Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

MopedMama

Review of Grandeur 3/12/2005

Recommended Posts

Embarkation was the smoothest of all 4 of my cruises so far. Part of this was due to my brother-in-law, who lives in New Orleans and delivered us directly to the loading area of the correct dock. :-) We were in the door and on the ship in about 10 minutes at noon. Our cabin was ready at 1pm, and our luggage was in the cabin at 2pm.

 

I was surprised at how long we were in the Mississippi River, I thought New Orleans was right on the Gulf. We were winding around in the Mighty Mississip until well after midnight.

 

This particular week was Spring Break for much of Texas, Kansas, and Tennessee. Although all the college kids, teachers, teens, and little kids we met were very nice and very polite, there were just too many of them, LOL. The ship was very crowded, especially around the pool and other sunning areas. I think I'll take my cruises during slower times of year next time, since I was looking for quiet relaxation and sunning. That being said, I would like to complement the parents of all the kids, from age 2 to 22 - Great job! They were all quiet during the shows, no underagers in the Solarium, and they were all having fun without tearing up the ship or disrupting others' vacations.

 

Unfortunately, the Grandeur still has sewer problems. Our cabin was on Deck 4, near the Champaign Bar on the smoking side of the ship. We never smelled the sewer smell in/near our cabin, but our shower drain would burp and gurgle every time we used the sink. We smelled the sewer smell mostly on Deck 6 near the Centrum. Just a random whiff every now and then, not constant, but still not pleasant :-(.

 

We did not see any sick people on the ship. Everyone seemed to be washing their hands frequently as recommended, and every time we boarded the ship they made us sanitize our hands. :-)

 

First day - at sea: It was sunny, but very windy and cold first thing in the morning. Since I wanted sun, I went to claim a pool chair about 9:30am. Most of them were already taken - a book or towel but not many humans in the chairs. I wore a miniskirt-type coverup, so I tried to lay there and read for about an hour but it was torture. I bailed and went to the Solarium instead. All the lounge chairs in there were taken/reserved too, so I found one lone table and sit-up chair and sat there for a while.

 

I wanted to get a massage while we were at sea, but I was disappointed in the spa menu. Everything was aromatherapy-related, and I'm allergic to most scented things. I really wanted a fake tan too, and that was conspicuously absent from the menu. I saw a lot of other people reading the spa menu and frowning and leaving too. There was too much focus on selling scented products and too little focus on massaging, tanning, and relaxing the vacationers.

 

The food in the main dining room was great, and this was their best night IMHO. The herb-crusted Cod was fantastic. The dining room service was pretty good on everything but the wines and coffee. The waiter did the alcoholic beverages and I don't think he had time to do it as well as other cruises I've been on. There has always been a bar drinks/wine steward staff person on my past cruises that would pay more attention to recommending a wine and noticing when you've finished your bottle and need another. After my bottle ran out, I forgot to order a glass of wine with dinner on my two last nights and didn't get another chance to order. Also every single night, coffee showed up after we had already eaten our desserts. I like to sip on my coffee while they're preparing dessert and while I'm eating it. :-/

 

Second day - Cozumel: I did the "Deluxe Beach Break" excursion. The weather was perfect, sunny and warm. I really enjoyed the free Dos Equis all day, and I got my first taste of that wonderful warm Caribbean sunshine. :-) The beach had nice white sand and a good swimming area, but every time the wind blew, I noticed cigarette butts surfacing in the sand. Bleh, that was gross. You cover one up and dig up two more. And I didn't really like the beach chairs, they are those fiberglass non-adjustable sled-type things with no legs. Its impossible to lay on your stomach in them, I had to move the neighboring chair somewhere else and lay on a towel when I wanted some sun on my back. At least there were plenty of chairs/sunning spots despite the large crowd. The music was good and I appreciated the games/entertainment being in a separate area of the beach. No loud blaring PA while I was trying to read :-). Unfortunately the Mexican Food buffet was a disappointment. I was hoping for some "real" Mexican food, but it was mostly salad and chips/dips. :-/ I've had much better Mexican food here in Alabama.

