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Old 15-08-2019, 12:48 PM   #2686
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They always have steak in the Chinese restaurant. It is the same sirloin steak as you get in the paid steak house. The higher grade of steak is ribeye if you know your steak. They always do the steak exactly as I ordered and comes piping hot, not like the other Chinese food they serve which is pre-cook in the afternoon.

Western cuisine is only available on every trip except the weekend Bintan trip. Official Chinese restaurant is on upper dream dining deck 8. Lower dream dining on deck 7 on most trips is a mixture of Chinese and Western. Western on the left and Chinese on the right.
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Old 15-08-2019, 12:49 PM   #2687
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Not sure what you mean about the premium beverage package. Hard liquor is also included. But if you ask for Drumbuie or $200 bottle of wine you have to pay for it.

I see they have added an additional $400 fee for palace upgrade, so yes it is better to book palace up front.

Lastly you have your casino relationship manager to look after you. Do they still give you a butler.
Palace guests get inclusive Classic beverage package and not the Premium package, can only enjoy beer, wine, soft drink and coffee, no hard liquor like dram or whisky.

Yes, still given a butler whenever travel on suite, assist from checkin to checkout, restaurant reservation, shore excursion booking, passport collection, etc..
My agent basically only do cabin, concert and tournament booking.
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Old 15-08-2019, 12:50 PM   #2688
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Is it for the weekend Bintan trip or Wednesday port Dickson trip. Thanks for the feedback.
Friday trip, used to be Cruise No where trip.
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Old 15-08-2019, 12:55 PM   #2689
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Palace guests get inclusive Classic beverage package and not the Premium package, can only enjoy beer, wine, soft drink and coffee, no hard liquor like dram or whisky.

Yes, still given a butler whenever travel on suite, assist from checkin to checkout, restaurant reservation, shore excursion booking, passport collection, etc..
My agent basically only do cabin, concert and tournament booking.

Agents do not really entertain their clients on board especially the Lao Jiao ones. It's the private butler service thats nice. Tipping is optional. The best part is you get excellent service without having the pressure of needing to tip.
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Old 15-08-2019, 01:00 PM   #2690
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Friday trip, used to be Cruise No where trip.

They used to serve hard liquor for palace suite guests but now it's just classic package as what you mentioned. I am a non alcoholic drinker so I appreciate that they include fresh fruit juice now. Previously it's only chilled juice that tastes yucky.
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Old 15-08-2019, 01:43 PM   #2691
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Agents do not really entertain their clients on board especially the Lao Jiao ones. It's the private butler service thats nice. Tipping is optional. The best part is you get excellent service without having the pressure of needing to tip.
You like the butler service. Not me.
I don't need someone to check up on me ever so often.
Maybe I am a very private person. Also there is really nothing I need the butler to do for me.
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Old 15-08-2019, 01:56 PM   #2692
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Palace guests get inclusive Classic beverage package and not the Premium package, can only enjoy beer, wine, soft drink and coffee, no hard liquor like dram or whisky.

Yes, still given a butler whenever travel on suite, assist from checkin to checkout, restaurant reservation, shore excursion booking, passport collection, etc..
My agent basically only do cabin, concert and tournament booking.
Classic beverage package is half the price of the premium package. It is advertise as beer package. The wine is not drinkable as it is too sweet.

Also the standard wifi is only good for handphone use. Cannot use for Internet or streaming when the occupancy on the ship is high.
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Old 15-08-2019, 02:07 PM   #2693
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You like the butler service. Not me.
I don't need someone to check up on me ever so often.
Maybe I am a very private person. Also there is really nothing I need the butler to do for me.
Me neither. I only call them if I need them. I assume you are mostly on Wednesday trips.
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Old 15-08-2019, 04:10 PM   #2694
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Me neither. I only call them if I need them. I assume you are mostly on Wednesday trips.
You can request for their turn down service to prepare your bed when you are ready to sleep at night. They will leave some chocolates on your pillow, close your curtains, give you some new towels if you need, or even put the cabin slippers beside your bed.

