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Age: 69


Number of Cruises: 1

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Mariner of the Seas

Sailing Date: 2011-02-26

Itinerary: Valparaiso to Sao Paulo

Destinations were the reason for us choosing this cruise I.e. Valparaiso, Chile to Sao Paulo, Brazil via the Chilean Fjords (gorgeous), Ushuaia, very interesting except a fiasco due top inadequate tender service, Cape Horn, wonderful and the highlight of the trip and the captain gave us ample time to take it in; the weather was wild and windy and wavy which is what it should be there. Then Montevideo, (wonderful) and on to Sao Paulo. The bus tour in Sao Paulo was dreadful. Due to disembarking delays it was truncated, the tour guide was totally self-centered a gave us a political rant for hours, she was misinformed aboTrmut a few things as we discovered for ourselves the next day, and the bag lunch was deplorable! The ship was much bigger than we would have liked therefore crowds and much time sent waiting for elevators. The Windjammer was often too crowded. The service was good overall, except for the guest service desk which was less than helpful. Stateroom staff was excellent for us. We had a junior suite which was lovely. Although most of the time it was too cool to use the pool, when it did get warm we found it impossible to use it because the music was deafeningly loud, to the point that we couldn't talk or hear, and certainly couldn't read our books. The Internet/wifi services were quite inadequate. Several of the computers were unusable, and those that were OK were so slow that you used up a great deal of your time (at cents a minute) just waiting to connect. In this day and age wifi should be a given in each stateroom.

Food was generally so-so; the buffets were average, and no more. The dining room was OK, mainly because the portions were a reasonable size and not mammoth. Some nights were better than others, Service was very good.

Lovely as we had a junior sweet which was well worth it. Nice balcony, room to spread out. Should have wifi see above.

Did't participate in much,but thought some of the morning lectures were OK, and some of the entertainment was good particularly the classical pianist and the " Three Seasons " classical group. Also the ice show was fantastic. The captain's lecture on the last day was interesting, but should have been earlier in the cruise. We had many quest ions about the ship and the precise route we were taking day by day. There wasn't enough information about where we were or here we were going..

Don't take the day long trips, but take a short overview and then go on your own. In our experience the port that required tenders was a disaster- completely ruined the day, which was a shame as we wanted to have a look around Ushuaia as well as go out on a boat trip, but the lack of tenders meant that we missed the town and waited for two hors to get back to the ship. Definitely sit up in the lounge on Deck 14 and watch Cape Horn.(the smoking lounge is quite disgusting and too odorous to even use. Also, there was a "private" function in Ellington's every evening at cocktail time, which was quite annoying as it would have been nice to have a drink up there before dinner. Too much attention given to the diamond set, you need to cultivate the new cruisers. A welcome drink or something would have bern nice - even the most basic all-inclusive in Mexico offers that.

Destinations were fabulous, the cruise itself was ho-hum.

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