When we got on board - we ran into people who have been doing this for 15+ years, some every year, some skipping years but it was a crowd that knew each other and many of the staff. That's the big difference between a short cruise and a Grand World Voyage. Food good, variety sometimes lacking but still, very good. Steaks in Pinnacle as good as any great steakhouse. Staff - can't say enough about how warm, friendly and helpful they are. They knew our names within the first 2 weeks and we were greeted by name. I think if I said we would like to do this again in a couple of years that would say it all.
We booked this cruise in hopes of seeing the fall colors in Canada and New England but the warm weather had delayed this. Otherwise, the cruise had no issues. It's an older ship (1997) but well maintained and all the systems were working well. One thing to be aware of, bring a plug strip if you intend to plug things in - there is only 1 115v outlet in the cabin and the TV was plugged into it.
We enjoyed the food in the Italian restaurant and the steak/seafood restaurant (Pinnacle Grill). Reservations in advance are a must for both of them. The ship was full but we didn't feel crowded even on the Lido buffet lines. Food was decent but not outstanding (optional restaurants were excellent). Decent variety on menu and decent selection in Lido buffets. Nice pastry and dessert items as well.
Staff was plenty friendly and competent. Shows were OK nothing spectacular but we had a wonderful concert violin and pianist who would outstanding.
This was our first HAL cruise and we will go on them again.