Dear travellers and vacationers,
This was my first ever ship cruise experience and also my first ever trip to Sri Lanka. I had never taken a cruise to any place before.
The closest I had come to sailing while traveling was almost 4 years ago, during our trip to Andaman & Nicobar Islands; from Port Blair to Neil island and then from Neil to Havelock island.
It would be safe for me to compare the excitement I was feeling before embarking Genting Dream Cruise, with the kind of enthusiasm and excitement I used to feel before our family vacations in the 90s, especially trips to amusement parks during my childhood.
What I saw after reaching Mumbai Port (Green Gate) at Colaba, where the gigantic and dreamlike cruise was waiting for us, at 9 or 9:15 AM that day – honestly blew my mind away.
|My excitement multiplied when we saw Genting Dream from the bus that shuttled us to it|
Genting Hong Kong is known to have over 20 years of Asian cruise industry experience, with internationally-acclaimed luxury cruise expertise in creating its new cruiseline called “Dream Cruises” and also creating itineraries to offer and create unforgettable memories for their guests like us. All opinions mentioned in this travelogue are personal and unbiased. All photographs have been captured by Snehsha and edited by our talented team operating from Mumbai: Lensplate.
|Caught Snapchatting & uploading live stories on Instagram!|
While waiting to embark the ship sailing to the port of Colombo from Mumbai on the morning of 29th October 2016, I overheard that Dream Cruises is the first-ever Asian luxury cruise brand that caters specifically to the large and rapidly growing high-end market in China and other Asian countries; but perhaps after the release of Dil Dhadakne Do, there’s a huge demand for cruise experiences now even in India.
For those who are planning to skip through this post about our cruise experience and wait to read next travelogue about our culinary journey in Sri Lanka, I suggest you watch the video below for glimpses from our 2N 3D journey on the Dream Cruise. I promise to publish the next travelogue very soon.
Your browser does not support the video tag.
|Mumbai Port had installations to signify the love story between an Astronaut & Mermaid|
The bold and imaginative theme of the “Dream” cruise was actually derived from the ground-breaking new campaign for the brand’s launch, which featured an emotive love-story between a mermaid and an astronaut: to simply signify their motto about breaking free of your boundaries to reach out for your dreams.
|We embarked the ship at 1100 but it left from Mumbai much later at 1900|
Purpose-built initially for the Asian tourism market and industry, The Genting Dream is the first and inaugural ship of its fleet, which debuted during Diwali in November last year, with its sister ship World Dream scheduled for the upcoming 2017; which also promises to offer guests even greater levels of service and spacious comfort than the ship weighing 151300 tonnes we had embarked for our journey to the land of Lanka.
|The alleys to our respective rooms, made all guests feel lost in a long-lasting maze|
|Our room was small but the bed was acceptably big and the balcony was a blessing|
Gross Tonnage: 151,300 grt
Length: 335 meters
Width: 40 meters
Manufacturer: Meyer Werft, Germany
|Onion bhajjiya salad: we proceeded for lunch immediately after checking-in|
|Vegetarian main course for her: 2nd course out of our 3-set-course-meal|
|Some grilled chicken on mash with veggies and gravy for me|
|Our first tour of the ship started from the top most deck!|
After a quick lunch and a round of introductions with other bloggers, journalists and reporters on this FAM trip; we all decided to divide in smaller groups and take a casual tour of the cruise. Enjoy the pictures captured as our first impressions of the cruise below; especially their iconic rooftop beach club called Zouk.
|Entrance to the top deck: poolside area|
|The upper most deck and spot of Genting Dream Cruise: Zouk Beach Club|
Happy Diwali, everyone! We’re on the @dreamcruiseline, on our way to #SriLanka, getting ready for a sundowner at this fantastic location on the top most level of our #ship tonight: Zouk Beach Lounge. Hope you have a crazy night too! Please don’t forget to watch my #InstaStories and follow me on #Snapchat for *live* updates! #cruise #sea #gentingdreamcruise #dreamcruise #travelblogger #travelogue #colombo #travel
|View from our room: the cruise left an hour later than the time for departure: at 20:00|
|PR reps and guests of the FAM trip assembled together for a briefing session about the cruise|
|Indian vegetarian main course for her again|
|My scallops were delicious but I was highly disappointed to see ketchup on my fried chicken!|
|I suggest skipping straight to dessert if you’re planning to dine only at Dream Dining|
Every day, every lunch or dinner can be on the house, provided as a luxury FOR FREE with your tickets! The restaurant has fixed timings for both the meals every day but making a reservation at least an hour is advisable. All guests can also enjoy a free pint of beer or a glass of wine with every free meal at Dream Dining.
