Embarkation was a breeze-on the ship in no time and luggage quickly followed. We had a balcony cabin on Deck 7 which was very comfortable with plenty of storage (love those comfort beds). Our steward was always prompt and efficient. We only used room service for early morning coffee and it always arrived promptly.
The shows were ok-nothing spectacular-a lot of singing and dancing, a couple of comedians and magicians,etc. Our table waiters at dinner were fairly new but they did a good job. The food was good but again nothing outstanding (well, except for the Warm Chocolate Melting Cake).
The ship was clean and provided plenty of daily activities if you wanted to participate. The spa prices were a little expensive but on port days there were some reduction in prices.There seemed to be a wide age range of passengers on board and we saw no unruly behavior.
Our entire cruise was smooth sailing and we enjoyed all the ports of call and the sea days. Debarkation was a little confusing only because people didn't listen and follow directions. We chose self assist and had no problems getting off the ship. Wehad a great time and wouldn't hesitate to go on this ship again.
The dining room food was very good, there was something for everyone. There was care taken in the preparation of the food and the menu itself. While it is mass produced, it is top quality. There were a few exceptions though. If you like Chocolate try the Chocolate melting cake, it's the bomb!
I have to also mention the waiters we had. Shettie is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, I have been on four cruises now and he is the best so far. A+++
The Red sail, which is the cafe on deck nine, serves all three meals, as well as snacks and late night dishes.
I found breakfast to be at best ok. Breads were not toasted enough, pastries where a bit stiff. The eggs had a rough consistency. A big positive for the Red Sale is the omelets station, which was very good.
The pizza was exceptional at the outside pizzeria. We also found the burgers outside to be very good.
An A+ goes to the Deli, where you can get a delicious Rubin sandwich, I highly recommend the Deli even though the line can bea bit long.
Room service lacks in selection, this is a known on Carnival and does not stack up to RCCL. You can get simple sandwiches, salads, and cookies, along with many beverages. What's lacking is the late night burger or Pizza on the menu. Thumbs down. The service and speed was very good though.
This ship is in good shape, being only three years old she still has a somewhat new feeling about her. Although you can see signs of wear, such as in some of the elevators, the tiles are lose on the floor. To Carnivals credit, they were fixing tiles in certain areas while we were on board.
We found no grime or foulness on this ship. No sewage smells or stained carpets. The closest thing I did notice to grime was some big spots on my chair in the main dining room. I pointed this out and the waiters attempted to clean it, but they remained.
The Gym was in good shape, and as you can always expect on a ship one or two machines had issues, but they were being fixed on the spot.
I did see rust on metal around the balcony, but if you cruise you know this is normal and it is something all ship lines battle constantly.
The cabins we had were immaculate. Everything worked, everything was extremely clean both in the room and in the bathroom. The Stewards kept it up doing an excellent job. Unlike other reviews we did see our cabin steward Santana, he was very nice and thoughtful and we liked him a little visible once in a while.
First Dana, the cruise director, who has been beaten up a bit on this site, was excellent. I did not see any of what had been written about him. He was on the speaker all the time updating us, joking around. He planned a special New Years balloon event that was great.
Dana if you ever see this, A+.
The shows were very good, we went to just about every major show and I was never bored.
We don't gamble much but the Casino was well the Casino, smoky, full of people and flashing lights. Everyone looked to be having a good time while losing their money ;-)
The ports, Cozumel, Belize, Costa Maya, and Nassau.
All four are tourist traps. You are mainly there to buy little trinkets. If you plan on doing things of substance buy into the excursions, otherwise you're going to be disappointed if you don't like to shop.
Everyone was very attentive and nice on this ship, no exceptions.
One last thing, if you're into the spa, wait until your in port, they discount the spa heavily, and it's worth it. See Rebecca for an aroma therapy massag, she is the best :-)
All in all I would go again on the Glory and I rate it a solid A, although not for the itineraries, which in itself says something very good about this ship and crew.
Here is the URL to all of my posted images on this site.Rob Alfonso Galleries
We arrived at the port somewhat earlier than planned, but still the wait to board wasn't too long. Even though the lines look long, they seem to move rather quickly, with the exception, once again, of the wait just before boarding the ship, so the photographers can take your picture. Princess allows those who request to bypass this to do so, but Carnival insists that they be allowed to photograph you so they can sell it to you later.
The cruise in general, was the BEST Carnival cruise that we've taken in many, many years. We found the cabin to be excellent, with great maintenance, and comfort. The food was head and shoulders above our recent Valor cruise. Everything had excellent flavor, and presentation. The buffet line, although we rarely used it, was good to excellent.
