Hey all...just off the Glory and wanted to post my review bc I learned so much from CC before I went. Thought it was only fair. We flew into FLL airport and took John's Cab Service to the Marriott Bicayne Bay where my family and I(10 total ranging in ages from 10-67) stayed for the night before departure. John's Cab Service was resonable, reliable and very clean. We got the Marriott on Priceline.com for $85 a night. We were very excited with the price as when we tried to book it on our own it was well over $200 per night. It was a nice, clean, typical hotel for a Marriott. No place I would want to stay for an extended time as it has little to do. The pool area is not that great....just a pool. Lobby is beautiful but the food was way over priced. We found a hotdog vendor right down the street and attached to the Marriott there is a little store where we picked things up for breakfast and ate dinner at the little bar there. The food was great and you get a TON of it. We had a driver from the Marriott take us to the nearest grocery store to buy our wine, pop and water for our next days departure.
None of us slept the night before as we were so excited. Some of our group has cruised before...all on Carnival. We always have a great time, food is always super and we can't see a reason to pay more $$ when Carnival goes out of its way to keep us coming back. We took the shuttle service from the hotel...$5 each. I don't know why the hotel does not do more to promote this service. When I called they said we would have to take a cab. Not to impressed with cabs so I was very happy to see they had a service we could use. In fact, we used them to the port, back to the hotel after the cruise and ended up using them to take us back to the FLL airport the next day.($85 for the whole group of us...ask for Mario's #)
When we arrived at the port at 10:30am...the whole process was very smooth. We were on the ship by 11:30, and after we worked out our cabana that we booked on line, had our pop cards and our 1st drinks(of many) in hand by noon. Of course we went to the Red Sail Buff. to eat...we all had a variety from pizza to burgers to fish n chips to sands. All of us agree that if someone has a problem finding something to eat... they are the ones with the problem. None of us went hungry at any time and in fact.., we all came home in tighter clothes. We never had a problem with any of the food the whole 7 days.
By 1:30 we were off to our rooms. We had 3 balcony rooms right in a row(6438, 6442, and 6450) and 2 inside cabins for the kids right across the hall.(6440 and 6444) This location was great that we were together, our balconies for 2 of the rooms were larger than reg. balc. and our room steward(Antonio) was fabulous. He opened the dividers for the 3 balconies so it was huge. I love balconies!!! However...I don't know if I would book these exact rooms again. Maybe same rooms just on the 7th deck. At night, it could be loud for sleeping until midnight or so and there was an odor in the hallways only that real stunk at times.
We ate in the dinning room once for breakfast but found we liked the buff. better. For lunch we tried it all...fish n chips, pizza, burgers, buffet, burrito bar, sushi, ice cream. If it was there, at least one of us ate it and was pleased. I wasn't a fan of the sushi....any sushi that is!!!!!
We ate each night in the Platn. Dining Room for late seating as it got us all back together to talk about our day. Our wait staff was the best.(Puntria, I Made, Gradf) One night my mother ordered the Flat Iron Steak and I Made took it back...on his own...because he didn't feel it was cooked right for her. This is the first out of three cruises that our drink waiter was there willing to even bring us extra pop. He even smiled and made jokes with the kids. With 10 people, most of us ate a lot of different things. I say most because 2 of the teen boys that were with us got the flat iron steak every night with fries, shrimp cocktails, ceaser salads and of course choc. melting cake. Then PB n J's and chips for room service at 2 am every night. There was nothing that we walked away saying it was horrible. The ribs were a HUGE hit as was the fried shrimp. We enjoyed the soups, the Flat Iron Steak, Chix. Fett. and the Veal Parm. Like I said before, if you walk away hungry, you need to recheck YOU not the food or the staff.
None of the kids, even though they were signed up, went to any of the Camp Carnival...O2 clubs. The teen boys now say they wish they would have went for the meet and greet on the 1st night to meet some other kids but...next time.
At night, we all enjoyed a bunch of different things. We went to most of the shows that were good. The dancers were ok...I didn't find them to "sexy" for my kids as I have read on these boards. The illusionist was GREAT!!! And this young kid...Timmy can REALLY sing. We enjoyed the comedians each night too. We did go to the dance club a couple of nights and kareoke. WOW...some people just need to be told they are not that good and doing things once is enough. The only real negative thing I can say about Carnival is that they allow to much smoking in areas that I would have liked to enjoy. Wanted to go to the piano bar but couldn't. Being a non-smoker it was tough. I am all for smokers rights but....
