The second day of any cruise is my favorite day of the sailing because it is the first full day onboard and it is usually the sort of day you think about all the time in the days, months and years leading up to your cruise vacation, Embarkation day is wonderful because it is the start of your cruise, but there is so much going on. When day two is a sea day, it is usually a day full of fun and activities that really sinks in that “I’m on a cruise!” mentality.
We woke up earlier than I expected (PSA: be sure to turn off your daily alarms on your phone before going on a cruise), but took things easy as we rolled out of bed.
For breakfast, we decided to take advantage of our suite benefits and head to Chops Grille. Each morning, Chops offers a breakfast for gold SeaPass card guests that is a fantastic alternative to the main dining room.
I wanted to stay on the lighter side of things and went with smoked salmon on a bagel, while my wife went with french toast. My salmon was excellent!
After breakfast, we headed to the Schooner Bar for a round of morning trivia.
Considering our team consisted of just me and my wife, we did pretty darn well, scoring 12 our 20. I could not remember that Fleming discovered penicillin and struck out on the trick question if giraffes have more bones in their neck than humans (same amount of bones, giraffe neck bones are just bigger).
After being denied a trivia championship, we took a walk around the promenade deck on deck 5. Today was a wonderful sea day, with no waves in the ocean, no motion to be felt and nothing but sun and a few passing clouds.
We made our way to the helipad on the front of the ship, which is a great little hidden secret about Brilliance of the Seas. It is usually open throughout the day, and a great spot to enjoy the view.
At 11am was the suite guests reception in the King & Country Pub. This was a thank you event for suite guests that included a visit by the ship’s Captain, as well as plenty of complimentary alcohol and quick bites to eat.
Since we have the Ultimate Dining Package, lunch at a specialty restaurant is included in our package benefits so we headed up to Izumi.
Izumi is priced a la carte, so you get a per-person stipend. Our waiter told us we would have a $35 limit with the package, and was quite creative in the math to make our purchases work.
We ate with a few friends from RoyalCaribbeanBlog.com, so we got to see quite a few dishes.
I started off with a miso soup and poke tuna taco.
One of our friends had the tuna wasabi, and I had instant sushi envy.
For our main course, I went with a sashimi combination plate and my wife chose the hot rocks with steak.
One of our dining colleagues chose the spicy ramen soup with pork. He said it was a lot of food (nearly overwhelming).
Feeling very full from our lunch, I really wanted to relax by the pool. We got changed in our room and then headed down to the Solarium.
As you might expect, the Solarium was crowded, but after two to three laps, we managed to grab two lounger chairs.
It was a great afternoon of pool time, drinks and even a coveted nap.
Around 4pm, it was time to head back to the room and get ready for our evening activities.
After getting ready for the evening, we grabbed some pre-dinner drinks and then headed to the the theater to catch the Broadwway tribute show.
We have seen this show before, but it was a great performance of favorite showtunes across a variety of Broadway shows.
Dinner tonight took us to Chops Grille, which was packed for formal night.
The food was great, although our service was a bit slow. Nonetheless, it was a great meal.
After dinner we went to the most crowded Pub I can recall being at in recent memory. It was great to have a ton of energy with every song.
- The main pool was back in service all day today.
- There is a crew of contractors working to upgrade the WiFi infrastructure on the ship. I spoke briefly to them, and they indicated that the upgrade was more about better WiFi coverage rather than faster speeds.
- The guests in this stateroom were quite creative with their stateroom door decorations.
- In terms of maximizing my drink package benefits, so far I have been succesful in "breaking even" on my investment. Two drinks between breakfast and the afternoon, two drinks at dinner and two drinks after dinner, combined with a coffee or two and bottles of water and the drink package math makes a lot of sense.
- It seems to be hit or miss when it comes to wait staff to take drink orders on Brilliance. Just one waiter came by in the afternoon to take our drink orders inthe Solarium and the Pub waiters tend to stay behind the bar. Meanwhile the Schooner Bar has waiters roaming all over the place.
- Chops had the red velvet cake on the dessert menu
- Our stateroom attendant really went to to town with our anniversary decorations tonight.
Tomorrow is our only port of call, and it will take us to Cozumel, Mexico.