Atlantis #JetAdventure Day 1: My 1st JetBlue And A Dolphin Too!NEWS | Nirasha Jaganath | January 31, 2010 at 9:58 pm
So I am back. It happened really so fast and yet so wonderful. If you don’t know I was invited to a special media trip on behalf of Jet Blue, Lego and Atlantis. I know what you are thinking: Lucky girl. And you know what you would be correct. I have been thinking for days, while I tackle my mountain of laundry that awaits every vacationer, of how to share with you, my readers, the best view of what I have experienced. I finally decided the awesomeness of the event could not fit in one post, heck I still can’t believe it fit in 3 days.
My 2 year old had never been on a flight so I was quite anxious to travel with her and my 4 year old. Papa was coming along, on behalf of The Papa Post (so watch that space for more insight into the trip). Considering that we had not been on vacation for several years we were pretty excited for this jaunt, and who could blame us? I had never flown Jet Blue Airways and although I had heard many rave about it, I had already been through many other airlines so I was not expecting much. Yes, we were going on a chartered flight from New York to Nassau, Bahamas fair judging of service would have been difficult had I not had a regular Boston to New York flight the night before. Normally used to have flight attendants roll their eyes when they see you with kids I was amazed at the genuine attention they gave to the girls. After I got over the leg room, the actual fact that there was legroom (and trust me we are short people but even we feel the pain of cramped seats), I decided it was time to get the girls a pair of headphones. On trying to order the headphones, the attendant gave us a pair of kiddie headphones, for free.
I normally hate in-flight snacks. They are sodium filled and really are full of crap. I was surprised to see the same familiar brand names of snacks in flight as I do in my favorite store: Whole Foods! Of course our special flight from New York was much more special but only because I was amongst a wonderful group, made up of a handful of bloggers and mainly traditional media. Of course the fact that we were traveling with L.A.N.S.E a 5 foot Lego character en-route to Atlantis made it exciting too. We were given little Lego puzzles to build, which were to become part of a larger canvas to be revealed on the final night. Also included in the little kit on our seats was a scavenger hunt to obtain 5 keys throughout our stay. I must admit that the puzzles were a great idea to keep kids busy and pass the time on board. Since I knew that Lego’s involvement was due to their special Lego Fantasy camp launching in the summer, I was interested to see how that would mesh into a beach resort.
After arriving at Nassau and being treated to live music as we got through the customs and immigration checkpoint we zipped of to Atlantis. Atlantis is part of the Kerzner International resort and since I had been to The Palace Of The Lost City in South Africa (during a SAP R3 conference) I had been familiar with the work of Sol Kerzner (who is also a fellow South African). Somehow the marriage of nature, grand architecture, technology is apparent in all of his buildings. To describe the building in words I fear I may not do it justice but I owe this trip to my readers so I will do my best.
Imagine every railing, every bulb fixture, every door, every ceiling, I mean everything, being a canvas for displaying unique detail. If you throw all of these together it would not be surprising to see this fine attention to detail getting lost to the visitor who is overwhelmed by the combined splendor. Maybe it was the fact that I come from a background that could not afford vacations or the fact that for the past 8 years I had not been on even a simple vacation, but I was drinking it all in like a fish in water. I was really appreciative for the exposure, and one with my entire family was certainly an experience worth having.
After a 5 minute check in to our spacious room we headed to the Dolphin Cay for our shallow water experience with the Dolphins. Now know that this body was not meant to be seen in a swim suit, but then I learned that we would be using wet suits – yup just what I needed was a body clinging suit to emphasize my figure! I was glad that no swimming was needed (since I did not know how to swim – I know shocker but that is another longer story). I was pretty touched to learn the story behind the dolphins that they were rescued during Hurricane Katrina. The entire process is broken down in a very systematic way, after donning our wet suits (yes they found one that fit me) and a lesson in locker locking (no kidding) we were off to a waiting room where we were spoken to about do’s and don’ts in the water, then grouped and then off to our dolphin experience. “Our” dolphin was Shari who was 34 years old and weighing over 300 lbs (glad that someone heavier than me was in the water).
I know this post is getting long, but I wanted you to “journey” with me. We then went straight to (and seriously there was no time to go our rooms before) a pizza party. We were bushed by then and though the food was a real disappointment with being lukewarm and bland, I devoured it pretty hungrily. The girls got more Lego challenges from Eric. Did I mentioned we were accompanied by Eric, one of 12 of the world’s Lego Master Builders?
Any smart person might have called it a night in exhaustion but when they asked whether we were up for a tour of the Underwater Dig, we said yes. The experience of seeing the amazing underwater sea life so up close is exhilarating. This to me was the best part of Atlantis. Being witness to nature at this proximity was a true honor and for my kids to have learned, from experience, what a shark or stingray was indeed a special moment.
The Papa Post’s Video of the Jet Adventure (a must see – trust me)
Disclosure: All expenses for the Jet Adventure trip were paid.