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This cruise was magnificent in every way
I have just returned from one of your cruises, the Venice from the Water Cruise, 16th October to 20th October incl. I occupied cabin 111.with my sister and it was booked by my brother and his wife who occupied cabin 110. I would just like to say that this cruise was magnificent in every way and you should be proud of all the staff on board, who were absolutely wonderful. The Ship was spotlessly clean, service excellent and the food magnificent. I am already looking for a further holiday with yourselves for next year and will recommend your company and services to my friends.
18 day cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam
This was an 18 day cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam and the whole cruise from start to finish went smoothly. The crew were French, Hungarian and German but all could speak English to a greater or lesser degree. They were always friendly and nothing was too much trouble. One of our party had a dental problem. A dentist and a taxi were booked ahead for the next stop and once we moored it was all sorted in less than an hour. The organisation was perfect. At each stop busses were waiting with local, official guides waiting who gave the commentaries in English and French. On arrival at museums and historic buildings the guides had tickets waiting and there was no queuing to enter.
The ship was spotless inside and out and kept that way throughout the trip. Everything was cleaned and washed down every day. The cabins were small but very comfortable but we only slept in them. There was too much going on to want to stay in the cabin. The towels were changed every day and the bedding every 5 days unless you asked for it to be done more often. The whole ship was air conditioned and the cabins had individual controls.
The food was excellent and most days reflected the food of the country we were in at that time. Breakfast was buffet style with everything you could want. Lunch was a 4 course meal and dinner 3 courses. The meals were beautifully presented in the French way. All drinks were included and freely available. The service could not be bettered.
There were daily entertainments organised by two dedicated entertainers who were superb and who became everyone's best friends. A friendly rivalry developed between the French and English speaking passengers that led to many hilarious situations. A great sadness is that we will not see these people again. In the lounge there was live music all afternoon and evening provided by a pianist that was excellent. He seemed to be able to play and sing any music that was requested.
We spent 5 days in Budapest before the cruise and 5 days in Amsterdam after. Both cities are great world cities and most enjoyable.
This is not a cruise for children.
Would I go again? I have been home for 1 week and am already looking at the brochure to plan our trip next year.
Venice and the MS Michelangelo
Just came back from a great cruise. Yesterday I submitted a review on "Cruise Critic" under the username "ToughOkdBird" which should get posted in the next few days (their posting process takes a while). Below is a copy of what I submitted. My special thanks to the purser (Elvin) and cruise director (Lucy) for their fabulous service and attitude.
"When we booked this stay (30 June-4 July 2016) on the MS Michelangelo for the six of us (two seniors, two middle-agers and two teenagers), it was after a lot of research on Venice hotels and convenience. We wanted to be near the water, close to St. Mark's Square and have convenient transfers to-from the airport. We knew the Michelangelo clientele would be predominantly European and that English would be a second-language rather than primary for shipboard activities. Also, the cuisine would be focused toward European versus American tastes. For us, these were plus factors.
Embarkation-Debarkation. Coming from the airport our transfer driver was able to drive directly to the Michelangelo which was docked for embarkation-debarkation at a side quay (San Basilio) next to the main cruise terminal. We arrived at 11AM and dropped off our luggage. We then went on a walking tour along the main canal, stopping for lunch along the way at a sidewalk bistro. About 3PM we were back at the ship and got a quick nap before the ship left the San Basilio quay for the 30-minute trip to the primary docking site near the Arsenale vaporetto station. The ship remained here (except for a three-hour lagoon cruise) until the third-day trip to Chioggia. From Chioggia the ship sailed directly back to the San Basilio quay for final night and passenger debarkation the next morning. We skipped the scheduled excursion to Padua, opting instead for the tranquility of the Chioggia-to-Venice cruise.
The Cabin - Small, to say the least. It was functional and spotlessly clean, which were the most important things to us. Time spent in the cabin was minimal at best, as Venice sightseeing filled most hours of the day. The cabin is 220VAC, so bringing a plug-in converter for 110VAC devices is a must. The beds were much more comfortable than I expected.
Shipboard Activities - Very few entertainment activities, but none really needed. The draw is Venice, not shipboard entertainment, and the docking location made having access to Venice sights very convenient. Venice at night is beautiful and deserves some time to experience it. There were crew performances and a fabulous local entertainer (singer/clarinetist) for evening onboard entertainment.
The Shipboard Food. Breakfast was a European-focused buffet, and Americans expecting piles of crispy bacon, American-style scrambled eggs and such are in for a culinary shock; as European breakfasts involve different items (cold cuts, cheeses, fruits, etc.) preferred by Europeans. The breakfast baked goods were superb, and my grand-daughters devoured the croissants and rolls. Lunch and dinner were set-menu three course affairs, and even if a person only ate two of the three courses (tastes and expectations vary), the food was good and plentiful. We can't complain about the shipboard food at all, but we also had a couple meals at Venetian restaurants for the sheer fun of it.
