I love to travel.
Working for the entire year anticipating this one short time period of two weeks, it is the most treasured time in my life every year, and more so as I am cruising for the very first time.
My travel buddies keep emphasizing to me that once I had cruised with Royal Caribbean, I wouldn’t want to cruise with any other brand of cruises again. They sang their praises highly of Royal Caribbean cruises, it was hard to ignore what they say.
|Sunrise on the day of embarkment of our cruise adventure|
Being my first time on a cruise, I pretty much have no reference to compare against while my buddies do. I just have to go with my gut feeling and input as whatever experienced I was going to have to be the highest benchmark for cruising.
This massive giant hosts up to about 3600 guests, with a service team of 1400 crew members.
It is literally a city on the seas.
We had a little more time in the morning (we were checking in at the terminal at 11am) so we had breakfast at the nearby Bayside Marketplace. Bayside marketplace is a marina with a nice mix of shops and restaurants.
I had dinner here in the Chili’s restaurant on the night we arrived in Miami.You can read about it here.
|Morning at Bayside Marketplace|
Bayside Marketplace is more of a nightspot. While the shopping starts early, the place really comes alive when the sun sets. However, the marina is a hotspot for another set of audience in the morning.
‘The early bird catches its worm’ . How apt.
These beautiful seagulls ( I haven’t seen seagulls these upclose before) were the stars at the marina in the morning.
Anyway, we took a cab down to the terminal to check-in.
Upon arriving, we were told to check-in our luggages.
|Michelle, my room mate, tagging her luggage|
We were given a luggage tag with a picture of what looks like a shape of the boat hull that was cut up in 6 pieces, much like a grid. You can see it in the picture above tagged to our luggages.
The porter asked for our room number and deck and he will make a marking on the grid and set it on the metal luggage carrier.
Later on I realised, the grid actually helps them to quickly identify the position of our rooms and made porting our luggages more efficient and accurate. Smart!
A huge crowd started queuing at terminal G at Port of Miami where we were boarding the cruise; and we had to queue in the hot Miami sun. God did bless us fine weather that day, as the skies pour the past two days when we arrived earlier.
It took about an hour or two? I couldn’t remember, but it was the excitement that kept fuelling my patience to board the cruise.
After checking-in at the counter, we were each presented a cruise card.
|Michelle and her cruise card|
|The deck we are on… We’re Vikings!!!|
|My room number. 4D anyone?|
The bathroom is on the right side of the room, just behind the front door after you open the door to the room. As we were on board the cruise for a conference, our conference materials and our product orders were all already quietly waiting for us in the bedroom when we arrived.
*You can check out more of my room in the video at the end of this post.
|Our lunch reception!|
Lunch. Need I say more??
Okay, at least I’m not the one chowing down loads!
Due to the heavy breakfast, I only ate very little…… compared to the rest of the ladies!!! *chuckles*
Typical Singaporeans you may say so…
You really haven’t seen it all…. Try looking at some of the other passengers. Asians or not, the habit of piling up on plates at the buffet seems universal.
After lunch, we were ushered outside for a firedrill, ops not, more like a safety drill. We needed to know where our escape pods were, how to put on the life vest, etc.
* Did took some video clips. You can view them in the video below.
Royal Caribbean had collaborated with Dreamworks to give us a Dreamworks experience on the cruise!
King Julien and Gloria threw us a huge sail away party and even thought us how to “move it, move it” !!!
Shrek and Princess Fiona also graced the party.
How cool is that?!
The sun was setting as the cruise slowly ease out from the harbour.
From the top deck of the cruise, I was able to take in all the beautiful sights and sounds, and wind (yeap it was so windy as the cruise moves!) of Fort Lauderdale, Miami.
We were blessed with a breathtaking sunset that day.
Here’s another shot as we sail further out:
Although not very well taken, I was very intrigue with this next shot as the cruise glides on the waters at dusk…
Here’s the video I had shot on the first day of my cruising experience!
Some of you would be curious how much I paid for this cruise??
Well, I went for a conference with an mlm company and they chartered the entire cruise.
All paid activities onboard such as the Flowrider and all gratitudes/tips for butlers and servers were paid for by the company; we only paid the base price and port tax, or I called it the “ticket price”.
Amount I paid for this cruise: USD$749
Approximately (based on rate of USD$1 to SGD$1.40) : SGD$1048.60
In 2013, the price of a similar cruise of the same class is approximately priced at USD733.
But with the USD dollar drops, the cruise should be cheaper in SGD.