We live in the NOLA area, so cruising out of New Orleans is a no-brainer. We have done both Carnival and NCL, the two that regularly depart from here. Based on this last cruise, NCL is going to be our go-to cruise line.
Camp Carnival was great for our three-year old. The employees remembered her in the halls and she always was excited to go (telling us that once we left she had a great time).
The ports -- Cozumel, Belize, Roatan -- were fun and interesting. We had been to Cozumel, but the other two were new for us.
The room was spacious! 220 sqft. I was really impressed at how much room there was, including the closets.
The room stewards were good. The room was always clean and even if we took a nap mid-day, when we would return, the sheets would be tucked in.
To the individual who designed the ship: You are a moron. I have never been on a ship where it was difficult to actually see the water. On Deck 3, the deck with Guest Services, the main Atrium level, etc., the wood deck has really only two doors on each side, about thirty feet from each other. So you go out onto the deck and start walking forward or aft only to realize it is a dead end. The entire deck is a waste. Ah, it must be a smoking area then! Nope, the signs all say no smoking (unless you are a crew member or officer -- whenever I went out there an employee or two were always smoking.) I was trying to get to the Internet Cafe, so I asked guest services after I had roamed around for a while. You have to head up to the fifth floor, go all the way aft, take the last stairwell/elevator bay down a floor, go through the bar and there it is. The whole ship was like that, horribly designed.
The overall staff were a bit surly too. We had an assigned seating time, but we also went to the dining room for lunch and dinner a few times, so we got an idea of the mood of the restaurant. I can only guess that the workers in the Paris Dining room a) hate the maitre d', or b) are about to stage a mutiny b/c living conditions are so bad. Do not, and I repeat, do not ask for a second piece of bread. They will hunt you down and rape your dreams at night for this transgression. You would think that you wanted something extraordinary. We had the same wait staff for dinner for seven nights; they never remembered our names. Sounds petty, but isn't that the schtick, where they greet you by name (it has been that way on other carnival and NCL cruises). Iced Tea in the dining room should be treated as a luxury, much like the bread. IF you manage to get some, enjoy it!
The dining areas on this ship are amazingly claustrophobic and ill-planned. There was always a line at the buffets and they moved SOOOOO slowly. For example, cream cheese is usually put on a bagel. Why would you put the cream cheese at the front of the buffet and the bagel at the end? People had to constantly go back and forth in the line to get things that they had missed. Same thing with the cups, ice, and drinks. Think of the drink dispenser in the center, cups to the left, ice to the right. Try to figure out how that line worked. The guy doling out the bacon in the morning had to have been a Muslim assigned to the horrible task of giving the unclean pork. That or he had a ten-year ingrown toenail while wearing too-small shoes.
Fine Dining is a foreign concept on this ship. I will 1000% admit that I am a food snob. But this was really sad. One night I got short ribs, it was horrible and fatty -- and I mean so fatty I couldn't eat it. Another night was duet of filet mignon and short rib rillette. The filet was OK (although if I was the cow I would be upset that I was butchered twice -- once in the slaughterhouse and again in the kitchen) but the rillette consisted of the same exact short rib that had disappointed me the night before. There was no other preparation of the meat, just left overs. Rillettes are not reheated leftovers. Lobster Bisque tasted like flour, the shrimp the last night had a very distinct mold flavor (sounds delicious but it really is quite disgusting), in general the food in the dining room tasted like it was off the buffet from the day before. And that is saying a lot because the food on the buffet tasted like it was the left-overs from the previous dinner. It is a chicken and the egg situation, but in this scenario the only outcome is a half cooked chicken rubbed in eggshells.
If I cruise on Carnival again, it will have to be with some sort of unbelievable deal.