Costa Pacifica Cruise Review by JMHamburg
- Sail Date: October 2018
- Destination: Mediterranean
- Cabin Type: Balcony Premium
Embarkation - The process from arrival at the terminal to my stateroom took about 2 hours, but I was repeatedly addressed in German, my native language. The stateroom was not yet ready at shortly after 01:00pm, but I already could store my hand luggage and grab my board card.
Security Drill - It took less than 30 minutes and was held in Italian, English and German languages shortly before departure; movies in other languages were available on the TV in the stateroom the entire cruise. Cruise guests had to bring life vests from their staterooms.
The Ship - 'Costa Pacifica' is a classic cruise liner, 9 years old, with a more traditional form, compared to newer ships. Interiors featured the theme music, with many colorful symbols and images in warm colors. There were always lots of free sun loungers on the very spacious sun decks, even in quiet areas. The cruise was outsold and the ship appeared crowded sometimes. 'Costa Pacifica' was well maintained and in good shape, given its age. Orientation signs on board were good.
Crew And Staff - The crew was friendly, caring and attentive, always trying to talk to their guests in each their languages, a charming Babylonian language jumble. The stateroom stewardess made a good job and was always open for a small talk.
Dining - There were different theme evenings in the main dining room, but I couldn't find a menu before entering the restaurant, and since I am a buffet type of passenger, generally avoiding long sessions in the main dining rooms, I did not visit the main dining room at all. In the evenings, the 'Ristorante Buffet La Paloma' was open from 07:00pm to 09:00pm, there were queues sometimes, since the buffets are arranged on long bars, not allowing guests to jump. Plastic table ware was used, but the offered food was among the best things on the cruise. Different variations of meat - including very good Bratwurst - and fish, a selection of pasta and different potato and vegetable preparations, very delicious small bites from the patisserie were always offered for lunch and dinner. Other deli was presented at special events at the main pool for example, as well as hamburgers and fries daily from 11:00am to 02:00pm. For 'La Merenda' from 04:00pm to 05:00pm, the restaurant was always very crowded, for good reason, the many different bites were very good; queues at the basket with freshly fried cinnamon rolls. On sea days, the 'Ristorante Buffet La Paloma' was crowded for breakfast; choice and quality was always very good, except for the fluid scrambled eggs. I had the 'Pranzo & Cena' beverage package, since only some beverages for breakfast and 'La Merenda' - coffee, hot chocolate and tea, plus juices for breakfast - were included in the cruise fare. The guest can get beverages at the end of every buffet line in the 'Ristorante Buffet La Paloma' at lunch and dinner, manually served by friendly staff, a full plastic cup with 250ml to 300ml out of cans or bottles. The 'Carta Costa' must be shown or handed over to the staff for paying therefore, any purchased beverage package is noted with its code on the card. Tap water was free, available from dispensers in the 'Ristorante Buffet La Paloma'. Hand disinfection was available at every buffet, but was not taken very seriously by most guests on this cruise. The dress code was casual, long pants were required in the evening.
The Guests - Majority from Italy, followed by cruise guests from German speaking countries. Other remarkable groups were from France, Spain, UK and Eastern Europe. The cruise was like all Europe on one ship. From my observation - I saw people in wheel chairs and with rollators - the ship was very kid friendly, with different kinds of kindergarten like care, plus a dedicated pool and play area. Kids were involved in festivities and had their appearances as special guests.
Shore Excursions - This is something I usually organize on my own. Disembarkation and Embarkation at ports of call was quickly without long waiting. The ship was always very punctual, but harbor stays were short. Guests were not allowed to bring beverages on board, but could walk in with even big bottles sometimes.
Entertainment - The program offered something for everyone, with live music every day, plus the shows in the theater of course. There were also entertainment offers in other languages than Italian. Over all, the program appeared a little bit limited, especially on sea days.
Shopping - Some few shops offered different things, from clothes to gifts, spirits and tobacco, as well as perfumes. There was no intrusive spa promotion on this cruise. The photo area was under renovation, temporarily moved to another location.
Internet - I had purchased the Internet 500mb package, the internet speed was not so good, temporarily overloaded or even unavailable sometimes on sea days.
Disembarkation - Cruise guests were assigned to disembarkation time slots and had to leave their staterooms until 08:00am, spending time until disembarkation with breakfast or waiting in crowded lounges. The baggage was easy to find in the terminal, on-board accounting was correct.
Thank you 'Costa Crociere' for an again wonderful cruise with so good food, charming multilingualism and your warm Italian hospitality on bella 'Costa Pacifica'!
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