I think the first thing to say about the cruise that I just did on Carnival Dream is that the Dream is dead. I have cruised plenty and I think that the Carnival “FunShips” have really brought the idea of cruising down to a very low level. So much so, that the "FunShips" anymore could almost be classed as the “TrailerTrashShips” or the “GhettoShips”.
All manner of skanky dress could be seen from the pool to the so called formal nights. The idea of wearing your pants down around your hips with your greasy underwear sticking out going into the main dining room for dinner is just appalling to me. Of course the Maitre d’ did nothing to stop it.
The food, which I had been told would be quite good, was not. I had taken a cruise on the Carnival Victory last year out of San Juan and that, WAS, the absolute low of cruise experiences for me. Freezer burn on the chocolate pie, bacon and sausages swimming in grease on the breakfast buffet, etc. So, when I went on the Dream, I thought that it being a newer ship, things would be a bit better. Sadly I was mistaken.
The Captain’s Dinner was a waste of food. The Prime Rib was tough and so unbelievably bland, I had two bites and sent it back. This unfortunately upset our waiter and it had no reflection on him at all. That poor man hustled is butt off every evening and so did the busboy. They had just too many guests to serve at once. Most items appeared at the table warm or cold as they would be brought from the galley right after ordering and then sit, covered, on the wait table for 15 to 20 minutes until served.
We did treat ourselves to the “Chef’s Table” and that was absolutely terrific. If you do do a Carnival cruise, sign up for it as soon as you get on board because it will be only good meal you get other than the Steak House.
For a ship that holds over 3000 people, Carnival has seen fit to only put 2 small pools on board. You can never get in either of them and when you do, it’s just a matter of standing up in the water and not being able to move.
The 3 big main shows in the theatre were mediocre at best. The female lead singer had no lower register so when she went to the lower notes you couldn’t hear her and when she had to hit the higher notes they were basically screamed out. The male lead was just as bad but he insisted on having the microphone so close to his mouth all you heard were the very loud “P” and “D” sounds when he sang. You could also hear him heavy breathing while he was dancing. The dancers were very heavy footed and you could hear them stomping across the stage which seemed to throw off the beat and rhythm of everyone else. The first show was a country and western themed show which was not good. The other two shows were geared to the African American audience, one of which was all Hip Hop and Break Dancing. The third was directed totally to the MoTown sounds.
The layout of the Dream is very basic with very few small areas where one can sit and chat comfortably. On Deck 5, if you want to go from the front to the back of the ship you MUST walk through the centre of the Casino regardless of what you do. The sushi bar stank up the whole one side of the ship and was not pleasant to be around at all.
All in all, it was not the best cruise I’ve ever taken however, it will be my last Carnival cruise. Carnival has lowered the bar beyond any chance of bring back the standard of a basic cruise.