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Acheavacci

First time cruisers on Breeze Eastern Caribbean. Review – Feb 15-22 2020

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I love reading the reviews about other cruises on this forum and I thought I would add our as well.  We are a family of four from Buffalo, NY. Our family includes me (Ann Marie), my husband (Kevin), 16 yo dd (Rosie) and 14 yo ds (John).  This was our first cruise and first time visiting places not on the continental US.  We all had a great time.  Sure there were a few hiccups along the way, but that did not change the fact that it was an amazing vacation.

 

Here we go.  Full disclosure, I am an accountant and much better with numbers than grammar.  Please forgive me if there are errors throughout.  I rely heavily on autocheck J

 

Pre-Cruise:

Up and out of the house by 4:40 am the day before our cruise.  Car says 7 degrees outside.  Bye-bye cold weather.  Thank goodness there isn’t snow.  In the plane and ready for takeoff by 6:40am…but first they have to de-ice the plane.  Sounds like we are going through a car wash.  I am amazed and a little nervous that just dousing the plane with a solution makes it all good, but they know best, right?  It is Valentine’s Day and SW has complimentary drinks.  My kids give me the snarky side eye as I ask for a Baileys for my coffee.  I very rarely drink but I am on vacay and to heck with the norm.

Land in Orlando at 9:40 am and by 10:30 we have the luggage, a rental car and are heading to Gatorland for some good cheesy gator loving fun.  The temp says 65 degrees but it is cloudy so I am still in jeans and a light sweatshirt.  Normally we would all be in summer clothing.  But, without sun it is a little chilly even for this northerner.

Spent the night before the cruise at Animal Kingdom Lodge. Savannah view is amazing.   It was a splurge for us since this will most likely be a last big vacation hurrah for us.  Our kids will soon be out of high school and making their own vacation memories. 

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Following along! I, too, just returned from a cruise (February 2-9 on the Glory. Check out my review on here), and know the joy of leaving our cold Buffalo weather. But for my vacation, we flew out of Rochester to New Orleans, as it was much cheaper than out of Buffalo. Can’t wait to read more of your review. Keep warm. Another storm is on the way. Hoping for good driving weather, as we leave on next vacation 3/29, driving to Ft Lauderdale and sailing a B2B on the Magic. 

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Cruise day 1

 

Woke up and had coffee on the balcony watching the animals each and run.  Greatest splurge the entire trip.  I don’t think I would spend a week there but one evening and morning was worth the money.  The kids and husband enjoyed the resort as well but they are Disney obsessed like I am.

 

Packed the rental minivan and headed to Port Canaveral around 10am.  Our ship aboard time was 12:30 and we had to drop the rental at Budget and grab a shuttle to the ship.  Smooth drive to Budget and then chaos.  Apparently they were short cars due to Daytona 500 so people that were getting off their cruise were still waiting for us to drop our cars off.  Some people waited almost two hours.  I waited 35 minutes just to return the car and get a receipt.  They wouldn’t let us just drop the keys and leave and there was not a kiosk.  That was the only mishap that occurred that could have been prevented.  After the return was complete, the shuttle took us to the terminal.  A very nice man helped us get our bags to the proper place and let us know where to go when we came back.  We had no idea what to do so we let him take the lead.  Everything worked out because our bags were at our cabin door by dinner. 

 

Anyone over the age of 18 had to fill out a disclosure form before entering the main doors. The questions ask us if we had been to China or had come in contact with anyone that had been to China in the last few months (can’t remember the exact time frame). That’s it, two questions and a signature and then handed it to a person.  I asked someone what we need to do next.  She led me to a rope and said wait here and I will let you know when your arrival time is ready.  Ten minutes later she led us to an open isle with a man who looked at our passports, took our picture and guided us to security.  After security I can’t remember what happened because we must have looked like newbies so everyone just pointed where to go next, nodded to that person and then they help us to the next point. 

We bypassed the welcome aboard picture station.  I love pictures, but didn’t want to get sucked into buy a package that costs more than my engagement ring so I just kept saying no thank you.  That came as surprise and huge relief to my family since they know I am photo obsessed most times and think those type of pictures are a huge waste of time.

 

Walked the gangway and BAM! we were on the Ship.  WE ARE ON OUR FIRST CRUISE!! 

