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Paradise Bahamas 2-day cruise #178815
12/25/2018 11:59 AM
12/25/2018 11:59 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 481
Florida
RobT Offline OP
Traveler
RobT  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 481
Florida
I saw Paradise Bahamas was offering a 2 for 1 deal on their 2-night cruise to the Bahamas out of the Port of Palm Beach, so I thought it would be a perfect birthday present for my wife. While her ticket was free, there was still a $88 charge for port charges and other fees. Also, there is a valet parking fee of $19 per day. When I signed up for the trip I noticed that they had special free dinner for veterans in November at their specialty Admirals steak and sea food restaurant. I had to send in my proof of service before the trip, but it made of a special dinner for us.

We knew the ship was not full, and we found out later from our taxi driver that only 600 people were on ship that could handle 1,800 passengers. November is not the best of time to go to the Bahamas. It was really cold in Southern Florida on the day before our sailing. It was a clear day in Grand Bahamas, but the temperature was only about 70 degrees. The locals told us the water would be fine, just do not come out of the water as you will really be cold.

There was a lot of confusing information about check in and boarding time. The weather was cool so we did not get there too early. We got there about 1:30 and were going to roll our carry-on bags, but they told us our room would not be ready until 3:00 and we could not take our bags into the buffet if we want to get something to eat. So we ended up checking our carry-ons. As it turns out, the rooms were available around 2:00.

After you check in, the next step (after they try to get your picture) is to book your meal time. That was when I booked the dinner for the first night at the Admirals restaurant. We also book the first seating from 5:45 to 6:30 on the second night. When we went to dinner that night, we saw someone turned away who had not booked a time. That person was told to come back for the second seating at 8:15. They also had some on-time seating as well, but we did not use it. Both dinners were very good.

The next step is booking excursions. The weather was quite cool so we did not book any of the water related excursions. We planned to take the group rate taxi to the Lucayan Market. That worked okay except we planned to stay there too long. There are two nearby hotels, but the one on the beach was closed due to hurricane damage. The other hotel was not on the beach. So we were left with wandering around the market. We arranged for the group taxi to take us back at 3:00, which was too long for what was open and going on. But our group got back to the meeting point early and we left around 2:30.
There were production show both nights. Not a big audience, but the shows were good. Of course there was a casino. The low number of passengers meant that the table games were not heavy used. I like to play blackjack with a full or nearly full table, so that was difficult to find.

Overall we enjoyed the trip, but the weather made it disappointing in the Bahamas. There used to be a day cruise to the Bahama (leave early and return late the same day), but I could not find that type of cruise in Southern Florida.


Beach Hunter
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Re: Paradise Bahamas 2-day cruise [Re: RobT] #178819
12/25/2018 01:19 PM
12/25/2018 01:19 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 69,815
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
Traveler
Carol_Hill  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 69,815
Central Florida!
Thanks for the report. I note you are from Maryland. Did you fly down here just for this cruise? The Bahamas in winter can be quite chilly, for sure. I remember our second cruise was on the NCL Sunward II to the Bahamas in December. It was cold as a witch's elbow in Nassau!! We were living outside DC at the time and didn't really know that the Bahamas in December can be so COLD, so didn't know what to expect. Kind of odd they were turning people away at the dinner service, considering how few people were on the ship.


Carol Hill
Re: Paradise Bahamas 2-day cruise [Re: Carol_Hill] #179048
12/29/2018 08:12 AM
12/29/2018 08:12 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 481
Florida
RobT Offline OP
Traveler
RobT  Offline OP
Traveler
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 481
Florida
I updated my profile. We moved to Tamarac, FL in September. So it was just a 90 minute drive to the Palm Beach Terminal. Besides the weather, another benefit of living in South Florida is being relatively close to major cruise ship ports. I new it might be cool in November, but I did not expect the beach to be closed due to hurricane damage.

My guess on the passengers being turned away at dinner was because of staffing. There was plenty of room in the dinning room.


Beach Hunter
Re: Paradise Bahamas 2-day cruise [Re: RobT] #179059
12/29/2018 09:47 AM
12/29/2018 09:47 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 69,815
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
Traveler
Carol_Hill  Offline
Traveler
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 69,815
Central Florida!
OK, thanks. I thought perhaps you were here for the winter at least, as would be surprised to come down just for this cruise. We did what we called a 'garbage scow' cruise out of Port Canaveral a few years ago to the Bahamas on I think it was called Discovery 'something'. We had some good stories to tell afterward, but I wouldn't do it again! grin


Carol Hill

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