1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
My wife and I had put off too long a trip to Antarctica and finally took that long awaited itinerary. I wish we had done so earlier!! The entire experience (with one small exception) went off without a hitch and, as usual, we enjoyed the ... Read More
My wife and I had put off too long a trip to Antarctica and finally took that long awaited itinerary. I wish we had done so earlier!! The entire experience (with one small exception) went off without a hitch and, as usual, we enjoyed the family-like Azamara experience. This being our 10th Azamara cruise we had a pretty good idea of what to expect, though The Pursuit is a recent addition to the Quest and Journey. The layouts are identical so it was just like returning home. A number of the crew were familiar transfers from the other ships so it really did feel like family. The ship was renovated before being put into Azamara service with the new Deck 5 layout sans Casino. Honestly, on this size ship, the casino was little more than a nice diversion and the extra space in the newly converted "Den" was put to good use. Though we had a 7 day stretch where we were limited to staying on the ship, it seemed to pass quickly with the interesting "cruise by" itinerary of the Alaskan peninsula. Passing a number of HUGE icebergs was also a favorite of all onboard. Best of all, we were lucky to have pretty calm seas passing through the Drake Passage twice and the horror stories some people told us about never came to pass. Entertainment was varied, though by necessity it is limited to guest entertainers and a small ensemble of singers and band. Still, they were excellent, professional, and interactive. The stops were all interesting and fun, and the AZAMAZING EVENING in Montevideo was a presentation of the Urguayan Carnivale and was one of the top two AZAMAZING EVENINGS we have experienced! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We have not done an Ocean cruise for 15 years. We have been taking land tours and River cruises instead. Before we stopped we had been on 8 Ocean cruises. I was very excited to discover this Antarctica Cruise and on a ship we had sailed ... Read More
We have not done an Ocean cruise for 15 years. We have been taking land tours and River cruises instead. Before we stopped we had been on 8 Ocean cruises. I was very excited to discover this Antarctica Cruise and on a ship we had sailed twice before (as the Royal Princess!) and had loved! The ship is a perfect size for those of us who like a smaller number of passengers. I thought the redo of the interior was fine. The "living room" is a very popular spot to hang out during the sea days with the loungers always in demand. Passengers "save" seats so I was not able to try them. The following are my impressions of the cruise: .Cabin 7100---awkward furniture, was always moving the coffee table to get to veranda or loveseat, plastic shower curtain made shower dark and liked to wrap around the body.. Ship shore excursions---too expensive. arranged tours online with private vendors for all ports. .Service--room steward great, staff friendly, buffet staff attentive, Discoveries staff needs more training (multiple use of seating charts, we were "forgotten" about during our meal several times and sat for 20+ minutes waiting to be checked on .Dinning/food---BUFFET food greatly improved, theme of buffet advertised daily in program, DISCOVERIES menu posted outside restaurant only so had to make trip to check its menu before deciding where to eat daily, menu lacking in variety and food was not outstanding, no soufflé/bananas foster/prime cuts of meat/lobster. Main dinning room has suffered from having specialty restaurants as only place to enjoy those foods. AQUALINA specialty (ate X2) no change in menu from one week to the next, soufflé outstanding but majority of food did not stand out. Two brunch meals in Discoveries were outstanding events! Chocolate buffet was crowded due to small venue area. .Activities--daily activities have not changed in 15 years. I spoke to Tony the cruise director two times about this and he was very receptive to my criticism. Enjoyed: ABBA dance night, photo contest/lectures from professional staff photographer, enrichment lectures (including NASA lecturer who hosted eclipse viewing) , movie nights, Polar club. HIGHLIGHTS Azamazing event & White night party! All in all this was an exciting itinerary! Was happy with the change of dress to "country club casual". The ship captain was very interactive with guests and went out of his way to maneuver ship for exceptional scenery viewing. Would recommend this itinerary/ship with the knowledge that dinning in Discoveries is not a highlight. I hope this review helps other cruise lovers pick their next adventure! Read Less
BBMacLaird, CBO - Azamara Club Cruises has responded
Thank you birdyrobin for the review! We appreciate it.
