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13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My wife and I have just returned from a cruise and stay package with Marella, staying firstly at the wonderful conca park hotel in Sorrento then onto the Explorer 2. Given it was our first cruise, We obviously have limited experience of ... Read More
My wife and I have just returned from a cruise and stay package with Marella, staying firstly at the wonderful conca park hotel in Sorrento then onto the Explorer 2. Given it was our first cruise, We obviously have limited experience of cruises but must say that we found our first experience to be amazing. Every aspect of the cruise was fantastic, from the cabin we had (a standard balcony cabin on deck 8) to the food, entertainment and staff. We enjoyed having so much choice for meals and loved fish and chips at the snack shack, pasta in Nonnas and main meal in the MDR. We were very Impressed with the friendlyness of all of the staff and the amazing shows in the show lounge, we made full use of our balcony and wouldn't like to do another cruise with a lesser grade cabin. So,altogether a great trip and would highly recommend this ship and company to others. The only negative aspect of our trip as mentioned in other reviews was Naples airport which was hell! Too busy, awful service and attitude and a horrible start and end to an otherwise great experience, I can only hope that Marella get the message and change this airport as we would certainly not wish to use it again and would therefore be very reluctant to do another holiday via there again. I had a wheelchair with me and found that all on the ship and tours were very accommodating. It was a bit of a squeeze in the cabin but we managed fairly well. However the same could not be said at the airport. You also realize how far we have come in accommodating disabled people in this country compared with others. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because we wanted to have a weeks stay in Sorrento afterwards. It was our first cruise and after reading the reviews our expectations were not too high. After all it isn’t a high end cruise so we were not ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to have a weeks stay in Sorrento afterwards. It was our first cruise and after reading the reviews our expectations were not too high. After all it isn’t a high end cruise so we were not expecting luxury. Cabin - our balcony cabin was a good size, with more storage space than we could possibly use ( I pack the kitchen sink). Tea and coffee making facilities, comfy bed, everything you need. Food - Latitude restaurant the food was variable, some good some not so good. Some starters were so small I wouldn’t have bothered dirtying a plate it would have fit on a cracker. Vista was our favourite the Italian dishes were delicious Nonnas pizza was really good, but service slow because it is so busy. The Market Square - canteen food. Did not enjoy the food in here Entertainment- a good variety in the different bars and the broadway lounge Drinks - we upgraded to the premium drinks package and really enjoyed everything. The gym was well equipped and there was a fitness studio, however the air conditioning in the gym is non existent which is surprising when the rest of the ship is so well air conditioned. When I went to use the shower and changing room I was told I couldn’t as it was being reserved for people using the spa. Staff - OUTSTANDING everywhere. I couldn’t believe that on our second visit to the aperitive bar our waiter Rene knew what our drinks were. After all there are another 1400 or so people on the ship. The staff were amazing Now for what I didn’t like. The pool area is jam packed with sun beds and I am sure the people are up at the crack of dawn to get on them, and they don’t shift. The ship has a policy of moving towels off beds that are unoccupied after 45 minutes but I never saw that enforced. There are no parasols so if you did get a bed you would be in full sun. For the seven days we were on the ship the only sun we got was on our balcony as we couldn’t get near the sun deck till after 5 pm. I didn’t go on holiday to sit in my room! Unless you book the massively overpriced excursions there was little or no information given about where you are visiting. A request at destination services was met with are you booking a trip? When we said no, then we don’t give maps! They cancelled the stop in Sicily so we had an extra day at sea, for me that was the nail in the coffin. There were too few areas where you could relax in the fresh air. We did get a lounger on the starboard deck but it was in the shade and very windy. The activities on board ranged from bingo and quizzes to towel folding and talks on how to get rid of your fat belly. It was like being in a hotel with the doors locked and there is a limit to how much eating and drinking you can do Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
been with marella before,not the biggest ships but some value as the basic drinks package is in with the price,entertainment was good and the food is good,but not the italian restuarant the vote is out on that,but Norras paizza place ... Read More
been with marella before,not the biggest ships but some value as the basic drinks package is in with the price,entertainment was good and the food is good,but not the italian restuarant the vote is out on that,but Norras paizza place excellent,although they say referb ship only in the public areas cabins not only bathrooms the food is good and lots of places to eat from lots of choice,thae speciality restaurants are also very good the standard drinks package is excellent but they dont do banana banches on explorer 1 or 2 as they do on discovery,you can upgrade the drinks package if you like, entertainment i the main showroom is very good and varried,however on deck its the normal entertainment as on all ships no maps or info given out for your destination of the day wich is not very helpfull,they say look at the screen as this is saving papper,but seem to deliver plenty of crap in flyers to your cabin every day to sell you things. the flight to and from Naples (nighmare)on arriving half a mile walk along streets to the coaches,plus 1 broken wheel from flight on returning 2and a half hour delay while sitting on plane waiting for luggage to be loaded,only 1 small glass of water from tui,arrive gatewick 2 hrs 45 mins late another brocken wheel and zipper riped on case, I would use marella again but never NAPLES AVOID,but it would be about itinery first,the suites on board marella 2 i would not call suites at all just lager balcony cabins Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
The experience started badly in Manchester Airport, the check in lines were unbelievable it took nearly 2 hours to check in. This needs to be sorted there was no separate check in fo cruise passenger or if you had printed your own boarding ... Read More