Crew. The crew:passenger ratio is roughly 5:1. About half of the crew were fluent in English, with most having some basic English skills. The captain, purser and cruise director were personal, very accommodating and helpful, more so than I have experienced on the "big boat" cruises. The waitresses and bartenders were wonderful, always smiling (real smiles, not the phony industrial type!) and kind.
Special note. Our group included two teenagers who were under the legal "alcohol" age. At both "captain's events" there were specially-made alcohol-free drinks already prepared and served to them (and a couple other youngsters onboard) which looked exactly like what the adults received, so when drinks were served the youngsters were not left standing there empty-handed. This attention-to-detail to insure all passengers regardless of age were fully considered and included is something I have not seen at "captain's events" on "big boat" cruses, and it was very appreciated. High marks to CroisiEurope for having this insight.
Summary. Hindsight being 20:20, we would still have made the same choice. For folk who are relatively self-sufficient tourists the Michelangelo has all that's needed. For those non-Europeans who demand things (especially the food) be "exactly like back home" while supposedly experiencing Europe, they won't be happy. We (six Americans) came to Venice and the MS Michelangelo for a European-immersion vacation, and the CroisiEurope staff fulfilled every expectation.
The Michelangelo is indeed a floating hotel which occasionally cruises the area. Despite the limited cruising, having the convenience of shipboard meals when we didn't want to dine "ashore" made things easier. The reception/concierge service was exceptionally efficient the couple of times we needed it, and the ship's primary docking location couldn't have been much better located. CroisiEurope has made us very satisfied, and probably repeat, customers.
Seine River cruise on the MS France
We had a wonderful trip on the France, from Paris to Normandy and back. The crew were terrific and very accommodating to all our needs. The food and wines served at all meals were very good, and if you had special needs they were met. We took almost all the tours offered, which we enjoyed. The price for the cruise was a bargain for all that was included!! We will cruise with Croisi again for sure!
Terry Reilly, April 2016, Traveled on 09/02/2015
First ever river cruise. MS Beethoven is a beautiful boat. Very clean and comfortable, food outstanding and organised shore trips well worth attending. The staff onboard gave 110% all the time and nothing was too much trouble. Would highly recommend Croisi to other people. I would certainly travel with them again.
Andre Lowson, traveled on 25th June 2015 on board the MS Beethoven
Seine River Cruise on the Botticelli
My husband and I just returned from the Seine River Cruise on the Botticelli -- it was wonderful! The staff was friendly, helpful, accommodating, and gave 110% at all times; they made sure all passengers enjoyed their stay. Most passengers were French speakers, with us being 2 of the 10 English speakers (6 from USA, 2 from Australia, 2 from England), however we never felt "left out". Food was wonderful, served hot (important to us), and beautifully presented. While same meal was served to all, when we noticed something that my husband would not eat, they were quick to make a substitution for him. Unfortunately our weather was not the best for sitting on the upper deck, but the lounge was very comfortable and afforded great views as well as friendly service. We ha d never been on any cruise and would definitely do this again! The small size and personal service made for a fabulous vacation!
CJ & Pip Sarser, New York 03/06/2014
Cruise on the Seine
On behalf of myself and my friends Mary Anne, Alice and Sue we would like to thank your for the wonderful experience we had on our cruise in France. The hospitality and service we received was outstanding. All the servers were so consideration and kind. The excursions were excellent, I especially enjoyed the Normandy beaches trip. We are all looking forward to another trip with CroisiEurope. I have already recommended your cruise line to more of my friends.
Wonderful time on the MS Cyrano De Bergerac
My clients had a wonderful time on the MS Cyrano. The crew was excellent, and the cuisine outstanding. The crews' evening show should be on YouTube!
For the most part the tour guides did a good job. The most enjoyable ones switched languages often, which kept everyone interested.
Again I want to thank you for extending this hospitality to us.
Everyone I have booked with you is very happy with the ships, hospitality and cuisine.
BACK TEES TOURS
8- day cruise on Croiseurope's Renoir on the Seine River
Recently I returned from an 8- day cruise on Croiseurope's Renoir on the Seine River. We traveled to and from Paris to Honfleur, near the Normandy D-Day beaches and cliffs.
From the moment we stepped on the ship where we were pleasantly greeted by Louis, our pursar, we enjoyed a most enjoyable week. The friendly and talented staff met our every needs, the accommodations were spotlessly clean and comfortable, and the food was beyond belief. Every meal was a gourmand's delight. I loved the fresh croissants every morning, the French sauces with many lunches and dinners, and the scrumptious desserts. The variety of French wines was amazing and enjoying these at any time, included in the cruise fee, was an added bonus.
