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Honeymooners REVIEW of the SUMMIT in the S Caribbean on 22Feb in AQ AFT w DIETARY Req

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Can you tell us what the massage costs? Would be interested in doing next time in St Lucia Thanks. Also enjoying the review!

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Hi!

 

Thanks for your great review! We are leaving 2 weeks from today on the Summit! My DH is also lactose intolerant. It's great to see there are some lactose free options available onboard.

 

Not long to go now!

Being lactose intolerant used to be much more restrictive, but I honestly did not find it a problem on the Summit. Make sure you communicate your needs before each meal as he may be able to pre-order to ensure his choice get's whipped up for him. AND don't forget about dessert - the best meal! Just let them know that you are interested. And don't be afraid to ask for something other than sorbet :) Happy cruising!

 

 

Uh oh did we lose her???

 

Not that easily - I am back in full force :D

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I have a few comments to catch up on!

 

Looking forward to more. Hope all is well.

 

Things have improved thank you for the positive vibes. I hope you are enjoying the updates! :)

 

Sorry to hear about your Mum, I hope she is on the mend. We all have busy lives and appreciate the effort that is put into a review like this. Take your time. I think people were generally concerned about you not the review when you dropped off the radar.

Keep your chin up!

 

Thank you for your thoughts. I've been keeping her occupied with all things cruising :p. Although time consuming, I've really enjoy writing & going through our pictures. I hope that I am able to help / provide insight - I know the feeling of being prepared can make all the difference! This place was such a great resource of information before our cruise I really wanted to give back to the community.

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It was much quieter than Flamenco & is known for the turtles in the area. This is the amazing part. We actually swan with wild turtles! We didn’t have to feed them, they just swam towards us. We were beyond excited!

 

I was in PR earlier this year. LOVED Culebra. Getting ferry tickets seems like a nightmare. We booked a kayak snorkeling tour with a company that reserved us tickets, so we just went to the front of the line to pick them up. VERY turbulant boat ride though! Apparently the locals call it the "puke box"! Tested out my sea sickness wrist bands and now know that they work! Snorkeling with the turtles was awesome!

 

I wish I had your hotel and restaurant recommendations for OSJ though! We stayed mostly in Farjardo at the Farjardo Inn, which was affordable and a nice little resort.

 

Thanks for your review :-)

 

 

It's been my pleasure! Culebra is underrated - but not for everyone. Very special place. I'm not sure that I would be game enough to test out the ferry! Sounds like an experience though :eek:

Now that you have OSJ recommendations you may just have to head back over for another cruise to test them out ;)

 

Good to have you back. I hope your mum is getting better now :) What a lovely idea to recommend a Med cruise!! You should have stipulated that you had to go with them to make sure they will be ok.. ;)

 

Mum is slowly recuperating. I hoped that by giving her something to look forward to she would get stronger quicker. She spirits are high so even if she just sits onboard all day, it has been completely worth seeing her excited.

 

Oh - I tried! I mentioned that I am available during that time should they require my services as a guide. Dad laughed. I was deadly serious! What started as a trip for my parents has increased to family in Germany meeting with them as well as another couple joining them from Australia. At least private shore excursions will be easier to organise! :D

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I'm still here and reading!:)

I agree with your impression of Bridgetown.

As we had previously taken excursions, we decided to go into Bridgetown on our own. We did however find a bar that gave away free postcards of the cricket ground, much to my husband's delight.

 

However, we were left with the local currency, after our drink, so a visit to the market by the ship was essential.

 

Glad you are still around ;)

LOL - At the free postcards. The things that make a port memorable! I don't think I mentioned that in Bridgetown we stopped off at a pharmacy to stock up on some sunscreen & aloe vera. We decided to pay with USD (probably paid a lot more that what we should have) but didn't want leftover change int he local currency.... but it would have served as a great excuse to go shopping :D

 

I didn't see any markets though - where were they?

 

 

So glad that you enjoyed Normandie! We make sure to dine there on every cruise. It's well worth the extra money.

 

Looking forward to reading the rest of your review :)

 

We were chatting just last night with some friends re Normandie. It truly has been cemented as one of our fav restaurants!

Hope you are enjoying the remainder of the review. :)

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I am enjoying your review immensely. Congratulations on your marriage, and I am sorry your mother is not well. I hope she feels better soon.

