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Live and Life from Koningsdam on her Mexican New Year's voyage


Copper10-8
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2 hours ago, OlsSalt said:

 

Sad to report, it is #2. I assumed Austrian chef Rudi would offer the real deal - the billows of sugar dusted, baked egg white meringue, inspired by his very own snow dusted Austrian Alps which is the classic dessert dish of its namesake Salzburg. People still fight over who makes the best Salzburg Nockerl in that city.

 

Instead this signature dish got translated as a rather uninspired sunken berry claufoti, (looking more  photo #2) with the sweetened berries microwaved which made them too hot to eat until they finally cooled down.

 

Our own experience with the Konigsdam Sel de Mer Christmas cruise leg was a a one and done, so we cancelled our next New Years cruise leg Sel de Mer reservation and enjoyed the MDR menus instead.  It was an overall odd experience - our two first choices on the menu were not available - the Duck al'Orange or the Rack of Lamb.  DH finally ordered the sole and enjoyed it. 

 

The appetizer "foie gras" was not the individual segments that used to be served in the MDR, but a paté au foie gras - a large slap of emulsified duck pate.  Trying to decide on a now third entree choice, the waiter whispered the duck was not that good anyway, and when choosing then between the boulliabaise  or the coq au vin, he again whispered the bouillabaisse was a bit "thin". 

 

We just kind of struck out at Rudy's that night. To not get the coveted real Salzburg Nockerl made us realize why the waiter instead had pushed the profiteroles from the very beginning. We should have taken his advice.

 

We did love Canaletto on Konigsdam, and did I mention how superb the Gelato Bar was (ha! more than once) - we certainly  did not starve and found the MDR to be very good. Glad we tried them all - no regrets.

The poster above you said it looked like one ;).  Its not something I would order but it sucks if it was like 2.  I've really enjoyed my meals in sel de mer.  My first impression of it years ago was meh, so kinda like yours.  Over the years I feel for me it has gotten better.  I love the lobster in there.  I tried the sole that everyone raves about and thought it was fine but not great.  I agree, the canaletto on the koningsdam is superb.  I wasn't a fan in the past (on other ships) but I am now.  I don't care for the gelato, I've found it icy like its been in the freezer too long.  I love the nutela chocolate tart.  That has to be the best dessert on the ship.

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1 hour ago, Florida_gal_50 said:

The poster above you said it looked like one ;).  Its not something I would order but it sucks if it was like 2.  I've really enjoyed my meals in sel de mer.  My first impression of it years ago was meh, so kinda like yours.  Over the years I feel for me it has gotten better.  I love the lobster in there.  I tried the sole that everyone raves about and thought it was fine but not great.  I agree, the canaletto on the koningsdam is superb.  I wasn't a fan in the past (on other ships) but I am now.  I don't care for the gelato, I've found it icy like its been in the freezer too long.  I love the nutela chocolate tart.  That has to be the best dessert on the ship.

Agree, Canaletto is much better than it was but the profiteroles they used to serve were horrid. Hopefully not the same recipe they are now serving at Rudy's. 

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2 hours ago, REOVA said:

Agree, Canaletto is much better than it was but the profiteroles they used to serve were horrid. Hopefully not the same recipe they are now serving at Rudy's. 

I don’t remember ever seeing them in Canaletto.  That said, their desserts weren’t great, kinda like tamarind now.  They used to have fabulous desserts in tamarind.

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re;  DRESSY night as compared to Formal/GALA night

 

We once anticipated dressing up and going to a special occasion dinner.  Pictures at the tables or around the ship to show our fine style.  Dancing and fine music to celebrate the special night.

 

Now you can expect fewer menu choices than 10 years ago.  Fewer photo ops.  Less entertainment.  The officers no longer dress “up”.  I no longer expect it to be a special night for food or officer participation.  It has become just another MDR dinner onboard with less menu choices.

 

On our recent cruise, up to the day of sailing the Navigator app said “casual” for every day.  We didn’t bother to take “dressy” clothing.  I thought HAL had decided not to do Formal, GALA, or dressy.  Fine with me.  DH wore Tommy Bahama Hawaiian shirt.  I can’t even remember what I wore.

