Pleasantly Surprised by the Carnival Breeze: Carnival Breeze Cruise Review by tinafmd
Overall Member Rating
Pleasantly Surprised by the Carnival Breeze
Destination: Southern Caribbean
Embarkation was the fastest/smoothest I have ever experienced...we showed up to the cruise terminal at 1300 and by 1330 were up on the Lido deck for lunch. Leaving the ship went smoothly as well, and we received our luggage pretty quickly.
The Ship Overall: We like the Serenity Deck location better on other ships, but it is much bigger. Some areas had noise from the waterpark, but there were plenty of quite areas too. We also really enjoyed the new color schemes, and liked the set up on the fifth deck that separated the areas better than on ships where everything is in one area. We also liked that the two pool areas were completely separate from each other. We never felt mobbed with people. More
Entertainment: We did not go to any of the musical shows, but enjoyed the director's show at the start of the cruise, (and kudos to the three volunteers that made up the majority of the entertainment for that)...some shows were cancelled due to high winds, but we really enjoyed the hypnotist and two of the comics. We did not have problems getting a seat for the comedy shows, but based on past reviews, showed up 5-15 minutes early, waited in line, and had comfortable seats. If you go to a show off the ship, you don't show up at show time and expect a good seat, so we didn't mind this, but agree that they need a bigger venue. We enjoyed that they had the NFL playoffs on the Seaside Theater, but didn't choose to watch any of the movies they played there.
Dining: Just an overall comment, we always do the late seating for dinner, but with this itinerary at least, the late sitting caused you to miss many of the events that were only offered once in an evening, and would suggest the early seating for that reason. We don't expect as much from Carnival and Carnival's prices as we do from other cruise lines, but we thought that the food quality was better than on our other Carnival cruises. We enjoyed the Lido deck set up, and we never saw really long lines, but noticed that if one side had a long line, the other, with the same food, would have a short line, everyone seemed to gravitate to the lines on the right side. Also, adjust your eating times a little, and there were no lines at all (i.e. avoid 1130-1230 for lunch).
The pizza was good (I like thinner pizzas), we enjoyed Guy's Burgers (ask for extra fries if you want more than 8), and the burritos were good for breakfast and lunch. We went to the Italian place for lunch for the pasta bar and didn't enjoy our food at all, so didn't go back. For the dining room, our staff quickly learned what we liked and took great care of us. After the first night, our drink server had my diet coke waiting every night. If we didn't like something, they replaced it with no problem. We didn't get served any cold food. The Punchliner Brunch food was best for breakfast, but don't expect an actual comedy show. A couple of lines interacting with the audience and they were gone, but we were there for the food, so that was no problem. We used room service a few times, quicker response when ordering by phone instead of through the interactive menu on the TV. Went to the dining room for breakfast and lunch most days, nothing spectacular but nothing bad either.
Cabin: We had an inside spa cabin, and it only cost us $1.90 per day to upgrade to that (I figured it was a website typo and was happy to take advantage). It was nicely decorated, and nice to have the upgraded shampoos etc, robe etc, and to have short corridors without a lot of traffic. Didn't find the elevator to the spa until the 3rd day in, but it was nice to have an entrance that didn't require you to wait in the main elevator lobby. We had free use of the spa therapy pool, saunas, etc. Our cabin attendants were always smiling and friendly and took great care of us.
Ports: Grand Turk-we stuck to the beach at the port and had no complaints. LaRomana, we did the ship's cave excursion and really enjoyed it, but the market they took everyone to after their tours was a madhouse of aggressive salesman and wish I had stayed on the bus. Curaco-everyone headed to Mambo beach because it was close. We caught a cab and went to Blue Bay beach ($8 each with nine in the cab) on the recommendation of another cruiser and it was beautiful...its relatively small, quiet, attached to a resort area and had a small snack shack, a bar, and a nicer restaurant. They did diving lessons there, but there are no other water sports. Not the place to go if you are looking to parasail, jet ski, etc. but perfect for just relaxing in paradise.. In Aruba we took a $20 tour to the rock formation, chapel, light house, and got out at Palm Beach, where we did go jet skiing. I enjoyed the tour, my husband didn't care for the sites but enjoyed the drivers commentary on life on the island, but both of us wished we had just headed straight to the beach. We caught the city bus back to the ship for less than $5 total.
Overall, we had a great time...don't let the reviews affect your experience, go with an open mind, and enjoy yourself. Less