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Barrycat

CASUAL ELEGANT DINING.....NOT ANYMORE

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We just returned from a wonderful 23 day cruise aboard the Legend from Hong Kong to Singapore. There were the same old minor complains that are to be expected on a ship of the Legends age but they in no way affect he overall positive experience.

We did however see an obvious and negative change In Windstar’s definition of “casual elegance” as the clothing standard in Amphora fir dinner. Jeans, tee shirts, and flip flops are specifically outlined in all Windstar literature as unacceptable dinner attire. Unfortunately, all were allowed without comment on the Legend. After twelve Windstar Cruises, this is the first time we noticed more than an occasional dress code violation, and it became more obvious as the trip progressed.

I expressed my concern to both the hotel manager and captain and they kind of blew it off as a wider cruise industry problem and did not express any plans to enforce the code. This is a cop out and should be of concern to both the company and customers. Once you stop standing by the standards that make Windstar Windstar it diminishes the experience that makes us want to return.

if future cruisers notice this trend on their ship and you share my concern, speak up. This is the only way to reverse this trend

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I noticed a decline on my Dec cruise from San Juan.  People were very casually dressed for dinner; more so than I’ve ever seen.  I discussed this with a fellow passenger, and she also was surprised.

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I agree that posted standards should be enforced. And I prefer the existing policies. But be careful what you wish for. The trend in American life is towards "anything goes", and the additional emphasis on "it's all about ME" (because my parents never said "No" to me) accelerates the destruction of rules. Top-level fine dining in New York City now features polo shirts and jeans, because the Hedge Fund titans and Digital App duuudes can set their own rules.

 

Interestingly, during our January 2019 Star Breeze Panama Canal trip, a middle-aged woman commented to me that she wished there was a casual dinner option, where she could just order a burger. There's no room on such a small ship. Another guest reminded her that room service is free on Windstar.

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On our recent Surf cruise, we did notice t-shirts on the first night. On the following nights,  we saw the maitre'd prevent two couples from entering who tried to wear shorts.

Sounds inconsistent across vessels, but we've experienced this on other lines too.

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2 hours ago, CruiseOrLand said:

I agree that posted standards should be enforced. And I prefer the existing policies. But be careful what you wish for. The trend in American life is towards "anything goes", and the additional emphasis on "it's all about ME" (because my parents never said "No" to me) accelerates the destruction of rules. Top-level fine dining in New York City now features polo shirts and jeans, because the Hedge Fund titans and Digital App duuudes can set their own rules.

 

Interestingly, during our January 2019 Star Breeze Panama Canal trip, a middle-aged woman commented to me that she wished there was a casual dinner option, where she could just order a burger. There's no room on such a small ship. Another guest reminded her that room service is free on Windstar.

 

And. Although the room service needs to be delivered to your room, there’s nothing to prevent you from taking it anywhere you want, including on deck if the weather is nice. Aren’t there always burgers on the Amphora menu? 

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Even though this is cheating, if there is a night where you just don’t want to change out of your shorts and slip flops, you can generally just slip in the back door point to seats and the server will just say “go ahead”. Once you’re seating no one knows. But, we don’t make a habit of this. 

 

On some cruises, especially with long stretches of sea days the crew will announce “tonight is casual night.”  I’ve also had it in strong weather conditions. They may say something like “we know everyone is uncomfortable, If you are hungry Amphora is open normal hours, just come as you are.”

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This issue has arisen not only on Windstar but on many of the luxury cruise line boards. Personally, I don't understand why some people are so focused on the attire of others. If that's enough to ruin your cruise then too bad. You can always take a seat with your back to the offending attire.

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As long as the food and service is great, that's all I care about.

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I didn't notice any change from normal on our Wind Star Panama Canal and Costa Rica cruise.  I saw one person turned away because they were wearing shorts.

 

We tend to be at the more casual end of the spectrum but don't go below slacks and a polo shirt.

 

Something that has bothered me on two recent cruises (the above mentioned and Star Legend in Alaska) is that they announce a stricter dress code on board than what is on the website. Namely, on both cruises the cruise director's list of what not to wear for dinner during their initial talk included "tennis shoes." The Windstar website says: "And no shorts, flip-flops, jeans, hats or t-shirts in AmphorA or Candles during the evening. "There is no mention of "tennis shoes." 

 

Fortunately, I didn't see any attempt to enforce that. I think inconsistency dilutes the whole policy and also that nice trainers aren't any more casual than many sandals which are allowed. The policy announced on board should be the same as what is on the website and not something more restrictive. I asked the cruise director about the inconsistency. She wasn't aware of it and said that her list was what corporate told her to say. 

 

I wore my Brooks Ghost shoes some evenings and nothing was said about them. If anyone asked, I intended to point out that they aren't "tennis shoes," they are jogging shoes.

