2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
This cruise was amazing, it was my dream cruise! I traveled with my mom and dad. It was amazing! It was a new ship with only 2 months sailing before our cruise. You could tell that everything was new since the boat was just beautiful. It ... Read More
This cruise was amazing, it was my dream cruise! I traveled with my mom and dad. It was amazing! It was a new ship with only 2 months sailing before our cruise. You could tell that everything was new since the boat was just beautiful. It was my first cruise but not my parents. It was a busy cruise since we stopped every day except 3 days. So th cruise was a bit tiring but that was because it was my first cruise. The food, it was okay not the best. By the end of the cruise all of the food was tasting the same. I also did not like how at the buffet the food kept repeating every other day. The dinning room was nice. But again the food was not the best, very bland food. The food there repeated sometimes too. Another thing I really did not like is that we had to wait 10-70 minutes for a table to go to the dinning room. We did have open dinning but since the ship sailed off at different times we did not want to commit to a certain time. . I LOVED the pizza, 24 hour ice cream, Mexican food stand and the Guys burger joint. It was the best food on the ship. Just beware that some resteraunts charge an extra fee that maybe costly. But losts of good resteraunts are included. Cabin, it was very cozy and very small. But that is cruise life. We had a balcony and even though it is more money it is worth it. It was hard to fit 3 people since the bed could only fit 2 and the pull out couch was NOT comfy more like a rock. The room was very clean and nicely kept by our cabin staff. We did not know that we were right bellow the buffet room so every night all night so we could not sleep beside of the noise of the cleaning staff. We told the guest services and they did not do much to help but they did give us a 100 dollar credit. But the room was wonderful very well kept and I LOVED the towel animals they made daily. The cabin at the end of the cruise felt like my new beloved home. The staff, the staff was wonderful! There was a few nasty staff members on the play area and they made it difficult to rise the Sky Rider. The Sky Rider was impossible to go on so don't go on it if you don't absolutely want to. But so many staff members would do ANYTHING for you. You became friends with some of them because they were so likeable. Even though there were concerns this cruise was just amazing the staff was nice, food was okay, ship was wonderful and many more. I wish I lived on the ship. Hopefully we will sail on the Carnival Vista soon again. I would definitely recommend this cruise and ship to your family. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2013
We chose Carnival as we had enjoyed a previous cruise with them sailing out of Tampa Florida..The food and entertainment were excellent and we had a wonderful holiday. Sadly the same could not be said for this cruise. The embarkation was ... Read More
We chose Carnival as we had enjoyed a previous cruise with them sailing out of Tampa Florida..The food and entertainment were excellent and we had a wonderful holiday. Sadly the same could not be said for this cruise. The embarkation was dreadful with unhelpful staff and long queues. My friends handbag was snatched off her before she could close it and her passport was lost . Eventually it was found under the rollers of the x ray machine but not before being told she would not be able to sail. Not a good start to a holiday. The food was plentiful and varied at the self service which we had at lunch time but in the evening we like to eat in the Restaurant. I feel the very large number of passengers on this large ship led to cold food being served,Also the standard of food was not too good and I haven't eaten a steak since being served a large steak which a good vet could have resurrected. I h ad asked for a small medium rare steak. The southern fried chicken appeared to have been cooked a long time prior to being served and was hard and dry.The food would have been excellent to anyone whose criteria was if there is a lot of it its good. The entertainment was mundane ,repetitive and lacking variation . The cruise Director was excellent,naturally funny as were the comediens who were on later at night. The ship was lovely and the cabin comfortable and clean .As we have slight mobility problems we chose a cabin near the lifts but the length of the ship posed problems. However that was our own faults for not foreseeing that problem when booking. We certainly could not just nip back to the cabin. We only had one day when the decks seemed crowded. Most days we sat in comfort on easy chairs. The sail into Venice was the highlight of the cruise, taking advantage of being on an upper deck. Sadly this may not happen again as Venice may be stopping the larger ships from entering the lagoon. We only did a few excursions as we had been to many of the ports and it was lovely when only a few passengers were on board. The drinks were quite pricey but we expected that. Disembarkation was planned with military precision. We look forward to another cruise but probably not with this company due to the poor entertainment and food. Also we would choose a smaller ship. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We have been loyal Carnival customers for 16 years. We are VIP. In other words it would be very hard to make us un-happy. Well cangratulations Carnival you did it. This was the worst Carnival cruise we have ever taken. To begin at the ... Read More
We have been loyal Carnival customers for 16 years. We are VIP. In other words it would be very hard to make us un-happy. Well cangratulations Carnival you did it. This was the worst Carnival cruise we have ever taken. To begin at the beginning. The embarkation in Barcelona was awfull. Being VIP was supposed to get you on reasably early. NOT. We were one of the last to get on the ship. Oh well it had to get better. NOT. We immediately found a $35.00 charg on our account for the rental of a walker. Went to guest services to complain and was never more rudely treated. I was made to feel like I was being dishonest and was trying to get out of something, even though it was obvious that neither my wife or I needed a walker. After 3 days we finally got a credit. The entertainment on Canival was supposed to be top notch. It's always been on our other 15 cruises. NOT. The Vegas style shows are gone. The guitar players on the ship were awful. There is no band or orchestra. All the music is canned. Let's talk about the food. Throughout the whole cruise the food was boring and totally un-imaginative. The powdered scrambled eggs at breakfast at the buffet was un-edible. Dinners the first few nights were o.k., but then they started repeating the same items over and over again. How many nights could they offer frogs legs you ask. Well don't. They obviously wiped out the frog population of Europe. I could go on and on I suppose, and believe me we could overlook alot, but the worst part of all was the rudeness of the staff. Eastern Europeans should never be in customer service. They are the coldest and most un-emotional people we have ever had the misfortune to come in contact with. Never a smile, and no hint that they are enjoying what they are doing. We have noticed over the past few years that Carnival's customer service has been going downhill. Well it's reached the bottom. Take a hint from us and avoid Carnial completely. We will. They've lost us permanently. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We booked a five day stay in Barcelona at the H10 Universitat Hotel. We had an inside room that was very small but the price reflected the worth of a place to just rest your head. It was clean and efficient and for 12 euros extra per room ... Read More
We booked a five day stay in Barcelona at the H10 Universitat Hotel. We had an inside room that was very small but the price reflected the worth of a place to just rest your head. It was clean and efficient and for 12 euros extra per room per day you can get an excellent breakfast in their restaraunt. The staff is wonderful and very accomodating. It's location is excellent, being a short block from beautiful Plaza Catalunya which is the centre of the city. We were surprised at the cleanliness of the streets and numerous parks and the friendliness of the people. We went on an all day tour called "skip the lines" which gave us an overview of the sights and places of interest. We used the "hop on hop off" buses for the rest of our stay. I found Las Ramblas reflected much of the Catalan way of life and it was simply a lot of fun to walk down to the harbor. Anyone who finds this "cheesy" seems to be missing the point! We boarded the Breeze on Nov 6 and embarking was one of the easiest and fastest we ever experienced. The Breeze was just beautiful and the wait for our trip worth it. We were there mainly for the rest and relaxation and the shore tours offered by Carnival. There are cheaper ways to arrange these tours but we prefer the security and organization of Carnival tours. We didn't use the dining rooms or pay for alternate dining. I had a cold when I went aboard, so I avoided crowds where possible. We did catch a few shows and were quite pleased with the quality of the entertainment and venue. Most meals were taken at the Lido buffets, and we found the quality and selection excellent. The pizza served from the lido deck stern was made to order from a menu and was good and hot. Guys burgers were some of the best we ever tasted so don't miss them! I have to say my favorite breakfast was the made to order omelets. We found the service on the ship to be top notch from the busboys to the service desk. Special thanks to the room steward for anticipating our every need. Our stateroom (9319) was very comfortable and the balcony was more generous than anticipated. I spent a lot of time there reading and watching and listening to the waves go by. Our first stop was Majorca and we chose the half day Soller and train ride which we enjoyed. Our second stop was Malaga and we took the full day "Granada of the Moors" tour. It's about a 2 hour drive each way with a very nice restaurant lunch provided after the walking tour of the Alhambra. This was one of our favorite tours and you have to "see it to believe it". The only really difficult part is the cobble stone surfaces. There were a few stairs and minor uphill grades to walk, but even with Angina I didn't find it too difficult. Our third stop was Grand Canaria and we took the all day tour "The best of Grand Canaria". Again it was a good choice as the scenery is spectacular, and the location of the provided restaurant lunch was unique. The third and fourth stops we just winged it with some leisurely walking and shopping. Philipsburg on the island of St Marten provided some of the best bargains, so you may want to save your money ahead of time. The two day run back to Miami was for more relaxing and packing up. The debarkation was held up by American Customs and we thought we would miss our flight out at 12pm. Thanks to some quick thinking of Carnival staff who put us in a van direct to the airport we made our flight. Overall an excellent cruise with a few minor glitches. Please, don't sweat the small stuff and just enjoy the trip! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
While I would agree with several other reviewers on the beauty of the ship, my food poisoning and ensuing quarantine ruined what might have been a more favorable review. And, I think the lack of customer service, coupled with food ... Read More
While I would agree with several other reviewers on the beauty of the ship, my food poisoning and ensuing quarantine ruined what might have been a more favorable review. And, I think the lack of customer service, coupled with food poisoning, is something others should consider. At the dining room, early seating, I was served seafood newburg, with three mussels (presumably as decoration)that had their shells closed. Of course I did not eat those mussels. However, the mixed seafood had lots of already shelled mussels in the sauce. Four and a half hours later, I became drastically ill, vomiting with severe cramps. I called the medical center, thinking they should know about the food poisoning. They asked me to come right over, saying they could help. Instead of wanting to help, their goal was to enforce a legal quarantine based on their preferred diagnosis that I "gastrointestinal" illness that would be contagious. When we attempted to argue that I only had food poisoning (I had none of the other symptoms of gastrointestinal illnness), the nurse would not budge, but said if I felt fine in the morning, I could see the doctor, and if I was well, he could release me. Of course, the Breeze management would rather confine me with a wrongful diagnosis than admit to food poisoning. The next morning I was fine and went to the medical center. After waiting 45 minutes, the doctor refused to see me, I was told to return to my room, and could return 24 hours later to be released from the quarantine. FYI the quarantine was notified to everyone, the cabin steward, the dinner waiter, any deboarding use of the card, etc. all were informed I could not leave my room. When I attempted to order food by room service, my choices were limited to jello, clear broth and saltines. Needless to say, the next 24 hours were awful, both for me and my partner. Before we left the ship, we left a written letter at customer service asking for at least some recourse and/or an apology. We received no response on the ship, nor have we heard anything since. We took the cruise with another couple, and all in all, had a great time ... but this was less because of facilities offered by Carnival. On the 5 day crossing, we played bridge everyday ... but this was organized by other passengers, not Carnival. We used the Spa center for massage and facials, and this was outstanding. The entertainment the first night of the cruise was excellent, the second night good, but the remainder wee not up to the typical Carnival standard ... mediocre at best. Although the tickets were of course cheap, we expected something nice for the Breeze's maiden voyage across the Atlantic. In terms of food, the burgers and burritos were both fantastic. The rest of the food was good (ignoring the food poisoning) at pretty much what we would call standard Carnival. In conclusion, the food poisoning and wrongful quarantine put a cloud on the whole trip and I think it is unlikely I will take a Carnival trip again. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
