Carnival Cruise Lines -- which is in the midst of a massive, $250 million revamp of its middle-aged hardware, its eight Fantasy-class vessels -- has trickled out a few more details on upcoming upgrades. Focusing on the transformation of each of the ships' pool decks, the line will introduce new pools and whimsical aqua parks.|
For instance, "Carnival WaterWorks" will feature a four-deck-high, 300-ft.-long spiraling tube water slide, stamped proudly by its status of lengthiest slide in cruising. A separate 82-ft. triple-lane water slide will also be added, and a large portion of the remaining deck area will be feature a spray park, complete with various water-spouting sculptures. From the details of design, it brings to mind the H20 Zone concept pioneered by Royal Caribbean's Freedom and Liberty of the Seas.
Thatched umbrellas, faux palm trees, and a blue and yellow tiled "beach" will enhance the main pool area. The two bars adjacent will also get the thatch work-up, as will the roofs of the outdoor food service area just behind the performance stage.
Carnival Imagination and Carnival Inspiration will be the first two ships to receive the latest innovations later this year, though the other six will get the sun deck revamp during their regularly scheduled dry-dock periods, to be completed by the end of 2009.
The upgrades, part of an "Evolutions of Fun" initiative that began in 2005, focus on other areas of the ships as well. Future improvements will include makeovers of the ships' 12,000-square-ft. spa facilities, custom-designed clubs for the 12- to 14-year-old age group under the Camp Carnival children's program, inter-connecting staterooms on some ships, and new sound and lighting systems in the ships' main show lounges. Firm dates on these additions have not yet been released.
Other "Evolutions of Fun" program additions have already been added on several ships, including remodeled staterooms, suites and bathrooms; flat-screen TV's in staterooms and select public areas; coffee bars; and nine-hole miniature golf courses.
--by Dan Askin, Assistant Editor