This being our tenth cruise we arrived in Miami as Platinum Members for our Carnival Glory 7 day cruise to the Eastern Caribbean. Empress deck balcony mid ship.
Arrived in port and dropped off my 5 other passengers at the luggage check in and headed for the parking garage second floor. Upon my return to the check in my wife and I walked down the VIP line and checked in. Not one person in this line. My other friends checked in the regular way and we were able to compare Platinum and regular service. We were escorted to the front of the line to have our bags screened and headed right upstairs. Then off to the private check in suite, no one in that line either. Back outside and showed our brand new shinny Platinum Cards to the lady at the bottom of the escalator and up we went and right onto the ship and right to our room. Meanwhile, our friends completed the lengthy lines and had to wait to be called by zone onto the ship. By the time they had gotten on the ship we had been to our room unpacked our one carry on bag and had almost finished lunch.
Carnival did not have us all assigned to one table but a trip to the dinning room took care of that and we were given a table at the rear of the Platinum Dinning Room with a view right off the rear of the ship. Dinning Room staff was outstanding and the food was great every night, the best of my 10 Carnival cruises. Food in the cafeteria was also very good, no complaints. Breakfast in the dinning room was also very good and fast.
The ship was clean and our room staff was top notch and called us by name from the moment we showed up at the door. Room and balcony clean and service was also outstanding. No complaints with the room or staff.
Cruised to Nassau for our third time and visited a really nice hotel in the morning and then back to the port for some shopping and sightseeing. One really neat thing was the police officer in full dress uniform on the box in the intersection directing traffic, pretty cool.
St Thomas was nice, been there before several times so we went with another couple to St Johns and off to Trunk Bay. Beautiful. We did not schedule any excursions we did them on our own. Had a great time with Todd at Captain Quin's Bar waiting for the ferry to St. John's. He did what we all have thought about over the years. Left California four years ago and now working the bar and his wife is doing snorkeling trips every day. They live in a duplex on a hill overlooking some of the prettiest islands and waters around. Well worth the trip...do it yourself so you can pace yourselves.
Puerto Rico was our next stop and we had never been there before. This was a great destination. We took a short tour of the port area and San Juan. We toured the old fort and took in some great views and lots of photos, a must see. We then walked the shops and headed for the ferry to take us to the Bacardi Rum Factory. I thought it was a great journey and tour. Had a few free drinks and bought some glasses for the house. The views from the ferry ride were great. Another trip we just did ourselves and we had a great time. It filled the entire day, we made it back to the ship 15 minutes before departure.
Our last stop was Grand Turk. WOW! We have never been here before either. The ship docked and literally right beside the ship was great shopping, the beach with free chairs and snorkeling and a freshwater pool that was awesome with bar service and food. Three of us took a little side trip to a hotel on the beach and sat by the pool and had a beer and lobster salad.
When we pulled out of port there was a Princess ship beside us. It was pretty cool. Everyone was waving, yelling and partying on the decks. It was fun to see everyone having such a great time.
A new tradition will be to go the steak house on the last night. The Emerald Steak House was wonderful. The staff was on their game with great food, great presentation and beautiful decor. I had a Maine lobster tail and filet. Another WOW and well worth the extra $30 per person. For what you experience, it was more than worth it.
As Platinum Members we used the free laundry service, very nice. Received two free lunch cooler bags, Sushi in our room one night and pastry's one evening. As you can see, I'm hooked.
One of the shows on the ship, "Living in America," we have seen probably four times. The other show was the same with some different sets. Comedians were very good and at least 3 different shows almost every night. I'm very critical when I travel but I will say this trip was as good, if not better, than our Miracle trip to St Marteen, St Kitts and St Lucia. The staff was great, the food was great and the ship was very nice. Nothing went wrong and I really had no complaints on this cruise. If I had to say something, I would say more time in the ports of call. We are booked for number 11 this May on the Freedom. Done it, but just love to cruise and do different things each time we visit ports of call.
Disembarkation as a Platinum Member was again well worth the experience. We arrived in Miami as we were having breakfast and then retrieved our one bag from the room and went off the ship as our other checked bags were just coming around the corner on the baggage belt and right off to customs, no line and out to the parking lot. We were off the ship and at our car in less than 10 minutes. We waited for our friends for well over 45 minuets.
Carnival can be hit or miss but this time...right on target.