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We first sailed on the Conquest in 2004 & 2005 (this is our 12th Carnival cruise, Platinum member, both 49 & 50 yrs old) and there have been some great changes but she is starting to show her age. The staff was absolutely amazing though. I was used to the staff being almost invisible as they went about their work on the lido deck - this crew would smile & say hello as you passed. It took me by surprise but I really liked it! They were also very helpful. For example, I noticed that smoke salmon & cream cheese w/bagels was not on the room service menu anymore but I found it at the deli. Only problem is they opened at 11am. When I mentioned that I loved that for breakfast, Shyam at the deli immediately offered to make me a plate of cream cheese and salmon and wrapped it up so I could keep it in my fridge. It was enough for 3 days worth! I ordered bagels & coffee from room service & enjoyed some great breakfast moments on our deck. He caught me walking by a couple days later & flagged me down to let me know he was setting some aside for me and just tell the breakfast crew (omelette station) to pull the plate out for me. I was so incredibly touched at this kind and unsolicitated act. This warm and friendly overtness was seen throughout the ship, from the entertainers to all levels of staff. We got the privilege of having Eric Brouman "the voice from above" as our cruise director but it was his last week on this ship. He was energetic & creative. He started the first night off with a "pub crawl" which he announced at the welcome aboard show. We met in the lobby where he talked about activities we could see there, followed by a dance off & a drawing for a free drink. Next stop was the live guitarist in the casino lounge (more dance off's & drawings which was held at each stop), then to the piano bar, karaoke bar & finally the Vincent bar which is buried at the back of the ship by the comedy club. Excellent martini's & a great live band that played a different genre every night (The Fanny Pax). The bar tender said that bar was pretty dead until Eric started the pub crawl. It was packed every night we went in with all different age groups & the little dance floor was packed. In fact, all the areas were well attended w/all ages having fun together. It really broke the ice & got you exploring the night life early in the cruise. The casino was always packed but I didn't spend any time there. We watched a play off game in the sports bar & it was always standing room only w/a high energy vibe. I would recommend they put sound to the hallway tv that had a lot of us overflow people watching the games. The comedians were so much better than my past cruises. The George Lopez Punchliner is really drawing in some amazing talent. The rated R didn't rely on "crude & lude" to be funny, it was just uncensored comedy. Even the PG was outstanding. A couple of nights, we drug ourselves away from the live entertainment & comedy to watch a couple movies at the "Dive In Theatre". What a great addition & well attended. You could show up in your jammies & bathrobe or check out a blanket from the towel station. There was fresh popcorn available & the tequila & rum bar remained open. They do shut down the hot tub & pool at 10pm, so people were disappointed they had to get out for the 2nd show. The aft adults only hot tub & pool was open until midnight. We ate at the burrito bar once & guys burger joint twice - both outstanding additions. And you could go up a level to 10 & get fish & chips for lunch. They also had a amazing seafood soup & appetizers - high quality. We had dinner in the main dining room every night & this is where I noticed the biggest changes. Gone are the linens (except elegant night) & you get to pour your own water (not a big deal, just a change). The staff had some bad habits like reaching across you to put down & clear plates (I heard others mentioning this too) & never once asked our names. I've been on 4 day cruises were the staff knew our names & preferences by day 2 & this was a 8 days cruise. All in all, not that big of a deal, but just sloppy manners in an area that I was used to over the top service. We had I Gusti from Indonesia as the assistant waiter & he was friendly & good at his job which made up for the indifference & borderline rudeness from the head waiter. Christoffer was running his heart out & we only saw him at dessert time. The worst was the bar staff. Every night my table mate would order cola from her card & I would buy a glass of wine (not pre-paid) & my husband ordered a drink on occassion. We would have to ask our waiter to send her over & I would get my wine half way through the main course & she wouldn't come back until we were done w/dessert (if at all). She was content to stand up against the wall in the back. One night our table mates didn't show for dinner & she commented that the girl who orders the cola was gone. So she knew we wanted service every night and she was never busy because she was just leaning up against the back wall. They missed out on some profit from me because I would have had more than one glass. The first night was horrible, the 2nd night was a little better & we were ready to switch tables by the 3rd night but the service improved enough to stay put. And then there was our room steward, Sofyan from Indonesia. What a delight! Always friendly with a soothing voice to wish us good morning, a good day & good evening as we headed off to dinner. Our room was spotless. He was a little ninja because we would occasionally leave for an hour & the room was made up by the time we got back. He was a hard worker but made it seem like he took great joy in his daily tasks. The past guest party was an improvement. Instead of sitting in the theatre & waiting for a tray of mini drinks to come back, we were in the comedy club area which allowed for a lot more conversations. They served full sized drinks and wonderful appetizers. We visited 4 ports on this 8 day cruise. The first was St Marteen. We took a water taxi to the nearby beach which was only $7 all day for unlimited trips. We played in the water & ordered drinks from a guy who recently purchased the bar. He arrived 16 years earlier with only the shirt on his back from one of the smaller islands. He was friendly and it was great to hear of his success story. He overheard us talking about the powerball & how it had reach over a million and told us there was one store on the island that sold the tickets. We talked to the security guard to ask if it was