We were two of only four Diamond status passengers on board for the week. There is nothing but great things I can say about the ship, crew and entertainment, cabins etc. There were two items that galled the two of us.
1. The Smoking Policy. If there is one thing I wish Carnival would do, that would be to STOP all smoking on the balconies. Other cruise lines have done this and Celebrity has even stopped smoking in the Casino. The Paradise was our favourite ship when it was 100% non smoking, but we understand it was not profitable. I understand that smokers need places to light-up and Carnival needs to address this.
2. The Chef's Art Restaurant. As Diamond members we were given a complimentary dinner each. My wife chose to use hers on this cruise. We must say, the "Amuse Bouche", appetisers,salad and dessert were up to the standard one would expect. However the two items that were actually cooked by the three chefs, were not up to even a two star restaurant. Two miniscule pieces of Chilean Sea Bass, one of which was particularly "fishy" in taste, the other square inch was perfect. My "Cowboy" Steak, was cooked properly and what little meat there was , when dissected from the fat, well flavoured but chewy, what one would expect on the range, if one was a cowboy. I think the chefs need to go back to the chef's art school. Or to coin a phrase, from a popular TV Channel, "You have been Chopped" The other two item on the entree were two gigantic pieces of broccoli, which although billed as steamed were almost raw, and unable to be cut with a fish knife. My steak knife was able to cope.
We did express our concerns to Chef Anthony and to the hostess, who did offer to replace the fish and suggested that in the future we asked for the steamed broccoli to be well cooked!
Apart from thost two items, the cruise was a howling success with the Superbowl on Lido deck, and the addition of the Tequila and Red Frog Rum Bars. Special mention to Lancelot at the Red Frog Bar who looked after us, "Irie Mon"!
We used the MDR only once as they managed to find is a table for two in a forgotten corner, where the used plates snd china were collected. At least we got to see for the one night we ate there, what people left on there plates. For the rest of the week, we dined "Al Fresco", under the stars, with excellent food from the buffet. Perhaps I have lousy taste, but the steaks on the buffet, were superior to the Steak House! Also the Indian Tandoori, at lunch, was absolutely superb, as good as any I have eaten in the World. We had breakfast on deck from the buffet or in the MDR. Both places were excellent.
Overall a great cruise, highlighted by a special tour of the Bridge for the four of us Diamond Members, as we set sail from Costa Maya. Followed up by being invited by the Cruise Director, Ms. Jamie Dee to have our photos taken with all the Senior Officers at the Repeaters Party, as apparently we had the most sail days on Carnival for this particular sailing.
We will be back on the Breeze in November headed for Curacao, Can't wait!!