1. Home
  2. Cruise Destinations
  3. Italy Cruises
  4. Italy Cruise Reviews
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Viking was wonderful! They met us at he airport and delivered us to the hotel in which we stayed in Rome. A beautiful hotel, which was part of their package. There were Viking agents there almost round the clock to help us with anything. ... Read More
Viking was wonderful! They met us at he airport and delivered us to the hotel in which we stayed in Rome. A beautiful hotel, which was part of their package. There were Viking agents there almost round the clock to help us with anything. They took us on to the ship. The embarkation was the best of any ship we have taken. Smooth and efficient. Then the ship was absolutely beautiful. Our bags arrived very promptly and our cabin steward was right there to make sure that we were settled in and aquatinted with everything. The cabin was spacious, beautiful and very comfortable, as was the bathroom. It is a beautifully appointed ship with ample comfortable and elegant seating throughout. The ships staff were welcoming and helpful. I really can’t say enough about this entire experience. We stayed two extra nights in Venice, as we have always loved that city, and although the hotel was across the water from St Marks, it was very pleasant. In fact the hotel itself was amazing and very comfortable. This was our first experience with Viking, but it certainly will not be our last. So many passengers on our ship were repeat clients. All sang the praises of both the ocean and the river cruises...our next adventure! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
Taking a Star Clippers cruise is about being on a true sailing vessel. If you like to sail, this is your ship. Our trip to Italy and Greece was amazing. We spent a day exploring Rome on our own and then took the train to Civitavecchia ... Read More
Taking a Star Clippers cruise is about being on a true sailing vessel. If you like to sail, this is your ship. Our trip to Italy and Greece was amazing. We spent a day exploring Rome on our own and then took the train to Civitavecchia (make sure you take the bus from the train station....walking doesn't work) where we boarded our ship. It is breathtaking because it's a sailing ship that is well loved and taken care of. After we did all the check-in's, drills, unpacked, etc. we had a delicious dinner and met new friends. Our stops were Ponza, Palmarola, Sorrento, Lipari, Syracuse (Italy), and Pilos, Elafonisos, Hydra, and Athens (Greece). All of our stops were beautiful. Every day, there is a talk and a sheet of paper that explains destination, tours, opportunities to explore. Do some research on your own too. Many people did the tours but some explored on their own and had a fabulous time. One couple would find a cafe with a beautiful view and spend the day painting. We love seeing their pictures. Because this is a sailing vessel that can transport you to smaller ports, sometimes the ship cannot dock right at port. In that case, you will take a tender to the port. Embarking and disembarking the tender is only as easy as the calmness of the ocean. For 95% of people, this was fine, but there were some that struggled. Also, don't take the first tender in the morning. The first one is too packed with people, it gets hot and they're figuring out how to work with the ocean and waves. The tenders go back and forth regularly so you can have short or long excursions....whatever floats your boat. The cabin size was perfect for us. They are small, but we don't sit in our cabin, we love the ship and spend as much time out on the deck as possible. One of our favorite activities before dinner is to enjoy a glass of wine at the back of the ship watching the rolling waves and the scenery and then going into dinner a little later. You can sit wherever you like at meal times. If you have a preference (i.e., english-speaking table or if you have a group of people, they will seat you together). The food is delicious. You probably get fancier stuff on big ships but this is trip is about sailing. I ate fish almost every night and loved it! Their soup is delicious too. Cocktails are very reasonably priced. We enjoyed their house rose too. We had a category 2 cabin/bathroom and the shower is small....but it feels delightful after a full-day of excursions. I would choose this cruise over a big cruise any day because the crew is fantastic, the ship is beautiful and it's a fabulous experience. There were some issues with night-time entertainment on our ship because the piano player had a medical emergency and could not be on our boat, but we were so tired at the end of the day, we couldn't stay up anyhow. If dancing/music are important to you, bring a phone with your favorite playlist and they will make a party/dance club on the tropical deck. Category 1 (500 level) rooms can hear some of the action on the deck (pounding/repairing sails, music from the dance club, etc). Category 5/6 (100) level rooms can hear the engines. Not much you can do about that other than bring earplugs. Star Clippers vacations are fabulous. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
9 days "Sicily Splendors" was purchased in June 2016. We cruised on Windstar (Windsurf) before and knew about the warm crew approach, amazing food, long staying in the ports and all the other things smaller ships can offer. We ... Read More
9 days "Sicily Splendors" was purchased in June 2016. We cruised on Windstar (Windsurf) before and knew about the warm crew approach, amazing food, long staying in the ports and all the other things smaller ships can offer. We were in the different parts of Italy many times but not in Sicily. So the decision was easy. Embarkation was smooth and easy. We were upgraded to a higher deck - which was a nice surprise. Cabin was clean and kept clean all the voyage. The dining on Windstar ships is the one of the best you can get on a cruise ship. All the time 5* - breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, BBQ event - everything! The ports were interesting for us as I've mentioned. All around Sicily plus Malta and Gozo (small island next to Malta). Unfortunately due to the weather conditions in Gozo captain decided to stay one more night in Valletta so we couldn't see Gozo. But safety first and we spent a wonderful one more day in Malta - which was nice :) Special event was very well organized. Additional point to the Team. Miss the ship already and dream to come again! :) Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Wanted to try a short cruise and the destinations of Sicily and Malta were places that we had not been to before. The ship is classed in todays world as small ( 600 passengers) but this made it easy to find your way round and meet the same ... Read More
