Azamara Quest Best of the Greek Islands and Turkey Cruise review 21st June to 28th Ju

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#1
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
ImageUploadedByForums1404026227.008983.jpg

A bit of background to start my review! We booked this cruise over a year ago and it was a special cruise as we were celebrating our honeymoon on it! We took advantage of the double upgrade promotion and we also got flights and 1 night's pre cruise stay included in the price plus transfers which made the price of the cruise very attractive indeed!
This was my 6th cruise and my husband's 2nd - we'd never been on such a small ship before so we were a bit intrigued as to what it would be like!
I will be posting up pics as and when I download them as took rather a lot on my iPhone and normal camera!
Initial impressions - we really enjoyed the cruise a lot, Azamara has a lot of people who work very hard to make the cruise experience both off shore in terms of transfer organisation and on the ship itself - we wouldn't hesitate booking another small ship cruise again but the price has to be right!


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#2
Raleigh NC
25,280 Posts
Joined Oct 2007
Thanks for the report!
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Kirk

Future Cruises
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#3
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
We drove down to Heathrow from our home in the East Midlands on Thursday afternoon - our hotel didn't have the space for the park and fly nights we needed so we checked into the hotel, got our bags in and then drove up the Bath Road to Purple Parking where we got an excellent rate for 9 nights parking. There is a bus stop outside near the Travel Inn so we caught a bus back to the Arora International Hotel where we were staying in a Premier double room where you have fabulous views of the Heathrow runways! We ordered room service dinners, mainly because hubby wanted to watch World Cup football and even the staff member who brought up the dinners was wowed by the runway views! We had a very early start in the morning for the 06.45 am flight so we wanted to be chilled out and relaxed and me well I'd be grumpy and half asleep at that hour lol!


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#4
5,625 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
I'm happy you enjoyed Azamara. I'll be following along and can't wait to see your pictures.
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09-01-2012 Azamara Journey French & Italian Riviera
09-03-2013 Celebrity Silhouette Eastern Med & Greek Isles
09-20-2014 Azamara Journey Tuscany & Amalfi Coast
09-27-2014 Azamara Journey Sicily & Malta
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#5
Sussex, England
6,936 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Congratulations on your wedding and looking forward to the rest of your review......but please hurry as we leave on Friday for Quest !!!

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#6
UK
2,588 Posts
Joined Mar 2011
Can't wait to read your cruise blog kikki....as you know, Hazel and I should have been on your cruise. I hope you all had a great time.

Please write quickly!
#7
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Eek trying to sort out and edit my pics but only got as far as Mykonos today! I will try and write faster lol!
So it was a very early morning start and here's a tip - nothing opens until 5am at Terminal 5 so we were there at 4.30am trying to stay awake.
However, there was an Azamara rep there which I wasn't expecting checking people off her list and telling people how/where to check in so that was good!
We got checked in relatively quickly when check in opened and it was through security and into the rather nice duty free shopping area at Terminal 5 where ahem I got a bit stocked up on items! My holiday had started! Getting to your gate can take some time and we had to catch a bit of a metro train so bear that in mind re shopping and catching your plane in time!


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#8
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
For some reason my pics aren't uploading - I will keep trying!

Anyway we boarded the plane and we managed to select extra leg room seats for going out which was nice although the BA plane is far roomier than Easyjet ones! We had a very pleasant flight and the lovely flight attendant we were chatting to got us 2 min bottles of champagne when we told her that we were on honeymoon so we shared one and kept one for our room later on!

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#9
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...type=3&theater
I can input my pics from Facebook but it is a bit of a pain so think I will open up a photobucket type account as it's very slow writing and doing that!

We touched down in Athens just about on time - we had mainly good weather and I was able to take quite a few aerial shots with my new digital camera which has a very powerful zoom on it! It's a Panasonic DMC - TZ55

An Azamara rep was waiting for us at the airport and as I looked down his list there was just us and another couple staying at the Hilton, everyone else was at the Grande Bretagne!!!!

By this time, I was over this hotel issue and we had hopefully sorted out a room upgrade at the Hilton and we were eating lunch close by and thankfully it did all work out well!
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#10
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
It took about an hour or so to get to the Hilton and we were the first drop offs so that was good! It took a little while to get checked in but a delightful young man did the job and and we got our room upgrade to an Acropolis view room and wow it was worth it! We were on the 9th floor and the room was huge as was the bathroom! I told Martin not to get used to the large space as he wouldn't be getting that onboard the Quest lol! I had looked on Trip Advisor previously and I knew our lunch restaurant was 5 minutes walk away so when everything was in place and we had freshened up a bit and taken lots of pics, we went over for our lunch!

Oroscopo was lovely - we had fresh baked bread and bread sticks with lovely dips to start, we had complimentary potato and leek soup which was delicious and a lovely salad with zucchini balls and they bought us out a complimentary slice of cheesecake which was delicious! The service was good too as they were working hard to avoid us being rained on as yes we had some rain showers in Athens but it was still lovely and warm and pleasant!
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#11
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
We debated what to do after lunch and talked about going up Mount Lycabettus Hill again or to the Plaka but actually all we wanted to do was chill out and this became the theme for our honeymoon - think it was the most relaxed we've ever been and jolly nice it was too!

We work hard for ourselves as we own our own businesses and the wedding planning was intense so we thoroughly deserved our chill out time - and in any case, it was time for our next treat!

Athens is lucky enough to have quite a few Michelin starred restaurants and we decided that it would be lovely to try one out so we picked Funky Gourmet out on Trip Advisor due to the mostly rave reviews and it being no 1! We have eaten at 2 x 2 star Michelin restaurants in the UK so it would be very interesting to have a comparison abroad.

We got ready and after having confirmed our reservation via email, we got a taxi outside the Hilton and had a drive across the city to the Keramikos area. it was in a very odd location down pedestrianised streets that cars still drive down and close to a flyover and a mainly residential area but the restaurant itself has been done out very nicely indeed and the service was great like you were being welcomed into a family home!

We picked the 2nd tasting menu without wine and I would give the menu 7/10, Martin 6/10 - there were some outstanding dishes and some that fell short of the mark. I don't think the restaurant would gain 2 stars in the UK but would definitely have a 1 star. I still think Sat Bains sets the standard as his food was all amazing from start to finish!
It was definitely an enjoyable experience and gives us an excuse to go back and cruise from Athens again and sample more Michelin starred restaurants!

Tip: Taxis in Athens are very reasonable - the trip from the Hilton was 8 euros!
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#12
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
http://s1172.photobucket.com/user/Monmar1408/slideshow/
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#13
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Yep the link works so I will add some more pics to it now!

We finished off our evening by having drinks in the rooftop Hilton bar, Galaxy, it was very cool and trendy up there and it was lovely sitting up there drinking my cocktail and Martin on the beer comtemplating getting on board a ship again in the morning - it couldn't come quick enough!
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#14
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
We had a really good breakfast included at the Hilton - you could have all manner of items but I was still trying to be good after months of healthy eating but I couldn't resist a Greek cinnamon rice pudding yoghurt dish, OMG, it was so good!
The luggage was tagged and taken outside our room at 11am apart from the hand luggage so it was a matter of waiting on the comfy seats in the reception area and oh shopping too - managed to bag the first of my jewellery purchases from my hubby! that clock seemed to go by so slowly for our 12pm bus transfer pick up to the port!

There was an Azamara rep at the hotel for a few hours in the morning to help with luggage tags and any questions which was useful. Then we were sat on the bus and within half an hour we had our first sight of the Azamara Quest, although she's small, she still looked big - in fact in our experience she gave us all the big ship vibe but on a smaller scale!

We managed to get 2 drinks of sparkling wine each and then decided to have a good look round the ship and take pics which was great as hardly anyone else seemed to be around and then we were advised that our cabins were ready well before the advertised time - we had a spa look round and one of the girls taking us round was from Notts so we had a laugh with her and we also had some lunch in Windows.