 

 

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Edited by Acheavacci

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Enjoying so far, thanks for bringing us along. Looking forward to your impressions of the Breeze and your first cruise! 

 

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We were on the Breeze a few months ago.  Ita our favorite shop so far.  Looking forward to the rest of your review 

 

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We loved the Breeze when we sailed her last year. I wouldn’t mind a cruise on the Breeze again. We had a great time. Sailing her sister ship April 5 & 11.

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Brace yourself—-all Buffalo schools have been closed already in the anticipation of the Blizzard starting tonight. 😬

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19 minutes ago, grandmarnnurse said:

Brace yourself—-all Buffalo schools have been closed already in the anticipation of the Blizzard starting tonight. 😬

Every surrounding school has closed except ours.  Only a matter of time though.  It's been such a mild winter I am certain this is going to be a big hit.

 

In 2017 we came back from a Florida vacation and two days later "Snovember" hit us with over seven feet and the kids had another week off.  We must be the curse,  haha.

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25 minutes ago, hurricane0226 said:

Will be on the Breeze on Aug 1st, Eastern Caribbean. 

It's a great ship.  As long as I knew which was was forward, I could find everything easily 🙂

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41 minutes ago, Acheavacci said:

Every surrounding school has closed except ours.  Only a matter of time though.  It's been such a mild winter I am certain this is going to be a big hit.

 

In 2017 we came back from a Florida vacation and two days later "Snovember" hit us with over seven feet and the kids had another week off.  We must be the curse,  haha.

My daughter, who lived in Alden during Snovember, had 7 ft of snow! They dug a tunnel/path to their hot tub, and enjoyed a few peaceful days until the National Guard plowed their road. We, in a small community near Buffalo, had 5 ft.

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Cruise day 1 continued

It is so overwhelming and the people are rushing by us.  I felt as if I was in slow motion and in everyone’s way.  All three are looking at me and their eyes are asking what now.  My eyes responded “I have no idea, I have never been on a cruise”. 

 

That’s when all in info from these forums kick into high gear.  We went to the lido deck worked our way to the marketplace found a table and some food.  We had one carryon and 3 12-packs of pop so we were no overburdened with items.  After lunch and dessert it was after 1:30 so we went to our cabins.

I booked two connecting cove balcony cabins (2314 & 2318) mid ship.  This was the second splurge of our trip.  I have a teen daughter and an antsy husband.  I knew one bathroom would not work and I would get the brunt of all the anger.  Mom’s always get the brunt of daughter-dad arguments, even when they have no involvement in the situation; its matter of fact.

 

We were unpacking the pop and watching Shaq on TV about the muster, safety rules and what not.  Our cabin steward, Carmina, introduced herself and asked us if we wanted morning, evening or both service.  I (we) chose morning service but ice for morning and night.  She was a delight and am very happy with her amount of enthusiasm and kindness.

 

Muster was at 3:30.  We had to go to Sapphire Dining room which was muster B3.  Very efficient and quick.  Don’t think I learned much but I knew that I had to get my floatation device and get to Sapphire DR and then they would proceed to the next step.

 

Then it was sail away time.  We went up to lido but that was too crowded for our liking.  Deck 10 was much better.  We listened to the music and watched as we departed the port.  Waving to people as we sailed away.  Disney and Norwegian also sailed away around the same time but the Breeze was first. 

 

By the time we were got back to the cabin our luggage had arrived.  We unpacked and organized.  We were out to sea and swaying a bit.  Rosie did not like the movement initially and was a little out of sorts.  Not sick but off kilter.  I gave her a bonine and had her lay down, fell asleep within minutes and was out for 13 hours!!  I checked on her a couple of times to make sure she was okay.  I believe it was the combo of sea movement, bonine, and pure exhaustion.  She is a junior and preparing for college, dances over eight hours a week, participates in activities at school and has a part time job.  It takes a toll even on young bodies.  That and she didn’t have social media stimulating her to stay awake (not a bad thing IMHO).

 

The three of us went to dinner in the Sapphire MDR.  We chose Any Time Dining and it was the perfect fit for us. 

We were given table #115 and it was at the window.  John was looking out the window and began to feel queasy.  I gave him a Bonine and he left to go back to the cabin.  By now I am stressing about how we were going to handle the motion, praying that it would be less movement soon and the kids would adjust and not have a horrible cruise. 

