Romance, Cruising and Food

I want to get back on!!!!!!!

          Good Monday everyone and we hope you are well rested after this glorious weekend we just had. Oh, your weekend wasn’t restful, exciting, fun and romantic? Sorry. Maybe it’s because didn’t do a TV show on MomTV then immediately hop on a cruise on Norwegian Cruise Line like we did. Does it sound like bragging? Well it isn’t. We are truly singing the praises of a form of travel that is unsurpassed for couples. We are talking about starting a vacation from the moment you board the ship to the moment you get off. For a busy couple, that is the only way to go.

          Lee says: We had the wonderful opportunity to cruise on the Norwegian Jewel this past weekend. The Jewel is down in Miami for the next 5 months and then returns to New York. We had been on two previous cruises with NCL (The Sky) and had a great time so choosing the Jewel Mini Cruise to check out the ship was a chance we wouldn’t miss.

          So why is a relationship blog talking about cruising? Since we are committed not only to our own relationship but writing about forming healthy relationships, we believe cruising is the best way to recharge a couple. First of all, the moment that you step on board, you are on vacation. Unlike flying or driving, the mode of travel is part of the excitement. And for us, the cruise is a natural aphrodisiac. The romance of the water coupled with the relaxed atmosphere is the perfect backdrop to recharging the love and recapturing the passion. BTW: these are the cleanest ships we have ever been on which helps with the romance. Clean is sexy. Secondly, with Norwegian’s ‘Freestyle Cruising’, the need to plan and manage your vacation takes a backseat to just enjoying yourself. There are no ‘have to’s’. And thirdly, especially on NCL, when you want to just be with your partner, the staff is there to support you from the excellent room service to the bartenders (Jose in the Sky Bar was the BEST!) However, when you want to have fun, the staff is there to support that as well. They seem to have a sixth sense about this. Carolyn Roddrick, the Guest Services Manager, says that the staff is trained in ‘unobtrusive service’. My impression is that they are there to facilitate your enjoyment but, unlike other cruise lines where the staff is hustling for tips, the service seems more genuine.

          However, since our theme is food this week, we need to take a moment to mention the faire on the Norwegian Jewel. Most people think of cruise eating as one endless buffet and are more impressed with the quantity rather than the quality of the cuisine that is served. This can not be said for Norwegian. From the buffet style fair of the Garden Café (By the way, the burgers on NCL are enough of a reason to take the cruise) to the specialty dining restaurants that served everything from Tapas to French to Sushi to Teppanyaki. Yes, you read that correctly. They offer the full Teppanyaki experience with the chefs and the large grill. We had it and Paul raved about the Filet Mignon. I will sing the praises of the Fish and Chips at the Blue Lagoon that serves ‘Comfort Foods’ and is open 24 hours a day.

          But the cruise was far more than yummy food. This weekend was typical for us. Friday we were tired from the hectic week and preferred to spend time alone. We had a quite dinner and a drink at the Sky Bar before going back to our cabin to snuggle. Saturday, after recording our radio shows for Goddard Radio, we were in the mood to party. After our delicious Teppanyaki dinner, we were back at the Sky Bar to people watch and await the White Party. While Jose made our drinks, we had the opportunity to not only converse with Carolyn the Guest Services Manager but also Que (no, not ‘what?, it’s pronounced Q), the Cruise Director and Steven Jacobsen the Hotel Director. Is it because we were getting special attention, no. We happened to be sitting there and these individuals were there to ensure that everyone was having a great time.

          We need to make a special mention to these folks that made our trip special. Shout outs to the following people:

          Jose: the bartender at the Sky Bar knew when Paul and I wanted to talk alone and when to encourage the partying. Nice guy and great whiskey sours.

          Carolyn: Guest Services Manager-not only cares about the customers she genuinely loves NCL and is committed to great service.

          Que: or the Cruise Director with a heart. He believes in the power that cruises have over couples. ‘Chickichipahhhhh!’

          Steven Jacobsen: Hotel Director. The commitment to providing excellent service is evident from the top to the bottom.

          Lourdes: Guest Services Manager in Embarkation. She happened to be on the cruise as a passenger and shared her love of NCL and was also focused on making the vacation enjoyable from the moment you walk through security.

          We were sad the cruise was only 2 days but what a great opportunity to recharge and reinvigorate not only our marriage but also our writing. We hope you take our advice and check our Norwegian Cruise Lines for your next romantic get away. Take the time to recharge your relationship in a perfect atmosphere.

             Paul says (from home): Where’s my buffet?

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