This is very common in hospitality industry and some even allow you to choose your type of bed linen or pillow like down and feather pillow.
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Old 15-08-2019, 04:26 PM   #2695
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I have experienced staying in Palace cabin for a few times and I love cabin 11290 particularly ! I always request for this cabin whenever GD gives me suite. It is a deluxe suite that have the bedroom and living room separated by partition wall instead of curtain and a very spacious balcony where can accommodate 20 people to hold a party! . Compared to the Palace cabins at level 15, palace deluxe cabins are located level 13 and below either in front or very rear of the ship.

The buffet at level 17 is not as good compared to early this year, food are getting lesser and lesser, still very much better than Lido though. The reason for lesser food serve at level 17 could be because palace guests can have their free meals at the paid restaurants, I myself like Umi Uma Japanese restaurant and mostly settle my lunch and dinner there. My last long distance trip to Philippines 6d5n no longer allow Palace guests to have 2 meals at paid restaurants but once a day.

Free wifi for all Palace guests, although a normal Palace cabin only accommodate 4 guests but they allow wifi setting up to 7 devices. So.... you know what you can do when you have friends who are not traveling on Palace....

Palace guest entire free Classic beverage package and not the premium package which serve hard liqor.

I have not pay for my cruise except my "virgin" trip last year March. GD is currently promoting their Palace suite which it very attractive, grab it before they are all gone because my previous enquiry on Palace is $2250 for a person to travel on a 3D2N cruise. Palace suite comes with free wifi package per pax is about $50, classic beverage package $90, free shore excusion $50, 3 free meals at paid restaurants about $150, butler and priority services . Comp balcony is not possible to use cash to top up to Palace suite and if guest travel on paid cruise, the fee paid for a balcony cabin is about $400 per pax + if the upgrade fee is $540, total $940 which is almost the same rate as their current promotion, must well book Palace directly and save all the trouble to upgrade onboard. Moreover, Palace guests can start to receive priority services upon arrival at MBCCS.

Phew ~~~ I seldom type so many words here....
There are few other similar suites with seperated bedroom and living hall setup at the Aft of the Ship below:

9800 (Portside) or 9300 (Starboardside)
10796 and 10296
11790 and 11290
12786 and 12286
13728 and 13228
15592 and 15090

Those on Deck 9 and 10 are bigger that the 11290 you liked.
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Old 15-08-2019, 04:48 PM   #2696
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I was on the cruise with my dad on 2nd, 3rd and returned on 4th August.

I would say I feel the CECA not that many. Maybe 30 or 40%? Still quite a lot but not that crazy number. Still got chinese use the pool lah. But I only ate with my dad.

I think hor, the food is just ok only. It's not bad but nothing fantastic. The chinese food ok lor, just glamourised cai png.

The Function 8 is not bad since everything is free flow, mix of ang mor and chinese food. I find the selection not bad... but I nv eat at the Lido at all.

I never play any gambling, so I only walk + eat + sleep in the 2 days. Lucky very short trip else I would die of boredom. The wifi was like shiat also, I would have thought technology have improved.

Only the gambling improved with all those dices gaming. The table Sic Bo and other tables no one play one. Minimum bet table all is at least $100, not $50. All the aunties and uncles are just jackpot siao

I would say hor, compared to my previous star cruise trips around 20+ yrs ago, I really feel seems like nothing improved, only got worse. I remember in Star Cruise last time arcades more machines to play. The ship was also bigger? Maybe coz last time went with many relatives now go there just walk nia

The food also worse

The arcades also no one visit. I never go to the very top deck lah to see the zip lines or rock climbing la. I feel a lot can be improved, they can add lan gaming and other machines for the arcade. the arcade is like dead

Even the shops and the candy shops are like dead........... basically no one visit, everyone just gamble only.

