'Dragon's Lair' - Gothic disco club with its own DJ. Entrance only for those who are 18 years old and older:
On the decks every 10-20 meters are very convenient schemas-pointers, in the form of a ship. To get lost you have to try very hard.
The distance between the decks of the ship is much smaller than between usual floors. To descend from the 14th to the 1st you do not need to overcome a height of 14-storey building, everything is much more modest. For those who are too lazy (or who drank too much at the bar) always work the elevators, but taking the stairs is more interesting - different works of art are certainly demonstrated on each flight of steps.
Burning question about tips: to whom, how many, and where should we pay, and whether we should pay at all? Everything has been already thought over before you. Usually, the day before returning to the mainland, in the cabin appear the envelopes with the names of the steward, the waiter, serving you in the banquet hall, the assistant waiter on the drinks, and head waiter of the restaurant. You can put as many as you want, or you can use pre-computed scheme (most people do so), having paid the service in advance in the Customer Service, and in envelopes you'll just put the relevant vouchers.
In general, we feel wrong to call this case 'tips'. 'Service fee' would be more logical, maybe in this case people's attitude to these extortions would be different. In our case, the total amount was $11 per person per day (including the child).
In general, problem with 'where to eat?' on the vessel does not exist. Quite the contrary: as you know, most of returning from cruises bring with them not only an interesting experience, but those extra kilos. There is a whole ocean of food on the ship, and it is available at almost any time of the day.
In addition to dinner in two shifts in the main banquet hall (usually a couple of times during the cruise dinners are 'formal', that is, you are asked to come in suits and evening dresses), always available the buffets called 'Windjammer' and 'Jade' with a Japanese orientation (sushi!). the food in the buffets is very, very diverse and of good quality - from the shrimp in the glaze to do-your-own-miso-soup. If you wish, you can even lose weight on vegetables and fresh fruits, but many still rush to greasy pizzas, donuts and hot dogs (freebie, sir!), although right next to them are perfect roasts and grilled salmon.
Every week the kitchen staff prepares 300 thousand 680 desserts, 234 thousand snacks and 69 thousand steaks to feed the crew and passengers.
For special gourmets the '
' even has two paid restaurants: Chops Grille steak house and Italian Portofino. Pay $50 for a person and enjoy a private dinner on the highest level. Many praise it.
Overall, the service on the ship is above all praise! As the saying goes: had no time to sneeze, as you already have your nose wiped. More than a thousand workers from 63 countries, from the cleaners, kitchen workers, and entertainers, to the captain and his team. All work in shifts, and this is completely transparent to the eyes of tourists. We joked that on the ship there was a parallel reality.
The presentation ceremony of the team. Captain - Dane Flemming Nielsen - in the center, facing the camera:
In April 2012, 'Mariner' was upgraded in dry dock, in result the arsenal of the ship got the screen on the top open deck, Wi-fi around the whole territory, new rest room, new decor in the Portofino restaurant and Cafe Promenade (they also changed the signs at Giovanni's Table, Boardwalk Dog House, respectively).
At the moment, 'Mariner of the Seas' serves cruises from Singapore, but in winter will return again to the Caribbean.
When choosing a cruise, it would be good to know in advance the overall composition of the audience. I doubt that families with children would want to be in the company of hundreds of half-drunk American teenagers who fell upon the cheap booze in Mexico. In our case advantage was in the opposite direction: the average age of passengers was 60+. Never before I've seen such a great amount of old people at the same time!
But these were not downtrodden frightened pensioners, but imposing, having a high opinion of themselves gentlemen, and very well-groomed ladies in diamonds with a child's head size, immaculately dressed.
If you think that they treated the kids like classical grandparents, missing their grandchildren, you are sadly mistaken. No, most of them, of course, said a couple of words to a child, even gave some small items (e.g., casino chips), but there were those who were speaking through set teeth with malice: 'I would never take my children on a cruise. They prevent my rest!' I was tempted to ask if grown-up kids still remember about the existence of such 'mother'...
Having partially unloaded the suitcases, which had been already delivered to the cabin, while we were passing through the metal detector and registration, we went to the upper deck to watch the departure. People partied with cocktails in the Jacuzzi, some put on their sneakers and was warming up on a circular jogging track, but the majority of people gathered along the sides.
Departure went unnoticed, not even announced, just - one moment! - and it turns out that we are already swimming! Slowly stretched the Texas shores, densely built-up with gas and oil storage tanks. Pelicans, as usual, were flying in a thin chain of 8-10 pieces, arounding the ship with a haughty, concentrated mien. The farther into the bay, the more beautiful became the water, gradually changing unappetizing brown color near the shores to a deep blue.
Part of the evening we spent at children's room, where we found some fun for us like a table football battle. Then we were exploring the ship for a few hours, taking pictures of different consrtuctions and installations, and finished the day in the main banquet hall - and I can't say that we didn't like it, but with a small child it is better to choose some simpler places, such as 'Windjammer' café. A table by the window, a little of people, comfortable window seat where the toddler can crawl, while mom and dad are dining.
The next day was entirely marked as 'at sea'. After breakfast at a favorite 'WJ' - kids room, arcade, sports deck, ping pong and volleyball.
And then started a strong wind and rolling. We were in open waters of the Gulf of Mexico on the multi-ton vessel, which, it would seem, won't be afraid of any rolling. But no. We had to stop lunch at the aft, because my husband and the baby became seasick and the child's temperature began to rise. Coming in the ship's supermarket for medicine, we were unpleasantly surprised by the local pricing - price for Tylenol for children was off scale at $17! As they say, where you gonna go from a submarine... Where, where - we went to the medical facility on the first deck, where the same medicine was sold to us for $5. The difference was drunk in the bar to the health of our child.
Till the evening it became easier, we even crawled on the Boardwalk, admired once again the captain in a white ceremonial tunic, which at this time was not running the ship, but played the role of Santa taking pictures with everyone. Were just going to dinner, as it started rolling once again, and even worse than during the day. We were approaching the Mexican coast, meeting the ship quite frostily.