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About cheezenip

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  1. Could you elaborate on the pros/cons of gender for lobsters from a hungry consumer's POV (coming from Maryland, I understand the pros/cons of eating male/female blue crabs but your quote has me curious)?
  2. Similar experience here (3 to 4 cruises). I jokingly tell friends Princess is tired of hearing me complain repeatedly about how their cost-cutting measures have deteriorated the passenger experience, in some areas, compared to other cruise lines and as a result I no longer receive the post-cruise surveys.
  3. My cruise on the Eclipse was in 2012 so it is quite possible this could have changed.
  4. Very nice review and overall similar to my experience with a few exceptions / different POV: (1) Buffet: I prefer the Royal Class ship's buffet better than the Solistice Class because of the variety / selection. When I was on the Eclipse, I noticed they rarely rotated the selections at each of the food stations throughout the week . On Princess, they changed the options daily and seldom repeated. I am glad you picked up Celebrity's limited hours as this is something I observed also. However, I do prefer the buffet design on Celebrity as it is more open and less congested. (2) Aqua Spa Cafe vs. International Cafe: Not sure if I would compare the 2 as they are different in my view. I viewed the Aqua Spa cafe as an alternative to the buffet with healthier options. I love Celebrity's Aqua Cafe as I appreciated ordering salmon cooked to order and coming out hot. There is nothing like Princess's International Cafe and is something I appreciate and miss when I travel on other cruise lines. (3) Misc: I found the quality of musicians better on Eclipse vs Royal / Regal. The library was great on Celebrity vs Princess smaller venue. I found the MDR staff slightly more accommodating on Princess for special requests. I agree that they are more similar than different and would not hesitate to cruise either line.
  5. Getting Off Early on Port Days Wanting to get off the ship early to beat the crowds on port days for our private tours, I am not familiar with HAL's way of handling passenger traffic. Does HAL have a ticket system of first come first serve to get off the ship in an orderly manner or is it just a matter of getting in line?
  6. We’ll be on the ship in 1 week. Please Keep the good/bad comments coming all week long as well as any tips. Enjoy your cruise!
  7. Colin - We will be on the sister ship Nieuw Statendam in slightly over 1 week doing the identical crossing to Ponta Delgada before heading off to a diff part of Europe. Can you provide more detail about the daytime weather during your sea days? Specifically interested on how much cooler it got each day after leaving warm weather in Florida. Trying to gauge how many quality sea days (weather dependent of course) one would have laying outside in either shorts or long sleeve clothing before getting too cold. I'm packing in layers but wondering how much opportunity to enjoy warm weather before it gets cooler prior to reaching Ponta Delgada. Also, did you notice the ship to be cold or rather comfortable in the public areas (realizing that part of this is subjective)?
  8. Breath of fresh air...I can't stand companies who use lame excuses thinking we don't know the true motives.
  9. For those not familiar with Postmodern Jukebox (PMJ), the original song that they reworked is below followed by the "Original PMJ video / musical version" which was one of their grassroots songs that started them on a musical journey and propelled them toward the international popularity they now have. The original PMJ is still my favorite over Copper's posting of the revised PMJ version (excellent also):
  10. IMHO, what you had described is the "Carnivalization cutbacks" across their ship brands. (CCL, PCL, HAL, etc.) Coming from Princess (will be doing my 1st HAL cruise in approx 2 weeks on NS), the patterns are similar as the management is experimenting with stuff to save money via cutbacks. I personally am looking forward to the music on HAL as I think the Princess musicians (for the most part) are below acceptable for entertainment purposes. Your feelings about HAL are my feelings about Princess.
  11. Give this person a free a subscription to medici.tv !! 😊
  12. It's always good to see other people acknowledge their talent (and I do mean TALENT). I would respectfully disagree that North American audiences don't appreciate them. Their concerts usually sell out and they do have a big fanbase here. However, it is still a niche market (despite the popularity). HAL is not the right demographic. Personally, I don't think the mainstream cruise line is the right place; however, if you were to "force" me to pick a cruise line it would be Celebrity or Norwegian that could appreciate the artistry.
  13. I am a big fan of Post Modern Jukebox and have been following them for years. However, having them on HAL (or any mainstream cruise line) is a big mistake as this is not the proper audience that would appreciate their talent. This is a misjudgment on the executives responsible for overseeing entertainment. They were looking at $$ and not taking into account what works for passengers.
  14. Those that feel strongly against the surcharge and have the time should call and barrage HAL with their inquiry and ALSO voice their opinion AGAINST the $10 nonsense. Those that are for it...well....(LOL...I'll stop right here)...
  15. I appreciate your thoughtful response. In 3 weeks, I will be on my 1st HAL ship which happens to be the NS. I am a big fan of Royal's buffet with the amount of variety offered (I was not as happy with the MDR and considered eating all my dinners upstairs). I've been reading how many passengers end up eating many of their dinners at K-Dam / NS's Lido buffet which brings memories of my feelings with Royal's Horizon Court. I am trying not to build my expectation on Lido's buffet compared to Royal but was curious since you've been on both. I suspect I might have mix feelings about NS's entertainment. I enjoy classical music so the Lincoln Center should be fun; however, HAL's cutbacks (from what I have read) reduces the amount of productions shows and variety acts so I might feel less satisfied after doing 2 weeks aboard NS. Not a rock n roll guy but enjoy jazz and good musical arrangements with all instruments. In the end, variety is the spice of life as each will have their own pros/cons.
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