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About ejnsb

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    Cool Cruiser

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    New Smyrna Beach, FL
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    Skiing, travel
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  1. We may be to blame. We went through 13 bottles of Veuve on the Epic in September.
  2. We had it on the Epic in September. Two other couples dining with us had the regular package. We ordered Veuve Cliquot every night at dinner. A total of 13 bottles over 6 dinners. They didn't care that the others at our table didn't have the PPB. They just asked how many glasses. Also ordered several bottles of red (don't remember what kind). Used it every morning for fresh oj, numerous times for specialty coffee drinks in the Atrium (which was the only bar outside the dining rooms serving Veuve). Also ended my nights trying various single malt scotches including Macallan 25. Well worth it for us. Plus, we probably got 50-60 bottles of water, enabling each couple to take some back to their cabin.
  3. I am probably not your source for insight on Cannes or Palma because we didn't do much there, but this is what I remember. We decided not to stress over catching an early tender for Cannes and that's the one day we had a relaxing breakfast in the dining room. It's a short walk from the tender pier to town and we strolled in with no real plans. One thing we learned in Barcelona was to get off the main streets and check out the alleyways and other areas. That's where we found a very cool market selling everything from flowers to pizza to oysters. Looked like a lot of locals do their daily shopping there. My wife is a movie buff so we also visited the hq for the Cannes Film Festival. You can pose on the red carpet and peruse the handprints scattered around. We did not do Palma correctly. Again we had no plans and if we visit again will set up a private tour. It is a long walk from the dock to an area where you can pick up a taxi or the hop on bus. There were long lines for both and it was the hottest day of the week. We walked into town, had drinks and then grabbed a taxi back. Again, I should have planned this one better.
  4. Moving on to the ports: This is a port intensive itinerary and we did our research to make sure we got the most of it. The three big days in a row were exhausting but exhilarating and I think we did it right. Since there were six of us we never considered the ncl excursions. In the Naples, Rome and Florence stops we booked with RomeinLimo based on the reviews posted here and another site. They were fabulous and cheaper than the ship's offerings. We had an 8 passenger Mercedes van with driver all to ourselves. We were driving away from the ports while hundreds were piling into the big buses. Even though we had booked specific tours, our drivers were completely flexible to our requests. For example, we were supposed to tour Florence first and Pisa later but the driver suggested we flip it. We hit Pisa before any buses and it was very nice walking through nearly empty streets. Florence is always busy so it didn't matter there. Another example was the Rome driver. On the way in we told him we did not buy tickets for the Colosseum because the website said we probably would not have time. He took us straight there and went to the ticket office. We got right in and it was a highlight of our trip. We also booked a private guide for the Vatican and Pompeii and it was money well spent. The drivers also gave us great lunch suggestions and complimentary cold water. In Cannes and Palma Mallorca we did our own thing, walking or tendering when we wanted. Really liked Cannes, awesome market in town. Would probably enjoy Palma more if we weren't worn out by then.
  5. A bit late writing this but we have just been back in the states a few days. My thanks to all the reporters before me for their invaluable insights. My apologies for not having the discipline to take notes and do a daily play by play. This will be more summary style and I will be glad to answer questions. We are 3 couples, 5 of the 6 recently retired. We did 3 days pre-stay in Barcelona. Post cruise we did 3 days each in Paris and London, traveling by high speed train. Since this a cruise report I won't cover the land stays other than to say we had a fantastic time everywhere. Embarkation/cabins/disembarkation. We arrived at the port around 10:30 and were onboard with cocktails in Maltings by 11:30. Pretty seamless experience. Bags were in our cabins when we returned from the muster drill. My wife and I had sailed Epic before and chose balcony cabin 8197, starboard and aft. Our friends were alongside. We loved this location for easy access to many drinking and dining venues. Our routine was to meet in Maltings for drinks pre-dinner. Disembarking, we walked off at 7 to meet our private driver to the train station. Ten minutes from closing the cabin door we were dockside. We found the cabins to be fine and had no problems with the unique bathroom setup. Our steward did a fine job. Food and Beverage: Due to the early start to each day to get the most out of the ports, we usually did breakfast in the buffet and/or room service. We liked the outside tables (the Great Outdoors). Buffet was fine, nothing special. Most lunches were ashore. We had 3 dinners in the Manhattan, one each in Shanghai's, Moderno, Cagney's and La Cucina. All good to very good, made even better by the champagne (which leads us to beverages). We all had the beverage package but when NCL announced their Premium upgrade package, I was definitely interested. Thanks to some input on these boards, I pulled the trigger and am very glad I did. We had 13 bottles of Veuve Cliquot champagne during dinners. It did not matter that the other two couples did not have the package, they simply asked how many glasses we needed. We also had 3 other bottles of wine, multiple specialty coffee drinks, 12 large glasses of fresh orange juice and probably 50-60 bottles of water. In addition, I am a scotch drinker and enjoyed Glenlivet, 25 year old Macallan and more. Again, most of this was shared and the servers did not care. Maybe it helped that we tip a buck when ordering but we have always done that. Running out of gas so will leave this here and pick up tomorrow.
  6. Six of us were also on this cruise. We had an early departure from the train station so we prebooked a private van, walked off at 7 no problem. At that time there must have been 50 taxis lined up. Our driver said there were seven ships in port that day so I can imagine it being hectic later on. I will agree it was an awesome trip and plan to do a trip report soon.
  7. We are in Barcelona now, boarding tomorrow. I am using the Free Now app to order a taxi. You type in your destination and it gives you the option of a larger vehicle if needed. Works great. Similar to uber or lynx
  8. Great thread. Going on our 5th ncl cruise next week . We tip bartenders and others but never did these cards. I will look for them for sure and I like the idea of bragging on the ones usually taken for granted.
  9. Others have reported that when getting bottles of wine at dinner, they were able to share it with table mates. Any thoughts?
  10. So I pulled the trigger on this for our 9/15 sailing. I know we will get our money's worth with the champagne and single malts. My main concern was being able to share the bottles at dinner and two have reported you can. I will try to report back post cruise.
  11. We were deck 8 aft on tthe Getaway. It was enormous. Our family of 8 did sailaway on it. Loved it so much, booked the exact same cabin 6 months later. The only negative is that during the warm months it can be too hot to sit out for long.
  12. LCR stands for left center right. Each player starts with three tokens/quarters/dollars or whatever you want to play for. You take turns rolling dice l, c, r or a dot on each side. You pass your tokens left, right, or center (the pot) or nowhere for dots. Last one standing wins the pot.
  13. Didn't realize you were talking about those kind of numbers.
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