The experience started badly in Manchester Airport, the check in lines were unbelievable it took nearly 2 hours to check in. This needs to be sorted there was no separate check in fo cruise passenger or if you had printed your own boarding passes which would have speeded everything up. Naples airport dreadful too had to walk for 20 minutes in the heat with cases ! Thought suitcases would have gone straight to cabin. Overall we enjoyed the cruise and thought it was reasonable value for money. There are areas that need to addressed though so hence my detailed review. The ship was lovely the public rooms were very nice newly renovated so were very modern however ship was always freezing air con too cold ! The balcony cabin was really nice and roomy and kept very clean by our steward. New bathroom with glass shower doors better than a curtain! Entertainment in the main theatre from the young singers and dancers was excellent - some really good shows. Other entertainment awful far too many silly game shows and quizzes should just pay more for quality artists. Don’t really need full on music and quizzes all day by the pool either. Resident groups were average. Karaoke was ridiculous as the screen is behind the person who is singing so all you see when in the audience is the back of the head of the person singing. All staff particularly waiters and bar staff were very good and efficient. The food in the main restaurants was good but not fantastic there should be more choice very limited no curries or chillies or liver or fillet steak. Buffet food not as varied as it should be and couldn’t believe at breakfast there was no egg station to make fresh omelettes etc and no carvery at lunch or dinner never known that before on a cruise. Speciality restaurants expensive Drinks package ok but wish Marella would invest in a decent Zinfandel Rose instead of the dry house rose . Also no Strongbow cider in main buffet restaurant but 2 Fosters pumps ? Tables for 2 in main dining room far too close together might as well have been on table for 4 ! No ice bucket or water in cabins and no daily news sheet or map or info re port of call - seem to be cutting back a bit too much I think. Been on many cruises with all the major lines and I do like Marella particularly for their itineraries and reasonable prices but they just have to be careful they don’t cut back on costs too much to reduce the quality of a cruise experience and ultimately effect how many repeat bookings they get. Naples Airport on return journey horrendous no proper system to queue at gate and no air conditioning and subsequently delayed. Very very limited food on plane going back as had sold out due to queues at Manchester Airport on incoming flight as nobody had a chance to buy food in Airport so passengers bought everything up on plane on flight to Naples! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
This was our first cruise and although we have nothing else to compare it with, can honestly say it was the best experience ever. Yes, there is a bit of a walk from the airport to get on the coach, but its not that far. Embarkation and ... Read More
This was our first cruise and although we have nothing else to compare it with, can honestly say it was the best experience ever. Yes, there is a bit of a walk from the airport to get on the coach, but its not that far. Embarkation and check in had a nice feel to it, with welcoming drinks etc., Our Cabin was always clean, with fresh towels and pool towels whenever you needed them, The food choice on board was great, and the Surf & Turf Steakhouse was so good, we booked to go again, before we came home. The staff could not do enough for you and were always pleasant and happy in their work. We did a few excursions, and that was the only thing that we had a negative about as one trip we booked, we hardly had any time to visit the place, as the tour guide decided to take us on tour round the town. so bit disappointed. But, we are already researching our next cruise and it will defintely be with TUI Marella. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Our cruise was with TUI, Marella Explorer 2. We sailed out of Naples 2nd May 2019. We have cruised 14 times before with many different companies and ships however, we feel that Tui Marella Explorer 2 is the worst ship and cruise that we ... Read More
Our cruise was with TUI, Marella Explorer 2. We sailed out of Naples 2nd May 2019. We have cruised 14 times before with many different companies and ships however, we feel that Tui Marella Explorer 2 is the worst ship and cruise that we have ever been on. We have cruised with Thomson 3 times and have always enjoyed the ships, food, very friendly staff and happy atmosphere on board. We feel that Tui have lost the plot, the ship was shabby, not because the staff didn't clean but because the company have done a very poor job of refitting and maintaining the ship. The food was very poor, limited choice at buffet and sub standard menus in dining rooms, they obviously have cut the staff to a minimum and it showed in the service and the way the staff enacted with customers. I feel the staff did their very best under the circumstances but I can only describe the atmosphere as being unhappy and the ship was soulless, the whole ship had a sad feeling not what anyone wants on a holiday. If this had been the first cruise we had ever taken we would never have cruised again. The shows were boring, certainly not up up Thomson's excellent standard. the limited daytime entertainment was nothing short of embarrassing. There were no toiletries in the cabin apart from one container of shower gel in the shower. On arriving at Naples Airport were had to walk about a quarter of a mile with all our luggage to get to the coach park, lots of elderly people were really struggling, no help was offered from Tui staff. The whole cruise was basic and penny pinching and we will never travel with them again or recommend them to friends or family. We traveled with 6 friends all experienced cruisers and we are all of the same opinion. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Ponant is a lovely yacht if the seas are kind. We were lucky and it only got rough the last night. Despite the excellent service onboard, there are a few things that, for the price, should be addressed. 1. Do not be fooled by the ... Read More
Ponant is a lovely yacht if the seas are kind. We were lucky and it only got rough the last night. Despite the excellent service onboard, there are a few things that, for the price, should be addressed. 1. Do not be fooled by the deck chart. Cabins 1 through 5 are very tiny and definitely should be your last choice. The beds are fixed queens and cannot be separated. These cabins themselves are very tiny. 2. On day two of sleeping onboard I awoke with the most horrible pain in my hip. This has never happened before. This pain stayed with me throughout the entire cruise. I could only get to a standing position very slowly with much pain and walking pain. Then I found out I was not alone. Two other people were having such issues, another one actually having to stay onboard like I did. There is something wrong with the mattresses. Even adding two duvets to the top and a pillow did not help. 3. Food choices are really geared to lamb and fish. I never saw chicken on the menu. Although the ship was very accomodating on some food issues, in general all I can say is that both my husband and I lost weight on the cruise. Read Less

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