From the title you can see this was our (my husband and I) 6th cruise with Carnival (Gold VIFP). As always prior to the cruise I read the reviews. After my previous cruise with Carnival and the negative reviews the prior ship had and afterward my absolutely positive experience, I decided that only my actual experience would be the judge in my case.
Embarkation in NYC - approximately 30 minutes and my husband and I were on the Lido deck having lunch (no line).
Cabin - Inside, midship, Verandah just as I had requested. Our luggage was delivered to our cabin by 3:00 p.m. (Clean & Immaculate). Our Steward Natasha introduced herself and asked if we had any special requests, which I really appreciated.
Muster Drill - Painless, everyone was in order and everything was smooth and completed prior to sailing.
Buffet - As many reviews as I had read prior to the cruise complaining about the long lines, the food being cold and the staff, our experience was totally the opposite. My husband and I never encountered a line, the food was hot, the selection was good and the staff was great, always pleasant. Truthfully, I was completely beside myself when I heard a couple complaining about a long line in the buffet when there was only two people in front of them and I was in back of them. Some people just are absolutely ridiculous and just love to complain about anything.
Main Dining Room - Well our waiters Goran, Sussila and Andrea were excellent. They were attentive, quick, knew us by our first names after the first night, our food was always hot, they knew how we liked our coffee and just could not do enough for us. My husband and I shared the table with another couple who were very nice and friendly and educated. I truly believe that since the four of us treated the waiters with respect, we received the same back. The last day of the cruise I shed a tear or two as I said my goodbye's this is the impact that our three waiters had on me. As far as the food, the menu was great, no complaints whatsoever.
Overall ship - The ship is nice, and I found the pink to be tasteful. I did prefer the theme of the Liberty and the Dream.
Children - I love children, however on this ship there were less than 200. For those who do not like to cruise with children onboard, cruise the last week of September or when they are all in school.
Overcrowding - Although many complain about the crowds, I never felt that it was too crowded.
Ports - I have visited these 3 ports before and loved them all. In past reviews I have covered the ports, so I will not repeat myself on this one.
Casino - I like the slots and the casino staff is very attentive. I am part of the Players Club and they treat me very well. I do have one request if a Carnival representative reads this review, which by the way I will also incorporate in my customer survey. Please, Please add air purifiers in the casino. I am a non-smoker and I also have asthma and I feel this is something that needs to be addressed. The cigarette smoke was pretty bad.
I have tried my best to give you a glimpse of my experience, however, everyone has a different way of thinking and seeing things. I truly believe that everyone has to be their own judge. My husband and I had a wonderful experience. Just remember you make your own vacation and sometimes we have to make adjustments to accomplish our goals. Happy Cruising!