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shireboi

Explorer Dream - 2019 Australia Cruises

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Explorer Dream -  2019 Australia Cruises

 

 

Thought I would start a thread on this ship...... given that there is nothing on this site at the moment.. no reviews.. no comments.

 

I'm giving this a short try out in December - as part of a Tripadeal package (Sydney / Brisbane / Sydney -  fly to Brisbane, 2 nights accom - then  2 night cruise back to Sydney - was about $719 for a balcony and the whole package)

 

https://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/20617-explorer-dream-debuts-with-new-look.html

 

 

This of course was the old Virgo

 

I have no idea what it's going to be onboard... dining options etc...  but .. if anyone else has booked and beats me to our December sail...  drop some feedback on here.

 

 

 

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I've booked her, though in November.

 

I'm sure we'll hear some reviews after she comes through in October.

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On 8/31/2019 at 1:16 PM, shireboi said:

Explorer Dream -  2019 Australia Cruises

Thought I would start a thread on this ship...... given that there is nothing on this site at the moment.. no reviews.. no comments.

 

I'm giving this a short try out in December - as part of a Tripadeal package (Sydney / Brisbane / Sydney -  fly to Brisbane, 2 nights accom - then  2 night cruise back to Sydney - was about $719 for a balcony and the whole package)

 

The price is superb. I am sure you will have a great time.

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I'm  going on her on her first cruise out of Sydney :) 

Im a bit apprehensive but excited to try a new ship.

Only booked as there were no other good deals at the time for that time of year. Then as soon as I paid deposit the Princess Cruise I really wanted to go on was reduced from $1500 to $999 😨

Ah well it will either be a fantastic trip or a disaster time will tell 😀

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I am booked on this ship in Nov but certainly a bit apprehensive about it, having sailed on her from Manila last Dec/Jan when she was still SuperStar Virgo. My problem is that she has been designed for Asian passengers and Aussies are totally different. For example, they had the Captains Welcome Cocktail Party first night and the drinks were solely water or juice. On NYE my wife and I were the only people in the bar, apart from the band. They've done an expensive refit on her, but as best as I can tell most of the money went building The Palace, an area most of us won't see. The dining areas seem remarkably unchanged.

 

The company has already said they expected most of the passengers to be inbound Asians and are surprised how many locals have booked. Because of this I'm convinced they won't be equipped to handle Aussie drinkers. It seems they only have two bars, both on the pool deck, plus a function room they're going to use for shows. Plus a few portable drink stations selling beer and bubbly, again on the pool deck. I don't believe there is a single bar on the lower public area decks, only cafes and ice cream stations. How they are going to cope each evening when 1500 thirsty Aussies descend on staff who are used to serving a few soft drinks, demanding their beers, cocktails and mixed drinks is an issue.

 

I fear the first couple of sailings could be very problematic. I hope I'm wrong and they've done all their homework on cruising from Australian ports.

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Good points.

 

Given even RCL and Celebrity have struggled with elements during transition, I'm sure it won't go completely smoothly though. At least your expectations are somewhat prepared!

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8 hours ago, Emoliash said:

I will be keen to hear what you think of the ship. 

The ship, at least as SuperStar Virgo, was very nice so I expect the decor will be even nicer. I'll be very interested to see what they do in the dining rooms because, as SSV they didn't have a menu to choose from. Every night was a set multi-course menu and if you didn't like the Chicken Feet you just pushed that aside and waited for the next course to arrive. And as they still have the same two dining rooms, one Western and one Oriental, I wonder if they'll still have the set menus. But she'll be here in a couple of weeks and I'm not sailing until end-Nov so I dare say there'll be some very detailed comments about her in these pages very quickly 

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2 hours ago, Gerko said:

The ship, at least as SuperStar Virgo, was very nice so I expect the decor will be even nicer. I'll be very interested to see what they do in the dining rooms because, as SSV they didn't have a menu to choose from. Every night was a set multi-course menu and if you didn't like the Chicken Feet you just pushed that aside and waited for the next course to arrive. And as they still have the same two dining rooms, one Western and one Oriental, I wonder if they'll still have the set menus. But she'll be here in a couple of weeks and I'm not sailing until end-Nov so I dare say there'll be some very detailed comments about her in these pages very quickly 

I'm tempted to do a short cruise but my annual leave is in the negative in the moment so not sure work would be thrilled. I would be interested in going on a cruise aimed at the Asian market. I would particularly interested in the food.

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17 minutes ago, Emoliash said:

I'm tempted to do a short cruise but my annual leave is in the negative in the moment so not sure work would be thrilled. I would be interested in going on a cruise aimed at the Asian market. I would particularly interested in the food.

They are doing three 2nt sailings from Brisbane to Sydney that all depart on Fri and arrive on Sunday so that might fit with your work schedule

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This flash sale just came up on my insta feed. It looks pretty cheap. Unfortunately I have no annual leave left

F65DA0BE-FB1A-4602-B165-D4867FED2BB7.jpeg

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This has arrived.... but no reviews as yet..

 

ive found a Russian video from a Chinese cruise....l it at least shows some aspects of this ship - from last month.

 

theres one dining option, called the Blue Lagoon which is a paid option, but looks like they should / could have had it as part of the included... just another buffet type

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgbC4Wz4570&feature=share

 

 

 

Edited by shireboi

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First cruise here is complete, not sure if anyone on the forum sailed though. I look forward to hearing about it.

 

There's a few different dining options, paid and included.

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Have been following someone on facebook that was just on her.  Looks pretty good and sounds like they are still tweaking it for Aussie cruisers.  Hopefully they will change the liberal smoking rules otherwise i won't be booking anytime soon - they still allow smoking on the balconies, yuk. 

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18 hours ago, shireboi said:

This has arrived.... but no reviews as yet..

 

ive found a Russian video from a Chinese cruise....l it at least shows some aspects of this ship - from last month.

 

theres one dining option, called the Blue Lagoon which is a paid option, but looks like they should / could have had it as part of the included... just another buffet type

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgbC4Wz4570&feature=share

 

 

 

 

Thanks, watched the video now and it's pretty good. Makes me look forward to the cruise. The only thing is that gym isn't great, not a lot of equipment. The fitout/refurb looks good overall though!

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2 hours ago, Mr&MrsCookie said:

Have been following someone on facebook that was just on her.  Looks pretty good and sounds like they are still tweaking it for Aussie cruisers.  Hopefully they will change the liberal smoking rules otherwise i won't be booking anytime soon - they still allow smoking on the balconies, yuk. 

 

Oh, that's disappointing. One of the characteristics of its ownership/customer base it seems.

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43 minutes ago, The_Big_M said:

 

Thanks, watched the video now and it's pretty good. Makes me look forward to the cruise. The only thing is that gym isn't great, not a lot of equipment. The fitout/refurb looks good overall though!

 

The gym is right next to the pool area (though glassed off).  I'm only on for 2 nights..  but given a trip last week to BKK (and putting on a few kgs 😞  after months of fasting) - I'll spend some time in there.. though it looks sparse.  

 

The review - whilst not praising - has mentioned the Blue Lagoon (a paid restaurant) - but whilst its noted a price of $8 - it didn't give much detail.

 

It's 5 Wednesdays away before we get on board.. hopefully a few things will get ironed out in that time. 

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Interesting review. Hasn't enticed me aboard. If there is smoking on the balconies, chances are there is smoke in the cabins as well.

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Local cruisers won't have so many smokers, so not so much an issue.

 

Different issue in Asia, but then many things are different there.

 

 

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