3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Arrival at Gatwick did not go according to plan as there was conflict regarding checking our bags in the night before. ON FLY CRUISES YOU CANNOT DO THIs Otherwise embarkation and disembarkation was speedy and efficient This cruise came ... Read More
Arrival at Gatwick did not go according to plan as there was conflict regarding checking our bags in the night before. ON FLY CRUISES YOU CANNOT DO THIs Otherwise embarkation and disembarkation was speedy and efficient This cruise came up to all our expectations with one major exception that is the volume of the entertainment on deck 9 and in the Atrium. In the afternoon on deck 9 it was what they call Trivia which was quizzes, music etc. The compare had the microphone on full volume, to the extent it was difficult to talk to people and too read. The same applied to the music in the atrium in the evenings. In our case there was a guy with a guitar playing and singing. The volume was such that you could not carry out a conversation, we along with others had to move.Again in was a case of the volume being turned up too loud,Music in cases like this should be back ground you should not need to compete with it to talk to people a few feet away. I hasten to add the guitarist was really good. The bar staff on deck 9 in particular Jodi and her brother Christopher was excellent, super efficient and very happy people a real pleasure to be served by them. The classic car trip in Havana was good but Havana itself did not impress us. Would recommend the panama canal excursions,In Montego Bay. I did the Chukka Zip Wire. Superb fun and the instructors in particular namely Gray Goose Oka and Gossy Vernon. Excellent at their jobs. All in all everything about the cruise was superb in particular the food and our cabin boy Ikhsan, he really looked after us.My wife would have appreciated an Act of Worship on Sundays as practiced on other cruise ship. Finally talks or discussions would be appreciated as and alternative to going ashore or in addition too.sea days Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We booked this cruise totally for the length and the ports of call. We were not sure of the quality Marella would provide but the whole experience was much better than anticipated from some reviews. Flights arriving throughout the day ... Read More
We booked this cruise totally for the length and the ports of call. We were not sure of the quality Marella would provide but the whole experience was much better than anticipated from some reviews. Flights arriving throughout the day which meant embarkation was staggered and went very smoothly. Cabin was available straight away and luggage arrived timely. The ship is a medium sized older ship. Well laid out, decor good and plenty of room apart from deck space which was very crowded on sea days as the cruise was fully sold. Only one outside pool. We booked the basic inside cabin on the lower decks. It was smaller than other ships we had sailed on with just enough room at the side of the bed to squeeze out into the cabin. The cabin creaked and groaned quite loudly especially in rough seas. Apart from that it was very well laid out with a small seating area, dressing table, drawers and plenty of wardrobe space, hairdryer and tea and coffee making facilities. No Fridge. The bathroom was OK with shower curtain but plenty of hot water and shower gel and hand soap. Dining - Islands Buffet - even on a full ship we had no problems finding a seat. It feels very airy because of the full length surround windows. Staff were very attentive and the food was varied and hot. We ate breakfast and lunch here and enjoyed both experiences. We did try the MDR for breakfast one day - if you like a leisurely meal then this may be for you. For us, we like to be up and away there are always so many things to do so we preferred the Islands. MDR - We ate most of our evening meals here. The decor of the room is lovely with tables for 2 and more, although most of the tables for 2 are so close together you feel as if you are on a table for 4 or 6. We felt the food served here was very good with a good selection and always hot and drinks served promptly. Staff were very friendly and efficient. If you eat early you can walk straight in, if you like to eat later you may have to wait for a table, generally 20 mins. This was never a problem for us as we like to go for a pre-dinner drink so we would go to the restaurant, were given a pager, would go off to enjoy our drink and then be called to eat at the time we wanted to. Great system. MDR - Italian Menu - Half of the upstairs MDR is set aside to serve an Italian Menu. There are 2 menus which are changed during the cruise so you need to keep an eye on that if you want to eat from both of them. Although you are still in the MDR, it is a different eating experience and an option if you don't fancy anything on the main MDR menu. Glass House - In the evening serves a tapas and pizza menu. Tried this once enjoyed the food, but didn't like eating next to the indoor pool and sunbeds. There is a platter of continenta meats and cheese, then you can choose from 7 tapas choices and then you choose a pizza of your choice. There is also