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Silversea Cruises' Silver Shadow
Cruise Diva's Cruise Diary
A Swedish Sojourn

Ice Bar
An Absolut good time in the Ice Bar

Stockholm, July 7-8, 2007
At best, air travel isn't enjoyable these days and the most comfortable way to get to Europe is still by ship. Unfortunately, when a cruise begins in a wonderful embarkation city such as Stockholm, a transatlantic crossing isn't always feasible. So, we checked in at Lufthansa in Atlanta dreading the ten-plus hours we'd be in the air. Fortunately, the flights--Atlanta to Frankfurt, where we changed planes, and a short flight to Stockholm--weren't full and we were able to spread out and catch some sleep.

Upon arrival for a pre-cruise overnight, we took a pass on the airport-to-downtown train, even though the Central Station was right next to our destination, the Radisson SAS Royal Viking Hotel. There are times when a cab is just worth the extra cost and, being jet-lagged, we opted for the easy, yet pricey, taxi option.

Our plan was to shower, nap, and, once refreshed, go the Ice Bar in the Nordic Sea Hotel where everything is made of sparkling clear ice and the 'seats' are covered with furry hides. It was an easy task to pre-reserve a spot over the Internet before our trip and a fun way to kick off our time in Sweden. Only thirty people at a time don parkas for for 45-minute sessions in the -5 degrees Celsius environment. Our fellow patrons were an international lot, from Ireland to the U.S. and Brazil.

Stockholm, July 9, 2007 
We slept soundly beneath down comforters and awoke to a somewhat drizzly and chilly day, which curtailed our city wandering somewhat. No problem, we'll be back at the end of our cruise.

Another taxi delivered us pierside mid-afternoon and the Silver Shadow staff welcomed us aboard at 3pm. For me, it was good to be "home" again with the Silversea family. For Mel, as a first-time guest, everything is brand-new, but it didn't take long for him to get acclimated to the suite life on Silver Shadow--all accommodations are suites and our luggage made it to ours before we did. Even with a full ship, Mel remarked how swiftly we embarked and, later, how uncrowded the public rooms seem. However, first things first, and after unpacking was complete we explored the outer decks and joined fellow passengers for tea in the Panorama Lounge. It's something of a surprise to see several families on board with toddlers.

Still a bit jet-lagged, we nevertheless enjoyed a lovely dinner with drinks afterward, and then slept like babies on Silverseas' new beds that feature pillow top mattresses, comfy duvets, and down pillows. We feel like valued guests on a private estate (one that just happens to float), where our every whim is catered to and no wish is too difficult to fulfill. The bathroom is outfitted with my favorite Bvlgari green tea toiletries and I couldn't be happier.

For excitement, just wait until our arrival tomorrow in Ornskoldsvik, Sweden. We've never seen anything like it. Seriously!

Back to the Swedish Sojourn Index

Forward to Ornskoldsvik, & Lulea, Sweden

Forward to  Vaasa & Turku, Finland & a Day At Sea

Forward to Oslo, Norway; Gothenburg, Sweden; Copenhagen, Denmark; and Lubeck, Germany

Forward to A Day At Sea & Exploring Stockholm

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