Wanted to try a short cruise and the destinations of Sicily and Malta were places that we had not been to before. The ship is classed in todays world as small ( 600 passengers) but this made it easy to find your way round and meet the same people.We spent 3 days in Rome before the start of the cruise which was well worth doing. Everything about the cruise was very good, dining, entertainment and service. We had a Veranda stateroom which was furnished very well although slightly small. The shore excursions were very well organised but slightly expensive. The wifi and internet were expensive on board ship so used the wifi at the ports we stopped at. The crew and staff were very attentive with nothing being too much trouble for them. The captain was very approachable and was often around when we were leaving the ship for excursions and during part of the evenings entertainment. He would often make suggestion about when was a good time to be on deck ie. when entering Valletta in Malta for the views from the ship. We would definitely travel with this company again. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
We had travelled with Regent before and wanted to experience their new ship. Although quite different in decor to the other ships - the wood is slightly darker, it is a stunning looking vessel with lovely touches such as beautiful glass ... Read More
We had travelled with Regent before and wanted to experience their new ship. Although quite different in decor to the other ships - the wood is slightly darker, it is a stunning looking vessel with lovely touches such as beautiful glass and works of art scattered around the ship. The internet needs work - it seemed to be switched off in port which, as we were in port most days, meant that it had limited availability. The staff were amazing - so friendly and kind at every single level and always smiling. The entertainment was brilliant - I know there are those who still think they should have Celine Dion every night but that is not going to happen. Those seeking such high levels of entertainment should perhaps go to Las Vegas? The singers and dancers were really good and thoroughly charming both on and off the stage.They did some great shows. The acts they fly in were all tremendous Paul Soha the violinist was exceptional. The cruise director is first class - John Barron. He is funny, unflappable and a great entertainer and a complete asset to Regent. His sense of humour might not be to everyone's taste but he was popular with 99% of those on the ship and his own shows were packed out. His assistant David was also excellent. They have added a new restaurant called the Pacific Rim which was just fantastic - Asian fusion and a real stand out service from start to finish. The French restaurant actually got our vote for the best food - yes it is French food, which may be a little refined for some travellers who like their food in larger quantities. Prime 7 is probably the most popular with US travellers as it is home from home and it is always fantastic. That said, the Compass Rose which is the general restaurant has also really upped its game in terms of the variety and quality of food. We did not manage to eat in Sette Marie this time as we ran out of time but as were were travelling round Italy we had quite a bit of Italian food anyway. The excursions were all excellent. More detailed guidance on how strenuous they were and how long meant that there were fewer occasions when someone was on the wrong excursion or we have a petition to go back early because those who like to eat at 6pm had dinner reservations. There was something for everyone. A standout person in the Explorer lounge was Magdelena - a fantastic coctail maker, totally calm and collected and always remembers your drink. Any downside? Well, as the age profile of the travellers starts to go down, perhaps a bit more nightlife would be good as most things closed at 11.30. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
This was our fifth Windstar Cruise, but the first on the Sea Breeze. Overall it was very good value for the money. Some observations : 1. The logistics at the Port of Civitavecchia (Rome) necessitated two(2) coach transfers - no easy ... Read More
This was our fifth Windstar Cruise, but the first on the Sea Breeze. Overall it was very good value for the money. Some observations : 1. The logistics at the Port of Civitavecchia (Rome) necessitated two(2) coach transfers - no easy task when you are 80 years old, the temperature is in the low 30C's, and you have handle your own luggage....................However, both embarkation and disembarkation went extremely smoothly. 2. Customer service was excellent, and left a big impression that the satisfaction of the client was a number one priority. Some examples: - on two (2) separate occasions my Wife had issues with her meal. On both occasions the Head Chef was at our table within 5 minutes. - By the third evening it was becoming very obvious that the initial high standard of service in the Main Dining Room was starting to deteriorate (getting sloppy- I am still waiting for my dessert.............). Having informed the Dining Room Manager that it was not acceptable, the service the next evening, and for the balance of the cruise, was back to it's initial high standard. - The shore excursion to Gozo was abandoned due to a heavy swell - a full refund was given without asking. - The boat excursion to Positano had to be changed to a visit to Positano by Coach - again due to a heavy swell. A partial refund was given - again without asking. - My Birthday was celebrated twice - once at breakfast with a croissant adorned by two (2) candles, and again in the evening with a more formal birthday cake. 3. The Laundry Package/Service was excellent and good value for the money. 4. The Wine and Beverage Package was, in my opinion, overpriced. You would have to be a confirmed alcoholic to get full value............. 5. A nice touch was the offering of local wine and locally sourced food - especially the Branzino (European Sea Bass) which was cooked to perfection. 6. Candles Restaurant was superb, as was the on-deck BBQ. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Our previous cruises were all on Carnival ships, so the elegance and 'dignity' of the Riviera was a very pleasant change, as was the smaller ship with fewer guests. We noticed no loss of pleasant attendance by a reduced number ... Read More
