Victory for New Year's!: Carnival Victory Cruise Review by grneyedmustang

Carnival Victory 4
Member Since 2007
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Victory for New Year's!

Sail Date: December 2007
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Miami
I sailed the Carnival Victory 12/30 - 1/6/2008. Even though the weather was bad most of the trip, I still had a blast! Remember, a cruise is what you make it. This was also my second cruise with Carnival.

Prior to embarkation, my friend and I stayed at the Hyatt Regency Coral Gables. We were able to book the room through an internet agency for $139 per night, which was an excellent deal! The hotel property was beautiful and the service was great. After checking in the hotel, we hung out on south beach and people watched. We had a great time in Miami! The only drawback was that the hotel was right in the middle of the parade for the orange bowl. The officers that were working were very nice though (and quite a few of them were cute)! Okay okay, back on topic...

Embarkation was fairly smooth. Upon arriving to the cruise terminal (which is very nice), you are assigned a zone number and allowed to board by zone. We were on the ship by 1:30, having lunch and free More champagne (excellent!) after arriving at the cruise terminal at 12:30.

The ship was very nice. Most of the decor is blue and green. Watch out for the seahorses on the staircase, I did get bitten one night! The two minor complaints I have about the layout of the ship are: 1)On my first ship (Celebration) it was easier to walk around the deck of the ship on different levels, and 2) The ship's design is somewhat broken up. We were in the Pacific dining room which is only accessible via the aft stairs and elevator. If you take the stairs/elevator at the front of the ship, you cannot walk across the entire floor to get to the dining room at the back of the ship!

There was plenty to do on the ship, but we had an extra sea day due to bad weather, so some of the activities got a bit "old" after being cooped up on the ship. For this reason, I will make sure my future sailings are fairly port intensive, and I will also try to avoid sailing during bad weather (which was not Carnival's fault)! I also made a little donation to the Casino. I did enjoy the Casino on the Celebration just a tad better (there were not enough penny/2 cent machines on this ship)! New Year's Eve was excellent. The ship provided free champagne {AGAIN! :)}, hats/noisemakers, and there was a countdown! We partied well into the early morning hours! Later on the cruise, I saw one of the comedians, who was okay - he wasn't horribly bad, but not spectacular either. The nightclub, Club Arctic, was okay, but by day three, I was really tired of hearing "Soulja Boy", "Walk it Out" - and every other song they seem to have on repeat in the nightclub.

The service was great on the ship. Malcolm, the cruise director, will keep you informed during the cruise as to what is going on around the ship. He also kept us well informed of the situation with ports during the bad weather. My room steward was excellent, I can't remember his name, but he was from Haiti. We had the lovely towel animals, and he always made sure that we had fresh towels and ice during the duration of the cruise. The room was nice, also, it's not huge but not claustrophobic, either. Even though we booked a 1A, ours had two porthole windows, which was great in the morning. The one disadvantage to this room - if you experience bad weather and rough seas, you will definitely FEEL and HEAR it during the cruise because you are so far forward and close to the water. Some nights, we could see the waves hit the ship! The three nights we had really bad weather, it sounded like a mine field outside - but I had earplugs so that definitely helped! If you take bonine/ginger - that will also help prevent motion sickness. Just don't take ginger on an empty stomach (yes, I learned the HARD way).

The food was okay during the cruise, it's not five star dining, but you won't go hungry. I was not impressed with the Filet Mignon - it had *Quite* a bit of fat on it, and I ended up ordering broiled salmon instead. I loved the shrimp cocktail, grilled shrimp, fresh tropical fruit, lobster (I ordered two), broiled salmon, and the warm chocolate melting cake (of course!). Try the fajitas from room service, I loved them! And there's always ice cream and pizza, mmmmm. Word of advice - if you are not sure you're going to like an entree, get another one as a backup. THEY DON'T CARE. Our waiter, Rolando from the Philippines, was excellent. Dining in the dining room with our tablemates was so much fun! I had the 8:00 seating in the Pacific Dining room, and our table was all single men and women. New Year's Eve, we were discussing our thoughts and goals for 2008, and one of the guys at my table decided during his turn he was going to get the party started, so he stood up on the table and cheered, and got the whole dining room amped for the New Year! I know some didn't like it - but I loved it - and this is the Party ship, right?

Our first port was Cozumel. I LOVED COZUMEL!!!! I can't wait to go back in April. We caught a cab from the pier for a low price to Paradise Beach - which was $10 for all inclusive snorkeling, beach chairs, and watersports (and a few free shots of tequila)! The snorkeling wasn't that great, but I did see a few interesting fish here and there. After laying out in the sun in the only 85 degree weather I would see all week, we left Paradise Beach and went into town. We went to the mall and got a few good, cheap souvenirs and then went to Carlos and Charlie's. If you are looking for a good, unforgettable experience, GO TO CARLOS and CHARLIE'S (note - this place is NOT for CHILDREN). We had some $10 shots and excellent quesadillas, as well as The Yard Margarita, some dancing, and hot Mexican waiters! We then left Cozumel, and that was the night the weather took a turn for the worse....

Next stop - Grand Cayman. At this point, we were feeling the effects of a strong cold front that swept the US and the Caribbean. For a while, it was up in the air if we were even going to stop in Grand Cayman. The waves were so bad, we couldn't stop at the normal point, so the ship had to stop on the south side of the island, in Spotts Bay. All water excursions were cancelled due to the waves and the weather (it was quite cold - everyone was in winter gear). We ended up taking a taxi tour around the island and stopped in Hell and the Tortuga Rum company. The tour was okay, but it wasn't snorkeling - which was the primary reason I wanted to go to the Cayman Islands. Our last stop was Margaritaville, which was okay. I felt the food was overpriced, and "the bar" (literally) had been set with Carlos and Charlie's. The people in the Caymans are very nice and not aggressive, unlike some of the other islands.

Our last port, Ocho Rios, was cancelled due to the weather. Bummer. Carnival did give everyone a $25 credit due to the cancellation. Since we didn't go to Jamaica, we had an extra day at sea, I just hung out with the new friends I made on the ship, and caught up on some needed sleep!

Disembarkation was pretty easy. My friend and I did self assist and were off the ship in 30 minutes.

All in all, this was a good cruise. I had fun despite the weather situation - and Carnival has no control over the weather. Carnival gets 5 Stars for the New Years Eve celebration! I am going to try this itinerary again when I have a chance for better weather. The service and food were still on par with what I expect from Carnival. Less

Published 01/08/08

Cabin review: 1A2216 Interior Upper/Lower

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