Originally Posted by bocaraton1
would like to hear from people who have been on Azamara about ship and how amenities are. also any suggestions. we are cruising Baltic in June. Also how are stabilizers? Please tell us of any really special amenities that they say makes this cruise so superior.
I sailed on the Azamara Journey in December and it was one of our best cruises and the Journey is one of our favorite ships.
We had previously sailed on the Renaissance ships and love the layout and smaller size. The Journey is the former R6. Royal Caribbean/Azamara transferred this ship and Quest from Pulmantur to create Azamara Cruises.
The positives you will find on this ship are: Excellent food in all venues. This includes the buffet, dining room, the two specialty restaurants and room service. Full dinner selections are available, in cabin, during dinner hours.
The specialty restaurants, Prime C and Aqualina offer an upscale dining experience that is as good or better than I have found on any other line. The only thing that would be lacking in comparison would be the butterfly service on Celebrity.
The service is overall very good to exceptional. They do offer "butler" service in all cabins but I found the butler to be about equal to a good cabin steward.
While the regular cabins are not huge (approx. 169 sq. ft. balcony) they were more than adequate for our two week cruise and the beds and linens were first rate.
The open seating for the main dining room is a real plus for me. The open seating gives you great flexibility for port intensive itineraries without compromising food quality or service. While there were some reports from people who said they had some slow service in the dining room, we NEVER experienced it. I did find that a couple of these people referred to the wait for a table for two at peak times. The peak times were around 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
The Country Club Casual dress code is also a plus. No formal nights but also no jeans, t-shirts and shorts at dinner. The need not to bring formal wear cuts down on the packing. I saw few jackets and I wore my sports jacket only in the specialty restaurant.
Do not expect large, production show, entertainment but the cabaret style of the show lounges and the individual entertainers will provide you with a good variety of entertainment.
One negative I found was the low number of excursions offered and the relatively high cost. I have to admit I am biased over ship's excursions and rarely take them. We did our own and really enjoyed them. The Baltic itineraries may have more offerings and if you are going into Russia a ship's excursion may be your best alternative.
In terms of stability the ship was fine. Don't expect a completely motion free cruise but no one complained about the motion but on a few days it was noticeable and the stabilizers kept it to a minimum. Just remember, one person's slight motion is another's "worst ever".
Overall, I think you will find that Journey will provide you with a great ship for a port intensive itinerary but still offer a bit more upscale of an experience than you would find on a mainstream cruise line. If you have booked the Journey I wouldn't think twice about your decision.
Take care and have a great cruise.