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seannyice81

V is for VICTORY (and cruise #5) PHOTO HEAVY review.

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Hey Folks.

 

I'm pretty tired from being on a ship, then a car, then a plane, and then a car. I wanted to get started on my Carnival Victory review though as it appears to be one of the more frequented ships now.

 

Some background.

 

I originally obtained tickets to Ultra Music Festival in Miami for a good friend's 30th birthday (more on that later). After a little while I decided to make it a complete vacation and break the trip into segments. First part being Ultra Music Festival and the 2nd being a relaxing shorter cruise. As I sit here thinking about it, I feel it was a REALLY good idea that I did the cruise. Especially after the festival and not before it. Things went a little awry with the festival portion of the trip. Thankfully the cruise completely redeemed (and then some) the rest of my vacation.

 

***Hold tight*** There are a lot of words and photos coming.

 

Here is a nice shot to tide you over for now.

 

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You know that's a Celebrity ship right?? :-)

 

Sailed on the Victory last September and thoroughly enjoyed it! I think one of the reasons that the Victory has more interest is because she's based out of Miami now instead of San Juan. One funny thing I did notice on my last cruise is that someone forget to change that scrolling digital message bar that is on the Promenade Deck. It said "Enjoy your day in St. Lucia." :-)

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums mobile app

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You know that's a Celebrity ship right?? :-)

 

Haha, yea. There will be plenty of Carnival content ahead.

 

Can't wait for more!:D:D

 

More on the way. Not sure how far I'll get tonight bc I'm dead tired already. I'll cover some good stuff this weekend at the least.

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We were in Miami during the music festival. Did you enjoy? Attendees we spoke to said it was terrific, although they were disappointed that a performer they were looking forward to had to cancel. Horrific about the guard getting trampled. Sounds like some pretty serious injuries. Looking forward to the cruise review!!

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PRE CRUISE DAY 1,2,3 - Miami, Florida

ULTRA MUSIC FESTIVAL 2014

First off... Who is Molly?

 

I'm going to be condensing my days in Miami prior to the cruise as it wasn't cruise related and quite honestly, was not a good time.

 

In a nutshell, it was all wrong from the beginning. I traveled with 3 others who we're all each other's cousins. Since they were family, they kind of struck-out on their own as far as flights went. I had booked with JetBlue months in advance to get a decent flight/rate. They booked with American at a much earlier time than me (6am). They also didn't sleep the night before because they're nervous flyers. That in-particular really messed things up. They would get there 3 hours before me and due to the hotel policy, they couldn't actually have access to the room until I got there was was able to check in.

 

Noon comes around and I touch down at Ft. Lauderdale (on time). Getting off the plane was easy, I was one of the first people to get my bag, and I was off in a taxi in a hurry. Its not often I tell a cabbie to "step on it", but this was one of those occurrences. It was all for nothing though, as I hit construction and accident traffic, not once, twice, but 3 times. It took an hour to get to the DoubleTree in Miami from FLL. I felt so bad, but there wasn't much I could do. As soon as I pulled up, I met up with them and we checked in.

 

Our reservation was for the 2-bedroom condo suite. When we opened the door, it was quite a surprise. Wall-to-wall windows/glass doors, full kitchen, nice furnature, nice bedrooms, and big TV. It looked great! It also had a massive balcony that overlooked the northern part of Miami. It was AWESOME!

 

View from massive balcony

 

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One dude packed all these shoes!

 

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Ultra Music Festival didn't start until 5, so we all kind of took it easy and rested before we'd head over. We wound up waiting even later though as we weren't too interested in the opening acts and we knew there would be a lot of crowding. We had no clue...

Edited by seannyice81

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We were in Miami during the music festival. Did you enjoy? Attendees we spoke to said it was terrific, although they were disappointed that a performer they were looking forward to had to cancel. Horrific about the guard getting trampled. Sounds like some pretty serious injuries. Looking forward to the cruise review!!

