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Sand and Seas

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Everything posted by Sand and Seas

  1. HELP! I am no longer getting emails from cruisecritic when a thread I created or follow has updates. Yesterday I read this thread, and I followed these instructions and reset that I wanted to get emails. STILL not getting any emails.
  2. Love the pictures! Thanks for posting for us😎 Is there still a walk-up window on the WaterFront for Ocean Blue? We love getting the lobster rolls on sea days there. Breakaway still has one and looking forward to our November cruise on Getaway.
  3. Yes, it expires today (unless they renew it???) I haven't ever seen this particular bonus before and I'm always looking!
  4. We booked this week using two Certs with Casinos at Sea, but this $100 OBC wasn't applicable with it😕
  5. Good to know! I'm making a note on my 'things to do' first day. Thanks😎
  6. It sounds like Dawn is doing the same thing as Breakaway for the complementary Asian restaurant. I know in the past on some ships people would just line up at 5:30 or so and hope to get in. Even though Orchid Garden is a 'freebie' I'm thinking they might allow us to reserve once we board. Thanks for your replies🙂
  7. On our Breakaway cruise earlier this month we were able to make a reservation after boarding for Shanghais Noodle Bar. We couldn't reserve until we boarded and times filled up fast. Just wondering if it might now be the same on the Gem as it's been awhile since we were on a Jewel class ship.
  8. Exactly! I am going to gamble somewhere and have fun doing it. Now part of the 'game' for me is getting comps my family and I enjoy. When we add up at the end of each year what we enjoyed (comped cruises, suites in Las Vegas & New Orleans, free concerts, great restaurants) and see what the gambling cost us we are very happy with it. I have friends that pay high prices for their cruises or the hotels/shows/dinners in Las Vegas. We get them comped while gambling. It's all in how you choose to spend your $$. Never have gambled anything we couldn't afford to lose. Haven't ever 'lost' enough to keep me awake at night (if you don't count that one piece of land we started to build on and didn't complete!)
  9. For recent Gem cruisers, just wondering about the Orchid Garden restaurant. Can you make reservations after boarding? (It will not allow us to reserve in advance like the specialty restaurants we have booked.)
  10. The Getaway is just coming out of drydock now. When the Breakaway was in drydock last year they converted a venue to Syd Norman's Pour House. Looking forward to hearing from those on the first cruise after drydock what changes may have occurred. (Of course, sometimes no visible changes are made in drydock.)
  11. Loving all these pictures! We enjoyed the Bliss out of Miami earlier this year. Thanks for taking us along IN A DOS to Alaska!
  12. I'm hoping someone will be posting some Joy Aft cabin pictures soon. I've tried googling, but can't find any yet.
  13. We did Haven once on the Getaway in the Spa Suite. Loved the in-room jacuzzi. Didn't use the spa as much as we might have since we tried to go up to the Haven and spend time there. Hardly ever saw the butler, but that was OK with us. (Although he totally ignored our typewritten list of 'we like ....., don't bring us canapes'.) We didn't get to enjoy the Haven pool area much since there were kids overtaking the place. Do not know where their parents were! We did enjoy the upper private Haven deck and there were great servers who were in cahoots with the Haven bartenders to keep us well stocked with some great drinks😎 Loved the Haven restaurant and bar. Great staff at both. The priority debarkation wasn't much for us. We still ended up in a line, so I'm happy just sticking with our Plat Plus yellow (not gold) tags. So, to answer your original question, we doubt we will ever cruise in the Haven again. If you could bid for Haven upgrades starting at $200 pp or so, maybe I would throw that bid in for a lark. Otherwise, I'm very happy to enjoy a mini-suite with large balcony. We will cruise more often and get by with our Platinum Plus perks.
  14. Thanks again Two Wheels! We have depended on your advice for prior ships....nice to have your help again for the Joy!
  15. Since I discovered packing cubes, cannot do with out them! When you learn how to roll/fold and zip your clothes into them you have less wrinkles. Easy to unpack too. We keep most items in the cube on a shelf until needed. Very helpful if there aren't many drawers in your cabin.
