Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Reports about cruises on Arcadia
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Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 06 Oct 2018, 15:25

Hi all,

I am back on Arcadia for a b2b cruises to the Med and then the Caribbean. I am giving DTM a well deserved rest from tendering so the reports may not be as reliable as in the past but I will try to keep up to date as we get WIFI. Today we have visited Cadiz and that report will hopefully be posted when we reach Cagliari on Monday.

Wednesday 3 October 2018

After spending three days in Devon we had an easy journey to Southampton for an overnight stay in the Holiday Inn at Eastleigh.

We woke to glorious sunshine which boded well for a great sailaway.

We had been warned about horrific traffic holdups due to ongoing roadworks to Middlebrook roundabout near to where we park our car and they were not exaggerated. The journey normally takes 10 minutes it was nearer to an hour before we arrived at the car park. Great service there as the taxi van was ready and waiting to load up our masses of luggage and being local he knew the least congested way to get us to the Mayflower terminal.

There was a short wait there as the computers were being upgraded but within 10 minutes we were in the priority area having a coffee and only just had time to drink it before the announcement was made that the ship was ready for boarding.

We were on board just after noon and as I was still full from breakfast I skipped the lunch and just stuck to the bubbles. Cabins were ready by 1 p.m. and we did a detour via the Spa to book the package and then the Neptune bar to buy the soda card. We had been informed that these cards were being discontinued due to the drinks package being brought in but obviously not yet.

We couldn’t put off the dreaded unpacking any longer so made our way to the aft and our cabin which would be our home for the next 7 weeks.
The majority of our luggage had been delivered the rest followed within minutes. A birthday card was on the bed from Captain Cook who has stayed on board to do the handover of Arcadia to the new Captain Martin Allen.
We were all unpacked with everything in its place well before muster drill at 4 p.m.

After muster we sat on the balcony in the sun with a G & T watching the ship sailaway from Southampton. There was a sailaway party on deck but we were happy just relaxing.

As it was Garrys Birthday I had booked Ocean Grill for our evening meal. The menus have changed since we were last on board and the price increased but as they were doing a first night offer the price was only £10 a head. We didn’t know this when we booked so a nice surprise.
The evening was full of surprises as a friend who had been on board for the last cruise had left a bottle of Billy Billy our favourite red for Garry’s Birthday. Thank you Denise and Brian. The card you left for a Garry was hilarious and so very true. Thanks also to Caryll and Sharon for your card.
Another surprise was when a lady came over with a birthday card. She had read on one of the cruise forums that it was his birthday, and soon afterwards a waiter brought another card from another facebook poster. It was a lovely thought and great to put faces to names of people I ‘chat’ to regularly in cyber space. Of course the cards let the cat out of the bag and the after dinner chocolates were presented with a birthday message.

By the time we had finished dinner the show had started so we stood at the back and watched the last few minutes of the Troubadours. We have seen them before but they were worth watching again and we will probably go to their next show before they disembark in a Cádiz.

Another surprise when we returned to the cabin a box of chocolates from the loyalty team. He has been well and truly spoilt all day and has the rest of the cruise to look forward to.


Thursday 4th October 2018 - 1 st Sea Day to Cadiz

Another bright sunny day and the sea was like a mill pond. I went to the early morning exercise class which is now held in the fitness centre rather than the Retreat which is another change since the last time we were on board Arcadia. There were only 4 passengers attending the Body Conditioning Class and Bryn the fitness instructor. It was an excellent class and hopefully more will join in as the cruise progresses.

I had ordered room-service breakfast which was waiting for me when I returned to the cabin.

P & O had advertised a meet up in the Viceroy room at 10 a.m. for any passengers who use Facebook wanting to meet up. We went along but there were only eight of us there. We chatted for about an hour about cruising and no doubt we will see them all again during the cruise.

Battle of sexes was at 12:15 in the Rising Sun hosted by the very capable and amiable Mikey. The Ladies won the round although it was a very close call.

I went straight to the dancercise class hosted by the Headliners but as the Battle had overran by 10 minutes I didn’t stay as the retreat was heaving and they had learnt most of the first dance.

I had a light lunch in the MDR before returning to the cabin to see what my butler was doing. We had a lazy afternoon but as we are sailing due South the sun was missing from the balcony but the temperature was very pleasant.

Trevor Glass is the Head Chef and he sent some chocolates to Welcome us back on board. So much for the diet.

It was the 1 st of 4 formal nights and the Captains Welcome on board party. On our way there we met Trevor Glass and thanked him for the chocolates. We hadn’t seen him since the world cruise so spent some time catching up. We caught up with officers and crew that we hadn’t seen for a while and had a couple of glasses of bubbles before heading down to dinner.

It was Marco’s Beef Wellington menu which was as usual excellent. Our waiters are Francis and Vikas and Neil is our wine waiter. Together with Rachel our diet waiter and Kevin the restaurant manager we were looked after extremely well. Rose the Head Wine waitress came by our table to say hello and discuss the new wine packages. Everyone is so friendly and it has already started to feel like home.

The Headliners performed A Night of a Thousand Stars in the theatre followed by a Formal Night Ball in the Globe. We finished the night in our favourite East Bar. This is definitely the best bar to sample the cocktails in and the Long Beach is just as lethal as ever.