Our excursions were reasonably priced and were guided by multilingual and knowledgable people. We were English speakers and were always served well with translators. It was fun being included with many different nationalities in one setting...Spanish, French, Brits, Irish, and Norse.
What else is there to say? My group of five is already planning our next Cruiseurope trip!
The Beautiful Blue Danube - MS Beethoven
In August last year, my husband and I (from New Zealand) enjoyed eight happy days and nights on MS Beethoven, on a CroisiEurope Imperial Danube Cruise through Austria, Hungary and Slovakia, beginning and ending in Vienna.
The itinerary was the perfect mixture of relaxation, sightseeing and entertainment for us as first time cruisers, with excellent in-depth guided tours of Vienna, Melk Abbey and Dürnstein in Austria, Bratislava and Sturovo in Slovakia, and Kalocsa, Puszta, Budapest and Esztergom in Hungary. As an historian, I was delighted with the tours that covered the fascinating Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the Habsburg dynasty, while my husband enjoyed visiting the village of Dürnstein, the hike to the castle above the village where Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned, and our visit to the Hungarian horse ranch in Puszta where we watched superb horsemanship.
Other highlights were the magnificent winter and summer palaces of the Habsburgs and the Mozart and Strauss concert in Vienna; the ornate Melk Abbey with its gorgeous gardens; the “Pearl of the Danube”, Budapest by night and then by day; the little Hungarian village of Kalocsa, where we saw brightly-coloured hand embroidery and a traditional house with hand-painted flowers; Esztergom's huge basilica on a hill above the town, with a dome modelled on St Peter's Cathedral in Rome; and Bratislava, with its baroque palaces and 13th century Michael's Gate. We are usually independent travellers so one of the best things for us was the freedom from stress and decision-making: no navigating in and around cities, no parking hassles, no need to find accommodation and places to eat every day, and no need to pack and unpack every day which was a huge time-saver. The young men and women on the ship, mainly Hungarian, put a huge effort into looking after us all week. We were waited on hand and foot and our cabins were serviced daily with beds made and fresh towels supplied. In the evenings the staff all became entertainers, putting on a series of great shows including Hungarian music and dancing in honour of their special national day. Portuguese purser Sonia was outstanding - a highly efficient manager and also a star entertainer in the variety shows.The food was fabulous. Breakfast was a buffet with fresh melons, pineapple, grapes, figs, peaches, prunes, cereal, yoghurt and a huge variety of breads, croissants and cheeses. There were cold cuts of meat and sausage, as well as delicious cooked breakfast options of scrambled or boiled eggs, bacon and divine sausages. After a few days, I actually had to ration myself to two sausages a day!
The French influence was obvious in the beautiful presentation of the lunches and dinners. All the meals were delicious but the gala banquet at the end of the cruise was spectacular: Duck Foie Gras in a Gingerbread Case with Compote of Damson and Brioche; Crispy Fillet of Quail and King Boletus Mushrooms with Parsley and Port Sauce; Terrine of Blue Cheese with Heart of Pear; Baked Alaska, Flambé in Grand Marnier, all served to us by our lovely waitress Csilla who absolutely endeared herself to all of us. Bottles of excellent French wine and handles of beer were delivered to our table, free of charge, by our charming wine waiter Konrad. We met interesting, friendly people from all over the world and had a fun time in the evenings socialising, dancing and being entertained. And river cruising, unlike the open sea, is 100 percent smooth with no sense of swell or wave movement at all. So this was our introduction to the ease of life on a river ship. All aspects of our lives as travellers were taken care of and included in the price - superb French cuisine and wine and beer with lunch and dinner, comfortable spacious air-conditioned, serviced cabins with huge picture windows and en suite bathrooms, and top local guides waiting at the various ports to take us by coach right to the heart of the sightseeing spots. It was excellent value for money. And I hear that from next year, spirits at the bar are also included in the price!
CrosiEurope. On behalf of my husband, Mother in law and I, I would like to say a huge thank you for the wonderful Duro River Cruise we returned home from this morning. The Vasca De Garma was wonderful, the staff terrific, the way the Belgiums, French, Guernsey a d our Jersey people mixed so well together was wonderful. The food except for one course was excellent, entertainment, was just so good and glad to say the dancing was wonderful. We loved the crews show, I particularly loved watching the Flaminco dancing as I am just starting to learn it in our WI Easy Dance Class. The coach tris were brill and our tour guides did their job so well, their Englash was good. So on behalf of the three of us, a very big thank you also for the choice of the two hotel's at the start and end of our holiday with you, Jane, Margeret and David Bechelet, Jersey, Channel Islands.
Jane Bechelet (via Facebook)
From Martigues along the Rhone
Had a wonderful cruise on the 'Mistral', the first cruise of the season, 10th April, from Martigues along the Rhone. Even though we were the only Aussies on board the staff were very welcoming. We would definitely cruise again with Croisie. Many thanks.
Dianne Back (via Facebook)