Posts Tagged ‘Onboard Amenities’

Cruise Ship Casinos: Roll the Dice and Win Big on Your Next Cruise Vacation

A big draw for many taking a cruise vacation is the casino.

You will find a casino on almost every large cruise ship. Do note: Disney Cruise Ships and Norwegian’s Pride of America do not have a casino onboard.

The ships that do feature a casino, they do it big. Get your own little slice of Vegas at sea with thousands of square feet of lights, action, slots and tables.

  1. Slot Machines. They have penny machines on up to high payout slot machines. Me? I tend to stick with the penny slot as I am not the luckiest person in the world.
  2. Blackjack. This is an easy game to learn and great fun.
  3. Roulette. I will be honest, Roulette has always intimidated me although I love to watch others test their luck!
  4. Craps. Roll the dice, try for a 7 or 11, you could win big!
  5. Poker Nights. Make sure you are ready to show off your bluffing skills.
  6. Bingo. Don’t laugh, I have had several clients win BIG (even a free cruise!) with B-I-N-G-O.
  7. Tournaments. Several cruise lines offer Blackjack, Texas Hold ‘Em or Slots tournaments, entry fees vary.
  8. If you have no idea how to play 1-7, never fear, many cruise lines offer ‘learn to play’ with personalized instruction from staff.

The Casino onboard is an entertainment hub for many with its exciting atmosphere. And for those high rollers out there, you can even receive benefits for future cruises depending on how much you spend in the casino!

TIP: There is a bar in the casino, as well as beautiful ladies kindly bringing beverages to you, so make sure you tip as they are not part of the overall gratuities. Smoking is allowed in most casinos, some only allow it in a particular section, but it can still be bothersome if you are sensitive.

Make sure you bring that lucky someone to be by your side! There is nothing better than hitting it big and celebrating with someone special.

Good luck!

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Splish and Splash it Up on Royal Caribbean

What is your favorite thing to do when on a cruise? For me, I like to stay busy. I’m not one that will sit by the pool for hours.

That’s why I love sailing on Royal Caribbean.

They offer something poolside for people like myself, a busy-body, or for those that like to lounge with a good book (or now-a-days an electronic book!).

Royal Caribbean has six classes of ships, each offering the same simultaneous energetic and relaxing aqua-ambiance.

Sovereign Class –

  • Majesty and Monarch of the Seas are the 2 smallest ships in the fleet, weighing in at about 74,000 gross tonnage each.
  • There are 2 pools on each ship for you to swim your daily laps or just hang out with friends poolside.
  • There are also 2 whirlpools to soak your worries away.

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Evening Entertainment Onboard Carnival Cruise Line: 9 Reasons You Can NOT Hit the Hay Early

Carnival Cruise Line does indeed provide the Fun Ships!  I don’t even know where to begin with the numerous activities to choose from onboard a Carnival cruise vacation.

  1. Once you have completed your dinner (yum), you can take a stroll up on deck to enjoy the view of the night sky over the darkened ocean. OR, you can enjoy those same stars while watching Hollywood stars on the big screen of Carnival’s Seaside Theater (outdoor–not available on all ships).
  2. If you don’t feel like keeping your feet still, get your groove on and dance it up at one of the many nightclubs. The energetic dance floors and great music will have you out dancing the night away to the ‘oldies’  and the latest in pop songs.
  3. Be sure to attend at least one of the planned dance parties. Whether it’s the Sail Away Party, Fun Hop, Captain’s Party or Late Night Deck Party they will all keep you laughing and having a great time.
  4. If you don’t like to dance, then just hang out while enjoying the music, atmosphere and your new friends.
  5. I love the piano bars onboard, and Carnival has some of the most entertaining piano players that I have had the pleasure of listening too.
  6. In the main show lounge, relax with your favorite cocktail while watching a spectacular Vegas-style performance with talented singers, dancers, extravagant costumes and awesome scenery.
  7. There are comedians and sometimes amazing magicians to make you laugh so hard you cry.
  8. Okay, so you might get tired of watching other people perform, why don’t you head to the karaoke lounge to give your best performance?  Carnival holds karaoke contests where the winner gets to perform live on the main stage.  So warm up those vocals and sing it like you meant it!
  9. Don’t forget to bring your change and lucky rabbit’s foot to hit the fast-paced action of Carnival’s lively casinos.

Want to get a real taste of all a Carnival Cruise has to offer? You will receive a daily newsletter in your stateroom detailing the onboard activities being offered the next day. Get a sample of all of the excitement you have to choose from!

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originally posted 3/30/11

Wipe Out! 5 Things To Know Before You Ride the FlowRider®

What is a FlowRider?!

This is a surf simulator where you can either ride a boogie board, or if you’re really brave a surf board.

The complimentary FlowRider experience is offered 5 of Royal Caribbean’s ships…Freedom, Liberty, Independence, Oasis and Allure of the Seas. Oasis and Allure each have two FlowRiders!

