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HLM last won the day on October 13

HLM had the most liked content!

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About HLM

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    First Mate

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  1. HLM

    Where is everyone

    Hi Sinbad, unfortunately you're just one of several present and former members he takes great pleasure in continuing to abuse, and all this from someone who claims to have been a senior officer in our armed forces. Shocking isn't it? HLM.
  2. HLM

    Where is everyone

    Hi OWT. Apologies OWT but it never even crossed my mind that you'd knowingly started a controversial discussion, it's just that the mere mention of that name stirs people up, me included. He's tried to ruin many a forum and to some extent succeeded as a lot of those he abused left and never returned or had to change user names etc just to try and escape the abuse, yet to this day he continues to do it across several platforms. Wouldn't mind betting where extracts of this discussion subsequently end up!!! HLM.
  3. HLM

    Where is everyone

    Perfectly put Sinbad. HLM.
  4. HLM

    Where is everyone

    I definitely have strong views Towny, however there's a clear and obvious difference between strong views and his continued damn right nastiness, stalking and trolling of several members of not only this forum but others as well. People are more than welcome to their opinions of this so called gentleman, I'm quite clear of my opinion of him are. I'd imagine you would've visited his personal blog at some point and the section where he discusses other forums, I don't think I need to say anymore other than if you haven't maybe you should. HLM.
  5. HLM

    Where is everyone

    Hi OWT, But Solent Richard was banned for his continued stalking and harassment of members not only here but other forums, something he continues to do to this day not only on his own blog but across the few other forums he's still allowed to post. This forum is certainly better without the likes of him, even if there are quieter periods. HLM.
  6. HLM

    Where is everyone

    Sorry to hear this news Davybe I hope all goes well, shame about having to cancel your cruise but health always comes first, I prey all goes well and there'll be plenty more cruises for you to look forward too in the future. HLM.
  7. HLM

    Thomas Cook

    My sympathies go out to those who've not had their holidays as yet and are very unlikely to get their refund for at least a couple of months minimum, many of which saved all year. Chances are by the time they get a refund prices will be inflated and who really wants to rebook to Europe in November for a summer holiday by choice. Also my patience wore a little thin this morning watching those being interviewed abroad saying they'd had a lovely holiday but are now claiming they've been left "stranded", it's been widely publicised that everyone will get home but it may take a day or two to get it resolved, very selfish considering those not getting away and staff losing their jobs. HLM.
  8. HLM

    New to forum

    Hi Harpers, glad you enjoyed your recent cruise. You're not alone regarding drink prices this appears to be the main gripe with many Cunard cruisers. HLM.
  9. HLM

    Is cruising suitable for all?

    As I said Towny not aimed at genuine people, but of the few who were using walking aids etc on my recent cruise two clearly didn't actually need them, hence my scepticism. HLM.
  10. HLM

    Is cruising suitable for all?

    This may sound slightly controversial OWT and is not aimed at genuine people, but I'm convinced many of those who use mobility scooters etc don't actually need them. In an emergency I suspect quite a few of those who scoot around on scooters etc whilst onboard would be at the muster station before me (without the scooter)!!! Two recent incidents added to my suspicions, one women using a walking frame which must of been a ploy to get airport assistance as once she boarded the ship she was fine and no frame every time I saw her during the cruise, another whilst onboard using a scooter but could be seen happily dancing whilst Inebriated most nights without a care in the world as it seems. Just to reiterate my views are not aimed at those with genuine disabilities but those who take the **ss. HLM.
  11. HLM

    Marella Dream.

    I couldn't agree more Andrew, Discovery 1 was very disappointing when it came to service and food quality, that's was what I found really difficult to understand. They appear to run the newer ships in the fleet completely different to the older ones for some reason . HLM.
  12. HLM

    Marella Dream.

    Good morning Davybe. All I can say is Marella are obviously not the top end of the market therefore expections need to be realistic. Having tried both Discovery and Dream you'll realise by now my preference, however if you were to give them a go do a bit of research before making a decision on which ship to cruise on, they are totally different experiences. HLM.
  13. HLM

    Marella Dream.

    Yes I agree Marmite and Marella seems to go hand in hand. Up until the last couple of weeks I'd of been in the not for me again camp following my Discovery experience, however this experience has changed that view. What I find difficult to understand is how Marella can run the ships in the fleet so differently, Discovery while this is a much smarter ship the service, food choice and quality were way below my expectations, yet the Dream exceeded them by far. Something I forgot to mention is BEWARE of the wifi especially with young kids in your party, as previously mentioned there was an autistic child in our party and he managed very easily to connect to the ships wifi simply by putting his grandad's cabin number and birthday in his iPad, cost was £60 for the two hours he bought through his grandad's account, reception as a good will gesture removed the cost after the circumstances were fully explained, however we spoke to another couple who's teenage son done the same and they had to pay considerably more. HLM.
  14. HLM

    Marella Dream.