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise mainly to see Antarctica, but also to have a chance to cruise Azamara again on her "new" ship. Embarkation was a little busier than we expected and a shuttle bus must be taken to the ship in Buenos Aires, ... Read More
We chose this cruise mainly to see Antarctica, but also to have a chance to cruise Azamara again on her "new" ship. Embarkation was a little busier than we expected and a shuttle bus must be taken to the ship in Buenos Aires, but there were Azamara people with signs at every stop easily directing you to the next location. All in all, not a bad experience. We thought the ship was lovely and due to the itinerary, spent a lot of time in the Living Room on Deck 10 looking at the scenery. It was tough to get a seat at the front at times, and took some patience, but it was quite an unusual itinerary. We would typically take a seat more toward the middle and move up as they became available. The buffet was fine, though we didn't go there often - for health and quality reasons, we prefer the other restaurants when possible. When looking for drinks, we felt we were either asked 50 times if we wanted a drink, or we couldn't find anyone and ended up serving ourselves. Never sure why that was the case. We felt the food in Discoveries was generally very good and the two Brunch Buffets were outstanding! The music during the buffets, provided by the Pursuit Band was so delightful, we ordered more coffee and tea and lingered to relax and enjoy. It was heavenly! Specialty restaurants were good and the Chef's Table food and wines were excellent - we thoroughly enjoyed this experience and felt it was a good value (we chose a package, chefs table + 2, which was one Chef's table and one dinner and each specialty restaurant.) Unlike others have mentioned on here previously, we felt the complimentary wine offerings were quite good (especially the Cline Cellars Zinfandel) and offered a good chance to try wines from different countries. Others we chatted with on our cruise agreed. Bartenders were willing to make our favorite drinks, Cosmos and Lemon Drops with complimentary alcohol and it was all good. One odd point, I think maybe bartender placement is more by seniority rather than quality, as the best bartenders were not in the best bars.... by far the best bartender on our ship could only be found in Discoveries at night... he had quite a following, but it was strange to not find a bartender of his quality in the Spirits Bar or Living Room...all other cruise lines we've sailed (27 so far) would have placed him in a much busier location. The Azamazing Evening, a carnival celebration at Solis Theater in Montevideo, was surprisingly excellent. It was a pain to be bussed over there, of course, but we were expecting it and the show was very good - we were surprised and impressed! The White Night celebration had some challenges with the weather, so we ended up eating in the dining room, but going up after for dancing - some songs with a few sprinkles of rain mixed in - but it was a very fun time! We attended most of the enrichment lectures. The main lecturer gave good overviews of all of our ports. Unfortunately, the wildlife speaker was not as interesting, and he ended up not giving any after the first few. This is one area I think Azamara could have done better for this itinerary....they missed a chance to bring on an expert on Antarctica in areas such as ice, iceberg types, previous expeditions, geology etc.... This cruise had a different type of clientele, I believe due to the itinerary and we spoke with many people who would have enjoyed a more in-depth enrichment experience. However, they did fly down a NASA expert ambassador for the lunar eclipse - He & Captain Carl made this a once in a lifetime experience! The few days in Antarctica were an indescribable experience - We thoroughly enjoyed everything about it! We would have liked the overnight in Ushuaia, as our original itinerary included in order to see more of Patagonia. This was our second Azamara cruise (27 total on Carnival, Princess, Celebrity & Oceania) and we thoroughly enjoyed it and would go again tomorrow if we could! Read Less
BBMacLaird, CBO - Azamara Club Cruises has responded
Thank you ihbsurf for the 5-star review! We are so glad you loved your cruise of South America and Antartica with us!
