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About vakamalua

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  1. Best? Probably subjective. We will be sailing BA to Santiago in January. We chose that direction so we could add a few days in Rio prior to the cruise--two cities before relaxing on the cruise--and adding five days in Easter Island from Santiago at the end that corresponds with the Tapati festival in early February.
  2. Is the Chef's Table on all ships? Cost?
  3. A bit off topic but...haven't been on Princess in a few year's and new to Chef's Table. --Is it worth it? What is the cost? --How do you book this? Can you do it through the cruise personalizer pre-cruise or do you have to wait and do it on line? --Is it offered only once on a cruise (will be on a 16 day cruise)?
  4. We are in the US. We book through Princess to expedite things like cabin choice and be sure to get their current perks. Then within the 60-day agent transfer window, we transfer booking to our TA who gives us a 7% cruise fare reduction (the 7% doesn't apply to taxes, ports charges, air) so we have a reduced final payment.
  5. We are Platinum but haven't been on Princess for about five years. Since then we sailed with Celebrity where the food was just OK and on a christening voyage of one of HAL's new ships where the food was really bad (I was served raw creme brûlée), the service inattentive bordering on rude, and anytime dining chaos. We've concluded that you can't pay mass market prices (often with perks) on large (and getting larger) ships and expect upscale food prepared in large quantities and have attentive service when servers have too many tables and time constraints. We are trying Princess again in January with mass market prices and mass market expectations. Their bottom line will always be the top priority for large corporations.
  6. Haven't used this service but considering it for our upcoming trip https://www.tangol.com/eng/argentina/buenos-aires/transfers/d_20_tp_6 What hotel are you using in BA?
  7. Does anyone who has stayed pre or post cruise in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, or Santiago have a well located, clean reasonable hotel to recommend? Would appreciate any information.
  8. Thanks for the information. We're excited about this cruise and just booked an extension to Easter Island after the cruise. BTW Great pictures.
  9. For anyone who has done one of the cruises that does scenic cruising in Antartica, does Princess have any expert lecturers on board or any other enrichment activities? What type, how often? I know every cruise will be different, but how were the seas crossing Drake's passage (late January)? Was the weather clear for Antarctica viewing? Were you able to tender into the Falkland Islands? Any other info appreciated. Thanks
  10. Frankly, for environmental and safety reasons, there definitely needs to be changes and stringent controls on traffic in Venice waterways.
  11. What what theme & website of the tour company you used? Cost? Duration?
  12. We're probably on the same cruise (Coral Princess). I'm just starting to explore going to Easter Island after the cruise. Here are two tour companies I found so far; we'd prefer to have one company book hotel, transfers & tours: https://www.fullchiletour.com/easter-island/ https://www.adventure-life.com/chile/easter-island
  13. vakamalua

    Hotel Nacional

    Don't miss the Hotel Nacional; It's a beautiful historic building. Be sure to-- Visit the Salon, a wonderful bar with an old jukebox and pictures of all the celebrities that have stayed there during the 30s, 40s & 50s Visit the Cigar Shop in the basement with a big selection at good prices and a man rolling cigars Linger over a drink--Cuba Libre, Mojito-- on the back lawn with views over the water Check out the missile tunnels where they were pointed at the US during the Missile Crisis We had our private car tour drop us there after the tour and we took a readily available cab back to the cruise terminal (about $15 CUC + tip)
  14. We're on the NCL Sun and will be in Havana in about10 days. Here's a couple of last minute Qs I thought someone might be able to answer: --How long did it take you to get through customs and currency exchange? We are supposed to dock at 8 am and are meeting our food tour near Plaza Veja at 10. --Did you need insect repellant? --Did anyone find a good restaurant / bar within walking distance of the cruise terminal that we could go to in the evening? Looking for outside seating, music, good food. Prices? --Looking for a piece of original local art. Anyone know the best place to go? Prices? Thanks
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