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iluvwineandtravel

Grandeur of the Seas Southern Coast/Bahamas, March 15-23rd "Livish"

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Hi Everyone,

We are leaving Wednesday evening to fly to Baltimore for a 9 night Southern coast/ Bahamas Cruise on Grandeur of the Seas.  This will be our 3rd time on Grandeur, but our first time on this itinerary.  We have an large outside guarantee cabin for this cruise and were reserved a room right away after calling for a price drop.  All in all we got a great deal on this cruise for less than $1300 total for two people including port fees and $135 onboard credit.  We turn diamond on this cruise, so we did go ahead and pre-purchase a drink package. Initially, I got it for $41 per person on black friday, but two weeks ago it dropped to $38 per person per day so I cancelled and rebooked saving over $42 total.   I also pre-purchased the BOGO 2 night dining package for $30 per person prior to the price increase to $40.  Grandeur only has 3 specialty restaurants.  CHOPS, Giovanni's table, and Izumi.  I also pre-purchased the sushi class after Matt's review.   Our pre-cruise hotel for Wednesday is the Hyatt Regency, Baltimore inner harbor.  I have points with hyatt and utilized a free night coupon for the stay.  The blog will be "Livish" as I did not purchase VOOM for this cruise. 

Here is our itinerary and plans:

Wednesday, March 14th
  • image.gif.29c6246c81a68e430777a882cae9c747.gifFly to baltimore 
  • image.gif.b01dac4a687344c3dfb08055f8245c05.gifUber to at Hyatt Regency Baltimore inner harbor
 
Thursday, March 15th
  • image.gif.7ee00561d4b27a18ec67a449fc3a035b.gifCoffee at Filicori Zucchini 
  • image.gif.149474e47e34b042c1574e666577b6e6.gifTop of world ( purchased on groupon)
  • image.gif.baef9529ab9741e4fc33643b4302031a.gifBoard cruise ship- departs at 4pm 
  • image.gif.db123577bada370ef9f1907180d5aee8.gifDinner @6:30pm (specialty restaurant #1)
 
Friday, March 16th
  • Day at sea
  • Dinner @ 6:30pm ( specialty restaurant #2)
 
Saturday, March 17th (7am to 3pm)
  • Charleston (St. Patty’s day)
  • image.gif.5e801e5bb2e3be0070efa669b86f2884.gifWalking tour (Charleston in a nutshell)- 10 am -12pm  Purchased on groupon - Tour departs at 10am next to the large water fountain at Waterfront Park   
  • image.gif.50f0f5183b6abaa9a517db7ad3a45fd7.gifLunch and beer flights at craftsman kitchen and tap house in french quarter 12 Cumberland StCharleston, SC 294 ( opens at 11:30)
  • image.gif.76fab97aeee4da17c07c09a0861e0f99.gifMTD Dinner reservation @7pm
 
Sunday, March 18th (10:30 to 9pm) Port Canaveral
  • Kennedy space center ( pre- purchased tickets on a discount site-  will take uber or lift there)
  • Beer flight at Florida beer company??? (hours 1-6)  
  • Dinner @ 7pm
 
Monday, March 19th (10:30 to 8pm)
  • Miami
  • Catamaran tour 2:30- 5:30 pm ( groupon purchased )— leaves from Bayside marketplace
 
Tuesday, March 20th (10 to 11:59pm)
  • Nassau
  • Bahamas food tour 11:30 to 2:45pm Bites of Nassau Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tour 
  • Beer flight/wifi at Pirate Republic Brewing
  • MTD Dinner reservation @ 7pm
 
Wednesday, March 21st (8 to 5pm)
  • Cococay
  • MTD Dinner reservation @ 7pm
 
Thursday, March 22nd
  • Day at sea
  • Sushi making class 11:55am to 12:55pm ( izumi)
 
Friday, March 23rd
  • Day at sea
 
Saturday, March 24th
  • Disembark
  • Fly home 

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We made it to Baltimore yesterday evening and checked into our hotel at the inner harbor.  Found a crab cake and a cold brew for dinner.  I forgot to change my shoes to my sneakers this morning and really wanted to have them in the trip so we found a marshall’s close by and then proceeded to the world trade building to the Top of the World observation deck that we purchased on groupon. It was a pretty day and nice view.  