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
e have just returned from an Azamara Pursuit cruise to Antartica. The customer serviceon the ship is appalling. We had problems with our hot water going cold over two days. After various attempts to fix it (it would go cold again within ... Read More
e have just returned from an Azamara Pursuit cruise to Antartica. The customer serviceon the ship is appalling. We had problems with our hot water going cold over two days. After various attempts to fix it (it would go cold again within a couple of hours) and much debate we were offered another stateroom but no apology, upgrade or any comprnsation for the inconvenience.The guest relations manager (Sasha) hid behind his staff and after meeting with us once never got back to us although we left messages for him to contact us. Also the stateroom had the smallest shower and least storage of any that we have ever experienced in 21 cruises with 8 cruise lines. The ship was also compromised in many areas as altough it has been refurbished it is quite old. For the price we paid and the reputation of Azamara (boutique cruise line 4.5 stars) we expected far more but sadly found them worse than 3 star cruise lines such as Princess and Holland America. To say we were disappointed would be an umderstatment and we will never travel on Azamara again. No port information was given out apart from maps from port staff. Food quality was quite variablee, sometimes good, sometimes not. Selection was reasonable except for breakfast with only four cereals on offer. Entertainment was OK. Unfortunately the floor of the theatre didn’t slope so it was difficult to see. The enrichment lectures were great. Embarkation and disimbarkation was well organised and very smooth. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise as we wanted to go to Antarctica but didn't want to pay the prices of the expedition ships. Fortunately the ship was small enough to allow us to navigate some of the small passages and appreciate the wonder of ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we wanted to go to Antarctica but didn't want to pay the prices of the expedition ships. Fortunately the ship was small enough to allow us to navigate some of the small passages and appreciate the wonder of icebergs and penguins. We even entered an active volcano. 17 days on board with only 4 ports was a bit too long, but we knew this when we signed up. What we didn't know was how inadequate the weather proofing was in the staterooms. We were freezing inside, even with the heating bumped up high. Not sure if this is still one of the teething problems with a newly acquired ship. We didn't even have the standard issue binoculars in the stateroom - an abomination for a destination such as Antarctica. Having sailed with Azamara previously, more recently we have become disillusioned by the increasing up-selling. The brand has been cheapened by all the nickel and diming, although base prices have not reduced. The prices of the shore excursions were obscene, and based on general feedback around the vessel, they weren't even good. The promised strenuous 2 hour trek we went on turned out to be a 1km walk + bus ride. They did listen to our feedback and begrudgingly gave us a small refund. Although still settling in as a relatively new team (since August 2018), the service staff were friendly and efficient as we have come to expect from Azamara. Some recognised us from before. We thoroughly enjoyed the talks given by the destination speaker. He was entertaining and knowledgeable and certainly did enrich our time on board. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
What a disappointment We just got back from our first and most likely last Azamara cruise – a 15-night NYE in Rio voyage. We traveled in a Club Continent Suite. My experience on Azamara was so disappointing, that I’m compelled to ... Read More
What a disappointment We just got back from our first and most likely last Azamara cruise – a 15-night NYE in Rio voyage. We traveled in a Club Continent Suite. My experience on Azamara was so disappointing, that I’m compelled to write this review. This is my first review on cruisecritic, though I’ve read hundreds of reviews to help with the dozen or so cruises we’ve been on in the past few years on Celebrity, Oceania, and Viking. I’m going to take each main experience area in turn, starting with the positive. Embarkation Overall experience was smooth for the most part. Though we were surprised there wasn’t a line dedicated for Suite guests, as is the case with other cruise lines we’ve traveled on. Cabin We were fortunate enough to be able to travel in a Club Continent Suite. The room itself is roomy, with over 300 sq feet. The décor is modern and inviting. Lots of closet space. The bathroom and walk-in shower were great. Lots of room and storage. The veranda was as long as the room, but fairly narrow. Just enough width for the 2-seater table and a little leg room once you’ve sat on the individual seater situated on the veranda. Food This was one of the most disappointing of the elements. We ate at the buffet for most breakfasts and lunches. The food served were the basics ( egg