Azamara Quest in Cannes
Azamara Quest in Cannes / Azamara / Jenna Lyn Pimentel
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The Top-Deck Pool
The Top-Deck Pool / Azamara
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Scallops at Aqualina
Scallops at Aqualina / Azamara
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Club Veranda Stateroom
Club Veranda Stateroom / Azamara / Michel Verdure
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Our Review
Deal Expert / Travel Blogger

When this boutique cruise line was formed by Royal Caribbean in 2007 it had two ships, Azamara Quest and Azamara Journey. Both carry under 700 guests and are R-class vessels that had been launched a half-decade earlier by the former Renaissance Cruise Line. Another identical ship was acquired in 2018 and christened Azamara Pursuit and a fourth joined the fleet in 2022 as Azamara Onward. By the time the latter ship was christened, Azamara had been sold by Royal Caribbean to investment group Sycamore Partners (the deal closed in March 2021) and the cruise line severed all connections with its former parent company.

Azamara’s ships, with their elegant wood detailing and elaborate central staircase, were known for having a country club-style ambiance and a casual dress code. While these lavish touches remain, the ships’ décor has since been given a more contemporary feel in neutral shades of gray and taupe. Think of Azamara as "luxury light" at sea: The onboard experience has some of the hallmarks of luxury ships — including excellent food and service — but without the spacious, more modern suites and the higher price tag.

What We Love

What’s Included: Azamara includes plenty of extras that other lines charge for, including select beer, wine, and standard spirits throughout the cruise (upgraded beverage packages are also available); specialty coffees and teas; self-service laundry; transportation from the ship to the town center in most ports, and gratuities. Suite guests enjoy unlimited dining in the ships’ two specialty restaurants, Prime C and Aqualina (non-suite guests are charged $35 per person). The line also hosts private on-land special events called “AzAmazing Celebrations” once per cruise and those, too, are included.

Late Departures and Country Intensive Itineraries: Azamara appeals to travelers who enjoy cruising but who are often frustrated by short stays in port. Most Azamara itineraries include at least one, and often several, late departures (after 10:00 pm) or overnight stays, which allow guests to enjoy evenings ashore. The cruise line is also known for offering Country Intensive sailings that focus on ports in a single country, such as Italy, France, Spain, Greece, Japan, and South Africa.

Best Known For

Low-Key Entertainment: From enrichment lectures to full production shows, the diversions tend to be classy and fun without the dazzle of mainstream cruise ships.

Locally Inspired Cuisine: Fresh, beautifully presented local dishes are served with an Old World flair.

Who It's Best For

People Who Like Smaller Ships: These four relatively intimate ships have none of the fancy features of bigger ships — such as sprawling spas or elaborate stage shows — but they also don’t have congestion and crowds.

Food and Culture Lovers: Azamara is ideal for those who enjoy the finer things, both in life and in their travel experiences.

Don't Say We Didn't Warn You

Cabins Are Tiny: Cabins in the non-suite category are relatively small — especially the snug bathrooms — but that is reflected in the price.

There’s No Casino: All four Azamara ships no longer feature a casino. In its place is a bar/lounge called The Den, where guests can enjoy live music.