Our previous cruises were all on Carnival ships, so the elegance and 'dignity' of the Riviera was a very pleasant change, as was the smaller ship with fewer guests. We noticed no loss of pleasant attendance by a reduced number of crew (from the larger ships). The four specialty dining venues at no extra charge were lovely, although we did not know to make reservations BEFORE the cruise and therefore could not visit them all. The bed and bedding were luxurious and the veranda we had divine. I spent a lot of time trying to master the WiFi and a laptop computer, and so the width of the room became narrowed between me in the chair and the coffee table and couch. Not a real problem, just an irritation as I spent much longer trying to use the internet than should have been needed. Chalk that one up to user error. Even though I had told our charge card company that we would be travelling, I was unable to log into my account to look at transactions made during the trip. This was very frustrating, as we thought we had been cheated by one merchant and could not find out. The company wanted us to call them because of possibly fraudulent login attempts (mine), but we had no phone. We only attended one of the evening musical productions, and that one badly needed more thought. . . There were so many amenities available, but with a new mooring every day there was little time to explore them. The shore excursions were rather expensive, and I was especially watchful because I have difficulty walking -- one 'easy' one had us walking on cobblestones, uphill, for a good 15 minutes, which is nothing to a younger person but very difficult for me. The ports, especially Corfu and Kotor, Montenegro were delightful, picturesque, and well worth all the money I spent in the shops. Service was spectacular and I would recommend this line to anyone wanting classy, luxurious cruising. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Loved Viking River Cruises and couldn't wait to experience a Viking Ocean Cruise. This was a surprise trip given to my husband for his birthday and retirement to finally go visit his Italian family roots. Viking Ocean Cruise was ... Read More
Loved Viking River Cruises and couldn't wait to experience a Viking Ocean Cruise. This was a surprise trip given to my husband for his birthday and retirement to finally go visit his Italian family roots. Viking Ocean Cruise was spectacular and perfection in every way. Boarding and departure was very smooth, amenities aboard ship were the best, crew was extremely friendly and always there to offer anything you needed, and entertainment was wonderful. Without a doubt, we will do another Viking Ocean cruise. The arrangements in all ports were flawless and the tour guides were from the area so they could really give you the true history and worth points of interests to see and know. Coaches used in each port were very clean. The process for departing the ship each day for your daily excursion was very smooth considering the number of people they needed to move off the ship. Well worth it in every way. Read Less
22 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This cruise was a part of our honeymoon, so I spent extensive amounts of time researching and planning. I am writing this review because I found it difficult to find a straight-forward review. We loved it & would have booked sooner ... Read More
This cruise was a part of our honeymoon, so I spent extensive amounts of time researching and planning. I am writing this review because I found it difficult to find a straight-forward review. We loved it & would have booked sooner with more confidence if it wasn't for the cruise snobs complaining about the smallest trivial things! This is what we wanted in our cruise: 1. Clean and comfortable 2. A way to see a lot of Europe without having to re-pack our bags every day 3. Good food 4. Stopping at good ports 5. Fun activities on the cruise (although we spent most of our time on shore) And we got all of it! Here's what I was confused about even after reading all the reviews: 1. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BUY WATER. I drink a lot of water, so it sounded like you have to buy every cup. That's only if you're in one of the fancy restaurants that you have to pay extra for. There's Buffets for every meal that is included in the cruise without extra charge and all the free water you want. People seems to complain for the extra cost of water at the fancy restaurants but that's typical if you ask for bottled water at any restaurant. You can also buy bottles of water on the ship, we prepaid for 12 large 2 liter bottles for like $3 a piece. Really reasonable and we were never thirsty. 2. There's open breakfast buffet upstairs, but you can eat a nice sit down breakfast downstairs at no extra charge. You can order eggs, burritos, and any of their pre-set hot meals. I guess europeans are used to eating small breakfast (like cheese and croissants) so it wasn't crowded downstairs. Lunch buffet has pasta, pizza, salads, etc. So no extra charge to eat, only at the fancy restaurants that you need to make reservations for. Also, the ship does have a lot of Europeans, I think we only ran into a few Americans, but there was no problem communicating in English. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
My husband and I just returned from the taking the Star Breeze, Sicilian Splendors cruise (Sept.17-27) and I wanted to provide you with first-hand feedback and many thanks to the crew. We had a great time and Windstar is to be ... Read More
My husband and I just returned from the taking the Star Breeze, Sicilian Splendors cruise (Sept.17-27) and I wanted to provide you with first-hand feedback and many thanks to the crew. We had a great time and Windstar is to be congratulated for providing us an excellent experience. The food was top quality and Chef Rohit showed his skill and innovation in procuring and preparing local products meeting and exceeding our every request. The dining room service was great and Dining Manager Allen made sure that all of our needs were promptly met making every dining experience memorable. Lastly, Hotel Manager Stephane’s skilled staff ensured that the rooms were clean and ready. What a treat to have a new towel animal to greet us as we returned from our tours which were very organized and fun filled. The special luncheon and stops for a snack/drinks were welcoming and elegantly executed. It is hard not to complement every member of crew for their excellent customer service, wonderful attitudes and providing every guest with personalized care. Last year, we cruised on the Wind Surf from Dublin to Lisbon and while that cruise was fantastic, this most recent cruise on the Star Breeze was even better, hard to imagine but it was! We also enjoyed the staff's dance night and talent night, and it's clear they enjoy their jobs and working with each other, therefore providing great customer service. We look forward to taking another Windstar cruise in 2016. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
