Nautica diary: A bittersweet farewell after so many days exploring Southeast Asia on this cruise

Day 26: Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) ABOARD OCEANIA’S NAUTICA — Today is disembarkation day and it’s bittersweet. We shared dinner and conversation last evening with a Kiwi couple from Christchurch — for the second time on the cruise — and lingered over coffee, reluctant to return to packing. We all agreed on the success of the voyage from Bangkok — most enthusiastically about the quality of the crew, who not only executed their duties with proficiency, …

Read moreNautica diary: A bittersweet farewell after so many days exploring Southeast Asia on this cruise

QE2 gains new life in Asia as a floating hotel

Over the last several months, I’ve been watching the press coverage of the fate of the QE2. Rumors have been swirling as various sources tried to predict whether she would begin another life or be sold as scrap metal.  Most recently, reports have suggested that QE2 London was in the process of gaining approval from the London Port Authority to have the ship permanently berthed there. It seems the issue has finally been settled, however, as Oceanic Group …

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The buildings of Dubai are as spectacular as you have heard…one more amazing than the other

This is will be my last article about Dubai…after all, I am already on the Seabourn Spirit but there is still a bit more that needs to be written about the fascinating city of Dubai. My first article told you a bit about old Dubai, including the museum, the gold souk and the history of the Creek. Then I wrote about the two new wonders of Dubai…the Burj Khalifa tower and the inside ski resort. Now I …

Read moreThe buildings of Dubai are as spectacular as you have heard…one more amazing than the other

Everything in Dubai is over the top, especially the Burj Khalifa

Yesterday we went to the top. Actually, to two tops. First, we went to the top of the tallest building in the world, the 160-story Burj Khalifa, which opened earlier this year in Dubai. Then we went to the top of a ski hill, certainly the only ski hill in the Mideast. And – typical of Dubai, where everything is the biggest, tallest, longest or whatever – both of these are in shopping malls. Yes, Dubai is …

Read moreEverything in Dubai is over the top, especially the Burj Khalifa

A full day of touring in Dubai, from old to ultra-new

Our 14-hour flight from Atlanta to Dubai last night went smoothly and we both managed to get some decent sleep. When we arrived just before 8 p.m., it was nice to have just a 10-minute taxi ride (35 dirham, about $10) to the Park Hyatt Hotel. I discovered the Park Hyatt online and am very glad that I did. It is an exquisite property: a low-rise hotel in the middle of a bustling metropolis. It is flanked …

Read moreA full day of touring in Dubai, from old to ultra-new

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