My husband and I did the 12 day Cruise of the Med and stayed aboard for the Transatlantic. I have never been as disgusted at the lack of professionalism and common sense of the cruise staff. It appears that the ship is just too big and ... Read More
My husband and I did the 12 day Cruise of the Med and stayed aboard for the Transatlantic. I have never been as disgusted at the lack of professionalism and common sense of the cruise staff. It appears that the ship is just too big and the staff too poorly trained to manage it all. The cabin steward on the first leg was great but on the second leg, our steward must have been hiding as we saw him twice. The service was adequate. Our dining staff were also adequate. The food however was lacking with a boring menu and interestingly enough, the sauces for all of the meats were the same or seemed to be...dark and salty. The food was usually cold and the coupling of food was just plain strange. The bread selection was small, dry, and always the same. A big production was always made about using Purell to sanitize your hands but I am not sure what effort was made to cull the sick ones from the group. A woman sat across from us at dinner with a box of tissues on the table and blew her nose at will as well as people not hesitating to enter elevators with coughs and snotty noses. Walking down the hallways was like walking through a kennel with the barking sounds and try playing Blackjack with a few coughing and sneezing people touching chips and cards. UGH I asked a worker who was cleaning an elevator how come he was using such a strong chemical and he told me that a lot of people were sick... Safety and consideration? How about the naked baby in the Tidepool with no diaper on? or the 5 kids one day in and out of the jacuzzi eating and drinking with no supervision? or perhaps the Morons in the pool with beer bottles? who was in charge? Everything about the ship was a hype...buy, buy, buy everything from jewelry to spa services and shore excursions. Excursions? we took two. One to Pisa in the pouring rain with the lazy bus driver sitting with his feet up and the tour guide on her cel phone for most of the trip while some elderly and impaired guests had to walk for a quarter of a mile in the rain to get back to the bus but heaven forbid the bus would have gone down for them or the trip to Rome when the guide told us that she forgot her English for a bit since she just gave a tour in German the day before. She also told an older couple who asked to be picked up that walking was good for them. We took no more excursions and when we complained, the staff gave lip service that the tours were overbooked...it was raining etc. Oh, the staff...what is it about the Eastern Europeans? is it lack of education or just plain lack of social skills and training but they are very wooden and unemotional...a bit scary. I ordered a hot chocolate from one and he told me that it was too much trouble as he had to walk from the casino to the coffee shop to get one.....hard to believe. We had a horrible experience at the Cucina Italiana..we had a comp dinner and we invited our tablemates to come with us. the casino made our reservation and our mates made their own. The manager ( an Eastern European woman) called them back to remind them that they had to pay for their own dinner as our was a comp. They told us that they understood the circumstances. We arrrived for dinner and this woman walked over to our table and said to our tablemates." you must pay, they don't pay." and pointed to a carafe of wine that was comped to us and said," you pay for wine..if you drink...you pay." I left the table and got the woman aside and told her that she insulted these two fine woman and that I have never entered a resteraunt anywhere in the world and someone said..You Pay! Coincidently, the hotel director came into the conversation after entering the restaurant and said that the restaurant doesn't want to insult anyone and walked away. Of course, we were billed for the dinner....amazint....no wonder these people don't have a clue. IMHO, the activities available appear to be geared to the lowest common denoninator with things like the hairy chest contest and endless inane trivia contests. The entertainment was a bit suspect with sound blasting shows and a juggler...club comedian...and a guy that did card tricks ( for real)...the saving grace was a singer taken from the troupe for a show and an opera singer. Overall, pretty bad. Although the card players were given a room to play in, they always seemed to hang around the Marketplace and the outer pool decks depriving people with food a place to sit and enjoy their lunches. A few days before the end of the cruise this was finally addressed, I could go on and on but really, why bother? Herd them in and herd them out. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Who would not love the opportunity to sail from Barcelona across the Atlantic to Miami? It was an absolutely incredible vacation!! Barcelona is fabulous. The Carnival Breeze is a bright new modern ship. The weather was perfect! Carnival ... Read More
Who would not love the opportunity to sail from Barcelona across the Atlantic to Miami? It was an absolutely incredible vacation!! Barcelona is fabulous. The Carnival Breeze is a bright new modern ship. The weather was perfect! Carnival does do a lot of things right. The cabins were bright and clean. We stayed on the spa deck which gave us a few extra perks and our cabin steward, Althea was amazing!! The gym and spa were good- too crowded on sea days, but there was just so much sun you can get. Outdoor movies, comedy shows, a casino, games... wonderful. Since this is a review, here are the things that could be better: #1. The Food. Where to start? The burger joint was great. Greasy at times but oh so good on the taste!! Mexican was good, pizza so-so. We are not big on the Indian food so I can't rate that at all. Our friends seemed to like it . The deli was a perfect choice for really good food in a pinch. The Italian restaurant was great but there is an extra charge for that. Reasonable enough to visit often. Fahrenheit 55 was fabulous and we went several times. Its a shame tho that between the $35 charge per person plus wine or cocktails makes it a $100 a couple experience. The sushi was a disappointment and it was not free. What a shame. Some nights you would find sushi on the Lido deck buffet that was free, however. Not sure if it was the stuff left over that never sold from the Bonsai restaurant the night before!! There was also an extra charge for appetizers in the Red Frog, coffee and desserts on deck 5, and basically anything that wasn't boring or borderline un-edible . The main dining room was a BIG disappointment. Picture going to a really big wedding on a really tight budget. Food either overcooked or cold. On Filet mignon night, the steaks tasted like they had been boiled first than cooked. Disgusting!! Salads were miniscule, fish smelled strong, sauces were bland. Overall, a big BIG disappointment there. We skipped it most nights and ate either at the Italian (a charge), Steak house (a charge), Red Frog (a charge) or Lido buffet. Overall, this is the biggest area Carnival needs to fix. Make the food more edible!!! #2. Service. We loved our cabin steward and had nothing but a great experience there. We also loved the bar service and food service at the Italian restaurant, the Steak House (Yatzi is the best), the Red Frog (Colin) and the Sports bar on top (Yatzi again). The Lido deck service was horrific. No coffee cups in the morning and empty coffee, dirty tables. This area needs a lot of work. Dining room staff was ok. You could tell they worked hard and tried but there were too few servers for just too many people. The spa girls were nice but had no consideration for your time. Every time I used the spa, they were late. Not just a few minutes late but 10-15 minutes each time. If they spent less time talking amongst themselves or trying too hard to upsell the prior appointment and cared about the appointment they had scheduled, it would be a much more relaxing experience. #3. Design. Whoever designed this ship should go back to school!! Common sense things were just not considered at all. I mean, Laundry rooms across from cabins?? Really??? People would congregate in the halls to wait for the too few washers and dryers that were on the ship and disrupt the people who had the very unfortunate luck to have a room close by. I would have been furious!! The Adult only section by the kiddie pool!! Really??? Two tiny swimming pools for a ship that size? These things were mind boggling. On the plus side, the spa deck was a plus, nice and quiet, and no one can complain about the beauty of the ship overall. We have taken several Carnival cruises now over the years. Would we take another?? Probably. But we will also try other cruise lines because we KNOW things can be done better. Maybe if enough people keep pushing Carnival to back off with all the extra charges and make the things that are included in the price good quality, they can truly build a much more loyal fan base. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We are loyal Carnival cruisers but were a little disappointed with some things on this cruise. The ship is beautiful with the decor completely changed from other ships. The layout mistakes on the Magic have been corrected and the ... Read More
We are loyal Carnival cruisers but were a little disappointed with some things on this cruise. The ship is beautiful with the decor completely changed from other ships. The layout mistakes on the Magic have been corrected and the traffic flows much better. The buffet areas on Lido deck have been re-designed and no longer looks like a giant school cafeteria. Food: There are more places to eat now. The food is good, especially the Guy's burgers, but the food on Lido and in the MDR while good, is not the same as it was in years past. Most of the desserts are a type of cake with very few pies offered. The beef is just not as good, or maybe it is the way it is cooked. One can only order steak medium rare or medium well. And I am not sure how they define those choices as it never came out the same. The choices on Lido are the same, day after day. The activities consisted mainly of trivia all day long. But no more ships on sticks as prizes. Just an autographed picture of the entertainment staff who was hosting that particular session. And the B2B cruisers had all the answers. Bingo was not so in your face as before, but still was a big activity pushed by the ship. The Hasbro games were okay, but were only held three times. Two of the same people were chosen for two of the three sessions. Only 18 people were chosen each time, so very few were chosen to participate. The shows that I attended were not as good as in past cruises. Gone are the "Vegas" style productions. The movies were hit and miss. Children's movies were shown on the big screen and television and only 67 children were on board out of 3600+. My biggest complaint is the wait staff. We had a terrible waiter who gave even worse service after we complained. It would appear that Carnival has increased the number of passengers but has not increased the staff accordingly. For the five nights we had early dining, our dinner took over 90 minutes to complete. One night it was 8:05 pm when we got our dessert. Since we are platinum we requested YTD and got changed. The service was excellent but we sat in the section of the dining room that was serviced by a waiter we had on another cruise.. I heard many others complaining about slow service. The other complaint is how John Heald talks and treats his assistant Calvyn. Calvyn is gay, and on the morning shows, JH is always saying things like "don't touch me" and other things , which I think are not necessary and inappropriate. A person's sexual orientation is private and should not be either celebrated nor demeaned in a public setting. I like JH and his humor, but not in this particular instance. I will not go into the many other small "glitches" that took place with embarkation, debarkation, and other small snafu's that happened. I like Carnival and will sail again with them again. But their staff and procedures on these larger ships need improvement. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
I am comparing my experience to the review written by glomarrone. The description of the decor is quite accurate - a change from the often loud and sometimes distracting decor on other Carnival ships. The design of the Buffet was a ... Read More
I am comparing my experience to the review written by glomarrone. The description of the decor is quite accurate - a change from the often loud and sometimes distracting decor on other Carnival ships. The design of the Buffet was a pleasant change from the often drab settings, and there was better use of space to include breakfast bar type seats across the width of the restaurant; however, there is always the lingering problem of those who use the dining space for playing cards, reading books while viewing scenery, etc. Many passengers have to hold a table to assure that food will still be hot when finding a place to sit. A new feature of the ship is the lanai, a walkway around deck 5, over the lifeboats. While it makes for a nice track to walk around the ship, and includes more lounge chairs and occasional hot tubs positioned partway over the edge of the deck, it can also be annoying to those who have balconies just above it. We were on deck 6 forward. We would normally be able to sit on the balcony with privacy, but we had people waving good morning, or we had to listen to the squeaks of athletic shoes as people walked or ran on damp decks. We would normally be able to look straight down at the ocean, but now my husband considers this an obstructed view. The lights on the rail were illuminated all night, so the view of a dark sky to gaze at stars or watch for passing ships was not there. Carnival seemed to have their cabin stewards spread too thin, since we didn't even meet our steward until the third day of the cruise, after numerous calls to Guest Services and leaving a note on the bed about the lack or beach towels or robes, which are normally provided in the room. Our main waiter in the dining room seemed to be new to the job, as he was double and triple checking orders for the first few days, then began warming up to passengers, using first names and anticipating daily requests, such as tomato slices instead of salad, or extra crackers. I found that I only ordered the chilled soups, since many seemed to be a combination of whatever herbs, spices or other ingredients were available that day. I didn't find items such as beet or pumpkin soup desirable. Even on the daily "standby" menu, from which you can order other items (such as salmon, etc.), there was no common soup (chicken, vegetable, bean, etc.). I liked the idea of Internet usage being available in different parts of the ship, instead of being hidden away (such as just beyond a cigar bar). The terminals could also be used for information about the ship, activities, weather, and other things. The main site, where the Internet manager was located, was on the promenade level; however, it was adjacent to the bar where trivia and/or karaoke took place, so it became just a place to quickly check things online, then move on. There were plenty of loud announcements, especially encouraging people to "please wash your hands with soap and water". There were more Purell dispensers on the ship than I've seen on others, but still none inside the casino or immediately in sight upon exiting. At each main dining room, there were 2 dispensers, but when it came time to move people quickly for dinner, they had staff members stationed on either side with spray bottles to speed up the process. While this was the last cruise to purchase future cruise certificates, there was always a long line to take advantage of it or to book the next cruise on board. The shows in the main theater were repeated in some cases, just in reverse order, so that each seating in the MDR could see them. I was glad to see that they removed bingo from the evening portion of the use of the theater. There would always be those who were were already there playing bingo, and you'd have to sit through bingo in order to get a decent seat for the show. I did participate in a new experience - the Carnival Glee Club - in which, with only 5-6 rehearsals, we performed on stage (with choreography created by entertainment staff), singing "We Are The World" plus a disco medley of 7 songs. This show also included performances by certain staff members. Our maitre d, who always sang in the MDR before introducing the waitstaff, did not perform as well with a live band. We always accused him of being a "Frank Sinatra wanna be", since that was most of his songs. I don't ever recall having a singing maitre 'd on any other cruises. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
