Arrived at Fiumicino Airport in Rome as part of the Carnival cruise air package. Having been to Italy before, was not surprised at the utter confusion at the airport. Transported by bus to the port and waited at least one hour at embarkation facility before the Carnival staff arrived. There again confusion reigned. The actual embarkation processing was painless and soon we were aboard the ship. A very impressive, large, and unique ship to say the least. I learned to like the spaceship-like lighting used throughout the ship. It pulsated with different intensities, glowed in various colors, and seemed like it was of another world. It actually made the entire ship seem alive. We had a balcony room which was fairly roomy, well appointed, and comfortable. Plenty of storage space. As other reviewers have mentioned, the ship deck layout is just plain bad. It takes about two weeks to fully understand where you are, want to go and how to get there. Too bad most of you will be on a one week cruise.
Was disappointed with the quality of tour guides used in the shore excursions arranged for by Carnival. Also, Cruise Director Todd Wittmer has a ways to go before I rate him as "Exceeding my expectations". Good luck with your girlfriend Todd, we hope your personal life works out. The quality and variety of food was disappointing. It seemed like the food staff strived hard to make each meal exceptionally ordinary. It's too bad that during six days at sea, the highlight of daytime cruise entertainment was a continuing series of trivia games. On the plus side, the stage musical productions were high energy, well staged and well done. Well enough for now, I've got to get busy booking another cruise.
p.s., Don't bother expecting any camera bargains on this ship. You can do better at Circuit City.