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What to change in the "new" Azamara?


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6 hours ago, ChucktownSteve said:

 

XX uses the term luxury as well in their description.  Guess it has no true meaning to RCG. But they don't walk the walk...just talk the talk.

I never thought of Azamara as luxury.  And I really never thought of Celebrity as luxury.  Not even when in any suite. 

Which is precisely why we  like Azamara.  Have no need to be "pampered" (in fact, don't want it).  I want a well organized ship with good food (and the opportunity of better food, e.g. in the Specialties and Chef's Table), congenial fellow pax, helpful and friendly crew and staff and most importantly an itinerary driven sailing. 

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12 minutes ago, ECCruise said:

I never thought of Azamara as luxury.  And I really never thought of Celebrity as luxury.  Not even when in any suite. 

Which is precisely why we  like Azamara.  Have no need to be "pampered" (in fact, don't want it).  I want a well organized ship with good food (and the opportunity of better food, e.g. in the Specialties and Chef's Table), congenial fellow pax, helpful and friendly crew and staff and most importantly an itinerary driven sailing. 

I completely agree with you - these are the reason we enjoy Azamara the most.  We have sailed Celebrity a lot and it has its place in our travel plans.  When we want to do a port intensive cruise we look at Azamara - the itineraries and overnight stays don’t compare.  Neither are luxury by any standard of measure and luxury isn’t one of my criteria when cruising.  

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7 hours ago, welwyngirl said:

I can't remember if they do recent (ish) movies.  HAL do and we really enjoyed them.  Was tempted to 'stay in' sometimes and order room service and drinks to watch.

 

They do, but just a couple of them that are repeated over and over and over...

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I agree that upper-premium is the level of cruise line that DW and I feel most comfortable with.  Everything (food, included drinks, service) is better than 'good enough.'  And you can pay for even better if and when it appeals.

 

We did enjoy our cruises in the Azamara CW suite and in MSC Yacht Club, but the Butlers were a mixed blessing – wonderful for some things, but oppressive in the need for us to satisfy their need to be needed.  [I read a lot of mysteries set in Regency England and I see this same reaction in those newly 'upgraded' in status, having to deal with servants for the first time.]

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Looks like in the cleaning of this thread my response got deleted by accident so here goes. 
If you see a butler as being analogous to a servant you are likely to have issued. 
When booking a CW suite you know it comes with a butler so better be prepared.
We’ve found the secret to a good relationship with a butler is a two way process and it’s best to have an honest conversation with the butler when you first meet. Although we’ve had most of the butlers over the years we still have that conversation even though they remember so much of our likes and dislikes from before. We are very very low maintenance don’t really need a butler. However if we are in a CW suite we always have a pot of coffee delivered to the dining room table for 7am - ready for my wake up coffee. Our other request wherever we are is absolutely no food delivered unless we order it. Saves embarrassment and wastage. 
Butlers aren’t mind readers, you need to help them understand how much you do or do not need them. Never found an Azamara butler to be needy. 

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Given what’s been posted on other threads and the issues with FCCs and the behaviour of some travel agencies I would like to suggest the new Azamara sets far tougher standards of behaviour applicable to all agencies (I mean the standards the good ones are meeting) and take action against everyone of those agencies who breach their “code”.
They should be at the vanguard of championing ethical business practices even if that means walking away from some potential channels of business.  Azamara and the ethical agencies will get known for behaving in a fair and appropriate manner and cruisers will keep coming, even if it means an agency change.  It can also be a competitive advantage these days for both the cruiseline and the agency so win win. 

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On 3/7/2021 at 1:02 AM, ECCruise said:

Which is precisely why we  like Azamara.  Have no need to be "pampered" (in fact, don't want it).  I want a well organized ship with good food (and the opportunity of better food, e.g. in the Specialties and Chef's Table), congenial fellow pax, helpful and friendly crew and staff and most importantly an itinerary driven sailing. 

Well said ... we are very much in sync with you ... we don't like people into our personal luggage, we had enough status with the old Azamara that they washed our clothes and shined our shoes ... we usually book a balcony ... who needs a butler ...

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Posted (edited)
On 3/8/2021 at 9:34 AM, GlobalMethod said:

Well said ... we are very much in sync with you ... we don't like people into our personal luggage, we had enough status with the old Azamara that they washed our clothes and shined our shoes ... we usually book a balcony ... who needs a butler ...

I'm low maintenance, but when I have a suite following a while in standard cabins it is a very nice addition. Breakfast delivery set up on the table with a cloth is particularly nice. The butlers I like are those I can chat to and have a laugh with, but at the same time are efficient and discreet. Elro is one. Croox is another.

 

All the butlers I've had on Azamara bar one who I will not name have been great.  There used to be one called Ravin from Mauritius. He was the best. Cheerful, friendly and a huge character. We dubbed him part of the Mauritian Mafia. He left to another cruise line,  but understand he is looking to come back to Azamara with ship 4 announced. 