station, cheese and charcuterie station, one carving option, sandwiches etc..). No imagination, no creativity, and for the first few days, very little was seasoned. For dinner, we ate the specialty restaurants since we had that as a benefit for being in a Suite. The menu never changed, and after the first few dinners, there was little left on the menu that we wanted to try. What we ate was fine. But nothing to write home about. And, somewhat meager and plain for a specialty restaurant compared to what we ate on Oceania, Viking, and even Celebrity. Entertainment This was another major downer. Tony Markey, the Cruise Director, and his wife were the headliners for several of the shows. Overshadowing, in our opinion, the four very talented “Signature Singers” who only got to perform 4 or 5 of the 15 nights. The same for the Vegas performer, Tony Arias, who was relegated to only performing 2 out of his 10-night stay on the boat. So odd. So much talent on the boat, and yet we were relegated to Tony, his wife and a string trio that sang the same 10 songs 2x a day for 15 days. The other odd experience was NYE night itself. It seems they combined the “White Party” and NYE celebration, instead of two sperate parties on two separate nights. The party itself was very well organized, and finally some good, higher quality food. However, the moment the clock struck midnight the party ended. No Auld lang syen. Nothing. Everyone looked around wondering if, in fact, the party was over at precisely midnight. Especially since the cruise was billed as an NYE celebratory cruise! Suite Value for Money We paid a handsome sum to travel in a Club Continent Suite. The room itself was lovely. However, apart from the ability to eat at the two specialty restaurants, that for all intents and purposes served up basic food, there were few other standout benefits. In fact, even with a Suite stay and an upgraded Premium drinks package, we were still only served the very basic brand of bottled water given free to every passenger, plus no additional or premium wine selections beyond what every other guest gets. We found that incredible that even the combo of a Suite plus Premium drinks package couldn’t get us a glass of Evian water or a better choice of wine beyond the sub $10 bottles they were serving. The other Suite benefit that seems interesting on paper, but not in reality, was a Tea service provided each day at around 3 pm. The trouble with this benefit is that they were basically serving the same mini sandwiches and scones found at the café, and only provided a cup of tea. Staff We found the higher the ranking, the less friendly or approachable they were. This not only included Tony and his assistant Cruise Director Lee, who had a hard time pronounces many of the ports we visited and proudly stated on one of the awkwardly embarrassing mornings shows that he’d prefer to spend time at the “London Zoo” than visit the wildlife found in the South Atlantic, but the other senior staff that many times just looked stern and not very friendly. On the opposite spectrum were our incredible Butler, Padem, and the other attendants on the 8th floor. As well as the staff in all the restaurants and cafés, particularly Vadym who managed to remember our names after only just a few days. True gem. Feedback We were sent a questionnaire about 4 days into the cruise to provide any feedback that could be addressed during the cruise. We shared detailed feedback regarding several areas where there was an opportunity for improvement. The first was the Entertainment. A few hours later, Tony, to his credit, called my husband to let him know that he wasn’t monopolizing the entertainment, the exact word my husband used in the feedback form and that we’d see improved entertainment. This never happened. We also lamented the fact that even though the Sanctum, in the Spa, was billed as 16 years old plus only environment, on every day we visited there were a few pre-teens in attendance. They were also in the adults only gym, and sauna/steam room. And you could even find infants on the dance floor post 10 pm at night. We realize this was a holiday cruise, but there was no regard to what is stated policy. Disembarkation We were so disappointed with the cruise and all the various elements that when we got to our final port, Punta del Este, we were so depressed at the thought of spending the last two nights on the boat that we decided to give up our Suite and leave the boat early so we could at least explore a town that seemed very interesting. This forced us to spend additional money on a hotel room for two nights and a flight from Punta back to Buenos Aires, where the cruise originated and where we had already paid for a flight back home. Despite the additional expense, we were happy to have thoroughly enjoyed the last two night of our vacation, and off the Pursuit. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose the cruise for the destinations and the company were advertising the cruise as an upmarket experience. We boarded at Lima, no issues. The main problems were, the food served in the buffet, this was nearly always luke warm ... Read More
