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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our 14th cruise overall, the 13th with Carnival, and our first as Platinum VIFP guests. We booked the 7-day cruise out of San Juan, going to Eastern and Southern ports. However, Mother Nature had other plans in the forms of ... Read More
This was our 14th cruise overall, the 13th with Carnival, and our first as Platinum VIFP guests. We booked the 7-day cruise out of San Juan, going to Eastern and Southern ports. However, Mother Nature had other plans in the forms of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, which devastated not only San Juan, but several of the destinations. Consequently Carnival canceled the cruise, and offered this 4-day to the Bahamas for only port fees and taxes. So we decided, "why not?" The ship is one of the older/smaller Fantasy class ships, so not as many bells and whistles, which we don't really mind. We like the smaller ships -- 2000 passengers is just about right. (We have no desire to cruise with 6000 of our closest friends!) We had a mid-ship balcony cabin on Empress Deck, our favorite deck for these smaller ships. However, this was the tiniest balcony cabin we had ever had -- no couch nor small table set-up at all, just a bed and 1 straight back chair. Décor and bathroom fixtures had been updated somewhat, and we hated the bathroom updates -- instead of the corner shelves on either side of the mirror, now only one small shelf under the mirror -- room for virtually nothing, LOL. But no big deal. Everything else was in good shape. Our steward was ultra-accommodating and congenial. Our dining room was the centrally-located Sensation Restaurant, where we enjoyed Your Time Dining. It was very-well-run, and we only waited for 10 minutes on the first evening; other nights we just walked right in. Menus were familiar, but we always found something to enjoy, and everything was prepared and presented well. We were happy to see they still offered escargots on one night! Service in the dining room and at the bars was generally excellent. And a first for us -- we made a daily trip to the coffee shop and had lattes -- very nice start to our days. We did the Sea Day Brunch, and also ate breakfast in the MDR every morning. We particularly enjoyed the piano bar with Martin, and the atrium music. We attended two big shows: the Welcome Aboard Show (ugh) and the Divas Show (meh). We went to one adult comedy show and it was good. We got off the ship briefly in both Nassau and Freeport, just long enough for a little shopping, then back on. This was a different cruise for us, and we were just in relax-on-the-balcony mode! Embarkation and debarkation were well-organized and very quick. We are looking forward to being back on the Fascination next year when we try again for the San Juan itineraries. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
We chose this vacation for the ship that we were suppose to sail on the ELATION, needless to say we were put on the fascination the ship from HELL. Oh ccl was smart they used this to their advantage, get that all mighty dollar no matter ... Read More
We chose this vacation for the ship that we were suppose to sail on the ELATION, needless to say we were put on the fascination the ship from HELL. Oh ccl was smart they used this to their advantage, get that all mighty dollar no matter what the passengers thought.Food was terrible I got food poisoned on the lido deck buffet, ship was old and delapedated. Carnival you may have won because you got the hard earned people's money, but you loose because you have lost the business from a lot of cruisers, and the respect from all. Our cabin had black mold, when we were out of our cabin maintenance came in our room and painted over the mold, so now we had paint fumes to deal with.The doctor on board was a big fat joke, I was in horrible pain, vomiting my head off he just stands there like an idiot and the nurse over rode the dr and gave me a pain injection. Yes, carnival you have got the money from all of us but no more! I will never cruise you AGAIN!!!! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
I'd like to think that the problems with this cruise had more to do with Hurricane Maria than anything, but the hurricane was only a very small part of the issue. My first Carnival cruise was so wonderful I never saw this experience ... Read More