 

We will be sailing in January, so I have been reading this with great interest. I also have Celiac's disease. I am so excited to read that they can make a gluten free crepe at Bistro on 5. I look forward to reading more. :D

 

I was unsure about the excursions in St. Lucia, but I love your pictures of the Pitons from the beach. I will have to look up Spencer's. Thanks for the great idea.

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All the previous pictures are missing :-(

 

They should all be back now :)

 

Love the review but can't see any of the pictures. There is an error message that comes up from photobucket where the pics should be. We are going to be in 1141 (same cabin on the other side of 1140 in July so I am really enjoying this!

 

Pictures have returned! You will love cabin 1141 - it's fantastic! It really was the cherry on top for our cruise. Enjoy the planning & excitement build up! :D

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Thank you for your reviews! We are booked on the Summit with our group of 86 next Feb 2015.

 

Thanks again for your time and talents!

Regards,

Maria

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Pictures are back....looking good! Thank you for doing this wonderful review!

 

I'm glad that you are enjoying it :)

 

Your review keeps getting better and better!!! I am loving all the pictures. St Lucia looks so beautiful. My husband was wondering how the Piton beer was? As I was reading this I kept saying to him "Oh my goodness... you must look at this. Isn't this beautiful?!"

 

Thank you for your very kind words -they gave me a nice & fuzzy feeling :o

I asked DH about the Piton beer, he said that it was an easy drinking lager. It was cold, so it was refreshing and that was its saviour. He also used the words 'forgettable' - let's keep in mind DH is someone who has a passion for beer & had trouble finding a beer he hasn't tasted at Michael's. Despite the preconceptions, I think tasting different beers/drinks (so many rum varieties! ;)) from different places is a must!

 

St Lucia is truly a gorgeous place. well, at least from sea it is, unsure if I would have a different perspective should we have been in a minivan driving windy roads!

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We kept walking on our little trail until we arrived at our 'change room' cabana. There were two, one for males, another for females. I entered with my own key to a locker. This room was gorgeous. In this locker there were hairnets, slippers, ‘disposables’ & the fluffiest robe I had ever had my hands on. At first I felt silly but decided to go ahead & play ‘let’s me a celebrity’. I could only imagine DH’s face when I walked out – but i was prepared for the never ending jokes - much to my surprise he was dressed as I was! We both had silly grins ear to ear.

We followed our masseuse in our private cabana where there was the other waiting.

This was it

 

 

 

They introduced themselves, gave us the options of oils (went with coconut – yum!) & gave us some privacy whilst we undressed & lay in the most comfortable beds ever. What proceeded was amazing. One hour of pure bliss. This was, hands down, the BEST massage we have both received. Muscles we didn’t know we had were massaged. Words cannot describe how luxurious we felt. But the experience didn’t there. The ‘back doors’ were opened into our own private, natural, watsu pool. It was hot. Relaxing. Amazing.

The aftermath (apologies - should really have taken a pic of what it looked like BEFORE the massage) - you can see the 'back door' on right hand side - it was closed during our treatment darkening the room.

 

 

 

 

This was 'our' pool

 

 

They did ask that we rinse off in the double outdoor shower first, which was fine by us ;) Once we were done we made our way back to the ‘change room’ cabana (took our time) & headed back down to the beach.

 

Some more pics of the cabana maze.

 

Oh my goodness, what a fantastic idea!!!! You just totally sold me on what we'll do the next time we're in St. Lucia. :D

 

Congratulations on your marriage and enjoy! You guys are off to a fantastic start with this honeymoon. We've sailed the Southern Caribbean three times (on Royal), but we're sailing the Summit next year and can't wait. You really gave us some new ideas for our time post-cruise. Thank you so much for sharing :)

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After our day in St Lucia, we were back onboard & greeted once again with those refreshing towels. We had our mandatory stop at Cafe Al Bacio, & recapped our day. We decided to check out the Persian Gardens as entry is complimentary for guests of the Aqua Class. I never thought I’d visit the gym, or any of its facilities during a vacation but sure enough I found myself at the Gym’s reception desk. We were actually surprised to be greeted by a kiwi’s (New Zealander) accent!

We were advised that there were no robes – no problem I thought – until I realised where the changing rooms were! Neither DH or I were comfortable walking across in our swimwear. Lame, but we really would have appreciated those robes at that point. Into the gardens we went & literally entered the first room – aromatherapy of some sort. It smelt wonderful & the temperature was hot! But.....this room was more like a closet – it was tiny! Only 4 x people could sit in there at the any one time, & it was tight. The gentleman we found in there was lovely & explained that each room had its specific health benefits & there was a recommended time to stay in each. Needless to say, we followed him soon after he left each room as he sounded like he knew what he was talking about ;) We wanted to reap the benefits! The next room was one with REALLY hot tiles. And the last was a sauna/steam type room. This was the largest, with a detachable shower hose by each lounger. Your session ends with some relaxation time on the curved heated loungers. You could fall asleep on these! There were some showers to rinse off but for the life of us, we could not figure out how to use them. One kind of worked, so we managed but judging by all the different jets at different heights I feel like we missed out! Maybe they were too luxurious for us?? On the way out we noticed some robes folded & make the most of them – we were happy that we could walk across to the change rooms with some dignity.

We spent about an hour in the Persian Gardens & overall enjoyed our experience. It was very relaxing. I can see how the loungers on the Solstice class facing out into the ocean would be amazing. Each visit is retailed at $20 or $99 for a week of unlimited entry. Although I would have paid for a single entry I think the weeks pass would be a waste as the novelty may wear off - there is simply too much to do on the cruise! We did have every intention of returning, but never made it back.

We ate in Blu which was superb was usual. It appears that I may have taken Blu for granted – I didn’t take any pictures nor made any notes of what we ate. Every single night was amazing. I would choose my meal for the following night so I always had something to look forward to :D Mazy was the maître’d & by the end I wanted to take him home with me!

After dinner we stopped by the Martini Bar for a drink – this area was very loud. I ordered an Espresso Martini without any dairy – not too sure what they mixed up instead but it was great! DH was hurryingly me along because he had a very important game at 10pm – The Captain’s & Hotel Director’s Vegas Poker Challenge in the casino. DH had signed up for it on embarkation day & had noticed that there was actually a waiting list! We arrived super early – DH didn’t want to be late or miss out. There were 8 players in total, 4 guests & 4 ‘officers’. My only job was to not cheer him on (audibly) & to take a few snaps. Unfortunately for DH that martini was very strong. And it tasted great! As a result all of my photos are so blurry that if It wasn’t the colour of DH’s shirt, I wouldn’t be able to tell which ‘blur’ was him. Much to DH’s delight he was the last guest standing, only to be upstaged by the Hotel Director! DH won $50 & a couple of drink vouchers...oh...& this....currently sitting on the mantelpiece....

 

 

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This image is an example of the quality of photos I took that night (oops)

Needless to say, the alcohol overpowered the espresso in that martin & I slept very well that night :D

 

Moral of the story - the bartenders at the Martini bar can make non-dairy espresso martini's!

 

 

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OK! Antigua!

 

 

Now, what came to mind when we heard of Antigua.....not much really. DH mentioned the cricket – but there was no way I was doing anything cricket related.

 

 

This was the first day that we didn’t have an excursion booked – I figured after two full days we may need the break, & I’m glad it worked out that way. We were surprised to see that it was raining – on & off – this is what we woke up to. (it reflected perfectly how I felt after the night before fuzzy..blurry..)

 

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We had a relaxing morning, with no rush to be anywhere – it was marvellous – very different to the first sea day because we knew our way around a bit better, were more comfortable & could enjoy & appreciate the relaxation.

 

 

We had breakfast in Blu, & i had the BEST blueberry pancakes in the whole entire world! Do you know how hard it is to find great tasting pancakes without any gluten, dairy OR eggs? REALLY hard. But the Summit has the goods :D

We ended up going for a walk around the port & were pleasantly surprised by the colours & vibrancy of the area. Oh, & it was REALLY busy. There were a lot of local operators offering tours around the city, I was tempted but then remembered why we hadn’t gone ahead with it in the first place.

 

 

 

 

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We had a little walk around & ventured outside of the Duty Free shopping area – we couldn’t believe the difference in scenery by simply crossing the road. All of a sudden it was no longer, fun, colourful or vibrant. I think this is the first time we really noticed how much these ports are built up for the cruising industry. It didn’t take too long before we turned back around & headed back into the ‘gated’ area. Just by the gate we noticed a quaint looking building & thought we’d give it a try – it was filled with tourists – but it was rather welcomed. And that’s not something I say too often.

