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Copper10-8

Oosterdam's 2019-2020 New Year's cruise; a photo log and a recap after the fact

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19 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

 

You can't, unless you have a crew I.D. 😉 Gotta go celebrate/Happy New Year!

Or a tour.  Fantastic!

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For New Year's Eve, the big fiesta started at 11:00 PM around the mid-ship Lido Pool where the B.B. King's All-Star Band had set up shop on a specially build stage. It was a gala night and the majority of pax had made an effort to dress up which was nice!

 

Lots of dancing to live music, champagne flowing, the ship's bell having been brought in from the bow, and a Dutch New Year's tradition, 'oliebollen & appelflappen,' around with the place filling up as the clock of Midnight drew closer. There was an official countdown and at the strike of 12:00 AM the Officer of the Watch on the Bridge had his finger on the button of the ship's whistle and let her have it!

 

Lots of kissing/PDA's, handshaking and New Year's wishes followed. The party/live music went on till about 1:00 AM when things started to quiet down, at least on the outside deck. A very cool way to ring in the new year' highly recommend it 🎩

 

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Wednesday, 01 January 2020, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico; Oosterdam approached PV around 0830 hrs, picked up its local pilot, and proceeded stern first into the Terminal Maritima with our destination being Muelle No. 2 across the street of the very popular (with the crew) Walmart and Sam's Club. Already safely docked were our friends from Cabo and Mazatlan, Princess Cruises' Royal Princess (Muelle No. 1) and Carnival Panorama (Muelle No. 3). It was cloudy but still dry in Puerto Vallarta however, that was about to change!

 

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While having our PG breakfast, Capt. Rens was still busy backing up his big ship towards, and alongside, her berth. We had a closeup/window seat of Royal Princess as he did so

 

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The Mariachis were here to welcome Oostie's passengers while Walmart and Sam's Club were here to welcome her crew. What was not so nice is that there used to be two pedestrian gates, #15 for Muelle 2, and #17 for Muelle 3, trough which you could easily access cabs (inside the port complex) as well as Avenida Medina Ascensio, the main drag that connects the port with Centro and Veijo Vallarta (old town) heading south and the airport heading north. However, some junior Einstein has seen it fit to close both those gates.

 

The end result being, that you now have to hump a quarter of a mile on foot to the main gate at Muelle No. 1, even longer for the passengers of the ship berthed at Muelle No. 3. They do now have some Mazatlan-like trolleys at both berths but, with 9,000+ pax in port, those fill up muy rapido

 

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We had that issue in PV as well.  Long walk for everyone to get out and then back in.  Is it because of the construction or staffing issues at the gates-who knows.   For people with mobility issues we were not impressed at all.  

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On 12/31/2019 at 4:00 PM, canadianbear said:

... You’ll have to blow it up a bit to see.  

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Copper10-8 thanks for asking housekeeping about the removal of the towel animal eyes.  I don't buy their reason!!  Yes, the fancy plastic eyes could be considered a problem, but the paper eyes I have had in all (I think) my previous HAL cruises as shown in canadianbear's picture above are IMHO not an environmental hazard!!  Even my wonderful stewards made hand drawn homemade eyes a couple days....I think they felt bad about the missing eyes too!

 

I know this subject is completely frivolous 😞 but, dang, it seems so silly that HAL would ban the paper eyes while still keeping the daily papers with spa ads, etc.!! 

 

Thanks so much for this wonderful review and the pictures are great.  Happy New Year!!

 

~Nancy

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1 hour ago, Vic The Parrot said:

Happy New Year 🎉!

 

Back at ya Vic, Happy New Year to you and yours!

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So, at around 11:00-11:30 the weather gods in Puerto Vallarta opened up the skies for us and it started pouring for the remainder of our stay (9:00 PM). We had plans to grab a PV cab and have its driver take us to our regular 'hangout,' Restaurante Pipis (Calle Guadalupe Sánchez 804) in Viejo Vallarta for lunch but, with the yomp to the main gate, just to get a taxi and under the current weather conditions, we thought better of it and decided to stay onboard and relax with a movie on our stateroom flat screen (turned out to be "Everybody knows," a Spanish-language psychological thriller with Penelope Cruz), followed by a visit to the Explorations Cafe inside the Crow's Nest for a Chai Latte and a White Mocha

 

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Oosterdam's Crow's Nest, since her last Freeport dry-dock known as Explorations Central (EXC) at the Crow's Nest. Besides the EXC "stuff," it has an awesome and huuuge scale model of the Oosterdam inside a glass display case

 

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Lunch at the Dive-In under the closed roof, They sell milkshakes (vanilla/chocolate/strawberry) now at a cost

 

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2 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

Lunch at the Dive-In under the closed roof, They sell milkshakes (vanilla/chocolate/strawberry) now at a cost

 

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How much are the milkshakes?  I don't suppose they are covered by the beverage card by any chance?

