Remember this was a back to back cruise. On this cruise was; DW & myself of course, my DS & BIL (3rd & 4th cruises) and my DB & SIL, (1st and 2nd cruises). We flew in the day before and stayed at the Days Inn Cruiseport Airport for @ $90.00 a night. Hotel looked nice from the outside. They've started renovations and are working from the top down. We were on floor # 2, let's just say, at least it was clean. No restaurant in this hotel so we grabbed a taxi to The Cheesecake Factory. It was great, the food, large portions at a good price, and the service was just as good. On the way to the restaurant, the boys were in one cab and we stopped for the smuggle on wine.
Embarkation; my theory is, you have to wait in line anyways, so we might as well go early. Now seeing that the 10 & 11 o'clock shuttles were full, and we didn't want to wait til 12,so we grabbed a couple taxis and were at the port, Pier 19, and in line by 10:30. We did the check in thing and then went and sat down to wait, sitting is so much better than standing. This is where we found out that we couldn't have our requested 6 pm dinner time. We later figured out that there were a lot of groups on board, and they all probably wanted the early. So we decided to give it a try, hey more time for sushi. We get the nod to move from the terminal and through the line to put your picture on the S&S card and then we were on board by 11:35. Not too bad if I do say so myself, 65 minutes. When we were with the check in lady, we saw a letter saying that even though you can't stay in your cabin, you can go and drop off your carry ons. DW & I did this, we just tucked them under the bed with no problem. We found our Room steward and told him they were there, but for the others they weren't allowed to. I guess their stewards were being a bit testy. So we went to the Lido deck for food and drinks. Then the muster drill. You might as well go, because they shut down the bars and food service. After the drill, we went back to the cabin and found our bags, @ 4:30. We did the unpacking thing and then just met the others at dinner. I'm not going to got through every detail.
Our Stops were; Key West, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Ft. Lauderdale, ( turn around day), Cozumel, Limon Costa Rica and Colon Panama. We missed Limon because we has a medical emergency and had to redirect to Roatan Honduras. This was the closest port with med-evac capabilities. The Captain tried to get us into Roatan, but the pier was full and they didn't have tender service available. So seeing that we went there on our sea day, this put us out of range for Limon. Well yes we could have gotten there, but for only 2 hours. 3000 people off and on the ship in two hours, I don't think so. So we headed straight for Colon Panama. We had an extra day at sea and everything was refunded. So seeing that we had our S&S bill reduced by $218.00, DW & I went to the gift shop, lol.
Food, all six of us agreed that the food was really good with some flashes of brilliance, mainly at dinner, and some Ok. But over all we decided not to do the Sun King Supper club because the food was that good in the dining room. Breakfasts were the same every day, but how can you really change breakfast. Lunch buffet hot items changed every day.We ate in the dining room once for lunch and it was good. Mongolian grill was really good but long lines. Deli was good and the fish and chips were not so good. I think it's the fish they use, because on the Liberty in '07 it was absolutely awful. I tried it again but won't be back the next time we sail CCL.
For those of us who went to the shows, they really enjoyed them especially the Beatles Review show, however, from the men anyways, I think it had something to do with the girls wearing thongs, LOL. Piano player, Peter wasn't that good. Playing the piano was fine but his singing, wowsers, stay away from the falsettos. Don't ever request a BeeGees song.
Decor; a lot of people have called it "Garish" I call it, "I wouldn't put it in my house and neither would you, so why would anyone really care". Lido deck music was alright, although a bit loud. Now before you get your nickers in a knot, I'm 46 not 105. A lot of people were upset that the inauguration was on for something like 10 hours. For those of you who recognize me, I'm Canadian, and most of the complaints were coming from Americans. I've cruised with my DS & BIL before, but this was the first time for my DB & SIL, and I'd sail with the 'group' again. We had a great time. Disembarkation; between the 3 couples, we had #s 10,11 & 12. So we waited for # 12 to be called, and then we did the dreaded walk to the Atrium to disembark. All in all 30 minutes to the airport, we were there by 9:30, flight was at 2:50, darn!