Relaxing Fantasy - Western - Adult Only Concierge Cruise - 8/30 to 9/6 - Complete10/5

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by Dis_Yoda, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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  3. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Introductions

    We originally booked this cruise in April 2013 when we needed something to look forward to after a mess of a home buying experience in Naples. Although in the end of that mess, we ended up with a much better house in a better part of town, it was stressful! This was the first time we had booked a vacation almost 1.5 years in advance which gave us a long time to look forward to it!

    We are booked in stateroom 12010, a category V, with the extended balcony. We have early dining.

    Dis_Yoda:
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    28 Year Old Quality Engineer. This is my 4th Disney Cruise. My first one was with some girl friends while I was in college. The last 2 were with my husband. I grew up loving Disney! While I love the parks (I mean, look at my signature, I go a lot), I also really do enjoy cruising. I don’t have to worry about work or anything while on board and can truly relax on the boat. I also enjoy photography and this is my first vacation since I acquired my 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens, my 2nd non kit lens after my 50mm f/1.4.

    Mr. Dis_Yoda:
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    30 Year Old Retail Manager. This is his 3rd Disney Cruise. He never cruised before he met me but has learned to love it as its a great way for us to truly disconnect from the real world.
     
  4. Mickey4me!

    Mickey4me! Lost my screen name so I'm starting from scratch!

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    Subbing! Sounds like fun. Hope you have a great trip and I'm already jealous of your new lens!
     
  5. jedijill

    jedijill <font color=red>Chiefs fan living in Bronco countr

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    I'm in! Can't wait to hear all about the trip.

    Jill in CO
     
  6. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Thanks! I'm really excited to be leaving tomorrow! This week has gone by so slow at work this week. I imagine tomorrow is going to be worse as we leave for Disney as soon as I get off.

    Thanks for joining in!
     
  7. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Initial Plan

    It may seem like we have this more planned than we do. The exercise has to be on point as we have the Tower of Terror 10 Miler on October 4th & we don’t want to fall behind on our training despite being on a cruise.

    For tastings, we have mixology already set up as a private group but we are also planning on Whiskey, Rum, Italian Liquors, Beer and possible one or two more depending on when they are occurring. We hope to spend lots of time in the adult only areas between the bars, rainforest room, or sun deck.

    August 29th, 2014
    3:30PM - Drop Dogs Off @ Kennel
    7:00PM - Arrive at Saratoga Springs
    ...walk to DTD & shop & enjoy
    8:30PM - Dinner @ Fulton’s

    August 30th. 2014 - Boarding
    Training: 40 Minute Cross Training
    8:30AM - Leave Saratoga Springs
    10:00AM - Park @ Port
    12:00PM - Hopefully Boarding!
    ...check in with concierge & book tastings, desired villa appointment, get rainforest pass, etc
    ...enjoy Lunch
    2:30PM - Disboard Cruise Meet

    August 31st, 2014 - At Sea
    Training: 70 Minute Run
    6:30AM - Complete Training Run
    ...shower, check in for massage
    8:00AM - Bamboo Massage for Dis_Yoda
    4:00PM - Disboard Meet - Mixology Class

    September 1st, 2014 - Cozumel
    Training: “Rest”
    8:45AM - Mexican Cuisine Workshop & Tasting Excursion
    6:00PM - Palo Dinner

    September 2nd, 2014 - Grand Cayman
    Training: 58 Minute Run
    10:15AM - Shipwreck & Reef Snorkeling

    September 3rd, 2014 - Jamaica
    Training: 40 Minute Cross (maybe the tubing can count ;) )
    7:15AM - Chukka Jungle River Tubing Safari
    6:00PM - Remy Dinner

    September 4th, 2014 - At Sea
    Training: “Rest”
    9:15AM - Facial for Dis_Yoda
    11:30AM - Remy Champagne Brunch for Dis_Yoda

    September 5th, 2014 - Castaway Cay
    Training: 55 Minute Run but we’re just going to do the 5K & call it a day
    8:30AM - Castaway Cay 5K

    September 6th, 2014 - Leaving The Ship :(
    ...skip final breakfast & enjoy get something small in the lounge
    7:00AM - Leave Ship
    ...drive home
    12:00PM - Hopefully be Home
    3:00PM - Coworker’s Babyshower
     
  8. cforsythe

    cforsythe Mouseketeer

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    I'm all in. So proud of you all for continuing your workouts!!

    My sisters and I are going on an adult only celebrating a milestone birthday in January. Can't wait!!
     
  9. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Well, my goal was to keep up with the workouts. It didn't go exactly as planned but it is vacation after all.

