Carnival Imagination Cruise Review by Torontorob12: Go for the Suite
Member Since 2012
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Go for the Suite
I first used the Carnival Imagination in 2008 and booked a category then called the Presidential Suite, Upper Deck. It was lovely and came with a large balcony, living room and even a walk-in closet. With the except of my early cruising years where I did two ocean view rooms, all have since been suites or at minimum a balcony---traveling solo and paying for two people can be expensive! In 2008 I felt like I was in heaven.
In 2012, I came on board and realized that the ship had been remodeled a little since the first time. Newer carpets, some design changes and they were pleasant to the eye. My stateroom...disappointing! I immediately regretted not doing the upgrade when I had the change and ran right to the front desk to see if there was any suite cancellations so I could pay the difference then and there but unfortunately I couldn't.
To put it in perspective--the room was not dreadful just that it reminded me of rooms that I would use on the ferry service when I More used to travel from Nova Scotia to Newfoundland; it did not seem like it belonged on a cruise ship. At times I couldn't believe that this could have been the same boat that I had sailed on years before. More on this below as there is a section on the cabin.
Food was great and the newly renovated adult only serenity section at the back of the boat was just heaven---no screaming children! It was a slice of relaxation that was just lovely for one who wanted relaxation. The staff were friendly and the drink prices were reasonable and what I had come to expect with Carnival. In addition to this ship I also been on the Triumph and the Spirit. I also enjoyed the entertainment.
Embarkation was a little frenzied. Again, because I booked a lower category of stateroom there was no priority or special line. That process was at least an hour, 45 mins of which we snaked through a line-up just to get our passports and cruise doc verified. Disembarkation was no issue here as it was Miami and anyone wanting to use the self assist walk off could do it.
Otherwise, just a typical 4 day cruise. Less
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Cabin review: Carnival Imagination Oceanview Empress E244
I was in E244 and this was an AFT cabin with a back view from the window. Well, the disappointment began when I realized that this window was probably not cleaned in about several months as there was so much grime on the window that there was very little view at all! This cabin was basically right in the middle of the back end so it added a few extra square feet to the room. To give Carnival credit, they did a nice job with the bathroom remodel but the room itself seemed so basic. Aside from my beds there was only one wooden chair there--not exactly comfortable for sitting---though I knew that I was downgrading when I booked, I expected at least a small stuffed armchair! Now for me the clincher was this. My cabin was directly across from the stairwell landing that took anyone up to the next deck which was roped off as a crew rest area. From there passengers were able to walk up another flight to the serenity deck then one more to the buffet. The downside was this: the crew rest area was also a designated smoking area! This area covered that little side and all around the top of that deck. Hence, each time the door was opened on that floor, the downdraft took the smoke with it and it was blown right into my room! Damp towels helped that but then because the crew still smoked on the deck above, it got sucked into the AC unit and spread it through the cabin! In order to deal with this I had no other choice but to have an engineer come in and block the AC vent so this mean I was in a room with no AC in over plus 30 C weather--it was either sweat or choke. Unfortunately, the ship was full so there was no other cabin available for me to move to. Being severely allergic to smoke I then desperately asked if I could just end my cruise early in Key West and then make my way back to Miami from there. I found out that in order to do so would have meant a US gov charge for early departure of $395, plus proof of new hotel bookings to cover the days that I would remain in the USA then proof of purchase of how I would get to my departing flight. With the cost of the internet on the boat, trying to do all of that plus pay those other fees would have more than added up to an extra thousand or more, so I decided to swelter instead.
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