– Avalon Myanmar – Myanmar River Cruise – April 2017
*Azamara Club Cruises – Azamara Journey – Singapore to Dubai (April 8, 2018)
* Azamara Quest – Southeast Asia and Japan (February 2015)
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Part I
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part II
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part III
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part IV
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Some Final Observations and Thoughts
– The Prologue to the Travelogue
– The Adventure Begins…With a Bump or Two
– Settling In Made Easy
– Luxury Touches Here, There and OK, Not, Everywhere…But There Are Lots of Them!
– Asian Flair Onboard and On Shore
– Private Tours, Israel and Conflicts in Perceptions and Perspective
Celebrity Equinox 2009 – Egypt…Impressive and Depressing
– Dining With the Captain and the Reidel Wine Seminar
– The Last Dinner (Tuscan Grille) and Disembarkation
– What Happens When A Class Act Meets Highly Discounted Cruise Fare
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part I
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part II
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part III
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part IV (Food & Wine!)
– Princess Cruises Doesn’t Treat You Like Royalty; Celebrity Cruises Does! Which is a Better Value for the Upscale Cruise Guest? Part I
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. -Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part II: The Standard Veranda Staterooms
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part III: Treating You Right From The Start
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part IV: The Wine Lists Speak Volumes (As Do The Beverage Packages)
Regent Seven Seas Voyager – August 2017
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part I
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part II (Getting There, The Stateroom and First Impressions)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part III (“You Can’t Teach Five Star Service” and Bonafacio, Corsica)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part IV (Calvi, Monaco, Portofino, Porto Azzurro…and Stale Bread)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part V (My Last Day…and How The Chef’s Team Makes It Happen)
Silversea has announced today that on top of its 15% discount prepay option (and don’t tell me that is not a cry for cash) and the slashing of its prices while still sailing with significantly lower passenger counts, it is adding butler service to all of its suites.
I immediately wondered, “Why?” and then “How?”
According to its press release “Each butler, assisted by a suite attendant, is empowered to troubleshoot problems and provide special service touches, if desired by the guest — for example unpacking and packing clothing, facilitating a dry cleaning request or preparing a scented Jacuzzi bath — ultimately creating a suite environment where one can relax and feel totally cared for.”
The first thing that came to my mind was, “So what.” and then it was “Isn’t this exactly what the stewardesses do anyway?” and then “Wait a minute…Celebrity already does most of this for all its suite guests. Don’t tell me that is the measure!” With that said, let’s review:
Knowing that the stewardesses normally do these things and that they are truly nothing special, I ask, “Why?” The reason is painfully obvious: Silversea is probably cutting down on the number of stewardesses, so they need staff to shift the workload to. Folks, there are only so many crew berths on a ship, so it is not like Silversea is bringing more staff onboard. An alternative: Silversea is seeking a way to address the reported decline in in service quality; not by improving training and crew retention, but by reducing the stewardess’s responsibilities.
And don’t think these butlers are going to be lounging around all day while you are at the pool or dinner or on tours; they are going to be doing jobs which others have not been doing as well as they should.
To me the net result is: Yes, this is it…you might receive the service you used to receive on Silversea albeit through the use of the previously dismissed European staff that Silversea recently discharged (allegedly for not being friendly or happy enough) being reintroduced.
Please, can anyone tell me what is wrong with luxury cruise lines just providing consistently solid service?
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