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Old October 3rd, 2004, 08:27 PM
Camelia
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Default Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

It was a coastal cruise from Vancouver to Los Angeles. This was the first time I took a five day cruise and I wonder if they are treated differently than the normal 7 day? First of all the ship is a beautiful one and I"ve never been on a steadier ship..I quite missed being rocked to sleep at night..like I"ve been in other ships!

There were a few things that I'd like to comment on:

First of all this cruise convinced me that I definitely prefer traditional seating as apposed to anytime dining...I know there's a ce rtain appeal to being able to go to dinner any time rather than at a scheduled time but that wasn't quite the way it was on board. The first evening I naively arrived at one of the dining rooms at about 6:15 for dinner and when I explained that I had no reservations..I wasn't accomodated but told that I needed them..and that nothing was available until 8:00 p.m....I was astonished..I had been prepared to wait but not two hours..this was different from the Sea Princess when I also had anytime dining and indeed was accomodated quite quickly when I arrived for dinner. .For the rest of the cruise..I had to call each morning to book a table and only one day did I get a preferred seating at 6:30..the rest of the days I was forced to go at 8:00 each evening..what is anytime about that??

I absolutely hated what they did with the set up of the Horizon Court. I know that many people have commented on the layout of the buffet area but I never had any problem with it..I appreciated the fact that the intent of having the different stations is that people can go to them without having to line up each time and I've always thought they worked quite well..except this time. Whoever was in charge had the brilliant idea of closing ALL the exits except one...there was only one entrance and one exit for everyone..this meant that lineups were inevitable and the whole purpose of the set up was defeated..once you were in it was so difficult to work your way around and I kept feeling trapped in a tiny space with many people who sometimes weren't in the best of moods. I still don't understand WHY they had to close the other exit which would have made life so much easier for everyone . The final annoyance was the absolute waste of manpower. There were actually two full time staff stationed at the exit/entrance..one was there to give us our plates and one was there to give us our cutlery..I have never seen two more bored individuals..I felt sorry for them..I don't know why Princess thinks we can't pick up our own plates! I thought it was for hygienic reasons but then we shouldn't have been allowed to touch the fruit plates or anything else in that case!

Lastly, I was a bit disappointed that the Captain was quite invisible...not even a Captain's cocktail party...or a Circle member party either....which I enjoyed on other ships..that leads me back to my question: are shorter cruises treated differently?
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Old October 3rd, 2004, 10:30 PM
Nonie
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Default Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

Your comments make me a little nervous. We booked a Mexican Rivera cruise on the Diamond Oct 16th. Our TA talked us into Personal Choice dining this time, although we've always had traditional seating in the past.

Camelia - would you mind telling me about the size of your cabin. We booked a balcony - Baja deck - mid ship.

Thanks for any info you care to share.

Nonie.
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Old October 4th, 2004, 04:11 AM
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Default Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

I sailed the Diamond Alaska in May and returning to the ship in Dec for the Mexican Riviera. It is a great ship. The most important thing to do is make reservations for the week upon embarkation by dialing "DINE" from your cabin phone. You will be fine Nonie =) Princess.com has the exact paramaters of your cabin with photos. Having the choice of 5 dining rooms is great. Again, if you book the reservations early you will not have a problem.
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Old October 4th, 2004, 05:21 AM
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Default Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

I too was on the Diamond Princess 5-day from Vancouver to Los Angeles and had a great time. I had too always been a 'Traditional' diner, but with the options on the Diamond, I switched.

What you have to do, is decide where you want to eat and on what night and call and make reservations. Just like a restaurant, if you don't have reservations, you are only accomodated when they can fit you in.

I think that on the Diamond and Sapphire, they should call it 'Anywhere' dining, not 'Anytime' dining.

Can't wait to go on this class ship again!
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Old October 4th, 2004, 08:35 AM
Camelia
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Default Thanks for your responses..

I must be mistaken then in the actual meaning of the alternative to traditional dining. I've always thought that traditional meant being obliged to eat at only a certain time which is decided upon by the ship and that the alternative meant that you can be more spontaneous and dine whenever you felt like it..depending on the activities of the day...here..there was NO spur of the moment opportunity about it..you had to know by very early morning or even the night before to get the time that you wanted...I know it's a small thing but I was a little disappointed especially because on the Sea Princess it worked so well and we were able to be truly spontaneous..showing up whenever we wanted and never having to wait...

But..I suppose as long as you understand this at the very beginning..you can work within this system and easily adapt.

Nonie...I wouldn't worry..you will have a wonderful time..especially with this bit of info I've just provided..nothing like being forewarned..and you might even prefer it to traditional!! I don't know the exact size of our cabin but it was on the Aloha Deck - midship with balcony...just above you...hardly felt any movement at all...

Enjoy!
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Old October 4th, 2004, 11:59 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Cumming Ga
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Default Re: Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

Nonie
We are also booked on the Diamond Oct 16th, we were orginally booked on the 2nd but it was over sold and they offered us an upgrade from mini suite to a premium suite on theBaja deck. We also selected the Personal Choice Dining, looks like we will need to plan ahead. Looking forward to a great trip.
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Old October 4th, 2004, 06:54 PM
Rosemarie
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Default Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

Camelia

glad to read this message. We are booked on this ship on Nov 20th with our
3children, husbands and 7 Grandchildren to celebrate our 45th Ann.
Just returned on the NCL Star { first time on NCL} from Vancouver to L.A. had
the same problem as you with this dinning.
Hope to have Trational dinning on the Diamond with all our family.

Thanks for the input.

Rosemarie
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Old October 4th, 2004, 07:09 PM
JImeeee4
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Default Re: Re: Returning from a short cruise on the Diamond

PLEASE....don't go on the ship looking for things athat are imperfect! Enjoy, roll with the flow, and tell me later how much you enjoyed it.
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Old October 5th, 2004, 08:15 AM
Camelia
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Default Believe me..I did not go on the ship looking for

imperfections...I love cruising and I love Princess..but..what's fact IS fact and there are no two ways about it. Of course I had a great time and enjoyed myself..but..my point is that it could have been better.....look upon my comments as simple feedback or a bit of constructive criticism..either way....I usually take comments where everything was great with a grain of salt anyway and don't find them very helpful..the reason I read comments is to glean small tidbits of everyone's experiences that I can use or not when I have the pleasure of sailing..hopefully this will be the case for someone else so they won't share my disappointment (however small it was)!

Camelia
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