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7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We choose the cruise because of the itinerary - United Arab Emirates plus Qatar, Bahrain and Oman. To be fair the ship - Mein Schiff 4 - is beautiful. The staterooms are well appointed, the dining - no matter which restaurant you ... Read More
We choose the cruise because of the itinerary - United Arab Emirates plus Qatar, Bahrain and Oman. To be fair the ship - Mein Schiff 4 - is beautiful. The staterooms are well appointed, the dining - no matter which restaurant you choose is not to be faulted and the all inclusive concept very nice. With the exception of the wines served in the all incl. restaurants that are not of good quality. But you can circumnavigate that by ordering your much better wine at the all incl. bars and then just take them with you to your restaurant table. As long as you don't go during school vacation time when kids are running riot all over the ship at all hours - as we experienced during a Mein Schiff cruise in January 2018, it is quite pleasant. During sea days it is heard to find a sun lounger as all are reserved and the crew doesn't bother to free the loungers even if there is nobody there half the time. Very German (and I am one myself). I can't say anything about the shore excursions because we dislike travelling in groups and always organize all our shore excursions ourselves. Really horrible is that Mein Schiff has a very strange smoking policy. Our stateroom had a balcony and we were really looking forward to using it to read and relax. No such joy as smoking is allowed on the balconies and we had the misfortune of having heavy smokers living to the right and the left of us. We could not even leave the door open as smoke wafted into the stateroom. Disgusting! Upon complaing we were told that Mein Schiff's policy is that all passengers should "feel free to pursue their personal preferences". We find that this is absolutely not acceptable and had we known this before we booked we certainly would not have booked Mein Schiff and we never again will. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
Embarking Mein Schiff 2 very efficiently and smoothly. Balkony stateroom spacious,.Dinner in a very relaxed atmosphere as there was no need to book in advance and no formal dress required. It was possible to choose between tables that ... Read More
Embarking Mein Schiff 2 very efficiently and smoothly. Balkony stateroom spacious,.Dinner in a very relaxed atmosphere as there was no need to book in advance and no formal dress required. It was possible to choose between tables that seated 6 or only 2 people. The food itself was of very good quality consisted usually of a four course menu. We booked the cruise as we had ways wanted to pass through the Suez Canal. That really was the highlight. Astonishing to realize the different landscape right and left of the canal. We did not book any excursions but organized the tours privately. The negotiations with the taxi drivers was a bit tedious but the reward was a reasonable price. Alexandria eg can easily explored by the old neglected tram. but exciting. The only negative point to mention was the luggage reglement as it was only 20 kg for the flight home instead of 30 for the flight out. Read Less
20 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Tui Cruises/ Mein Schiff - The hidden gem of cruising. Have you ever come across a ship with spectacular calligraphy on a dark blue hull, and asked yourself the question; What is that? -Well, that is what this review is all about. My ... Read More
Tui Cruises/ Mein Schiff - The hidden gem of cruising. Have you ever come across a ship with spectacular calligraphy on a dark blue hull, and asked yourself the question; What is that? -Well, that is what this review is all about. My wife really wanted to visit the Gulf States. So being a cruisoholic I had to find us a cruise in the region. Normally one can find great deals on cheaper cruise lines, but this time Tui was able to compete, so I didn't want to miss the opportunity to satisfy my own curiosity. As it turned out I got thoroughly rewarded. This cruise line has a feel-good concept where a lot of things are included as supposed to the case of most other cruise lines. This includes most drinks, ice-creams and cakes and the fabulous spa with not less than four saunas. One of the saunas is the largest one at sea. Little things around you gives you the feeling that you are cruising a bit up market from the largest cruise lines, like bath robes, slippers, coffee machines and mineral rocks for your water in your cabin. There is no goofy billing- the advertised price is what you pay, no hidden charges, service fees or baksheesh like on American or Italian cruise lines. You can even bring your children along for free. We normally enjoy the ships with relaxed service and atmosphere the best, and I must say that Mein Schiff goes beyond everything in this aspect. Even if the crew usually is doing very well on other cruise lines, trying cruises was like experiencing