I'd like to think that the problems with this cruise had more to do with Hurricane Maria than anything, but the hurricane was only a very small part of the issue. My first Carnival cruise was so wonderful I never saw this experience coming, on my second! Customer service was anything but... very long lines to speak to anybody (an hour or longer), only two persons working the guest service desk, and as quickly as you asked them a question and they responded, they moved on to other guest without ever asking if that answered your question or took care of your problem. If it did not, you had to get in line all over again to follow up, and they didn't want to help you any more the second or third time around either. I paid for a Grand Suite, which was advertised to come with Faster to the Fun benefits. When we arrived we were confirmed as Faster to the Fun by the porters taking luggage. They directed us to our VIP check in, where again we were treated very well and confirmed as Faster to the Fun. After needing assistance from guest service and waiting in line for more than 30 minutes we finally made it to the window... the Faster to the Fun window is what opened up. The guest service representative told us that we would not be helped at that window again and were not Faster to the Fun, as we hadn't paid extra for it. When we asked for the problem to be addressed, we were directed to the Shore Excursion Desk, where we waited in line again. That desk advised that only SOME Faster to the Fun benefits would be ours and we should look for a letter in our suite, advising us of this. No letter. They told us to check with Guest Services for a letter; I refused another 30 minute wait I line. They had a supervisor bring us the letter and then dismissed us. Letter said we needed a special sticker on our card; no sticker. Waited in line another 30 minutes to get the missing sticker but they refused to give one to my aging mother, who could not stand I that long line; no appearance, no sticker. One line after another, no service in either. That was the first day. Every day thereafter was more of the same callous treatment. Spa staff was horrific and was nothing but a daily bait and switch. Will never sail with Carnival again. There was just no reason for the bait and switch they pulled at every opportunity, for the art dealer who knocked at our stateroom door demanding to come in and show us artwork we didn't want, then making my sister dig through the trash to return a $200 off coupon that was left in our cabin since we weren't going to buy their art, and the guest service and shore excursion fiascos. Let's not even talk about Hurricane Maria - they wrecked this cruise before the hurricane ever became a factor! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
The staff did a commendable job of entertaining and facilitating the passengers during what could have been a disastrous experience! Our schedule had to deviate from its original plan to stay clear of Hurricane torn destinations (St. ... Read More
The staff did a commendable job of entertaining and facilitating the passengers during what could have been a disastrous experience! Our schedule had to deviate from its original plan to stay clear of Hurricane torn destinations (St. Thomas and Saint Martin) by making stops in Grenada and Antigua. We ended up staying at sea an additional two days as our port of origin (San Juan, Puerto Rico) sustained heavy damage while we were at sea and could not return. Instead we were re-routed to Miami where our cruise concluded and had to re-book flights. The Cruise Director, Captain and staff kept us as informed as they were able to, making onboard entertainment adjustments on the spot to cater to us all! In fact, due to the storm damage left in the wake of Hurricane Maria, only residents were permitted to disembark when we arrived back in San Juan. If they decided to continue with the rest of us (which several passengers did, then Carnival had arranged return airfare home for the Puerto Rican travelers at NO expense! YOU WERE AMAZING CARNIVAL AND ONCE AGAIN PROVED TO ME WHY YOU HAVE BEEN OUR CARRIER OF CHOICE THROUGHOUT OUR CRUISING HISTORY! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
overall the ship was in pretty good condition the cabin room was enough for 1 person did not see the steward till the second day and then that was the ONLY time I seen him he did pick up dirty towels but just scooted over the ones on towel ... Read More
overall the ship was in pretty good condition the cabin room was enough for 1 person did not see the steward till the second day and then that was the ONLY time I seen him he did pick up dirty towels but just scooted over the ones on towel rack not fresh ones. went to MDR every nite dont know why I was disappointed in the service slow had to ask for a menu several times I think that this was because a big important table was next to us funny one nite ask for broccoli got one flowertte in the bowl portions are quite small now. The captain did a good job stirring us away from the hurricane but thought we could have been informed more as to what was going on 2 days before we going to dock in San Juan we were allowed to call the airlines and family free of charge but me living in FL this made me not get a flight till Friday first come first serve so needless to say had to stay in the airport in case something came available and most hotels were book full ask if anything carnival could do for me just laughed, but did say I could pay for another cruise. Now in the casino never met the staff manager I had a drink on us notice in my room ask several servers about it said you find out never came back on day 2 finally got a card but before that I had to pay for my drinks. disembarkation was a nightmare was suppose to start at 7 it was 8:15 had to be cleared then it was crazy worst one I have encountered The ports were late about an hr in St Kitts my shore excursion was cancelled but when I got to the meeting place they said they let carnival know just not me. Missed St Martin but did get $9.61 back and had an extra sea day boy carnival benfited on that -all those extra drinks Would I got on this cruise again NO I had one booked in December came home and cancelled I think I will try land vacations for awhile . Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