Friday 5 October 2018 2 nd Sea Day to Cadiz

The hour changed over night and it showed at the early morning exercise class as only 2 of us made it today for the Fab Abs Class. Annja certainly pushed us hard and I was still aching from yesterday’s class.

My butler resumed his duties in the laundry which was very quiet.

The port talk was on Messina and Michael the port presenter gave away his favourite Gelato shop close by the port. We didn’t have anything planned for Messina but now we do. A gelato sounds just perfect.

It was another glorious Sunny day as we continued sailing South past the Portuguese coast. As the temperature rose the decks filled up with sun worshippers.

The ladies lost the Battle today but once again it was very close and still friendly. Garry joined me for a light lunch in the dining room and we spent the afternoon relaxing. The lunch menu has changed quite dramatically and takes a while to work out. There doesn’t appear to be a Curry every day which had always been a P & O speciality.

The sun gradually crept onto the balcony during the late afternoon but after today when we start sailing easterly we will have it all day.

Another excellent dinner and as I had designated today alcohol free after the excesses of the past week we didn’t order any wine and stuck to water.

The Troubadours performed their final show in the theatre. A very talented group of 4 male vocalists singing easy listening music from the 60s era, The Drifters, Queen etc. It was standing room only well before 8:30 p.m. another change since we were last on board is the later start time for the early show to 8:45p.m.

Tomorrow we will be in Cadiz and the forecast is a sunny 28 degrees.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Kenmo1 » 06 Oct 2018, 16:55

Just out of interest Sue - how the heck do you pack for 7 weeks without getting totally stressed ? I am currently packing for a 12 nighter next week and I'm already stressed. I am trying to keep cases down to 2 main cases to hand in and 1 hand luggage to keep with us. Luckily there are only 2 formal nights. I just couldn't cope with the thought of packing for 7 weeks. Ken is under strict instructions not to take his Swiss army knife this time as I don't want the embarrassment of being called to security this time.

Have a great time.

Maureen.


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by colin parry » 06 Oct 2018, 18:21

Disaster on Oriana, they don’t stock Billi Billi any more. Fortunately, the old girl is as good as ever. Don’t know why they’re selling her. Another 18 days to look forward to.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 06 Oct 2018, 19:59

Looking forward to following your travels, Sue, as always. Have fun x
Gill


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Whynd1 » 06 Oct 2018, 20:48

Me too

Lindsey

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by david63 » 07 Oct 2018, 11:13

colin parry wrote:
06 Oct 2018, 18:21
Disaster on Oriana, they don’t stock Billi Billi any more. Fortunately, the old girl is as good as ever. Don’t know why they’re selling her. Another 18 days to look forward to.
There is a Californian Old Zinfandel that, in my opinion, is as good as, if not better, than Billy Billy and about the same price.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by barney » 07 Oct 2018, 15:50

Hi Sue.
Please keep 'em coming.
Your reports make our day :thumbup:

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Meg 50 » 07 Oct 2018, 17:33

Kenmo1 wrote:
06 Oct 2018, 16:55
Just out of interest Sue - how the heck do you pack for 7 weeks without getting totally stressed ? I am currently packing for a 12 nighter next week and I'm already stressed. I am trying to keep cases down to 2 main cases to hand in and 1 hand luggage to keep with us. Luckily there are only 2 formal nights. I just couldn't cope with the thought of packing for 7 weeks. Ken is under strict instructions not to take his Swiss army knife this time as I don't want the embarrassment of being called to security this time.

Have a great time.

Maureen.
In some ways longer trips are easier - I've packed for a 26 nighter - basically everything came!
If only a short trip, decisions have to be made before leaving home!
Meg
x

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 08 Oct 2018, 09:59

I just use a spread sheet and copy and paste. It is harder when you need cold weather clothes as well as hot weather and in between clothes. A fleece is packed for our journey home in Mid November. We did have a lot of luggage this time with 3 large cases and 4 large holdalls although one of them was filled with ny Caribbean snorkeling gear and Pilates mat.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 08 Oct 2018, 10:00

Just about to dock in Cagliari and picked up a signal from shore.

4 th Report from Arcadia. - Cadiz

Saturday, 6 October 2018 - Cadiz

It was still dark as I woke at 6a.m. but warm outside. The Body Conditioning exercise class still only had two attendees. Luckily we are both at approximately the same fitness level and we are pushed by both the instructors who take it in turn to do the early morning class. By the time the class finished we had docked so I took the opportunity to get weighed. Exactly a week after leaving home and I had already gained 7lbs.

I went for breakfast in the main dining room as we weren’t in any rush to get off and Garry had gone to the Spa. I met a couple from the 2017 World cruise and we had a great catch up. It is just unbelievable that 18 months has passed since we said our goodbyes.

By the time I finished breakfast it was another lovely sunny day. Garry was not a happy bunny as when he got to the Spa it wasn’t working and he felt the staff up there were really not bothered. Yesterday they gave him the wrong cruise card back and it was only when he had walked the length of the ship to our cabin that he realised and had to walk back again. No doubt he will will sort them out before we disembark.

P & O had secured the paupers dock in the Commercial Area and for the first time ever in Cadiz we had to get a shuttle to the small duty free shop and security area. A Costa ship had the Number one Berth but as passengers were embarking and disembarking it made sense. The third berth was not being utilised and I haven’t found out the reason why Arcadia couldn’t berth there.