Cruise Director Mark Price went out of his way to take care of his guests. Entertainment was outstanding, with really great shows, and guest performers. My only complaint on the entire cruise, was that the piano bar was inop, because, I found out later, the artist who normally performs there had broken his wrist the weekbefore. (certainly not Carnivals fault) The Karaoke was held in the Bar Blue, which was much too small, and way too smokey to be enjoyed. The "Ebony Cabaret" located right behind the "Bar Blue" was never utilized much, and was usually empty! I was told that on all the other ships of this type, the rear lounge was indeed used for karaoke, but that management wouldn't change the rooms. Made no sense to me.
In summation, the "Glory" is a superior cruise, and a great value for the money. I'd highly recommend it to anyone looking for fun in the sun, and a great cruise experience.
Family has been on 12 cruises, this was the 6th on Carnival and probably the last. The last 2 years was on the Caribbean Princess and my favorite. We had a balcony cabin on the Verandah deck which was fine, mid ship, all balcony cabins we've been in are the same. Love the new pillows and comforter however. There was 3 of us in the room and for some reason almost every day we had to tell the cabin steward he kept forgetting to give us that 3rd face towel.
Food was not as good on this ship as others. Steak was always chewy so could never eat. On ships you can always ask for something else but had enough to eat with appetizer, salad and soup. The pools are very small on this ship and always very crowded. Always liked the idea of the pool slide but my 2 sons complain every time they can't go down more than once cause its too hot on their feet. When eating breakfast or lunch on the lido deck many times was hard finding a place to sit that was clean, staffvery slow at clearing tables.
All in all husband says you get what you pay for, Carnivals prices are lower and I feel they just want you on the ship and don't care. We visited the Western Caribbean, Cozumel is one of our favorite places, water is absolutely beautiful, however Belize and Costa Maya we felt are not worth going to. The excursions were very high priced and beaches they took you to were not very nice.
On top of everything, a few weeks before we left the cruise price went down $200 per person and my travel agent told me Carnival will not do anything for you. Some free drink coupons, bottle of wine, etc anything would be nice. $600 is quite a bit of money!! But again...I don't think they care. We will stick to Princess and/or try Celebrity next as I haven't heard any complaints on them....
This was our 4th Carnival cruise. Due to the proposed shuttle launch we arrived at Port Canaveral by 9:30am to beat the traffic (we live in Orlando). Checked in by 10:30am and waited in line until they started boarding at 11:30am.
Went straight to the Red Sail restaurant and the first thing I noticed was a bad smell. The kind of smell when dirty cloths are being used. The staff were using water & clothes to wipe down trays and the water had probably gotten grubby and not refreshed.
The buffet was the usual fare, tasty. Fish & chips were fabulous, cripsy and the fish had great flavor. The bouilabaise was also good. But the fish & chips on Thursday were doughy and undercooked.
Sailed about 6pm as we waited for passengers held up in traffic. Platinimum dining upper level - we had a lovely view of the ocean and our dining staff were super corteous and pleasant. The South African maitre'd Robert made a small speech, but other than that he never came to our table. I did chat to the assistant maitre'd one evening as I left the dining room.
Our roomwas on the Upper deck forward and our steward unlocked our balcony partition so that we had a bigger balcony (my inlaws were next door).
The carpet of our stateroom had not been vacuumed when we embarked and it never got vacuumed the whole week. Also our room steward did not dust before we arrived or at any time during the week. The bathroom was always spotless. I adjusted my gratuity for him at the pursers desk.
I overheard my neighbor telling her husband that she was not going to pay the gratuity for the dining staff as she only planned to eat in the Red Sail!!!!
The food this cruise in the Platinum was hit and miss (in my opinion). I am a reasonably good cook and enjoy well flavored food. The strip steak, sirloin and chateabriand were all bland and the strip steak very tough. The appetizers were always good and the chilled soups were terrific. The roasted pumpkin soup that is usually always a stand out was just o.k.
The desserts in the dining room this cruise were just o.k. Lots of interesting combinations of things, but nothing really worked for me. The tiramisu one evening was served in a shallow dish and had not been chilled properly it was sloppy. The creme brulee had a raspberry twist and it had the consistency of custard. The dark & blanc chocolate pudding, had no chocolate in the bottom of my bowl and was actually more like a bread and butter pudding. It was after this desert that I chatted to the assistant maitre'd about the deserts and he knew before the words were out of my mouth that the dark & blanc desert was "off".
The desserts in the Red Sail had way more flavor for the most part.
