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Host Jazzbeau

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    Cruise Critic Host & 20,000+ Club
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    New York
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    Jazz, food, wine
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    the next one
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Farther
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Host Jazzbeau's Achievements

  1. They should throw the patties overboard – but that would probably be illegal as cruel to the fish!
  2. The investments were decided on years ago. The cutbacks started recently and have accelerated. And does anybody think the two new Royal installs were given orders to undo them?
  3. Edie was only looking out for herself and making it all about her. Barbara was helping customers (including responding to my email question about the dress code that would be on Silver Ray). Coming from Azamara, that's what I look for in officers and executives – and what I don't expect from the new Royal installs. But I may solve my problem by doing exactly what Barbara just did...
  4. Don't panic until Monday. Friday night is IT's time to do backups, upgrades, etc. Give them the weekend to get the website back to normal.
  5. Two weeks is not very long for a refund to process through corporate checks and balances. They don't just give money away without establishing the paper trail required by their auditors.
  6. New article on Porthole: PAUL GAUGUIN CRUISES ANNOUNCES VOYAGES FOR 2026
  7. New article on Travel Weekly: Abercrombie & Kent orders Amazon ship This follows on AmaWaterways' new venture in Colombia with 2 ships on the Magdalena River: https://www.amawaterways.com/colombia So if you've run out of rivers in Europe, here are two more to add to your bucket list!
  8. The answer is 'both.' Sometimes there is a promotion by the cruise line that includes subsidizing the OBC. But most often the high-volume TAs use part of their commission to pay for the OBC – in those cases you can ask them to give you a rebate check instead (same cost to them, easier to spend for you). And of course the usual caveat that under Cruise Critic rules we can neither name nor hint at Travel Agents or Agencies...
  9. IMO the market for the category has gotten oversaturated. MSC is building 6 ships for Explora (despite major teething problems figuring out how to market the new brand), Four Seasons is building 4 (admittedly at a new hyper-luxury level), Ritz Carlton is building 5, Scenic another 5 (including its Emerald brand). I wonder if they knew this when they announced 7 Atlas yachts? They say they are still committed to completing the series, so that would give Atlas 5. [For background, and I may be a little hazy here]: the company that owns Atlas had a monopoly on building and operating river ships on the Douro; the announcement of Atlas and these new-builds came [I believe] in reaction to losing that and needing to keep their shipyard busy. That may have led to less-than due diligence on planning this new cruise line. But luckily the basic design of the ships is very good, and they have now found a good partner. Hopefully these new ships will work out for Windstar and they will order more – their ex-Seabourn 'little sisters' are not really competitive as they lack verandas. They would need 4 of these to replace the capacity of the older 3 and even more to expand.]
  10. I think the new-build purchase is a terrific idea, as the changes can be made early in the construction process. But I question the refit – why not take the next new-build instead of sending this back to the shipyard for 'some work'? Will it come out looking like Cher???
  11. Be careful Davy – I can protect you from some things on Cruise Critic, but not from a fatwa. 😱
  12. The alterations include this: "the bow will be changed a bit to look more yachtlike, and a ducktail added to support the watersports platform" – which I think would reduce the seaworthiness for extreme polar itineraries. Also "Prelog indicated they won't be operating as expedition ships or going to the poles. But the capability could come in handy for destinations like Alaska and Greenland." Why buy them? Probably because they were cheap and the ice-strengthened hull is just an added benefit in the "why not" category? The article from which I took those quotes also indicates that the new owner's suites will be where the helipad was [which I'm guessing is the big circle at the front of Deck 8]. The extra passenger capacity may be reflected in adding 3rd berths to some suites, rather than adding new suites – which would also mean that the ship is less likely to sail at 100% [relevant to the overcrowding question] Here's the full article: https://www.seatrade-cruise.com/shipbuilding-equipment/windstar-cruises-acquiring-two-mystic-invest-ships-one-newbuild
  13. Right! Nile cruise – ship stocked with local water – everybody loses weight!!!
  14. One difference (which may or may not make a real difference) is that these new ships were designed for polar voyages (meaning the interior spaces are heavily used) and Windstar says they aren't going there – in warmer climates many people will be outside.
  15. Me too. I'm scheduled on the brand-new Silversea Silver Ray for Jan. 2026, but with all the comments here about Silversea cutbacks I would seriously consider cancelling in favor of a brand-new Windstar yacht. Happier to stick with a cruise line that's moving in the right direction!
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