Rooms are clean, that's all

I felt paying 900 for 2 people for 2.5 days ad-hoc trip was damn ex and experience was crap.

First time cruise go-ers also dont know must pay the dunnno what fee at the end of the trip


I really feel so many things can be improved

1. Add LAN gaming for kids and adults
2. Improve arcade. TOTALLY BO LANG one
3. Improve gambling experience. They only focus on jackpot and not table games
4. The customer service experience was kinda sucky and the dunno what event they held at level 7 or what was like not engaging and no one rly join
5. The snacks shop was like a wtf place........ it's worse than 1/3 of a 7-11. The items + merchandise they sell also crappy
6. The Internet is shiat. They also nv rly improve technology to allow communication between guests


Also, no room service for food one ah? Got anot ah?

I feel technology sucks, no interaction, lousy customer service

Last edited by defnull; 15-08-2019 at 05:07 PM..
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Old 15-08-2019, 06:44 PM   #2697
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How come your trips all free?

High roller at casino? Play high stakes and got DC staff auto approach you?

Per pax. The enquiry was made early this year.
Now they have promotion, $900+ per pax only, that's why I say grab it before they all gone.
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Old 15-08-2019, 09:34 PM   #2698
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Back from my 09Aug 3N cruise. Due to the monsoon the sea was abit rough and heavy winds along the way.

For Penang there was an incident and the ship need to leave and dock again due to very strong waves. Heard one of the gangway was broken. Hopefully no one was injured. For the re-dock they took nearly 1 1/2 hrs and many people was stuck at the immigration. some nearly waited for 2 1/2hrs. It was abit chaotic at the immgration as no clear announcement was made and alot of uncles and aunties was tired and angry and also got some people shouting. Even the dream cruise staffs also duno what happened for those went onshore.

I quite like the crystal asian spa (Deck 5) promotion. 2 package for 30% and 3 package for 50% which i guess is for longer cruise. I can say is worth it. 1 shoulder and foot massage 1hr is $65 so less 50% is very good deal loh. And you can use the facilities which is not bad. Got Steam, Sauna, pool & jacuzzi. Inside the spa also can find jackpot machine lol.
I also went on the 9 Aug trip too. Brought my parents (69 years old) on their first holiday in a long time. They briefly went on shore at Penang at 3/4pm to buy some Penang products at the port shops, then went back on board. We were at Lido buffet when we observed the ship leaving port for a bit. At first i though the ship was re-positioning itself to head to Phuket later at night, but later heard that it was due to rain + strong winds. When the ship was leaving Penang port at 9pm, we saw from our balcony stateroom that the port crew had deployed a crane to retrieve a gangway that fell into the water hahaha.

This is my third cruise. First two times was with RCL Mariner of the Seas in 2017 and 2018 Mar-Apr period, so I was constantly comparing this cruise with RCL.

Embarkation-wise, my parents were kiasu, and we arrived at cruise centre at 11am. I started queuing for the self-check-in at 11.45 and got the cruise passes shortly after self-check-in opened at 12pm. We got Group 1, and were released to go on board i think around 1pm or earlier. We heard Group A(?) boarded first. We hand-carried our luggage and dropped it off at the cabin before going to lunch.

Room-wise, i booked a Balcony Deluxe for my parents and me. It wasnt too tight for 3 folks. I had the sofa bed and it wasnt comfortable. Overall, it was new, clean, and had some free toiletries (unlike RCL, which doesnt even give toothbrush/toothpaste, and my friend had to ask around for one).

Food-wise, GD is more suited to Chinese palate. Lido is good for meals when you know the masses are on-shore. It resembles a wet-market when everyone is on board. It was especially bad on Sat 12-1pm when everyone was trying to grab lunch before going to shore. The key benefit is that it has Western, Chinese, Indian (vegetarian) and Halal food. As someone with no dietary restrictions, you can pick from all 4 sections. I didnt see anyone taking food with their hands, so that's good. I really loved the Indian crackers (Papad) haha.