We wandered by the Cathedral area. Cadiz is a typical Spanish town with large plazas and many bars and cafes. The local market is huge and sells fish that I have never seen before. So many fish stalls and on the other side fruit vegetables and meat. It was heaving as some of the trips call here and as it was a Saturday the locals were shopping and bartering. Everywhere was noisy and bustling but a great atmosphere. At the side of the indoor market there were more cafes and bars selling tapas and drinks. We stopped here for a couple of drinks I had freshly squeezed oranges before then sampling the local drink of Tinto Verano but we didn’t eat as we had read about a local fish restaurant that had been highly recommended.

By the market is the Carrefour supermarket where we spotted many of the crew and passengers stocking up or buying items they had forgotten to pack. We just bought some soft drinks for the cabin before setting off in search of the fish restaurant. We knew vaguely where it was but heard it before we saw it. They do takeaway here as well as tapas at the bar or Meals at the table. It was heaving and looking at other people’s choices we knew we had chosen the right place.

Freiduras de Pescados was excellent. The locals were eating here which is always a good sign and the queue for the takeaway fried fish was out of the door. We found a table which had just been vacated and although it was very busy the service was excellent. It only cost 20 Euros for 2 drinks, a huge plate of mixed fish and another of massive langoustines. If you visit Cadiz and love fish this is the place to eat. They did serve meat and vegetable dishes as well but fish is defo their speciality.

Back on board was early at 4:30 and the sun was out for the sailaway party. It wasn’t a particular scenic sailaway due to being in the Commercial dock.

As we knew we would be eating lunch out we had pre ordered a very light meal in the dining room and kept to the Spanish cuisine and both had Spanish tortilla with salad. The wines on the Captains choice package have all changed since we last cruised in June and our favourite white the NZ Marlborough Stoneburn Sauv Blanc is no longer available but the new NZ Sauv Blanc called Wakkapapa is an excellent replacement.

The show in the theatre was Comedian Lloyd Davis who we had seen earlier this year but as his jokes are very topical we went to see him again. Another excellent performance and shows that the older established comedians can run rings around the modern ones. He didn’t need to be crude or racist to get laughs.

Tomorrow is a relaxing sea day before we have three consecutive ports of call.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 08 Oct 2018, 10:07

5 th Report from Arcadia

Sunday, 7 October - Sea Day to Cagliari

It was still dark when I woke and the balcony was very wet. We had obviously had rainfall during the night but by the time I had finished my morning ritual of Exercise Class, Shower, change and breakfast it was bright and sunny. I met a couple of ladies at breakfast who recognised me from the Cruise Community forum. We chatted the whole way through breakfast. It is great to meet up with other forumites.

I collected the pool towels and set up on the aft deck for the morning as the Sun wouldn’t reach our balcony until midday. It was so lovely up there that I missed the Battle of the Sexes Quiz and the Dancersize Class.

My butler had bagged a washing machine to get the whites up to date and then went on sun watch. He brought me a cold drink and told me that at half past twelve the sun would be fully on the balcony. After picking up a salad for lunch that is where I spent the rest of the day.

Late afternoon I left Garry having a siesta and went to the Crows Nest to meet Michele who is a member of the Cruise Lovers forum . We had a chat about our cruising experiences and found we had a lot in common. Arcadia’s Crows Nest must be the best in all of the fleet. Very modern with huge windows with great views from Port, Starboard and the Bow of the ship. A very popular meeting place and quite busy as the Bingo was being held in there.

At dinner our wine waiter Neil had managed to find a Billy Billy for us. I suspect there is a secret stash somewhere. It went down very well with the steak and salad I had ordered.

Neil also booked me into the Gin Parlour for an afternoon of all things gin. Not until the 18 th October but something to look forward to. It is a new concept on this ship and involves food soaked or made with gin as well as the tastings and cocktails.

The Headliners performed Blame it on the Boogie which has recently beenrevamped with New Costumes and Dance Routines. They were one male dancer down but the show was flawless. The 60 s & 70 s night followed on from the show in the Globe where when we arrived it was already getting started. The group New Wave were providing the music and I was surprised to see the guys from the group Troubadour leading the dancing. I thought they would have disembarked in Cadiz but must be meeting up with another ship in Cagliari. It was a fun night although not many passengers now dress up for it.

It was only when the Horizon newspaper arrived that we realised that our call into Cagliari tomorrow was a short one. We don’t arrive until around Midday

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by oldbluefox » 08 Oct 2018, 17:29

Enjoying your reports Sue :thumbup:

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 08 Oct 2018, 17:57

How’s Arcadia looking these days, Sue? Considering booking a big chunk of the World on her. Is the food up to scratch?
Gill

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by david63 » 08 Oct 2018, 21:59

GillD46 wrote:
08 Oct 2018, 17:57
How’s Arcadia looking these days, Sue? Considering booking a big chunk of the World on her. Is the food up to scratch?
Having just got off Arcadia despite her recent refit she is looking a bit tired and, in my opinion, lacking a few facilities - such as a Glass House.

We found the food just about adequate - nothing was seasoned with the meat was generally overcooked and vegetables undercooked. Most of the meals we had in the MDR were not very hot, despite complaining. Some of this may have been due to being on a table of eight, or it may have been due to the chef. Even on 30 nights it got repetitive so not sure what it would be like on a Worldie!

