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Everything posted by Klapka

  1. Thanks for your comments. I knew I could rely on you guys. I was pretty sure that things would be flexible, but just wanted to avoid any nasty surprises!
  2. The last time we sailed on Silhouette, we were entitled to dine in any of the restaurants without charge. We enjoyed this privilege, but much preferred a couple of venues to the others. As we do not have that luxury next time, I am looking to you Celebrity Experts to help me on a couple of points of detail? If I buy package, I am told I get a saving (26% for 5 nts, for example) and I will have a "courtesy" reservation on the first night. It seems I will be able to change that reservation once on board. My simple questions for those with experience of these things. 1. Can I influence the restaurant selected for the courtesy reservation before I board or do we have to take what we are offered? 2. If I decide that we do not like the restaurant chosen by the line and the venue we prefer is full that evening, can we dine in a free restaurant that evening? 3. Since the cover charges seem to vary from place to place, will I be restricted in the number of times we can visit any venue? In other words, suppose, having purchased a 14 night package, I want to eat in Murano every night of the cruise,. would they let me do so - assuming there is space and I don't die of liver failure? Thanks, guys.
  3. Thank you for explaining things. I am now less mystified. I now see that I can get a glass of wine in the Retreat Lounge if I am in a suite, but I may have a bit of a wait. Can you guys take me a little further on my voyage of discovery and explain what is on offer? Are we talking (a) Classic Drinks Package? Or (b) the range of drinks available to Elite members between 5pm and 7pm? Or (c) the Premium Package? Or (d) some other range of beverages? As a point of reference, my wife loves champagne. I know that champagne is not offered under (a) or (b) but is available under (c).
  4. This is a bit mystifying. I am not a regular on Celebrity, but have been trying to keep up with all the changes, including the package of suite perks. Michael’s Club has become the Retreat Lounge, with new furniture. It got that. But I thought the whole idea of the lounge was that, if I am in a suite, I can get a drink, irrespective of whether I am Elite or have a drinks package. Have I missed something?
  5. The references to France, South Africa and Croatia that I quoted in one of my posts came from the communication I received from Star Clippers agents in U.K. when they offered to settle my claim. It was explained that the warnings had been received from their lawyers on the eve of the cruise and that, in respect of Croatia, it was a “possibility”. From this, I would deduce that they will by now have reviewed this advice carefully and had time to warn passengers of any future changes due to this “seizure” concern. I guess all those sailing later in the year will find itineraries unchanged or, if there are changes, those alterations will be properly handled and warned of well in advance. Good luck, guys
  6. Thought I should give a last update. I was pleased to accept a settlement offer from the company which was made quickly and graciously, restoring my faith in the fairness of the cruise industry as a whole. In commenting upon the matter, I was told that the lawyers are trying to settle the dispute concerning Flying Clipper but that in the meantime the threat of arrest only applies to France, South Africa and Croatia. Make of that what you can. This thread has been pretty much all me and I promise that this is the last one! Cross my heart etc etc ...
  7. The sun is hot? Who knew? Clearly not the refit designer.
  8. I see that I did not actually quote the exact wording in the letter from Kraft. He said "we can not entirely exclude that they (presumably Brodosplit) will try to arrest Royal Clipper in a French port or hinder its passage in some way". Like something out of an adventure story from my youth! I have submitted a complaint to the company. Perhaps the response will contain more details of the issue - and whether it is likely to be resolved soon. If so, I will add some comments here.
  9. I have now the time to add more facts to my earlier posting. We selected this cruise because the itinerary was just seven days and offered a number of ports that we had not visited before. After Cannes, this cruise was to take us to ports in Italy, Elba, Sardinia, Corsica (where the ship would make four stops) and Monaco, most of which we had not previously visited. There would be eight stops in all before returning to Cannes for disembarkation. Further, travel from UK would be relatively easy: short flights to and from Nice with 40 minute transfers to and from Cannes port. Attractive cruise package; straight forward journeys to start and finish. Lovely. In reality, the ship was not in port when we arrived in Cannes at 2.00pm on 3 August. We were given a brief explanation that we would be need to take a 3 hour bus journey to Savona in Italy and that we were to find that the itinerary had been changed. There had been no advance notice of these changes and, when I enquired later, I found that our cruise agent had had no warning either. Four ports were retained from the scheduled itinerary: Lerici, Elba, Monaco and Alghero. These were excellent destination. In each case, there were excursions available and the locations were in themselves interesting to visit. It was easy to see why a cruise planner would select these and we were very happy to visit them. Instead of four ports in Corsica, we were taken to two new ports in Sardinia. These fell very short of the mark. Although the first offered an excursion, the second did not. Neither were interesting places to visit, the second being particularly poor. It appeared that these destinations had been selected merely for their geographical location rather than for their tourist appeal. The port of Savona was a very unsatisfactory substitute for the port of Cannes both as a location and scenically. Taken as a whole, the new itinerary was substantially less attractive than the itinerary that we had booked and paid for. Each and every change had a negative impact: the only parts that were enjoyable were those that were unaltered. The embarkation day was really uncomfortable. After the shock at the port of Cannes, we took a three hour bus trip to Savona, Italy (passing Nice Airport en route). The ship arrived an hour or so after we did, but we were lucky to be one of the first few aboard at 8.00 pm - others were much later. Our meal was interrupted by the lengthy safety drill. We finished our dinner at about 11.00 pm. Disembarkation was a muddle. The initial version of the new itinerary planned to disembark us in Monaco. This was not going to matter too much as the journey time from this port to Nice airport is about the same as from Cannes. So, of all the changes we were to sustain, this one would matter the least. However, after I had rearranged our taxi pick up to Monaco, Star Clippers changed the plan again. We would now be disembarked back in our old friend Savona! Two and a hour hours away from Nice. The poor old cruise director worked really hard to deal with the new unsatisfactory plan. However, he clearly had no authority to sweeten the bitter pill beyond a single free glass of house wine one evening. I concede that the free bus from Savona to Nice saved me a few euros, but this could not make up for the exhaustion of the first and last days and all the other changes. The attitude of Start Clippers to date has been lamentable. The information concerning these changes included a very brief note from Michael Kraft. It contained not a hint of an apology. Instead, we were told that the contract dispute concerning Flying Clipper had reached such a pitch that it was no longer safe for the company to sail in French waters. My cruise agent has received a comment from the company which says, in effect, “since you sailed with us after hearing of these changes you have waived your rights”. The apparent lack of concern of Star Clippers management is as annoying as the changes they imposed on us.
  10. Internet too slow for much more at this time. The loss of of all our Corsican ports is a big blow. Today we are in Golfo Aranci in Sardinia all day, where there are no excursions and the place offers very little worth seeing. And it is V hot! Judging by the comments my cruise agent has received from the line, I can expect no redress for this. I will post more when I am home.
  11. The current Royal Clipper voyage (3 Aug) started disastrously Due to sail from Cannes, every passenger arrived to discover that the ship had gone to Savona, Italy. We understand that a dispute concerning the Flying Clipper construction has led to the French authorities threatening to seize our vessel if it enters French waters. Thus our itinerary has been changed: several destinations dropped in Corsica and we will end in Monaco rather than Cannes. So, instead of a relaxed boarding at 4pm, we found ourselves being bussed to Savona, 3 hrs away. There, we found that the ship was still at sea. We finally got to our cabin at 8 pm (luggage a bit later). Many passengers arrived later. Pretty fed up, we went to dinner. This was interrupted by a lifeboat drill at 10pm. Plates of half eaten dishes were left as we stood around, fuming and sweating. We now have to rearrange our departure arrangements. Today, we hear a few words of regret that we had been inconvenienced, but it is pretty clear that the comfort of passengers is low in the priorities of Star Clippers. We hope that the company’s financial arrangements do not lead to any further changes before the end of our week. Obviously, this line is not going to appear in our future travel plans!
  12. I am in U.K and the links don’t work as the website here defaults to a U.K. version rather than the .com one. At least it does on all my devices. The main website has loads of stuff we cannot see on this terrible U K version. Have to wait until we are in USA to view. With some cruise lines I can work past this “localisation”, but Celebrity do not like me to do so.
  13. Oh dear. I can foresee that, at these prices, we may struggle to find our way from the bar when we sail on the ship next month! Thanks for all the info, guys.
  14. Very interesting. We will be on Silhouette next year after similar changes have been made. As to the Retreat Sun Deck, you are saying entrees are served? At what times? Can I get a drink up there?
  15. Thanks for the info, guys.
  16. Last time we sailed with a Premium Drinks package, so we didn’t pay much attention to the detail of some of arrangements about drinks. Our next sailing will be with only a Classic, but again in a suite, so I am interested in what I have read above. Two questions: 1. In Michaels/Retreat, are the complimentary drinks offered from the Premium Package (or better)? Specifically, can we get a glass of champagne? 2. We are newly Elites. You are referring to a Happy Hour, which I am sure Celebrity would prefer you to describe as the “Evening Cocktail Hour” ( much more up market!). You are saying that this runs from 5 -7 and might now be offered in most/all bars. Do the drinks offered come from a special list and, if so, does that list include champagne? (I may be giving a clue as to my wife’s preferred tipple!)
  17. Has anyone any details of drinks prices on this ship?
  18. Thank you guys. You even managed to negotiate past my poor spelling! So, my wife can get a glass of champagne in the Retreat, if she feels like it - which is pretty well always.
  19. Now that the ship is Edgified, may I get things straight in my head about the Retreat. It is open to all suite passengers. There is a free bar at certain times of the day. Canapés are served at certain times of day. Have I got that right? If so, what is the timetable?
  20. A new website is always a challenge at first, but this is just weird! Seems to be designed to confuse rather than clarify.
  21. I have just come to this thread, not having thought about Celebrity for a while. Trying to get a handle on what is going to be done to Silhouette next Jan as far as it affects suite passengers. I think I am deducing that Luminae stays as it is, Michael becomes the Retreat Lounge (ie doesn't get bigger or material change its offer) and there is a Retreat sundeck at the top of the ship. Beyond that, there is a new décor style throughout. Have I got it about right? Thanks, guys.
  22. I usually find that any changes to a website, especially as dramatic as has occurred here, deeply annoying. However, the old website was so ghastly, I am prepared to give the experience a qualified welcome. Give it a try, guys.
  23. I cannot understand why the old set up was ditched. So easy to use. It was the best thing about the site for someone like me who hops around the lines. I cannot be bothered to fiddle about now. Looking for another website.
  24. OK I found the app, but it is not designed for an ipad. I was able to load it but it was impossible to navigate. In any event, it does not cover the Silhouette, which is the ship we are next on. Still, an interesting way to spend half an hour!
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