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shipshape sam

just off Carnival Paradise

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Posted (edited)

Just back and it was great!!

 

Embarkation in Tampa was so fast and everyone associated with getting us on ship was great.  Parking across the street was also a plus for us.  Weather for the whole cruise was sunny, warm-hot.  No rain!

 

Once onboard,  we never felt crowded at anytime on cruise.  Got into our cabin around 1:30 pm and unloaded our carry on stuff.  Rest of luggage was there by 3 pm for us and we unpacked.  Muster was easy too and we were in the theater with nice seats and A/C.  They did have to wait on some folks to show up which took a little time.

 

Passenger make up seemed to be older than I would expect for Carnival. More like we see it on Celebrity.  Few kids and not many groups of adult singles.  Most likely due to time of year and sailing to Cuba compared to a more typical 7 day cruise itinerary.  

 

 

The food, for us, was very good in MDR.  Fernando and his team was excellent!  Was disappointed in no lobster, but that  could have been due to only 5 day cruise. The food on Lido deck too was good.  I very much enjoyed the taco bar and the hamburger bar for lunch.  Breakfast in Paris restaurant was very good too.  Would have liked some muesli, but I enjoyed chicken sausage from the taco bar with my eggs/ beans, tomatoes, ham.  I like to  eat an English style breakfast when on ship.  Not many restaurants serving beans or grilled tomatoes 🙂

 

The drinks were ok.  Only ok for me as I could not order a top shelf liquor martini at martini bar.  They would not even 'upcharge' me to make one.  Just was directed to the printed card.  😞 The Parched Pig IPA was excellent and had numerous ones each day. DW like the well drinks and we had a few bottles of very nice wines.We loved sitting in the pool bar areas and enjoy the music/activites.  Never used a lounge chair or got in pool.  

 

Shows are not my thing, so cannot comment on them.  Did watch 2 comedians, who seemed to have the same theme jokes-at least the pg rated ones.  they were pretty good.  To me, without vulgar themes, those comedians are the better ones who can make us laugh at everyday things.  Again, they were good.

 

Carnivals staff was very good.  We liked to interact and a number of them learned our names and addressed by our first names pretty quick.  Not necessary, but it was a nice effort by many of the staff.  A big shout out to Mel (Melissa) the cruise director.  I think she was the overall best CD we have ever had on 35 cruises.  She was not only the CD, but a great performer.  We loved her energy, her performances of the Motown and 80's show she did in the centrum area, her ability to react to the situation was a work of art.  At Motown , she was Tina Turner.  She got the crowd into the songs and it was a fun (and short) hour of great group signing!

 

 Our cabin steward was Irpan and his team and we had a couple of requests and they were immediately fulfilled and the rest of the time, our room was cleaned, etc without ever seeing them in our room.  They always took the time to speak to us when seeing us in the hallways too.

 

Our day in Key West was just what I had hoped for.  Got a shirt in the Crazy Shirts store, then across the street to Sloppy Joes for drinks and then up Duval to see the sights including enjoying key lime pie along the way.

 

Our day in Havana, Cuba too was great.  We took the ships excursion as one of our fellow travelers needed some help at times.  The best was the about 1 hour in total riding in the back seat of an old Chevrolet convertible (bright yellow) through the streets of Havana with my arm around my DW . Was a little surprised that there still is a lot of buildings needing lots of work or even needing to be torn down.  Enjoyed some Cuban beer called Bucanero.  Not an IPA/hoppy-bitter beer, but very good.  

 

Our 2 sea days were just as I like:  eat, drink, laugh, enjoy poolside entertainment with our old friends and the friends we made onboard Carnival Paradise.

 

Getting off ship too was a breeze.  We were in parking deck before 7:30am  One reason was we were on deck 7 forward which was a great desk for us.  50 feet and we were at the centrum area bar.  2 flights of stairs and we were on the entertainment deck, 3 flights up and we were on the Lido deck.  I like walking and stairs to get my 10,000 + steps in each day.  

