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5 Night Asia Cruise from Hong Kong

5 Night Asia Cruise from Hong Kong

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Spectrum of the Seas
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Itinerary

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  • Day 1
    Hong Kong
  • Day 2
    Cruising
  • Day 3
    Hue
  • Day 4
    Nha Trang
  • Day 5
    Cruising
  • Day 6
    Hong Kong

Spectrum of the Seas

Spectrum of the Seas - Royal Caribbean International


Cruise Reviews

My husband and I took this cruise - our first without our kids who are now both in university. We chose this cruise because we have always wanted to visit Japan but the idea of travelling there on our own was a bit daunting. We have ... Read More
My husband and I took this cruise - our first without our kids who are now both in university. We chose this cruise because we have always wanted to visit Japan but the idea of travelling there on our own was a bit daunting. We have cruised several times before and thought this would be a good introduction to Japan. We booked this without knowing we'd need a visa for China and truthfully, it might have put us off if we had known. The visa application was very long and expensive - but I'd definitely go through it again. We flew from London to Shanghai and had one night in Shanghai before the cruise started. We arrived Saturday morning, and after a short food break in the hotel, we walked around for a few hours. The next day we took a taxi from our hotel to the port in Baoshan. As westerners, we seemed to be ushered into a different line than the Chinese passengers and it was extremely quick (it felt discriminatory if I'm honest). We arrived at the port at 1:30 pm and were on the ship within an hour. We had booked a junior Silver Suite and it was lovely. We had a bathtub, sink/mirror and separate shower in one room, and a toilet and sink/mirror in another which was ideal. The cabin itself was spacious, tastefully decorated and felt more like a hotel room than any other cabin we'd had before. On the second day I asked our cabin attendant for a feather pillow and was very happy to find one on the bed later that day. The ship is beautiful, but we were slightly disappointed that the main dining room seemed to lack the "wow factor" of other ships we'd been on; no grand staircase and the decor was a bit plain. That was probably the only part we were disappointed with as there was comfortable, stylish seating all over the ship and finding a quiet spot wasn't difficult. As Silver Suite passengers, we had access to the private solarium which was beautiful, comfortable and very quiet. We were disappointed that we were not assigned a table in the Main Dining Room for the duration of the cruise as that had been a highlight of past cruises; getting to know our waiters and fellow dining companions. On the first night we sat on our own, although there were 5 couples in all sitting in a row, seated at the same time and served at the same time. It was almost like sitting at a large table, but not quite. We ate twice in the Main Dining Room and twice in the Windjammer and both were OK, but we felt the food was slightly below par compared to other ships we'd been on. As Silver Suite passengers, we had access to the Silver Dining Room (something we didn't really know much about before the cruise started) and the quality here was superior to both Main Dining Room and Windjammer with a buffet for breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus an a la carte menu in the evening. The a la carte menu was the same each night, but it was good quality food. We also had a few snacks in Cafe Two70, Sorrento's and Splashaway Cafe as well as special coffees in both Leaf & Bean and La Patisserie and were happy with the quality of all. Overall we were happy with the quality of the food, but this is mostly due to the Silver Dining Room (seafood lunch buffet on day 7 was a definite highlight) and we both feel the Main Dining Room and Windjammer should have been a bit better. As a note: the Bionic bartender was super busy on the first night, but really quiet throughout the rest of the cruise, so if you want to try it out (even just for the sake of getting a video) wait until at least the second day. Although there were several available dinner packages for the restaurants with supplements, we did not try any of them. As for the entertainment, we watched Showgirls, The Silk Road and The Effectors and all were very good, but The Silk Road we especially good - beautiful visuals and lots to look at. We also enjoyed the virtual fireworks and the piano player in the lift was fun, too. The only on-board activity that we tried was the climbing wall - my husband is a climber, so he had a few goes on several of the days. He found the sea days tended to be much busier than port days. One of the things I had wanted to hear about in other reviews is what to expect re: Chinese passengers. I have to say that my experience might not have been the norm, but I did not find the Chinese passengers to be rude; I witnessed only one spitting incident (into a bin by the lifts) and two incidents where we had to push past Chinese guests to get off the lift as they had rushed on before we could get off. It might have been that I was bracing myself for the worst, but I think that I was needlessly worried. I will leave my comments about the ports at the end, I'm not always interested in what people do/think of the port stops, so I'll put them at the end in case you want to finish reading here (presuming you've read this far Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We were part of a group tour from Australia traveling from Shanghai China to Japan for one week, then back to Shanghai. The cruise was marketed as a Western Cruise. Approx 800 Aussies were on board with others from UK, USA etc but still ... Read More
