Carnival Breeze Cruise Review by moondog73
- Sail Date: April 2019
- Destination: Eastern Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Balcony
Room: We all had balcony rooms on deck 9 forward port side. Rooms were the typical cruise ship rooms. We met our steward, Gede, and told him we only needed morning service but my wife wanted a towel animal each day too. I just don’t understand the reasoning for needing your room serviced twice a day. Some argue it is a luxury of cruising, but I say I can turn my own bed down when I get tired. This is 2019 not 1930. I just don’t find that sort of service a luxury. We had brought extra hangars with us but there were already a large number in the closet. We did learn one trick the night before our cruise. We read to take wooden clothes pins to put on the bottom of the shower curtain to make it stay down in place while showering. It worked!!!!
Other Passengers: We did not really encounter too many lines or rude people. About the only bad apple was one evening we ate at the lido buffet. My brother was in line and was waiting as the cook was replacing the penne pasta. Before my brother could take a portion, a large man cut in line and scraped all the cheese crust (the best part) off the top. I guess they just could not wait their turn in line for fear of losing a pound. It was spring break in Georgia and North Carolina but the ship did not really seem inundated with kids. I will say the ice cream station was always a mess. Small kids would get ice cream and make a huge mess. Carnival really needs to place the machines higher up so an adult has to help. We did read online of some unruly kids, but we never witnessed it. Also, the CHOGS (chair hogs) were out in force on sea days. Carnival again needs to address this. Their current system of putting a sticker on your chair for 40 minutes before removing items is a complete joke. My wife said they did that the last sea day and about 20 mins later a lady came and took the stickers off 8 chairs. A really simple solution would be one person in a chair can save one empty one right next to them. That way people can use restroom, get food, go down slide, etc. No butt in chair….no saving!!! Also they should walk around the decks at 8am and collect all the towels, shoes, books, etc that are saving seats. Do it once at the beginning and then it is not a problem.
Breakfast: Every morning we ate the lido buffet and it was the same exact offerings every morning. One item that never was eaten was the salmon and eggs dish. Who eats that? The buffet usually always had some kind of line. The buffets with one long station are the worst. People have to stand there and analyze whether or not they want an item. If you have to think about longer than a second…move on!!! The omelet station was very good and the line never really too long. Some of us skipped the buffet and hit the Blue Iguana instead for huevos rancheros. They were excellent and there was NEVER a line.
Lunch: We ate different places all the time when on board. We ate Pig & Anchor BBQ on embarkation day and last sea day. We also tried the pizza (usually a line) and the Mongolian wok (always a long slow line but so good) and deli (always a long line). Lunch also had the new cake selections and they were excellent. The other regular desserts were not so good.
Dinner: When we could, we ate in the MDR. We had YTD dining and always went to the Sapphire Dining Room on deck 3 about 5:15. We were usually one of the first seated and before the dining room actually opened. On the second night we were sat in Dipendra, I Made, and Dennis’s section. They were awesome. They learned our name the first night and anticipated our needs. Unfortunately due to strange port times, we only ate here 3 times. Some meals in the MDR were really good others just so-so. Our main complaint was the menu descriptions. One night several of us got BBQ Flat bread with arugula. It arrived and was full of mushrooms. First off there was no mention of mushrooms on the menu. Secondly, why are mushrooms on a BBQ flatbread anyway? They don’t go together. One thing Carnival should do is discontinue the servers singing and dancing. This does nothing more than slow down service.
Activities: Carnival Cruises are always jam packed with activities. You can be as busy or lazy as you like. Since we sailed on Easter Sunday, carnival had an Easter egg hunt. They had 12 eggs hidden across decks 3, 4, & 5. You got a piece of paper and had to write down where each one was found. Supposedly they had a drawing of all the correct answers for some prize but we never heard anything about it the rest of the cruise. The kids in our party loved the waterpark and slides. My 72 yr old dad even went down both slides. My oldest niece and nephew were looking forward to doing the ropes course. Neither really liked it especially my nephew (8 yrs old) was scared to death. He said it was way too windy. We played mini golf embarkation day but there were not enough balls for 3 kids. Carnival should station someone on the sports deck to police the use like they do on the waterpark. We also did several trivia games winning one general knowledge trivia game one morning. My nieces and nephew loved their Carnival Bling on a String Medallions!!! My nieces (10 & 5) also loved singing karaoke. They were usually the hit of the night!!! We also bought some items at the shops and went to the 80 Rock N Glow deck party. Carnival really does have activities all day/night.
Overall Ship Layout/Cleanliness: The ship layout was not one of our favorites. We have been on the Valor, Sunshine (twice), Sensation and now the Breeze. The Breeze is probably our least favorite with the Sunshine being our favorite. Having the waterpark at mid ship, it limited the amount of seating around it to watch the kids. The lido deck pool also seemed to be lacking in seating unlike the Sunshine. There was plenty of seating at the buffet though but the buffet itself was set up horribly. We prefer the Sunshine buffet layout with several smaller stations instead of one long one. We also saw all kinds of workers constantly cleaning and wiping handrails, walls, and chairs. Overall it seemed like a very clean ship.
Debarkation: Again since we had priority, we arrived at the buffet for breakfast right at 6am. We had received a letter the night before stating to be in the Ovation Theatre starboard side at 7:15am. We ate and headed to the theatre around 6:45. Carnival had people stationed at the forward staircase checking to make sure only priority people we allowed. Of course there was one moron blocking the stairs arguing with the crew about why he and his family could not disembark. They finally told him they don’t care where he goes but he can’t be here. I walked by and said loudly to my brother that Faster to the Fun looks like a good buy you cheapskate (only I used more derogatory terms). They started allowing those people carrying their luggage and early flights off at 7:15. We followed shortly after. Carnival did a really good job with our debarkation. It was very organized and efficient. Once in the terminal, we grabbed a porter, found our luggage, and skipped ahead of several hundred people waiting in the customs line. The porters have their own line. The customs agent checked our passports and asked if we had any fruit from the ship. After that we were on our way to the garage or shuttles. My all were on the road by 8:07am!!!!
Amber Cove: Wife and I went to Damajauga Waterfalls through Iguana Mama (highly recommended). We signed up for the full 27 but due to drought conditions could only do 12. Rest of the group stayed at the port pool.
St Thomas: Hired a private customized tour through VI Scenic Tours to take us shopping downtown (rum and sterling silver hook bracelets), Mountain Top, Magens Bay, and Drake’s Seat overlook, then finally back to Havensight Mall at the pier.
San Juan: We all did a self-guided walking tour to El Morro, the Cathedral to see Ponce de Leon’s tomb, Parque de las Palomas to feed the birds, Barrachina’s for pina coladas, Fortaleza Street to see the umbrellas, and Plaza Colon to shop some street vendors.
Grand Turk: In our opinion, Carnival can skip this port. It used to be a nice relaxing beach day. Now the locals have moved in and there are chairs everywhere on top of each other with no easy way to walk along the water. All the free port chairs/umbrellas are in the back. The locals have their chairs/umbrellas all the way in the front all the way down to the water line. At high tide, some were even in the water. They wanted 2 chairs for $30. They would not do 2 chairs for $20, but you could get 3 for $30. Go figure!!! Not sure how their math works!!! We needed 6 total so it worked out for us. We did walk down to Jack’s Shack for jerk chicken and it was excellent!!!
Random thoughts: On our cruise, they began using the HUB APP for making YTD reservations. Of course since we went early, we could not use it. It came online exactly at 5:30 each night but we were already seated by that time. We also found the live music played all over the ship was way too loud. Most times you had to yell to talk to someone. I did buy some Hennessy Pure White on board. Ship price was $56.99 each or 3 for $135.00 ($45 each). I only needed two but got three. The ports all had it 2 for $90. Lesson learned to get it in port. In the end, we choose the ships based on itinerary. We would sail the Breeze again only if the itinerary fit our choices
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