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1. Stateroom We stayed in a category 8B balcony stateroom (6277), located on deck 6 forward, starboard side. The proximity to the forward elevators was convenient for our kids, and made for much easier way-finding as I could tell the kids to use the front “glass elevators”, and they knew they could come out right by our cabin. The music from the atrium was loud in the hallway, but never a problem at all from inside our room. The cabin was clean and spacious, with plenty of room to store our luggage under the bed, and ample cabinet/closet/drawer space for clothing and shoes for four people. I was worried about the cabin being too warm, and I had seriously considered bringing a fan - But I’m glad I didn’t, because our room stayed like an icebox (exactly how we like it) the whole time! Our balcony was overlooking a giant chess board, which was also nice with the kids. We felt very comfortable letting them go downstairs one deck without us, and play chess while we watched from our balcony! Our steward, Wi, was phenomenal, tending to our every need. He serviced our room twice daily, and was especially kind and helpful to my older brother, who was a first time cruiser and has autism. He had his own cabin down the hall, but Wi kept me informed if he knew that my brother was looking for me, etc. 2. Food Our first dining experience aboard the Breeze was lunch at the new Guy’s Pig & Anchor - We had been anticipating this experience for weeks, and we were thrilled to find that it was opened on embarkation day! It was raining in Galveston, but we were happy that there were no lines, and plenty of hot food just waiting for us. We got our plates loaded and ran to a sheltered table, and we were all SO disappointed. The meat was so strange - I don’t know if it was flavorless, or just odd - I tried the brisket, and the sausage, with and without sauce, and both were disappointing. The mac and cheese was bland, but fair… That’s how my daughter likes it, so that part worked out well. We didn’t go back the Pig & Anchor for the rest of the trip. In all fairness, I am a Texan - We are BBQ snobs! At the recommendation of others, we booked at the Farenheit 555 Steak House for the first evening of the cruise. Because we waited until late to make reservations, our party of six could only be seated at 8:30. That was my first mistake, as we were all very tired from the flurry of embarkation activity. The restaurant was mostly empty, so we had hoped that service would be excellent as our server’s attention would not be divided. We asked about the free bottle of house wine, and we were quickly discouraged, and told that it was dry and “no good”. So, we paid for two bottles of wine at 50% off. Our hostess was friendly, but it seemed very forced and unsincere. I ordered the surf and turf, and the lobster was small and over-cooked. The steak was alright, but not remarkable. Another member of our party never received her side dish. This was not the highlight and great first impression I had hoped for. We probably will still try the steak house on our next cruise aboard the Vista, but I won’t bother going on the first day, and I’ll make sure we go earlier. Cucina del Capitano - We dined here on the second elegant night, and thoroughly enjoyed the meal and the service. Zaid’s recommendations were spot-on, and he was very attentive and friendly. The restaurant wasn’t crowded, and we all enjoyed this experience! The food here was AMAZING. Main Dining Room - Our server, Marko, was very friendly. However, he seemed to have too many people to wait on. We were never offered tea, and when one of us asked for it, it was not offered to anyone else at the table. After a few nights, I had hoped he would realize that we are all tea-drinkers! Also, there were no teaspoons made available. My daughter often used her butter knife, while I added sweetener and just swirled mine around to mix. Our sides were often incorrect (mashed potatoes instead of baked potato, etc.) and two nights I never received condiments for my baked potato. Again, we really enjoyed Marko, I just think it’s becoming very obvious that Carnival is reducing staff - This has a tremendously negative impact on the guest experience, and I hope these hard-working folks get more help soon. Captain’s Pasta Bar - This is a hidden treasure! In two prior cruises, we had never tried this lunch option, and I’m so glad we did this time! I asked for extra sauce on our second visit, and the chefs were very accommodating. Both of our kids enjoyed this venue as well. As many have noted, it’s noisy at lunch time as the basketball court is directly above the restaurant, but this is a wonderful lunch option. Guy’s Burger Joint - Hands-down, great food! I do wish they served onion rings… Pizza Pirate - One of our all-time favorites, good as ever! Please don’t change a thing! Room Service - The standard offerings were all good, but this time we opted to pay extra for two pizzas to be delivered to our room one evening. We asked for pineapple and pepperoni, but were told they only had pepperoni, or pineapple and ham. They couldn’t make one special. We settled for pineapple and ham, but both pizzas were sparse on the cheese, and undercooked. The dough was still doughy, yuck. Sea Day Brunch - This was another hidden treasure that we had never tried before, and I’m so glad we did on this trip! Service was great, our view from the Blush Dining Room was superb, and the food was amazing. Lido Marketplace - Fantastic option for a quick bite on the run! We didn’t eat here often, but when we did it was a good experience - No complaints at all. 3. Entertainment Cruise Director - On our two prior cruises, we never paid any attention to the cruise director. I really had no idea who he was or what he did, he added no value or benefit to our vacation. This time, however, Steven Schwartz ROCKED our cruise! That guy was