We chose the cruise for the destinations and the company were advertising the cruise as an upmarket experience. We boarded at Lima, no issues. The main problems were, the food served in the buffet, this was nearly always luke warm ie,fried eggs not fully cooked and kept at luke warm temperature. Chicken kept at luke warm temperature, not hot. There were so many issues and we saw lots of food being sent back. Many times we spoke to staff who told us they would pass our concerns on. There had been gastroenteritis on board and everyone was advised to wash hands and use sanitiser around the ship! There were guests who have travelled with Azamara several time before and the told us not to judge Azamara by the Persuit, they stated the Pursuit was not up to standard. The entertainment was very poor, the cruise entertainment director was more interested in selling his CD’s and the assistant entertainment cruise directors discription of tours on the TV was appalling. If you like Jazz the type where all the notes are’in the wrong order’ this is the boat for you. One evening the pianist microphone was off, no one told him, that’s how bad he was. Communication on board was not informative, unless you booked a very expensive trip with the ship there was little information on Ports. Speakers gave wrong information, which the captain had to apologise for. The list goes on and on. This was not the amazing cruise it was advertised as. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We love the small ship feel and especially Azamara as everyone fells equal. The new ship looks great with a modern feel to the cabins but a few problems with moisture were seen as they had to run dehumidifiers in certain areas. We were ... Read More
We love the small ship feel and especially Azamara as everyone fells equal. The new ship looks great with a modern feel to the cabins but a few problems with moisture were seen as they had to run dehumidifiers in certain areas. We were in a Club Continental suite which was very comfortable, lots of storage, nice bath/shower and cleaned constantly. As I am asthmatic they had already removed feathers and any sense enhancers. The only problem is the makeup mirror in the bathroom must have been installed by a man as it is placed for a 6 foot person. Again great staff come to the rescue for a 5foot lady. A female officer lent me her personal makeup mirror for the entire cruise. The new chairs in Aquilinia were very comfortable even though others had said other wise. The new lounge chairs on the Sanctum are very uncomfortable as they do not recline, but again the great AZ staff upon request brought the regular reclining lounge cots out for my husband. We missed the double lounge cabana that was outside in this area as it blocked sun as well as being cosy for a couple. Food was very good to excellent, Aqualinia still shines with their Dover sole and in Prime C the fillet minion is outstanding and I am not a big meat eater. Lots of excellent appetizers, deserts were better than the previous cruises. Windows cafe and The Patio were also very good with excellent variety. Entertainment is where there is a let down. The musical trio in the living room were so so, sometimes better than others. The shows were generally poor but their in house singers/dancers did do some good shows. The comedian was not bad but the rest were not worth watching. We did not attend the lectures or other activities. Service is where AZ shines, we boarded in Buenos Aries and did have to wait for a short time but it was done in an organized fashion and once on the rooms were already to drop your carry on. To our surprise as we walked towards our room we recognized our butler from our last year cruise as he had been moved to this new ship. Again in AZ fashion he greeted us with our names and remembered us with a greeting of my Canadians. Elro was always able to fulfill our requests with a smile. We left from Buenos Aries stoping in Montevideo where AZ put on the most fabulous Azamazing evening in the Solis theatre, it was unique entertaining and interactive. Well done AZ. Santos Brazil was interesting with some great views and the coffee museum. Buzios Brazil was a lovely beach town friendly people great boutiques, fabulous gelato and nice cafes. Nice day on a great beach with fresh fish lunch. Paraty was a quiet beach town with little infrastructure and a dock in poor shape. We did a private boat day which was nice. Rio stop was ok as this is such a dangerous city we used a guide. It was hot and line ups were long even early in the morning. The rain forest in the city is beautiful and the beaches crowded but lovely looking. As it was New Year’s Eve soon roads were blocked off near Copacabana Beach by noon. Our Captain (Carl) changed the next port because of bad weather and stopped in a beach town which was a good decision as weather throughout the cruise was excellent. We then stopped for one day instead of two in Punta del Este a very high class city taking an AZ tour to the seal island and then walking to the sculpture of the hand in the sand. Lovely cafes, restaurants, and shops. The New Years was outstanding, AZ did their white night on deck and amped it up for New Years. Food was great entertainment fun, hats blowers and beads were given out as well as sparkling wine for midnight toast. The fireworks viewed off the Copacabana Beach were spectacular. It made for a memorable night. We took a special day tour the last day in BA arranged by AZ to Iguazu Falls. It was costly but done well from start to finish. A long day but worth it, they even arranged a dinner at a hotel so we would not need to eat so late upon return. Internet was ok but a pain to keep putting a code in each time to use on my IPad. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