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2 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

So, at around 11:00-11:30 the weather gods in Puerto Vallarta opened up the skies for us and it started pouring for the remainder of our stay (9:00 PM). We had plans to grab a PV cab and have its driver take us to our regular 'hangout,' Restaurante Pipis (Calle Guadalupe Sánchez 804) in Viejo Vallarta for lunch but, with the yomp to the main gate, just to get a taxi and under the current weather conditions, we thought better of it and decided to stay onboard and relax with a movie on our stateroom flat screen (turned out to be "Everybody knows," a Spanish-language psychological thriller with Penelope Cruz), followed by a visit to the Explorations Cafe inside the Crow's Nest for a Chai Latte and a White Mocha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah well, any rainy day on a cruise still beats another day at the office😉

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We are on this cruise as well.... rain doesn’t even begin to describe the weather in Puerto Vallarta... Goodness it was an absolute deluge. 
 

Sunrise over the pacific this morning is amazing though. 
 

 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, comcox said:

 

 

6 hours ago, Alphen said:

Ah well, any rainy day on a cruise still beats another day at the office😉

 

True that! We still had a nice and relaxing day plus can't control what the big guy does upstairs

Edited by Copper10-8

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Good Morning Copper,

What is your opinion of the new Explorations Central? Is the model of the ship made with LEGO's?? Are those small shelves all that is left of a "library"? My sweet husband will love the milkshakes. Do they still sell the morning veggie smoothies in Lido? (I know you don't normally frequent Lido in am with being a sky walker) Thank you! Joy

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6 hours ago, comcox said:

How much are the milkshakes?  I don't suppose they are covered by the beverage card by any chance?

 

$5.18 and yes, they are covered by the Bev card

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1 hour ago, SJSULIBRARIAN said:

In all the times we've visited PV,  I don't recall ever seeing rain. An anomaly?

 

First time for us also during end of Dec/early Jan, but they do have a rainy season which is supposed to run from June through October so, perhaps a bit of an anomaly during this time of the year

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Posted (edited)
46 minutes ago, Seasick Sailor said:

Good Morning Copper,

What is your opinion of the new Explorations Central? Is the model of the ship made with LEGO's?? Are those small shelves all that is left of a "library"? My sweet husband will love the milkshakes. Do they still sell the morning veggie smoothies in Lido? (I know you don't normally frequent Lido in am with being a sky walker) Thank you! Joy

 

Good morning to you also Ma'am!

 

Well, it is a known fact that the Crow's Nest was underused in the daytime hrs so they tried something new with EXC. That, of course, meant removing the CN as an "entertainment venue" during the evening/night time hrs (this does not include the remaining two "S" and four "R-"class ships which did not/will not get EXC)

 

There is no doubt that activity has now increased in the CN during the daytime hrs, especially on sea days when it looks like a coffee shop with folks reading, using their laptops, talking, etc. with a cup of java. I'm not a huge fan of the combination "liquor and coffee bar," which included removing the Explorations Cafe bar from the starboard side of the Crow's Nest (that space now occupied by shore excursions), but it seems to work OK (the display of the "goodies" of the old Explorations Cafe bar has diminished considerably) 😉 

 

The interactive wall display and tables? I think it's a sorta, kinda "new toy" for first time users but, after the "newness" has gone away, there is not much usage on those displays. 

 

The "library" is of course not a shadow of its former self when those original libraries came out when the four Vista-class ships were new. T'is what it is, an  area where you can read up on travel destinations, no more, no less

 

The lecture area with the stacked chairs on the port side was created for EXC guides to give presentations on world wide destinations. The only thing that's been in there on this cruise was a "future cruise presentation" at 4:00 PM in Cabo San Lucas and, pretty sure, the EXC guide position has/is being removed

 

The two "virtual bridge" displays in the front? Bad positioning! If you're going to have them, move 'em to the back

 

The big Oosterdam model? Nope, not made out of lego; it's a very detailed scale model similar to the ones displayed at the annual cruise industry fair in Miami, FL

 

Can't answer your Lido smoothie question 'cause I've never consumed one, but I'm almost positive, someone else can 😉 

 

Two sea days left! 

 

See ya    

Edited by Copper10-8

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I am sorry you day ended in rain.  At least it doesn't snow there!

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