a new dimension of cruising that was very pleasant indeed. Embarkation The embarkation process in Port Rashid (Dubai) was the best ever. There just was noone else there to check in just after lunch time. Everything got taken care of easily and without any fuss. They didn't even ask for a credit card. After that we just walked on-board, just the way it should be. The ship Mein Schiff 2 is the old (Celebrity) Mercury, renovated 2011. It gives the impression of a fresh and modern ship, but it lacks many of the state of the art features that you meet on new ships. Tui Cruises vessels are (re-) built with the company's wellness accept in mind, and it really works. The cabins, the kids club and the plentiful bars are like on most cruise ships. The restaurants make the vessel stand out of the crowd, in diversity, quality and atmosphere. The same goes for the sensational spa area where we spent every afternoon. Here I really need to put out a major warning that relates to the possibility of culture shocks. The first time we went into the spa area we entered through the gent and ladies dressing rooms to meet up on the other side. So far nothing weird. We were dressed in our bathing suits as usual. Suddenly it appears to us that we were the only people warning anything at all. All the rest of the guests were totally naked. Of course we had to skip the swim suits, even if it was a weird. It took a little while to get used to, even for us Scandinavians. The kids club Our experience over the years when it comes the cruising with kids is that facilities and programs are less important than the number of children on board at the given time. It is therefore difficult to compare different ships I in this aspect. Our cruise had very few kids, so our kids were attended by their own crew member who entertained them in English. I don't know how it would have worked out if there would have been many more kids on board, but there was always plenty children's staff, and they seemed to care very well for the needs of every child. In addition to the kids club there are video games in the public areas that got the kids totally hooked. Restaurants Antlantik is the main restaurant, it has the same fuss-free and pleasant service as any other establishment on board. If you don't want a five-course-dinner then you can pick the bits and pieces that you prefer, but even so it will take time. It you have limited time it is not the best option, but a great place if you want to make your dinner a whole night event with great food and drinks. Ankelmannsplatz is the buffet-restaurant, and a great one. It has special zones like healthy choice, kids' buffet, oriental wok station and an ice cream bar. Cliff 24-is a 24h grill located where the buffet-restaurant meets the pool side. GOSCH Sylt is a wonderful sea food restaurant that became a favourite. La vela -the bistro is another favourite with pasta dishes, salads and pizzas. Richard's -exquisite cuisine, Surf & turf -steak house and Blaue Welt Bar – sushi are not included in the cruise fare. We were so happy with the rest that we didn't bother to visit them. Ports Cruisers have different priorities with their cruising. You have the foodies, those who insist on the greatest ships, the gamblers and so on. If you're all in for the ports the Gulf may not be the best place to go. The different cruise companies typically do the same routes. Khor Fakkan We went walking around Khor Fakkan, but couldn't find much of interest. There is a bazaar, a beach and a fish market. Muscat The capital of Oman is an interesting place to discouver, but it's spooky, because it's empty. There are very few people around. Abu Dhabi This place has so much to offer, so you have to choose if you're only here for a day. Since we live in a harsh climate we choose to go to the beach. It's clean safe and nice. The shuttle bus takes you down town, and the beach is only a few blocks away. Entertainment This is the weak side of Mein Schiff. Most cruise lines we've cruised with are offering better shows and activities. The musical entertainment tends to aim at retired Germans. If you are not very familiar with German culture then you might as well skip the comedy shows all together. My wife said;I can understand the words that they say, but I don't get the point. It certainly isn't funny. Without the language you will obviously miss out on the edutainment etc. if you are into that sort of things. One person who managed to entertain the passengers very well was the captain. He held an Q & A session that quickly turned into an incredibly advanced technical seminar. The audience was remarkably knowledgeable, and critical when it came to technical and environmental issues. The captain also spent a lot of time with the passengers in the public areas. I actually managed to get lunch together with him all by myself in the buffet-restaurant one day. This may sound incredible, but it's typical for the general impression that the crew really wanted to know how we as passengers were doing, and how we wanted things. The big issue- the German language This is of course what keeps most cruisers from even considering cruise lines specializing in attracting cruisers from a specific region. But let's look at the alternatives; Many cruisers detest the Italian cruise lines because of multiple language announcements. Others are put off the American cruise lines since their PA-systems disturb even more with their commercial adds. On mein schiff we enjoyed the most peaceful cruise ever. So what if you don't understand any German at all?