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Russ Pruden

Age: 30

Occupation:Marketing

Number of Cruises: First Cruise

Cruise Line: Imperial Majesty

Ship: Ocean Breeze

Sailing Date: N/A

Itinerary: Nassau, Bahamas

The cruise was wonderful. This was my first cruise. There were a total of 4 in our party and two had been on a Carnival cruise before. We all loved this cruise. We thought the ship was beautiful and the staff was adequate.

The Ship and Décor:

Things to note, as you will read by others this ship is definitely ship-like. Don’t expect a mega-sized boat. With that said it is large enough to get lost and find new places throughout your cruise. We felt the sway of the ocean as well. None of us got seasick but we did speak with a few who did. If you do tend to get seasick ask if they expect rough seas and if they do take something before you leave.

Rooms: Well, I highly suggest getting a suite. We were in suite 606. It wasn’t huge (it is a ship after all) but was definitely cozy. All suites are on the boat deck. There are 2 larger suites. We asked the folks if we could see their room, they were a little bigger but not that much. The suites do slant back a little though. We had one king bed and one pull out sofa. Definitely enough room for 4. We also had a TV, tub, refrigerator with cocktails and goodies (to buy), 4 big windows and ample closet space. The people we ate with had an inside cabin w/o TV or any other goodies mentioned above. They didn’t care for their room. If I had to have a smaller room I’d want one of the ocean view rooms on the Atlantis deck. The open deck is just outside the rooms but the view of the ocean may be minimal.

Entertainment: Gotta love the bingo, but the jackpot doesn’t usually go until the last morning. Play the black jack tournament. It’s only $20 and lots of fun. The shows in the Rendezvous lounge are nice (kind of folksy) with good dancing and singing. Costumes were nicer than we expected. One in our group used to be an entertainer for Club Med and he was impressed with this production. Karaoke is fun if you like to participate but expect kids singing bad slow songs, but after all that’s karaoke.

Food: Well it was decent. Not the gourmet food others speak of on cruises. Dinner was nice but not gourmet. Lunches were burgers and hot dogs. The midnight buffets reminded me of college cafeteria food. One of our group was vegetarian – they definitely do not cater to vegetarians.

Excursions: We shopped the morning in Nassau and took the 11am boat ride to Blue Lagoon ($32). The island was nice but crowded. We never found the significance to Gilligan’s island. There had been damage to the island from hurricane Michelle. We thought the dolphin tank was rather cruel. But that stems from our general idea that dolphins shouldn’t be caged anyway. But people seemed to like swimming with them. Look for the few secluded beach access areas near black beards tower. That was cool!

What to avoid: Be careful of the relentless cocktail waitresses/waiters. They will hound you every moment for the infamous souvenir cocktail glass. We bought them so they would leave us along, but you don’t get off so easy. They then want to fill them for you. At $6.95 the first time and $4.25 a fill up the cost will add up. You will also get attacked for soft drinks and bottled water. Go for iced tea – it’s free!

Bottom Line is that we loved the cruise. The boat was big enough to get lost but small enough to not feel overwhelmed. We docked next to the Crystal Princess [sic] and Disney Wonder but felt they were just way too huge, pretty but huge. The staff worked incredible hours and our cabin steward helped make the trip (Svitlana from Ukraine)! Try to take advantage of as much as possible and get a suite or upper room. Those we spoke to who didn’t enjoy the cruise had inside cabins and didn’t take advantage of the social events. I can’t wait to go again!

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