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sweet_successes
January 8th, 2008, 01:35 AM
Hi Everyone

Well here is my review - will add photos shortly.

Background
Travelled on the cruise with hubby and 2 teenagers - boy aged 15 and girl aged 13. We were in an outside Cabin midship on Empress Deck.

Embarkation/Departure
Got to Portside Wharf at about 10 am to find there had been big changes in 10 weeks. There was now the huge arrivals and departures hall open. The hall was ok - still smelt of new paint!! The loudspeakers were not working and it took about 2 hours to get into line. Then a relatively smooth passage onto the ship. After we got on, we found out the the customs computers kept crashing and as such we were 1 1/2 hours late leaving Brisbane.

Cabin
We were in an outside cabin on Empress Deck. The cabin was set up for 4 spoke to our cabin stewards - Voltaire and Russell about changing the bottom 2 beds into a queen. Was told to check with the pursers desk. Went down to pursers deck - got the ok and when we got back to the cabin the beds had been moved and remade up. Was quite surprised at the size - cabins are definitely bigger than the Pacific Star.

Dining/Food
We were 1st seating Bordeux Resteraunt. On reflection we much prefer 2nd seating but this was not possible due to teens club. Also tried out the sushi and oyster bar. Really enjoyed the sushi but wasn't too fussed on the prawns. 12 piece sushi platter is $10, 1/5 kg prawns is $10 and oysters were only available for 1st 4 days so missed out on them. New Zealand natural Icecream was yummy - $4 for 2 scoops and $5 for 3. Went to Lido buffet a few times - but much prefered resteraunt. Also tried steakhouse - well worth the $20 cover charge!!

Entertainment
The entertainment crew were relatively new - most had only been on the Pacific Sun for 2/3 weeks - most were from New Zealand. Cruise Director was Neil Rose. Shows were: Piano Man - absolutely loved it; Tribute - ok - wasn't overly fussed on this. Performers were singer Helen Day - really enjoyed her stories - didn't so much like her singing but she does sing a great shirley bassey. Other performer was comedian Martin Ralph - just loved his tricks with a yoyo and spinning top!!

Next post will be shore tours and ports of call.

sweet_successes
January 8th, 2008, 01:44 AM
Noumea
Due to ship leaving brisbane late and unable to make up time due to weather, all shore tours were cancelled and every passenger over the age of 13 was given $50 on board credit. Arrived in noumea about 6 pm. Walked up to the markets - the town was holding an enchanted evening market being so close to Christmas. Not much there bought a few trinkets and then got back on the ship. Free buses were available to go to Lemon Beach but decided not to.

Isle of Pines
Enjoyed the island - tried to snorkel wasn't too successful with bodgied glasses and snorkel mask - kids loved their first ever snorkelling expereince. Katy got her hair braided for $15 and we bough souvenirs.

Mystery Island
Trust me - it does exist!!! The water was amazingly clear - didn't even need to put head under the water to see the fish!!

Port Villa
We did a shore tour - Ekasup cultural village - this was absolutely amazing - i would strongly recommend this tour - it is most definitely worth the money. After the tour we went and did our duty free alcohol shopping and then went and bought souvenirs at markets near the ship. A long, tiring day but most definitely worth it.

Champagne bay
What an unspoilt beatiful place - the sand was so white and pure - the views from the beach back to the ship were just stunning.

sweet_successes
January 8th, 2008, 01:50 AM
Champagne Waterfall
Champagne waterfall was held Christmas night. Hubby went and said it was ok - although absolutely none of the champagne was shared - it was all tipped out with the excuse given was the amount of under 18's on the cruise.

Christmas Night Show
This was a production called A Starry Starry Night and was really good. IT had heaps of funny moments.

Christmas Day
Christmas Day felt really funny - almost not like Christmas. There were heaps of decorations and people wishing each other Merry Christmas but it just wasn't the same. I do know that the kids loved it and that was the main this but to us (as in hubby and I) it just didn't feel right.

Overall
There were 1854 passengers on the ship from 18 different nationalities. There were 198 teenagers on board and over 275 children under the age of 12 on board.

Hope my review has helped fellow cruisers - overall we did enjoy the cruise but the Pacific Star is most definitely my favourite ship.

Rach

Brushtail
January 8th, 2008, 02:14 AM
Thanks heaps, Rach. I really enjoyed your review.

discovery
January 8th, 2008, 02:17 AM
Hi, who was your waiter?

livingstone
January 8th, 2008, 02:18 AM
great review thanks, I did the cruise on the Sun April 2005. rained every day but we still had a great time.

strawberrypatch81
January 8th, 2008, 03:10 AM
Champagne Waterfall
Champagne waterfall was held Christmas night. Hubby went and said it was ok - although absolutely none of the champagne was shared - it was all tipped out with the excuse given was the amount of under 18's on the cruise.

Christmas Night Show
This was a production called A Starry Starry Night and was really good. IT had heaps of funny moments.

Christmas Day
Christmas Day felt really funny - almost not like Christmas. There were heaps of decorations and people wishing each other Merry Christmas but it just wasn't the same. I do know that the kids loved it and that was the main this but to us (as in hubby and I) it just didn't feel right.

Overall
There were 1854 passengers on the ship from 18 different nationalities. There were 198 teenagers on board and over 275 children under the age of 12 on board.

Hope my review has helped fellow cruisers - overall we did enjoy the cruise but the Pacific Star is most definitely my favourite ship.

Rach

I completely understand what you mean about it not feeling like Christmas cause I did a Christmas cruise on Pacific Sky in 2003. While it was a great cruise, Christmas day wasn't quite the same and the food on Christmas day was not what we thought, though nice, just not as Christmassy enough? Otherwise fun cruise.

I am glad you had a great cruise! :)

sweet_successes
January 8th, 2008, 03:26 AM
Hi, who was your waiter?


Hi Angel

our waiter was bud and our assistant waiter was boddy

Rach

sweet_successes
January 9th, 2008, 08:46 PM
Hi All

Am in the process of uploading all of my photos. Will hopefully have them all finished today.

Link is: http://community.webshots.com/user/rarljay

Cheers Rach

brisbane first cruisers
January 9th, 2008, 10:59 PM
Great photos Rach, Loved the daughter braided hair.

Cheers,

Kirsten

bubby025
January 10th, 2008, 12:17 AM
Do you think that you would be able to fit in two shore tours in Vila? We have booked on two but we wanted to do some shopping and I wanted to get my hair braided too. What's your advice?

Teegiee
January 10th, 2008, 02:32 AM
Hi All

Am in the process of uploading all of my photos. Will hopefully have them all finished today.

Link is: http://community.webshots.com/user/rarljay

Cheers Rach

love your pics. They are so similar to ours. lol. glad you had a good time. Hopefully we will be on the Sun at christmas time :)

Ela 2
January 10th, 2008, 06:12 PM
Do you think that you would be able to fit in two shore tours in Vila? We have booked on two but we wanted to do some shopping and I wanted to get my hair braided too. What's your advice?
I think it is possible to do all you want to do in Vila, provided you are organised. I assume the tours you have booked are in the morning. I would plan to do the shopping immediately after the second tour (they usually offer the option of dropping you in town). There are several ladies on the wharf who do hair braiding. I suggest leaving the hair braiding until last, because you are right there beside the ship and won't miss the sailing, or at least be concerned as you might be if you were shopping in town at the last minute.

MsMinx
January 10th, 2008, 09:04 PM
Thanks for the review and photos Sweet Successes! They were great :D:D

LouLou28
January 13th, 2008, 07:53 PM
Do you think that you would be able to fit in two shore tours in Vila? We have booked on two but we wanted to do some shopping and I wanted to get my hair braided too. What's your advice?

Hi Amy

We did two tours in Vila ... and still had time to shop! One of them was a bus tour through the town, to a little village (with market), then to a chief's meeting hut and back to the ship (couldn't find it in the Shore Tours booklet) - then we did the glass bottom boat/snorkelling ... then went into town ... plenty of time for everything - does depend on the timing of the tours though! I think our second tour left about 11:30am or so and got back about 1:30pm - we went back on board and grabbed some lunch then went into town.