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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We went as part of Sea Courses so 4 days were dedicated to lectures - Always when we were at sea. This was our first cruise and I think we hit the jackpot. We have nothing but good things to say about this experience. We stayed in a ... Read More
We went as part of Sea Courses so 4 days were dedicated to lectures - Always when we were at sea. This was our first cruise and I think we hit the jackpot. We have nothing but good things to say about this experience. We stayed in a window cabin on deck 4 so not the top of the line, by any means. However, we were extremely happy with our cabin. We didn't need anything more. Our cabin had tons of space for storage. It was comfortable and cleaned diligently by our friendly housekeeper, Sharonette. The bar was well stocked and fruit replenished daily. Dining was superb. By the second day, Angelo, our waiter, knew what we liked to drink. The waiters were all friendly, funny and they took such good care of us. It was great having the daily activities printed and presented to us every evening for the following day. Reception staff was so pleasant and helpful. The ports of call were lovely. We chose not to go ashore every time we docked but were never bored. There's always something to do. Loved Les Gaugines and Les Gaugins. Delightful and beautiful. We took a few excursions and enjoyed them - outrigger excursion was my favourite. Most were booked by the time we were on board. Our flight to Tahiti was very late arriving so we didn't explore Papeete but went on a tour on the last day. Very informative. The one negative comment would be that the meal times could have been a bit longer. It was a marvellous experience. The ship experience and the destinations visited were just great but the journey to get there and back was brutal. I don't think I could do that again. A very long time to get there from Toronto, not helped by the tardiness of Air Tahiti Nui. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We went on this cruise because of the "sea less traveled". It was an adult only charter cruise. The staff was over the top polite and genuinely nice. The cabin, 817, was close to the pool/bar and restaurant. I would book this ... Read More
We went on this cruise because of the "sea less traveled". It was an adult only charter cruise. The staff was over the top polite and genuinely nice. The cabin, 817, was close to the pool/bar and restaurant. I would book this room again. Just be ready in the morning for the joggers to start stomping like elephants at 8:30 am above your room. After all, you do have to get up for breakfast. The shore excursions were the absolute best we have gone on. People that go on the the cruise and expect a giant mall in each port should not go. This is for adventure and seeing something new that you can check off your bucket list. We hiked to a waterfall after a rugged 4-wheel drive ride. Not for the feint of heart or handicapped. I made it with the help of our guide. We swam with lemon sharks, reef sharks and rays. We say the ship's namesake's grave and learned during lectures about his life. The on board archeologist who accompanied us on excursions gave us lectures and information we would have never known about. I would suggest doing only one excursion picnic on the beach and it would be the one in Bora Bora. Authentically cooked in the ground instead of brought in from a kitchen. That's just me. I found the on board activities fun and hard to choose from because they scheduled multiple events at the same time. I am not much of a meat eater, so I can't say much about the food. The people I ate with seemed puzzled at the weird combinations in the special restaurants. Pate on a slab of tuna tartar? Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
My partner and I just completed an 11 night cruise through Society and Cook Islands. The experience was phenomenal. This was not our first time in these islands but it was our first time cruising. The Paul Gauguin is a lovely luxury ship. ... Read More
My partner and I just completed an 11 night cruise through Society and Cook Islands. The experience was phenomenal. This was not our first time in these islands but it was our first time cruising. The Paul Gauguin is a lovely luxury ship. Great food, clean and pleasant decor, extremely friendly and efficient staff - especially the dive operation, room service and wait staff. Of course, the ports are amazing and the excursions diverse - the travel desk is very accommodating and search for other options at your request. The staff as well as the passengers were totally accepting of us as a same sex couple and made every effort to make us feel included, welcomed and part of the scene. That has not always been my experience and it has made me leery of "straight" cruises in the past. This was a very pleasant surprise. The primary disappointment we had on the cruise was the diversity of entertainment and onboard activiites. The entertainment needs to be reviewed and upgraded. While the performers were pleasant enough, they aren't "star" quality. Also, there needs to be more diverse entertainment in other areas of the ship (restaurants, bars, etc.). There's not a lot to do onboard ship during