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Great Trip by redbubba1

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

The ports were excellent and the number of sea days perfect which made the trip great. (A+ ) The ship was very clean throughout.(A+)  Our room steward, Nanda, was the best we have ever had and that is saying a lot as we have been on some 25 cruises, 13 with Celebrity.(A++)  The shortcomings were the main dining room food, entertainment and excursions.  The main dining room food (C) was seriously lacking as well as the service.(Oceanview Cafe food and service was very good and far superior to main dining)  Customer service and attitudes by main dining wait staff needs serious improvement.  Far too many acted as if they just did not care, with one actually trying to debate my wife as to what she wanted that evening.  Theater shows would get a grade of B.  There were a few good guest entertainer shows with the two folkloric shows in French Polynesia and Maui being the best of all ..The shows of the production cast was the worst of any Celebrity ship we have been on.  Excursions are a waste of money.  We took the whale watching tour in Maui and it was a total waste of time and money.  The tour guide on the boat stated that he did not know why the ship sold this tour to us, as the whales had been gone for 3 to 4 weeks.  Independent tours on shore were excellent and about half the price of the ship.

We still like Celebrity very much and favor them over most of the others however, it is not the cruise line it once was.  Becoming more and more main stream.

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From the Shire to Waikiki by AGoodWoman2

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Singles/Friends

A fun cruise from Sydney to Honolulu.  Lots to do, including the Equator crossing, at which point I stopped being a polliwog and became a shellback.  Great visit to Auckland to see the Hobbiton movie set.  Bilbo was not at home.  Enjoyed French Polynesia, incredibly beautiful, and journeyed to Hana on the fabled road of 690 curves and 59 one lane bridges, again with incredible views.

 

Food was great, weather was reasonable.  Had a couple of windy days and rough seas.  Some folks went to Medical, I landed at the Passport Bar, prosecco in hand, watching the surf occasionally reach up to wash the windows.

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3 Comments

Some aspects were GREAT and some were HORRIBLE by chrisharrell

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

The itinerary and the cruise ship were both very good. Great ports of call and nice rooms. The food was just OK and the food at the pay restaurants wasn't worth paying extra for. I wouldn't even give them a try if you are going. My biggest complaints were the alcohol. We bought the package...but the drinks were so week I don't even know why they call them alcoholic drinks. Plus, even if you have the drink package, if you want a double you have to pay extra. There were a few martini's that had decent alcohol...but that was about it. Lastly, I bought the internet package in advance in US dollars because they were promoting it as a discount to buy in advance. When I got on board, they were selling internet for the same price...but in Australian Dollars. There were some other customer service issues that makes me want to try a different cruise line the next time around.

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1 Comment

Unexpected could turn out good by 24miguel24

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

Despite a few problems, we enjoyed the cruise very much. NCL has excellent entertainment in most nights; their band, dancers and singers are fantastic. The workers are some of the most friendly people - they cannot trained them so well, so those workers must enjoy their jobs. The food was quite good in this cruise and the different ethnic celebrations in the buffet each night was smart and delicious. Moderno is a fantastic paid option for variation as dinner choice. We were very lucky with the weather. In our stops, don't know why we have to be so far away from all the interesting places and most of the time be tendered to nearest far away harbor. That's upsetting and time consuming. The visas with Australia were not handled well. We suggest NCL requires some sort of visa proof way before one checks in. And when mistakes are made with visas, they shouldn't send ultimate letters to the stateroom. That ruins anyone's vacation. The cruise consultants in this trip were not friendly so no cruise reward buying for us. Finally, NCL has gone paranoiac with bringing water, juices or liquor into the ship. They should cool down and follow their motto: freestyle cruises. Overall, though, we were very satisfied and will cruise NCL again. Always giving them a chance to improve.

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Despite some challenges, cruise was awesome by BoulderCruisers

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

The itinerary for this cruise was amazing. We really enjoyed all of the ports as well as the sea days. One of my favorite things about this cruise was the captain who gave us daily reports of the waterways, the ports, the weather and some of the history of the area we were in. 

The downside to this cruise was that there were several changes in the itinerary and NCL was not good about keeping us informed of the changes. Despite this we would definately do this cruise again. It was well worth the money.

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Colorful Coral Seas by carollynnhousto

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Singles/Friends

I would recommend this cruise to others if they didn't have 6 straight days of high winds, rain and rough seas and were able to go ashore.  I chose the wrong time of year.

Oceania's food iand service s always excellent

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2 Comments

Bad Choice by chyeo5152

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Large Group

There are 3 key ports in this cruise that one aspire and look forward to visit. They are Port Chalmers, Akaroa and Tauranga. We have to skip 2 out of these 3 ports due to heavy fog. Other than Tauranga, nothing else is worth visiting. Worse of all, having to skip Port Chalmers and Akaroa resulted in us having to cruise from 15Feb evening to 20Feb with limited entertainment. The entire cruise was a disaster and investment for cruise is as good as pouring our money into the seas.

