Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Anything about Fred Olsen cruises
User avatar

Topic author
Happydays
First Officer
First Officer
Posts: 1461
Joined: June 2014

Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Happydays » 22 Feb 2019, 15:05

Here goes with my review of our cruise with Fred Olsen Braemar. I won’t go into daily details just an overview of our experience.

Flights

Our flights were from Gatwick with Thomas Cook which are not a favourite of ours but needs must. We didn’t upgrade our flight this time so it was economy all the way ha ha! Even so the outbound flight was acceptable we had lunch and afternoon tea which were both edible we were also given two complimentary alcoholic drinks each any others you were charged for. The flight was on time and we arrived 2.45pm. The return from Manaus wasn’t as good due to the fact that we had to refuel in Barbados and weren’t allowed to disembark the plane so sat on the runway for almost three hours as there was a mix up with the paperwork!! There were a lot of unhappy passengers as it was HOT. When we did take of the food etc was OK and we did land on time.

First Impression of the Ship

We were happy with the ship it reminded us greatly of "Adonia" which we really liked. The public areas were very nice, plenty of nice comfortable areas to sit and during the day NO blaring music all the time, you could relax and read a book in peace! On the top deck there were plenty of sunbeds with cushions there was a nice poolside bar that had food as well. The Neptune Lounge in the evenings was used for dancing before the entertainment started The main entertainment for the evening was here Shows like Headliners (not as many dancers) the singers and dancers were excellent and cruise Director Nick Cosslett was involved with nearly everything and had a very good singing voice there was a a variety of acts a Magician (good) comedian Andy Rudge who we have seen on P&O Vocalists and the crews show also when we were in Manaus a local show came on board. The resident band Funky Blue who played in The Coral Club were the best we've ever had on any cruise they played rock 60, 70 & 80's mainly and the dance floor was busy we were hardly ever in bed before 1am except when we had an early excursion the next day ;)


Cabin

We were in an inside on deck three midship it was clean and the bed was comfortable, bathroom was a bit small. The toiletries were Cole & Lewis (?) Some people may struggle with the size but we were OK as we're not big ;) There was enough storage. There was tea/coffee in the cabin but no biscuits. On a wall (didn't bang our heads) was a 32” flat screen interactive TV that you could view your account, watch films etc.

Service Staff

On the whole they were attentive and we were served promptly but as usual there were one or two that needed to have a refresher course! We only saw our cabin steward a couple of times (not a problem) What I thought was good, there were never big housekeeping trolleys in the corridors so no manoeuvring required Ha ha.

Food/Restaurants

Breakfast: The Thistle 7.30-9.30, Grampian 8.00-10, Palms Cafe (buffet) 8.00-11.30 and poolside 8.00-10
Lunch: Thistle 11.30-1.30, Grampian 12.00-2.00, Palms Cafe 1.00-3.00 Poolside 1.00-3.00
Dinner: Thistle & Grampian were 6.15pm or 8.30pm Palms Cafe 6.30-8.30
Afternoon tea Palms Cafe 3.45-4.30 One afternoon there was a tea dance in the Morning light Club with lots of lovely cakes similar to the chocolate afternoon on P&O.
Supper Club 11.00pm-12.00 (midnight)

When we arrived on board it was open sitting for the first evening in the Thistle & Palms and there was a barbecue on the top deck with Funky Blue playing. A nice way to start the cruise. We had a table for eight first sitting in the Grampian and had nice table companions. On one of the formal night an office joined us for dinner (Health & Safety). We thought the food was as good and in many instances better than P&O. The food in the Palms was HOT not like the buffet on P&O (I’m always complaining about that on P&O) and the choice was very good. What we liked in The Palms (Buffet) was that everyone was shown to a table which had a tablecloth and cutlery so no searching for a table with a tray of food in fact there were no trays hurray, at breakfast, you were served your hot drinks at the table a nice individual teapot (if you were having tea of course). A few times a week there was champagne to help yourself. The Head chef was Derek Wilson and he kept a close eye on the food in all the venues he went to them all checking presentation etc and was available if anyone wanted to talk or ask him anything.