safe to walk in town & she assured us the island was very friendly. So off we went on our powerball adventure, down back alleys with bars on the windows in our search. We ran across so many people in this 3.8 mile walk (I had on my apple watch). No matter who we talked to, they were all incredibly friendly & we never felt in danger. We never did find the powerball, but what a great adventure! The bar had free WiFi so we were able to FaceTime our daughter back in the states & have her buy us a couple tickets. Next stop was St Kitts, unfortunately a completely different experience. We didn't have any plans here so we waited for the crowds to thin & ventured off the ship. To the left of the "tourist" part of the town looked like you could walk the shore line so off we went. We are pleasant, conservatively dressed & don't do anything to scream "tourist" in our appearance or actions. We headed through the tourist shops and made a left hand turn. It was like going from color to black & white. My "spidy senses" were going off but my husband said to go another block. I could feel people staring at us like we were in an area we didn't belong and then we came upon a big group of locals in a parking lot. There were a lot of screaming & raised fists & it looked like a brawl was going to break out. We turned around, acted as invisible as we could and headed back toward the ship. I noticed a local who had a sidewalk fruit & vegetable stand pacing and acting very agitated. As we passed him he started yelling at us "Filthy American government!". We just pretended we didn't hear him & kept walking - right back to the ship! I did report this to guest services. My husband didn't think they would care but they asked a lot of details. I've been in ports before where they have warned us not to wander off if we were not in a big group or an approved tour. I felt like we should have been warned here because that was a very unsafe situation. A couple other guests reported that had a wonderful time on their tours with locals coming out & waving as their open air tour bus went buy. That lead me to believe that the area we wandered off to had locals who didn't pay to get into the tourist type of shops & there was some frustration & jealously there. Either way, it's not safe to walk around this area on your own. Next day was San Juan, Puerto Rico. We had been here several years for a night stop & was warned not to go off the ship unless in a big group, so I was a little gun shy after the St Kitts incident. But it was a beautiful day so we ventured out after being in port a few hours. It was packed & there were police everywhere! We walked up the hill to the Castillo de San Cristobal and decided to walk the wall around the city to the North. We only left ourselves 2 1/2 hrs until we had to be back on the ship and arrived pretty quick to the point (Castillo San Felipe del Morro). There were so many police, all in eye shot of each other. I was trying to decide if this made me feel safe or nervous. I asked one if it was safe to cut through town back to the ship. He seemed offended and told me "of course, there are police everywhere!". It turns out it was the first day of a big festival & it was packed w/street parties and vendors. What a fun atmosphere as I allowed myself to relax and enjoy the energy. We easily made it back to the ship with no problems. Last stop was Grand Turk and it was my favorite! We booked the Ultimate Snorkel Tour and were off the ship quickly. Captain Dan took us to two snorkel sites. My husband and I are both scuba divers so we were a little surprised that they were taking us to what appeared to be a deep area. It was on the edge of a wall and the water was crystal clear (oh how I wanted to dive down for a closer look). It was around 60 feet deep but you could see wonderfully. A lot of coral and plenty of fish. They chummed the water first and there was a great variety of fish that swam up to us. It was beautiful & you could even hear the parrot fish munching on the coral. It almost felt as peaceful are scuba diving except you were farther away from the action. The next stop was shallow and there were more boats around (maybe 20 - 25 feet). One of the staff had a nurse shark on his lap (yes!) As about 30 people from different boats crowded around to touch it - the staff says "don't pull its tail". It made me laugh that you would even have to tell people this. After 10 minutes they let the shark go and he swam around with us for another 5 minutes then we got back to looking at fish. It was pretty amazing. Our staff said they feed this shark everyday, so he is used to them now. Then he told me about a 23 ft hammer head that hangs out on the other side of the island. My eyes got big & he assured me they don't go around that one! The ship is docked right by a free, public sandy beach. We went back on the ship for lunch then played in the water for awhile before reluctantly going back on the ship (knowing that was the last time this winter that our feet would be in the Caribbean). The first roped off swim area had a lot of rock so we went down to the second area a little further down the beach. It was a great sandy bottom. As we were getting out of the water we noticed a big shadow and watched a Manta ray swim right by where we were just standing. It had about an 8 foot wing span. I know they are not aggressive but I'm really glad it didn't startle me in the water!! The beach chairs in front of Margaritaville were free as was the pool. We heard they charged for the chairs a little further down the beach but I can't confirm that since we were in the water the rest of this port stop. We are Platinum so debarkation was simple. We were off the ship, through customs, got our bags and a cab in under 30 minutes. We arrived at the airport so early that we had to wait awhile to check our bags in. We did take a private cab instead of the shuttle and it was $20 for the two of us. Overall, this was a great vacation. We just did an all inclusive in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic at a 5 star resort 3 weeks prior. Even adding in the cost of drinks, the cruise was still a little better value. After being gone from cruising for 2 years, I had forgotten how much I love it. Having a bonus day (8 days instead of the normal 7 we do) was perfect! I would highly recommend this route. The ship is showing it's age with worn cushions and some tears in the hallway carpeting but it was very clean. If you want a relaxed atmosphere for your vacation and a lot of fun choices, this is the best option!

