Treated like a "Rockstar" more like a roady!!
We booked the Southern Carribbean Cruise, which included 3 nights stay in the Almond Casuarina hotel Barbados. This Hotel, although not 4 star quality as advertised, was acceptable although entertinment at the complex was non existant. We arrived at the Airport and we were met by our Virgin Rep, our luggage was thrown onto a large dirty Luton type van, we were then hurded, like cattle on to a coach that had clearly seen better days. One passenger for whole of the half hour journey, had water pouring out of the air conditioning unit above her head. Needless to say the air conditioning did not work, but not really surprising given the age and condition of the coach.
We were asked to meet up the next morning at 10am, this was our chance to meet our Virgin Rep. Our Rep turned at 10:45am (this was after all time out of my holiday). She proceeded to sell us available excursions around the Island and was gone after 20 minutes. This was to be the only encounter we would have with Virgin, apart from the airport.
Our 3 days at the hotel came to an end and we were due to join our ship. Having struggled down to the reception with our luggage, we joined a confused and un-organised group. No one new what was happening, not even the hotel staff. We had to keep asking staff where we needed to get our transport. Once again our luggage was recklessly thrown on to the old Luton once again. We were then guided to our transport, to say this was clearly unroad worthy was an understatement, the coach was absolutely filithy and flea ridden, evidence left of bites on both my legs and my husbands. It had not been cleaned for some considerable time. Our journey was a replica of the "Italian Job", with no consideration for the passengers on board, this was to say the least, a very scary journey. When we arrived I felt like I had been dragged there on the back of a shovel.
We boarded the Victory and stepped back in time to seventies, the ship was extremely tired and in need of revamping. After registartion we explored the ship, my heart sank, I had a really bad feeling about this holiday.
We ventured up on deck to the buffet resturant - pigs and troughs came to mind, there was food every where, tables were full of empty dishes and there was liquid all over the floors. There was no empasis on using the hand sanitiser, in fact people weren't even using the serving implements, they were using their hands. My husband said he was worried about picking something up and spending most of the hoiday ill. We both agreed that the buffet resturant was not for us.
We proceeded to check out the swimming pools, well this was the final straw the whole of the top deck was taken over by gangs of Puerto Ricans. Who were not at all friendly, in fact they were very intimidating and just pushed and shoved you out of the way. The swimming pools were full of Puerto Rican kids, eating and drinking. Nothing was said to them. There was no way we were going to use the pools either.
We had no problems wth our cabin staff, in fact the front of house staff were excellent. The Guest Service Staff were appauling, rude and unhelpful, unless you wanted to spend money on excursions.
We were allocated any time dining in the restaurant and was looking forward to some fine dining LOL. Each night became a private joke between myself and my husband, "what shall we have tonight" as we checked out the same menu night after night (but for one or two changes). One night my husband explained to the waiter that he did not like cheese mash, and asked for chips instead. The mealed arrived with cheese mash, cheese peas and chips on the side. We brought this to the attention of the waiter who proceeded to pick up the plate and scrape the mash on to my husbands side plate and returned his plate to him. The meals were obviously pre-plated and warmed up and did not allow for any changes.
Entertainment was appauling and not at all what we expected, third rate, cheap and not the standard we were led to believe would be offered. One of the highlights was the hairy chest competition! need I say more.
The journey home was by far the worst experience of my life; We had to vacate our cabin by 9am, but our cabin lad started hammering on the door from 7:30 and continued to do so until we vacated at 8:15. Our flight was due to leave that evening at 19:50. We heard through the grapevine that once you left the ship, you were not allowed back on and there was no where to leave your hand luggage. We were being collected from the dock at 2pm, so we decided to stay on board until we were due to go to the airport. We arrived at the airport at 2:30pm and left to wait for a flight that was not due to leave for a further 5hrs and 20 minutes. "Rockstar Treatment" what a joke.