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LitaArn

Cruise Review: Venice, Bari, Corfu, Athens, Mykonos, Dubrovnik - Splendour - Aug 2012

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What also added to our very enjoyable dinner was that a group of diners to the left of us, a French family started talking to us in French. Emily being fluent in French was our able interpreter and we chatted away. What a beautiful family! The young couple has a very cute baby boy (he slept mostly in his pram), so adorable :)

 

The French family and Emily

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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

 

Good Night Venice..... We hope to experience more of your magical nights in the future...

 

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Edited by LitaArn

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The following morning, we had our usual delicious breakfast, then started to get ready to check out of our hotel. Though we felt sad about leaving beautiful Venice, we were also excited to board the awesome Splendour OTS.

 

Sandro, one of the hotel owners who I’ve previously mentioned earlier on this review, arranged a water taxi to pick us up from the front doors of the hotel, then drive us to Royal Caribbean’s cruise port terminal.

 

Our driver arrived on time at 11 am. He and Sandro took care of our luggage, and we proceeded to say our goodbyes. We thanked Sandro deeply for the most wonderful time we’ve had in his and his partner Walter’s lovely hotel and their amazing staff. Hopefully, we get to visit Venice again in the future, and when we do, Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo will be our premier choice.

 

 

Sceneries on the way to the cruise port terminal

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One last look at a gondolier and his iconic gondola

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Just passed under Ponte della Costituzione or Constitution Bridge

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There She Is! The Beautiful Splendour of the Seas!

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Splendour on the right, parked beside MSC Divina - MSC Cruises’ latest Fantasia-class luxury cruise ship

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On the dock, our driver handed our suitcases to the pier’s baggage handlers, with Royal Caribbean’s staff supervising. We paid our water taxi driver 90 e plus tips (he was quite helpful); we also tipped our baggage handler on the dock. We then began a short walk from the dock to Royal’s cruise port terminal. Yay! We’re almost there!

 

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Because we have booked a Grand Suite (it was the first time for us out of 7 cruises), check in went very quickly. We got our seapasses, went through Italian security check, Royal’s security check, then... Woo Hoo! We were officially on board the beautiful Splendour OTS!

 

While waiting for our cabin to be available, we walked around the ship to take a few photos. I apologize that I only remember to take a few :o

 

This is Royal Caribbean’s Facebook link with plenty of pictures of the ship

 

The link does not show pics of an Inside Cabin or the Royal Suite. I found this link though of a detailed video of an Inside Cabin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RsxQJIXT5A

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I will continue to post more tomorrow, starting with our Grand Suite photos and Sail-a-way.

 

Good night, and thanks for tuning in...

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Originally Posted by scottishwee35

hello

 

I still enjoyed to read your trip story.

 

you see that we are going to Venice next year for two days before our cruise which similar your...

 

We are deaf family apart from hearing son.

 

the reason I was reading your story and wonder where did you booked for Grand Canal Boat Tour and Gondola Ride and Serenade Tour ?

 

I see that the photos that you were sharing with another people for Gondola Ride and I wonder if that would be less expensive ? If we go 4 of us for Gondola - will it be expensive? or better share with anoher?

 

Scottishwee35

 

 

 

 

 

Hello scottishwee35 :)

 

I'm sorry that I forgot to mention that on that Viator link I'd sent you, on the left side halfway down on the page, there's a blue box that says "Questions...

Click here". You can email them any questions about the gondola ride. Hope this helps.

 

Hi

 

Oh you are so nice to help me and many thankk for information and I put it in my favourite so I will have a look at it for later.

 

I continue to read your trip report and love it ;)

 

Scottishwee35

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Schooner Bar

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Entrance to the "King and I" dining room

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I enjoyed to read it and what a lovely photos of Venice and this cruise too..

 

thank for your time to wrote and showing the photos.

 

I look forward to read more later :)

 

Scottishwee35

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Your food porn really IS food porn. I started salivating looking at the antipasta plate and the dinner from the last night. I showed Blake the pictures and that's whetted his appetite for seeing Venice. It's the canals that seduce him. I can't wait to see the pictures from the Grand Suite.