This was our second cruise on a Cunard ship. Our previous experience was on the QM2 and our cruise from Rome to Trieste on the Queen Victoria left much to be desired. I am also not used to complaining and this is the first negative ... Read More
This was our second cruise on a Cunard ship. Our previous experience was on the QM2 and our cruise from Rome to Trieste on the Queen Victoria left much to be desired. I am also not used to complaining and this is the first negative review I have ever given. Everything was average and nothing was wonderful - the food and the entertainment. Our cabin was spacious and comfortable and the service was adequate. The speaker geared his talk to a mostly British audience and many of his punch lines were inaudible. The comedian was insulting to the old and infirm and he made fun of the accents of the staff - something I would not have expected Cunard to condone. The boats used to transport passengers from the ship to the center of Venice were hot and uncomfortable and as this was mid-July, everyone was drenched in sweat on reaching Venice or returning from Venice . I expressed my concerns to Cunard Customer Relations and expected an incentive to return on another cruise but just received an acknowledgement of my concerns. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
We have just returned home form a Rome to Venice cruise. On the whole our experience was very positive and found the experience very relaxing, in fact I don’t think I’ve ever been so relaxed ! We had a classic drinks package , select ... Read More
We have just returned home form a Rome to Venice cruise. On the whole our experience was very positive and found the experience very relaxing, in fact I don’t think I’ve ever been so relaxed ! We had a classic drinks package , select dining and a $300 on board credit included . The drinks package was well worth it. Embarkation was well organised and timely. On the positive side, the ship was very clean and well maintained. Our stateroom was modern and the window huge. We had breakfast in bed every morning. The staff were friendly and helpful, and the food in the Marco Polo Restaurant was lovely. The ports of call were a fantastic selection. We enjoyed the pool area , with the added bonus of roving bar staff. There are two small outdoor pools and two internal hot pools, with numerous spas. A DJ and Band play in the afternoons. There was also a Health Spa, where we had a massages. The daily newsletter lets you know what activities are planned for the day, and you are free to take part, or not. I am unable to comment on the quality of the night time entertainment as we chose to do our own thing. There is a small walking track and a gym and basketball court if you feel like exercising. The negatives were few. The ship has a no smoking policy with designated areas, however these were many, including 1/2 of the pool deck and right next door to the ping pong tables where children congregated and on a corner of the walking track.....nothing better than a lung full of second hand smoke when your exercising ! There feels like a lot of pressure to buy when on board. The shops were limited and displayed duty free sings, however they state they were required to add 22% Tax which you were able to claim back if you spent over $180 USD, and of course there are the endless gratuities added to extra services . The excursions we went on were pricey but fabulous, especially the Caves in Slovenia. The WIFi- this was expensive, bought in a package and charged by the minute. It took me 28 minutes to do my internet banking, this would normally take me 5 minutes on my home PC. Slow was an understatement, its dial up speed at best. The lack of affordable internet could also be seen as a plus as you had to put this aside and disconnect. The ship was full, this made at sea days feel unpleasantly crammed, especially the pool deck. It would have been nice to have an adults only area. Disembarkation was not a positive experience. We opted for a transfer organised by the ship and were told there would be limited taxis. We were to be off the ship by 09.30 and the transfer wasn’t booked until 11.30. We didn’t have time to get into Venice and back so we , and many others had to spend our time waiting on the footpath outside customs for 2 hours. There were plenty of Taxis and for 2 of us the fare was less than the bus transfers organised by the ship. That said, I would do another one tomorrow .... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2015
We had extremely high expectations for this cruise, and rightfully so given our previous excellent experience on the Wind Surf along the Croatian Coast. Let's begin with the ship. The Star Breeze is a different type of vessel from ... Read More
We had extremely high expectations for this cruise, and rightfully so given our previous excellent experience on the Wind Surf along the Croatian Coast. Let's begin with the ship. The Star Breeze is a different type of vessel from those who are accustomed to the Windstar sailing ships, but we knew that going in. Having acquired the ship from Seabourn, and recently completed a much touted multi-million dollar renovation, our expectations for the ship were higher than what was delivered. The staterooms are more spacious than on the sailing ships -- a big positive. The public areas are ok, but a bit underwhelming. The main dining room is the nicest area on the ship, as far as the public areas go, and they certainly did much to make it elegant. The "Candles" restaurant really is not a step up in food quality from the main dining area, and other than the fact that you are seated outdoors, there is nothing special about the ambiance. It is the same area used for serving breakfast every morning. With that said, we certainly did enjoy the outside seating and the wait staff did an excellent job with their service. Larry is the ship's officer responsible for the dining room staff, and he is truly committed to service excellence and to making sure that the client experience is very positive. We found him to be very personable and engaging. One of the most frustrating aspects of the ship was the horrible internet infrastructure onboard. I have an extensive background in technology and am well aware that satellite-based internet service is inherently slow. That's not the issue. The issue was the ongoing outages