SalsaCrazy Salsa Cruise to the Mexican Riviera: Salsa Dancing on a Cruise through Mexico

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SalsaCrazy Salsa Cruise to the Mexican Riviera: Salsa Dancing on a Cruise through Mexico


This cruise was special. I go on at least one cruise a year, going on ten years now.  I certainly feel like a professional cruiser, and this one felt special. It was likely the promise of a full live salsa band onboard, endless salsa dancing or perhaps simply the temptations of fresh guacamole, pacifico and plenty of limes…

This trip started great, with a quick jaunt on Virgin America down to LAX, a quick check in at the Embassy Suites, where about 100 dancers gather for a pre-cruise party to take place at the Granada nightclub in Los Angeles. We boarded the bus, and started the 20 minute trip to the club at around 8pm. At 8:30 pm, we were the very first people to arrive at the club.

The music started as we walked in, and many of the die hard salseros (and salseras) from our group ran directly to the spacious (and empty) dance floor. I ran directly for the bar.  Festivities abounded thereafter, with a salsa class, and a packed salsa club by 11pm. The Granada in LA gets a big thumbs up for it’s Saturday night salsa scene.  A live band, large dance floor, multiple levels, good restaurant, and comfortable atmosphere makes a top notch salsa club. One of the finest I’ve been to.

salsa cruise

A few familiar faces, and some wonderful dances with Rebecca (past SF resident, now LA), and various other salseras, and I was tuckered out.  Great night of dancing, and perhaps just a bit too much tequila (form the most generous of bartenders) had provided an excellent evening of salsa and socializing. A great way to start the cruise, and a good reminder to never miss the pre-cruise parties!

Up early the next day, we made the large buffet breakfast, which caused us to fall back asleep and miss the bus. Doh! We hopped a cab to the cruise ship, went through a painless and quick boarding process, and were on board by about 1:30, taking in my favorite onboard eatery, the deli, in all its sandwi-fied glory.  How great is that?

Two sandwiches later (a pastrami and a lox and cream cheese), I was off to the staff meeting, followed by dancing, followed by dinner, followed by drinks, followed by dancing, followed by … you’d think sleep, but you’d be wrong.

The first two days of the cruise are at sea, which is the best way to start a cruise. It allows for two days of endless workshops, cruising, dancing, and dining, that allows the group to jel, and get to know one another.  With two days at sea, we really had some non stop on cruise action.  I’ll give you a layout of the decadence…

After staying out late, you awaken at a (too early) 10 am, where you ideally had your monstrously huge, never ending, buffet breakfast at sometime preceding. You arrive to Solomon and Sandra’s (LatinHips.com), outrageous and fun aerobics and latin dance class. It’s a great (and intense) warm up to the days activities. I wish I had a a video so you could see it. Take my word for it… you won’t be weighed down by breakfast afterwards (if, of course, you survive).

After that, there is a day of workshops, that end at about 4pm, followed by a much needed break until dinner. Dinner on the frist night was formal, so I got to break out my tux, and dine in style. Each night, our tables were graced by flowing wine (from France to Switzerland to Napa), and endless entrees and appetizers. Ever night would end with a chocolate lava cake (molten chocolate inside a hot baked cake layer), with vanilla ice cream. At least, that’s what I got every night – there were quite a few desert options, and the flan was delcisiou!

Lest’ we get too carried away by desert, the dancing typically starts aknew at 10pm and goes until late (at times, very late), in the beautiful (hard wood) butterfly lounge. We were graced with a band each night (Los Duenos del Son) from LA, each night, and on several nights, excellent DJ music as well. Since it’s quite a social cruise, every effort was made to keep the songs short.

salsa and guacamole

Skipping ahead to PV (Puerto Vallarta), it's a great. Lot sof fun, and highlights a trip we take every year to Chico's Paradise. We dance, we eat, we drink, we wander around (ziplines, etc…). A great trip, followed by some real fun meeting up with my buddy Mike from San Francisco – we went and saw his amazing house overlooking the beach, and went dancing a Bodequita del Medio (I also visited this place in Prague).

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Here's a picture of us hanging out there. Also had some great dancing there, and some great food too (and about five Mojitos). Great fun, and always a highlight of the trip. Tons of dancing, and our first port of call, PV sets the tone for the trip, and after two days of workshotps, and at-sea days, this is a great port to start off the land portions of the cruise.  We get to start in port unitl 10pm, so we get a little taste of the nightlife, and get to eat dinner off the ship! 

Darn fun!  The rest of the cruise, ahhhh…. pure paradise. Salsa, Sun, Surf, and beautiufl ports – along with a great bout of sunny, warm weather (without being too hot), made the entire cruise really comfortable!  I would also say, there was a lot of actual dancing this cruise. Of course, classes were full, and there were quite a lot of them (with a great variety, from salsa, to bachata, to cha-cha-cha, and more), but for me, the social dancing was a lot of fun. I seemed to get my "sea legs" a little early this cruise – on the very first night, as opposed to other cruises where it takes me several days to stabilize my footing on board. :)

I thought I was done salsa cruising! After 10+ cruises, I thought I'd had enough. Evidently not – since our next cruise, coming up January 2010, will be a 10 day cruise, going through the Panama canal, with absolutely amazing ports of call.  No, you can't book it yet, and yes, this one is so cool, I'm planning on going on it again. Just click the Salsa Cruise link and sign our email list (website updated shortly).

Hope to see you onbard! (more pictures will be posted shortly)

SalsaCrazy (and some behind the scene SalsaCrazy Staff going on their "bonus" trip):

salsa crazy salsa cruise staff

 


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