This is the cruise to take if you want to make a crossing of the Atlantic from Tampa, Fl to Barcelona Spain with several great ports between over a 14 day period. However, after the itinerary, this ship lacks in overall consistency. The ship is one the smallest and older ships and it is reflected in aspects of the ship. The main decks are not easy to transverse from bow to stern because of add on areas to the ship. The food is well below average, is very inconsistent in its preparation and overall quality, the drinks are expensive $14-16.00 and not made consistent from bar venue to bar venue, the three specialty restaurants are your best choice if you want fairly consistent food with the Chop House being the most consistent in quality and service. The ship works to separate you from your money with a $7.95 charge for room service, expense drinks, expensive photos packages while at the same time offering lower quality food. The strongest point of the ship are the entire crew, cruise director, and overall entertainment and shipboard activities. The crew is very multicultural which makes it work even better. Every crew member will do whatever is necessary to make sure you enjoy the cruise by their service and friendly attitude. Again, the best complaint is the ship’s approach of charging excessive prices for everything will “bottomlining” everything in order to line its pockets. You will also find the daily tips higher than average onboard this ship, and only justified by the friendliness of the crew if it is totally to their benefit. This is a cruise you would only take to avoid flying in coach for a comparable price between the U.S. and Europe, but be prepared to pay for every service onboard the ship. This ship makes its money by upselling its lower cost cruise prices for its staterooms and then collecting its cut from the pricing of its services. Caveat Emptor!
1 out of 5
Our luggage was lost onboard the ship and not delivered to our stateroom for 1 1\2 hours after getting underway! We missed our first seating waiting on our clothes to change into for dinner!
Food and Dining
1 out of 5
The food in the various venues was worse than average. There was no consistency in the preparation of the food from meal to meal, two of the three speciality restaurants had limited menu. The bar prices for liquor, wine and drinks was overinflated for the quality of the drinks served, the water cost over $40 for 12 bottles of bottled water, the ship charged $7.95 for room service meals except of a limited menu at breakfast.
4 out of 5
The activities were excellent with trivia, karaoke, stage performances and a variety of other activities during the day including rock-climbing and a fitness center.
4 out of 5
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
The strongest point of the ship was the crew at every level. The crew was friendly, professional and very diverse from a variety of different countries. The entire crew worked well together to make the cruise enjoyable. The strongest point of this ship was its crew composition and their upbeat attitude.
3 out of 5
The ship is old, small, and the main decks are limited because it makes it difficult to walk from the bow to the stern of the ship because of how “chopped up” the main decks are In the major social areas.
Cabin / Stateroom
2 out of 5
Be prepare to create your own eating style using the Windjammer Buffet initially, My Time Dining Reservations and be prepared to pay for room service, and the special restaurants to get consistent and average to above average consistently with the food.
The embarkation was confusing and chaotic in trying to get to the pier where the ship was departing. The City of Tampa does not really take charge to move the traffic to the ship area in a smooth or organized manner.
Do take the hour train tour around the major areas of Key West. It will provide an excellent history of the City and show you the highlights as well as drop you off in a major shopping and eating area of the city
Do the Hop-on-Hop Off and get an hour overview of the city with the highlights of the City. It was difficult to hear the recorded presentation on the bus, but it is well worth the expense to take a tour of the city.
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