 

Next up:  Hawaii.  Dressy night will be Hawaiian Shirt for him,  Hawaiian attire for me.  

 

Aloha and Mahalo, HAL

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20 minutes ago, oaktreerb said:

re;  DRESSY night as compared to Formal/GALA night

 

We once anticipated dressing up and going to a special occasion dinner.  Pictures at the tables or around the ship to show our fine style.  Dancing and fine music to celebrate the special night.

 

Now you can expect fewer menu choices than 10 years ago.  Fewer photo ops.  Less entertainment.  The officers no longer dress “up”.  I no longer expect it to be a special night for food or officer participation.  It has become just another MDR dinner onboard with less menu choices.

 

On our recent cruise, up to the day of sailing the Navigator app said “casual” for every day.  We didn’t bother to take “dressy” clothing.  I thought HAL had decided not to do Formal, GALA, or dressy.  Fine with me.  DH wore Tommy Bahama Hawaiian shirt.  I can’t even remember what I wore.

 

Next up:  Hawaii.  Dressy night will be Hawaiian Shirt for him,  Hawaiian attire for me.  

 

Aloha and Mahalo, HAL

Yup mine said the same.  It also used to show on your boarding pass.  What’s the secret?  I think hal is just trying to lower expectations so it’s no surprise when pjs are considered dressy.

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On 1/18/2023 at 12:14 AM, Copper10-8 said:

Come on HAL, you can do better then that!

This has been my biggest gripe with HAL lately. Their entertainment has really gone down the tubes. I just got off a Princess 10 day Mexico cruise and their entertainment was FANTASTIC and put HAL to shame! HAL really needs to step it up. I was on NS in December and the entertainment was pretty dismal. I’m going to be on the Koningsdam for 35 days next month, and I admit that I am concerned about what the entertainment choices will be in the main showroom. I may start cruising more with Princess if things don’t improve and I’m a diehard HAL fan. 

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At least their attempt at Salzberg Khockerl looked like a reasonable facsimile of food (though obviously not what it was supposed to be). I give you Celebrity's attempt at an English trifle, which I am not sure is actually edible:40898817-A5DD-4E77-A94E-D3110C35C26A.thu

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FRI 06 JAN 23 – Day Eight – At Sea
 
Our last sea day found big K-dam sailing north alongside the coast of, now Baja California, Mexico. There was definitely more “motion in the ocean” since Koningsdam was dealing with a northwest swell however, the “Say high to Ralph” bags never made it to the railings of the elevator lobbies on the various passenger decks.
 
Baja California, “lower California” in English, officially the Free and Sovereign State of Baja California / Estado Libre y Soberano de Baja California, is a Mexican state, is the northernmost and westernmost of the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. Before becoming a state in 1952, the area was known as the North Territory of Baja California / El Territorio Norte de Baja California. It has an area of 27,071 square miles and comprises the northern half of the Baja California Peninsula, north of the 28th parallel, plus oceanic Guadalupe Island. The mainland portion of the state is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean, on the east by the Mexican State of Sonora, the U.S. State of Arizona and the Gulf of California (also known as the "Sea of Cortez"), and on the south by Baja California Sur. Its northern limit is the U.S. State of California.
 
After breakfast, 11:00 AM brought the, what’s now known as the Mariner Recognition Event, held in the BB King’s Lounge on Deck 2. After the restart of operations in 2021, the former Mariners reception is now only for, according to the invitation, “top mariners” so, I’m thinking, presidents club members and 5* mariners. There is no longer the Mariners luncheon in the main dining room, at the conclusion of this event. Btw, there still is a Mariners reception on embarkation day for 3, 4 and 5* mariners, held on our cruise between 2:15 and 3:00 PM in the Billboard Lounge, also on Deck 2, but more forward.
 