After this episode, I am putting my plan for the 104 days world on hold.

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4 Comments

Bad Choice by FellowCruisers

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Large Group

The foods served in the Dining Room (Da Vinci) are salty making them not edible. More so for elderly where sodium intake must be kept to its minimum. To make matter worse, there isn't much choice of specialty dining available as compared to the Golden and Diamond ship. Otherwise, we could have opted for specialty dining to replace those served in Da Vinci and Michael Angelo. Unlike the Golden and Diamond ship, the Grill and Pizza served in the sun deck of the Emerald are tasteless.  

 

The ports can be divided into essential and non essential. The essential ports being Port Chalmers, Akaroa and Tauranga. The rest are non essential.

This cruise, we have to skip Port Chalmers and Akaroa i.e. 2 out of 3 essential ports. While skipping the 2 essential ports are unavoidable due to fog, it would be good that an alternate ports be planned ahead rather just skipping the ports.

 

The saving grace for this experience being the good service crew. We appreciate their friendliness and hospitality. The embarkation and disembarkation were efficiently conducted. Kudos to the crew.  

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7 Comments

My review of Au-NZ cruise by KirtikumarDoshi

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Family (young children)

Favorite part of cruise was south New Zealand. We took 2 days exeercusion tour at Floid National Park. Which includes Mildord Sound, Queenstown. Due to weather problem trip was extended to three days on ground and we were able to see most of South Island,

Princess treated us very nicely, food , hotel, transportation and guide was excellent.

thanks princess.

huk456@aol.com

 

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1 Comment

Dull Holidays by AUSTNZCruiser

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Large Group

11 days cruise that supposed to have visited 6 ports but have to skip 2 of the 3 main places of interest due to fog. As a holidays maker, we can understand that safety is paramount but skipping places of interest is unfair. You may have no alternatives at that point in time but am pretty sure there should be contingency plans on hand whenever face with such situation. An established cruise company like Princess would have better plan to make up for such a situation.

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13 Comments

good ports and fun crew by BuzzA

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

good ports of call for touring, crew were all very helpful and seemed to enjoy their jobs.

ship could use a facelift, it was clean but tired looking.

this ship in sydney sometimes tenders to port and is usually a huge problem off loading and on loading. wait to board can take 3 hours standing with no places to sit. just be aware if you tender to the ship its going to be a zoo.

 

 

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JAM'S Review by joseamondragon

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

Ship refurbished recently. Public areas very nice. Cabin bad, king size bed fit into space that leaves less than two feet at either side to get out of it. On one side of bed, a picture hanging on the wall plus a curtain used to separate the sleeping from the sitting area blocking the way out. You bump into the picture and have to push the curtain out of the way every time you want to get out of the bed.

Food quality poor. Service very bad. Number of wait personnel not enough. It takes forever to get someone's attention to get your order and get a waiter to clear table of dirty dishes.

Waiting lists at Compass Rose (a novelty). When you are finally seated, you see a number of empty tables around you that are never taken. Maybe this system is used to keep number of guests down to make up for the lack of enough wait and kitchen personnel.

Entertainment has been grossly downgraded to include mostly one-performer show, the type you see at a bar. Gone are the Broadway-type shows. Cruise line has been downgraded ever since Norwegian took it over. What a shame!

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Was this review helpful? 9

Generally pleased (though some issues) by jmgills

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Family (young children)

Overall, I was very pleased with this cruise.  We are veteran cruisers (20+), so my comments come with that background.  We were in a Grand Suite on Deck 10 and had access to concierge services and concierge Denzil was absolutely fantastic.  Our room was also nice and spacious, and stateroom attendant Nicholas kept the room nice and tidy and was super friendly.  The food in the main dining room and at Chops Grille was also pretty good, though this was first cruise kitchen that couldn't get a soufflé right (texture was like angel food cake).  On the minus side, this boat had some new and inexperienced staff and it showed.  The casino dealers were mostly new and several couldn't deal the poker based games (i.e., Texas Hold 'Em and 3 Card Poker).  I'm guessing they over- or under-paid several patrons.  The waitstaff in casino also took until day 7 or 8 out of 12 to remember your name and drink when when you had a beverage package, and so it was a pain to provide your seapass card every time you ordered, and the staff was slim, so getting drinks took a long time many nights.  This was also an uncommon experience as typically by day 2 or 3, I would never have to provide my seapass card to a casino waitstaff as they knew my name, order, and would have a record of my account reflecting that I had a beverage package.  I also found several public bathrooms to be rank--just lack of cleaning or regular cleaning needed to keep them fresh.  Casino bathrooms and bathrooms near the pool and Windjammer were the worse.   I learned from a spa staff that some of the inexperienced and new staff were due to where this cruise ported (Sydney, AU), and that it was far away from many places where the cruise companies recruited workers or too costly for workers to leave that part of world to visit home; hence some areas of ship had lots of brand new staff.  This was also the only ship I have been on with a single nail technician, which made getting nail appts more challenging. Lastly, we mostly had great experiences with shore excursions but, in Vanuatu, we were delayed into port due to another cargo boat.  That delay caused our excursion to be cancelled.  However, we received untimely notice of that cancellation and no alternative excursion was arranged or suggested despite being in port for another 7+ hours.  Again, while we experienced some issues, I still loved my time on the cruise, and enjoyed the beautiful ports we visited with some of the prettiest beaches with clear water (Mare, Lautoka, Isle of Pines) that I've ever seen. My son (age 10) also won an iPad Mini in the kids arcade playing a Stacker game, so he couldn't have been happier either.  He also generally enjoyed the Kids club and activities onboard (pool, rock climbing, bingo--free for kids, etc).

