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Everything posted by Tarwood3

  1. Hi there....Crystal’s smallest room is 207 sq ft, and Silversea Muse, their largest ship so closes in size to Symphony, has a 334sq ft vista suite as their smallest room...so if I’m comparing suite size apple for apple....the itinerary I was looking at for $22k is very steep in comparison to a similar on SS. We have a spreadsheet off all the cruises we have done that breaks down cruise cost, excursions , what we spent onboard , total vacation cost of it ..etc...and so we have a per day amount that we have spent so we can compare the value of a particular cruise (even comparing on same line) b
  2. So we were on this cruise as well...took my mom and her good friend with us ...We had done one previous Crystal cruise but it was on the yacht, Esprit which was phenomenal. We have mostly sailed on Silversea, Seabourn , REgent and Celebrity. After our experience on Esprit, we were very excited about this trip. In short, I have to say that we were disappointed in the ship. We loved the itinerary which is why we booked this cruise..itinerary is always number 1 for us when choosing a trip. But compared to Silversea and Seabourn, we felt like it fell short of our expectations. Was service
  3. Who’s on? My partner Ben and I are from Sarasota, FL and we are doing this cruise with our parents and Ben’s sister. We have been to Australia 5 times and NZ once...and can’t wait to go back...one of our favorite places in the world!
  4. We are going on Oceania for the first time in July on Marina for a Baltic cruise. We thought we would try them for the food and it’s mid level price range....we normally cruise Silversea, Seabourn etc...but occasionally throw in a Celebrity for something different. We arent particularly loyal to anyone, we like to sample. Hoping that there are some friendly gays...our last cruise on Crystal, the gays were pretty snobby. I hear the ship is pretty nice..hoping for the best!
  5. Just back from a fabulous cruise on Esprit ....and so we booked the Endeavor in 2022....a fabulous and unique West African itinerary! We have been eyeing a similar itinerary with Silversea for years, but theirs has been too long for our dogs’ liking...so this one works out much better! Very happy!
  6. We are on this cruise as well and its also our first Oceania cruise
  7. Exactly why we booked Azamara ....they have the best Black Sea itinerary....
  8. Can you use your onboard credit (the O Life $$) to pay for excursions when booking them 240 days before sailing??
  9. Interesting...well, our cruise is a 10 day Dec 11-21st...I think its been a tough cruise to sell since its right before Xmas...which is our fav time to cruise ..so I wouldn’t be surprised if we have a lot of newbies as well. On SS, Americans are always the minority...the Brits dominate , as does their rather more reserved social interaction... Thanks again for sharing while on board..having done it many times myself. , sometimes it can seem like a burden with internet speeds and lack of time...so , we all appreciate your efforts!
  10. Thanks for taking the time to share your experience! We have done Silversea many times, Seabourn and did our first Regent in January where I did a “live” post as well. We are doing our first Crystal later this year on the yacht , Esprit then a month later , in December, on Symphony. I will be interested to hear how the “social atmosphere” compares to your other experiences as well. Even though we have done Silversea the most of the luxury lines, I feel like they are the least friendly of the ones we have been on...Regent was so nice, so friendly , so fun...without the pretense of SS...so ho
  11. Oh really? Nice!! Nice meeting you!
  12. Thanks Keith....I’ve browsed the Sticky Threads, but thanks for the reminder, I will dive a bit deeper in it!
  13. We have done many Silversea in the past and are very much looking forward to our 2 first Crystal Cruises , October on Esprit and December on Symphony. I think we will like it and we are actually looking forward to a slightly bigger ship . The only thing that has held us back from trying Crystal is that there are only 2 ships...so not nearly as many itineraries and variations on itineraries as a Silversea or Seabourn for example. So even if they become our favorite cruise line later this year, Crystal wont be our sole go-to line
  14. Wow, that’s so disappointing to hear...we have sailed Silversea many times and me and my partner love them...we have even done the Silver Spirit twice...we have never had bad service from anyone...shocking to hear.
  15. We didnt have a problem with mosquitos......and we didnt use repellent. We have traveled so much around the world, that I’m up to date on all vaccinations anyway, so honestly I dont remember if we needed something for Vietnam. Usually if there are vaccinations required, it is listed on your invoice from Silversea at the bottom with all the info about the cruise...visas, vaccines, etc... otherwise, check with your doctor or go to the CDC’s website. Also, I’m sure there is a travelers vaccine clinic near you....just check their website or call...
