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dandee2

Star Plus Initiative

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39 minutes ago, dandee2 said:

Updated Deck Plan available on WS website.
https://www.windstarcruises.com/yachts/star-legend/accommodations/

 

I love the floor plan.  Having the bed by the window is a wonderful idea.  On our Lands of the Midnight Sun cruise a few years ago, a friend of ours had the staff move their bed to the living room area.  They were ahead of their time!!!

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Mostly good stuff.  I note the insertion of a space just called "restaurant" by the Compass Rose. it looks like they left the Star Bar more or less in place, which is a good thing!

 

I find the insertion of those 10 "porthole cabins" on the Amphora level to be very odd. They're down there all by themselves - I'd expect those to be sold cheap.But, at least you're close to dinner!

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I don't mind the cheap porthole. Really, with our Canadian dollar so low, that's the only one I could afford anyway :classic_biggrin:

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25 minutes ago, milepig said:

Mostly good stuff.  I note the insertion of a space just called "restaurant" by the Compass Rose. it looks like they left the Star Bar more or less in place, which is a good thing!

 

I find the insertion of those 10 "porthole cabins" on the Amphora level to be very odd. They're down there all by themselves - I'd expect those to be sold cheap.But, at least you're close to dinner!

On the Alaska Splendors itinerary, the Porthole Suite is priced $200/person lower than the next category, forward Ocean View Suite.

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7 minutes ago, ridethetide said:

On the Alaska Splendors itinerary, the Porthole Suite is priced $200/person lower than the next category, forward Ocean View Suite.

 

I haven't looked yet - is this lower than the old pricing for the Ocean View or has everything else gone up?

 

They're going to have to do some massive work to the access to those cabins. Right now, that area very much feels like the servant's entrance. They have trays stacked up, it seems to be used as a sort of staging area for beverage service, and they always seem a little surprised when a passenger finds their way there. For those of you not familiar, I should explain that it is actually a public area and serves as a convenient back entrance to Amphora for those closest to that elevator, but it is not attractive. I can't imaging wading through servers doing their work every time I needed to access my cabin.

Edited by milepig

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17 minutes ago, milepig said:

 

I haven't looked yet - is this lower than the old pricing for the Ocean View or has everything else gone up?

 

They're going to have to do some massive work to the access to those cabins. Right now, that area very much feels like the servant's entrance. They have trays stacked up, it seems to be used as a sort of staging area for beverage service, and they always seem a little surprised when a passenger finds their way there. For those of you not familiar, I should explain that it is actually a public area and serves as a convenient back entrance to Amphora for those closest to that elevator, but it is not attractive. I can't imaging wading through servers doing their work every time I needed to access my cabin.

 

I just noticed that the area I was talking about is now a "tender embarkation" area, and that elevator is in a different place, with the bow elevator looking like the location of the existing one. I think those cabins are part of the area that't being added and not carved out of the existing part of the ship. Does anyone know where the new part begins and ends - relative to the layout?

 

I am glad to see that they're renumbering the cabins so they align with the deck number. I never understood why they didn't.

Edited by milepig

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16 minutes ago, milepig said:

 

I haven't looked yet - is this lower than the old pricing for the Ocean View or has everything else gone up?

 

They're going to have to do some massive work to the access to those cabins. Right now, that area very much feels like the servant's entrance. They have trays stacked up, it seems to be used as a sort of staging area for beverage service, and they always seem a little surprised when a passenger finds their way there. For those of you not familiar, I should explain that it is actually a public area and serves as a convenient back entrance to Amphora for those closest to that elevator, but it is not attractive. I can't imaging wading through servers doing their work every time I needed to access my cabin.

I personally would never consider booking one of the Porthole suites because of their location.

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9 minutes ago, dandee2 said:

Here it is for deck 5.

Added section.jpg

Thanks - I think that might need to be moved down a smidge. It looks like the Elevator behind the current 214 is staying, and I think 530/531 are part of the new area, given the location of that elevaot, which doesn't currently exist.

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When traveling solo, I might opt for one of the porthole suites to get the cost of the trip with solo supplement down. They have a good midship location for motion. Other than that, I'd prefer to stick with the classic layout for the suites rather than the new "Star" layout. I like to be able to sit by the window. It was especially nice when we had the balcony to be able to sit on the couch by the open balcony door and, on a couple of evenings in Alaska, it was nice to have room service dinner by the window watching the scenery the couple of nights that I wanted a quiet evening. 

 

It seems like the Yacht Club will be very crowded at times unless they do something to change the windows in Compass Rose. Currently, it is the only good indoor view lounge for cold weather cruises.  Perhaps the area labelled Courtyard will provide another indoor view lounge?

 

I wonder where the zodiacs will be stored. The current deck plan doesn't show it, but, to support the Alaska excursions, they added storage on Star Legend for zodiacs and cranes to lower them around where the deck plan says "sun deck" and closed off that area for passengers. I hope that they have found someplace else to put them and the sun deck will again be available to passengers as this plan shows.

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2 hours ago, Misty Morning said:

I like this new Star BBQ area on Star Deck, I assume they will have more alfresco dining aside from Candles.

 

Time will tell. When we first sailed on the Pride shortly after the takeover there was a lunch BBQ set up in the star area. That’s the last time we saw it. 

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Thanks for that image link. I never found Windstar facilities too crowded, but a glance at the .PDF suggests that there is little or no increase in the Lounge, Amphora, or Veranda seating. I would worry if they are planning to continue to offer all open-seating with some lame tourism-engineering calculation, that seats will be available on request 93.5283% of the time. Service is poorer when dining areas a fuller, even now. (That's an observation, not a substantive complaint - today.)

