11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
This review and ratings are based on my experience on the inaugural sailing of the Classica. I fully understand that this was an inaugural sailing, this is a lower priced cruise line, and thing will happen that need to be ironed out with ... Read More
This review and ratings are based on my experience on the inaugural sailing of the Classica. I fully understand that this was an inaugural sailing, this is a lower priced cruise line, and thing will happen that need to be ironed out with better processes moving forward – no one should expect a perfect trip on the inaugural sailing, in my opinion. I received an invitation to be a guest aboard the inaugural sailing of the Bahamas Paradise (BP) Grand Classica sailing to Freeport on 13APRIL2018 thru 15APRIL2018 from an Association of which I am a member of. No one asked me to write a review nor provide any feedback, and this invitation did not influence my review. This ship was formally the Costa neoClassica. The invitation was for travel industry professionals to experience the product, visit the resorts that BP partners with, and the company personnel. For those who have read any of my reviews here on Cruise Critic (CC) or other sites, you know that the review can sometimes be longer then the sailing. With this being the first sailing of this ship, I EXPECTED vast amounts of technical difficulties, process issues, confused staff, shortage of supplies and so forth – you go on an inaugural sailing, it should be expected. Confirmation of my reservation came a couple of weeks before the sailing, and about a week after accepting the invitation to join the festivities. It was an email with basic information including my ocean view room on deck 6 (6105), arrival time and links. I called the cruise line, waited 45 minutes on hold to talk to an operator, as I wanted to inquire about online registration – there is none – show up with passport, fill out one form when you get there. Made a mini-vacation out of this trip and headed down from North Carolina with my 75yo father in law who loves cruising almost as much as myself. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Palm Beach Airport Conference Center. Hotel was great – I stay at a lot of IHG hotels and get some good perks and great rates. We went to the port after dinner to see if the ship was in – still not in. I would not recommend staying right near the port itself. This was a quick 15 minute ride, just off 95. Early morning breakfast followed by a short ride to the port. We were told to arrive at 1000 but ended up pulling in shortly after 915. We were anxious, what can I say. Port was easy to navigate and small, but plenty of signs. There is only one terminal, easy to find where you are going. Pulled up to the front door, valet took the car, we took our backpacks and walked in the door 10 feet away. Right thru security, up the stairs and into the lobby that had only a hand full of people in it. We had a backpack, which they would not accept at the baggage area (“we don’t take backpacks”), and one small bag that they did take. It ended up in the hallway outside our door after lunch. There were many staff members present, and senior personnel giving direction, but still, much confusion. The band came in and played as I filled out the one form – my credit card information – and waited. And waited.. and waited. The staff stated we would line up at 10. 1030 came and went and some started to enter the queue. It was around 11 and the lines started to process. Immediately there were two issues – 1. The computer systems were not ready for guests. The frantic IT guy worked hard to get the up and running one at a time, did a great job. Should have been tested days before, but roll with it. 2. EVERYONE was a “VIP” it seemed. Since so many were invited guests and the paperwork stated to enter the VIP line, there were a few offended that they were not given the royal treatment. I was one of the first in line, ushered up to the window in about 5 minutes, and on my way a few minutes later. Once the window opened and we proceeded, my stint was about 10 minutes. Others were longer, especially those who waited to get in the lines. From the counter to the ship was an easy walk. Upon entering the ship, we were ushered from the deck 5 lobby to deck 8, Encore Lounge, for a cocktail reception. Industry guests were identified throughout the week with blue wristbands and nametags. About an hour after some cocktails and hors d'oeuvre, the festivities moved to the Legends Grand Theater where there was GB staff, politicians, and Bahamas reps talked about the new ship, economic impact, etc. Cut the ribbon and off to lunch in the Yellow Elder dining room. I then did a tour of the ship, so lets break that down. Muster – this was a CHARLIE FOXTROT – if you know what I mean. Direction was minimal at best. You report to your muster station (deck 9) but there was mass confusion here. I saw one person with the counter at a random spot in the hallway, but there is no way the count was accurate. The USCG was on board and even asked about the technique and method. There was no order going on and the staff, some oblivious to what they were doing, tried to get people to line up behind lifeboat numbers and stated that this was where they should go in an emergency. The room key states only which of the three muster stations to go to – they need to add in what lifeboat! In an emergency, this is a critical point of failure. I had little confidence in their muster process. Many people had no idea what was going on, and if this were their first cruise, a guest would be baffled. Deck 5 – Reception area was very basic – one statue in the middle and a cube like feel going straight up a few decks. One staircase twines suspended a few decks above. The ship was immaculately clean – no guests for a couple of weeks gave them time to ensure this. Throughout the 2 days, I saw a few people cleaning some elevators, banisters, and carpets. Late night on each night I did notice bottles and glasses “placed” in various spots throughout the ship (stairs, hallways, random spots). I attribute this to guests not putting things where they should (hold onto your glass or bottle, don’t just leave it on the stairs!) But the staff moved through and cleaned often. Shore Excursions and Guest Services were located here in the deck 5 lobby. This is where you can grab your daily planner of events going on. The day in the Bahamas, we never saw nor were we able to get one of these planners, they were all out of them by the time we went down to get them. They do not put one on your bed in the evening for the next day. Staff was friendly, lines moved quickly. The only hold ups I saw at the Guest Services related to people questioning charges on their accounts, all related to alcohol. Decks 4,6,7 are rooms only. There is zero advantage to pay and upgrade to be on any of them. With elevator banks in forward and aft section, the ship layout plays nicely. 4 elevators in each bank, and 2 sets of stairs to go up / down. Navigating the ship up and down as well as forward aft is relatively easy. Only one “cant get there from here” on deck ten where the 10 suites are located and you need to go to deck 11 to get to the buffet. My OV room was a good size. Large porthole window, air conditioner was freezing. Closet, section of draws, small safe, small refrigerator (seemed cold, I never used). No couch, 2 chairs. 1 US outlet was under the desk along the floor – it took me talking to someone about this to find out where it was, as I had only seen the European outlet. One plug. That’s it. Bathroom was clean, functional, good water pressure, lots of hot water (could not get a cup of cold water to drink). Overall, the room was a really good size. Deck 8 – LOTS of public space, more so then on many ships I have been on, if not all ships. Card rooms located off the halls, library, a non-working computer lounge (a work in progress, was not working yet) along with many seating areas. The Encore Lounge was huge, and offered many seats to watch the band that played nightly. Music I heard had mostly a Latin flare. Large bar offered many drinks, including the $5 large bottles of water. Bars accepted the drink coupons for drinks $12 and below. To the front of the ship was the first deck of Legends Grand Theater. A piano on the way in was played one time that I saw, as we walked into the welcome ceremony. The Theater was comfortable, but had some flaws that I could see. First, the floor seats are low compared to the stage. Offer a great head on view, but they are low. I preferred the side seats, around half way around and front row. Could see the stage great from here. Some seats higher up and especially those on the turns had poles. The theater was not crowded at any of the shows I attended. Lights all worked, acoustics were good for the shows. The theater was accessible from 8 and 9. Handicapped accessible through deck 8, but arrive early as you will want to move some of the chairs. The isles can get tight and would be best navigated with less people in them. Next on deck 8 was the conference center. While used only by staff on this cruise, I see this as a great place for groups to get together. Along with the card rooms off to the side, I envision this ship will be ideal for class reunions and other groups who want a quick getaway from this port area and to have some meeting space onboard. It was an excellent meeting place. The Admirals Steak House was the specialty restaurant. It was accessible from the starboard side of the ship – simply put, it is the seating area on the right hand side of the dining room and not a separate venue. This was not “open” on this sailing, per say. The dining room, named after the Bahamas national flower, is the Yellow Elder. Located in the aft of deck 8. The dress code is listed as NO shorts, no flip flops, etc. This was the furthest thing from the truth as people walked in with basketball shorts, Bermuda shorts, T-shirts and flip flops on both nights, and staff did not blink. No one told us to use hand sanitizer at any point of sailing on this ship to include boarding, dining, or buffet. Food is subjective, so I don’t go into great detail about it. First night service was comical, and I felt bad for the staff. It was like throwing them to the wolves to fend for themselves. No processes were in place, my waiter had tables on both sides of the vast dining room, they were looking for common items all over the place (no steak sauce yet, sorry). The menu looked good, but the food was warm, at best, for both meals. Looking at the menu, the left side is the dining room menu, and the right side was the Admirals Steak House upsell items. Lobster, filet mignon, etc. There were listed vegetarian options and the usual