Only went Dream Dining Upper thrice and Function 8 once. Never tried Dream Dining Lower since my parents dont like Western sets. Dream Dining is about average but the food is served quite fast. The breakfast dim sum is good. My parents also loved they served decent coffee and tea (compared to the dispenser-type coffee at Lido). Also, the host will give your family one whole table, and you didnt have to share with anyone else. So a family of three will just end up taking a table meant for 5/6. My dad didnt like Function 8 coz folks will be asked to share tables when the Function 8 is full.

Never tried the other restaurants. I tried the ice-cream parlour and the sea-salt was really nice. Can look out for the happy hours for free toppings. I also won a herbal jelly thru the on-ship lucky draw (drat! didnt win the 6D5N cruise haha) that was served at the Blue Lagoon.

Entertainment-wise, I loved the Sonio show and caught it twice. The second show "Some Like it Hot" was more singing and dance, and more enjoyable if you were familiar with 60s-70s tunes. The Chinese acrobatics show at Bar 360 was also decent. [I didnt catch the Dreamgirls show - anyone knows if it was worth catching?]

I participated in the third night dream party and it was fun to just dance along for 2hrs to the mass dances and the live band + DJ. The cruise staff leading the dance were really good, as were the band that performed contemporary hits.

I tried the pool on the third day morning, and it wasnt crowded since many people were on shore at Phuket. I wanted to try the slides, but the lifeguards didnt allow googles (i had corrective ones) due to safety reasons, so i didnt try the slides. Towards the afternoon, it got more crowded. The adult pool is quite deep - 1.7m (my height!) at the shallower end and 2m at the deeper end. Not really long enough for anyone to do decent laps.

The level 15 gym is small, but doesnt get a lot of traffic. The equipment are new, and similar to what you can find at Safra gyms. I think i saw some of the Sonio performers use it on Day 3 AM, but didnt bother them.

I also went on the bridge tour ($30) and galley tour ($25) on Day 4. The bridge tour was quite cool and you get to speak with the staff on duty and take photos. The galley was quite noisy, but the exec sous chef doing the tour did his best at showing the kitchen, prep areas and freezers. We also had a brief look at the ship's "I-95" (termed as the route running the length of the ship where crew can get one end to another at Deck 4) and also saw the crew going into the crew mess.

The only bad point was that the bridge tour started at 1015 and the galley tour at 1100. When i booked it, the reception staff said i should have enough time for the bridge tour. However, the bridge component ended at 1050, and there was also a inclusive tour of the helipad too. So i had to drop that component to make it in time for the galley tour.

[Spa] I booked on the second day for three treatments (50% off, total damage of $153 (18% included) for 180mins. Quite worth it. I did 60mins reflexology and 60mins body massage on Day 2, and another 60mins body on Day 3. My first masseuse Bella was quite good - can ask for her.

App and Payment - the app was quite useful for booking the Sonio and Some Like it Hot shows, and for viewing the Dream Daily if you dont have the daily newsletter with you. You can also view your bill and do quick payments for your expenses via the app. Quite convenient compared to RCL, which forces you to link a credit card to your room card.

I didnt try purchasing the onboard wifi, since i wanted to do a detox. Since i was always connected to the onboard wifi to view the app easily, i think some data does get thru, and my phone will get some notifications.

Ship-wise, I think the lay-out was quite well-designed. There werent any spots that made you do detours (whereas RCL Mariner had a few weird floors that forces you to take some stairs when trying to walk from one end to another. RCL Mariner was also packed at the indoor plaza areas.) With 3400 pax, there was surprisingly a few areas that werent crowded, like the L15 gym and crystal life cafe; L17 sun deck aft and zouk area; L19 forward Palm Court (may be occasionally closed for private functions) and Terrace. When i was chased out of Palm Court once as they needed it for a private function, i found a nice little corner at L5 forward where there were some seats near the meeting room area. [Did anyone try camping at L15 crystal cafe? Will they ask you to order food/drinks to continue staying there?].