 

Presumably, they will hire more people to do the "turnarounds" in the same amount of time. But they can't make the hallways or service passages wider, to pass more people or more luggage or more cleaning teams, in the same amount of time.

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On 2/27/2019 at 12:27 PM, dandee2 said:

Added section 2.jpg

 

I think this second try is still wrong.  All the cabins from the front up to 528-529 match (suites, ocean views, balconies, then four more ocean views.  So the cut is after the old (pink) cabins 226-227.  The new area starts with the new elevator and 530-531 and goes back to 544-545 – notice these are all the new categories of cabins, so they have to be the new cabins.  [Old cabins 228-229 are lost in the cutting process.]

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On 3/2/2019 at 11:31 AM, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

I think this second try is still wrong.  All the cabins from the front up to 528-529 match (suites, ocean views, balconies, then four more ocean views.  So the cut is after the old (pink) cabins 226-227.  The new area starts with the new elevator and 530-531 and goes back to 544-545 – notice these are all the new categories of cabins, so they have to be the new cabins.  [Old cabins 228-229 are lost in the cutting process.]

Other than the new elevator, I don't think you can match up the new and old areas based on the changes. There are areas being reconfigured that aren't added by the split - for example changes at the stern on decks 6, 7 and 8. The Star Porthole cabins being added on deck 3 don't line up with where the other Star cabins are. 

 

On 3/2/2019 at 9:43 AM, CruiseOrLand said:

Thanks for that image link. I never found Windstar facilities too crowded, but a glance at the .PDF suggests that there is little or no increase in the Lounge, Amphora, or Veranda seating. I would worry if they are planning to continue to offer all open-seating with some lame tourism-engineering calculation, that seats will be available on request 93.5283% of the time. Service is poorer when dining areas a fuller, even now. (That's an observation, not a substantive complaint - today.)

 

Presumably, they will hire more people to do the "turnarounds" in the same amount of time. But they can't make the hallways or service passages wider, to pass more people or more luggage or more cleaning teams, in the same amount of time.

 

Amphora is somewhat larger than it was before. The deck plan shows a larger increase in the number of tables than its size increase - possibly by packing more tables in.  It also shows more seating in Compass Rose despite not having a size increase (less open area). It looks like there is some additional indoor seating for Veranda along the sides of the ship surrounding "Courtyard" whatever that is. 

 

The Lounge and, for cold climate cruises, Yacht Club are the areas that seem most likely to be a problem. Neither appears to have any space or seating increase. The Lounge can be pretty full for a popular talk - not sure if it has enough seating for 100 more passengers.

 

The halls are wider than on the sailing ships and they handle around 300 passengers on Wind Surf so I don't expect the additional passengers to be an issue for turn arounds. 

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On 3/4/2019 at 5:01 PM, new_cruiser said:

Other than the new elevator, I don't think you can match up the new and old areas based on the changes. There are areas being reconfigured that aren't added by the split - for example changes at the stern on decks 6, 7 and 8. The Star Porthole cabins being added on deck 3 don't line up with where the other Star cabins are. 

 

I do believe you can line up the split with the new elevator, and this works clearly for decks 4 [cabins 430-445 are the new types], 5 [cabins 530-545 are the new types], and 6 [cabins 626-639 are the new types].  Since these new type cabins have a different layout, it makes sense to me that they are in the new spliced-in section of the ship.  The old cabins are getting new bathrooms, but not new layouts.

 

You are right that Amphora is expanded, but I believe that it is also in the new part of the ship – and the new Star Porthole Suite cabins are in the old Amphora location (along with the new Tender Embarkation area).  Note how the new Amphora lines up with cabins 430-431 and 444-445 [all new types].

 

On deck 7, they have replaced the old pool with the new 'Courtyard' and created a new pool in the addition area -- the new pool is a different shape than the old one.

 

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Posted (edited)

I'm sad that all of the 3 little sisters are 'going large' but its still very a very exciting project and we can't wait to try them out.  Seabourn were foolish to let them go.

Edited by Joolsverne

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23 hours ago, Joolsverne said:

I'm sad that all of the 3 little sisters are 'going large' but its still very a very exciting project and we can't wait to try them out.  Seabourn were foolish to let them go.

 

Carnival owns Seabourn. I guess they didn't fit in their business plan.

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I'm not sure how the increased size will affect the ships, but the changes it allows are all good:  choice of cabin layout, expanded dining options, and especially the new 'green' engines – you couldn't do that kind of engine replacement without cutting the ship open.  The blueprint-style drawing of the expanded-ship elevation is hard to gauge – I hope they will look just as classy and maybe even more sleek in their completed livery.

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I will wait until after the review before booking any future cruises on the larger Star ships. If you increase the number of cabins, you have to increase all public venues and services to support the extra passengers. I just sailed on a cruise that had added a whole deck of cabins without adding public spaces. It was crowded. Often had to wait to get a dining table .  Getting a seat in the lounge area was a challenge. Unless you came early, you had to stand. I just hope that Windstar gets it right. Looking forward to sailing on Star Breeze in April. Love the size of it as it is now. 

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We'll be the guinea pigs – just booked on Star Legend for late September 2020.  Thanks to discussions here we decided not to pay $1,000 per person extra for a French balcony.  We're trying one of the new SS1 Star Ocean View Suites, with the bed near the window.

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First steel cutting today - It's on Windstar Tweeter channel

 

WS Initiative Tweet-01.jpg

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