We cruised from Amsterdam to Budapest, September 2019, in an Owners Suite.
Overall this was a very good trip, but there were a couple of not so good features which could potentially stop us using the Jewel again.
First, the positives. The Cruise director Emese was truly excellent, very approachable and hands-on throughout. We can't praise her enough, and the organisation of just about everything was also excellent. The cabin met our expectations, well fitted out and styled, with plenty of storage space for two, and the room attendant was very pleasant and obliging. Shore excursions were very good, with free time usually available to explore alone. Food quality was good, as were the wines offerred at meal times. The majority of onboard staff were also pleasant and helpful. So far so good.
Now the negatives, which mostly concern the Restaurant and dining room seating. If, like us, you enjoy tables for two and do not want to share a table, this is probably not the ship for you. In fairness to the staff, when we made our preference for a table for two known, they laid up two for dinner on the first night, but on subsequent nights only one, strictly on a 'first come-first served' basis. Availability of a table for two at lunch varied from day to day, but was never more than one. We were fortunate to secure a table for two on several evenings and lunchtimes, but that involved waiting outside the restaurant door ahead of opening, something we really don't enjoy. It also meant we had to eat earlier than we'd have liked. At lunchtimes in particular, a large number of tables (up to 30 per cent on some days) in the dining room were placed 'off limits' to guests by the staff - leading to enforced sharing of tables. Apart from the customer service considerations of this policy (customer wishes should take priority over staff convenience) it seemed especially ill-advised on this cruise when nearly half of all guests seemed to be suffering from a really nasty chesty cough and/or cold. Another F&B issue concerned the way wines were served, with glasses being filled almost to the brim, something which we find really off-putting. This is a personal preference, and in fairness to our wine-waitress, after a few days she had cheerfully adjusted her pouring style to meet our preference. I appreciate that generous pouring is probably expected by many guests, but a little more finesse would certainly enhance the overall experience.
So, the acid test - would we use Travelmarvel Jewel again? This was our second Travelmarvel trip in just over a year, and we've been really impressed by the company's way of organising all the important factors such as embarkation, shore excursions, and the ships themselves. However, until more tables for two are available in the restaurant, we'd probably not use them again. Having said that, we have friends who enjoy sharing tables on cruises, and we'd have no hesitation in recommending Travelmarvel to them.