My roommates and I left Michigan around 11am on Saturday March 5th to drive down to New Orleans. We stayed one night in Meridian, MS, and then drove the rest of the way down to New Orleans where we stayed at the La Quinta Downtown.
We set out for the port around noon and had a hard time trying to find where to go (construction), we finally found the luggage drop off spot and the parking garage. Once out of the parking garage we boarded a bus which took us to the cruise terminal. Since we arrived early, there wasn't a huge line to get on, we made it through the line/customs/etc in about a half hour, and we were on the boat by 12:40pm. Our room was ready, so we went to check that out. An ocean view stateroom on Main Deck. M164. The room was clean, but you could tell that it had been through a lot of wear - nothing terrible though. I slept in the fold down bunk, and it was actually pretty comfortable.
We had lunch on the Lido deck buffet - burgers and fries which actually were pretty good! We went through the Muster drill and then took a tour of the spa and made appointments to get our hair done that night after dinner. Dinner was at 5:45 in the Ecstasy Dining room. Our waiter was Vincent (who wasn't really around after the first night) and our Assistant waiter was Innocenti! He was great! Dinner was always very good, especially desserts - my favorite desserts were Pina Colada Cake and Tiramisu. Prime Rib, Lobster, Filet Mingon, beef wellington, etc. were all offered.
We had to rush through dinner to make it to our 7pm hair appointment. The lady who cut my hair was Australian and she did a GREAT job. I loved it! The spa on the boat is great! The first night was very rocky as there was a storm, but I took a dramamine just in case, and didn't get sick. Through the cruise we noticed that almost every night the boat got fairly rocky and swayed, not just side to side, but front to back also. I had seen a few people who were ill, but my roommates and I were all fine.
Our first day at sea we laid out on the sun on deck, had lunch on lido deck ,and dinner in the dining room again. I believe this was the first Las Vegas style show night, and it was about the Holidays. It was really entertaining. The comedian/ventriliquist I really could have done without. He seemed to think that by throwing a few swear words into his act that it made it an "Adult Show".
Our first Port of Call was Calica. We signed up for the Shopping Tour and Beach Break. I was a little disappointed as the shopping tour only took us to more "touristy" areas. I bought a very nice silver and tanzinite ring from LaPis for $30. Shopping was done in Playa Del Carmen, and then we finally went to Tukan Beach - it was beautiful! On our way back to the ship, the little shops that were set up right on pier were still open so I stopped to look at beach bags. I asked for a price on a corona bag that said "Playa Del Carmen" on it, and I was told $28. I told him "no thank you". So he said $20. I said $10. He said $15, etc..finally we settled on $11 only because I was "such a pretty girl" haha . We missed dinner in the dining room that night, so we went to the 24 hour pizzeria. The pizza was decent, not wonderful, but not bad. We went to a game-show type thing in the Fantasia lounge, the cruise director Shawn was a little strange, but I suppose its her job to be that way .
Our second port of call was Cozumel. We had the BEST day there! It was beautiful! We took a taxi to Playa Mia and found that it was open bar all day for us. There was a full buffet, very nice bathrooms, little shops, a pool, hammocks, a water trampoline, a inflated ice berg to climb in the water, even a zoo! We were there from about 11am to 4:30pm. We were back on the boat around 5pm and went to dinner.
Our last sea day was spent shopping and just relaxing, at dinner we danced with our assistant waiter! For drinks and shore excursions on the ship I spent $261 on my sail and sign card. I've attached a picture of my roommates and I. I'm the one on the far right, with the red hair and black dress.
Don't forget to post your review in the Ship Reviews section of the board. Glad you enjoyed your cruise.
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Thanks for the great review! I leave with a group of girls on the April 9th sailing, so it would nice to see a review from a younger point of view. Did you guys see many people your age on the ship? Also if you could give me more details on Playa Mia, taxi costs, etc. Thanks!
Thanks for the review. I never tire of reading about my favorite ship.
BUT...did you notice if there is a Fox TV channel in the cabin. I sail on Monday, April 4--and I don't want to miss my weekly dose of "24." Being at sea will somewhat dampen my withdrawal symptoms if I miss it, but I'd really rather not have to miss it.
WWJBD--What Would Jack Bauer Do?
I may dwell on the land, but I live at sea!
Sensation 2/03 I disembarked, but never really left the ship.
Enchantment 9/03 Just had to go back.
Inspiration 3/04 Just have to go back again, and again, and again...
Sensation 04/05 The vessel made me do it!
Summit 03/06 It's Margaret's fault!
Playa Mia was a $14 taxi ride (entire cab, not per person) from Cozumel Pier, its actually called "Playa Mia" theres a huge sign at the beach. Tukan Beach is in Playa Del Carmen, not really near where the pier is in Calica, Calica is basically an industrial area.
As for the Fox channel, I didn't see it, they change the channels, there are 2-3 with cruise stuff on it, and then 2 channels with the daily movies, and then usually 1 random channel (we couldn't figure it out, it kept changing).
We booked our Playa Mia excursion through the ship, it was called "Playa Mia Beach Break" in Cozumel for $29. You take a taxi there, and you give your ticket to the lady at the booth in the front, they give you a welcome drink, all of the ice/water is purified there, there are little shops, a buffet (extra cost), open bar (free pina coladas, margaritas, beer, rum punch, mezcal, bottled water, daquris). They have beach chairs for you, a pool, nice bathrooms, somewhere there is supposed to be a zoo, a water trampoline, etc..palm trees on the beach, hammocks in shade or sun. It was definitely worth the money.
We didn't see too many people our age, there were some high school and then some older, but not too many in their early 20's, I think our spring break was just earlier than most schools (I go to Central Michigan University) though..