a desert choice available. This is free of charge - you can choose a hot stone meal for which a supplement is charged. Snack Shack - Sandwiches, Salads, Fruit pots, chips, burgers, chicken Wings, Fried Fish - that type of food. Only used this when coming back late to the ship - it's OK but wouldn't eat here if other options were available. Did not eat in the paid for restaurants. Entertainment was excellent and varied, as was the activities - something for everyone and if you didn't want to join in you could find quiet parts of the ship. All the entertainment staff were excellent. To ring the changes on this 18 day cruise entertainers were flown in to perform on one or 2 days and then left the ship. There were plenty of bars depending what you like to do in an evening and the choice of drinks was excellent. We never had to wait long to be served whether at the bar or from our seat. Ports of Call - Arrived as scheduled and we were given plenty of time in each port (an average of 7 hours). Did not go on any Marella excursions but the excursion staff were helpful when asked questions and provided a printed map of the main town area. Tip - If the weather is not good try to get a seat at The Veranda at the rear of the ship, it was sheltered when the outer decks were very windy. To sum up we had a fabulous trip, Food and Drinks were Very Good, Entertainment and Activities were excellent and the staff were the best. We enjoyed it so much we would book to go again as there are still things to see at the ports of call. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Been on Discovery 2 before, nice ship, food ok, staff lovely always smiling, especially Philip he is a credit to Marcella. Ports of call very good, weather in Europe not so good, we were in a force 12 gale one day, but we survived it. ... Read More
Been on Discovery 2 before, nice ship, food ok, staff lovely always smiling, especially Philip he is a credit to Marcella. Ports of call very good, weather in Europe not so good, we were in a force 12 gale one day, but we survived it. Entertainment from Headliners excellent, didn't see comidiens so can't comment. 4 Tunes very good but did not like Jon Asher. Pleased Captain didn't say it's going to be a 'bobby dazzler' as often as he did on last cruise, he must have taken heed of feedback. I must say to all those inconsiderate people who went up to the Veranda deck to move sun beds on the 5 consecutive sea days ,one night it was 3am and others it varied between 4 am and 6am you should be ashamed of yourselves and if anyone thinks of booking a Junior Suite on deck 8 think again because you will be woken up in the early hours unless General Manager does something about blocking the stairs on deck 9 that lead to Veranda deck during night time thus stopping the selfish people from accessing Veranda deck until a reasonable time. Good cruise overall, but will not book a Junior Suite deck 8 again. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I have cruised with tui for many years but this has to be one that I can stay will stick in my mind for the wrong reason. Getting to the ship was as usual very good as you would expect with marella cruises from leaving Manchester to ... Read More
I have cruised with tui for many years but this has to be one that I can stay will stick in my mind for the wrong reason. Getting to the ship was as usual very good as you would expect with marella cruises from leaving Manchester to arrival in Montego Bay. Could not fault cabin very good as usual, but when you go for evening meal in 47 Restuarant here is where it falls down. Firstly the waiters lean across table to serve other dinners on table,rather than by your side as with normal Restuarants, If you have steak for an evening meal don't expect steak knife cut through with blunt knife, you are not offered tea and coffee now you have to ask. The second day was good easy to get sun bed no worries. I took two evening shirts for formal nights but did not wear because on the evening of dress to impress I had a quick look over the Atriaum balcony and what I saw changed my mind, I was going to wear my formal wear but when people are wearing shorts and bathing wear why bother. I make my way again to 47 Restuarant that evening and was dressed with shirt bow tie trousers and shoes so as far as I was concerned smart but then dinners walk in in shorts open toed sandals so why bother. After evening meal went for walk on ship and easy to get to other areas through Broadway shops good quality into show lounge. Here maybe the show team are new but not the best I've seen I am sure they will get better. After show of to venue bar for game shows very good and funny entertainment team were very good. After shows of to love room where the casino was and again could not fault. If you are still hungry in the evening then go to Glasshouse and get a good evening buffet recommend the curry. The service in all areas was great and the waiters are very friendly and if you go often even rember what you drink which is amazing. The ship is very good indeed and unfortunately had to visit medical centre because my wife became ill, these people really do care and look after you, if it's an insurance claim don't worry they sort out the whole thing. To them I send a big thank you. So all in all here are my main points about this cruise, 1....Think about how waiters serve meals and correct utensils for meal 2....Think about dress code and monitor it Hopefully these can be improved, I realise I could have gone to Islands which is self service but I like to be served in evening. Let's hope things do improve am on discovery in December so hope for better things. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We booked this cruise as a "transitional " from the Caribbean to Palma calling at various places , we particularly were looking forward to Cuba ,Nassau and Lisbon and Bermuda ...the first three destinations were cancelled shortly ... Read More