The veal, the seafood selections and pasta were all very good.
The ports of call Belize, Costa Maya & Cozumel were all great, Nassau was just the same as always.
We tendered in Belize and took the Bacab Park tour, the tour guides spiel on the bus was really interesting.
We took a taxi into Mahahual in Costa Maya, found a nice spot on the beach and just relaxed all day and swam. This little village did not exist 2 years ago, most people have just moved from other places in Mexico to cash in on the cruise passenger boom that is just starting.
The hurricane damage in Cozumel is very apparant, but reconstruction is ongoing. Everyone was very friendly and we spent a great day shopping and had lunch at an outdoor restaurant on the main street.
Nassau - we paid $4 each for a taxi ride to cabbage beach and spent a couple of hours relaxing. The sea was fabulous. We left when a large group of 20+ people arrived from the Glory and proceeded to take over climbing on each others shoulders and having the time of their lives, while having no consideration for their fellow men, who were enjoying the peace and tranquility.
The 2 shows Rock down Broadway and the Vegas show were the same shows we saw 2 years ago on the Glory. The comedian Jim Brick was fabulous, his commentary on life in general was hysterical.
Past Guest Party - an individual invitation was sent to our cabin for each past passenger. It did not state "joe public plus gust", just your name and the request that you bring it with you. The 2 drinks I had must have been wiped with a dirty cloth as they smelt really bad.
There was no 8:30pm show in the Amber Palace on Wednesday or Friday, with the result that the Illusion show at 10:30pm on Wednesday was jam packed with people sitting in the aisles.
In general the friendliness of the crew was lacking (with the exception of the dining staff). Wesels the South African shore excursion guy was very curt and unfriendly unless you were purchasing one of his overpriced tours!!
Debarkation is odd, self assist passengers go first (those that carry ALL their own lugage). However, most people have now opted for this option, so if you put your luggage out the night before you are now the last to debark. We did not get off until 9:40am and customs and immigration takes forever.
Happy to answer any questions.
Who: Barry & Kathy Cooper and Barry's Brother and Sister-In-Law. Last Cruise: Carnival Glory (Western) - Aug 05 Next Cruise: Carnival Miracle - Mar 07 and Carnival Glory (Eastern) - May 07
Getting started Flew in on Ted (United) the day before the cruise. Stayed at my brothers house in Lake Mary (north of Orlando). Getting to the ship was fine except for the traffic back-up on the toll road at the new bridge (cost us about 10 minutes!).
Embarkation in Port Canaveral was very easy. We arrived at the port around 12:00 (including the traffic jam). The lines were actually relatively short once we got in the terminal building (through security). We are all Platinum members so we actually went to a special line with no one in front of us. We went to the Skippers Club, but since they were busy, we were taken to the regular line with no wait. Once we were checked in, we were escorted all the way to the ship with no line (of course, the lines were all relatively short, but it was very nice being escorted through). We then went to the Red Sailrestaurant for lunch (typical first-day buffet and Deli stuff). After lunch went to see Maitre 'D to let him know about my wife's dietary restrictions (low-fat, non-dairy). I must say this was our biggest disappointment of the cruise. In the past, they have had my wife discuss her meals with the dining room hostess the day befort, but this time there was no planning before we got to the dining room each night. Was not a real problem (she eats a lot of chicken breasts and baked potatoes). Muster drill was at 4:00 and was pretty short (life vests were the thin kind so it was not too hot and we were also on the shady side of the ship).
The Cabin We had booked two cabins (separately) as a Balcony guarantee. We both ended up on the Empress Deck (8B) about 5 cabins apart, pretty much mid-ship. It was a great location.
The ship As this was our second time on the Glory, it did not take us too long to remember where things are located.The jogging/walking track was pretty good and so was the gym. I must say that the public rooms were all still freezing! I had planned ahead and brought a sweatshirt and more long sleeve shirts and my jeans to wear in the casino on the Sea Days. The dining room and show room (Amber Palace) never felt really cold.
Food & Service Dinners were really good to excellent. Our dining staff was excellent (head waiter, Enrico and asst waiter May). We ate all of our lunches in the Red Sail Restaurant and were very good. Unlike last time, I did not miss the Chocolate Buffet the last day for lunch. We did eat dinner at Emerald Supper Club once. It was really good (my wife and I both had the lobster). The service in the Emerald Supper Club seemed a little bit less than the last time we tried it on the Glory. One negative that we did have was that on the last 2 nights of the cruise, my wife ordered jello. I am not sure what they brought her, but it could not have been jello - it seemed to be grainy. I thought about asking the Maitre'D and or the chef to come out and tell us what it was or why they are serving it, but just did not want to make a big deal of it. Will try this again on our next cruise and hope for the best.