    Indeed OWT, I felt for what was paid It was hard to be overly critical. To me service, entertainment and overall experience is crucial other material things such as age and condition of the ship are not overly important. I'm now thinking of looking at other ships in the fleet, more especially the Celebration or again the Dream simply because they seem to offer a somewhat more traditional experience. HLM.
  15. Having just returned yesterday from the Dream I thought I'd give a brief overview of our experience. Friends had booked a year prior to boarding and wanted us to join them, so with a couple of months to go we took a look at the price and felt it was very reasonable for what we are getting working out to around just over £100pppn all inclusive. Flight - Tui operating a Canadian airline (Sunwing), the flight was on time an very comfortable for the short 2hr 20min flight. Within an hour of landing we were on the ship having drink and an early lunch, luggage was in our cabin within an hour of embarking, very efficient. The ship (exterior) - First impressions left me slightly apprehensive as there were clear ageing signs such as rust spots on the hull etc also on the open decks again signs of age an corrosion albeit these were under maintenance constantly which was good to see and did not impact on our overall experience, in addition we subsequently found out that the ship is in for a refurb in February. The ship (Internally) - We found to be very well maintained spotlessly clean and very acceptable, another plus was that all entertainment venues (Broadway show lounge, Tides, Medusa and Watersedge etc) were all on deck 8 this took away the constant up and down stairs lifts etc encountered on other ships, I would also imagine this is a plus for those with disabilities. Entertainment - Broadway show lounge was where most of the production shows took place twice nightly 20:30 and 22:30, I'm not one for this particular type of show however with friends decided to attend several shows over the two weeks, shows ranging from Dancing Queen to Broadway Musicals, I must say we're very well performed and professional, but as I say not all my taste but that's just a personal opinion, the guest act on the first week was comedian Tank Shearman who I enjoyed the main reason was he was funny without the need to swear or be smutty etc this was also the same in his late show, another comedian was on the second week who's name unfortunately slips my mind however not very impressed and he did get a bit to close the the edge with children onboard. Medusa lounge - I must admit not much time spent here either but this is where most of the family shows take place most of which are game shows based on those from the TV, these were very popular with those with young families and appeared to be full to capacity every night, in between the resident band Musik unlimited could be found singing a variety of different sets and were very good. Tides bar - This is where our party tended to locate before and after the shows, one of our party is an autistic 12 year old boy who formed a lovely bond with Tom & Maris the resident singers, most nights he was invited up to sing and dance with them and was always greeted with genuine affection, this can also be said about the waiting, bar staff and fellow passengers. Tom & Maris without doubt are probably the best onboard act I've seen on any ship, not just because of the warm welcomes but their genuine and wide ranging singing talents. Watersedge - This is where the casino and late night entertainment occurs, this again is very well attended and music goes on until the early hours either in the form of the resident band or the disco, spent several late nights there's and thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere, I think it also needs to be said that although Marella is now fully AI I personally never came across any unruly behaviours, yes there were a few worse for wear but all in good humour and spirits. Food and drink - The buffet restaurants were found on both poolside decks 9 & 11 serving both a wide ranging choice of hot and cold foods, from basics such salads to burgers, pizzas chips etc to fresh carved meats every day, in addition there was also omelette stations and more especially for the kids fresh ice cream which was help yourself. Drinks menu was very good with a large variety of choice, however there was an upgrade option of £50pp a week if required and that would have included the whole selection of premium brands such a grey goose gin for example, but I didn't see the need as the AI list was more than adequate and also covered speciality coffees etc. The MDR (Orion) restaurant was on deck 4 this opened for all meal times for breakfast, lunch and dinner all of which is open dining. Our party only used this in the evening this was excellent, having sailed on Discovery 3 years ago I was apprehensive as the choice on there was very limited, however I needn't of worried the food choice was fantastic a choice of around 6 meals per course, if for any reason nothing suited there was the always available menu offering seared chicken, pasta and fish dishes etc nothing was to much trouble and I dear say if you wanted something other than offered it would've been got for you. Crew - Again I will make the comparison with Discovery chalk and cheese, Discovery we waited and waited for service, the complete opposite on the Dream in fact we rarely needed to order they saw the glasses were getting low and simply brought the drinks over, similarly in the buffet, empty plate were taken away promptly. I won't go in to detail regarding itinerary as most of the ports were standard across the Med which most would of been too these including Palma, Trapani, Monaco, Sorrento, Palamos, Toulon, Cititaveccia etc, etc. The highlight being Monaco where we were treated to late night fireworks display, we moved from our originally anchored position and re-anchored closer to the action for a full twenty minute display which was absolutely incredible. So in summary, I am aware that Marella,Tui or Thomson as they are known do receive a lot of mixed reviews and I dear say justifiably so in some cases, but I can only speak from my experience and I'd go back in a shot on the Dream. Any questions feel free to ask. HLM.