Service-wise, I think RCL staff are more friendly and will smile more. For GD, a few standouts are my room steward, some of the DD-upper waitresses, and the cruise entertainment staff leading the exercises/games/dream night.

Ship-stability wise, i felt GD was a bit rocky. You can certainly feel the rocking at the forward and aft sections, including my cabin (L10 forward), and DD-upper, and Lido. Compared to RCL Mariner, i only felt vibrations when the ship enters/leaves port, and never on the high seas. Perhaps it was the seasonal weather (it rained 3 times, but not heavily) and we did experience strong winds at certain times.

Overall, I was quite satisfied with the trip. My parents really enjoyed it, and they want to do a longer cruise next year.
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Old 16-08-2019, 06:42 AM   #2699
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How come your trips all free?

High roller at casino? Play high stakes and got DC staff auto approach you?


New members who are high rollers might/might not be approached onboard

Can try to call up dc bookin line after your 1st trip to check on any comp cabin

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Old 16-08-2019, 06:48 AM   #2700
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I also went on the 9 Aug trip too. Brought my parents (69 years old) on their first holiday in a long time. They briefly went on shore at Penang at 3/4pm to buy some Penang products at the port shops, then went back on board. We were at Lido buffet when we observed the ship leaving port for a bit. At first i though the ship was re-positioning itself to head to Phuket later at night, but later heard that it was due to rain + strong winds. When the ship was leaving Penang port at 9pm, we saw from our balcony stateroom that the port crew had deployed a crane to retrieve a gangway that fell into the water hahaha.

This is my third cruise. First two times was with RCL Mariner of the Seas in 2017 and 2018 Mar-Apr period, so I was constantly comparing this cruise with RCL.

Embarkation-wise, my parents were kiasu, and we arrived at cruise centre at 11am. I started queuing for the self-check-in at 11.45 and got the cruise passes shortly after self-check-in opened at 12pm. We got Group 1, and were released to go on board i think around 1pm or earlier. We heard Group A(?) boarded first. We hand-carried our luggage and dropped it off at the cabin before going to lunch.

Room-wise, i booked a Balcony Deluxe for my parents and me. It wasnt too tight for 3 folks. I had the sofa bed and it wasnt comfortable. Overall, it was new, clean, and had some free toiletries (unlike RCL, which doesnt even give toothbrush/toothpaste, and my friend had to ask around for one).

Food-wise, GD is more suited to Chinese palate. Lido is good for meals when you know the masses are on-shore. It resembles a wet-market when everyone is on board. It was especially bad on Sat 12-1pm when everyone was trying to grab lunch before going to shore. The key benefit is that it has Western, Chinese, Indian (vegetarian) and Halal food. As someone with no dietary restrictions, you can pick from all 4 sections. I didnt see anyone taking food with their hands, so that's good. I really loved the Indian crackers (Papad) haha.

Only went Dream Dining Upper thrice and Function 8 once. Never tried Dream Dining Lower since my parents dont like Western sets. Dream Dining is about average but the food is served quite fast. The breakfast dim sum is good. My parents also loved they served decent coffee and tea (compared to the dispenser-type coffee at Lido). Also, the host will give your family one whole table, and you didnt have to share with anyone else. So a family of three will just end up taking a table meant for 5/6. My dad didnt like Function 8 coz folks will be asked to share tables when the Function 8 is full.

Never tried the other restaurants. I tried the ice-cream parlour and the sea-salt was really nice. Can look out for the happy hours for free toppings. I also won a herbal jelly thru the on-ship lucky draw (drat! didnt win the 6D5N cruise haha) that was served at the Blue Lagoon.

Entertainment-wise, I loved the Sonio show and caught it twice. The second show "Some Like it Hot" was more singing and dance, and more enjoyable if you were familiar with 60s-70s tunes. The Chinese acrobatics show at Bar 360 was also decent. [I didnt catch the Dreamgirls show - anyone knows if it was worth catching?]