This site's summary for Carnival is "High-energy ship good for families, extroverts". Unfortunately on this cruise, Carnival lost the recipe. Passengers would have been totally bored if they didn't read, play games ... Read More
This site's summary for Carnival is "High-energy ship good for families, extroverts". Unfortunately on this cruise, Carnival lost the recipe. Passengers would have been totally bored if they didn't read, play games and/or cards, or frequent the casino. For example, I don't consider a sea day activity as going to the Art Auction. Both daytime activities and evening entertainment was sparse. Even the last two cruise days had the feeling of the typical "last cruise day". On the positive side: - With this ship's layout, I really appreciated the two separate pool areas. The aft pool provided peace and solitude while the mid-pool still provided the typical loud music and directed activities usually associated with Carnival. - The "Your Time Dining" was very convenient. The service was generally very good and the food was usually above average. - The crossing was very calm and warm. I'm thinking a southern latitude transatlantic route during late-November is preferable to a more northerly crossing. On the negative side: - During cruises, I enjoy frequenting the steam room. Unfortunately on the Breeze, the use of the steam room requires purchase of a spa package. The cost quoted at the beginning of the cruise was $249. - The entertainment was lacking and a real disappointment. The reliance on background animation in the stage productions was tiring and repetitive. In fact, I had a hard time discerning what audio was prerecorded versus live. Also, there was only one band (Eddie C & The Cool Breeze Band). Unfortunately they appeared to disembark at Antigua (with four days left). There also were two guitar players; however, I didn't consider them very good. A big disappointment was that only nine of the fifteen days had comedian shows. What kept the evening lively was the piano bar with Ron Pass. In conclusion even with the negatives, I might again consider the Breeze for a shorter cruise duration or if Carnival addresses the entertainment shortcomings. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
After looking forward to this Trans-atlantic cruise, I was very disappointed. The pluses should always be first so: *the decor is a great improvement over the glitzy Vegas decor of other Carnival ships *the multiple eating venues are ... Read More
After looking forward to this Trans-atlantic cruise, I was very disappointed. The pluses should always be first so: *the decor is a great improvement over the glitzy Vegas decor of other Carnival ships *the multiple eating venues are great *the show entertainment was first rate. The technology was superb. *the cabins are nice and roomy *the public areas (lobby, lounges, etc.) are plentiful and very comfortable The negatives, however, are in more important areas: ^the music was awful. I would have paid not to hear some of the musicians such as the two guitar players and the piano bar player ^while the singing maitre d' is nice, it was intrusive to have the guy singing every day, particularly when he repeated the songs ^the service in the assigned dining room was awful. Seemed like everyone was in a hurry to get you out of there, this in the second seating. The atmosphere in the "dine as you please" was much more conducive to conversation and relaxation ^the food in the Lido Marketplace and the main dining rooms was terrible. The food at the Cucina del Capitano was not much better. Not very Italian for having Italian officers ^the service of bartenders, Lido, dining rooms was very deficient, probably because there was very little supervision. The tables in the Marketplace were left dirty with dishes piled high when there were guests who needed them. ^the activities were practically non-existent. ^the crew was not very friendly ^the ship was a surprise in that it shook and vibrated excessively. We like the lower decks during a transatlantic crossing because they have an easier motion in high seas, but this ship shook and groaned and made terrible noises at the lower levels. All in all, a great disappointment! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Fairly new to cruising having taken our first cruise just under two years ago, but we have caught the bug and this was our seventh cruise now in this timeframe. Our second with Carnival. Our other five were with Royal Caribbean. Our first ... Read More
Fairly new to cruising having taken our first cruise just under two years ago, but we have caught the bug and this was our seventh cruise now in this timeframe. Our second with Carnival. Our other five were with Royal Caribbean. Our first Carnival experience was our only bad one, but thought we would give them a second chance. There will NOT be a third one ... First time reviewer here. I felt it my DUTY to register and post this review for all to see. It would be a disservice for me to continue reading all the great info here at cruise critic without contributing to assist future cruisers. I feel that I could rant on typing for the next hour, but I will spare you all the gory details, and just touch on the major ones. The service on the Breeze was by FAR the worst my wife and I have ever seen. First the pluses. + Beautiful new ship, with that new ship smell. Clean. A bit hard to navigate. Why on earth they don't have a royal promenade like RC's biggers ships, I will never understand. + Comedy club & shows. Nothing real special, but acceptable. Thrill theater was reasonably priced. when you get the 14.95 ticket for all shows, and was enjoyable. + Embark and debark were smooth and trouble free. + A "few" of the entertainment staff made some events more enjoyable. + Speaking with many others that were horribly dissapointed in this cruise and Carnival. Hey at least it was nice that we were not alone, and that is a positive. I'm searching for more things to spark my memory for pluses, but honestly I believe that was all. Now the major negatives. - Service. Or lack thereof. From our room attendant, to the dining staff, to the drink servers on down. 95% of them were just truly unprofessional, and simply did not care to even pretend to be happy for us to be on board their ship, or happy within their own profession. The scowls frequently outweighed the smiles at about a 90/10 ratio. The dining room was by FAR the slowest service I have ever seen. They seemed to be understaffed most nights. This is most likely more on Carnival then the individuals, but it was not our fault that they were overworked and miserable because of their employer. 45 minutes for apps to arrive most nights. Seriously? Then you had to hope the right one was coming. Simple things as an ice tea refill? I had to get up and find the iced tea most nights. I know this may sound trivial ... hey you were cruising man! Be happy! But those of you who cruise often will understand where I'm coming from. Food quality subpar.Bland, bland, bland. Someone please tell me how a chocolate cake, an orange cake, a coconut cake, etc., can all taste alike? It was real odd. One positive here was the deli sandwiches at lunch. Delicious. - Activities. Or again ... lack thereof. Trivia, trivia, and more trivia! 100's of people attending each one. Want to know why? There was simply NOTHING else to do! On a 12 day cruise they had less then 6 total sporting deck activities. How much mini golf and foosball does one want to play in 12 days. Seriously Carnival you NEED to take a look at other cruise lines and see what fun is really about. The FUN ship? You cannot even believe that statement yourself. Back to trivia. How hard is it to come up new questions and answers. I have a free app on my tablet that could last you a year Carnival! Yet, they managed to continually repeat trivias throughout the cruise. Trivial comment ... perhaps. But again these small details are not very small as the days go by on a cruise. - Hot Tubs/Jacuzzi's. Day one. Not even body temperature. Day two. Same. Three same. Checked all of them on board, and were all the same. It took this being my seventh cruise to finally make my first formal complaint to guest services. Was told they would get right on that and check the temperatures for me. Nice. Day four, same. Five, same. Back to guest services. They will get right on it! Phew. Day 6-12 same. Two more complaints later they expedited me to an onboard manager, first name Anna, on day 7. Promised me a change that never came. We literally spoke with at least 100 people on board that also complained about this. The temps never were even body temperature once. How difficult was this to fix. Seriously? They just don't seem to care at all. - One evening I asked our room attendant for an extra program for the next day. He scowled at me and actually slapped one into my chest firmly. Yes you read that correctly. Unacceptable to say the least. I still can't believe that actually happened. - Breakfast most morning's at the lido buffet. Empty coffee vessels. Empty orange juice, etc. etc. Every morning same thing. Go to other side, and empty. Walk to other end, empty. Cycle back until you find one attended to. Good luck finding a table when the dishes were rarely cleared off. Lack of staff, and the ones there ALWAYS let me repeat ALWAYS looked MISERABLE to be there doing their JOB. It was truly astonishing. Would have tired the main dining room for an occasional breakfast, but heard that the service was so slow, you had to devote 2 + hours to it. No thank you. - Overnight one evening our toilet overflowed with "other" peoples waste from our floor. Okay happens right? But it should NOT have taken a full hour and 4 phone calls to get it fixed!! There is so much more. I could go on and on and on. So much to the point that I feel I should stop here, or your simply just not going to believe me. Carnivals biggest flaws jump right out at you. They were eerily similar to our first time with them. I can assure you there will NOT be a third time. If their upper management does not seem to care to fix issues on board, how ca they expect the rest of their staff to care? Spend just a "little" more money elsewhere, and get a MUCH better experience. Is this your message to me Carnival? Message received. Loud and clear! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Our party of four arrived in Barcelona around 12:30 PM the day of the cruise - November 6, 2012. We were three hours delayed in arrival due to an unresolved problem with an upgraded navigational system installation on our aircraft. We ... Read More
