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Bryan Schmidt

Age: 39

Occupation:Quality Assurance Coordinator

Number of Cruises: 1

Cruise Line: Imperial Majesty

Ship: Regal Empress

Sailing Date: 2008-12-29

Itinerary: Granda Bahamas

Having never cruised before, we did not know exactly what to expect. We had also read some bad reviews online and were filled with apprehension, especially because other details of our package had been difficult and a great hassle for us. We were pleasantly surprised. The ship is older and thus does not have some of the amenities we had read about on other ships but for what it is, it was the highlight of our trip. The service was top notch as was the entertainment. Food was above average and plentiful. Cabins were clean and well maintained. Our only complaint about them was as a couple we were initially assigned bunk beds, which makes no sense. We had specifically been promised and requested at least a double bed. The port supervisor did arrange an upgrade, but it was a frustrating hassle to deal with right off the bat. The cruise more than made up for it. Our only other complaints were not going to Nassau as we had been sold on when we bought tickets and the constant picture taking by staff photographers of staged photos, which were then offered at overpriced rates. A pirate photo? Was that really necessary for adults? Titanic staircase photo? Gee, I wanna think about that when I am on a cruise....not. These are minor points though, we are now chomping at the bit for another cruise.
Food was freely available and good. Drinks were way overpriced and that situation was frustrating for us, because we did not realize we would have to pay so much for soda. If we had known, we would have brought more with us. I thought the food was very well presented, well prepared and tasted very good. Some of the buffet stuff was a little less so. The Mexican food was pretty much a disappointment. I did hear the Italian, which we skipped due to wanting sleep, was the best meal on the ship though. I just wish some of the buffet offerings were a little broader in between times.
Clean, well kept. Nowhere to put luggage and a little confused what the intention was for how to settle in. But they did have closets and drawers available though we made little use of them. These were big enough to stow our luggage in though. Bathroom was big enough for both of us and thus bigger than expected though the shower was a little tight for one.
Good shows, good variety of activities, some of which I did not even discover until the day we disembarked. I did not expect the quality of entertainment to be so high, so this was a pleasant surprise. We also enjoyed the hospitality of an excellent crew whose origins from all over the world was fascinating.
Excursions were not the best way to see the Bahamas and there were plenty of on shore opportunities at better prices with less crowded conditions, so I recommend skipping them.
If you sell us Nassau, please take us there and if you have a good reason why you cannot, we deserve an open explanation not dodging around it. We felt communication could have been better on some things which would have spared frustration. Our only crew complaint is that our cabin steward was pretty hard to get a hold of and we did not see him but once after we came on board.

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