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3 Mobile to Mexican Riviera Cruise Reviews

After a 7 hour drive to Mobile Alabama, from Nashville Tn, we arrived at the Port Terminal around 11:30am for Embarkation. Found the Cruise Line Parking Signs very helpful that were posted on the route in! After a long process to get on ... Read More
After a 7 hour drive to Mobile Alabama, from Nashville Tn, we arrived at the Port Terminal around 11:30am for Embarkation. Found the Cruise Line Parking Signs very helpful that were posted on the route in! After a long process to get on the ship, which I have described in my "port" review, we settled in on the Lido deck, for our first DOD! Found the service, food and drink all exceptional!! Hooked up with a waiter, Ras, who remained our favorite waiter on the Lido deck for the entire cruise! Seating was usually available, if you were patient. Seemed to always be plenty of seats on the port or Non Smoking side. Found the ship in fairly good shape, seemed clean, but in need of some updating. I must add that last year we cruised on the Dream for it's 1 yr anniv, so I may be being a little too hard on the Elation. (I'm a little spoiled)Heard that Elation goes into Dry Dock for refurb very soon, and as a seasoned cruiser, I think it is time!! Our cabin was on the Main Deck, Starboard side, very near the front. We were allowed in the cabin area right around 1:00pm, and found the cabin clean and ready for our arrival. We were immediately greeted by our Cabin Stewards, Efnul & Gus. We couldn't have asked for any better!! Muster drill went smooth, no longer have to carry life vest with you, but have broken it into a two part deal, where you meet at the muster station area first, then proceed out to the lifeboats. After completing the muster drill and heading back into the cabin area, was hit in the face with a terrible odor. Smelled like RAID to me, and was offensive. However, the smell soon dissipated. We had late dining, that was confirmed as early dining, but we were able to change times after the first night. The food and the service in the dining room were great, always love the entertainment provided by the servers! Mostly did lunches at the cafe and always enjoyed the usual, pizza, deli and ice cream! There was plenty of opportunity for entertainment on the ship, with shows, Karaoke, Marriage game, Match game, Comedians (were funny!)and all the usual offerings, enjoyed the Activities on the Lido deck also, Hairy chest contest, etc.! Even the Casino was good to us! The ping pong tables and putt putt golf areas were popular spots too! The Serenity deck was also a popular spot, rarely a comfy spot available. Guess you needed to get there early. I want to remark about the hot-tubs/children issue. The tubs on Elation state that only toilet trained children, with an adult should enter. Found the tubs on the Lido deck always crowded full of kids...never got it one. The slide was fun for children and adult alike! With the exception of a few children running thru the Lido deck area, there were no issues there. Always enjoyed the Caribbean/cruise music playing in the background! Had complained of that on other cruises! Had no small children, so no comments regarding the kid camps. Disembarkation and Embarkation at the ports was a simple non eventful process. We ported at Cozumel (our 3rd time there), and we were very pleased to find the port we visited just last year had completed the construction it was under and is now a lovely clean air conditioned welcome center/shopping area. As we proceeded thru the building we exited into a lovely shopping area that wound you thru to the main streets of Cozumel. We took a cab to NACHI COCUM beach resort,(Limits number of guests, so reserve a spot prior to the cruise!) it's all inclusive, food and drink, with a beautiful beach, pool, swim-up bar, hot tub,(that wasn't hot) hammocks, chairs & umbrella's, floats & snorkels were for rent ($7), a souvenir shop, clean restrooms and other extras for charge-para sailing, wave runners, etc. Met up with several others from our ship and also from the Disney ship. Enjoyed our time there so much, we only had time to get back to the ship, and did not venture out into Cozumel, tho this was our 3rd visit here, and in the past have wandered all over the town. On Thurs, day 4, we ported at Playa Del Carmen. Again no issues departing or embarking~Hopped a cab to Grand Coco Bay Hotel, for an all inclusive package, that we had reserved prior to the cruise. This place was beautiful! We arrived at 9:30am only to find out that the food and drink portion of the package were not available until 11am...So we entertained ourselves at the beach, then moved to the pool for Volleyball and other directed activities they had available to us. Once it was finally available, the food and drink were awesome!! All beach amenities were available and tho the beach was small, it was beautiful. I think there were 2 other families from the ship, but most were Europeans that were staying at the hotel. Again, spent the day there, and did not venture out, found a little souvenir area near the port gate, for a quick hammock purchase, that turned out to be a swing! haha No problem with that either, it will do! (No wonder I got it for 20 bucks!) Our last Sea Day, we encountered some huge waves, 10-12 ft swells, that caused a lot of motion sickness on the ship. It got to me bad, and as a seasoned cruiser, had never experienced this before...:( So it was literally a blur to me, hubby packed us up and set our luggage out. The next morn, we waited until almost 9:30 to be called off. Found our luggage waiting for us in the terminal, and after getting a porter, made our way off the ship and back to reality. No problems or issues there. It seems much more relaxed on the Fantasy Class size ships and the food & service is definitely better! All in all, it was a great cruise, with great times!! Met some GREAT people, who will continue to be friends, THROUGH our thread on the CRUISE CRITIC BOARD! *As stated earlier, I think it will only serve to help Carnival to refurbish/update the Elation. I also think moving out of Mobile is a good move. I only hope they keep the same personnel, because we did not encounter one problem with any of the staff!!! EXCEPTIONAL!   Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We cruised Jan 6-10th from Mobile Alabama, We had two days at sea and one day in Cozumel. I will not complain about the weather as obviously that is not under Carnival's control, but two days at sea when the temperature is only in the ... Read More