Our party of four arrived in Barcelona around 12:30 PM the day of the cruise - November 6, 2012. We were three hours delayed in arrival due to an unresolved problem with an upgraded navigational system installation on our aircraft. We were all quite relieved when we finally departed from the gate at JFK. There were quite a number of us onboard taking the cruise. Our transfers with Carnival from the airport to the ship went well. We completed the boarding process in minutes. What surprised me the most about our cruise on the sparkling new Carnival Breeze cruise ship was the smoothness of our transatlantic crossing. How lucky we were since last year's crossing of The Carnival Magic was quite rough. Our 15-day Transatlantic Voyage included Ports of Call at Barcelona, Spain, Palma De Mallorca, Spain, Malaga, Spain, Las Palmas, Canary Islands, Antigua, St Maarten, NA and Miami, FL This newest addition to the Carnival fleet has a very different feel to it. The ship itself is simply stunning. Gone are the glaring neon color schemes and dizzying competing patterns on older Carnival ships. Instead, I welcomed the calming Caribbean palette of colors: clear aqua, sky blue, mint green, shades of yellow and soft browns the color of sand. There was just a tease of delicate pink neon swirl on a section of the ceiling in the Lower Level Sapphire Restaurant (MDR). I did enjoy the outdoor palm tree decorations, the cheerful yellow umbrellas in the Lido Marketplace Buffet and the whitewashed & the rattan deck furniture. The three deck-high Ovation Theater looks lovely and inviting with comfortable long couches and convenient small beverage tables. Almost every seat has an unobstructed view of the stage. All the public areas- lounges, bars, Breeze Atrium, pubs etc are beautiful. The Serenity decks & others have comfortable cushioned lounges and rattan enclosures - even some hammocks. Most of all, I enjoyed my large beautifully appointed Regular Deluxe Ocean View Stateroom #1288 with its two baths. If you haven't experienced one of these, then you cannot believer how smoothly your life will be onboard. Gone are the garish art works adorning stateroom walls. Instead, there were soft modernistic hangings. The king bed is very comfortable and the storage and closet spaces are plentiful. Two end tables, a good-sized couch with four small pillows and a coffee table complete the furnishings. Stateroom passageways have tall wallpaper art depicting Caribbean landscapes. I photographed several because of their beauty. Stateroom doors have slats of blonde wood reminiscent of the Caribbean. It was a joy to walk along these halls. Since The Breeze is now home ported in Miami with Caribbean itineraries, the ambiance is just perfect. Ahmad, our Cabin Steward, kept our cabin clean and fully stocked with towels and amenities as well as towel animals. As VIPs on Carnival, we enjoyed complementary laundry service. It was a big plus on this long cruise. Although I did experience occasional slow service in the dining rooms at breakfast or lunch, everyone on the wait staff did their best to serve us as well as possible. We dined only in the MDR for our dinners each night. We all enjoyed the selection of meal choices and the quality of the food. Our party of four chose the Anytime Dining Option and it worked extremely well for us as we usually sat at our requested window table in Luis' section. We were so impressed with the congeniality and teamwork of our wait staff on the second night onboard that we requested to be in their section for the remainder of our voyage. I would like to send a big thank you to Luis, Wayan and Milton for their attentive service. They regularly anticipated our needs and desires. We did get to taste the food in the Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse and rave about the Tiramisu and the Mushroom Cappuccino Soup. Marketa, a MDR Hostess, did a superb job of handling my husband's Special Meal Requests and went out of her way to ensure that they were prepared correctly. She often made suggestions not listed on the menu. He was very impressed by her competency and attention to detail. Look for her on the Carnival Dream in December and the ship will be lucky to have her professionalism and rapport with the passengers. My husband & I took Carnival shore excursions in the European ports of call. All were worth the money and began promptly as scheduled. The guides were knowledgeable and articulate as well as friendly and informative. Since we have been to the two Caribbean Islands many times, we did our own thing in these ports. The ship docked in each port for approximately 7-10 hours so we had plenty of time for sightseeing. Still, some passengers on independent tours did not make it back to the ship on time and delayed our departure in each of the European ports. Besides the Caribbean feel of the ship and its newness, I also enjoyed the warm temperature of the Beach and Tides pools, which filled with passengers from early morning until dark. The Lanai, Tides and Serenity Whirlpools were also quite popular. It was never difficult to find lounge chairs around or near the pools and whirlpools. Depending on the weather, the ship provides blankets and/or towels at a poolside station. Of course, our staterooms also had the same long plush towels for our personal use on and off the ship. My husband and all the other "kids" onboard loved going down the two water slides. I enjoyed watching the big bucket of water cascade over the Water Works area every few minutes. If you enjoy Trivia, you will love all the many daily games on the Breeze. The participation was amazing. There were also the usual card games, arts and crafts, casino tournaments, pool games, dance classes, parties, Bingo, Art Auction, ice sculpture demonstration and Arcade games. The Cloud 9 Spa offers many deals and there are the daily sales outside the Fun Shops and elsewhere around the ship. Since I had $650 of onboard credits, I made several purchases. The Fitness Center is also quite popular but I simply enjoyed walking 4 miles around Deck 5 each morning scanning the ocean for dolphins, whales and ships plying the waters. Something new on this ship is a bar in the Library opened 11 AM-Midnight. What a neat idea! Another intriguing new amenity on this Carnival ship is the Sea Ropes Sky Course - challenging fun for kids as well as adults. If you are bored on this ship, it is your own fault. Be sure to catch the high energy, outstanding Playlist Productions - Divas, Motor City and The Brits! The use of LED screens to produce realistic detailed scenery and the illusion of a cast of hundreds on stage are simply amazing. Wow - was I impressed! In addition, the comedy acts in the Punchline Theater are funny without being vulgar. Be sure to catch at least one performance. After dinner, it is always fun to listen to Ron in the Piano Bar 88. He always takes requests and has a loyal following. After a show, enjoy dancing in the Atrium. In fact, all around the ship there are wonderful opportunities to hear great live music. There was a variety of fun Cruise Critic events, also to attend including: Informal and Official Formal Meet & Greets, Group Breakfast, Nightly Cocktail Times, Card Draw Game, Cabin Crawl (which I was one of 13 hosts), Book Exchange, Mini Golf Tourney, Ship Pub Crawl, The Movie Night PJ Party, Games & Cards Activity and Farewell Group Luncheon. It was nice seeing so many members wearing their personalized tee, wristband and light up ship pin. I did experience a few disappointments with the ship. I disliked that I had to pay extra money to see films shown in the inside Thrill Theater. The outdoor Seaside Theater movies, by the way, are included in the cruise price. The complementary sushi on other Carnival ships is now an extra charge Bonsai Sushi Restaurant on the Breeze. I always enjoy the complementary after dinner Cappuccino on other Carnival ships but on the Breeze, it is an extra charge. This Carnival ship also has just too many announcements over the speaker system. It is indeed hard to find a place for quiet reading anywhere on the ship including the library, which has piped in music. There is only one place on the entire ship to pick up or exchange pool towels. This is an inconvenience when on the Serenity decks. It was not until a couple of passengers got sick onboard that the Carnival Staff started enforcing use of the hand sanitizers at the buffet. Perhaps most annoying of all was the noise of the ship cutting through the ocean swells crossing the Atlantic. I suggest that you book a stateroom above deck 3 for a quieter night's sleep. Our stateroom was on deck 1. My husband and I always enjoy ourselves on Carnival ships. We appreciate the good value we get and are quite happy with the meals and level of service that we receive. Although most Carnival cruises have lots of young people and kids onboard, this was not true on this long cruise. Of the 3,600+ passengers, only 67 were kids. The majority of passengers hailed from the US - Florida in particular. Many of the Europeans onboard came from Germany. Still others came from Canada, South America, the UK and Australia. I chose this cruise because it was brand new ship. I liked that some of the ports were in Europe and others were in the Caribbean broken up with sea days in the middle. By the way, Carnival is doing away with the Future Cruise Certificates. We have used several on previous cruises and found them to be financially worthwhile. I hope to take a future Caribbean cruise on The Breeze. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
I'll start by saying I've been on 8 Princess cruises, 3 NCL cruises, 1 Royal Caribbean cruise, and 2 Carnival cruises. Of those 14 cruises, only two have ever canceled ports altogether. Those 2 were both the Carnival cruises ... Read More
I'll start by saying I've been on 8 Princess cruises, 3 NCL cruises, 1 Royal Caribbean cruise, and 2 Carnival cruises. Of those 14 cruises, only two have ever canceled ports altogether. Those 2 were both the Carnival cruises I've been on, and the biggest reason I'll never go on Carnival again. This cruise was something our family had talked about doing for 13 years, and had actively planned for nearly 1 year. We were excited about going on a new ship, but the overwhelming reason for choosing this cruise was the fabulous itinerary, and the fact that out of 11 full days, only 3 were going to be "fun" days at sea (a better ratio than any cruise I'd ever been on). When all was said and done, only 5 days ended up being in ports, and 6(!) days were at sea. The trouble started the morning of the first full day, when during breakfast in the dining room (which incidentally we walked out of after being ignored for over ten minutes after being seated), an announcement came over the loudspeaker saying that we would not be able to dock in Monte Carlo due to high winds "for our safety". The odd thing is that the wind was less than 10mph, and the seas were calm. We later heard from other passengers that Monte Carlo had been canceled on the last two cruises before us, and that our captain had crashed the Breeze into some expensive yachts in Monaco on a previous cruise, and they had decided beforehand not to return again. Whatever the reason, it was NOT the weather, and it had clearly been decided beforehand. Later that same evening (after the first unexpected "fun" day at sea), an announcement was made that "Mother Nature was STILL not cooperating" and many of our big ports would all come packed together at the end of the cruise, and Messina (Sicily) would be omitted as well. The next day we stopped as planned in Livorno, then had two more unplanned days at sea before stopping in Dubrovnik. That night, after leaving Dubrovnik, another announcement came. My husband and I were eating in Cucina del Capitano at the time. This announcement was to tell us that they were "so sorry" but the weather was yet again an issue, and now we would not be getting EITHER of our TWO days in Venice (however the one day in Messina was mysteriously returning to the itinerary). After this third announcement canceling Venice, all hell broke loose. The couple next to us in the restaurant was on their honeymoon, and the wife began to cry. My parents were in their stateroom at the time, and they heard someone scream with rage in the hallway. An angry mob started to form at guest services (later moved to the theater due to size). Crew members took names and contact info, and implied that things would be made right (to date, over a month later, no one in our party has heard a word from anyone at Carnival). The compensation for radically altering the trip we all had planned on? Refunding $40 in port charges, and one free drink voucher good only in the dining room and for a limited selection of drinks. Other aspects of the cruise were disappointing as well. Food was definitely subpar, both in the dining room and the buffet. Meals were often served cold, and missing certain ingredients (no cheese in "broccoli cheese soup", no sweet chili sauce on "thai sweet chili shrimp"). Parts of the buffet were often inexplicably closed during peak times, leading to overcrowding and exceptionally long lines in areas that were open. The dining rooms were frequently closed for breakfast and lunch on the "fun" days, leading to even more people at the buffet. The one bright spot for dining was Guys Burger Joint, which had exceptional hamburgers and oddly enough not much of a wait most times we went there Entertainment was very limited. On a 12 day cruise, only 4 shows were provided, and they were just repeated continuously. Most of the entertainment options that were heavily hyped cost money (bingo, thrill theater, casino, etc). The constant announcements to encourage passengers to take part in these paid activities was enough to make more than a few people skeptical of the real reasons of all the added "fun" days at sea. Being a new ship, everything was very clean, including cabins. Beds were not comfortable, and didn't seem any different than on the 8 year old Carnival Miracle we sailed on the previous year. Our particular room was right across from one of the only TWO laundry facilities on board, which seemed very inadequate to handle the needs of nearly 4,000 passengers. This meant that every day from 6am until midnight, there was a continuous line of people spilling into the hallway waiting to do laundry, some of whom actually sat in our doorway and fell back into our room when we'd open the door. I'd advise anyone to look at a deck plan map carefully before booking. This cruise has basically taught us that you get what you pay for. Before going on Carnival, I wondered how they were able to charge less than other cruise lines and stay in business. This cruise answered that question all too well. Subpar food, more passengers per unit area, canceled ports, and limited "free" entertainment. We won't be going on Carnival again. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
The theme song for this cruise was "we´re on the ship to nowhere". That´s how we felt on those 6 ¨fun days¨at sea and during the 3 itinerary changes. We have been on 8 different cruises and this was our first (and last) ... Read More
