Embarkation was very efficient and swift, got to the port via Park N Go at 1:15 and on board by 1:40 p.m. Went to the Endless pool on deck 9 for a quick drink and slice of pizza. Pizza okay as a snack but nothing to jump up and down about.
Had an ocean suite on deck 7 midship. Which was a great location close enough to elevators and stairs. Our room attendant was Ronnie. He, along with his great crew, were excellent. Room was always made up while we were at breakfast every day.
We took advantage of the Sun King dining on the first night to get the free wine, which was not bad considering it was free. Can’t say enough about the service as well as the menu. Excellent all the way around from the hostess to the table servers. The chef is excellent. Sorry I did not get his name, but he really put on a great meal. Our steaks were done perfectly and all the side orders were terrific.
We had the early dining (at 6:00p.m.) in the Posh Dining room. Our server was Michael (at Table 351). Michael along with his crew were excellent. Always there and making sure our meal was what we had expected.
Our first port was Grand Turk. We took the trolley ride as it was only 1-½ hours. Nice way to see the port without a lot of walking.
We did not tour La Romana and believe me all the passengers were saying “Why did we stop here?” There was absolutely nothing there except the local beer, Presidente. They should consider eliminating this port.
Next was Aruba. We took the bus tour of the island for over 3 hours. It really covered everything there was to see. Nice tour with little walking.
Since we did not make it back to the ship for our 6:00 dining, we went to the Lido deck (buffet). Quite surprised as the good selection there.
We did find out that the best place for the buffet was the rear section near the Endless pool area, always found a table and not a lot of hustle and bustle there.
We also found the Fish n Chips on deck 10. Great best kept secret of the ship. Never crowded and the fish and chips were always excellent. It is only accessible via stairs but you have to discover this great little dining spot.
The staff throughout the ship (exception Casino) were very friendly and very helpful.
We attended on show advertised as big band. Have no idea what the producer of this show knew about big bands, but this was sooooo poor, we left after one half hour. Felt sorry for the performers, they were only doing what they were told.
The VIFP party, however was excellent. Free drinks and snacks. Great attendance and the overall show reliving the early days of cruising was excellent.
We attended on comedy show at 7:30, comic was great, sorry I didn’t get his name, but he proved that you can be funny without being dirty.
We like Ron Moore who was in the Casino stage. However, they moved him the the Swingtime Lounge. We went to catch his show there, however, it is a cigar and smoking area. We could not stay and enjoy his show. Thankfully, he was back in the Casino on the last night.
Other entertainers were not too great. The so called Freedom bank sounded like my grandsons found some instruments and were banging them to death. Just loud and no way to figure out that they were playing, not sure they knew either.
Now for the only real cons on this cruise. This was our 13th cruise, 5th on Carnival. This was the only time we felt we had to tackle the serves to get a drink. The worst place was the Casino bar. The bartenders apparently never took a course in how to serve passengers, we would go to the bar (as servers were apparently on break) request a drink and then be totally ignored by the bartender. Unbelievable! Then to top it off, the last night our friend requested a Bud Lite from a server we had to truly tackle to take his order. One half hour later, she returns and say the bar is out of Bud Lite. Would you like another beer? Unbelievable! Requested a Coors Lite which took another half hour to show up. By then we had to go to our dining room, so the beer became a traveler. Apparently, Carnival is making enough money now that they really don’t care to be sure that the passengers are served in a timely and professional fashion.
All in all, the Casino experience being the most frustrating part of this cruise, the rest of the cruise was very relaxing and fun.