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Azamara Quest Cruise Review
Sailing from New Orleans to Miami
I had wanted to go
on this cruise out of New Orleans for some time, but my wife said it
was too long. When she finally agreed to go, cabin 7005 was already
taken. My wonderful travel agent booked 8053.
She said she would watch for an opening and sure enough 6002 and
6003 opened up and I was able to book 6003 for an increase of about
$4000+. All was set until we went to check in and I was told I was
upgraded to 7119, which I had not authorized. I was disappointed,
but my wife told me to be quiet since the upgrade was an increase of
about $4000 without charge. I had my heart set on that forward
viewing cabin and if asked if I wanted the upgrade, I would have
declined. In any event we had a good cruise. My travel agent agreed
that she should have been notified and would have explained that I
wanted the forward viewing cabin. The change was made by the Azamara
financial people and they couldn’t understand why I was dissatisfied
with an upgrade. Some people in business think things are all about
The Azamara Quest is the old R7 built by Renaissance Cruise line in
the year 2000. Celebrity cruise line acquired it around 2007 and
along with the Azamara Journey have been operating these two upscale
We sailed out of the PORT OF NEW ORLEANS on a pleasant cruise down
the Mississippi River toward the Gulf of Mexico and I suppose went
out the Southwest Pass. This happened in the middle of the night.
There is nothing to see except marshes and at night pretty lights
mark the way.
We had a rough ride across the Gulf of Mexico with seas about 10 to
12 feet so the ship did a lot of pitching. The roll was very well
controlled by the stabilizers which were apparently working
perfectly. These Renaissance ships ride well for small ships in
We arrived at GEORGETOWN GRAND CAYMAN Saturday October 29 on our 4th
day at sea. Jan had wanted to take a submarine tour, but it didn’t
run on Saturday. I kind of wanted to do another helicopter ride
since previously I had done two on one visit and it was beautiful.
Jan is not keen on helicopter rides and our friends were not aboard
since Beryl got sick in Fort Lauderdale after their Princess cruise
across the Atlantic and was admitted to ICU from their Miami hotel.
They were scheduled to fly from Miami to NOLA to board with us
October 26, 2016. I decided that I didn’t want to leave Jan by
herself, so just talked to the Helicopter rep and found out that
Jerome is still flying his helicopters.
We just walked around since we had previously been to 7 mile beach
and would wait for St. Martin for our beach day. Bought some Tortuga
Rum cakes and had them shipped for gifts at home.
Our next port on Sunday Oct. 30 was PORT ANTONIO, JAMAICA a once
thriving Banana export city. We got with new friends and shared a
cab to Boston Beach, Blue Lagoon, and Frenchmen’s cove. The lagoon
and Frenchman’s cove are over rated. Boston Beach was better and
grabbed some Jerk Chicken.
We had a nice sea day October 31, 2016 and that night many danced in
costumes in the dance area up top in the Living Room I think.
The next port Nov. 1st was LA ROMANA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC. We had
previously been there and already visited Altus de Chavon. This time
we had planned a trip to the Dreams Hotel to spend the day and pay
for a cab ride. The ship offered a free shuttle to Casa de Campo,
which we took, but it let us out at a shopping area and things were
closed. This Catholic country takes “All Saints Day” off. We thought
we might be let out at the main hotel and pay a day fee, but that
didn’t work. We walked around and looked at the nice yacht harbor,
and ran into Mike and Karen who decided to take a cab from there to
the Dreams Hotel with transportation back to the ship and we spent
the day at the Dreams for $65/p with all the drinks one could want
and nice food buffet. We shared this cab with Len and Angie Bettam
from Vancouver Island BC, Canada and Richard and Sherrie and Mike
and Karen who had got it together. Mike is a retired fireman and his
muscular build showed it.
This was nice and the cab driver found us at the appropriate time
and we returned to the ship.
