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JamieLogical

Random Bliss Stuff - We'll Call This a Review

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On 2/15/2019 at 2:32 PM, JamieLogical said:

Before I move on to Monday's activities, I wanted to touch on two subjects before I forget: drinks and the casino.

 

Drinks

On the Gem in June and on my last Escape sailing in October, we noticed more and more of the drinks being pre-mixed. My SO actually had a conversation with one of the bar tenders at Tobacco Road on the Escape about it and found out that it was something they had started doing since SO MANY passengers have the drink package now and will ask for a drink, try it, and not finish it. Taking the time to make so many drinks individually, only to have so much go to waste was a drain on resources, so they started pre-mixing what they could.

 

I saw VERY LITTLE of that on the Bliss, so I don't know if it is a fleet-wide shift or not. The only time I received a partially pre-mixed Mr. Worldwide was once at the Observation Lounge bar, though all my other Mr. Worldwides I ordered there throughout the week were fresh made. On that occasion, the Pimm's and Vodka were premixed in a Pimm's bottle with the label crossed out with a red X. All the other ingredients were added separately as usual.

 

At many of the bars, the liquor for a Mudslide was all pre-mixed in a Skyy Vodka bottle. And then, of course, at the poolside bars, they had some of the drinks pre-mixed in their slushy machines, like the Mango Meltdown. But they did make me a couple of those fresh as well when the machines were empty.

 

Towards the end of our sailing, two different bars we stopped at (Observation Lounge and Surf Bar) were out of Bailey's. Also, on the last day (Friday) they seemed to run out of the large, clear, NCL branded plastic cups at the poolside bars and used much smaller, translucent solo cups.

 

And of course, straws were in limited supply. I only received paper straws at specialty dining restaurants, never at any of the bars. Once, as described before, I received a straw for my frozen margarita at Los Lobos. And then at the end of the cruise, we had our last dinner at Ocean Blue where I ordered a mojito and eventually received a straw for that. We had brought our own reusable Final Straws and had them with us most of the time. Since they are kind of a pain to keep clean, I only used mine in my mojitos and in the occasionally frozen drink that really was just too frozen to sip. I do recommend them for anyone who thinks they will need a straw, because they fit nicely in pants pockets.

 

Final thought on drinks. The new prices had gone into effect, but had zero impact on us. We don't drink wine and we mostly do mixed drinks where the quality of the liquor is not such a big deal. I only drank a few specialty drinks at the specialty restaurants, screwdrivers, Mr. Worldwides (my favorite NCL drink!), mojitos, Mango Meltdowns, vodka sours, and Irish Russians. An Irish Russian is something I discovered on the Escape in October. I tried to order a White Russian at the District Brew House (which does have a full bar, not just beer), but they had no milk/cream, so they offered to make me one with Bailey's instead and I was like "YES!!! Why did I never think of this?!?!!" So since then, I never order regular White Russians anymore.

 

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Iron butterfly. Voldka kahlua baileys enjoy in moderation 😁

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On 2/15/2019 at 2:32 PM, JamieLogical said:

Before I move on to Monday's activities, I wanted to touch on two subjects before I forget: drinks and the casino.

 

Drinks

On the Gem in June and on my last Escape sailing in October, we noticed more and more of the drinks being pre-mixed. My SO actually had a conversation with one of the bar tenders at Tobacco Road on the Escape about it and found out that it was something they had started doing since SO MANY passengers have the drink package now and will ask for a drink, try it, and not finish it. Taking the time to make so many drinks individually, only to have so much go to waste was a drain on resources, so they started pre-mixing what they could.

 

I saw VERY LITTLE of that on the Bliss, so I don't know if it is a fleet-wide shift or not. The only time I received a partially pre-mixed Mr. Worldwide was once at the Observation Lounge bar, though all my other Mr. Worldwides I ordered there throughout the week were fresh made. On that occasion, the Pimm's and Vodka were premixed in a Pimm's bottle with the label crossed out with a red X. All the other ingredients were added separately as usual.

 

At many of the bars, the liquor for a Mudslide was all pre-mixed in a Skyy Vodka bottle. And then, of course, at the poolside bars, they had some of the drinks pre-mixed in their slushy machines, like the Mango Meltdown. But they did make me a couple of those fresh as well when the machines were empty.

 

Towards the end of our sailing, two different bars we stopped at (Observation Lounge and Surf Bar) were out of Bailey's. Also, on the last day (Friday) they seemed to run out of the large, clear, NCL branded plastic cups at the poolside bars and used much smaller, translucent solo cups.

 

And of course, straws were in limited supply. I only received paper straws at specialty dining restaurants, never at any of the bars. Once, as described before, I received a straw for my frozen margarita at Los Lobos. And then at the end of the cruise, we had our last dinner at Ocean Blue where I ordered a mojito and eventually received a straw for that. We had brought our own reusable Final Straws and had them with us most of the time. Since they are kind of a pain to keep clean, I only used mine in my mojitos and in the occasionally frozen drink that really was just too frozen to sip. I do recommend them for anyone who thinks they will need a straw, because they fit nicely in pants pockets.