and continual dropped connections to the ship's router that occurred throughout the duration of our cruise. There were times that I got dropped 10-12 times over an attempted 1 hour session -- finally giving up in frustration. One morning, I got up almost 2 hours early to take care of some time-sensitive business matters back home, only to find that the internet connection was down completely. I politely complained about all of the above to the nice young woman at the reception desk, only to be told, "I'm sorry sir... our officers have been made aware of the problems..." I'm now in Day 9 of our trip and I feel like there should be some adjustment made to the outrageous $250 fee I paid for "unlimited" internet use. It has not been offered yet, although I intend to ask for one at the end of the cruise. Today, our port of call was Capri. Knowing it was a "short" day with the last tender returning to the ship at 3:45pm, we were up waiting for the first tender at approximately 8am. Nothing happened. The number of people started to build in the waiting area, and clearly there was frustration. No communications. Finally, the Captain made an announcement over the ship's PA system at around 9:30am, explaining that they had been negotiating with the Port for a place to anchor and regarding the use of the ship's tenders, versus the port's. This made no sense to me since it is well known that Capri requires the use of their own tenders. We watched the "comedy" as the Italian tenders from Capri were sent out to the ship, as they bobbed and rolled in the fairly mild seas, yet posing great difficulty for people to safely board from the ship. Ultimately, only one of their tenders was useable, and it needed to be shared with the larger ship anchored next to us. We ended up waiting until about 11 am to finally board and head to shore. We also observed the crew staff tell one of the other passengers that he and his family needed to wait because first priority boarding was being given to passengers who booked shore excursions through the ship. He politely told the crew staff that he had his own excursion and was going to board the tender with the same priority as those who purchased theirs through the ship. Unexpected things happen in every business, and how you handle matters with your customers differentiates the best businesses from the others. This matter was very poorly handled by the Windstar crew, and ultimately the responsibility resides with the Captain who was nowhere to be seen. Frankly, he should have left his ivory tower and explained the situation to the multitude of very upset passengers... personally, and not via the PA system. People should have been offered refreshments to keep them comfortable, and there should have been ongoing communications about the problem, what was being done to resolve it, and when people should expect to make it onshore. Instead, there was very little communication, and the ship's staff appeared to be confused and ill-prepared to handle the problem. The finger of responsibility was pointed at the Italian's at Capri's port, but this issue was totally foreseeable. Instead, many of us felt that there was a lot more to the "story" than was being communicated to the passengers. Even though the shore time was extended by almost 2 hours to "make up" for the delay, many passengers lost confidence in the system that would supposedly get us back to the ship, and ended up cutting the afternoon short in order to return early and avoid the chaos we had witnessed in the morning. After missing one of our earlier ports of call due to heavy seas, our final port of call in Capri was substantially compromised. It was not a positive way to conclude our cruise experience on the Star Breeze. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2015
This was our first clothing optional cruise, but definitely not our last. The boat was full of nothing but cheerful people. I guess it's hard to be crabby when your not wearing pants! This was truly a clothing OPTIONAL cruise. ... Read More
This was our first clothing optional cruise, but definitely not our last. The boat was full of nothing but cheerful people. I guess it's hard to be crabby when your not wearing pants! This was truly a clothing OPTIONAL cruise. Most folks chose to take full advantage of the sun and ocean breezes, but some preferred full or partial covering and that was OK. I can't recommend the Bare Necessities folks and organization highly enough. there were 16 first time couples, and we all said we'd come back in a heartbeat. The ship, meanwhile is great. When the wind blew the Captain shut off the engine and hoisted all 42 sails. Stunning! There isn't much choice of activities on this 200+ passenger ship, but all we wanted to do was lounge around on deck, with occasional (and voluntary) sail hoisting and mast climbing. One day he raised all the sails in a very light breeze, and launched two tenders full of photographers to circle the ship. She is a BEAUTIFUL ship! There is a minuscule library, comprised solely of donated books in many different languages. And the entertainment is very low key. Shoe excursions were very reasonably priced, with a good variety. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
We went on the 7-night Star Breeze cruise, Rome to Nice, based upon the belief that this would be a 6-star experience, docked in each port because this was a"yacht," and could go to ports where the big ships could not go. THE ... Read More
We went on the 7-night Star Breeze cruise, Rome to Nice, based upon the belief that this would be a 6-star experience, docked in each port because this was a"yacht," and could go to ports where the big ships could not go. THE GOOD: The ride was really smooth. We were concerned that the yacht, being small, might not be comfortable in not-so-calm waters. The ride was a pleasure. The cabin was large and beautiful. It was about the length of a Princess mini-suite, bet about 1-1/3 wider. The decor was tasteful, and the bathroom large and beautiful (double sinks!) The food was excellent and plentiful, particularly the baked goods. The croissants were about the best I've had. A small thing, but do not miss the orange juice. I appreciated it as I enjoyed it on board, but, now at home, I miss it. The service was super, except for a few hiccups. The ports were beautiful. Portofino, in particular, lived up to its hype. Cinque Terra should not be missed. THE BAD: Do not go if you want entertainment. They had 2 duos, who were good, but offered only sporadically. The free "Glitterazzi" excursion to the Monte Carlo Casino was a bust. We only took 1 of their offered tours, the boat trip to Cinque Terra. It ww q bit pricy, but we were glad we did it. Otherwise don't bother. They offered a walking tour of Monaco for $115 each. 30 yards away was a hop-on-hop-off bus for 19 Euros. These are good values for an overview, and then use it to return to those sites which interest you. THE UGLY The promised ability to dock in the smaller ports was not true. We had to tender in half of the ports. And the tender was awful. Most cruise ships use their life boats, relatively stable catamarans. Windstar, however, used a couple of old 1930-era speed boats, which bounced terribly. When at the ship (er, "yacht"), they only used one rope, and you had to jump on and off the tender. Several people were bruised, and one lady had a rather nasty injury to her arm. All in all, I give this cruise a C+. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2015
My wife Andrea and I were of the opinion that the small cruise lines delivered better service, until we experienced the Celebrity Constellation. Our room attendants, "Ray" and "Igede," our butler Nikola, waiters ... Read More
My wife Andrea and I were of the opinion that the small cruise lines delivered better service, until we experienced the Celebrity Constellation. Our room attendants, "Ray" and "Igede," our butler Nikola, waiters Christian, Mohammed, and Mateja leave us as raving fans of Celebrity and the Constellation. On a slow day in one of the restaurants, we were able to have a meaningful conversation with Mateja, who we later encountered at the gelato bar. My wife remarked that there is a depth to this man and qualities that go well beyond what training can accomplish. I agree. Nikola insisted we call him to set reservations, bring room service, and he cheerfully brought by tea every afternoon around 4. He is pure class and would do well training and mentoring others. The authentic desire to serve makes the staff aboard the Constellation a cut above the 5 other lines we have sailed. Clearly, the people who hire, train, and coach the staff on the Constellation "get it." These 12 days covered some of the most beautiful places we have ever been. Malta and Santorini stand out for us. We had a small suite with a nice deck, and it was perfect. The food was excellent everywhere we went on the ship. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
If the "O" stands for "O" zero value, "O"zero taste(foods),"O" zero crusie experience than they got that right. They also have an "F" rating with the BBB, (which I wish I had checked ... Read More
If the "O" stands for "O" zero value, "O"zero taste(foods),"O" zero crusie experience than they got that right. They also have an "F" rating with the BBB, (which I wish I had checked before, not after I took my first & last cruise with them), a mistake learned going forward. The "F" stands for, Failed!Failing! Falling short! and in fact Failure to respond to my BBB complaint as well. Also a first time ever for me, filing such a claim with any company. Oceania really don't seem to care, which goes to their attitude on board as well.The well being of their passengers are not their priority. It is a corporate decision to just ignore the BBB complaint (they have lots of complaints filed, check it out before booking). Please Save your $, they are not even close to being a high end, luxury cruiseline.Clueless is more like it. There are a few others to select from that deserve your hard earned $$$$$$$$$$$'s The food is pretty but tasteless. Even in their specialty restaurants. Got food posioning at Jacques, their french restaurant. Couldn't chew the prime rib at their famous chop house. I don't think even the cow it came from could have chewed it. How do you screw up a prime rib from your best steak house. The afternoon teas had pastry that tasted like cardboard. Restaurant hours not condusive with port calls, so most closed when you got back on board only to have the grill serving the same few selections daily. The entertainment was so bad that I actually felt sorry for them. I mean cringe worthy bad. No lectures, or movies or other choices but very bad shows. They do offer cooking classes that you have to pay ( as if their fees aren't high enough) for and a free art class. The ports were in areas where there was nothing to do if you didn't go on a tour that took you at least an hour away. Also the local guides lied about important information that could have caused great harm, and did not have the passengers best interest. This crusie was paradise from hell and has nothing to do with expectations not met, as was told to me from their representative. This is all about their failing to provide a cruise experience worth celebrating, as we have had on so many other ships. I can't state this any more clearly, if I can save one perosn from cruising on Oceania, they will Thank me. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
My wife and I have now sailed on Windstar 4 times, the last being the Classic Italy/Dalmatian Coast cruise on Wind Surf that May 3 -11. Sadly, because we really have loved the small ship, casual and comfortable style of Windstar in the ... Read More
My wife and I have now sailed on Windstar 4 times, the last being the Classic Italy/Dalmatian Coast cruise on Wind Surf that May 3 -11. Sadly, because we really have loved the small ship, casual and comfortable style of Windstar in the past, I think this is likely our last Windstar sail. I have some specific comments but I must say that the Windstar feeling seems to have changed. The marketing is slicker but the service actually seems a little more rote and less personal. I was surprised that the meals in the dining room were not better - I had heard they had improved but I did not find that. Not that they were bad, they certainly were acceptable - but one comes to expect more of Windstar. As a point of comparison, the food in Amphora and breakfasts at the Verandah were consistently excellent - so the company can do it. The excursion and tour selections were extremely disappointing - you could get 1/2 day or full day private cars or vans or book ordinary walking or bus tours for twice the price that you have to pay if you book directly. And, there was, at least to me, a significant overemphasis on food and wine experiences. The Sicily private event was a waste of a day. But the most unpleasant experience was disembarkation in Venice. The actual point where we leave the ship was a long walk from the terminal - a long long walk. We were staying at an apartment in Venice so did not need Windstar transfers. But we did need directions, etc. to get started. The Windstar staffer at the terminal had little time for us - after all we were past customers and not paying for a transfer so she just pointed out the door and said get a taxi over there. We walked - there was no taxi stand - we ended up walking 30 minutes from the terminal to Piazza Roma for vaparetto connections (and it turned out if she had helped there was a vaparetto stop not 5 minutes from the terminal in the other direction). This was not just a lack of service; it was specifically disservice. Summary - ship is still fun, food good but not great, cabin comfortable, ports good, shore excursions mediocre. All in all, not the world's best small ship line. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2015