 

By the way (and not sure you want it posted here but oh, well), Blake said that Emily is beautiful. 'Twas unsolicited so you know it's true. :)

 

My apologies to everybody else replying...Lita and Arn are our good friends and cruise buddies and I'm still jealous that we didn't make this trip but I am enjoying the experience through Lita's eyes. Next time, though, I plan on being in the dang pictures. :p

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I really enjoyed your visit of Venice. You had great pictures and really got to see a lot. We were in Venice for an overnight (on Brilliance) but I really wanted to spend more time there. We did not get to go to the outer islands either.

Looking forward to reading the rest of your report.

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I VERY much enjoyed your review of Venice and the photos! We will be there next May!

 

Couple of questions - Do you have to reserve a gondola ride in advance or is it something you can arrange on the spot?

 

Did you have tours to the islands because you mentioned only 50 min. at Murano?

 

Did you use public transportation any in Venice?

Do you know where your hotel was located relative to the train station?

We'll be flying into Venice, staying 1 nt., then to cruise, then back in Venice for 3 nts before catching train to Rome. I'm trying to find something that will be convenient and easy transfers.

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Wow the ship looks really good! Our only RCI cruise before was on Grandeur before she had her refurb so it wasn't that "glitzy", still an amazing cruise though :)

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Hi

 

Oh you are so nice to help me and many thankk for information and I put it in my favourite so I will have a look at it for later.

 

I continue to read your trip report and love it ;)

 

Scottishwee35

 

I enjoyed to read it and what a lovely photos of Venice and this cruise too..

 

thank for your time to wrote and showing the photos.

 

I look forward to read more later :)

 

Scottishwee35

 

Hello Scottishwee35 :)

 

Thank You for all your kind comments. I'm glad you're enjoying my review.

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This is one of the BEST reviews I have ever read! I love Venice!

 

Hi Donna,

 

Oh my... Thank You so much. I am so pleased that you like my review :)

 

I just read your signature quickly and noticed that you sailed to Turks and Caicos in 2010. We would love to visit it one of these days...

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Your food porn really IS food porn. I started salivating looking at the antipasta plate and the dinner from the last night. I showed Blake the pictures and that's whetted his appetite for seeing Venice. It's the canals that seduce him. I can't wait to see the pictures from the Grand Suite.

 

By the way (and not sure you want it posted here but oh, well), Blake said that Emily is beautiful. 'Twas unsolicited so you know it's true. :)

 

My apologies to everybody else replying...Lita and Arn are our good friends and cruise buddies and I'm still jealous that we didn't make this trip but I am enjoying the experience through Lita's eyes. Next time, though, I plan on being in the dang pictures. :p

 

Hi there Rebecca :)

 

Many of our great memories in Venice were the dinners we've had, so very delicious and I'm happy that I remembered to take photos.

 

Emily and Eileen send their love to you and Blake :)

 

Hopefully, Arn and I will get to experience Venice again, and maybe with you and Blake next time. It would be so much fun, just like in Barcelona, Caribbean, etc...

 

Hugs,

Edited by LitaArn

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I really enjoyed your visit of Venice. You had great pictures and really got to see a lot. We were in Venice for an overnight (on Brilliance) but I really wanted to spend more time there. We did not get to go to the outer islands either.

Looking forward to reading the rest of your report.

 

Thank You for writing in. I'm glad that you like my review. :)

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I VERY much enjoyed your review of Venice and the photos! We will be there next May!

 

Lucky You :) The first time we were in Venice was end of May-early June. The weather was perfect!

 

Couple of questions - Do you have to reserve a gondola ride in advance or is it something you can arrange on the spot?

 

We did arrange for our gondola ride and serenade excursion before we left home with Viator (we've used them before and we're quite happy). Here is the link http://www.viator.com/tours/Venice/Venice-Gondola-Ride-and-Serenade/d522-2495TOUR4

 

Did you have tours to the islands because you mentioned only 50 min. at Murano?

