We began our stay in Seattle for 2 nights prior to the cruise. Doing the typical tourist thing of Pike Place Market and Space needle. Be sure to purchase some of the lovely flowers from the market for your cabin. We dinned at Sky City Restaurant for dinner the night prior to the cruise and the food was good, but the view was to die for! We used a local town car driver "Ozzy" he was waiting for us at the airport when we arrived, took us from the La Quinta on 8th ave and again was waiting for us when the ship docked to take us to the airport.
Getting on the ship was different than any other Carnival terminal we had visited, but not very crowed at 11:45 - we were VIP and walked on after verifying all documents. We did not see a VIP waiting area and you do stand in line with everyone else while getting aboard. No problem for us, just seen the question asked on one of the forums. We walked around the ship and ate lunch at the Deli, our rooms were ready by 1:15. The Ocean Suite was nice, not as large as other Suite's on Carnival ships, but the balcony was large enough for 4 adults to sit very comfortably, with a couple of kids also. There were 4 chairs and a small table on the balcony. The queen size bed was hard, but our room attendent, George, put something on top of the mattress to soften it us some making it ok. Plenty of storage space, double closets in the sitting area off the bath and double closets by the bed. Bath room had double sinks and whirlpool tub. Nice and clean. In fact the entire ship was clean.
The crew of the Spirit were very friendly and helpful. We did the main dining room the first two nights, but they were slow and the food on the Lido dining was good. Room service was also quick and good.
Cruising Tracy Arm Fjord was the highlight of our cruise, I didn't want to leave the balcony. Between my DH and my camera we have 600+ photos of that day alone. The whales were always on the other side of the ship, no matter which side we were on LOL. We did see a whale, some seals, eagles, birds and other native wild life, but not like we had hope
As for the clothing, I way over packed! We only wore light jackets once, we saw no rain except for a few sprinkles in the last port. No need for the bug spray for us. The weather could not have been nicer. All in all it was well worth the time spent planning and almost 2500 miles of air travel. I wish you fair winds and following sails......