I cruise quite a bit and found the Jade to be consistently a great experience. If you read my other ship reviews you can see I am critical. Very clean and excellent service, I'd take another cruise on this ship. Technology is not the ... Read More
I cruise quite a bit and found the Jade to be consistently a great experience. If you read my other ship reviews you can see I am critical. Very clean and excellent service, I'd take another cruise on this ship. Technology is not the same as newer ships, can't check your bill on line. The food was fine. The French restaurant was outstanding for taste and service, very impressive. Cagneys was painfully slow and the waiter (same one two different nights) would not give us clean silverware between courses. The buffet staff was the best I have seen. No conditioner provided so bring some if you use it. The spa was amazing. Clean, great view and relaxing. The band at the pool left us running for a peaceful escape and found the spa's therapy package to be pampering and well worth the money. Loved all the ports. Would like to return to Kotor, so much to see and do we ran out of time. Did private tours in each port with great success. Great cruise, great ship and staff. Hats off to the Jade team. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2015
A belated but useful review of the 2 tours that our group of 18 made in Italy were: Luccalimo, (office +39 3206066859) with our excellent guide Valter (Alias Giovanni) Roman to Lucca, Italy and an excellent tasting tour of the winery ... Read More
A belated but useful review of the 2 tours that our group of 18 made in Italy were: Luccalimo, (office +39 3206066859) with our excellent guide Valter (Alias Giovanni) Roman to Lucca, Italy and an excellent tasting tour of the winery complete with 4/5 red wines, 1 white, and a sumdilly-iscous meal by the owners wife and helpers. It was paradise on Earth. Our last tour to the Amalfi Coast, Italy by the most handsome & informative driver, guide, & part owner of Lovelyamalfitours.com (+39 339 82458) by Giovanni Buonocore was complete with even an Italian serenade By Giovanni. Although only 31, he was informative & charming way beyond his years. Even Sheryl (sitting in the front passenger seat) was taken to a far-away, delightful realm by Giovanna. And when each of us was given a hug and our spoken name was cited, we all had delightful daydreams of G. that lasted way beyond our trip to another scrumptious meal & a drive back to our ship. There were so many excellent memories formulated that day. TY gentlemen for your service, information, and a rather full set of tummies!!! As to Freestyle cruising on the Norwegian Jade: I really believe that it lost a personal touch with not having the same waiter/helpers each evening. Since we had trouble with service to 6 of our group of 18, we were able to have the same waiter: Alan & his helper Rita for all our evenings in the dining room. The dining room "commander" Ivan (from Slovakia) always checked on our service and meals each evening. That was the "selling point" that he earned from removing the utterly, useless Freestyle Cruising from our agenda. TY, Alan, Rita & Ivan for all your help!!! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2015
Went on nowergian jade for an 11 night cruise for my 50th birthday!! Excursions to Florence, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Valencia, Toulon, and Naples. Loved the wine tasting and the sites of the ports. Even went tendering which was an ... Read More
Went on nowergian jade for an 11 night cruise for my 50th birthday!! Excursions to Florence, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Valencia, Toulon, and Naples. Loved the wine tasting and the sites of the ports. Even went tendering which was an interesting time! The Jade crew was absolutely awesome and made my birthday very special!! Archie our cruise director was great. A very huge shout out to the captain for keeping the crew and passengers safe during the storms,always was well informed of what was happening. Truly going to miss them all. The entertainment provided was just awesome. The 4 station singing group outstanding. Had the pleasure of having them bring me on stage and sing to me. The acrobats and the Mexican ballet was so wonderful. Enjoyed the evening parties. Had a great time at the white out party!! This cruise wants me to go norwegian again!! WASHY WASHY HAPPY HAPPY DIANE TURNBAUGH Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2014
My husband and I were very excited to take our first cruise. We were told the Windstar Star Pride was a new ship and that idea was only furthered by Windstar’s promotions. We did not expect to walk onto the Star Pride and ... Read More
My husband and I were very excited to take our first cruise. We were told the Windstar Star Pride was a new ship and that idea was only furthered by Windstar’s promotions. We did not expect to walk onto the Star Pride and immediately notice from the furnishings and smell that it was NOT new in any way. I remember saying to my husband, “ I think this is a huge mistake.” Apparently the ship was new in 1988 and in dry dock for about 18 days where carpets were replaced and common areas were "refreshed". Our Classic Suite, which we paid an additional 4,000.00 to upgrade to, was in extremely poor shape and run down. We had been told there were floor to ceiling windows yet there were regular sized portholes looking out onto a public deck. Our bathroom consisted of yellow rust stains, tape peeling off from the mirror as well as large ugly patches of caulking. I didn’t ever dare to look at the state of our mattress. Our satellite phone, which was always on the charger, wouldn’t hold a charge and would beep whenever we attempted to use it. When we called for a late night snack we were told that after 10pm only cold food was available. The bath towels were something you would find at a car wash. Above our bed the ceiling panels were not put together correctly and had dark handprints on them from maintenance workers. The