 

Yes, we did go on a tour. We were in Murano in 2006 and had seen the glass demo but it was the first time for our daughter. It would have been ideal if we had longer time there, but all things considered, we're still happy :)

 

Did you use public transportation any in Venice?

 

Yes, we did. We took a water taxi from the airport to our hotel, also from the hotel to the cruise port terminal. For our comings and goings around Venice, we used the waterbus or vaporetto. Here is the link for Venice Vaporetto Fares and Info http://goitaly.about.com/od/transportation/qt/vaporetto.htm

 

Do you know where your hotel was located relative to the train station?

 

Here is the link for the hotel http://www.alpontemocenigo.com/

Also, as per the hotel's website:

 

" By train:

From Santa Lucia station take vaporetto no. 1 (N at night) and get off at the San Stae stop (third stop). Cross the bridge on your left and walk for 30 meters along the Fondamenta Rimpetto Mocenigo until you arrive to the private bridge that leads to the hotel.

Alternatively you can arrive at the secondary entrance to the hotel by simply going straight from the vaporetto stop, then taking Calle dei Preti, the first on the left, and ringing the bell at the second door on the right (no. 1984/b)."

 

We were talking to a couple of hotel guests there who took the train and they said the hotel was convenient to get to from the train station. As for getting around Venice, the S. Stae vaporetto station stop is less than a minute walk from the hotel, and 11 stops away from St. Mark's Square -- approx a 10-20 minute ride depending on traffic.

 

We'll be flying into Venice, staying 1 nt., then to cruise, then back in Venice for 3 nts before catching train to Rome. I'm trying to find something that will be convenient and easy transfers.

 

I hope the above info will help in planning your trip.

 

Thank You for writing in.

Edited by LitaArn

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Wow the ship looks really good! Our only RCI cruise before was on Grandeur before she had her refurb so it wasn't that "glitzy", still an amazing cruise though :)

 

I'm happy for you that you get to sail on the beautiful Splendour next year :)

 

Thanks for writing in.

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AUG 25th, Embarkation Day - Continued...

 

Afterwards, we had lunch at the Windjammer. Very crowded but we did manage to find seats for us. It was around 1 pm by the time we finished lunch; time to go and check out our cabin, a Grand Suite.

 

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Edited by LitaArn

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SAIL-A-WAY with Our Newfound Cruise Critic friends... Christine and Family ~~~~

 

Months before this cruise, I started posting on our Meet and Mingle Roll Call. Joining Cruise Critic was one of the best things we’ve done when we started cruising (Thank You Cruise Critic!). Through its website, we’ve learned so much about cruising, saved plenty, and the best of all, it gave us the forum to chat with other cruisers sailing with us, many of whom have become very good friends, like priceless jewels really.

 

Such was the case with Cruise Critic member Christine from U.K. (cruise criticname: hummy0605) from this sailing’s Roll Call. Through the exchange of many newsy emails, we got to know each other and each other’s families (she and her husband Neil have two lovely young daughters: Elyssa and Chloe).

 

The following is what I’ve written about Christine’s family on our Meet and Mingle Roll Call thread right after our cruise:

 

“ Theirs is the loveliest, most kind and generous family you’ll ever meet. We met everyday for pre dinner drinks, sat together for dinners, and did many fun activities. For 5 nights after dinner, they took our daughter Emily to party with them till 1 or 2 pm, and then they would walk her back to our cabin and see her safely inside. (Arn and I could not stay awake past 11 pm except for the last 2 nights of the cruise). Because of their lovely family, Emily had a lot more happy memories of this trip. No wonder she said that first night “Mom! You picked the best friends! They’ve treated me like their own daughter!”

 

On the last night of our cruise, Christine & family invited us to visit them in England. We want very much to invite them to visit us in our home too; she just beat me to it. Then, just several days ago, I received the loveliest email from her stating “ANYTIME you want to come across to England you are very very welcome to stay whether it is just to use us for a base whilst you visit other places or to stay with us and let us spoil you.” What a lovely, generous invite, melted our family’s hearts... “

 

 

From left: Elyssa, Emily, Chloe

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Elyssa, Emily, Chloe, Neil, Arn

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Edited by LitaArn

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