 

Also parents need to be aware - the bars were not carding anyone at all. I watched an approx 8 year old kid get a strawberry daquiri. He was in front of me in line, and heard a college kid in front of him ask for one, (it looked sorta like an Icee), so he asked for one also. And I was shocked when he got it - the bartender didn't even look up, just layed it on the countertop and went on to pour my Dos Equis draft. =:-O

 

Third day - Grand Cayman: I have been here before, and I don't especially like tendering, so I planned to stay on the ship. It was absolutely heavenly, I had my choice of pool chairs, I got to swim in the pool, and it was nice and quiet for me to read my book.

 

Speaking of books, someone should have done an official count of passengers reading "The Da Vinci Code", LOL. It was definitely more than 1000. Me & my neighbors at the pool noticed that 7 contiguous chairs had that book laying on it, plus we were both reading it too. Walking around later in the day, it was EVERYWHERE in the Solarium and the other lounges too.

 

Fourth day - supposed to have been Costa Maya: It was sunny and warm but extremely windy. The water was so rough that there were rumors that a ship before us had bumped the docks in Costa Maya. Don't know if that was true, but we could not dock either. We punted and the Captain announced we would go to Progresso MX the next morning instead. I think the crew did a great job of redoing the scheduled activities quickly for a day at sea. I got a revised Compass from the Captain himself in the elevator about 10am. I did not participate in any of the activities, since I found a good pool chair and some rum drinks :-).

 

Fifth day - Progresso: it was cold, windy and rainy. I got off the ship and shopped in the small dock area shopping center, but did not take the bus to town. I found some beautiful Mexican silver, turquoise, Mexican opal, and red jasper jewelry. The prices were ok, about the same as any port. Many people were not trying to bargain though, and they were definitely paying too much. My red jasper pendant/earrings set plus a silver slide choker was initially priced $140 and I got it for $60. Always make them an offer - especially on a rainy day with few shoppers :-).

 

Sixth day - at sea: Sunny but windy and a little cool. I got my last fix of sun and rum drinks. The pool area was extremely crowded and the chair situation was pretty bad. I ended up in the Solarium, finishing off my book and just watching the waves. I tried the hot tubs in the Solarium, but one of them would not operate. Everyone had to try their "tricks", but nothing worked. The other one was hard to operate, the buttons had to be held down or pressed several times to get the pumps to come on. Also, they were re-tiling the pool area in the Solarium during the whole cruise. Looks like they could wait for dry-dock to do that, there was always an area roped off with construction tape. :-/

 

Last day - disembarkation: Very smooth despite the fact that we told the truth and marked that we were independent travellers with no flight arrangements. (Others we met on the ship recommended always marking yourself as having a tight flight schedule, so that you could get off the ship first.) We were in about the middle of the disenbarkment schedule. It was nice, actually, the baggage claim area was not so crowded and nuts by the time we got there, and the passenger pickup area on the curb was not crowded either. Sitting peacefully in a lounge on the ship sure beats milling around in the frantic crowd to me ;-).

 

A couple more comments: I was planning to climb the rock wall, but was very disappointed in the schedule. It was only open about two hours per day, once during my normal breakfast hours and once in the evening right after dinner. Picture me full from a 4-course meal and dressed for dinner climbing the rock wall. RIGHT. I guess I could have gotten up early, but hey, I'm on vacation. Especially on a Spring Break cruise full of children, that wall should have been open all day long every day.

 

Another thing that could use some improvement is the weather forecast on the ship's info channel. It was the same picture of a sun with a dark cloud beside it every single day. Whether it was 100% sunny or 100% rainy. We need to know how to dress for the day, especially if we have an inside cabin and can't see what its like out there. The navigation crew of a major vessel must have access to more specific forecasts than that. Give it to us, we need it. And give us the text version of how its going to change during the day from morning to mid-day to afternoon, so we'll know what to pack in the beach bag. I wasted a lot of time having to go back to my cabin and change clothes 3 different days.

 

The Grandeur is the creakiest ship I've been on so far. I was SO glad I brought my ear plugs, my top bunk squeaked very loudly all night long in rough seas. I think when those 3rd & 4th passenger bunks are folded up into the ceiling, their mattresses provide some sound insulation, but when they're down, you're right there *in* the creaky stuff.

