“Welcome aboard!” the cruise staff exclaims as my girlfriend and I cross the bridge and finally step foot on the ship. This part of the experience seems relatively ordinary with some of the cruise staff greeting you as you make your way from the outside deck to the main entrance door, except for a photo opportunity with a Groove Cruise backdrop. But of course, there’s nothing ordinary on a Groove Cruise.
This post is part of my Groove Cruise Miami 2014 Review series. See the full list at the end of this post.
As we approach the entrance to the atrium, music can be heard. We step through the door and are immediately presented with 2 bars, a DJ and an active dancefloor, and what seems like a 20 foot LED wall. It’s not even 1PM, yet. The tone has been set. I realize that this is going to be much more than a cruise with DJs replacing traditional entertainment.
We head to our deck 11 double interior cabin to drop off our carry-on items. I can’t help but bounce my head to the music as we walk. The music from the stage in the atrium? No. It’s to the music from the 24/7 Groove Cruise podcast soundtrack that’s playing through the ship’s speaker system! You can’t escape the music, and you don’t want to.
We open the door to our stateroom, and it’s small. If you’ve been on a cruise, then you know this. If you haven’t, please don’t expect your average hotel’s 300-400 square foot room, unless you knowingly booked a large suite. Interior cabins give you a bit over 100 square feet of room, and that is just fine for me and my girlfriend. Room sizes go up from there, but let me give you a different perspective. You have been provided your own private (well, shared among yourself and your roommates) room walking distance from every party. It is a place to securely store your belongings. It has a clean bathroom, a shower, a bed (or beds), and electrical outlets. And you can visit it whenever and as often as you’d like. Please tell me what other event or music festival provides such a great amenity! Take your time.
After dropping off our belongings, we do what every cruiser does as soon as they get on the ship…lunch. As much as this is a music festival, it is a cruise, and that means food is included! Of course, there are some fancier paid options; however, as a 20-something who just dropped a relatively significant amount of money just to be a part of this experience, the included options are excellent in my opinion. There were breakfast, lunch, dinner, and after hours buffets available as well as basic drinks. If you were hungry or thirsty, you could eat or drink and have options 24/7. On the other hand, in a club or concert venue environment, there is generally no food offered. At your onshore music festivals, you can pay $10 (that’s always the price for some reason) for your deep fried item of choice. On Groove Cruise, you are provided with a variety of food items at any time of the day. Eat as little or much and as healthy or as bad as you’d like. It’s included, and it’s delicious.
Now, we’re sitting at a table near a window overlooking Miami’s Palm Island estates. Eight months of diligently working out, eating right, and losing 50 pounds, and the first thing I do is eat a plate of pizza, french fries, and Chinese food…and I can’t help but smile. I know for a fact that the Groove Cruise experience has just begun, but I just have to appreciate that so much awesome has already been had, and we haven’t even made it to the pool area.
This post is part of my Groove Cruise Miami 2014 Review series. Here’s the full list of posts in the series:
Pictures from top to bottom:
Crossing the final bridge to board the ship.
Photo of our Interior Double Cabin.
View of Miami’s Palm Island from the cafe.
My lunch after 8 months of workout, eating right, and losing 50 lbs.
Part 3 of my Groove Cruise Miami 2014 Review series coming up next!