 

To be honest, it was not good for us. It got worse the further into our time in Miami. I'll get into it a little more later.

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PRE-CRUISE, MIAMI, CONTINUED.

We got out to Ultra Music Festival about 6pm to catch an act we all wanted to see. When we got there though, it was absolute chaos. People were everywhere and this was before we even got inside the park. The entrance gates were closed apparently to ease congestion. Once they started letting people through, it didn't get much better.

 

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Adding to that, somebody used a low voltage taser on one of my friends causing some temporary pain. We never found out who did it though as the crowd was ridiculous. After a little over an hour and no security pat-downs we finally made our way inside to catch the very end of Zedd's set. Because we had been waiting in line for so long, we had to use the bathroom and then waited 30 mins to use an outhouse. While waiting for that and walking around, we we're approached numerous times by kids asking if we had "Molly" (pretty much ecstasy). So much of the place smelled of weed. I kind-of expected that, but there were pre-teens in there smoking it. Things were looking pretty bad. Things looked even worse when we found out about the person getting trampled. The music and visuals though. Wow! There were so many good acts with good sets playing that the event almost redeemed itself. Scared of what else might happen and dead tired, we retreated to bed the first night.

 

The 2nd day we all woke up around noon. We grabbed some lunch and I went to Ultra while the other guys stayed in the condo and watched soccer. I bought a couple t-shirts and watched a few sets. I grabbed a smoothie from a vendor (mistake) and proceeded to find my way out and meet up with the other guys. It was crazy though. Nobody knew where the exit was and everyone I asked kept sending me back and forth. After looking for a way out for 45 mins, I jumped the fence. Some dude shouted at me and I just took off running, haha! THANK GOD I didn't get caught.

 

I made it back to the condo where the guys were talking about going out, getting some dinner, and then hitting up South Beach. We had steaks in the restaurant at the hotel, got dressed nice, and went out looking for some fun. Mango's was a place of interest and some of the other bars were looking like fun. After cruising the strip though, it got frustrating really quick. We all got too picky when we should have just parked the damn car and walked to the clubs. Instead people were bitching about the long lines to get in, some of the places looked "dead" when they weren't. All I wanted to do was get to Mango's. We decided to head back over to Miami (city) and drove down to 5th St. While approaching the interesection, there cops coming from everywhere with lights all over the place. Turns out somebody had been shot and we saw the dude laying face down in the street! CRAZY! We we're all like LETS DIP! NOW! We high-tailed it across the bay and sat down for a couple drinks. It was at this point, I started feeling ill, so I went back to the condo. Frustrated with the lack of good time they were having my friends started making plans to bail since they weren't coming along on the cruise. 3am rolls around and my friends tell me they're driving back home in the afternoon after getting some good sleep. I drank some pepto bismol and went to bed, bumming that they'd be leaving.

 

Noon came around and I woke up feeling a little better but decided to walk around for a while and see if I could work up an appetite. I walked over to Bayside Market, enjoying the nice weather, and looked around some of the stores. Walking back to the hotel, I got a text from my friends saying they should we should get a nice lunch and chill for a little bit before they rolled out. That way we could end their stay on a nice note. We grabbed some lunch at the City Diner (GREAT PLACE!). I asked if they could take me to South Beach before they rolled-out at 4. I wanted to see the ships sail out and hit up the Big Pink for a nice dinner and drink or two.

 

They gave me a ride across the causeway at 4. If you ever watch the webcam you know the NCL ships leave pretty promptly then and I caught the Epic as it was starting to leave. Fortunately I was able to catch it and a few others before they passed the park. I wished my friends a safe trip back they rolled-out while I enjoyed the scenery and sail-aways.

 

Here are a few of the ships leaving. Disney Magic, Carnival Glory, Carnival Conquest. (NCL Epic, not pictured)

 

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After the watching the ships leave, I had a nice dinner and caught a cab back over to Miami. I found my way back to Ultra to watch David Guetta's set for a little while and then crashed for the night. Ready for my cruise the following morning.