Some thoughts:

- it is much colder than expected with the wind!  I am not used to having to wear a coat for boarding day despite the fact that I have been on 4 alaska cruises :).  We are packed up and heading to the port now!  Looking forward to some much needed sunshine this week! 

 

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first night was Thursday and first sea day was yesterday.  We are waking up to a beautiful sunrise in Charleston today! 

So far we are having a fabulous time and our sea day yesterday was nearly perfect!  I love the quaintness of the grandeur and the feeling of always being connected with the sea.  I had gotten the BOGO dining package when it was still $30 per person.  Night 1 we ate a CHOPs and last night we ate at Giovanni’s.  We went earlier than our reservation and were able to get a great window seat at both locations.  At CHOPs, I ordered the lamb and DH got the filet, but we split them.  The filet was my favorite, but both were good.  I also got the crab cake, lobster bisque, and the red velvet cake.  At Giovanni’s,  we got the filet and veal to split and then the crab ravioli for the table.  Again, the filet was my favorite. I may have even liked it better than the one at CHOPs.   We loved our waiter at Giovanni’s, and realized it was our favorite waiter Kicki that we had when we sailed on Grandeur in 2016. We also loved the baked mozzarella appetizer, and the kalamata bread and dipping sauce.  I had purchased the sushi class and it was originally scheduled for later in the week, but it was moved to yesterday at 11:45.  We started off in the MDR for check in and then proceeded on a tour through the galley.  I had not toured the galley in a while, so this was a fun experience.  We then went up to the Viking crown lounge and had the class in Izumi.  It was a lot of fun.  We made two full rolls, a hand roll and a sushimi. We then got to eat hat we made. I would recommend the class and recommend pre-booking in the cruise planner. While, it is not discounted in the planner, you do save the added 18% gratuity that is added if you purchase the class on the ship. 

 

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Def. Following --- We love Grandeur ..... We've got a third one booked on her this coming October ....

We did the Sushi Making Class last September ... tons of fun..... My wife was much better at it than I, as in the attached picture to use as comparison.

Which one would YOU rather eat? :4_joy:

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On 3/19/2018 at 9:45 AM, coneyraven said:

Def. Following --- We love Grandeur ..... We've got a third one booked on her this coming October ....

We did the Sushi Making Class last September ... tons of fun..... My wife was much better at it than I, as in the attached picture to use as comparison.

Which one would YOU rather eat? :4_joy:

IMG_4439.JPG

I would eat both, no problem.

Does anyone know the minimum age for the Sushi Making class?

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On 3/19/2018 at 9:45 AM, coneyraven said:

Def. Following --- We love Grandeur ..... We've got a third one booked on her this coming October ....

We did the Sushi Making Class last September ... tons of fun..... My wife was much better at it than I, as in the attached picture to use as comparison.

Which one would YOU rather eat? :4_joy:

IMG_4439.JPG

The one the instructor made!:3_grin:

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On 3/17/2018 at 7:03 AM, iluvwineandtravel said:

first night was Thursday and first sea day was yesterday.  We are waking up to a beautiful sunrise in Charleston today! 

