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Review: Thomson Spirit

Cruise - Ocean Cruise

Thomson Spirit, Pharaohs and Promised Land

  • By SilverTraveller Alan-Fairfax

    83 reviews

    Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon

  • Mar 2012
  • Wife
  • Regular holiday
  • Oceanview

131 people found this review helpful

We arrived at Paphos airport after a fairly comfortable delayed flight. On collecting our luggage we took it to the coach for transfer to the cruise terminal in Limassol which took about 50 minutes. It was then a matter of collecting your envelope containing cabin cards, number and the luggage stickers to attach to your cases. At this point I did wonder why the luggage once checked in at the departure airport cannot go straight to your cabin like other cruise lines. It was then queue to be booked in. There was a drink of orange juice in a plastic beaker for those who needed it. Finally we arrived at the check in desk where our photographs were taken and credit card registered. More of that later.

On boarding the ship we were shown to our cabin which was number 608 at the bow end of deck 2. Although an outside cabin we did not think it as large as the inside cabin we had on the same ship last year on deck 1. Certainly the condition was nowhere as good. The bathroom basin in this one needed replacing as the surface around the plug had totally worn away and the soap dish had worn through the covering to the bare metal. The cabin was also very noisy. When the ship was in motion and the sea less than mill pond smooth the waves could be heard banging against the hull as the ship ploughed through. There was also the sound of an electric motor that operated at all different times. Not good when trying to sleep. However on the other side of the coin the 2 female cabin attendants were excellent. It was my wife’s birthday whilst on board and they obviously saw her birthday cards in the cabin. When we came back to the cabin that evening they had arranged the towels in the form of a 3 tier cake with ribbon around it and balloons together with a birthday card. Yes, they truly went that extra mile and I made sure it was brought to the attention of their management team and thanked them at the end of the cruise in the appropriate manner.

As far as the food was concerned we found it was the same as last year. The Lido Buffet was quite good but the service and quality in the Compass Rose main dining room left a great deal to be desired. By way of example, one night we went in and I ordered the steak and requested it medium rare. When it came it was obviously not as ordered and I mentioned this to the waiter who replied that they only had them ‘Well Done’. Why didn’t he say so when I ordered? Another night I had the Beef and on asking for mustard was presented with a plastic squeeze bottle of the type found in a fast food outlet. The waiter, on my mentioning this, then squeezed some into a dish!!!! Surely even Thomson can give a choice of mustard. Not everyone likes Dijon. One morning at breakfast we entered the main dining room and had a table for 4. We ordered and the fruit arrived within minutes. However 50 minutes later the main breakfast had not arrived and we got up and walked out. On mentioning this to the duty manager he apologised and said they were busy. Aren’t they busy every morning? The Lido Buffet however was consistently good with selection and presentation. At times you even had a pianist and violinist playing whilst you ate.

Some areas of the ship are looking extremely tired and could do with refurbishing. One area in particular is the area around the main pool which really needs taking back to the original decking and then resealing.

Last year the entertainment in the main show lounge was quite good but this year it was in my humble opinion very amateurish. Certainly there was no problem in getting a seat if you wanted one. One night there was a comedian whose jokes were not to everyone’s taste and were very old. We didn’t bother to watch him on his second performance.

The bar staff like the cabin staff were very friendly and efficient but this is a product of Louis Cruises who crew the ship as opposed to Thomson. There is ‘Happy Hour’ at various times during the evenings. The time varies according to the bar. Raffles is the first from 1700-1800 hrs. Also in Raffles is a lovely white grand piano and the player is excellent.

On leaving the ship on the last day to identify our luggage and book in we were stopped at the security and asked to go to reception as we ‘Owed Money’. This led to some embarrassment and the looks from others in the queue behind us said it all. I could not understand this, as previously mentioned, I had registered my credit card on arrival. On attending the reception desk there were other people there who were not happy having been told the same thing. It would appear that some of the credit cards had not been registered thus causing the problem. The lady at reception was most apologetic but it had still caused my wife and me considerable embarrassment.

Would we go on this ship again? Definitely not. We only went on this cruise because of the ports of call which we had not visited before.

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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