Sorry. I've been pushing down my Summer trip posts in lieu of more local food finds which seem to get readers all riled up. I must continue within the year or else I wouldn't be giving my Summerstravaganza justice.
So anyway, my previous post was about the Celebrity Equinox, the ship which we took to tour the Eastern Mediterranean. But no Cruise talk would be complete if we didn't talk about the infamous, notorious, and just plain over-the-top BUFFET.
Love it or hate it, buffets are the epitome of cruise ships and can vary from icky and muck, to awesome and unbelievable. ToT experienced the latter on the Oceanview Cafe, which even the crew members agreed was the best Buffet setup in all of Celebrity cruise ships.Aside from the usual cooked food, Oceanview Cafe's Hot Station served Minute Steaks, Lamb Chops, Pork Chops and more meat!
For Breakfast, they would have several types sausages, corned beef hash and other dishes Pinoys love.
A danish bar was there serving freshly baked croissants, danishes, and my favorite chocolate croissant. Being resourceful, ToT traveled with a stash of ziploc bags, and took some of these carb-buddies with me when we would tour.
Aside from that, a Sandwich Bar was available with different rolls and sliced bread, and a variety of cold cuts and sandwich fillings. I mean.. COME ON.
There was an Asian Section, a Mexican Station, Pizza & Pasta Station as well as a meat carving station.
On a healthier note, the options for salad were so delectable, I forgot I was eating "healthy" for a vacationer! Caprese salad anyone?
And the fruit.... AAAaaaahhhh... crated in on every stop we had. Each day's selection became the surprise of the day.
Yet, amongst other stations, my favorite would have to be the Dessert one. Pastries, little cakes, mousses and parfaits, even sugar-free versions. and CREAM PUFFS!What's not to love?
And the motherlode... the ICE CREAM BAR!
Can you imagine living here for 12 days? Gym is my best friend!
Anyway since our second day was At Sea, there were plenty of activities in store for the cruise guests. I tried to read a book by the Solarium, the covered pool.
After a while I went down and found my S-i-L taking Cha-cha classes at Quasar, the disco/club.
I tried for a few rounds, then got lazy and just sat down
I tried to read another book at the Library, but I knew what I really wanted to do.
GET MY DRINK ON!!!
We were so fortunate during our trip that the Head of all the bars onboard was Filipino, and was the namesake of my Dad. So he treated us like Filipino royalty, and ToT got sloshed on very many occasions.
The best place to kill the afternoon buzz was to sit by the pool and tan which was on top of my to-do cruise list.
And who else to accompany then unattached ToT but her equally snap-happy and alcoholic brother! I'm not sure how this photo became overexposed, but I like it.
Yes, that's ToT... EATING by the pool. What can I say? I'm great at multitasking.
After getting a bit of sun, I explored the ship and saw the Salon, which had beautiful lime green armchairs that made me crave for more mojitos.
One of the best things about the decor is the modern art & photography that infiltrated the public areas.
A complete departure to the drab walls I experienced at some of the older cruise ships.
So come dinnertime, we were completely mellow and decided to clean up for our first Formal Night. Formal nights are usually nights when the ship is sailing to its next destination, and something special happens afterwards.
Our designated dining location was the Silhouette Room, beautifully designed with two floors, side to side windows, and the largest wine collection on any cruiseship as its centerpiece.
When we had to be social and decided to stop noshing on the buffet, we sat down as a family and became spoiled with the one on one waiter service as well as the plated dishes.
After dinner, we went to the Equinox Theatre for the special show.
It began with a Toast from the Captain of the ship, and an introduction of the officers on board. Bubbly time!
This was followed by an acrobatic, Cirque du Soliel-type show which was more entertaining that mere singing & dancing.
ToT and my cute parents. Genetics is on my side!
After the show we went back to Quasar and saw that is was a bit lifeless and empty.
So I sat by the bar and ordered a drink. What!? I'm thirsty!
I also tried to get my dad to join in the fun, but clearly, his two youngest kids more than compensate for his vice-less ways.
After Quasar, we walked around and saw the Indonesian bartenders do an exhibition at Crush Vodka Bar
And I saw the countless Martini glasses around the frozen bartop... And I just had to have one too!
We bumped into our godsister there too!
Our last stop before hitting the snooze button was Sky Lounge, which is the biggest Club atop the Ship.
ToT's Bro chatting it up with the Filipno Band who performed for the duration of our trip!
After a looooong and alcoholic day, we were glad to get back to our bed with many many pillows and sleep the night away so we can wake up to our next destination...
DO YOU KNOW WHERE THIS IS?!