 

Final thought on drinks. The new prices had gone into effect, but had zero impact on us. We don't drink wine and we mostly do mixed drinks where the quality of the liquor is not such a big deal. I only drank a few specialty drinks at the specialty restaurants, screwdrivers, Mr. Worldwides (my favorite NCL drink!), mojitos, Mango Meltdowns, vodka sours, and Irish Russians. An Irish Russian is something I discovered on the Escape in October. I tried to order a White Russian at the District Brew House (which does have a full bar, not just beer), but they had no milk/cream, so they offered to make me one with Bailey's instead and I was like "YES!!! Why did I never think of this?!?!!" So since then, I never order regular White Russians anymore.

 

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If you love that as do I. I recommend a Colorado bulldog made with ice cream instead of cream. That's at least easier not to have a bad hangover in the morning. 😏

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Thanks for the link to the review  --  Loved it!  It's especially helpful when researching new ships to learn the rational behind a persons likes/dislikes - pros/cons for a ship. 

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Sailed the Bliss on Sept 30, 2018 to Oct 5---Vancouver to LA....quite the experience.  My notes: we got thru boarding slowly due to hundreds of temp employees and computer glitches....buffet was good, reminded me of Old Country Buffet lol, balcony cabin on deck13--awesome but cabin steward the worst. Did O'Sheehans once for breakfast...not so hot. Ended up doing the main dining rooms for breakfast after---as well a few meals.  Specialty meals were La Cucina, Le Bistro , and Cagneys-Cagneys was not good.  Spent most of our time hanging out with a group of folks from all over on deck 18 outside bar/smoking area---the unlimited drink package was used heavily!  The casino was good-----won a lot! Cigar Lounge had poor ventilation- smelled like an El Producto after 10 minutes and those clothes were unwearable the balance of trip. Beatles show is well worth it! Do the Cavern Club but go early to get front row seats and listen to 4 people somber karaoke...….Jersey Boys good.  Wanted to see a comedy show but didn't...…...overall left feeling wonderful. Only bad experience was at the Cruise Next desk-woman was rude and I walked away! Loved people watching and seeing similar folks most of cruise yet others must only come out at night LOL...and missed the Washy Washy guy and Wakey Wakey girls!!! 

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Finally moving on to Monday! We did first breakfast on our balcony, as usual. Then we headed to The Local to get second breakfast. We stopped by the bar there to get our own screwdrivers, because ordering drinks from the wait staff can be a bit slow. I got the corned beef hash as always. It's the main appeal of The Local for breakfast for me. Everything was pretty good, but they forgot to give butter and jelly to everyone who ordered toast and I heard some yelling about it coming out of the kitchen at one point. Not from the passengers, but from one NCL employee to another.

 

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For lunch on Monday, we ate at Margaritaville. It was as I remembered from the Escape. I had the "Last Mango in Paris" margarita, which was delicious. The food was very good, but they give you just WAY too much of it. Our server there was really nice and friendly and funny. We got the nachos and the conch fritters as apps and both got burgers for our entrees. The burgers really are VERY good. I had the server get me some key lime pie to go, but it didn't fit in the fridge, so it mostly ended up going to waste. 😞

 

This is how much of the nachos were left after we'd eaten our fill! It became kind of a running joke to see how much of them other tables managed to eat, since it seemed like every table at least attempted them.

 

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Oh! I forgot to mention that the Captain and my future husband, the Hotel Director were there having lunch while we were. The joke about "my future husband" also reminds me that I failed to tell you about the Q&A with the ship's officers that we attended. Turns out the Hotel Director, Mark, is single and it also turns out that officers are allowed to bring their spouses on board. So I intend to marry him so I can go on free cruises all the time...

Edited by JamieLogical

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On 2/16/2019 at 2:22 PM, Von & John said:

Thanks for the link to the review  --  Loved it!  It's especially helpful when researching new ships to learn the rationale behind a persons likes/dislikes - pros/cons for a ship. 

 

My typo/grammatical error just jumped out @ me... 

The proof reader must have had too many cocktails on Saturday...
I'm hoping all posters are rational

However, I enjoy learning a person's rationale for what they enjoyed or not on the ship...

Edited by Von & John

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4 hours ago, cruisetimeforme said:

Jamie, where did you go???? Will you be continuing on with your review?? Hope so.....

 

 

I apologize for not posting is so long. I have been dealing with the death of my closest friend and it may be a bit longer before I am in the right head space to continue my review.

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Jamie  --  Our condolences on the loss of a loved one!  I lost my lifelong friend just over a year ago.  Hold tight to your memories, these will keep your friend alive & help you through the upcoming months. 

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36 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

 

 

I apologize for not posting is so long. I have been dealing with the death of my closest friend and it may be a bit longer before I am in the right head space to continue my review.

So sorry to hear!

I always enjoy reading your perspective on things!

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