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Carnival Miracle Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
1,400 Reviews

Carnival Miracle wanting for a major refit !

Carnival Miracle Cruise Review by ottawa2009

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Mar 2010
  • Destination: the Southern Caribbean

Don't expect too much, it is your very basic Carnival no frills experience albeit on one of their larger ships. I will point out some things to expect.

Anyone that has been on one of the Carnival ships that have carved out a new adult only area, like the Carnival Glory I was on last month, will be very sadly disappointed with the Miracle. Don't expected shaded comfortable areas. You will find the adults only hot tub is the smallest tub on the ship; four people comfortable at best.

Evening Entertainment (song and dance) is still pretty good compared to other cruise lines. The adult midnight comedy is good if you are into that. The piano bar is nice and raunchy later in the night. The Lido deck Caribbean-calypso style band you expect in the "Caribbean" was not very good. Carnival has cut back to a two member band with unfortunately, little talent at this stage in their entertainment careers on this cruise. There is no big drive-in style screen over the Lido nor do I expect one considering the layout in which the lido pool are divided into two small pool areas in the middle of the ship. Again the Carnival Glory has this and it will be sorely missed on the Miracle until they improve pool side entertainment. Maybe basic soft recorded music would even be nice.

Good things were the balcony H category extended balcony and the cabin steward service. For some reason they did not have signs to hang on cabin door when you wanted service only the privacy sign. Cabins do not have the upgraded flat screen TV's yet. Wireless internet worked well in my cabin although Carnival Plans are around .50 per minute when you sign on so...read and compose offline by cutting and pasteing and save any web-surfing for on-shore cheaper internet kiosks.

We thought we would try this ship's new anytime dining option. It was our mistake because we found out it means first come first seated until the small area of the main dining room, they have dedicated to this options, fills, then it's very quickly, beeper time and you should a expect 45 minute to 1 hour wait, and that was for a table of two; any larger groups, best of luck. I quickly request a change back to the 6 p.m. seating which was is the better option. It is very clear Carnival has cut way back on the table services staff as the lead-waiters are over whelmed, serving way too many tables! Carnival is still charging the $5 tip each night.

The ship's best option is their premium ($30) restaurant. Do not eat a big lunch and bring an appetite, very good service and food. Watch out for you liquor drinks on the Lido, I asked for a Bloody-Caesar (vodka and Clamato juice) in a larger glass full of ice and the bartender tried to charge me $11. Same thing for the drink tickets my family had surprised us with. They are supposed to be a value of up to $5.95 per ticket and the pool bar staff said that if we wanted any kind of drink of the day etc it would have to be served in the smaller cocktail size glass. This is just plain cheap of Carnival's food and beverage department, after all this is their marketing to friends of guests cruising to buy someone a bon-voyage gift and this booze is completely duty free to them. We ended up using the drink tickets for glasses of wine, but only the low end wine qualified; again come on Carnival, still this is all duty free stock!

The biggest rip was the Carnival Whale/Dolphin watching excursion in St Lucia. Stay away from this $89 for nothing excursion. It had absolutely nothing redeeming at all. After we push away from the peer on a very uncomfortable boat (a diving boat with pads covering the back rests where the dive-tanks normally are located) the crew gave us a life jacket demo then disappeared. Not once did they offer us any of the drinks they were to provide rather it was help yourself. The ice floated in the cooler water which everyone was expected just to grab with their dirty hand. When I found a crew member 2 hours into the sea-hunt and asked when was the last time they sighted a whale, he could only jokingly say the Captain was the last whale he remembers seeing lately; not even one dolphin sighted; a complete waste of a port day I am afraid to say and St Lucia did look like it could be a nice port.

Conclusion, if you are a new cruiser with younger family members, you will enjoy. If you are a more seasoned cruiser who has sailed on one of Carnivals recent refitted ships - wait for the Miracle to go through a major refit! One last comment to Carnival - who's big idea was it to change the traditional Captain parties, which use to be no charge drinks (like whiskey sours etc) and nice hors d'oeuvres. These were the best. Now Carnival does event in the main lobby bar area with only a $1 off the full drink price - another disappointment.

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Cabin BLH 5119

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