We are not that experienced as Viking cruisers, having spent more time sailing with Seabourn and Silversea. We did, however, spend four weeks on the Viking Sun crossing the Pacific last year and thoroughly enjoyed the Viking experience, so we decided to try them again. Sadly, the Star did not come close to our experience on the Sun and I explain why below. Of course, our trans-Pacific cruise was pre-Covid, but there was nothing directly Covid related about our poorer second experience, nor have I sought to compare Viking with Seabourn or Silversea, whose ships are smaller and whose trips are more expensive.
Viking attempted to simplify boarding during Covid by using the Verifly app to check vaccination status and by incorporating other boarding requirements into a QR coded boarding pass for us to present at the ship. All great ideas, but a complete waste of time and effort, since all this prior work was ignored and repeated at check-in! We even subsequently got a letter telling us we had to visit guest services and register a credit card, which we had also done online before leaving Canada. Having said that, boarding was nonetheless a smooth process and the wonderfully welcoming Viking crew were a delight.
Once we got to our room, which was ready for us on boarding, we were dismayed at the condition of the couch. It was the first thing we saw entering the room and we couldn't begin to understand in all the time this ship had spent doing nothing, this hadn't been attended to. I've attached pictures below. Otherwise, the room was like every other Viking Penthouse Veranda room, and clean and in good condition.