Charles Keefer's Blog

Dream Come True

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The Owner's Suite on the Norwegian Sky.

I have been a cruising fan for 20 years. My first cruise was a week long trip on the SS Norway, formerly the SS France, at the time the longest cruise ship ever built at 1,035 feet. It was a trans-Atlantic ship before being rebuilt for the Carribbean trade.

Those were the days of two seatings for dinner and at least two nights where my off-the-rack suit was outed by the tuxes of other passengers.

I still remember the people at my table, including the 20-something plumber from Philadelphia who immediately convinced our table server that he needed two of everything and regailed us with stories about drinking with the crew and actually waking up one morning under the pool table in the crew quarters.

I’ve been on ships owned by all of the cruise lines that operate out of Miami and Fort Lauderdale.

I’ve had cabins so low in the ship that you were lulled to sleep by the engines. I’ve had cabins on older ships where you could hear conversations in the neighboring cabin. I’ve had cabins with balconies and I will advise you never to have anything less.

Last weekend, I put up the money and got what I have dreamed about ever since that first cruise – the Owners Suite. For the price of a week long cruise, I got the Owner’s Suite on the Norwegian Sky for three whole days. I invited my friend Bev to go along.

There was a person to walk us on to the ship. He took us to our room two hours early to drop our bags. Then he escorted us to a private dining room for an exclusive lunch – only others who booked Owner’s Suites or Penthouses were allowed.

When we returned to our cabin, there was complimentary champaigne and chocolate-covered strawberries. They stocked our private bar with three bottles of booze that we picked. We had a private hot tub on a bow-facing balcony that was easily as big as my living room.

Then there was the cocktail party where we met the Master of the ship. That is above the Captain, who was officially titled the Staff Captain, according to the org chart posted on Deck 6. He actually seemed offended when we stood to meet him. No one else did, but I figured it best to stand when meeting someone who can either marry you or hang you, not that there was call to do either.

Our concierge, Virginia, called us each evening to see if we wanted to book one of the specialty restaurants. There are monitors around the ship to show which ones are filling up. I finally realized that, if you are in an Owner’s Suite, it doesn’t matter. You go wherever you want to go.

When we went to the show, Virginia met us and escorted us to our special seating.

We had a butler named Jeffery who overdid everything. We had an expresso machine in the cabin. And a computer, of course. The bed had memory-foam.

The morning we left, we had breakfast again in the exclusive restaurant and Virginia escorted us around the lines to disembark.

Did it live up to my dreams?

You betcha.

Would I do it again?

Sure, but wait till you see the next generation of ships. They will make us nostalgic about the “small” ships like the Norwegian Sky that are larger than the SS Norway.

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Written by Charles Keefer

November 18, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. I’m going to be gauche and ask how many commas and zeroes does it take to get the Owner’s Suite.

    Was it better than investing the funds in the Hot Rock experience?

    ksteinhoff

    November 24, 2009 at 11:42 am


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