We booked this cruise as a "transitional " from the Caribbean to Palma calling at various places , we particularly were looking forward to Cuba ,Nassau and Lisbon and Bermuda ...the first three destinations were cancelled shortly after the final balance was paid ( nice!! ) We booked an upgrade and were given cabin 8031 The ship looked good , staff brilliant , food very good with a wide choice , cabin horrendous , the vessel had a major refit in 2016 , former office space was converted into cabins ( 6 in all on the port side ) On this vessel the engines are amidships and as the cabins are by the open atrium they are subject to a lot of noise , worse still they are also afflicted with constant vibration from the engines ( particularly at sea ) and creaking from the wall panels and windows .We had to move to another cabin to save our sanity .... All this made the cruise a nightmare at times , which was a shame because resturants were very good , entertainment suited most people we talked to , the other thing to note is that you cannot get away from piped music ( loud at times ) wherever you walk or sit it will always be there which is a shame because there where some very nice places . There is a complete walk round on deck ( 4 laps 1 mile ) We would probably have enjoyed the cruise more with a better cabin as the ship has a lot going for it but sadly the vibration issue afflicting it spoiled our enjoyment Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
Just wanted to let fellow cruisers know of an amazing place near Amber Cove where you can volunteer to spend either half or full day at Dove Missions. Check out their website and trip adviser. We had such a worthwhile morning spent ... Read More
Just wanted to let fellow cruisers know of an amazing place near Amber Cove where you can volunteer to spend either half or full day at Dove Missions. Check out their website and trip adviser. We had such a worthwhile morning spent meeting children from one of the poorest areas around tbe barrio. At the school we played games, crafts and helped them with learning English. Martina and the staff are amazing and make you feel so welcome. You leave with a memory that will last a lifetime. Back to the cruise itself. I loved joining the' A Band on Ship 'learning to play the ukelele. My husband joined the choir. The singers, in particular Braxi Music and Dan were excellent, and we couldnt fault anything regarding entertainment. The theatre shows were outstanding. Food was fab, public areas beautiful, the whole ship was very impressive. The only downside of the whole experience was disembarking at Palma. Poor Brett put himself (very admirably) on the front line to take responsibility for a very badly organised departure from the ship. Should have kept cruisers in the groups which pertained to the colour of their luggage labels denoting their flight destinations and moved people group by group rather than the free for all experience of taking an hour and half to get off the ship. Despite that one hiccup we had an amazing time and will definitely look to cruise with Marella again Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise because in November 2016 we had cruised on Discovery 1 & had a wonderful cruise, but then it was under the TUI brand name. The ship's are sister ship's so we knew what to expect. What we didn't ... Read More
We chose this cruise because in November 2016 we had cruised on Discovery 1 & had a wonderful cruise, but then it was under the TUI brand name. The ship's are sister ship's so we knew what to expect. What we didn't account for was that the new brand name would alter everything. The cabin and cabin steward were excellent but everything else seemed to have been forfeited. The food in the restaurant was acceptable but the control of how people dressed was appalling. They allowed people to come in to dine in shorts, teeshirts and one even came in in flip flops. We complained to maitre d who explained that there had been a directive allowing dress shorts to be worn, the ones we saw were not dress shorts. There was a sign I in the glass house sayng it was adult only after 4pm ( or 5pm not sure) but although there were very few children on board we still saw children in there after the time stated. To us it seemed that no one was prepared to enforce any of the so called rules. We had booked a premium balcony room & expected to have decent toiletries but the toiletries turned out to be a green shower gel on the wall and a small(very small) handsoap. The entertainment was ok although some of the shows were repeats from previous cruises with Thomson. We have always rated Thomson or TUM but we would not be using them again Under the Marella flag it would seem that standards have dropped drastically, so very disappointing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
