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Old 03-16-2013, 08:14 PM   #1
Carrie in AZ
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Thinking about first cruise: Tell me about room host/hostess

We are hoping to cruise this Fall for the first time ever. Can you please tell me about the room hosts? What do they do?

We are the type of people who keep the Privacy Please sign on our door whenever we travel because we do not like the thought of personnel being in our room. My husband has trust issues, and I do also but not as strong as he. When on vacation staying at hotels, we don't need or ask that our room is cleaned -- I simply meet the housekeeper in the hallway to get fresh towels. Sometimes I bring the trash out and put it in the trash area of their cart. I don't care if they make the beds. Basically, we are fine on our own! And, I also do this as sort of a "gift" to the housekeeper. If it was my job, I would be THRILLED if someone said "please pass on our room today". We always tip on the day we check out even though the person has done basically nothing during our stay. (I digress, but there is a lovely woman we adore at historic resort in San Diego -- we specifically ask to stay in her section of the resort each time we visit so that we can see her each day and converse a bit during our towel exchange. I love tipping her because she is so wonderful and has worked long and hard for many years.)

Is there anyone out there like us? If so, can you and do you ask that your host doesn't go into your stateroom? I realize most people want to be totally waited on while on vacation and our feelings may be in the minority. Can't help it, just not looking forward to someone being in our room often.

Thanks in advance for sharing!
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:24 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Carrie in AZ View Post
We are hoping to cruise this Fall for the first time ever. Can you please tell me about the room hosts? What do they do?

We are the type of people who keep the Privacy Please sign on our door whenever we travel because we do not like the thought of personnel being in our room. My husband has trust issues, and I do also but not as strong as he. When on vacation staying at hotels, we don't need or ask that our room is cleaned -- I simply meet the housekeeper in the hallway to get fresh towels. Sometimes I bring the trash out and put it in the trash area of their cart. I don't care if they make the beds. Basically, we are fine on our own! And, I also do this as sort of a "gift" to the housekeeper. If it was my job, I would be THRILLED if someone said "please pass on our room today". We always tip on the day we check out even though the person has done basically nothing during our stay. (I digress, but there is a lovely woman we adore at historic resort in San Diego -- we specifically ask to stay in her section of the resort each time we visit so that we can see her each day and converse a bit during our towel exchange. I love tipping her because she is so wonderful and has worked long and hard for many years.)

Is there anyone out there like us? If so, can you and do you ask that your host doesn't go into your stateroom? I realize most people want to be totally waited on while on vacation and our feelings may be in the minority. Can't help it, just not looking forward to someone being in our room often.

Thanks in advance for sharing!
You realize that's their job, right? And, I'm not sure, but I think that occasionally, the room hosts are checked on by their supervisor to see that they are doing what they should be doing. This includes keeping ice in the icebucket, turn-down service at night (including the pillow chocolates), as well as making up the room in the morning, clean sheets, towels, replacing shampoo, soap, hand lotions, vacuuming.
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:29 PM   #3
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If you will be using more than the queen bed, the host will have to enter the room at least twice each day to put away the bunk beds and then set them out at night.
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:27 PM   #4
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I am sure if you talk to your room host on the first day you could work something out that would keep both of you happy. One thing to keep in mind- you DO want the host in your room daily to clean the bathroom and put away the beds. (The toilets can get quite smelly if someone isn't taking care of them daily.) Our room host said they disinfect things daily to decrease the risk of germs and viruses.
We LOVED our room host on our last cruise, he was very attentive but NEVER once attempted to visit our room while we were in it. He was almost always in the vicinity when we were coming or going and asked if he could access our room while we were away.
If you are worried about valuables, put them in your room safe or in a locked suitcase under your bed.
Enjoy your cruise- and I hope you do find a way to enjoy the service that a Disney Room host provides. Their service is second to none... loved it!! And we looked forward to returning to our room every night to see what kind of goodies Dean had left for us!!
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:32 PM   #5
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This maybe something you should call an ask Disney. If it was me I would not allow someone in one of my rooms for 7 day without one of my staff being able to check on it. It goes into safety and security for all guest.
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Old 03-16-2013, 09:39 PM   #6
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The difference between housekeeping services on land and at sea is that, at sea there's really nowhere to stash something you've stolen. The ship knows who's assigned to your room, and can search his/her room if necessary. Risking being black balled from the cruise industry and sent back to a third-world country is not worth whatever you may have in valuables. Also, these people are very busy, they don't have time to rifle through your undies.

