Our first cruise, to Tahiti and Hawaii, was fantastic - from the moment we laid eyes on the Century in Sydney Harbour, to the parting of ways in Honolulu.
Although considered a smallish cruise ship, the Century appeared to us as an impressive white giant as we boarded without delay or hassle (admittedly with the benefits bestowed by our Concierge ticket).
Investigating our new suburb for the next 18 days we were impressed with the lovely lacquered timber, the lounges, the grand dining room, and the welcoming hello's from the 'staff'.
The cruise itself was a novelty, it being our first, and we enjoyed both ship arranged shore excursions and those we found ourselves while island hopping in French Polynesia and Maui. We were not disappointed by the cruise destinations.
The stateroom, like most hotel rooms, was a little tired, particularly the bathroom but contained everything we could want from the most comfortable bed to well stocked bar fridge,wireless internet (surprisingly adequate for a satellite service), to the furniture and of course the verandah (where we enjoyed some wonderful private breakfasts).
The formal and casual dining areas were great. The grand dining room was a picture. Straight out of a grand 19th century hotel with its majestic stair case and timber, timber, timber, finished with the giant windows two storeys high across the aft of the room/ship.
The Century's on board activities certainly kept the passengers busy from dance classes to bingo to shows in the Celebrity Theatre. Although we kept ourselves busy by the swimming pools relaxing.
And then there was the staff. The wait staff in the dining areas, lounges, pool deck and the staterooms. From Bali, Romania, Serbia, Peru and everywhere in between. To Irfan, Ketut, Nenad, Radu and so many others - you made the cruise much more than just another vacation. And the ship's operational crew, mostly behind the scenes but those who maintained the ship, got us on and off the ship, both at dock and by tender so seamlessly, thank you.
Of course there were some aggravations. But nothing disasterous, nothing not remedied with a smile.