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Danitroline

ALLURE REVIEW June 9- STAR Class ( w/Haven Comparisons)

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Posted (edited)
On 6/18/2019 at 3:26 PM, Danitroline said:

“Later we would meet the international Champion of Cruising Blow Hards, Boasters and Sociopaths

ROFL.  I actually think we’ve met these people on our previous cruises too!  

 

In all serious though...great review.  Thank you.  DH and I will be in a CLS on Allure in Feb 2020 for a much needed escape.

Edited by SuzD123

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I would love to have Daniel for a genie.  Most genie's seem to be friendly but not spend extra time just sitting and talking.  I think it is very interesting to find out how they do their job so efficiently with the people they have to take care of.  It is also fun to hear how they get the presents for people, especially the kids.  We have had Derick on Anthem 2 times so far and will be able to spend time with him again in November.  It is great to have the same genie as you have a little knowledge of what they can and will do for you.  We have talked about sailing NCL in a Haven room but so far we like Royal because they have some wonderful balconies, which most other lines do not have.  Of course the H1 Haven is a bucket list room, but that is a little more pricey than a suite with a genie.

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On 6/18/2019 at 3:26 PM, Danitroline said:

We had originally booked a GS, were offered a ROYAL UP bid 3 weeks before sailing.

 

Do you recall the original cost of the GS and how much the min bids you put in were? I've been in the Haven and am curious about the Star Class product as well.

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7 hours ago, tomservo said:

 

Do you recall the original cost of the GS and how much the min bids you put in were? I've been in the Haven and am curious about the Star Class product as well.

 

We have GS in August. 

 

Min bids

Star Loft bid is $1700

A1 2 bed Aqua is $900

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For our Grand Suite the price and the Royal Up cost  the total was 6,300. We were not even bidding on the suite we received. We received a higher class than we bid on.

It was genuinely the nicest suite we have been in .

 

We booked in March of this year, received a PA discount and a few other ones; watched the prices and caught a $500 reduction prior to final.

 

We actually ended up paying LESS with the Royal up than we would have paid if we stayed in the Grand Suite and paid for drinks, specialties, etc. I had thought it was an even deal but was using the price of our upcoming Freedom trip by accident. 

 

I did not mean to desert this thread- been trying to play catch up at home and work! 

 

 

 

 

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Im not sure where I left off and dont feel like looking so l'll head off to a few Haven /Star Class comparisons.

 

Genie vs Butler:  NCL loses. While I understand that each butler on NCL has more suites to care for than the Genies; we have found them to be invisible most of the time. We had ONE outstanding butler on Getaway when we had suites that we outside of the Haven ( but still Haven class suites) . on e each NCL cruise we have been since the butler inception there will be a family or two that will be very "Extra" as the millenials say.

What does a butler actually do for an average family? Bring you a snack in the afternoon. Perhaps bring you cookies. We don't  have cocktail hours in our suites and the like so I have no experience in this area. 

 

Butlers on NCL can bring you cocktails but it is not included in the drinks package. Genie team gets those martinis right to the suite!

 

Our last butler was on Epic last summer. One of my boys ( adult)  was feeling awful when we reached Naples -  bad  headache, hypersensitivity to sound - and decided not to leave the ship. We gave him his imitrex and Aleve and he wanted to just sleep. He got sick at breakfast and we asked if his order could be brought to the suite. This was done. After making sure he was okay we ran off to Pompei. The butler who brought the breakfast  was not our  usual butler but he came back every 45 minutes to make sure our son was okay; when i thanked him later I noted he handed me a paper with our cell phone #- he asked my son for it in the event that we needed to get back to the ship quickly! 

(It turned out to be an ear infection which "cleared" when my son's ear drum perforated on the flight home several days later. Messy, messy )

This is actually our only memorable NCL butler interaction.

 

The Genies go to Butler school in England and receive a pin that looks similar to a Red Cross emblem  indicating  that they have learned to buttle the British way ( Fraisier Crane would be impressed!) 

 

One area where NCL wins is in the daily treats/ snacks. They were only provided on sea days to our suite. Remember - the Genie knows your schedule especially if you have excursions booked thru RCL which we did. We rarely purchase excursions thru the cruise line but it worked out well for us. Getting back from Jamaica excursion late and having had a NASTY lunch , an in-suite tidbit or morsel would have been appreciated. I do not know if this is the Genie's domain or not as I had our treats delivered by a galley staffer the first sea day.

 

Another glaring omission was the lack of fresh flowers and a fruit bowl in the suite. This was our first cruise on either line where we did NOT have fruit and flowers. I LOVE having the fresh flowers and a banana and some grapes. 

 

LITTLE THINGS MEAN A LOT!! 

Haven has better pens, hands down! Suites on Royal have plastic pens, Haven has nice silver metal pens that last a long time. the concierge gave me a handful when I asked for one. I have enough to last quite some time

 

The hair and body care amenities are a toss up-actually a slight edge to Royal simply because of the sheer size of the LOccitane bottles. Haven has  Bulgari and provide a 4 oz bottle the first day, any refills are the 2.5 small ones. This is not an issue unless you have three young adults showering every 12 minutes . I prefer a large bottle that i dont have to worry about becoming empty and leaves a large amount of shampoo and conditoner for me to toss in my luggage so that I can smell my cruise over and over when i shower

 

SIDE NOTE: One of my sons collected multiple Bulgari soaps as they were replaced. He would pop the wrapped ones in the drawer.  I asked him why he was doing this and he said he was just seeing how many bars he could collect over the course of the cruise. He ended up with quite a few and the steward was hip to his game and started leaving him extras. I was cracking up when we were unpacking at home and he had about 15 soaps from the ship and the hotels we stayed in in Rome.