On a positive note the crew appeared to be a "happy crew"

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 09 Oct 2018, 06:00

Thank you David. The limited Select Dining options do concern us I must admit. Time yet to decide - maybe sonebody else will do the route we want. Fingers crossed eh?
Gill

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 09 Oct 2018, 07:42

GillD46 wrote:
08 Oct 2018, 17:57
How’s Arcadia looking these days, Sue? Considering booking a big chunk of the World on her. Is the food up to scratch?
Our experience in the dining room has been completely different to David’s. All the food has been excellent as has the service. We are 100 % satisfied. Arcadia is looking fabulous after the refit the only ‘tired bits’ we have seen are around the windows where sea air and water has caused corrosion.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 09 Oct 2018, 07:43

6 th Report from Arcadia

Monday, 8 October 2018 - Cagliari

Only after reading the Horizon last night did we notice the late arrival time of Midday and only here until 4:30 pm. All passengers I spoke to were equally surprised although I should have realised that normally we sail into Cagliari on our way back to Gib so the journey from Cadiz is a few hours longer. We usually read the port arrival and departure times thoroughly as we often book private trips but we had obviously missed this one. It wasn’t a problem as we had been here so many times previously that we had already decided on either a day on board or an easy walk into town and perhaps a carriage ride.

It meant I could attend both fitness classes and I started with the 7 am stretch class with another two passengers and then the fab abs class where we were down to just two of us again. Another tough class but I am hopefully getting some benefit. Bryn asked how my Abs were doing and I told him they were screaming at me but as yet had failed to put in an appearance.

After a leisurely breakfast in the MDR because it is Monday and that means Egg Benedict day I returned to the cabin to find the sun full on the balcony. Our decision to stay on board was made once the Captain had docked and our balcony was still basking in the hot sunshine.

Just after midday our cabin steward arrived to clean our balcony so we left him to it and went for a light lunch. When we returned it was looking pristine. We had ordered an ice bucket and the Rose wine was chilling nicely and we spent a leisurely afternoon in the sun with views of Cagliari in the distance.

Another excellent dinner of seafood brochettes with a salad. The food has certainly been exceptional so far as has the service from our waiters.

We went to watch Lloyd Davies in his final show of this cruise. Before the show one of the entertainment staff Caroline kept us amused with her antics. Apparently she had been drinking too much coffee according to Mikey her colleague. She got a standing ovation and it certainly made the waiting time pass quickly. The theatre show doesn’t start now until 20:45 but the seats are full well before that time.
Another funny performance from Lloyd but this time I did remember most of his gags from the last time I saw him. He leaves the ship tomorrow as does the entertainment manager Neil Kelly who is joining Q.V.

Tomorrow we are in Naples and have a full day tour booked.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 10 Oct 2018, 08:36

7 th Report from Arcadia
Tuesday, 9 October 2018 - Naples

We had an early trip booked so I gave the exercise classes a miss and instead watched the sail in to Naples. Another hot sunny day. Just for a change we had breakfast together in the Main Dining Room before collecting our bags and heading to the theatre which was the meeting point. We had only been sat for a couple of minutes when our tour was called to board the coach.

Our tour guide was Sylvana whose English was perfect but was at times difficult to understand because of her accent. She had the patience of a Saint though and repeated herself when asked for clarification.

The traffic was manic and the roads steep windy and very narrow. Our driver certainly had his work cut out and needed eyes in the back of his head. We had lots of near misses with the Kamikazee motorbike riders.

Our first stop was the free time in Sorrento which we were pleasantly surprised was for 3 hours. Other passengers were not happy at all and had been sold the tour as little or no walking and other than sitting in a cafe or bar for 3 hours it is impossible not to walk up or downhill in Sorrento. Even the coach dropped us at the top of a hill with a 300 yard walk to the flat main shopping street.

We wandered around soaking up the atmosphere of the narrow streets with limoncello being sold on every corner. We found a bar with seats in the sun and joined a couple from the UK who were spending a few days there. Next stop was at Fresco Sorrento a Gelateria which uses only fresh natural ingredients. Very small and friendly owned and run by a young couple. The ice cream was excellent and so much choice.

Our final stop before making our way to the meeting point was for another beer. The sun was so hot I had to move into the shade.
The meeting point for the coach was by a shop where the toilets were available for the coach tours. They were selling the Venetian jewellery Antico Murano so much choice and reasonably priced compared to Venice. Garry bartered and agreed a price for my chosen set.

The coach arrived just as we had finished our purchase and although it was the official meeting point the traffic was so busy and not an ideal pick up spot especially as the coach had to turn around in the narrow road. The road to the farm was even worse than the road from Naples to Sorrento. The Italians certainly have no patience and refuse to give way even though the coach could have crushed them.

We were welcomed to the farm by two noisy geese known as the gatekeepers. The farm was ancient with lots of history. Rosa one of the owners explained the different fruits and vegetables grown on the 8 acres of land where the olives, fruit and vegetables were grown. Seven cows produce the milk for the Mozarella which is handmade, fresh everyday by Maria . Not quite sure what the UK public health department would have thought as she was not wearing protective gloves and she had cuts on her hands. It was all very interesting but the best part was yet to come with the tastings.
We were sat at tables with jugs of water and homemade wine, different breads drizzled with olive oil and a plate of food grown or produced on the farm. It was all delicious and we finished with homemade cake drizzled with a lemon liquor.
Finally we sampled the Limoncello and a creamy lemon liquor. For us it was an excellent trip but I fully understood why some passengers were not as happy.
There was a lot of uneven downhill walking to get to the farm and uneven walking around the farm. The coach picked us up at a different point but there was still a fair walk to reach the meeting point which was on a narrow main road with no shade and no footpath. The cars were whizzing past us within inches. We only had a 5 minute wait for the coach but it was a bit ‘hairy’.
The journey back was without incident and we were back on board for 5 p.m. A little later than we anticipated but still enough time to get showered and changed for dinner. We don’t sail until 8 p.m. but having walked a lot today we didn’t get off the ship again.

