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Firstly, we are a couple in the late 40's to 50 bracket, and this trip was a large part of that 50th birthday present!This was our 6th cruise, in different parts of the world, and put us up to Emerald class. We left the UK a week before the sailing flying Emirates to Singapore, where we have relatives, and spend a few busy days enjoying the atmosphere and good food. We have been here several times and can recommend the night zoo, Sentosa Island and the many nature walks in the rainforest where you come across monkeys, turtles, lizards and the occasional snake in their natural environment! We then flew o/night to Sydney with Qantas and stayed in the Sydney Boulevard Hotel for 3 nights. Its located just out of the C.B.D. but for the price, harbour view and great walks we had through the parks to Circular quay, we cannot fault it. We did the Bridge Climb [excellent!}, Sydney Opera House tour {very good!} and a full day tour with a small local company to the Blue Mountains {excellent!}. On cruise day we got a taxi, with the grumpiest most miserable driver ever, to the O.P.T. and after the usual boarding procedure got to see our home for the next 2 weeks. This was the first time we have been on a Radiance size ship, having been on both smaller and larger, and overall it was a good balance. Plenty of space {inside and out}, plenty of restaurants to try {foods a big part of any cruise!} and well signposted, although it did take one of us most of the cruise to find our way about! We got into our cabin around 1pm and had booked a JS on the midship port side as this meant we would see the land on cruising clockwise around NZ. The cabin was large,clean, airy and had a large walk in cupboard. The bath is a must for us for health reasons, and was full sized, tiled and mould free! The bed was comfy and the balcony spacious with table and 2 chairs. { had space for an extra lounger} We always had hot water and everything worked as it should, so can't ask for much more. Ok, will break down the cruise as best I can from here. Crew As usual they mostly worked hard to provide a good overall experience, with standouts being the cabin stewards{as usual}, the waiters in the main dining room and the cruise director. Food We had anytime dining which was the best we have had. Food always well prepared and hot. Waiters knew your likes etc after a few days and we always asked and got extra veggies as this was always lacking on the plate. The dining room was large,sometimes noisy, but with glass all around and well decorated was a nice place to have your dinner and meet new friends. We tried Chops Grill {twice!] Izumi, Giovani's Table and Samba Grill during the 2 weeks. No need to tell you our favourite, but all excellent except the Italian. It was good but I think the problem we had was that there are lots of good Italians around which did not make this anything special or worth the extra money. My wife says the speciality coffee at cafe Latittudes was excellent, so that was her morning sorted! This was a port intensive cruise with the exception of the 2 days at sea either end. We are not big drinkers{anymore} so the drinks packages were not for us. That said, we enjoyed the odd bottle of wine with dinner. Entertainment Cruise director Amy was a live wire! I think she terrified some of the passengers particularly if they tried to leave the theatre at the end of the show before she had said her bit. She was seen to chase a few up the aisle and back to their seats! The shows in the main theatre were mainly excellent with a higher than normal number of headline acts brought onboard. We were knackered most evenings after early rises and full days ashore and with the exception of dinner and a show we headed for bed early most evenings so cannot say to much about the bars and other entertainment. Shore Excursions Before we came on the cruise we had all but one of our excursions booked with local small independent tours which were significantly cheaper than the ships. Only one let us down at the last minute but we replaced it easily locally. All of our excursions were well run,informative and in small groups and we believe we saw and learned more as a result. Leaving Disembarking went well and only took about 20 mins. We had booked a hotel the other side of Circular Quay for 2 nights and just pulled the cases for 10 mins. The hotel was the Sir Stamford. This is one of the best hotels we have ever stayed in. I chanced my arm on booking re an upgrade for the birthday and surprisingly got one. We had a large room overlooking Circular Quay, bridge and Opera house and got to watch the ships come and go. Breakfast was excellent as were the staff. Took the ferry to the zoo opposite{high quality zoo} and went to Manly. One of the highlights though was walking the coastal path from Bondi to Cougee. Magnificent views! Had a 3 night stopover in Dubai after the 14.5 hr flight and stayed in the Radisson Blu at the Creek. Excellent hotel and location with metro lines nearby. Had a fantastic holiday and life experience and working on next cruise trip!  

