The Celestyal cruise company is based in Cyprus, and operates cruises in France, Italy, India and Greece. Their Olympia ship cruises the Aegean, visiting islands like Crete, Santorini and Mykonos.
This is a smaller ship than most, carrying only a maximum of 1,664 passengers in 724 cabins. That means even on shorter, four-night cruises, you’ll feel as though you’re getting to know the place and the staff, who are all extremely friendly, accommodating and helpful.
But the ship is older, and feels it. It creaks and groans in high waves. The décor is decidedly tired and worn, as are the staterooms. Deck paint and wood stain was peeling. The food is average at best, with hits and misses at each meal. Still, the staff seemed willing to bring a new dish if something wasn’t found desirable, or bring a do-over if meat was undercooked, etc.
The boat’s numerous lounges made it easy to find a place to settle in for a cocktail (especially welcome when trying to avoid the almost ubiquitous cigarette smoke), though the drinks themselves were less than impressive. The seas were too rough for the pools to remain full and in use, and the on-board activities and entertainment were not exactly dazzling.
The Celestyal Olympia is, overall, an adequate means to an end for exploring the Aegean. If you have a choice and can find an operator with better reviews, go with them instead.
Chile offers bountiful opportunities to get out and explore. From volcano climbing to skiing, or surfing to horseback riding, the country boasts one of the greatest outdoor experiences on Earth. La Serena is no exception, and has plenty of places to catch some sun and adventure.
Bleisure — it’s a term we’re all familiar with these days. After all, millennials drive the rising trend, combining business and leisure trips regularly. Take a few days to decompress in a new destination after a hectic schedule of meetings and business.
Dining is an art, and now that applies to both on the ground and at 35,000 feet thanks to Hainan Airlines’ “Hai Chef” Inflight Artistic Chinese cuisine series, a collaboration with Dong Zhenxiang, a Chinese culinary master also known as Dadong.