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About CupKayke

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    Cool Cruiser
  1. Thanks for your comments and sorry but I just now saw your question! Yes, we did get to check-out the casino band on the last night. They were fantastic. My husband & I went to the casino bar to get a drink and I normally don't pay attention but they were good enough they caught my attention and then I noticed this guy dancing around to them. He may have had too much to drink but that's how we all felt inside listening to them. After my husband ordered, I left to go pack... then I realized it was the last night and I wanted to spend some time with my husband... when I got back to the Casino bar it was a cloud of smoke! LOL Luckily, hubby was up on Deck 10 smoking and having his drink. But yes... to answer your question... we did appreciate them at least one night for a bit.
  2. Good Question and the answer is... surprisingly... No, it is not out of the way on this ship. You have to walk down the stairs to a bar but there is a bar at both ends of the smoking area... one aft/one forward. The smoking section is Deck 10 Starboard side - it starts very close to the top of the stairs over the Red Frog Rum Bar and ends very close to the top of the stairs over the bar located next to the Pizzeria. This ship has a great Lido deck layout and the smoking area is long and narrow and above the eating/drinking/bar areas. In the picture below.... I am standing in front of the smoking area taking this picture... In this picture...you can see the smoking area above the stairs on the far left. This area has yellow umbrella tables and other covered areas too. To the left (downstairs) you can see the Red Frog Rum Bar which is open late. Here is a daylight picture. On the far left at the top of the stairs is where the smoking area starts. It runs all the way to the back of the ship. There are two staircases at the back of the ship too. One leads to the ice cream/yogurt area and one leads to a bar but they are directly across from one another. The back is a quieter area and it's where the adults only pool is located. PS - I like your screen name.
  3. We arrived in Miami before daylight... By the time 6:30am rolled-around... it was daylight... We were out of the shower and out of our room by 6:45am. Someone had vomited all down our hallway and it needed to be cleaned-up!! Eh. We took our suitcases to the main lounge and we were there maybe 5 minutes when they said we could start disembarking. We were off the ship by 7:10am. We took an Uber to MIA - $18.69 plus tip We had an early flight on Delta to Atlanta and then on to Memphis. I was thankful it was no problem as I really should not have booked an early flight so we got lucky. There were cards in our rooms the night before telling everyone they had to be out of their rooms by 8:30am. Everyone was supposed to be off the boat by 9:45am. A few things I remembered... - Half Moon Cay only sells beer, pina coladas, and strawberry daiquiris (or the mx of the two). No other alcohol is available on the island per our waiter. - Our room steward was nice. He asked us the first day if we wanted room service in the morning or evening. I chose evening and he was disappointed. I explained to him my husband sleeps in. Of course, for the entire vacation, my husband did not sleep in. :o He was always asking me where was my husband... which I found strange. He was on Deck 10 smoking is where he was a lot of the time. Overall, I liked this cruise. It was a good mix of cruisers. A very large family from India in full dress every day... a lot of family and friends cruising together all wearing matching t-shirts at embarkation... a wedding party down the hall from us (they got married in Nassau at 11am).... some honeymooners... old, young, black, white, Asian, Indian, you name it... this boat had it. Everyone was nice and friendly. No pushing or shoving or ugliness was witnessed by anyone. If anything let me down this cruise it was simply the weather was too hot for us. I expected that when we booked the cruise. We are not warm weather cruisers but this little getaway for us of 7 days felt like 7 weeks so we are very glad we got a good deal from Carnival and very glad we took this cruise. I'm really glad we got to visit Miami even if it was just a little bit. Overall, Carnival offers a good value for the money and I do recommend them to my co-workers or friends who are considering cruising. Hope you enjoyed my review.
