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snorklinbarb

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  1. Same with us Bird. Transatlantic Epic from Miami on April 18. Have no doubts ship all not be sailing but just waiting for official word from NCL. We are very loyal customers but in this case would go with the cash refund. Good luck.
  2. I have the same question. Combinable with free at sea? CN double up? Free/reduced airfare? I'm sure there are others but I thought the stockholder OBC was indeed combinable. Recent change? Experiences? Thanks so much.
  3. Does anyone know what happens to the CN vouchers used on a cruise one can cancel for FCC? Redeposit into latitudes a/c?
  4. greeneggbert, CurtandLeslie mention 4 Blue and I know I've read here in the past that they are excellent. Were they on your recent cruise? Any word on how long they will be on? Thanks!
  5. Thanks for your comments! Always nice when a waiter makes a child feel comfortable and special. Did you have a Meet & Greet? We'll be on the transatlantic and have a very large roll call. Do you happen to have the card they give out with the list of officers? Realize that things will change over the next several weeks but curious if you do have a list. What band was onboard? Or was there a showband, party band and Caribbean band? Glad you had such a good time!
  6. Would have to agree with Bird Travels that they are really different dining experiences. FR is fun in a group where you can share dishes in an "international tapas" type vibe. Open for lunch on sea days. We tried the beef skewers with a spicy sauce, blazing rock shrimp, firecracker shrimp, tuna pizza, shishito peppers Friends do not like spicy food nor sushi so we also had chicken teriyaki, baby lamb chops and tonkatsu. Ocean is where I'd pick for a nice dinner with DH. Especially if I had the package and had extra dinners. 2 posters called it "terrible" but no details given so not sure what was bad. Perhaps they could come back and tell us as that's quite a strong denouncement. We did both venues on Encore Jan. 26 week. Actually FR for lunch and 8 dishes was more than enough for the 4 of us. If I had a late filling lunch,, FR would also be a good choice for a lighter dinner. In OB, I started with delicious fried calamari and New England clam chowder. Personally disappointed to see the conch chowder no longer offered. Taste and presentation were outstanding on that unusual chowder with very small conch fritters. This time for entree I had the whole cold water lobster and it was cooked perfectly (choice of steamed or grilled). Friends had the lobster as well. One of the waitresses handled the lobster for us and I called her "Lobster Master" the rest of the cruise. The dinner came with warm black sesame (?) fluffy focaccia type bread. I chose the lobster Mac (premium side) but would have really had to dig to find lobster. Plus asparagus. DH tried the sea bass/branzino and enjoyed it. Could never go there a la carte as prices are ridiculously high. Last time I went to OB I tried the now defunct lobster pot pie and thought it was more crust than anything and didn't care for the sauce. Glad they experimented and let it go. An app that I used to love, no longer offered, was the king crab claws. Used to order a double portion as my entree! Must say can't remember desserts at Ocean Blue!
  7. Which ship is the photo of the 2 scallops from? Is that an appetizer or an actual entree? Besides the waitress, did the AMD check on you? Curious what you might have been told. Have never heard of each ship setting its own policy like that - everything comes from Miami to be followed as directed (at least that's what we were told on 20 night Gem Jan. 2 cruise).
  8. Enjoying all your photos! We will be on the TA in April from Miami to Barcelona so none of these ports but we've visited them on other cruises. You made great use of your port time! Did you happen to have a Meet & Greet and did you attend? They usually give out cards of the senior officer team. If you happen to have it would you mind sharing the names? Of course, I realize there could be changes between now and when we sail but I'm curious nonetheless! Besides the Beatles in the Cavern Club, were there any standout entertainment like house band, vocalist, guitarist? Sometimes they have rather long contracts. Did you notice if they still have music during dinner in the Manhattan Room? They've stopped that in the latest new ships. I always enjoyed it as they would change things around with different band, show band w/vocalist, etc. Were there any crew members/waiters who you would highly recommend? Since you had different family members trying various venues, maybe there was someone you especially liked. Thanks again for taking time to do this!
  9. On Gem Jan. 2-24. They said they have 21 menus. However, there were several entrees that popped up a few times so some of those 21 were quite mix and match. For example, night 1 broiled pollock, night 3 baked pollock, night 5 broiled pollock. Turkey escalope w/parmesan crust night 1, turkey scallopini night 3. I happened to chat with the GM about this as there were 20 nights to spread some of these items around. He said they get everything from Miami and execute it as specified. Things got better during the cruise and repeats were more spaced out. Service in both DR's was excellent. Not too many long cruises like that. I don't have copies of any of the menus. The regular 7 night (went on Encore right after Gem) menus were incorporated into the 20 nights as well.