The head of the dining team saw John leave and talked to him for a minute.  She asked if it was the food or motion.  He said the motion and she told him she was going to give us something that would help him adjust.  She gave us a plate of six green apples.  She told us that eating the skin and flesh would ease the queasy feeling.  It did work and we had enough apples between her and Carmina to last the entire cruise. 

 

We started talking with a couple at the table next to us.  They had been on 26 cruises and mainly sailed out of Galveston Texas.  They commented that there was a lot of motion and it was the worst motion they felt in many cruises they had been on.  We also met a group of Diamond class veterans and they also said the same and reassured us that it would be smoother the next day.  After dinner, Kevin and I went to the lobby and listened to music, applied our gift cards to our account at guest services and watched the Fun aboard Show (I think that was the name) in Ovation Theater.

 

By then we were wiped out from the previous days travel and were also trying to adjust to the motion.  We called it a night, went back to the cabin and slept until morning. 

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Day 2 - Sea Day

 

By morning of the first sea day we were all fine and the water was calm. We explored the ship. Lido deck was hopping. The teen club was cool. The kids mainly hung with us but did go to the club for a few hours on the last sea day evening. Totally okay because that means we are not as lame at sea as we our on land🤣😂😂

 

Didn't take too many pictures but had so much fun doing trivia, mini golf, eating, the comedy and the production (every night was amazing). Did I mention eating? So many fabulous choices !!

 

We had breakfast and lunch at the Marketplace on Lido and Dinner in the Sapphire MDR.  We had different dining teams each time.  I have since realized that you can request the same dining team but not on the app.  It would also appear that the wait time would be longer and we were are not a leisurely dining family.  

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Day 3 - Amber Cove, Dominican Republic

 

1st port day in Amber Cove Dominican Republic. We did a excursion to Damajagua Falls. I didn't take picture but hired a "paparazzi " to document all the cliff jumps and natural rock slides. It was an amazing excursion. We decided to go with Marysol Tours and only had 12 people on the tour. All four of us jumped the cliffs. One was over 20 feet high! So fun! Jose our guide took us to a local Mercado and we purchased a wood carving representing our family.

 

Back at the port we had our passport stamped and were back on the ship. The evening was dinner in the main dining room, comedy show and main production. All of us were tired and in bed by 11.

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Pictures of the Damajagua Falls Tour.  So much fun!  I was so proud that I did all the jumps and slides.  

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I believe my wife and I ate with you and your daughter on Fri. At the pasta place. Looking forward to the rest of your review. 

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1 minute ago, Coachbradu said:

I believe my wife and I ate with you and your daughter on Fri. At the pasta place. Looking forward to the rest of your review. 

 

We did eat there for lunch on Friday!  We shared a table with three other couples.  I can remember all of the faces but can't remember all the names.  Was your wife seated on my left, directly to my right or two seats to my right?  It was so nice hearing everyone's unique experience on the cruise.  I am ready to do another cruise despite the horrible motion that last night.

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My wife was directly to your left and I sat beside your daughter. Yeah, I’m looking forward to your Friday story, along with the rest of your Cruise review. 

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I am sorry that no one told you that pictures on the cruise are free, unless you buy them.  I didn't know that on my first cruise, so we had no pictures taken when we boarded.  At dinner the first night, I found out two things from a "professional" cruiser- you can order more than one thing in the MDR, even seconds of the first thing, and that the pictures don't cost unless you buy them.  Now we always get that first pictures, because we always look the happiest when we board and the closer we are to disembarking, the sadder we look.

 

I don't usually read reviews of ships that I am not going on, but your intro was interesting, and the story so far is great!

 

  I love your mountain pictures of Amber Cove's shore line.  That is one beautiful spot! 

 

I am enjoying your review, cant wait for more! 

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28 minutes ago, Coachbradu said:

My wife was directly to your left and I sat beside your daughter. Yeah, I’m looking forward to your Friday story, along with the rest of your Cruise review. 

I remember!!  You loved all the food offerings and teased me about how men get all the blame, LOL!!

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Loving your review!  I really enjoy reading "first timers" reactions to cruising.  Thanks very much for posting. 🙂

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Heading on this ship in a few weeks...so wonderful to read a first timer's review.  I think some of us veterans can get a bit jaded...

 

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