Went on 5 day cruise from HK to Philippines. Unfortunately, there were some changes to the itinerary prior to sailing ( Borocay closed by the government so went to Subic Bay instead, and Manila docking changed from 8am until 11am which ... Read More
Went on 5 day cruise from HK to Philippines. Unfortunately, there were some changes to the itinerary prior to sailing ( Borocay closed by the government so went to Subic Bay instead, and Manila docking changed from 8am until 11am which was a bit annoying ).
Embarkation in HK brilliant - mainly because so few people get on here, so no waiting time and pretty much straight on the ship. The downside to that is that you have a 3-4 hour wait in Nansha both ways to pick up and drop off the majority of the passengers, given this is an Asian ship catering for the Chinese market.
We had an inside cabin and it suited us fine. It was spacious enough for 2 single beds, has fridge and safe and TV and kettle and all the things that you require in a cabin, apart from a view. Beds comfortable with nice pillows. Turn down service most nights, but no towel animals.
As a vegan I always struggle on cruises. We ate in the Lido each meal and found a wonderful food manager, Burhan, who went out of his way to make sure that we had a hot vegan meal each night. The salads were some of the best I have seen on a cruise, with plenty of variety and although I struggled with breakfast only being able to eat fruit, there was ample choice for those that eat a full diet. The main dining rooms unfortunately offered very little in the way of vegetarian or vegan options. We did not eat at any of the speciality restaurants.
Entertainment was once again great, with 3 different shows on our cruise, which you have to book once on board ( no charge ). The only issue we repeatedly find on this cruise line is the passengers come in late, stand in the aisle, talk and then leave before the show ends or the house lights come on. Staff did a good job trying to control this but they are fighting a losing battle.
Cruise staff brilliant. Godie and his team on this cruise were fabulous and provided a variety of activities, with lots of fun and smiles. They really know how to make you feel welcome and how to get people involve and enjoying themselves. We did a Behind the Scenes tour, which is run by the cruise staff, and found this well worth doing and very interesting. There was dancing and a real party atmosphere most nights.
The ship is lovely, and having also travelled on Genting, I liked this ship more. There are less poker machines and while the casino does spill out a bit, its not as bad as on Genting. The place is spotlessly cleaned, with staff constantly cleaning. Only issue is smoking is allowed on board in the casino, and the smoke does waft through the casino and the area around it. After 30 minutes sitting at a poker machine, which is a non smoking area, my clothes smelt of smoke.
Although this is a ship designed and staffed for the Chinese market, we may have stood out but never felt left out as Westerners and everything we went to had both a Chinese and an English speaking staff member. We found all the English speaking staff very friendly and found more of the Chinese speaking staff making an effort on this cruise compared to previous cruises.
Overall, we had a fabulous time on this cruise, mainly thanks to the cruise staff and how exceptionally nice they are and the generally nice Asian hospitality. Read Less