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Everything posted by Petroplex

  1. I can't comment intelligently on the Family Harbor lounge. However, I have sailed several times in a suite on Royal Caribbean. There is one principal from those cruises which I think would apply here-- I tremendously enjoy having access to someone who can help me with the range of things which would normally cause me to go to guest services (reservations, bill questions, etc.). I understand that there is sometimes a concierge posted to the Family Harbor lounge. If that is true, it would add a great deal of value to the experience for me over the regular suite in which I sailed on the Carnival Dream last month.
  2. For me, yes. The Grand Suite gets you access to the Suite Lounge and a concierge. I love the quiet space to be, the extra food offerings, and the concierge to help if something goes wrong or I gave a question that would otherwise go to guest services. With a small one, you might also enjoy free room service from the MDR. Either way, happy sailing!
  3. I love Galveston, and I write quite a bit about what we do while we are there. My favorite spot of all is the Hotel Galvez. It is a great pool, great bar, great location, and amazing spa.
  4. I used Z limo last month in the other direction. I know they do returns, and they seemed quite flexible. It is worth checking in with them on their pricing. As others have said, though, that flight time strikes me as awfully early.
  5. That makes sense, and they (who aren't on Cruise Critic) didn't book it expecting suite benefits. They expected enough space for their family. But, sure enough, it says "suite" when they log in. Their teenager really liked the suite lounge when we sailed on the Liberty last year, and we would like to be able to tell her she will have access to it again. However, again, Royal Caribbean and wild inconsistencies. What we are hoping for is some sort of recent policy change.
  6. Howdy, folks. We are sailing on the Enchantment this Summer. My family of 4 is in Owner's Suite 8014. When we log in to our reservation, it says, "Suite." We are traveling with a family of 6 who is staying next to us in cabin 8012. This is an ultra spacious ocean view. It also says "suite" when they log in. That would be excellent, because it would let them have all of the perks that come with it. Here's the problem, though. Sometimes Royal's website and customer service is... inconsistent. We didn't think they were booking a suite when they did it. We know that other balcony-free cabins on other ships have been converted to suites, but we can't find any clear documentation on this one. Has anyone actually sailed in Ultra Spacious Ocean View stateroom 8012 on the Enchantment, and can you tell me if suite perks came with it?
  7. Absolutely. The porters have always been quite helpful to me in Galveston. Happy travels!
  8. Petroplex


    We did it, briefly, when we got there in July. Expect to be met immediately on leaving the gates by someone volunteering to act as a tour guide. We kept saying no, and they kept following us. Once we found one specific person we liked and agreed to his services, all of the other prospective guides fell away. I felt perfectly safe, but I did not feel free to explore on my own. We then went back to the pier area and waited for the trip we had booked with Jamaica Culinary Tours. In addition to some delicious food, that provided me with someone who could give me and our group a much better sense of what we were looking at. I would do that again in a heartbeat. If you would prefer to just stay inside the pier area, there is a Margaritaville and a good bit of shopping and eating. I actually found some splendid patties there-- think of a meat pie. My teenager also had some excellent iced coffee. If you want to see a video of the pier area, I have one here. Happy sailing!
  9. Sadly, I have got lost in the thread. Where are they going, and how do we know?
  10. My bad. I pulled the list off of Royal Caribbean's website, and *I know better* than to trust that as a complete and accurate source of information. Apparently, the only ships listed are the ones already in service. That addition does significantly add to the capacity issues I was looking at. I spend a lot of time looking at the North American market with a particular focus on Galveston. My working assumption is that at least one unique ship would have to be tied to each of those phases. My second assumption is that this is at least the third scheduled they have announced for release dates. To me, that means something is unsettled about what Royal will do. That means they can't set a lot of other dominoes.