Whilst getting ready for dinner we had a phone call from one of the officers regarding a comment we had made on a short survey they had sent us earlier on in the cruise. The question was Is there anything we can do to improve your cruise experience. I mentioned the soot fall on the balcony and this was attended to by our steward the day after. The phone call was to assure us that the cabin steward would now clean the balcony daily. I am very impressed by how pro active the officers and crew are.

Another excellent dinner. I was dubious about ordering the Baramundi fish having sampled it in Australia fresh and perfectly cooked and then sampled it again on a ship where it was dire and like rubber. The food has been so good on this ship that I decided to go for it. I wasn’t disappointed and it was excellent. Cooked to perfection, meaty and juicy.

After dinner instead of going to the show which was the Headliners performing a fairly newish show ‘Money Makes the World go Round’ we returned to our balcony for the late sailaway from Naples. It is a huge Bay and great views of both Vesuvius and the Isle of Capri. Hundreds of birds followed us out diving for whatever Arcadia was churning up in the water. We sat there watching as the twinkling lights of Naples faded into the distance as we passed the Isle of Capri.

Tomorrow we are in Messina.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by gilly88 » 10 Oct 2018, 12:13

love the reports sue, brings back memories of Sorrento, only been there once but still remember the limoncello like yesterday!.
regards gilly.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 10 Oct 2018, 14:07

We had a very special sailaway from Sorrento some years ago on a Regent cruise. The Captain took us over to Capri, very, very close to the wonderful rock formations and literally “danced” the ship to classical music at sunset. It was positively magical, especially as there was a lavish farewell buffet on deck with lots of cocktails there for the taking.

It is certainly an exquisitely beautiful area, so I can understand you spending the evening on the balcony.
Gill

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 12 Oct 2018, 07:09

Hi all, just arriving at Elba, Atender port today. The storms of last night have gone leaving another sunny day.


Wednesday, 10 October - Messina

I skipped the 7 a.m. stretch but I was the only passenger at the Body Conditioning Class at 7:30 a.m. I had time to weigh in as we were docked and another couple of lbs have crept on. It must be the beer and Gelato that are doing the damage.

Garry went to the Spa and then decided to do another load of laundry as I went for breakfast. I had received a message asking Garry to go to reception to discuss some of the issues he has had at the Spa. Apparently my reports are being read and this was picked up on. Again very pro active as his requests and complaints at the Spa had fallen on deaf ears. Hopefully these will get sorted now.

Another beautiful sunny day but at 25 degrees not too hot for sightseeing. We headed into town and wandered around before reaching the Clock square where we had a beer sat in the sun.
The beer must have reached parts none other could as Garry decided he wanted to climb the 200 + steps of the Astronomical Clock Tower. We had done this a few years ago and remembered that the views were tremendous. It was such a clear day and we could see for miles. Well worth the 4 Euro charge. We made sure we were back in the square before noon which is when the Clock performs it’s tricks. I think if we had still been up there then we wouldn’t have any ear drums left.

Once the clock had completed its daily routine we headed back towards the port in search of the Gelato shop, that Michael the port presenter had recommended. He was quite right and we were not disappointed.

We had another lazy afternoon on board with great views of Messina.

Another excellent dinner of prawn and chorizo brochette.

There was early evening dancing in the Globe followed by Ben Makisi who performed to another full House in the theatre.

We finished the night in the Crows Nest and I sampled the Northern Gin flight. I first found these on Oriana in Anderson’s bar. There are three different flights to choose from and three different gins in each flight. They have a selection of 24 gins in the Crows Nest. I think this may become a favourite evening venue. When we were leaving the Crows Nest we saw that Clyde was the senior bar tender. He had been our wine waiter for the world cruise. We spent a few minutes catching up with him and congratulating him on his well deserved promotion.

Tomorrow we have a sea day before we reach the island of Elba.

Thursday 11 October 2018 - Sea Day to Elba

Our first cloudy day of the cruise but temperatures still in the early 20s.
After the early gym class of fab abs I went to breakfast and it was the liveliest breakfast table yet. A solo lady cruising with a male friend kept us entertained for the duration. They certainly had the banter between them and came across as a married couple which they both denied.

It was our Ligurian lunch day so it didn’t really matter that the sun was feeling shy. Helen, the Hotel General Manager hosted our table of 8 and the conversation flowed through an excellent lunch as did the wine. I had chosen the fish but Garry had opted for the beef and was very happy when his favourite Red Wine, Billy Billy was being served.
I was sat close to my gym buddy Helen and her husband Ray who were excellent company. The food as usual at these lunches was exceptionally excellent if that is possible. I notice the word excellent is being used too frequently in my reports of this cruise but is certainly deserved.