 

More to come tomorrow. I'm exhausted!

Edited by seannyice81

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wow you really did have a crappy start to your vacation!! sucks that your friends bailed on you!!! but I'm sure once you got on the ship things just got 100% better :D

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One dude packed all these shoes!

 

shoes11of1_zpsa24a9fd3.jpg

 

 

LOL This looks like how I pack, only stilettos not sneakers. :p Any pictures of the Doubletree suite? Looking forward to the rest!

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LOL This looks like how I pack, only stilettos not sneakers. :p Any pictures of the Doubletree suite? Looking forward to the rest!

 

Unfortunately, I don't have any photos of the condo. My friend has some on his camera, but he's hard to get a hold of. I might add them later.

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We were on the liberty and pulled beside the victory in grand Turk on Thursday

 

 

Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app

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CRUISE DAY 1 - MIAMI

 

I woke up this morning at 8. I got some nice sleep. Not going out last night meant no hangover and I felt really pumped about being done with Miami and getting on the boat. I repacked my large duffle, got my documents together and checked out of the hotel. The total for 3 nights of the 2 bedroom condo at the DoubleTree came to just a hair over 2 grand. This was due to all parties and Ultra. With the bill split 4 ways though, it was okay. After paying off the balance, I headed outside and waited for the staff to grab me a cab. After what seemed like a pretty long wait, I was off to Port of Miami and Carnival Victory.

 

I arrived at the terminal a little before 10:30. At this time, luggage drop off was only on the check-in side of the terminal since there were still a lot of guests leaving from the previous cruise. I walked right into the terminal, breezing through security and made my way up the escalator to check-in. I had purchased Faster to the Fun so I knew to keep an eye out for the other line. The FTTF line is actually dead center, right in front of you as you enter the check-in/waiting area. I didn't really need it though as there was hardly anyone else there at the time. I was called over, and in no time was checked in with my first GOLD card! Sweeeeeet!

 

"Goooolllllddd"

 

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I sat over next to entrance A for a while and watched some of the late disembarking guests leave and and others check-in. The terminal is a great place to people watch and everyone seems to be in a good mood. I talked a little bit with those around me and sent texts back and forth with those on the phone. I also sent a teaser shot to those who are in my Splendor repositioning group.

 

11:30 rolled around and before they announced boarding, I noticed some Diamond and Platinum members being led to the gangways. About 2 mins later, they called for Priority boarding. Sweet! I made my way past the photographers and onto the ship.

 

First thought that entered my head... GREEN!

 

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I've read it before, but this ship is very green. If not green, then aqua or blue. Joe Farcus must've designed the ship on St. Patrick's Day is all I can think. Also, typical of all the shots I've seen, some portions of the large atrium light were out, but that just meant Victory was in character. After getting through the lobby, I headed up to deck 6 and my cabin 6449 (aft interior, that they chose for me). It was pretty good size, considering I was completely solo this cruise. Looking around the cabin, I noticed a couple things. First, It was more gold than the pink of the Conquest Class. There was no fridge and there was storage for life jackets at the foot of the bed instead of in the closet. The bathroom was extremely pink. Unlike the Conquest Class, there was a storage cabinet instead of shelfs on the mirror. Women, take note, no magnifying mirror and what appeared to be a dust-buster for a hair dryer. A nice "luxury" this ship had that none previously had was a bottle opener on the wall directly across from the toilet! Never know when I might want a beer!

 

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I noticed my luggage wasn't there. This supports my theory; If you're among the first on the ship, your FTTF luggage will not be there, but will rather be the first to be delivered once they start making runs.

 

I ran into my steward I Wayan, tipped him some extra money for extra soap and a filled ice bucket. I then made my way to the other decks to explore.