I along with almost 50 friends and family were on the Fascination, Southern Caribbean cruise on September 3 and feel I have to post the wonderful way this cruise ship handled our cruise. We were blessed because we went to St. Thomas ... Read More
I along with almost 50 friends and family were on the Fascination, Southern Caribbean cruise on September 3 and feel I have to post the wonderful way this cruise ship handled our cruise. We were blessed because we went to St. Thomas first so we missed the weather there and it hit Puerto Rico early enough that it did not impact our flight out of there on September 10. We were not able to go to St. Maarten because Irma had already hit there but the captain was amazing in keeping us up to date on what was going on. Before I got back to my cabin after listening to his announcement there was already a letter under my door outlining the situation and explaining there would be a return of taxes and port charges on our sail and sign card which totally surprised me and I have to say was not my first thought. The staff did a fantastic job of now changing to accommodate the fact that they would now have us on board for a sea day that was not planned and you would not have known this was not a part of our original itinerary. We had no rough waters at all as a result of the storm and my hat really goes off to the guest service crew because they were busy ALL the time but always helpful and polite. I bought the internet package but was unable to get through to the airline and my transportation service so I was given a code to use the phone in my cabin at no cost to me. Thank you Carnival Fascination from my family and friends because a lot of them had never cruised before and this was a wonderful trip for this despite the devastation of the situation. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We took a group of 12 on this cruise and had a great time. We flew into Puerto Rico on Saturday so spent Sat and Sun walking Old San Juan visited forts and shops. Stayed at Sheraton across from cruise port in Old San Juan. Great hotel ... Read More
We took a group of 12 on this cruise and had a great time. We flew into Puerto Rico on Saturday so spent Sat and Sun walking Old San Juan visited forts and shops. Stayed at Sheraton across from cruise port in Old San Juan. Great hotel and easy to be close to everything. Easy embarkation got on easily at our time and luggage was quickly at our doors. We had a great time at St. Thomas was supposed to do Carnival excursion to St. John, however it was cancelled due to Hurricane Irma many boats were being taken out due to incoming potential hurricane. So we went to Megan's bay had a beautiful day there and not crowded at all. Then headed toward Barbados and it was great there. We went to Boatyard in Barbados there was some winds and bigger waves from hurricane Irma but we had a great time and spent a lot of time in lounge chairs and in water. They could not do turtle snorkel due to rip tides but great day. We unfortunately saw on their TV's St. Martin being hit by the Hurricane and it was really sad to see, we were supposed to dock there on our last day and we knew it would likely be cancelled. Went to St. Lucia next day and it was great did tour with Cosal Tours and it was awesome, my personal favorite tour and island. Next day we visited St. Kitts and they got some wind and rain from Irma but not to bad we had chose to go to Reggae Beach with Liz Peira Tours. She was right where she told us she would be to pick up. Was disappointed when we got to Reggae Beach was my 2nd time to St. Kitts but first time to Reggae Beach not what I pictured and saw on line. From Irma there was lots of debris all over the beach and rocks/shells so bad to walk into the water that you could not as it hurt your feet. I thought they could have at least mentioned this to us before they took us there. We left early and went back to town to shop got some great deals and had fun. When talking to others on ship they went to Carambola beach which I visited on previous trip and they said that beach was great. Wishing I would have gone back there, but no big deal we are still enjoying. As we thought our sat was supposed to be at St. martin turned to a sea day and we are ok with that last full day to rest before dock back in Puerto Rico. So we enjoyed the ship and they did lots of activities. WE had great waiter staff at early dinner each night and our room steward was great as