Aboard the floating palace that is Genting Dream, Prudence Lui finds herself with nary a dull moment as she immerses in the full suite of activities
Dream Palace pool
What The 18-deck, 151,300-tonne Genting Dream was designed to tap the high-end market in China and Asia. Out of 1,674 cabins, more than 70 per cent offer private balconies while over 100 provide connecting rooms catering for extended families and groups.
I embarked on a three-day, two-night weekend cruise that departed from Kai Tak Cruise Terminal on a Friday evening, looking forward to a full-day high seas voyage across the South China Sea the following day and the journey back to shore on the third day.
Apart from the six meals included at Dream Dining Room (Lower and Upper) and Lido Buffet, guests are spoilt for choice with over 35 restaurant and bar concepts covering Chinese regional, Asian and international cuisine to suit different palates. My favourite is the Silk Road, which offers Chinese fine dining by day and turns into a cabaret and burlesque show by night.
While there is no room service, some food outlets like the Lobby Bar operate till 01.00 while Bar 360 stays open round the clock.
Not to be missed are some pioneering concepts like the world’s first Johnnie Walker House at sea serving upscale Scotch whisky.
Why The premium Asian hospitality style is fully reflected from the bilingual (English and Chinese) public signage and room keycard, as well as its 2,000 crew members who are mostly friendly Asian faces i.e. Chinese and Filipino. Since the liner has a guest capacity of 3,352, it creates a high crew-to-guest ratio for cruising in Asia.
My 20m2 Balcony Stateroom on the 12th floor can accommodate up to four guests, thanks to the extra sofa bed and a spare duvet set stored in the cabinet. But what won my heart were the premium in-room amenities – think TWG tea bags packed in a dedicated black case – and the comfortable bed, clad with bouncy duvet and a choice of pillow from satin to feathers, ensured two nights of sweet dreams for me.
For those who yearn for the ultimate luxury experience, the two-storey Dream Mansion offers a ‘ship-within-a-ship’ experience with 142 suites featuring European-style butler service and exclusive facilities like private pool deck swimming pool and Genting Club restaurant.
How After completing a business conference on Saturday morning, I was left with only half a day to explore this 335m-long vessel proper – and that’s not enough.
Duty-free retail outlets and gaming facilities aside, the ship abounds with diverse entertainment options. The 45-minute China’s Got Talent is a theatrical representation of the Chinese hit TV series held in the 999-seat Zodiac Theatre at 21.00 while the Rhythm Divine: Latin Ballroom Dance Show is scheduled at 23.00 and the Voyage of a Lover’s Dream takes place at 14.00 and 16.00.
However, I missed the afternoon shows as I was too engrossed in other recreational activities like bubble football, hip hop dance with staff, mini golf, a water park featuring six different slides and a rock climbing wall.
Karaoke fans will be thrilled to know that five private karaoke rooms are provided on board.
Verdict An ideal short escape for families as well as guests seeking a premium cruise experience at sea.
Rates Summer promotional rate from HK$1,649 (US$212) per person, based on double occupancy and excluding gratuity, port charges and visa