note about allergies. I did okay with my allergy to nuts. They have you order your appetizer, meal, and dessert all at once. I talked to a lot of people who sailed on the sister ship many times, and they all said that the food was better on the other ship – I attribute some of this to it being new. The highlight was when I asked for coffee after dinner. Took forever and the waiter brought it to me. He explained that the coffee machine in the dining room was not onboard yet and he had to run to grab it. I asked for creamer and he explained it would be a few minutes; he had to go back to deck 10 for it. I told him to not worry about it and attend to other guests. As for the service, all of it was because they were new – they were trying. The wait staff was friendly, and one or two were very personable. Want a seat along the windows, better get there early for one of the two dining times. It appeared as though everyone sat only with those they knew, lots of tables for 2,4,6. Overall, food was okay and the biggest issue with is was the temperature. Service, well, lets just say they really tried and were not set up for success and they were understaffed. The second night’s service was much better then the first night. All of this was expected (well, not the coffee location, that was new). Deck 9 –Memories is where you can buy the overpriced photos (want to say that it was $20 for the picture and you got a keychain and some wallets or something like that. “Special price”. The Lucaya plaza (another tip to the Bahamas here) was appealing and spacious. The stores were empty when we first boarded – and I mean empty – no product! The staff spent the first few hours loading the shelves, making displays, etc. Liquor store had a special that basically enticed you to buy three bottles to get 30% off. They had no cigars but hoped to get them. The apparel store had good prices on hats. There were no designer sunglasses around, and the other stuff was basic beachwear style. Jewelry store had a limited stock. The small candy shop seemed to have the most business and was priced to sell, only $1.50 for a candy bar and other snacks were not overpriced. Grand Café are 2 for-fee venues. A Slice Above was a pizza and calzone restaurant in they open plaza where you could pay $9.50 for your choice. On the other side was a coffee bar with limited selections for our sailing, but the prices were excellent - $4.50 was most expensive basic drink. There was often a sales pedestal here offering $13 tickets to the comedian show for night 2. While all shows are free, the comedy show is an up-sell. Not sure how many people went to see him, but based on the attendance of the free shows, I don’t know how many actually paid to go – did not meet anyone who did. I did not have anything from either of these two shops as an upsell, but they did look and smell good. Plenty of open seating areas. Moving down deck 9 aft, you come across the Par-A-Dice casino. Finally! A SMOKE FREE casino (aside from Celebrity and the Divina). Very basic table games with a roulette table and some blackjack. Did not see the craps table opened, but then again the ATM did not have any money in it from what people were saying. Slot machines of various types. Not a lot of people in here at first, picked up the first evening. Second night, same thing. Never overcrowded. The best part was the smoke free environment. Beyond this was a wonderful aft panoramic lounge called the Regal Room. Live music included the sax player, a Tina Turner impersonator act? And a piano singer. The best part was the sax player and the endless views. Again, LOTS of seating and a good size floor. If I drank, this is the lounge I would hang out it. Deck 10 – the Suites are located in the mid and forward areas of this deck. There are 10 of them in total. I took a tour of one and will say they were nice size. Large semi-circle balcony, a seating room with couch, desk and TV (TV service was not available on our sailing, still said Costa neoCLassica on the menu). Bedroom was a nice size bed and big tv. Bathroom was a deep-jetted marble tub, a shower and marble vanity area. Very nice. Not worth the upcharge IMO for a 2 night cruise though. I would see no advantage to any traditional ship perks on this getaway – there is no need for priority boarding, priority seating on sun decks, or at the shows. The Ocean View Buffet was extremely weird. The green block walls and other yellowish paint schemes made if feel unique at best – and the appeal was not good. Two ways to get into the buffet area and neither entrance had staff – this was a huge miss. No one used the hand sanitizers, and no staff were around to tell you to wash! The worst aspect was the second day when many (non-Americans) were coming into here in bathing suits and flip flops – no shirts, dripping wet – and staff said nothing to them. The buffet was okay at best for breakfast (there was a made to order grill on the left), and terrible at other times (late lunch / dinner). Limited options for food, the layout is difficult. Very basic selections. Day 2, they ran out of orange juice and it didn’t come back. Coffee was good! Same staff that is in the dining room for dinner was running around here. Again, processes not in place, confusion, and understaffed. Lets chalk it up to the first sailing. The health concerns with those in bathing suites and flip flops though, that could be addressed. Just beyond the buffet was an outdoor seating area that was really nice. I enjoyed dining out here for daily breakfast and a snack on day 2. Plenty of tables, great views (especially as we sailed into West Palm). Downfall, the Rock Grill was an evening restaurant that was selling burgers at dinner time (lunch was free burgers and dogs – huge difference in quality). The problem – there is NO FREE FOOD after the buffet closes around 10PM. So, late night munchies, you must pay. Went to Guest Services, and they told me to call room service (limited menu which was no where to be found, and still at a small fee). Deck 11 – the Adults only aft pool was filled one day. No one was ever back here, except some kids in the Jacuzzis. LOTS of deck chairs, like everyone could have 2 or 3 without issue. The main pool area on the port side was the only smoking area on the ship. Some were smoking day one right near the pool and the staff went over to them and talked to them. Pool was there, kids, some adults. Standard pool deck entertainment like DJs and pool side games over the course of 2 days. Kids Clubs – they were on the smaller size, but then again, there was only a handful of kids on the ship. Kruzers was for ages 3-6, open 3-430 and 6pm-1am on day 1, and from 3pm-1am on day 2. Free of charge. Movies, activities, toys. The 7-12 age group was in a different area, had some games, movie, and some activities, but was very basic. Coming from RCCL and NCL kids clubs my kids would be a little disappointed in this one, but then again, it is only for a short time and only 1-2 days at best. I did not see Xbox or anything, so not sure if they had them – I don’t think so. If your kids will only be there for an hour or two each day, this will work. I heard there was a club for 13-17, but never saw it and not sure it really existed. Spa – The spa area was doing a soft opening. I signed up for an 8pm, day 2, message. All services were ½ price for this sailing (limited menu). I usually do a message per sailing. The exercise area was nice, all the facilities clean. About 7 or 8 loungers in the “relaxation” area, but this was comical – the section is right off the main area of the gym, and open to the sounds of the gym as a whole. The entire time I was sitting there before my service the lockers were beeping – lots of beeping – and the doors to the spa area were opened to the pool deck, complete with dance music. The others waiting were laughing as well. The desk staff was doing their best with no computers, and a limited staffing. Went in, had my message and mentioned this, and the masseuse told me they had been beeping for weeks. For the first time, they did not try to sell me a bunch of useless crap! They were in the case for sale, but not one person even made mention of it. This is great. But what is NOT COOL AT ALL was that there is a sign, and it is on the receipt, and the disclosure form, that states there is an 18% SERVICE CHARGE for ALL SERVICES. That’s okay, this is the tip, I get it. WRONG! This does NOT go to the staff. I confirmed this with the front desk girl, the manager, and my masseuse. They tried to tell me that this is a tax that they have to charge, and were uncomfortable with it. I made a slight stink about how the girls would be loosing out on tips day after day since people will think that is the gratuity. They agreed but seemed hesitant to talk about it. This is a very misleading practice and I will be putting this as my biggest negative of their operation. I have called Bahamas Paradise, and messaged them but get run-arounds on an answer for this for a week now. If this is true, I dislike the practice. Overall, props to the staff, they did a great job. Excellent message, very nice facilities. The “quiet room” and “wall of beeps” are the only negatives, and trivial at that. Deck 12 – Jogging track – artificial grass, and lots of deck chairs. Rows of empty deck chairs. If you’re a sun seeker, look no further. There were foosball tables around the decks, along with some ping pong. No chair hogs on this sun deck – you could have your own row. Deck 13 – wait, what? No deck 13? Ship has an inaugural sailing on Friday the 13th, and the first return to port day is April 15th (Titanic Anniversary), and they don’t have a deck 13? Props to NCL as being the only cruise line I know that keeps it real. Deck 14 – Crows Nest Sports Bar – they were installing the pool table and air hockey tables, vast bar with great views – empty both times I came in here, but think that at night it is crowded. Lots of seating, and a DJ booth. At night, they tried to build a party atmosphere up here, not sure how it worked out, not my scene. Shows – I saw a good sax player, some snippets of the Tina Turner singer, a latin band with lots of dancing by the crowd, and the two production shows. The shows had 6 dancers and 4 singes along with a magician incorporated into the acts. Night 1 was billed as a Havana Nights themed show. Started off with some Latin style dancing, but before long Guns-N-Roses was being sung so don’t take names litteraly. Performers did a great job. Better then some shows I have seen on Carnival, not as good as say, Chicago on Allure or Brat Pack on Escape. Have seen lots of shows on ships over the years, this one was not that bad. The singers were passionate; the dancers were slightly exaggerated at times but worked hard. Not really sure how a magician came into