Friday, August 8, 2008

Another Reason Conde Nast Traveler Bugs Me!

I received an email notification of another blog claiming Conde Nast Traveler's editor said the NCL Gem was simply the best. When I went to find the article I found that was not exactly what was said, but I also found the Conde Nast Traveler's Cruise Finder, so I gave it a shot.

I gave it two criteria: Foodie and Romantic. A mere six ships were identified: 3 Regent, 1 Seabourn, 1 Royal Clipper and 1 Oceania. Aside from the numerous ships that also should have been included (like Silversea, the other Seabourn ships, the other Oceania ships, etc., etc.) I noticed the the Paul Gauguin was identified.

Now, I had one of my best cruises ever on that ship and would recommend it highly for certain things...including Romance, but for Foodies??? Obtaining quality ingredients at a reasonable cost in Tahiti is very difficult and the chef readily admits his menu is limited and adjusted to compensate. Yes, you can have a very nice meal, but suggesting a Foodie pick this ship? I don't think so.

So I looked further and saw it was recommended not only for Foodies, but for Spa Goers and Landbubbers. If any spa lover saw the spa on the Paul Gauguin they would be terribly disappointed by the limited facilities. It doesn't mean you can't get a good massage, but picking the ship for its spa?

Similarly, if I was to pick a cruise for Landlubber I would not pick a small, shallow-bottomed, ship located in the middle of the South Pacific which has about 80% of its itinerary based on hopping from one small island to another and other itineraries with days at sea. A ship cruising around Italy or Greece would seem to fit that bill a bit better, wouldn't it?

I have to ask, if the editors have such a skewed and curious approach to identifying your perfect cruise, isn't it really a horrible disservice to Conde Nast Traveler's readers?

Maybe they should rely on professionals that actually have been on the ships, know the itineraries and understand what the product is on each ship. Geez.