Wait, hold up... it's a Bahamas cruise with live music from two of our favorite bands, O/A/R and Alpha Rev, plus many other artists, there's a ton of craft beer on board, and we would be celebrating the classic film, The Big Lebowski??? And, it's at a great discounted price? Well, how could we not be in!?!?
Saturday, 2/27 - We flew from Nashville today down to Ft. Lauderdale, rented a car and drove a little farther south to Miami today to start a long weekend as we awaited to board our cruise ship on Tuesday. We booked a room at the lush Hilton Cabana Hotel on the North Miami Beach.
|White sand, blue skies and aqua ocean! What a beautiful day to fly in to South Florida!|
After landing and securing our extremely nice SUV (thanks Ashlee's "Preferred Status" at Avis), we secured some lunch at the nearby Tap 42 in Ft. Lauderdale. The food was delicious and, as the name implies, the beer list was impressive.
|The weather cooperated, albeit a bit cool, this afternoon, so we headed back to the hotel and back out to the beach!|
What a great deal! For $40 each we got lots of wine, great heavy appetizers, four free hand-rolled cigars (the dude was on site making them in front of us!) and a hilarious caricature drawing of us as well from an artist on site. Our seats were super-comfy and we watched the entire telecast of which the highlight was seeing Leo finally get his well-deserved Oscar!
Tuesday, 3/1 - Day 1 of The Lebrewski Cruise - This was our first time on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship. The Norwegian Pearl is a very nice boat with pretty darn good food in the buffet. We started seeing performers almost immediately after boarding includig the hard-to-miss Andy Frasco (photo bombing our friend, Derek...nice shirt, D...lol...and then again later in the evening hugging on my wife!?!). We saw performances from Kyle Hollandsworth of The String Cheese Incident and friends, Jared and the Mill and the aforementioned (and amazing) Andy Frasco and the U.N. We had dinner in the Chinese bistro which was very tasty as were the three desserts we ordered! You gotta love cruisin'!!
|The young harmonious band from Arizona, Jared and the Mill, were rockin' the swim trunks (and boots?) in honor of the cruise and our tropical destinations that lay ahead|
Wednesday, 3/2 - Day 2 of The Lebrewski Cruise - We woke up in the Bahamas in the Port of Nassau today to perfect weather. We did a great small-group (just 8 people including us and Derek and Laurie) snorkeling trip excursion that included stops at a boat wreck/living reef that was sunk for the filming of the James Bond film, Thunderball, and then another stop at a larger natural reef. Captain Mark with Blue Hole Watersports was a great guide. On the way back to the cruise ship we stopped at Lukka Kairi Restaurant for some local beer and Bahamian bread.
|We had to tender over to shore but it was worth it.|
Yes, we saw Andy Frasco and his crew in the elevator on the way to the island that morning, and yes, Andy said he wanted to crowd surf to the ocean from the stage...and he did just that!! And we were privy to that information before anyone else...you never know what you are gonna learn in an elevator...(this is not my picture...thanks LeBrewski Cruise...but that's me under Andy's right knee in the yellow hat (Go Preds!) and Ashlee is behind me holding a guy's arm that I guess she thought was Andy's leg??
|Beautiful Great Stirrup Cay.|
|The craft beer was very abundant on board. This was one of our collective favorites and the name of it seems quite appropriate for this cruise.|
|Besides Andy Frasco, the young band out of New York called Hollis Brown was one of our great new-to-us "discoveries" on this trip. They have a fantastic sound and some great original songs.|
|One of favorite drives anywhere.|
|From a distance this looked like a religious or church vehicle carrying a cross...as we got closer we realized it was just a tiki bar being moved from on place to another..ahh, The Keys.|
|Our one stop on the way to Key West was for some awesome tarpon-feeding at Robbie's Marina in Islamorada. These suckers are huge and will eat small fish-heads right out of your hand!|
| We opted for a late dinner at our favorite restaurant in Key West, the always-awesome Blue Heaven. I had the daily special which was grilled hog fish (photo above) and |
Ashlee had their signature yellow-tail. Both were delicious!
Sunday, 3/6 - We slept in a bit this morning and then after breakfast at the inn, we strolled over to Nancy Forrester's Secret Garden, a sanctuary for rescued or abandoned parrots.
|We got an impromptu and private tour of secret garden from Batman and Jerry. What a great place!|
|With great dining views and the prospect of more good food (and beer) we decided to have lunch back the new Waterfront Brewery. It was a good decision. Cheers!|
|Stunning views and good weather as we headed north on Highway 1 and back to reality.|