  16. Yep, you can get SB or SS for $1000 a day...of course depends on when you book and where, but its not difficult to do. And thats the thing...we have always done a mix of luxury and premium lines...to balance out travel expenses. But lately, AZ has gotten so expensive and our Sky Suites on Celebrity are more than or equal to what we would pay on SS or SB...so for same price or lower, we will do SS or SB every time..
  17. You’re quite welcome....I hope you enjoy Vietnam as much as we did!! Xuan does some unique things that big tour groups cant...so that’s nice to have! Book as early as possible ...he’s quite popular. Like I said in an earlier post, if your cruise goes to Halong Bay in Northern Vietnam, please do the 12 hour Hanoi excursion . We were freaked out by the time at first. We only like half day excursions but we were assured by shore excursion staf that it is well worth it! There were only maybe 50 people who did Hanoi. We were split into groups of 6 and each group was in a comfortable mini va
  18. One more thing...I just looked back at my texts to my guide...the actual port name that we docked at was called Hiep Phuoc Port in the Xa Long Thoi neighborhood. The shuttle went hourly to Union Square which is adjacent to the Hotel Continental Saigon that I sent a pic of. Obviously these things could change but for the mid size ships I think this is the norm. There was a Viking ship docked on the other side of the river from us. No ships were downtown. I think only the very small ships can make it downtown....
  19. Yes, I highly recommend our guide. I actually had found quite a reviews on him through Cruise Critic before our cruise and everyone raves about him and we were not disappointed. His name is Xuan Le....his English is excellent...and couldnt be a nicer guy. He customizes his tours to whatever you want to see, but will happily give you examples of itineraries. No need for advance deposit. Just pay him when finished with tour. His email is tourwithxuan@gmail.com and his name Xuan is pronounced like “Soon”. He is very used to dealing with luxury clientele . By the end of our 2 days together
  20. You’re very welcome! Btw...the sail out was unlike anything I had ever seen. We went to the deck above Tors Observation Lounge for a good view forward...few people go up there btw. Anyway, I have never heard a ship blow its horn as much as we did...I lost count after about 40 times. The Saigon River is a very busy waterway with lots of barges and small boats that don’t yield to larger ships...they are pretty ballsy and arrogant. The captain was getting very impatient with slower vessels not getting out of our way....quite the sight.
  21. Hi there, we haven’t been but me and my partner are booked on the first Antarctica cruise late November. There are different things to see depending on the month you go . Some months are bettter for whale watching, others for penguin babies, others for seeing the large icebergs etc.... we found an easy to use guide at AudleyTravel.com which breaks down each month on “when is the best time to go”. We chose early in the season before many tourists have been and also because we want to see the massive ice bergs. We dont really care about penguin babies late in the season besides we have hea
  22. Kaiseki is aJapanese cuisine is known for its meticulous preparation and beautiful presentation. It's also known as the most expensive type of Japanese food — meals can have more than 14 courses. Kaiseki restaurants offer a private room — often with a view of a Japanese garden.
  23. Completely disagree with you on the poor planning comment...youhavent been and therefore you don’t understand the area...this is as close as they can get...the large ships like Royal Caribbean and Princess have to go to Phu My ...about a 3 hour drive each way......We have done the Vietnam cruise on the Muse and SS does an excellent job.
  24. So we did Vietnam in November on the Muse. We did not dock in Phu My or anywhere near. We were able to sail up the Saigon River quite a ways but sadly not in downtown. We were in an industrial port in an area called Xa Long Thoi. Silversea ran regular shuttles to Central Saigon. The distance isn’t too far to central Saigon, its the traffic that can be difficult. Sometimes it could be an hour, sometimes it was 30 mins. At first we were quite disappointed, but it ended up not being too bad. We had a private guide both days we were there. The first day he just met us at the shuttle stop i
  25. I was hoping that all ships would have itineraries through May 2021, but just a few....we were hoping to take a closer look at the Accra to Lisbon on the Cloud which usually is in March or April...but nothing on the Cloud or any of the expedition ships and Spirit only to March 2021...we have tentatively booked teh April 5th 2021 Tokyo to Tokyo...hits everywhere ,north , south and central. Excellent itinerary, but yes, very expensive.
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