I have personally ridden the waves on three ships. I took my first ride on the Freedom of the Seas back in May of 2006, it’s hard to believe it’s been almost 6 years already. It is sooo much fun.

The one thing I noticed, both while riding and standing in line, is that everyone cheers for the person riding the waves.  Everyone is involved and cheering you on. That’s what makes it even more fun! You don’t have to worry about if people are going to laugh, because they don’t….really!

The staff working on each ship was always helpful and encouraging.

Here are my Top 5 suggestions on how to brave the waves on the FlowRider:

  1. Take the time to watch other people do it before you get on a board. It’s fun to watch and you will see what to do and what not to do
  2. If you haven’t been on a surfboard before, I would not suggest starting here. I would suggest getting a feel for the waves on a boogie board, you won’t have far to fall!
  3. When it’s your turn, listen carefully to the staff member on how to hold your board and where to aim when hitting the wave. It can seem intimidating, but if you listen to what they tell you it’ll work I promise.   Thankfully, I have never wiped out upon entering the wave.
  4. The one thing they don’t tell you—you can’t see!! The water is splashing up in your face so you can maybe see 2- 3 inches front of you.  Just be prepared for limited visibility. This is important when you need to steer, which you do simply by leaning either to the left or right, forward or backward.  If you go too far back…BAM! You are wiping out!  But, you get right back up and do it again!
  5. My top thing to know before riding the FlowRider? WOMEN: wear a one piece or a t-shirt and shorts on top of a 2 piece.  MEN: make sure your strings are tied tight!   I don’t think I need to say any more on this subject!

Whatever you do…HAVE FUN!! KOWABUNGA!!

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Celebrity Cruises' Cabanas, 'The Alcoves' are Full of Style, Luxury and Relaxation

Stylish, chic, modern, sophisticated, elegant, graceful.

All without being pretentious.

Such a thing does not exist, you say?

In that case, your next vacation goal is to experience ‘The Alcoves’ on Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Silhouette or Celebrity Reflection.

Just steps away from Celebrity’s revolutionary Lawn Club, a freshly manicured lawn with a Country Club atmosphere, The Alcoves are eight cabana-style settings that comfortably accommodate two to four guests.

Relax within your own private hip bubble, just overflowing with style and ambiance, and take in the sea views behind a lush, green lawn.

Within The Alcoves, guests can enjoy stunning views of the lawn and sea; ambient mood lighting for cozy, romantic evenings; complimentary amenities including:

  • A fresh fruit plate
  • Hand-held fans
  • Chilled towels
  • Four bottles of water
  • All-day use of an iPad loaded with a variety of music, movies, games and magazines.

Guests enjoying The Alcoves can even stay in touch with family and friends back home, if they choose, as the area is fully WiFi-equipped (fee applies).

An impressive amenity, Celebrity presents each airy cabana with a dedicated Alcove Attendant. Just a quick phone call to your attendant and you can purchase a la carte beverages, spa services, or, my favorite, themed picnic baskets.

These fresh, themed picnic baskets from the specialty restaurants onboard include antipasti, Mediterranean seafood pasta, and salads from Tuscan Grille; jumbo shrimp cocktail, assorted berries, organic breads and healthy salads from Murano; fruit brochettes and country-inspired sandwiches from Bistro on Five. Plus, have fun trying to choose from the desserts and a special beverage menu.

Wine and cheese evenings under the stars also can be arranged, along with special spa services, once onboard.

Just imagine, unwinding with an ocean breeze underneath the shade of a chic, white awning as you are receiving an indulgent massage, facial, or manicure. I believe that is the definition of magnificent.

A wide variety of spa services can be arranged for you to enjoy in your Alcove, you can find the full list here.

  • The Alcoves can be booked online in advance, which is convenient for those that want to plan their cruise vacation before setting sail. It also ensures that you are guaranteed a day of luxury, these cabanas have been very popular and reservations fill quickly.
  • The Alcoves are booked as full-day rentals, from 9 am to 9 pm, or can be reserved for the entire voyage.
  • Rates are $99 per Alcove (not per guest) per day on days in port, and $149 per day on days at sea.
  • Special values are available for guests who book one of The Alcoves for several days or for the entire cruise.

2012 Sailings on the Celebrity Silhouette

2012 Sailings on the Celebrity Reflection

Celebrity Cruises' Wine Experience–a Private Worldwide Wine Tour by a Sommelier

Celebrity Cruises arguably has the one of the most extensive wine lists at sea, with sommeliers around every corner. If you are a lover of wine, you may have just met your vacation heaven.

Onboard, the wine collection offers you 480 selections on Solstice Class-ships, and over 350 selections on the Celebrity Century and Millennium Class-ships. The options are broad with every wine-producing region represented such as Champagnes, Rare vintages, and California Cults Wines, to name a few.

With one of the largest teams of Sommeliers in the world you have a chance to educate your palate. Each Sommelier is certified by the United States Sommelier Association, and one is designated for your convenience in each restaurant. They are there to assist you with wine pairing questions or to provide suggestions.