We like the repositioning cruises as you can go to ports not on the regular schedules and with only 4 days on the crossing part a real bonus .Gran Canaria to Cape Verde then over direct west to Barbados,Grenada,ABC isles then port of Colon ... Read More
We like the repositioning cruises as you can go to ports not on the regular schedules and with only 4 days on the crossing part a real bonus .Gran Canaria to Cape Verde then over direct west to Barbados,Grenada,ABC isles then port of Colon ( as its name ) for Panama where our real disappointment came .more later .The ship has many good facilities eg fitness gym,glass house and atrium area .The food was generally pretty good without being Michelin standard .Islands the casual buffet area could get very full at times .The shack which served snacks as well great fish bites and smoked salmon in salad tub .Waiter service dining in 47 was reasonable because we found a great funny waiter and other excellent guests. The menu was at times repeated ,there must be no Angus beef left in world .We tried upstairs in the pizza area and throughly enjoyed the different fare.There were plenty of activities and it was good to see the captain get involved in the cycling competition .Entertainment was the same structure as most of TU I cruises .The main shows had in our opinion one of the best team of dancers,singers that we have seen in our 14 cruises. The new team who were taking over were sub standard even allowing for it being their first show .That leaves our massive negative .Destination services ,Beware of the super slick presentations either in showcase or over the screens .As most know this is a big profit area for them .Our experiences have been very mixed a couple excellent and a few poor and generally poor value . Without boring you of all details ,we didn't do an excursion as the transport was old,no air con,no seat belts ,overcrowded. Not as described in literature however after 4 e mail dialogues once back home and an uninterested manager on board no refund of monies has been received .The moral is that they hide behind a couple of regs They say that as they are just an agent you must complain to the supplier of trip if a problem .Not easy at the end or when you are back on ship and the local agent is long gone . They also say any discretion on refunds is back in UK whereas when back they say it could have been sorted on board .Think twice as there are mostly good independent tours available from ports with a little research before trip using local tourist boards .Many complaints re Colon . However next day Cartagena in Colombia turned out despite prior beliefs to have a lovely old walled town which we explored with another couple getting a taxi as TUI said it was not safe .More inaccurate info from destination services .We had a day at sea before docking in Montego BAy Jamaica then a flight back from the airport which has not grown with the increased number of planes and passengers and we were an hour late leaving but there are many more longer delays ,it needs to resolve this although they had a very good PA system .Overall a very good cruise only tainted late on Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise exactly one week after coming of Discovery last year doing the transatlantic with a different itinerary. We had nothing to complain about last year it was superb. We chose exactly the same cabin we had last year on ... Read More
We chose this cruise exactly one week after coming of Discovery last year doing the transatlantic with a different itinerary. We had nothing to complain about last year it was superb. We chose exactly the same cabin we had last year on deck 8 right at the back. Discovery 2 is the sister ship of Discovery and are practically identical in terms of layout. For us Embarkation was swift, smooth and painless with baggage delivered and collected in a timely manner. The cabin is an aft facing cabin which meant we had the sun most days whilst crossing the Atlantic. The cabin is roomy with plenty of storage. A great feature this year was the addition of USB sockets in each of the lamps which was handy for charging up Ipads and phones. The electrical sockets are 2 standard USA and 2 Eurpean type. The decor was ok although a picture missing from the wall of the cabin which showed up the marks where it had been. Generally the cabin was kept immaculate by the cabin steward however he rarely replaced the toiletries and despite requesting and reminding him it still did not happen or if it did they were only partially replaced. On embarkation day there was a letter on the bed welcoming us back. Reading the letter it tells you that you have a Lavazza coffee machine in the room to which you are entitled to one cup of coffee a day! (What! after what we paid I would expect coffee to be free flowing like it was last year) That certainly did not set me off in the right frame