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Roll Call Magica 1-7-07


ncmapper

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Hi Mark, Sorry to say we are not on this cruise with you guys, but I recognized your name from talking with you in March on this board. Just wanted to say hey!, and I hope you enjoy the Cruise.

We had talked about going fishing on the western Magica cruise and meeting at the Hogs Breath for bloody mary's and mimosas.

I see you are doing the eastern cruise this time, planning on any fishing?

Did you do any good fishing in March?

You will remember that we had to cancel our cruise in March due to a medical emergency, We are just now getting around to our "make-up" cruise. We sail on the Magica on 12/17/06, Western carribean.

This time we are taking the kids, all 4 of them and their Grandmother.

We couldn't pass up the price with the kids sail free promo.(Kinda puts a damper on the Hogs Breath visit in Key West, but I am sure we will deal with it.)

 

Let me know if you have any recomendations for deep sea fishing in Cozumel. I think we are there from 8 to 5, should be enough time to get out with the boys for a little bit anyway.

Take care!

Kurt

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hi kurt....good to hear from you again..we had a great time on the magica last time and couldn't wait to go again. Your kids will love the water slide..just remember its only open at certain times...another plus we found...if you don't feel like getting dressed up for dinner the buffett offers all the same entrees and everything else that is on the menu in the dining rooms. (I still don't know how they keep 20 filet mignons perfectly cooked on a buffet..but they do)...the fishing in cozumel was awesome...its maybe a 27 or 30 foot boat...doesn't go far offshore at all....(maybe a mile or mile and a half)...We caught wahoo and tuna....also had free beer....:) ...Hope you have a great time

 

Mark

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Silversea cruise is fabulous, but you pay dearly for it. We went on a 50% off sailing and it was still steep,. But absolutely everything was included. We left from Aruba and went to St. Lucia, Grenada, Barbados, Las Rochas Venezuela & Bonaire then back to Aruba.

 

We will definitely sail with them again but it will only be a very special occasion.

 

Definitely looking forward to the Jan trip, I've never been on a cruise or vacation that I didn't enjoy.

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We are sailing on the Magica from Jan 7-Jan 14. Wondering if anyone else has this trip booked.

 

Mark & Sharon

 

We will be getting ready to board as you guys are getting off.

 

We have not been on the Magica but if it is anything like the Mediterrenea last year, we'll have a fantastic time. We are travelling with my sister & brother-in-law (as always) with one exception - they are bringing their 2 daughters (16 & 14) as well as a friend of their youngest daughter.

 

Can't wait.

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peter..you will really enjoy the magica.....we had a great time when we went last March...Our 11 year old had a wonderful time....I can't wait this time to see some of the new ports....I've heard Grand Turk is unbelievable...but that its a newer stop and does not have that much to do at the dock....if any one knows about this let us know....I have not heard much at all about the Dominician Republic stop but would also love to hear from anyone on it also...hopefully some more people will join in on this board so we can make some arrrangements to meet on board...

 

Mark & Sharon

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  • 2 weeks later...

woohoo....tickets came today...hard to believe its just over a month till we go...does anybody have any ideas on shore excursions they may be taking....we're thinking about doing the deep sea fishing in grand turk...

 

Mark & Sharon

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  • 2 weeks later...

Does anyone know what time the St Thomas/St John excursions leave the ship?

 

We are wanting to do these but also want to do some shopping there. Hopefully they will leave fairly early where we can have the latter part of the day to shop.

 

Thanks.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Kurt

Glad to hear you and your family had a great time....We are so ready for this trip...Just gonna be the wife and I this time. We are really looking forward to seeing Grand Turk and the Dominican Republic. We have never been to these two ports and are excited about them....If anyone has any suggestions or ideas about these ports let us know.

 

Mark & Sharon

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We are sailing on the Magica from Jan 7-Jan 14. Wondering if anyone else has this trip booked.

 

Mark & Sharon

 

Hi I am Jannett from Mexico I want to ask a big favor, I have a friend working at the costa magica in the casino her name is Dana Ciobanica, can you tell her please to email me.Or that if shecan give you her new telephone in the caribean: she is from Romania. If you have any notice about her please email me ; kassem67@hotmail.com thanks alot.