A rare vintage–If you happen to be sailing on one of Celebrity’s remarkable Solstice Class-ships, you will be immediately awed and inspired by the 2-story glass wine tower designed by renowned designer, Adam Tihany. Each tower holds 1800 bottles of wine!

One place you certainly do not to miss is Cellar Masters, Celebrity’s wine bar. Treat yourself to the amazing experience of a global wine tour. Learn about wines, receive expert recommendations, and relax with friends. One of the great features of Cellar Masters? It uses a state of the art Enomatic wine serving and preserving system. All you have to do is choose a wine, push a button, and pour a glass. Perfection, I say!

With Celebrity’s Wine Appreciation 101 workshop and Riedel® Comparative Wine Crystal Workshop, you have the opportunity to make the most of your love of fine wine.

To truly immerse yourself, Celebrity also offers Specialty Wine Cruises. The “Savor Your Destination” wine cruises offer memorable events designed to further your appreciation and understanding of wine and fine spirits.

Wine, champagne, sparkling wine and port tastings.
Learn how food can impact the flavor of wine
Discover what a spectacular pair port wine and chocolate make
Shore excursion to a winery with a wine tasting and dinner
Connoisseur Wine Dinner where French and California wines are paired to the Best of the Pacific Coast.
Learn how the shape of a wine glass affects flavors on the palate in the popular Riedel Wine Glass Comparative Workshop.

Call your Personal Cruise Guide for more information, and to reserve your Specialty Wine Cruise today! Cheers!

Carnival Creating Waves of Fun, Food and Drink with Fun Ship 2.0

Carnival is “The World’s Most Popular Cruise Line®”, with 23 “Fun Ships” operating voyages ranging from three to 16 days in length to The Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, New England, Europe, and Bermuda.

Carnival prides itself on delivering fun, memorable vacations to their  guests by offering a wide array of quality cruises, which present outstanding value for the money.

With this in mind, Carnival recently announced their newest wave of innovation, Fun Ship 2.0.

Fun Ship 2.0 is an onboard enhancement program will start with the Carnival Liberty later this month, and eventually be featured on all ships within the next few years.

Imagine everything you already love about a Carnival cruise, enhanced with new experiences that get you dancing more, laughing more and simply having more fun onboard.


Carnival has teamed up with comedian and TV funny-man, George Lopez. He will be their new comedic director of laughs, he will personally hand-select talent for their new, fleet-wide Punchliner Comedy Clubs.

An interesting new experience will be the Punchliner Comedy Brunch, offered on sea days, combining hourly performances with great food and drink.


Guy Fieri is an American restaurateur, author, TV personality, and game show host. He co-owns 5 restaurants in California, and is widely known for his television series on the Food Network.

And now, he can add Guy’s Burger Joint to his impressive resume. Together with Carnival, Guy Fieri brings you the appetizing appeal of a roadside burger shack in cool spot poolside. Fresh-off-the-grill burgers and hand-cut fries await you. Try yours Guy’s way or head over to the topping bar and make it your own masterpiece.

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Cruise Ship Acupuncture? Experience this Amazing Practice Onboard a Carnival Cruise!

Join John as he finds out first-hand what facial acupuncture is like in the spa onboard a Carnival cruise ship! Don’t cough John!

Get Onboard and Experience a Norwegian Cruise Line Ship with John

Step onboard a Norwegian Cruise ship with John Keen and allow him to take you through different areas of one of their ships!

Cooling Down on Celebrity Solstice Class

Celebrity Solstice Class ships are made up of four ships the Celebrity Eclipse, Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Solstice, and the brand new starting her maiden voyage the summer of 2011 Celebrity Silhouette. While these ships offer the best of service and style they also offer some fun and relaxing ways to cool off while at sea or in port.

The first area I must speak about is the ever so relaxing and luxury Solarium. This area on the Solstice Class ships is adult only with quiet whirlpools and a main fresh water pool that is large enough to do laps in.


What a peaceful way to start or end your cruise vacation and you don’t even have to worry about how many kids are on board. The Solarium is located forward on the Resort Deck very close to the AquaSpa.

Next are three water areas right in a row. There is the Sports Pool, Family Pool, and Wet Zone. All of these areas are also fresh water. You can also find a spot in a whirlpool in this area as well. With plenty of lounge chairs you can watch the kids from your sunning area or join in the fun. The staff on board the ship will have pool activities available at certain times. The daily news letter will let you know what activities are available and what time if you are interested. I can’t leave out the Pool Butler. If you have purchased a suite that includes butler service you will also have access to a Pool Butler. They will provide services such as assistance finding a lounge chair, mini neck and foot massages, chilled facial spritzes, and other luxury extras.

If you are concerned with the water areas being over crowded or too loud a great idea is staying on board the ship during port. This is usually a great time to get quiet pool time but of course you can always visit the Solarium which is quiet and relaxing all the time. Celebrity definitely has found a way to make cooling off fun and enjoyable not to mention relaxing.

What’s your favorite activity onboard Celebrity Cruises?

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