I have to say that we were very satisfied with all of the food we ate on board! We ordered quite a lot from room service especially breakfasts as we really enjoyed them on the balcony and we also ate in Windows and Discoveries but we didn't try any of the speciality restaurants as we ate out quite a bit too with staying later in the ports.
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#15
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
http://s1172.photobucket.com/user/Mo...YMOON%20CRUISE

I have now copied over my Facebook albums to Photobucket so you should all be up to date on my pics from there - the link is above!

We had to pick a dining time in Discoveries that night so we picked 8.30pm as it was after sailaway and didn't clash with our Meet and Greet in the Looking Glass which was well attended and was lovely to meet so many people and we felt a bit famous! There were canapes and drinks to be had and it was all very pleasant indeed!
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MSC MERAVIGLIA - JULY 2017

SAILED!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Mini Cruise to Bruges - May 2017 - 2 nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2502268
Celebrity Reflection - Miami to Puerto Rico, St Thomas & St Maarten - April 2016 - 7 nights - (Aqua Class Hump Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2334071

NCL Escape - NCL - Inaugural Cruise from Hamburg to Southampton - Oct 2015 - 3 nights - (Spa Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW - Still not finished - sorry!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Norwegian Fjords - June 2015 - 7nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW! http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2230373

Azamara Quest - Azamara Club Cruises - Cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey - June 2014
7 nights (Balcony)

REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2063572

Norwegian Jade - NCL - Eastern Med from Rome - March 2013 - 10 nights (Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...hlight=kikki21

Norwegian Epic - NCL - Hurricane Earl West/East
Caribbean special from Miami - August 2010 - 7 nights (Balcony)
Splendour of the Seas - RCCL - Eastern Med from Venice - October 2009 - 7 nights (Outside)
Celebrity Galaxy - Celebrity - Eastern Med from Rome - October 2008 - 10 nights (Concierge Class Balcony)
Majesty of the Seas - RCCL - Bahamas from Miami - Nov 2007 - 4 nights (Outside)
#16
London and Brighton
475 Posts
Joined Aug 2004
Congratulations on your wedding and honeymoon! I'm enjoying reading your posts. Couldn't see your pics though as after clicking on the link, the message on the website reads that it is a private album.

Look forward to reading more.....
Lynne
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Louis Lines - Israel/Egypt 1995
X Horizon - Caribbean 1997
Star Cruises - Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore 1998
X Mercury - Mexico 2002
X Constellation - Canada/New England 2004
X Summit - Panama Canal 2005
X Century - Med to the UK 2006
X Millennium - Med 2007
X Constellation - Baltics/Russia 2008
Azamara Journey - Med 2008
Azamara Journey - Baltics to the Med 2009
X Century - Adriatic and Med 2010
X Infinity - Norwegian Fjords 2013
Azamara Quest - Greece and Turkey 2014
Sapphire Princess - France and Spain 2018



#17
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Originally posted by Literary Lynne
Congratulations on your wedding and honeymoon! I'm enjoying reading your posts. Couldn't see your pics though as after clicking on the link, the message on the website reads that it is a private album.

Look forward to reading more.....
Lynne
Hi Lynne

Thank you for that, just trying to change the settings to public now! I have uploaded everything bar Santorini part 2 and flying home now so the bulk is done - phew, how many photos?!
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COMING UP!!!

MSC MERAVIGLIA - JULY 2017

SAILED!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Mini Cruise to Bruges - May 2017 - 2 nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2502268
Celebrity Reflection - Miami to Puerto Rico, St Thomas & St Maarten - April 2016 - 7 nights - (Aqua Class Hump Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2334071

NCL Escape - NCL - Inaugural Cruise from Hamburg to Southampton - Oct 2015 - 3 nights - (Spa Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW - Still not finished - sorry!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Norwegian Fjords - June 2015 - 7nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW! http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2230373

Azamara Quest - Azamara Club Cruises - Cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey - June 2014
7 nights (Balcony)

REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2063572

Norwegian Jade - NCL - Eastern Med from Rome - March 2013 - 10 nights (Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...hlight=kikki21

Norwegian Epic - NCL - Hurricane Earl West/East
Caribbean special from Miami - August 2010 - 7 nights (Balcony)
Splendour of the Seas - RCCL - Eastern Med from Venice - October 2009 - 7 nights (Outside)
Celebrity Galaxy - Celebrity - Eastern Med from Rome - October 2008 - 10 nights (Concierge Class Balcony)
Majesty of the Seas - RCCL - Bahamas from Miami - Nov 2007 - 4 nights (Outside)
#18
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
These were my old favourites and they still remained my favourites and now my husband's too - so still Santorini, Mykonos and Rhodes! Loved the fact that we stayed in port late for Mykonos and also Rhodes that is definitely an Azamara plus point - it meant that we could eat out in Mykonos for dinner which we did at M-eating for a really excellent meal, full of local flavour but definitely Greek fusion food!
Mykonos is a really chilled out island but it can also be a party island depending on where you go, we both loved it and we also had an excellent lunch at the Vencia Boutique hotel restaurant - great for views over Mykonos, the food was cooked to order and was more typically Greek.

We didn't eat out in Rhodes for dinner but we did go out for a walk and a drink after dinner on board the ship which was lovely. Rhodes is great as it is a very pretty port with lots of character due to the rich history of the Old Town!

I really wish we could have stayed till 10pm in Santorini so we could have eaten out for sunset in Fira but to be honest, it was so hot that day that we came back to the ship about 5pm and we had had enough!
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COMING UP!!!

MSC MERAVIGLIA - JULY 2017

SAILED!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Mini Cruise to Bruges - May 2017 - 2 nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2502268
Celebrity Reflection - Miami to Puerto Rico, St Thomas & St Maarten - April 2016 - 7 nights - (Aqua Class Hump Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2334071

NCL Escape - NCL - Inaugural Cruise from Hamburg to Southampton - Oct 2015 - 3 nights - (Spa Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW - Still not finished - sorry!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Norwegian Fjords - June 2015 - 7nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW! http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2230373

Azamara Quest - Azamara Club Cruises - Cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey - June 2014
7 nights (Balcony)

REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2063572

Norwegian Jade - NCL - Eastern Med from Rome - March 2013 - 10 nights (Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...hlight=kikki21

Norwegian Epic - NCL - Hurricane Earl West/East
Caribbean special from Miami - August 2010 - 7 nights (Balcony)
Splendour of the Seas - RCCL - Eastern Med from Venice - October 2009 - 7 nights (Outside)
Celebrity Galaxy - Celebrity - Eastern Med from Rome - October 2008 - 10 nights (Concierge Class Balcony)
Majesty of the Seas - RCCL - Bahamas from Miami - Nov 2007 - 4 nights (Outside)
#19
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
As we all know food is a very subjective subject on a cruise! I have to say that we give Azamara a thumbs up on this for the most part!

We ordered quite a bit from room service, mainly breakfasts and the service was always prompt and hot food was hot and we also ordered a burger one night as my husband got the munchies and it was great!

We were always going to do a mixture of eating out for dinner and eating onboard and we didn't have enough days to try out the speciality restaurants otherwise we would have done so but generally we were very satisfied with the food quantity, quality and service. The waiters would always keep your wine glasses topped up over lunch and dinner! There were 2 occasions where the meat product wasn't great and that was the beef tenderloin on the White Night party night, couldn't get a knife through mine which was disappointing and then my lamb gyros on the Greek buffet night was total gristle and had zero meat on it but I was stuffed with everything else to eat anyway!

Good tip re the breakfast smoothies as we both enjoyed them and I also thought the smoked salmon on board for breakfast was delicious and oh the sushi was also very good when we were around to try it!

The tempura prawns that were being done fresh on White Night were amazing and I have never seen my husband rave so much over a dessert but he loved the chocolate peanut butter frozen yoghurt!!!

We both enjoy our food in any case so it was a big thumbs up and it was great that you had alternatives both on and off the ship if you were in port late if you didn't fancy the menu - liked the fact you could check the menu on your TV!
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COMING UP!!!

