Serenade of the Seas Cruise Review to Europe - Mediterranean

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 29

Overall rating:

2 out of 5
Serenade of the Seas

12 Night Mediterranean & Venice (Barcelona Roundtrip)

Sail date: July 22, 2014

Ship: Serenade of the Seas

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 8652

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 7 years ago

Review summary

Having taken several RC voyages before this one was our longest and most expensive, and most disappointing. The quality of service was terrible, at most they did their jobs at the basic level and not even with a smile.  When we dined at the restaurants with a cover charge, THEN we got service. 

We stayed in a balcony room on the 8th floor, four of us.  One child was in an overhead (literally over my head) bunk.  Worst room layout EVER. Every handle on every drawer was sticky smeared with chocolate, the remote control was the same. Another child slept on the fold out sofa (twin sized).  The bed was NEVER made properly.  There was this constant pile of sheets by his pillow.  The state room attendant NEVER made the bed just tossed a duvet on it.

Mid cruise there was construction work on our balcony covering the railing with this black and yellow sticky foam caution tape.  five days later (and a lot of complaining) it was removed and the balcony repaired only to have them white paint the exterior covering the glass planels with paint splatter.  In 12 days the balcony was never cleaned, swept, glass washed, nothing.  Glasses and dishes were out there for multiple days. 

One of our excursions was cancelled, with no attempt to provide us with additional options (god forbid a discount even), when we asked for what was available nearly everything was sold out. so we got nothing and they didn't seem to mind. 

We complained about our neighbours smoking (various products) on their balcony.... FIVE times in 3 days.  The customer service offered several excuses, but in the end didn't apologise for the inconvenience, but reminded us how they were going out of there way to make sure our neighbours were abiding by the rules.  

We spend time (too much time for a holiday) discussing with the manager, the state room manager, the maintenance manager to cover all the BS that was ruining our trip, the manager did finally offer a discount on a future cruise, but when we got it in writing it was 50% LESS than what was verbally stated.  

It was eventually corrected, but that's the thing... it felt shady, no real apologies for anything no admitting of wrong doing, or poor service just here's a discount and oh by the way there's a time limit. :S

This boat is too small to hold 3000+ people from 60+ countries for this period of time.  The "shows" were cheesy at best, but at least the artists/dancer/magician/comedian didn't try to sell a cd a dozen times throughout their performance (like on other cruise lines).


Our first RC cruise was the greatest thing ever, it was nearly 20 years ago and we are still in contact with our table mates.  But since then... the service has just gone down the drain. 

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

1 out of 5
the main dining area had poor service, several people introduced themselves to us... yet the stack of used dishes sat at the edge of the table no one willing to pick them up or refill water glasses.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
more variety, needs more things to DO rather than more things to sit on your butt and watch


3 out of 5

Children's Programs

3 out of 5
it was good that they separated the 12-14 from the older teenagers (previous cruises didn't do that).

Service and Staff

1 out of 5
there were a few GREAT people, but 5 out of how many just doesn't cut it.

Ship Quality

3 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

1 out of 5
terrible room configuration, odd storage spaces

Ship tip

Remember it's YOUR vacation, just because the ship is at port doesn't me you HAVE TO get off the boat. Do what works for you, if your 'my time' dining doesn't work, then change it. If service is bad, SAY SOMETHING to a manager. And if someone is great, recognise them. :)

Ports of call

Barcelona, Spain

5 out of 5
Don't miss the S. Familia Church. and it's about 35 Euros from the El Prat airport to the boat

Cannes, France

5 out of 5
walk off the boat, there is a free beach and to the right a lovely shopping district (hidden behind the main road)

La Spezia, Italy

1 out of 5
Everything is SOOOOOooooo far away. and nothing close.

Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy

3 out of 5
we stayed on the boat... (been there done that, in July/August the city is overrun with tourists)

Salerno (Amalfi Coast), Italy

1 out of 5
Frustrated, if all the excursions were in Naples why not just port there.

Venice, Italy

3 out of 5
skip the excursions and make your own we went to Ca' Mancana and made our own masks.

Ravenna, Italy

3 out of 5
skip the beach excursion you can walk to the beach from the boat.

Kotor, Montenegro

3 out of 5
we were suppose to do blue caves, but it was cancelled. Worth the hike up the mountain, as there is not much else to do in this little town.
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