Paul Gauguin Private Island

Posted By : Sandie Harman/ 0 0

I have cruised on the Paul Gauguin twice.  The first time was a 7 night Society Island itinerary and the second time was a 10 night Society Island and Tuamotus itinerary.  I preferred the 10 night itinerary, it allows you to time to visit and explore the beautiful Tuamotus islands.   One of the stops on either itinerary is Paul Gauguin’s private island.  It is a wonderful relaxing day spent sitting under palm trees.

If you’d like a drink no problem, wade into water to their floating bar where Le Gauguins will be happy to mix you up an ice cold beverage of your choice.   Lunch is served on the island.  If you want to work off a few of the calories you consumed during lunch you can take out the complimentary kayaks or snorkel in the crystal clear water.  It is truly a day spent in paradise!

Honeymoon in Alaska

Posted By : Morgan Gibson/ 0 0

Alaska isn’t the destination most people think of in conjunction with a honeymoon but it’s where my husband and I ended up going and it was fabulous.  We got married in the late summer, which corresponds with hurricane season in the Caribbean and we were unwilling to risk the weather.  Europe was also a consideration; however, we were concerned it would be too busy after the intense business of organizing a wedding.  We really just needed to relax!

 

A cruise to Alaska it was! I wouldn’t hesitate to suggest it to anyone – it was quiet romantic to be able to snuggle under warm blankets on our balcony and enjoy the majestic scenery of the inside passage.

Travelling with a little one

Posted By : Sydney Hodgins/ 0 0

Before going back to work after my maternity leave we decided to take a cruise. We had been on several cruises in the past but always opted for the more economical cabin because really how much time do you spend in it?  But travelling with a baby we knew we would need to be in our cabin more for nap times and bed time so we splurged and got a balcony.  Best decision ever!

We were still able to have our daughter nap without feeling “stuck” in the cabin.  We could grab some lunch and bring it to our room and eat it on the balcony while she slept.  And in the evenings after she went to bed we were able to unwind on that balcony without feeling like we were missing out on too much.  Surprisingly, that was one of our most relaxing trips.

Celebrity Edge - The Spa Float Room

3 Things I liked about the Celebrity Edge

Posted By : Shelley Greenan/ 0 0

I’ve cruised many times before never with Celebrity Cruises so I jumped at the chance to be part of a Travel Advisor opportunity to spend a few days on their newest ship, the Celebrity Edge. She is a beautiful ship with many many great things for everyone to enjoy, but I just picked 3 Things I liked best about this ship!

THE SPA
This is a wonderful wellness spa, with many options beyond the typical aesthetic services such as Salt therapy rooms, a Crystalarium, Float Room, Turkish baths and a steam room and sauna.

 

THE INCLUDED RESTAURANTS
We were in Aqua Class so we had access to Blu. LOVED Blu. Great food. Great service. Lovely setting. Comfortable chairs. If something wasn’t on the menu, they would get it for me.

I liked that some of the other included restaurants were smaller venues. Gave it a more intimate atmosphere, quiet instead of the huge, noisy two level dining experience you get on some ships.

 

SPACES
I loved the design and connection of sea with land onboard. Lots of greenery and wood all around, very calming and not overwhelming to the eyes. Plenty of comfortable spots scattered throughout to relax or people watch (one of my favourite things to do!)

 

A New Twist On Great Ships

Posted By : Stephen Smith/ 0 0

I recently had the pleasure of spending a few days on Norwegian Bliss and wanted to share 5 thoughts.

Food/Restaurants

I did not have a chance to eat in all the restaurants but overall enjoyed the food experience. I am always a big fan of a pub on a ship.  The Local did not disappoint.  Good beer selection and some tasty pub grub. Food Republic was very cool – always a fan of shareables! We also ate at Tappenyaki one night and it was a lot of fun as was to be expected with a great show.

 

Go Carts

The Go Cart experience was far superior to my expectations.  The process to get started was smooth and the track was longer and more adventurous than I anticipated.  Most impressive was the speed and handling of the go carts themselves.  I was able to move at a good pace and take corners hard.  I really thought that it would be a very basic experience and it was truly thrilling.

 

Décor

The décor of the ship was great.  Modern and crisp with soothing palettes. One thing I am impressed with is that NCL seems to improve their decor with every ship – they don’t just keep it the same.

 

Entertainment

I am always impressed with a professional production of Jersey Boys – the story is great; the music is fantastic – and it was no different on the Bliss. We took in a comedy routine at the Social Comedy and Night Club and both the host and the comedian were very entertaining – a nice way to laugh off feeling full after dinner!

 

Observation Lounge

This may have been the most impressive space on the ship. Primarily because it was a major upgrade from previous Escape class ships.  It was well designed, extremely inviting and I was very impressed with the small food stations they had that allowed you to grab a snack or light lunch during the day.