    Enjoy your adult only! Disney does a great job keeping the adults entertained as well as the children on the boat.
     
  10. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Rain, Rain, Go Away

    Friday at work was the longest 9 hours of the week! I had a countdown going on until it was time to leave. Somehow, for the first time in forever, I had a completely clean inbox with no outstanding tasks that had to be done & I was able to walk out the door at 3:00PM. I drove straight home & my husband had already packed up the car so that all we had to do was walk the dogs & then head to the kennel prior to heading up I-75 to get to Saratoga Springs & Downtown Disney for the evening.

    As we were driving to the kennel, it was beginning to rain and thunder and lightning pretty bad. Have you ever tried to drive with two dogs that had thunder fears? Luckily, it wasn’t storming too bad when we got to the kennel & we were able to quickly check them in & get back on the road.

    As we headed back onto I-75, here was the sky:
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    For the most part, the drive until I-75 wasn’t too bad. A little bit of traffic by Sarasota, but thats normal for us; however, once we hit I-4, it was another story. The first 14 miles were stop and go slowly & it didn’t help that with all the stop and go, I wasn’t sure I would have enough gas to get through to Disney so we ended up pulling off in Lakeland to refill. Once we got back on the road after that pit stop, it was smooth sailing until we got to Disney property & headed to Saratoga Springs.

    As it was starting to rain once we got into the parking lot, I headed to the check in desk as Shaun went to use the restroom. Check in took some time as I didn’t do On-Line Check In for this trip so it wasn’t associated with my MDE account and we ended up having to take the basic gray bands they had waiting for us rather than the bands we brought from home.

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    Our room was in Grandstand in the building nearest the Carriage House so we could get the quickest walk to DTD using the bridge through the golf course to make our Fulton’s reservation as there were no rooms available in Congress Park.

    We headed to the room & got our luggage inside so we wouldn’t have to deal with it after dinner. We were on the first floor with a direct view of the parking lot and the patio was next to the walkway into the building. I love the details in SSR rooms.

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    By the time we got finished with this, the rain was coming down worse. Luckily, I had a poncho in my car from one of my other trips to Disney so I wore that while my husband took the Mary Poppins Umbrella that I had from my purchase in July.

    We had 20 minutes to make it to Fulton’s before we would be late to our ADR. I hate being late to things so we quickly walked as safely as I could in the rain (thus, we wouldn’t run) We made it right on time & were immediately seated upstairs. We noticed the menu had changed from our time there 6 weeks ago & I’m pretty sure its because Free Dining was starting as some options felt dumbed down along with certain things becoming Add On only.

    Our server quickly visited our table & took our drink order.

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    Orange Blossom Pilsner

    My choice which I had back in July. Its a nice choice to go with what I was ordering for dinner.

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    Angry Orchard

    My husband’s go to beer.

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    Crab Dip & Crackers

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    Beef Skewers - Chimichurri Sauce & Pickled Onions

    My choice for appetizer. It was a great selection as the meat was really tender.

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    Clam Chowder

    My husband’s selection which is what he always goes for.

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    Ribs w/ St. Louis BBQ, French Fries & Coleslaw

    This is where I feel Free Dining sucks. Back in July, this was an Asian Style Dry Rub w/ a nice light refreshing slaw. I craved those ribs since July and was well disappointed. I felt this was a very lazy version of the ribs this time around. They were tender at least and tasted good but not great. I didn’t eat any of the fries or coleslaw.

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    Chicken w/ Gnocchi in a Lemon Caper Sauce

    My husband’s selection. He loved it! The chicken was tender with enough seasoning to balance out the lemon in the sauce. The gnocchi was well made.

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    Side of Hashbrowns

    We didn’t eat much of the hashbrowns as they were good but I wanted to save it for breakfast the next day.

    We skipped on breakfast & decided to walk back to Saratoga Springs looking at the stores over in West Side. Shaun ended up buying a hat at the surf store while I picked up some Sport Beans & Gus at Fit2Run as I figured we may need them for the Castaway Cay 5k to balance out the food & drink we were going to enjoy while still needing the energy for the race.

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    We got back to the room shortly before 10PM & our clothes were soaked to the bone. I didn’t really want to go through the cruise with clothes that were that wet in our luggage or sitting in my car. Luckily, DVC has free laundry & I was able to do a quick load with everything we were wearing this evening.

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    After that was finished, it was time for bed as we needed to get to the port in the morning!

     
  11. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Arrival

    I had originally set an alarm for 8:00AM for us as I knew we wouldn’t be let into the port until at least 10:00AM. I apparently can’t sleep that late no matter how much I try. So I got dressed, put our stuff back into the car and walked to get my husband his breakfast so we could relax in the room all before 7:30AM.

