6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We were a group of four - a 50+ couple travelling with our 14 year old son and my 80+ mother (with limited mobility). We selected two, back to back 7 day cruises making a figure 8 from Palma de Mallorca around Portugal, Spain, Italy and ... Read More
We were a group of four - a 50+ couple travelling with our 14 year old son and my 80+ mother (with limited mobility). We selected two, back to back 7 day cruises making a figure 8 from Palma de Mallorca around Portugal, Spain, Italy and Southern France. We chose the ship and Marella (Tui) because it went where we wanted to go when we were able to go - we haven’t cruised with Marella before. First - some shout outs to the exceptional service from our cabin staff - led by Faiden - who looked after us all with great care throughout our fortnight. We particularly enjoyed the e-bike excursions led by Niko and Ashleigh - they led us through the sights and the beaches of Portimao, Corsica and St Raphael. We also used some of the coach based excursions- which were comfortable and as expected. We appreciated the peace of mind of all inclusive drinks - the upgrade was not necessary- and saw no evidence of it being abused by our fellow passengers. We were keen patrons of the coffee port, where we always enjoyed friendly service from Tamara. We ended up consistently using the Islands buffet for meals, for the pure convenience and because we tended to be earlier to rise and to bed than most, so that we tended to want our meals earlier than the other restaurants opened. We had breakfast a couple of times in the waiter service 47 degrees dining room - and it was a better experience. Islands certainly has a variety of food, but it has to be said that some of it was not very tasty - which is probably an inevitable consequence of the cooking methods required to produce food on that scale. Nonetheless we opted for convenience and there was usually something memorable on our plate each night. We frequently used the gym and adjoining spa/sauna services which were well equipped and set up. We preferred the Glass house indoor pool area which was quieter and cooler than the main pool area. In summary, the cruise delivered the experience we had hoped for with some of the staff making it that little bit better than we had expected. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We have just returned from a fabulous 7 days. The whole thing was fabulous. A clean and lovely ship. The staff are excellent can’t do enough for you. Cheerful friendly and helpful. Our room was well looked after cleaned everyday. Top ups ... Read More
We have just returned from a fabulous 7 days. The whole thing was fabulous. A clean and lovely ship. The staff are excellent can’t do enough for you. Cheerful friendly and helpful. Our room was well looked after cleaned everyday. Top ups for tea coffee milk etc. Our cabin was a balcony deluxe and it lived up to its name.Chocolates on your pillows. Always an animal towel in your bed lol.The entertainment was professional and great to watch.A different show each night. We had waiter service in the bars for our wide selection of cocktails.Irish cream coffees Baileys etc. The food was great .A good selection and always hot. Salads were tasty and tempting. Breakfast has a wide variety of things From English breakfast to continental. Omelettes were delicious. The trips were long days but we made lots of memories. Just need extra stops on the Rome walking tour. We packed a lot in a week but was a great holiday. Can’t wait to go cruising again with TUI. Thanks to everyone. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Our reason for booking this Tui cruise was that we booked late and needed a disabled cabin, Tui were the only cruise line that could accommodate this at such short notice. We are not “seasoned” cruisers, this was only our fourth ... Read More
Our reason for booking this Tui cruise was that we booked late and needed a disabled cabin, Tui were the only cruise line that could accommodate this at such short notice. We are not “seasoned” cruisers, this was only our fourth cruise in total and we have only sailed with P&O previously. We were nervous reading the reviews but have to say from the outset that we did enjoy our seven nights on Marella Discovery. I will try to make this review as fair and informative as I can. There are positives in that the ship was very clean, the staff (though mainly young and in lots of cases a bit inexperienced) were polite, friendly and very helpful. Discovery 2 isn’t massively impressive from the outside but the pretty atrium and public rooms on board are comfortably furnished and very welcoming and the vibe in the atrium bar is just lovely. I’m not sure whether this is down to the staff or the clientele but the atmosphere is very pleasant and relaxed. We met some lovely people on this cruise and didn’t find the snobby element you can sometimes encounter elsewhere. I need to say here that level 4 on the ship is the main “entertainment” area accommodating the theatre, a live-lounge (the clue’s in the name), a casino, the very popular atrium bar and the main dining room - BUT THERE ARE NO PUBLIC TOILETS ON THIS LEVEL!! You have to either go up one floor or down one floor to find a loo. Now this is fine if you, like me, are able bodied and can easily manage the double staircases (about 20 steps) to each level but, if you have to wait for a lift, it’s really unacceptable. This wouldn’t only affect the age demographic on this adult only cruise - I wouldn’t like to be travelling with children who, in my experience, nearly always decide they are desperately in need the loo when they sit down to eat. This really is my biggest niggle with Marella Discovery 2. As for eating, we personally used the main dining room, the Italian dining area, the Island buffet and the Snack Shack. The food in all dining rooms varied from perfectly acceptable to fairly good; there was lots of choice and you’d have to be a very fussy eater not to find something you’d like, however, we felt the dining room cuisine was not as good a standard as we have experienced on P&O. The temperature of the food served (on BOTH cruise lines we have travelled with) is never hot enough for British palates - we like hot food to be piping hot and this is something we rarely find in Mediterranean countries. Service in the main dining room can be a bit slow but we felt this could be improved either by better supervision, giving the staff more training or taking on more experienced waiting staff. That being said, the waiters/waitresses were all friendly and helpful. We were a bit worried about the “all inclusive” aspect of the cruise (which was adult only on our trip) and wondered whether people would be drunk by lunchtime. Again, we needn’t have worried, we didn’t see anyone taking undue advantage and going mad with the all inclusive drinks package. As for service of drinks, this was excellent with waiters/waitresses patrolling the pool area most of the day and checking whether you wanted anything from the bar and the same in the lounges in the evening. Drinks were served quickly and measures are European so more generous than in UK. We were asked if we wanted to upgrade to the premier drinks package but this really isn’t necessary and, though I’ve read in other reviews that people were pressured into purchasing the upgrade, we were not and we didn’t see anyone else being given the hard sell either. Our cabin was spacious, clean and comfortable. My only complaint was that drawer space was extremely limited. In an extra large, double cabin we had a wardrobe with plenty of hangers and only three very small drawers (I’m talking about 12” wide) built into a very small dressing table, though there was lots of space for a reasonable sized set of drawers. We do like the formality of P&O cruises (probably because that’s what we’re used to) and I wasn’t sure how we’d go on with a less formal approach. It’s a case of almost anything goes but most people seem to dress smart/casual. I didn’t take any “evening” dresses - I think I’d have felt a bit too “showy” if I had. Several men wore dinner jackets and a few of the ladies did wear evening dresses on the “Dress to Impress” night (equivalent of the Captain’s formal nights on other lines) but, in the main, most guests were smart but less formal. (Some men in lounge suits, some in shirts, ties and smart trousers and others in open neck shirts with smart, casual trousers; ladies in anything from long or short summer dresses, jumpsuits, and smart pants and tops). We didn’t see anyone looking scruffy in the dining rooms in the evening and found the less formal approach very refreshing. The shows we saw (4 in total) were all very professional and your enjoyment of these will really depend on your own taste. The theatre is very comfortable and drinks are not only served there by waiting staff but you can also pick up a drink from the makeshift bar outside each performance in your way in but soft drinks were not available outside the theatre. Poolside entertainment was limited but we didn’t mind that and it may be different in summer months or on family cruises. (To be fair, we only had one sea day and the weather wasn’t conducive to sitting by the pool (November) so we didn’t get to find out whether there’s a bigger range of “entertainment” on sea days). There were quizzes by the pool during the day and you could take part or not, as you wish. On the strength of this experience we have booked to cruise with Tui again later in 2019 - having checked that there are loos close to the main entertainment and restaurant areas first. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
I got on the discovery 2 at Corfu and got of there as well. I was on the ship for a week and the destinations are lovely Santorini and Rhodes have to be my favourite. The cruise is really good the activity's for kids are a ... Read More
I got on the discovery 2 at Corfu and got of there as well. I was on the ship for a week and the destinations are lovely Santorini and Rhodes have to be my favourite. The cruise is really good the activity's for kids are a climbing wall a mini golf 9 holes 2 swimming pools one inside and one outside also there is a games room called hideout for the children to chill out and play on the Xbox and the football table. The entertainment is fantastic with 4 different venues to choose from and they have a casino. the bars were clean and sold a verity of alcohols from shots to beer to cocktails. the crew are so friendly saying hello and always ready to help really good custom. The sail away party was absolutely fantastic with live performances from DJ Tomas and a band that I cant remember there name and a flag parade to see were parts of the crew come from. definitely arrange with TUI they are stars amazing job Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We went as part of a large family group (6 of us in total), two parents and then two couples in our twenties. My parents mostly go with P&O (10th cruise) however they were really pleasantly surprised. Overall we had a great ... Read More