The place was called ‘Hemmingways’. We spoke with the owner & he mentioned that his great grandfather built the building & rumour had it that Hemmingway actually spent a week in port, hence the name of the restaurant. We had a crab starter & it was lovely, full of flavour with all sorts of different herbs & spices. It was coated with cheese on top – the only reason DH had as much as he did :D

 

 

 

 

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On the way back to the ship we noticed a bar advertising free wifi. By this point we hadn’t had access to the internet for a few days (crazy I know) so thought we’d make the most of it as we were in no hurry. Of course DH had the mandatory tasting of the local beer.

 

 

 

 

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Off we went, & back onboard we had an afternoon nap. We wanted to be ready & fresh for our Riedel Workshop – which I will get to in the next installment. I’ll be back soon - hope you are enjoying it!

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I just wanted to tell you that I am loving your review! We just booked this itinerary for March 2015!

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We've eaten in Hemingways. It was really good. Funny thing too - 2 of our tablemates had gone "missing" from dinner for a couple of nights. DH and I got seated at Hemingways and we noticed the other couple. Found out that the gentleman had gotten a little sick, so they stayed in the cabin together. That night, they were back at the table with us and we all enjoyed a good chuckle over us "busting" them. :)

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Yay ... glad I could help and pictures are awesome. Your review is taking me back as we did the St. Lucia tour with Cosol and they did pretty well what your tour did with Spenser, went to the same beach near Pitons and everything. It was a wonderful day and can't wait to visit again and get a different experience of the island.

 

... and how could I not help, it's all self serving :D

 

I'm happy to hear that I'm helping re-live your trip! This help in this community just goes 'round, & 'round!

 

 

;) Went with Spencer , did exact tour as you, snorkelled , swam and had lunch which was yum, but alas, no celebrity massage :(. Such a lovely day, and would go again in a heartbeat. Keep it coming!!

 

It truly is a beautiful spot. The massage wasn't part of Celebrity - I organised that directly with the Spa at Sugar Beach Resort. It all worked out perfectly :D

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This has been great to read and share with DH. Please continue.

 

So glad that you & your DH are enjoying reading this!

 

Thanks for the great review.

 

No problems!- I hope you enjoy the rest of it :)

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Can you tell us what the massage costs? Would be interested in doing next time in St Lucia Thanks. Also enjoying the review!

 

 

A couples massage at the Rainforest Inn was $140 per person. That includes a 50 minute treatment & 20 minutes in the watsu pool (although they don't time you!). It was only about $20 more or so that the ship charges & I figured it would have been a different experience. Here is their website

 

http://www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/en/sugarbeach/spa_and_wellness/spa_services/couples-signature-treatments

 

I'm unsure of the prices with Canyon Ranch but found a (not so great) review for a couples massage here (awaiting to hear how much it was).

Edit: Cruiserziggy has confirmed that Canyon Ranch's price for a couples massage is $209 per person PLUS 18% gratuity!! (Maybe it was longer than 50mins?) But I would be expecting a lot more than a mediocre massage for that price!

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2022621

 

 

I am enjoying your review immensely. Congratulations on your marriage, and I am sorry your mother is not well. I hope she feels better soon.

 

We will be sailing in January, so I have been reading this with great interest. I also have Celiac's disease. I am so excited to read that they can make a gluten free crepe at Bistro on 5. I look forward to reading more. :D

 

I was unsure about the excursions in St. Lucia, but I love your pictures of the Pitons from the beach. I will have to look up Spencer's. Thanks for the great idea.

 

Thank you for the well wishes. We are still coming back down to earth slowly but surely. Mum is also getting better as each day goes by.

 

January is not that far away! I'm excited for you! The team onboard are excellent with dietary requirements - I think it's that much better because the staff get to know you & you develop a relationship with them. And don't forget to visit Bistro 5 on embarkation day - it will be lovely & relaxing - the complete opposite to the Oceanview Café!

 

I'm glad I've provided some inspiration for St Lucia, I cannot speak highly enough of our day there :D

 

Hope you enjoy the rest & feel free to ask any more questions!

