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About hospsafe

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Austin, Texas
  • Interests
    traveling, attending sporting events and live music
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Whatever line I sail next!
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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  1. I have looked at HL, Regent and the rest. If I am going to go see the Northern Lights in 2020 I would prefer to do it on a "boat" Does a Northern Lights cruise even exist because I havent been able to find one.
  2. The prices are about the same and the airfare isnt't an issue. I will be using miles. Looking at a suite on both.
  3. Its been over 12 year since I have done RC. I think it was on the Sovereign of the Seas for 4 days. Looking at next June and its down to the Freedom or the Harmony? A dad and 2 teenage boys if that matters.
  4. Shiraz, yes LOccitane was still available. NCHPcruiser, " the itinerary drew many people who don't normally cruise and have no plans to in the future. There were many multi-gerational family groups as well." Exactly. That must have played a role in it as well. I guess I didn't notice is as much on my previous cruise to Alaska with Princess.
  5. Thanks everyone. Since I have been to a lot of the ports both in the Caribbean and Alaska, I knew sea days were important to get the real feel of Crystal. To me ship life during sea days makes the cruise line. That's why I was disappointed with Celebrity. Howard, the single supplement does factor in as well. Keith, you aren't the first to suggest a T/A. I talked to someone at my local watering hole that suggested the same thing. However, I own two small businesses and it would be very difficult to take that much time away. I am going to look for a cruise that has at least 4 sea days even it means repeating several familiar ports. Time to do more research!
  6. Background - 50 yr old laid back, low maintenance male. I have been on 12 cruises with RC, Princess, Carnival and as of last week, Celebrity. I was on the Celebrity Eclipse in Alaska. My second Alaskan cruise. The weather was amazing but wasn't impressed with the overall value of Celebrity and yes I did have a suite. That being said, after much research, I am ready for my first Crystal cruise. What itinerary would you suggest that would give me great insight/example as to what Crystal is all about? BTW....I have no problems going back to Alaska for a third time.
  7. I was on the Eclipse last week, you can wear jeans and a polo shirt to dinner, even in the specialty restaruants.
  8. We were told when we tried to make reservations for the Italian Restaurant they said jeans weren't allowed. My boys and I only brought shorts and jeans. I understand that the cigar bar will never happen. My point was Micheal's was very dreary. They couldn't open up the curtains because all you would see are the life boats. The decor was black and red. They need to lighten it up.
  9. A little background...1 adult, 2 teenagers. First Celebrity cruise. Previously on Carnival, RC, and Princess. 12 total. Second Alaskan Cruise. First was on Princess. Suite - Aft corner cabin. I was told by a ships officer there were approximately 3100 people with 1100 staff members. Approximately half of the 3100 were first time Celebrity cruisers. Here are some thoughts... We had amazing weather the entire week!! The boys and I had an incredible time. A cruise is what you make of it. Stayed at Pan Pacific at the pier 2 days prior. Spend the extra dollars for access to the lounge. I would stay there or the Fairmont. Did the Vancouver Hop on/Hop Off. Probably the worst HO/HO I have ever experienced. It was a recording and not a live person. Did a harbor tour which was great. I love Vancouver! Getting on the ship was a breeze, by 10:30 thanks to the Suite Concierge but had to wait for our room until 1:00. No big deal. The boys and I travel very light. Probably the best suite attendant we have ever had. He has been with Celebrity for 20 years. They need to do something about Micheals Lounge. It should be cigar lounge because thats how it felt being in there. Luminae had very good menus and the service was spot on. Heard mixed reviews about specialty dinning. Its a shame that they didn't enforce the dress code. Saw jeans even on "Chic Night" in the specialty and main dinning room. Overall I thought the food was very good. Probably the best I have had on a cruise. I can see why people do the Aqua Class rooms. Its a more luxurious feel in that area.The spa was Ok but I had a great masseuse. Clearly Celebrity is for an older crowd. I would say the majority of the folks were over 60. Not much was planned for the kids nor did they promote it even though there seemed to be a lot