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    For my breakfast, I took some cheese I got from the quick service place and mixed it with my hashbrowns as I nuked it in the room. It was a great breakfast for me!

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    Adult Bounty Platter

    My husband was happy with this choice.

    We got on the road shortly after 8:45AM & made it to the Port in less than an hour.

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    The problem with arriving at the port at 9:45AM is that they won’t let you get into the parking lot yet as they are still dealing with the people that were leaving the previous cruise. We were instructed to go drive around for at least 20 minutes, then come back. So thats what we did as I was going to see I could get a Starbucks Btw, totally received my gold starbucks card in the pile of mail that was delivered after the trip, I think I have a starbucks problem As I couldn’t find one easily from the road as we drove towards Cocoa Beach, we turned back after 10 minutes to get back to the port as he did say 20 minutes. When we attempted to park this time, we had no problems and we able to get a great 1st level spot in the garage. We took our luggage to the porters & headed up to the 3rd floor walk way as we awaited to be let into the port.

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    It didn’t take long until the doors were open & we could get through security, picking up our DVC lanyards on the way to the back section to check in at the concierge desk. We got through that quickly as we had done On-Line Check In and then we headed to the private waiting area as we awaited boarding. We reviewed the Navigator for the Day along with looking outside at the ship.

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    It wasn’t long after 11AM when we were let on board & headed through the Atrium and taken to the elevator to visit at the Concierge Lounge with the Concierge Staff for bookings of alcohol tastings and making sure everything else planned was all set.

    I ended up deciding against the Rainforest Pass as Shaun really didn’t want to enjoy it and it was $144 for a single person’s unlimited pass whereas its $193 for a couple.

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    Once we were done with speaking with our staff member, enjoying a snack & a drink, we were told our room was already ready so we dropped off our carry ons before we headed out for lunch!

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    Love that extended balcony!

     
  12. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Drinks, Meets and Sailing Away

    We headed to lunch @ Cabanas, where I enjoyed some chicken and shrimp and some salad. My husband went with a more varied selection and enjoyed his picks as well. We sat at the bar in the back of the restaurant so that we could easily get a cocktail with our meal where I went with a Melon Vine while my husband had a Miller Lite.

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    Once we were done with lunch, we headed to look at the Adult Areas & get a drink from O’Gills which would turn out to be our favorite adult hang out spot on the cruise.

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    Shipbuilder’s Wife - My favorite martini and all for the low low price of $5.95!

    We headed back to the room where our fruit bowl was being delivered. I never really understand why we need to have this delivered when the lounge has food available from 7AM to 10PM every day.

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    We then hung out on the balcony until I realized my husband was going to watch some movie on his laptop & then I headed upstairs to the concierge sundeck to read some after grabbing another Vodka Soda.

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    As it approached 2:30PM, we headed to D-Lounge to stop by the Disboard Cruise Meet and to pick up the info needed for the private mixology; however, when we first went in I couldn’t find Amira, so we left after about 15 minutes to head to the DVC Member Meet to try for a chance a free onboard credit along with getting another cocktail for free.

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    I really like Vodka Sodas

    We didn’t win the credit so we stopped back by the Disboard Cruise Meet & I was able to meet up with Amira to check in for the private mixology along with picking up our goodies from her (which are great! Thanks so much!)

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    We headed back to the room to unpack everything and get ready for the emergency drill.

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    Fish Extender

    So at 4:00PM, the alarm sounded & we headed to our meeting spot - the Walt Disney Theater:
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    It was uneventful and we were soon released to head to our sail away spot - the Senses Fitness Center! It was empty except for us. I spent some time on the bike while watching our scenery change towards the open seas.

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    After we finished, we headed back to the room to get ready for dinner & the nighttime adult activities they had on board.

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  13. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Dinner, After Dinner Drinks & Entertainment

    Our dining rotation was main seating (5:45PM) and we started in Enchanted Garden. Our Server, Alvin, & Assistant Server, Putra, quickly introduced themselves and handed us our menus to look at until Alvin was able to talk about the menu in more detail and take our order.

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    Menu Pictures:
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    Lobster Ravioli

    My husband’s choice which he really enjoyed.

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    Ahi Tuna & Avocado Tower

    My selection for an appetizer - it was refreshing especially when enjoyed with the wasabi dressing.

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    Caesar Salad

    We both picked the same thing for the salad course. It was fine.

    At this time, the restaurant turned into night & the light fixtures opened up.

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    Roasted Chicken

    We both got the same entree, although my husband did sub out his sweet potatoes for a baked potato without an issue. The chicken was great once you added some salt & pepper to it. We noticed with the entrees they tended to be underseasoned in the main dining rooms but at least we easily fixed that ourselves.

    Dessert Menus:
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    Apple Cinnamon Sundae

    My husband’s dessert selection as he loves ice cream.

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    Esterhazy Cake

    My selection as it seemed to be the lightest of the selections.
    Our server brought us an additional dessert as it was his favorite. We really didn’t want it but felt it would be rude to not at least try a bite. It was ok but not something we would order

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    Warm Sticky Date Pudding

    We headed back to the room to relax for a bit as I had set up a spa appointment at 8:00PM for an eyebrow waxing. I think that was the most expensive eyebrow ever at $35.40 but I was in need of it and I didn’t get it done before leaving on the trip so I guess thats the price I pay. At least I got to look out onto the ocean while it happened!

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    Night 1 - Towel Animal

    Once I returned to the room, we headed out to Europa to visit O’Gills as Shaun wanted to watch the NCAA Football game and I was just happy to sit and drink while ignoring the game.

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    Strongbow & Peanuts - My husband’s choice

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    Yet another Shipbuilder’s Wife for Me

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    Chilled Leprechaun - my 2nd choice

    We sat and enjoyed this for a while until the entertainment was beginning in the Tube around 10PM, with the first showing of Match Your Mate. Our club host was Tisa who was very amusing. I ordered a drink from one of the waiters as we enjoyed the show. For the show, we had a couple that had been together for less than 5 years, a couple for 46 years and another couple that was together only for about 5 years or so. I’m always amused how much couples do or don’t know the answers along with the elderly couple being perfectly blunt and amusing.

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    Jack & Diet Coke for Me - Water for the Husband

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    The Couples

    After Match Your Mate, we headed back to the room for bed.
     
  14. franandaj

    franandaj I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!

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    I didn't realize that you had been on another cruise. Someday I will cruise on the Fantasy. Sounds like you have gotten a great start so far!
     
  15. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    You will love the Fantasy when you get to sail her one day! It definitely is my favorite of the four.

    I didn't talk about the cruise a lot as all the other trips required more attention as I was planning on this to be relaxing as the preplanning was easy with Palo, Remy, Spa and Excursions - the rest was kinda done by ear as we were there.

    We probably will go back onto the Fantasy in Feb 2016 but those schedules aren't released yet so we didn't book another cruise on board. We already 2015 pretty set with Disneyland in January for 5 Nights, A Girl's Only Trip in Feb for Princess Half Marathon, A Long Weekend in Universal for Harry Potter some time between May and August, and a 9 or 10 Night F&W Trip at end of September/early October.
     
  16. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Relaxing Early Morning

    Our alarms went off at 6:30AM as we had a plan to work out! I mean look at our pretty faces:

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    We headed to the gym to get in our schedule run per our training plan for Tower of Terror.

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    My husband did well. I well, didn’t. I’m pretty sure the amount of beverages I had the night before caused me to walk more than run but at least I got it mostly done!

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    I cut my run short so that I would be able to enjoy the gentle sauna in the locker room along with taking a shower prior to my massage. I said goodbye to my husband as he was going to spend some more time in the gym, get some breakfast on his own, and either enjoy our lovely balcony or sundeck until I got back.

    My massage was set for 8:00AM so I checked in slightly before 8AM at the front desk & was led directly to my treatment room as I had already done my consultation form the night before when I got the eyebrows waxed. I had originally signed up for the bamboo massage but she upsold me to the hot stone which I’m fine with as I do get some money back through my wellness program with work. It was blissful! I didn’t realize how tight my shoulders were and I knew my calves were tight from the running but at least that was addressed.

    My only complaint about the spa is the upsells at the end of the treatment but it didn’t take too long to say no thank you - I already have a wellness plan that works for me I left only $220 poorer instead of the additional $400 in products that were trying to be sold to me and headed back to the room to meet up with my husband. I got showered to get the oils off and relax and read for an hour or so. I had gotten us a ticket for 11AM to see Anna & Elsa as being able to meet them with little wait is so much better than what you get at WDW. Shaun didn’t want to join as he doesn’t care about characters.

    This occurs at Animator’s Palate & they have Frozen landscape images all along the screens in the restaurant. My meet went quickly as I really just wanted the picture & then ran away. They were very in character which is great for all the children that were meeting with them!

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    Afterwards, I headed back to the room & then we headed to lunch in Cabanas. Only, we were slightly too early for lunch. Shaun got a plate of breakfast food to start & I waited for the lunch to open on the other side. At 11:30, it opened & got my plate of peel & eat shrimp, chicken nuggets and a salad. We also enjoyed some of the ice cream you can get by the dessert and fruit section!
     
  17. princessnpirate

    princessnpirate Mouseketeer

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    Subbing in! Love to hear this!!
     
  18. Campbem

    Campbem Earning My Ears

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    Enjoying your report! We are going on the fantasy in Concierge in 85 days! Looking forward to hearing more on your trip and more details on Concierge.
     
  19. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for joining in! I'm going to try to get this complete as soon as possible as I have my Fall 2014 Pre-Trip/Soon to be Trip Report going on as those trips start soon & I don't want to forget too much about my cruise!

    You will love it! I love just the relaxation concierge brings with the ability to walk across the hall to the lounge, having 3 staff members able to handle your requests inside the lounge, and the private sun deck that is so close to Satellite Falls. There is also a private character meeting with only concierge guests & you usually get a free lithograph designed by Ducky. Being able to be the first group to board is also awesome along with that booking advantage.
     
  20. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Champagne and Mixed Drinks Are My Friends

    After lunch, we had about 15 minutes to kill before we would allowed into OhLaLa for our Champagne Tasting. We sat in the area outside & I read some of my book while my husband played a game on his phone.

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    We were led in right on time at 12:15 & were able to sit at a small 2 top on our own.

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    This was also served with a vanilla panna cotta.

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    The wines we tried that I can remember were the Tattinger Nocturne which is one of the special bottles you can only get on the ship. We also had the Moet Imperial & Moet Ice Imperial. We also had a Prosecco & a Spanish Sparkling Wine that I don’t quite remember the name of.

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    During the 45 minutes we were at Oh La La, we learned about the 3 grapes they use for champagne (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier) along with some of the other basics that I’ve heard at other tastings or dinners before. I didn’t really learn anything new but I did enjoy getting to try some different champagnes & sparkling wines I hadn’t had before. It was well worth the $30pp for the tasting as those wines are always so expensive by the glass.

    Afterwards, we headed back to the room for a while, where I enjoyed our private concierge sundeck that was empty for some more reading.

    Shortly before 3PM, I headed to La Piazza for Disney Tune Trivia & grabbed one of the Coke Zeros from the lounge to enjoy while at the game.

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    I think that share a coke with name fits, don’t you?

    One lady asked me as soon as I sat down where did I get the coke zero as diet coke just isn’t the same. Sadly, I wasn’t able to help her out during the course of the cruise & smuggle her one from the lounge ;)

    Disney Tune Trivia Round 1 was hard! I didn’t know many of the harder ones. I think I got about half of the songs/movies right which I guess isn’t horrible.

    When Trivia was over, it wasn’t too long before it was time for our private mixology class that was set up with a group of us from our meet thread here on the disboards, so we headed into Skyline Early & found ourselves a seat as we awaiting everyone’s arrival. We were greeted by our lead bartender, Lindsay & her support team with Oliver & Brankica.

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    The first drink that was shown to us on how to make was the Captain Mai Tai from our main host Lindsay. After Lindsay’s demo, 5 of the group got up to make the drink. I held off volunteering until it was time to make the martini as I love a good martini. I ended up getting a really strong mai tai from the people that made it but I have no complaints. Next up was a Berryoska which is prepared similar to a mojito but made with blueberries & vodka & lime instead. I also ended up with an overall stronger drink than what was intended as well ;) Next up was a champagne cocktail called a Pomo Passion which is champagne with passion & orange juice & pama liquor added on top. Then it was finally time to make the martini, a Fallen Angel. It was made with Bailey’s, Kahlua, Amaretto & Half & Half.

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    Mine was probably also a strong drink but that’s the fun of Mixology right?

    The last drink that was demonstrated was a B53 shot which is a layered shot with Triple Sec, Amaretto & Bailey’s. On this one, you were supposed to make your own shot but my husband had me make both of ours.

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    The glass was a lot of fun, especially for the $15 it cost. My only complaint is that it seemed our bartender had a love for Amaretto as 3 of the 5 drinks had it in it which just feels like a lot of amaretto to me but I understand trying to get drinks that a lot of people would enjoy.

    It ran late until about 5:20PM & we had main dining so we rushed back to the room to quickly change for Formal Night in the Main Dining Room. I think it only took us about 10 minutes to change, which shocked me so I was able to get some pictures of Cuba as we were sailing past.

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  21. Angeejoe

    Angeejoe DIS Veteran

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    Looks like a great start to your TR, I can't wait for more!
     

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