We went as part of a large family group (6 of us in total), two parents and then two couples in our twenties. My parents mostly go with P&O (10th cruise) however they were really pleasantly surprised. Overall we had a great time. Really good food, bar service was sometimes slow when they were very busy but never more than 5 mins wait. I will say that the Buffet restaurant (Islands), whilst the quality of the food is very good, the place is terribly dated, busy, confusing layout. Awful. We only ate there once, and much preferred the MDR and other restaurants. We tried all the 'pay extra' restaurants (Kora La twice) and have to say they were all really great quality with exceptional service by genuinely nice staff members. The only real negative area was Destination Services. On the first day we went to the excusion presentation in the show lounge and ended up walking out as it was so poor. A guy from Liverpool was 'presenting' - actually just reading from a script. There was no interest, passion, and if I never hear the phrase 'its a realllyyyy lovelyyyyy trip' it'll be too soon. We went on four excursions (already booked before leaving the UK), one of which was terrible, but all were very badly planned - where are your staff to check people onto buses? They were also very rude, not to me personally, but I witnessed on two occasions them being really rude to other passengers. If it was me I'd replace the lot. Gym could do with a refurb, but nice Sauna and Steam room area to use. Overall a great holiday was had by all of us. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
I chose this cruise for several reasons. 1. Itinerary, following the Adriatic coast I felt it would be more likely to be a smooth sail and the sea would be calm. ( I am not a good sailor). 2. The stop ports were places I hadn't ... Read More
I chose this cruise for several reasons. 1. Itinerary, following the Adriatic coast I felt it would be more likely to be a smooth sail and the sea would be calm. ( I am not a good sailor). 2. The stop ports were places I hadn't been to before. This was my first time on a cruise and I traveled as a single woman. I arrived after an early morning flight. The check in was easy, quick photograph taken and given card for boarding in a flash. Everything was so organised and I felt that continued throughout the cruise and included departure at the end. The dining was fabulous, especially the main restaurants, with waiter service for breakfast lunch and dinner. Food was really good and well presented, menu changed every day. Italian on upper level fabulous too. Given a pager at busy times, so just went for a drink until table ready. Sharing a table meant that it was quicker to get a table and a great way to meet new people and chat. Didn't manage the A la Carte restaurants as they were booked up very quickly. The buffet restaurant has lots of choices but can be very busy, only went in there for breakfast and also lunch on first arrival but enjoyed it. I attended a singles meeting on the second day organised by the crew hostess. Lovely new friends made, and in particular one friend, that enabled us to do things together including trips ashore and evenings at different entertainment spots. So much to do and still didn't manage all the entertainment on board. My cabin had a window and a lovely comfy double bed, loved it, and a really good steward, who looked after me and my room. So much to say I could go on and on. The singing from the entertainers was superb. The places and excursions are amazing. I had 3 nights after the cruise at a hotel in Corfu, because as much as I loved it, It can be very tiring and hard on the joints. It was wonderful way to end an incredible holiday. The ship is gorgeous! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
In the past we have had 12 previous cruise experiences and the 3 with Thomsons before this cruise. And it was 10 years since our last cruise. .Change of Literary was a Disappointment and the reason being the re-branding of the ship from ... Read More
In the past we have had 12 previous cruise experiences and the 3 with Thomsons before this cruise. And it was 10 years since our last cruise. .Change of Literary was a Disappointment and the reason being the re-branding of the ship from Tui to Merella was not in my option a valid reason to change our destinations. Just a warning after contacting TUI before the cruise they informed us that a cruise company can change the itinerary for any reason they wish, not just safety reasons. They did compensate all passages £40 to their on board credit. We on the 6th deck on a balcony suite, happy with the refurbish. Communal areas very well presented Food very good at all locations Staff very helpful Negatives The sunbed situation is a disaster, there are plenty of sunbeds but no were to place them. There is sadly a growing reputation by the British cruisers for sun bed and chair saving. After getting back on board after the days at port we were met by a covering of blue towels on empty beds and chairs. There was a 45 minute towel removal policy but its not enforced. I AM ALLRIGHT JACK CULTURE Get it sorted Merella- Would I go with Merella again-no But we really enjoyed the cruise and fall more positives than negatives Read Less
28 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Let me start by saying that this was my first cruise so maybe the points that I did not enjoy are standard on these kinds of holiday. If you are 60+, then you will likely enjoy this cruise. We went on the TUI Discovery 2 primarily to ... Read More
Let me start by saying that this was my first cruise so maybe the points that I did not enjoy are standard on these kinds of holiday. If you are 60+, then you will likely enjoy this cruise. We went on the TUI Discovery 2 primarily to spread the ashes of my mother in law as per her wishes. Before I go on, I have to say that they were fantastic with assisting us. Elanor helped us out greatly and is a true asset to the ship. On arrival to Malaga Port, I was a little underwhelmed with the size of the ship but in fairness, I had seen pictures so had an idea that this wasn't the Royal Caribbean monster ships that I'd seen on my travels. Once we got to port we were told that our luggage would be brought to our rooms and all we had to do was check in. While this is a nice idea, I had been up since 3 am (it was now 2 PM) and I wanted to have a shower and change but I had to wait for my bag. Accommodation: The package we booked included an internal cabin. My opinion on a holiday is to spend as little time as possible in my room so it didn't matter to me if I had a balcony etc. In saying that, these