Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Gluten Free Celebrity Summit

We sailed on the 3/14/15 Summit with my celiac mom. We notified the ship in advance and let all the waiters know when she placed her orders. We had lunch the first day in Bistro on Five. They were able to bring her the crepe filling. 

Overall, she was really pleased with the offerings. In the main dining room, each item has symbols next to it with the dietary information (gluten, dairy, vegetarian or sugar-added). The waiter was very knowledgeable. Each night, she would get a copy of the following night's menu to know whether she would need a special order. She never did since there was large variety. 

We even had great success in Blu, Normandie and QSine although their menus don't have the special symbols. The chefs of both specialty restaurants came to our table to discuss the options. The Maitre'D at Qsine has children who are celiac so he kept a careful eye on table and answered all our questions. He even intervened when the person delivering the course wasn't quite sure what was gluten free. 

The buffet was less successful. She eventually was able to find a manager to give her a tour of what to eat. They did offer to go back into the kitchen to prepare her toast or other items, but that would take about 20 minutes. The pizza was terrible.  Probably a rice flour that was spongy and no flavor. The one day she wanted to get gluten-free pasta, they said they were out of it that day. 

The Gluten free bread varied a lot in quality. She got some great bread in Normandie and Blu - but the main dining room was not as good. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Anthony Bourdain Travel Tips

Check out these great tips from Anthony Bourdain.  

One Bourdain tip I have followed on all my international trips is "Find the line". If you eat at busy restaurant or a stand with a long line - the chances of getting sick go way down.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Family Travel Tips - Keeping Teens Happy

Teens can be a tough audience when it comes to vacation. Here's some ideas to ensure they have a great time as well: 

Seek out resorts or cruises with activities geared to their interests. Some resorts offer DJ Academies, Video Production Classes, or  Teen Discos. If your teen enjoys water sports, pick a resort with snorkeling near the shore or free use of kayaks. 

Encourage your teens to get involved in the planning. Let them pick the activities for a couple of days. 

Consider an trip to a different culture - Asia, Europe or South America will offer an incredible learning opportunity. 

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Travel Tip: Label your Carry-On

Travel tip - Many people focus on how to mark their checked bag with ribbons, stickers, luggage tags so it's noticeable on the carousel and forget about their carry on luggage. On my last trip, I watched a woman almost take someone else's bag. Be sure to put a noticeable luggage tag on the handle of your carry on bag or use a luggage grip.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Family Travel Tips - Explore local foods

Vacations are a great opportunity for everyone to try new foods. 

Amy loved using a cruise to encourage her kids to try new foods since there really is no pressure. If they don't like it, the waiter just brings something else. 

Other ways to encourage food exploration: 
- Take a family cooking class together 
- Visit a farmer's market and everyone picks out one thing to try 
- When out to eat, order several different entrees versus every person picking a meal to encourage experimenting.