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Explora Residences


Raintree
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6 hours ago, Raintree said:

Has anyone stayed in one of ocean residences onboard Explora?  A dedicated butler is supposed to be part of the residence experience.  Was there a butler?

Thank you.


We’re booked in one 20 October and will report back. We have no use for a butler though, it’s one of the reasons we prefer Seabourn over Silversea. 

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I will be interested to know if the butler leaves you alone if that’s what you want or keeps trying to justify their existence.
Lately I’ve found several of the Azamara “butlers” so annoying but I’m very much if I want I ask and if I don’t ask I don’t want person 

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45 minutes ago, uktog said:

I will be interested to know if the butler leaves you alone if that’s what you want or keeps trying to justify their existence.
Lately I’ve found several of the Azamara “butlers” so annoying but I’m very much if I want I ask and if I don’t ask I don’t want person 


So true. Some just don’t know how to make themselves invisible.
 

We only use the butler for an occasional speciality coffee delivered to the suite (although I prefer to walk to the Mosaic Cafe / Seabourn Square myself) and restaurant reservations (not required on Seabourn) - that’s it. I don’t want a stranger to unpack my undies 🤣 and don’t need to be escorted to the theater. Room service is perfectly capable of delivering breakfast; I don’t need it handed off to a butler first. 
 

So yes - we’ll see how we go in 10 days time! 
 

 

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19 minutes ago, florisdekort said:


So true. Some just don’t know how to make themselves invisible.
 

We only use the butler for an occasional speciality coffee delivered to the suite (although I prefer to walk to the Mosaic Cafe / Seabourn Square myself) and restaurant reservations (not required on Seabourn) - that’s it. I don’t want a stranger to unpack my undies 🤣 and don’t need to be escorted to the theater. Room service is perfectly capable of delivering breakfast; I don’t need it handed off to a butler first. 
 

So yes - we’ll see how we go in 10 days time! 
 

 

Dont start me on our "one and done for now" experience on MSC Yacht Club.  We quite liked going to "the dark side" to do the shows.  Unfortunately first night we were led to believe that without the butler escort we could not go (it was just post pandemic so we believed this line"  To our absolute embarrassment the escort involved the butler going ahead of us in the busy areas shouting "Make way please VIPs coming through"   For the rest of the cruise we would try and sneak to any show we went to without him though again he reminded us one day he had to take us...........

 

Good luck, like you I can go with someone getting me a coffee if I decide but thats about it.  Rearranging how I lay things out in the room (a la Azamara butlers) really winds me up!!

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3 hours ago, uktog said:

Dont start me on our "one and done for now" experience on MSC Yacht Club.  We quite liked going to "the dark side" to do the shows.  Unfortunately first night we were led to believe that without the butler escort we could not go (it was just post pandemic so we believed this line"  To our absolute embarrassment the escort involved the butler going ahead of us in the busy areas shouting "Make way please VIPs coming through"   For the rest of the cruise we would try and sneak to any show we went to without him though again he reminded us one day he had to take us...........

 

Good luck, like you I can go with someone getting me a coffee if I decide but thats about it.  Rearranging how I lay things out in the room (a la Azamara butlers) really winds me up!!

We have been quite successful when in the MSC YC to tell the butler that we will let them know if we need anything. Although they always ask, we rarely use the escort to dinner or the show and they seem to figure that out after the first day or so and stop asking!

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34 minutes ago, happy cruzin said:

We have been quite successful when in the MSC YC to tell the butler that we will let them know if we need anything. Although they always ask, we rarely use the escort to dinner or the show and they seem to figure that out after the first day or so and stop asking!

Thanks. That’s our usual approach with butlers this one just didn’t/couldn’t get the message 😀

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1 hour ago, happy cruzin said:

We have been quite successful when in the MSC YC to tell the butler that we will let them know if we need anything. Although they always ask, we rarely use the escort to dinner or the show and they seem to figure that out after the first day or so and stop asking!

