Lots of room, needs some upgrading-turquoise bathroom counters a little dated, balcony acceptable, Disappointing that smokers are nearby to blow smoke in our room. AC system occasionally had a smoke odour, strange.
Ships entertainment: Bars had some excellent piano players and guitar. Dance and song shows were outstanding with great staging, sound, props and professional performers. Show band played elsewhere on the ship and were tight. Evening shows were even rescheduled due to some computer glitch. One note: the dancers wore the skimpiest Vegas revealing outfits we have seen. Had Edge a great juggler/comedian, impressionist Ken Block, Mark's Hypnosis show was hilarious, getting about 10 people truly hypnotized. Jamila-songstress, Doug Cameron (great violinist)guest talent show, real funny Tommy Drake. motown Marcus Anthony-fantastic, staff/guest traditional Legend's ending show, moved to the pm to allow for the rescheduled end show. Restaurants: Normandie dining room, was great, still have one lobster night, 2 elegant (formal) evenings, the award winning warm chocolate cake was available every night. Never had so much dancing in the dining room before, entertaining. Lido buffet, good variety, but very much spread out. A few things we missed: printed mini newspapers (we heard these were available in Europe on Carnival, a better library, more trivia/suduku puzzles (they did have daily events to make up)no future cruise booking desk, not even a Carnival travel flyer, no future deposit, onboard credit promo available, no anytime dining (being rolled out right now)
Panama Canal; transit was incredible. ship showed a PBS video the day before the transit, to an overpacked theatre-then replayed. Would have been nice to have an expert give a few lectures on this marvel and other Caribbean topics. Get up early to get your chair on the forward deck of the ship, some were there at 5 am. Also if coming from the Pacific, also get up early around 7 to be part of the interesting ship sailing under the Bridge of the Americas and Panama City on your right. We flew into Long Beach, a much nicer, smaller airport (only 5 airlines) than LAX. stayed at the LB Marriott, very nice, drove with friends to the San Diego Zoo pre-cruise, worth the visit. Embarkation was a very long delay, and not sure why, only 2 metal detectors I think. Carnival cruiser are very loyal, so be careful when comparing with other lines. On this ship out of 2200, 1500 were past passengers, the loyalty party was packed. Carnival somehow does not have a name for its loyalty program and does not publicize it enough on its website or on the ship. Platinum (10 cruises) is what everyone was aiming for. Had an aft balcony on Deck 8, learned something about the Azipod propulsion system that most newer ships have. With certain wave heights and cross winds, there is a lot of vibration felt all up the ship. They call it cavitation and nothing can be done. Forward on the ship, there is a lot of side to side motion with the winds and waves and the bow bulb plowing through the water, they call it tail wagging the dog. So midship and low is best for the motion challenged customer.