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13 hours ago, CruiseOrLand said:

The trend in American life is towards "anything goes", and the additional emphasis on "it's all about ME" (because my parents never said "No" to me) accelerates the destruction of rules. Top-level fine dining in New York City now features polo shirts and jeans, because the Hedge Fund titans and Digital App duuudes can set their own rules.


I guess I'm not the only one imagining things !!!! Sorry to say but I have to deal with millenial in my office bare feet and cargo short in the summer because this is what they are.

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That's why I finally retired! Seriously,  the millenials in my office dressed beautifully but their attitude of entitlement is off the charts. Our recent Wind Surf cruise the dining room manager refused to let men in wearing shorts. There is also the blue jean generation who believe dressing up for the evening  is denim pants and an expensive dress shirt. There were several attempts,  various ages, to skirt the rules. I think people feel like the Caribbean is more laid back and  I only saw two or three sport coats in the evening. In Europe it seems to be dressier at night. As long as someone is clean and neat it doesn't bother us.  And as Bob Dylan said, the times they are a changing. We don't go on other lines specifically because we don't want to drag a suitcase full of clothes to wear at night to impress people we will likely never see again. Not at the price the airlines charge to check them!

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On ‎2‎/‎22‎/‎2019 at 5:13 AM, Barrycat said:

We just returned from a wonderful 23 day cruise aboard the Legend from Hong Kong to Singapore. There were the same old minor complains that are to be expected on a ship of the Legends age but they in no way affect he overall positive experience.

We did however see an obvious and negative change In Windstar’s definition of “casual elegance” as the clothing standard in Amphora fir dinner. Jeans, tee shirts, and flip flops are specifically outlined in all Windstar literature as unacceptable dinner attire. Unfortunately, all were allowed without comment on the Legend. After twelve Windstar Cruises, this is the first time we noticed more than an occasional dress code violation, and it became more obvious as the trip progressed.

I expressed my concern to both the hotel manager and captain and they kind of blew it off as a wider cruise industry problem and did not express any plans to enforce the code. This is a cop out and should be of concern to both the company and customers. Once you stop standing by the standards that make Windstar Windstar it diminishes the experience that makes us want to return.

if future cruisers notice this trend on their ship and you share my concern, speak up. This is the only way to reverse this trend

I am speaking up, but not in the way you wanted.  This makes me more than ever want to go on a Windstar cruise. Thank you for pointing our that dress is more casual now.  This is the  ship I want to be on.  We usually dress "country club casual" for dinner but could absolutely care less what any body else chooses to wear.  

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9 hours ago, mexicobob said:

I am speaking up, but not in the way you wanted.  This makes me more than ever want to go on a Windstar cruise. Thank you for pointing our that dress is more casual now.  This is the  ship I want to be on.  We usually dress "country club casual" for dinner but could absolutely care less what any body else chooses to wear.  

Ditto, When we first started cruising I always brought a suit coat and tie, (yes even a tie) nice to know that now we can just wear what  we want, usually just wear a polo type shirt and some khakis.  (unless really hot then I will try and get away wearing shorts)

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I dress “nicely” for dinner, not because I want to “impress other people” (yikes :classic_blink:), but because going on vacation with my husband is like having a week (or more) of date nights all in a row and I want to look nice for him. Thank goodness we ladies only have to bring sundresses and not ball gowns!  :classic_biggrin:

 

We are Go for PPT in two days!!!

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1 hour ago, Sassy Chassis said:

I dress “nicely” for dinner, not because I want to “impress other people” (yikes :classic_blink:), but because going on vacation with my husband is like having a week (or more) of date nights all in a row and I want to look nice for him. Thank goodness we ladies only have to bring sundresses and not ball gowns!  :classic_biggrin:

 

We are Go for PPT in two days!!!

Wow, Have a great time, 

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4 hours ago, Newleno said:

Ditto, When we first started cruising I always brought a suit coat and tie, (yes even a tie) nice to know that now we can just wear what  we want, usually just wear a polo type shirt and some khakis.  (unless really hot then I will try and get away wearing shorts)

Windstar has never required a jacket & tie (or at least back to 2005 when we first cruised with them). Khakis & a polo have always been acceptable dinner dress.

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I thought that polo shirts (collared) and long pants were the dress code? That seems pretty minimal to me.

mexicobob: While I usually don't mind what other people wear, I guess I'm of the era of "dressing for dinner". I really don't want to see some hairy guy in a tank top while I'm trying to enjoy the ambiance of the dining facility...

It's interesting that women rarely have the dressing down problem that men have.

 

 

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1 hour ago, O2B@Cagain said:

Snipped

It's interesting that women rarely have the dressing down problem that men have.

 

 

Yep, it’s easy with sundresses and sandals and they don’t take up much room in the suitcase. My husband goes for the Tommy Bahama type button up shirt with khakis and his casual shoes. 

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I think it depends on the crew, the itinerary,  how low the price went,  and just random luck.  

 

I would prefer not to have a dress code, but I was brought up with the notion you should clean up for dinner.  I always wear at  least pants, shoes, and a collared shirt, but it tends to be a mostly casual, tropical feel when cruising in  a hot climate.

