This was our first cruise. The ship is HUGE and luxurious. There were over 2,000 passengers on board, and over 900 staff, so the staff:passenger ratio is excellent. You rarely ever felt crowded. There are plenty of great areas for adults ... Read More
This was our first cruise. The ship is HUGE and luxurious. There were over 2,000 passengers on board, and over 900 staff, so the staff:passenger ratio is excellent. You rarely ever felt crowded. There are plenty of great areas for adults to chill during the day, such as the Serenity area for 18+ with lounges, pool, spa, bar, and couches and chairs. There is also so much variety of bars, cafe, restaurants, seating areas, even a library, games room, chapel, games room, shops, casino, pools and water slides. There are specific kids and teenagers areas and activities so families with kids are well catered for. We never felt over run with kids, and everyone was relaxed and happy.
The 2 story gym, spa, massage, sauna and health area is phenomenal, as is the sidebar the 2 story theatre and large separate comedy club.
The 3 best places to eat are the Empire Restaurant, Bonsai Japanese restaurant and Nouveau restaurant. First Class!! Sensational service and quality of the food.
The Lido deck serves a large variety of buffet food in a more casual, family environment, but this can get noisy and crowded.
The quality of service of the housekeeping staff is just TOP CLASS, not only did they service the room twice a day, they even left artistic towel sculptures in the room in the shape of various animals, and the attention to detail with regard to cleanliness is excellent. You don't get this level of care and attention in any 5 star hotel! Our room steward Nyoman from Indonesia is a star!
The cabin (we had a stateroom with balcony) was modern, spacious and stylish.
Josh, the cruise director was a bundle of energy, casual, enthusiastic but always informative.
The award for the best bar goes to the Alchemy Bar staffed by the competent and super professional, friendly staff of Nicola, Miro and Helena. They really mix the most magical taste sensations.
Some downsides? The satellite internet is expensive, slow and unreliable. Our ship had an engine fault so we were delayed 8 hours on return to Sydney. We also missed the Isle of Pines shire excursion due to high waves/swell.
For any Australians used to good quality espresso, lattes, flat whites etc., you will definitely not find them on this ship. Carnival should employ Australian-trained Batista's, because the quality of coffee was mediocre at best.
For every other aspect of this holiday cruise, if you want a pampered holiday, excellent quality and variety of food and top class facilities and entertainment, Carnival Spirit is HIGHLY recommended! Read Less