Embarkation and cabin: We embarked in Hong Kong for a 7 night cruise via Vietnam to Singapore (after to land tour in China). We were travelling with friends who were experiencing their first cruise (we've done over 20 and this was our 3rd with RC). Embarkation was very quick and easy, as Voyager was the only ship in port that day. Our 'spacious balcony cabin' was ready for us (12:45 ish I guess) and was a lovely surprise: very roomy with a 3-seater settee, space around the bed and the usual type of bathroom area and enough storage space for 7-14 nights. Balcony quite small but fine - it was very hot and humid so we only really used it early in the morning or late at night. Our cabin steward was great and kept everything immaculate - we loved the towel animals he provided too! We expected it all to be a bit worse for wear as it was gong into dry dock immediately after our cruise, but I can honestly say that it was fine - a little tired certainly but nothing too major. There was no shampoo/conditioner or body lotion provided - just the shower gel in the container in the shower area. That's a first in over 20 cruises, but we'd bought our own, so not an issue, but an unexpected omission.
Dining: we chose Mytime dining and were accommodated without having to wait (there were 4 of us together), sometimes sharing with 4-6 others and sometimes as a 4. We never booked a time as that was the point of Mytime, I thought, and those who had booked had to wait in a much longer queue to get in - weird. The food was mostly good with generous main course portions, but more repetitious that we are used to and not as much choice. There seemed to be either several fish dishes or none offered (except the salmon, on every night and was very dry my friend said).They now charge a large supplement for lobster and surf and turf etc. The 3 top desserts each evening were 'new' with all the rest repeated every night and the only ice-cream on offer was the standard vanilla, strawberry or chocolate. Where was the salted caramel or stem ginger etc etc? Disappointing. The Windjammer food was fine although manic and difficult to find a seat at times, especially for breakfast when in port. It closed at 9pm each night, so nowhere for late night snacks/hot chocolate if that is your thing.
Drinks: the cost was exorbitant for us , with the poor $ / £ exchange rate currently and then 18% gratuity on top of that even though we had to wait at a bar ourselves on the open deck just to get served. There were a lot of people on the drinks package so they were keen to get served to get their money's worth. This is the first time ever that we have seen a number of people worse for wear from drinking. Inevitable with the cost or availability of drinks packages we suggest, though many of you will not agree. Needless to say we enjoyed the bottles of wine we were allowed to bring on board in our cabins (1 per person) and didn't bother buying much else. Doesn't make or break our holiday fortunately and at least we weren't pestered every two minutes to buy a drink.
Excellent use of space, which was generous anyway. Well maintained and serviced, thank you
Full day tour in the bay with lunch and time to swim
Tender port: got off and negotiated a 2 hour boat trip around the islands then took a taxi to a lovely beach area further along the coast
As on the can: given a map and a brief intro and left for 6 hours to explore on our own