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About fastpitchdad

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Sammamish, WA

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  1. Are the rooms exactly the same? It is about an $800 price difference from Balcony to Aqua which seems a little high just for a restaurant. We could eat at specialty restaurants every night for about the same price. That is something to look forward to...especially the Casino 🙂
  2. I haven't had an issue with either our corporate VPN or our commercial VPN (my company also sells a VPN service...actually two of them). I did have unlimited upgraded Internet. Not sure if that makes a difference.
  3. I searched but couldn't find any answers... We are considering sailing from VCE to BCN on the Infinity for our 25th Anniversary (Aug 23rd and then doing a B2B of sorts on the NCL Epic on Aug 30th). I see a lot of posts on Aqua on the Edge but not on many other ships. Is it worth doing on the Infinity? Is it similar to NCL's Haven? We usually get the Thermal Spa on NCL and it looks like Celebrity's version is included. For those who have done both are they similar? Any other major differences between Celebrity and NCL? We are non-smokers and wine snobs if that makes a difference 🙂 .
  4. There might have been some wine that was a couple of dollars above the UDP but they were all available by the glass with possibly a small upcharge. I would still recommend it...for someone into wine it was definitely fun. For value the best tasting we did was the Macallan tasting. For $20 (or $16 with discount) you get a flight of three higher end scotches with chocolate and nut pairing in a tasting environment for less than what you can buy it for at a bar (and most bars on the ship don't carry it).
  5. It is a blind tasting or sorts because in a black glass you can only use taste and smell to evaluate the wine. They start with a regular tasting and go through color, legs, swirl, smell, taste, etc. and then taste a few wines in a black glass. I believe it was $20 (plus a 20% discount because of UDP?). Also from my TR "Our first tasting was a black glass wine tasting at Le Bistro. We did something similar on the Pearl last year which we enjoyed but this one was much better. Only three of us signed up so the Sommelier really took his time to explain the intricacies of wine tasting. First we tasted some wine in regular glasses and with tasting notes and varietal information and then we tasted three new wines in black glasses. For each wine we had to decide red or white (pretty easy), varietal, and location (old or new world). In the end I think my wife won but she works in the industry. All three of us had a great time. When it was over he sent us on our way with a very full glass of whichever wine we enjoyed the most."
  6. Which is why I suggested going for the show and not the wine. It is not really a wine tasting (if you want that do the black glass tasting) it is more of a dinner theater where you taste along with the players. I thought it was worth doing and I can be a bit of a wine snob 🙂
  7. We went to the show on the Getaway last fall and enjoyed it. The wines are available at the bars and not terribly high quality (but none of NCLs wines by the glass are) but they sort of serve their purpose for the show. The food was decent (I think we had short rib). My advice would be to go if you think you might enjoy the show as a whole and not just for the wine. Here is what I wrote in my TR "We were seated up front with another Haven couple whom we would see throughout the week (we ended up having dinner together on the next to last night). In case you couldn't figure it from the 8 bottles we brought, my wife and I are really into wine (in fact she works pours wine in a tasting room on Sundays for a local winery). With that in mind the musical was pretty good. It was sort of half wine tasting half dinner theater. They made light of the quirkiness of wine connoisseurs and wine newbies while taking everyone through the tasting flights. "
  8. For us it was disappointing. The meats were poor and salad bar decent but below what we expected. We really enjoy land based Brazilian Steakhouses and Moderno wasn't even close. If you have never been to a Brazilian Steakhouse then my suggestion is to go to Moderno and enjoy it but then visit a decent land based restaurant (even Fogo de Chao) when you get back.
  9. We have a timeshare that includes a Seattle location that is available for those dates at $338 total for 3 nights but not in a room that would work for you 😞 (they have 1br and 2br units but only studios available for these dates). If anyone else on that cruise needs a Hotel let me know...happy to book it for you at cost.
  10. I would probably agree with the previous poster...if you absolutely need reliability, wait until you can get a land based connection at port. At the very least you are going to have latency with Satellite internet. Even with Webex and Skype it was noticeable.
  11. I suppose it depends on what you are doing and how much you trust NCLs vendors. I noticed that all data is tunneled through Miami. I used my corporate VPN without issue during our Baltic Cruise on the Getaway including webex and skype meetings.
  12. My wife and I have our 25th on August 26th. We currently have a 12 day British Isles Cruise on the Star booked. Our final payment is coming up so I am of course second guessing myself. The cost for a Balcony was ~$7K all in which seems a little high (it is higher now with the 30% discount special). We could do a back to back on the Jade from BCN (8 day + 12 days) which is probably too long and would cost about $1500 more. We could do a back to back Jade + MSC Grandiosa for about $2K less (or 2K toward better than Balcony) We could do a back to back Haven Spa Suite on the Epic + another 7 day cruise on Epic, Royal Caribbean, MSC, or Costa for about the same price. The first cruise is always our anniversary date. I think I want to get that out of the way so to speak 🙂 Any suggestions? Keep the current cruise? Scrap it all and just go the Best Western Bakersfield? For Europe, we have already done the Baltics and Italy/Croatia/MonteNegro/Greece out of Venice. The other option is a 12 day river cruise out of Amsterdam on Avalon but we are already booked for a 7 day River Cruise in the fall from Bucharest to Budapest. Any other suggestions?
  13. SEA has a light rail that will take you into the city but the only stop with hotels nearby is Westlake. There are several nice hotels in that area including the Westin, Sheraton, Hyatt, Grand Hyatt, Mayflower, Paramount. As mentioned, there are two piers for cruise ships. If leaving from pier 91 (essentially not NCL) then it doesn't matter where you stay because you will be taking some kind of cab-like ground transportation to get there. If you are leaving from pier 66 than the Marriott Waterfront and the Edgewater are within a block.
  14. Oops...misread the question. Well now you know when it closes as well 🙂
  15. It closed at 11-ish for us. It was supposed to close at 11 but if it was busy they would stay open a bit longer.
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