of mind. There were two days were half a dozen teeny pellets of soot landed on the balcony. The stewards cleaned the balconies up immediately and there was nothing to complain about. Those who have not stayed in one of these junior suites seem to imagine that it happens all the time. It does not! Another point is the saying the higher your cabin the more you pay the more it sways. It is no different to anywhere else on the ship. We only had two days were there was a bit of a roll and that was from Tenerife to Gran Canaria and en route to Jamaica but we slept quite well both nights. It is very quiet at the back of the ship. The air conditioning was not able to be adjusted. Food and dining. The food in the waiter restaurants was always hot and our meals were served in a timely fashion. I was surprised to hear people complain that dinner took around two hours. For me that is quite acceptable, who wants to bolt down their food when you are on holiday it also gives you the chance to share tables and meet some very interesting people. We never ate in the buffet restaurant apart from having afternoon tea one afternoon. I can't really comment on what it was like but the same food is served in the buffet as is available in the main dining room. Gallery 47 is an Italian restaurant with two alternating menus. The food is quite nice here and we ate here a few times. Surf and Turf and Kora La restaurants have to be booked at a supplement and both are like being on a completely different ship. The attention to detail and the quality is second to none. We only ate at Surf and Turf this time and the supplement was around £29. There was a fast food outlet called the snack shack where you could grab rolls in the morning fish and chips at lunch time or chicken wings etc. There were also cool cabinets with a variety of salads, sandwiches and pots of fruit. We only had a snack twice here but it was quick, tasty and filling. At busy times you might be given a buzzer and have to wait around 20 minutes for a table in the main restaurants it only happened once to us during the 18 night cruise but that was because we wanted a specific table so we were quite happy to wait. Drinks We upgraded the drinks package which for us was good value. We had 2 X 1.5 litres of water in the cabin each day. Access to the coffee bar for premium coffees and an enhanced premium drink menu. We found that the drinks on the normal menu seemed to be lacking in something but there was a noticeable difference in the premium drinks. We never had to wait too long for our drinks either being served or being waited on. There were ample staff for this and they were always busy. It worked out at £7 a day and we thought that was good value. Entertainment. We always found something to occupy us on sea days. There were some activities going on at one time or another. I think one of the biggest problems was inadequate seating in some of the venues particularly the atrium. The theatre is much more comfortable that theatres in London. My only criticism is that once the shows have started the bar service should stop. It is irritating during the show to see bar staff passing through and blocking the views. The shows only last an hour why not bring a drink from the bar it is not as if you are going hours without access to a drink. Also on a couple of occasions there were some ignorant people talking all the way through the shows. The shows were ok some better than others. I think the entertainment could have been a bit better but that is down to personal preferences. Service. There were a mixture of Filipino and Eastern European staff on the ship. All we came across were brilliant and everyone of them we met greeted us with a smile and a hello. They are on the ship for up to 8 months and there were some passengers do tend to be rude to them. We met quite a few staff from the Discovery who had transferred to Discovery 2. Surprisingly they remembered us and actually came to our tables to say hi. Ports and excursions. Our itinerary. Tenerife Day of boarding. Gran Canaria - We did our own thing as we were here last year. Mindelo Cape Verde - A God forsaken place not geared up to cruise ships at all. We left the ship at 10:00 and people were already heading back to the ship. Not worth a visit here. Barbados - Wonderful place but most things closed on Sundays! Got a hotel day pass. Grenada - Speedboat and snorkel. Absolutely brilliant but £72 was a bit pricey but worth it. Bonaire - A beautiful little island.