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Old June 21st, 2006, 07:15 AM
mehawk's Avatar
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Default Here is the Ecstasy Review

Enjoy everybody!!

My fiancé and myself arrived in Galveston on the 11th of June and we stayed overnight at the Harbor House Hotel. The hotel allowed us to leave our car there for the duration of our cruise for a nominal fee of $20.00!! On cruise day, which was the 12th, we were able to sleep in and lounge throughout the morning, checking out of the hotel at noon. We drove to the terminal, dropped off our luggage with a porter and returned to the hotel parking lot to leave the car.

The walk to the ship was short and pleasurable. We were able to walk right into the terminal and checked in. In all, it took 20 minutes from leaving the parking lot to being onboard the Ecstasy. There was an announcement that the cabins would not be available until 1:30. No big deal as we sat in chairs on the Lido Deck and drank and enjoyed the music.

When we arrived at our cabin, the room was clean and ready. I had ordered a plate of chocolate strawberries for DF and they were there ready for her to consume them! Such a shame that something that looked so good had to be eaten. After placing our belongings in their appropriate locations, we prepared for the mandatory muster drill. Fortunately, our muster station was two levels directly above us so not a far distance to travel. After the drill, it was off to watch the Port of Galveston disappearing in the distance and watching the porpoises playing in the bay before and around us. I was able to get them on the camcorder, cool!! After that, off to explore the ship and learn our way around.

We chose to eat in the Windstar dining room every occasion we were afforded. The service was always excellent and our waiter during the evening meals was superb!! He was always caring about our meals, well mannered and the food was incredibly good. All of the people at our table were pleased with him and his assistants. We did the buffet a couple of times because the dining room was unavailable. The food was good and the deli sandwiches were well received. One morning we did room service for breakfast and the meal arrived in 15 minutes and was good as well. Overall, the dining experience was excellent.

The first day at sea was a lazy one for us but, wow, was it hot!! We stayed indoors as much as possible and explored. The seas were very rough because the remnants of Tropical Storm Alberto were still in the area and we actually got a bit queasy. Off to the infirmary we went and the doctor told us that this pitching was the worst he had ever experienced himself. We also overheard other crewmembers stating the same to passengers. He recommended a sort of acupuncture for us to try. It was an elastic wristband with a button on it. It was placed on each wrist, over the pulse, and it worked!! The queasiness left us.

The beds were an issue with us. I am allergic to down and we found out afterwards that she is also. The beds, though comfortable, are almost all down. The comforter, the mattress pad and the pillows are down filled and we were miserable. At first, we thought we had the flu or some bug. When we left the ship for the docks, we cleared up, somewhat. Carnival does not have any other bed coverings or pillows so I hope they get this oversight taken care of before our next cruise.

Formal night was great and we were dressed to the max ourselves. We enjoy dressing up and we had a wonderful time at the Captain’s party and the dinner afterwards.

We docked at Progresso and we chose to stay on board until the early afternoon. Then we disembarked and strolled through the mall at the pier. A quick and heavy downpour appeared and then we were able to get back onboard before the rush of the others returning from their excursions.

The next morning found us in Cozumel. The damage is tremendous and incredible. We tendered in to what is left of the dock and caught a van to our excursion. The Adventure Park and Snorkel Tour was our choice. We rappelled, climbed walls, crossed rope and plank suspension bridges and rode a zip line. We didn’t snorkel as we weren’t up to it on this day. When we returned to the mall at the pier, we had a good meal, listened to the music and did some shopping. The tender was already at the dock when we got there so it was quickly on and back to the ship. The ship was two hours late leaving Cozumel, but not due to the ship. Two passengers ran afoul of the law and were “detained? by the local authorities. The Captain arranged for their release and the ship left with everyone on board. I don’t want to hear that Carnival does not take care of its passengers. To me, that was above and beyond the call of duty. It was not Carnival’s fault that the passengers did something that was against the law. We took pictures of us leaving the port as toasted the event. That evening, we dressed up again for the Past Guests Party and had another great time. Again, the seas were rough but that was because the Captain had the ship going full bore to make up the lost time caused by the hooligans.

