We docked in Sint Maarten about noon after another choppy and rainy night at sea.
Despite the rough seas, we had a great dinner in Manfredi’s private room last evening. Manfredi’s is the complimentary Italian alternative restaurant. I had invited anyone on our Cruise Critic rollcall to join us and all together we had thirteen folks for a fun, delicious and loud evening.
We awoke this morning to cloudy skies and scattered rain. But thankfully it was nice enough to be able to get a mile in on the promenade deck where I caught site of land and some sea birds.
As you can see from the title picture, by the time we docked the weather had cleared! We are the only ship docked in Sint Maarten today. So strange to see the piers and the shopping area empty. Last time we were here there were two or three mega ships plus some smaller ones. What a difference!
Made a quick trip ashore to visit the dutyfree and buy gin for the room. One of the many great things about Viking is that they treat you like an adult and allow you to bring on your own beverages. So $12 and 15 minutes later, I’m enjoying a G&T on the balcony!
With the daily restocking of the tonic in the fridge drawer we get in our DV stateroom, we are set for our crossing.
We elected to not take the included excursion since it was the same as what we did last spring. If you want to read about that you can look back at last year’s post. Instead I am going to head to the spa and enjoy a steam and some time in the snow grotto….unless of course a nap beckons 😂
Just back from meeting with the Guest Services Manager. Disappointed that the upgrade offer from Viking was higher than what we declined three or four weeks before sailing. Makes no sense given the ship is at 56% occupancy. Seems like it would have been a good PR move for those of us who aren’t part of the 40% who took the generous cancelation offer last week. And it would have put some positive cash flow into what has to be a money losing cruise.
Oh well, our beautiful room is just fine and all it really means is I’ll be going to dinner in wrinkled shirts (the upgrade came with pressing).That will teach them!😂
We attended Trivia (11 out of 15 correct) and Name that Tune (13 out of a possible 16 points) but didn’t win. Oh well, “it’s just a game”.
The weather has worsened throughout the day so most of the time was spent reading in our cabin. It was so dreary that Mike suggested it would be a good day for tea time. So we went and enjoyed ourselves. But we only had 1.5 sandwiches and 1 scone apiece so hopefully we will still be hungry for dinner.
Sitting on the balcony writing this having my second cup of coffee. We headed to breakfast in the Restaurant about 8:30 and were asked if we wanted to share a table. First time had that happen at breakfast…strange given how empty the ship is. We said sure and were pleasantly surprised to be seated with Fred and Susan, two fellow CruiseCritic members.
After our usual lamb chops and eggs (and a pistachio roll for me, we attempted to take a walk around the promenade. But it’s windy, a little rainy or salt water spraying so the deck was slippery. So instead I am up in the balcony enjoying the sound of the waves and the wind and the delicious in room Nespresso coffee.
I think I blogged last night that we asked about an upgrade when we boarded and had a voicemail last night telling us to come meet with the Guest Services manager today between 5-7 pm. So we haven’t yet unpacked fully. I stopped by guest services to try to get an idea of what kind of offer might be made-we don’t intend to pay anything extra for a Penthouse Veranda (that’s what we had in Asia and liked a lot but we are on a budget). We think if they offer either a Jr. suite or a man Explorer Suite for a reasonable amount we might fork over a few extra bucks just to try out them out. We will be keeping our fingers crossed. 🤞
Viking announced a temporary change to their cancellation policy last week due to Coronavirus concerns which allowed anyone who canceled at least 24 hours before the cruise to apply the full fare to a future cruise within 2 years. Apparently a number of folks on this crossing took advantage. Based on our CruiseCritic rollcall (obviously not a very scientific sample) it appeared about 20% canceled.
However after seeing how few there were at the muster drill, in the World Cafe (buffet) and in the Restaurant (the main dining room) I think it may be a higher percentage. No word on an upgraded cabin yet…we had a voice mail stating we could meet with the guest services manager tomorrow between 5 and 7 pm to discuss any “offers”. Hmmmm, I was hoping for a complimentary one. 😢
I purposefully took the picture of Mike to emphasize how empty the room was, there were actually full tables to his right. But typically the room would have been full or close to it at 6:55 when that picture was taken. During our two hours at dinner (great conversation with our neighbors), no one was ever seated at the banquets along the interior wall to his left.
Dinner was tasty as expected-I had the only new dish to us-bacon wrapped plantain on a guava sauce. Very interesting and tasty!
Civilized “mustard” drill (we are “Stone Ground” today😂) aboard Viking Sky. Hope we never have to actually participate in a real muster but happy to review the safety procedures each cruise just in case!
Doesn’t seem as crowded as previous so it will be interesting to learn just how full the ship actually is.
Next up, time to sailaway and the weather has cleared!
So not exactly the Miami weather one expects for a cruise…better than a snow storm I guess.
Just finished breakfast at the Hyatt Place and will leave for the ship about 11 am. The chance of rain is down to 10% by 5 o’clock so hopefully we will be able to enjoy being on the Aquavit Terrace for sailaway.
Landed 10 minutes late so of course no one to operate the jetway so we sat on the plane for another 10 minutes. Our new luggage worked great as it is the largest size that will fit overhead so we were able to go straight to the hotel shuttle area shown above.
Jeez, I had forgotten how hot and humid Miami is 😅
We just got to the Hyatt Place (scored for free on points!) and are soon going to head to bed.