My wife and I had never been on a cruise together and I'll have to say overall this was a wonderful experience. The weather was great and the staff was extraordinary.
The stand-outs to me were the wait staff in the Atlantic Dining Room including Ida, Hugo and Kristoff. They were very attentive and they were a blast to watch during the nightly entertainment. The food was good although I wish they had offered a rib-eye steak at least one of the nights.
Speaking of food, it was plentiful although I was expecting more from the pizza place. I'll preface this with the fact that I'm a Papa John's junky, but the pizza at the aft restaurant left a lot to be desired. As far the buffets, they had a variety and the lines were not bad. My personal favorite meal of the day was breakfast and especially the made to order omelets (never got the chefs name but he was great). Also there were waffles, pancakes and scrambled eggs, along with the thinnest and oddest tasting bacon ever.
In the casino we usually waited until our favorite blackjack dealers were on shift before we played. Anita was a delight to play with as was Carlos, who helped us learn the ins and outs of Fun 21. Although we left with less cash than we came aboard with it was still an enjoyable time.
My biggest complaint of the cruise was the entertainment. I'm a musician so I'm a bit pickier than many people, but really, is it that hard to find an acoustic guitar player that can play and sing without sounding like the quintessential smarmy/schmooze? He was technically a really good player but how do you mess up the melody and the guitar part to Sweet Home Alabama? (especially when it wasn't even a request)
The live band that played behind the karaoke was awesome! Every one of those musicians was top-notch even with novice singers sitting in. They were the entertainment highlight for me!
The casino band was ok but the bass player played ahead of the beat and overplayed so much it seemed like the band was playing two different tempos at the same time. I'm sure it was due to boredom and repetition but it was jarring to listen to.
The fitness room was nice with current machines and had free weights which I didn't expect. Just make sure you bring water... there's none to be found.
Disembarkation was flawless and we left the ship an hour ahead of schedule. I just wish the check-in at the airport prior to embarkation was as efficient.
All in all it was a good time and with a few exceptions, Carnival should be proud of the employees they have on the Victory.