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About dara90210

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Tacoma, Washington

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  1. Bring a bottle of hand soap (maybe two if your cruise is longer than seven days). So much better than a wet bar of soap sticking to the bathroom counter!
  2. I noticed that for our Miracle sailing in November the spa was booking appointments on the first day too and I thought it was odd.
  3. We are booked on the Miracle in November and can't wait. Our prior Carnival cruises have been on the Sprint (LOVE IT) and the Splendor (Meh.).
  4. We were on the Island for a partial Panama Canal transit in April 2017 (over Easter). We LOVED the ship and the cruise. I was nervous going in because I'd read so many terrible reviews. Hubby and I were traveling with my parents, and his mom and his Aunt. The Aunt can be cantankerous and makes it known when she is displeased. My MIL and her sister were in an aft cabin (not on the promenade deck) and LOVED their cabin. It was one of the newly added ones. I saw it and I also thought it was nice. Hubby and I and my parents had neighboring mini-suites, I think on Dolphin, and enjoyed them as well. While there is no International Cafe, there is a coffee bar in the Piazza and I think I remember there being pastries. After our breakfast mornings we adorned to the coffee bar for after breakfast lattes, so we weren't looking for food (yet). We liked the buffet layout, it was bright, clean and open and there was a good selection of desserts and sweets. Didn't notice congestion issues during peak times like on the Ruby and Emerald. The covered pool pictured in this thread with the tiki/Buddha theme is adults only, if I remember correctly and so are the loungers in the area surrounding it. It seemed to be the best place on the ship for a nap because mostly everyone in a lounger was snoozing. That pool was deep and very nice.
  5. Our waitress on the Grand in March told us shorts are okay in the MDR on first and last nights, as well as port nights. My husband was ecstatic.
  6. I also say Celebrity first , BUT since you said you're looking for some additional sea days, how about one of Princesses 10 day itineraries? We've done one 10 day to Mexico out of LA on the Ruby Princess, one 10 day Mexico out of San Francisco on the Grand Princess, and one 10 day partial Panama Canal Transit out of Ft. Lauderdale on the Island Princess. Love the 10 day itineraries!
  7. We did ATD for the first time on the Grand in March 2019. We were traveling with my parents and usually would do early seating in the MDR, but the change to early seating being 5 p.m. was too early for all of us, so we decided to try ATD. We went to the Crown Grill on the first night since it was hubby and my wedding anniversary. On night two, we went to ATD around 5:30/5:45. Walked right up and got seated right away. Had a WONDERFUL team of Janelle and Maurice from the Philippines. Janelle's husband worked one section over and it was fun to tease her and watch her wave to him as she was talking about 'her handsome". After dinner the first night in ATD, my husband stopped and talked to one of the head waiters and asked what we could to, if anything, to always be seated in Janelle and Maurice's section. He told us that as long as we showed up before 6 every night and promised to let them know if we weren't going to eat in the dining room on a particular night, he'd make sure we always got our table. We communicated the three nights we did not eat in the dining room and he indeed made sure that we sat at the same table in the same section every night. We had a great experience!
  8. We didn't wear the robes, but don't see why you couldn't. The bar is just up a flight of stairs and there was an occasional server that would wander through and we got plastic glasses, and aluminum cans/bottles of beer. We also made friends in the pool. There was kind of a group that was in the pool at the same time each afternoon.
  9. Our waitress in Anytime Dining told us that shorts are okay on first and last nights and port nights. This was on a 10-day Mexican Riviera.
  10. It was pretty busy but we were always able to find a spot. We didn't usually head to the pool until 2 or 3 in the afternoon. There is only signage about it being adult only. On all the ships we've been on that have aft adult only pools, I've never seen children in them or children trying to be in them.
  11. We loved the aft adult only pool and spent most afternoons in it. It wasn't warm enough until the third sea day at the beginning to use it, and we were only able to use it on the port afternoons and first sea day back to San Francisco. We enjoyed every second we got to use it!
  12. For our March 2019 cruise (the first after drydock) we were at the port, through security, checked in and onboard just after 11 a.m. thanks to my parents who we were traveling with being Elite (after this cruise, my husband and I reached Elite) and our puppy dog eyes explaining that embark day was our 20th wedding anniversary and it would be really special to board with my parents. I think every staff member we encountered attempted to steer us to the buffet and lied about a dining room being open (we knew better!). We finally said we were in search of an open bar and were directed to the International Cafe bar and low and behold found the DaVinci dining room that was opening for lunch in about 15 minutes. We had a lovely lunch and my husband got his coveted shrimp and avocado salad! Since it was our anniversary, we ate in Crown Grill on the first night.
  13. There were a lot of leaks in public areas when we were on the Grand in March. Luckily we didn't personally experience a leak in our room. We had no hot water for the first 24 hours and no one bothered to tell us until we tried to shower at 10 p.m. on embarkation day, but that's a long story for another time!
  14. Same sailing! We were on the Spirit in 2009 and loved it and the Splendor in 2011 and didn't care for the layout. Looking forward to the Miracle.
  15. We were on the Island for a partial Panama Canal transit in April 2017 and on the Grand for a 10 day Mexican Riviera in March 2019, the first cruise after drydock. The Grand was okay. An older ship, and we observed and encountered issues, but had a good time. We loved the Island. It's a smaller ship but we didn't notice crowding or issues with getting a theater seat or slot machine, etc.
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