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 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.