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Miscellaneous thoughts about our 3/12 Med. cruise

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Have seen a couple of good reviews of the 3/12 cruise to the Eastern Caribbean. I'll just pipe in with some additional thoughts (just my humble observations):


1. Casino - spent a LOT of time here. Played lots of 3-card poker. LOVED IT! Very friendly pit crew and many of the dealers were nice as well. DW played a lot of slots. Won a couple of $1,000 jackpots, but gave most of it right back. We think of it as cost of entertainment and left happy.


2. Aft Grand Suite (8266): Fabulous room! While not as big as other lines, the layout is wonderful, essentially two rooms. Since we were cruising with our nine year-old DD, this served us all very well. I loved the 272 sqaure foot wrap-around balcony. We spent a LOT of time out there as well. I liked this room much better than our mini-suite on the Grand Princess and even on Spring Break it was only about 1,000 more than the mini on Grand.


3. Food. I know this is a very personal preference. Here's my bottom line though: the pizza is excellent. Very much in the Neapolitan style. Ate a lot of it. Buffet was average. Not better or worse than Princess. Main dining room menus had great variety. I thought the pasta dishes were uniformly good choices. I also was impressed with the quality of the soups (with the lone exception of one cold soup that I didn't care for). I thought the rest of the food, while presented nicely, was just okay. Like I'd expect in any banquet/convention setting where they cook for 800 folks at a time. Club Medusa was clearly a step above. I HIGHLY recommend that you try it at least once if not more. They served one of the best steaks I've had in a restaurant. I cna't say anything we tried there was average. It was ALL good. Worth more than $25 cover charge.


4. Service: I was not impressed with our steward (I can't really complain, just can't gush about her either). She was a bit late several days getting the cabin in order in the morning. No big deal, but she didn't stand out. Our butler was efficient and we were glad we had hime, but didn't use him all that much. He brought breakfast most mornings, right on time. He booked our free dinner in Medusa. He sewed on a button on my tux. He made sure I got my formal shirt back from the laundry in time. We were happy, but not ready to shout out in joy either.


For the most part, every encounter with one of the crew was met with a greeting and a smile. I am happy with that.


5. The ship: I love this ship. I don't have anything to complain about. Have sailed on the Costa Atlantica and the Grand Princess. This is a nice ship. Some folks think she's "busy". I like the variety and the details that can be discovered everywhere.


6. Internet cafe: I thought the connection speed here was far faster than the Grand or the Atlantrica. 50 cents a minute still strikes me as not cheap.


7. Itinerary: picked this cruise because it was Eastern itinerary and included St. Thomas. We love St. John, so that's where we spent our day. Frankly, we could have done without San Juan, La Romana and Nassau. Glad we've been there. Probably wouldn't make a special visit back. Their island off Dominican Republic was a nice day at the beach. St. John is hard to top though!!!!!


Overall, a day at sea beats a really great day at work, so were we happy? Absolutely! Would we cruise Costa again? Absolutely! I think a lot has to do with expectations, being flexible, and keeping a positive outlook. Mission accomplished!


P.S. we sat down the first night at dinner and met our table-mates. Didn't take long to figure out that it was Dogger (who had posted a couple of notes on the roll call) and his family. It IS a small world! And we had fun sharing a table with them several nights!

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