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Everything posted by uktog

  1. No you need to set up your sharing arrangements before booking eg at the single and solos event
  2. Deck 9 Windows Cafe Port side or on embarkation day there may also be a second booking station on the Pool Deck as well
  3. No there is a desk on the port side of Windows Cafe deck 9 which is staffed 10-1600 each day. In addition on embarkation day they are there from 12 and often also have a second booking station set up on the Pool Deck. You are far more likely to be successful with reservations if you visit yourself. On embarkation day you may not see your butler until late afternoon and a lot of guests will already have made direct bookings. Its an Urban myth that butlers have access to more slots than the reservation desks
  4. I think the onboard bidding was a temporary work around to continue to generate revenue on excess capacity whilst the pre boarding process was in abeyance due to the IT meltdown. It was a lot of work for guest relations during their busy early days of the cruise and didn’t give any recognition for loyalty which was always a stated focus of the upgrade process. It was much more a first come first served action once the ship was sure of its inventory (a slight (!) issue during the IT meltdown). Looks like they’ve now reverted to a version previously used with the significant added benefit of the guest having the final say on accepting the upgrade or not.
  5. Exactly my thoughts or alternatively canned marketing never mind the detail!
  6. Fantastic review - it was so hard to decide which excursions to do and I spent many hours agonising over it. I think your post demonstrates that whatever you do you are going to see things that are so different and which amaze and fascinate you. How I miss the orderliness of Japan now I am home - why dont people walk on one side of the pavement/sidewalk only - it makes so much sense and leads to so much less hassle!!!
  7. As the ship was almost full no upgrades were accepted (though offers were sought) on the 3/4 cruise. Wisely they kept back what wasn’t sold as “contingency” I suspect these days letters to bid are automatically issued - it gives Azamara useful data if nothing else.
  8. The other person who can help is the Cruise Director as its an "entertainment" issue
  9. They can easily turn it down/off if they want to.
  10. I suspect given the flexibility built into ships structures to withstand vibration caused by more unpredictable wind and wave patterns unusual noise is something that’s potentially going to haunt you on ships regardless of their age And things can change overnight. Recently on a cruise that had previously experienced quite rough seas the captain highlighted that he had sounds that appeared through the night in his quarters which he had never heard in all the years he had slept there. Journey has recently had a few beatings at sea so I hope you’ve packed your earplugs - that’s what we do.
  11. 8060 is one of my favourite suites. We were 17 days next door to it recently and never had any noise issues. Maybe it’s down to individual hearing and the frequencies that each person is affected by
  12. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting. I’m kind of glad the reason ran late so that our peak viewing was in quieter places and not in the Sakura frenzy of Tokyo
  13. Funny we had that replenishment issue in Windows in February on Quest and didn’t enjoy our lunchtime experiences however just off Journey where we never encountered any issues and enjoyed a lovely varied range of offerings. It’s down to the Executive Chef and FB manager. If they’re not supervising it goes pear shaped. We never saw them checking around on Quest but did on Journey and the difference was significant. Journey also had a very proactive Hotel Director who was also checking- the inconsistencies are down to the management
  14. To which the correct answer is yes indeed I can afford a private yacht but there are other experiences I prefer better 😃
  15. That would be an excellent idea. Create a go to source for next years guests. I so want to do the survey so much was 10/10 Our experience has exceeded expectations both ashore and onboard though the latter was from quite a low base!
  16. Unfortunately we have the curse of Azamara IT. Our surveys have arrived - neither survey will allow us to progress beyond Page 1 on any device. We had many positive things we wished to say and in particular there were four excellent staff members (two on first contracts) we wanted to highlight. After so many positives and green shoots of recovery onboard they go back to the old ways!
  17. You were lucky we got no tablecloth 2/3 mornings and only got called ahead after the first no call delivery as I wrote that on the special request on the order form. Every time tray just dumped down and we were left to manage it - we did think that change in procedures was unnecessary and disappointing if you want to stay a premium line
  18. We are now in The Intercontinental Strings. A lovely hotel right by Shinigawa station which has the fast line to HND the Shinkansen and excellent local connections eg 12 minutes to Shibuya Crossing for less than £1 It’s the same rating as the New Otani that Azamara used for the pre cruise extension, its room rates on Expedia are lower than the Otani but this is a far better more personal experience. Azamara sometimes uses here. I think our pre cruise would have been 100 times better if they had for us Weve just braved the crossing and some back streets and didn’t get lost! We did however resist buying outfits for our sons new kittens. We’ve seen dogs dressed up but never cats!
  19. Safe travels home. Hope it’s negative for you. I’ve realised our tests are past their sell by so tonight’s results may not be reliable. I noticed the stateroom staff were masked up this morning but maybe that’s standard on turn around
  20. It’s so hard to say. They were all so different in their own way. And some like Kanazawa got extra points because they had the best blossom, Niigata had the sweetest pier staff and was quieter. Hiroshima was busy but thought provoking Kobe/Kyoto was very hectic but three iconic sights. I just can’t pick
  21. Azamara provided a shuttle bus to Ginza 6 shopping mall every 30 minutes which worked extremely well for those who wish to explore Tokyo independently. Port authorities also provided a shuttle to the nearby area, including one that toured a range of parks locally. I just love the quirkiness of little things that have fascinated me in Japan, including the very small fire snf police stations at Ginza and the range of unusual products for sale in shops Today we disembark for two days, independent travelling before going home It has been a really good cruise showing what Azamara does best destination immersion. Having been on quest only a month previously the inconsistency of standards between the two ships was remarkable. Something that the officers we spoke with were well aware off - Journey food wise was far better than Quest and although where a few trainees who needed further guidance, the general level of service was also much higher. The hotel director Ryzard is returning to Quest mid contract in May having been over to support the Japan programme and he himself has identified how far ahead journey was from quest. In conversation in relation to the food side of the operations he was quick to highlight how good the executive chef Dhani is and the significance difference his hands on the approach to overseeing the galley makes It’s a very positive experience for us, but until we see consistency, we still have a little bit nervous about the future. Yes we saw small cutbacks, some more annoying than others but most of all we now feel without new ships and space layouts that work for today’s passengers Azamara are going to face more and more challenges. That said they nail destination immersion something they should really focus on
  22. No they should be. We’ve got tests with us and I’m going to do one on DH tonight
  23. On Azamara journey at present there is a really bad cough going round - it’s not hayfever as people say because it’s a rasping rattling chest cough and unfortunately when you’re on tour you have people bringing up phlegm beside you and doing very little to take care of where they dispose of their tissues. Also, the concept of putting your hand to your mouth is not something that many of the older guests seem to want to do. Despite being extremely careful we now are coming down with it and I think we can pinpoint which shore excursion that happened on - even our guide spoke to the guest about her coughing fits. Many crew have the cough as well and I really think the ship should have been more open about the problems and perhaps to have made facemasks more readily available. For several guests the argument for not wearing one when they should be as they did not bring any with them If embarking tomorrow you might want to get some cough medicine before boarding
  24. Captain Dario has taken over from Captain Kresimir on journey today and Darren Lynton has rejoined as the cruise Director replacing Steven Willet who has been excellent and deserves his holiday. Darren will be on until the 10th August.
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