Overall: The cruise was very enjoyable and exceeded my expectations in many areas (mostly the history associated with the quaint German cities we visited, especially Nuremberg).
The boat was nice, the wi-fi worked well and the walking tours were quite good; some of the tour guides were exceptional.
There was also entertainment in the evening. A pianist played before dinner and then a variety of local entertainment was brought onboard each night after dinner, some better than others.
The food was a bit disappointing, but this is in part due to AMA’s claims of being a member of La Chaine des Rotisseurs, which may have some cache, but it didn’t seem to translate into the food on board, which was good and nicely presented, but unspectacular to the taste.
Boat: The boat (Amacerto) was clean, and had four decks, with a capacity of 164, I believe. Cabins were small, as was the bathroom, but sufficient.
We never did use the TV, the pool or sauna (it was cool in November, although some did use the pool). The wi-fi was handy, but reception was a bit weak on the lower deck. Many people chose to bring iPads or tablets into the lounge, which was on the second deck. The coffee-maker in the lounge was quite good, capable of a wide variety of coffees, including espresso/cappuccino and teas.
River Cruise Format: The river cruise promises to be more intimate (fewer passengers) and engaging (stopping at, or near, destination cities) than ocean cruises, and they deliver on that. The walking tours (aided by AudioVox portable receivers with an ear piece that lets you listen to the tour guide, regardless of how far ahead they were) ranged from moderately interesting to fascinating. They call it a “Floating Hotel,” and that seems to fit.
Food: The food was fine, which is both good and bad. I found breakfast to be quite good – they had eggs each day with bacon and sausages, and a guy making omelettes, as well as plenty of fruit, cereals (including muesli), home-made breads and pastries, yogurt and fruit juices, not to mention champagne.
Lunch and dinner were a combination of menu or buffet, or both. The food was good, but unremarkable IMHO, and it was a bit disappointing that while the wines were generally regionally sensitive (and also good, but unremarkable, which is understandable), but the food was not regionally sensitive.
We were in Germany for six days and only got German food (bratwurst, etc.) as a pre-lunch snack one day as we were leaving Germany. It would have been nice to have had one regionally sensitive option at lunch and/or dinner. A couple of dishes were well-executed, but I would have preferred more food that was rather simple and prepared well, to items more exotic that may or may not have achieved the desired outcome. I would have enjoyed, for example, a simple pork tenderloin with some garlic mashed potatoes, or even potatoes done German style.
We ate at the “Chef’s Table” one night and it was also good, but seemed to reach too far.
Staff: The staff were quite good, willing to help and went the extra mile in most situations.