I do like the Butler for getting on and off ship. Especially in busy ports and disembarking on last day

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Nothing better than having a butler.   You are missing the point of their use. It is not for packing and unpacking your undies.

 

As for SS IMHO  they are generally a second room attendants -- great butlers on Regent and on Old Crystal.

 

Some uses --

 

  • Canapes during the PM
  • Setting up your in room bar and keeping it stocked with mixers and ice (yes we know your room attendant will do same in a regular suite)
  • Course by course dinning from the "enhanced" room service menu.  Have yet to the residence room service menu.
  • Handling the extra priority reservations to the Marble & Co, or Sakura venues
  • Getting things fixed when room issues are bad.  Do not think you will need this but we made use of the butler for issues when we last sailed on Oceania.  Lots of issues and butler organized maintenance.
  • Forgot something at home -- the butler will find it.  DW forgot her walking cane.  Butler found one on board and we had it until we could get one ashore.
  • Need to have a party or special event -- the butler will organize it.

 

 

Looking forward to our experience in January in a COVE residence.  Certainly interested in what you all experience before our sailing

 

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5 hours ago, PaulMCO said:

Nothing better than having a butler.   You are missing the point of their use. It is not for packing and unpacking your undies.

 

As for SS IMHO  they are generally a second room attendants -- great butlers on Regent and on Old Crystal.

 

Some uses --

 

  • Canapes during the PM
  • Setting up your in room bar and keeping it stocked with mixers and ice (yes we know your room attendant will do same in a regular suite)
  • Course by course dinning from the "enhanced" room service menu.  Have yet to the residence room service menu.
  • Handling the extra priority reservations to the Marble & Co, or Sakura venues
  • Getting things fixed when room issues are bad.  Do not think you will need this but we made use of the butler for issues when we last sailed on Oceania.  Lots of issues and butler organized maintenance.
  • Forgot something at home -- the butler will find it.  DW forgot her walking cane.  Butler found one on board and we had it until we could get one ashore.
  • Need to have a party or special event -- the butler will organize it.

 

 

Looking forward to our experience in January in a COVE residence.  Certainly interested in what you all experience before our sailing

 


Thanks, but we don’t dine in our suite and definitely don’t have parties. My bar is always set up and canapés arrive with our without a butler. Reservations - yes - as I said above. That remains the only thing… 

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6 hours ago, PaulMCO said:

Nothing better than having a butler.   You are missing the point of their use. It is not for packing and unpacking your undies.

 

As for SS IMHO  they are generally a second room attendants -- great butlers on Regent and on Old Crystal.

 

Some uses --

 

  • Canapes during the PM
  • Setting up your in room bar and keeping it stocked with mixers and ice (yes we know your room attendant will do same in a regular suite)
  • Course by course dinning from the "enhanced" room service menu.  Have yet to the residence room service menu.
  • Handling the extra priority reservations to the Marble & Co, or Sakura venues
  • Getting things fixed when room issues are bad.  Do not think you will need this but we made use of the butler for issues when we last sailed on Oceania.  Lots of issues and butler organized maintenance.
  • Forgot something at home -- the butler will find it.  DW forgot her walking cane.  Butler found one on board and we had it until we could get one ashore.
  • Need to have a party or special event -- the butler will organize it.

 

 

Looking forward to our experience in January in a COVE residence.  Certainly interested in what you all experience before our sailing

 

Agree, on SS the butlers are basically room attendants who do not do the cleaning.  Some are a little more attentive to your needs than others but I think it’s oversold as a perk.  

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7 minutes ago, Covepointcruiser said:

The MSC Butler and the make way for VIPs would embarrass me.   I would not sail under those conditions.   I understand the one and done.   

Our YC Butler led us to the shows without such an embarrassing announcement.  Given the long line of people waiting to get in to the regular seats, it makes sense to cut the line because you are going to the reserved YC seating section.