kids of all age ranges. I did talk to a couple of guests in their 30's and they were bored. The feeling of the cruise was unlike any I have ever experienced...overall the fellow cruisers weren't very sociable, standfoff-ish at times, very cliqu-ish, the lack of "community feeling" was missing. The couple of other experienced cruisers I talked to during the cruise and at the airport felt the same way. The entertainment was really bad except for the comedian/juggler. During our sea days the pool area was packed but yet the CD didn't plan anything. No I don't expect a "hairy chest competition". Compared to the Naturalist on the Princess, I was not impressed with this one. Maybe it had something to do with the itinerary. He only got on the ship wide P/A once. Otherwise he was in the sky lounge without a microphone and not very informative. Getting off the ship was a breeze. We were off by 7:30 and were at our gate, cleared both Canadian and US Customs by 9:00am! I didn't expect this at all so much so I booked a 2:00 flight. The Hot Glass venue (glass blowing) was very cool and not expected. We got lucky with our excursions. All were very good. Two out of 3 had less than 10 people. We did a 4 1/2 hour halibut fishing which was great. Be fore-warned you are reeling in approximately 295 feet of fishing line. I strongly recommend doing the Zodiac tour in Kechikan. They were booked through Celebrity but it will be the last time I go through the cruise lines to book tours simply due to the cost. The bartenders at the Martini Bar were great. Very entertaining. I think its the best bar on the ship. I would do Alaska again and it will probably be on Crystal or Seabourn. When braking down costs, line by line, they are very comparable. If I were to do it on a big ship, I would go back to Princess and do the inside passage. I just don't see the value of Celebrity.
  10. Granted I haven't done Regent/Crystal/ Silver Sea, but I thought the level entertainment was no different than what I experienced on Princess or RC. In fact a couple of nights it was really bad. The ship was not lively. The few cruisers that were conversational, had similar opinions. On our sea days we had 70/80 degree weather with sun yet the CD planned nothing.for the pool area that was crowded. I understand that if you stay in the Aqua Class area you might experience luxury service.I did a massage and found that the spa was nothing special except I did have a very good masseuse. I found the menu in Luminae was different and a step above but the flavor didn't "wow me" . Once you venture outside of Aqua Area to the rest of the ship, the feeling of luxury is gone. That is contrary to my experiences at the Four Seasons and other places, no matter where your room is, no matter where you go, where you eat, the culture/the presence luxury is consistent as a whole.
  11. When I travel on land I stay at the Four Seasons, Fairmonts, JW, Aria in Vegas etc. I just spent the week of July 4th on the Celebrity Eclipse in a suite...this was my first Celebrity cruise and my 12th overall. The short answer is NO! When cruising by myself I am going to try Crystal or Regent. When I am with my kids it will be either RC or Princess. I realize that RC/Princess is not luxury but the perceived value is better.
  12. Tomorrow morning my 2 boys (teenagers) and I are heading to Vancouver to get on the Eclipse on Sunday. This will be my first Celebrity cruise, 2nd Alaskan cruise, and I think 12th cruise overall. I usually do Princess and Carnival. I usually do suites when cruising and try to get an aft. This time I know I lucked out and got 1663, corner aft, deck 11. I doubt that my bid for a RS or CS will be accepted since it hasn't been already, which I have very fine with. Whenever I do land vacations that has butler service I have found that I don't use them much. Yes when I go on vacation I am very "low maintenance". So my question is, what type of things do you ask of your butler? Still debating what drink package to get too....I do like a good bourbon. 😀
  13. Travelcat2...I actually did check out Silversea but it does seem they are a little bit too formal for me and it appears the average age is higher than the others. That's why I didn't mention them in my original post. I am a road warrior but on Southwest so the Business Class air does appeal to me. I like the "one stop shopping aspect" that Regent is promoting. When I get back from my first Celebrity Suite cruise in two weeks I need to make a decision. Looking forward to your thoughts during you sail on Crystal.
  14. Myself and my two boys (teenagers) will be staying at the Pacfica Hotel for a couple of nights prior to our cruise on June 30. Any recommendations nearby for casual places to eat aside from the hotel?
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