Edited by Xcitdcruiser
More info

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I had always been interested in the Riedel workshop - on embarkation day we spotted this ‘display’ at Cellar Masters. It caught my eye for a few reasons but the biggest one was ‘Explore Porto’ - the city in which I was born. I grew up with stories of how my mother worked in the midst of the cobblestone streets bottling the actual port from the ‘Douro’. Each time we are lucky enough to return, we would walk those streets & mum reminisces & tells all sorts of stories about the days she worked there. Unfortunately many of the smaller brands have since closed but she enjoys having a peek into those are open & telling us what mischief she got up to as a young girl. Although not to everyone’s liking, Port has a ‘sweet’ spot with me. Next time you are in Porto, head to the Tourism Office where they hand out free maps of Port Tasting Walking Tours. Highly recommended!

 

 

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Along the display, we picked up the following brochure. I was disappointed to see that the Port tastings would clash with that night’s reservation at Qsine but figured that the Riedel Workshop would make up for it. We were surprised we to see many of the workshops being held on a port day, early afternoon when many of the guests were likely to be out & about.

 

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The number of participants reflected this – a total of two. Myself & DH. A private workshop – we were excited! Yvonne was from eastern Europe & very knowledgeable. She has actually had then privilege to be a part of a number of master classes / courses held by an actual Mr Riedel in Austria. Very impressive.

We tried wines out of 4 x Riedel glasses as well as one ‘joker glass’ (ie. non Riedel) I originally thought it was going to be a hard sell on how great Riedel glassware is but I couldn’t have been more surprised. We actually learnt a whole lot. We tasted the same wine out of different types of glasses, various Riedel’s & the joker, & were taught how the actual glass has been designed to travel into your mouth to maximise the taste with its corresponding wine. And how a variety wine tastes different in each glass. It was very impressive.

In the hour we also picked up the following:

 

  • Only The Normandie uses Reidel collection (Qsine only uses the water glasses due to its quirky design)
  • There are about 300 Riedel glasses onboard & 6 different varieties (including water glasses)
  • All Riedel glassware is not hand washed, but run through the dishwasher onboard is specifically designed Reidel racks

The cost of the workshop was $87 which included a set of Riedel glassware. I had read that for a fee they could ship the glassware home. What I didn’t know was that they cannot ship the glassware to Australia. Even when X’s Solstice is in Australia they do not have the means to ship the glasses to Australian addresses. DH & I were looking at each other in dismay – there was no way we were going to get these glasses back in 8 pieces on a 30 hour journey. Even if we wanted to, those boxes were so large that they did not fit in our actual suitcases. Mind was racing that we had committed to spending $160 on an hours class. I think Yvonne could see our despair (& reason) & offered to only charge the workshop fee ($15pp) and not the glasses. We were overjoyed! Best $15 each spent yet! We were also advised that as we have done the workshop we were able to request Riedel glassware at dinner. I made a mental note of that...

I enquired about the Port class & were told that we could do the tastings at our leisure if we give prior notice & someone is available. I thought that was very accommodating. We had every intention of doing so, but simply did not have enough time. Note – if you are interested in a tasting but it is scheduled at a time that does not suit, simply ask – it may all work out.

 

Later that evening we dined in Blu. Upon being shown to our table we were also told that Riedel glassware has been set & will be available to use for the remainder of the cruise. I actually asked Mazy ‘How did you know about the glasses?’ Mazy replied ‘We know everything here’. DH & I were amazing at the level of attentiveness & service. This to us was a perfect example of Celebrity staff went over & beyond knowing what we wanted before we did! Sure enough we never had to ask, each meal we had Riedel glassware at our leisure.

Mazy by the way, if I haven’t already mentioned him, was the best maître’d. Ever.

I have no notes about dinner that night expect for one lonesome photo of frog legs! We felt adventurous trying them, glad we did, but wouldn’t go out of our way to order them again. They were too ‘jumpy’ for us :p

 

 

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Shopping & plane waiting in St Marteen is up next!

 

 

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Thank you for continuing to share your experience with all of us. We were on this same itinerary last December. I agree Mazy is the best! He speaks Portuguese and even Spanish by the way!

 

We too will be honeymooners on the other Summit itinerary this November.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Cruise Critic Forums mobile app

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We also did the Riedel workshop on our last Summit cruise. I admit I was a bit skeptical before the tasting but the wine did taste better in the appropriate glass!

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