My husband and I haven't cruised for over 25 years. Our last cruise was on a Carnival cruise back in the day when you had one dining option, the Grand buffet was grand and the food was equal to the best 5 star restaurants in New ... Read More
My husband and I haven't cruised for over 25 years. Our last cruise was on a Carnival cruise back in the day when you had one dining option, the Grand buffet was grand and the food was equal to the best 5 star restaurants in New York. Boy times have changed cruising. We cruised for Christmas this year. I was excited to see all the holiday decorations on board. I was disappointed that the decor for Christmas, a time when we all over decorate, was minimal. The gingerbread houses that were placed through out the ship looked like the children from the last cruise decorated them. Sloppy, candy still in wrappers and royal frosting put on without care. First impression was ehh!. Our cabin (11022) was very nice. We had a balcony that was great and we could sit out in the chairs at night to watch the sun set, or have our morning coffee. Our cabin steward, Karta, was terrific. Once we boarded, we got our bags unpacked, which were delivered quickly. As I laid down on the pillow, it smelled like old sweat! Karta was quick to give me a different one. These rooms are much larger than they used to be. If you like smaller ships, this is for you. Only 2400 passengers. Now for the food. We made our dinning reservations for the specialty restaurants as soon as we could. If you want to dine in any of these restaurants, get your reservations early otherwise you'll be dining very late if at all. The "complementary" dining rooms don't require reservations. We ate 3 times in the French restaurant Le Bistro. Food was phenomenal. Our waitresses were Nareen, and another wonderful lady from Grenada. Both were very attentive. We loved them both. We also ate in Cagneys, service was poor, and with the exception of the steak, the food was not so good. Another night we ate at the Brazilian steakhouse...wouldn't waste my time or money there. Meat was tough, under seasoned and the sides were at best institutionalooking tasting. The main dining room is served Cafeteria style..the food is good, but wouldn't write home about it. Deserts are just ok, nothing special. Even the Christmas Buffet was mediocre. I expected something really amazing. The ports are nice. Cozumel my favorite, they have starbucks with free WiFi. Belize city and Roatan are interesting, but so many are poor. We took the glass bottom boat trip that was very educational. Hosted my a Canadian trained marine biologist. Her main message was stop the algae growth by NOT urinating in the ocean!!. The ship crew really push the shopping in these ports! They almost scare you into only shopping at their recommended shops... just do your homework before going. If you want diamonds, Tanzanite and other gems, know what the cost us at home so you know if you are getting a good deal. With the exception of the diamonds, the gems may not be in white gold or even sterling. Most are plated brass.
Internet is pricey. 100 minutes for 75.00. Or by the minute for 95 cents per minute. Think before you buy.
It is so most time to debark and head to the airport. We had a nice relaxing time aboard. Before going again, I think I'd look at royal Caribbean because it is more formal, something I am more used to.
Hope this helps you plan your cruise. Aloha. Read Less