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About pf778c

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Northeast US
  • Interests
    Food, Wine, Music, Animals
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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  1. About to go into lockdown? In Hell's Kitchen yesterday:
  2. pf778c


    I can highly recommend Mike Watson. I rode with him and some former students of his a few years ago along the railway trail and had a fantastic time. I also had a ride scheduled with Moran Meadows, but received an email that the ride had been canceled and was unable to confirm in time to find out that was untrue, but was able to enjoy a ride with Spicelands Equestrian along with shore. They were pretty disorganized and I ended up having to wake someone up for my scheduled ride when I arrived. I later heard that they may have been in the process of changing hands. Wishing your daughter luck!
  3. I would say that some people will tip regardless. Most luxury lines include gratuities, but many people tip on top of that as well. I always donate to the crew fund, but did tip my butler once when he took it upon himself to clean and polish my tall boots (I like to go horse riding in the country while in port).
  4. I am used to a "pillowy" bed, so always request a topper in advance. I don't believe it is always the same type used, however. An egg crate type was used on my last Shadow cruise and I believe I would have noticed the "points" previously, so think a different type was used in the past. They have ALL been extremely comfortable!
  5. I just email my TA and have them contact the cruiseline on my behalf along with any other requests I may need to make.
  6. As I prefer a "pillowy" bed, I always request a topper prior to embarkation and it's always been on the bed when I board. Not something I'd want to have to pack and bring with me!
  7. I LOVE booking a cruise that departs from Old San Juan! I love solitude and riding, so it's the perfect excuse for me to spend as much time as possible in Rio Grande at Hacienda Siesta Alegre! Fantastic breakfast, no TV, beautiful stables, sleeping to the sound of the rain and breezes through the palms and the coquis - heaven! I grab a rental car from the airport and usually hit the kioskos in Luquilla most nights for dinner. After dropping off my luggage on the ship and unpacking it's time to wander around Old San Juan on embarkation day. Such a beautiful and charming little city (I have dreams of living here, but know it's too noisy and busy for me in reality)! One day in Old San Juan is enough for me though. Supposedly, there are areas in San Juan outside of the old touristy part of the city that visitors are not advised to frequent after dark, but that is true of any city and doubt that there would be any reason to be there in any case unless one was looking for trouble. Be smart and enjoy!
  8. I can second the recommendation for Platinum Heritage. We did a custom tour (platinum safari + astronomy + overnight in Bedouin village) with them last year and it was absolutely fantastic! Our guide, an expert on the desert and astrology, was with us the entire time, from picking us up at the hotel to dropping us off at the port the next morning. Great people, no crowds; an experience truly done right! I'll be booking with them again when the opportunity presents itself. I can also recommend the tours given by the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding.
  9. The place I rode with was El Rancho Barrio Dorcas. They are a small family-owned operation and arranged for transportation for me from the port with another family member who is a taxi driver. Nothing luxurious, but very convenient! He also took me rum shopping after the ride (I was able to find a great price on some Ron Zacapa - my idea of the prefect souvenir!). The ride was through the backcountry, along the beach, and through the mangroves; about an hour and a half total. The horses were well cared for, and steady. Tack was Western. They request a 10% deposit via PayPal, and the remainder in cash, as they cannot process credit cards. Being Honduras, US$ are acceptable; just make sure they are not torn or wrinkly. Contact info is: Roosmarie Maten, North America toll-free: 888-200-7702 or locally 504-9687-1067 / 504-9555-4880. This was in 2016, so prices and procedures may have changed, but their website appears to still be active.
  10. I had one of these as a guarantee on, I believe, either the Shadow or the Whisper and liked it. The shape is boxier, rather than rectangular, with the bathroom opening up off of the bedroom (very convenient) and very light and airy due to the "french" balcony in lieu of the window. I did not notice any undue motion, but that could very well be more a factor of itinerary rather than location (Caribbean).
  11. Do you ride? I can recommend a stable that gives tours around the surrounding countryside, otherwise you're right; the main reason to visit is for the diving.
  12. BIG congratulations Lois!
  13. I second BeachTunes recommendation of The Pillars. It really is a lovely property; quiet and intimate. The supper club on the premises is quite nice as well and you can't beat the view, dining along the Intercoastal.
  14. My experience is limited; I have only cruised solo with one line, however I agree with Lois and feel that adequate provisions are made for solos to facilitate guest interaction, at least on this one line. Aside from shore excursions and scheduled activities like trivia and small "lunch and learn" type cooking demonstrations and wine tastings where guests are in small groups, they offer a hosted solo gathering each evening followed by a hosted table for dinner and gentlemen hosts on many cruises. I think this is primarily a concern for shy extroverts; those who desire interaction but have trouble socializing with strangers. I think if they were to make their concerns known to the crew member(s) hosting the solo gatherings, the host may be able to offer a bit of extra "social grease" to help them with introductions to others and finding common ground for further conversation. What we think of as "true" extroverts would have no problem, I think, and introverts by definition, are much more comfortable with solitude and may or may not even be interested in joining the solo gatherings. I consider myself mostly an introvert and sometimes attend the solo gatherings, sometimes not, but thankfully, I am not shy and find it easy to meet others when I fancy. I am grateful that this line I am familiar with offers a solo "program" but does not pressure anyone to partake. I would find that very uncomfortable!
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