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Belgian fry

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Everything posted by Belgian fry

  1. Thank you all for your kind comments. We look forward to being able to cruise again when all this is over, whenever that may be. Stay safe everyone!
  2. Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. We were on HAL
  3. Sunday 15 March – disembarkation Disembarkation was delayed for a while (I guess for health checks), but as soon as our group was called, we headed off the ship, picked up our bags and passed through the checks with no difficulties. We had booked a transfer to Miami airport via HAL. This was very easy and good value for money. From the airport, we immediately took a shuttle to a hotel where we had booked a day room. Our flight was at 11pm and we had the room until 8pm, which was perfect. We spent the day catching up on the news, relaxing by the pool and reorganin ou
  4. Saturday 14 March – Halfmoon Cay I think we were on the second tender to Halfmoon Cay, where we had booked a clamshell. We decided to head down the beach to where it would be quieter. Once we had found a spot we liked, I went to the Water Sports Center and asked for someone to set up a clamshell. This took quite a while to sort out and I think I ended up asking 3 times. The process here could certainly do with some improvement. We had the island beverage package and had chosen a spot between cabanas 6 and 7. It wasn’t too far from the Captain Morgan bar, so we heade
  5. When we were there in March, people who had booked Mantas were being given clamshells. I wish I'd known before paying for a clamshell...
  6. Beware if you're thinking of buying this. We had it for a recent cruise. The bars take a while to be set up (everything has to be carried over from the ship), the choices are limited and by 1pm (for 2:30pm last tender), the only bar that was still open could only provide some random made-up drink because there was nothing left. We wouldn't purchase it again (and I'm kicking myself that I didn't remember to mention it in my survey)
  7. Wow. Thank you all for hour kind comments. Writing this has been fun and brought back lots of happy memories. I guess I’d better start working on the end.
  8. If you follow the HAL page on Facebook, they are currently publishing a picture of a mat every day!
  9. Friday 13 March – at sea Another quiet sea day, spent enjoying the ship and the sun. The only surprise here was that Pierre’s beverage package for HMC arrived, along with the card containing his birthday message (8 days after his birthday). I also attended “Ask the Captain”, which was both interesting and entertaining. Captain Timmers really is a very funny man. That evening, we ate in Canaletto. Like I said before, we are not speciality restaurant people, but earlier in the week we had been chatting to Herlina at breakfast, and she had convince
  10. Thursday 12 March – Saint Thomas We kept things simple in St Thomas, taking a taxi to Sapphire Beach, where we hired some loungers and spent our time between sunbathing and swimming. We enjoyed drinks and fish tacos from the bar there, along with the company of a very friendly cockerel! We had arranged to be picked up for the return to the ship and there was a van there for us (not the same driver). On our way back to the ship we asked our driver about post-hurricane recovery. She told us most people had been out of work for around a year after the last hurrican
  11. Wednesday 11 March – Saint Kitts/Antigua/sea So, as I mentioned before, when we left Barbados, we had received information that it was unclear whether we would be allowed to dock in St Kitts, and the captain had decided we would head to Antigua instead. Since we had booked a private excursion in St Kitts with Royston (recommended on these boards), I went to guest services who allowed me a phone call so that I could inform him that we needed to cancel. Whilst in St Lucia, I had managed to reach out to cruising friends via Facebook and ask them for recommendation
  12. Tuesday 10 March – Saint Lucia When you get to the terminal in Saint Lucia it’s complete chaos, with people everywhere trying to get you to book their excursions. We had already decided what we wanted to do, which was to go to Pigeon Island nature reserve and just wanted to get a taxi/van. We ended up booking with Heritage Tours and, after some waiting around, boarded a van with people going to several other destinations. Pigeon island was the last stop on the route, but it was probably no more than 20 minutes or so. We, and the others who were there from the ship, arranged for
  13. I think you mean in St Lucia? The answer is yes, and it's in my next post, which is ready to go!
  14. Monday 9 March – Barbados: We were docked at the furthest dock from the terminal, which is either a long walk or a ride on a little train. We chose to walk to the terminal for our excursion. The shops weren’t open, although Pierre managed to pop his head into one to check out the prices on Rum. We headed to the meeting point for our excursion and waited to be called. For Barbados, we had chosen to do a Catamaran excursion with Calabaza Sailing Cruises. I had done this excursion several times before and couldn’t wait to take Pierre. Gina, the owner, is a lovely p
  15. The morning we arrived in Barbados, we headed to the Lido for breakfast. We were talking about our previous cruise on the Rotterdam where a waitress called Magdalena had taken such good care of us. I walked up to the buffet and who should I bump into but Magdalena herself? I couldn’t believe it. Some of you may already have seen my post on this subject (in a recent Cruise Critic topic), but I’m copying it here for those who haven’t: "We had a lovely waitress called Magdalena in the Lido in June on [Holland America's] Rotterdam. We would deliberately sit in her section every mor
  16. Sunday 8 March – Martinique Martinique is a French island and many people are surprised by the French-ness of it. But it really is part of France and the EU, so that is to be expected. The other thing that took many people by surprise was that, since it was a Sunday, most shops, etc were closed. Martinique is a highly religious island (80% Roman Catholic, most of them practising), so it seemed most people were attending church. We had done our research and knew that this would be the case, so had arranged a tour after doing some research. We chose Karambole, run
  17. Saturday 7 March – St Maarten We arrived late in port due to a medical evacuation overnight, so we were told that we would stay a little later. It was raining, but knowing that rain rarely lasts long on the islands we headed over to the water taxi. Once we got to Front Street, we had a coffee, checked out the Guavaberry shop and visited a jewellery store which some friends had recommended. We bought a ring to be collected later that afternoon. We asked the shop owner for instructions on getting to Marigot, the French capital, and he escorted us to Back Street, g
  18. My first question! As far as I can remember the flight was around 8 hours. We flew with Aer Lingus.
  19. Wow.Thank you all for your great feedback. It's been nice writng the review and remembering the good times we had.
  20. Friday 6 March – at sea: Nothing special to report for this day, just more of what we did on the previous day. In the evening, there was the Captain’s Welcome Toast with the officers at 7pm, Lido Poolside. It was also gala night. We had dressed up so we went and had some photographs taken. I realise that I have mislaid our invitation to the Mariners’ lunch. I think it must have taken place on the first sea day, but I’m not 100% certain on that.
  21. Thursday 5 March - at sea: Pierre’s birthday, so I had booked Tamarind for the evening and arranged a Halfmoon Cay beverage package as little treats (more on both of those later). We ate breakfast in the dining room (our only time of the trip). We enjoyed it but we do tend to find it rather time-consuming. I think they probably don’t assign enough staff in the morning. We headed back to our cabin to find a birthday message and a cake had been delivered, courtesy of the ship. A nice touch. What hadn’t been delivered though, was the beverage packag
  22. Wednesday 4 March - Embarkation day: We took a taxi to the ship and arrived at the port at around 11:30. Our bags were immediately dealt with by the porters. We had to show our boarding pass to enter the terminal building, after which we joined the line for security. They scanned our bags, noticed we were carrying wine and sent us to the desk to sort out corkage. Very easy (the wine waiter placed stickers on our bottles and wrote us out a slip to sign). Next, we filled out the medical questionnaire (special Coronavirus version, with a warning that making a false declaration could
  23. I wasn’t originally planning on doing a review for our cruise, but with all that is happening in the world, I thought it might come as a welcome distraction. I have certainly enjoyed the reviews I have read recently. I don’t have any notes from our trip, so it will all be from memory and the daily planners which I kept. Do feel free to ask any questions and I’ll do my best to answer. First, I’ll introduce us. I’m Alice and my husband is Pierre. I’m British/ Belgian and Pierre is French. We live in Belgium and have been married for two years. Before I knew Pierre, I had cruised
  24. What we were told before we disembarked on 15 March was that she was doing Voyage of the Americas (with crew only) in order to get into place for the rest of her season (Alaska). That was, I believe, before Canada announced port closures until 1 July. I guess they’re still getting into place so that they can resume as soon as possible, probably reducing staff numbers as and when they can.
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