  11. I am deeply curious about why this keeps getting delayed-- particularly the short Caribbean. There are only so many combinations which work. I just did a search for July 2021, and the following ships do not have any sailings assigned: Brilliance Explorer Grandeur Independence Mariner Navigator Quantum Spectrum Voyager If I was a betting man (which is perhaps the wrong phrase, because I *am* a betting man), I would peg the Quantum and the Spectrum for either China or Singapore. Something goes to Australia. That leaves 5(ish) ships to run short Caribbean routes out of the U.S. The Independence appears to be the largest of these ships. Looking at July 2020 bookings, I did a search for 2-5 day sailings. Those happen out of Baltimore, Fort Lauderdale, Vancouver, Galveston, Cape Liberty, Miami, and Orlando. If one assumes that 2-4 ships are going to Asia (including Australia), it looks like Royal will not run short Caribbean sailings out of some current ports. Thoughts?
  12. We *loved* Cayman Cabana. Walk out of the cruise pier and immediately turned left. It is a couple of blocks away past where some folks are cutting up the fish they have just caught and which you might be served. We had a large group, and I think that was the only meal which made everybody happy.
  13. You might consider staying in the Harbor House or the Tremont. I walked with my bags from the Harbor House to the cruise pier last month and it was fine. After the cruise, I took the bags to the Tremont to wait for my ride. That also worked well. If nobody in your group has mobility challenges, they are both walkable. I cruised with someone last year who really struggled to get an Uber.
  14. I normally sail Royal, and as a general rule prefer it. I am on the Enchantment this Summer, although that obviously doesn't help answer your question. What I can do is provide video of a Carnival Dream Ocean suite to help you decide for yourself if that is the right room. I liked the room itself very much. The suite perks were lacking on Carnival, though, and I found the ship exceptionally hard to navigate if I wanted to get from one end to the other of the same deck.
  15. There is usually a sticker on your card, but there doesn't have to be. Just hand your card to a bartender, and s/he will swipe it and see that you have the package. They will then hand you a drink and a receipt for zero. It works as soon as you board, although in Galveston you have a limited selection until you leave. I believe in Puerto Rico you also pay sales tax while in port. Otherwise, you are good to go.
  16. I would love to hear a live report post trip about what suite perks came with it.
  17. How long after a cruise does it take you receive the casino offers, if one is coming?
  18. Following. We have friends sailing in this room on the Enchantment, and I would love to hear an actual user experience.
  19. It varies. I have seen it both places. I do not have a problem. I do not cruise too much on Royal Caribbean from Galveston.
  20. We got all of those things on Liberty this Summer.
  21. We were there in July on a day with two ships (ours and one other). RPBC was nice, but very crowded. We elected to rent a cabana in advance, and that wound up being an excellent choice. I have some static pictures as well as a video if you want to get a sense of the place. The video will give you a better sense of how crowded it gets at the peak. It is an excellent beach day if you want a gorgeous beach and a high energy vibe. It is not as good a choice if you want quiet. Unsolicited- for lunch you should check out Cayman Cabana. You can walk there from the cruise pier. My goodness I liked that. We had two senior citizens, 6 40somethings, and 6 kids in our group. We all liked our lunch, which was an impressive feat for any place.
  22. If you are trying to economize, I would book transfers through the cruise lines. If you want private service, we have used Z Limo and Super Shuttle. Given the size of your group, you might be able to get a larger ride from either of those providers for a very similar per person price to the cruise line shuttle. If everyone in your group can walk comfortably, you might consider staying at Harbor House or Tremont House. I stayed at Harbor House (video link) before my cruise last month, and it was an easy 5 minute walk over with luggage. After the cruise I walked with my luggage to Tremont House, had breakfast, and waited for a family member to pick me up. Harbor House is a couple of minutes closer on foot; Tremont has more upscale amenities. Either is walkable to plenty of nice places to eat.
  23. We sailed on the Liberty of the Seas this Summer. The suite perks there were identical to what they were on the Navigator when we sailed her. I have the full breakdown here, but I generally enjoyed the suite experience. When we tendered in Grand Cayman it was particularly nice to have the concierge escort us off, and I really like the suite lounge as a space.
  24. Howdy, folks. I normally park at Galveston Park n Cruise. My backup plan is Galveston VIP Parking. I like those two lots because I really enjoy the convenience of walking to and from the cruise terminal. This July, however, that is a problem. Those lots are only open Saturdays and Sundays, and I have a Friday sailing on the Enchantment. Will the official Galveston cruise parking or else EZ cruise let me family and I walk with our bags to the pier? Thank you very much.
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