a ball of energy - Everywhere we looked, there he was! Always hosting some fun event, saying hi in passing, or telling us that he loved us over the P.A. system. This guy is an absolute hoot, and he did a great job of engaging his audience. As we were planning our daily activities, I found myself thinking “Where will Schwartz be today?” He is the embodiment of what I think of when I think of a Carnival FunShip, and I hope to sail with him again! I wasn’t compelled to go see any of the playlist production shows, as I heard from others on the ship that they weren’t that great. I did, however, thoroughly enjoy the trivia events that were held in the atrium, hosted by Schwartz! We had never listened in on those during our prior cruises, and I’m so glad we did this time. We especially enjoyed the 80’s music trivia on the last night of the cruise. The string trio was fantastic - If I needed a few minutes to just unwind, or if I was waiting on other members of my group, it was a great pleasure to sit in the lobby and listen to this group. Dive-In Movies - This was also a new experience for us, which we really enjoyed! But couldn’t the popcorn have a little bit of fake butter? It was so dry and tasted almost burned. I tried it several times. Also, on the last night, they had family movies starting at 6:00 p.m. It was still so bright outside, you couldn’t see the screen. All of that said, I’ll definitely go to see several movies on my next cruise! Overall, there was a FANTASTIC selection of activities and entertainment to choose from. We couldn’t fit in everything we wanted to try! Great job Carnival! Excursions 1. In Montego Bay, we opted for the “Rose Hall Great House & Shopping” for our group of four adults. It was easy to find our way to our excursion group from the terminal, and our guide Cadia was very friendly and knowledgeable. The Rose Hall Great House was intriguing, but HOT! I can’t imagine doing this tour in August, LOL. I kept missing out on parts of the tour as I was seeking out a fan to stand near! On the front steps of the house, you are prohibited from taking pictures as they will take a picture of you and offer to sell it to you, framed, for $12 at the end of the tour. At the house, our guide was LaToya. She was very informative and friendly as well. After the tour of the house, they provide a small glass of non-alcoholic punch while a musician plays (please tip). You can purchase an alcoholic beverage at the bar if you wish. Then you are taken outside to see some local craftsmen and their wares, or you can go down to the on-site gift shop to catch a little air conditioning and buy other items. Once we left the Great House, we stopped at the nearby “Shoppes at Rose Hall” for some additional shopping - I really enjoyed this place, but the vendors were pretty sneaky. I negotiated a fair (not great) deal on two dresses for my daughter, and they tried to make me feel guilty saying “That comes out of our pay…”. I told the lady I didn’t want to put her in a bad position, and I started to walk out, but she stopped me and said it’s okay. Then when checking out, she tried to charge me tax. I told her I had $35 cash, and that was it - My husband had given me that money and gone down to another shop. Begrudgingly, she accepted it and we left. Grand Cayman - Grand Cayman is a beautiful port, but we didn’t schedule any excursions this time. Instead, we opted to walk around and shop. Everyone was very friendly, and we felt perfectly safe and comfortable. Cozumel - In Cozumel, we typically just shop in the port area. This time, at a friend’s recommendation, we took a taxi and went to Mr. Sancho’s! That place was absolutely fantastic. We had a reserved table for our group of nine. Our server Eduardo was a bit slow and sometimes omitted items, but he was super-friendly and he was clearly working his rear off! What little food we had (due to time) was excellent, the beach was clean and fun, and the pools were amazing. I got to meet the famous Julio Mateo, and he kept the drinks strong and flowing! I would have loved to have taken the kids to the aquatic park, but we were all having so much fun in the pool. I’m a cruiser through and through, but this place makes me want to fly down to Mexico for a weekend and go to Mr. Sancho’s! I was a little tipsy, but getting a cab back to port was no problem. All I could think was “I have to get on the ship, I have to get on the ship…” So I focused on keeping our group together, and herding everyone through the shopping area and back to the ship. Later that evening, I realized that I had forgotten to buy my Mexican vanilla, or any other souvenirs! Thankfully, we did buy the photo they sold us at Mr. Sancho’s, in a nice frame for $25. Behind the Fun - We opted for the “Behind the Fun” tour, which can only be booked once on-board. We have done this before, on the Magic, and it was a great tour. Erin and Roberto (from HR) were very enthusiastic and informative. The only two drawbacks - It was on the morning of our last sea day, so we couldn’t attend the Dr. Seuss breakfast. Also, the captain did not seem the least bit pleased to have our group on the Bridge. I offer my greatest respect to the Captain, as his primary job is his responsibility for 6,000+ souls aboard. However, this tour is a PR opportunity, and I think this captain made a poor impression. The staff emphasized several times that he is a man of few words, and when he came out to speak to us he just asked if we had any questions. When any of us did ask a question, his replies were demeaning, as if we were asking stupid questions and wasting his time. This was a real downer. On our first Behind the Fun tour, aboard the Magic, the Captain was clearly very passionate about his work, and eager to tell us about the bridge. I’ll just chalk it up to different personalities. Overall, this was definitely an amazing vacation, and we can't wait to cruise with Carnival again!