We were part of a group tour from Australia traveling from Shanghai China to Japan for one week, then back to Shanghai. The cruise was marketed as a Western Cruise. Approx 800 Aussies were on board with others from UK, USA etc but still mostly Chinese passengers. Having mostly sailed with RCI and having spent 30 nights previously on the Ovation of the Seas I was expecting the ship and cruise to be similar to what we have experienced previously. The ship is mostly the same but has a few different layouts. I can't say that these differences are for the better. The Solarium: I love this part of the ship. Unfortunately on the Spectrum this entire area is now only for "upper class" passengers. Only those few that have suites are allowed entry. Reminds me of the Titanic with areas below deck for the lower classes. Windjammer: What a nightmare! Only visited twice due to the noise levels, the crowds, the food choices, the pushing and shoving by other passengers. Sorentos Pizza: This now adjoins the Windjammer. Only has 2 tables inside. There is an area outside that is meant for Sorentos but impossible to find a seat as the Windjammer customers take them all including the two tables inside. The Patisserie: Used to be a favorite but with only four cakes (all the sames except for the colour) available, a bit pointless. The Dining Room: Meal times were 5pm and 7pm. We were booked as a group of 30 for 7pm. First night we were shown our tables off to the side. Second night we tried to go to our tables but were told that we all need to be present to be shown to tables that could be anywhere in the restaurant. Not what we were expecting. We had to plead with the staff to be all seated together in the same area. The meal service was very slow. Took two hours usually to get our three courses. We were never offered tea or coffee. Very difficult to get a drink. Food was usually only warm. The food was Ok but not as good as previous cruises. The shows: We booked for Silk Road. Had to queue at one of the bars at a certain time to book. The RCI App was useless, couldn't use it to book anything. Despite being the first passengers to arrive the first couple of shows were booked out. Show times didn't fit with the Dining Room time slots. Shows were at 6.30pm and 8.30pm. The show went for 45 minutes but you have to arrive 15 minutes early to get a seat. So we missed desert despite asking for quick service of our meal due to attending the show. We enjoyed the show except for the inconsiderate people who just don't understand the instruction "NO FLASHES". RCI should have staff available to kick the inconsiderate people out. Not only is it so off putting for the performers to stare into a bright light but due to the shape of The 270, other audiences members also have the lights shining in their eyes. You also have the passengers who feel the need to text and play with their phones throughout the performance. North Star & I Fly: We didn't use these as RCI have a fee on most activities on their cruises in the Asian market. Have previously enjoyed both on the Ovation for free. Why is the volume of the music turned up to head ache inducing levels every time an activity is on or a staff "performance" is on? The music band by the pool is also played at a really loud level. It's very hard to find a quiet spot on the ship to actually relax. There are no quiet areas indoors to relax and talk. Once again we were charged our onboard account in $A despite completing the onboard check-in details with a $US request. The difference in the RCI exchange rate to what our bank offers is huge. Every cruise we have taken they have disregarded our request. Definitely the worst cruise I have been on. I would never take another cruise in the Asian region despite enjoying the Ports we visited. The ship part of our holiday didn't come close to previous experiences. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I wrote a longer write up as a post to tell people about the Gold and Silver Class benefits on the ship. We stayed in a Grand Loft Suite on deck 15, we also had an Owner's Suite for some relative on the same deck. These were the ... Read More
I wrote a longer write up as a post to tell people about the Gold and Silver Class benefits on the ship. We stayed in a Grand Loft Suite on deck 15, we also had an Owner's Suite for some relative on the same deck. These were the best decorated rooms we have ever had on RCI, particularly the loft suite. The bathrooms were all lovely. As a new ship it was pretty much immaculate. The only thing I didn't like was the open bedroom in the loft where you could hear someone watching the TV below. Gold dining was pretty similar to Coastal Kitchen, service was fantastic. In general the food on the ship, however was mediocre. It was often under seasoned and lacking flavour. Chops was disappointing. Teppanyaki was excellent however. Sichuan Red was good but very spicy, although you could change this. It was too authentic Chinese for my liking. The Windjammer was constantly very busy and unpleasant. We only went in to look. The Silver Dining area buffet available to suite and Diamond guests was much more pleasant. Pizza at Sorrento's was the best I have had on a RCI ship. Entertainment was surprisingly good despite often being in Chinese. My wife and I took part in The Love and Marriage Show and they did it in English also for our benefit. We were told the policy was to add in English if needed. Bars were empty and the 7pm shows very busy. It was quite quiet after 9pm which I found pleasant. Some people may find it too quiet. We didn't find people too pushy, it seems that the policy in China is to get into the lift at the same time people get out. But really it wasn't an issue, just part of being on a busy ship. Embarkation was very slow due to Chinese paperwork which is much more extensive than elsewhere. You cannot disembark until 1 hour after the ship arrives in port. Most people on board were locals so they all started to get off as soon as possible ignoring stated times. The gym was small, but was not busy and seemed fine to me. Public areas were generally quieter than on other ships. Everyone seemed to be at The Windjammer. Pools were also quiet. We enjoyed the stops in Japan, Nagasaki and Kagoshima. We took a tour in Nagasaki and had a lovely guide for English speaking people. I found it haunting and sad. We walked around in Kagoshima and took the local tram. This was easy and way better value than the ship's tours. People were lovely. It was the shortest cruise I have been on and I personally found 5 days a little short. Overall we really enjoyed it and would happily go back, my only real gripe was the food. It seems to me that these Chinese cruises are also cheaper than elsewhere for similar cabins so I thought it was good value. For Europeans flights are probably cheaper to China than the US. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
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