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H-L Europa2 recent experiences - smoke and others?


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I have searched the forums and found some older discussion but would like more recent feedback.  We are very interested in an itinerary that is (mostly) unique to the Europa2 and it looks like a great ship.  We understand some of the basic differences - that most passengers will be German-speaking (sounds fun!) and that drinks are not included (less fun but fine 😁).  We don't speak much German and have a slight fear of being isolated but we know it's good to get out of your comfort zone.

 

Our main concern is wrt smoking being allowed in so many places.  When we go to other countries we accept that more people smoke and we deal with it as we are guests there. I presume that will be the same on this voyage but I am wondering if anyone found the smoke situation unbearable? 

 

Excursions - We also like to get off the ship and unlike Regent (that we just got off a few days ago and loved) HL does not have an excursion list available until 2-3 months prior.  Could we reasonably expect the usual complement of them to be available?  It's a southern Asia itinerary, so both "temple tours" and active/snorkeling .

 

I would appreciate any feedback as there are not so many reviews although most are highly positive.  Thank you!

 

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the second day there is a party for non German speaking guests with complimentary Champagne 😁  the international hostess will contact you

you will receive the daily programm in English and in the restaurants the menu's are available in English just ask for it in the buffet restaurant the English menu's are in another colour. ( i think green, German is light bleu ) Everybody working on the ship does speak English - most suite attendants  do speak better English as German as   most of them are from Philipinnes and some from Indonesia even some waiters from Tunisia ( they asked me to speak French what was not a problem as Belgian🤩 )

imho only the 4 most expensive suites owners and grand penthouses are able to book before the other guests . also those can book speciality resto's prior to other guests  

so when you do receive the info  , book asap !! 

I think smoking is only permitted in the Collins bar where expensive cigars are available and in a small part on the open deck  - since last year it is not permitted anymore to smoke at the counter of the pool bar  - you cannot smoke in your suite 

no smoking in the restaurants for sure 

i do not like smoking at all ... never endured problems. 

 

 

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I forgot to mention there is a small part of the Yacht Club restaurant and the Sansibar bar - outside where smoking is permitted 

very easy to avoid !

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7 hours ago, vistaman said:

I forgot to mention there is a small part of the Yacht Club restaurant and the Sansibar bar - outside where smoking is permitted 

very easy to avoid !

Thank you Vistaman.  I have also read your other posts on this ship and they have been very helpful.  Our main concern was balcony smoking but I assume since you didn't mention it that it was not an issue.

 

Seems like a great ship and we like to get outside our comfort zone sometimes.  Being a little extra cautious as we are relatively novice cruisers and there are 5 days at sea on this voyage.  Just got off the Regent Splendor and I think it made us "cruise people".  We loved it.

 

Thanks again.  

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22 minutes ago, The Hudson Co. Landlubber said:

Thank you Vistaman.  I have also read your other posts on this ship and they have been very helpful.  Our main concern was balcony smoking but I assume since you didn't mention it that it was not an issue.

 

Seems like a great ship and we like to get outside our comfort zone sometimes.  Being a little extra cautious as we are relatively novice cruisers and there are 5 days at sea on this voyage.  Just got off the Regent Splendor and I think it made us "cruise people".  We loved it.

 

Thanks again.  

I like the Regent Splendor as well   ,  i will join her on 24 th October - discovered het last year  as there were low single sup. 

You can take alcohol on board if you want to have a drink on your balcony , the first day do not forget to ask your room steward to provide ice twice  a day as this is not automatically done on Europa  2. In any case you will receive half a bottle of real Champagne as well. 

During the pool party , 3 fancy cocktails are offered as well and Hapag Lloyd never was avaricious with the drinks during parties . 

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We didn't notice any smoking the last time. I'm pretty sure as vistaman said that smoking is not allowed anymore in the rooms.

While alcohol is not included, there is often free alcohol at events/parties and the prices are very reasonable otherwise. Same goes for the spa by the way. Prices are at about 50% of what is charged on American ships.

The excursion offerings are pretty standard and also a bit cheaper IIRC. They have a concierge that can arrange excursions outside of their normal offering but I found them to be fairly useless in Australia. They might be better in areas they cruise more often. They do have bikes on board and a lot of ports had bike excursions for the more active guests. 

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I'm also concerned about smoking.  It seems from the official web site that smoking is permitted on all verandas, and all outside decks, except the Yacht Club (but including the outside area of Sandbar). This is markedly more permissive than most cruise lines.  I think the biggest problem would potentially be if your suite neighbours regularly smoked on their veranda.

