I want to start of by telling you a little bit about my cruise experiences. I have been on 14 cruises not all on Carnival. In Jan 2008, I took the Carnival Destiny out of San Juan, PR & did this same 7 day cruise. When I returned home I knew I wanted to plan this cruise again for my upcoming 40th birthday. So in March of 2008, I booked a group cruise through my travel agency (I'm a TA). My group of 34 friends & family couldn't wait to set sail on Jan 17th.
Most of us flew into San Juan, PR on Saturday, Jan 16, 2010. Flights were good & we received out luggage. We took a taxi to our hotel (Le Consulat) in Coronado, Puerto Rico. It was a very small boutique hotel. It was very clean & allowed us 6 persons to a room. Plenty of room with 2 double beds & a pullout sofa. We were able to book the mature rate and paid $170. This worked out to be $35.00 per person. You can't find another place in Puerto Rico for that kind of price. There was a outdoor pool with chairs & tables to sit by. Only 2 blocks to the beach & many restaurants & shopping near by. The La Concha hotel is about 1 block away. We felt totally safe walking around in the evenings. Excellent hotel front desk staff. We also stayed here 1 night post cruise on Jan 24, 2010 and the hotel staff stored our luggage for us until out rooms were available.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Jan 17, 2010
We took a taxi from our hotel to the port about noon. We went inside the terminal & made a few purchases in the duty free liquor store. Placed the items in our checked luggage & gave it to the porters. We also had a cooler with 12 pk coke, pomagrante juice & a case of water. Again no issues in receiving it on board.
We proceed to the check in area. It was very busy during this time. I like to get to the port about 10:30am so I don't have to wait in line but we just didn't make it in time. So we waited about an hour until we were finally on board.
Our rooms were not available until about 1:30. They keep the metal doors closed so you cannot enter the hallways of the cabins. Once all the cabins have been cleaned you will then be allowed access into your cabin. We had lunch on the Lido Deck after boarding. They have plenty of items to choose from such as: salad bar, Asian food, pastas, burgers, hot dogs, pizza, made to order sandwiches, wraps, desserts, ice cream, etc. Free beverages: ice tea, lemonade, coffee, & water. Again no complaints regarding the food quality or quantity.
After lunch we got off the ship to enjoy old San Juan as they were having their annual San Sebastian Festival. It's a street festival that involve locals. Craft market, street parades, music, drinking in the streets. It's a huge party. So crowded at one point you couldn't move. It was crazy! I also tried Gasolina (drink in a juice box). They were 3 for $5.00. $99 cent local beers as well. Plenty of drinking going on! I planned this cruise all around this festival & enjoyed it as well.
After the street festival we walked & shopped around a bit. We always hit the Marshall's dept store while we are there. They have some good prices & my husband always finds something to buy.
We decided to head back to the ship earlier than the required time of 8:30pm. Dinner seating was available anytime up till 9pm. The food was outstanding the entire week. So I'm not going to comment on this. The muster drill was easy as you no longer have to wear your life vest. When you hear the instructions over the intercom system you proceed to your station. Your station letter is right on your sign & sale card. The whole drill was less than 15 min long. They no longer call off each room number so again much easier than past cruises.
After the drill, we headed up to the lido deck for the sail-a-way party. This particular crowd on this weeks cruise was very active in getting into the nightlife. Plenty of entertainment, shows, comedians, piano bar, casino, disco, lido deck parties. They even featured movies on the lido deck at 1:30 am.
Weather: PERFECT!!! It was hot, sunny & in the 80's everyday. Just perfect. Calm seas too. Truly perfect.