  4. When we got back on the ship, the boat had added a little Halloween "Spirit" And these were in the gift shop... And this was the main lobby... where they had 80s and 90s music for about an hour this evening and it was AWESOME!! The lobby was packed, the banisters were packed, people were laughing and enjoying the "old" music! HA The Cruise Director was Phillipe (?) and I could not understand him very well. I did understand that after every announcement he said "Whoo Hoo" like Homer Simpson. We thought that was funny. He had reported it would be 80s & 90s music in the lobby tonight plus lots of people were buying last-minute pictures and liquor so the area was packed. Just a note about the Victory.... I've read various stories on here but they were NOT allowing liquor to be carried back to your room tonight. We tried around 8pm (before dinner) and again around 11pm and both times we were told no. Actually, the second time the guy said "Sure, you can carry it back to your room at 6am tomorrow morning." Rude, frankly. We were leaving for the airport early so I wanted to pack it so there was no need for his attitude. What the other guy had said before dinner was they would have the main lounge open from 6am to 9am for liquor pickup. Tonight we had dinner in the MDR and again, there was only four of us. Sooooo many tables were completely EMPTY!!! There were only two or three people sitting at the tables around us. I will never understand that but I know my husband would have skipped the MDR if he didn't like the company of our fellow cruisers so much so to each his own. Hubby said the ox tongue appetizer was fabulous and so did the other guy at our table. They also had Baked Alaska and loved it. I had Butter Pecan ice cream. The fried chicken was sorta sweet (strange and not good). I don't remember what else we ate. Bar service and service in general in the dining room was fantastic this cruise. Tonight was Family Night at the Dive-in Movies... Peter Rabbit 7pm The Incredibles 2 9pm Showtime in the Lounge was Vrooom at 8:15pm and 10:15pm
  5. Our next stop was not a good one... we were already running over time but we were given an hour to go to "the famous Fish Fry" but we were NOT at the famous Fish Fry... we were at Fish Central Fish Fry - the dirty restaurant next door to the famous restaurant. Our driver would not allow anyone to check out any of the other restaurants and told us we all had to go inside this restaurant and we had one hour. It was hot inside. People ordered food. Some people ordered full meals. We each got a small Bahama Mama to sample. This guy (the owner?) got mad at some of the people on our excursion for talking while he was talking. One girl finally just told him she was interpreting for her mother. He cracked open a conch shell, took out the moving conch, skinned it alive, scored it alive, squeezed lime and pepper sauce on it, and then cut it up and offered pieces for people to eat. No thank you. There were two vans of 20 on this excursion. We did not stay together generally. The other van driver let his people go anywhere they wanted to go in this area and even pointed out the beach if they wanted to go there, he would meet them there in a bit. Not our driver. No way. Several people on our excursion asked him (over and over) if he was related to the guy who did the conch display because the guy said he was one of fifteen kids. The driver said he was not. After we finally left this stop, we thought... great.. it's well past 1pm... this is over...but no... the driver took us down to Blessings Beach to put our feet in the water. I did get out and do this but only four people got out at this point. The whole van was done at this point. The part of the beach where we stopped was dirty and littered with liquor bottles but it was still beautiful. If you walk about 100 feet down the beach, it is clean, there are tourists, souvenir stands, hair braiding, etc. I saw this on our way back to the dropoff spot by the gates to enter the cruise ship area.. If we could redo Nassau, we would just take a taxi to Atlantis and explore on our own or we would simply walk off the boat and explore the small area in front of the ship with all the little shops and Senor Frogs right there in front of you. Nassau is beautiful but you need to be smart here. Lots of beggars, sadly.
  6. We chose the following Carnival Excursion today.. Top 10 of Nassau Would not recommend. It was boring, hot, and lasted 5 hours. We only enjoyed two of the stops. It was supposed to start at 9am but one couple just casually strolled off the boat at 9:15am. We also stayed way too long at some dirty restaurant which was odd and not really on the schedule. Regardless, we didn't get dropped off again until 2pm. I think excursions should say.. If you are late, you are left.... No Refund. This may be the last ship excursion we ever book. The best part of our excursion was visiting Atlantis. We drove around all three towers and saw the dolphins being fed and then we had some time inside and outside of Atlantis. I purchased my dad a very nice hat in their gift shop. These condos are party of the Atlantis complex... We stopped at Fort Finncastle. Meh. Nice views from here however.. We loved the stop at John Watling's Distillery. The grounds are beautiful and the cold Pina Coladas were wonderful. Sooooo good...
