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   Cruise Travel - Millenium Cruise

Day 0 - Monday & Tuesday, December 27-28, Ft, Lauderdale, Florida

by Joe Koshuta, TravelPage.com

December 27, 1999 - Holiday greetings from Ft. Lauderdale, here's what happened today:

View from our roomWell, we made it. Our departure was delayed an hour but the rest of the flight was uneventful. The hotel, Sheraton Yankee Clipper is one of the few Sheraton franchise properties - most of the Sheraton hotels are owned by Sheraton corporate - and this one has been here for close to 50 years. The view is from the balcony of our room.

The hotel actually consists of a series of buildings connected by walkways. We are in the original building which is right on the beach. The building itself looks a bit dated, but it has been maintained fairly well. So far the staff has been most helpful and level of service have been very good. There are three small/medium size swimming pools and the bar, "The Wreck" in the main building actually has windows behind it that open into the pool - you don't see that much anymore. It's not as elegant as some of the other hotels in the area, and there are annoying charges for things that should be free - beach chairs, parking, etc.- but overall it's fine for a couple of days before a cruise.

The weather is a bit of a surprise. We were looking forward to soaking up the sun on the beach but the high today was only 70 degrees. It was warm enough to go out to the beach but much cooler than we were expecting. The lows tonight will be in upper 40's so we won't be hitting the beach again the first thing in the morning.

December 28, 1999 - Weather is still not cooperating fully. We had sun this morning, but clouds through the afternoon. Temperature is in the 70s though, so it beats the weather at home. The photo to the left was taken during one of the brief moments when the sun got through the clouds.

Lots of passengers staying in this hotel and with the Sea Princess and Westerdam leaving this afternoon a lot of taxis headed to the pier. A lot of people are in town for the football bowl games so traffic is heavier than normal. We plan to leave around noon tomorrow to board the ship. There are a total of 21 people in our group and most are arriving this evening. If you have the option, I strongly suggest getting into town early to relax and get into vacation mode before you board the ship. Otherwise it seems like you spend the first day or so on board trying to unwind.

The hotel is beginning to grow on me. It's been here since 1956 and some parts of it look exactly how I imagine they looked when the doors opened. One of those places is the bar in the main building. As I mentioned yesterday, it has windows into the pool in the courtyard. As we sat there last evening before dinner we were treated to a not-so-synchronized swimming show by a couple of unsuspecting guests who decided to go for an evening swim. They really should have warning signs around the pool!

Well I am hoping to get up early and catch a picture or two of the Volendam as she arrives and I will post them before I leave for the ship if I have time. I've been assured that I will be able to post from the ship so I hope to continue these reports from sea starting tomorrow. If you have any specific questions about the trip or the ship, drop me a line and I will try to answer your questions as part of these reports.

Check back later for updates or click here to learn more about Florida.

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