He ended up selling the soap on Ebay for 8 bucks a bar. Yes, I'm mortified. 

 

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CHEF'S TABLE : ALSO KNOWN AS

"A NEWLY DISCOVERED CIRCLE OF HELL.",

" WANNA SHARE MY EDIBLES' and "

" HOW's YOUR FISH? TASTY? GOOD !LET ME TELL YOU HOW I PERFORMED MY 4th WIFE;'S C SECTION- NO, I'M NOT A DOCTOR- I'M A LAWYER"

Will comment on this later tonight or tomorrow.

 

If you have any questions about STAR treatment or Genies or the ship in general, hit me up! ( I'm so woke😉)

We did not visit the suite  sundeck, did not go to the pool and missed the ice show so cant say much about that. We saw all the other shows and ate in every specialty but Giovannis.Used the infirmary. Did not go to sports deck, flow rider or art auction. Forgot to even look at the pictures they took  of us. Didnt use Freestyle machines.

 

So- other than those things, ask away!!

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NCL has gotten silly with their suite prices. They tout the " BOOK A SUITE-GET ALL 5 BONUSES!!!.

 

When we booked the Allure I had a deposit on one of the "Aways" on NCL. It was an H5 aft balcony which we have had in the past and was an itinerary we liked. It was 8200 as the price also includes the service charges on the "free" beverage package, dining package" . I didn't feel like leaving out of Miami so decided to check out Royal again and I am really happy that we did. Flying from FLL to BWI is easy; when we cruise out of Miami we have the added hassle of getting there from FLL.

 

I have also been noting an interesting tidbit on flights.  Unless is it overseas we have been flying Southwest. Cheap, good selection, no change fees , free baggage. 

For this trip we had to change our flight 2 weeks before the cruise from leaving out of Baltimore to leaving out of Atlanta.

It was the slightly cheaper to take Delta First Class ( with 2 free bags!!) than taking a Southwest flight . We have done this multiple times for fights we booked relatively 'last minute". Even though this was a short hop, after the drive from Gburg and then the flight  delays; that big, wide seat was amazing and our luggae tagged as 'priority " and first down the chute.

Not only was it  cheaper than Southwest, it  was cheaper than Delta's own economy class when you figure in the luggage fees. Yeet!

 

 

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1 hour ago, Danitroline said:

 

SIDE NOTE: One of my sons collected multiple Bulgari soaps as they were replaced. He would pop the wrapped ones in the drawer.  I asked him why he was doing this and he said he was just seeing how many bars he could collect over the course of the cruise. He ended up with quite a few and the steward was hip to his game and started leaving him extras. I was cracking up when we were unpacking at home and he had about 15 soaps from the ship and the hotels we stayed in in Rome.

He ended up selling the soap on Ebay for 8 bucks a bar. Yes, I'm mortified. 

 

 

I did that on Oasis when were B3B in a JS. Every time I got a new soap it went in the drawer. Twice a day in most cases. 

 

20190222_133650.thumb.jpg.7bcf12e4ef2cb7fbcbabbc26ef102c07.jpg

 

He eventually went on vacation,  then transferred to Allure.  He found us on Allure (6 months later) the second day and gave me a huge stash and a full set of the big squirt bottles. 

 

I did not sell them on Ebay 

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I have to say this is a great overview of your cruise and the Star Class benefits. My wife is a fan of Izumi's Hibachi and I am a fan of Chef's Table. I know that Izumi is included in your package (or is it) and what about Chef's Table? Any comments on your experience with it and the Genie?

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19 hours ago, gkbiiii said:

I think Chef's Table is included for Star?

 

The wine may not be

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20 hours ago, gkbiiii said:

I think Chef's Table is included for Star?

On a Anthem in Feb we did Chefs Rable. The meal was covered but we each paid a $25 wine charge

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I find it interesting that the wine would not be covered at Chef's Table for Star Class. I have been to this event and the wines served were not expensive.... 

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, CruiszBug said:

I find it interesting that the wine would not be covered at Chef's Table for Star Class. I have been to this event and the wines served were not expensive.... 

 

Well, Royal charges $8 for White Zin 😉🍷

White Zin costs $4

The pkg is limited to $14 wines

So the covered wines must be under $10 

Edited by John&LaLa

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13 minutes ago, CruiszBug said:

I find it interesting that the wine would not be covered at Chef's Table for Star Class. I have been to this event and the wines served were not expensive.... 

 

And from what I read, they have gotten less expensive in the last few months.

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2 minutes ago, Host Clarea said:

 

And from what I read, they have gotten less expensive in the last few months.

 

They were still doing Caymus on Adventure in January.  No such luck on Serenade in May. 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, John&LaLa said:

 

They were still doing Caymus on Adventure in January.  No such luck on Serenade in May. 

 

Nice! No Caymus for us. All of the wines were uninteresting (to me) whites except for a singular red for the main course.

Edited by CruiszBug

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Just now, CruiszBug said:

 

Nice! No Caymus for us. All of the wines were uninteresting (to me) whites except for a singular red for the main course.

 

Chocolate martini was good, lucky I only had one as I was the designated wine finisher for Laura. 

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1 minute ago, CruiszBug said:

 

Nice! No Caymus for us. All of the wines were uninteresting (to me) whites except for a singular red for the main course.

 

None for us either.

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11 hours ago, CruiszBug said:

I find it interesting that the wine would not be covered at Chef's Table for Star Class. I have been to this event and the wines served were not expensive.... 

I completely agree with you.  The extra charge is bogus.  If we hadn’t been with friends, we would have skipped it.

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