Cruising the Panama Canal – A look around Infinity

After a long day cruising the Canal yesterday, we would have a bit of a break with another perfectly placed sea day. I awoke around 9 am today, for me that was a long sleep in. I hate when I do this on a cruise vacation. I do not want to miss a second enjoying the ship or the view of the ocean as we sail along. The opportunity to explore the ship, relax in a chair with smooth beverage and just enjoy the view while looking at the ocean or people watching (always and exciting ordeal), is what I enjoy the most. I am not one for the spa activities although I did take a 20 minute massage on deck one day (neck and back) for $20. Huh, never realized it was a buck a minute until I wrote that!

After waking and  getting dressed (always important before you head up on deck), we made our way to the Oceanview Café for breakfast.  As I was deciding what I wanted to have today, I happened upon the Eggs Benedict stand in the aft portion of the Café. Where was this all week? How I wish I had discovered this before. The food here was great and this became my new breakfast staple for the rest of the cruise.  The weather was overcast but very warm today as we headed for breakfast. However, once we had finished our breakfast the sky had opened up and the rain was coming down.  Lounging on Deck 11 by the Mast Bar was not in the plans now. On the other hand, I wanted to do some ship exploring and get some pictures of the common rooms around the ship. Thus, my plan fell into place.  I decided to head down to the Promenade deck and begin my explorations there. My first stop would be the Celebrity Theatre.

The Theatre is located on Promenade and Entertainment decks (Balcony).  We usually entered from the Promenade.

After the theatre, I headed along the Promenade deck toward the back of the ship. The theatre is forward on this deck by the way.

I then went into Michael’s Club. We only actually made it into this locale once during our stay on Infinity. This seemed to be a nice bar with a Piano singer. The Pianist name was Valerie Bouchard.

Moving along the Promenade, I then came upon the Casino known as Fortunes. I found it interesting how each day in the ‘Celebrity Today’ letter, they would give you a running total of how much was  paid out in the casino. In the end, there was $147,933.25 won. I will note they never mentioned how much was lost. Interesting enough, on the cruise before us the Casino had paid out $154,295.40. I never won a dime by the way… lost a bit… not much however!

Then I came upon the Grand Foyer. This was an interesting area. The stair case descended from the Promenade Deck to the Plaza deck and was located mid-ship. There did not seem to be very much activity in this area at least when we were around it. You would also find the Internet Cafe along the on these decks. I then went down the steps to the Plaza Deck where I would find the Cinema and meeting rooms. The cinema seemed a good size. The seating was comfortable and very spacious. Every day there were different movies being run usually 3 to 4 times. I never sat for an entire movie but wanted to at least say I had been in there.

My next stop was back up to the Promenade deck and our favourite evening bar the Rendezvous.  As you no doubt know if you have followed along the entire cruise thus far, the Rendezvous was the place to be for us. The bar staff were excellent and the entertainment perfect. We enjoyed many moments in this lounge throughout our cruise with all of our new friends. This particular lounge located just outside the Trellis Restaurant (MDR) was a hub of activity and dancing every day.

In my opinion, one of the key factors to a successful cruise is the dining room experience. Obviously, the food is key and as I said before the food was sensational on this cruise. No complaints at all. Another factor of course is your table mates. We always enjoy a larger table. Our table in the Trellis was 11 strong and we had great time every night. Every one got along and socialized both before and after the dinners. We had struck it very lucky on this cruise.

The Trellis Restaurant, on the Promenade and Entertainment decks was beautiful place. It is found at the back of the ship. The Trellis is very spacious and had some beautiful floor to ceiling windows at the very back. The view of the ocean as you had your meal would have been great (we had 8:30 seating so it was obviously dark by that time). If you happened to have breakfast or lunch in the Trellis then you certainly would have experienced this view.

Another popular spot on the Infinity was the Champagne and Martini Bar. This is located on the aft end of the ship just outside the Trellis MDR on Deck 5 or the Entertainment deck
We did frequent this place a few times and it did seem to be very popular. There was a stage and dance floor and some of the music heard here was performed by the Vivian Clement Jazz Trio.  The Martini Bar was located on the other side of the Champagne Bar. They shared a dance floor.

My next stop on this tour was the Tea\Cards room and the Cova Café. We spent a few afternoons in the Cova enjoying some specialty coffee (Aspen Coffee) as well as some other specialty teas etc. I am always amazed at how cruise ships have so many people on board but it is always possible to find a little spot that never has a big crowd. This was one of them.

As you continue along the Entertainment deck you come across the Emporium with its shops. The shop’s were nice and the prices seemed ok. Although, Vanda ended up with a bit of a cold and we had to pay over $15 for some cough syrup. Oh well… I guess they have the market cornered while you’re at sea… As I finished most of the areas along Deck 5, I then made my way up to the Library. This Library is located on two levels, the Panorama and the Sky deck. It’s location is mid ship.

This was all I explored for today. It was around lunch and so we met up with our friends and headed to Deck 10 to enjoy some lunch on the outside deck (it had stopped raining) of the oceanview grill. This would be the aft bar.

Our afternoon was spent in the shops looking around and then we headed back up to the Constellation Lounge to meet up with Craig and Vicki for a drink. Actually, ended up going back to the Deck 10 aft bar for a few beers and then we decided to head back down to Deck 5 and see about a drink or two in the Martini Bar. That plan quickly ended when the bar was empty and of course closed. Martini Bar did not open until 5 pm.  Plan ‘B’ was to then head down a deck to the Rendezvous. By this time, it was just Myself, Vanda and Vicki as Craig had left us to attend the Sabering at Sea event for some saber lessons for Champagne and sparkling wines (something about how to cork it). As it turned out, our timing was perfect for the Rendezvous, as the “name that tune” game was about to begin. The topic for today’s game was Elvis Presley. Right up my alley… I’ve been to Graceland twice and well have always been a fan!   Well the game went our way, there were 15 questions and we had every one right! A perfect score… The entertainment person announced that this was the first time in his career that anyone had ever got all the questions correct (I think it may have been his first cruise!).  Our prize was a Celebrity Hat. We then spent the next few hours sitting, laughing and chatting. Before we know it, the time was 5 pm and it was time to get ready for the night ahead. By the way, it was at this spot we began talking about organizing a pub crawl for the next sea day.  Stay tuned for more on that later

The evening show was Lazlo and Claudia a violin duet. We skipped this show…. nuff said on that!  Instead, we headed for the Martini Bar for some pre-pre dinner drinks. After a bit of time here, we then went for more pre-dinner drinks in the Rendezvous lounge. Tonight, all of our table mates showed up so our evening fun started early. Dinner was once again fabulous and on this night I opted for a very good New York Steak! The day ended much like the others…back up to the Constellation Lounge. Tonight the theme party was “Dancing with the Stripes”, sorry I forgot my camera in the room so didn’t get any pictures of this.  After the Dancing with the Stripes was over, Fusion Wave took the stage and the dancing began. We called it a night around 1:30 am.

Our next Port would be the last port of call on this long adventure. The cruise was now officially in the home stretch. I really hate that feeling. I am even getting a bit of the feeling writing this now.  Nine pages ago it seemed like my cruise was just starting.

Stay tuned for more from Cartagena, Columbia.  I hope you hang around for the home stretch. I have posted a slide show today of my travels around the ship.

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