, pub-4365197612565232, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0

Monday, January 16, 2023

Celebrity Summit Christmas Cruise - Pre-Cruise Miami

We flew into Miami the day before the cruise, December 21. Flying in the morning of the cruise is risky, and I proved that by missing my flight and almost missing the cruise a few years ago.

I originally started looking for flights in July, right after we booked the cruise. Initially, there were only nonstop flights on American Airlines, but ideally I wanted to fly Delta because I was pursuing Silver Medallion (also every time I fly AA, I say that I will never fly AA again). I set up Google Flight Tracker to track flights from LAX to MIA. A few weeks later, a new nonstop Delta flight from LAX to MIA appeared, and it was very affordable. I booked Comfort+ seats.... then the next day, I was playing around with the Delta change flight feature and realized that I could rebook First Class for only an additional $125 per person. I decided that this would be a nice surprise for Aaron and a fun way to kick off our vacation.

About a month before our flight, I got an email from Delta saying that our original flight was canceled, but they rebooked us on another flight. Unfortunately, we were no longer nonstop and would be connecting in ATL. Also, while our arrival time remained the same, our departure time now moved from 10AM to 7AM. The good news is that we were booked in First Class on both flights. I was worried that Aaron was going to catch onto my surprise when they emailed him about the rebooked flight, but luckily it went unnoticed. I also thought that he may notice the day before our flight when he checked in on the app, but again, he didn't.

It wasn't until we were at the airport. I took us into the Sky Priority lane to check our bag, and I was sure by then that he had caught on. "Merry Christmas!" "Is this for your status stuff?" "No, I upgraded us to First Class!" Had I known that the Sky Priority line hadn't given me away, I think we could have made it to the gate, and he wouldn't have noticed until waiting for them to call our Boarding Group. After the news sunk in, Aaron was very excited.... or as excited as one can be at 6AM - it was a good surprise.


In addition to our checked bag (Away Medium Checked), we each had the Away Bigger Carry-On. Aaron packed his suit and blazer in the Seyfocnia Garment Bag which rolls up into a duffle bag. We're skeptical that this actually qualifies as a personal item, but we didn't have any issues this trip... possibly because we were in first class, but also Aaron took the duffle off of his rolling bag and carried it on his back which made it look pretty unimposing (a hack that wouldn't work for someone my size). My personal item was my Brevite Camera Bag. I also used a magnetic hat clip to bring along my hats.


Time to board!


Casually blending in.... this is what all people who fly first class do, right?



Aaron kept saying how nice it was to have all of this room which made me really happy that I had sprung for the upgrade.


Bye, LA!!!


Since our cross-country flight was at 7AM, we were provided breakfast. Aaron and I both got the quiche. I thought it was good, but I was also very hungry. Aaron said it gave him heartburn because of the quantity of onions.


I watched a really weird movie about a luxury cruise called Triangle of Sadness.


Made it to ATL, my former home airport!


It was a little dreary outside. The east coast was experiencing some cold and rainy weather.


Miami here we come! Since it was now afternoon, Aaron and I opted for some first class beverages.


We landed in Miami around 6PM, just a little ahead of Aaron's parents. Our checked bag was first out on the carousel - what a relief! Once Aaron's parents arrived and collected their bags, I ordered an Uber to the hotel.


For our pre-cruise stay, I booked Eurostars Langford in Downtown Miami. In the past, we've stayed at the Marriott Biscayne Bay, but since the hotel was under construction, I thought we'd try something new. Hotel rates in Miami were very affordable for December 21, so Aaron and I thought this would be a good opportunity to stay a boutique hotel. We settled on Eurostars Langford because as architects, we were intrigued by its location in a 1925 Beaux Arts nationally registered historic building.


The hotel lobby was very small, and upon entering it felt more to me like a hostel than a 4 star hotel. I was worried that I had made a mistake. When we arrived, there was only one person working at the desk. I had booked our rooms directly through the hotel website, and I thought it was odd that each room was an even $180 rate. Well, it turns out that there would be additional taxes added, making each room $203.40. It's reasonable, but I would have preferred to have that rate disclosed to me in advance.


The interior didn't feel like a hotel, which I think is nice. These hallways definitely had haunting potential, though.


The rooms were the reason that Aaron and I decided to book this hotel. We like their modern eclectic design.


Love the herringbone wood floors. The ceilings are very tall, so the warmth added with the wood finishes and velvet upholstery feels very balanced and also necessary.


The room had a small desk, and an armoire for hanging clothes. Since we were only there for one night, we didn't really unpack anything.


The bathroom had this large shower with glossy black tile and a rainfall showerhead. I don't think it feels cohesive with the design of the room, but I'll give them credit for opting for a trendier bathroom. Though, the tile seaming on in the right corner really bothers me. It was done beautifully on the left, and the botched it on the right. Whyyyyy -


I tasked Aaron with finding a spot within walking distance to go for dinner, and he took us to Pollos & Jarras, a Peruvian restaurant near Bayfront Park. It's located next to and I believe shares a kitchen with CVI.CHE 105.


We did not have a reservation, but I think that if we were dining on the weekend, it would have been necessary. And it definitely looked like reservations were needed for CVI.CHE 105.

We were seated upstairs where the ceiling is decorated with hanging paper lanterns and inflatables.


The menus were in Spanish, but the menus online were in English.


I ordered the Causa de Congrejo con Palta. It was very good and also a lot of food.


After dinner, we walked back to the hotel, and I realized that we forgot to pack toothpaste. Aaron told me to worry about it in the morning then promptly fell asleep. I knew that we would need toothpaste for the entire trip, and there was no time like the present, so I decided to walk to the 24 hour CVS a few blocks down the street. The toothpaste that we normally use was locked up, and I didn't want to bother finding someone to unlock it, so I chose a different variation of the toothpaste (same brand, same price, not locked up) which I later learned that I didn't like. I should've had them unlock the case.


When I returned, Aaron was still sound asleep. Big day tomorrow!!

No comments:

Post a Comment