My first impression of this ship was alright, the ship is clean and the deck furniture is nice with sun shades that come up from the chair to block the sun from your face. Nice European style furniture. We had a balcony room which was comparable to other lines except for the TV which was small and was not mounted on the wall.
My first disappointment came on the first night when we went for dinner at the 1st seating and we sent to the buffet area where they simply blocked off the back section and put linen table clothes on the tables there. I was not happy with this as I have NEVER been seated in a buffet area for dinner, so I complained to the waiter who was friendly and showed me downstairs to talk to the Matre D who switched us to the main dining room.
The entertainment is nothing to get overly excited about, the dancers were nothing great, however they did have REALLY good gymnists who made up for the dancers.
The Casino is small, only 3 blackjack More
tables and they closed it most nights by 1am. The dealers were however very fun and entertaining, but the other cruise lines had more action in the casinos.
Now... the Gym... or should I say what gym! It is pathetic. They have very limited free weights, only goes up to 10 Kilos which is not very much at all and the cardio machines are not professional quality and are all in the metric system. The worst part is, there is not even a drinking fountain in the gym so if you need water you need to leave the gym and go to the bar in the spa and ask the bartender for a glass or bottle of water. I was so frustrated after the first day I only went back one day. This was by far the WORST gym I have seen on a ship. I think this goes along with the line being european, they do not use gyms that much but are more into spas.
Room Service - this is EXTREMELY limited. Do not expect to eat lunch or dinner in your room, you will be hungry. I ordered cheese and crackers one day and recieved 3 pieces of cheese and a package of 2 saltine crackers.
Kids Program - I have 2 kids, 3 and 5, and I called ahead before I booked this cruise and was told that they have babysitting services available for a fee after 11pm. Then, 2 days before we sailed I called again, and was told they did not offer this service, but they had free babysitting until 11. When we arrived I was told that is was only until 10pm. Good thing I had my mother in law with us to help with the kids at night or I would have been stuck in my room after 10. The activities they did were the same EVERY day and they put the little kids with the kids up to 13 years old. This was not ok with me being that I have a 3 year old daughter. My kids LOVE camp Carnival, and after we got off at the first port, they asked if they could get back on another ship so they could go to the other kids club! Pretty sad when a 3 and 5 year old notice the difference.
The food was terrible, both in the dining room and the buffet. Breakfast was the same EVERY day, lunch was an overcrowded buffet and dinner was nothing special. Same salads every night and no real dessert, mostly just ice cream. If you are hungry after 11 at night... you are pretty much out of luck. 2 nights they had a midnight buffet, but every other night there is nothing! I usually go for a snack after I'm done in the casino, but there is no food and I already covered the room service.
I would obviously not recommend this cruise. We only booked it because my mother in law is not a citizen of the US and she did not need a visa for the ports this cruise went to. It is however inexpensive, so I'm sure some people book it for that reason, but it is not even close to being in the same class with Royal Carribbean, Princess or Carnival. A little extra money is worth it to book a different cruise line. Less