We cruised Jan 6-10th from Mobile Alabama, We had two days at sea and one day in Cozumel. I will not complain about the weather as obviously that is not under Carnival's control, but two days at sea when the temperature is only in the late 50's makes in unpleasant to sit out on the deck. In fact it was too windy and down right cold to be on the top deck for anything other than a fast walk- definately not mini golf or basketball. We have cruised over 7 times, and I must say this was the most rocking motion I have ever felt on any previous ships. The last night was horrendous , and the site of vomit bags taped up to all available wall space for easy access was not a pleasant site either. The cabin we had was E127, there were three of us ( the room stated it had a trundle bed for the third person) , there was in fact a roll away but finding a place for it to go in the cabin was quite inventive as there is a huge pole in the middle of the room apparently helping support the restaurant floor (Imagination) above. We ended up removing the drawer from the dresser and having my sons legs go under the dresser. Noise was a big negative also- with the restaurant above us , there was very early morning scraping of furniture and what sounded like large heavy cartons being dropped on the floor. On the positive side- Cozumel is fantastic, we took the city, shopping, lunch, beach tour - the operator Miguel was so much fun and so knowledgable, kept my two teenage sons intrigued for the whole 5 hrs. The food on this cruise was Ok, but again not the best we have had on previous cruises either. One night of the dinner entrees , THREE of them were chicken. I would definately not recommend this cruise for a first time cruiser. If this had been our first , we would probably not be rushing to get on another. Two days at sea in the winter is not the best plan, unless you want to spend money on bingo and like staying inside drinking. This experience will not deter us from cruising again, but I have to say I will think twice about Carnival for the next vacation. Read Less
Sail Date January 2011
Our room was always clean and the cabin staff were exceptional. The bed is pretty hard, but it was comfortable. Cruise food should be better than it was on the Elation. The food in the dining room was served mostly warm/cold with ... Read More
Our room was always clean and the cabin staff were exceptional. The bed is pretty hard, but it was comfortable. Cruise food should be better than it was on the Elation. The food in the dining room was served mostly warm/cold with the exception of the Caesar salad which was served warm/hot. The waiters were pretty poor and did a lot of ignoring of customers. My sister in law had to walk up to the serving area to get a cup of coffee. Our group of 8 was told one night that we couldn't sit at the same table so they put us at two tables that were right next to each other but only a foot apart. Each side got different waiters. My side actually finished our main course before the other side got their orders taken. We did have good service one night with a waiter named Luka. Great Waiter. The Tiffany dining room where the buffet was also a disappointment. The food choices were limited and the dining room is set up in such an incredibly scattered way that you're always walking through people to get to the salad area, main dish area, dessert area, grill, and pizzeria, which are scattered here and there with no rhyme or reason. I never once was asked if I wanted a drink while in the Tiffany dining room. The food was mostly cold and there were several times they had put the food out but put out trays in front of it because they weren't ready to serve it yet. This was especially disappointing when we had an excursion that started at 7 and they refused to open the buffet until 6:30 a.m. although the food was already visible and getting cold. We went to a couple of the passenger based shows. I would suggest the Married Show, it's always quite amusing and one out of the two comedians was pretty good. I was again disappointed by the service in the lounges and bars as we rarely had a waiter come up and we ended up going to the bar several times and bringing stuff back to our seats. It was almost like they didn't want to make money. I would definitely suggest the Mexican Cuisine Cooking and Tasting in Cozumel at Playa Mia. The chef who gave the cooking lesson was great and it was a small enough group we got to know everyone. Plus the alcohol flowed extremely freely. The day we disembarked was a complete disappointment. We watched the video the day before and had already cruised a few times so we figured when they said they would start disembarking at 9:00 that it would be close to that time. Needless to say that when the announcement came at 7:20 a.m. that they were disembarking our floor I was a bit disappointed. I know I could have stayed, but it felt like the cruise line was saying "get the heck off the boat and don't let the door hit you on the way out." A few suggestions for the ship if they ever look at this. Consider putting the temperature on the tv with all the other information such as wind speed/direction/sea level. It's far more helpful to your passengers. Also, when you say the coffee/tea service is available 24 hours please make it available 24 hours. Several times we went down and all of the machines were out. All in all I had fun despite the ship. My family had a good time playing games in the library and the poor service gave us all something in common to talk about during meals. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010

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