- We did out own thing got a hotel day pass. Aruba - Lovely island- Got our own taxi for a tour $20 each. Island tour and beach for 3 hours. Brilliant. Curacao - Willemstad is a delightful colourful town. $20 taxi tour about four hours. Panama Canal - Vastly over priced. £120 Not as described in the blurb not the companies fault but 4-5 hours going around the lakes due allocated time of going through the locks. The last 3 hours were brilliant but the lead up to it was dire! We were very late back to the ship which had to wait for 350 passengers on this tour. Cartegena- Colombia $30 Taxi tour for 3 hours a beautiful city but boiling hot and humid. Jamaica- We did not do a tour here. We loved the itinerary and 18 nights went in a flash it only felt like a week. Can't understand visiting Mindelo but I guess it is a very cheap port for port fees. There are other beautiful islands in the cape so why those chose this one is beyond comprehension. Major concern. The medical centre. I have never ever seen so many people walking around a ship with Canulas in situ. Most being diagnosed with pneumonia some clearly not actually having pneumonia. Either there is something majorly wrong with the ventilation system or there is something afoot with the insurance claims. Would we sail with Marella gain? Not in the near future certainly. Reasonable standard of service but not quite up to the same standard as last year. Price wise they are not dissimilar to other cruise lines whose standards are a bit higher. I would point out here that customer service pre and post cruise is abysmal. We had no communications from our Tui travel agent at all. I only got information from a facebook group and had to go into the shop myself to get this information I understand that the telephone service leaves a hell of a lot to be desired too. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
Thought we would try Discovery 2 as it is an ex Royal Caribbean ship. They had great crew, seemed really happy, which is always a bonus. Plenty of time in the ports of call. The only thing we didn't like was the casino as this ... Read More
Thought we would try Discovery 2 as it is an ex Royal Caribbean ship. They had great crew, seemed really happy, which is always a bonus. Plenty of time in the ports of call. The only thing we didn't like was the casino as this is always a fun part of a cruise. In this case it was far too small with only one crowded roulette table and dull electronic slot machines. Other than that we had a great time. This cruise was on an all inclusive drinks package. We chose to upgrade to premium but not really necessary as lots of branded drinks included. Passengers dressed smartly for dinner. Great saxophonist and a good comedian. Excellent club on Floor 11. Decent evening meals. A much more chilled experience to have breakfast in the main dining rooms rather than search for a table in the buffet restaurant. Get a cab to town if you travel to Madeira its only 10 euros and saves a huge walk. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We were originally booked to travel to Florida but as a result of damage etc and the hurricanes prevailing at that time we decided to cancel and were offered the chance to rebook so decided on a cruise and stay as always fancied this type ... Read More
We were originally booked to travel to Florida but as a result of damage etc and the hurricanes prevailing at that time we decided to cancel and were offered the chance to rebook so decided on a cruise and stay as always fancied this type of holiday. We had cruised many times before, only once though with Thomson on the Majesty which we hadn't particularly enjoyed at the time but had heard of good reports of the Discovery 1 and 2 ships. We were immediately very impressed, only had an inside cabin as that was all that was available approximately 6 days before we sailed but it was fine, plenty of storage, clean, quite modern, well kept by the steward whose name I sadly have forgotten, easy access to the parts of the ship we visited and also close to a water cooler so we always had fresh water to take ashore or during the night, great idea this instead of the constant sales push by other companies to purchase bottles of water from them at extortionate prices. The only negative is the horrid shower curtains that keep attaching themselves to you, why can't they get rid of them! Shower doors would be much better. We used the main dining room for breakfast as we had had a break from cruising as we had both got utterly sick of buffets, the queueing for tables and hustle bustle and noise of it all in the past. This was a much better choice, waiter service, good selection of breakfasts and much more relaxing dining option and we never had to wait for a table. We also used this option for dinner, generally we had to have a pager but often we ordered a drink, sat down and then our pager went off. Food was excellent too at dinner, cannot fault it and my husband is fussy! Would thoroughly recommend the main dining room and the all inclusive drinks option was wonderful. The Prosecco, cocktails and wines which I tried were excellent and bar service was good. We used to have a drink in the bar on the upper deck which became the disco later in the evening and would then go down to book a table for dinner, going into the atrium bar while we waited. Coffees were also available on the all inclusive package. We did not book any trips etc but did our own thing. During the day we used the glass house for swimming as I do not sunbathe, the pool was a little chilly but the atmosphere was lovely and the food options for lunch good and the takeaway section just outside did a variety of foods and fresh fruit selection. We only used the buffet once, quite late in the afternoon so it was not too busy to at that point. We went to a couple of shows which were very good but generally did our own thing in the evening. Embarkation was very speedy when we boarded and our suitcases arrived very quickly indeed which is always a relief !and as we were going to a hotel for four days we left the ship fairly early in the morning but sadly we ended up sitting on a coach for ages as the coach was overbooked initially, the passengers were transferred to another coach, all a bit of a pain really and then we had a long wait to check in at our hotel but that is another story! The cruise was excellent thoughout, would definitely go again and would recommend, the all inclusive drinks package and tips included is a bonus. Read Less