Ports & Weather The weather on the entire cruise was great. It was a little overcast on the last day at sea and was a bit chilly at the back of the Lido deck where we tended to hang out. Do you think if I wrote a personal note to Bob Dickinson complaining about the weather on the last day he will give me a free cruise? :)
Our ports were Nassau, St. Thomas and St. Maarten.
Because my wife was not feeling great, we did not get off the ship in Nassau (we have been there way too many times). We did get off in St. Thomas (3rd time there) and went to the shops right there at the port. In St. Maarten (our 1st time there), I did go into town with my brother and his wife to shop some. Luckily, we are doing the same cruise next year and will hopefully get to see and do more.
Debarkation Getting off the ship was extremely easy since we were all Platinum Level members. We met in the lobby at 7:10 AM and got off the ship by around 7:40 AM. Our luggage was waiting for us and we were in the car and gone by 8:00 AM.
Overall This was our 13th cruise on Carnival and we were definitely not disappointed. We all thought the crew on the ship were excellent. A couple of negatives. The tomatoes the whole time on the ship were not very ripe (ok, it is a very small negative :)). I did notice that there was a nasty smell toward the back of the boat on the Empress deck on the day that we boarded, but they seemed to have been cleaning the carpet and I did not notice the smell a couple of days later when I went back that way. The only real negative was that I did not feel that my wife's special diet requirements were dealt with well. In the past, the maitre'd has assigned the dining room hostess to specically make sure that everything was taken care of which did not happen on this cruise. If my wife had been feeling better and not sticking to grilled chicken and baked potato, we probably would have mentioned it to the maitre'd.
I just took a 7 night cruise on the glory. The ship I feel is chopped up you can't seem to get there from here. Our dinning room was on deck 4 and there was a lounge just out side and the smell of smoke was very bad. It would have been nice to have a drink in the lounge before dinner but us that dont smoke could not enjoy it at all even on the no smoking side because there was cigar and pipe smokeing.
When we were in Costa Maya there was three large ships in port so it was crowds of people in port. I will not go on that ship again the small ships seems much better. I have been on three other Carnival ships and enjoyed them much better.
We have been on several cruises with various lines and have enjoyed each of them. This was our first with Carnival and undoubtedly our last. We experienced anything but a "fun" ship!
Our VIP check in procedure consisted of being "cut" in line to board the ship in front of people who had been waiting for some time. Our VIP attendant left us there with no explanation to the other passengers or us of what was going on. Needless to say the individuals that we were placed in front of were not pleased and let their feelings be known.
The entire cruise was an adventure in what not to expect from staff and crew. We experienced bickering bartenders. Not friendly banter or jovial kidding around. This was name-calling and verbal combat at its best. We experienced a member of the crew that was intent on telling our fortune and stated this was how he subsidized his income. One waitress we encountered looked like she was very ill and we asked if she was all right. Her response was that she had partied very heavily the previous night and thought she mayget sick. We had a member of the staff ask us if we could possibly bring them back a lobster tail from the main dining room because there was not ample time for this person to eat and still complete their assigned tasks.
The smoke aboard this ship was unbelievable. The smoking guests that had inboard cabins left their doors open and most of the passageways looked like a fog filled ally. The majority of the nightclubs and deck areas were no better. My wife has an allergy to cigarette smoke and as a result of the continual exposure found us making a trip to the ships infirmary. Ironically this was one of the best experiences we had with the crew. The nursing staff was very courteous and understanding. The doctor was very direct, helpful and explained everything during exam and while rendering his diagnosis and prognosis.
It appears that the staff and crew that has to work with you directly, i.e. cabin stewards and assigned waiters do whatever they can for you. What we encountered outside the staff directly assigned to us was completely unacceptable. Avoidance, curt responses, unprofessional behavior and a general, "its not my problem attitude" seemed to be the order of the day. A ship of this size cannot possibly have a one to one service ratio and we did not expect that. What we did hope for was a relaxing vacation on a "fun ship". We believe that in order to have a good time on a cruise, participation is required by guests and staff. We arrived at the premise very quickly that it was much safer and less aggravating not to expect much from staff and the less involvement we had with shipboard activities the better.
BACKGROUND of Writer and Co-Traveler. I have been on 10 cruise ships, she has been on 4, including several Princess, Royal Carribean, Costa, Norwegian, and Celebrity between us. Given the positive nature of Carnival's surge we booked a balcony stateroom only 1 week before cruise at similar cost to other ships, but chose to give Carnival a try.
