Cruise Review Carnival Glory March 24, 2007 - March 31, 2007
Ports of Call: Port Canaveral, Fl; Cozumel; Belize, Costa Maya; and Nassau.
Cruise Experiences: This was our 9th cruise with Carnival and our 48th cruise overall.
This was our first time aboard the Carnival Glory, which for this trip had Captain Salvatore Rassello in command.
Embarking/Disembarking: Check in gets mixed reviews. They were testing a new process called Express Check-In. They no longer wanted the "Fun Pass" which we printed from their website. Spent about five minutes at the first desk and received our room keys. Next to the obligatory boarding photo station and then we boarded the ship. Once on board we were directed to the Golden Dining Room on Deck 3 where we were trooped around the entire dining room and then did the "Sign and Sail" card thing with a one of several representatives stationed there. We arrived at the cruise terminal in Cape Canaveral about 11:30 AM and had finished the check in process in less than 15 minutes. But, there was a feeling of being "herded" around, thus the mixed review. Staterooms areas were locked off until 1:00 PM, so like everyone else we dragged our carry-on bags with us to the Red Sail buffet area for lunch.
Disembarking was the worst we have experienced in all of our cruises. We disembarkation color was not called until after 11 AM and we worked our way through line after line for over an hour to reach Immigration and our luggage. It was after noon when we finally got out of the building. Stateroom: We had a ocean view stateroom, #1216 on the Rivera Deck. The room was a very nice size and well equipped. Quite large as cruise ship staterooms go. I really enjoyed the little detailing that was evident in the room. I enjoyed some of the extra touches including indirect lighting. I would rate the stateroom as excellent to outstanding. We used the queen bed configuration and there was ample room on both sides of the bed to navigate. Stateroom did include a refrigerator which served as a cash bar. Bathroom was typical of cruise ships. Shower was the small but very functional I experienced no change in water temp. Supplied amenities were excellent. The bath towels were very large and thick, much better than on most cruise ships.
Restaurants and Food: There are two dining rooms aboard the Coral: The Platinum and The Golden both on Deck #3. The Golden is located amidships while the Platinum is at the aft end of the ship and cannot be reached directly. You must transit the ship on Deck #5 and then go down two decks to reach this dining room.
Open seating breakfast and lunch were served in the Platinum Dining Room and in the Red Sail Buffet (Deck #9 aft). The quality and variety of the food was excellent throughout the cruise. We ate most all of our dinners in the Platinum with the exception of Monday evening following a long shore excursion in Cozumel, when we ate in the Red Sail. Our breakfasts and lunches were split between the Red Sail and the Platinum. Selections were all great; we particularly enjoyed the "cooked to order" egg station, at the buffet.
Entertainment: There were the usual mix of musical revues and guest entertainers spread throughout the week ship in the theater. Nothing truly outstanding and only one that caused the four in our group to leave early. They also had the usual audience participation show (newly wed game, etc.). I felt the Glory Singers and Dancers did an outstanding job. This troupe was somewhat larger (in number) than we have seen on other ships. The Amber Theater was a disappointment overall. Although "glitzy" it does not function well. Lots of pole obstruction on the upper levels and the very highest level has seats with almost no leg room. All of the seats we used were uncomfortable. I very much disliked the bar service continuing throughout the performances. I understand the cruise line wants to make every buck possible, but this was just too much.
Cruise Director Ralph "Wee Jimmy" Valente did a barely adequate job, I would rate him as one of the worst we have seen. The Glory Orchestra was very good.
Other: The pool areas were great, typical of Carnival ships. Since this was a "Spring Break" week they were full of kids.
The mandatory Life Boat Drill was by far the worst organized drill we have ever attended in all 47 previous cruises. Seemed like they had never done this before and it took almost an hour for them to get everything figured out.
The gift shops were well stocked and stayed open most nights past 10 PM. The photographers were around the ship constantly. Formal photos were staged in many areas every night. Overkill in my opinion. Announcements over the ships intercom were constant and on a couple of evenings continued past 10 PM.
Ports of Call:
Cozumel We booked on-line for a one day pass to the Reef Club Resort: http://reefclubcozumel-px.rtrk.com/specials_packages/day_pass/index.html. A fee of $40 per person covered the use of all their excellent facilities and all of our food and drinks for the entire day. We had both breakfast and lunch there.
Belize We did Cave Tubing booked independent of the ship through CaveTubing.com and has one of the most memorable shore excursions of our lives. Highly recommend this activity. Costa Maya Just walked around the port area and shopped. A very enjoyable stop. This was our second time in Costa Maya. Nassau You have all been to Nassau. We just wandered around town for a couple of hours window shopping and then returned to the ship.
Overall: I would rate the Carnival Glory a 6.5 on a scale of 1 to 10. The overall experience was acceptable, but not outstanding. I have deducted for the show room, disorganized life boat drill, extremely cold public areas, the constant announcements, and the horrible disembarkation.
In the future, I will check my sailing dates a little closer and avoid Spring Break. However, I did not make any deductions from my cruise rating because booking these dates was my fault and should not reflect on the ship or cruise line.