- Even better I would say! Unless you are an incurable control freak you will have the time of your life. The German crew, a small minority of the crew all together, speak English very well. Most of the rest speak English but not German, or they speak English better any way. In no time we became celebrities on board speaking English. We felt so well taken care off, it was fantastic. Needless to say, I've booked my next Tui cruise on Mein Schiff 2 already. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
There are not so many reviews about this cruise line here, so it was very difficult to find some information about it. If yes, most of them was in german language. OK, this cruise line caters german speaking passengers. Main and only ... Read More
There are not so many reviews about this cruise line here, so it was very difficult to find some information about it. If yes, most of them was in german language. OK, this cruise line caters german speaking passengers. Main and only language on board is German language. Everything - menus in restaurants, daily news sheet, theater programme...For me is english only holiday language and from german I know only basic... After cruise I can tell, do not worry about it. Staff´s language on board is english and they are ready to help you at any moment, many passengers speak english too, so language bareer was realy minor problem. It was for the first time we sailed in Emirates and Oman territory. The ports of calls were only four - Dubai, Khor Fakkan, Muscat and Abu Dhabi. All of them are interesting and show different face of this part of world - modern from 22 th century and more traditional too. Embarkation process in Dubai was easy - no more then 3 minutes. Everything except photos was prepared in advance, process was like in other ships before. It is possible to go to the ship at 8:00AM !!!, The cabins were ready at 2:00PM. All ship looks like new, in very modern design, in light and fresh colours. In your price is everything included - tips, premium drinks except some onboard activities like spa.The ship has its own bicycles for land excursions in every port. Very good for active people. The catering is in high level. Premium brand hams, cheeses, spirits, very good quality of food. Buffet restaurant has plenty of free places, never was problem to find free table. I like the concept of asia buffet, when you choose ingredients for food, cook give you beeper with number of plate and after food is prepared, you got signal - your plate is ready. Main dinning room has free seating and timing, not wide menu, but food is nice presented and realy good prepared. The portions are not big, what was perfect for us. From 10:00AM is open ice cream corner - I never see on ship so wide choose of creams and toppings. On ship there are more possibilities for fine dinning with additional cost. All bars are very nice with great choose of drinks. In our cruise were two musician bands onboard, they play everything from german pop songs to jazz. The quality of program in theater was little bit amateurish, maybe little bit better if you understand german. We had inside cabin 5057. It was very good, close to reception, lifts and TUI bar. The sound proofing was very good, bed give us comfortable sleep. It was enough space for two persons, everything looks new. There is Nespresso machine in room with free capsules On the sundeck there are many sunloungers - we found everytime some free and ship was full in our cruise. 2 sea days were fine, some decent programm on board and everyday the food presentation on board - barbeque, cakes, fruits of the sea /oysters too../and many more. We take one excursion with ship - in Muscat, Oman to sheik Quabos Mosque and old town and it was well prepared, good priced, in english with german translation. Highligts of the cruise - best food we had on cruise ever, land tours to Muscat and Abu Dhabi mosques - both are a must, beach day in Oceanic hotel Khor Fakkan...and perfect rest on board -evenings full of dances under the stars, polite and nice staff. Dissembarkation is till 11:00AM , but it is possible to buy day pass and spent last day i Dubai onboard till 6:00PM for a little fee. We spent few pre and post cruise days in Dubai, so activities in Dubai we made before and after cruise. The price we paid for this cruise was worth every penny /749 Euro/ person - inside cabin 5057/ and I can recomend this cruise for english speaking passengers too who want to see something different of carribean cruises. OK they must be open for something new.   Read Less
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