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ex HARALD JARL ::: ex ANDREA ::: SERENISSIMA :::

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  • Seagull
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    Although mostly local materials were used, there are some columns of Italian marble, and these chandeliers of Murano glass. Part of the roof can be automatically retracted but I think it is only done on special occasions. Another modern feature is the laser beams, pointing from the minaret at night in the direction of Mecca.

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  • Seagull
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    These kinds of images better record my first impressions, and I am drawn to the ambiguity of that last image.
    Part of the building actually extends over the sea with a glass floor. The location of the mosque in close relationship to the ocean was apparently the wish of the King, inspired by a verse in the Koran - 'the throne of God was built on water'.

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  • Seagull
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    Coming in from the bright sunlight, it seemed darker at first than it appears in this photograph, and even now my most abiding memories are tactile - those of texture and temperature of polished stone and carpet beneath lightly stockinged feet.

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  • Seagull
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    When we paused to be handed plastic bags to carry our shoes in, I took the opportunity to photograph the guides traditional Moroccan leather slippers.

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  • Seagull
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    Whenever I'd said to anyone that the cruise I was on ended in Casablanca, the film of that name (and/or some memorable quotes/misquotes from it) would inevitably be mentioned! In fact that famous classic 1942 movie starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman was shot in a Hollywood studio! Around 2004 someone did open a bar-restaurant which they called 'Rick's Café', but I think when it comes to seeking literary connections and the atmosphere and mystique of the war and inter-war years I would choose Tangier.

    However, although the modern commercial city of Casablanca is generally said to have little of interest and attractivness to detain the tourist, architecture buffs could surely find just about every European trend of the past century here, Art Deco for example. However it is the new Hassan II Mosque that is the focus of guided tours, available at set times outside prayer hours when non-muslims including women are allowed inside. I already mentioned the minaret's height and the building's vast size, and indeed every statistic, from the cost of construction to the number of worshippers it can accommodate, is truly staggering.

    Last edited by Seagull; April 8th, 2015, 17:59.

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  • Seagull
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    Going ashore for an afternoon excursion.

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  • Tommi
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    Such a wonderful morning! All the way from the first red rays of sun to the captures of the work of the crew.

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  • Seagull
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    What a wonderful morning!

    And it's not quite over, for there's time for Kate's final lecture, entitled "The Pillars of Hercules", before lunch and the afternoon excursion.

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  • Seagull
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    Job done, our captain and officers get a moment to cast a professional eye over Sea Cloud II




    Out on Serenissima's foredeck painting duties recommence.

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  • Seagull
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  • Seagull
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    Out comes our gangway.

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  • Seagull
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    The view forward, in which I seem intent on including as many ships as possible including in the distance Marielle Bolton, and I even caught the pilot boat going off!




    Ah, I couldn’'t fit Polesie in that last photo, and you also get a chance to view the stern of Costa Fortuna!




    And for completeness, I head aft for a photo of Coral Mermaid.

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  • Seagull
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    No problem whatsoever for the wonderful Serenissima, Captain and crew - and the pilot looks pleased.

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  • Seagull
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    Now for some interesting manoeuvres, for our berth is that space in between Sea Cloud II and the ship beyond, Coral Mermaid.







    More of the guests are enjoying watching...




    ...but not everyone!
    Last edited by Seagull; March 31st, 2015, 14:50.

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  • Seagull
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    Once we have passed the IMTC Meknes we are going to turn in to the left to our quay, opposite from the Costa cruise ship which has just come into view.



    It turns out to be Costa Fortuna, and I take another photo before leaving the bridge wing clear for the crew for docking.



    There are already two ships at the quay, and one is Sea Cloud II

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