ABOARD THE REGAL PRINCESS-Cruising is known for indulging in fine food, wine and spirits. Perhaps Princess Cruises has set a new bar of indulgence, though, with its introduction of Chocolate Journeys.
Debuting on 18 of Princess’ ships, Chocolate Journeys is a chocolate experience throughout the ship in partnership with famed chocolatier Norman Love. The new program was launched as part of the 50th Anniversary of the cruise line.
Love is the former head pastry chef of Ritz Carlton hotels worldwide. He knows a thing or two about fine chocolates from around the world. So when Princess Cruises was looking to partner with someone to showcase the finest chocolate indulgences, they knew who to ask.
“We brought in chocolate consultants to ask who was the best person to partner with, and all of them had Norman Love on their shortlist,” said Gordon Ho, Senior Vice President of Marketing with Princess Cruise Lines.
In Horizons Food Court on the Regal Princess, I was surprised to find out that there is a chocolate station now available with all meals, including breakfast.
I was on the hunt to see exactly how much chocolate could be featured in a breakfast menu. It wasn’t easy to find the chocolate station tucked away at the end of a buffet line. In fact, I had to ask a waitress where it was. Once I found it, though, I was seriously impressed.
The breakfast buffet included chocolate Belgian waffles, chocolate banana bread, chocolate donuts, chocolate cookies, chocolate croissants, and chocolate muffins. A chocolate waterfall was available to dip fruits into. Hot chocolate and a chocolate milkshake were also available on the buffet line.
Chocolate desserts can be found on the menus of the main dining rooms, as well.
In the bars, the number of specialty chocolate drinks available will have you contemplating what to order and wondering how many drinks you could possibly consume in one cruise. Each bar was different with the types of chocolate inspired drinks that they were serving up. At the Wheelhouse Bar on Regal Princess, there were more chocolate inspired cocktails featuring rum, tequila and vodka. At Crooner’s Bar, it was more chocolate martinis.
Chocolate pairings at Vines highlight the always-popular combination of red wine and intense dark chocolate. They are indulgent and in high-demand, so plan ahead accordingly depending on what is offered on your Princess Cruise.
In the Lotus Spa on the Regal Princess, only one chocolate inspired spa treatment was offered. The Chocolate Indulgence Body Treatment combines a chocolate exfoliant, followed by a chocolate body mask, then a massage using a chocolate oil. Being cocooned in layers of silver tin foil while covered with chocolate body products – and the aroma of cocoa filling the air – made me feel like a real life chocolate bar. The scents are intoxicating and you will smell like chocolate for the rest of the day. Not exactly a bad thing!
In addition to chocolate desserts, drinks, tastings and a spa treatment, “Chocolate Love Pops” will be complimentary during the Captain’s Reception onboard. These intense chocolate nuggets served on a stick are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. Chocolate Petit Fours will be served on Formal Night.
Chocolate demonstrations will also be offered by Princess pastry chefs free of charge. In the gift shops, Norman Love’s chocolates will be available for purchase.