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Kim & Randy’s Liberty-Eastern Aft-Wrap Cruise!


rtw68
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This was our fourth cruise that I booked early in 2012 for DW and I. We turned “gold” while on the cruise (we had 23 days before this cruise) so we had our gold S&S card and Gold Pin.

 

We looked forward to this cruise because of our first aft-wrap cabin and weren’t disappointed. The Liberty is a great ship and we thoroughly enjoyed her features.

 

We purchased Faster-To-The-Fun, excursions in both St. Thomas and Grand Turk as well as the Cheers program.

 

PRE-CRUISE

 

Like our previous cruise on the Breeze, we flew out of Columbus, Ohio, which is two hours from our house. We had a very inexpensive direct flight from Columbus to Miami. The cost for this flight was less then the flight for November, go figure.

 

We drove down to Columbus the evening of April 23rd and stayed until we flew out at 6:00AM on April 25th. We met some friends that live in Columbus for dinner the night before we flew out. Unfortunately, the only flights are very early in the day or late in the evening; we picked the early flight and arrived in Miami around 9:00AM. Cab fare from the airport to the Holiday Inn was $30 (including tip).

 

This trip, we decided to stay at the Holiday Inn Port of Miami because of the proximity to Bayside as well as the Port of Miami. It was a very nice hotel and the rooms were in fairly good shape. We had a King Suite on the fourth floor. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite high enough to see the ships but we did see a whale tail the next day.

 

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Our room wasn’t ready that early, but we were able to leave our luggage with the Concierge and headed over to BaySide (which was right across the street from the hotel) and walked around.

 

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After we did some exploring we came back to the hotel and our room was ready after a little while longer. Nice room!

 

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We decided to head over and eat at Bubba Gump’s. The food and atmosphere was very good.

 

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Miami had a “Corporate Run” event that evening and had closed off several of the streets and there was a large police presence, which was a good thing after what had occurred in Boston.

 

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The next day, we decided to go on the Millionaire’s Row boat cruise. It was a 90-minute boat ride that went around the island where the cruise ships leave from as well as the homes that many millionaires supposedly live in.

 

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I ended up going downstairs to the aft of the boat and was able to get better pics than trying to fight over the limited space up on the 2nd deck.

 

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Hey, I see a whale tail!

 

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This was a guardhouse on Al Capone’s property. Evidently he lived there after being released from prison until he died.

 

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Anybody else think this boat will go fast?

 

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Here is the view of the cruise ships from where all the boats park.

 

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There were a number of other places to eat around BaySide, but we decided to go back to Bubba Gump’s again.

 

After relaxing at the hotel we finally hit the hay. Next we would be boarding Liberty!

 

EMBARKATION!

 

As usual, I was up very early and after eating breakfast at the hotel, we checked out and grabbed a taxi to the port. Being anxious to get on board we arrived at the port around 10:15am.

 

We handed our bags to the porter (along with the customary tip) and he placed a yellow tag on them because we had the Faster To The Fun paid for. We then checked in and went through security. Very shortly after that we were in the terminal.

 

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We then were ushered to a very short line and received our Gold S&S cards with a FTF sticker on the back of them. We also were handed this:

 

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So close…

 

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This is where things slowed down quite a bit. Having come back from Belize, customs were very slow and delayed people getting off Liberty as well as people boarding.

 

There were three wedding parties that had to wait for a long time to get on board. The wedding group we sat next two had their wedding at 1:00PM. By the time they called them to board it was close to 12:00PM. The Carnival reps that were with the wedding party was also getting concerned about the delay.

 

Once the wedding party’s boarded, the Platinum/Diamond passengers were called. A very short time later, the Faster To The Fun group was called. After the customary photo we were on board about 12:20PM.

 

We headed directly to our cabin and our luggage showed up about 10 minutes after that. It was well worth purchasing FTF because even though boarding was delayed, we were still the first groups to board and were able to get right to our cabin.

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Very much enjoying your Review and all the Pics!!!....We are staying at the same Hotel in October also in a King Suite

 

Looking forward to the rest

 

Thanks! :D

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I had to get on that balcony! It was HUGE and we spent a lot of time on it throughout the cruise.

 

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It was nice seeing the Breeze again. We spent 10 great days on her in November for the inaugural cruise.

 

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After we enjoyed the view, we went up two decks to get some fish and chips. Having had many Guy’s burgers I was not sure what to get first! Fish and chips won out.

 

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We came back to the cabin and unpacked for the week.

 

Afterward, we went upstairs and purchased the Cheer’s program. This was a source of debate the months leading up to leaving for the cruise whether it would be worth purchasing it or not. I had done some calculations and based on six drinks per day plus some pop we would break even.

 

I have yet to do the final calculation (they did have the cost of the drinks on the receipts) but I do believe we broke even. DW drank mostly pop and non-alcoholic frozen drinks and I had the normal alcoholic drinks and beer throughout the day. I don’t think we will be purchasing on our next cruise because it is so port heavy.

 

Muster drill on the Liberty takes place on deck four, where the actual life boats were. Everyone lined up in their section and close to the life boats. They went through the normal drill about how to put on the life vest, etc.

 

Fortunately, that was done and we stopped buy the aft pool bar to get a drink for sail-away.

 

I setup my video camera on the railing during sailaway and recorded the whole thing. I created a video on YouTube and sped up the video so it only lasts around 5 minutes:

 

 

Drop those ropes!!

 

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One thing you could feel from our cabin was the thrusters when they were cranked up.

 

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Had to get some pics of the Breeze as we left

 

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I had been watching the Liberty leave in the weeks prior to our cruise, and figured out that when we left we would be going to the turn basin.

 

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We went by the Disney Wonder

 

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We are on the Liberty in September in our first aft wrap cabin, can't wait to read your whole review! Thanks for doing this :)

 

You are going to love it. An aft-wrap was so worth it! :D

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We had a 7PM reservation in the Steak House but went earlier (normally they don’t have a lot of people on the first night).

 

As usual, it was a great meal!

 

DW:

 

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Me:

 

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And… more food porn!

 

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Ok, the cheesecake is ridiculous. We took both of ours back to the cabin and it took us four days to finish them both. If you haven’t yet tried the Steak House on any ship that has it, you should! Its well worth the price for the food and experience.

 

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After dinner, we enjoyed the views and then sunset from our balcony

 

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