This cruise was rather boring during the day. Not enough intellectual activities on.
Often on the Lido deck it was impossible to find a seat to sit down at.
We spent a lot of time in our cabin, as this was the only peaceful place.......
Not one of our better cruises.
The best meal was the Indonesian lunch they prepared for Mariners - very spicy & tasty.
We ate quite a few times in the Pinacle Grill - food was far superior & the service was brilliant.
5 out of 5
We were a little nervous to be leaving from Hong Kong (as there had been riots) so we arranged a pick up by Holland America - all went very smoothly.
Food and Dining
3 out of 5
The dining rooms seem very understaffed. (Cost cutting?)
1 out of 5
The sauna was not free this time, very few things of interest on board - no Art Auctions, no Seminars - the Americas Test Kitchen was good. They had a very good Jazz Band onboard - but they only played at night (after 10pm). A jazz afternoon would be good.
2 out of 5
The first 14 days seem to be repeated on the 2nd 14 days.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Our room stewards were lovely (Didi & Renzo-Indonesians)- very helpful. Room service was the best way to have breakfast...but the menu was limited. In the dining room the waiters were run off their feet. Service was slow. The best service was from the Sommelier (trying to encourage purchase of wine etc).
2 out of 5
Cabin / Stateroom
3 out of 5
It was OK..... Very annoyed that we paid so much for this room - we booked ages ago & this seems to be to our detriment. Friends of our booked 2 months out from the cruises departure & got a very large balcony room for much less than we paid.
We'd been there b4, so we got the shuttle bus into the market area & drank the famous Vietnamese coffee. Got a taxi to take us to all the sights that Holland America Tours were going to for a fraction of the cost.
This was a tender port - disgraceful - we waited 2 hours for our number to be called (and we were early to get the numbers allocated). They had 3 tender boats to get everyone ashore.....totally inadequate. We gave up after 2 hours of waiting & stayed on board - There was only a short time in this port - so if we had of gotten off at 10:30 am / 11am - we would have only had 2 hours in the port. Very disappointed.
we wanted to go to a beachside area. The taxis were more expensive that the boat Tours! We came back to the boat & caught the minibus into Ho Chi Min City & had a great day - met some lovely people - even though we'd been to many of the sites before - it was nice to revisit.
On the 2nd day we did a Tour
Absolute disgrace! This is a total waste of time. The shuttle bus to the beach was unbelievable - EVERY road in this port of call is being dug up. The Chinese are building 500 Casinos in this once beautiful little fishing village - its an absolute nightmare. The shuttle bus pulled up to the beach area - it was amongst rubbish skips overflowing with garbage. The beach smelled of urine - there was raw sewerage in the ocean. There was absolutely nothing to do there, so we got back on the next return bus back to the bus - the bus broke down - lost its gears....so we had to wait in the middle of the dug up roads for a replacement bus. I have no idea why this Port is included - It cost US $65 per person for the Cambodian Visa & $15 in the shuttle bus - per person. A complete waste of money & time & extremely disappointing.
Not enough time at this Port. We love Koh Samui. Another tender port - luckily we got off on the first boat - caught an expensive mini bus to Tong Krut (for coconut smoothie on the beach) then to Lamai Beach for massages, lunch & hairdresser & then a fast trip back to the boat at Nathon. Just not enough time.
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