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Looks like you CAN still smoke on your verandah. 😕 I only had an issue with it once though about 15 years ago. A lot less smoking happening nowadays. image.png.c52fd09c44f41c3a3b1604e2e2a867d7.png

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  • 1 month later...

Congratulations ! and I hope you will like her 

I was invited on board her sister ( the old Europa )  in my hometown 10 days ago and I had a brief look to the bar and wine lists. A cocktail is now 7,8€   and house Champagne 12 €

A bottle of Dom Pérignon was 220 ( and not 500 dollar as on crystal😝) - the US wines are not the cheapest  ( so no Far Niente for me on Hapag ) 

If you want your mineral water "cold" order ice  with it  they bring you a tall glass with ice and a spoon aside 

make the reservations for the speciality restaurants asap -  especially for the French Tarragon and Italian Serenissima 

for lunch you do not need table reservations  - in the Tarragon the famous steak tartare is prepared tableside during dinner ( there are some other carvings done as well )  , for lunch it is  prepared in the galley 

the gin tasting is free, the wine or champagne tasting is worth the extra money 

the girls ( there are men as well ) doing your suite will like you as English speaking guests😄 - most are from Philippines  - i do give extra something in the beginning of the cruise as well 

despite the buffet breakfast is extrememly elaborated ( egg dishes must be ordered at the table ), on the menu of the MDR Weltmeere there are specialities ranging from a small steak tartare to goose liver wit orange sauce  and go for a late breakfast in Sansibar once ... 

If you are a wodka drinker : that is not a speciality by Hapag Lloyd !

wodka cocktails are made  with Moskowskaia  , and there is Absolut and Grey Goose , however they do charge 11,5 € for a shot of Grey Goose . 

I suggest you bring   a bottle  on board - duty free?  or a Ketel 1   - martini's are not the speciality by HL , imho with 4 cl you cannot make a decent martini  ...one of the differences with other more US ships .  I never drink a martini on Hapag. 

If there is a problem go to see the hotel director . 

I am on Europa 2 in september : Rome Dubrovnik : full house . sold out 

 

 

 

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19 hours ago, vistaman said:

 

despite the buffet breakfast is extrememly elaborated ( egg dishes must be ordered at the table ), on the menu of the MDR Weltmeere there are specialities ranging from a small steak tartare to goose liver wit orange sauce  and go for a late breakfast in Sansibar once ... 

 

 

 

 

My husband had a filet mignon for breakfast every day. 😄  Weltmeere is a good spot for breakfast as it is much quieter.

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On 7/2/2024 at 3:49 AM, vistaman said:

Congratulations ! and I hope you will like her 

I was invited on board her sister ( the old Europa )  in my hometown 10 days ago and I had a brief look to the bar and wine lists. A cocktail is now 7,8€   and house Champagne 12 €

A bottle of Dom Pérignon was 220 ( and not 500 dollar as on crystal😝) - the US wines are not the cheapest  ( so no Far Niente for me on Hapag ) 

If you want your mineral water "cold" order ice  with it  they bring you a tall glass with ice and a spoon aside 

make the reservations for the speciality restaurants asap -  especially for the French Tarragon and Italian Serenissima 

for lunch you do not need table reservations  - in the Tarragon the famous steak tartare is prepared tableside during dinner ( there are some other carvings done as well )  , for lunch it is  prepared in the galley 

the gin tasting is free, the wine or champagne tasting is worth the extra money 

the girls ( there are men as well ) doing your suite will like you as English speaking guests😄 - most are from Philippines  - i do give extra something in the beginning of the cruise as well 

despite the buffet breakfast is extrememly elaborated ( egg dishes must be ordered at the table ), on the menu of the MDR Weltmeere there are specialities ranging from a small steak tartare to goose liver wit orange sauce  and go for a late breakfast in Sansibar once ... 

If you are a wodka drinker : that is not a speciality by Hapag Lloyd !

wodka cocktails are made  with Moskowskaia  , and there is Absolut and Grey Goose , however they do charge 11,5 € for a shot of Grey Goose . 

I suggest you bring   a bottle  on board - duty free?  or a Ketel 1   - martini's are not the speciality by HL , imho with 4 cl you cannot make a decent martini  ...one of the differences with other more US ships .  I never drink a martini on Hapag. 

If there is a problem go to see the hotel director . 