 

Overall it was a good vacation, definitely worth what I paid for it. I would go again, just not on Spring Break next time. ;-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad to hear you had a good time. Even with all the crowed people around the pool. Your article was well written and enjoyed it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi there

 

Glad to hear you enjoyed yourself!

 

Did you take any pictures?

 

I leave from New Orleans 4 weeks today on Grandeur and it finishes up in Baltimore!

 

Thanks for your info.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad you had a great time. We were on the Grandeur President's day week and there were 400 kids on board. Most of them were from the NE. This was their winter break. I understand they don't get out of school until the end of June so their spring break is in April. They were well behaved kids, and compliments to their parents. We didn't have any sewer problems or smells. The food was great and we did have problems with chair hogs, but we were out by 9 am so didn't have any problems finding chairs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your review! Which side is the "smoking" side of the ship? We are staying on Deck 4 - room 4006 Port. I am concerned the smoke might be a problem for us. Did you notice it much from the bar? We may have to move further towards the front if it is... Thanks for any tips!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MopedMama: great review!! Many people were reading The DaVinci Code on our last cruise in October too... wonder if the Library is handing them out....bulk sales and all.... ;) :D

 

1978: Take care of her as you deliver her to Baltimore....!!

Enjoy!! :cool:

 

This will be our teenage sons first cruise ...glad to hear the ship is family-friendly,.. probably can live without the climbing wall..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please give me some more information on the "smoking" side of the ship. We are on the Grandeur in July on deck 4, room 4554. Are we going to be affected by the smoke?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rosie,

when in July are you going? We are 7/17/05 & in cabin 4556 wouldnt it be funny if we were "neighbors"! LOL. We too are wondering about the smoking side??

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Please give me some more information on the "smoking" side of the ship. We are on the Grandeur in July on deck 4, room 4554. Are we going to be affected by the smoke?

 

Unless it's changed recently, the smoking side on Grandeur's Deck 4 has traditionally been the starboard side. I would not worry about the cabins or hallway being "smokey" since smoking is permitted only in the Centrum area (lobby). We had a starboard deck 4 cabin on the Grandeur last year and encountered no problems with smoke in the cabin or hallway. The only time it was noticeable was when we walked past the chairs and couches in the Centrum lobby (where some of the passengers gathered to smoke) on the way to the dining room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We were in cabin 4559 and it was on the smoking side of the ship, starboard I think. Next time we will be more careful to book on the other side, because we could smell the smoke in the hallway almost all the way to our cabin when the Centrium was busy in the evenings. We'd hold our breath and see if we could make it all the way in from the elevator, LOL. That's the only time it bothered us, it was not inside the room and during the day there weren't many smokers hanging out in the Centrium. And if you had a cabin farther forward on the ship, you could use the other set of elevators to avoid the smoke.

 

Haha, I did not take a SINGLE picture. When I brought my camera, I didn't realize that I'd be doing stuff entirely by myself, so there's no one to guard my valuables while I go get a drink or go swim or go to the little girls room, etc. And I never took the time to get up and photograph the ship, its so similar to Splendour and we already had pix of it. I didn't do any photo-friendly excursions, I mostly just vegged and beached. I guess I could have gotten my friend to take an action shot of me riding a pool chair, lol.

 

The shows were good, but none of them were spectacular. The singers and dancers were very talented and did a great job, but I didn't really care for the "love" theme for the week, so I guess that's why I rated it so-so. Personal preference. A bunch of the singers and dancers were moving on to Vegas and New York, and I think they'll do well. I missed the headliner comedian's act. My friends said it was very funny. The other comedian/juggler was good, he balanced on a freestanding ladder and did jokes and juggling. That's gotta be hard on a rockin' ship. I think Norwegian's Circ de Soleil-type show has ruined me - now IT was FANTASTIC. :D

 

Everyone who's sailing on Grandeur soon - have a great cruise! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your review. We'll be on her on the 16th and can't wait. What was the beach you went to in Cozumel? Was it Nachi Cocum?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
MopedMama: great review!! Many people were reading The DaVinci Code on our last cruise in October too... wonder if the Library is handing them out....bulk sales and all.... ;) :D

 

1978: Take care of her as you deliver her to Baltimore....!!

Enjoy!! :cool:

 

This will be our teenage sons first cruise ...glad to hear the ship is family-friendly,.. probably can live without the climbing wall..

