We Went On Genting Dream Cruise, The World's 1st Cruise With A Halal-Certified Kitchen, Here's What It's Like


Qistina Bumidin •  Jul 04, 2023

Remember those cruises to nowhere? They’re now a thing of the past! We (finally) set sail for Kuala Lumpur and Penang from Singapore on Resorts World Cruises’ new Genting Dream Cruise, the world’s first cruise ship with a halal-certified kitchen. Safe to say, we wish we didn’t need to leave the ship! Particularly because we had the chance to stay in the Palace Suite, where we had a dedicated butler service. No kidding! Read on to find out about our experience!

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Palace Suites: Cabins fitted for royals

There’s a saying that goes, “Heavy is the head that wears the crown”, but when you’re a Palace guest, you’ll feel like the royal treatment was made for you ?We stayed at the Palace Deluxe Suite, which is part of a range of “The Palace” rooms. This is the premier class of rooms on the Genting Dream, situated on higher floors, with its private amenities and, yes, a dedicated butler service. The room was spacious for us; they truly mean business regarding royal treatment! ? There’s one queen-size bed and a double sofa bed (which can be converted into a bed for your little ones), which is perfect for a family of four! The room covers all your needs - a bathtub and an adjacent shower area, a dresser, complimentary coffee and mini-bar snacks, wardrobes and more. 

But one amazing feature that stood out the most was the huge balcony! If you’ve ever been on a cruise before, you’ll know that having an entire balcony to yourself is simply a privilege, but as Palace guests, we enjoyed waking up to expansive views of the ocean. Two words - simply breathtaking!

And the list of privileges never ends! For starters, we mentioned earlier that we had a dedicated butler service (we’re not sorry for flexing this repeatedly), and boy, were we pampered from head to toe. It’s a round-a-clock service, where you can ask your butler assigned to you for anything. From ordering room service, and doing your laundry, to even helping you pack or unpack your luggage, it’s not wrong to mistake yourself being in Buckingham Palace instead. Palace guests also get priority reservations for all the amenities and activities on board, such as spas, dining, performances, excursions and more.

Your butler will check on you from time to time, during your meal times and activities, either to update you on your bookings or get your desired speciality restaurant for the next meal time. Imagine that!

Palace Restaurant

For meals, the Palace restaurant is exclusive to Palace guests! While the restaurant is not halal-certified, you can request a Halal menu, which will be provided by Lido Restaurant.

P.S.If you prefer to dine with less crowd, you can request to have your meal at Palace guests with cutleries and meals provided by Lido Restaurant, the only halal-certified restaurant on the ship.

Balcony Cabin: The most popular choice

If you spend 3 nights in the middle of the sea, a balcony makes the experience more enjoyable! It’s easy to see why the Balcony stateroom is the most popular choice on board the Genting Dream. Besides the balcony that provides a spectacular sea view, it’s also spacious enough for a family of 4!

Family-friendly activities to check out

Cruise ships schedule so many activities that a day at sea can be as fun as a full day of sightseeing. From ropes courses to cosmic bowling, mini golf to water slides (free-of-charge by the way), there's truly something for everyone! Yes, everyone, even your adorable little ones!

The Little Dreamers Club is a special section of Deck 16 dedicated to kids. With beanbags, games and toys to entertain kids between the ages of 2 to 12, this kids club at sea also comes with stunning views through the huge wide windows.

Credit: Klook

Your kids will love the nearby Kids Water Park, which has a kid-friendly waterslide and water sprays!

Of course, the main pool deck is a highlight not to be missed. Located on Deck 16, there’s one main pool and four jacuzzis for some splashing good fun!

Credit: Klook

But if you want privacy, here’s something great about being a Palace guest. You have your pool deck (jacuzzi included!), gym and spa! Since there weren’t many guests around, we could enjoy the ENTIRE pool deck to ourselves. It makes you feel like you’re on top of the world!

Lido Restaurant: The World’s First Halal-Certified Restaurant On A Cruise Ship

Here's the real icing on the cake: Resorts World Cruises' new ship serves halal food at Lido Restaurant! Dig into a buffet of authentic and popular cuisines, such as traditional Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Malaysian and local cuisine such as kueh, pastas, and more, for that boost of energy, you'll need to explore the rest of the ship!