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Tomorrows the big day...I'm pretty lucky, Sharon does all the packing so all I have to do is wait. We have finalized our excursions...In St. Thomas we're gonna do the Jeep tour, gonna do the casa del mar resort in Dominican Republic and gonna do the deep sea fishing in Grand Turk. Look forward to seeing everyone. If you're looking for me find the bar on deck 9 by the pool and i'll be enjoying a cold one with a green nike golf cap.

 

Mark & Sharon

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  • 2 weeks later...

we're back....what a wonderful time we had. I would like to take few minutes and go over the trip....

 

Embarktation...get there early or later in the day...we got to the port at about 10:30...checked our luggage and were allowed in the terminal...we could not check in until about 11:45..we did have chairs and it was air conditioned...it looked like anyone there after 11:45 had a heck of a wait.

 

Went onboard and were allowed into our room...dropped our bags, grabbed our cards and headed for lunch..(food was always good)..came back to room about 1:00 and luggage was already there.

 

Ports...San Juan was very nice...we didn't arrive until 5:00 and several shops had closed down, but we still enjoyed it very much.

St. Thomas...unbelievable..we took the jeep tour..drove jeeps all across St. Thomas. Stopped at two beaches..A public beach and Sapphire Bay. This was a beautiful beach with a nice resort. Also went to Mountain Ridge which is an overlook area. Definately if you can take a few minutes to go up here. Beautiful views of Megans Bay, Tortola, St. Johns...etc

Dominician Republic....We took the Chavon River Tour. Very nice paddle wheel replica boat..beautiful river tour. Free drinks, beer and rum :D . After the tour we took the shuttle bus into La Ramona. Found a great place to eat downtown called Don Quoxite..excellent authentic food. Making our way back to the shuttle bus was a little eye opening. Very, very poor..heartbreaking watching the children carrying the shoeshine boxes and begging. We never felt unsafe but always kept our eyes open.

Grand Turk...Supposedly Grand Turk gets 360 days of sunshine. We happened to try coming on one of the days when it was raining. Not just raining but 45 mph winds. We were not able to dock which was a dissapointment...but hey...you can complain about the weather but you can't do anything about it. (also means I get to go back soon...:D )

Food....very, very good...at dinner each night I recommend trying the pasta dishes before the main course. Also, try something different...they of course have the standards..but I can get a steak or chicken anywhere...where can I get Quail, gorgonzola turrine or sea bream...by the way it was all excellent.

 

Problem.....I only had one problem and it had nothing to do with the cruise or with Costa. This is not directed at all of the much older adults but a small sector of them...If I had to listen one more time how you couldn't get lobster (after a while I began to question if lobster was only available on a cruise ship)..or complain that on this other ship they did this or they did that I thought I was gonna lose it. I guess some people are looking for something to complain about......but guess what ..... they sell lobster in your local grocery store....

 

We had a blast...Thanks Costa

 

Mark & Sharon

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Glad to hear that you had a wonderful time and to bad you were not able to dock at Grand Truk, it really is a great place to visit... So I take it that the service a food was good...

 

If you put up any pictures keep us informed...

 

Deb

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we're back....what a wonderful time we had. I would like to take few minutes and go over the trip....

 

Embarktation...get there early or later in the day...we got to the port at about 10:30...checked our luggage and were allowed in the terminal...we could not check in until about 11:45..we did have chairs and it was air conditioned...it looked like anyone there after 11:45 had a heck of a wait.

 

Went onboard and were allowed into our room...dropped our bags, grabbed our cards and headed for lunch..(food was always good)..came back to room about 1:00 and luggage was already there.

 

Ports...San Juan was very nice...we didn't arrive until 5:00 and several shops had closed down, but we still enjoyed it very much.

St. Thomas...unbelievable..we took the jeep tour..drove jeeps all across St. Thomas. Stopped at two beaches..A public beach and Sapphire Bay. This was a beautiful beach with a nice resort. Also went to Mountain Ridge which is an overlook area. Definately if you can take a few minutes to go up here. Beautiful views of Megans Bay, Tortola, St. Johns...etc

Dominician Republic....We took the Chavon River Tour. Very nice paddle wheel replica boat..beautiful river tour. Free drinks, beer and rum :D . After the tour we took the shuttle bus into La Ramona. Found a great place to eat downtown called Don Quoxite..excellent authentic food. Making our way back to the shuttle bus was a little eye opening. Very, very poor..heartbreaking watching the children carrying the shoeshine boxes and begging. We never felt unsafe but always kept our eyes open.