DAY 2: HALF MOON CAY
By far...one of my favorite places in the world. I book all of my cruises going here. When they talk about paradise, this is it for me. We booked a cabana on line which worked out great. Loved that!!! It gave us a place to all be grounded too. We got the last cabana which was awesome. The island was packed by the little water park and this was far enough away to get us away from all of that. It was the most perfect day. The water is soooo blue and after leaving the snow back here in NY...as close to heaven as I could be. There are a ton of excursions to book but we just enjoyed hanging out by our cabana and enjoying the sun. We didn't go to either bar but we did get food at the BBQ. It was OK and filled all of our tummies.
DAY 3: SEA DAY
We all did a bunch of different things. Making my way around the ship and laying out in the sun is what kept me busy. I am not a big fan of sea days but there is so much to do that everyone enjoyed themselves. We went to a spa talk and re-learned a bunch and worked out in the gym. Not a great gym but they have everything I needed to get sweaty. This day was also the 1st of 2 formal night. My daughter and I went and got our hair done up nice for dinner which was a nice bonding moment. I realized however she is growing up way to quickly and I need to charish every moment with her. Dinner was super! Lobster and shrimp where the favorites of the group.
DAY 4: ST. THOMAS
We booked a tour with Sunny Liston Tours. I will say the tour was OK. I thought it would be a lot more informative and a lot more fun as in the reviews I have read. It was OK. I also was very dissapointed with island. That is my bad. It was not the paradise I had pictured. It was very dirty in spots but the views were spectacular. I have always thought I would want to go there with my family on an extended vacation but since this day...that has changed.
DAY 5: SAN JUAN
We booked a tour with Albert Aquirre who I found through these boards. I can't tell you how AWESOME the whole day and experience was. It was incredible and this is all due to Albert. He even let me use his cell phone as my phone does not cover PR. He is soooo passionate about PR and everyone in our group felt that. My son says he is going to add him on facebook. We met him outside the port gates at the Sheraton Hotel. I wasn't impressed with the short walk there as tons of cabbies are begging to take you somewhere but once there, all that changed. We took a drive to the rain forest where we got amazing photos. Albert talked about PR the whole time answering ANY questions we had. He made the kids...and my mom cool hats out of the leaves, it was great. After the rainforest we took a beautiful drive along the most beautiful undeveloped beaches I have ever seen. We stopped at this cool little "shack" that served amazing authentic foods. Albert seems to be a regular there. The people were fantastic and they made us feel right at home. We watched some surfer for a bit and then it was off to see some more sights of Old San Juan and the forts. We all learned so much on this tour that we will be booking a week in PR. I am positive we will see Albert again. He just brought PR alive for us. I recc. him to EVERYONE!!! You can get a hold of him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 787-317-6907. You won't regret it.
DAY 6: GRAND TURK
We had a great day here also. Spent some of the time at Margaritaville, on the beach and then at Jack's Shack. This is our 3rd time there and I have to say, Jack's has grow a lot busier over the years. We also rented a golf Cart from Nathan's and the kids had a blast tooling around the island. I was a bit nervous but it all worked out well.
DAY 7: SEA DAY
Again...not a fan of sea days but played corn hole, ping pong, putt putt, basketball, laid out in the sun and bought a ton of pics that we had taken. I was impressed however with the amount of chairs around the deck there was. I NEVER had trouble finding a place to hang out with the crowd or off by myself. With that said, I could NEVER get a chair in the Adult Serenity Area during the day. I spent a couple of very romantic nights with my hubby out there though.
Disembarkment went smooth. Off the boat by 10:30. We had a great cruise. The Glory was in great shape and the staff is amazing. Everyone smiling and working to make things perfect. Jorge and his staff were always busy. We saw Jorge every day so those who say he is not around...????? There was ALWAYS something going on so those who say there was little to do...again?????. I would be happy to answer any questions you might have and I will answer them the best I can. Happy cruising. Wish I was back on her right now.