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November 25-December 2, 2001
We sailed the Eastern
Caribbean itinerary (San Juan, St. Thomas & Nassau) 11/25-12/02. I
can say that it was a very pleasant week and a ship I would not
hesitate to recommend to anyone, if they're a NON-Smoker.
The ship was very clean and not as flashy as some of the other Fantasy
class ships. It was decorated for the holidays and very pretty. The
big shows were terrific, though the first one had to be postponed
until we were in port in San Juan, due to very heavy seas. Remember,
Hurricane Olga was out there and created some huge swells. Many people
were ill and didn't show up for dinner or the evenings entertainment
(comedian), but we were fine and enjoyed the quiet ship. When they did
perform the shows, we were very impressed with the high energy and
quality. I lost count of the number of costume changes, but they were
very good. The entertainment on the other nights was so-so. They
didn't intend for the comics to have to perform 3 shows (due to the
seas), so we had to realize they were winging it.
The food was some of the best we've had on a ship in a long time. Our
waiter, Vasel, and his assistant, Didi, were great. Very personable
and attentive. It was great having waiters that seemed to enjoy what
they're doing, which is something we haven't really noticed much of
Our cabin steward, Robert, was great. Surprised us every night with
our towel critters. He was visible without being intrusive. The cruise
line is now adding the gratuities to your onboard credit, which you
can adjust or remove, if you so choose. The dinners are staggered (new
since we last sailed Carnival). There are 2 early seatings (6:00 and
6:30) and 2 late seatings (8:00 and 8:30). We got stuck with the 8:30
(latest), and tried to change to earlier, but it was not available.
Our dinner companions were super. We all hit it off well.
The casino was hard on me. We play roulette and I was up after the first
night, but was down until the last night. I recovered a bit, so didn't
feel too bad. I just can't say enough about how pleasant it was to be
able to be in the casino and bars and not have that nasty smoke
blowing in my face. I'm a smoke magnet.
We were on this ship because of a contest for travel agents that
Carnival had. They upgraded us to a 5A (portholes) on the main deck.
It wasn't bad, except there was a horrible noise when we were coming
in to port. Not sure if it was the thrusters or what. It never lasted
that long, but you couldn't miss it. We took advantage of this cruise
to really relax. We slept in, went to the gym, took naps every day,
ate way too much, but did exactly what we intended, and that was to
relax. The only tour we took was in San Juan. We went to the Bacardi
factory. Had I been aware, I would have waited to buy the rum in the
ships terminal. That was where it was the cheapest. Even beat prices
in St. Thomas. That's the only shopping we did. I didn't even get a
t-shirt! I wasn't very impressed with San Juan. It's been about 15
years since we were there, and it's really run down.
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