Soon after returning to our cabin a beautiful flower display arrived compliments of the deck manager Shahid. I think this is because we mentioned the soot issue on our balcony on the feed back form which has been dealt with daily. It is an unexpected lovely gesture.

After the lunch and wine we had a lazy afternoon as it was our 2nd formal night of the cruise. Unfortunately it started raining but as our balcony is partly under cover it wasn’t a problem and still warm enough to sit out. The rain worsened and during dinner we were treated to an amazing electrical storm.

The Headliners performed a new show in the theatre called Magic Moments which told the story of the life and music of Burt Bacharach.
I very much enjoyed the show which was very lively and included 25 of his best known songs.

Tomorrow we tender into Elba


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Whynd1 » 12 Oct 2018, 08:12

It's nice to know your concerns are being addressed Sue. One would hope that all passengers concerns would be addressed so promptly but I do wonder. I remember that when we had a similar balcony on Arcadia you had to remember to put a pool towel on the chairs as they often had soot on them.
Glad you are having a lovely time.

Lindsey

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 13 Oct 2018, 08:44

9 th Report from Arcadia

Friday, 12 October 2018 - Elba


We woke to another glorious sunny day and no sign of the stormy weather that we had experienced last night.

We had room service breakfast as it was an early start for our trip to a hillside village followed by wine tasting. We met at the theatre and waited for around 10 minutes before we were called to go down to the tender dock. The tender operation appeared to be running smoothly helped by the calm sea.

Michael the port presenter was the escort for our tour.
The roads roads were steep, narrow and twisty but not as hair raising as the ones in Sorrento. Our tour guide was British and had duel nationality Italian and Scottish so her English was perfect.
It took a while to reach the hillside village of Capoliveri which is only 6 miles from the port as we went the scenic route and saw a lot of Elba. Once there we only had 25 minutes which was no where near long enough. By the time we had a drink and used the facilities it was time to leave this beautiful village and I hadn’t had any retail therapy.

The next stop was at the gorgeous vineyard La Chiusa which is in a perfect location overlooking the bay. The sun was shining and the wind delicious. We sampled White, Rose, Red and a sweet red desert wine. All were excellent. The food to accompany the wine was basic bread, cheese, meats and olive oil with fruit cake and biscotti to finish. Once again there just wasn’t enough time to take everything in and I felt that the whole day although very enjoyable had been rushed. On the way back we were supposed to see an old Roman Villa but by the time we were told it was there we were already driving past so didn’t see it. I thought we were going to get some time there not just drive past at speed.

Once back at the port the queues for the tender were horrendous. The sun was extremely hot and there was no shade. Typical of Italian organisation there was only one tender dock but two queues which merged as we reached the tender embarkation area. We were lucky and got on the first tender but the queue was still growing as we set off back to the ship.

We spent the afternoon in the sun on the balcony with fabulous views and the occasional yacht sailing past.

Another excellent dinner but we decided to skip the entertainment on offer as they were showing the England match on TV. It was a guitarist in the theatre and saxophonist in the Globe.

Garry called at Sindhu to book a table for the night we leave Toulon.

Another fabulous day and tomorrow we are in La Spezia where another sunny hot day is forecast.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 13 Oct 2018, 09:14

Your sunshine sounds delicious, particularly as we are in the midst of gales and torrential rain, and have been for 24 hours and will be for another 12.

I hope it all continues for you in the same vein.
Gill


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by silver surfer 2010 » 13 Oct 2018, 11:38

Just to keep you up to date with your next cruise Sue, a seperate 'meet & greet' has been arranged at 12-30 in the Crows Nest, Starboard side, on the Sunday, this is in addition to the P & O organised one so if we miss you at one we might see you in the other. Hope the next cruise is as good as this one sounds. Enjoy you reports - one week to go.
David E

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 14 Oct 2018, 10:44

silver surfer 2010 wrote:
13 Oct 2018, 11:38
Just to keep you up to date with your next cruise Sue, a seperate 'meet & greet' has been arranged at 12-30 in the Crows Nest, Starboard side, on the Sunday, this is in addition to the P & O organised one so if we miss you at one we might see you in the other. Hope the next cruise is as good as this one sounds. Enjoy you reports - one week to go.
David E
Thanks David hopefully meet at one or the other although Battle of the sexes is held at 12:15 and the PO official meet clashes with the church service.

Sue

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 14 Oct 2018, 12:18

10 th Report from Arcadia

Saturday 13 October 2018 - La Spezia

There were lots of long trips today but as we had docked here a few times and had always done trips we decided to see what was on offer in La Spezia itself. This meant that as we didn’t need an early start I could do both exercise classes and Garry could visit the Spa. When I returned from the Gym we were docked so close to the MSC Fantasia that it felt like we could step off our balcony onto their deck. It did feel intrusive and certainly the monster ship blocked a lot of our view.

Another sunny hot day but the Captains announcement was forewarning us of worsening weather conditions in both Toulon and Barcelona. We have been so lucky so far but need to make the most of the sun today.

We had to catch the shuttle bus to the cruise terminal and with 3 ships in port all using shuttles with limited space at the terminal and the usual Italian organisational skills it could have been a recipe for chaos. Luckily the worse of the deluge of passengers had subsided somewhat by the time we disembarked.