The theme song for this cruise was "we´re on the ship to nowhere". That´s how we felt on those 6 ¨fun days¨at sea and during the 3 itinerary changes. We have been on 8 different cruises and this was our first (and last) cruise on Carnival. We had selected the cruise because of the new ship and the attractive itinerary; however, it ended up being a total deception, waste of precious money and vacation time. Furthermore, communication from the ships' officers to the passengers seemed non-existent especially when so many changes were taking place. These changes led to an impromptu gathering of passengers in guest services demanding to speak with the captain as the cruise director was unable to deal with the passengers' concerns. (She even commented over the intercom, after cancelling the 2-day visit to Venice due to weather, that passengers should focus on their loved ones being affected by hurricane Sandy). This event ended up being the "entertainment" that evening as the theater was chosen to accommodate the large and growing crowd. The next morning (another "fun day at sea") allowed the ship's hotel director to answer "questions" from the passengers. Once again, and without a microphone, the ship's hotel director had inadequate answers to passengers' real concerns leading to an early and escorted exit due to a so-called "important conference call". Once again, the passengers were left feeling frustrated with no real explanations as to why so many changes had taken place and above all, no real compensation (only $40 per person total for cancelled Port charges) for all of the missed ports and shorter port times in the latest itinerary. Other negative points: The entertainment was lacking and repetitive, the most fun was actually the Liquid Night Club, thanks to the fun guests on board. Halloween was also a good time, but once again, thanks to the guests who hauled their costumes in their suitcases. (we were unable to buy costumes at any ports due to the cancellations). Any of the "interesting" lectures on board were actually Carnival sales pitches to get us to spend more money. The activities on board were boring...too much Bingo, too much trivia and too few classes to actually learn things. The theater was too small for the amount of people on board (especially for port information meetings where people had to sit on the floor, stand or sit on the stairs) The gym offered too few group classes as well although the individual equipment was good. The good points: The wait staff in the dining room was very patient, accommodating, positive and friendly. They dealt with all of the changes in stride and made sure we had a good time at dinner and ate well. The food in the dining room was quite good and the Lido buffet was not too bad (except those scrambled eggs!). The hamburger was surprisingly good and there seemed to be a variety of food to choose from. The cabin with balcony was a decent size, clean and quiet. The beds were comfortable too, except for the very hard sofa bed which was made as soft as possible by the cabin steward. He was also quite accommodating and friendly. There was enough room for the 3 of us (adults). All in all, the cruise was very memorable, both good and bad. We still don't understand why Carnival would offer this itinerary so late in the year knowing how the weather affects specific ports of call (i.e. Monaco, where the ship could only dock with very little wind so it had been cancelled various times by Carnival already in October). It was unfortunate that Carnival was unable to re-work the itinerary in a way to include substitute ports of call that could handle the ship during autumn weather. Instead, we spent too many "fun days at sea" cancelling ports traveling back and forth and in circles all around the Mediterranean Sea. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2012
We were a family of 8 adults from Australia setting out for a great adventure in Europe. A once in a lifetime trip as some of our members are 80 plus. We enjoyed much of Carnival Breeze. It is a new ship and we had balcony cabins that were ... Read More
We were a family of 8 adults from Australia setting out for a great adventure in Europe. A once in a lifetime trip as some of our members are 80 plus. We enjoyed much of Carnival Breeze. It is a new ship and we had balcony cabins that were quite spacious. Our cabin crew were really nice and we had folded towel animals and chocolates each night. We were in cabin 6364 which was a really convenient spot in about the middle of the ship near the lifts. Getting on the ship was really easy as we got there late in the day and got straight on. However, once we got on we started experiencing problems with the itinerary. . We missed out on two ports. The first one Monaco, their excuse was that there were high winds, however it did not seem windy that morning at all. The next disappointing thing was missing out on the highlight of the cruise, Venice. Ok it may have been flooded but Carnival had plenty of time to organise another port. Also the ship was to stay in Venice overnight so instead of being in Venice we got two more 'fun' days at sea. They promised some great entertainment for those days but none came, it was just the same, trivia, bingo and spa talks such as 'secret to a flatter stomach' where they are trying to sell you something. They also played some really old movies and kept repeating them. One night they cancelled the main shows due to supposed high seas, however the seas were not high at all. We have been on many ships where there have been really high seas and they have not cancelled the show. The most insulting thing was we were sitting waiting for the show to start as we had not been told it was cancelled and they put on a 30 yr old Johnny Cash movie, surely they could have come up with something better than that. I must say though, the ship itself was pretty good, we really enjoyed the adults only area upstairs and there seemed to a lot of spa's around to bask in, especially the ones on level 5 that were very convenient to us. We enjoyed the food in the restaurant, it usually seemed of a very high standard.. We were on my time dining and had no problems with that. We enjoyed the waiters dance routines every night. The drink waiters were often very slow though. The food in the marketplace was ok but the area seemed too small for a ship of that size, it was often so crowded that you had trouble finding seats and had to get in long queues to get food. The Italian restaurant was free at lunchtime and was very good We were also really surprised that they allowed smoking in the casino, this was really awful as we had to walk past this smoky area and worst of all we often saw kids in there, sitting right near the bar, breathing in all that smoke and seeing all the gambling. Shame Carnival! The lifts were a problem as well, they were not working on a number of occasions. There was no notices or information as to what lift to use and the staff didn't seem to know which were working. As we had someone in our party who was 88, it was very inconvenient not knowing where to go to find lifts that were working. The last thing that really upset us was how we were treated on the last day. We were woken up at 5.30am with very loud announcements from the cruise director Jamie telling us who could leave the ship. We felt this was extremely rude. She was so loud there was no way you could sleep though it and she kept making these announcements about every 10 mins. This has never happened on any other ship and l think it left people with bad memories of Carnival Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
This was my wife's and my first trip to Europe. We chose the Breeze because of the itinerary and found a whole different face of Carnival from previous cruises - and not a good one. I'll get to the whole itinerary issues later. ... Read More
This was my wife's and my first trip to Europe. We chose the Breeze because of the itinerary and found a whole different face of Carnival from previous cruises - and not a good one. I'll get to the whole itinerary issues later. Let me start with the ship. The Breeze is a beautiful ship, modeled much like the Disney Wonder and Magic boats in decor but a lot like the older Carnival ships in layout. The food was the typical pretty decent Carnival fare (except the eggs in the buffet - ugh!) and had some fun additions like the Guy's Burger Joint (probably the best free food other than dinner) and the Blue Iguana Cafe. There were lots of upcharge food areas, too (an Italian restaurant for $12 pp, a steakhouse for $35 pp, a pretty decent sushi bar ($1-$12 depending on what you ordered), a dessert place ($3 for ice cream??), and Red Frog Pub which we did not try because none of the $3 appetizers appealed to us. The entertainment was sporadic (three times they cancelled shows and they had issues with the comedians, but that was due to the itinerary issues) and at times non-existent (basically, there's not much going on between 5-7:30). The staff was friendly but poorly trained in some areas (e.g. the girl in the Library Bar had no idea how to work the self-service wine machine - and she was the only one on duty). We had a cove balcony which was probably the best thing about our trip. The balcony was on deck 2 and had a great view of the water and was fairly well protected from the weather. One night we had 50 knot winds and 20-25 foot waves and it was pretty cool watching them from the balcony. The balcony does have an outer steel door which was closed when we had to take the rough seas broadside which prevented us from using the balcony during those 2 brief periods. The room was larger than previous Carnival rooms we had had and had plenty of storage. The thermostat just says "warmer" and "colder" and it didn't seem to respond very quickly either way. Our steward told us the last night of the cruise that the ship doesn't have heat, just AC either on or off and that's controlled by the thermostat. We had some cold nights, but the comforter was certainly adequate for keeping us warm in bed. Now getting to the itinerary issues, which were plentiful. I understand Carnival (or any cruise line) can't control the weather and want to put safety first, but they certainly made it clear that they would rather hide behind the legalities of their contract rather than try to do right for their passengers if they decide to change or remove a port. Weather was an issue for several days of the 12-night cruise. The first sign of trouble was Monaco, where like the two cruises with the same itinerary prior to ours, the ship was not able to dock. The staff had already reduced the time in port from an 8 PM departure to a 5 PM departure, but then as we approached Monaco, they scrubbed the port entirely due to "high winds" and we were told by the cruise director that there was no way we could get into port. Even by the ship's own data displayed on the map channel, there was less than 10 mph of wind and the seas were calm. This was just the first time the weather was used as an excuse to skip a port. Later that evening, the cruise director announced a major change to the itinerary, basically moving every other port day around and dropping Messina, which we sailed by two days later in calm seas. After we got into and out of Dubrovnik, the cruise director once again announced a major change to the itinerary that the ship would drop Venice and replace it with Messina after another 2 days at sea. All totaled, the itinerary lost 2 ports and 3 days in port and replaced them with "fun" days at sea - meaning half the cruise was "fun" days at sea in the Mediterranean, where there are ports all over the place. This is not what we signed up for. We came to see Europe, not a Carnival ship. And the grand total of the compensation offered for missing these ports? $40 pp in refunded port charges and ONE free drink per person in the main dining room at dinner from a limited selection. The extra days at sea were without entertainment or a poor selection of activities and the activities that were pushed by the staff all involved spending more money (spa, casino, restaurants, etc.). The comedians from the first few nights were supposed to leave in Rome initially, but had to stay on two extra days and get off in Dubrovnik instead. Their displeasure was on full display in their poor attitude and rather humorless and brief routines. The senior staff's attitude was that any decisions had to be made by the main office and their hands were tied. Even the free drink was only offered after lengthy conversations with the hotel director. Now the staff did SOME things right - they offered free phone and internet communications with private tours to allow for them to either be cancelled or rescheduled, and then they offered the same for families who were victim to Hurricane Sandy back home in the US, the latter only after again some prodding by guests. By losing Venice entirely, and then rescheduling Rome to a Sunday when the Vatican museum is closed meant that the two big things we really wanted to see in Italy were taken away from us. In the end, the itinerary was shot and Carnival did little to compensate for it. They basically chose to do what was legal rather than what was right. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
Before I start, please understand I am not a whinging hard to please person. I'd taken 7 cruises before this one and loved them all; I'd always feel a little exasperated if I heard people complaining about something on a cruise, ... Read More
Before I start, please understand I am not a whinging hard to please person. I'd taken 7 cruises before this one and loved them all; I'd always feel a little exasperated if I heard people complaining about something on a cruise, thinking they should count their lucky stars they WERE on a cruise and look for the good things, not focus on a few hiccoughs. But now my faith in cruising as a wonderful holiday has been lost. I'm in fact rather nervous at the thought of taking a cruise again after our dreadful experience on the Carnival Breeze. Any cruise we take in the future will most definitely not be on Carnival, never again! There needs to be two parts to this review, my thoughts on the ship and cruise itself, and my thoughts on the treatment we received from Carnival, both the staff on board and management. Since I'm sitting here back at home, still disappointed about missing out on Monte Carlo and Venice, and more than a little shocked at Carnival's treatment of the passengers on this cruise and disregard for them, I'll start with that. This was Carnival's second chance with us. We'd previously cruised on Carnival Spirit on a back to back, Alaska and Hawaii, and though we enjoyed the ship itself (better ship than Breeze in my opinion) the dining room food left a lot to be desired. Though we were happy with their buffet food, the food in the dining rooms on Spirit was usually lukewarm to cool despite our requests several times for a hot meal; it was also not unusual to get substandard meals, tough meat. So for that reason we were hesitant to try Carnival again. Then we saw this Mediterranean cruise that covered ports we'd always wanted to visit, and the bonus of a new ship. We decided to give Carnival one more chance. We didn't take this decision lightly as we live in Australia and we had to factor in the cost of airfares and l-o-n-g travel time, but this was to be our long awaited dream cruise of the Mediterranean. Well, that didn't happen! Carnival saw fit to cancel Monte Carlo, which was to have been our much anticipated first port of call. Coincidentally, they cancelled Monaco on the previous Carnival Breeze cruise, and I've been told on the one prior to that as well though I'd need to have that confirmed. The excuse each time was "high winds". An announcement came over that the ship had made several attempts to enter the port but had been unable to do so due to bad winds. Several people observed that the ship did not in fact attempt to enter the port, as they were on deck to watch our arrival in port, and they also confirmed that the wind had in fact NOT been strong. Senior crew later admitted that attempts had not been made to enter the port. I feel that Carnival had planned to omit Monte Carlo even before the cruise started. I wonder if that's due to the ship really being too big for the port... but whatever the reason, Carnival deceived us. That's what is a major disappointment and let down for me, that they