The Twelve Days of Azamara

Okay, don’t get jealous, but as I write this, I am Cruising on the Azamara Journey for 12 days.  YES! 12 days!  I have decided to write a bit each day as opposed one long review. Our “Journey” will take us to St John,  I hope you enjoy!

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On the first day of Azamara……

“First Impressions only happen once…”

Having never sailed a Cruise Ship the size of the Azamara Journey, I was very curious and excited to experience it.  At approx. 30,000 tons , holding almost 700 guests I consider this a midsize luxury ship.  Much smaller than the typical 90,000 and up cruise Ships and much bigger than the 5,000 ton Windstar or Sea Dream Yacht Club.  Having been spoiled by service on small luxury cruise ships, I expected that the Azamara Journey would be comparable.  The question – “Will the Azamara Journey just ba a small version of a large Cruise Ship, or a Larger version of a smaller Cruise Ship?”

Embarkation was a breeze.  Very well set up.  Very exclusive, luxury feel.  Once onboard, we were greeted with champagne & a smile.  Very nicely done!  I could feel the extra effort of “small ship luxury”.  I was most surprised by the style & decor of the ship.  As an avid traveler, I research each resort & cruise thoroughly and that “first impression”  upon arrival is sometimes filled with shock!  Well, this was one of those moments!  A good one.  I was happily surprised that the ship itself was far nicer than I had anticipated!  The photos even in the Azamara Club Cruises brochure do NOT do this ship justice.

First Impressions –

Very clean, classic style ship.  Carpets were fresh looking and vibrant without being too bold.  The rich wood used throughout the public areas exudes wealth & class.  Every piece of furniture upholstered in rich, luxurious textiles that just invite you to sit & relax.  Ceiling frescos were very impressive and popped into view at surprising moments.  The pool area was so inviting.  The 5 inch deep, blue padding on each teak chair was definitely calling my name!  This was going to be a comfortable cruise!

Service with a smile.  Our first lunch onboard was definitely a top notch service dining experience.  Dinner in the main dining room “Discoveries” was excellent.  What struck me that first night was the face of the Dining staff.  It was evident that they are not the typical large cruise ship staff.  This staff seemed more mature, more experienced then you would normally find.  We were very satisfied with the quality of food and the presentation.

Our verandah stateroom was very much what I expected and true to the photos.  Stateroom was very clean, pleasant colors.  Not totally in love with the furniture in the room.  But it was “okay”.  Space was adequate, although storage space was a bit tight for a 12 day cruise (my hubby would say it is because I packed too much!).  Bathroom is very clean and suffuicient.  Nothing luxurious about this cabin except our Cabin Steward Dany.  Now he put the “luxury” in the cabin!  Wonderful attitude and presentation (can I take him home!!).

As always, the first day onboard a cruise is the most exhausting, so we retired early.  Ready to see how much our “first impressions” will hold up throughout the next 11 days!

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