Better than before, Best perhaps,Still not perfect
Our second cruise on Europa2 sailed from Colombo. With 2yearly refit/makeovers some good changes have come about. In particular "Belvedere" lounge is now larger with library space. However it still does not work for musical events. Our hotel pick up was spoiled when coach seats ran out and we were turned back to wait for another to arrive, not handled well HL. Cabins are still poorly sound proofed, and Germans still like to smoke, and cough on cabin balconies and elsewhere. On our very warm voyage the robes were thick toweling. Still most passengers are German speaking, yet all crew are English fluent once they learn you require it.The very pleasant English hostess was often around. Men are requested to ware jackets for dinner but most took the off to sit so what is the point? Still no drinks package, just a $200 credit and some in room drinks. The bar lists are excellent and very affordable with no service charge. There is a tacky Raffle for the crew and a donation box. More annoying is having to pay for water at lunch and dinner which is the German way. Sansibar being open to the deck can suffer from heat and smokers. Cabin light switches (8 beside my bed!) are now loosing their markings making them even harder to understand. The new huge screen TV's offer limited films and channels, no BBC nor USA. Watch out if you want to reserve a sun bed, friends had all their possessions removed by another passenger (yes German). No charm school onboard. The beach party was excellent, however some passengers fell down drunk and injuring themselves needed the ships Dr to come ashore and collect them up! Food quality and service remains high. However being Germanic in style may not please everyone. Baking for instance. "Elements" Asian food could be disappointing being cooked by mostly Indian chefs. Out of meal time food options were very limited which felt very poor after paying for expensive shore trips for instance, and room service poor. How old fashioned to order via reception desk staff who can not even see your room number. The "Yacht Club Grill" was very poor. Some shows/bands were excellent but timings can be spread thin and Club2 is still under used. Some lectures are repeated for English speakers. The "Entertainment Officer" Frank was seldom seen and preferred his TV studio! A number of LGBT passengers requested an organized meeting/party and that had to be referred to Hamburg, and was turned down, which left a bad atmosphere among some young Germans who were first time on Europa2. Disembarkation was bad. No berth was available at Bali so all bags and passengers were crammed into tenders in an uncomfortable way, our final memory of Hapag Lloyd.
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