well. Ship was well taken care of and all staff we approached and talked to were very friendly. Enjoyed our trip. Would go on ship again. We had early dining for our group of 12 had a great table by window and great team of wait staff. No issues at all always accommodating and we loved the dinner you could always find something good to eat. Room steward was great kept room clean always had plenty of towels and ice always said hello if he saw us. No issues with room steward. Great towel animals. Entertainment was good. I did not care for the one show in the theatre but loved the other show. Saw one comedian and he was great. Loved Love and Marriage and Hasbro shows and some trivia too. All staff we talked to always talked and friendly with us. No issues Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
I've read many reviews about this cruise leading up to our trip. Some were negative and some were positive. Most of the reviews I read had referenced the fact that the Fascination is an older ship. I've been on 3 other Carnival cruises and ... Read More
I've read many reviews about this cruise leading up to our trip. Some were negative and some were positive. Most of the reviews I read had referenced the fact that the Fascination is an older ship. I've been on 3 other Carnival cruises and two Norwegian cruises. The Fascination is just as nice, if not nicer, than any other ship I've sailed on. It is SO CLEAN. At one point, I saw someone cleaning the floor with a toothpick! I also saw cabin stewards steam cleaning curtains and wiping the ceilings. Show me any resort that does that on a daily basis! This was such a clean ship and did not show its age anywhere. Embarkation in San Juan was simple. Our appointed time to board was 1pm. We arrived to the port around 11:30am and were directed to the 2nd floor of the cruise terminal. There was a very small line. We were shocked to find out that we could board as soon as we checked in. I've never boarded so quickly before. I almost purchased the Faster To The Fun program but opted against it. I'm glad I did. The only thing I had to wait for was our luggage to get delivered to our room later on that evening. We had cabin M225, which is an oceanview room. It is slightly smaller than other oceanview rooms on other Carnival ships(185 sq ft compared to 225 sq ft). It is a normal size room for any other ship. I brought an over the door shoe rack to store our toiletries in. It hung right over our bathroom door. I recommend bringing one because this ship does not have the larger shelves that some of the newer ships have in the bathroom. It also does not have a hairdryer. My girlfriend brought hers just in case and was pleased she did. The room does have plenty of storage for all of our clothes. We had 4 people in the cabin, 2 adults and 2 children. We chose the anytime dining and had many excellent meals in the Sensation dining room. All of the wait staff were friendly, professional, and very nice. The meals came to the table hot and delicious. The buffet was also really good. I really enjoyed the Mongolian Wok. I hear it may be getting replaced with Guy's Burgers in February when the ship receives the Funship 2.0 upgrades. I'll be sad to see it go. Its delicious! The Dr. Seuss breakfast is always a good time and is only $5 p/p extra. We went to a few shows, we liked the mentalist, Rich Purpura. He's really funny. Our favorite bar had to be the Atrium Bar on the 7th deck. Theres live music most of the time and one of the bartenders, Siti, is SO NICE. She is super friendly and makes really good drinks. Our son loved her chocolate banana smoothies. We did a few excursions. In Barbados, we went on the Jolly Roger Pirate Ship. We did not book this through Carnival and we were glad we didnt. Carnival's trip does not include food. You have to buy it when you check in to get on the pirate ship. A burger is $5, the buffet lunch which includes your choice of steak, chicken, or grilled tuna as well as many sides is $15 extra if purchased through Carnival. We found the excursion through another website and only spent $6 more per person for the trip. HOWEVER, that INCLUDED the buffet lunch. Also, we were on the same excursion as those who purchased through Carnival. So we weren't afraid that we'd be left behind if the ship left. In St. Kitts, we relaxed at a resort for a day. It was very nice. I did not much care for St. Lucia. The port is in the city and there is nothing to see. People harass you to take their tours in their taxis or shop at their stands. We got right back on the ship after only a few minutes. St. Maarten and St. Thomas are both very nice. We didnt do any excursions, just toured on our own. Overall, this was a very nice cruise. I had a great time and met some great people aboard. My only complaint is that there is only 1 fun day at sea. After the Fascination's dry dock in February, they are replacing that fun day at sea with another port in Domenica. So there will be a port day every day. For me, that is too much. Read Less
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