After reading many negative reviews on various site regarding Carnival Spirit I feel that I need to add my opinion to the mix.
From the time of booking this cruise until the date of departure it was a positive experience even getting an upgrade from an obstructed view to a Balcony.
Check-in was a smooth process from the time of of arrival at Station Pier to the arrival at our room. Luggage didn't take too long to arrive at our room.
After a quick freshen up we set off to explore the ship and meet the rest of our group.
LIDO DECK- more food than you could imagine. The food was set out in different stations throughout. This was a bit confusing at first but once you had the idea of where everything was I think it was a good set up. Even better than the layout on the Dawn Princess. If you can't find anything to suit your taste buds here I think you would have to be a very fussy eater.
NOUVEAU STEAKHOUSE- We booked this through the Carnival website before we went on the cruise and it was a wonderful dining experience. Faultless and well worth the $35 cover charge.
CHEF'S TABLE- I read about this somewhere online and also booked before we cruised. This event is only held twice per cruise for 10 people each time. At a cost of $75 per head with wine included in the cost. It started off in the Kitchen with 3 starters. It was an amazing experience to see the kitchen in action. We were then taken to the disco where a table for 10 was laid out with all the trappings. We all agreed that it was one of the best dining experiences we had ever had. I would recommend this to anyone.
EMPIRE DINING- We were on anytime dining and I would recommend this to anyone.
We were never under any pressure to get to the dining room. Regarding complaints about queues we only had to wait for a table once and we were given a buzzer so they could let us know when the table was ready. We were a table of 8 so I think that is a pretty good effort. All the wait staff were friendly especially our drink waiter Wiger. He could not do enough for us. 10/10 for all meals in the dining room.
BARBQUE- We only had this on one occasion and it was very yummy.
ENTERTAINMENT- We only went to a couple of shows. We never seemed to have the time.
COOL CLUB- The band that played here are very talented and had a vast repertoire. They always had people up dancing.
PIANO BAR- We loved going here and joining in with every one seated around the piano. Once again this guy could play pretty much anything.
SPORTS BAR- Ok but only American sports on offer. Something to do with the Satellite.
WIFI- For $64.90 you could get unlimited WIFI for one tablet or phone for duration of cruise. Good for facebook and checking emails. Pretty good value.
GREEN THUNDER- I wasn't game to go on this myself but those in our group that did enjoyed the experience.
SHOPPING- The shops were a nice place to visit to fill in a spare moment here and there. The sale days created an atmosphere with people gathering to get the bracelet and watch bargains. Also some high end jewellery and plenty of duty free perfume and alcohol.
DRINKS- Cocktails were priced at between $8.50 and $10.50 and everyday there was a cocktail of the day and you could keep the glass as a souvenir. I got a mirror ball one day, flasks another and glasses another. I always found that the alcohol content was of a strong amount. Most cocktails were very nice. Beers were around $6.95. Bottles of wine around $34.
PHOTOS- Cost around $15 for normal ones, ie: getting off the ship etc. Formal photos were $29.99 which may sound expensive but when you think about the cost of getting a professional shot they are not a bad price.
DISABLED ROOM- My mother and daughter shared disabled room 4207 and the bathroom was very good for a person in a wheelchair. The only negative was the door which was very heavy. This room is classed as an indoor room but it had a window in between life rafts so had a bit of a view so is a bonus.
STATEROOMS- We were in rooms 4215, 4185 and 4181 and all rooms were of a good size, sometimes fitting 8 people in them for pre dinner drinks. We were able to bring a bottle of wine in each in our carry on so this was a bonus. Bigger than on the Dawn Princess. The mattresses and pillows were very comfortable.
Our room attendants were fantastic and could never do enough for us. Thanks Ketut and Putu.
Al in all I think Carnival Spirit is a great ship. Her decor may be gaudy but I think that is what I liked about her. I liked the fact that there was a vast range of ages on the ship from babies to very old. It was a great mix.
We would not hesitate to go on her again.