After a long wine and dine session, all of us decided to call it a night early on our first day and we were mutually extremely excited to see what our morning looks like on the next day. We were hoping to be safely sailing in the middle of the Arabian Sea and I’ll let the pictures speak louder than my descriptive words below.
|Sunrise view from our room’s balcony|
|View of the ship from our balcony|
|I wish I could enjoy this view during my morning walk every day|
Breakfast for all travellers on the cruise is available for free too, at two or three different restaurants; as far as I remember, all of them are also located on the same deck. From freshly baked breads to our choice of eggs to order; from garma-garam sheera and upma to packaged fruit yogurts – we enjoyed a lot of food for breakfast that day. My personal favourite remained their hot croissants with some cold fruits and a refreshing cuppa of strong cappuccino even on the next day.
|Freshly baked croissant, some ham, fresh carrot and hot sheera|
After breakfast, we gathered at the lobby to kickstart our tour of the entire cruise, including special access to the Dream Palace, hosted by the management of Genting Dream Cruise exclusively for our FAM group. I cannot possibly publish the entire heavy video file I captured or alternatively cannot even publish over five hundred pictures Snehsha captured during this tour. However, I sincerely hope you enjoy viewing the shortlisted gallery of pictures assorted for you here.
|All 18 decks are accessible with multiple lifts on both the corners of each floor|
|Genting’s theme of the astronaut and mermaid is constant as artworks on all walls across the ship|
|Many bars were open all day on the cruise|
Guests on board can choose to be entertained by “China’s Got Talent” the first of its kind at sea. 45 minutes of theatrical representation of the worldwide hit TV series in the ship’s 999 seater state-of-the-art venue can leave you enthralled with its booming opening montage, same lighting and set design. On inquiring I was told that they host only 4 shows every week.
|A bowling alley on the ship!|
|An Asian restaurant on the cruise serving popular dishes from Hong Kong & Bangkok|
|Another fine dine restaurant on the ship for your visual comparison|
|There are many lounges on the cruise as well|
|Some of them are located on the top most deck of the Dream Palace|
What is the Dream Palace? I asked our smart and well-spoken guide who took us around for this exclusive tour inside the palace. I remember his immediate response was “Dream Palace is a discreet ship-within-a-ship deck on the Dream Cruise that offers two floors of lavish suites.”
|We managed to get a glimpse of an unoccupied room in the Dream Palace|
He confidently also claimed that it features a highly-personalised European-style butler service and collectively delivers one of the most ultimate luxury experiences seen in the world of travel so far.
|All suites in the Dream Palace were equipped with a tablet and a Nespresso machine|
After walking around for over two hours, we decided to rest for lunch at Umi Uma: their popular Japanese restaurant offering teppanyaki grills and personal chefs for each group of 8 to 12 diners.
|All of us waiting eagerly for our chef to be appointed to us|
Within 5 minutes we realised the emphasis of the teppanyaki experience at Umi Uma was solely going to be on the chef performing a show for us, continuing to introduce new variations and tricks while he cooks on the iron grill for us.
|The food was delicious but nothing exclusive or extraordinary|
|Sadly the best course we tried for lunch was not from the grill: Green Tea Cake|
|Every child’s paradise on Genting Dream Cruise|
After a 5 course meal at Umi Uma, I decided to take a short nap and Snehsha decided to explore more locations on the cruise and capture as many shots she could for this travelogue. We regrouped an hour and a half later at our favourite spot on the ship, The Promenade; to play Uno with our new friends: Phorum and Nishit Dalal. Our Diwali day was spent well.
|With Nishit & Phorum|
|This is where we drank wine and played Uno for hours before dinner|
We got ready in traditional wear for our Diwali dinner and got introduced to the entire top management of the cruise. They hosted us with the best of shrimp and cocktails before disclosing a naughty surprise they had planned for us after dinner that night.
|Silk Road Lounge on Genting Dream Cruise|
After the cabaret show, we got divided into smaller groups once again and some of us decided to join the raving party at Zouk Beach Club after grabbing another helping of dinner or snacks. Snehsha, Phorum, Nishit and I decided to enjoy a pint of beer or two at the casino and called it a night after drinking and dancing our hearts out for more than a couple of hours. We knew our stay on the cruise was coming to an end and we ended that night on an incredibly high note with a few old friends and a few new at Zouk Beach Club.
When we got up the next day, we had already reached the shore of Sri Lanka and all the time we had to spare, got utilised in packing our bags hastily.
|Sunrise in Sri Lanka|
|View from our room’s balcony, all set to disembark the ship!|
Dream Cruises is the first-ever Asian luxury cruise line that aims to redefine vacationing with a transformational journey at sea. Our first cruise experience was on their first ship: Genting Dream. For more information about Dream Cruises, please visit www.dreamcruiseline.com
We’re now in #SriLanka! A detailed #travelogue and #travelreview of our experience from #Mumbai to #Colombo on the Genting Dream, will go up on my blog very soon. For now, don’t forget to watch live updates on my Instagram or Snapchat #stories. Thank you so much for making our first cruise experience unforgettable, @dreamcruiseline. #travelblogger #travel #travels #lanka #shipcruise #indiantraveler #dreamcruise
Thank you Kirk, Naina and the entire team of Madison for this wonderful opportunity. Here’s hoping there’ll be many more travel experiences, especially at sea, with all of you. Cheers!