I took my 81 year old Mother on a cruise for her birthday on the Carnival Ecstasy and it turned out not to be so "happy" after all. I am normally a very positive person, especially when on vacation, but Carnival made this cruise very had to stay that way.
There are a few positives:
1. Fastest embarkation I've ever had. The port crew are awesome.
2. Room steward was very attentive and friendly.
3. Dinning staff also did a nice job and were friendly.
4. Our room was right off the center lounge area and we could not hear the music once inside our room.
Now the negatives:
1. Ship is old and has a while I had read about the fowl odor in other reviews I was going to remain open minded. Unfortunately the smell was noticeable in the hallway where our room was.
2. Paid for a handicap room, but the only thing that made it classified as handicap was bars on the wall of the bathroom. My mother can walk, but had she been in an actual wheelchair she would not have been able to get into the bathroom because it had a step up in to it. There was a fold down seat in the shower, but when it was folded down there was no room to move at all in the shower. On day 2 the the handle on the sink broke off.
3. My mother had a scooter and when we asked the information desk if she could take the scooter on the tender to Half Moon Cay, they said no, it could not accomodate a scooter. After I talked my Mom in to walking to the tender and standing in line to get on it, once we got to the island we found other passengers roaming the island on their scooters. Not only could the tender take scooters, it had a ramp built specifically for it. The information team had no clue!
4. We booked an excursion with Carnival for Nassau that was mark mild activity. Turns out after walking almost a quarter of a mile just down the pier to get to the guide meeting place, we had to walk another quarter mile to get to the shuttle. Again, Mom couldn't take her scooter so she had to walk to the shuttle. She almost passed out. Had we known how far she would have to walk we would not have booked it.
5. This was my 4th cruise on Carnival, and I should have gotten a past cruiser sail and sign card when I boarded, which normally includes tickets to the captains party later in the week, but I was given a 1st time cruisers card. I did straighten it out with the front desk, but they did forget my captain's party tickets again.
6. There are only 2 musical shows and they repeat them throughout the weak. Neither are that spectacular.
7. There were not very many musical choices in the evenings and the seemed to end fairly early.
As I said, this was my 4th cruise with Carnival and probably my last. I think it's time to check out something a little classier. Yes, it was a reasonably priced cruise, but I don't think I even got my monies worth on this one!