Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)
Ship: 300 out of 500
Accommodation: 109 out of 200
Food: 237 out of 400
Service: 252 out of 400
Entertainment: 56 out of 100
Cruise: 232 out of 400
Overall Score: 1186 out of 2000
Size: Boutique Ship
Cruise Line: Premier Cruises
Former Names: Andrea, Harald Jarl
IMO Number: 5142657
Builder: Trondheims Mek (Norway)
Original Cost: n/a
Entered Service: Jun 1960/Dec 2012
Length (ft/m): 286.7/87.4
Beam (ft/m): 43.6/13.2
Draft (ft/m): 15.5/4.7
Passenger Decks: 5
Total Crew: 55
Passengers (lower beds): 107
Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 24.5
Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 2.1
Cabins (total): 59
Size Range (sq ft/m): 66.0-236.8/6.1-22.0
Cabins (for one person): 0
Cabins (with private balcony): 0
Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 0
Wheelchair accessibility: None
Cabin Current: 220 volts
Casino (gaming tables): No
Slot Machines: No
Swimming Pools: 0
Hot Tubs (on deck): 1
Self-Service Launderette: No
Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No
Onboard currency: Euros
Dated, but tough, casual little ship for coastal cruises
Overview. This intimate ship is best for cruising in coastal regions. It is suited to couples and single travelers of mature years who enjoy nature and wildlife at close range, and who would not dream of cruising in the mainstream sense aboard ships with large numbers of people. This is for the hardy, adventurous types who don’t need constant entertainment or mind-numbing parlor games.
The Ship. The 107-passenger Serenissima began her career as Harald Jarl, cruising the Norwegian coastline and fjords. Extensively renovated in 2003, she was renamed MS Andrea and began her career as a classic cruise ship (chartered by Noble Caledonia for a number of years).
In spring 2012 the ship was purchased by the owner of the Russian rivership Volga Dream, and renamed Serenissima. After a thorough renovation, this charming ship commenced cruise operations in April 2013. With her small size she is able to dock in the heart of Europe’s historic centres and is able to navigate into smaller, remote ports inaccessible to large resort ships.
Serenissima has a good amount of outdoors space (including a forward viewing and observation platform), and the rather nice semi-covered aft area of the Boat Deck. The ship also now has stabilizers to counteract her well-known rolling motion.
Accommodation. Several different grades of cabins are arranged over five decks and, with the exception of the five interior cabins, all have either windows or portholes. Because of the nature of this eclectic ship, the cabins do vary in shape and size, giving the ship more character: from dimensionally-challenged interior cabins of approximately 10 sq m (108 sq ft), to ‘executive suites’ of 25.4 sq m (273 sq ft) with small balconies, minibar, and other amenities. Two Owner’s Suites are located at the front, directly under the navigation bridge, with forward-facing views, and measure 22.7 sq m (244 sq ft). Dedicated standard single-occupancy cabins range in size from 9.9 to 12.7 sq m (107 to 137 sq ft). The cabins are very nicely furnished, with blue and gold the predominant colors.
Cabin 407 is designated for mobility-limited passengers (an adjacent elevator serves Decks 3 to 6).
Dining. There is a cozy, one-seating Venice Restaurant, but the chairs do not have armrests so lingering over a meal is not exactly comfortable. The food is tasty and well presented, and there is a good variety. Casual eats can be taken in the aft-facing open-deck Café.
Entertainment. Really, with this kind of ship, it’s the after-dinner conversation that creates most of the evening’s entertainment, although there is usually a solo pianist or other musical unit.
Spa/Fitness. A small fitness center has only a limited amount of equipment (treadmills, bicycles, and free weights), plus an adjacent massage room.