Still a F.U.N. Ship! Jan 9 - 17, 8 Day Eastern Caribbean Cruise

Carnival Conquest Cruise Review by ShineOn

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We first sailed on the Conquest in 2004 & 2005 (this is our 12th Carnival cruise, Platinum member, both 49 & 50 yrs old) and there have been some great changes but she is starting to show her age. The staff was absolutely amazing though. I was used to the staff being almost invisible as they went about their work on the lido deck - this crew would smile & say hello as you passed. It took me by surprise but I really liked it!

They were also very helpful. For example, I noticed that smoke salmon & cream cheese w/bagels was not on the room service menu anymore but I found it at the deli. Only problem is they opened at 11am. When I mentioned that I loved that for breakfast, Shyam at the deli immediately offered to make me a plate of cream cheese and salmon and wrapped it up so I could keep it in my fridge. It was enough for 3 days worth! I ordered bagels & coffee from room service & enjoyed some great breakfast moments on our deck. He caught me walking by a couple days later & flagged me down to let me know he was setting some aside for me and just tell the breakfast crew (omelette station) to pull the plate out for me. I was so incredibly touched at this kind and unsolicitated act. This warm and friendly overtness was seen throughout the ship, from the entertainers to all levels of staff.

We got the privilege of having Eric Brouman "the voice from above" as our cruise director but it was his last week on this ship. He was energetic & creative. He started the first night off with a "pub crawl" which he announced at the welcome aboard show. We met in the lobby where he talked about activities we could see there, followed by a dance off & a drawing for a free drink. Next stop was the live guitarist in the casino lounge (more dance off's & drawings which was held at each stop), then to the piano bar, karaoke bar & finally the Vincent bar which is buried at the back of the ship by the comedy club. Excellent martini's & a great live band that played a different genre every night (The Fanny Pax). The bar tender said that bar was pretty dead until Eric started the pub crawl. It was packed every night we went in with all different age groups & the little dance floor was packed. In fact, all the areas were well attended w/all ages having fun together. It really broke the ice & got you exploring the night life early in the cruise.

The casino was always packed but I didn't spend any time there. We watched a play off game in the sports bar & it was always standing room only w/a high energy vibe. I would recommend they put sound to the hallway tv that had a lot of us overflow people watching the games. The comedians were so much better than my past cruises. The George Lopez Punchliner is really drawing in some amazing talent. The rated R didn't rely on "crude & lude" to be funny, it was just uncensored comedy. Even the PG was outstanding.