the mix, but they did a good job at incorporating him, while using the dancers as his assistants. Some basic illusion tricks that amazed some and entertained others, the delivery needs to be worked a little more on some of them and props tweaked on the “spin me around” box night 2. The show was about an hour of non-stop dancing and singing. On the second night, same group, different theme. This time, it was a VooDoo theme, with many songs related to magic, voodoo, spells, etc. Again, great energy and performance with high energy and many outfits. I will say, the shows were better then I envisioned for a lower budget cruise line. Overall, this group did a great job and I am glad I saw both shows. There was a great selection of recognizable songs, and talented singers – no lip-synching. Other entertainment included a glow party, which I did not attend. Freeport Bahamas – Ships dock miles from anything to do, in the middle of the shipping yard. There is nothing more then a few junk stands at the port. All the tour busses are lined up. The cruise line offered us an opportunity to go see three resorts they use as part of their cruise – resort package, and I took them up on it. First stop was my favorite, the all-inclusive or al-a-carte option at the Lighthouse Point Grand Lacayan. Beautiful waterfront resort, infinity pool with lifeguards, lap pools, great spa and exercise room. We ended up having a luncheon here and walked to the marketplace for shopping afterwards. Market place was empty. Lots of shops, no people. Other options we visited were Pelican Bay, which was my least favorite. Some okay pools and dining, but no beach – you have to pay to go to the aforementioned Lacayan, or take a quick ferry to another resort, Flamingo Bay Resort and Marina. Depends where your room is, you may be near the beach or a quick walk away. Awesome pool with grotto swim up bar and waterslide. If I was taking my family, I would opt for the Grand Lacayan because of the location, beach, and amenities. The spa and exercise area was great, and the proximity to the beach put it above all others I visited. Disembarking – Extremely easy. We lined up, they opened the doors, and off we went. Heading into the customs area, passport holders to the left, others to the right. In a matter of minutes, I was at the curb. Handed the valet ticket to the attendant, and in about 2 minutes, my car was there and I was gone. From ship to drive off, under 15 minutes. They didn’t force people off the ship in a hurry, and offered people to go to eat so the rooms could be cleaned after a certain hour (was late if I remember correctly.) Since almost all do a carry off, not sure if people would put luggage out at night. Perhaps if you did a week on the island you may. The ship is in great condition for a 27 year old ship. The staff is ready to learn, but needs more processes in place and support from the experienced staff. The technical difficulties are expected on a first cruise. This ship is ideal for those who live in the Florida area, or are looking for a quick getaway. I would probably opt for a 3 day on another line if I were driving to Florida just to cruise, and visit a better island. While I am certain there are fun things to do on this island, it is a tough sell. This is also a good option for groups, as there are lots of public space on this ship and a small conference center where events could occur. It is an okay option for a first time cruiser who wants to see what a cruise is like, but not be gone for a week on a mainstream line. The good option for this would be to couple it with a few days on the island, which is something unique to this cruise line (cruise, hotel, cruise). I fully expect that they will move forward and bring those things that made people fall in love with the Celebration over to this ship. Many people I talked to went on that 4 or 5 times, and say they liked the ship and staff and were disappointed with this sailing and ship – again, I think a lot of it is because the ship is new. Since this is a first sailing, one has to expect challenges. It is how they deal with those issues moving forward that will dictate how good this cruise is. The public space is unmatched, seriously. Seats and lounge chairs everywhere. Classic smaller cruise ship feel. Some international clients. Since it only travels 58 miles, the ship moves slow and steady – it was amazingly smooth sailing (perfect weather and calm seas). Would I sail it again? Perhaps if it was on sale, AND I was in Florida for some reason. If I were driving down to vacation, I would opt for a 3+ day sailing elsewhere. I would consider it for the hotel stay option, but need to compare it to the overall cost of other resorts on more desirable islands where I could fly. Hits: 1. Cleanliness of the ship 2. Amazing Public space 3. Ease of embarkation / debarkation (aside from CPU issues here on day 1) 4. Smoke free casino 5. Production shows Misses (except for new ship / staff related factors): 1. The spa 18% Service Fee that does not go to staff 2. No free food options after 10PM 3. Buffet was terrible aside from breakfast 4. Dining room issues with the cold food and availability of basic items 5. No enforcement of dining room and buffet dress codes or hand sanitizer 6. No life guards 7. Fine print says fuel surcharge of $12/day if fuel is above $40 (Rarely below $40 - RCCL @ $60, NCL @ $65); not sure if they ever implement this. I contacted the line to ask them and have not heard back after multiple attempts. No other line has implemented in nearly 10 years. Overall, I would recommend giving this cruise a try for a quick getaway from the local area, but not as an option for someone making a trip to Florida specifically to experience a cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I would like to take a few minutes of your time to update you on our very poor cruise experience. Can you please pass along to any other party that may be involved? Your supervisor etc… We sailed o 4/13/18 and spent two nights at the ... Read More
I would like to take a few minutes of your time to update you on our very poor cruise experience. Can you please pass along to any other party that may be involved? Your supervisor etc… We sailed o 4/13/18 and spent two nights at the Grand Lucaya Lighthouse. Which by the way was a true blessing and enjoyed it very much. First of all I have a question. Why do people take vacation? To: enjoy, relax, destress, etc… Well this cruise was the absolute worst we have ever been on. I would like to share with you and the cruise line. This was so stressful and very aggravating. Please refund me the monies that we were charged for transportation as we were told you did not offer any but conveniently charged us $36.00. We paid for a taxi both trips to and from the hotel. I also would like to request a refund of the cruise monies or some type of compensation as this was a true nightmare of an experience. Listed below are Huge concerns that you need to be aware of. I do understand this was the first sailing and please don’t use that as an excuse as you have another boat with experience. 04/13/18 we did not leave port until approximately 8PM no one could tell us why nor were we advised. Our thinking part of it was the casino was nowhere finished they were still setting up slot machines and tables and the stores. Food was absolutely terrible not eatable. We ate bread and fruit and bought chips the two days we were on your ship. We did finally get to order a pizza on 4/13/18 at 8PM because we were told they were not ready to open. You hear people say we gained so many pounds on the cruise. Well not on this one my husband lost 8 pounds and myself 4 pounds. We were unable to shower as well as you should have been able to. NO WASH CLOTHS!!! WHAT never heard of such thing? We were told to use our hands. REALLY!!! When we finally arrive in the Bahamas we gathered our luggage and tried to get off the ship. WELL guess what they wouldn’t let us off the ship told us we had to go to the customer service desk. My husband headed upstairs as I stayed with our luggage. Of course the line was long as it was the entire trip due to everyone unhappy and complaining. As I am patiently waiting watching everyone leave. My husband was told he had to pay $104.00 cash before we could exit the boat?? WHY?? They had our credit card on file. Eventually they said okay and let us off the ship with no cash payment. So an hour of our time was wasted for nothing. Why were they doing this to rip people off and charge double??? Meantime as I am waiting for my husband “the cruise director” standing right next to me never said a word. One of the employees pointed out 3 blood spots on the floor to him. He never did anything about it. People walking and standing all over the blood spots. This was very unsanitary and a huge health concern. When we finally were able to exit the ship we had to locate a taxi even though we were charged $36.00 for transportation to the hotel and it was not provided. As I had mentioned above we enjoyed the hotel was very nice. Food and shower was refreshing as we were not able to do this on the ship. Which is unheard of. The drink coupons: My husband bought a pack we are not heavy drinkers of alcohol. We wanted to use some of them for soda the coupon read non-alcohol drinks can be served. We were told NO and charged the soda to the room. We paid for the coupons and should have been able to use them as we wanted. So what if the coupon was worth $12.00 and we wanted 2 $6.00 sodas. They were our coupons we should have been able to use them as we wanted. 4/16/18 we checked out of the hotel dreading the return to the ship. Called a taxi for transportation that we again paid for. Made sure we ate extra food and took a shower before we returned to the ship. We had hoped that maybe on our return trip on the ship would be better being we were off for 2 days. Well not even a little better it was a nightmare and very stressful. Surprise : NO eatable food or wash cloths. The casino pit boss (short bald guy spoke not much English) was very rude. When my husband was winning he would change the dealer. We are seasoned players and this was offensive and never seen this done as obvious as it was. This was a joke. The morning of the 4/16/18 we were so ready to get off this ship we went downstairs approx.. 8:15AM had our luggage in hand and when they scanned our cards told us we had to go to customer service desk again. NOOOOO ! We wanted to get off this ship as fast as we could. So we went to the desk with our luggage to find guess what a huge line of people mad and complaining. Waited in line for another hour handed the girl our card and she looks at me puzzled and said “YOUR CARD IS NOT BLOCKED” so guess what we waited again for absolutely no reason. She said just a minute and my husband followed her as she spoke with the same guy at the door that had no idea what is going on. Showed him that our card was not blocked. So after again waiting for nothing we were finally on our way home. This cruise vacation was not enjoyable what so ever! This was just a few highlights of this terrible trip! Thank you for taking the time to review and I am looking forward from hearing from you. And will be waiting for a refund. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
