October 2016 - Carnival Conquest to Caribbean - Eastern
This cruise was the first time we ever cruised and I can surely say we look forward to many more with Carnival!
First, I would like to get the bad news out of the way because there was so much more good to talk about! The Muster drill on the first day was dreadful. You've got to come up with a better way of doing that. The first day is stressful anyway and to add a 45 minute drill in a scorching hot hallway with people stacked on top of each other does not make for a good start! The conductors were also rude and impatient which didn't help. I would say maybe broadcast the Muster drill in the staterooms and just show a map of the boat with the locations of the different stations.
Room service personnel needs a serious retrain. There was only one time that room service was friendly and smiling and first thing in the morning, you need a smile! Also, please start offering alternative milk through room service. My wife and I both have severe allergies to dairy and we could only find almond milk at the coffee bar which was inconvenient and expensive. I just needed a little for my coffee in the mornings!
Your nighttime bartender on the lobby deck has got to go. Her name is Catherine and she has got to be the rudest person on your ship. She outright ignored my wife and I until she couldn't possibly ignore us any longer each trip we came to the bar and then rolled her eyes at us when we ordered. And each time, she had an excuse about why she couldn't make the drink we were ordering. Then when we got the guy who was with her, he would smile and say "oh she said that? I can do it! No problem!" What is that girls problem?! She told the guy she was going to make my drink and then literally left the bar and didn't come back for 10 minutes. When he saw me still standing there, he said "Have you still been waiting for your drink?" I said "yes." And he said "Oh my gosh, I am so sorry. She told me she would make it and I don't know where she is." Then proceeded to drop everything he was doing to make my drink for me. He was the best! I wish I could remember his name.
One last thing and then I'll move onto the good news, I promise! My wife is a vegan and we were told several times that accommodations could be made for her dietary restrictions. This was certainly true for dinner but the other meals were not so easy. There were literally no options on the buffet, so we never ate there. My wife did come to enjoy a pizza at Pizza Pirate with no cheese! However, the man making the pizzas every day (short, asian man) was rude and unhappy every time she asked for no cheese. It's not a hard request! The worst, though, was Guy's Burger Joint. On the very first day, we asked if they offer veggie burgers for my wife. They responded with "absolutely! Just ask for them and we will put them on the grill for you. Just know it will take a little longer because we have to cook it." Great! No problem. The veggie burgers were delicious! Then the second time we came back, we were greeted by a man who told us "we don't do that." To which we responded "you did yesterday?" And he said "oh... we did? Okay fine." It was only then that we received the veggie burger which took twice as long to receive as the day before. We didn't go back after that.
But now! The great stuff! The adults only pool section is genius for people like us who aren't into the crazy party scene. It was closed the first day for maintenance but was open for the rest of the cruise. Always clean. Always fabulous. And the bartender was always friendly and on point.
Your nighttime entertainment is FABULOUS! Rick and the U Turns kept us bopping all night long! Emma and Brandon are the friendliest of the group and always stayed to chat with us! Couldn't have asked for a better nighttime show.
The Antman has the funniest comedy show on the boat! Had us laughing until we cried!
Reggie (housekeeping deck 2) was AMAZING at keeping our room tidy and giving us the best towel animals! He even wrote "Happy Birthday" to my mother in law on the mirror in the room. So sweet! He always asked us if we needed anything when we passed by in the halls and we always looked forward to coming back to the room at night and seeing what he created!
Beds were comfortable and linens always clean. Shower was tiny (as expected) but the water pressure and temperature were good.
Our Casa en la Playa excursion in Amber Cove was incredible. Memories we will never forget. Mama is the sweetest and so hospitable to her guests! Of course, the other staff there was wonderful as well. We never went without a drink the entire time as they were always walking around to offer a refill. The food was incredible and authentic and there was plenty for all! The water sports were also great and we really enjoyed kayaking in the ocean. One thing I must also mention though, was the attentiveness of the staff. They were genuinely concerned for the safety and wellbeing of their guests. My mother in law tipped her kayak and they came swimming out to make sure we were okay and help her back in. A baby on the beach fell down on the sand and they came running to check on her! It was amazing to see how much they cared!
Our other excursion "All Inclusive Beach Break" in Grand Turk was awful and we would never recommend it. But Shore Excursions with Carnival did their very best to make it up to us and they were wonderful.
Now, I've saved the best for last... our dinner service. The Chef was always so accommodating to my wife's dietary restrictions and always had something for her every night. Food was always delicious and portion sizes were perfect! But the true shining stars were the crew members who took care of us every night. There are no words to describe how amazing the following people are: Saya Doni, Barbara Pstrucha, and Bilal Kartal. They were the highlight of each and every day. Even when we were so tired we couldn't possibly have the energy to get dressed and go to dinner, we pushed through it just to see them because they were seriously the best part of each and every day. They made us smile and laugh and took the time out to talk to us each and every night. It was clear to us that we were not considered as just another few faces in the crowd but that they were genuinely interested in taking the time to know us and take care of us.
Thank you, Carnival for a great trip!