2008 Aust&NZ Cruise: Millennium Reflections

Millennium in TaurangaWe had read much on the Cruise Critic boards about the state of Millennium, but we didn’t have any issues.  We found the bumpy corridor that someone wrote about (I did stumble on one section the first time), but we made it a joke, and called it the bumpy corridor, and just pointed out the bumps as we went along. Yes, perhaps it should be a flat corridor, but I figure there must be a reason for the bumps, or they wouldn’t be there – so we just adjusted our behaviour and had no problems. On Deck Two (I think) the bumps in the floor were more noticeable, and they had stickers pasted on the carpet to watch your step.  And, when the ship is rocking as it did on sea days, it’s bumpy everywhere!

There was some wear and tear on the carpets and fittings and I noticed a couple of paintings that had been damaged. The paint was a little worn in places, but these really were minor and nothing to get upset about. There were staff cleaning everywhere every day, and the public areas were spotless. At each port, there was painting and maintenance work happening. I guess we didn’t expect perfection (impossible anyway) so we weren’t disappointed. We have stayed in some truly horrible hotel and motel rooms over the years, and our suite is up there with the best accommodation we’ve ever had.

Service was great. There will always be the individual who doesn’t smile at you when they serve you, but they were few and far between. Nearly every staff member we met greeted us with a smile no matter what the time of the day or night, and some had ‘extra’ personality and had conversations with you. The staff in the main restaurant were fantastic, and deserve every bit of their tips. When you consider the hours that most of the staff work, it is pretty wonderful that their service level is so consistently high. We had no complaints. Someone said to me at the first Cruise Critic event when we were overrun with complainers that you really need to go with the flow on a cruise, or you’ll be spending a lot of energy being angry instead of enjoying your cruise, and I think that’s a very wise piece of advice.

The hand sanitizers were everywhere, and I didn’t see anyone not use them. If it helps prevent a noro-virus outbreak, why on earth would you refuse to use them?  It quickly became part of the routine of meal time, and getting back on the ship at every port, and wasn’t an issue for us.

Entertainment – on the whole, the standard was reasonable. I still wonder how you can dance and sing on a stage at the bow of a ship that is moving up and down and side to side but they manage it. The cruise director was very professional, and the activities staff were all good at their jobs and seemed to be enjoying themselves. There was a lot of criticism of the entertainment, but it depends on whether you expect Las Vegas style productions (I didn’t).

Captain’s Club Benefits
- coupons in the cabin
- bridge tour
- afternoon tea in the Olympic
- private lounge for disembarkation
- invitation to the Captain’s Table

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