I just returned home from an absolutely marvelous time on the Miracle, so I thought I'd share my thoughts with you. The good, the great and even the not so great.
To start, we brought along my mom who is a platinum carnival cruiser. So embarkation was so easy, we were whisked right to the VIP check in line it took all of 5 minutes to check in and get on the ship.
We went right to the Lido deck to await our cabins readiness. Every crew member we passed greeted us with a friendly hello! We spent a little time checking out the welcome aboard buffet. The buffets on the Lido deck are vey nice. Breakfasts are full of omelette stations, and a variety of other yummy breakfast items, scrambled eggs and bacon are daily staples. Fresh pastries, cereals, and fruit are plentiful. The hot chocolate was always hot and very tasty! I recommend the buffet for breakfast because the service in the MDR is very bad at best, but they do offer a delicious filet and eggs if you are willing to wait for it. We choose the lunch buffet every day and the selections were always plentiful and mostly all were good. I major thumbs up to the deli area, the pastrami is actually fantastic!
After the lido buffet I went up to see if my room was ready, and it was. I booked a Vista Suite, and was I ever impressed, the room is a little bigger then the standard balcony stateroom, the bathroom offered double sinks and a jacuzzi tub. It has a separate bedroom and living room area. Two flat screen televisions. But the wrap around balcony is the highlight of this category! Simply put it is amazing! The views are just awesome. It was large enough for 3 lounge chairs AND 3 deck chairs. The only problem is that I chose deck 8 right below the serenity deck, this wasn't an issue for noise, but they wash the deck in the evening and when you are lounging you hate getting hosed down! So book a lower deck! Our room steward I Made was really nice and very efficient. The room was always clean, towels always refreshed. The other major issue with my cabin was it was always freezing, no matter what I did to the thermostat it was always cold.. I hope they fix that.
I chose anytime dining, but we always wound up in the dinning room around 6 pm. Our head waiter was Anthony from India, and he was amazing, by night two he knew all of our likes, and made many suggestions and brought food that we didn't even order because he wanted to make us happy. I wouldn't call the food amazing, but it was very good. And plentiful. The desserts were always great especially the famous warm chocolate melting cake. The decor in the Bacchus Dinning room is very weird, dark and very purple.
On night three we went to Nick and Nora's steak house, they charge $35 per person. And the food is really great, the service is top notch I recommend giving it a try. But make sure you go on a night that the MDR is offering a menu that does not thrill you.
The Miracle has a bunch of pools on the Lido deck, but my choice was the child free Serenity deck. Nice pool and hot tub and QUIET!! Spent a,lot of time there. But you have to get there early as the chairs fill up fast.
The evenings were spent in the casino ( I won $700) the sports bar watching football,baseball, and even cricket! Went to some of the shows too. While its not broadway, they dancers,and singers try very hard.
The first port was Grand Turk, very nice! Spent the day in the ocean swimming next to the boat!
Next was Half Moon Cay, this was the highlight! Very beautiful soft sand warm waters, the only problem there was the choice of music they were playing at the bar. Gangsta rap is not relaxing at all! Due to tropical storm Rafael, they cancelled all snorkeling and scuba at grand Turk, so I booked parasailing at Half Moon. You haven't lived till you've seen your 70 year old mother flying at the end of a rope with a parachute.
Nassau is dingy , sad, and a very long walk for,the ship to the town. I will skip Nassau if I ever dock there again.
Debarkation was smooth and easy, due to the Platinum VIP card we were out quickly and in the Lincoln tunnel by 10:30
The only downside in my opinion, and this may be true on all cruise lines, it seems like a major money grab at all times, drinks are expensive, soda is $3 bucks a pop, the Drew Carry look alike cruise director is always hawking something. I understand that is how they make their money, but the high pressure sales pitch for expensive pictures, jewelry, bingo, and every such thing is a little off putting.
I did book a couple of spa treatments and they were ok, not great, and when they were done, the sales pitch for expensive products ruined the experience for me.
All in all a great time was had by all and today I booked my next cruise on the Carnival Splendor for next October.
Hope this helps!