Agree with a prior poster, DCL will expect to get access to your room to confirm no damage and also that neither of you appears to be ill, because of the risk of highly contagious things like norovirus.
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Old 03-16-2013, 09:43 PM   #7
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Cruises are not like hotels.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:01 PM   #8
cynjam
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I agree w/ OP about hotel rooms. I NEVER allow housekeeping to clean my room on land, always use the DND sign. But trust me, a disney cruise is COMPLETELY different! Don't take anything TOO valuable and what you do take can be locked in the safe with a password you make up. They do such a WONDERFUL job, you should allow yourself to experience it at least once. I found anything in drawers are never touched or even opened (don't ask how I know) Anything left on the floor is picked up, folded and laid on the table or couch. I would suggest using one of the glasses from the room to put everything from the bathroom counter in so they won't have to touch your personal items (hair & tooth brushes). They will move the glass to clean the counter.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:14 PM   #9
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We always leave the room steward a bigger tip than our wait staff cuz we feel that they work so dang hard. I don't know when they sleep....they always seem to be on the job!
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:24 AM   #10
hasabigrock
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Housekeeping and maintenance crews visit the rooms a few times a day for cleaning and turndown. Maint will come fix anything housekeeping finds, plus they might go out on your balcony to do painting while in port.

Like a previous poster said you cannot takeout or putaway the extra beds on your own.

Each room comes with a good safe. I kept our passports, pads, wallets, etc. in there and things were fine.

I only bumped into our housekeeper twice.

* * *

Here's a little story for you. My family was staying at a hotel, we went out for a day trip and when we came back we found that the hotel had swapped out all the furniture in our room. Apparently, they were not quite done with the last rennovation and while we were out they put in new dressors, bed, desk, etc. In the process the removed all our belongings from the drawers, disconnected all our charging batteries (which isn't good for them), and when we complained we were treated like we were high maint and the manager wasn't even on site.

Called Marriott corporate and complained and their attitudes adjusted overnight.
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Old 03-16-2013, 09:55 PM   #11
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I agree also. I can understand trust issues, but what are you afraid of them taking? There is a safe in the room, and if you have something larger you want secured, guest services would be able to help.

With that being said, think about how many people these stateroom host and hostesses service. There is always someone richer, more well off and more careless with their belongings. Not only do you hear no complaints or accusations, everyone speaks glowingly or fondly of them and their service.

You may have been burned before. However, we have left 2 laptops out, several iPods, and cell phones right on the desk. Wallets and money are always in the safe. You will not need cash on the ship, it is all done and charged on your KTTW card (or room card).

Like the PP said, they would have nowhere to go, they will see you day in and day out for the entire cruise.

You really could be short changing yourself, seeing the fun things they do with towel animals, and interaction with them. It truly is part of the ambiance of the cruise. I think most of the cruises would be the same, however, Disney has a high standard. If there was even a complaint, they would take it so seriously, that I doubt there wouldn't be stringent scrutiny.

Their tips are their pay, and they come from very poor countries and circumstances. They aren't willing to jeopardize their jobs and livelihood of their families for a "pittance" of what they could pick up in someone's room.

