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Posts posted by MishelleMcc

  1. I had forgotten that I had posted this question! Our friends ended up being able to go after all and we booked HAL Eurodam November 30! We have VD veranda staterooms and We are so excited!!!!!! I think that once HAL bans the veranda smoking (which I am sure they will) we will venture on Celebrity!!! This will be our friends FIRST Cruise and I am excited for them! This will be my wife's 2nd cruise and My 6th!!!!! If anyone else is going, let us know so we can be excited together and meet up for cocktails on board!!!!!! Thank you everyone for all your advise!!!!!

  2. I have a secret hidden nook I bring a hot chocolate or tea to after the evening show and I watch the waves go by. It's cool to sit so close to the water and have nobody realize you're there. I've heard some interesting conversations and even some passage of wind (human, if you know what I mean). lol I'm not revealing it, but maybe one day you'll happen upon it. If so, hide a note for me somewhere, like a geocache. haha



    We will be on the Eurodam Nov 30 2014 and will HUNT for that special space AND I will leave a little note for you OR anyone else that stumbles upon it!!!http://boards.cruisecritic.com/images/icons/icon10.gif

  3. it's all the little things added up that make HAL so special -


    the varied ambiance of the Crow's Nest (a lot of ships have no inside forward viewing area)

    it is relaxing during the day to read or watch the sea

    it is elegant for before dinner cocktails while watching the sea

    it is wonderful for music and late drinks while watching the sea


    the history of the sea as viewed from the art tour - you can get a printed copy and take your tour or use the audio tour given out in the library area


    the fresh flowers everywhere - large displays in public areas, flowers on every table - MDR, Lido, pool deck, bars, room service tray - public restrooms with fresh flowers and cloth towels


    the helpful crew who pamper you - from room cleaning, MDR waiters, bar stewards who make an effort to learn your name and your drink, cooks in the Lido who make your special requests - I could go on and on


    bathtubs in OV and above - don't see this on a lot of lines


    the understated elegance and ambiance just all add up to something special, and in spite of some cutbacks, it is still there


    we have only had one cruise that didn't quite meet all of our expectations - so that's a pretty good batting average - all the rest were wonderful vacations, seeing lots of new places and meeting lots of nice folks



    Amen Sista!!!!!!

  4. Having cruised post Katrina in January 2006, I would say that it will take months for them to recover. We have been to Cabo twice (our friends own a timeshare - Solmar) Construction takes a long time there. I would chat with regulars on the Trip Advisor Cabo forum (I think I am allowed to mention Trip adviser since its a sister site) They will keep you current on the status of all the resorts. It's one of the friendliest forums I've experienced! Good luck!

  5. Hi all! I am by no means an expert but I think the differences (and confusion) is in the type of Signature Beverage Package.


    If one BUYS the signature beverage package, then the above quote is applicable.

    If one RECEIVES the signature beverage package in the Explore 4 promotion then the dollar amount caps apply.


    It reads, in part:


    "FREE Signature Beverage Package*


    • A value of us$100 per day, per stateroom (us$50 per person)

    • Includes wine, beer, spirits, cocktails (including non-alcoholic), sodas and coffee (a daily limit applies)"

  6. the room number is 7082


    Too funny! We have 7086 and 7088! I think it will be okay! Ship elevators are not as bad as Hotel elevators.... It will become a familiar noise associated with Cruising! I haven't sailed since 2006 and I sometimes STILL hear the sounds similar to the Balcony partitions banging and... I remember the experience.... I love everything cruising!


    If you are on our sailing, we can compare notes! We sail Nov 30 2014! Can't wait!!