 

It was also helpful to cut the line for tenders, and to have express elevator service.  We paid for it, and anyone not getting that treatment could have paid if they wanted it.

 

But I was hoping that Explora would have equivalent service for everyone on board.  I am not looking to feel superior, I just want a luxury level of service.  Time will tell whether Explora can achieve this – so far Crystal is the only cruise line I know of that has managed across-the-board luxury service on 1,000 passenger ships [and even they have decided to redo their ships to dramatically reduce the number of passengers].

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13 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

But I was hoping that Explora would have equivalent service for everyone on board.  I am not looking to feel superior, I just want a luxury level of service.  Time will tell whether Explora can achieve this – so far Crystal is the only cruise line I know of that has managed across-the-board luxury service on 1,000 passenger ships [and even they have decided to redo their ships to dramatically reduce the number of passengers].


100% agree. We’ll judge for ourselves on our 20 October cruise, but from everything I’m reading on here, I bucket Explora with Azamara, Oceania and Viking, not with Crystal, Regent, Silversea and Seabourn. It’s virtually impossible to offer a truly luxury experience to 900 guests. Crystal is bringing its passender count down, and Seabourn is - in my opinion - noticeably delivering a better experience on their new 250 passenger ships than their 650 passenger ships. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 10/10/2023 at 3:44 AM, florisdekort said:


We’re booked in one 20 October and will report back. We have no use for a butler though, it’s one of the reasons we prefer Seabourn over Silversea. 

If you have the time, I would still be interested in your review of the Residence you are in. We are booked in the Cocoon Residence in March and have heard that the bathroom layout is less than ideal.

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On 10/12/2023 at 9:22 AM, florisdekort said:

We’ll judge for ourselves on our 20 October cruise, but from everything I’m reading on here, I bucket Explora with Azamara, Oceania and Viking, not with Crystal, Regent, Silversea and Seabourn. It’s virtually impossible to offer a truly luxury experience to 900 guests. 


Interested to hear how you feel about where Explora sits against these competitors now you’ve sailed on Explora 1 

 

I’d certainly position Explora right up there with Crystal, Regent and Silversea and well ahead of Viking 

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On 10/11/2023 at 6:22 PM, florisdekort said:


100% agree. We’ll judge for ourselves on our 20 October cruise, but from everything I’m reading on here, I bucket Explora with Azamara, Oceania and Viking, not with Crystal, Regent, Silversea and Seabourn. It’s virtually impossible to offer a truly luxury experience to 900 guests. Crystal is bringing its passender count down, and Seabourn is - in my opinion - noticeably delivering a better experience on their new 250 passenger ships than their 650 passenger ships. 

Seabourn's "little sisters" were true luxury at about 200 passengers.

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17 minutes ago, CruisingAlong4Now said:

Seabourn's "little sisters" were true luxury at about 200 passengers.

Unless you include a true veranda in your definition of luxury.  I do.  But I'm giving one of those little sisters a try on Windstar anyway.  We'll see how a French balcony works in the Caribbean...

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  • 1 month later...
On 10/27/2023 at 1:24 PM, Host Jazzbeau said:

Unless you include a true veranda in your definition of luxury.  I do.  But I'm giving one of those little sisters a try on Windstar anyway.  We'll see how a French balcony works in the Caribbean...

I had a cabin with a French balcony on Seabourn Legend, unless you can get a good price, don't bother. It's standing room only, about 2 feet wide.

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9 hours ago, breadandbutter said:

I had a cabin with a French balcony on Seabourn Legend, unless you can get a good price, don't bother. It's standing room only, about 2 feet wide.

I always had one of those suites when on Seabourn Legend.

It is good for fresh air ventilation when you open the sliding door.

You also get a view along the ship when sticking your head out.

No they are not large loinge on balconies but then these small ships have other attractive and unique qualities.

 

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