the day and that should be addressed. One bright spot is the Enrichment Series of lectures - very informative and passionate speakers on polynesian culture and history. Another major source of dissatisfaction is the expensive and dicey internet service. I spent almost $500 on internet service. I am still employed and had to check in often, download some documents, etc. I think the cruise ship needs to upgrade their service and their pricing model. If planes can have internet at 40,000 ft, I'm not sure why a cruise ship can't. I also overhead people complain about wanting to send pictures home to family, facetime, etc., and it is not practical to do so. The cruise line needs to "get with it" if they want to attract a younger professional passenger. All in all, it was a great cruise, a wonderful ship, amazing ports of call and very pleasant staff. We can highly recommend it. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2014
I was leading a Spanish group. What a great experience on that intimate small cruise ship! Great service, very friendly team. the room lady and the "chef de rang" was able to remember our names. We visited Taha'a ... Read More
I was leading a Spanish group. What a great experience on that intimate small cruise ship! Great service, very friendly team. the room lady and the "chef de rang" was able to remember our names. We visited Taha'a private beach, Huahine, 2 days at Bora Bora and 2 days at Moorea, my home island. And I agree with most people: Moorea is the nicest one! The scenery of the mountains when you arrive is so dramatic! And the water of the lagoon so pristine... And there is much more to do on Moorea: - Land tours, by bus or 4X4, hiking, horse riding (and new in July 2016: Treetop adventure park), shopping in Maharepa... - Lagoon activities: half a day minimum at the Lagoonarium, sting rays feeding (no danger with the black tip sharks), dolphin watching, whale watching from august till november.. This ship is very luxury and all inclusive. I had champagne every dinner and I didn't have to ask for it: the waiter would bring a glass to me even before I had time to get sitted... They have 3 restaurants and each guest has the possibility to go to the gastronomical one once in the week minimum. But the other two are great too, anyway! Great experience! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
We booked a cruise on the Paul Gauguin which included a three night stay at the Intercontinental Hotel in Tahiti prior to the cruise and a day room there the day of disembarkation. At the last minute, we were joined by another couple on ... Read More
We booked a cruise on the Paul Gauguin which included a three night stay at the Intercontinental Hotel in Tahiti prior to the cruise and a day room there the day of disembarkation. At the last minute, we were joined by another couple on the cruise portion of the package. First, let me say that the Intercontinental Hotel in Tahiti is a beautiful facility, with plenty of lounge chairs and towels, several pools, and a closed lagoon area for snorkeling. The rooms were clean and comfortable. We had some issues with service, but management went the extra mile to correct and make right any issues we experienced, so kudos to them. We would stay there again. On to the cruise. Our wait to board was non existent, with embarkation a simple walk on, get your ID, and then we were led to our room by one of the stewardesses. Our bags were already there. This was only a portent of the wonderful treatment to come. This cruise was absolutely, without a doubt, the A # 1, first class cruise we expected. In fact, it exceeded our expectations. The meals were exceptional dining experiences, and, we ate in the " no reservations" restaurant most nights. We made reservations in the La Veranda French restaurant one night, and the food there was also perfectly done. This restaurant was patterned after the Michelin Two Star restaurant of the same name, and it lived up to the same rating. The wine selections at dinner were very nice, and the wait staff was very accommodating to special requests. Even the breakfast and lunch dining options were special. In addition to the buffets offered, there were also menu items for those who weren't buffet fans. If you decided on the buffet, they wouldn't even let you carry your plate to the table. Once you selected your food and filled your plate, a waiter magically appeared at your elbow, asking to take your plate to the table for you. A little disconcerting at first, but a nice touch. And, if you ordered an omelet or custom pasta at lunch, they took your order, then had it delivered when it was done. There was no charge for any of the drinks that anyone in our party ordered, and we were drinking top shelf liquors, including Gran Marnier, and Dewars. Although the brochures for the cruise stated that there might be an up charge for some drinks, I can't imagine what those would be. I noticed that they freely poured other top shelf liquors such as Glenlivet and Glenfiddich. The fruity drinks that most cruises and resorts charge $15 for we're plentiful and tasty. The service throughout the ship was OUTSTANDING! From the wait staff in the dining room, to the drink service by the pool, to the bartenders or drink service at the numerous events and parties, the waiters