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  #1  
Old February 7th, 2010, 02:24 PM
Lizzim Lizzim is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Dorset, UK
Posts: 9
Default Island Escape Review 29/01/10

Background

This trip was a short break for my boyfriend and I (29 &28) and his parents (late 40’s and early 50’s). We had heard all the bad reviews before we booked but decided that for the price it was worth trying it out.
We flew out of Bournemouth on 29th Jan and arrived in Tenerife on time. The flight was OK, a shame there is no in flight entertainment (but apparently they will have planes with this from May) and a bit annoying that the cabin crew insist on continually bumping into passengers sat in the aisle seats – the aisle is not wide but they should take a little more care in my opinion.

Day 1 - Tenerife

We took the coach from the airport and arrived at the ship at approximately 8pm, check-in was quick and well organised. We put our tags on our luggage and boarded the ship; we went to our cabin to drop off our hand luggage and were greeted by our steward Romeo. We grabbed a bite to eat in the beachcomber and then had a drink in the lookout before going to bed.

Day2 – Gran Canaria

We went on the camel ride excursion today, the weather was warm and mostly sunny which made a nice change from home! The camel ride was an interesting experience and we went to visit a camel farm before stopping at the Hard Rock Cafe for apple cake and tea/coffee. This was a good start to our trip and a pleasant day out.

Day 3 – Las Palmas/Sea

We had planned to do the volcano and wine excursion today, however while eating breakfast in the Island Restaurant we saw tugs attempting to get us into port and then the pilot boat arrive to pick up the Pilot.....and then came the announcement that we would not be able to dick today as the winds were against us. This was a little disappointing but did mean that I could watch the Final of the Australian Open. So instead we headed onto Madeira and arrived around midnight meaning that we had a night not at sea!

Day 4 – Madeira

This was another nice day, there was some cloud and rain later on but we did have some nice sunny spells. We did the Taste of Madeira excursion – up in the cable car and down in toboggans before visiting the botanical gardens. This was really good fun and definitely worth doing! We got off the coach in town and had a wander around before walking back to the ship. As has been mentioned previously they are working on the dock, but there are pavements most of the way and we only had to walk along the road right at the end of the dock for a few moments.

Day 5 – Sea

This was our planned day at sea and we relaxed and read a book and I went and had my nails done!

Day 6 – Morocco

This was the worst day as far as my boyfriend’s mum was concerned – she would have stayed on the ship if given the chance! We went to Taroudant and thought it was a reasonable trip – the tour did end in a square but we did not feel obliged to buy anything, we did purchase some turtles carved from stone because I wanted them though

Day 7 – Lanzarote

Today we went to the Texas Ranch Park while the parents went to Costa Teguise. We had a great time, the shows were entertaining and the burger (included in price) was better than expected. The weather was great again which was good as it had been a bit miserable the past couple of days.

Day 8 – Tenerife

We arrived back in Tenerife to lovely sunshine, they had flooding in Tenerife while we were away and this was clear from the mud left on many of the roads and pavements. We walked into town and did some shopping and then went back to the ship for lunch. We still had a few hours before our coach left so we had a coffee in the bounty lounge before collecting our hand luggage and heading back to the airport.

The flight home was just OK we left early and arrived back in Bournemouth at 11.15pm. However, the plane was strangely hot and the cabin crew were even worse than those on the way out – I lost count of the number of times I got hit by either them or the trolley and as I was in the back row I was frequently leaned on as the crew got things out of the reserved overhead locker!

Food

The food on the ship was well cooked and although nothing special was always hot and there was plenty to go around. We tended to eat in the Island Restaurant rather than the Beachcomber as I am not a huge fan on plastic plates and mugs. Although billed as self service we were served our food from the buffet at every meal except from lunch on the final day (I assume because the crew get this day off.)

Hygiene

There was hand sanitizer on entry to the ship, outside all restaurants and in all bars/cafe and outside all toilets. It was virtually a requirement of entry to the restaurants to use hand sanitizer! Having said that I was not aware of any outbreaks of illness while onboard.

Crew

As has been stated before all of the crew was incredibly helpful and friendly, our steward could not do enough to help and made towel animals almost every day of our trip. Several of the bar staff knew our names and the head waiter in the restaurant asked where we were one evening when we were not hungry and the parents went to dinner alone!

Overview

We enjoyed the cruise but in all likelyhood would not return – not due to the ship or crew but because we would not want to visit the same ports again.

I have got some photos and when I have uploaded them I will post a link on here.
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  #2  
Old February 7th, 2010, 02:59 PM
Cymro1953 Cymro1953 is offline
Blue Ribbon Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: North Wales
Posts: 4,542
Default

Hi, glad you had a good time and thank you for letting us know how it went.
It was our 1st time in the Canaries when we went and like you we will not be returning. Apart from Madeira for a hotel holiday at some point.
But it made a nice relaxing break rather than an intensive sightseeing one like you'd get cruising to Italy, Spain etc.

What we missed when at sea that there was nothing to see. In the Med you see the lights from the coast, passing ships etc and nice views from the Lookout when cruising along before it gets dark.
But out there in the Atlantic there was nothing.

Berwyn
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1968 S.S. Nevasa Baltic
1970 S.S. Nevasa Western Mediterranean
2008 Island escape Western Mediterranean
2009 Legend of the Seas Eastern Med and Aegean
2009 Island Escape Canaries
2010 Thomson Dream Western Mediterranean
2011 Thomson Spirit Red Sea Magic
2011 Star Princess Adriatic and Aegean
2012 Thomson Majesty Adriatic
2013 Thomson Dream Western Med
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  #3  
Old February 9th, 2010, 12:57 PM
crooza crooza is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 32
Default

We flew out on the same flight as you and agree the flight crew were appalling, not the best way to start a holiday. Disagree about the friendly crew though, mind you, our cabin boy was cheerful and the towel animals were funny. We had a balcony 9086, last one on the starboard side. The balcony is where we spent most of our time, even sleeping with the door open. Only good part about the ship really.
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