This is our first cruise and considering that it was to depart when the east coast was experiencing some of the heaviest snowfall in many years we were very happy that our departure port was baltimore as it was a couple of hours drive for us.
Getting on the boat was a lengthy process starting from dropping your luggage off(1hr)to getting thru security and giving your credit card information(1 1/2 hr). When we finally made it to the boat we headed straight up to the Lido deck to grab a bite. Im gonna break my review down by category as I think it is easier to write.
Decor: OMG, so GAUDY!!! Considering that the reputation of carnival includes kids I did not feel that their decor was appropriate at all. Lets start with the wall paper upon entering the cabins. They were 1/2 naked women with breasts exposed. Mermaid grill had lots of breasts exposed. Davids restaurant had all of David exposed. Just was not impressed with the designers choice of decor and placement. Its not that the materials were even cheap...there was granite, mosaics, slate etc..that could have been placed very tastefully....BUT WASNT!!!The atrium was dark and garish, the dining room although nice and bright was very old fashioned looking. The casino had beat up tables, torn vinyl on the tables,stained chairs, and was congested.
Food: On a scale of 1 to 5 I would say that the food was a 2.5. There was a variety of food on the first day but then I felt that the following days(7)it was all the same. I just wasn't so impressed with the quality of food. I didn't feel that it was upper/top quality especially where the steak, shrimp, sushi was concerned. I didn't feel that they had a lot of healthy options for snacks like fresh veges, fruit was there but other options??? I just wasn't impressed.
Entertainment: Was not impressed with the shows at all. I didn't feel that there was variety in this area. Bingo was okay. Comedian, mark simmons, was funny and I did enjoy his show. A variety show?? Chrismas show was okay. Love and marriage show--okay. Hairy chest contest--I guess that this is entertainment for some. On the Lido deck 2 calypso singers would sing with a keyboard--this was okay. I felt that there should have been more interactive activities like dance classes, couples shows, more comedians, game shows etc...
Kids club: My kids btw the ages of 5 and 8 did enjoy it however I felt that whenever i dropped them off i had to pick them up an hour later due to lunch time or break time etc...they did enjoy the activities.
People: Okay we by no means are snobs and enjoy mingling. I would consider us to be a white collar hard working family. We enjoy spending time with our kids and doing activities with them, we like to vacation at least 2 times a year and we enjoy eating out at non-fastfood places. I was very disappointed in the quality of people. There was not even a handful of people that I spoke to more then hello. Very disappointing. I will never leave out of Baltimore again, NEVER!!!