I participated in the third night dream party and it was fun to just dance along for 2hrs to the mass dances and the live band + DJ. The cruise staff leading the dance were really good, as were the band that performed contemporary hits.

I tried the pool on the third day morning, and it wasnt crowded since many people were on shore at Phuket. I wanted to try the slides, but the lifeguards didnt allow googles (i had corrective ones) due to safety reasons, so i didnt try the slides. Towards the afternoon, it got more crowded. The adult pool is quite deep - 1.7m (my height!) at the shallower end and 2m at the deeper end. Not really long enough for anyone to do decent laps.

The level 15 gym is small, but doesnt get a lot of traffic. The equipment are new, and similar to what you can find at Safra gyms. I think i saw some of the Sonio performers use it on Day 3 AM, but didnt bother them.

I also went on the bridge tour ($30) and galley tour ($25) on Day 4. The bridge tour was quite cool and you get to speak with the staff on duty and take photos. The galley was quite noisy, but the exec sous chef doing the tour did his best at showing the kitchen, prep areas and freezers. We also had a brief look at the ship's "I-95" (termed as the route running the length of the ship where crew can get one end to another at Deck 4) and also saw the crew going into the crew mess.

The only bad point was that the bridge tour started at 1015 and the galley tour at 1100. When i booked it, the reception staff said i should have enough time for the bridge tour. However, the bridge component ended at 1050, and there was also a inclusive tour of the helipad too. So i had to drop that component to make it in time for the galley tour.

[Spa] I booked on the second day for three treatments (50% off, total damage of $153 (18% included) for 180mins. Quite worth it. I did 60mins reflexology and 60mins body massage on Day 2, and another 60mins body on Day 3. My first masseuse Bella was quite good - can ask for her.

App and Payment - the app was quite useful for booking the Sonio and Some Like it Hot shows, and for viewing the Dream Daily if you dont have the daily newsletter with you. You can also view your bill and do quick payments for your expenses via the app. Quite convenient compared to RCL, which forces you to link a credit card to your room card.

I didnt try purchasing the onboard wifi, since i wanted to do a detox. Since i was always connected to the onboard wifi to view the app easily, i think some data does get thru, and my phone will get some notifications.

Ship-wise, I think the lay-out was quite well-designed. There werent any spots that made you do detours (whereas RCL Mariner had a few weird floors that forces you to take some stairs when trying to walk from one end to another. RCL Mariner was also packed at the indoor plaza areas.) With 3400 pax, there was surprisingly a few areas that werent crowded, like the L15 gym and crystal life cafe; L17 sun deck aft and zouk area; L19 forward Palm Court (may be occasionally closed for private functions) and Terrace. When i was chased out of Palm Court once as they needed it for a private function, i found a nice little corner at L5 forward where there were some seats near the meeting room area. [Did anyone try camping at L15 crystal cafe? Will they ask you to order food/drinks to continue staying there?].

Service-wise, I think RCL staff are more friendly and will smile more. For GD, a few standouts are my room steward, some of the DD-upper waitresses, and the cruise entertainment staff leading the exercises/games/dream night.

Ship-stability wise, i felt GD was a bit rocky. You can certainly feel the rocking at the forward and aft sections, including my cabin (L10 forward), and DD-upper, and Lido. Compared to RCL Mariner, i only felt vibrations when the ship enters/leaves port, and never on the high seas. Perhaps it was the seasonal weather (it rained 3 times, but not heavily) and we did experience strong winds at certain times.

Overall, I was quite satisfied with the trip. My parents really enjoyed it, and they want to do a longer cruise next year.
Erm, actually so far among all the cruises tat i went, i feel tat my elderly family prefer costa cruise

They enjoy the ambience, stage performance n the food there.

I feel there are less child or young kids activities onboard
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