Dress Code

I would say that on the formal nights (three) most people took part. On the British night most people wore something in red, white or blue and had a scarf or something similar. The other nights were smart casual.

Destinations

Barbados, Grenada which we've been to many times. Brazil ports were Belem, Santareme Parintins and Manuas. We went on a variety of excursions and some DIY the best excursion was to see the Pink Dolphins when we were in Manuas they really are pink :)

I hope you managed to get to the end of my ramblings ;) We would definitely give Fred an other try but already have our next two cruises booked. We shall have to look at thier cruises for Oct 2020 when they are released in March. Our next cruise is October on Ruby Princess in Australia. I did say never again on Princess but we liked the look of the itinerary so needs must ;) Then P&O Dubai and India next January!

User avatar

Manoverboard
Deputy Captain
Deputy Captain
Posts: 7369
Joined: January 2013
Location: Dorset

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Manoverboard » 22 Feb 2019, 15:48

We did a Braemar cruise fairly recently but given that it went around Scotland 'n' back there was no chance of a Barbecue but we did manage to fit in a couple of beers / cocktails on the top deck during the afternoon period.

I agree 100% with you re the buffet but I recall that CaroleF ( unknowingly in the cabin next to ours ) did not like it as much as we did.

Thanks for doing the report o little one ;)

User avatar

Kenmo1
First Officer
First Officer
Posts: 1686
Joined: January 2013

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Kenmo1 » 22 Feb 2019, 16:36

Thanks for the review Happydays. Two of our friends have 'jumped ship' from PO to Fred. They are very happy with the choice they have made and are unlikely to go back to PO.

You have two wonderful cruises to look forward to over the next 12 months, extremely jealous.

Maureen

User avatar

GillD46
Senior First Officer
Senior First Officer
Posts: 3013
Joined: January 2013
Location: Gower Peninsula, South Wales

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by GillD46 » 22 Feb 2019, 17:38

A very interesting read, thank you.
Gill

User avatar

Jan Rosser
First Officer
First Officer
Posts: 1771
Joined: January 2013
Location: South Wales

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Jan Rosser » 22 Feb 2019, 18:41

Enjoyed reading about your Amazon adventure - thanks for posting - Fred is certainly worth thinking about :thumbup:
Janis

User avatar

Topic author
Happydays
First Officer
First Officer
Posts: 1461
Joined: June 2014

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Happydays » 22 Feb 2019, 20:10

Jan Rosser wrote:
22 Feb 2019, 18:41
Enjoyed reading about your Amazon adventure - thanks for posting - Fred is certainly worth thinking about :thumbup:
They often have no single supplements on their cruises quite a few on our one😊
Forgot to say we had the drinks and tips included. We liked the Chilean Merlot🍷

User avatar

oldbluefox
Deputy Captain
Deputy Captain
Posts: 6980
Joined: January 2013
Location: Cumbria

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by oldbluefox » 22 Feb 2019, 21:54

Thanks for posting your review of Braemar. We have often thought about giving Fred a try especially as they have quite a few cruises from northern ports.


Whynd1
Senior Second Officer
Senior Second Officer
Posts: 959
Joined: February 2013
Location: Gower, Swansea

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Whynd1 » 23 Feb 2019, 10:27

Thank you for the review.
Food for thought re the trying of Fred.

Lindsey

User avatar

Gill W
Senior First Officer
Senior First Officer
Posts: 2735
Joined: January 2013
Location: Kent

Re: Braemar 17 March Amazon Adventure

Post by Gill W » 23 Feb 2019, 15:14

Thank you for your review.

I went on Fred's Balmoral last March, and have booked Boudicca for next March. I was very pleased with my cruise on Balmoral - I still like P&O, but felt Fred still had some additional little niceties.
Gill

Return to “Fred Olsen”