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Everything posted by PatsFanBrian

  1. Can't speak to Odyssey, our first time on will be in January, 2024 and we're on it specifically for this itinerary. Everyone's mileage will vary regarding their opinion of ports, but Curacao is one of our favorites. We've only been once, we were supposed to be there this past June until a tropical storm forced an itinerary change. You can do a general search for Curacao on this forum and you'll get lots of info and advice. For me, it's all about the town itself and the walk from the ship to the town. Most Curacao stops go well into the evening because the town is magnificent after dark. The people are great, excellent shopping, there are excursions to choose from (we did the distillery and a beach break), but save time to just walk the town. Don't be afraid to explore side streets and alley ways, you may find some hidden surprises.
  2. This will be our first time back on a Quantam class ship since the initial sailing of Quantum (2014). This is a Southern Caribbean & Perfect Day itinerary. It will make up for our recent June sailing which had to divert from Aruba and Curacao due to a tropical storm. We want to get back to those stops, plus we really enjoy Coco Cay. Only 457 long days to go.
  3. Pretty impressive. I'm not sure I'm the intended target (nearing retirement, kids long gone), but it may be worth a try at some point in the future.
  4. Congrats! We also turned Diamond after our most recent cruise. We’re looking forward to the next one when we can take advantage of the perks.
  5. I agree that $265 for the club is way too much. When we were there on 7/2, we paid under $200/pp and that was probably a bit high because we were there due to an itinerary change while we were sailing, so full retail price was the only option. I figured that the club restaurant would have cost about 80-100/pp in my home area. The remainder was for the access to a great beach and a nice pool, fewer people in the facility and great service.
  6. We were on Explorer from 6/25-7/3. Thought the ship was in great shape. Not being amped was of no concern since we would unlikely use any of the enhancements. Overall, the ship was at near full staffing, the biggest issue being the inexperience of many of them. By this time, that should have worked itself out. Staff was very attentive and friendly. The entertainment was OK, not great. Some of it was the design of the shows, but some of the talent was not up to the usual RC level. The ice show was great. The Schooner entertainer was fun and engaging. You should have no concerns if you are on Explorer.
  7. When we went back in '17, we were there for 16 hours. So we did a distillery/beach excursion in the morning, then spent the afternoon walking the town. The afternoon was the highlight of the day. The walk from the pier to the town is fantastic, going through the old fort and walking across the pontoon bridge. We found some nice hidden places by walking down various alley ways and just exploring. We found one open courtyard with a couple of food places and a bar when we decided to wander down an alley. In the evening, we went up to the Crown Lounge and looked over the pastel painted buildings all lit up. It was really picturesque. We were suppose to go back on Explorer in late June, but a tropical storm got in the way and we went elsewhere. It was disappointing because we really wanted to go back. So we booked our next cruise (17 long months out) to go back there. Overall, one of our favorite stops that we've experienced.
  8. We had an unplanned stop at Coco Cay while on Explorer at the end of June. We were supposed to be in Aruba/Curacao, but TS Bonnie forced a change. Because we weren't planning on being there, we weren't too prepared for it. We decided that we would carry over our credits for cancelled excursion and do the Beach Club. We were blown away by it. The facility was top notch, the beach was the best of all our stops and the pool was perfect. Throw in the incredible service and the gourmet restaurant and it ended up being our best stop of the week. The stop ended up being on our last day, so that wasn't ideal, but that was more our scheduling preference than anything to do with the facility. Our next sail won't be for more than a year from now, but we found an itinerary that will take us to Coco Cay on day 1 and then to Aruba/Curacao to make up for our missed days there. Not sure if we'll do the Beach Club again or explore the area and save some cash.
  9. Back in June, I filled out the special needs form, but the room attendant didn’t have the info. In short time, he delivered the extension cord and distilled water. Previous cruise, everything was waiting for me. It’s hit or miss with the form, but in the end, just mention the CPAP to the attendant and you’ll be all set.
  10. As has been mentioned, if you are an OJ person, order fresh squeezed in the MDR. You can also order a Cappuccino or Latte if you choose. May as well get maximum value for your money.
  11. Yes, frosted is usually the way to go. But I'd say an American Legion has the luxury of frosting mugs as compared to a busy restaurant, pub or tap room. Those type of establishments can sometimes barely keep up with washing dinnerware, never mind the time and space required to put them in a freezer.
  12. Interesting, I don't think I've ever had a draft beer poured into a frosted mug at any establishment including every tap room I've ever gone to. I can't imagine how a place could keep up with cleaning mugs and then have enough time to get a mug frosted. Better if it is frosted, just a matter of logistics.
  13. I find most of the restaurants in this area (Eastern MA) offer local craft beers. There are still a couple of holdouts, but there are enough local breweries to more than fulfill the needs of the local eateries.
  14. This has always one of my pet peeves. If I want a chance at a decent beer, I need to go to the pub, and that can be spotty from sailing to sailing. Even when the pub has something good, I don't want to spend all my time there.
  15. Perhaps that's why it was cancelled. The Cape on any summer week is bad enough, but that's Labor Day weekend. The excursion is unlikely to get very far onto the Cape before it has to turn around and head back to the port. They might make it to Hyannis, can't see it getting much further.
  16. You're describing some of the more common complaints these days, although lack of pool chairs is an age old pain point. I believe the unusual lines are due to the ships still working to get back to full staff strength combined with a high percentage of staff that are inexperienced. When we were on Explorer back in late June, at Capt's Corner, the hotel manager noted that while the ship was approaching full staffing level, the biggest issue was the inexperience of the crew. Everyone's learning to sail again. The pool chairs, unless you're at the pool by 9AM, will always be a challenge. That has nothing to do with staffing levels. Hopefully this is just a one off for you and the next cruise will be a better experience.
  17. We did Explorer last month. We did Chops twice and Giovanni's once. We could have done 3 nights in one if we had chosen.
  18. The last things I use before leaving which is typically what I need in the shower and also my CPAP.
  19. Since this is just a poll of our personal preferences/usage, I never use the Gym/Spa (exercise on vacation?) and my kids are adults, so Adventure Ocean doesn't do anything for me.
  20. I print on regular paper and have the luggage tag holders referenced above. I used to bring a stapler and heavy tape to attach the tags, but the tag holders make that moot.
  21. I've bragged about getting to Diamond because for us, it's an accomplishment and has been a goal. Unlike many here, a lot of folks don't have the time or funds to cruise as often as we'd like. Additionally, many don't have the funds to accelerate the process by living the Suite life. Reaching Diamond requires the equivalent of 12 standard 7 night cruises. It's taken my wife and I 17 years to finally get there. So I'm going to celebrate it. Who knows how long it will take to get D+. Now that we're closing in on retirement, perhaps it won't take another 17 years to get there and we'll occasionally treat ourselves to a suite. Keep sailing and keep celebrating.
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