La Spezia has a huge naval history and this could be seen from the memorabilia along the long flat walk along the sea front. A very pretty little town with lots of bars and cafes and a large public garden area as well as the famous Naval museum.
We enjoyed the stroll in the sun taking in the sights and stopping for photos. We passed where the boats were docked ready to take passengers to Cinque Terre. Even at 11 o clock the queues were enormous and with 3 ships in port doing organised trips there, the small villages must have been swapped. We wandered into the town where amongst the usual well known shops were the unusual individual Italian shops. It was a Saturday and busy with the locals doing their shopping.
Some stunning architecture mixed in with the usual European concrete blocks.

We found a bar with tables in the sun and enjoyed a beer with a few snacks whilst people watching. A few stalls had set up close by and one was showing the birds from a local sanctuary. Beautiful owls and a huge falcon which luckily was tethered but was showing a lot of interest in its audience.

We stopped for another drink before making our way back to the cruise terminal. We had just missed a shuttle bus as there were no Arcadia passengers in the queue but didn’t have long to wait. It was a good service for disabled passengers as the majority of the shuttles were the low buses with ramps.

Late afternoon I realised that part of a tooth had broken clean off. No pain but sharp edges. We. Both started researching dentists in Southampton as I didn’t want to risk waiting until we were in the Caribbean. Luckily we found one who could offer me an emergency appointment on early Saturday morning. Later on even more of. The tooth broke away and I suspect it is not going to be viable. We still have 5 weeks before I can visit my own dentist so hopefully they will be able to do a temporary repair.

I didn’t really feel like much dinner but the tuna steak was so tender and juicy it just melted in my mouth. I don’t think I will be eating any meat for a while.

The Headliners performed a new show and the best ever. Mr. Tinkertons Clockwork Circus was great fun. The lead male singer was fantastic but the whole show was so well choreographed with lots of acrobatics as well as dancing. I am already looking forward to seeing it again next cruise. One definitely not to be missed and a well deserved standing ovation at the end.

Tomorrow we dock in Toulon and have a full day tour.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by david63 » 14 Oct 2018, 13:05

Suekersh wrote:
14 Oct 2018, 12:18
The Headliners performed a new show and the best ever. Mr. Tinkertons Clockwork Circus was great fun. The lead male singer was fantastic but the whole show was so well choreographed with lots of acrobatics as well as dancing. I am already looking forward to seeing it again next cruise. One definitely not to be missed and a well deserved standing ovation at the end.
I think that that is probably the best Headliners show that I have ever seen


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by silver surfer 2010 » 14 Oct 2018, 14:19

The other site, CC, has been down since last Thursday so no one on your next cruise is aware of what is happening. quite disappointing really, and very frustrating

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Gill W » 14 Oct 2018, 16:27

I'm pleased to see that Elba is still on the itineraries. Elba was on my first cruise in 2001, and we've never been back. Hopefully we'll get a chance go back one day.

Hope your tooth doesn't give you too much trouble
Gill


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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by silver surfer 2010 » 14 Oct 2018, 17:05

Thunderstorms forecast for Barcelona today but looks as though tomorrow might be OK

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 15 Oct 2018, 09:00

The weather today in Barcelona is fine some clouds and sun but the storms seem to have past. Very bouncy last night and for the first time this cruise we knew we were on a ship.

11 th Report from Arcadia


Sunday 14 October 2018 - Toulon

The weather wasn’t as bad as forecast and although breezy and overcast there was no sign of rain. At around 20 degrees it wasn’t cold.

It was an early start so we had ordered room service for 7 a.m. as usual it was very prompt. The ship was on time docking but it took a long time for the French authorities to clear the ship and by the time the announcement had been made there appeared to be queues along every corridor and public area. We joined a queue and as the disembarkation commenced an officer announced that the forward gangway was open and that there were no queues there. A group of us set off for that one and were soon off the ship but then met another queue to get through the terminal where the tours crew were directing everyone to the coaches for tours or independent passengers to the boats to get through the naval area and into the city. I can understand why passengers booked on tours needed to disembark early but why on earth independent passengers were rushing off at 8:30 a.m. on an overcast windy Sunday morning in France where nothing opens on a Sunday is a mystery. If they had waited 30 minutes the tours would all have departed and they could have strolled off without the hassle.

We boarded the coach and Helene the tour guide intoduced herself and the coach driver Frederique.
It was a 90 minute drive to Saint Tropez along narrow winding roads. Just after we left the port we were stopped by a police barrier for around 10 minutes and had a great view of a parade of very expensive cars. Some vintage some new which seemed to go on for ever. Helene was an enthusiastic guide who enjoyed talking about the scenery and what we were seeing along the way which was mainly trees, bushes, and vineyards. She recommended the local Rose wine which she thought was the best ever.
When we reached Saint Tropez the sun was trying hard to break through the clouds and there was quite a lot of blue sky. There was another parade of Porsche’s and they were all gathering close to whe the coach dropped off. Zillions of pounds worth of metal seemed to get the men excited. Helene walked us to what would be the meeting point for our return journey and then gave us a choice of exploring on our own or following her on a tour round the town. We did a bit of both and followed her along the front where more Zillions of pounds were docked up. These interested me far more from huge yachts to old sailing boats. All were immaculate. Because of the Parade of the Porsche’s many of the small individual shops had opened and of course the bars and restaurants were already doing good business.

Another how much moment when we stopped for a drink at a waterside bar but just something you have to do when in Saint Tropez. We didn’t have time for a full lunch there but made do with a wrap and ate it by the sea front. Everyone was at the meeting point on time and we set off for the 2 nd part of the trip Port Grimaud.

