5 Night Canada/New England (New York Roundtrip) Sail Date: July 31, 2010 Cabin Type: Suite Traveled As: Large Group Reviewed: 6 years ago
The "Wal-Mart" of cruise lines. Poor attitudes by much of the staff. Hard to find a smiling face. Everyone spoke English, but not many had a good mastery of the language, so one needed to be careful as to not speak in any colloquials, just use plain, slow simple words. The Maitre d' in our dining room, called the Platinum, spoke very fast and with such a heavy accent it was difficult to understand him.
Food and Dining
3 out of 5
No sit down full service for lunch. Cattle call buffets all over. Quality passing but zero ambiance. Short hours for sit down breakfast. Dinners were fine, Maitre d' spoke so quickly and with such a heavy accent, that he was not understood by most.
3 out of 5
Many activities required additional fees, such as bingo, slot and poker tournaments art "auctions" (with all pieces for sale at a reserve price) and even one very limited tour "behind the magic" a 3 1/2 hour tour conducted by mid level crew training staff where we got to tour from the sub- basement with the brig and morgue, to backstage with the dance captain, through the ship galley to meet the chef De cuisine and some of his staff, then to the engine control room with its banks of computers and displays. We were taken to the bridge and had a 20 minute meeting with the Ship's Master, the Captain, so answered all questions put to him. No cameras were allowed for many reasons, but a ship's photographer came with us, and I have a nice shot with the Captain at the wheel shaking my hand.
3 out of 5
Clubs for the kids to keep them busy, but some of them still managed to get booze on the ship. In addition, there was an area for adults only on the 10th level for some peace and quiet.
Service and Staff
1 out of 5
I mentioned before that the entire staff was pre-tipped, so there was no motivation for anything more then minimum service. I gave an additional gratuity to my Room Steward, both on arrival and departure, and it was money well spent. On the first night of the cruise I attempted to give a tip to our Maitre d', but he has the gall to refuse it. The last night, we found a tip envelope in the stateroom, just for that purpose. I tossed it away.
3 out of 5
Quantity rather than quality, with the exception of their Emerald Room Steakhouse, with was an additional $30 pp plus gratuity. No table service at lunch anywhere on the ship, just cattle call buffets, so fairly nice and well stocked.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
We took the Grand Suite, the largest on the ship. It had a very large European bath, with a hot tub, twin sinks and even a bidet. Then there was a dressing area with an additional sink, then a very large stateroom with 2 sofas, a small table and two arm chairs, and towards the door was a full desk with honor bar, glassware shelves and one of two telephones. Three large closets, all with lighting, a wall safe and a flat screen T.V. that rotates on a stanchion. We had a largish balcony with 2 chairs and a small table, plus a full size lounge chair. The Room Steward was exceptional, and was very sharp at all times.
We took a 3 hour tour. Too much lingering on the Titanic dead. Saw 2 graveyards and heard about 3. Let them rest in peace and stop trying to make a buck off their tragedy.
Don't Miss: Botanical Gardens.
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