The size of the cruise ship business was pointed out to us tonight as we spoke with Mark Akst, the GM of Cambria Suites Fort Lauderdale in Dania Beach. He told us about ships now cruising out of this port with 2500, 3500, and even 6500 passengers. And a good many of them need to stay in a hotel before they are taken to their cruise. That keeps this new hotel hopping, especially on the weekends.
We figured this was why there was a huge crowd of people in the lobby when we showed up to check in today around 12:30 pm. Usually this is a sedate time of the day in a hotel, but here every seat in the lobby was filled with people sitting in front of their suitcases. It must be a rush to work on a cruise ship and have an entire cast of characters change every Saturday, 3000 new people coming in and all of the rest departing.
It was a pleasure to be strictly on vacation here, and we enjoyed a leisurely lunch at a Turkish sidewalk cafe in Hollywood. Over an assortment of mezze including hummus, baba ganaoush, thick yogurt and salad, we listened to people speaking in Turkish and watched the passing cars as we sat in the sun. To us it was marvelously warm, but to a woman in the sunglasses shop, it was horridly cold and she couldn’t wait til tomorrow when temps will get up in the the ’80s. We strolled a bit thinking we would make it to the beach and then turned back when we saw that it was far, far away, over a drawbridge and we’d have to drive.
Walking the boardwalk in Hollywood, we dipped our toes into the ocean. It was cold but not as bracing as what we’d expect in New England. Nothing we had to do except walk, and talk, and find a place to buy sunglasses. Off duty, yet, really never off duty, as this blog attests. Let’s call it light duty. Now time to check out a Vietnamese place we found on line, fingers crossed we won’t get lost trying to find it.