Embarkation and Disembarkation: Ft Lauderdale - so easy and quick - Carnival is #1 in this process.
Ship: Loved this class ship - so easy to navigate, very comfortable and welcoming in every area. The dEcor seems a bit gaudy in places, and I feel there are some unused spaces that could benefit with some attention and action ( i.e. The Garden walk, and a few other common areas that appeared empty most of the time). I never felt the ship was crowded like I have on other cruises.
Food: Overall I would say very good. I ate in the main dining room ever night for dinner and was always content with my selection. Some favorites were the mashed potatoes, mushroom soup, shrimp cocktail, and all the delicious deserts. The buffet always had a good selection, including a deli (good Ruben's) Asian and Italian stations and a made to order egg/omlet station at breakfast. The French toast was delish. Self serve ice cream or yogurt available 24hrs was a nice treat (try the chocolate/strawberry yogurt cone..yummmm). Awesome choc chip cookies at the buffet.
Cabin: #7299 is a Premium balcony - with a more square style room and larger balcony - this cabin was one of the best I've stayed in (no elevator noises) The square" feel - seemed roomier, more closet space than I have had before in a standard balcony- and a great size balcony that we had opened to our neighbor/friends cabin. Nothing like having room service deliver coffee to drink out on the balcony watching the sun rise over the ocean.. "ahhh the life".
Service: Our room steward (Casy) was wonderful. He did everything we asked and then some. Our room was always cleaned and a towel animal on the bed every night.. Couldn't have asked for any more. Our servers in the main dining were friendly, and we asked to keep our same servers for the duration which is part of the fun for me in getting to know the servers and having conversations with them.. making the whole dining experience more enjoyable. I was very impressed with all service - all staff were friendly, smiling and engaging.
Entertainment: Loved the new comedy shows, so glad there are more venues available in the evening. There was always something going on and a good variety of entertainment available. I do wish there were some Trivia and Name that Tune games in the evenings.
More good stuff: I really liked how Carnival does not "push" drinks or photo's on passengers. I like that there is no "Art Auction" going on in the lounges areas. I was impressed with how the casino rewards past guests with perks. I loved that the daily announcements are not constant and blasting into the cabins - so sleeping in and naps are possible. I loved how clean the bathrooms and common areas were kept. I like that there is a Sushi bar available at 5pm daily (need California rolls).
I wish: there were places to sit on deck 3 to enjoy the evening air. I wish the casino had been kinder to me. I wish Carnival would provide a better program for Cruise Critic Meet and Greet meetings with snacks and officers available to attend. RC does this and the Captain has attended to speak and take photos, this was a nice treat. I wish the pools were fresh water. I wish the lounge chairs on the balconies had cushions. Mostly... I wish I were back on the ship. Happy cruising!!!!!!