  7. First, Terri, I am so happy that your DH is on the mend and glad that you both have been treated so well!


    This was a very educational thread for me as well as for others. We traveled to China last December and I fell stepping out of the bathtub and required stitches. I had Travel medical insurance but I ended up not using it. I kept telling everyone that I had insurance but nobody responded. The Hotel, Ritz Carlton Sanya- (we won this trip!) drove us to hospital and my wife was required to pay cash before I was treated. It was about $67.00 US. (ER service, Doc, Stitches, Tetanus shot...) I don't know what would have happened if the cost had been higher than what we had in yen. I never did contact my travel health insurance provider either. I ended up with a bad infection and was hospitalized once I returned to the US but again, I didn't contact the travel insurance. In hindsight, I realize that I should have educated myself as to HOW to use the policy BEFORE I might have needed to use it. Your experience is a great reminder that we really need healthcare coverage when traveling out of the country.


    Thank you for sharing with us! Have a safe and comfortable trip home!

  8. I love to have an excuse to dress up! It's part of what makes formal night special to me! On our honeymoon in 2006, we wore our wedding dress and tux! Silly, I know, but we relived our special day all over again! It was a wonderful night and we received a lot of congratulations which we didn't expect. I truly loved and appreciated my fellow PAX that night! Cruising can be magical!!!!

  9. Thank you Keithm and Donnatello! I was reading more reviews yesterday and I agree that some of the things folks choose to complain about were not severe enough to ruin a vacation yet they got so worked up over them that the rest of their trip was overshadowed by them. Other times, I think that some folks "want something for nothing" and assume that their complaints warrant some kind of compensation.... So I try to "read between the lines"


    So I am leaning more towards Celebrity while still holding in the back of my mind that Holland is still a great choice for us too! I found out yesterday that the couple who we thought might travel with us, are now not going to be able to, so that also changes the importance of some of the features of a cruise I was considering. They would be new to cruising so I was weighing the importance of things that are not as important to us as it would be to them.


    To us, The adventure of being on a ship at sea is the purest definition of

    V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N! Nice surroundings, friendly people and great food!!!! What more could one want!?!?!?!?

  10. To answer your question Sails, no, no, no. There are so many other aspects of cruising that we consider, way beyond this smoking issues. Smoking, not to smoke, where to smoke, where not to smoke, just isn't all that important in our decision who were going to cruise on.

    Personally I'm am tired of these smoking threads too, only because they seem to consume so much of our board, and they are so negative and confrontational. We love to cruise and we love our cruise line of choice. We know that even when Hal makes the decision to discontinue smoking on their balconies it won't be the end of the issue because there are people who want the world to be smoke free and they will never give up.


    I have sever allergies to perfume (so does Joanie). It is a problem for me, but no one is going to quit wearing perfume for me. I just have to be careful and avoid it as much as I can, but you don't hear me making a big deal out of it and starting thread after thread on perfume issues. There are times when I can't use my balcony either because there's a person that has drenched theirselves in perfume standing out on their balcony at the same time.


    We got it, you don't want people to smoke around you, but as long as it is a legal substance they are not going to outlaw it on cruise ships, because people are allow to have a little space to enjoy their vices, be it smoking, drinking or whatever. I'm sure with all the brow beating on this subject, you will get your way. Though I kind of wish Hal would stick to their guns on this issue, because I know whether they allow smoking on their balconies or not, they will continue to have lots of customers..........and there will still be complaints about smoking.


    This makes sense!!!! I am a smoker. I don't cruise often but when I do, I pay for a balcony (starboard aft). I didn't smoke in my cabin even when it was allowed so to me, it's a benefit to have a balcony!


    So to answer the original question, Yes, I choose HAL because I CAN still smoke on my balcony. If HAL bans it then I will consider all other lines and try to find a cabin with easy access to a smoking area.


    Another point made that I agree with is that by limiting areas where folks CAN smoke, it will create areas that are so smoke infused that no one will be able to enjoy the space.


    There are legitimate reasons for people to need to be away from smoke however, I think that the general "anti smoking" crusade has blown the issue way out of proportion.

  11. Hi there! We haven't cruised since 2006 and are planning one this winter but undecided as yet.... Having said that, I wanted to encourage you to research the cruise line/ship reviews to get an idea of what is out there and what appeals to you. Also, go to the cruise line web sites and sign up for emails and special pricing. I've been checking pricing off and on since this spring and have learned that the "wave" season is once of the best times to book a discounted cruise with a distant sail date. Another option would be to secure a "last minute" cruise. (since you are driving distance to embarkation ports.) Unsold cabins - especially inside cabins could be very affordable! Vacations to go has a "last minute" ticker that could be a useful tool to try a couple times a week to get an idea of what price drops you could expect.


    There are some VERY experienced cruisers on this board and they can share a wealth of information! To help them advise you appropriately, add to your inquiry what your interests are. Will you gals be partying 'till the wee hours? Do you plan on being active all day - even on ship? Or is relaxing with a god book and a cocktail more to your liking?


    You're off to a good start by mentioning that this is an adult only trip and a delayed honeymoon too!


    btw, my wife and I were married in 2006, then registered as DPs on our anniversary in Jan 2013. Congratulations!!

  12. I proposed to Rowell on the first leg of our B2B (Bermuda and Canada / NE). I enjoy editing video and put together a compilation of pics and video clips from our trips, lives, etc. Background music by Train, "Marry Me" and as campy as it sounds, "Take a Chance" from Mama Mia. Hey, it's due to our demographics, LOL! Cocktails on our veranda and he was in tears by the end. :) Good luck to you guys!




    OHHHH shoot!!!! That made me cry!!!!

  13. Thanks for the very kind words about my Antarctica photos. It was indeed the trip of a lifetime!


    Amazing that you won a trip to China; how fantastic! (What cities did you visit? Did you have any time on the Yangtze?) It's definitely a long fight over; we had three internal flights on our trip there, so quite a lot of flying in a couple of weeks. After that, the flight to Buenos Aires (the start of our Antarctica trip) didn't seem so long. :)


    Our TA on the Silhouette this fall starts out with a week in the Med (Civitavecchia [Rome], Livorno, Toulon, Barcelona, and Palma de Mallorca), followed by the crossing itself, one of the main reasons we picked this particular itinerary. It's a two-fer!


    We won the trip through Conde' Naste Travel. It was all Ritz Calrton! I don't even own nice enough clothes to walk into the Ritz - let alone have the ability to afford such luxury!! Coach airfare was included. We were in Beijing, Shanghai and Sanya... ( 2 nights, 2 nights, and 3 nights respectively.) It was such a quick trip that we really didn't get to explore much. But we did hire a private tour guide and driver for the Great Wall and The forbidden City. It was our biggest expense but thought it was worth it. Our Guide's father was a 7th generation Feng Shui master (surviving the revolution) and she had a lot of insight to their culture and history that we could not have appreciated without her!

  14. Wow! Thank you for the input everyone!!!! I lived in SF Bay area in the '80 so I know how damp and chilly it can be! Was it Twain that said: "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Fransisco!" ??? We are caretakers at a county campground open April through November so the only time we can vacation is Dec, Jan or Feb (per contract)....


    I think I was limiting my cruise preferences based on Balcony smoking... (sad - i know) After NCL announced their ban I decided 2 things: We might be non smokers by the time we sail and I can always pick a cabin with easy access to a smoking area!!! After all, we never smoke in hotels even when it was allowed!!! (like in China last year - we won that trip! Amazing!) We just can't stand the smell! Sooo NOW, I am exploring more possibilities!!!!!


    I have actually considered the NCL Epic Dec 7! Didn't realize there was a significant grouping going!!!! We have missed socializing with brothers and sisters so we consider that a plus! Also, Beaches!!!! The comment: "There's just something about the light, the water, the air, and Miami!" is EXACTLY what we are out for! We don't scuba (got to "sample" once but haven't pursued it) I love to snorkel although DW doesn't swim...


    All wonderful advise and Will keep you posted!!!!

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