 

We typically sail Royal or Celebrity as those were the first ones we sailed, but I have sailed Carnival now 3 times, HAL once, Princess 3 times and  plan to sail Carnival Corp ships again in future.

 

 

Edited by shipshape sam
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Glad you had a great cruise and thanks for writing the review. Tampa has the very best and most efficient embarkation and debarkation of all the six ports we have sailed from! We did the Paradise overnight Havana cruise last year and and had a great time. We are  booked on Holland America for Oct. for a 2-stop Cuba cruise, but Trump has negated President Obama's lenient Cuba travel policy so that only family members may travel to Cuba (announced 4/17/19), so we aren't sure if the cruise will go. No implementation date on the US Department of State, so who knows? We sail on the Paradise often as we live close to Tampa and concur with your observations.

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Nice review! We, too, enjoy the Paradise. Thanks!😁

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Thanks for sharing your cruise experience on the Paradise.

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Thanks for sharing your experience.  Just over 2 weeks until we are on the same ship / itinerary, and we are very much looking forward to it!

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When it comes to Carnival Paradise, I will post the same thing in every thread:  Please make friends with Arturo, he's a bartender there.  Our cruise, he worked the bar in the buffet.  He was GREAT.

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To the OP, Carnival no longer offers “free” lobster on cruises 5 days or shorter. This changed 3-4 years ago off the top of my head. 

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12 hours ago, PhillyFan33579 said:

To the OP, Carnival no longer offers “free” lobster on cruises 5 days or shorter. This changed 3-4 years ago off the top of my head. 

That is what I had guessed.  Could have paid $20 for one though. 🙂

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On 5/6/2019 at 12:22 PM, K&RCurt said:

Thanks for sharing your experience.  Just over 2 weeks until we are on the same ship / itinerary, and we are very much looking forward to it!

Wishing you a great cruise!  I would sail on Paradise again on a short cruise.

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Thanks for a great review!  Paradise is a bit smaller and some folks seem surprised when they get on board.  We enjoyed our time on this ship and enjoyed the many opportunities for some R and R

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On 5/8/2019 at 10:14 AM, DaisyGirl55 said:

Thanks for a great review!  Paradise is a bit smaller and some folks seem surprised when they get on board.  We enjoyed our time on this ship and enjoyed the many opportunities for some R and R

 

For sure a smaller and older ship, but it had plenty of things to do.  It took us a couple of days to understand how to  get to our deck 8 MDR aft location from our cabin located deck 7 forward.  It was not a straight shot.

 

We have sailed some of the new mega ships and like the smaller ships for most cruises.  

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On 5/6/2019 at 6:10 PM, Don Kehote said:

When it comes to Carnival Paradise, I will post the same thing in every thread:  Please make friends with Arturo, he's a bartender there.  Our cruise, he worked the bar in the buffet.  He was GREAT.

 

We walked by that bar to sit outside a couple of times.  Our 5 O'clock somewhere typically had us up on the pool deck.  Never was in buffet/paris restaurant for dinner.

 

Hey too, I am assuming you are/were Air Force, so thanks for your service.  I was in AF and station at Eglin AFB in 70's from 72 to 76 then got out.  

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On 5/5/2019 at 7:48 PM, shipshape sam said:

I could not order a top shelf liquor martini at martini bar

 

Where is this martini bar?

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Just off the Paradise on 5/11/19.  Best embarkation and debarkation I have ever experienced!  Great staff on the Paradise!!

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19 hours ago, tandemcruzr said:

 

Where is this martini bar?

Rotterdam Martini Bar deck 9 aft

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6 hours ago, shark Fan said:

Rotterdam Martini Bar deck 9 aft

Has it become the Alchemy Bar?

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Can someone advise if you have to use a card to open the safe on the Paradise?  Do you have to use your card to turn on/keep on lights?  Also, can you open the divider between balcony cabins?

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Enter numbers for the safe.

No card needed for the lights in cabins.

Depending on your cabin location you normally can have the divider open with another cabin.

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