WE DISEMBARKED IN BELIZE and FLEW to MIAMI to spend remainder of vacation in Florida. It was a disaster. Talking to other "Carnival" Cruisers for the 3 days we were on board, it was their worst experience.
-Bad Food, no, lack of food!! Buffet was all but ignored. On a purportedly sold out vessel, bars and restaurant alternatives were constantly closed. The buffet had no desert, but we were told we could go to deck 5 to buy desert for $2.00.
-Cabin not cleaned prior to arrival, in room safe was not working.
-Cardio Machines in gym in disrepair and water bubbler was broken in gym on Sunday and Monday. Tuesday we got off.
-Taking Carnival up on their "Guarantee" They left as at the port, and informed us we must pay $80 for a taxito the airport and then $65.00 cash for departure at the Belize airport. At this point it was too late to turn back. We were off the ship with our luggage when informed that the guarantee covered our airfare back but not the costs required to get to the gate at the airport (i.e. transport to the airport and departure fees required by BELIZE)
-Deck chairs were tied up and unavailable for use while at Key West in the Sun.
-While there were free deck chairs during "Fun Day at Sea", no one would assist in lifting chairs to an available location. I could do this physically and I did, older people could not.
-Disembarking at Key West was unorganized and a mess. It took an hour to get off in line, as we followed directions getting in line on deck 3. Others could beat the system by taking the elevator to Deck 1 and cut the line, which the cruise allowed.
-Waiter staff was unfriendly, a first for either of us at sea.
-Night time noise was awful. We were on Deck 8 below the "Red Sail" Buffet where at 1am to 5am they dragged chairs, or whatever, cleaning. We could hardly sleep the 3 nights we were on the ship.
-DETAILS GO ON AND ON. OF ALL THE PEOPLE WE TALKED WITH THERE WAS ONE COMMON THEME, IF THIS WAS THEIR 1st CRUISE, THEY WOULD NEVER CRUISE AGAIN.
THIS MIGHT SOUND STRANGE, but I don't complain much, rarely, the list goes on and on. These are highlights after arriving home this evening and getting to a computer.
We selected the Carnival Glory in order to sail on Carnival's Conquest Class which includes the following ships: Conquest, 2002; Glory, 2003; Valor, 2004; and the new 2005 Liberty. These are the largest Carnival vessels afloat to date. However, the Fincantieri Shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy is now planning to launch the Carnival Pinnacle in 2007, which will take the honor of the world largest cruise ship, projected to be over 160,000 tons.
We were favorably impressed by the Carnival Glory, she sits in port like a gigantic yacht --- larger than life. Captain Francesco La Fauci takes great pride in this beauty; with her sleek looks, she is most elegant. Her amazing maneuverability was displayed at each port we entered. Unlike most newer ships which utilize Azipods, the Glory is guided by six thrusters; three in the bow and three aft. Vincent can attest to her agility, since he was convinced she was employing Azipod, until the 1st Officer Andrea Catalani pointed the thrusters out. We came to know Capt. La Fauci and with each day we were more astonished by his competence and gentility.
EMBARKATION Boarding time is 1:30 pm and Carnivaladheres to its schedule. We arrived in Port Canaveral at 1:30 pm and we were assisted on board in less than 30 minutes (check-in, security and in our cabin). There were long lines of passengers, who had arrived in port hours before boarding time. Although some ships do allow early boarding, from noon on, we have found that access to staterooms is usually after 1:00 pm; thus, passengers have their carry on luggage with them at the Welcome Aboard Buffet. We checked our dining assignment and found it was a table for two, by a window, and near the entrance. Perfect.
We were off to the buffet in the Red Sail Restaurant on Deck 9. With all our errands done, we returned to our stateroom just 15 minutes before the Life Boat Drill. Perhaps this drill could be pushed back a bit later. But, sailing was scheduled for 4:00 pm and with a 1:00 pm embarkation there is no possible way, since there are many logistical issues to consider. Embarkation was simple, fast and relatively painless. Our kudos to Hotel Director Brian Huppe.
THE SHIP Carnival Cruise Lines has grown from just one old ship in 1972, the TSS Mardi Gras (27,250 tons) to a fleet of 22 mostly new ships of which the Glory is number 19. The Glory's statistics are as follows: weight 110,000 tons, length 952 feet, beam 116 feet, and a draft of only 27 feet. Passenger capacity is 3,700 with an average of 2,974 per cruise.
Carnival CEO Bob Dickinson states that recently Carnival has added more ports in the US in an effort to deploy its ships "close to home:" Charleston, SC; Baltimore, MD; Norfolk, VA, etc.... Carnival places emphasis on the "Everyman" and has something for all generations. These "Fun Ships" aim to bring cruise vacations to everyone, not just the elite, and at a great value.
The name Glory refers to our US flag (Old Glory) and the theme of presentation of colors is carried throughout the ship by Carnival Architect Joe Farcus. The lobby has a display of three framed US flags. All the public areas, restaurants, theatre and lounges are named in colors: i.e. the Amber Palace Theatre, the main promenade is the Kaleidoscope Boulevard (all paved in black marble with mosaic squares of bright colors reminiscent of the child's toy). There is also the Black and White Library, the Green Room, The Ivory Club, The Crimson Club, etc....
We feel that this ship is the first Farcus design which did not go over board on the decorations. We found it much to our liking: a simple concept of colors, with a simple execution. He also kept the flashing lights in the ceilings and under the dance floors. In the day time the ship's appearance is subdued. At night the colors make the whole ship radiant.
Riviera Deck 1 is all staterooms.
Main Deck 2 is again all staterooms.
Lobby Deck 3 forward has the Amber Palace Theatre. Midship is the Information Desk (Purser and Excursion Offices). Midship, toward aft, is the Golden Restaurant. All the way aft is the Platinum Restaurant with its platinum walls decorated with huge stylized cherry blossoms. The carpeting repeated this theme which fits with the patriotic mode (i.e. the cherry blossoms of Washington). The placement of the restaurant was a problem for us, since our stateroom was all the way forward and this involved two separate elevator rides at opposite ends of the ship. When sailing the Conquest Class, we suggest reserving the central dining room, for those with wheel chairs. When dining, the colors game is played with passengers divided into Red, White and Blue teams, who basically try to out cheer each other.
Atlantic Deck 4 forward has the Amber Palace. Midship is the Photo Gallery, the Black and White Library which has too few books (all locked up) and too short library hours (10 to 11 am and 3 to 4 pm); Wednesday, on this cruise, it did not offer any hours at all. The room is always open with nice tables and chairs etc. but does not truly function as a library. Midship is the Golden Restaurant balcony, and aft is the Platinum Restaurant balcony.
Promenade Deck 5 forward has the Amber Palace balcony and the Boulevard Shops. Midship are the Kaleidoscope Boulevard, the Camel Club Casino, with life size Camel statues and a Sushi Bar (serving from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm daily --- Excellent!). Toward aft is the White Heat Disco decorated with six foot tall white candles and a sunken dance floor. The Mexican Fiesta was held here on Wednesday night and the free Margaritas and chips contributed to the fun immensely. Toward aft there is a sort of mezzanine with the video arcade Ultraviolet's (play with tokens or Sail & Sign card -- $20 per day for under 18 or $50 per day adults). Aft is the Burgundy Bar, Cinn-A-Bar, Bar Blue, and Ebony Cabaret. The Captain's Welcome Party was held in this area using all four venues. We were ushered into the Cinn-A-Bar (a piano bar), where the Champagne flowed freely and the canapés were abundant and delicious.
Upper Deck 6 is mainly staterooms and the atrium. Our cabin was located all the way forward, where we could see the bridge overlook. We suggest that wheelchair users be aware that from here there is a long walk to the forward elevators; then there is another long walk to the aft elevators and the Platinum Dining room. However, Vincent likes a balcony and this is the only site where wheelchair accessible cabins with balcony are available on the Conquest Class ships. All other wheelchair accessible cabins are either no balcony or inside cabins. Since we travel often and see so many physically challenged passengers, we believe that more wheelchair accessible cabins should be made available in every category and placed near central elevators.
The Empress Deck 7 and Verandah Deck 8 are all staterooms. On Deck 7 look for the "Evening Funnel" a gift from the ship's builders the Fincantieri Shipyard. It was designed by the Mosaic School of Friuli, Spilimbergo, Italy (June 2003).
Lido Deck 9 has staterooms forward; midship is the outdoor pool, stage, and Turquoise Bar and Pool; aft is the Red Sail Restaurant (very simply decorated with red sails!) Oriental Deli, the Pizzeria and Grille (excellent pizza cooked on order of ten minutes). All the way aft is the Azure Lido Pool and Bar with a retractable cover --- a very nice area.
