ON THE ROAD BACK BACK TO HAWAII - DAY ONE AT SEA
Rebecca, so glad that you have booked World Cruise 2020. Very exciting.
All...A couple who is friends with us and trying their first Crystal Cruise later this year was at a Chinese Restaurant and when they opened up one of the two fortune cookies they thought of us with this saying. We thought we would pass this on as it is our core beliefs when it comes to travel.
“Travel with an open heart and positive expectations."
Rain would not prevent the USC Marching Band from performing yesterday at 3:00 PM. This has been a tradition of many of the World Cruises leaving out of Los Angeles. Special thanks to Vice President of Crystal Cruises Land Programs John Stoll for arranging this special sendoff.
When the weather is good they perform outside around the pool area. Since it was raining they performed inside at the Galaxy Theatre.
Shortly after the performance by the band, Keith visited friend Bob and Glo who boarded yesterday and chatted with them for awhile.
On our way to the 5:15 PM mandatory lifeboat drill we saw friends John and Linda who also boarded yesterday. We first met John and Linda on the 2007 World Cruise.
This was the first drill we attended on Serenity where guest didn't need to wear their life jackets. Both Symphony and Serenity eliminated this practice beginning with their respective January cruises.
After the drill we stopped by the Crystal Cove for a drink. Bartender Afzal took excellent care of us. On the last cruise he was at Palm Court and for this cruise he is at the Crystal Cove. Afzal is amazing. At one point every seat at the bar was taken and Afzal was alone making drinks in very short order.
As we were getting ready to depart the port Captain Giske spoke from the bridge. He noted that due to a storm in the Pacific we would be taking a somewhat different route over to Hawaii.
We had dinner at Waterside. These are the restaurant menus.
We enjoyed dinner at Waterside. It was very quiet when we first arrived and continued that way for most of the dinner.
Let's start with the waitstaff team.
Senior Waiter Claudia who we had in October.
Waiter Yivraj who we had for the last two cruises.
Sommelier Ricardo who we has taken good care of us for several years.
Dinner was fabulous.
Anne Marie had the Roasted Portobello Mushroom and Keith the Seared Ahi Tuna for our appetizer. We both had Caesar Salad (dressing on the side) and for our entree Salmon. Everything was terrific. It came out hot and it was delicious.
As much as we wanted to stay up for the World Cruise 2019 Balloon Drop it was held late in the evening and the timing did not work out for us. We were up early that morning and today we began the day early with personal training for Keith.
These are photos taken earlier in the day of the Balloons.
When we arrived back to the room there was information from World Cruise hostess about upcoming events for the World Cruise. It included a letter, a calendar with any known events and a place where we could list restaurant reservations and also a Crystal Cruises photo calendar.
There was also a booklet about the Word Cruise Games which will be held on-board this segment of the World Cruise. It will include a variety of events including sports, team trivia, board and computer games and photography. Those placing first, second or third will receive gold, silver or bronze medals. Two former Olympians are on-board. Every guest participating will receive a shirt.
This morning was about exercise.
Our morning began early with a workout for Keith, followed by coffee and breakfast in our room. Both of us have signed up for personal training and Keith took his first class today with Melanie Hossack. She is from Scotland where she has been a personal trainer on land. Fifteen minutes after the personal training session was over Keith took the first indoor cycling class of the World Cruise. We had four people at all times. Other than Keith all first timers. One guest gave out about half-way through the class as the seat was hard for her which often happens for first timers. One gent was confused about the start time and arrived ten minutes before the end of class. As it turned out Keith met one of the men a few years ago on the Paddle Tennis court. He's from the UK, likes exercise and will be on-board until Cape Town.
In addition to the workouts for Keith, Anne Marie walked for an hour, and she took the Yoga Class.
Views of the Pacific Ocean and Sunrise taken from our room at 7:00 AM this morning.
In addition to the being the first leg of the World Cruise which includes the World Games this is also a Wine and Festival voyage. As part of this theme there will be several activities. This includes cooking demonstrations, wine tastings, presentations by a mixologist, and a special dinner in Waterside featuring selected items prepared under the direction of the guest chef on-board for this voyage.
Today's program included 50+ enrichment activities including three lectures:
Destination lecturer Ken Rees shared his experiences as a reporter covering the world.
Forensic Science Lecturer Judith Fordham shared stories of wild characters and crazy experiences from 30 years of law practice.
Marine Biology Lecturer Dr. Jay Christofferson spoke about the Coral Reefs.
The World Cruise also includes some special enrichment programs in addition to the 50+ programs found on most voyages.
Memoir Write Joe Kita will teach Memoir Writing on the first segment of the World Cruise providing an opportunity for guests to learn how to write a memoir or just about one aspect of their lives.
Yoga Instructor Maria Kita will teach Yoga on the first Segment of the World Cruise.
A Music Instructor, Ursula Cauffiel,is on board to teach piano on the Yamaha Pianos.
Stan Leja will teach a college course on several different applications of the Apple products.
Protestant Clergy Ed Voosen, Jewish Clergy Rabbi Morris Hershman and Catholic Clergy Father Thomas Falkenthal are on-board for the duration of the World Cruise.
Photo of the Yamaha Pianos.
We attended a morning World Cruise get-together which included an introduction of many of the officers and senior staff on-board and an opportunity to meet fellow guests, Rather than sitting we walked around for most of the time so we could see as many people as possible.
We enjoyed lunch at Waterside making our usual salad entrees.
Keith was going to play Paddle Tennis but it was too windy. We both walked together inside the ship and are enjoying the rest of the day on-board Serenity.
Anne Marie & Keith
WORLD CRUISE 2019 - DAY 2 - THE EXCITEMENT CONTINUES TO BUILD
Doris...Thank you for your good wishes. Yes, there are some new ports on the World Cruise and the voyages following it. Same will be true for the River Cruise.
Sophie....Thank you for your thoughtful commments.
Alessa...Thank you also for your nice comments. You asked about a link at the bottom of the Blog. If you scroll to the bottom which might require scrolling down several of the posts you will come to a footer. It will say previous if this is the first one or if you look at an older post you would see previous or forward. With that said we just made a change which will loading two posts per page which will make it easier to scroll down to the bottom of the page to see the footer.
Barb....Glad you enjoyed the slide show from previous World Cruises and the photos of Richie and Ruel.
We had an amazing start to World Cruise 2019 last evening. Throughout the evening we reunited with many guests who we have sailed with before and met new guests. In many ways it is similar to a family, high school or college reunion. There is lots of hugging and embracing between guests and crew who have become our extended Crystal Family.
This was our schedule of events:
5:30 PM Hollywood World Cruise Gala & Celebration hosted by Crystal Cruises CEO & President Tom Wolber. This included a welcome, dancing and cocktails
6:00 PM Hollywood Word Cruise Gala Dinner at Waterside which included a multi-course dinner. They assigned each guest to a table.
8:30 PM Sneak Preview Of Upcoming Broadway Show. We got a sneak preview of the new play Mrs. Doubtfire. It included appearances by Tony Award winning producer Kevin McCollum and featured Broadway Stars, Heidi Blicenstaff and Brian d"army James with The Crystal Showband.
9:00 PM to 12:30 AM Afterwards there was live music in three different venues; Avenue Saloon, Crystal Plaza and Palm Court.
It was an amazing evening and one we will remember for the rest of our lives.
The theme was Hollywood. After all we were docked less than an hour from Hollywood. The was a red carpet in the Crystal Plaza leading to Waterside where dinner was held. Small tables were placed around the Plaza and the area on the next floor with a replica of an Academy Award.
We wanted to mention that we learned that those arriving to the ship yesterday for embarkation were greeted as Hollywood Stars. After being dropped off by their vehicle there was a red carpet and inside the terminal, they were given flutes of champagne as well as caviar.
We saw so many familiar faces at the welcome celebration and also met some guests for the first time. We also spoke with John Stoll VP of Land Programs; Susan Robinson; Director of Global Public Relations; and Carmen Roig, SVP of Marketing & Sales. CEO& President Tom Wolber gave a very nice welcome address.
Next was dinner. Each guest was escorted to their assigned table by members of the waitstaff team. Other personnel from the waitstaff came by the table.
Waterside looked amazing and the flowers on the tables were beautiful. We sat with two couples who we met for the first time and one solo guest (Anne) who we have known since the 2007 World Cruise and CEO & President Tom Wolber.
We enjoyed a delicious meal with outstanding service, in this beautiful room and a wonderful nice conversation throughout the meal.
The meal included:
Fresh Dungeness Crab Salad
A choice of fish or beef entrees. We chose :
Pan Seared Halibut
Dark& White Chocolate Mousse
The two hour dinner was a “wow”!
After dinner we went to the show which we thoroughly enjoyed. The music and the singing was sensational and it did include two songs from Mrs. Doubtfire. We cannot say enough about the singing of Heidi Blickenstaff and Brian D'Arcy. Heidi sang throughout the performance songs from various plays including Mrs. Doubtfire. Brian sang one of the new songs from Mrs. Doubtfire. When Cruise Director Gary Hunter came out there was a standing overation for the performance and an encore for Heidi to sing more.
Gary closed out the show by mentioning the remaining entertainment for the evening and also highlighting events for today including an appearance by the USC Marching Band, the mandatory lifeboat drills and the World Cruise Balloon Drop.
Yesterday was also Gary Hunter’s Birthday and we all sang Happy Birthday to Gary including another appearance by Heidi Blickenstaff to lead the song.
When we arrived back to the room there was a beautiful floral arrangement of flowers from dinner, a World Cruise hat, vest and a shirt for the men and a sweater for the women.
We wanted to share some fun facts about the 2019 World Cruise:
347 Full World Cruisers
63 of the Full World Cruisers are on their first Crystal Cruises.
Of the 284 Crystal Society Members, 105 are taking their first Crystal Cruise.
Captain Giske will be Captain for the first part of the World Cruise and this is his third World Cruise. Captain Birger will be Captain for the second part of the World Cruise and this is his fourth Crystal World Cruise and he as been on eleven world cruises.
Gary Hunter and Rich Spath will be the Cruise Directors with Rick on his fifteenth overall World Cruise and Gary on his eighth overall World Cruise.
World Cruise Hostess Stacey Huston is on her ninth Crystal Cruises World Cruise.
We slept well last evening but it was not due to the gentle rocking of the ship as we remained docked in San Pedro.
Although we went to sleep late, Keith began the morning extra early with his daily workout. We enjoyed coffee followed by breakfast in our room.
We are getting used to the room. It is the same room as the one we are in other than everything is on the opposite side and that includes the interior of the closet. We are sure we will be experts in a few days. LOL.
Keith tried on his new World Cruise 2019 Shirt and wore it today.
We enjoyed the rest of the day on the ship. Keith met at The Bistro with Carmen Roig, SVP of Marketing & Sales. The remainder of the day we visited with many guests who we have sailed with on prior cruises, talked to many members of the crew and enjoyed a nice lunch.
Those guests who are booked for one or more segments of the World Cruise embarked today some of whom we know very well so it was great to see them.
We set sail for Hawaii at 6:00 PM this evening.
This is the Reflections daily program for today.
Anne Marie & Keith