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Marelaine

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About Marelaine

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    CT
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Celebrity

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294 profile views
  1. I was able to stream Downton Abbey from Prime on our Reflection cruise in March, during the late evening. That was a southern Caribbean cruise. On the evening that we were approaching Bonaire, there was too much buffering to enjoy watching. We had the one device unlimited wi-fi.
  2. The MDR turkey dinner is the same dinner they have on every cruise. Sliced turkey breast with oyster stuffing, sweet potato tart and some kind of veggie. It's okay, but nothing like a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.
  3. We eat lots of fish and chips in New England. In my opinion, the fish and chips they served on our Reflection cruise in March were very good. The fish was battered and fried to a nice crisp and moist inside. It's best if you get them as soon as they're put out on the buffet. The chips were not great, though.
  4. If you're select dining, no need to let them know. If you're assigned dining you should let the waiter know not to wait for you to serve your table mates. The MDR posts the dinner menu for each evening just outside the door, usually after lunch. On the nights when the menu isn't appealing, we head to the buffet. I'll mention this in case you're new to Celebrity: Everyday around 4 p.m, they put out a nice spread of tea sandwiches and little pastries in Oceanview buffet. My husband and I enjoy doing that once or twice during the cruise, in lieu of dinner. It's self serve, but still enjoyable.
  5. I couldn't upgrade online either. Called my Celebrity Vacation Planner who was able to do it.
  6. I remember that. People were downright hostile. We don't pre-tip, but nearly always receive excellent service. The one point that I took away from you was that it might be a good idea to tip $1 per drink to bar servers. It worked pretty well at the pool.
  7. We are MDR select, but we usually settle in with one waiter by the second night. On the one cruise where we had a different wait staff every night, we didn't tip extra to the MDR staff. For the cruise where the attendant didn't remember to replenish soap and toilet paper unless we asked, we didn't leave extra. We don't frequent the same bar for most of our drinks so we don't tip the bartenders. But the MDR bar server who showed up with our drinks as soon as we were seated - she got extra $. No one should expect more than the auto-grats.
  8. I think that is a closely guarded secret. A few crew members have hinted that the lion's share of their wages is from the auto-grats.
  9. As a person who has grown up in a 'tipping culture,' I agree with you. I wish the cruise lines would just pay their crew members decent wages and adjust our upfront cost. No more wondering if and how much we should tip.
  10. As you noted, most people aren't comfortable talking about money. But I will. We leave auto-grats in place so we don't miss anyone. We put our extra tips in an envelope along with a thank you note for those who provided excellent service. We are regular balcony cruisers, 10 day cruises. cabin steward and head waiter $40 - $50 assistant waiter, bar server in the MDR, $20 cafe al bacio - $10 if we've had the same server for most of the cruise On the last evening, I put a few $10 bills to hand to crew members who are not usually tipped, such as the restroom attendants.
  11. I like to book directly with my vacation planner at Celebrity. I usually do all my research before I call. I'm always surprised when he finds me a little extra something. I know he will return my calls within hours if I have questions and I enjoy talking to him. He's given me money saving tips for future cruises. I've dealt with a few big box TAs. One gave me an amazing deal, then he passed my booking to another agent. Turned out he had double dipped and she got stuck honoring the deal. To repay her, I booked a cruise through her at Celebrity's price + $50 OBC. When shopping around for a Princess cruise, I noticed one cruise was hundred of dollars/pp less than Princess. I called the box box agent. She told me it was pre-launch group booking available only through that big box TA. Sadly, I couldn't take advantage of that.The deals are out there, but I unless I happen upon one of those, I'll stick with a direct booking.
  12. The SV balconies aren't covered. The balconies above can see down into your balcony. We booked an SV on Silhouette once. My husband loved it. The view is amazing. There's not a lot of unnecessary traffic at the end of the ship. You'll be putting in lots of extra steps to get to the pool, buffet, theater. Those are the pluses. We use the Solarium a lot. It's a long walk back to your cabin if you forget something. The same wake view is available at the Sunset bar and the deck beneath, Aft of the buffet. Our last cruise was in a cabin on the hump slant. Nice, roomy balcony. We chose a cabin near the forward elevators for easy access to the Solarium. We both agree that was our best cabin so far.
  13. https://www.newportmansions.org/plan-a-visit/custom-tours I love Newport. Check out this website for various tours. Tickets can be purchased online to save time. If you'd like to enrich your experience by reading, I recommend 'The Husband Hunters,' by Anne de Courcy. It's a fast, easy read.
  14. I know exactly what you mean. One evening, I didn't eat the Steak Diane because it was flavorless and overdone. The waiter offered to bring something else, but I wasn't very hungry, and ate 2 desserts, instead 🙂 The next evening the supervisor of our section of the dining room stopped by to apologize for the steak. She asked if we would be willing to talk to one of the chefs after dinner. I told him that the quality of the steaks was not very good, they were so thin that it would be difficult to cook them medium rare. I also mentioned that I would love an American style chef salad one night for dinner - a break from the red meat and some much needed veggies. The next evening a huge, beautiful chef's salad arrived at the table. And the supervisor returned after dinner to make sure I loved my salad. The waiter, after that, encouraged me to order 2 entrees every night. On beef Wellington night, he also delivered an orange duckling, moist and tender with crispy skin. He said it was his responsibility to make sure I enjoyed my meal. As much as I enjoyed that salad, I felt guilty for returning the steak.
  15. Our meet and greet was well attended by officers, including the Master, cruise director, hotel director, chefs etc.... I believe it was the hotel director that told us that he monitors Cruise Critic. He asked that we speak to him during the cruise, if we weren't satisfied, so that he could make it right, rather than post negative comments on CC after the cruise. Maybe it was just PR, but he seemed sincere. This isn't the first time that Celebrity reversed decisions that seemed to be based on comments made here. Remember when they started charging for burgers at the Mast Grill? We may be a small fraction of passengers who cruise Celebrity, but I do think our opinions count.
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