This place reminded me of Burano an island off Venice. Port Grimaud had lots of bridges and waterways. Most of this place is private and closed to visitors but the central area is open and full of quaint restaurants and bars. We only had an hour here and some chose to do a canal trip round but we chose to walk and stop at a bar by the canal where I sampled the Rose wine recommended by Helene. Not to my taste at all but to be fair I haven’t found a French wine I do like.

The journey back to Toulon took 90 minutes and would be longer if midweek. It had been a long day and we arrived back just before sailaway which was extremely windy and Arcadia needed the assistance of a tug.

We had booked Sindhu for the evening meal which was excellent. My lobster was thick and juicy. Garry ordered the chefs signature plate which he thoroughly enjoyed. There was so much food on the table that we just couldn’t eat it all. I am sure most of the extra rice they put on the table goes back untouched. Who would fill themselves up on rice when there is so much tastier food on offer.

We were too late finishing the meal for the first show and too tired to stay out until the late show started so skipped the entertainment which was a variety show with the Byron the guitarist and Ben Makisi.

Tomorrow we are in Barcelona.
Last edited by Suekersh on 15 Oct 2018, 09:01, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by Suekersh » 17 Oct 2018, 06:11

Monday 15 October 2018 - Barcelona

A very Rock and Roll night being woken up regularly by loud bangs as the wind and waves hit the ship. This is the first time this cruise that we have experienced any sort of bad weather and now we know we are on a ship. We woke to a very windy day and I did wonder if the Captain was going to abort the call as we appeared to get close then circle away but he came around again and got us safely berthed behind the Costa Diadema. There were 6 ships in port so very busy in Barcelona.

The sun came out and the wind died down and it was another beautiful day which shows how erratic the weather forecasts can be. After I had breakfast I met Garry after his spa session where he was delighted to report that finally the blinds in the spa had been closed and he no longer felt like he was in a goldfish bowl. Thank you to the Customer service manager for helping to resolve this issue.
As there was no rush to get off ship my butler did a wash load whilst it was quiet then we set off to join the horrendous queue for the shuttle bus to the bottom of the Ramblas. It looked worse than it was as more shuttles kept arriving. It was good to see the Customer Service manager outside talking to passengers in the queue and keeping things moving.

We ambled up the Ramblas taking in the sights and smells of Spain. It wasn’t as busy as last time we were here but we still needed to keep our wits about us as petty crime is rife here. We stopped at the Carrefour where once again lots of the crew were shopping. We were going to stock the cabin with soft drinks in Southampton but now with the dentist visit being the priority we are not sure if we will get there. I am soft where dentists are concerned and I am anticipating the need for my bed straight afterwards to get over the shock not just of the pain but the cost as well. Shopping done we then headed to Plaza Catalunya and our favourite tapas bar.

It threw us for a bit as last time we were here it was called Ciudad Condial but now it is called Cuitat Comtal which as it was the same staff menu etc I presume is the Catalan version of the same name.
The food and drink did not disappoint, we were just missing our friends who we usually eat here with to help us out with the quantity. It was only tapas but we certainly didn’t need to eat again before dinner.

Not wanting to face the crowds of the Ramblas again or the shuttle bus queues we got a taxi back to the port where Arcadia was waiting and the sun was fully on our balcony.

We had an Invite to the Viceroy room for a Sailaway Cocktail party hosted by the Loyalty team - Brooke, Chloe and Lewis . The party was for the most loyal passengers on board and the drinks and delicious canapés were much appreciated.

The Tropical night party was held in the Globe after the Headliners had performed Destination Dance in the theatre. We headed to the Crows Nest where once again I sampled the Northern Gin flight.

Spain v England was being shown in the cabin so that is where we finished the evening.

Tomorrow we have a much needed sea day after 4 consecutive busy port days.


Sea Day to Ceuta

I was looking forward to a lazy sea day. Just two of us at the early fab abs class.
The sun tried hard all day to break through the cloud but never quite managed it although it was still warm enough to sit out.

The scenery as we sailed close to the Spanish coast was stunning and just as the Battle of the sexes was about to start the officer of the watch announced that at the port bow of the ship there was an unusual phenomenon in the form of of a water spout.

The men won the Battle of the Sexes and the score is now 3 to the ladies and 2 to the gents with 2 more rounds to go.

Garry met me for lunch in the upper dining room which was surprisingly busy as the Caribbean tier passengers were having their Peninsular lunch in the lower dining room. The new lunch menu always has a sharing dish on it, which as we don’t normally choose the same food we hadn’t tried it but today it was a sharing curry. It was excellent as the P & O curries always are.

It was the third formal night of the cruise and Black & White night.
The entertainment was a female vocalist who we hadn’t seen before but we didn’t feel like spending up to an hour sitting in the theatre so after dinner went for a drink in the Crows Nest and then down to the theatre about 10 minutes before she started. We managed to get seats right at the back but we didn’t stay long as although she could sing the songs she chose from the West End shows weren’t our thing. We headed to the Globe and the Black & White Ball.

Tomorrow we dock in Cueta which is a Spanish town in Morocco and a new port of call for us.

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Re: Sue Kersh Arcadia Cruises

Post by GillD46 » 17 Oct 2018, 11:13

Good luck at the dentist.
Gill

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