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Friday, April 28, 2017

Romance on the High Seas

Romance with chocolate: the Love Boat Dream
Dessert on the Regal Princess
It’s no wonder the infamous TV show was called The Love Boat. Cruising and romance go together like, well, love and marriage.

In fact, more than 85 percent of cruisers take along their significant other.*

There’s something about cruising that brings out the romantic in us. Maybe it’s the way the sea shimmers in the moonlight. Or the unbroken horizon suggests anything is possible. Or maybe it’s just that we’re on vacation.

Whatever the reason, the cruise lines want to help you along when you’re in the mood for love. Here’s just a sampling of what you can do with your one-and-only:

Tie the knot or announce you’re glad you did. Royal Caribbean, Princess and Carnival all have packages for doing weddings onboard. Princess also has some for engagements, honeymoons, vow renewals and anniversaries. Carnival will even help you get married on the beach.
 
Bliss and blue skies on the Regal Princess' SeaWalk
Two for dinner. When you sign up for your cruise, you can ask for a table for two in the main dining room and can usually get one. There’s a limited number of them, though, and while most are okay, you can get one in a weird spot. If this happens, you can always ask for a change.

Dine al fresco. Do a leisurely breakfast, pre-dinner cocktail or quiet dinner for two with room service and a view.

Or make it extra special. The specialty restaurants will cost you more, but you get better service and better food than the main dining room. Some of the settings are more fitting for flirting too. Like the plush high back chairs of Oasis of the Seas’ Central Park 150 or the dark moody lighting in the Regal Princess’ Crown Grill.
 
Making it special at Sabatini's on the Regal Princess
Be formal. Formal nights were made for romance—with both of you in your best digs, find your ship photographer of choice and pose for posterity.

Room for wine and roses. From Royal Caribbean’s room décor packages to Carnival’s goodie baskets to Princess’ Norman Love’s chocolate gifts to Norwegian’s flower deliveries, you’ve got a number of choices for building a stateroom love nest.

Massage à deux. For the ultimate in peer pampering, consider a couples massage in Royal Caribbean’s Vitality Spa. In Princess’ Sanctuary, you can be massaged side-by-side each other and the sea in your own onboard cabana.

Kiss on camera. On the Regal Princess’ disco night, you might get your romance up on the big screen. Cameras scan the crowd and if lands on you, your fellow cruisers will egg you on to indulge the Love Boat Kiss Cam and see your smooch on the more than 300-square-foot poolside screen.

Together, alone at the ports. Take a carriage ride in San Juan, a floating raft for two in Carnival’s Mahogany Bay or Amber Cove, or spring for seclusion in a cabana by the sea in Royal Caribbean’s Labadee.
Find some seclusion by the sea in a cabana for two at Amber Cove

A final thought (or warning). Whether you find yourself stoking the fires of your passion on a raft, at a table or in the spa, no matter how tempting, just say “no” to being on the marriage game show—if you still want to be in love on the morning after.

Note: Facilities and amenities vary by ship.
* Cruise Lines International Association website, www.cruising.org