First they had no activities except a comedy show and magic show but they were good No WiFi No washcloths only bath towels Could not eat in speciality dining book by private events both nights Drink mixers very limited no bloody ... Read More
First they had no activities except a comedy show and magic show but they were good No WiFi No washcloths only bath towels Could not eat in speciality dining book by private events both nights Drink mixers very limited no bloody Mary’s and no dirty martinis cause they have no olives No cranberry juice or orange juice So much was wrong food awful Nickel and dime you And so much more Awful casino not all machines worked No room service but they advertised they do DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY I’m not a complainer but this ship was not ready to sail we did not leave port till 8:30 pm supposed to sail at 5:30 The trip was unbearable Perfect cruise for people who don’t like to eat Never had ice in our room ice shortage they said Shops do not have anything and close early Nightmare at sea Beware please Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
The Grand Classica was by far one of the worst cruise vacation I’ve ever experienced! Here are just a few things that went wrong...the water was coming out brown from the faucet, the air conditioner was not working, the key cards were ... Read More
The Grand Classica was by far one of the worst cruise vacation I’ve ever experienced! Here are just a few things that went wrong...the water was coming out brown from the faucet, the air conditioner was not working, the key cards were not working apparently the battery died and my best friend was locked out of her room, WiFi that was purchased did not work and staff WOULD NOT refund you for the purchase of the WiFi package. Every meal was COLD the moment it touched the plate, the ATM NEVER worked, sold me expired water, they could not provide any wash clothes, the only excuse they had was “it’s their first time sailing” staff was RUDE and unreasonable! Staff was not knowledgeable of the boat they did not know where anything was. There was only 1 outlet to plug anything in to be charged being that the boat came from Europe. I've actually sailed on the grand celebration there other ship and this was an extreme disappointment to say the least. Majority of the excursions were canceled. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2018
Just got off the first sailing aboard the Grand Classica. My summary: Cabin: We had a midship Oceanview. The room was large, beds comfortable, nice view, clean, safe functioned well, lots of closet space, moderate sized bathroom ... Read More
Just got off the first sailing aboard the Grand Classica. My summary: Cabin: We had a midship Oceanview. The room was large, beds comfortable, nice view, clean, safe functioned well, lots of closet space, moderate sized bathroom with typical circular shower. NO washcloths, hand soap, shampoo. TV was about 22" at best. Entertainment: The complimentary evening shows were different each night of our 2-Night cruise. Both shows has a short intro by a comedian, one-act magician, then the Classica dancers. First night was "South Beach" full of energy, excellent dancing and singing. Second night was "Voodoo" with same cast doing blues type music. Both were fantastic. They also had the comedian for an "Adult Only" show which cost $13. We did not attend this. Poolside games were entertaining. Sports bar had NO TVs to watch anything. Only sport bar I have seen with no TV. The had a pool table, with only 6 balls, and air hockey table. Poolside had 2 foosball tables. Food: This was horrible!!! Cold, overcooked both in the complimentary dining room and the buffets. Best food we had was rice crispies. Sorry, but they need a new Food and Beverage manager!! Staff: Our room steward was excellent! Bartenders seemed to enjoy their jobs and kept pace with the flow of traffic. Speaking of bars, definitely purchase the drink package, unless you only drink beer. Checkin was slow possibly due to lack of technology. They still use a credit card imprint machine. Customer service desk onboard was always packed. Excursions: Wide variety to suit anyone's needs. Reasonably priced too! Overall: Don't expect luxury! The ship definitely shows its age and could use a complete paint job. Deck is in great shape as are the cabanas poolside. Hot tubs were fine, but adult pool was closed for some reason. Entrance artwork was a nice touch but the lime green/orange decor dates the ship to the late 90's, true with is build date. The interior design, across the entire ship, could use some updating. Safety muster was extremely unorganized. So glad we didn't need to evacuate at sea. Lifeboats didn't look very well maintained. I was a bit disappointed. I had expected much more for an inaugural cruise. I hope they get the bugs worked out as this has a great potential. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
I went on the Celabrtion it was fantastic but this ship was a total disaster . Room the outlet didn't work only a European plug. Food was bad and the upscale dining the food was sent back twice for cold and still was cold. Booked an ... Read More
I went on the Celabrtion it was fantastic but this ship was a total disaster . Room the outlet didn't work only a European plug. Food was bad and the upscale dining the food was sent back twice for cold and still was cold. Booked an trip to the Bahamas and they waited till the next day when we were getting off the ship to tell us to report to the main desk because the credit card problem of my girlfriend that had a warnung on kicked it out. The service was terrible seemed some weren't happy. They had some crazy unisex bathroom that was very uncomfortable.The food stations were all cut up in different location and terable besides.It was extremely cold on the ship at all times. I will never go on this ship again or recommend it to anyone that I know. I got sick of hearing the excuse that we are new that should matter.I love there other ship but this one is totally different and a disaster.I thought it was very unprofessional of a ship company. I sure wasn't very happy............ Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
This is going to be long but I want to explain why this cruise is worth the money for anyone who is getting turned off from the horrible reviews! I was reading about this cruisline for a while and almost didn’t book because of such bad ... Read More
This is going to be long but I want to explain why this cruise is worth the money for anyone who is getting turned off from the horrible reviews! I was reading about this cruisline for a while and almost didn’t book because of such bad reviews. But then I saw The Classica was added so I wanted to try it out and I’m glad that I did! I can honestly say that the bad reviews I have read are about some pretty pathetic and nitpicking things! We did the BOGO deal and our total was only $350! Without gratuities or on board spending. First, there are NO “hidden fees.” If you read the webiste AND your confirmation emails that even has a FAQs and extra info in it, it literally explains everything!! From the fuel charge (ours was included in our taxes when we booked), 18% gratuities on anything your purchase, $13 comedy show etc. It is literally all right there IF people choose to read it! People just spend crazy on the ship and then get a bill at the end and forget that everything adds up. If you monitor what you’re spending then the prices on this ship can’t be beat! My husband and I set our expectations VERY low and I can honestly say that this boat is on par with both of the older carnival ships I have been on. I actually preferred this decor MUCH better! More modern and clean. Here are some key things I noted: Embarkation: the easiest on and off ANY boat! ESPECIALLY if you have a passport! You are treated like VIP! Took less than 20 mins from pulling up to valet to being on the boat. The ship - Very clean!!! The pool was really small but for only being on board for a total of a day and a half, I wasn’t expecting anything more. Adult only pool area is nice. Lounge chairs could be updated. Inside was really pretty. Nice hallways and stairs and the common areas were really nice with plenty of space! Cabin - We had an ocean view as part of the BOGO deal and the room was surprisingly big. Especially the shower and vanity space! Bed and pillows were both comfy. Room was very clean overall. No complaints there. Dining - We did the Yellow Elder (main dining) the first night and it was good. About the same as your other cruise lines. The second night we did the Admiral’s steakhouse and it was GREAT! I highly recommend paying the money to go!! The buffet was decent. Not bad, not great but it had plenty of options and was just fine for this type of cruise. Entertainment - We didn’t go to any shows but we caught the tail end of one right before bingo and it was pretty good. The band playing in the Encore lounge the first night was really really good. Especially the woman singer! We also didn’t participate in many activities but I saw some going on and everyone seemed to enjoy it. Service - The service staff was excellent! Very attentive and polite! I’ve read many reviews about how much they hassle you but we only got approached THREE TIMES the entire trip. Twice on the first day in the buffet and once poolside. If you just politely and firmly say NO, most of them will keep walking and not come around again. It wasn’t that serious like people in here are complaining about. Never once saw our room attendant but he/she did clean our room one night when we didn’t have our ‘do not disturb’ sign up. Freeport - The actual port itself is pretty run down and dumpy looking. With every excursion you have to take at least a 20 min bus ride away from the port which is included in your excursion. Our snorkeling excursion got canceled because of wind so we chose the all inclusive day at Wyndham resort and we had a great time! Check in at the resort took a little longer than it should have but the staff mentioned they were working on altering the process. We were treated to a large breakfast buffet, lunch buffet, all you can drink alcohol and soft drinks, beach chairs, pool access and pool side entertainment. Definitelty worth the $79pp! A few other things: Some of the really good things I noticed was how NOT CROWDED this ship was. It was sold out yet there was never crowds or lines (except day one at the lunch buffet) but other than that, there was more than enough room to not feel stuffy or squished like on other ships. We were on deck 6, mid ship and it was SUPER quiet. Nice change from other ships. The comdian Brian Bradley was SO GOOD! Pretty much picked on the crowd instead of doing his act and it was HYSTERICAL! Definitely worth the extra $13! The one really disappointing thing was the Crow’s Nest that was advertised as a sports bar with pool tables, arcade games etc. Well, that area isn’t even set up. Arcade equipment is still in pieces and everything was wrapped in Saran Wrap. It was only the second weekend that the Classica had been sailing but I was looking forward to spending some time there and was disappointed to see that it wasn’t even ready for guests. Hopefully that’s changed by now. Overall I would definitely recommend this cruise for a weekend getaway! My husband and I sailed to the Bahamas for $350!!! You seriously can’t beat that!!! Everything on this boat was well worth the $350. And the only people I can see not enjoying it are the people who had high expectations and thought they were getting a Norwegian experience at a super discounted price. Unrealistic!