A couple of nights, we drug ourselves away from the live entertainment & comedy to watch a couple movies at the "Dive In Theatre". What a great addition & well attended. You could show up in your jammies & bathrobe or check out a blanket from the towel station. There was fresh popcorn available & the tequila & rum bar remained open. They do shut down the hot tub & pool at 10pm, so people were disappointed they had to get out for the 2nd show. The aft adults only hot tub & pool was open until midnight.

We ate at the burrito bar once & guys burger joint twice - both outstanding additions. And you could go up a level to 10 & get fish & chips for lunch. They also had a amazing seafood soup & appetizers - high quality. We had dinner in the main dining room every night & this is where I noticed the biggest changes. Gone are the linens (except elegant night) & you get to pour your own water (not a big deal, just a change). The staff had some bad habits like reaching across you to put down & clear plates (I heard others mentioning this too) & never once asked our names. I've been on 4 day cruises were the staff knew our names & preferences by day 2 & this was a 8 days cruise. All in all, not that big of a deal, but just sloppy manners in an area that I was used to over the top service. We had I Gusti from Indonesia as the assistant waiter & he was friendly & good at his job which made up for the indifference & borderline rudeness from the head waiter. Christoffer was running his heart out & we only saw him at dessert time.

The worst was the bar staff. Every night my table mate would order cola from her card & I would buy a glass of wine (not pre-paid) & my husband ordered a drink on occassion. We would have to ask our waiter to send her over & I would get my wine half way through the main course & she wouldn't come back until we were done w/dessert (if at all). She was content to stand up against the wall in the back. One night our table mates didn't show for dinner & she commented that the girl who orders the cola was gone. So she knew we wanted service every night and she was never busy because she was just leaning up against the back wall. They missed out on some profit from me because I would have had more than one glass. The first night was horrible, the 2nd night was a little better & we were ready to switch tables by the 3rd night but the service improved enough to stay put.

And then there was our room steward, Sofyan from Indonesia. What a delight! Always friendly with a soothing voice to wish us good morning, a good day & good evening as we headed off to dinner. Our room was spotless. He was a little ninja because we would occasionally leave for an hour & the room was made up by the time we got back. He was a hard worker but made it seem like he took great joy in his daily tasks.

The past guest party was an improvement. Instead of sitting in the theatre & waiting for a tray of mini drinks to come back, we were in the comedy club area which allowed for a lot more conversations. They served full sized drinks and wonderful appetizers.

We visited 4 ports on this 8 day cruise. The first was St Marteen. We took a water taxi to the nearby beach which was only $7 all day for unlimited trips. We played in the water & ordered drinks from a guy who recently purchased the bar. He arrived 16 years earlier with only the shirt on his back from one of the smaller islands. He was friendly and it was great to hear of his success story. He overheard us talking about the powerball & how it had reach over a million and told us there was one store on the island that sold the tickets. We talked to the security guard to ask if it was safe to walk in town & she assured us the island was very friendly. So off we went on our powerball adventure, down back alleys with bars on the windows in our search. We ran across so many people in this 3.8 mile walk (I had on my apple watch). No matter who we talked to, they were all incredibly friendly & we never felt in danger. We never did find the powerball, but what a great adventure! The bar had free WiFi so we were able to FaceTime our daughter back in the states & have her buy us a couple tickets.

Next stop was St Kitts, unfortunately a completely different experience. We didn't have any plans here so we waited for the crowds to thin & ventured off the ship. To the left of the "tourist" part of the town looked like you could walk the shore line so off we went. We are pleasant, conservatively dressed & don't do anything to scream "tourist" in our appearance or actions. We headed through the tourist shops and made a left hand turn. It was like going from color to black & white. My "spidy senses" were going off but my husband said to go another block. I could feel people staring at us like we were in an area we didn't belong and then we came upon a big group of locals in a parking lot. There were a lot of screaming & raised fists & it looked like a brawl was going to break out. We turned around, acted as invisible as we could and headed back toward the ship. I noticed a local who had a sidewalk fruit & vegetable stand pacing and acting very agitated. As we passed him he started yelling at us "Filthy American government!". We just pretended we didn't hear him & kept walking - right back to the ship! I did report this to guest services.

My husband didn't think they would care but they asked a lot of details. I've been in ports before where they have warned us not to wander off if we were not in a big group or an approved tour. I felt like we should have been warned here because that was a very unsafe situation. A couple other guests reported that had a wonderful time on their tours with locals coming out & waving as their open air tour bus went buy. That lead me to believe that the area we wandered off to had locals who didn't pay to get into the tourist type of shops & there was some frustration & jealously there. Either way, it's not safe to walk around this area on your own.

Next day was San Juan, Puerto Rico. We had been here several years for a night stop & was warned not to go off the ship unless in a big group, so I was a little gun shy after the St Kitts incident. But it was a beautiful day so we ventured out after being in port a few hours. It was packed & there were police everywhere! We walked up the hill to the Castillo de San Cristobal and decided to walk the wall around the city to the North. We only left ourselves 2 1/2 hrs until we had to be back on the ship and arrived pretty quick to the point (Castillo San Felipe del Morro). There were so many police, all in eye shot of each other. I was trying to decide if this made me feel safe or nervous. I asked one if it was safe to cut through town back to the ship. He seemed offended and told me "of course, there are police everywhere!". It turns out it was the first day of a big festival & it was packed w/street parties and vendors. What a fun atmosphere as I allowed myself to relax and enjoy the energy. We easily made it back to the ship with no problems.

Last stop was Grand Turk and it was my favorite! We booked the Ultimate Snorkel Tour and were off the ship quickly. Captain Dan took us to two snorkel sites. My husband and I are both scuba divers so we were a little surprised that they were taking us to what appeared to be a deep area. It was on the edge of a wall and the water was crystal clear (oh how I wanted to dive down for a closer look). It was around 60 feet deep but you could see wonderfully. A lot of coral and plenty of fish. They chummed the water first and there was a great variety of fish that swam up to us. It was beautiful & you could even hear the parrot fish munching on the coral. It almost felt as peaceful are scuba diving except you were farther away from the action. The next stop was shallow and there were more boats around (maybe 20 - 25 feet). One of the staff had a nurse shark on his lap (yes!) As about 30 people from different boats crowded around to touch it - the staff says "don't pull its tail". It made me laugh that you would even have to tell people this. After 10 minutes they let the shark go and he swam around with us for another 5 minutes then we got back to looking at fish. It was pretty amazing. Our staff said they feed this shark everyday, so he is used to them now. Then he told me about a 23 ft hammer head that hangs out on the other side of the island. My eyes got big & he assured me they don't go around that one!

The ship is docked right by a free, public sandy beach. We went back on the ship for lunch then played in the water for awhile before reluctantly going back on the ship (knowing that was the last time this winter that our feet would be in the Caribbean). The first roped off swim area had a lot of rock so we went down to the second area a little further down the beach. It was a great sandy bottom. As we were getting out of the water we noticed a big shadow and watched a Manta ray swim right by where we were just standing. It had about an 8 foot wing span. I know they are not aggressive but I'm really glad it didn't startle me in the water!! The beach chairs in front of Margaritaville were free as was the pool. We heard they charged for the chairs a little further down the beach but I can't confirm that since we were in the water the rest of this port stop.

We are Platinum so debarkation was simple. We were off the ship, through customs, got our bags and a cab in under 30 minutes. We arrived at the airport so early that we had to wait awhile to check our bags in. We did take a private cab instead of the shuttle and it was $20 for the two of us.

Overall, this was a great vacation. We just did an all inclusive in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic at a 5 star resort 3 weeks prior. Even adding in the cost of drinks, the cruise was still a little better value. After being gone from cruising for 2 years, I had forgotten how much I love it. Having a bonus day (8 days instead of the normal 7 we do) was perfect! I would highly recommend this route. The ship is showing it's age with worn cushions and some tears in the hallway carpeting but it was very clean. If you want a relaxed atmosphere for your vacation and a lot of fun choices, this is the best option!
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin 8D 9249
Showing a little wear in the room but not in bad shape. The bed was comfortable and the room was clean. There is a mini fridge, a safe, plenty of closet & drawer space and a flat screen tv (which we barely turned on - just to see our position in the sea). The bathroom has shampoo & a soap dispenser. Bring your own conditioner or your hair will be straw dry (this coming from a girl who has silky/oily hair). Gone are the trays of free sample products. There are still tissues in the bathroom. The desk has a stool and there is a blow dryer & bible in the top drawer. If you are lucky enough to have Sofyan "Sofie" as your room steward, you will be very pleased.
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews