Started night before at Holiday Inn w/ park & cruise option. Shuttle to ship was great; signed up on list & no problems getting there. Went at 10:30 since 11:00 was booked.
Arrived around 11:30 & went straight in VIP (Recently Platinum)room, which was very nice with comfortable chairs & lemonade. 3 nice women there to help with registration & no waiting at all. I got my Platinum card & my DH & bro got their golds. Nice room & climate controlled, but would recommend a TV. Others in our group registered (outside) when they came & it seemed the lines weren't as long because people came & registered as soon as they arrived. Handicapped had a special line.
They came to get us at 12:20 p.m. & ushered us past the other people to the front of the line. No waiting at all to get on & went straight to Lido for lunch.
Loved the mini-golf & had a tourney with our group. Super fun.
Didn't care for deck party. Did not do conga line, line dancing, YMCA or macarena. Oldies music...twist, etc. & country music for dancing would have been good. Instead the dancers came out & danced for us (yawn). I wanted to dance to some of those oldies, not watch them! I keep getting confused...who is this for??? Dancers would probably like to take the night off as well. I was very disappointed since some of our other deck parties were super fun.
I think part of the problem is the age of some of the 'kids' who run the activities. They seem to base everything on what they want to do. They don't think that older people want to do things or pick things that we don't want to do. Try to talk to some of them to get ideas on what would be fun.
Ok, the ship...well, it was large & not decorated to my taste, but heck, I'm on a cruise...who really cares that much? The only time it really bothered me was in the El Morocco lounge which had carpet that was orange & yellow plaid, paisley-like tile of green & blue, sapphire blue lights on the ceiling, antique outdoor like lamps of bronze, zebra striped benches, & other conglomerates of stuff. Kind of just looked like Home Depot threw all clearance items in a barrel & they used it all to decorate that room. But as I said, it was fine...the comics were in there & it was mostly dark & seemed kind of apropos. The Spectacular room was large & they had taken out most of the huge posts in the main part of the room,so it made it nice for more people to see better.
Our room. The luggage was there & the room was ready almost immediately. Possibly because I was a VIP, though. I'd received a letter (laying on the bed)from Carnival giving me info on what I got as a Platinum, along with my complimentary logo item (picture frame). I had a full-time concierge # to call for anything I needed. I got unlimited wash & fold laundry. I got petit fours & appetizers brought to my room on two separate nights. There was a desk specified for Platinum guests at guest services...no waiting in line! First on & first off the ship. Our room was a Premium aft corner balcony & it was just amazing! We had an extra entrance with a door so the room got no hallway noise. It was a true party balcony & could have fit about 14 or 15 people comfortably. The room was the same sq. footage as other balcony rooms, but a different configuration, so seemed larger (more square/triangle than long rectangle. My brother shared our room & there was always lots of space to maneuver. Being in the aft, well, seemed I walked a lot more than normal...but didn't gain any weight so great.
John Heil or whatever. He was so good!!! He was super funny, witty & seemed to be a genuinely nice guy. We really enjoyed him & he was one of the very best directors ever! I laughed & laughed many times when he was running the shows.
Our waiter Mo, was good, but not as personable as some. He was efficient, though we did wait quite a while to be served. My water glass was empty a lot & I usually took my husbands water since he drank soda more. There were two tables of us (19)& Mo did both tables. The first night, he waited on the other table first & it seemed like forever before we were served. My brother & husband are good tippers & tip service people extra. The next night & the other nights, we were waited on first & they were served last...think it might have been the tips. Food was good, but always the same. Wish they served crab legs. We don't go to the Steakhouse because we see no need to. Lido food was buffet food & satisfying, though not incredible. Chocolate buffet needed more dipping chocolate.
Shows were OK, but I missed the jugglers, magicians & comedians in the main show rooms. I get tired of the singing & dancing. It seemed some nights, there wasn't a lot to do. Comedians were fairly late, but the ones I saw were good.
The talent show was good, but only because John made it ROFL. Legends was OK, but by they should put some older women in the show, rather than Britney & Madonna (I don't want to talk about 'being a virgin' at this stage of my life)& Gloria Estevan. Aretha was good. Gloria & Britney are not legends to me. Cher would be better or a country western star, Reba. Time for a change. Elvis, Frank Sinatra, Garth Brooks, James Brown, are legends...Ricky Martin...no.
Maitre'D was good - Gabriel. Never had one even talk to me before. He came by almost every night to visit. Very personable. I missed the 'hot, hot hot show', & dancing around with us.
Room stewards were OK (did tip at beginning). TV broke & was fixed immediately. They put on extra comforters because all our backs hurt from the hard beds.
Olga...karaoke. We did not like her at all. She was super caught up in herself. The first night she wore a skin tight red dress with a black thong underneath...tacky! She was representing the cruise line & should dress a bit better; many people complained. Another worker came in & she let him sing, making others wait. Then she said, "He comes in just to see ME in my red dress. She insisted on singing a lot herself & would sing herself & not let the ship people sing saying there wasn't enough time. She would say she couldn't work the machine, and when people asked for songs (they gave her the numbers) she'd say, "Sing this one instead.I can't get that one to work." When some very young & cute boys came in to sing...after they sang their one song, she made everyone else wait so she could sing some songs with the cute kid. Time ran out before some got to sing their song. Karaoke has always been one of our favorite things...though we seldom sing. But others should be able to sing & it should not be "all about her!"