I hope this make sense without sounding condescending. It is not my intention, but once you meet these people, you would understand what we all have already experienced.
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Old 03-16-2013, 10:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manateesmom View Post
The difference between housekeeping services on land and at sea is that, at sea there's really nowhere to stash something you've stolen. The ship knows who's assigned to your room, and can search his/her room if necessary. Risking being black balled from the cruise industry and sent back to a third-world country is not worth whatever you may have in valuables. Also, these people are very busy, they don't have time to rifle through your undies.
To the OP, I'm like you in that if I stay at a hotel for a few days I prefer to just be left alone and not bothered by housekeeping. The stateroom host/hostesses are much more than just housekeeping though. They're extremely hard working and every one that we encountered was pleasant and polite. It's not just their job to clean your room. They really are there to help make your stay more pleasant and I found they did it without being intrusive at all. If you give them a chance I bet you would quickly feel comfortable with them.
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Old 03-17-2013, 02:06 PM   #13
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I agree with all the PPs. We loved our stateroom host! We came to think of him as a little "magical faerie"! Even when we saw him in the hallway, he knew our names! We never saw him in our room, but every time we returned to our room, there was something new left. Whether it was a spotless room, chocolates, new navigators or a towel animal, there was always a new surprise waiting for us! And after a long, tiring day playing in port, it was sooo nice to come back to a clean, tidy room. And as others have mentioned, they will come in to do certain maintenance duties like bringing down the beds. They will also make sure everything is as it should be, like shutting the verandah doors. We left our's open on accident a couple of times. Oops!
Definitely don't miss out on having them be part of your experience.
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Old 03-18-2013, 01:03 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie in AZ View Post
We are hoping to cruise this Fall for the first time ever. Can you please tell me about the room hosts? What do they do?

We are the type of people who keep the Privacy Please sign on our door whenever we travel because we do not like the thought of personnel being in our room. My husband has trust issues, and I do also but not as strong as he. When on vacation staying at hotels, we don't need or ask that our room is cleaned -- I simply meet the housekeeper in the hallway to get fresh towels. Sometimes I bring the trash out and put it in the trash area of their cart. I don't care if they make the beds. Basically, we are fine on our own! And, I also do this as sort of a "gift" to the housekeeper. If it was my job, I would be THRILLED if someone said "please pass on our room today". We always tip on the day we check out even though the person has done basically nothing during our stay. (I digress, but there is a lovely woman we adore at historic resort in San Diego -- we specifically ask to stay in her section of the resort each time we visit so that we can see her each day and converse a bit during our towel exchange. I love tipping her because she is so wonderful and has worked long and hard for many years.)

Is there anyone out there like us? If so, can you and do you ask that your host doesn't go into your stateroom? I realize most people want to be totally waited on while on vacation and our feelings may be in the minority. Can't help it, just not looking forward to someone being in our room often.

Thanks in advance for sharing!
I completely understand. I NEVER let people in my hotel room, not because I think that they will steal but b/c I'm too lazy to "clean up" enough for them to come in (I have kids, there's always stuff all over the room that I don't want a stranger to touch).

My parents are even more this way than me---my mom will actually clean up the entire room (sparkling) before the steward comes in. She does this on a Disney cruise as well.

I've explained to her that its the steward's job to deliver navigators, papers and clean toilets. The problem with simply leaving your DND hanger on is the steward has to check you off the list and they're too polite to ask you when you're leaving...so if you just leave it hanging they'll have to wait for you for the whole day. My mom now cleans before she leaves for the day (they usually stay out the whole day), and the steward makes up the bed, and then returns to do turn down/toilets and leaves quickly.

I do have to say on the cleanliness issue---one time I came back to my room and found a dirty "rag" on my table next to my baby's diapers. The steward had forgotten it. Which kind of reminds me of my own general rule --- I don't really think they "clean" the room better than we can. All I did was Lysol wipe down that area again and started putting diapers in plastic bags before leaving them out.

But don't feel like you're alone. After 4 cruises, the only thing I really tidy up before leaving now is the bed so that he can make it.
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Old 03-18-2013, 01:27 PM   #15
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Also, unlike a hotel, your stateroom host knows you and which room is yours. I've heard horror stories about hotels where the housekeeping has the door open while cleaning a room, and a thief will walk in and say, "Oops! I forgot this!" and then steal something from your room. But with the cruise staterooms, your host will know if someone comes in your room that isn't part of your travel party.
That's a good point!



We are happy to go without housekeeping at normal hotels. But it's just lovely on a cruise. If you're nervous about a dishonest steward, remember that there is NOWHERE for them to go, that their room doesn't belong to them, and the ship knows who has been in your room.

We accidentally left the DND sign on our door, and came back to a messy, undone room, and a steward practically set to pounce on us, asking how he could help. If you're going to limit access I think you should definitely talk to the steward to explain, so they aren't constantly wondering when they can get into your room.
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