June 2015 - 12 Night Mediterranean & Venice (Barcelona Roundtrip) Cruise on Vision of the Seas
We were a party of grandparents with grandchildren (19 and 16). The overall experience is good. But we noticed the differences between the previous cruises and this one. The ship is very nice. But nobody greats you when you embark, nobody takes you to your cabin. The cabin is great. Patric was cleaning very well. But there are no chocolates on the pillow at night (our granddaughter was disappointed), no toiletries except 2 pieces of soap (you have to carry them overseas or run around to buy them). Mattresses are not good. The feeling of the 5 star hotel is not there any more. The experience in the dining room was very good. Sandro and Jose were wonderful. We were looking forward for dinner. Also the guy (don't remember his name, who was making the reservations in the dining room) was extremely helpful. The different story about the buffet. There are three times less personnel than before. Nobody cleans the tables. You can't find the table because they are all dirty. I think I can bring a cup of coffee for myself, but find a clean table is more important. Also you have to clean the chair before sitting on it. They are all sticky. The floor is dirty. If you run around and find the person to clean the table, he or she will say 'sure', then turn their back on you and leave. They prefer to bring coffee than to clean a table.
About the itinerary. It was wonderful, if you can get from the port to the city. You are forced to pay for the shuttle, if you want to be on your own. There is no other way to get out of the port. I understand, that the cruise is a big business, but the cruise line should not charge for the shuttle. It is your responsibility to bring passengers to the point in the port were they can walk around and enjoy the city.