Sunday, November 30, 2008

Emerald Princess, December 2008, Embarkation

Sail away!

Lifebuoy: Emerald Princess, Hamilton

Slept well and got up at 7:30 to have breakfast and do some re-packing. There was a light rain and it was very hot. The shuttle left the hotel right on time, at 11:45 A.M., and we got to the port about 20 minutes later. There were long lines for the Emerald Princess but they moved very fast and by 1:00 we were in our cabin. It was a very comfortable mini-suite with a balcony on the usual starboard side, Dolphin deck 9. There was a bottle of Champagne waiting for us along with a plate of chocolate covered strawberries and minutes later a bowl of tropical flowers arrived. All of this requires a little preplanning but it's well worth the effort.

The PiazzaBy 2:00 P.M. three of our four pieces of luggage were delivered. The last bag arrived at the door at 3:45.

Also in Port Everglades on this Sunday were Carnival Freedom, Celebrity Solstice, Crown Princess, Imperial Majesty's Regal Empress and Holland America's Westerdam. When you add the Emerald Princess, the total passengers debarking and embarking on this Sunday is potentially 30,208 if all the ships are at capacity.

Before muster drill at 4:15 we had a light lunch in the Horizon Court Buffet. The weather was getting stormy and a front was passing by so the Commodore delayed our (5:00 P.M.) departure nearly an hour. The sea was slightly rough and the Emerald Princess was rolling a bit. Later the sea got quite rough.

Christmas Tree on Emerald PrincessThe ship is beautiful and still feels new. Its inaugural cruise was in April 2007. It is a Grand Class ship and carries 3100 passengers and 1200 crew. It was beautifully decorated for Christmas -- tastefully and not overdone.

We had dinner in the Michelangelo dining room. Luis from Portugal was our waiter and his assistant was Olena from Slovenia. Both were very friendly and professional. Dinner, with veggie spring rolls, spinach soup, mushroom soup and roast beef plus dessert, was very good.

We both were tired and sore from the long two-day drive and we went to bed early -- enjoying the rocking of the ship in the stormy weather.

No comments: