10 (Mon) June 2019
Slow Roasted Prime Rib
at Sapphire Main Dining Room – Voyager of the Seas
-Singapore to Malaysia-
with the Family, Mom and Dad
Summer Vacation 2019, Day 3 of 7.
Aboard Royal Caribbean’s Voyager of the Seas. Our first cruise. Departing Monday from Singapore, stopping in Penang (Malaysia) on Tuesday and Phuket (Thailand) on Wednesday, returning to Singapore on Friday.
Voyager of the Seas. 15 decks. Capacity of 3,500 passengers, 1,500 crew. When launched in 1999, it was the largest cruise ship in the world – now, not so much.
Partly because we’re spoiled, partly because we have two monster boys, we opted for the premium “Owner’s Suite.” In addition to the extra space, the price of the room includes expedited check-in/check-out, free room service, reserved seating for on-board shows, etc.
Upon boarding at lunchtime on day one, the critical need to purchase a beverage package became immediately clear. Inclusive beverages provided with meals are crappy powder-based iced tea and fruit drinks. Suite guests do get a better range of complimentary drinks, but only in a separate lounge, and booze only from 1730-2000. I will require ready access to booze, wherever and whenever I may be – same with my father.
The boarding day special offer consists of $74.34 per day per person for the full unlimited package, plus 50% off for a second person at $37.17 per day, totalling $446.04 over four days. Averaging $8 per drink, that’s 55 drinks to break even, each person needing to drink about 7 drinks per day.
Just over the first lunch, we had 12 drinks: 2 glasses of wine + 2 beers for Dad, 6 glasses of Champagne for me, plus 2 cheat drinks passed to the kids.
The Main Dining Room – apparently, “Main Dining Room” or “MDR” is a term of art among cruise aficionados – is the primary (main) eating (dining) venue (room). Parties are preassigned to a table and waitstaff throughout the cruise. Menus change daily, ranging from Continental/American to Chinese to Indian fare. Guests can order as many of each item as they want: a kind of à la carte buffet – yay!
I ordered a Bay Scallop Gratin (2.0) (greasy), a Caesar Salad (2.25) (meh), an Herb Roasted Chicken (1.75) (dry), and a Slow Roasted Prime Rib (2.25) (bland) – mediocre across the board. Still, kinda fun, if only for the novelty of the experience.
DJ got two Bay Scallop Gratins, a Linguine with Pomodoro Sauce, a Slow-Roasted Prime Rib, and a Tempura Fried Pollack – finished most of it, with some help from Grandpa.
IZ got 3 orders of ice cream – “You said … I could have as many … of anything … that I wanted!!” – at times, he sounds like a cocky lawyer slam-dunking a closing argument – can’t decide whether I should be proud or perturbed.
Later that night, free room service: Oriental Dumplings (1.5), Spicy Wings (1.5). Not so fun.