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planetarium on jupiter?


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just read about the planetarium on the orion....we have 6 days until we board the jupiter in barcelona....would be fun if there was one onboard. i could not find any mention of it in my searches....

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I've seen nothing but very bad reviews & comments on CruiseCritic of the planetarium on the Orion and Jupiter.  Can anyone comment who has been to the planetarium on why?   Is it the programs?  The seats?  The astronomy specialists?

Was this a big mistake for Viking?   Are there things that could be changed? 

I was looking forward to this on our upcoming cruise on Jupiter, as I very much enjoy astronomy, but now I'm not so sure.

 

How do they have people attend?  I heard you have to sign up for tickets?  Where/when?   What are examples of the programs they have had?   I heard another comment that "they lost the last rows of seating" ?  

 

Thanks to those who can provide some insight as to whether this is a worthwhile cruise experience!

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9 minutes ago, CCWineLover said:

I've seen nothing but very bad reviews & comments on CruiseCritic of the planetarium on the Orion and Jupiter.  Can anyone comment who has been to the planetarium on why?   Is it the programs?  The seats?  The astronomy specialists?

Was this a big mistake for Viking?   Are there things that could be changed? 

I was looking forward to this on our upcoming cruise on Jupiter, as I very much enjoy astronomy, but now I'm not so sure.

 

How do they have people attend?  I heard you have to sign up for tickets?  Where/when?   What are examples of the programs they have had?   I heard another comment that "they lost the last rows of seating" ?  

 

Thanks to those who can provide some insight as to whether this is a worthwhile cruise experience!

 

hello CCWineLover

 

We were on Orion in January and I wrote a review after. This is an extract from that review;

 

*we attended the Mars presentation in the planetarium dome. We assumed it would be some sort of documentary about man’s progress towards a Mars landing etc. Unfortunately it was a ‘movie’ (for the want of a better word) with actors pretending to be astronauts pretending to go to Mars. It was terrible. They lock the door when the movie starts .. we assume this is to keep those attending in, rather than late arrivals out

 

Obviously just our opinion .. we didn't back back for seconds so can't comment on the other movies / whatever they are called. We did seriously consider walking out half way through but thought we would only disturb others (who may well have been enjoying the experience).

 

You get tickets from Guest Services.

 

We sat at the very back but even then it was uncomfortable looking up at the screen on the ceiling as the seat did not recline back far enough - again in our opinion.

 

There was no 'expert' in the room to talk about astronomy etc - just a guy who locked the door and pushed the 'play' button.

 

 

Personally - the whole experience was disappointing.

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10 hours ago, Orangegurl said:

How is the planetarium show? Is it worth watching? Is it offered frequently throughout the cruise?

 

Just got off of the Orion and attended one of the planetarium shows (had reservations for 3 different shows but cancelled after attending the first). As others have stated, it is merely a small domed theater with canned productions (whales/dolphins, journey through space, northern lights) shown on the dome.  The seats are ill-placed as one must strain the neck to view the dome even though the seats are slightly reclined. After seeing the northern lights production which seemed more like a children’s documentary with computer generated animation, we decided there were better things to do on the ship. 

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3 hours ago, Little Monty said:

 

hello CCWineLover

 

We were on Orion in January and I wrote a review after. This is an extract from that review;

 

*we attended the Mars presentation in the planetarium dome. We assumed it would be some sort of documentary about man’s progress towards a Mars landing etc. Unfortunately it was a ‘movie’ (for the want of a better word) with actors pretending to be astronauts pretending to go to Mars. It was terrible. They lock the door when the movie starts .. we assume this is to keep those attending in, rather than late arrivals out

 

Obviously just our opinion .. we didn't back back for seconds so can't comment on the other movies / whatever they are called. We did seriously consider walking out half way through but thought we would only disturb others (who may well have been enjoying the experience).

 

You get tickets from Guest Services.

 

We sat at the very back but even then it was uncomfortable looking up at the screen on the ceiling as the seat did not recline back far enough - again in our opinion.

 

There was no 'expert' in the room to talk about astronomy etc - just a guy who locked the door and pushed the 'play' button.

 

 

Personally - the whole experience was disappointing.

 

Thank you for sharing your experiences.  It is sad that this was disappointing. 

I enjoy astronomy a lot, and is a shame that Viking built this just to put on a 2nd rate show.

Perhaps with enough reviews they will attempt to make things better.  Trying to be positive!

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2 hours ago, Focused1 said:

 

Just got off of the Orion and attended one of the planetarium shows (had reservations for 3 different shows but cancelled after attending the first). As others have stated, it is merely a small domed theater with canned productions (whales/dolphins, journey through space, northern lights) shown on the dome.  The seats are ill-placed as one must strain the neck to view the dome even though the seats are slightly reclined. After seeing the northern lights production which seemed more like a children’s documentary with computer generated animation, we decided there were better things to do on the ship. 

 

Thank you Focused1 for sharing.  Yes, it is a disappointment, but better to know now.

Perhaps there will be some changes - we can only hope.

As you say, there is so much to do on the ship, no need to waste any time doing things that are not that worthwhile.

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4 minutes ago, CCWineLover said:

 

Thank you for sharing your experiences.  It is sad that this was disappointing. 

I enjoy astronomy a lot, and is a shame that Viking built this just to put on a 2nd rate show.

Perhaps with enough reviews they will attempt to make things better.  Trying to be positive!

 

Yes, after my review I was contacted by Viking (via this Forum) to thank me for my comments. They indicated these sorts of comments are taken seriously and are provided to those higher up the management line for their attention. Let's hope for something better in the future.

 

As an aside, apart from a couple of minor gripes, we had a wonderful time on-board and look forward to our Norway - Iceland cruise in May. Where ever you are going next, we hope you also enjoy. Regards, LM

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For those who have been on ships with and without the planetarium, how negatively does having it impact the Explorers’ Lounge?  We enjoyed the second floor a great deal on Sky and wonder if the planetarium on Orion and Jupiter make it too small. 

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8 hours ago, Clay Clayton said:

For those who have been on ships with and without the planetarium, how negatively does having it impact the Explorers’ Lounge?  We enjoyed the second floor a great deal on Sky and wonder if the planetarium on Orion and Jupiter make it too small. 

There is a big impact on the space so this upstairs and popular area of the Explorer Lounge is always full due to limited seating. 

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On 3/11/2019 at 10:46 AM, CCWineLover said:

I've seen nothing but very bad reviews & comments on CruiseCritic of the planetarium on the Orion and Jupiter.  Can anyone comment who has been to the planetarium on why?   Is it the programs?  The seats?  The astronomy specialists?

Was this a big mistake for Viking?   Are there things that could be changed? 

I was looking forward to this on our upcoming cruise on Jupiter, as I very much enjoy astronomy, but now I'm not so sure.

 

How do they have people attend?  I heard you have to sign up for tickets?  Where/when?   What are examples of the programs they have had?   I heard another comment that "they lost the last rows of seating" ?  

 

Thanks to those who can provide some insight as to whether this is a worthwhile cruise experience!

We are on the Orion now (continuing from Auckland, heading to Brisbane) & just finished our third show. For the Sydney to Bali, you can now reserve your spot for which show you want using the interactive TV.  It worked well & the person checks you in at the door.  There are three rows, four seats on either side of an aisle.  Two single seats in the ‘Fourth Row’.  We had two passengers sit in those last seats today; I thought the number of tickets per show was 24 but maybe I’m miscounting.  It is announced that you can leave, but you need to let the tech person know so he can turn on the lights so you can exit safely(there are steps & the door is hard to see).

As for the shows, we were planning to skip the ‘Space’ show since Cruise Critic feedback was very negative but Viking changed it to ‘Journey to Space’ (2015) which was a 45 minute documentary about the Space Shuttle trips to the International Space Station.  The other two were about Dolphins & Whales(2008) and Life Under the Arctic Sky (2016) which is about Northern Lights and Arctic people called the Sami’s & their reindeer.  We thought the Space film was the best of the three.  It’s all about seeing 3D film projected on a dome.  Even the Space documentary felt ‘dated’.  I don’t know how many short 3D films are available to be shown.  The computer needed re-booting today so we didn’t start on time.  The other day I heard that the projector got too hot so they couldn’t run the film that night.  It seems to be an expensive experience since you have to have a tech person dedicated to running the show each time.  The shows run five times per day on a Sea day, less on a port day depending on which port.  I’m glad that I got to experience it & see the three shows but I wouldn’t repeat them.  As I have mentioned in the my other post - Live from Orion Auckland to Bali - Crossing the Tasman Sea, I think the planetarium takes up a lot of space on the upper level of the Explorer Lounge which cuts into nice open reading space for people.  The astronomy lectures have been in the Star theater.  I don’t think it’s what we envisioned it to be.  