Amazing Family Vacation

Carnival Breeze Cruise Review by smbarth

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
1. Stateroom

We stayed in a category 8B balcony stateroom (6277), located on deck 6 forward, starboard side. The proximity to the forward elevators was convenient for our kids, and made for much easier way-finding as I could tell the kids to use the front “glass elevators”, and they knew they could come out right by our cabin. The music from the atrium was loud in the hallway, but never a problem at all from inside our room.

The cabin was clean and spacious, with plenty of room to store our luggage under the bed, and ample cabinet/closet/drawer space for clothing and shoes for four people. I was worried about the cabin being too warm, and I had seriously considered bringing a fan - But I’m glad I didn’t, because our room stayed like an icebox (exactly how we like it) the whole time!

Our balcony was overlooking a giant chess board, which was also nice with the kids. We felt very comfortable letting them go downstairs one deck without us, and play chess while we watched from our balcony!

Our steward, Wi, was phenomenal, tending to our every need. He serviced our room twice daily, and was especially kind and helpful to my older brother, who was a first time cruiser and has autism. He had his own cabin down the hall, but Wi kept me informed if he knew that my brother was looking for me, etc.

2. Food

Our first dining experience aboard the Breeze was lunch at the new Guy’s Pig & Anchor - We had been anticipating this experience for weeks, and we were thrilled to find that it was opened on embarkation day! It was raining in Galveston, but we were happy that there were no lines, and plenty of hot food just waiting for us. We got our plates loaded and ran to a sheltered table, and we were all SO disappointed. The meat was so strange - I don’t know if it was flavorless, or just odd - I tried the brisket, and the sausage, with and without sauce, and both were disappointing. The mac and cheese was bland, but fair… That’s how my daughter likes it, so that part worked out well. We didn’t go back the Pig & Anchor for the rest of the trip. In all fairness, I am a Texan - We are BBQ snobs!