Panorama Deck 10 forward has staterooms. Midship is the Cobalt Lido Pool and aft are the Emerald Room (fine upscale dining) and the Fish & Chips venue (serving fish soups and chowders along with fried fish and oysters). This is a very hard area to access for wheelchairs, since it means a long walk. Take the midship elevators and walk aft. Look on Deck 10 for the traditional bronze plaque which Fincantieri places on all it ships and the Carnival Glory is listed as their 6058th ship produced.
Spa Deck 11 forward is the Beauty Salon, Health Spa and Carnival Gym. This is one of Vincent's favorite areas, since on most ships the hot tub is quiet; however, this trip it was being serviced almost every morning. Aft is the Sports Deck and jogging track.
Sun Deck 12 is the Kid's Pool area with Camp Carnival.
Sky Deck 14 has the entrance to the giant Water Slide.
It is evident that this is a huge ship, so we suggest selecting your stateroom location according to your needs and its proximity to the venues you will enjoy the most. The ship is brightly decorated in bold colors, and it is lovely.
CABIN Stateroom 6207 is wheelchair accessible. When entering straight ahead is the large bathroom with safety handrails all around. There is a single sink with a large shower all in aqua tiles. When entering, on the left there is a double maple armoire, fitted with both shelves and hangers. There is another single armoire with shelves and hangers. Next, there is a desk/vanity with lighted mirror, TV, personal safe, and refrigerator all in natural maple.
When entering on the right, there is a king-size bed flanked by night stands with reading lamps. One upholstered stool, a chair, and a coffee table complete the stateroom. The carpeting and drapes are in gold, red and orange. These colors complement the maple wood. There is a white puff quilt on the bed and two bright paintings in enamel. The balcony is small with a recliner, table and a chair. The room is invitingly warm and Benjamin, our steward, was perfection.
FOOD & SERVICE Service is always programmed from the top on down! Captain Francesco La Fauci is a very visible and accommodating gentleman and a credit to the Carnival Lines. He is hands on in the navigational aspects of the Glory, and he is also very caring about the safety and well being of the passengers. He is joined on the Bridge by Staff Captain Carlo Aquilone; 1st Officer Andrea Catalani and Deck Cadet Giuseppe Cozzella. Captain La Fauci was concerned that the sea was a bit choppy and two review shows were postponed in deference to the safety of the participants. Substitute performances were given by a hypnotist and a comedian.
Hotel Director Brian Huppe has brought service to a very high level. Of course, it is the food which most interests many passengers. Carnival in an effort to appeal to "Everyman" has implemented new ideas which are improving the fare. Salads are brought to the main dining rooms in large serving bowls and are plated individually. Dressings are made fresh for each meal. Hot dessert is now on each menu: cakes, pies and soufflés.
We were happy to sail again with Executive Chef Andrew D'Souza; he is superb! He has specific expertise in Italian Cuisine and his pasta sauces are exquisite: lightly seasoned, fresh ingredients and a joy to the taste. Plating is done with special care and the dishes and flatware are quite nice. We heard that Captain Francesco has culinary talents too!
Breakfast is available in the Platinum Restaurant and the Red Sail Restaurant (Buffet) Deck 9, or by Room Service. We had ours in our stateroom every morning.
Lunch is available in the Platinum Restaurant with a pared down menu, which is still more than ample (appetizers, soups, salads, several hot entrees and desserts to write home about). In the Red Sail Buffet, there are many venues which include a roast station (with tender rare roast beef or succulent roast pork), a pizzeria, a grille, a Deli for made-to-order sandwiches, salad bars, fresh fruit, desserts and ice cream. Dinner was a treat each evening. Among the appetizers were the following: tropical fruit plates with wild berries, smoked salmon with onions and capers, shrimp, prawns, escargots, prosciutto and melon, and artichokes etc. Soups were a medley of hot ones such as the following: Lobster bisque, Cream of tomato, Funghi Selvatici (wild mushrooms), etc. There were also the following cold ones: Gazpacho Andalouse, Strawberry bisque, Vichyssoise, cucumber and dill, and cream of lychee etc. Salads were super fresh and varied. Mary felt the Caesar Salad was the best she had had afloat. Chef Andrew is superb!
Every night is featured a pasta course: Ziti with Italian Sausage, Bell peppers and mushrooms; Trennette Puttanesca; Penne Mariscos with shrimp and scallops; Farfalle with smoked turkey; Penne with vodka and caviar; Penne a la Siciliana with eggplant, zucchini and plum tomatoes, etc. All were exquisite!
