Preview of the Carnival Vista

Photo courtesy of the Carnival Corporation

I have to say, I’m pretty excited about the Carnival Vista. The ship looks awesome!

Carnival sometimes gets a bad wrap but really it is a good line- especially for weeklong cruises. I’m not a big fan of Carnival for short cruises; likely where carnival received the “party ship” reputation.

Back to the Vista. Want an IMAX Theatre at sea? Yes please; Vista has one. Staterooms specifically for families? Why not! Family Harbor staterooms and suites have access to the Family Harbor Lounge – where kids and parents can hang out, play games or help themselves to the cookie and snack bar. Of course there is also an adult only area to escape to when the kids are entertained at the kid’s clubs. A water park, a suspending bike ride, it all sounds awesome!

Photo courtesy of the Carnival Corporation

Check out this super cute video on the Vista. (I’m serious it will make you smile!) As I said I am really excited about the launch of this ship. I will be sailing her this winter! The Vista is scheduled to enter service on May 1, 2016 in Europe. (Updated to indicate that she is currently sailing Europe.) She will then come to New York for her US inaugural cruise, and then she will travel to Miami where she will launch year round Caribbean service. What are you most excited about on the Vista? Do you plan to work her into your vacation schedule?

Happy Travels! So many vacations, so little time.

Update: I’ll be cruising the Vista in January, be sure to follow me on social media for pictures. Twitter and Instagram.

Current Internet Prices for El Dorado Royale 

This past weekend we stayed at El Dorado Royale in the Riviera Maya, Mexico. Below are pictures showing the current Internet (wifi) prices and sign up details for the resort

The speed was actually good. At first I thought it was worse than a cruise ships in terms of reliability and speed but it turned out that that morning a quarter of the resort was out. Once it was resolved we had no issues as all; in fact we were even able to FaceTime with our son that was home with grandma.

This was information I was interested in before the trip, so I hope it helps you as well.

Happy travels!

Related Post: My Review of the El Dorado Royale

Gluten Free at Giovanni’s Table on Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas

In March I had the opportunity to dine at Giovanni’s Table on Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas. Due to a medical diagnosis I am required to eat gluten free. This of course completely changes the dining experience.

My husband and I scheduled Giovanni’s as our date night. To say I was disappointed would be an understatement. But starting at the beginning- I reviewed the menus for the 2 specialty restaurants that I was most interested in trying. The choice was between either Chops Steakhouse or Giovanni’s Table. [I attempted to provide links to pages for each restaurant but as of the time of this writing, RCI changed the website and information isn’t available without logging in to a cruise.]  We chose Giovanni’s based on it’s menu. It had a HUGE selection of offerings available gluten free, or so we thought. It seemed like the perfect choice.  Our assigned head waiter in the main dining room made our reservation for us and indicated that I have gluten allergy. Upon being seated we told our waiter that I had a gluten allergy but that I was interested in trying several different foods. This should have been our first clue, he seemed to blow it off.

Unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures of our meal. I think we were dumbfounded by our experience to remember the blogging aspect of the meal.

So for appetizers I chose the caprese salad, the antipasti and the eggplant parmesan, all of which had the GF symbol on the menu indicating they offered gluten free versions. The caprese was normal and tasty. The antipasti was odd. It had no parmesan and I recalled it being a very odd combination of offerings. It was not what I would consider normal. But it was otherwise fine.  When the eggplant was brought I remember thinking this just looks too amazing to be gluten free. I confirmed with the waiter that it was gluten free. I still was hesitant and requested that he double check with the chef.  [This was the point of the meal that I should have asked to speak to a manager and it was a poor decision on my part that I didn’t.] The waiter returned a few minutes later non-apologetically indicated that my eggplant had gluten. He indicated that they were made earlier in the day. He did not offer to provide me with a GF replacement.

For my main course I ordered the filet of beef with steak fries – since they had a designated fryer. The beef came with a wine sauce and it was tasty. The fries were very similar to those served at Red Robin. My husband ordered the mashed potatoes and they were not memorable.

For dessert they served me vanilla ice cream, and it wasn’t gelato. They had no other GF options.

We left this meal disappointed. I have no idea why we didn’t complain to management. I was not at all please to have spent $50 on this experience. I wish I had a more positive ending to this post.

How has your experience been  dining with allergies in specialty restaurants on Royal Caribbean? If you have any questions about this dining experience or any others I experienced on the FOS, please do not hesitate to ask below in a comment.

Happy Travels!

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