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Old September 18th, 2007, 09:41 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
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Default Food Quality of HAL, Cunard, Celebrity

We are deciding between a cruise on the QM2, Celebrity, and HAL's Amsterdam to the Caribbean this December. I have sailed 3 times on Celebrity and found the food excellent. I have never been on Cunard or HAL and would appreciate any feedback.
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Old September 18th, 2007, 08:11 PM
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I will give you my scenario. I just got off the Carnival Conquest where the food was wonderful. Hubby had a prime rib, you could have cut with a spoon. Souffle was to die for....Service was great as well!

My cruise experience on your 2 choices went as follows:

Over NY eve, we were on the Century, food was only good, and the service was really bad, in fact, one couple left and never returned to the dr. I think that was a miatake.....It did improve slightly aftwerwards.
The food was excellent in Murano's, as was the service.

On HAL'S Zuiderdam, we sailed with a friend who is a HAL fan, bigtime. Our service was frightful, due to I think, the discourse between the waiter,and asst. And, the food was just good...He was very disappointed over the service taking a nose dive, from his past HA: cruises..The Pinnacle Grille, was excellent in both food & service, and we wished we could have dined there every night.

That being said, the service in the dr is a crap shoot, I think..tables right by us on both ships seemed to have no problems. Both lines tout service and I hope you get it ....Toss a coin......heads Celebrity, tails HAL! Good luck in whatever you decide:)

Trip, with her book & tea!
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Old September 18th, 2007, 09:56 PM
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Location: Philadelphia, PA
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Originally Posted by Trip
That being said, the service in the dr is a crap shoot, I think..tables right by us on both ships seemed to have no problems. Both lines tout service and I hope you get it ....Toss a coin......heads Celebrity, tails HAL! Good luck in whatever you decide
On my last two HAL cruises I found the service in the dining room to be excellent, but very, very slow. The problem, I believe, was not in the staffing levels with the waitstaff, but rather with problems in the kitchen.

Also, I don't know if this initial impression is accurate, but I think how good your service will be depends upon the size and diversity of the people at your table. By that, I mean ... if you are seated at a table for ten, and some of those people order items from every course, while others maybe only order an appetizer and the main course, the service is gonna be slow. You're gonna be served your appetizer when the others get theirs, and then will have to wait while those others go through their appetizer, soup and salad before the main courses are delivered to the table. Now add to that if you've got some really talkative people at the table ... people who are slow eaters ... well, you get the picture. It could amount to a 2.5 hour event for dinner every night.

This happened on my last cruise and several people at the table became disgusted over it. A few of them left on some nights without even getting their main course. They just got tired of sitting there and left. Yet others were happy as clams because they were sampling all the courses and enjoying good conversation with them.

I don't know what the solution is other than to pick your dining companions carefully. Or maybe HAL's new Dine as You Wish flexible dining program is the answer.

Blue skies ...

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Old September 30th, 2007, 04:12 PM
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I don't think you can lose whichever way you go. I would however caution you about QM2 dining. There are 3 tiers from the Brittania to the Grill Rooms and the top suites get the best service and menus. Celebrity and HAL are more democratic. Basically everyone eats from the same menu unless you up the ante and go to the Specialty Restaurants--a highly recommended activity. Bon Voyage!
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