I had told my husband that my bucket list was to see Machu Picchu and had been since high school. So we booked on the Pursuit. We had heard there were problems with food etc but to us it’s just something that will happen because it’s a ... Read More
I had told my husband that my bucket list was to see Machu Picchu and had been since high school. So we booked on the Pursuit. We had heard there were problems with food etc but to us it’s just something that will happen because it’s a new ship with new staff learning the ropes with seasoned staff from some of the other ships. We never went on this cruise with high expectations because of the nature of where we were, where we were heading and the type of conditions in weather etc we could face. We were very lucky with the weather overall being nice with the odd rain but expected in snow capped mountainous areas. Our adventure to Machu Picchu was fantastic, 5 star hotels all the way, absolutely 4 wonderful guides who met our every needs. All 21 of us got along famously and we all agreed it was the highlight of the whole trip. As one of them said, the guides did everything except put the toothpaste on our toothbrushes. I will put up photos once I get them organised. We enjoyed the cruise, seeing things and going places we would probably never gone to. There was a factor that prevented us from stopping in one port ,having to do with filters but we were not affected except for the missed port. Pursuit was supposed to go to the Falklands but being a place where weather ,wind especially , plays a huge part in deciding if a ship can make it or not, we did not make it there. 21 foot waves, a 3 mile tender, and a return trip would have been miserable for everyone. Sasha and his group scrambled to give us new shore excursions at a new port of call while the Captain and his crew scrambled to find a port we could go to. It all worked out so I commend the captain and all those involved for all the very hard work they did to keep us happy. Wine in the main dining room was fine though we thought that as far as the four choices each evening could have featured wines from the countries we visited. I still enjoyed the wine though and thought they were good. My husband decided to take the ultimate package as he drinks more wine than I do. Food was good ,hot in the dining room but I think there could have been more variations. Their lamb shanks were so good as was the fish. They also had choices for those who are vegan or vegetarian. The waiters were terrific and when they weren’t working on the dining room they went up to Windows Cafe. The room attendants were so accommodating and worked very hard to keep our rooms clean. Overall I think it was a great cruise , you just have go with the idea that anything can happen and don’t have high expectations. Read Less
BBMacLaird, CBO - Azamara Club Cruises has responded
Thank you for the cruise review Hayliegolden. We appreciate that you took the time to write it. We hope to welcome you back aboard soon!
Sail Date: December 2018
The ship is lovely except for the old windows which need painting. The dining room food and service was outstanding. Thank you Vishal ..the egg man, for looking after us. The Living Room was our favourite place...classy, quiet, and ... Read More
The ship is lovely except for the old windows which need painting. The dining room food and service was outstanding. Thank you Vishal ..the egg man, for looking after us. The Living Room was our favourite place...classy, quiet, and relaxing with the ever changing view. The buffet food was always only luke warm. Many passengers complained but this was never resolved. Shore excursions were well organised. Dr Ron Orenstein guest lecturer was fantastic. Bars and lounges were very nice with good service. Missed two ports because of bad weather and mechanical issues. Uninspired entertainment. Piped music was horrible and repetitive. The ships general areas not very clean with the same crumbs on the floor for days under tables. Beds and linens were wonderful but no clock in the cabin. Captain was very entertaining and did give plenty of updates.Feel there could have been more guest lecturers on board talking about night sky, glaciers, geology, weather, and marine history. All staff were wonderful...very attentive. The big thing was the buffet food. No excuse for it always being barely luke warm. Many really upset passengers over this. Read Less
Azamara Pursuit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins N/A 3.7
Dining N/A 3.5
Entertainment N/A 3.0
Fitness Recreation N/A 3.6
Family N/A 3.6

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