At the recommendation of others, we booked at the Farenheit 555 Steak House for the first evening of the cruise. Because we waited until late to make reservations, our party of six could only be seated at 8:30. That was my first mistake, as we were all very tired from the flurry of embarkation activity. The restaurant was mostly empty, so we had hoped that service would be excellent as our server’s attention would not be divided. We asked about the free bottle of house wine, and we were quickly discouraged, and told that it was dry and “no good”. So, we paid for two bottles of wine at 50% off. Our hostess was friendly, but it seemed very forced and unsincere. I ordered the surf and turf, and the lobster was small and over-cooked. The steak was alright, but not remarkable. Another member of our party never received her side dish. This was not the highlight and great first impression I had hoped for. We probably will still try the steak house on our next cruise aboard the Vista, but I won’t bother going on the first day, and I’ll make sure we go earlier.

Cucina del Capitano - We dined here on the second elegant night, and thoroughly enjoyed the meal and the service. Zaid’s recommendations were spot-on, and he was very attentive and friendly. The restaurant wasn’t crowded, and we all enjoyed this experience! The food here was AMAZING.

Main Dining Room - Our server, Marko, was very friendly. However, he seemed to have too many people to wait on. We were never offered tea, and when one of us asked for it, it was not offered to anyone else at the table. After a few nights, I had hoped he would realize that we are all tea-drinkers! Also, there were no teaspoons made available. My daughter often used her butter knife, while I added sweetener and just swirled mine around to mix. Our sides were often incorrect (mashed potatoes instead of baked potato, etc.) and two nights I never received condiments for my baked potato. Again, we really enjoyed Marko, I just think it’s becoming very obvious that Carnival is reducing staff - This has a tremendously negative impact on the guest experience, and I hope these hard-working folks get more help soon.

Captain’s Pasta Bar - This is a hidden treasure! In two prior cruises, we had never tried this lunch option, and I’m so glad we did this time! I asked for extra sauce on our second visit, and the chefs were very accommodating. Both of our kids enjoyed this venue as well. As many have noted, it’s noisy at lunch time as the basketball court is directly above the restaurant, but this is a wonderful lunch option.

Guy’s Burger Joint - Hands-down, great food! I do wish they served onion rings…

Pizza Pirate - One of our all-time favorites, good as ever! Please don’t change a thing!

Room Service - The standard offerings were all good, but this time we opted to pay extra for two pizzas to be delivered to our room one evening. We asked for pineapple and pepperoni, but were told they only had pepperoni, or pineapple and ham. They couldn’t make one special. We settled for pineapple and ham, but both pizzas were sparse on the cheese, and undercooked. The dough was still doughy, yuck.

Sea Day Brunch - This was another hidden treasure that we had never tried before, and I’m so glad we did on this trip! Service was great, our view from the Blush Dining Room was superb, and the food was amazing.

Lido Marketplace - Fantastic option for a quick bite on the run! We didn’t eat here often, but when we did it was a good experience - No complaints at all.

3. Entertainment

Cruise Director - On our two prior cruises, we never paid any attention to the cruise director. I really had no idea who he was or what he did, he added no value or benefit to our vacation. This time, however, Steven Schwartz ROCKED our cruise! That guy was a ball of energy - Everywhere we looked, there he was! Always hosting some fun event, saying hi in passing, or telling us that he loved us over the P.A. system. This guy is an absolute hoot, and he did a great job of engaging his audience. As we were planning our daily activities, I found myself thinking “Where will Schwartz be today?” He is the embodiment of what I think of when I think of a Carnival FunShip, and I hope to sail with him again!

I wasn’t compelled to go see any of the playlist production shows, as I heard from others on the ship that they weren’t that great.

I did, however, thoroughly enjoy the trivia events that were held in the atrium, hosted by Schwartz! We had never listened in on those during our prior cruises, and I’m so glad we did this time. We especially enjoyed the 80’s music trivia on the last night of the cruise.

The string trio was fantastic - If I needed a few minutes to just unwind, or if I was waiting on other members of my group, it was a great pleasure to sit in the lobby and listen to this group.

Dive-In Movies - This was also a new experience for us, which we really enjoyed! But couldn’t the popcorn have a little bit of fake butter? It was so dry and tasted almost burned. I tried it several times. Also, on the last night, they had family movies starting at 6:00 p.m. It was still so bright outside, you couldn’t see the screen. All of that said, I’ll definitely go to see several movies on my next cruise!

