Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Living the Dream- Sea Day #1

Lido and Laughs
Monday. March 13, 2017
This was a great day of rest, relaxation and refreshment. We enjoyed a meet and greet and cabin crawl with fellow cruisers and enjoyed exploring more of the ship. The weather was cold, windy and rainy but we still had a great time.

We woke up feeling refreshed from a good night's sleep despite the hard bed. We officially met our room steward, Arnold, and asked if we wanted AM, PM or both cleaning services. We opted for the both scheduled cleaning times as I really like the room to made up in the morning AND the turn down service in the evening. This was no problem for Arnold and he seemed happy to do it! In fact,  Arnold turned out to be one of our best room stewards ever.

TIP- This is a new thing Carnival is trying on several ships. This gives the guest the choice of morning, evening or both cleaning services. We opted for both and there was no issue! I know lots of cruisers are complaining about this but we had not issues at all. 

After we met with him and finalized all of our cabin options we ventured out to the Lido deck to get breakfast. It was already past 9AM so there was quite a line but we managed to get our burritos and tacos from Blue Iguana within 15 minutes or so. The breakfast options at Blue Iguana did not disappoint, yet again.

Our morning breakfast view. It doesn't get any better than this!

We explored more of the ship as we were so tired on embarkation day that we napped instead of touring the ship. During our explorations we saw the new pizza place on board called Pizzeria del Capitano and even though we just got done eating breakfast and were full... we got a slice anyway! We were on vacation! TIP- This new pizza place was the best pizza we have ever had on any Carnival ship. The recipe seemed to be different and the crust was much tastier. Be advised there is nearly ALWAYS a line but this time it was actually worth it! It is currently on the Dream, Magic, Sunshine, and Vista. 

This new pizza place was AWESOME and so fresh! 

After nearly an hour of exploring we went back to our room to be sure it was cleaned for the Cruise Critic cabin crawl. TIP- Cruise Critic is a website dedicated to ALL things cruising. This was a group of fellow cruisers who set up a tour of various staterooms. We had been on a cabin crawl before on the Serenade of the Seas so we knew what to expect (Although, this crawl being our second was less spectacular compared to the one Cindy threw on the Serenade in 2015).

During the crawl we got to see many different cabins including balconies, spa cabins and even a suite. It was a great way to see various cabin styles for future bookings. TIP- I would highly suggest all cruisers become part of the Cruise Critic family and get involved in your sailing's roll call and activities. It is a GREAT way to meet people and exchange cruising and even life stories.

We left the cabin crawl and went straight to the new Guy's Pig and Anchor BBQ on the Lanai Deck 5. TIP- This was added on in the recent Carnival Dream drydock and is a sister restaurant of Guy's Burgers. It is on the Carnival Dream and the Carnival Magic right now and is available only on seadays from 12:00 to 2:30PM. We got there about 10 minutes before it opened and there was a line about 50-60 people deep already. However, the line moved quickly and were enjoying this tasty BBQ within no time. In fact, it was literally some of the best BBQ I have ever had. Be sure to check it out if you are sailing on the Dream or Magic anytime soon.

The line looked really long but it moved very fast! 

There was a huge selection of sauces to go with your "que". 

My tastebuds are watering right now... but the picture does not do this justice!
Be sure to try it out if you are on the Dream Class ships

After lunch we made our way up to the Serenity on deck 14 to get away from the hustle and bustle of lunch time on a mega ship. Luckily we were able to snag a large padded clam-shell chair and rest and relax for a little bit. Sure enough... we fell asleep for over 2 hours before the cold windy and rain woke us up. Before we even got into the lobby of the Dream the rain had stopped so we enjoyed a nice cool breeze before moving on to our next adventure.

Cheers to a lovely day at Sea! 

Sea Day 1 storm and winds from Deck 14 on Carnival Dream.

We decided to give the hot tubs a try since the rain had passed and the sun was coming out. The Carnival Dream class ships offer 10 hot tubs throughout the ship but they do fill up fast. We started on the Lanai as those are our favorite hot tub as they are bigger and usually less crowded but these were colder than the actual swimming pool. We later learned that there was a broken steam pipe which fed into these 4 hot tubs and in turn they were not hot early in the trip. We also tried Lido aft and midship hot tubs but they were full with people. Then the rain came back with vengeance so we called it a day and gave up searching for a warm or empty hot tub and went and got ready for dinner.

It was our 1st formal night at sea and we knew it would be a busy night in the Main Dining Room so we opted to get there early. TIP- Your Time Dining allows you to come and eat anytime between 5:45 to 9:30PM and we got there around 5:40PM and they were already opened and assigning tables. This turned out to be one of the best formal nights in our cruising history. The meal was FANTASTIC and the service was exceptional. We were in and out of the MDR on formal night within 80 minutes, which is unheard of in the cruising industry. Towards the end of dinner our waiter, Selvin, brought out the congratulatory anniversary cake from John Heald and CCL and they sang "Happy Anniversary" to us, very well I might add! I am so blessed and honored to be Mrs. Davis and able to celebrate 11 years with Chris doing what we love... cruising! 

Formal Night #1

Happy Anniversary Chris! I love you! 

We got back to our room to find the FunTimes for Key West and a Spa gift certificate/ discount for our anniversary! Unfortunately, we never used it! 

After dinner we made our way to the aft of the ship for the Punchliner's Comedy Club. TIP- This is a unique venue and entertainment option on Carnival that offers various comedians to perform on the ship. They usually offer 2 PG shows, which is great for kids of all ages and then 2-3 adult only shows. These "adult only" shows have adult language and topics and can sometime get out of hand. The PG shows, however, are great and a funny as well! It is a great option for families with 6-12 year olds. Check your ships FunTimes for comedians and times.  

We watched the first 2 PG shows of the evening and they were hilarious. Lester Bibbs did an outstanding job of not cursing and staying family friendly. Tommy Drake, who is also from Houston, was by far our favorite comic ever on a cruise ship. He was absolutely hilarious and never really need to curse or drop the F-bomb to make things funny! We enjoyed him very much and caught nearly all of his shows.

TIP- The comedy club also offers a "pitcher" of drinks at a reduced rate! 

Having fun in the Comedy Club! 

After these 2 shows we ventured down to the atrium to catch the Motown Showdown with the Cruise Director, The Flying Scotsman. He was singing and dancing and leading a battle of songs and moves between the guests. It was an amazing atrium party and we were already in LOVE with the Cruise Director.

Disco Atrium Party on the Carnival Dream. 

From high above on Deck 6 near the elevators

The Flying Scotsman singing 70s disco tunes in the atrium.

I have never been happier! 

Our 1st of many pictures with our new favorite Cruise Director, Chris Williams!
(excuse the crazy eyes... allergies) 

We then went to see the "main" show in the Encore Theater. This show was called "Motor City" and we had seen it before on another Carnival ship but we enjoyed it none the less. This cast of singers and dancers were average by cruise ship standards but they did feature 1 great male and female singer respectively. Overall this cruise featured the best shows and overall entertainment we have experienced in our 10 cruises. The Cruise Director, The Flying Scotsman, has a lot to do with that but we enjoyed the Dream's entertainment nonetheless. To end the night we went back to watch Tommy Drake again for his "adults only" show. This was hilarious and hardly any cursing or racist jokes. We enjoyed it very much!

The day was full of relaxation on the Lido and lots of laughs in the comedy club but it was just what we needed. The next day we would be in Key West, FL and we were looking forward to feeding the sharks so we needed to get some rest.

Thanks for following along! Be sure to check back for tomorrow's post! 

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