We booked the Cruise on the New CCL Magic over a year ago, as soon as we read that the ship was to be home ported in Galveston, Texas. We booked the Transatlantic Cruise and became part of a very large Roll Call on Cruise Critic Boards. We all were tremendously excited and were all looking forward to a fun filled happy crossing to Galveston.
My wife and I flew to Barcelona with our Aunt and Uncle with great excitement and plans to have a wonderful 16 days on the new ship. We like most others spent the evening before departure in Barcelona, and enjoyed the city(even if it did rain) -
The boarding of the ship on the 28Th was easy, and we were very pleased with the duty free shopping at the terminal, purchased champagne and prepared for our "sail away". Our group had a M&G on the Lido Aft area for the ships departure which was fun and nice to meet each other.( my wife does not drink - so I enjoyed the champagne) ---
The first night aboard - we ate in the Southern Lights Dining Room, which was lovely, - and we enjoyed KEN Bryant the Singing Maitre...... all was wonderful until about 3:00 AM when my wife became very ill. She threw up for several hours, and then started severe diarrhea. Throughout the next day, She became very dehydrated and I became concerned. I requested a wheel chair for her and we took her to the ship infirmary. Long story made short, - she was given two "I.V." treatments, many pills, and confined to the stateroom for four days. She was given a Room service "special diet" only, brought to the cabin on a tray with a "red plastic bag" over it, and her APASS sail and sign card blocked so she could not go ashore. SHE WAS NOT SEA SICK, nor was she ill from the stomach flu as the Doctor and Nurses suggested. We missed all of our CC Roll Call group activities, and all of the ports of call in Spain.....as well as the Halloween Party - and the first five days of the Cruise - we saw no one.
The next few days was spent also in the cabin where she slept most of the time, as I was able to go about the ship and also bring her some food from the Lido Buffet - During which time I also developed some of the same symptoms she had, and just remained on our balcony most of the cruise. Finally after a long time recouping, we arrived in Freeport ( in place of Grand Turk ) where we did go ashore - and into town shopping.
That evening - we tried unsuccessfully to go to the 8:30 PM show in the Showtime Theatre. We went around 7:45 PM, (- as we have always done on many, many cruises....) only to find the entire showroom was packed. The showroom is way too small for the size of the ship, and number of passengers aboard. We stood in the door way and tried to see the Magic Show- ( which I understand was very good )All in all - at this point it really did not matter as the cruise was pretty much done for us.
In some sort of closing, - all I can say is that based on all our sailing experiences, our being CCL Platinum, and having sailed on many other CCL Ships, as well as other companies ( Celebrity , HAL, and Cunard ) this has to have been the very worst cruise ever.......period.
Upon returning home, - 11/13/2011 - we visited our personal Doctor first thing the next day, who after a complete examination, blood tests, and etc. - came to the conclusion that we contacted the Norovirus on board the ship.
Is the Magic a jinxed ship ? I do not suggest that she is - however, there needs to be a better system of crowd control in the showroom, dining rooms, and some means of improvement in cleanliness of the ship, as many people were in the infirmary each and every time we went to have my wife treated.
The other area of great disappoint was with " James " the "fill in CD" after John Heald left the ship. In all of our cruising experience's - I will say that he seemed a poor substitute, and way too "flamboyant" to represent the newest CCL Ship in their fleet ....