Whether it’s experiencing the hospitality of the locals, or indulging in some exotic cuisine; cruising the open seas en route to new cultures, or taking in a new city through the eyes of a native, Kendra and Prasanth’s Western European trip was captivating and remarkable. You & I joins this adventurous couple as they recount the time they sailed across the Mediterranean in pursuit of a good time and some great memories.
When Kendra O’Mullane and her husband Prasanth Chemuduri, the Chairman and Director of O’Mullane Management Solutions, respectively, arrived in the Spanish city of Barcelona, it marked the first day of their 18-day trip. The journey included stops in Paris, Amsterdam, Livorno, Civitavecchia and Marseilles. “We first travelled to Barcelona, as Prasanth had a conference to attend there,” said Kendra, adding, “I am glad we got to spend a major part of the trip in this city.”
Here the couple found a beautiful apartment in an area called El Poblenou, just outside of Barcelona. “The apartment was only a 30-second walk from one of the best tapas restaurants we could have found. We had many great meals there and the people were truly amazing,” reminisced Kendra, “and this was when the perfect opportunity arose for my husband to finally experience a holiday on a cruise,” she added.
The Norwegian Epic, based in the home port of Barcelona, as well as Rome, was launched in 2010 and operates throughout the year. Awarded the Best Cruise Ship Entertainment by Frommer’s, the renowned travel guidebook company, the Norwegian Epic maintains its exclusive stature by continually updating its services and performances. The cruise’s latest Broadway shows now showcase Ballroom Blitz and Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Recounting their incredible journey aboard the cruise, Kendra said, “I was fortunate to have found a great deal, and we managed to enjoy seven nights on this luxurious ship nestled in a two-bedroom suite. It was nothing short of wonderful.”
When it came to their experiences in these exotic cities, Kendra said, “Every city had its own charm and beauty. But in a heartbeat, I would travel back to Barcelona!” Furthermore, when it comes to European escapades such as this, it certainly is difficult to have one’s fill with just one trip. “If I had the time, I would’ve loved to have rented an apartment in Civitavecchia, which is just outside of Rome,” stated Kendra. “This lovely, small city was quite a surprise. It had a beautiful walkway just near the port and lovely rustic markets, which sold the most scrumptious delicacies,” she recalled.
Finding herself returning even now to her experiences in Barcelona, an amused Kendra also recalled a rather problematic memory, which then turned into something out of a comedy sketch. “One day, the moment I walked out of our apartment, I realised I had left the room key inside. I stood around for about five minutes thinking to myself, ‘How on earth am I going to get back in?’” she reminisced. “We then went around to the restaurant and told them what had happened. This young man pointed to our apartment and said in his best English ‘is that yours?’ I said ‘yes’ and then within seconds he turned into a Spiderman-esque character, climbed up the side of the building, in through the window and out the front door. I couldn’t have been more grateful!” she said.
Returning once again to her memories of exploring the charming cities, Kendra shared that both her husband and she tend to be wanderers and love to walk the streets, observing people as they go about their day. Amsterdam is a particularly beautiful city that you can do that in. She added, “Despite making wonderful memories on this journey, the most special moment for me would have to be watching Prasanth enjoy his very first time on the cruise!” However, the couple did miss their butler, Orlando, from the Norwegian Epic. “This might sound a bit indulgent, but we loved it. Prasanth would call up in the morning, order tea and toast, and this lovely man would bring it with a smile on his face and it didn’t matter what time,” she said.
Finally, ending their cruise down memory lane, Kendra shared that the one great thing about going on a cruise was that all they had to wait for was pulling into port, having their breakfast, hopping off, and then starting their day. “We were glad we didn’t have to worry about catching a plane, train or bus because we were already there,” she said, “The opportunity to explore Western Europe is definitely not one that anyone should miss out on.” – as told to Roshni