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One of the best cruises by stanwilla

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Family (older children)

One of our best cruises. The Maasdam is excellent with very good food, activities and crew.  The smaller passenger size is a definite plus as it was easy to find seating in the restaurants and shows with an very friendly ambiance and crew interactions. It has essentially all the amenities and public areas pluses of a larger ship but is easier to reach and has a higher comfort level relative to crowing and noise due to the smaller to mid-size of the ship.

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New Zealand and Australia Cruise Review by ferndallas

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

I would absolutely recommend this cruise to anyone considering a relaxing vacation, needing a break from stress, and seeking an adventure!

My husband and I planned this trip about 9 months prior. We scheduled amazing excursions at most of the ports. At others we just walked the town and enjoyed the local restaurants, shopping, and people.

As for the ship, the Maasdam is a bit dated and shows it age in several places. The stateroom furniture is a bit worn and the paint layers are very thick! However, none of that mattered to us. We were there to relax and we did!!! We enjoyed room service for breakfast and the balcony for great views and moonlight!

The food was delicious everywhere on board. We were surprised by the scrumptious hamburgers served poolside! We sampled strange new adult beverages during happy hour in the Crows Nest. We were spoiled at dinner in the dining room by Heri, our server and his team.

Entertainment was delightful in a variety of areas and times on the ship. We walked around each evening to see what was happening, and we were never disappointed, with the exception of not winning the raffle at the jewelry counter!

Can't wait to plan our next adventure with Holland America!

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Beautiful New Zealand and Australia by esclyde

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Large Group

New Zealand is gorgeous and green this time of year, but still not hot (in fact, rather cool).  The highlight was cruising Milford Sound in Fjordland National Park.  Also loved the Te Papa museum in Wellington, Christchurch, and the Moeraki Boulders and Larnach Castle in Dunedin, Tasmania, and the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne.

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Great ship, crew, entertainment, food and stateroom by nbfarrar1

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

The food and waitstaff were wonderful. Excellent variety, presentation and taste.

The ports-of-call, optional excursions and at-sea days were exceptional and fun. The relatively small ship which had been re-furbished since our last trip on her was a very nice surprise.

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Things have changed by CTvalleygirl

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Couple

We've taken 8 cruises on RCCL over the last 16 years and have watched the quality steadily decline. We have also cruised with Celebrity ,  NCL, Princess and Carnival, so we do have a basis for comparison.

 

The service has declined, probably due to noticeable reduction of staff, to just average. Many of the staff appear unhappy or overworked. Food  is just average; no entree that we had in the main dining room was exceptional.  The Voyager is  in need of some repairs as well; nothing major that we noticed, but little things.

 

Three of  the four  ports of call were nothing special. I guess an island is an island whether it is  in the South Pacific or the Caribbean.  The island of Mare had  a lovely beach with a coral reef about 100 yards out where the waves broke; beautiful. 

 

We arrived in Sydney 5 days ahead  of cruise and it was a wonderful place to explore on our own. It was the highlight of our trip.

 

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Things have changed by Ncane

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Family (older children)

We've taken 8 cruises on RCCL over the last 16 years and have watched the quality steadily decline. We have also cruised with Celebrity ,  NCL, Princess and Carnival, so we do have a basis for comparison.

 

The service has declined, probably due to noticeable reduction of staff, to just average. Many of the staff appear unhappy or overworked. Food  is just average; no entree that we had in the main dining room was exceptional.  The Voyager is  in need of some repairs as well; nothing major that we noticed, but little things.

 

Three of  the four  ports of call were nothing special. I guess an island is an island whether it is  in the South Pacific or the Caribbean.  The island of Mare had  a lovely beach with a coral reef about 100 yards out where the waves broke; beautiful. 

 

We arrived in Sydney 5 days ahead  of cruise and it was a wonderful place to explore on our own. It was the highlight of our trip.

 

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Beautiful Ports of Call by cherzai

Sail Date: / Traveled As: Singles/Friends

The excursions to other islands was well worth the money.  The Chops Grill was worth the money.  Please remember to get a visa before entering the country.

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