For me, I love the noodle soup station. I’m a fan of soupy dishes, and slurping up their delicious chicken noodle soup hits the comfort spot for me, especially when you’re miles away from land - it simply feels like a warm hug! I spotted the ice cream station which makes soft serve ice cream - which the kids (and adults with a sweet tooth like me) will love!

Port of Calls: Kuala Lumpur and Penang

Disembarkation process

We took the 4D3N itinerary, where we disembarked at two ports of call - Port of Klang in Kuala Lumpur and Penang. Genting Dream Cruise offer tours for you to explore KL and Penang in a different light.

Our disembarkation process was smooth from the start! Our butler assisted us from the room till the end. Cruise lines usually keep your passports as it’s easier for immigration to check passports when travelling between different countries, and when we disembark the ship, our passports are returned to us! And yes, if you’re wondering if we Palace guests did get priority to disembark, you’re right! We were escorted to a designated waiting area to facilitate the disembarkation as we were the first group to disembark. Now nothing is stopping us from the fun!

KL tour

We disembarked at the Port of Klang and embarked on a tour around Kuala Lumpur. If you’re a Palace guest, your butler can help you book a tour for Palace guests, while other passengers can head to the Shore Excursion counter at Deck 6! There are so many to choose from, and we decided to pick out the shopping tour since KL is home to both cheap steals and luxurious goods!

The tour guide brought us to Pavillion via coach, which has over 700 retail outlets - time to shop till you drop, which we did, and boy, did we score lots of loot. After the tour ended, we had some free time, so we just explored the nearby Bukit Bintang area before meeting at the designated pick-up point and heading back to the ship. 

Penang tour

On the 3rd day, we headed to Penang! We decided to try something completely different for a change: explore the vibrant city of Georgetown on a trishaw! This is part of the ‘Colours of Georgetown’ tour. You’ll get to see mural arts and plenty of photo opportunities!

Verdict: are the tours worth it?

It depends on the travel you like, and who you’re travelling with! If you’re travelling by yourself, with your friends, or simply prefer moving at your own pace, exploring the cities on your own would be a much better option. You won’t be restricted to a certain itinerary, and you can move on your own time without rushing about or being rushed. For instance, Penang has a thriving cafe culture that we wanted to visit, however, there weren’t as many offered on the tour we went to.

Genting Dream Cruise offers one-way buses from the ports to KL city and George Town in Penang, so you’re free to roam around! However, just remember to return before the cruise sails off! It’s best not to explore too much or too far. However, if you prefer having your travels planned out for you, or you’re travelling with a large group, perhaps the tours would be the best choice! Everything is planned out for you; sometimes, food is included, albeit not that much.

Furthermore, some tours offer food experiences; however, they may not be halal. Do inform the staff on deck so that they can help you make the necessary arrangements! There are different tour options anyway so surely, one would best suit you!

P.S. If you need some ideas on food, shopping and sightseeing, check out our Kuala Lumpur and Penang tags on our website!

Here’s a side note: you don’t need to leave the ship! You can simply stay in bed and chill the entire day, or explore all the other activities you’ve missed. There were still a number of activities such as rock climbing and high elements that I did not get to do as we spent quite some time onshore!

P.S. To make checking in more efficient, check your assigned check-in timing, which would have been assigned to you 7 days before your cruise. If your reservation was made less than 7 days before your cruise, you will receive your assigned check-in timing 48 hours before your cruise. Palace guests can skip the immigration queue and embark right ahead! Afterwards, you will be escorted by ground crew staff while you wait for our key card at a lounge.

Final verdict? The Genting Dream Cruise is the perfect vacation for everyone of all ages, and you can choose to make it as active or chill as you like! Of course, we won’t stop talking about the amazing butler service, other special privileges as a Palace guest, and how we don’t have to worry about finding halal food while you’re miles away from the land ? Plus, you don’t have to stay on the cruise for the entire trip - this is something I didn’t enjoy when I first boarded the cruise to nowhere. You get to leave and explore KL and Penang, which means more fun activities (and food) await you offshore! If you need a sign, this is it: it’s time to pamper yourself and book a cruise with Genting Dream Cruise via Klook!

This article is brought to you by Klook.