Edited by seannyice81

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We were on the liberty and pulled beside the victory in grand Turk on Thursday

 

 

Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app

 

Cool! I have some photos of Liberty arriving.

 

I heard you missed out on Half Moon Cay due to rough water. That stinks. I wasn't sure we were going to make it because there was a little chop to it when we arrived as well. Thankfully we did, but it became an issue later though for me. I'll get to that later.

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CRUISE DAY 1 - MIAMI - CONTINUED

 

AROUND THE SHIP

 

After dropping off my backpack in my cabin, I decided to venture around the ship for a while. Here Are some photos from the interior areas.

 

Places along Neptune's Way (interior promenade)

 

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Edited by seannyice81

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I know I just got off this ship last month...but you're making me even more excited to board her again next month! :D

 

And after my last cruise, I promised myself to definitely look into booking a solo cruise one day! I think I would have more fun that way :cool:

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CRUISE DAY 1 - MIAMI - CONTINUED

 

AROUND THE SHIP (OUTER DECKS)

After walking around the inside of the ship a little while I had to get top-side to have a nice drink and get some lunch. I grabbed a quick bite to eat in the Mediterrainian Restuarant and headed to the pool bar for a drink. I then made my way around decks 9, 10, 11, and 12 checking out the layout. If you didn't know, Victory has a unique Serenity Deck with 2 jacuzzis right by the bar.

 

-NOTE that the clam shell loungers are on the upper Serenity Deck.

 

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Out on Lido, they had the DJ playing songs while guests caught-up and grabbed their drinks of the day. Some wound up taking early dips in the pools.

 

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Walking to the back of the ship, I found Ecstasy, Carnival's 2nd oldest ship docked behind us. I have yet to sail on a Fantasy Class ship, but they look like their pretty fun despite the smaller size. At Nassau, the aft decks were packed on these ships! -More on that later.

 

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Here is something that hopefully gives some of you more peace of mind. The back-up generator that was installed (fleet-wide, as part of an initiative) after Triumph's extended stay in the Gulf. Note that they very recently have been covering up the CAT logos with Carnival logos to make the equipment look more "original." However, these units are still technically leased. They do regularly test them (one test occurred one evening on my cruise).

 

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Time flew and before I knew it, it was time for muster. The muster drill on this cruise was scheduled for 3:45. At that time though, I was still on my way to my muster station, G. Thankfully, it didn't really take terribly long for everyone to arrive. Once we started our drill, it was the FASTEST I've ever experienced. Our cruise director, Kevin was very fast and understandable during the process. The whole thing took less than 20 mins and our side was excused first to head off for sail-away.

 

It didn't take too long for sail away to happen. The sky started to become a little overcast. 4 came around and I noticed that the Norwegian Sky was still in port. It's odd because NCL almost always leave promptly at 4. I thought, surely that means Majesty of the Seas will go first then. Nope. To my surprise, the water churned at the bow and stern of our ship. They were slacking the mooring lines and we were about to be off. Cool! We started off slowly and started making our way out the channel. Majesty of the Seas behind us and Ecstasy behind it.

 

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I continued to watch us leave Miami and had a few drinks. I found a nice spot and watched as the sun began to sink behind Miami, bound for the Bahamas.

 

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Edited by seannyice81

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Victory is the riddler at sea. Or at least that's what I've always called it both times I sailed it. Lol

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I know I just got off this ship last month...but you're making me even more excited to board her again next month! :D

 

And after my last cruise, I promised myself to definitely look into booking a solo cruise one day! I think I would have more fun that way :cool:

 

This was a very good cruise. I had a pretty different time being solo, with mostly good experiences. I would like to go with some friends again, though.

 

We are sailing on Victory in two weeks! Love the pics and looking forward to the rest of your review!

 

Sweet! More on the way.

 

Victory is the riddler at sea. Or at least that's what I've always called it both times I sailed it. Lol

 

All the green? Yea, haha. One can easily assume there has to be an inside joke between CCL staff with this ship.

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