Dining Destinations At Sea

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The trend continues to turn cruise ships into “dining destinations.”

Celebrity Cruises recently inked a deal with Elizabeth Blau, credited for transforming Las Vegas from all-you-can-eat buffets to the dining mecca it is today. Blau and her team are bringing a whole new taste to Celebrity and indeed to the smaller Azamara Cruises brand, which features open-seating in the main dining room and two alternative dining restaurants (Prime C for beef-lovers and Aqualina for Italian fare) on each of its two ships.

Spa Cuisine: Both Celebrity and Carnival will feature optional ‘spa cuisine’ on their newest ships. Celebrity will do so in Blu, a 130-seat restaurant where dining is complimentary to guests booked in Solstice’s new AquaClass veranda accommodations.

Carnival Splendor will offer a wide range of health-conscious dining options, including an extensive salad bar and 24-hour frozen yogurt in the Lido restaurant and gourmet-style selections in the main dining rooms that are lower in calories, fat, cholesterol, and sodium.

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In response to a growing public health trend, Crystal Cruises has banned trans-fats altogether on its ships. World-class master chef Nobuyuki “Nobu”Matsuhisa (pictured) will travel aboard the award-winning Crystal Symphony this spring to officiate the opening of two new restaurants. Silk Road and The Sushi Bar were conceived in partnership with luxury cruise specialist Crystal Cruises and will feature the coveted cuisine of this legendary chef.

Crystal also boasts perhaps the most ‘extravagant’ alternative dining at sea — the Vintage Room, where meals paired with rare wines have gone for more than $1,000 per person.

For somewhat less, Princess Cruises’Chef’s Table‘ provides both a behind-the-scenes look at the galley during its busiest time (dinner) and a special dining experience for up to 10 passengers per evening. The cost is $75 per person.

Holland America Line’s Eurodam features three alternative dining venues, including a new pan-Asian restaurant on deck 10 with panoramic sea views.

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