 

Your reference to into your personal luggage?  I'm assuming you mean the advertised packing and unpacking?  I've never had them do that. It more of a marketing gimmick, but reality is different and it's very rarely done because you have to be there for security reasons. 

 

Phil 

Edited by excitedofharpenden
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I agree about Ravin he is a great character, he was our cabin attendant a few times in the early days.

We always had a balcony but he made a point to come speak with us later on when he was a butler.

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1 hour ago, Bloodaxe said:

I agree about Ravin he is a great character, he was our cabin attendant a few times in the early days.

We always had a balcony but he made a point to come speak with us later on when he was a butler.

Sounds just the sort of thing he'd do. He was always out there and visible on White Night and would often have a dance with the ladies. Special guy. I miss him. 

 

Phil 

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I miss Ravin and his alter ego from the mafia Pravin.  Elro is so much fun and like Ravin always seeks us out when we are sailing but not in a suite.  None of them are needy 🙂 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, uktog said:

I miss Ravin and his alter ego from the mafia Pravin.  Elro is so much fun and like Ravin always seeks us out when we are sailing but not in a suite.  None of them are needy 🙂 

I missed that. Definitely not needy. I feel that is an insult to them certainly the ones on Azamara and seems based upon limited experience. I don't know about MSC Yacht Club as I haven't sailed with them. 

 

Phil 

Edited by excitedofharpenden
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Elro is a star. It's been great to watch his career progression from our first Az cruise on Quest in 2013 (when we first met him in Windows Cafe), right up to meeting him in Belfast when transferring his Butlers role from Journey to Pursuit.

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On 2/22/2021 at 2:48 PM, Jim in OR said:

If they could solve the issues with the tight galley, I’d like to see the library converted to a French specialty restaurant. 

No please don't take away our library.  It is the best on the high seas.  No other cruise line comes close and we have cruised on some of the "luxury" lines.

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The couple times we went by the Library on the Journey, there was no one there.  We were surprised to see this.  On our other cruise line of preference, the libraries are usually well attended.  There are newspapers to read, maps to look at and of course books to read.  

The space needs to be taken advantage of but I think it should still be a library, just add something to increase its use.

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On 3/19/2021 at 9:02 AM, mj_holiday said:

The couple times we went by the Library on the Journey, there was no one there.  We were surprised to see this.  On our other cruise line of preference, the libraries are usually well attended.  There are newspapers to read, maps to look at and of course books to read.  

The space needs to be taken advantage of but I think it should still be a library, just add something to increase its use.

I love that the ships have well stocked libraries. I am the Luddite who doesn’t read books electronically, so saves me having to use valuable luggage space for books.

Betsey

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2 hours ago, Mackdogmolly said:

I love that the ships have well stocked libraries. I am the Luddite who doesn’t read books electronically, so saves me having to use valuable luggage space for books.

Betsey

DW and I both love our kindle readers.  We never run out of books.  At home we read both print & ebooks.  DW initially said that she didn't want to do ebooks, but now has authors that she follows and I get their ebooks for her. 

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I haven't read a physical book in at least 6 or 7 years.  Have close to 500 on my Kindle.

 

But I will scream loudly if they make any changes to the Library.  It is a quiet and attractive space.  Rarely have seen it totally empty except perhaps at meal times.  

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3 hours ago, ECCruise said:

I haven't read a physical book in at least 6 or 7 years.  Have close to 500 on my Kindle.

 

But I will scream loudly if they make any changes to the Library.  It is a quiet and attractive space.  Rarely have seen it totally empty except perhaps at meal times.  

I have 1800 on my kindle.  DW and I don't always read the same books.  But we share kindle accounts.

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1 hour ago, Skicruiser55 said:

I wonder if they will continue with AzaAmazing evenings?  

I would expect the entertainment to be brought onboard rather than buses to venues. They did onboard evenings in the Caribbean in November/December 2019. It’s not the same as an Azamazing evening but it’s more than just local dancers coming onboard 

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We had one on board in Egypt too, it was great. The event was on Deck 9 and they brought on snake charmers and whirling dervish dancers, plus a lady that did henna hand painting, another that told fortunes and someone who did beautiful Arabic writing. It was a really interesting and lively evening. We also heard that they’d considered trying to get a camel on board, but decided it was impractical.

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7 minutes ago, Grandma Cruising said:

We had one on board in Egypt too, it was great. The event was on Deck 9 and they brought on snake charmers and whirling dervish dancers, plus a lady that did henna hand painting, another that told fortunes and someone who did beautiful Arabic writing. It was a really interesting and lively evening. We also heard that they’d considered trying to get a camel on board, but decided it was impractical.

I remember that on one of my cruises. Maybe it was the same one you were on.  Good fun!

 

Phil 

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I think they would be unwise to stop the Azamazing evenings - they are a USP.

 

The thought of bringing them on board is interesting and has some plus points over bussing the whole ship to somewhere on shore.

 

We've done two Azamazing evenings, one good, one not so good.The Maori choir mixed with Western classical music in New Zealand was great. The Aboriginal show in Australia was not so good, possibly because we were so far back from the stage that we couldn't see that much.

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