Entrees each evening included fish, fowl and meats in great variety. Seafood included the following: Sweet and Sour Shrimp, Honey basted Pacific Salmon; Broiled Lobster tail; Red Snapper on a Lentil cake, Black Tiger Shrimp etc. Fowl included Supreme Chicken Breast with herbs and garlic, Young Long Island duckling, Roasted Quail with herb stuffing, Tom Turkey, etc. Meats on the Menu were delicious and cooked to order. We especially enjoyed the following: New Zealand Spring Lamb, Beef Wellington, Veal Parmigiana, Prime Rib, Filet Mignon, and an excellent Wiener Schnitzel.
Desserts were cheese cakes, creme brulee, Chestnut Napoleon, Prune tarts, Chocolate cakes, Grand Marnier Soufflé, and two new ones for us: Lemon custard with Basil ice cream and sloe gin, and an Almond Expresso cake with phyllo dough!!! Let's not forget the wonderful ice creams and sherbets made on board. They aim to please, Mary asked for a cup of just plain wild berries and out it came (black berries, blueberries and strawberries). How delicious!
Our Compliments to Chef Andrew D'Souza --- his Carnival offerings are new and exciting. We met Maitre D' Bimal Bodaji and he should be proud of his staff. Platinum Dining Room Maitre D' Terence Roddy was exceptional and we were very pleased with Head Waiter Hector White and Asst. Romeo Tao-on. The Dining Room Hostess Kamila Krzak is sweet and elegant too. Room Service was punctual every morning and available 24 hrs a day, with the usual wait between 20 to 30 minutes. That is excellent for a large ship. Thanks Jolita!
Dinner with Captain La Fauci was a night to remember. He is a very erudite man and his officers are a most competent group. Carnival has set its sights on elevating cruising to the best vacation value and we feel it is succeeding. The demographics of this cruise seemed to be much younger than many other lines. There were young families, teens, newly weds and retirees among the mix.
ENTERTAINING Cruise Director Mark Price and his Asst. Director Carlo are a very active team. Carnival "fun ships" make every effort to provide many enjoyable options: Yoga, Aerobics, Card Games, Classical Concerts, Jazz, Rock and Roll, Casino fun, Teen Disco, Treasure Hunts, Bingo, Night Clubs, Internet Cafe ---- or if you prefer---- quiet relaxation in a deck chair on the Promenade, or on your own private balcony. The Amber Palace shows are billed as "Las Vegas Style"; however, this cruise had postponements due to adverse seas. The Carnival Glory has an upbeat ambiance with singing and dancing even in the dining rooms. There is fun for all ages.
DEBARKATION Carnival does not rush passengers off. We had breakfast in our own stateroom even on the morning of debarkation. Passengers are asked to remain in their staterooms until their deck # and luggage tag colors are called. Green was called at 9:15 am. We had assistance with the wheelchair and the luggage all the way to the 4th floor of the Parking Garage. Bless them. Excellent!
PORTS OF CALL Saturday Port Canaveral Depart 4:00 pm
Sunday Nassau, Bahamas Arrive 8:30 am Depart 2:00 pm
Monday At sea.
Tuesday St. Thomas, USVI Arrive 10:00 am Depart 8:00 pm
Wednesday St. Maarten Arrive 8:00 am Depart 6:00 pm
Thursday At sea
Friday At sea
Saturday Port Canaveral Arrive 7:00 am
CONCLUSION This was a great cruise, even though the weather was not at its best and our cabin location was all the way forward. The food and service were among the best we have had at sea. However, due to limited mobility, the location of the cabin is very important, especially on mega ships. Ironically, we have booked the same stateroom on two more cruise ships with identical deck plans to the Glory: the Costa Magica and the Carnival Liberty. We feel we should change our cabin on these coming cruises, which means either sacrificing the balcony or getting a regular cabin with balcony but closer to the central elevators. Fortunately, we don't have this problem on the next two cruises, on the Star Princess, Oct. 23rd and on the Navigator of the Seas, Dec. 3rd, where the wheelchair accessible cabins are close to the atrium elevators.
We suggest the ship designers consider the hardship of those with limited mobility and make a better plan by positioning the wheelchair accessible cabins within short distances to the midship elevators. Nowadays, we see more physically challenged people on cruises, because this is a type of vacation best suited to them, where they can participate to whichever activity they are able or relax on deck or balcony enjoying the view or reading a book, etc.... Thus it is important to have sufficient number of specially adapted cabins in all categories and in appropriate locations. We suggest that ship designers should use a wheelchair for a day, in order for them to realize the effort required to get around a mega ship. This way they would be aware of the importance of the location of cabins for physically challenged people. Happy Cruising!