Grand Turk...Supposedly Grand Turk gets 360 days of sunshine. We happened to try coming on one of the days when it was raining. Not just raining but 45 mph winds. We were not able to dock which was a dissapointment...but hey...you can complain about the weather but you can't do anything about it. (also means I get to go back soon...:D )

Food....very, very good...at dinner each night I recommend trying the pasta dishes before the main course. Also, try something different...they of course have the standards..but I can get a steak or chicken anywhere...where can I get Quail, gorgonzola turrine or sea bream...by the way it was all excellent.

 

Problem.....I only had one problem and it had nothing to do with the cruise or with Costa. This is not directed at all of the much older adults but a small sector of them...If I had to listen one more time how you couldn't get lobster (after a while I began to question if lobster was only available on a cruise ship)..or complain that on this other ship they did this or they did that I thought I was gonna lose it. I guess some people are looking for something to complain about......but guess what ..... they sell lobster in your local grocery store....

 

We had a blast...Thanks Costa

 

Mark & Sharon

Mark & Sharon...and anyone or everyone who has been or is thinking about taking a cruise on Costa. I must send you this message to tell you about our experience on the Costa Magica. We were on this ship at the same time as you, Mark & Sharon...and we are happy that you had a good time. A cruise is what you make of it. We love to cruise, but we probably won't cruise with Costa again. This cruise was a comp to us from Costa because we sailed with them last year at this time. Last year on the 2nd day out, we decided to enjoy the spa behind the Positano Pool aft. My husband fell on the steps going down to the deck - they were wet and as slick as ice. There were no non-slip treads on the steps. You can bet there are rubber non-slip treads on them now! That is the first thing we checked out when we got on the ship this time. Anyway, when he slipped, he fractured a couple of ribs, split open his head and his elbow which required stitches. The medical on the ship gave him pain shots every day for the rest of the cruise just so he could navigate a little bit. It really took the enjoyment out of the cruise for both of us. They told us to file a claim when we got home. Okay - we did that, but, boy was it a hassle. We tried to remain calm and collected, but soon got very frustrated trying to negotiate anything. At first, all they wanted to do was pay the doctor fee's, but we have insurance, so the Dr. fee's were practically nothing. It took 6 months for the ribs to heal - we sent a release form to Costa with the entire Dr's report - then they told my husband they would comp only him a cruise on the ship to only the Caribbean. Well, he certainly didn't want to travel alone and besides I (his wife) didn't enjoy the cruise and could not do anything because I was busy taking care of him - also very worried about his condition. They had no x-ray equipment on the ship and did not get x-rays until we arrived home to determine the extent of the fractures. Anyway, they finally agreed to comp the cruise only for both of us. We booked this cruise in October and were very excited to finally get to enjoy a cruise on this ship. We live on the West coast, so we had to buy our own airfare, pay the port charges and taxes, and of course the gratuities, etc. and this was okay. And we accepted that offer. They gave us a balcony cabin on deck 8 - Aft. Very, very, nice. We were very happy with our cabin and our housekeeping staff. Now, I must tell you the rest of the story.....and why we had such an unpleasant cruise experience this time.... When we got to the Ft. Lauderdale airport, our luggage wasn't there. To start off, and try to make a long story as short as possible...., we are home now, and we still do not have our luggage. We spent the entire cruise on the ship without our luggage!!!! Our luggage is currently in Miami, FL with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Okay, we certainly realize that it is ultimately the airlines fault for losing our luggage. When we filled out the lost luggage report at the airport before we went to the terminal, AA told us if they found it before our ship left the dock, they would bring it to the terminal and see that it got on the ship - if not, it would be delivered to our first port of call. When we checked in at the terminal, we were told to go to the front desk the minute we got on the ship and report the situation. We spent an hour there filling out all of the necessary forms, etc. with the supervisor in charge and she assured us, they would work with the airlines to retrieve our luggage and get it to us and they would keep us informed as happenings transpired. Well, we were in contact with them constantly, but not because they contacted us - WE HAD TO CONTACT THEM.... Well, the airlines called at 2 p.m. and said they found our luggage - front desk said they would get the luggage to us... We left the port - still no luggage. Later, we went to the front desk and said our luggage is still not to our cabin - they said, we'll check and get