A Great Journey To and Around NZ

Radiance of the Seas Cruise Review by TRUEBLUE66

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
Firstly, we are a couple in the late 40's to 50 bracket, and this trip was a large part of that 50th birthday present!This was our 6th cruise, in different parts of the world, and put us up to Emerald class.
We left the UK a week before the sailing flying Emirates to Singapore, where we have relatives, and spend a few busy days enjoying the atmosphere and good food. We have been here several times and can recommend the night zoo, Sentosa Island and the many nature walks in the rainforest where you come across monkeys, turtles, lizards and the occasional snake in their natural environment!
We then flew o/night to Sydney with Qantas and stayed in the Sydney Boulevard Hotel for 3 nights. Its located just out of the C.B.D. but for the price, harbour view and great walks we had through the parks to Circular quay, we cannot fault it.
We did the Bridge Climb [excellent!}, Sydney Opera House tour {very good!} and a full day tour with a small local company to the Blue Mountains {excellent!}.
On cruise day we got a taxi, with the grumpiest most miserable driver ever, to the O.P.T. and after the usual boarding procedure got to see our home for the next 2 weeks.
This was the first time we have been on a Radiance size ship, having been on both smaller and larger, and overall it was a good balance.
Plenty of space {inside and out}, plenty of restaurants to try {foods a big part of any cruise!} and well signposted, although it did take one of us most of the cruise to find our way about!
We got into our cabin around 1pm and had booked a JS on the midship port side as this meant we would see the land on cruising clockwise around NZ. The cabin was large,clean, airy and had a large walk in cupboard. The bath is a must for us for health reasons, and was full sized, tiled and mould free!
The bed was comfy and the balcony spacious with table and 2 chairs. { had space for an extra lounger}
We always had hot water and everything worked as it should, so can't ask for much more.
Ok, will break down the cruise as best I can from here.
Crew
As usual they mostly worked hard to provide a good overall experience, with standouts being the cabin stewards{as usual}, the waiters in the main dining room and the cruise director.
Food
We had anytime dining which was the best we have had. Food always well prepared and hot. Waiters knew your likes etc after a few days and we always asked and got extra veggies as this was always lacking on the plate. The dining room was large,sometimes noisy, but with glass all around and well decorated was a nice place to have your dinner and meet new friends.
We tried Chops Grill {twice!] Izumi, Giovani's Table and Samba Grill during the 2 weeks. No need to tell you our favourite, but all excellent except the Italian. It was good but I think the problem we had was that there are lots of good Italians around which did not make this anything special or worth the extra money.
My wife says the speciality coffee at cafe Latittudes was excellent, so that was her morning sorted!
This was a port intensive cruise with the exception of the 2 days at sea either end. We are not big drinkers{anymore} so the drinks packages were not for us. That said, we enjoyed the odd bottle of wine with dinner.
Entertainment
Cruise director Amy was a live wire! I think she terrified some of the passengers particularly if they tried to leave the theatre at the end of the show before she had said her bit. She was seen to chase a few up the aisle and back to their seats! The shows in the main theatre were mainly excellent with a higher than normal number of headline acts brought onboard.
We were knackered most evenings after early rises and full days ashore and with the exception of dinner and a show we headed for bed early most evenings so cannot say to much about the bars and other entertainment.
Shore Excursions
Before we came on the cruise we had all but one of our excursions booked with local small independent tours which were significantly cheaper than the ships. Only one let us down at the last minute but we replaced it easily locally. All of our excursions were well run,informative and in small groups and we believe we saw and learned more as a result.
Leaving
Disembarking went well and only took about 20 mins. We had booked a hotel the other side of Circular Quay for 2 nights and just pulled the cases for 10 mins. The hotel was the Sir Stamford. This is one of the best hotels we have ever stayed in. I chanced my arm on booking re an upgrade for the birthday and surprisingly got one. We had a large room overlooking Circular Quay, bridge and Opera house and got to watch the ships come and go. Breakfast was excellent as were the staff. Took the ferry to the zoo opposite{high quality zoo} and went to Manly. One of the highlights though was walking the coastal path from Bondi to Cougee. Magnificent views!
Had a 3 night stopover in Dubai after the 14.5 hr flight and stayed in the Radisson Blu at the Creek. Excellent hotel and location with metro lines nearby.
Had a fantastic holiday and life experience and working on next cruise trip!
 
TRUEBLUE66’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin 1542
Good sized cabin. Mid ship. Walk in cupboard. Full sized bath. All finished to a good standard.
  Radiance of the Seas Deck Plans