Overall, there was a FANTASTIC selection of activities and entertainment to choose from. We couldn’t fit in everything we wanted to try! Great job Carnival!

Excursions

1. In Montego Bay, we opted for the “Rose Hall Great House & Shopping” for our group of four adults. It was easy to find our way to our excursion group from the terminal, and our guide Cadia was very friendly and knowledgeable.

The Rose Hall Great House was intriguing, but HOT! I can’t imagine doing this tour in August, LOL. I kept missing out on parts of the tour as I was seeking out a fan to stand near! On the front steps of the house, you are prohibited from taking pictures as they will take a picture of you and offer to sell it to you, framed, for $12 at the end of the tour. At the house, our guide was LaToya. She was very informative and friendly as well. After the tour of the house, they provide a small glass of non-alcoholic punch while a musician plays (please tip). You can purchase an alcoholic beverage at the bar if you wish. Then you are taken outside to see some local craftsmen and their wares, or you can go down to the on-site gift shop to catch a little air conditioning and buy other items.

Once we left the Great House, we stopped at the nearby “Shoppes at Rose Hall” for some additional shopping - I really enjoyed this place, but the vendors were pretty sneaky. I negotiated a fair (not great) deal on two dresses for my daughter, and they tried to make me feel guilty saying “That comes out of our pay…”. I told the lady I didn’t want to put her in a bad position, and I started to walk out, but she stopped me and said it’s okay. Then when checking out, she tried to charge me tax. I told her I had $35 cash, and that was it - My husband had given me that money and gone down to another shop. Begrudgingly, she accepted it and we left.

Grand Cayman - Grand Cayman is a beautiful port, but we didn’t schedule any excursions this time. Instead, we opted to walk around and shop. Everyone was very friendly, and we felt perfectly safe and comfortable.

Cozumel - In Cozumel, we typically just shop in the port area. This time, at a friend’s recommendation, we took a taxi and went to Mr. Sancho’s! That place was absolutely fantastic. We had a reserved table for our group of nine. Our server Eduardo was a bit slow and sometimes omitted items, but he was super-friendly and he was clearly working his rear off! What little food we had (due to time) was excellent, the beach was clean and fun, and the pools were amazing. I got to meet the famous Julio Mateo, and he kept the drinks strong and flowing! I would have loved to have taken the kids to the aquatic park, but we were all having so much fun in the pool. I’m a cruiser through and through, but this place makes me want to fly down to Mexico for a weekend and go to Mr. Sancho’s! I was a little tipsy, but getting a cab back to port was no problem. All I could think was “I have to get on the ship, I have to get on the ship…” So I focused on keeping our group together, and herding everyone through the shopping area and back to the ship. Later that evening, I realized that I had forgotten to buy my Mexican vanilla, or any other souvenirs! Thankfully, we did buy the photo they sold us at Mr. Sancho’s, in a nice frame for $25.

Behind the Fun - We opted for the “Behind the Fun” tour, which can only be booked once on-board. We have done this before, on the Magic, and it was a great tour. Erin and Roberto (from HR) were very enthusiastic and informative. The only two drawbacks - It was on the morning of our last sea day, so we couldn’t attend the Dr. Seuss breakfast. Also, the captain did not seem the least bit pleased to have our group on the Bridge. I offer my greatest respect to the Captain, as his primary job is his responsibility for 6,000+ souls aboard. However, this tour is a PR opportunity, and I think this captain made a poor impression. The staff emphasized several times that he is a man of few words, and when he came out to speak to us he just asked if we had any questions. When any of us did ask a question, his replies were demeaning, as if we were asking stupid questions and wasting his time. This was a real downer. On our first Behind the Fun tour, aboard the Magic, the Captain was clearly very passionate about his work, and eager to tell us about the bridge. I’ll just chalk it up to different personalities.

