First impressions were good. Check in and boarding were painless and quick. We found our state rooms easily and left our hand luggage.
State rooms were surprisingly spacious, with space under the bed to adequately accommodate suitcase and two roll on cases. Wardrobe easily took our clothes, and had plenty of hangers.
However found the bathrooms lack of toiletries irritating....in fact on use of shower found the soap/bath gel dispenser completely empty. Had to call housekeeping to come and fill up. You would think this should be checked on turnover.
Shower was not very hot and had to call maintenance to look at it and rectify. Sink tap was practically impossible to turn on, just enough water flowed through to clean ones teeth.
Balcony area needed refurbishment, paint was peeling off all areas.
Our first visit to The windjammer buffet was a fiasco. Too many people, not enough space. In fact they opened the speciality restaurants to accommodate the number of people which converged on the buffet. A continuous announcement to vacate tables when finished was constantly played.
Good choice of food as usual, but also chaotic. Not enough space to manoeuvre round the food islands.
We therefore ate in the main dining room, which was a lot better, for breakfast.
Dinner in the main dining room was good, but food was certainly way below par to previous cruise line we have been on. There was a choice each evening of Asian or European cuisine. We ate in Giovanni, the Italian speciality restaurant on Christmas night, which was good and service good too.
Overall service was ok in all areas, although slow in some due to lack of staff ....Schooner bar a case in point, it took a while before ordered drinks were brought to the table.
Entertainment....shows were terrible, musicians in bars good.
Casino....busy but fine, not as varied slot machines as on other cruises but adequate.
Overall cruise was fine for 5 day break over Christmas period, but was more geared up for the Chinese/eastern market.
Surprisingly few Christmas festivities, was surprised by lack of. Admittedly ship was decorated for Christmas but felt more could be done for those celebrating this holiday period.
Ports of call....Port Klang a waste of time, unless you had a ship tour booked you were not allowed off the ship. In any case the ship was docked at a cargo terminal so there was nothing to walk around if you had been allowed.
Penang....docked right by Georgetown, an easy walk into town....well worth doing.
Phuket....short tender ride to Patong.....worth doing, visit shops & restaurants along beach front, or visit the beach for a change.
Spacious, good storage.
No shower gel in pump dispenser in shower.
No hot water for first few days.
Sink tap allowed only slight flow, despite complaint to maintenance.
Lack of toiletries.
Waste of time unless you had tour booked, were not allowed off ship and in any case was docked at a cargo terminal!
Easy walk into main area of Georgetown.....worth doing.