162 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Spanish Sunsets Cruise : Date of Cruising: 28 May to 4 June 2017 Having cruised previously with Princess, Royal Caribbean and P&O on their larger ships holding 3,500 passengers, we were a little nervous about booking a western ... Read More
Spanish Sunsets Cruise : Date of Cruising: 28 May to 4 June 2017 Having cruised previously with Princess, Royal Caribbean and P&O on their larger ships holding 3,500 passengers, we were a little nervous about booking a western Mediterranean cruise with Thompson (now rebranded TUI), on their newly refurbished flagship ‘Discovery 2’. The TUI ship is a lot smaller carrying just 1900 passengers. Obviously, on ‘Discovery 2’ you don’t get the feeling of space as on the bigger ships and there is no ice rink, sports court, flowrider, water slides, large promenades, zip wires, etc … that you get on the larger cruise ships, everything is obviously scaled down, but so is the price. This ‘Discovery 2’ is a ship that was previously owned by Royal Caribbean but sold to TUI who then have rebranded it along with a major refurbishment in May 2017. I was presently surprised by what I saw and experienced and in most areas my expectations were exceeded. The cabin was first class and on a par with the other cruise liners we have sailed with. It was spacious and well equipped and had we had no complaints what so ever. The restaurant where we dined for our evening meals (Gallery 47), was also excellent with a varied menu and delicious food. The service from the restaurant staff was also first class. No complaints from me and I’m a fussy eater. Breakfast and lunch was in the Islands buffet restaurant and again the food was very good. It did get busy at peak times but going slightly earlier or later meant you could always get a table. (Peak time for breakfast was around 9am). Generally the look of the various areas of the ship was good and taking into account that it was a ‘refurbishment’ and not a ‘refit’ a good job had been done. Most importantly there was new carpeting throughout which is important as nothing makes a ship look more ‘tired’ than worn faded carpeting. There was a variety of entertainment around the ship and most was of a reasonable standard and some excellent. The main disappointment were the shows in the main theatre. Although the singers and dancers were very talented, their choice of material was disappointing and song choices could have been a lot stronger. The production and scenery was good and the seating was very, very comfortable, it was just a shame the the material chosen for them to perform was not the best. Also TUI could have done better by having more variety with professional artists being brought onboard to perform that were of a higher calibre than the TUI resident dancers and singers, as good as they were. There was one variation during the week when we had a comedy magician who was OK but not the best. Most of the crew were very courteous and helpful and the room stewards good although they were not as visible and as ‘chatty’ as some on other cruises we’ve been on. There were two pools (both with jacuzzis), one indoor and one outdoor. Both were of good quality and the indoor one was not overcrowded, as was the outdoor one, but that probably wasn’t helped with the week of our cruise being Spring Bank holiday week, and so there was a large number of children onboard. There were plenty of sun beds around the ship and if you looked around you could find a variety of shaded areas. In summary: There is an old saying that ‘you get what you pay for’, and that is certainly true here. You just get the feel that things are just not quite as big, as plush, as roomy and of the same quality as the cruise companies I’ve made mentioned previously, but for what you pay it is good value for money. As you can probably tell, I’d prefer to cruise with Princess, Royal Caribbean, P&O etc, but for a cheap one week cruise in the Mediterranean then it’s worth considering if ‘money is not is a little tight’. Having spoken to others that have previously sailed with TUI/Thompson, I think this is a step up for the company and the effort they are putting into raising their image and brand in the cruise market is to be commended. If you’ve booked a cruise on ‘Discovery 2’ then I suspect you’ll enjoy it as long as you don’t expect the same experience as on the larger cruise liners who specialise in this type of holiday. I hope this review has proved useful and if you have any questions please feel free to e-mail me at glyn.day@ntlworld.com. Cheers, Glyn 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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