Monday, September 5, 2011

A Ruined Evening at Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant in Heidelberg

The view from the upper deck of the ship restaurant.
It was supposed to be a dream evening for our family: to watch the Heidelberg Castle illumination and the firework display.

And the best place to watch it, we were thinking, was at the Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant located along the bank of the Neckar River in Heidelberg.

We really planned our dream evening, we wanted it to be perfect.

Photo taken from the street

We booked a table more than a week before the event. We specifically requested for a space at the upper deck. The answer was yes -- although they are not sure about the sitting arrangement yet so we are advised to come earlier. It is a good thing they accept dogs!

As per our inquiry, there would be a special menu on that day and it is strictly on reservation basis. Our impression was: we would be part of the special group of people partaking of the delicious dinner and having the best seat in the Neckar during that day!!!

So we asked the girls to take a little afternoon nap so they won't miss anything on that dream night. Even our pup, Rikki, had to be 'prepared' so the evening would flow smoothly.

We left our house around half past five and therefore managed to find a parking slot in front of the restaurant. I went to the restaurant earlier to claim our table. I was happy to know that we were seated near the front of the upper deck. Meaning, we have a fantastic view of the Heidelberg Castle.

My husband and the girls had to keep Rikki company for at least an hour --- to walk the pup along the park, to let her play in the water, and finally, to give her food and drinks, and do other puppy businesses. Those were enough to make the pup tired and sleepy -- she was snoring under my restaurant seat the whole night!

It absolutely started as a dream evening -- we had a comfortable, quiet summer night basking in Heidelberg's wonderful old town and castle panorama. The girls are relishing their usual hectic and exhilirating running around, taking time to cool-off by feeding their dolls in between.

After Rikki settled down, we ordered dinner from the special menu card. My husband and I toasted our dream evening with Kir Royal aperitifs. The food were beautifully presented and were mouthwatering. We were utterly that satisfied that we cleaned-off our plates!

The beautiful view from our table in the restaurant.
Well, the illumination and fireworks display is scheduled at 10 p.m. -- can you imagine the long wait for the girls? Actually, they were not bored. The girls got busy finding adventures (mostly they oggled the picnic atmosphere in the park and checked out the booths) along the bank, along the park -- that my husband and I simply enjoyed the silence and the view -- together.

We could hear the waitresses turning away inquiries for seats and we would smile at each other because we are feel lucky to have booked earlier and to have great seats, too.

A few minutes before the big event started, we even ordered non-alcoholic cocktails for the girls -- we sat down to relax and get ready for the big show!! Yuhoo! We focused our eyes to direction of the Heidelberg Castle which looks imposing that night.

Yes, only a few more minutes...

But then, wait!!! It seems I missed my focus. Until... until...What is that I see now?

More and more people are filling the upper deck. Most of them are pushing forward. Oh wait, now I could only see the backs of these people. No more Heidelberg Castle. Shit!

The girls are complaining, too. And they are the only kids in the upper deck that night! Another group right in front of us are complaining, too. Because suddenly, our best view became the worst view! Our relaxing evening turned into chaos and frustration.

My husband called the attention of some of the people blocking our view. Of course, most of them simply ignored him.

So he approached the waitress in the bar. He wanted to know why they are not preventing the surge of people. Her answer??? 'Es ist mir egal. Die wollen doch auch was sehen.' (I don't care. They also wanted to see something.) Well, how about us with reserved seats. We wanted to see the show, too!

Since the illumination had already started, my husband then brought the girls in front. He was on his knees, compared to the others who were standing and blocking our view.

I didn't bother to long neck. I didn't leave my seat, instead I comforted myself and kept my temper by scratching Rikki. The supposed to be dream night's already ruined for me. Not long after, the girls and my husband came back and sat there with me. The dream night's just that, a dream.

Imagine -- we planned for it, we arrived early for it, we paid dearly for it and in the end, we saw nothing. The big show became a big null.

And we really thought we were lucky to find a seat in the upper deck of the Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant. And we really thought we would go home raving with the beauty of the display because we were special reserved guests at Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant.

We thought wrong. It was a frustrating evening. It was a disappointment.

And I was a little bit angry for the unfairness of it.

I could not blame the people who blocked our view. My opinion is that the staff should have prevented the throng in the first place. But since the answer was already a shock for us (and even for the other group who complained) I would guess that this kind of thing always happen everytime the Heidelberg Castle illumination and firework display.

I therefore conclude that it is best to avoid the Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant in Heidelberg during the Heidelberg Castle illumination and firework display.

Never, ever go there during the show or else, you would go home frustrated, disappointed, defeated, ruined, bad-tempered...It would be more satisfying (and cheaper!!) to bring along your picnic blanket, with a picnic basket filled with sweets and homemade goodies; plus bottles of chilled sparkling wine the adults and kiddie champagne for the kids!

That's what we would do next time!

P.S. I am the kind of customer that doesn't come back after a bad experience. Just like with LIDL, I am NEVER going back to the Schiff Schlossblick Restaurant in Heidelberg.

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