The next day Nov. 2 was a sea day and the night of the “Best of the
This is a spectacular dinner put on for the top suite people and is
well worth the attendance. It is hosted by the Captain and several
officers. I had been before on previous cruises and wouldn’t miss
this. I even put on a coat and tie. It was a magnificent display of
On Nov. 3, we had a previously booked a tour with Actief for
WILLEMSTAD, CURACAO, but our English friend got sick and couldn’t
make the cruise. We had previously been to Curacao but didn’t take
any type of tour last time. We were able to find new friends Len and
Angie that paid Vance’s portion and took their place and we had a
wonderful tour with Chippy the driver guide. Chippy was his handle
because his last name was Chippendale. We could have decreased the
cost by increasing the number but 4 seemed good at $60/p. This
gentleman driver/guide was very educated and knowledgeable about
Curacao which can be difficult to understand the different areas of
Willemstad. We visited the Curacao factory and bought the obligatory
liquors. Chippy showed us the Wedding Cake house and took us out the
fort which Len climbed, but I stayed with the girls. I used to hoot
with the owl at night, and soar with the Eagle during the day, but
the Owl can’t hoot much anymore and the Eagle has trouble getting
going during the day. Willemstad is beautiful city to visit with its
Nov. 4 we had a wonderful day at sea.
Saturday Nov. 5 we visited GUSTAVIA, ST. BARTS and the two of us
grabbed a taxi to ride around the Island. That was $80 since we
didn’t plan ahead to share. I will pay anything because my joints
just don’t last walking.
On Sunday Nov. 6 we visited CHARLESTOWN, NEVIS. We teamed up with
Mike and Linda and met a taxi driver that put us with his wife who
was an encyclopedia of knowledge. She knew Alexander Hamilton’s
entire story, and many other stories about pirates and buccaneers,
but I don’t think she mentioned that a Mr. Burr running for governor
of New York challenged Mr Hamilton to a duel because of speeches he
was giving against the New York Governor. Mr. Hamilton died as a
result of his wounds.
On Monday Nov. 7 we arrived at PHILLIPSBURG, ST.MARTIN where we have
spent two separate week trips previously along with several cruise
port stops. We went to ‘Orange Fever’ a relatively new area on
Orient Beach (since May 2016) and it was very nice and very good
fried breaded shrimp. We shared a cab with Len and Angie from
The Azamazing Evening planned had to be moved inside to the ship and
the performance was magnificent. Too bad it couldn’t have been
outside as originally planned. The cruise ship goes to a lot of
expense to put these things on along with the fire works after.
On Tuesday Nov. 8 we visited VRIGIN GORDA and did the same tour with
friends that we had done on a Silversea cruise three years before.
Mike and Linda from South Carolina were great traveling partners.
November 9 and 10 were days at sea and we arrived in MIAMI as
scheduled. On board the ship there was something to do for everyone
every day. Many trivia games, shopping etc to keep busy. The
blackjack tournament was fun since I won one. I had one hot run
playing BlackJack and got ahead $200 and quit. My wife Jan however
borrowed $10 from me and put it in a slot machine and won $900. I
got my $10 back and that is all. I should have made a deal to share
the profits from my investment.
When our Blackpool English friends are with us we play “Joker Poker”
and have been known to play 37 hours on a cruise. If one types ”Pegs
and Jokers” in Google the rules can be found. We have made our own
boards and have a traveling game made by fixing a layout to an old
folding Monopoly game. At home we have a board made by gluing the
layout to an appropriately cut board. It is a great game and all
games played are different.
Friday Nov. 11, 2016 I had a transfer booked privately but could not
connect because of communication problems so we took a cab. I had my
credit card company credit the charge back since I did not cancel
the transportation, they just didn’t show even after texts saying
they would. They acknowledged my text that said I would be
disembarking in 10 minutes and getting through customs with a porter
was a breeze.
What a great trip!
© Linda Coffman
Guide & Cruise
Cruise Diva's Blog
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