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Everything posted by DaisyGoldberg

  1. Keep in mind when you dine in your room the dishes will need to be returned by *somebody.*
  2. Just booked the hotel we usually stay at in NJ (Hilton Garden Inn). Previously they had a package where you could stay/park/get a ride to the cruise terminal. They still offer to let you park for the duration of the cruise (even though you only stay one night) , but discontinued the car service. Good news is that the room price is so much lower I don't mind paying the car service separately. Any recommendations for a regular car service? Will have our elderly mom with us so I don't want to chance Uber/Lyft availability and would like to know we'll travel "in style." Yes, I could ask their front desk and may still do so, but they probably have a deal with somebody and other leads might be better.
  3. Even though I'm actually sailing on the Getaway January cruise, I too vote for Gem! Of the newer huge ships I've only been on the Breakway. I was in the Haven, and I recall thinking the ship was just poorly designed and if I had been in my usual balcony, I'd be spending a lot more time than usual in my room, because the public areas were just jam packed, and all the traffic moves through some heavily used areas (including the elevator banks), creating what seemed like constant congestion. I found it stressful. Instead of using the showrooms for games, they'd do them in the atrium, so you couldn't really concentrate because people would be standing around in the aisles talking with their companions as they passed through - or worse, they'd just stand there and chat as they watched the show, as if they were invisible. Not really their fault - it's an atrium, not a showroom (which is why they shouldn't hold shows there!) Pretty chaotic. The buffet was amazing, though - far superior to the smaller ships, especially when it came to Indian food - there was a whole large section of it nightly and I preferred it to the Haven restaurant it was so good! You should absolutely be able to find quiet spots to enjoy a restful cruise on the Gem. It's just a totally different vibe, one that a lot of us obviously prefer!
  4. Thank you all for the very helpful and detailed responses - very kind! Mom's pretty mobile and can take a few steps without the walker if necessary, especially from the doorway to the bed which does seem very close! She could even manage the step, but we'd rest easier in the night if she didn't have to. I'll be in the second bedroom, so no issues with a step there. The metal threshold/drain looking things remind me of when I was in a Haven courtyard room once and my toilet overflowed (flushed normally, but then kept filling and filling and filling....). So it was clean water, but overflowing. I threw down my towels, called somebody to notify plumbing, then went in the hall because housekeeping was always there and maybe they could help. No sign of anybody (learned later that this was JUST when they were having some kind of meeting). Grabbed a bunch of towels and ran back in. Eventually a series of escalating staff and officers showed up. The problem was in the wall outside my room and it took a few hours to fix, then they set up fans to dry the carpet, because the water was coming out faster than the bathroom drain could handle. Would have been worse without the 20 towels I put down! Was impressed with the officer oversight. We've had engineering to the room for one thing or another over the years, but this clearly was something that went right up the command chain.
  5. The sun came out and the sky is blue, so you should be getting a great look at the ship (in case it rains later!)
  6. Thanks! No problem with a step in the second bedroom. Just didn't want mom wrestling with a step in the middle of the night. The bedroom in the master certainly looks tight!
  7. If you don't require a balcony and are on a scenic cruise, the SJ suites are terrific. Lots of room, gorgeous floor to ceiling windows - we did Boston to Canada back to back and the views were just STUNNING. There are suites with balconies as well, but not the same views from inside the room, clearly. The Murphy bed is quite comfortable as well if somebody needs it. And the location is great - a short walk to elevators and everything front of ship, and a short walk across the pool area to midship. On a cool weather itinerary I'd take an SJ on the Dawn any time.
  8. Unfortunately, videos of these suites don't show what I'm looking for. Is there a step between the master bedroom and its bathroom? My mom uses a walker and we've stayed in multiple 2 bedrooms on various ships, including in Havens, and there has never been a step into the bathroom from the master. However, the accessibility document triggered by applying for wheelchair assistance to board the ship indicates steps entering BOTH bathrooms. I can tell from one video that there is no step up from the living room, but there are no angles in any films or stills I've seen that show the transition between master bedroom and bathroom. We'll cope, however it turns out, but I'd rather not worry about it if the letter is mistaken and it's one level on the master side of the suite. Thanks!
  9. The washable reuseable pads are great and you can use them in combination with disposable pads. If you have a light leak, the disposable one can be tossed, and the reusable one put away for the next evening if unaffected. We don't put it under the sheet - if you wash them several times they're quite soft, and they don't move. Just get a larger size so you aren't worried about what will happen if you roll over. The purpose would really be just to save the mattress/bed in case of a real flood. Pad inside disposable diaper then lying on disposable pad on top of reusable sturdy pad is great protection, and you can easily dismantle when you get up in the morning so that the room attendant simply makes the bed as usual. Give it a try at home and see how secure it is. We buy the scented bathroom trash bags and just tie them up tight and put them in the trash (urine only). They've always been removed with the trash with no comment.
  10. We took some grab bars similar to those pictured above on our last cruise. They came in very handy for my mom to transfer from her chair into the toilet area. There was a very thin (more decorative than anything, in my opinion) grab bar beside the toilet, but that was a couple of steps in from the door - pretty useless in terms of transferring from a chair or walker. She would set her walker aside at the door and step into the cubicle. So we put one outside the cubicle and one inside, so she could pass hand to hand with something to hold onto. They have a very sturdy grip on smooth surfaces and don't weigh much, so you can transport them easily. You just press them against the wall and snap the lever and they will hold a LOT Of pressure. To release you just flick the lever back up. Leave them up for the cruise and take them down the day you leave (you may have to tug hard!) If you want to take them off and move them to the shower, that's easily accomplished, too! Unfortunately they don't stick to the patterned surfaces in the rest of the cabin.
  11. You can also discuss the individual ports with the concierge -- some may have a level walk off platform, others a steep ramp. Very port- (and sometimes tide-) dependent. They should be able to clue you in as to which ports you might be more comfortable being wheeled off vs walking off.
  12. We logged in five minutes early because I wanted to make sure we were both in frame, and the lady popped up and took us right away. So don't be surprised if you're greeted BEFORE starting time if you're there. I think they just field these things steadily all day long, so if they have a break and somebody's there, they might as well get you out of the way. The link may only work within a narrow window, however.
  13. Copley Square is a great location and walkable to all the sights, shopping, etc. However, the end of October will be very crowded and expensive. A week earlier during the Head of the Charles race there probably wouldn't be any rooms in Boston at all.
  14. If it's a back to back with identical itinerary it will give you so much freedom - plan to see a show or have a certain dinner but just plain don't feel like getting up from your nap and dressed for the evening? Roll over, sleep til 8, hit the buffet, go back to your room and watch a movie, make it an early night and maybe start the next day earlier than you would have. The freedom of solo travel is doubled when everything is scheduled twice for you!
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