  7. Either at Guest Services desk or at the Excursions desk - it is through Carnival Half Moon Cay is a private island owned by the Carnival Corporation Glad you are loving the review. Thank you :)
  8. One more note about HMC. Those blue clamshells are $30 to rent for the day. Good deal. You should rent them before your HMC day. They give you a big receipt to put at the top of your clamshell. Lots of people just sat them up and didn't have a receipt (like us). So I walked around asking the others where they paid and they said they didn't pay but about an hour later a nice lady came by asking for everyone's receipts. I asked if I could pay her and she said we had to walk down to the end of the beach (by the water shuttles) and pay there. We just removed our items and didn't use the clam shell anymore. If you want one for the full day, pay your $30 ahead and have your receipt to display at the top of your clam shell - this will save you a lot of walking and time in the heat. Half Moon Cay was a nice day. It was also a semi-short day. Everyone back by 3:30pm was the rule. it was extremely hot so many people were back long before that time. Tonight they only had one Dive-In Movie. Book Club at 7pm. I really wanted to see it but it hadn't cooled off enough to be out there yet so we skipped it. There were only four at our table for eight at dinner tonight. We don't normally go to the dining room but we liked the conversation with our tablemates. We noticed a lot of half-empty tables around us. The waiters were again on their game- quick and friendly. It poured rain, thundered, and lightening flashed all through dinner and most of the night. The boat was rocking but nothing too over the top. We fell asleep to the sound of the thunder. Day 4 - Nassau, Bahamas We arrived into Nassau to a downpour of rain... We sailed by Atlantis in the rain... Carnival Ecstasy was already in port...
  9. They definitely DO have fountain drinks onboard... which is why I asked if the Bubbles program gets you a can of soda or not... because we saw them using the fountain sodas to refill the glasses for the Bubbles program and not use the cans. It's not that big of a deal but I was just curious. There was no bar of soap given for anything in our bathroom. We brought our own body washes for the shower because I've never liked Carnival's offerings. Thank You. I'm glad people are still reading. I will finish this today (I better, at least).
  10. Half Moon Cay looks crowded but it never felt that way to us. There were lots of empty lounge chairs and the water was NOT crowded despite the pictures. We were in the middle of the beach. I floated around with my eyes closed and never came close to hitting anyone. Below are pics of the beach... right to left... showing how the beach thins out as you get further away from the water shuttles.... it's practically empty by the time you get to the pirate ship. Closer to the water shuttle dropoff point... Middle... Pirate Ship BBQ area early afternoon was practically empty (it was HOT today folks)... We were back on the ship quick... strange because the Lido deck had a bunch of people in the pool and laying out?!! So. Odd. It was a scorcher outside today but in the water, you didn't feel it. We saw a few burns today for sure - even people's feet got burned. We saw this from our balcony....
