We chose this cruise because of the great price. Our cabin was D1842 on the lowest passenger deck and we were very happy with it. This is not a cruise for younger folks. There were two children on board and I had to wonder if they were bored to death. The room stewards were excellent, as were the bar waiters and all the staff in the Lido buffet. Unfortunately we had poor service in the MDR despite going there when they said they were less busy. One night after waiting 20 minutes for the waiter to take our order we gave up and left, never to return. The food in the Lido was excellent and varied. We loved having eggs benedict cooked to order for breakfast. We loved the Crow's Nest lounge up top, despite the noisy daily trivia. The art work was great. As it happens I love oriental art so I really appreciated the lifesize terracota warriors and horse and ancient Chinese artifacts. We enjoyed the Ocean Bar. There were always places to sit around the ship but the daytime music in all the lounges except the library annoyed us. The Explorations Cafe offered custom coffees and also served as the library, board game room, and internet cafe. This was the largest library I've seen at sea in years. It was a popular room but there was always a chair available. We appreciated the wraparound promenade deck for our daily walks. The art gallery and auction were, blessedly, low key. There were several recent, good movies in the Wajang Theater but it was hard to understand why there was just this smallish drop down screen instead of a real movie screen. If you sat at the sides of the theater it was hard to see the screen. It was nice to have a real movie theater onboard, though. The Billboard lounge features two grand pianos and two musicians playing and singing. A different decade of songs was featured each night. We thought the male singer was good but the female was not professional quality in our opinion and we also couldn't see the appeal of the place but it was very popular. Aside from the great price what we really like about this ship was the relaxed, uncrowded atmosphere. The passenger to space ratio is average so we're not sure how this happens but we never experienced lines or crowding, even at the elevators which always arrived promptly. The entertainment was good for the most part though we miss the production shows they no longer have. There was a German instrumentalist who played the marimba, sax, trumpet, drums, and pan pipes. He did a dueling drums thing with the ship's drummer that was fantastic. He did "Stairway to Heaven" on the pan pipes that was hauntingly beautiful. He was so good we went back to the second show to see him again. There were always seats available in the show room - no need to show up a half hour ahead for a seat like was the case on Princess. There were two cornhole tournaments we enjoyed and lots of trivia games. They had many performances of classical music in the Lincoln Stage that were very good, provided by a young, enthusiastic quintet. The port lectures and talks on Mexican history and culture were excellent. The passenger service desk and shore excursion desk staff were both efficient and courteous. Embarkation and disembarkation were efficient and painless. The hot dogs and hamburgers were made to order so they gave you a little buzzer for when your order was ready but when we used this a crew member passing by grabbed the buzzer, got, and delivered the order to where we were! Impressive and the hot dog was the best I've had on a ship. The main pool has a cover so it can function in any weather and this was a popular area. It also had two ping pong tables made of real, beautiful woods and unlike on many ships they were in a protected area so you could play without the wind ruining your shots. The pool behind the Lido buffet was also popular and there were nice tables and chairs out there that were a bit protected from wind and sun. One of our favorite things was the towel animals the room stewards left on our bed each night. And on one of the last days the crew decorated the entire pool area with towel animals. It was a great display much appreciated by many of us. This is a ship for us older folks who don't need non-stop entertainment and activities and like to spend time watching the ocean or reading or enjoying walks on deck. This is an older ship without the modern bells and whistles but it was perfect for us.
You could tell this was an older ship from the rust around the window. The bathroom was spacious and had a tub, which we don't use but some like. The shower was excellent despite having to climb into the tub. The robes and couch were much appreciated as well as the desk chair. The beds were comfy. The only negative thing was only one electrical plug but we were prepared for that with a plug extender and an extension cord for my CPAP machine.
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