MSC MERAVIGLIA - JULY 2017

SAILED!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Mini Cruise to Bruges - May 2017 - 2 nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2502268
Celebrity Reflection - Miami to Puerto Rico, St Thomas & St Maarten - April 2016 - 7 nights - (Aqua Class Hump Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2334071

NCL Escape - NCL - Inaugural Cruise from Hamburg to Southampton - Oct 2015 - 3 nights - (Spa Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW - Still not finished - sorry!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Norwegian Fjords - June 2015 - 7nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW! http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2230373

Azamara Quest - Azamara Club Cruises - Cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey - June 2014
7 nights (Balcony)

REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2063572

Norwegian Jade - NCL - Eastern Med from Rome - March 2013 - 10 nights (Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...hlight=kikki21

Norwegian Epic - NCL - Hurricane Earl West/East
Caribbean special from Miami - August 2010 - 7 nights (Balcony)
Splendour of the Seas - RCCL - Eastern Med from Venice - October 2009 - 7 nights (Outside)
Celebrity Galaxy - Celebrity - Eastern Med from Rome - October 2008 - 10 nights (Concierge Class Balcony)
Majesty of the Seas - RCCL - Bahamas from Miami - Nov 2007 - 4 nights (Outside)
#20
Nottingham, England
2,204 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
We were in a standard balcony forward on deck 6 - this wasn't my choice of stateroom and I wouldn't have chosen it if I had had a choice as it was over the Cabaret!
We often like an afternoon nap on a cruise but there were a few times when practice was occuring for the band and/or singers and it was loud and there was no way you could sleep over that!
Although the stateroom is small, it is very functional and there are lots of places to store your belongings and the bed was huge and very comfy.

Our stateroom was kept very clean by Remy and we enjoyed the turn down service, my husband liked the chocolates and we liked the fact that we were kept watered up and looked after - not really bothered about having fruit there or not! And no towel animals at all!

The bathroom hmmm I hated that shower curtain with a passion but then I hate mine at home too but at last there is room to turn round - again it's a functional bathroom but it can hardly be called luxury!

I would like to choose my own stateroom next time on Azamara and deck 6 was fine but I would choose more towards mid ship and aft than forward in any case!

We did see a lot of visible officers in particular the Captain and Ryszard - it's not everyday that the Captain has a bit of banter in the morning with his guests on the lookout platform but it was nice and personal and you feel that as a guest you do matter.

I did think that all the staff we met were personable, friendly, liked to have a bit of banter with you even if you weren't going to buy the very nice H Stern jewellery in the shop, I wish!!!
We also had a bit of banter with the very nice blonde lady in the casino, think she may have been one of the managers as we were playing the slots and she was in our tender boat in Mykonos as we were going back into town for dinner and we were joking about not being back in time! (We were back in time!)
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MSC MERAVIGLIA - JULY 2017

SAILED!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Mini Cruise to Bruges - May 2017 - 2 nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2502268
Celebrity Reflection - Miami to Puerto Rico, St Thomas & St Maarten - April 2016 - 7 nights - (Aqua Class Hump Balcony)
REVIEW - http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2334071

NCL Escape - NCL - Inaugural Cruise from Hamburg to Southampton - Oct 2015 - 3 nights - (Spa Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW - Still not finished - sorry!

Britannia - P&O Cruises - Norwegian Fjords - June 2015 - 7nights - (Superior Deluxe Balcony)
REVIEW! http://boards.cruisecritic.co.uk/sho....php?t=2230373

Azamara Quest - Azamara Club Cruises - Cruise to the Greek Islands and Turkey - June 2014
7 nights (Balcony)

REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2063572

Norwegian Jade - NCL - Eastern Med from Rome - March 2013 - 10 nights (Mini Suite Balcony)
REVIEW!
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...hlight=kikki21

Norwegian Epic - NCL - Hurricane Earl West/East
Caribbean special from Miami - August 2010 - 7 nights (Balcony)
Splendour of the Seas - RCCL - Eastern Med from Venice - October 2009 - 7 nights (Outside)
Celebrity Galaxy - Celebrity - Eastern Med from Rome - October 2008 - 10 nights (Concierge Class Balcony)
Majesty of the Seas - RCCL - Bahamas from Miami - Nov 2007 - 4 nights (Outside)