back to you - they didn't - we went and asked again - they said they couldn't find our luggage and gave us a little ditty bag with only a tiny tube of toothpaste, a toothbrush, and a few essentials we didn't really need. Was told we could purchase what we needed at the stores on board, but they would do our laundry - no charge (that was good). We did have one change of clothes and our bathing suits in our carry on, but no sundries - hairspray, etc. Could not find any sundries at the stores on the ship - front desk assured us "Yes" they were there, probably tucked back into a corner somewhere. Okay, we found it - ALL THEY HAD WAS BIG BOTTLES OF SUNSCREEN - 2 SPF (that's not enough - we need at least 15 SPF), a large tube of toothpaste, a large men's deodorant - THAT'S IT!!!!! Oh, I'm sorry, I lied - they did have some condoms! We didn't need those...LOL.... I went to the beauty shop - they had no hairspray, shampoo or anything they could sell me, except an $18 bottle of hair thickening spray. I bought it thinking that was better than nothing! I really needed some cosmetics, foundation, eyeliner, etc. but they had none I could buy. Okay, after bugging the front desk constantly, they finally told us that our luggage was being delivered in San Juan, and they would pick it up and get it to us when we docked there. We docked early - before 5 - right? At 6 p.m., still no luggage - I went to the front desk - they said "We have someone on the dock right now to retrieve your luggage - we'll have it to you in 10 to 30 minutes. We waited in our cabin at least an hour - no luggage - decided that we would go to the buffet and eat and assumed the luggage would be there when we got back to the cabin - WRONG! Still no luggage...At 9 p.m. we went to the front desk and insisted on some answers - they let US call the airlines and AA told us our luggage was delivered in San Juan at 10:30 a.m. that morning.. Front desk supervisor said she would check with the port agents and get back to us. She called us after 10 p.m. (the one and only time they ever contacted us) and said the port delivered our luggage to the R.C. Explorer of the Seas. GOOD GRIEF! If they were on the dock to retrieve our luggage at 6 p.m. like they said they were - why didn't they know that then and notify us???? And if they were in contact with the airlines like they said they were - why weren't they keeping us informed????? We immediatlly went down to the front desk and asked them if the Captain or one of the officers could board the Explorer and retrieve our luggage. Answer - that's not possible, the Explorer has left the port and are on their way to St. Maartin. We are livid by now.....Next day, we went to K-Mart in St. Thomas and purchased a few things we absolutely needed, but didn't have time to do anything else. But now I had my hair spray and suntan lotion...HA! On Thursday, late, the front desk told us they confirmed that our luggage was on the Explorer, and it would be docking in Miami on Sunday at 7 a.m. They said they would work with the Explorer when we got in to Ft. Lauderdale to make sure we got our luggage before we had to leave on the plane at 2 p.m. The Manager of the Front Desk walked us off the ship and stayed with us until their Costa people at the port assured us that our luggage would be picked up from Royal Caribbean in Miami and delivered to the AA Baggage Claim in Ft. Lauderdale in time for us to board our plane at 2 p.m. We got to the airport baggage claim and told them we were expecting our luggage - we waited - they watched for it - no luggage came - and we had to board the plane without our luggage. My husband was on the phone ALL DAY yesterday, back and forth with Costa, AA, and Royal Caribbean to try to determine why,what happened and where was our luggage. Finally, R.C. confirmed that they still had our luggage - Costa never picked it up.....The airlines contacted R.C. and said they would retrieve our luggage and send it to our home airport where we could pick it up. First thing this morning, my husband called R.C. and they said they still had our luggage. John called the airlines and told them again the situation (we get a different person everytime we call). Now they are suppose to retrieve our luggage and get it to us. John will call R.C. again tomorrow and ask if our luggage has been picked up by the airlines. With all this bad weather around the country, do you think we'll ever get our luggage.????????? Well, I must say that any cruise is better than no cruise, but we know for sure that we will not cruise with Costa again, because we feel the front desk personnel were not totally honest with us - just kept telling us what they thought we wanted to hear. Bottom line - they did nothing they told us they would do. We only ate a couple of meals in the dining room. Can't complain about the food - it was okay, but we've had better on our other cruises. We totally enjoyed the entertainment, and we met some very nice people who we will continue to keep in contact with. The ship was very clean, nice cabin size, and we even contributed $80 to the Casino....Ha! If you enjoy the ship I would encourage you to sail Costa again - just don't get into any situation where you might have to deal with the front desk......LOL......

 

Naomi & John

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NKL, I certainly can understand your frustration and can see how your situation would put a damper on your vacation. It's certainly not anything you would wish on your worst enemy, BUT, it seems to me there is bit too much blame being pointed at Costa for things not their fault.

 

Personally I was very impressed with Costa. The only issue was a lengthy embarkation, but when you realize they have about 3000 people to board in a few short hours then it's understandable.

 

I loved the ship. Not all the decor was to my taste but it is very beautiful.

 

Food....I ate primarily in the dining room. I was very impressed with about 65 to 70% of the dishes I had. Excellent flavor and presentation.

 

Workers--As with most cruise lines the workers worked their butts off constantly, yet they were friendly and courteous. Moral among the crew seemed good, unlike the last Carnival cruise I took where a majority of the workers were sullen & surly.

 

Customer service desk----The only time I was there was to check on early deembarkation and they were very helpful and accurate in what I was told. If you have an early flight the self-assisted early deembarkation is the way to go. I was at the airport before eight.

 

 

Room......We had the balcony stateroom and found it to be very adequate, always clean and comfortable. Once we got the extra mattress topper the bed was fine. That was a good piece of information to know.

 

Drinks......Very good, not a lot of alcohol in them but the foo foo stuff had an excellent flavor. Loved the Bailey's Colada. Keep in mind if you ask for the XL size that it is only available on the drink of the day.

 

Excursions, had a great time.

 

Shows, pretty good shows but I was exceedingly impressed with the quality of their sound and light equipment and the people that operated them.

 

I would book Costa again with no hesitation. Especially at the price we paid for this trip. I highly recommend it.

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I have to agree with NKL about the front desk personnel, though I wouldn't characterize their behavior as lying -- more like disinterested, laid back. Maybe they just possess a calm style; I don't know. Reading your post, NKL, brought back the feeling of frustration I had for several hours.

 

In my experience on the Magica last year, the front desk staff had no urgency or follow through. I'll try to make my story brief. Basically, another couple thought our cabin was theirs. They moved into it and took our Costa Cards and left.

 

My husband had many visits to the front desk. Their primary solution was to page the people and that we should wait in the cabin. "Someone will come." Finally, after many trips to the F/D and as a couple of hours passed (and we couldn't/wouldn't unpack), I decided that the front desk should void the existing keys and issue new keys to us. This way, they other couple would have to appear at the front desk when they could no longer get into the cabin and we could at least get lunch before it stopped being served.

 

Ultimately it all got resolved, once I basically found the couple. (No, they never heard the page.) Then more waiting and confusion ensued, especially since their first language was Chinese.

 

Needless to say, I was exhausted. I recall that the F/D people, while very caring, as I said above, they really had no sense of urgency or follow through. Just the calm attitude of "it will all work out". Here was a couple, in the wrong cabin, walking around with our Costa Cards potentially charging who knows what.

 

So, while I agree with ORV in that when asked a question, the information was accurate. But for a real problem, it was frustrating to deal with their style. NKL - I only had the frustration for a few hours. As I said, your post brought it all back to me. I can't imagine dealing with it for an entire trip.

 

What I can say, and maybe it's from being in the NYC business world, but I've learned that in such situations, when the problem starts to be on-going, I do not just sit and wait. I do the physical leg work and try to get the problem resolved, keeping a staff member at my side until it is.

 

I'm so sorry you had two "challenging" trips. I do hope your luggage arrives soon.

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