After spending a week on Carnival Liberty, I have to say that its Fun Ship 2.0 enhancements are pretty stellar. Of the new additions, none really miss the mark, but I can tell you which ones — like the burger joint (duh!) — are particular hits. Still (and you knew this was coming), there were a few little non-2.0 niggles throughout the ship that were bothersome. And, of course, I have to share.
Hit: Guy’s Burger Joint. This place is definitely at the top of the “hits” list. Every single one of the five burgers on the menu is delicious — greasy, but delicious. Choices include the Plain Jane, a plain cheeseburger; the Ringer, a cheeseburger with an onion ring; the Straight Up, which includes special sauce, lettuce and tomato; the Piggy Patty, featuring a burger and a second patty made entirely of bacon; and Chillius Maximus, basically a burger with the works. It’s also nice that you can build your own with the plethora of options offered at the nearby toppings bar. The best part is that you can eat as much as you want for no extra charge. I don’t recommend eating more than one in a sitting, however. It might leave you slightly incapacitated for the rest of the day. Just sayin’.
Miss: F-bombs on the Lido. I freely admit to cussing like a sailor at times, but I try to restrain myself when I’m around kids. I was sitting by the pool writing a blog post early one evening, and I was shocked to hear “the mother of all curse words” blasting across the Lido Deck — courtesy of the D.J. and an uncensored Eminem song — as children splashed in hot tubs and raced up the stairs to the waterslide nearby. One night prior to this incident, I noted with some confusion that a lot of the music played by the D.J. in the ship’s club late at night was edited, much to the disappointment of the 20- and 30-something regulars.
Hit: BlueIguana Cantina’s tortillas. They were some of the best I’ve tried, made fresh on-site in a special machine that you can watch in action. It’s able to crank out up to 700 of the flat flour wraps per hour, and the finished product is something that I could have eaten by itself without any toppings whatsoever. Although the burritos and tacos as a whole are ok, the tortillas stand alone. Bonus: There’s no extra fee to eat there.
Miss: Quarter-operated laundry. A cave-tubing shore excursion in Belize left my good running sneakers soaked and smelling like an uncleaned fish tank, and the humid sea air wasn’t doing much to help them dry when I tried putting them on the balcony. I decided to toss ’em in one of the ship’s self-service dryers. To my dismay, I discovered the machines don’t take Sail & Sign cards, and getting enough quarters for the $3 dryer fee was a pain, as there was no change machine in the laundry room. So, I bummed a plastic bag from one of the gift shops, shoved the shoes inside and attempted to quarantine them from the rest of my wardrobe until I got home.
Hit: Alchemy. This bar, just across the Promenade from the ship’s club, is both elegant and quirky. Ordering a drink there makes you feel a bit like an elite Manhattan socialite. However, you get to do so by choosing a beverage from one of the bar’s light-up menus or coming up with your own concoction and writing it down on a “prescription” pad. Apothecary jars and bartenders in white lab coats enhance the theme. Try drinks like the Cucumber Sunrise, the French Kiss or the Alchemist’s Sidecar, each from $8.95.
Miss: Spelling errors. This is probably of minor significance to most, but I’m unable to suppress my inner copy editor. I noticed several spelling mistakes on signage throughout the ship, and it bugged me. One sign, in front of one of the main dining rooms, declared “Silver Olympian Dinning Room,” and another, this one in the buffet, announced the presence of “Strawberry Cake Pop’s.”
Hit … and Miss: Cherry on Top. This little corner candy store on the Promenade Deck is just too adorable to not be a hit. It absolutely screams pink, and everything inside is sweeter than sweet. However, it’s also a bit of a “miss” because of the one thing it’s missing: gum. After one especially garlicky dinner, my travel companion and I searched the ship high and low for gum and were told that it’s not sold anywhere onboard (because less-than-courteous passengers tend to stick it on furniture and carpeting). We passed up some overpriced Altoids but were excited to see a giant gumball machine outside of Cherry on Top. We didn’t have any quarters (also the source of my laundry conundrum above), so we didn’t try the machine, but we were disappointed to learn that it actually dispenses … jawbreakers.
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