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Definitely noticed a big difference in dress code over the last few years. Surprisingly the gents seem to be much better dressed than the ladies! Men are wearing shirts and smart trousers, sometimes even jackets. Women (note not ladies!) seem to think it is acceptable to turn up to dinner in crop (Capri) trousers and casual tops. I would never dream of wearing an outfit like this when attending a restaurant for a meal, so why wear it to dinner on the ship? A dress is easy to pack and wear. It does not need to be an evening dress. The information given by Windstar used to be smart casual, this does not mean VERY casual.  The prices on Windstar are increasing - towards 5* yet the outfits are more 2/3*. I find that disappointing and concerning.  It is also interesting that depending on the clientele (Europeans or Americans) aboard, the standard of dress for dinner is very different.

 

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Why be critical about what other people wear?  I don't care what you wear. Nor should you care what I wear.  I respect cruise lines right to express a dress code and whether or not to enforce it.  Jeans are now accepted on most cruise lines. I wear jeans most days.  I never wear torn jeans. My jeans and all of my clothing is smart casual.   Times dictate what people wear. 50 years ago, I didn't own any jeans.  Going out for dinner meant dressing up. Now to get me to dress up, it has to be a special occasion like a wedding.  Just ate dinner at Capital Grill.  Saw many people in jeans.  Just accept that people wear whatever they think is acceptable.  

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8 hours ago, Redtravel said:

Why be critical about what other people wear?  I don't care what you wear. Nor should you care what I wear.  I respect cruise lines right to express a dress code and whether or not to enforce it.  Jeans are now accepted on most cruise lines. I wear jeans most days.  I never wear torn jeans. My jeans and all of my clothing is smart casual.   Times dictate what people wear. 50 years ago, I didn't own any jeans.  Going out for dinner meant dressing up. Now to get me to dress up, it has to be a special occasion like a wedding.  Just ate dinner at Capital Grill.  Saw many people in jeans.  Just accept that people wear whatever they think is acceptable.  

I agree mostly with your sentiment, but on the smaller, and more expensive cruises, people do have expectations.  When something is important to you (ie dinner on a cruise) another person can cheapen the experience by dressing like a slob.   

 

I go to dinner early and get a window.  Never a problem.  I look out the window and my traveling companion. I just do not look at them.   It is tougher to do that when I am in the middle of the room.

 

I like your live and let live attitude, but it goes both ways .... you have to allow for people who will feel upset when other do not put in effort.

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I finished my 9th cruise with Windstar in December and have a couple of comments here.

 

Traveling with my 32 year  old son in law and 30 year old daughter, they had one and only one complaint about dining. The dress code is too much for us. They are both professionals, but he doesn't see the need for a collared shirt and she wanted to wear flip flops. The way they expressed it was as a desire for a more casual dining opportunity, and said they would probably eat there every night. Could be done by switching the Stella Bistro on Windsurf, and possibly the very unatmospheric Candles on the three sisters, or just relax the code in AAmpora.  Attracting younger people to the line is a good idea, in my opinion.

 

Secondly, on the jeans thing, we are from Texas. I know here and many other areas of the Southwest, jeans are fine anywhere. My accountant son often wears jeans to work with a button down, jacket and boots. Why do the standards for jeans have to be East Coast style? 

 

Overall, I would like to see them get back to more focus on the service in dining room and less on the attire. The last three cruises have had a reduction in the service that we have known and loved for many years.

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I could never understand why people worry about what others are wearing. How can it have an impact on your meal. I’ve seen people “dressed to the nines” as my mother would say and come to dinner drunk or smell.  I’d prefer dressed in jeans or shorts instead of drunk and smelly. 

I see no problem with women wearing capris to dinner - I do. When I am in the Caribbean after a long hot day, the very last thing I want is to get dressed up. 

But to each their own. For me, wear what you want but please don’t be obnoxiously drunk or smell. 

I’ve been on over 25 cruises and each cruise line has its issues with dress code. 

Happy Cruising All - next month will be my first Wind Star cruise (and I have 2 more booked 😊). 

 

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10 hours ago, Luv my furbaby said:

I could never understand why people worry about what others are wearing. How can it have an impact on your meal. I’ve seen people “dressed to the nines” as my mother would say and come to dinner drunk or smell.  I’d prefer dressed in jeans or shorts instead of drunk and smelly. 

I see no problem with women wearing capris to dinner - I do. When I am in the Caribbean after a long hot day, the very last thing I want is to get dressed up. 

But to each their own. For me, wear what you want but please don’t be obnoxiously drunk or smell. 

I’ve been on over 25 cruises and each cruise line has its issues with dress code. 

Happy Cruising All - next month will be my first Wind Star cruise (and I have 2 more booked 😊). 

 

Hopefully, people like you are the future of cruising.  It would seem like it, so look forward to running into you at sea somewhere in the future.

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