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Very dysfunctional From the time you try to board from the time you try to leave. I have been on many many cruises. Cruise at least twice a year. I was not expecting Wish to compare to the other cruises. And there is no comparison. So ... Read More
Very dysfunctional From the time you try to board from the time you try to leave. I have been on many many cruises. Cruise at least twice a year. I was not expecting Wish to compare to the other cruises. And there is no comparison. So not much of a disappointment. I paid for the best room. There’s only 10 suites with balconies so I got one of them. I also paid for the concierge service. That part is the biggest joke in waste of money I’ve ever seen. I’ve virtually had to beg for everything that I was supposed to get and still got nothing no VIP check-in to know VIP leaving and nothing in between. Ship is very old but nostalgic. I am not much of a foodie so I’ve never thought any cruise food was bad until this LOL. The specialty restaurant or not bad. But stay away from the buffet. So if you’re not expecting anything except a ride to the Bahamas you’re in good shape . If you want a cruise experience definitely try something else. This is common from probably the most laid-back don’t expect much person. I’ve never even written a bad review until now. I’ve actually tried to call paradise cruise to let them know my concerns and hopes that they can fix them. But like everything else it’s impossible to get a hold of anybody. By the way I was in the grand Terrace suite it was the loudest room I’ve ever been in constant tables and chairs being drug overhead and the amount of noise was unbearable. Good luck sailing Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
The "newly refurbished" Grand Classica was a total disappointment, to say the least. Slapping some paint on the walls and updating light fixtures does not count in my book. Two toilet seats (one on pool deck and our state room ... Read More
The "newly refurbished" Grand Classica was a total disappointment, to say the least. Slapping some paint on the walls and updating light fixtures does not count in my book. Two toilet seats (one on pool deck and our state room toilet) completely fell off when lid was lifted. Staff was rude and not helpful in the least. TV did not have volume for most of the cruise. No washcloths or room service menu were available until late on first night. Garbage from previous cruisers was still in trashcan in state room. Refrigerator was warm, so forget about keeping drinks cold. Only two hot tubs on ship, one was broken. ATM broken. Head waiter in The Yellow Elder was extremely rude. Our waiter, Fernando, was the only staff member on the boat that acted like he enjoyed his job. Food was sub par at best. The bus driver on the excursion, we paid good money for, blasted raunchy rap music the whole time to cater to the drunken idiots in top of bus. When asked to turn it down, he ignored us. "Showtime" singers and dancers were lacking on talent. It felt like I was watching a dance recital for children. Everything was overpriced for the quality you received. Buffet food was cold and tasteless. Worse than army chow. In order to get a decent meal, you had to pay ridiculous prices. Day of embarkation, we were rushed off the ship by obnoxious staff members. I am severely disgusted with my whole experience. Step it up Grand Classica! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I have been on the Bahamas Celebratiojn many times always with a positive experience. We thought that the cruise line would bring this same effect forward to the Classica. They were very much too soon with putting this ship in ... Read More
I have been on the Bahamas Celebratiojn many times always with a positive experience. We thought that the cruise line would bring this same effect forward to the Classica. They were very much too soon with putting this ship in their use... There was no pre boarding paperwork available on line. On board there was no deck plans to be had. The ship is old and looks it. The carpeting looks shabby. The walls look shabby. The furniture looks shabby (tables at poolside were peeling). The phone in the room had no directory... Nothing was ready for this ship was ready to be put online with passengers, The crew and all on board worked hard to do thing up but without help for the ship itself nothing worked. I have been sailing with this line since well before the first ship sunk (sank) and there was no doubt of my returning. Time share is not the Bahamas Cruise, so beware of this group I will sail again on the Celebration to see how things are there, but I would stay away from the Classica for a least a year to see if it can be brought up to the standard that I am used to. It was a great getaway let if they can continue to be up to their standards. DO NOT SAIL ON THE CLASSICA. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I booked this cruise as a very last minute inexpensive trip with my significant other. I have cruised frequently and just needed a quick getaway. I new 2 nights was not a lot and we would not do as much as on a normal cruise, so there were ... Read More
I booked this cruise as a very last minute inexpensive trip with my significant other. I have cruised frequently and just needed a quick getaway. I new 2 nights was not a lot and we would not do as much as on a normal cruise, so there were things we missed. I had read the nightmare reviews and even up to embarkation was fearing the worst. Embarkation was super quick. We were on the ship within 30 minutes. There was a severe thunderstorm so all of the passengers where inside. Once on board, I noticed friendly staff everywhere, assisting everyone like myself who was completely lost. We proceeded to deck 7 to check out the room. I was fully expecting a musty mildew mess of a bathroom with worn carpet and old towels. Nothing could be further from the truth. All of the linens and towels appeared to be brand new. The "MOLD" that people may be thinking is mold on the shower floor where it meets the wood is actually a black rubber epoxy that seals the pan from the wood. Our room steward checked in a couple times a day. I always saw crew cleaning and asking passengers if they needed help. Classica is in excellent shape for her age. I looked for the dingy carpets and old decor. I saw none of that in the interior public areas. The carpets on the stairs and in my cabin looked new. The ship is not fancy but it was decorated very tastefully. We spend most of our time at the Lounge listening to live music and having a couple cocktails. The drink package was more than enough for the two of us to share. We even had coupons left over. 10 drinks for $69.99 plus gratuity Once onboard, we went to the dining room Yellow Elder to make our dining reservations. After perusing the menus (which can be found on their website) we decided to eat in the included dining the first night and splurge on the Admirality Club the next night $33 pp. The food was probably the best I have had in any main dining room. The bread selection was warm and delicious. We each had a salad. I had the Mustard Rubbed Petit Beef Tender and my other half the Cuban BBQ Chicken Breast. My dessert, Chocolate Crocante was heavenly. It is white and chocolate mousse on a rice krispy type wafer. Peach Cobbler was also very good. The Steakhouse was to die for and well worth $33 a person for the 4 course meal. We were so stuffed we could not even finish our entrees - but still ate half of our desserts. We never made it back up to the pool deck, as I stated, it was a terrible thunderstorm on Night 1 and on Night 2 after being on Freeport 8 hours, we were exhausted. We had dinner and went to take a nap, but never made it back out. We were not able to see any shows - but the things we did see in the live music venues were pretty good. I am already planning on coming back on board soon. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Only good thing on this cruise was the dancers and singers. I loved watching the curly haired dancer, she is by far the best , and it shows. Costumese looked great. The solo boy dancer amazing as well. Not all the dancers knew what they ... Read More
Only good thing on this cruise was the dancers and singers. I loved watching the curly haired dancer, she is by far the best , and it shows. Costumese looked great. The solo boy dancer amazing as well. Not all the dancers knew what they were doing it looked like. Magician wasn’t that impressive to me. Overall entertainment was the best thing on this cruise. The cruise was dirty and wifi didn’t work. Buffet didn’t stay open long enough.. Casino drains you and only ATM does not work. Ice machine was broken and lots of wet floor. Food was average. Very casual party cruise. Fun games and activities on board. Computers didn’t work at all which was strange since there were so many of them. Cheap party booze drinking ship. Good for first time cruisers. Would not go back until everything works properly. I hope this review helps future cruisers. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
A girlfriend of mine and myself decided to take a small vacation away from reality for the weekend. We saw this short cruise and thought it would be perfect, a little get away with no worries... We were WRONG. The initial price of the ... Read More