So far we are having a fabulous time and our sea day yesterday was nearly perfect!  I love the quaintness of the grandeur and the feeling of always being connected with the sea.  I had gotten the BOGO dining package when it was still $30 per person.  Night 1 we ate a CHOPs and last night we ate at Giovanni’s.  We went earlier than our reservation and were able to get a great window seat at both locations.  At CHOPs, I ordered the lamb and DH got the filet, but we split them.  The filet was my favorite, but both were good.  I also got the crab cake, lobster bisque, and the red velvet cake.  At Giovanni’s,  we got the filet and veal to split and then the crab ravioli for the table.  Again, the filet was my favorite. I may have even liked it better than the one at CHOPs.   We loved our waiter at Giovanni’s, and realized it was our favorite waiter Kicki that we had when we sailed on Grandeur in 2016. We also loved the baked mozzarella appetizer, and the kalamata bread and dipping sauce.  I had purchased the sushi class and it was originally scheduled for later in the week, but it was moved to yesterday at 11:45.  We started off in the MDR for check in and then proceeded on a tour through the galley.  I had not toured the galley in a while, so this was a fun experience.  We then went up to the Viking crown lounge and had the class in Izumi.  It was a lot of fun.  We made two full rolls, a hand roll and a sushimi. We then got to eat hat we made. I would recommend the class and recommend pre-booking in the cruise planner. While, it is not discounted in the planner, you do save the added 18% gratuity that is added if you purchase the class on the ship. 

 

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Red velvet cake is the best.

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Enjoying your blog!  Thanks for taking the time!

 

So, how was Charleston?  I don't get downtown much anymore because it's just become so congested, but I do love Craftsmen.

They have a fantastic taplist and bottles, as well.   There are so many nice places to visit that are within easy walking

distance of the terminal.

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16 hours ago, mom2mybugs said:

Sweety...I'm not going to be able to take a bite of red velvet cake on freedom next week without thinking of you!   Jane

Thank You. I will be on the Navigator. They better have red velvet cake.

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On 3/21/2018 at 11:19 PM, mom2mybugs said:

Sweety...I'm not going to be able to take a bite of red velvet cake on freedom next week without thinking of you!   Jane

We might be eating red velvet cake at the same time. My husband gets an extra slice, hides it in the room and makes me find it. The last time it was on the balcony with a glass of milk. Very romantic.

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I am in the airport at BWI and finally have Wifi again so catching up on the Blog.  Last Saturday was our stop in Charleston for St. Paddy's day.  It was a gorgeous day!  We got off the boat around 9:30 am to meet our walking tour guide at the fountain at the waterfront park.  The ship was already decorated for St. paddy's day that morning.  The Charleston waterfront is gorgeous with a walking path along the park and lots of sailboats.  We saw several dolphins while we were waiting to meet the guide.   The 2 hour walking tour took us through the historic area and the french quarter.  We ended the tour near king street and saw the end of the parade.  We then grabbed an Irish stout at craftsman's kitchen and split a burger for a light lunch.  There were meeting green drink specials on the boat.  I tried a green godess martini, but was not a big fan of it.  This was our first night in the MDR at MTD of the trip. We got sat at table 577 with Desmond and Shereen.  They were very good and we were able to get seated in their section on all of the rest of the nights with the exception of the lobster night which was incredibly busy.  We still got seated quickly on this night, but the service was much better with Desmond and Shereen.  On this night.  I had the strip steak and DH had the lasagna.  We had the new menu on Grandeur.  Sometimes this was frustrating as the menu on the screens was often not updated.  We always like to check the dining menu during the day to think about what to order.  I liked the concept of ordering desert with the rest of the dinner order.  This definately seemed to improve efficiency.  We like MTD because with 2 of us we are usually through dinner in an hour vs. 2 in the Main seating.   Overall it was a beautiful day.  We got to see both sunrise and sunset! 

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Day # 4 Port Canaveral.    We opted to go the Kennedy space center.  I had purchased our tickets for $40 each at a discount site prior to the cruise.   We took lyft on our own.  The cost was $28 going and $25 for the return trip.  It was a great day!  We saw several alligators.  I will post a photo even though it is blurry and was taken from the bus that goes around the launch sites.   We also did the Chef's table on this night.  We were offered a discounted rate of $51 per person for the Chef's table since we had the drink package the the BOGO package.  We got the offer for this night only on the first night when we dined in CHOPS.  I have done the chefs table on celebrity, but this was our first time on RCL.  The experiences are similiar and we very much enjoyed the food and wine pairings.   We esp. loved the desert pictured here that is originally from Wonderland.

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