  16. At the very good advice from 138east, we used Hotwire last year and got the 3 Star Aloft in the Seaport District. Nice decent hotel for a good price of $87 per night (Labor Day weekend). Easy to walk around to the restaurants in the area. We also walked to the Black Falcon terminal day before the cruise and realized we could easily walk there with our rolling luggage the next day. Used Hotwire again this year for our upcoming Labor Day cruise and got 4 Star Westin for $106 (with taxes 133). All the hotels in the Seaport area look good. It's a great place to walk around and enjoy the day before a cruise.
  17. Exactly! We have never had a bad cruise. Looking forward to seeing Footloose. Also hope to enjoy the Beatles show as we did on Bliss. Elevators and elevator lobbies are always crowded after muster. We just step to the nearest door to the deck and enjoy the ocean for a little while. You can let yourself be frustrated, or you can enjoy the ocean😎
  18. Interesting menu. I wonder if the Lobster rolls are as good as the ones you can get at the Ocean Blue walk-up window on Breakaway and Getaway. We really love those!
  19. The only indoor smoking area on the ships, except for humidor, is in the casino. Since we gamble, we have been used to sharing those areas with smokers and I do not complain about that🙂 But for those who have allergies, etc, they might have problems in or near those casinos. On the older ships you can usually just avoid walking by that area to avoid indoor smoke. The newer ships have the casinos on deck 7 mid ship with the open atrium area running through it. Bliss has an enclosed smoking casino section which is a huge improvement over the earlier Breakaway class ships. It's been reported that the Joy (so probably Encore too) has an enclosed casino section for smokers like the Bliss. I do think NCL is doing a good job of enforcing the smoking policies and we haven't seen anyone smoking on balconies for years. The more open casinos will have some smoke drifting to nearby areas. On the 'Away' class ships it's harder to avoid due to the atrium through decks 6/7/8. The Escape has (in my opinion) better air exchangers in the casino. Just off the Breakaway and it was definitely smokier in the casino area than Escape. Bliss with the enclosed casino section for smokers has made an improvement for the 6/7/8 decks. We do love the layout of these ships with the atrium through 6/7/8 and the Waterfront area on deck 8. Loved our Bliss cruise earlier this year. We have already booked two cruises on Encore and one on Joy.
  20. I would love to see this too. Is it a set charge for your entire meal (like Margaritaville) or are items individually priced?
  21. Decided to come back with an update on this. Our Bliss cruise in late February was great. Beautiful casino and yes-- there is a section enclosed for smokers and it had a good variety of slot machines in there, plus some table games. Some smokers we talked with were not happy about the short list of other places to smoke on the ship. We just got home from the Breakaway last week and it was noticeably different. They have the open atrium through decks 6/7/8 with the casino surrounding it on deck 7. There isn't a definitive glassed off section and the smoke does travel. We did see some small air purifiers but they did not work as well as the larger ones we saw on Escape. If you are trying to avoid smoke in a casino, suggest you book Bliss, Joy and probably Encore.
  22. While we love Los Lobos, we were pleasantly surprised with Q on Bliss. We ate twice at Los Lobos and had a full dinner at Q plus stopped in for a lighter meal another night. Loved the Crab Cake, loaded fries and desserts at Q....if you call that a lighter meal🤔
  23. Returned from Breakaway last week. We enjoyed La Cucina & Cagney's the most. Great service and food. Every beef filet we had onboard was super tender. Enjoyed the Surf & Turf in Cagneys. Pasta appetizers and salads in La Cucina were excellent and better than we had on Escape. Le Bistro was OK. Favorite 'lunch' was Lobster Rolls at Ocean Blues walk-up window on sea days. Biggest disappointment was the discontinuance of the complementary themed lunch buffets on sea-days in Modernos. You can still get a small breakfast buffet there, but those lunches were great.
  24. Is it possible your OBC is for a Latitudes cruise? I'm not seeing OBC on the regular listings. The Latitudes OBC just adds onto whatever other promos are on.
  25. I suggest you just log into your account and choose 'make payment'. When I did this last year I was able to select a just purchased certificate and apply it as a 2nd $250 (balcony and above).
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