furnishings were old and outdated. I put our valuables into the safe and when I went to retrieve them the safe would not open because the batteries had died. We had to call maintenance and wait for them to unlock the safe. Flat screen televisions are advertised and the TV we had in our bedroom was from the 90s. The deck of the ship was extremely weathered and grey. The pool was closed for the first 2 days – and only days- we were on the ship. I had emailed with someone from Windstar before we boarding letting them know I had a gluten intolerance and although she said Windstar caters to all dietary needs and that she put a note in with my name to the ship, I was never offered any gluten free options. We missed lunch one day and what was available for us was a selection of airport lounge style cold dry premade sandwiches. At dinner we were told there were not enough tables to accommodate the guests yet we could be seated at an empty table set for 4 and would likely have another random couple seated with us at some point during our meal or we could wait. We waited only to have them try to seat people at our table and we outright refused. Having to be confrontational when trying to be on a romantic cruise was the last thing we wanted to deal with every night. After speaking with Kristy on the Star Pride we packed our bags and disembarked at our first stop in Sicily. Kristy sincerely apologized for all the issues and gave me contact information for Dustin at Windstar whom she said would be able to come to a solution that would make us happy. We were not allowed to disembark however before paying another $84.00 in bar bills yet our package included all premium drinks. Frustrated, we simply paid the bill so we could get off the ship and try to begin to enjoy our vacation. At this point we had to find last minute - meaning extreme rates - hotels for the remainder of our trip and transportation to each location. All in all, this was a absolute disaster! We will never find ourselves on a cruise again. For over 17,000.00 dollars I had envisioned a floating Four Seasons and this was not the case. I have stayed in rooms at a Holiday Inn that were cleaner and nicer. I expected the food to be better than average and to have a suite that felt clean. The only positive comment I have is for the staff who were very kind and apologetic, letting us know how understaffed the ship was. After speaking with Dustin at Windstar I let him know which suite we were in and was told the CEO of Windstar had stayed in the same suite the week before and had no complaints – shame on him! Dustin honestly felt that Windstar did not promote their ship as being new and said the best he could do was to refund me the amount we paid for the upgrade as well as the bar bill. Feeling that I was not getting any further with Windstar I told them to send me the refund. This is NOT a luxury cruise in any way. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2014
This was a voyage we were so looking forward to. The only reason we sailed with Windstar was to enjoy the Grand Prix Formula 1. Well, what a disappointment. Since most of the ports were tender ports, one would expect Star Pride to provide ... Read More
This was a voyage we were so looking forward to. The only reason we sailed with Windstar was to enjoy the Grand Prix Formula 1. Well, what a disappointment. Since most of the ports were tender ports, one would expect Star Pride to provide a better tender service. They are small, unstable and definitely unsafe. The sea , most of the time, was very rough Disembarking and embarking the tenders was a nightmare. Bless the staff who helped us on and off. The last night was a nightmare. As Retiredharley quite rightly wrote in his critic, why didn't the Captain notify us? No announcements were made. Luckily we had brought our own sea sick medication, but this time nothing helped. It sure felt like the end of our lives had arrived. One just lay in bed waiting for the next bang! Everything in the room was flying around and one could not even stand on the floor. We know the Captain cannot control the sea but for goodness sake, talk to your passengers. He should have reduced speed much earlier on and provided us with more information. On a positive note, the food was first class. Kudos to the Chef and his staff. The night of the Grand Prix Gala evening at the Hotel Paris in Monte Carlo, where we had dinner, we sorely missed his food. That evening was a disaster. Upon our arrival there, we had to wait more than half an hour outside since the hotel staff were not ready for us. For a cocktail party,which lasted over an hour, no seating was provided and there were many of us who were unable to stand that long. The hotel is beautiful and it was exciting to see and visit the Monte Carlo Casino. That's where it begins and ends. But thank you Chef, for the wonderful brunch you prepared the following morning. Entertainment on board was minimal . A movie once in the afternoon! A four person band, poor. We never saw the photographs taken . Why were they not posted on the boards on the Deck 5? This was not a cheap cruise. We certainly did not believe that we would return home so disappointed. Never again with Windstar.   Read Less
Sail Date: May 2014
Cruise left 02/05/2014 for 7 days . As this was our first cruise we had no expectations . Left Civitavecchia ( Rome's port ) and arrived in Venice . We had a great time . Our room steward , Edwardo kept our very comfortable room ( ... Read More
Cruise left 02/05/2014 for 7 days . As this was our first cruise we had no expectations . Left Civitavecchia ( Rome's port ) and arrived in Venice . We had a great time . Our room steward , Edwardo kept our very comfortable room ( with balcony ) clean and tidy with towel animals at night . We ate in many of the restaurants with all staff helpful and the food varied and enjoyable . Breakfast on the back deck looking over a new port each morning is hard to beat . One hint is to go up to the Bali Hai Bar ( over looks the pool ) at the forward end to watch the ship leave port each afternoon . Great photos of the country you are leaving plus sunsets . Here you can talk to the best Head Barman on the ship in Julian from St. Lucia . Many thanks to him for his wonderful company . We had many discussions about him becoming Captain but finally decided the Bali Hai could not survive without him . Hint 2 - the ship was moored at the last wharf in Civitavecchia . We caught a taxi ( 5 Euro ) which was a 10 minute ride . People who walked pulling their luggage took up to an hour . Peter & Michelle from Australia   Read Less

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise