It’s time to set sail, Sailors! I can hardly contain myself when embarkation day arrives! Terminal V is now open in the Port of Miami. The beauty of the Scarlet Lady beckons you upon arrival. With a later sail time of 7, boarding doesn’t start until 2 pm so you can sleep in and rest up for the party that awaits you and your fellow Sailors. No need to fear, porters are lined to assist with luggage, so you are hands free to enjoy the ship once on board.
We made our way to Palm Way, Virgin's separate entrance for rock stars. We didn’t need to select a pre arrival port time as the red carpet is always rolled out and check in is extremely easy. We showed our negative covid tests and were given a band indicating that we were cleared and not awaiting test results. Passports were verified and our Bands given to us since we did not receive them ahead of time in the mail. Made with recycled ocean plastic, these sleek keepsakes will unlock your adventure including boarding the ship with ease, accessing your cabin, making onboard purchases and allow rock star access to Richard’s Rooftop.
While waiting in a separate part of the terminal, there was water and snacks and the opportunity to mingle with others. There was lots of chatter of people’s favorite activities if they had sailed before and for those like us who were first timers, lots of excitement and sharing of what everyone was looking forward to once onboard.
Boarding began promptly at 2 and we excitedly made our way to the party that started as soon as we stepped foot onto Scarlet Lady. There were crew members greeting each sailor and a DJ playing music as we were directed to the Manor where we had the opportunity to meet our roadie while sipping champagne and mimosas. We knew we were in good hands with Lazar once he grabbed my phone to ensure that no dining or activity I had previously scheduled interfered with any fun onboard that he was aware of. I also requested a bridge tour and we told him of our mini bar preferences that were included in our Seriously Suite. We were all set with our weekly overview and made our way to our quarters where our luggage was waiting for us.
Seriously, it was sweet! I wasn't sure what to do first! Grab a drink from the stocked bar, listen to some tunes on the record player, relax in the hammock on the terrace or explore the bathroom that was bigger than my own! Our home for the next 5 nights had lighting for any mood, and we quickly met our steward, MJ, who stopped by to make sure we had everything that we needed and if he could be of any help.
After we took in our safety video we decided to explore! Gosh it was beautiful and with only 580 people onboard it seemed more like a private yacht. We made our way to The Dock bar located on Deck 7 aft. This spacious location with plenty of seating quenched our thirst with sangria and very delicious tapas. With a view of the city and watching a train pass over the trestle in front of us, we kicked back on the sofa bed and soaked up the rays, which were the first of many on the appropriately named cruise, Mayan Sol.
The minutes flew by, and we found ourselves on Richard’s Rooftop for the sail away party. Free champagne is at your fingertips and nightly from 5-7 if you are rockstars. We took in the excitement of other ships leaving the port before us and the sunset while heading out to sea was breathtaking.
Once we entered the open waters, we headed back to the room. I had yet to spin some tunes on the record player and or try out the hammock which was a huge draw for me especially since I love to sip coffee by morning and wine by night on the terrace. We had made dinner reservations at Extra Virgin and everything about it was extra! I think I'll save dining as a separate blog since there is so much to share and say about the exquisite meals and service we had on board.
We ended the night dancing, meeting new friends and hanging out on the net that overlooks the ocean- thank you neon lights that read, “Save Water, Drink Champagne”. You aided in making my sea legs strong and my fear non-existent as I waltzed out over the crashing waves below all captured on video in case I forgot that moment in time where I felt like a kid again (and possibly looked ridiculous). But the best part? No one cares! You get to do what you want and be who you want when onboard. And that, my friend, is priceless. Until day two!
Why I love Voyaging with Virgin (Part 1)
Looking for an adult only escape? One that’s cheeky? Fun? Over the Top? Well keep reading my friend because my sailing with Virgin Voyages onboard the Scarlet Lady was all of the above and more! We set sail out of Miami on the Mayan Sol Cruise from April 8-13, 2022. I'll be sharing in depth details about our stops in both Costa Maya Mexico and Bimini in the Bahamas as well as our 2 at sea days which were perfect for squeezing in as many activities as we could. But before I do that, let me give you a little bit of background on this new cruise line and why I have been all about it from the get-go.
Founded by Sir Richard Branson and established in 2016, Virgin Voyages had originally planned to take to the seas with their first vessel, Scarlet Lady, in June 2020 but amid the pandemic was delayed and finally set sail with guests in August 2021. A boutique hotel at sea if you will, the Scarlet Lady (homeported in Miami), Valiant Lady (soon to be homeported in Miami in the winter and Barcelona in the summer), and the Resilient Lady (homeported in San Juan in the winter and Greece in the summer) holds 2700 guests and life onboard is pretty ‘suite’. From Mega rock star quarters where a roadie is your personal concierge to an inside solo cabin for one (can we say rock on for not having to pay double occupancy for those who fancy traveling alone?) these cabins revolutionize cruising. From aesthetically pleasing designs, mood lighting, bathrooms with roomy rainshowers, and private hammocks for those with sea terraces, you may find yourself doing more than just crashing after a fun-filled evening at sea.
Virgin Voyages has been on my radar since the pandemic. July 2020 to be exact. It was then that I signed up for an account with them to train and to learn more about this exciting opportunity not only for myself but for my clients. I mean let's face it. At that point in the pandemic, people were only dreaming of traveling again. Virgin’s vibe was 100% fun, on point, and given the fact that most people were stuck at home with their kids, every adult in America needed to rekindle that spark; a time away from the kids with a vacation to call their own. It was the perfect friend’s getaway to dream about. Virtual meetings and happy hours only cut it for so long. It was then that I knew I wanted to level up my “knotiness” and become a First Mate so I could bring back some normalcy, rekindle the romance couples had been longing for, and help adults remember what it was like to drink champagne, get decked out for a night of dancing, and dine in restaurants that tantalized their taste buds.
It’s only been one week since I set sail on the most perfect cruise. The memories are amazing and, in an attempt, to not overwhelm you, my reader, I have decided to break up this blog post into cruise days. There is simply so much to do, see and suggest that I wouldn’t want one day to outshine the other. I say that to say this as I thought it was so perfectly stated by Ryan The Foodie on board. “Every moment is a serendipitous moment”. You never know what will happen and it's a matter of being in a specific place at a specific time that will give you that perfect experience. There's not a right way or a wrong way, just take in everything that is presented. I loved that! There were experiences that happened that we weren’t expecting and people we met that we wouldn't have otherwise met had we not been seated around the same table at Gunbae when neither party originally planned to be there on that night. It’s those unexpected moments that create the memories that get us through until our next time onboard. Until my embarkation day post, I’d like to say Gunbae (Cheers) to serendipity and may you always find happiness in the moment regardless of where you are.
Let's toast together: Contact Form | VirginVoyages (mytravelsite.com)
Beginning October 19th, Walt Disney World Resort theme parks will offer guests the opportunity to maximize their time like never before with Disney Genie and Disney Genie+ with Lightning Lane selections.
Disney Genie is complimentary and is a service available to all guests using the My Disney Experience app. From a personalized itinerary creator of Disney favorites, map out your day and reduce your time in lines. Genie intuitively builds around your existing dining reservations, appointments and ticket preferences. Between the perks of Genie and your Mouse Expert you can’t go wrong!
Looking to skip the standby queue and use the all-new Lightning Lanes?
Disney Genie+ service option is what you’ll want to purchase. This will allow you to select arrival windows for Lightning Lane entrances at more than 40 attractions and entertainment across all four theme parks, one at a time throughout the day.
There are several ways to purchase the $15 per person/per day Genie+ Service:
Don’t want to purchase a full day of Genie+? You’re in luck! You can also purchase Individual Lightning Lane entry. This a la cart option (which will vary in price based on date, time and attraction) will allow each paying guest to choose an arrival time for up to/but limited to TWO different attractions per day (one at a time).
Here’s how it Works:
Have Questions? I have Answers!
What if everyone in my party wants to ride a different attraction?
Prior to selecting a Disney Genie+ attraction, you can chose which members of you party will be joining in each experience.
Can I modify my Genie+ Selection?
While you are unable to modify an existing selection, you can cancel and select a new arrival window at an available Lightning Lane Experience.
Do I have to purchase two individual Lighting Passes or can I just purchase one the day of my visit?
When making your individual selection, you will select the time for your first choice and then it will continue to the purchase screen. If you would like to make a second individual selection, you would repeat the same process, but the short answer is No, you do not have to purchase a second pass if you choose not to.
If I have a Park Hopper will I be able to select a al carte Lightning Lane passes for different parks in the same day?
Yes! If you have park hopper tickets you may choose an Individual Lightning Lane pass for an attraction in which you have a park reservation for the start of your day AND you will be able to select a Lightning Lane time that is AFTER 2 PM for an attraction in the park that you plan to ‘hop’ to later that day.
So what are waiting for? Click below and let's make Magic today!
The school year is coming to an end and summer will be here before we know it. It’s been a unique and sometimes challenging year and we could all use a vacation to a place where we don’t have to think about a thing! Check out why you should consider a Beaches® or Sandals® all-inclusive vacation
In this episode I am chatting with Karie Zipper with Scout & Cellar. Whether you are toasting to something special or just looking to sip away the day, their clean crafted wines will have you saying cheers.
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Wellness1stnutrition4All and Z' Wine Cellar w Karie Zipper
IG: wellness_1st Zwinecellar
In this episode I am chatting with Abby Pherson, who alongside Trades of Hope, helps women living abroad overcome hardship and help them live the lives they were created to live.
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And Check out her website: https://tradesofhope.com/ABBYPHERSON
From Disney only Destinations with Ears of Experience to cures for wanderlust with The Curated Travel Collection, Amy Westerman is here to chat about her newest addition to the agency, Charleston Travel Plans.
Headed to Charleston? Be sure to reach out to Charleston Travel Plans here: charlestontravelplans.com/
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In this episode I chat with small business owner, Julie Antelo, who alongside Beauty Counter is on a mission to get clean beauty products into the hands of others one person at a time.
In this episode I chat with Scott Connors, who is the owner of Magical Vacation Grocers, where helping you get groceries and special deliveries when traveling to the Walt Disney World Resort and surrounding area is their specialty.
Join me and my fellow Mouse Expert, Brian Franks, as we chat about his Real Estate Business and learn about some wonderful travel options in Tennessee. Great for those who are considering a drivable destination!