  11. Good Morning Half Moon Cay They had three water shuttles (at least) running to HMC and back starting early. They pack them but it's a short, safe ride and you can stand-up if you want. The Beach is amazing... The sand is like flour... The water is aqua... The drinks are $16! LOL
  12. We left the show early hoping to get seats to the second Dive-In Movie of the night... and we did! The Dive-In Movies tonight were... Avengers: Infinity Wars 6:30pm Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom 9:15pm People were very polite and quiet during the movies even though the bartenders were serving drinks. They let the kids swim in the pool between the movies. Fresh popcorn was made before each movie and they had different sprinkles. It was good. There was a nice breeze blowing and even thought the movie lasted until late, this is such a great thing Carnival does! We loved it! I apologize but I got ahead of myself trying to get this review finished before tomorrow when they shutdown these forums for a bit. I wanted to say that in the morning on Sea Day they have Trivia in the Lobby Lounge (Seven Seas Lobby, Deck 3). This place... Trivia is free. They offer little trivia notecards and pencils for you to write down your answers and maybe win a prize. It's completed on the honor system and it's a lot of fun. They have General Trivia at 9:30am, Rock Tunes Trivia at 10am, "Friends" Trivia at 10:45am (Can't believe I missed that one!!), Harry Potter Trivia at 11:15am and Sports Trivia at 11:45am. We were walking the decks and seeing the shops when we overheard the General Trivia which was a lot of fun - everything from "What English dinner consists of sausages and potatoes?" to "What fruit is named after a color?" I sat and played the entire Rock Tunes Trivia. I did okay. There were a lot of people on the balconies that would join-in and it was kinda funny. I think I will attend more trivia in the future now that I know how much fun it can be.
  13. Bingo was at 2:30pm today according to my Fun Times. It was in the main showroom lounge on Deck 3.... this lounge... The Fun Times said you could buy Bingo tickets ahead of time at 12:30pm at the Café Mid Aft. This was not the case. I was there until 12:45pm and the only thing there was a very busy café with a long line of people wanting specialty coffees. It also said you could show-up in the Deck 3 main lounge as early as 1:45pm for the 2:30pm Bingo to start buying your cards. We showed-up at 2:29pm and were some of the last people to buy cards. They actually stop sells at 2:30pm. Period. By the way, everyone that won was sitting at the very front of the room. I say show-up early and buy your cards and get a good seat. See the "BINGO" marker. If you don't have a colored highlighter, it's needed. It's $2. Bingo is sold in card sets of 3 for $20... so many more for $30... and then $40. You can pay $10 extra for a purple card. No matter what, you are playing three games with the last one being blackout. It was fun. People enjoyed it. There were plenty of servers taking drink orders. They have Bingo 3 of the 4 days on the cruise but this is the only time we participated. You get a green card to take with you if you play again, you get a free card the next time. Tonight we skipped the main dining room for dinner and decided to attend the 8:15pm Showtime in this same lounge called Living in America. It was just okay. The dancers were wearing thongs and it didn't look like they had pantyhose or anything to hold anything in from jiggling. I would say it's not a family friendly show. Overall, it just wasn't our thing but I'm glad we gave it a chance.
  14. Our second day on the ship was a Sea Day and our only Sea Day on this cruise. We had an early breakfast on Lido. The raisin French toast was very popular and very good. The eggs are terrible (fake). Hubby realized if you go get an omelet at the omelet station, you get real eggs. Btw, you can get a bucket of ice from any bar at any time, no questions. That was nice. I loved-loved the iced tea on this ship. It was available 24/7 along with plenty of ice. I did water it down with extra water but it was fantastic to always have iced tea available. As for the bacon, it was cooked thoroughly and it was fantastic and they were not stingy with the bacon, ever. We walked the entire ship this morning. It is beautiful... Love the greens and blues This is the main lobby area - shops, photo area, excursions desk, guest services... These wonderful hand wash stations are all over the Lido deck in blue and red. Just look. You will see them everywhere. They were great and people were using them. One of the tiny things that seemed so odd this cruise is no handsoap in your cabin bathroom. We used a sample-sized body wash I had in our luggage as handsoap for the entire cruise. Who thinks to bring their own handsoap on a cruise?? And then... the last day... as we were leaving... I saw on one of the room attendants cart... with a whole bag full of round, hard, white handsoaps. WHY didn't we ever have one??
  15. Pictures of our room... Sinks Bed facing balcony window and door The Victory does have the little "clothesline" in the shower. I like that. Also, the view from the bed can be pretty nice at times....
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