My friend and I booked a two-week cruise on the Carnival Victory in June. We took the same cruise a year ago and loved it for the itinerary offering different ports every day. There is so much to see and do on the islands during the day, with plenty of time to relax in the evening. We flew to San Juan the night before and stayed at the Sheraton in Old San Juan, right across from the cruise pier.
EMBARKATION: quick and easy. The friendly Carnival employees took care of everything while we were sitting at the VIP lounge. We headed to the terminal around 11.30 and began boarding the ship promptly at 12:30. In fact, we were the first two people to board due to our VIP status!
ROOM: We had originally booked a balcony cabin but Carnival upgraded us two weeks prior to departure to an ocean view suite. The suite was spacious, with plenty of closet space, a larger balcony and, most of all, a refrigerator (regular interior and balcony cabins on this ship don't have refigerators.) Our room attendant was excellent.
FOOD: same as any other Carnival ship, abundant but bland. There were long lines at the omelet station at breakfast and lunch, especially in the early afternoon when most passengers returned from their shore excursions. The Mediterranean restaurant on the Lido deck (also known as the buffet) was right on the money. We went to the dining room on the first formal night and had to wait 25 minutes for somebody to get our drinks and over an hour for the food to arrive. The glorified lobster was, unfortunately, overcooked; the steak, however, was medium-rare at best, even though I had requested it well-done. We finished our meal with the signature warm melting chocolate cake and never returned to the dining room.
ENTERTAINMENT: better than usual. There were two exciting shows featuring the Victory singers, dancers and show band: 'City Lights' and 'Vroom.' Both shows have been choreographed with great attention to detail and flow nicely. Both singers have powerful voices; the musicians were simply spot-on. The magician, however, didn't quite keep us on the edge of our seats. The cruise director, Brad, did a great job and I enjoyed his refined Canadian sense of humour.
DEBARKATION: again, quick and easy. People were calmly waiting for their zone number to be called so the could debark the ship. A fleet of cabs were waiting outside the terminal to take passengers to the airport.