rooms are tiny! Maybe all ships provide a cabin of this size but there is very little room to move. With our cases in the room, it meant I had to climb over the bed to get into it because of the room that the 2 cases took up. Not including the tiny shower & WC the room was approx 3 mtrs x 4 Mtrs. The rooms were supposed to be upgraded but not seeing them before I can't comment. The bed was comfortable and there were USB chargers in all of the wall lights which was handy. There is a flatscreen TV in the room with a couple of channels (ITV choice and a couple others that I can't recall). They have kids movies on a loop so handy for kids but the room is too small to spend any time in it really. The safes in the rooms should be replaced. They work using a magnetic strip which essentially means that you need to carry a credit card with you in order to open and close it. That kind of defeats the purpose in my opinion as I only want to take my credit card out when I need to. Housekeeping: The housekeeping was exceptional. The room was cleaned daily in the morning and towels replaced etc in the evening. The ship is kept very clean and tidy. Drinks: The cruise is all inclusive as standard but all inclusive does not mean all inclusive. On the standard package, you can have a couple of beers on tap (nothing in a bottle) and a few spirits. We immediately upgraded for £50 (EACH) as we are fussy with drinks. It worked out OK. If you stay on the standard package, you will be hit with a supplement for each drink on the premium menu at an average of £1.50 per drink. Entertainment: There are 5 main places for entertainment: The atrium, The Live Lounge, The Venue, Bar Eleven and The Theatre. Live Lounge: It's a really comfortable place but the bar gets really crowded as its the most popular. Most nights there was a guy on piano followed by a band or singer giving it socks to "Your favourite hits" which consisted of Billy Joel / Neil Diamond type music. While it was not my cup of tea, the older folks certainly enjoyed it. The casino is also part of the Live Lounge and has Blackjack, Poker and Roulette. The Venue: This place is just weird. It's done really well but the entertainment was just odd. I went in twice and was left kind of scratching my head as to what was going on. The first time we went in, there was an interview with a staff member on stage followed by a guy going through the "Top 10 Tweets of the day". It was like watching a video on Youtube but live. The second time we went in, there was a guy showing Youtube video "Fails". I really think that this could be a great venue but they are not using it properly. The Atrium: Located beside the Live Lounge The Atrium is actually quite similar to the Live Lounge ad the entertainment is similar. Broadway Show Lounge: The venue is stunning and it's obvious that Thomson has put some money in here. We went in 3 nights of the 7 that we were there and the acts were ok. What was weird was that the sound seemed a little "tinny" considering they had a cracking sound set up. Bar Eleven: We were delighted to find this in the evening as we really needed a break from the cabaret. It's the nightclub of the ship and I would say caters for about 200 people so it's quite small. The music was refreshing for the first night and was kind f wedding like i.e. Abba, Justin Beiber, Tom Jones. It was ok but the DJ seemed to play the same set every night so it got a bit repetitive. Good for a late night drink though. Food: I don't think there is a need to review every place but there are some good and some not so good points to make. The food overall is OK. Nothing really to complain about and nothing t write home about. The best restaurants that don't require a reservation is 47 and just above it (Mezzanine style) Gallery 47. The food here is nice and a step up from the buffet. The main issue we had with the food was that there are 2 restaurants that require a booking - Kora La and Surf and Turf. We tried to book a table for either restaurant for any night on Tuesday morning (We arrived on Sunday) and were told they were booked out for our entire stay. Saying that i managed to book a table with Kora La despite being told it was booked out. What made it worse was that while we ate, there were 6 tables free for the entire meal. So it looks like people book and just don't show up. Kora La (Asian fusion) was amazing by the way. These 2 restaurants require a £20 pp supplement. Staff: In general, the staff were great and very accommodating. There were times at the bar when we ordered drinks and were told: "we don't have it here, please go to another bar". Not really what you want to hear on this kind of holiday. Tours: The tours looked overpriced so in all locations except Ibiza, we did our own thing, which after booking the Island Tour in Ibiza, was a good idea. The Ibiza Island tour stated it was a tour around the Island, stopping in a couple of towns, then lunch and a beach. At £55 per person, we thought it seemed reasonable. The tour was just that, a bus ride around the island where we stopped at places to do our own thing for x amount of minutes and then meet at the bus. Lunch was not included! All in all, it was a bus trip around the island and was not worth the £110 per couple we spent on it. This was my first and definitely my last (At east until it nearer retirement age). It just was not my idea of a good holiday and didn't represent value for money. I can see the appeal for the older generation however and this is who they cater for. While it may sound like I am being critical, I again must stress that it was my first cruise so maybe the items I disliked are standard. Read Less
Marella Discovery 2 Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 3.5 3.7
Family 3.5 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.5 3.3
Service 4.5 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.7

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