Overall, this was definitely an amazing vacation, and we can't wait to cruise with Carnival again!
smbarth’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 7 to 9
Service
Onboard Experience
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin 8B 6277
We stayed in a category 8B balcony stateroom (6277), located on deck 6 forward, starboard side. The proximity to the forward elevators was convenient for our kids, and made for much easier way-finding as I could tell the kids to use the front “glass elevators”, and they knew they could come out right by our cabin. The music from the atrium was loud in the hallway, but never a problem at all from inside our room.

The cabin was clean and spacious, with plenty of room to store our luggage under the bed, and ample cabinet/closet/drawer space for clothing and shoes for four people. I was worried about the cabin being too warm, and I had seriously considered bringing a fan - But I’m glad I didn’t, because our room stayed like an icebox (exactly how we like it) the whole time!

Our balcony was overlooking a giant chess board, which was also nice with the kids. We felt very comfortable letting them go downstairs one deck without us, and play chess while we watched from our balcony!

Our steward, Wi, was phenomenal, tending to our every need. He serviced our room twice daily, and was especially kind and helpful to my older brother, who was a first time cruiser and has autism. He had his own cabin down the hall, but Wi kept me informed if he knew that my brother was looking for me, etc.
Deck 7 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Private Resort Day Pass
    In Cozumel, we typically just shop in the port area. This time, at a friend’s recommendation, we took a taxi and went to Mr. Sancho’s! That place was absolutely fantastic. We had a reserved table for our group of nine. Our server Eduardo was a bit slow and sometimes omitted items, but he was super-friendly and he was clearly working his rear off! What little food we had (due to time) was excellent, the beach was clean and fun, and the pools were amazing. I got to meet the famous Julio Mateo, and he kept the drinks strong and flowing! I would have loved to have taken the kids to the aquatic park, but we were all having so much fun in the pool. I’m a cruiser through and through, but this place makes me want to fly down to Mexico for a weekend and go to Mr. Sancho’s! I was a little tipsy, but getting a cab back to port was no problem. All I could think was “I have to get on the ship, I have to get on the ship…” So I focused on keeping our group together, and herding everyone through the shopping area and back to the ship. Later that evening, I realized that I had forgotten to buy my Mexican vanilla, or any other souvenirs! Thankfully, we did buy the photo they sold us at Mr. Sancho’s, in a nice frame for $25.
    View All 184 Private Resort Day Pass Reviews
  • Grand Cayman (Georgetown)
    Grand Cayman is a beautiful port, but we didn’t schedule any excursions this time. Instead, we opted to walk around and shop. Everyone was very friendly, and we felt perfectly safe and comfortable.
    View All 3,399 Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Review
  • Montego Bay
    In Montego Bay, we opted for the “Rose Hall Great House & Shopping” for our group of four adults. It was easy to find our way to our excursion group from the terminal, and our guide Cadia was very friendly and knowledgeable. The Rose Hall Great House was intriguing, but HOT! I can’t imagine doing this tour in August, LOL. I kept missing out on parts of the tour as I was seeking out a fan to stand near! On the front steps of the house, you are prohibited from taking pictures as they will take a picture of you and offer to sell it to you, framed, for $12 at the end of the tour. At the house, our guide was LaToya. She was very informative and friendly as well. After the tour of the house, they provide a small glass of non-alcoholic punch while a musician plays (please tip). You can purchase an alcoholic beverage at the bar if you wish. Then you are taken outside to see some local craftsmen and their wares, or you can go down to the on-site gift shop to catch a little air conditioning and buy other items. Once we left the Great House, we stopped at the nearby “Shoppes at Rose Hall” for some additional shopping - I really enjoyed this place, but the vendors were pretty sneaky. I negotiated a fair (not great) deal on two dresses for my daughter, and they tried to make me feel guilty saying “That comes out of our pay…”. I told the lady I didn’t want to put her in a bad position, and I started to walk out, but she stopped me and said it’s okay. Then when checking out, she tried to charge me tax. I told her I had $35 cash, and that was it - My husband had given me that money and gone down to another shop. Begrudgingly, she accepted it and we left.
    View All 13,176 Montego Bay Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Montego Bay Cruise Port Review