could be less than honest with their passengers and manipulate their itinerary for their own reasons. There was no regard for the fact that people had spent a lot of money to take this cruise, or that perhaps it was their "trip of a lifetime"; all we were offered was another "fun day at sea" - with no fun activities actually happening - and a $20'ish refund of port charges, and oh yes, a free drink at dinner from a limited selection. On top of Monte Carlo, Messina was also cancelled, and on we sailed; actually a lot of the time we were put-putting in slow circles on the Mediterranean, trying to kill time. When I dreamt of a Mediterranean cruise I dreamt of actually visiting ports, not floating on the Mediterranean! We sailed past Messina in fine weather and spent another day at sea. The lack of onboard activities and poor entertainment is covered later. The final straw came with the announcement that Venice had been cancelled from our itinerary. Supposedly that was because of flooding there. By now my mistrust of Carnival makes me doubt they were telling the truth as I heard that other ships have managed to dock there, however that might be hearsay or might not. I certainly don't believe that they suddenly found conditions in Venice would not allow us to visit; they would have had access to weather forecasts and trends days ahead. So now Messina was reinstigated! The port that for some obscure reason had previously been cancelled was suddenly back on the itinerary. We passed a fine, sunny and pleasant day there. We spent a lot of time killing time on the Sea. The Captain and crew would give no other answers except the port cancellations were for our safety. No other ports were substituted. I know port visits must be planned, but I believe Carnival knew of the cancellations they'd be doing, before the cruise started. Why didn't they have a backup plan organised? Why didn't they give us the chance to opt out of the cruise, or cancel the cruise? At least then we might have got our money back from travel insurance. Why weren't they upfront with us? Why did they not seem to care about the passengers and have empathy for how the passengers were affected? We'd selected this cruise because we loved the itinerary. We'd always wanted to visit Venice, the other ports too. If the itinerary had stated "Monte Carlo - possible", "Venice - possible" we would simply not have booked. I believe the ship had proved to be too big to comfortably manage docking in Monte Carlo and Venice, and to me that IS the mechanical reason that senior crew cited as the only reason compensation would be paid. We are very disappointed in this whole cruise experience - other than enjoying some memorable ports and meeting some lovely fellow cruisers. We feel Carnival has let us down badly. Its sad to be asked now by friends about our Mediterranean cruise and to have to try hard to sound upbeat and not disappointed. Carnival should realise, though, that a disappointed customer is not going to keep their disappointment a secret from other people who might once have been potential Carnival cruisers. Now ship and cruise specific comments: SHIP The ship was new, so that has to be a plus. I'm not going to gripe about a little staining on carpets or whether or not I liked the decor. But what I really missed were nooks and crannies to just hang out. Not bars... we're not big drinkers. Nor are we gamblers. Just places to sit and chat or look at the passing parade or read; windows to gaze through and see the sea; lounges to meet up in. There was Ocean Plaza and little else. As someone else commented, the ship is big yet there didn't seem to be a lot of public space for the size of the ship. ACTIVITIES I thought the Limelight Lounge had great potential but it seemed to be under utilised; the comedians appeared there, and there was a t-shirt sale there. In other ships I've been on, such a space was used regularly for a musical group and dancing. We love to dance! How I missed dancing! Carnival, why was there no real provision for dancing? I don't mean a little jigging in the atrium area, but actual dancing on a dance floor. Music and a party feel. The Liquid Nightclub doesn't fill the bill. Its supposed to be a Fun Ship. What about perhaps some dance lessons on sea days, too? Dance lessons can be fun; we had a wonderful time in regular popular dancing lessons on an Australian P & O cruise we were on, with the teachers being 2 members of the dance troupe who interacted with the passengers and were great fun. I would have loved to use the Serenity area (did use the spas a couple of times), and the waterworks, and all the other outside facilities, but the weather unfortunately prevented that. I did wonder about the fact there were just two pools for such a big ship. Gym? A little small, concentrating more on treadmills than equipment for strength or toning. Not much room for doing your own workout, but you can get by. At night the ship seemed like a ghost ship. We'd wander along trying to find something to do... there was little on offer... often few people in sight. Where was the music, other than karaoke and the musicians in the atrium? The shows other than The Brits were unenjoyable, and were repeated. So some nights there was nothing at all to see. The comedians were hit and miss. We WANTED to party and have fun, but each night we'd finally give up. Daytime activities? I'm used to being on cruises and finding on the sea days that there were time clashes of things I wanted to do. On this cruise, no way did that happen. Other than trivia (which I do enjoy, but not every half hour) there was really nothing to do. The marriage game in the Ovation Theatre was funny, though something many cruises seem to have; the Hasbro game was not. I feel that Carnival provided the facilities for a good time IF the weather is pleasant and people can amuse themselves out on deck. However they failed to cater for inside activities, and with bad weather and enforced extra sea days, surely they should have pulled out a few activities. They seemed to have no backup plans at all. CREW I said above that Carnival provided the facilities for activities (outside on deck), but they failed to provide the human touch. There was no warm friendly feel. Cabin stewards... Our's was friendly and nothing was too much trouble - not that we make requests of our cabin stewards - but towels were replaced, bed turned back, chocolates and towel animals left, room kept clean. Our fridge was never unlocked but if we'd bothered to ask I'm sure it would have been. We were short of coathangers and he fetched us some extra in no time. Wait staff... Staff in the dining rooms gave excellent service on the whole. Staff in the Lido didn't impress as particularly friendly overall, but they did their job. Guest services desk... Other than Jan, a young man who finally came to our aid regarding a cabin issue after 3 other staff shrugged me off (living out of our suitcases in a disabled cabin we'd been mistakenly assigned, with little storage space, for 3 nights) the staff there were stern and unwelcoming. It was as if they took a defensive attitude even before they knew why you were there. Unfriendly, unsmiling. And the queues! Especially in the light of the port cancellations and that naturally there'd be a lot of enquiries, the desk was understaffed and people stood for ages in the queue, and the staff appeared to care not one iota. Jaime... If I heard another comment about "another fun day at sea" I would have been tempted to toss her IN the sea. I felt she was very scripted, and lacked sincerity. I also feel Carnival overdoes the "fun" terminology and should soft pedal it a bit, especially since their cruise was the most un-fun cruise I've ever experienced. I understand that Jaime would have been feeling the stress after the cancellation of our visit to Venice, and would have been the brunt of a lot of ill will. But one night she approached us as we were walking to our cabin and my husband greeted her pleasantly with "Hi Jaime" (as she'd told the passengers to do in one of her early talks). She responded with a scowl and said nothing. FOOD Dining rooms The Breeze came up with hot meals in the dining rooms, and this had been our one worry after our experience on the Carnival Spirit. I was happy with the meals in the Sapphire dining room. We opted for Anytime dining as we'd done that on NCL cruises and it worked well. However, Carnival doesn't seem to have quite got the gist of it. If you said you wanted a table for two (sometimes we preferred to have a quiet dinner and didn't want to linger over it for ages) you were seated at a table for two... 3 inches from another table for two... the tables for two were arranged in sets of 3 or 4 and the people on them were treated as one big group. We had some enjoyable chats with others at dinner, but there were a couple of occasions when we really would have preferred just the two of us. Lunch in the Blush dining room was something we experienced once, and it was wonderful. Helped by the fact we had a window seat and scored some good table companions. We didn't use the pay extra restaurants, though we did have lunch once in the Italian restaurant. My pasta was tasty. Lido I've always really enjoyed and looked forward to the buffets on our cruises, but the Lido was a big disappointment. This might perhaps be partly due to the fact I'm Australian and not used to or fond of some of the American foods and topppings. However, powdered egg and syrupy sweet orange "juice"? I gave up on both of those after one day. I thought there was not enough variety or variation in the food on the Lido. Basically the same old thing every day. There were a lot of cereal choices but there was no muesli. I started adding nuts and raisins to my basic cereal, then raisins disappeared. I found one counter had prunes, started adding them, then they disappeared to be replaced by olives... for breakfast! Bananas had run out for 3 days before they finally reappeared, as had oranges. For those days all the fresh fruit consisted of was trays of sliced melons, two of each type. Not good enough. Guy's Burger Joint is, I know, popular, so this must be just my weird or Australian taste, but I didn't enjoy them. I found them greasy and the toppings and cheese unenjoyable. Not what I'm used to in burgers. I wanted to try Fat Jimmy's BBQ but it wasn't there very often, and the one time I spotted it the smell turned me away. Again, probably just my individual taste as others have raved about it. PORTS I have covered ports we visited but Messina, Sicily was not in the list provided. In Messina we did a privately organised tour that we found on the Cruise Critic roll call, and it was a wonderful 5+ day. The driver was entertaining and informative, and we greatly enjoyed seeing Taormina and then Castlemola, and our lunch in an Italian restaurant. We met some lovely people on the tour and count that day as one of our standouts. Sorry, long review I know. Normally I practically have to be dragged off a cruise ship. This time I was eager to leave. There's a lot of cruise lines out there to choose from. I recommend you look and think carefully before booking a Carnival cruise. The attitude they have to their passengers is extremely poor. They are not customer orientated. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
Embarkation at Barcelona was long to me. I did not like taking zone numbers based on cabin location to board. To me, if you show up early, you should be able to board when you get there. The ship was very nice. I really liked the decor. ... Read More
Embarkation at Barcelona was long to me. I did not like taking zone numbers based on cabin location to board. To me, if you show up early, you should be able to board when you get there. The ship was very nice. I really liked the decor. It was much more subdued compared to other Carnival ships. I also liked the variety of the dining venues. The Blue Iguana burrito and taco stations on the Lido deck were a welcome change. As was the addition of Guy's Burgers. But the times they were open were very limiting. With all the sea days we endured, it was disappointing that they closed the burrito bar at 1:30 pm and only opened Guy's from noon until 6 pm. Fat Jimmy's BBQ was good, but with the bad weather on deck, I found it only open one day out of the twelve day cruise. I heard similar complaints from many other travelers. Good food, but limited dining times. The MDR was the MDR - nothing different, nothing new. And the buffet was the same as ever. The addition of the Tandori station was good, but again limited in the time it was open. The Bonsai Sushi restaurant was excellent, but hardly used by the passengers. We did enjoy the Il Capitano italian restaurant. We had an excellent meal there, It was well worth the extra $12 per person. We did not eat at the steak house on this cruise. One highlight was the Red Frog Pub. Good drinks and appetizers. Now limited dining times may sound trivial if you are on a port intensive cruise or on a Caribbean cruise with sunny sea days, but on a cruise that ended up with six sea days - most all rainy and windy, some relief from usual dining at extended hours would have been welcome. Now on to the schedule. I was on deck the morning we were supposed to dock in Monte Carlo. It was slightly overcast with light winds. In my view, the captain made no attempt to even try to dock. We simply loitered offshore until a blaring (volume level) announcement was made by the CD that we were going to miss the port. It was my birthday and we had arranged to rent a car and drive the Corniche. It was disappointing, but I was willing to overlook it. I had missed a port before with Carnival, so I got over it. Little did I know what was in store for the rest of the cruise. We went on to Livorno, where it was windy and wet. We arranged for a rental car to meet us at the dock and we visited Lucca. Lucca was fun. Wet, but fun. But we had a great day shopping and sightseeing. But upon arrival back on ship, we were told we were going to bypass Naples, Rome, and Messina, and head straight to Dubrovnik to try to avoid the weather system. We would then see Venice, then Naples, then Rome. Messina would be missed. Ok, I could live with that. Out of all the ports to miss, Messina is the one. But it screwed up our plans in Venice. We had a hotel in Venice booked overnight to spend more time in port. Now that was gone. Dubrovnik was nice. Clear warm weather. Plus it was great to get off the ship just to walk around after two days at sea. But I could see it clouding up, and I feared they would cancel Venice. Well, they did. After getting back on the ship, we got another annoying blaring announcement from Jamie the CD telling us we were going to miss Venice and have two more "Fun Days at Sea" on the way to Messina. Oh boy! We were getting Messina back. I say that sarcastically. A few side things here. Jamie had to be one of the most annoying CDs we have ever experienced on Carnival. Also, the PA and sound systems on the ship were always set to the maximum volume level. I get up early and like to go up on the the Lido deck to have some coffee and look at the ports or the sea. On the mornings when the Lido deck was habitable, they would run CNN News at the highest volume possible, prompting passengers to scream for them to turn it down. Ok, back to the change in plans. After learning about the itinerary changes, we headed down to guest services. We found about fifty people gathered around Jamie and a ship's officer complaining about the changes. We also saw a security officer off in the background there to ensure nothing got out of hand. Many people complained about the changes in plans, the lack of communication, the lack of compensation, etc. I took my turn and spoke out. I brought up the fact that Carnival had a captive audience of 3000 people to fill the casino, buy drinks form the bars, and shop at the shops. I brought up the idea that Carnival could have searched for alternate ports when they learned of the weather system. Of course Jamie gave us the line, "at least we weren't involved in Hurricane Sandy, and that the captain was just keeping us safe." That was an outlandish statement used to guilt the passengers into accepting the situation. I mentioned that I saw no weather reasons that we could not dock in Monte Carlo. An officer tried to explain to me that the ship was too tall and that high winds would have caused problems with docking, and that Monte Carlo was a soft dock, not a hard dock. I have trouble with that whole explanation. Many people gathered there were long time cruisers who had cruised with Carnival many times. They told Jamie that they would no longer cruise Carnival. Jamie responded with the company line "I"m sorry to hear that". I asked her if that was all she had to say. She responded that Carnival does not compensate passengers based on weather conditions. Even though Carnival was within their legal right to change the itinerary based on weather conditions, the changes to the itinerary were poorly executed and left many of the passengers feeling they did not get what they paid for and therefore, Carnival should have, at the very least, offered discounts or credits towards a future cruise. How much could that cost them? Many of the people would never use it, but it may have restored some confidence with other cruisers. No offers, no compensation, nothing. I got tired of arguing, so I went back to the Casino Bar. As for the Casino Bar. I spent a lot of time there. The Lido Bars were usually closed because of the weather, so the Casino Bar became my home away from home. We purchased the "My Awesome Bar" program upon boarding the ship, so I was there to get my money's worth. The bartenders, especially Miljan and Goran, worked hard to keep the passengers happy. And, while I understand we were in European waters and getting European satellite feeds, a six-day tennis tournament, cricket matches and European football only enhanced the boredom of the imposed sea days. Another side note, during our conversation with Jamie, my wife told me that she was sick of hearing the term "Fun Days at Sea." She told her days at sea were not fun when that was all you got out of the cruise. We use the ship as a floating hotel, not our entertainment. When we travel to Europe we expect to tour Europe, not float interminably in the Mediterranean. It's sad that the only way many of the passengers got to experience the European ports was to hole themselves up in their cabins and watch Rick Steves' travelogues on the ship's television. For the rest of the cruise, during Jamie's blaring announcements, we heard no more use of the words "Fun Day at Sea." As for cabin service, it was horrible. No ice bucket was offered until asked for. The refrigerator was unlocked, but never emptied, even though I asked for it to be done twice. Dirty towels were not picked up. Bed linens were not changed. Empty plates or dirty glasses were left in the room. The only way I could get dishes picked up was to leave them outside the room. And they sat there for over twelve hours many times. And, how my wife's pajama bottoms ended up stuffed behind my nightstand will continue to be a mystery to us; we thought that was rather strange. We made it on to Naples and Rome and made the best of it. In Naples, we rented a car and drove to Amalfi and Positano. While walking around Positano and seeing people enjoying the views at cute restaurants, we started debating whether further cruising was for us. Always constrained by time in port is becoming a factor in determining our vacation wants and needs. If Carnival would have made all the ports, this discussion may not have occurred. This cruise had become a disappointment to us. In Rome, we went to some areas we had not seen, the Appian Way and the Aqueducts. They were very impressive. We also went to the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, and St. Peter's Basilica. My wife and I were very dissatisfied with the cruise. We planned for a year for it, spent a lot of money to get there, and were totally at the whims of Carnival management. It still bothers me to think of the first time Carnival cruisers I met who said they were disappointed with cruising and how they would never choose Carnival again. I have read John Heald's blog with his two letters from people who were on the cruise. One expressing disappointment, one expressing praise and regrets for the captain and CD. He dismissed this cruise with no apologies or interest. The second letter expressing praise for the captain for "keeping us safe" reminds me of the people in airports who do not mind intensive groping by TSA in efforts to "keep us safe." I'll give Carnival another chance on the upcoming Christmas cruise on the Victory. It's already paid for, I have no choice. But if we see a repeated pattern of missing ports for Carnival to save port fees, increase revenue in the bars, casinos, and shops, then we will stop cruising Carnival. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2012
This cruise was a gift from my husband for my 60th birthday. I had to work 18 months to be able to accumulate enough vacation time to go on this trip. Our first problem was with Air France, that lost our bags when we arrived in Barcelona. ... Read More
This cruise was a gift from my husband for my 60th birthday. I had to work 18 months to be able to accumulate enough vacation time to go on this trip. Our first problem was with Air France, that lost our bags when we arrived in Barcelona. After our arrival on the ship, we were told by Jan not to worry about our bags, that Carnival would be responsible for finding out bags. Three days later our bags arrived, so first of all I want to thank Jan for all of his attention and help on this matter. We paid for 12 days of cruising, 9 at ports and 3 "fun days" at the sea. At the end we had 5 days at ports and 7 "fun days" at sea. Fun day at the sea means 4,000 people in the ship spending money in beverage, Casino, store... good deal for Carnival, not for us. The sheets and ice buckets were never changed voluntarily. You had to ask for this to be done for anyone to come to your room to do it. During our cruise departure from Barcelona, all of the announcements were made only in Spanish and Russian, even though the ship was leaving from a spanish-speaking country and the ship is registered in Panama. A lot of the spanish-speaking cruisers were very upset because they could not understand any of the announcements. When the two days in Venice were cancelled, everyone on the ship was outraged, and even though Captain Stefano Battinelli should have made an appearance to speak to the public, he only sent out his assistants to do the explaining. The compensation for the days lost at sea was only removal of the port charges from everyone's account, which is nothing compared to the amount people spent on the trip. If it was true that we could not dock at specific ports due to inclement weather, we should have been offered alternate ports to dock at. A lot of the entertainment on the ship was completely useless. The water slides and pools were all very nice, but who is going to go swimming in Europe in October. Carnival and its Captain Stefano Battinelli ruined the vacation of almost 4000 passengers. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
This was, or should have been, my dream trip of a lifetime. This trip has been in the planning for almost 12 yrs and my husband and I have saved for it for over 2 yrs (cruise and airfare)as seeing Italy was my dream. We are 'paycheck ... Read More
This was, or should have been, my dream trip of a lifetime. This trip has been in the planning for almost 12 yrs and my husband and I have saved for it for over 2 yrs (cruise and airfare)as seeing Italy was my dream. We are 'paycheck to paycheck' people, still working full time w/ multiple mortgages, bills and family depending on us. This was a "once in a lifetime" that may never happen again for me. We have never been to Europe before, so when my husband booked this cruise he depended on the Carnival employee's expertise to guide him to the right cruise, right time of year, etc. He was told that the sail date of 10/25/12 was the 'BEST ONE', but he wasn't told that it was the LAST one of the season and it was during the worst weather in the Mediterranean. After our cruise the Breeze was also transitioning to Florida, as it is too large for most of the ports we were scheduled to see. I believe the employee in the booking dept was more concerned w/ filling spots on the 10/25/12 date, than with what we wanted and were paying a lot of money for. My husband booked this cruise with this specific itinerary, due to Venice being an overnight port and my entire reason for wanting to see Italy. Sadly, I never saw Venice and may never be able to travel to Italy again. On the very first day, at the very first port of Monaco (Monte Carlo) we were told the ship couldn't dock due to high winds; even though the map channel on our cabin TV showed winds of only 10-12mph. The 1st day, the captain chose to skip Monaco and change the dates of all the other ports; mixing them up and giving us another day at sea from the very start. The date changes meant the private gondola ride I had booked for Venice on Nov 1st, was now not going to happen and I'd lose $428.00. We, along with several hundred other guests, immediately went to the very small room set up for complaints. We were pushed, shoved and then finally seated at a small table, watching a few crew members running around w/ cel phones, but we had to grab one to get any help. We had our private tour paperwork and were told a guest services employee would be emailing the company for us, as calls were not going through. It took the next 3 days of me "hounding" them twice a day, to get an answer that the company bad rescheduled our gondola ride for our new arrival date. When the captain made the itinerary changes, it forced us to be on the ship for 2 days at the beginning. One stop in Livorno, then more sea days. One stop in Croatia and then we were supposed to be sailing to Venice that night; arriving on Oct 31st. After leaving Croatia, the cruise director announced (over the PA system) that there were more itinerary changes: now skipping Venice all together and adding another 2 sea days to our trip. So far we had missed Monaco and had Sicily taken away; all other ports were moved around and dates changed. Now, we're having Venice taken away, more sea days added and more port date changes; but magically added Sicily back to the mix. So, essentially out of 10 days of actual sailing, we spent SIX on the ship and the last 3 ports (Sicily, Naples & Rome) were rushed into the last 3 days on the ship, with one last sea day to pack and have luggage outside the cabin door before 2200 hrs the night before we docked back in Barcelona. the ports we did manage to dock in, had the times shortened, both arriving later and leaving earlier. The excursions booked though Carnival were rushed and less than accommodating with "free" time to shop, eat a cafe, etc. We cancelled our excursion in Naples so we could just walk around the city, as that was the ONLY port close enough to do that; all the others were a 90 min drive to get to the place we paid to see (i.e., Rome 90 min drive from docking port; Sicily 50+ min drive to Taormina, Pisa 45+ min drive from Livorno. etc). Also, when we booked all of our carnival excursions, via the website, prior to sailing, the descriptions all say "beautiful drive" "scenic views" etc ... NOT. Every drive to the place we paid to see was through inner cities, freeway areas and less than beautiful, to include a bus driver in Rome who had to stop, waste our tour time to figure out how to turn on the windshield wipers so he could drive in the rain. The food was horrible. Powdered eggs for scrambled and omelets. The same choices all 12 days; no variation, no change. Most of the 'hot' food was cold even before you sat down at a table. Lunch and dinner were the same day after day; no imagination in the choices. Baked potatoes and white rice with every dinner; no flavor, nothing for the price you pay. The shows and comedians were less than adequate. Same shows, same 2 comedians every night. Once you saw them, what's left? The big screen by the main pool was never used during the day and played one 1990's movie at night. If you wanted to see a movie on the six sea days you would be forced to pay over $10 for ppv or to go to a small theater on the ship. No activities except bingo and trivia every single day. My husband and I walked the decks for six "fun" days at sea, desperate for something to do. The crew and staff were rude and less than happy. They were curt at the guest services desk; sometimes with obvious disdain for our anger at being stuck on a ship for six days. The casino bar was the only one with TV's for entertainment and they refused to change the channel and showed only soccer or tennis the entire time. The Internet cost almost a dollar a minute. The elevators didn't work at least two thirds of the time and on a ship that holds over 4000 guests, there were only 2 self-service laundry rooms w/ only 3 washers in each one .. AND it cost $3.25 per load to wash and another $3.25 to dry the clothes. I could go on forever ... I will never sail Carnival again and I hope anyone who works as hard as my husband did to try and make my dream come true, goes elsewhere as well. This vacation was a complete failure and my dream was ruined. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
The Carnival Breeze is the the newest ship we've ever been on. There are some outstanding things about it. We loved the 4D Theater, Sky Course and the Water Works (slides). The fast food was the best we've ever had. Guys ... Read More
The Carnival Breeze is the the newest ship we've ever been on. There are some outstanding things about it. We loved the 4D Theater, Sky Course and the Water Works (slides). The fast food was the best we've ever had. Guys Burgers, the Cantina for Mexican and the Pizza were by far the best of any ship we've been on. The cabin was incredibly small and plain. The noise from the Lido was awful and heard throughout the night, every night we were onboard. The walls are too thin and we heard the TV early each morning from our neighbor's cabin. While most of the food was good in the dining room, I believe there is some room for improvement here. The waiters made numerous mistakes with service though they were extremely nice. Our waiter also smelled of body odor and should have been counseled on it. The comfort foods on the menu were enticing and above all the melting chocolate cake was our favorite dessert. The Carnival production shows were too loud and in your face for us and there is not one indoor space we could find for peace and quiet. Even the library has music piped in. Onboard shopping was excellent but a bit crazy during sales such as the $5 t-shirt sale where people were acting like animals. The cruise director was very personable and sincere. We missed the port of Monaco due to "weather" that never appeared until we would have left the port but the Captain has to make those tough calls. Other than that most days were sunny and we were able to enjoy the activities upstairs. It would be nice to have an indoor pool on the ship but it seems nowadays few ships have them. We would recommend this ship to others and would like to sail on her again. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
My wife and I cruised on the Carnival Breeze for 12 nights on October 1st and had an amazing time. I am 38 and my wife is 36. We are both avid cruisers, although this was our first non-Caribbean cruise. First some general ... Read More
My wife and I cruised on the Carnival Breeze for 12 nights on October 1st and had an amazing time. I am 38 and my wife is 36. We are both avid cruisers, although this was our first non-Caribbean cruise. First some general observations: -Cruising in the Med in October was a great call. Excellent weather, less crowds, lower price. -Carnival Breeze is an amazing ship with lots of activities. -For those of you who are Carnival regulars this was a much older crowd than you typically see on a Carnival cruise. Some of this is likely a reflection of the time we choose to cruise. No families with kids. My children (12 and 8) stayed with my parents. There were quite a few late 20's early 30's couples and then 70% over 50. -I understood from the crew during the summer there are way more kids. For those of you contemplating bringing kids on this cruise,there is NO WAY I WOULD SPEND THE MONEY TO BRING CHILDREN YOUNGER THAN 12(Probably 14)on this cruise. This is a very active, busy cruise. I can't imagine trying to walk a 6 year old through the Vatican. If you just want to relax save your money and go to the Caribbean.-Carnival Breeze is a beautiful ship. There is tons to do. Carnival has really upgraded this ship. Lots of nice touches compared to the other Carnival ships we have been on. Tons of activities. No excuse for being bored. -Food was very good. I read some reviews complaining about food. The reality is you can not go to the main dining room expecting 5 star dining. The price point of this cruise simply doesn't allow that. The steakhouse is amazing and a great value for a 35 dollar cover charge. You would pay 70-80 bucks just for a steak of that quality in the states. So if you want nicer pay extra. The lido deck food is very good. Again some other reviewers amaze me. Of course the food is more cafeteria style. It's designed to be good but to serve lots of people quickly and in a short amount of time. Guys Burger's is absolutely awesome. I gained weight because of this place. Huge upgrade over the old burger stands on carnival. My only complaint would be to have a little more variety in the main dining room menu. -This was easily the friendliest crew we have had on any of our 9 previous cruises. Best dining team, best cabin steward, hardest working crew, and the list goes on. -Overall entertainment was good. Latin nights was awesome. Brits wasn't very good. -Bottom line this was an outstanding experience. I don't see how someone could have been on this cruise with the amazing itinerary, beautiful ship, and great crew and not had a good time. Bottom line if you can not find a way to enjoy your self on this cruise it is on you. My port reviews are below. Happy cruising.Pre-Cruise, Barcelona-We arrived Sunday morning the day before departure. Naturally lots of jet lag. Used sunshine transfers to pick up from the airport. It was 39 euros to take us to our hotel. Used credit card points to stay at Le Meriden Barcelona on Las Ramblas. Happy with the service. I would have planned on arriving two days before the cruise if I had it to do all over again. There is lots to see in Barcelona and the first day you are just to tired. Also the first part of the cruise is the busiest, so getting your rest in helps. If you stay Las Ramblas area, it is easy to do self guided walks of the sights. Embarkation was very easy the next day. Taxi ride to the port was about 25 euros from Las Ramblas. We were on the boat by 1130. I'll cover debarkation during the ports review section. Do not be afraid to book your own tours! Carnival really pushes their tours but you say way more with less people by booking on your own. We enjoyed our one carnival tour, but were much more impressed with the private tours. Tripadvisor and CC message boards are your friend. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
We were curious about the cruising experience, and now, having completed a 12 day cruise, our curiosity is satisfied. In many respects the experience matched out expectations. Cruising is a very comfortable way to travel, with many of the ... Read More
We were curious about the cruising experience, and now, having completed a 12 day cruise, our curiosity is satisfied. In many respects the experience matched out expectations. Cruising is a very comfortable way to travel, with many of the comforts of home, and limited hassles. It is an inexpensive way to go, too, as food in Europe is very expensive, and a cruise ship provides unlimited food as part of the price. There were a few surprises. Because the cruise industry has the capacity to dump huge loads of tourists into port at one time, some of the smaller ports were simply overwhelmed with a crush of people, and one could not escape the feeling, from time to time, of being part of a cattle-call. It was rather un-nerving to be part of such a large crowd, and one couldn't help but wonder how we hoards of tourists were perceived by the locals. I expected, because I'd heard, that shore excursions booked through a cruise line are not a good value (e.g. marked up quite a bit over what one can negotiate independently). We'd done some research on this, and personally felt that what the cruise line tours offered was quite competitive. We were very satisfied. We would probably not try to negotiate train travel in Italy on our own. We attempted to take the train instead of land transportation offered by the cruise line in two ports; Livorno and Naples. In both instances we found that negotiating train stations is a daunting task, made even more so by the fact that few Italians seem to speak much English. And, if you don't know to validate your train ticket before boarding (this is NOT made clear when purchasing your tickets, or clearly explained along the platforms, you may well be fined! All in all, we felt we got what we paid for. A modestly priced European vacation, with lots of good food and ease of travel. And speaking of food; there is a LOT of food. Perhaps for that reason alone many fat people are attracted to cruises. Certainly there were a lot of fat folks on our cruise, so much that it was discomforting to see and a definite turn-off at meal times. I wouldn't recommend one-port-a-day cruising for those who want more than a brief sample of what Europe has to offer. Nor would I recommend it for people who are uncomfortable being part of a LARGE crowd. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
This was our second cruise after 20 years. Overall, very disappointed with the food and constant pressure to buy photos, shore excursions, items from the shops and spa services. Cabin was good, clean with adequate closet space , but ... Read More
This was our second cruise after 20 years. Overall, very disappointed with the food and constant pressure to buy photos, shore excursions, items from the shops and spa services. Cabin was good, clean with adequate closet space , but needed more hangers. First lunch was a buffet. I chose the stir fry, where you select your veggies, protein and sauce. Then the cook tosses your choices on a Wok along with a cup of water, covers the dish with a lid for 60 seconds. The result is a soupy dish of wet ingreds. I would describe the buffets like a Food Court during a Black Friday sale at a Mall. Dinner was in the optional price steakhouse. Now, that was excellent. The service attentive and the beef cooked perfectly. The four of us chose the steakhouse because there was an offer for a free bottle of wine only on the first night. This excellent dinner raised my expectations for the rest of the voyage. Next morning, we were woken on the PA to be advised that due to high winds and small port entrance, we would not be able to tie up at Monaco. Disappointment to say the least. Breakfast buffet... powdered scrambled eggs with overly sweetened orange "juice". The coffee after 2 days drove me to brew tea. Toast was on one side of the line, but jam and syrup were across the aisle. Hard boiled eggs were prob cooked for 10 minutes on a high boil resulting in the telltale black outline. Told the Maitre'd about the HB eggs, but no change. Dinner, they greeting desk tries to seat you to share a table, not always wanted. You have to be aggressive. For every seated meal, the first person to attend was the cocktail server who would not bring the wine.Food in Dining room was good with no shining stars. Each dinner we had to repeatedly ask for lemons in the glass of water, even tho we had the same team. Ports were 60 minutes from the cities and coach drives were described as scenic. Not so, usually high speed routes. The shore excursion in Rome was rushed. Seemed like a sprint for 8 hours. Stop to shoot a scene and the umbrella was 100 ahead. Guides were knowledgeable and friendly. The best part of the entire 12 days was the locals we met on shore, whether a shore excursion laid on lunch, owners in a retail shop, fruit street vendors or just helpful locals. The entry to Venice in the fog was spectacular along with the historic skyline. We were so fortunate the stand on St. Mark's piazza 10 days before the flood!! Found some reasonable shopping(leather, wool cap, scarf)and wonderful food window displays.The walking along the narrow streets over the canals was a delight. Next morning back to Venice with a water taxi back to the ship to be in time only to learn that the departure would be delayed for 2 hours. Sadly, there was a death onboard. One of the passengers had a medical emergency, was transferred to another boat for further care. However, we were all advised on the PA that he/she had passed away. Shockingly, in the next sentence we were told about the sale on the shops onboard!!. No pause, no moment of silence! The Cruise Director was the voice on the PA became very annoying after the third day. Too loud with forced enthusiasm. The large screen on the Lido deck showed sitcoms( Frazier) and very old movies. Same for the room TV( Rick Steeves) and broadcast of info for disembarkation and broadcast of entertainment where cruise customers were the talent. Comedy club in the lounge, we left after 7 minutes, not funny. Our room was clean and comfortable. the two twins pushed together resulted in a seam to deal with. The cabin staff and for that matter serve staff addressed me as MR. Richard( my first name, not last). I guess this was the training. Felt weird. The emphasis was on the manner of address and animals fashioned out of towels, not upscale thoughtful service. At Dinner, one of asked for extra vegetables. We received more potatoes and some carrots... no greens. At another dinner, mashed potatoes were included. The server asked if I wanted a Baked potato...I got both. Desserts were on the too sweet side. So, we were constantly reminded about the level of service and quality of food in the Italian optional Captain`s Table resto. We booked a table for 4. Arrived, met a couple that we met on board and agreed to all 6 dine together. I asked the Maitre`d if we could switch from 4 to 6. She rolled her eyes and said she would look. After a few minutes, she said she was able to switch. When we were guided to our seats, the room was more than half empty?? I ordered the Melanzane which was inedible, overcooked mush and too oily. When asked how I enjoyed it, looking at the still full plate, I described the failure. Shock on her face, but no offer to replace, substitute or credit. Everywhere on board, they play music at volume. We found the Wine Library, still PA music. It has an auto wine vendor. You use your ship's card to select and pour a selected flavour of wine in a glass. One selection was off and undrinkable( another cruiser agreed with us). I asked the bar attendant if she could replace the glass of wine. She snapped that the vending machine was automatic, our charge could not be credited and there was nothing that she could do. I insisted on speaking to her supervisor. She replied that he was on break for the next 3 hours. I asked to speak to someone. This had deteriorated. After 15 minutes, an office in white arrived, credited the account advised us that we were the only ones who did not like the wine. I pointed to the guy at the bar. The whole process was unpleasant. The staff are unwilling or unable to resolve complaints. On the exterior decks, the majority are constantly wafted by cooking odours, not fresh sea breezes. With the constant pressure to spend more cash on board, I started to call the ship by the "Carnival Squeeze". Read Less
Carnival Breeze Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.0
Family 5.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 2.0 3.6
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.0

Find a Carnival Breeze Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise