I had high hopes for our cruise on board the Carnival Miracle after reading so many glowing reviews of the ship. I had also sailed on the Valor twice, and enjoyed that ship immensely. Needless to say, were were less than enamoured with our cruise on board the Miracle.
My first impression of the ship was immediately negative. Upon entering the ship, I was hit with such an overwhelming smell of smoke. We found this to be the case throughout the entire 8-night cruise. There is really no delicate way to say this....the Miracle smells bad. Throughout the trip, I was constantly smelling either cigarette smoke or an overwhelming mildew smell. Unfortunately, these smells were almost everywhere. I've been on 12 cruises, and I've never experienced this before. It was a very unpleasant assault on the senses.
I also did not care for the ship's layout. The ship, while as large as many others that I have sailed, seemed very small. I found the pool area to be entirely too claustrophobic, and I hated that the main pool area consisted of two, small pools that were completed divided from one other. I truly prefer an open, airy feeling at poolside, and the Miracle had just the opposite feel.
Clearly, no cruise is entirely bad, and there were some very positive things that I'd like to point out as well. Our stateroom was great. We were in cabin 6170, and ocean view suite, and we loved it. The room is layed out exceptionally well, and there is a abundance of closet and drawer space. Our cabin stewards were extremely friendly and very attentive.
We also found the food to be really great. We used Your Time Dining, and with the exception of the first formal night, the service was terrific. We also loved Nick & Nora's...the atmosphere is wonderful, and the food is fantastic.
We've sailed Princess, NCL, RCCL and Carnival (four times.) Out of our 12 cruises, I would rank this one very close to the bottom of the list. We truly disliked this ship, and we would never chose to sail on a Spirit-class vessel again.