We just returned from a Mexican Riviera cruise on the Carnival Pride. There were 18 "Crazy Cruisers" with us and we had a blast. The Pride is a beautiful ship. The artwork and decor was wonderful. While the design and artwork were better than other Carnival ships we've sailed on, the cabins seemed slightly larger but were the same ugly orange color.
We enjoyed tasty meals in the dining room as well as delicious buffets. The service from our servers (Werner, Mariya, and Canstantin) was superb. We especially enjoyed the desserts that were served in the Mermaid's Grille. The 24-hour pizza and ice cream were also a highlight. We ate until we were sick of food by the end of the cruise.
The entertainment onboard was very good. We really enjoyed the band "Pure" who entertained nightly in the Butterflies Lounge. They played soft rock from the 1960s through present day. It was such a pleasure to listen, dance, and socialize to such good music. The Butterflies Lounge is also smoke-free which we loved. Our only complaint comes from the fact that children were "all over" the dance floor a few nights. We would enjoy an "Adults Only" dance floor. We did visit the Piano Bar one night but didn't find the singer/pianist that engaging or entertaining. We didn't visit the other bands playing because the cigarette smoke was so horrible in those lounges.
The entertainers for the evening shows were all right. None of the comedians "bowled us over" but they were fine. I wouldn't pay to see any of them again, but they were typical cruise ship comedians. However, the three shows by the onboard dancers and singers were awesome. I believe they were named Vroom, Swing Time, and Wonderful World. The dancers and singers did a great job.
The casino was fine except for the cigarette smoke. We played the slots once for about 30 minutes but left due to the smoke. It was nice to have nickel, quarter, dollar, and two dollar machines.
There were a few things we thought needed improvement. The cruise director, Lenny, was the least entertaining cruise director we've had on six cruises. He just didn't have that "IT" factor that we've seen in other cruise directors. He appeared at shows and made a few announcements, but never really seemed into his job. It wasn't that he did anything wrong; he just wasn't "fun" like others had been in the past.
We have been on six cruises; five being on Carnival. The menus have been exactly the same on every cruise we've sailed on. It's time to vary the menu. By now, we have them memorized.
The ports of Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta were typical Mexican ports. We enjoyed seeing new ports but didn't fall in love with them like we have with St. Thomas, Grand Cayman, St. Maarten, and Jamaica in the Caribbean. We booked an excursion in Puerto Vallarta called "Rythms of the Night". It was AWESOME! The boat ride was fun, the meal was fabulous, and the show was super! We highly recommend that excursion.
And, we wish all of the bars with bands playing, as well as the casino, were smoke-free. Being allergic to smoke restricted us from enjoying all this ship has to offer. Be prepared to breather harder if you visit most bars, lounges, or the casino onboard.
Our cabin steward, Edgar, was an older gentleman who seemed to have a lot of trouble keeping up. Our bathroom had not been cleaned when we arrived but he cleaned it shortly thereafter. He had trouble several times getting the cabin cleaned and serviced. We didn't really mind due to his age and the fact that he was friendly and seemed to be trying hard.
Overall, we LOVED the Carnival Pride. It is a beautiful ship, the employees were friendly and helpful, the food was absolutely delicious, and the entertainment was great for the most part.