I am on Europa 2 in september : Rome Dubrovnik : full house . sold out 

 

 

 

Wow tons of good advice here!  Copied this text to my onenote.  Thank you.

 

I will make reservations for the specialty ASAP.  We are in a Penthouse suite, hope that and butler helps with priority.

 

I am a wine lover also and appreciate the advice there.  I'd be happy drinking Riesling all trip if I had to although it is a 15 day cruise with 5 sea days - the most ever for us.

 

Wife is a wodka drinker but she's usually not too picky about her cosmos.  We get spirits in the suite, will they bring Grey Goose there?  Problem solved.

 

Absolutely will do the wine and gin tastings.  Gotta put those sea days to work!

 

This cruise is mostly in the Philippines - (6 stops there, I have not seen another itinerary like it, so amazing) so I will absolutely tip ahead as many of those attendants will be visiting home.  Thanks for that advice, and all of it, including in your other posts.  They were influential in our decision.

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in a PH   - i think - you do receive a full bottle of Moet and luxus canapes and 5 half liters of different drinks 

I think the wodka is Absolut  -    you better play safe and take a Grey Goose from duty free airport 

if you like the caviar "plain"  the best serving is in the Yacht Club with free wodka

there is also a daily free apero for dinner in the Yacht Club  - main entrance

probably Hapag Lloyd will do something for the Philippine crew  on the ship as well 

in the morning the butler will bring you a plate of sliced tropical fruits, ( if you want more just ask) something sweet after lunch and some taster before dinner 

the best German Rieslings are from area Rheingau and Rheinhessen  ,  a good producer is Weill, Schneider is not so bad  - Baden and Franken are easy to drink wines

however announced as "dry"  "trocken"   the Mosel area is the sweetest 

but  the Austrians are superb Wachau and Kamptal area   -  the best is a wine "Singerrieder" 

in Germany better wines are "grossen Gewachs " in Austria "Smaragd " 

if the Austrian sommelier ( Manfred ? )  is still on board he would be delighted to give information

if you are mentionning " a Belgian repeater "  both the general manager ( 4 stripes ) as the hotel director 3,5  stripes will know me 😄

if Lisa is there as international hostess , she will take good care of you !

 

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19 hours ago, The Hudson Co. Landlubber said:

 

Wow tons of good advice here!  Copied this text to my onenote.  Thank you.

 

I will make reservations for the specialty ASAP.  We are in a Penthouse suite, hope that and butler helps with priority.

 

I am a wine lover also and appreciate the advice there.  I'd be happy drinking Riesling all trip if I had to although it is a 15 day cruise with 5 sea days - the most ever for us.

 

Wife is a wodka drinker but she's usually not too picky about her cosmos.  We get spirits in the suite, will they bring Grey Goose there?  Problem solved.

 

Absolutely will do the wine and gin tastings.  Gotta put those sea days to work!

 

This cruise is mostly in the Philippines - (6 stops there, I have not seen another itinerary like it, so amazing) so I will absolutely tip ahead as many of those attendants will be visiting home.  Thanks for that advice, and all of it, including in your other posts.  They were influential in our decision.

I was in a Penthouse a few years ago and I recall that about the first thing the butler asked, after she had introduced herself, was whether she could book speciality restaurants for us. We are on Europa 2 this autumn (from Bali, possibly the cruise following the OP’s) so I am following this thread with interest. We are in a standard veranda stateroom this time. 

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5 hours ago, tiggis said:

I was in a Penthouse a few years ago and I recall that about the first thing the butler asked, after she had introduced herself, was whether she could book speciality restaurants for us. We are on Europa 2 this autumn (from Bali, possibly the cruise following the OP’s) so I am following this thread with interest. We are in a standard veranda stateroom this time. 

i am always in a standard ocean stateroom    being single🤑

on board Europa 2 in September , I will report back  - aware there is a small group of Belgians 

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On 7/4/2024 at 5:46 AM, tiggis said:

I was in a Penthouse a few years ago and I recall that about the first thing the butler asked, after she had introduced herself, was whether she could book speciality restaurants for us. We are on Europa 2 this autumn (from Bali, possibly the cruise following the OP’s) so I am following this thread with interest. We are in a standard veranda stateroom this time. 

 

No tiggis ours is not until January 2025 but I will be eager to hear your report as it also departs from Bali.

 

vistaman thanks for the wine tips, you can be certain I will try them all.  I enjoy Rieslings, especially drier ones.  I lived for years in central NYS where there are many German-founded wineries making good ones along the Finger Lakes.  I am eager for your trip report also.

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