alway had cold drinks and warm smiles. The room stewardesses, or as my wife refers to them, housekeeping fairies, did an excellent job while remaining seemingly invisible. I don't know how many times each day our young lady, Teresa, came through, but the room was always immaculate. The evenings included a turndown service and a quality chocolate on each pillow. Ahhhh! The entertainment on board was also top notch. Dan the Piano man kept us entertained, whether it was during an after dinner drink, or hosting a Name That Tune quiz / contest, his kind demeanor and light hearted banter made everyone feel at home. There was also a house band, Santa Rosa, that did a great job of providing dance music for parties and events. The nightly shows in the main theater were entertaining, informative, and amusing, sometimes all at once. The Gauguin brought in local dance troupes and cultural groups from the different islands, and they were very entertaining. In addition, and separate from the entertainment groups, they brought in expert speakers who were very engaging in their fields. The two that we attended were "Spinner Dolphins and the Whales of Tahiti" and the "True Story of the HMS Bounty" were both fascinating. Also on board, there were games and activities hosted by their hospitality team, the Les Gauguines, which included several lovely young Polynesian ladies, and one young Polynesian man. There was something for everyone. We participated, collectively, in several activities, including trivia contests, jewelry making classes, a Polynesian language class, ukelele lessons, and others I'm sure I've forgotten. The Gauguines were multi talented, intelligent, graceful and engaging. Included at no extra charge are trips to the Gauguins Private Motu off Bora Bora, where you can sun, snorkel, swim, and eat a BBQ lunch and drink your fill; and to a less appointed motu just off Moorea (only drinks available), but with great snorkeling. There was also kayaking off the Marina deck pretty much any time we were at anchor. We stopped at several islands, snorkeled, swam and shopped. We also did some excursions (extra charge) including tours, a helmet dive, and dinner at Bloody Mary's on Bora Bora. This cruise was stellar right to the end. We had to be out of our stateroom by 9:30am, but the pool bar was open early and a full lunch was served, starting at 11:00am. Our disembark time was 12:20pm, and there was a free three hour tour of Tahiti, if you wanted to go, rather than go directly to the hotel, where our day rooms wouldn't be ready until 3 pm. We thought it would be a sales type trip, but were we wrong. It was an excellent tour! Our guide was extremely knowledgeable, and told us much of the history of Tahiti. We went to a spectacular waterfall; to the house which belonged to the author of Mutiny on the Bounty; toured the coastline; and stopped at a historic lighthouse constructed in the 1867. And thanks to our longtime travel agent, Linda Herron, from Cruises Etc, out of the Cleveland area, for putting together another stellar vacation experience for us. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2012
We took this trip so that we could view the Eclipse from a favorable spot in the middle of the Pacific. That part of the trip was fantastic, as were the on board Enrichment Lectures given by Rick Fienberg, Holly Gilbert and Mark Eddowes. ... Read More
We took this trip so that we could view the Eclipse from a favorable spot in the middle of the Pacific. That part of the trip was fantastic, as were the on board Enrichment Lectures given by Rick Fienberg, Holly Gilbert and Mark Eddowes. Unfortunately, the crew of the PG seemed completely unfamiliar with the western Pacific port stops (New Caledonia and Vanuatu). These were poorly organized and information was inaccurate or lacking for anyone not interested in taking one of the paid tours. We generally explore areas on our own and were told, for instance, on Mare that there would be shuttles running all day every 20 minutes to a snorkeling beach. The shuttles stopped running around 1 pm and people began to get fearful they would be stranded. The original itinerary indicated we would stop in We on Lifou and instead we ended up in Easo on the other side of the island. The cruise director said that "cars were available for rental" where we were putting in, yet there were no cars, only "guides" who would take you to the local grocery store in the village and then to a beach to swim for an hour. In Port Vila, Vanuatu, we were told by the PG staff that the ferry to Iririki Island was free but it was not. Since our primary interest was in the Eclipse, we wish the cruise had cut out some of the extra days at sea by perhaps sailing from/to Noumea, New Caledonia, making it only 7 instead 10 very expensive days. There was a single younger woman working in reception who was kind; the other two ladies we encountered could only be described as surly. The wait staff in the restaurants were excellent, as were the stewardesses. The food and wines were okay. However, the relative disorganization of the port stops and the disembarkation process this morning, coupled with the attitude of the reception staff makes it highly unlikely we will ever sail with PG again. Read Less
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