This was our second cruise with Carnival. After lots of bad press, we still decided because of the ports to do this cruise out of Barcelona, to France and Italy. We scheduled what was supposed to be the 4th cruise on the referb'd Sunshine but they cancelled the first two so we were the second cruise. They did not have the pools open and the slides were only open a couple days out of the entire cruise. The putting green was also never opened. They provided a OBC which worked out fine. We had a great dinner in the steakhouse that we otherwise wouldn't have had. The staff were all fairly nice, our cabin steward did a great job. We were initially in 6311, I would warn people against that room as it is right under a late night disco. On the first night at 1130pm when Eye of the Tiger was blaring and our 2 yr old couldn't sleep, we sought a room change. Although it was tedious and seemed to take them almost a day to find a place for us, we did change rooms. Some rooms had toilet issues or no water, so not all the rooms were complete or available to occupy.
We did excursions through www.cruisingexcursions.com and felt they did a great job, despite Carnival not allowing them to bring their shuttle buses to the port. We went to all the same spots as the Carnival excursion but usually arrived sooner and had more time there.
The food was delicious, our main dining waiter/waitress were excellent. The Italian specialty restaurant was FAB as was the steakhouse (3 hr dining experience)! Our 2 yr old used the children's club and was happy most of the time. There were a few staff that went above and beyond. As for entertainment, we loved the piano bar guy and there were a few game shows that we saw but otherwise, with such a port intensive week, we were exhausted most nights. We were told by some staff that they had not been paid for their time on board setting up the ship or since they started sailing, which I think was horrible! We enjoyed the ports but the ship was not on par with the "hype" that was created. Maybe after they worked out the issues it would have been better.