The last day at sea and we slept in. Later, we did the Art Auction and purchased some paintings. We almost bought a Rembrandt but decided against it at the last moment. I must say it was difficult to pass up.

Arriving in Galveston, we did not do the self assist debarkation, mainly due to our Nine pieces of luggage (). We lounged in our cabin until they called our color. We were off the ship and on the curb of the street in about 30 minutes. Using the porter cut about 45 minutes off of our wait. I walked to the hotel parking lot, collected the car, collected my fiancé and the luggage and off to home we went.

Overall, our trip was a hit!! We did not want to get off and we are looking to, perhaps, do the same trip later this summer. We already have a trip planned for November and anxiously await it.
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Cruised more times than I can remember.

Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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Old June 21st, 2006, 07:45 AM
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Hi Mike,
Excellent review, my friend! It sounds like you and Sandy had a wonderful time. I've never had sea sickness, even in the swells of Jeanne and into a "front" coming from the North as we headed north from the Caribbean to Ft. Lauderdale. However, there's always a first time and hope I don't find out soon! The thing that got to me was the combination of the waves with the deisel fuel coming from the smokestack up on the 18th deck that made feel me a little uncomfortable!
Thanks for the report on Cozumel. We haven't been there in a couple of years. You two seem to be the outdoor type--repelling walls, etc! Me, I stick close to the solid ground!
Anyway, I'm glad your experience was a good one. Now onto the next one!!
Lynne
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Old June 21st, 2006, 09:37 AM
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Thanks for posting your review, Michael. Sounds like you had a wonderful cruise inspite of the sea sickness and the allergy problems. I always wondered if those sea bands really worked. Guess you proved that they did. I hope that the cruiselines will be more prepared in the future for people with allegies to down. I always thought that down linens were so luxurious, but not for folks who have allergies.

I'm with Lynne, I'll keep my feet on the ground. Repelling and all that stuff would do me in.

Phyll
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Old June 21st, 2006, 11:44 AM
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Glad to hear that you enjoyed your cruise on the Ecstasy since that is the ship that we go on in December. Curious about the wrist bands -where can you get them? My DH and I have never cruised and he has hardly even been on a ship/boat so not sure what to expect as far as sea sickness and he is on so many meds that I hate for him to take anything that isn't necessary so the bands seem like a good choice!
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Old June 21st, 2006, 12:14 PM
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Spanacres, the wrist bands are in the Galleria. I'll tell you exactly how to get to them. Stand on the Atlantic Deck, facing the elevators in the stairway. Go to your left, into the shop that sells tobacco and in the area where this shop becomes the jewelry shop, to your right is a stand that has drugstore items on it and the bands are on this stand. They run about $2.50.
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Michael

Cruised more times than I can remember.

Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

Courage and perserverance have a magical talisman; before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into the air.

Pick your company wisely! Hang around people who are going to help you become all God created you to be.
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Old June 21st, 2006, 07:33 PM
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Default Thanks Mike,

I have a note book with all my cruise notes and added your information to it! Thanks for the quick reply! Marcia
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Old June 21st, 2006, 11:13 PM
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Oh you made my heart sing! Great review, can't wail til we go in October. Sorry to hear you had problems with the bedding. Lucky for us we are both ok with down.

Thanks again!
Renee
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Old June 21st, 2006, 11:33 PM
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Hey Michael, sounds like you and Sandra had a great time. Strangely enough, I am also allergic to down, but I LOVED Carnival's new bedding and pillows, and they didn't bother me! Maybe I have outgrown my allergies since childhood!
You guys are just too adventurous for me - rappelling, wall climbing and zip lines - no thanks, I'll keep my feet on the ground thank you! But glad to hear you guys enjoyed it! Got any pictures?

donna
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