5 Night Western Caribbean (Galveston Roundtrip) Sail Date: April 02, 2007 Ship: Carnival Ecstasy Cabin Type: Oceanview Traveled As: Family (older children) Reviewed: 10 years ago
The cruise line needs to stop taking pictures of it's guest fifty times a day. Initially this was just inconvenient, but quickly grew into harassment. It was offensive to have a camera shoved into me and my family's face every time we went to dinner, left the ship, etc. The staff was friendly most of the time, and tried to accomodate requests up until the morning of debarkation. The staff and crew then turned into a roll of cattlemen, trying to herd the masses off of the ship and out of our staterooms as fast as possible. Many of us ended up having to sit on our luggage on the debarkation decks and wait for an eternity. Customs took over 4 1/2 hours to clear, and my entire family was exhausted before leaving to get back to the resort where we had parked. I tried to adjust my gratuity after being hurried out of our stateroom and they conveniently closed the books and told me basically, "Sorry but too bad for you." This will definitely be our last carnival cruise. The activities for physically active teenagers were non-existent, leaving them primarily to run around a dangerously high-winded short track or playing basketball on the afterbrow on a bent rim and half-destroyed nets with basketballs that I would have tossed in the trash if I had seen in my garage. My wife and I are in our mid-late 30's, and this cruise catered even less to us. We ended up spending money at the Casino. Unless you're into Bingo or theatre shows that have talent of less calibre than a high-school musical (The singers were tone-deaf and painful to watch and listen to), in closing, avoid this cruise line.
Food and Dining
1 out of 5
The Windstar dining room, though clean and elegantly adorned, lacked the food quality that you would expect on an all-inclusive cruise. The service was extremely slow, The menu was limited at best, and main courses were served luke-warm consistently.
1 out of 5
If you saw my comments regarding the entertainment you would understand how the Ecstasy's entertainment achieved this rating. Someone forgot the 30 something crowd completely when they decided on entertainment for this cruise. My wife and I were unable to enjoy ourselves with the exception of the casino. Basically we were entertained for probably 45 minutes a day on the ship, bored for around 8 hours, slept for 6-8 hours, annoyed about our lack of entertainment options around 5 hours, and ate food the rest of the time because of boredom. There was no place on the ship to go dance, the live music was repulsive, and the stage performances were pathetic. The choreography was okay, but it was impossible to enjoy the show because the singing and talent was so bad.
1 out of 5
Camp Carnival for 6-8 year olds was adequate when it was opened. Club 02 for my 16 year old was boring, and my 13 year old wouldn't even attempt pre-teens. If you want a successful program, find out what kids in sports want to do for entertainment and build a program around that. Design hot tubs for groups of more than six people to enjoy, especially if you aren't going to build a pool that kid under four feet tall can safely swim in, and a slide that will accommodate that age group as well.
Service and Staff
3 out of 5
They did okay, not above or beyond. I almost felt like a second class citizen because we stayed on the Riviera level, though I'm quite certain that they were more accommodating to people staying in luxury suites.
1 out of 5
Who ever designed the ship's recreational areas didn't consider it to be a moving vessel. It was way too windy to enjoy the running track,putt-putt, most of the hot tub and swimming areas, and the main pool and waterslide was too tall for our six year old, and he lost out on part of that fun. It was like someone tried to throw in things to do after the fact the ship was built, and left the
Cabin / Stateroom
3 out of 5
We stayed in an oceanview stateroom with a window so dirty we couldn't hardly see out of it. The amenities were okay, but the layout was hazardous at night. One of the pull-down beds was positioned directly above where they had made our bed, and we ended up bumping our heads on the upper bed on several occassions.
Had a great time shopping, better know the prices before you order food on the beach, or they will put the screws to ya. $2.00 for a coke, $4.00 for a bowl of guacamole for Nachos. Barter with the locals on any purchases, they will negotiate everything, including braiding. It does get tiring being approached every five minutes by a local to buy something. The ship should issue signs that say, "not interested in buying your stuff." in spanish.
Don't Miss: Take the $2.00 city bus tour, it's a nice break and enjoyable.
Sons loved the beginning scuba diving through B&B Divers (check the Cozumel web site.) The prettiest and clearest water in Mexico. The ship didn't stay long enough in port to enjoy any more than one activity, so my wife and young son and I didn't get to enjoy the beach at all. Carnival needs about three more hours in this port to make the experience enjoyable.
Don't Miss: Beginning Scuba at B&B Divers (Cheeto is the sole proprieter is the bomb). Check the Cozumel website
Pros: Camp Carnival was a wonderful time for our 6 year old
Cons: The food was mediocre at best, service slow, boring, customs debarkation horrible!!!
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