  10. Outbound City: NYC/LGA to MIA Return Departure City: BCN Destination: JFK Airline used: American (outbound), Iberia (return) Number of Connections: Both nonstop Outbound time: 6:00 am arrive MIA 9:03 am Inbound Flight Times: 5:10 pm arrive JFK 8:15 pm Did you pay for a Deviation: 1 day early Number of days Prior to Departure flights were ticketed: approximately 60 Plan of action: 24 hours in advance pay for same-day change to book a later flight to MIA **PSU76, you posted you were able to upgrade your BA flights. Did you do that with miles? Looking on AA, it states for BA and Iberia upgrades one must have Full Fare Economy priced seats? Haven't checked the actual NCL ticket to see what "code" was used but would have my doubts. How did you manage it? Also does BA charge for a checked bag or was that included in your booking? All in all, very pleased with NCL's booking. For the late return from BCN I've booked a tour with airport drop-off, only available for flights after 4:30 pm. So there are ways to turn things around rather than sit at airport all day. Note that for both flights, seats were assigned. With record locator I was able to change our middle seats on AA. For Iberia, seats are same row but aisle on one side and window on the other side. To change seats would incur a fee but 24 hours prior to flight I can check availability. Iberia has various levels of economy, the lowest of which does not include a checked bag or a meal. Agent checked our booking and NCL's allows a checked bag each, one carry on and one personal item....and dinner! If Iberia includes wine like some international airlines, so much the better!
  11. To the OP, thanks so much for the photos, first I've seen. They've done a spectacular job in turning Spirit into a "new" ship with a fresh new look. But I also thought about the incredible Asian art that made the Spirit so special from the small Cambodian statues on various decks to the Mother of Pearl lacquered screen to the Jade Buddha mentioned above. I still remember having dinner in the tatami room around the huge lacquered table, sitting Japanese style on the straw mats. Times change and so has the Spirit! To the person who mentioned it, yes, looks like same carpet as Encore Garden Cafe. The gray with gold swirl near elevators is the carpet from same area on Dawn. Good eye! The soaring atrium and elevators fortunately stay and still look beautiful. Looking forward to having a chance to sail on Spirit again after so many years. Wishing the Spirit many successful and enjoyable voyages full of happy cruisers! Congratulations to NCL.
  12. Bliss should be similar to Encore which I was on Jan. 26-Feb. 2. Asked at spa and for a female haircut it would have been $89 + 20% gratuities. I passed.
  13. For those who have recently been on Epic, do they still have the "yakitori" grill with the beef and chicken skewers? We enjoyed having some sushi along with those. We are going on Epic in April and plan to use one of the SDP for 4 items and split them - maybe at lunch.
  14. FWIW, I just filled out 2 Hero cards for Gem shorex mgr Raluca and her team member Matea. Didn't need a refund or have a problem. They were helpful in willingness to discuss tours and address concerns I had regarding the level of physical activity. Welcomed feedback about the 13 shorex I did, always a big wave, etc. They were both leaving for vacation when I disembarked Jan. 24. However, the current shorex mgr should be perfectly capable (and certainly no excuse to be rude) of resolving this issue. I believe the OP that it was a level "2" shorex because I was looking at that very one and I'd never even give a 2nd glance to a "3." So if onboard it was listed as a "3" then it needs to be rectified. It would seem to me, if, as a result, the OP had difficulty on a too strenuous excursion, it shouldn't matter if others had no problem. Great for them....not so much for OP.
  15. Agree about getting this resolved while onboard through the chains of command suggested above. Regarding this particular excursion and the comments about bad knees and being older (all good points, Bird Travels!) this particular shorex has a wrinkle I've never seen on a tour listing: one cannot book this shorex over age 60 per the tour operator's restrictions. Red lights flashing, I booked something else on the NY-SFO leg. Have done other "2's" and been challenged. Agree Level 3 would be out of the question and should not be dismissed by tour desk. Please come back and let us know but contact GM Metin if all else fails. There's a Dear Metin box at Guest Services and they promise a prompt response. Good luck!
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