A girlfriend of mine and myself decided to take a small vacation away from reality for the weekend. We saw this short cruise and thought it would be perfect, a little get away with no worries... We were WRONG. The initial price of the trip itself was nice but what they don't tell you is all the fees and troubles you have to deal with on the ship. The first day went smoothly but coming that morning we were awoken by a note under our door stating that our card was declined.. We went to the front desk to find out what was going on and there had to have been 50 other people in line with the same note.. APPARENTLY, you had to contact your bank before coming on the trip or you would be disembarked. Makes sense but I have been on thousands of cruises and have never had this problem (and neither did the other 50 people standing in line with me after speaking with them). Thankfully, at the time, my friend had her credit card and just transferred everything unto that card. The next morning we woke up with an invoice stating I still had to pay everything even though she had already paid it. So, once again we go to the desk, and would you know it, a huge line with the same ticked off people with the same invoices. Seemed like scam after scam with this cruise. The morning of disembarkment, they tell everyone they have to be out of the staterooms at 9:00. We got to breakfast, al la carte, at 7:45, and did not get out food until 8:45 so we had to inhale our food before getting our things out of the room. Mind you, there was only us and about 6 other tables which some were already eating. NO reason to take an hour to get your food. Whether it be breakfast or dinner, everything took FOREVER to get. Needless to say, our little get away was not pleasurable, what so ever. More of a worry/stress trip.. If I wanted that, I wanted to stayed at work Waste of what ended up being about an $900 trip just for a day an a half. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This cruise was great. I was a bit hesitant because of the reviews but it worked timewise for me. I cruise alot! I've been n many ships with different cruise lines. This cruise exceeded my expectations! It was clean. There were always ... Read More
This cruise was great. I was a bit hesitant because of the reviews but it worked timewise for me. I cruise alot! I've been n many ships with different cruise lines. This cruise exceeded my expectations! It was clean. There were always cruise staff immediately available for whatever I needed. They had numerous activities which were so fun. The shows were awesome. The food was great It was any worse than any other cruise I've been on. I upgraded to the specialty steak house first night. Got filet mignon. Main dining second night was very good and server Dan was awesome! They have an adult pool I went to alot, although there weren't many kids on the cruise. It was quiet and the hot tub was great. I enjoyed it thoroughly! For the price it's well worth it! I'll be going again soon! Kudos Bahama Paradise! Highly recommend. Don't hesitate. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We wanted to go for a mini vacation for Mother's Day weekend. We booked this about a month ago, and we were very excited. My wife paid for a suite (which we were told were the best on this cruise ship), and we paid for concierge ... Read More
We wanted to go for a mini vacation for Mother's Day weekend. We booked this about a month ago, and we were very excited. My wife paid for a suite (which we were told were the best on this cruise ship), and we paid for concierge service as well. Concierge service included some of the entertainment, one of the dinners and two champagne breakfasts, as well as getting assisted to and from our rooms upon getting on and off the ship at arrival and departure. This refurbished ship had paint splatters all over the terraces. The spa waiting lounge area has rust THROUGHOUT! Windows are dirty. The "theater" was nice but don't look too hard or you'll see the holes in the carpet. We went for our "breakfast" at "The Admiralty" restaurant. My wife ordered eggs benedict and the hollandaise sauce had separated (which means that it wasn't made right or was old), the bacon wasn't cooked well and seemed to have been refrigerated for a long time (had "that" taste) and was limp and cold. My waffle was cold and very dense. We left our food on the table and went to the buffet. We had dinner at "The Rock" which we wasn't included in our concierge package (because we wanted to eat at the Admiralty for their steaks and lobsters as the package dinner meal). You cook the food on a heated rock yourself while the staff gets you the fixings. The meat is not marinated or anything. You get sauces to dip them in, but only salt and pepper to cook it. We order rice (fried and jasmine) and both tasted the same...flavorless. The meat and salmon were good quality, though, it seemed (tender and juicy). Most of the staff were helpful when you asked for it. There were announcements on the loudspeakers that no one could understand. And when it came time for the excursions, there wasn't enough help and order for that many people...and the staff stayed in the front of the room where you're supposed to meet and did not go around the room asking guests if they needed help...just stood there goofing around with themselves (they had badges with their names and "YOUTH STAFF" on it). The pools were surprisingly small, and on the adult side, only one of the two small jacuzzis were working. The other had a tacky red plastic net across it showing it wasn't working. The public bathrooms were a hit and miss. The ones by the 10th floor buffet (right by the "Suites") were broken and disgusting. I spoke to one of the staff advising him of the condition and the smell, and he just said, "I know" and walked away. The dinner at the Admiralty restaurant was ok. The rib eye steak was tender but honestly, rather bland (again, the steak sauce helped it). The shrimp and crab claw cocktail was ok (again, you could tell it was frozen and then thawed by the texture and taste). The pistachio creme brulee was really good...yay! Finally, something good. To read about our cabin experience, see below. Oh, by the way, they only have European electrical outlets on this ship, so if you are looking for plugs to charge your stuff, good luck! Our room only had one American electrical outlet, so we had to charge our stuff, one at a time. They had a small kids room which was for toddlers, I guess. I wouldn't leave my kid there; and a teen room for videos. The 11th floor was the deck for the pool(s), DJ, outside dancing, karaoke, and the spa. We got a massage from Gabriela and Daniela and they were AMAZING! They were the best part of the cruise, if you ask me. The gym was ok. The equipment was well kept but there wasn't enough "air" to keep you cool if you were actually trying to work out. I was on the treadmill and the bike and almost died from the heat. The rest of the ship was freezing, though! This cruise is fine if you got the Groupon and don't expect much...really, it would've been fine if we hadn't fallen for the hype we got and paid so much extra money for. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
I saw lots of bad reviews but the buy one get one mothers day was too good to turn down. I can't say what experiences other had only mine so take it with a grain of salt. Boarding- Just flat out excellent. No waiting at all ... Read More
I saw lots of bad reviews but the buy one get one mothers day was too good to turn down. I can't say what experiences other had only mine so take it with a grain of salt. Boarding- Just flat out excellent. No waiting at all basically work right in and give them paperwork and set dining time. Do paperwork beforehand and no need to stop at blue desk. Go straight to counter. Took maybe 15 minutes front door to buffet. Done eating and rooms were ready. Cabin much larger then newer ships and even had an extra Murphy bed which we did not use but nice. Large nice porthole windows maybe even bigger then the square windows on some other lines. Bathrooms large as well all redone in all smooth fiberglass. A/c is in centigrade but right around 22 was about 70 degrees at least that's what my projection clock says. Exceptionally clean and room steward knocked and introduced himself. Agus was his name said we need anything let him know which we do prefer ice everyday in our room. Fresh ice no issue. Cabin issues zero. Buffet not much choice but just OK. The Rock Grill hamburger, dogs , fries bratwurst and sausages in rear where you can eat outside very good. Service in buffet about average but kudos for cleaning up fast. Sometimes too fast left to get something else and my silverware was gone. Buffet issues: water, all drinks except for coffee. They all had a chlorine taste way too strong. I think the coffee over powered the taste so what I drank mainly. Tea wasn't terrible. This cruise line doesn't allow anything even bottled water to be brought on board so this is a major issue unless you plan on alcohol for all your drinks which of course is expensive. Their sister ship Celebration does not have this issue. Moving to MDR fantastic service little slower then sister ship but getting up to speed. Service very good meals again variety suffers but definitely upgrade from buffet and beef tender was excellent. You can chose Admiral dining room naturally for up charge but more and better variety IMO. Eugene was our waiter. No complaints except for water issue as stated above. Entertainment: IMO they are as good or maybe even better then the big boys. Sound not too loud like Carnival always too loud. Dancing and singing much better the the Celebration. Performances all over the ship were excellent. One let us down a little the Piano man but still not bad. Heard worse on RCI. Many venues and different varieties you should be able to find something you like. We avid the DJ's and what I call the noisy side of ship but that's what you like plenty of that as well as island music,and latin disco. You can party hearty or just lay back and enjoy and anywhere in between. They do a relatively good job pleasing everyone. Now for the bad. NOTHING and I mean nothing is free. Ask for tomato juice upcharge. Free on all the other lines but then you pay double for it. They push drink packages hard especially the first day. 10 times I believe. Like most of the other lines doesn't include the 18% gratuity they call it. I call it a subsidy fee to cruise line. You are picky or want pampered the entire cruise. This line is not for you. Though I will say they had a speech about adults controlling the children. Kudos for trying but parents now days more interested in social media then watching their kids. So expect some rowdy children. Age groups where all kinds so you prefer older groups or younger you can find both. Compare it to Carnival for age groups but better variety then Carnival as for entertainment. No water slides and very small pools. One adult only pool and but one bath size hot tub maybe 5 people max. Actually had two but only one working but since it rained no one use them at all. Games and activities as good as the big boys and IMO again better. Nothing outstanding surfing, rock climbing mini golf just a typical cruise. Lot of wasted space and ship still doesn't have everything up and running including the Ice Cream machine. They have plenty of room for mini golf and sports court so not sure why. Thus the half the price of the others. Now during shoulder months price is almost the same in which case take a real cruise 7 days or longer and enjoy. Go for the gusto! However you just want to set back relax do nothing or party for 2 days without the clean up. This may be for you. Nice 2 day get away. Excursions more reasonable then the big boys and just as nice. Stay away from the cabs take the shuttle service for 1/4 the cost or ship excursion. You may want to check out others like shorexcurisoneer.com as well. You get what you pay for so don't expect all the amenities and services for the bigger lines and just enjoy cheap few days at sea. Disembark : We always take our own luggage off the ship and very fast. Maybe 20 minutes and we are in our car heading home. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Bahamas Paradise Classico is so much better than I expected it to be . If I listened to the reviews I wouldn’t have booked this trip. But I wanted to form my own opinion.The food is Very good so far. We had the buffet lunch and for ... Read More
Bahamas Paradise Classico is so much better than I expected it to be . If I listened to the reviews I wouldn’t have booked this trip. But I wanted to form my own opinion.The food is Very good so far. We had the buffet lunch and for dinner we ate in the main dining room The salmon was the best salmon I’ve had in a while and the dessert was great . Our wait Ivan was quite attentive.Now We are walking around the ship .A beautiful ship with lovely art work. Our cabin is spacious and comfortable. The bathroom is big enough for two people to use at one time. The staff is friendly, efficient and professional. Saw the Donna Summer (Sharon Johnson) act in the Encore lounge and she was great . We had breakfast in the main dining room on the second day. Lovely luck we got Ivan for our waiter again this morning. We were offered danish, fresh fruit, omelets. Pancakes, toast, juices etc. Hearty and tasty meal. We have been to the Bahamas many times so we stayed onboard. Relaxed at the pool. Bahamas part 2 I decided to buy the 4 hour Internet package. It was $7. I checked my email and uploaded pictures to Fac ebook. The lunch buffet had a turkey carving station and fresh salad and fruit. Also offered pannini. I didn’t think I would like anything on the dinner but boy was I wrong. Goat cheese croquettes were yummy and so was the avocado mango chicken salad. 830 PM , Encore lounge had a Tina Turner tribute that was amazing. The show was called Superstition in The Legends Theater at 930PM . There was a musician, comedian , dancers and singers. Lovely trip. The only complaint is that there is not a drink station when dining areas are closed. You can buy alcohol etc. but coffee you need to pay for. I would give it a 9 out of 10. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
People say 'You get what you pay for'. Well, that's true of this cruise. The Classica is the line's second ship, joining the Grand Celebration, which is an old Carnival ship. The Classica is the old Costa NeoClassica. ... Read More
People say 'You get what you pay for'. Well, that's true of this cruise. The Classica is the line's second ship, joining the Grand Celebration, which is an old Carnival ship. The Classica is the old Costa NeoClassica. She was built in 1991 before balconies became as popular as they are today. The décor and furniture are all bright Reds, Greens and Yellows. All things considered, this two day cruise out to Grand Bahama and back to West Palm represents genuine value, if you remember where you are. You're at Wall Mart, not Bloomingdales. You're on a DISCOUNT cruise line. I enjoyed myself onboard the Grand Classica. You can a lot of fun anywhere if you do it right. The ship itself is in fairly nice shape and the crew keeps at it to keep it clean. The rooms are OK. The crew stays very positive and friendly. The food is OK, but you won't write home about it. The one big complaint that I have is that they close the free buffet for the evening meal. This forced us into the Dinning Room, which I hadn't planned on, and hadn't packed the right clothes for. But since they ignore their own dress code, it doesn't matter. If you eat at the Hamburger line outside, you need to know that the local birds in Grand Bahama will swoop in, land on your table and fly away with your hot dog. Really. There is a pizza counter on Deck 9, but they wouldn't speak to us. They were in the middle of a photo shoot, having lined up all the pizzas on the counter. I heard the pizza was pretty good. When you get off the ship, everyone is required to carry their own bags. We were off the ship, through customs and in our car in about 15 minutes. If you're looking for a short cruise without spending a ton of money, this one can work. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We (I am a single female and went with my married female friend) chose this cruise because it was BOGO...and all inclusive but it isn't. I was disappointed about this at first. But that's marketing for you. You pay for ... Read More
We (I am a single female and went with my married female friend) chose this cruise because it was BOGO...and all inclusive but it isn't. I was disappointed about this at first. But that's marketing for you. You pay for drinks, housekeeping, tips, some shows, upgrade on restaurants...but it was a blast and well worth the money we spent! We met so many nice people. I look forward to going again. I'm saving for next year and would like to make it a little longer cruise. I'm hooked!! Staff and cruisers were great...only had one sleepless night... many drunk passengers coming in late at night that were loud in the hall outside our door..I didn't notice the first night ...too drunk... They really push the alcoholic drinks ...I understand ... but it's not healthy! More self control next time on my part and more fun too!! I loved the excursion to Wyndham...went on a double decker bus...included all drinks...lunch...sailing, scuba diving, snorkling, kyaking, pool and activities, jet skies and more! LOVED IT!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We have been on the Bahama Paradise cruise ship several times and wanted to try the newly arrived Grand Classica ship to see if we liked it better. Living in Florida and only twenty minutes from the port, makes this an ideal short time ... Read More
We have been on the Bahama Paradise cruise ship several times and wanted to try the newly arrived Grand Classica ship to see if we liked it better. Living in Florida and only twenty minutes from the port, makes this an ideal short time getaway. Our outside cabin was a good size, with a nice size bathroom. The sitting areas around the ship were comfortable and plentiful. Unfortunately, except for breakfast, the choice of food on the diner menu was awful. Everything was either blackened. jerked, cajun or sauced. We had the same problem on their other ship and were hoping for more edible food on this one. I would have liked to see a plain piece of roasted chicken or fish for those of us not able or not into spice, spice and more spice. The entertainment was fine, the service and crew were excellent. Very welcoming and pleasant. The casino was large and smoke free, which we appreciated. They could have added a great many more slot machines in the room they had. The port was a waste of time. This port offers nothing. No reason to leave the ship! We traveled with several friends, and therefore had an enjoyable time. We would go again mainly because of the convenience, but we will bring sandwiches for dinner.0 Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
I have cruised 13 times with RCL, NCL, Celebrity, Holland, & now Paradise. Exceptional experience for three peaceful days on Grand Classica! Easy embarkation & disembarkation with a passport. Fast valet parking only $19 day. Sailed ... Read More
I have cruised 13 times with RCL, NCL, Celebrity, Holland, & now Paradise. Exceptional experience for three peaceful days on Grand Classica! Easy embarkation & disembarkation with a passport. Fast valet parking only $19 day. Sailed 6/6/18-6/8/18. Spectacular ship, spotlessly clean, huge public areas, and beautifully decorated. Inside room 4067 was large and refurbished nicely. Comfortable beds. -Food on buffet was good and better then expected for lunch. Staff was always cleaning. Deserts good. The Zitti pasta was a surprise. -Yellow Elder dining was fast for anytime dining. Wait staff was quick to adjust to your needs. Waiter brought us extra entrees with out us asking (Impressive for two males!) Delicious food. Great deserts. You have option to purchase lobster or rib eye for additional price. See no need to pay extra since the included meals were great. ( Ok some one complained rolls were a bit stale. I did not care, since eating rolls was not my primary food option) - All staff always smiling and gracious. Any questions were answered with a smile. You always see staff cleaning. Every area of ship shinned with pride from staff. - Drink package that was a great value. (Do not want to get bartenders in trouble, but they always added extra alcohol!) -They have a nonalcoholic drink with cucumbers and limes that imitated a mojito!!! Was afraid first to try because of the cucumber. This drink is the "Bomb"!! I hope I can find this drink on land!! -Two separate pool areas were nice with abundance of lounge chairs.(They were in process of refinishing teak pool deck. Ship will then sparkle as a ten star) _ "THE BEST PART" The two shows in Legend Theatre with magician Neil Crosswell. Singers were of Broadway quality. Choreographer created an original show that was not "cruise ship funky". ( If you cruise regularly you know what I am talking about!) I would pay $60.00-$100.00 to see this show on land. Neil's magical act was incorporated into the music. Yes he pulls off some tricks that will leave you speechless!! Singers were beyond exceptional!!! _Tina Turner & Donna Summer tribute singer Sharon Johnson, Latin Band Azucar, DJ in the pool area all exceeded expectations of live high quality entertainment. -Grand Classica, Paradise Cruise Line offers a relaxing cruise for a incredible price. I do not work for cruise line. I was so impressed with the quality of this cruise I wanted to take time to share my wonderful experience with a cruise line that is really trying hard to give you a value cruise on a budget!!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
I read through a lot of reviews before deciding to go on this cruise with my 2 kids (ages 10 & 15). I tried to prepare for any potential issues brought up by other reviewers. It turns out I didn’t need to! This cruise was great! I ... Read More
I read through a lot of reviews before deciding to go on this cruise with my 2 kids (ages 10 & 15). I tried to prepare for any potential issues brought up by other reviewers. It turns out I didn’t need to! This cruise was great! I will preface my review by saying I have sailed in Carnival 5 times before. I needed something that would fit my budget and time schedule and this 2 night cruise on the Classica was perfect! Embarkation was a breeze. We were greeted warmly and everything went smoothly during the process. A delicious lunch buffet was waiting for us when we got on board. The selections at this and all meals were great. Our room was a spacious inside cabin for three. If I had to say one thing bad it would be the shower size could have been a bit larger. There were plenty of on board activities to occupy our time with. We dined in the Tellow Elder for dinner and breakfast and the food and service was wonderful! We caught both big singing and dancing productions and LOVED them. We also caught some of the other entertainment around the ship and they were all great! I loved this cruise and look forward to doing another one! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
To be honest I didn't have high expectations for this cruise and after reading some reviews, I knew to go in with an open mind. I will say, I was wrong. The Grand Classica was an incredible experience. The embarkation process was ... Read More
To be honest I didn't have high expectations for this cruise and after reading some reviews, I knew to go in with an open mind. I will say, I was wrong. The Grand Classica was an incredible experience. The embarkation process was simple and the attendants were friendly and helpful. There were a large variety of foods available and everything my husband and I tried tasted good.The complimentary seating restaurant has delicious. My personal favorite was the Cajun Broiled Fish Fillet and Shrimp. Just thinking about it, my mouth salivates. Our cabin and ship was clean and there was always someone willing to help answer questions or guide us in the right direction. While on the cruise, there were tons of entertainment and activities available. One of my personal favorites were a Latin band playing meanwhile guests danced. When we arrived to the Bahamas, we decided to spend the day at the all inclusive Wyndham Grand Lucayan. The food was delicious and the alcoholic beverages were good quality with premium alcohol. We spent the day enjoying the pool, hot tub and the beach. The weather was wonderful, warm waters and sunny skies. My overall experience was great and I would highly recommend this cruise if you are looking for a relaxing weekend gateway. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We we’re so excited for this to be our first cruise together. This cruise ship is awful! Do not cruise on this ship! It has absolutely NOTHING to do on the ship. The food was horrible! They charge you for EVERYTHING. Total trip was 384 ... Read More
We we’re so excited for this to be our first cruise together. This cruise ship is awful! Do not cruise on this ship! It has absolutely NOTHING to do on the ship. The food was horrible! They charge you for EVERYTHING. Total trip was 384 total for 2 people. They charge you for alcoholic beverages 82.50 for 10 drinks. If you have cash your cash is no long useable once you get on the ship. If you use cash is a 100$ dollar per person deposit to put down. For non-alcoholic beverages 34.50 an 18% charge on EVERYTHING!!! Once again do not pick this cruise! They charge 25.90 per person to clean the rooms. That’s not even included on how much we paid for gas to and from. We we’re charged an extra 244$ just for 2 nights. Oh Yeah and we didn’t even get off the boat!!!! The excursions are not worth it. When you get off the boat is only 2 little store and 4 to 9 miles to a beach! My whole birthday weekend was horrible!!! Literally you have to PAY FOR EVERYTHING. Non-refund for ANYTHING YOU PURCHASE on the ship. The crew members do not speak any English not one person! Horrible weekend! The breakfast was rewarmed the next morning. The line to exit the ship is awful! It says we dock back in West Palm Beach at 7am we didn’t, we didn’t get back until 7:30am the line to get back In The US is horrible they need a better system. Once again do not book this cruise the worst Birthday weekend I have ever experienced! The cleaners only cleaned the room for ONE day which was Saturday and everyone is off the boat by 8:30am on Sunday so why are they charging for 2 days of cleaning. The food was put up at a certain time. Everything stopped at 12:30. No need to buy the drink specials they tell you there’s no water on the ship but it is, try not to drink the water because it’s NASTY, All the water is connected!!! Also parking is 19$ a night 6/8/2018-6/10/2018 Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Time Availability, and Budget all factored into my choosing this cruise, since I was already in West Palm for other travel. I did not want to be gone long, and the ship is brand new and from Italy, so I wanted to check it out. The ship did ... Read More
Time Availability, and Budget all factored into my choosing this cruise, since I was already in West Palm for other travel. I did not want to be gone long, and the ship is brand new and from Italy, so I wanted to check it out. The ship did not disappoint. Unlike the mega cruisers offered, it had quaint charm and beautifully decorated throughout. You walk into the atrium with a Murano type glass sculpture and a up looking view 9 decks above. It was spotless. In fact, I travel globally often, and have not seen such attention to cleanliness detail from a staff like this ship's in a long time. The elevator buttons glisten, the floors are polished, the rails are varnished every day, and the carpets, upholstery, curtains, tables in public areas all were as clean as my own living room at all times. The Elder Yellow dining room was really nice. Food was average. Salmon first night was great, others had beef which was overcooked and tough. Service was fantastic, exceptional staff, every attention to detail one would expect, and beyond for the price of this cruise. Buffet: If you know Golden Corral restaurant, it is pretty much the same thing as far as quality and selection. No other way to describe it. Not bad, not good, just food. Soups were actually very good though. Seafood Gumbo and pepper pot very tasty. Breakfast had omelette station and what you would expect from Shoney's or Golden Corral. The area to eat at the buffet was nice both inside and out on the back deck of the ship. So food aside, the views were great, and service good as well. They have burgers, and hotdogs, fries, etc... outside as well. They were good. The ship is not overly large, a pleasant adult pool with two aft hot tubs overlooking the stern was really nice when leaving port. You can sight see and Jacuzzi simultaneously. Hot tubs were very clean and well maintained, as was pool areas. The second pool is the "activity area" pool and kids enjoyed it, my son won two contests and got virgin bahama mama's. So the other amenities are as follows: My cruise had 600 booked guests aboard. It was half capacity, you can't fault the cruise line for non participation in the events they put together, so here it goes: Casino was clean, smokefree, and what you would expect, nice new slot machines. Front room from there had awesome Latin band perform all night, they rocked. Front of ship crows nest nightclub was well decorated, had a modern dance floor with lights, smoke, etc... and a banging system with DJ but nobody went! Dead empty, not the cruise lines fault. The main lounge was like being in Monte Carlo, well decorated, tasteful seating arrangement, very open, airy, and great public space. Saw Donna Summer singer, was good. Night band was not that great though. The big shows were fantastic! No lie, they were better than the mega cruisers shows I have seen. Each night, same performers, totally different show. My teens had a teen area that was well thought out and a big space with full time staff to supervise. X-box, dance floor, etc... all for them. Went to Lucaya Beach on excursion, was pleasantly surprised by humor filled tour guide with microphone on our double decker open air bus ride to the resort. Very organized, safe, and gorgeous beach. Would do it again. The port itself has no reason to disembark, unlike Key West where you disembark and go on foot, there is literally nothing at this port but industry. USA Customs was slow and terrible getting off the ship at the end of the cruise. Waited an hour with only 50 people ahead of me. This has nothing to do with cruise line. Here is the thing, I feel bad for the bad reviews, everyone complaining seems to lack simple reading comprehension skills. How did you not know about drink vouchers, included vs non included amenities etc... BEFORE purchasing and boarding? I set expectations on what I paid for and knew other fees would follow, as is customary to cruisers, like gratuity, tax, etc... Being shocked about cruise economics is a newbie problem. The staff truly cares, Alex the cruise director is straightforward and humble of his beautiful ship. He asks everyone to fill out comment cards so "they can get better" and I do believe they want to, there is a sincerity in every cruise staffer I engaged with, my fellow cruisers were a true representation of South Florida with about 50 - 60 percent Black and Latino and about 70 percent under 50 if those things matter to you. Everyone got along, no issues whatsoever or bad vibes from everyone enjoying there getaway. Everyone greeted each other on the jogging track with friendly hellos as I passed by. Give this cruise a try and keep expectations reasonable and you will definitely enjoy yourself. I am not an unsophisticated traveler, been all over the planet, and my family came away from this experience smiling and enjoying the memories. Read Less
Grand Classica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.3
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 3.6
Fitness Recreation 3.5 3.1
Family 3.5 3.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.3
Enrichment 2.0 2.9
Service 4.5 3.7
Value For Money 4.5 3.5

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