 

off topic, but I never see anyone from Torrington on here.......love it there........I've visited family many times over the years.......:)

 

Sharlene

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know there are 2 formal nights, but is there a semi-formal also, or were all other nights casual dress.

 

thanks for the help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rosie - who was your stewart - Anthony? We were in 4563 last Aug., and thought he was great. BTW, for future cruisers - I think I'm "average" for smoke sensitivity, and didn't notice any smoke problems - all depends on your sensitivity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

P&D - We will be on the Jul 17 cruise also. And I'm glad you wrote back and wrote the changed cabin #. I checked and my sister and her husband will be in cabin 4556, so you 4 would have been a bit cramped in that cabin lol! Anyway, I am concerned about the smoke. I don't want to walk into smoke every time I leave my cabin. Can you really smell it in the hallways on deck 4?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HI Rosie,

What part of Md are you from?

hey Bonnie, you found us here & we have another passenger on 7/17 !!YIppeee!

Rosie check out our roll call thread!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also we were on Grandeur last July, stayed on deck 3. But during our travels I dont really remember smelling smoke except in the casino. & I also am sensitive to smelling it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi MopedMama - glad we got to meet at least once. And that time only by accident. My mother got sick on Monday (not the intestinal thing, it was more like bronchitis) and was in bed most of the rest of the week. I spent most of my week doing things alone so it wasn't one of my most memorable cruises.

 

We were on deck 3 and didn't notice any sewer smell but two of our tablemates were on deck 2 and they noticed it alot.

 

I was also impressed with the behavior of the kids and young adults on the cruise. We only saw a few kids playing elevator tag the whole week. Nothing like on previous cruises where it seemed like some kids just ran wild all week. Or there were a lot of obnoxious drunks just being annoying.

 

It seemed like there were a lot of big groups onboard and they would take over whole sections of the pool deck and rearrange the chairs so nobody else could get through.

 

Disembarking was the easiest I've ever done even though we went right from the medical center on the ship to the ER in New Orleans. We missed our color being called due to my mom being treated by the ship doctor so when we were ready to go, we just put her in the wheelchair and went right off the ship. We still waited in line but it wasn't near as long as I've seen it before.

 

We're back on Grandeur in November only a few doors down from where we were on the March 12 trip. I'll be anxious to see the new singers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey Mark,

There were two formal nites and one "smart casual" nite. I didn't see much difference between smart and regular casual, though. Mostly khakis for guys and casual resort wear for women.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm so sorry your mom got sick, that's awful :( . I hope she's feeling better now. Oh well, at least she got you guys an easy exit off the ship ;) . Hey, you should have looked me up - I was going solo the whole week, we could have hung out at the pool or something. Did you get to do any excursions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just returned from the Grandeur on saturday. We were on the deck 7 and had no problem with smells of any type. The new singers and dancers just started the week we were there and they are fantastic. The rest of the entertainment was good also. The only smoke problems I heard of were from the family we were with, who had someone next to them smoking cigars out on the balcony. You could smell smoke in the casino, but we would go to the champaign bar each night before dinner and it never bothered us. There were a lot of kids (spring break) but they weren't out of hand. We had the best waiter we've ever had -- Rodrigo -- if you get him, you're in for a treat. The food was good, but we usually sail Celebrity, so we were spoiled. I had read reviews that the ship was in bad shape, but that was not the case. The whole ship was in great shape. I would definatley sail the Grandeur again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its only on deck 4 and only in the hallway right beside the Champaign Bar at night. The piano player and the Champaign Bar are both on the smoking side of the Centrium, and are both pretty busy starting about 5pm until late at night. Our cabin 4559 was right on the fringe of where the smoke smell ended in the hallway. The one night it was so windy, I think a door at each end of the hallway must have caught it just right, because the whole hall was stinky that night. We took the other set of elevators to dinner to avoid the smoke because my friend is highly allergic - it gives her an instant migraine. The rest of the time we'd cut across the Centrium to the non-smoking side and circle around to the elevators. Only people who are very sensitive to it would be affected.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • NCL Sail-Away Giveaway Sweepstakes - Win a 7-Day Cruise on Norwegian Joy!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...