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During July 2018 on Orion for Iconic Mediterranean we had an astronomer, Howard, who held a lecture on the night of the lunar eclipse on the uppermost deck of the ship with the lights turned off.  Before the event, he gave a presentation of the extraordinary lunar eclipse that was about to occur in the planetarium Dome.  The night of the eclipse, we climbed to the top of the ship, champagne glasses in hand with our fellow passengers oooing and ahhing in enchantment as he pointed out the space station and all the planets visible in the sparkling Mediterranean night sky, especially Mercury rising and the Blood Moon, which was spectacular.  Every one of the dozens attending loved it, gazing at the constellations while Howard described the events.  That evening was one of the highlights of our trip.  It would not have happened without Howard and the Dome.

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23 hours ago, Focused1 said:

There is a big impact on the space so this upstairs and popular area of the Explorer Lounge is always full due to limited seating. 

 

This is unfortunate. The upper level of the Explorer Lounge was among my favorite public space. 

 

Based on the overly negative reviews, Viking should consider getting rid of the planetarium and restore the space to iris original design. 

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4 hours ago, sleepybobo said:

 

This is unfortunate. The upper level of the Explorer Lounge was among my favorite public space. 

 

Based on the overly negative reviews, Viking should consider getting rid of the planetarium and restore the space to iris original design. 

 

Can anyone post pictures of the differences?

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2 hours ago, OneSixtyToOne said:

 

Can anyone post pictures of the differences?

 

Sorry, I haven’t been on the Jupiter yet. I saw from a previous post that the upper level is always full now which was not the case when I sailed with the Sun in 2017. 

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6 hours ago, OneSixtyToOne said:

 

Can anyone post pictures of the differences?

 

Thanks, OneSixtyToOne - I was going to ask the same thing...

Pictures of the Planetarium inside and pictures of the reduced 8th floor portion of Explorers lounge.

If none by April when we board in Barcelona, I'll post some.

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10 hours ago, CCWineLover said:

 

Thanks, OneSixtyToOne - I was going to ask the same thing...

Pictures of the Planetarium inside and pictures of the reduced 8th floor portion of Explorers lounge.

If none by April when we board in Barcelona, I'll post some.

Oyster.com has a whole bunch of pictures of Orion, including some 360-degree images:

https://www.oyster.com/ships/311961-viking-spirit/panoramas/explorers-lounge--v490554/

https://www.oyster.com/ships/311961-viking-spirit/panoramas/explorers-lounge--v490580/

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6 hours ago, just_dont said:

 

I knew I had seen these somewhere.  In my opinion, from the pictures and having  been on the Star, this doesn't have a negative impact.  I have not seen the shows so this just concerns aesthetics.  There seemed to been a lot of unusable space before that was filled with display collections that really needed to be delved into to be fully appreciated.  Since most of Viking's cruises don't contain a lot of sea days, this area seemed empty and unused, except for the large couches where people would be napping on occasion.  I've seen people sleep before so I really don't think we need that space in a public area.  The grouping of furniture does seem to be laid out in sections for people to converse, either while waiting for the planetarium or when shows are not being presented.  I would pivot all the chairs facing the planetarium to face the windows, where the real show is and there would still be room to pass.  There's my opinion, not that anyone cares or asked.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We’re on Jupiter now and just saw the first of two 3D shows in the planetarium, “Explore.”  Given all the negative reviews from those who had watched shows on the Orion, I thought I’d post my impressions, which are much more positive.  I think Viking has updated the films they are showing and, based on “Explore,” I think they have improved a lot. (Frankly, the 3D “trailer” they show, which highlights the 3D capabilities of the projection system, etc., was great!). The movie Itself traced the history of astronomy and ended by showing how a spaceship docks with the Space Station and how ultimately a spacecraft will get to Mars.  The theater was full (26 passengers) and no one seemed to have any complaints about the experience.  I agree with earlier posters that said the back seats are the best. We sat in the two individual back seats and they were great.  Anyone, I’m just posting this to say that, at least in my opinion, the 3D shows in the planetarium were worthwhile.  We didn’t sign up for the 2D movie on the Northern Lights, but may yet check it out.  

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  • 1 month later...

We are currently on the Jupiter and have enjoyed the planetarium shows. After a lecture by the resident astronomer in the Star Theater someone asked him if he could do a lecture in the planetarium. Last night he arranged such a show. After his 2nd lecture in the Star Theater he handed out a very limited number of tickets (24) to those that were interested. The program consisted of the current night sky and moved through all the visible constellations. He did narration and pointed out interesting facts about the various stars and constellations. Very entertaining.

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We will be on the Jupiter in July (British Isles cruise) and I'm so glad to read more positive comments about the new planetarium.  And kudos to Viking Ocean for listening to comments by passengers and improving the programs. 

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