on April 10, 2006
Standard Dining Option: Windjammer Café and AboveBy Hun OhmI’ll have to be honest with you. I haven’t any time in Las Vegas except on a brief layover en route to the Colorado River, so I have not seen the legendary buffets. However, I imagine that they will have a striking similarity to the Windjammer Café. Located on Deck 11 and just a sliding door away from the main pool, the Windjammer is one popular place for repast.Plenty of EverythingExcept the truly fussy or discriminating, the Windjammer will have something for everyone. The food stretches as far as the eye can see. Depending on whether it is breakfast or lunch, you will find hot dishes that change daily, carved meats, cold cuts, hamburgers, hot dogs, eggs, sausages, biscuits, toast, omelets, smoked fish, cereals, fresh fruits, cut fruits, vegetables, pasta salad—it literally goes on and on. Because it is all self-serve, you can be as quick as you please and thus avoid some of the wait associated with sit-down meals. This can be an advantage if you’re in a rush to get to a scheduled excursion, or if you’re just eager not to lose any sun time. However, be forewarned: the traffic can get very heavy at times (I would say between 8:15 and 10am for breakfast, 12 and 1:15pm for lunch), and you may be hard-pressed to secure a table without some effort. One possible alternative is to take your food out of the Windjammer proper to the surrounding half-enclosed deck area, where there are some tables and seats. Or, as mentioned in other entries, you should consider going to the formal dining room for breakfast and/or lunch.If you do are an early riser, the Windjammer for breakfast can actually be a very pleasant experience. If you get there before the buffet is ready (say, sometime before 7am), you will be limited to cereals and fruits, but you’ll have the whole place to yourself, which means your choice of window seats to take in the Caribbean blue passing you by, or, if you’re in a port of call, the island as it awakens.The Viking Crown LoungeThere are actually several different venues on Deck 14 that comprise the Viking Crown, a circular area that is about as high as you can go on the ship. This area appears to be largely ignored during the day. Thus, once you’ve returned from your meanderings about the day’s port, rest up and, before your dinner seating, consider heading up here for a drink. The atmosphere is actually pretty cozy, and you will get a bird’s eye of Deck 11 as well as the surrounding sea. For some reason, something about seeing the day close from this vantage point will bring the chill quotient to new heights. Or maybe that’s just the mojito working its magic on you. The nighttime scene is a bit more busy, noisy, and, well, forgettable.
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