For the recognition event, wine, champagne, mimosas and O.J. was being served. Captain Robert Jan and Hotel GM Santhosh were present from the crew, as was the coordinator, Jennifer from guest relations, who was the MC. Platinum and gold medallion holders were recognized by name and the captain gave a short welcome speech. Afterwards, there was an opportunity to have your pic taken with the captain and hotel general manager. The entire event from official start to finish took maybe fifteen minutes. We were seated with a nice couple from Montana so, of course we talked about the excellent “Yellowstone” mini-series. Afterwards we hung around and had another nice conversation with poster Sue from Washington State as well as with poster Ann and Pat from beautiful Victoria, BC. Such nice people!
 
Afterwards, we sauntered up to the Crow’s Nest/Explorations Café where we got ourselves a Chai Late and a Café Mocha, still a great deal compared to coffee shops on terra firma, Lunch was inside the Lido Market. Captain Robert Jan had a second public appearance on the same day as he participated in the “Ask the Captain” question and answer session on the World Stage at 2:00 PM. Other activities in the afternoon were the infamous, yet extremely popular Coloring for Adults in The Studio on Deck 2, yes that would be the former digital workshop.
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FRI 06 JAN 23 – Day Eight – At Sea (Con't)
 
When we returned to our cabin, to our surprise, there were two “Royal Goedewagen” tegels/tiles laying on our bed. These were the “new” 2021/2022 series with the four corners of the tile displaying the seven-pointed crown of the Statue of Liberty in New York City harbor. Those seven points represent the seven continents as well as oceans. The tile depicts the images of a HAL Pinnacle-class ship, has the names of those three ships: Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam and Rotterdam, plus has a “sea monster” below the ship. It was nice to get a couple of these new tiles, especially after receiving a note on the first day of this cruise that stated that “Due to ongoing global supply chain issues, we currently do not have any inventory of the coveted Delft tiles.”
 
For dinner at 7:15 PM we had our very last reservation at one of Koningsdam’s specialty restaurants, that being the Italian-themed Canaletto Restaurant located on the starboard side forward of the Lido Market. We were escorted to a nice window seat by the host Tatenda, all the way from Kenya in Africa. For the “small plates,” we each had a cup of Minestrone soup (farro, borlotti beans, Pecorino cheese and the minestrone). We also shared one order of veal and sage meatballs (glazed cipollini onions and rustic tomato sauce). For the large plates, the child bride and I each had the Friday special which was veal Florentine cannelloni (spinach, pomodoro sauce and Grana Padano) and we shared one order of the braised beef short rib Gnocchi (mascarpone butter-roasted carrots and celery). For dessert, Maria had the Affogato (vanilla gelato, espresso, chocolate shavings and lemon zest), while I had the Gelato sampler (malaga, pistachio and bacio).
Molto Bene!! Delizioso!!
 
The main entertainment tonight was scheduled to be the fourth performance of the Step One Dance Company called “Off the Charts”. For this performance, the six dancers were joined by the two pianists from Billboard Onboard. Unfortunately, this performance was cancelled tonight due to the swell and subsequent movement of the ocean. This was done with the safety of the musicians and dancers on the elevated stage in mind. Totally understandable! In its place, they played a movie (didn’t get the title) on the big screen in the Main Stage.
 
We wound up going to BB Kings Blues Club where we listened to a full set by the BB Kings All Star Band.
For our last three/four cruises, we have changed our M.O. re: packing our valises. In the old days we used to wait until after the show, so around 10:00 PM to start our packing which frequently took us to 11:00 Pm or later. We now actually do the majority of our packing prior to dinner which, in our opinion, makes things a lot more easy going.
 
Koningsdam will be back in San Diego on early Saturday morning! We’ll see you then for one final time!
 
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One other treat on this New Year's cruise after leaving San Diego was showing Top Gun:Maverick in the main stage- with, as always,  the free HAL  popcorn. Topical since much of it took place at Miramar, Naval Air Station, San Diego. 4th time for me, and it was just as great. Audience loved it.  

 

Of note, there are the movie snacks also available at the Dive In when they show movies on the large outdoor Lido pool screen.

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17 minutes ago, OlsSalt said:

Topical since much of it took place at Miramar, Naval Air Station, San Diego.

While the original Top Gun took place at Miramar (then a Naval Air Station)...Maverick was filmed at Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, including the I Bar scenes.  The film version of the I Bar was built as a set on the Base...and was a good (but larger) representation of the actual bar which all Maverick fans should visit.  I was taken there by surprise on my birthday last year....coincidentally the day after I watched the movie for the 4th time.  We even got a drink chit because someone set their phone on the bar.  He had to buy a round of drinks .

I wished we had watched it on the cruise.  It would have been cool if they showed in on the Lido screen during the sail away as we rounded North Island.

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41 minutes ago, OlsSalt said:

One other treat on this New Year's cruise after leaving San Diego was showing Top Gun:Maverick in the main stage- with, as always,  the free HAL  popcorn. Topical since much of it took place at Miramar, Naval Air Station, San Diego. 4th time for me, and it was just as great. Audience loved it.  

 

Of note, there are the movie snacks also available at the Dive In when they show movies on the large outdoor Lido pool screen.

 

Just a heads up. Miramar yes, originally a squid air station, has been a Marine Corps - Oorah - air station since June 1996, after MCAS El Toro, my old stomping grounds when in the Corps, closed down

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4 minutes ago, Sherry H said:

I do believe the mountain scenes were filmed in the North Cascades, Washington State.  Flying out of the base on Whidbey Island.

Some one also said there was a lot of activity at the Truckee-Tahoe, CA airport too, for perhaps some of the snow scenes?   Anyone else voting that Hangman was just the cutest guy ever. DH approves of this message,  since he gets to keep watching this movie again and again. While I get to swoon over Hangman.  

 

DH was a flight surgeon on an aircraft carrier (Vietnam) so it takes little arm-twisting to see the movie again. Those opening scenes and the precision team work getting planes on and off carriers was 100% authentic for him.

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4 minutes ago, OlsSalt said:

Some one also said there was a lot of activity at the Truckee-Tahoe, CA airport too, for perhaps some of the snow scenes?   Anyone else voting that Hangman was just the cutest guy ever. DH approves of this message,  since he gets to keep watching this movie again and again. While I get to swoon over Hangman.  

 

DH was a flight surgeon on an aircraft carrier (Vietnam) so it takes little arm-twisting to see the movie again. Those opening scenes and the precision team work getting planes on and off carriers was 100% authentic for him.

 

Please thank him for his service to his country! The U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps will always have a friendly rivalry, but Marines truly love Navy Corpsmen!

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16 minutes ago, Sherry H said:

I do believe the mountain scenes were filmed in the North Cascades, Washington State.  Flying out of the base on Whidbey Island.

 

7 minutes ago, OlsSalt said:

Some one also said there was a lot of activity at the Truckee-Tahoe, CA airport too, for perhaps some of the snow scenes?   Anyone else voting that Hangman was just the cutest guy ever. DH approves of this message,  since he gets to keep watching this movie again and again. While I get to swoon over Hangman.  

 

DH was a flight surgeon on an aircraft carrier (Vietnam) so it takes little arm-twisting to see the movie again. Those opening scenes and the precision team work getting planes on and off carriers was 100% authentic for him.

 

A good resource as to where the filming took place 😉 

 

https://www.atlasofwonders.com/2022/06/where-was-top-gun-maverick-filmed.html

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1 hour ago, Copper10-8 said:

A good resource as to where the filming took place 😉 

Thanks for this. This brings back memories. I remember the filming of the Ft Rosecrans flyover. We went to the beach and watched it from NAB. 
I was testing out a huge video wall at one of my projects and we played the Maverick trailer. Feb 2020 or so. Never imagined them that it would be 2 years + until the movie was released due to covid. 

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2 hours ago, OlsSalt said:

 

Those opening scenes and the precision team work getting planes on and off carriers was 100% authentic for him.

So are you saying that the sequel has another incredible opening scene? 


I just marveled at the opening of the original movie, and I’m not into planes and such.

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4 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

 

Just a heads up. Miramar yes, originally a squid air station, has been a Marine Corps - Oorah - air station since June 1996, after MCAS El Toro, my old stomping grounds when in the Corps, closed down

Copper,

You weren’t in VMGR-352, were you?  Our son is a pilot with them now stationed at Miramar MCAS. 

 

We loved the New Years cruise on Koningsdam and can’t wait for our next HAL cruise. We are however heading back to Mexico in March on Princess after we got a great deal for a mini suite. 
 

Bob

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46 minutes ago, TiogaCruiser said:

So are you saying that the sequel has another incredible opening scene? 


I just marveled at the opening of the original movie, and I’m not into planes and such.

 

The opening scenes of TopGun:Maverick are easily a 10, and lots of fun references to the first film slyly snuck in.

 

If the Navy and  naval aviation ever needed a recruiting film, those few moments of the opening scenes on deck  had it all- mission, action, team work, critical technical skills, discipline ...it was all there. Zero tolerance for error captured in those thrilling first moments. 

 

What worked after seeing it several times was picking up those fun reference and finally sorting out all the new characters, who come by more in a blur on the first showing. But each of them get warmly known after seeing it again. The re-introduction of  Iceman was just one of many peak nostalgia scenes. Poignant.

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12 hours ago, rwmiller said:

Copper,

You weren’t in VMGR-352, were you?  Our son is a pilot with them now stationed at Miramar MCAS. 

 

We loved the New Years cruise on Koningsdam and can’t wait for our next HAL cruise. We are however heading back to Mexico in March on Princess after we got a great deal for a mini suite. 
 

Bob

 

Morning Bob;

 

VMGR-352 was definitely assigned to El Toro when I was there but don't believe they were known as the Raiders then. I was assigned to the 3rd MAW, H&HS, Provost Marshal's Office (PMO) aboard the air station; Please thank your son for his service to his country! Semper Fi!

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19 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

 

Please thank him for his service to his country! The U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps will always have a friendly rivalry, but Marines truly love Navy Corpsmen!

 

Thank you for your service in the Marines , and as a LEO and also sharing your cruise ( and photos ) . It seems that we traveled similar but different paths . I flew from Miami to San Diego where I was drafted to be the RCPO in boot camp . I then retrieved my VW from Miami so I could get around and surf while I was in Corp school in San Diego . After becoming a Corpseman ( To quote President Obama I was sent to Camp Lejeune ( Where I did drink the water ) . After an Honorable Discharge I spent 28+ years as a Firefighter / Paramedic in Miami- Dade County . Any who , we took a quick cruise on the Nieuw Statendam and we're reviewing currently . We hope to be near you guys for a few days coming and going to San Francisco and Kauai for our 45th anniversary in March . Best wishes to you and your child bride and keep up the good work cruising and sharing it .

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2 hours ago, scubacruiserx2 said:

 

Thank you for your service in the Marines , and as a LEO and also sharing your cruise ( and photos ) . It seems that we traveled similar but different paths . I flew from Miami to San Diego where I was drafted to be the RCPO in boot camp . I then retrieved my VW from Miami so I could get around and surf while I was in Corp school in San Diego . After becoming a Corpseman ( To quote President Obama I was sent to Camp Lejeune ( Where I did drink the water ) . After an Honorable Discharge I spent 28+ years as a Firefighter / Paramedic in Miami- Dade County . Any who , we took a quick cruise on the Nieuw Statendam and we're reviewing currently . We hope to be near you guys for a few days coming and going to San Francisco and Kauai for our 45th anniversary in March . Best wishes to you and your child bride and keep up the good work cruising and sharing it .

 

Thank you Sir, but first of all, THANK YOU for your service in the USN taking care of us jarheads as a "corpseman" (had to laugh at that one) and subsequently as a FF/PM saving undoubtfully many lives in Miami-Dade, which I know is a very busy Dept. You did well! I had a life altering experience at MCRD as a 19-yr old fresh "off the boat" from Amsterdam, Holland, getting some "personal attention" from Vietnam-experienced D.I.'s  😉 

 

If you have extra time in L.A. in March, let me know please (email is in my sig) Love to meet up! Take care, be safe, and continue to cruise!! 

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