More Pasta Please

Posted By : Sydney Hodgins/ 0 0

I’ve been on a few Princess Cruises and one thing that I always look forward to is my Fettuccine Alfredo.  My first cruise was with a seasoned Princess cruiser and they told me I must try it – so of course I did!  It was delicious!  It came in a crispy parmesan basket, was creamy and buttery and just darn tasty.  So now anytime I sail with Princess I have it at least twice a cruise – it is on their “always available” menu so I know I won’t be disappointed.  My husband started getting it as an appetizer and when I travelled with my extended family our waiter knew to bring us a few bowls to share around the table each night so everyone got to have some.

 

Oh and don’t forget to try the Princess Love Boat Dream for dessert!!!

Image courtesy of Travel Pulse News  
Whale viewing from ship

Whale Spotting from our Balcony

Posted By : Morgan Gibson/ 0 0

It was day four of our Alaskan Cruise and I sat luxuriating on our private balcony, drinking a glass of wine, and admiring the rugged beauty of the snow-capped mountains that lined the horizon.

Gazing over the railing , I mentally reviewed the wildlife we had been fortunate enough to spot so far: Noble bald eagles soaring with amazing grace, the black bear who wandered across our path during a drizzly ride to the Mendenhall Glacier and a  playful otter we spotted out for a swim in Sewards port. Abruptly my thoughts were interrupted. An orca spectacularly breached the ocean, propelling itself high into the air and then crashing back down with a tremendous splash.  It was so exciting!  We had been waiting to see a whale! It really made our trip complete! My husband came out and joined me on the balcony and we sat and watched the whale play. Amazing!

 

 

 

Photo credit:  Holland America

Princess Cruises Bridge Cam

Bridge Cams your view to the sea

Posted By : cutecourts/ 0 0

Okay, I’ll admit it … I really do love cruising! Honestly, the thought of getting on a ship gets me extremely excited. I’ve mainly sailed with Princess Cruises and one of my favourite things to do is follow the ship I am going to be on via the cruise ship Bridge Cam. Each day I check out where my ship is positioned and know that will be me in a few short days.

And yes, sometimes I even search out an itinerary that I’d like to take and follow that ship so that I have an idea of what I may see if I decide to take that voyage.

Does this make me a cruise geek? Probably!

Check out a Princess Cruises Bridge Cam … you may find your self getting addicted

The Unique Celebrity Edge Infinite Veranda

Posted By : Maria Karmiris/ 0 0

I’ve cruised a lot, and when I cruise I really enjoy a balcony stateroom. I love having a place to sit out and relax in the morning with a coffee or in the evening after a show. I was recently on a 2 day inaugural of the new Celebrity Edge and was lucky enough to have one of their Infinite Veranda staterooms and I loved it!

It is a really interesting design, you can close off the veranda with large glass doors or have those open and your cabin feels like it goes right to the edge of the water. It is set up as a typical veranda, different flooring, a small table and really nice comfortable chairs – no regular old plastic chairs here. And since it is a covered veranda it is very private. You are able to drop down the top part of the floor to ceiling window to let the sea breeze. And even from our KING size bed we were able to see the ocean and enjoy feeling like our whole stateroom was the veranda.

If I were to sail on this ship again I would absolutely book myself into one of these staterooms.

Nieuw Statendam

Shipyard Tour of the New Nieuw Statendam

Posted By : cruising/ 0 0

It is always impressive to see a massive cruise ship up close.  But even more jaw-dropping to tour it at the shipyard where it is being completed and where the mind-boggling scope of work comes clearly into focus.

So it was a thrill for ilovecruising.com correspondent Martha Chapman to be the sole Canadian member of a team of journalists from Europe and the US to visit Holland America Line’s latest “baby” at the Fincantieri shipyard, near Venice, Italy last month.

The ship was at 85% completion at the time and was a beehive of workers, machinery and noise as the journalists donned hard hats, steel-toed boots and workers’ overalls for the tour.  And talk about a labour of love:  there have been as many as 4,000 workers at one time on board.

The ship is the second of Holland America’s Pinnacle Class ships and will be almost identical to its sister ship the Koningsdam.  It will accommodate 2,666 guests (including) and 1,000 crew. There will be 32 family suites accommodating up to five guests and 12 solo travellers in specially-designed outside cabins. Over $4 million US in art will enhance the vessel.

Passengers won’t go hungry – or thirsty – with 12 restaurants/cafes, seven bars and seven entertainment centres and 139 whiskies to choose from in their own tasting bar.

A new “Club Orange”, available for a surcharge, will feature its own restaurant, concierge hotline and priority shore transfers when you travel in a suite.

The first passenger sailing is a 14 day transatlantic crossing December 5, and then the Nieuw Statendam will sail the Caribbean in winter and Northern Europe in summer.

And it will boast a godmother which many consider a fairy godmother:  Oprah Winfrey will christen the ship in February next year and will escort a three day girls’ getaway cruise.  Apologies if you’d like to be a part of that:  that sailing sold out months ago, within 24 hours.

The Nieuw Statendam carries an investment of over $900 million Canadian, we have no doubt it will succeed with grace and panache.