This was my girlfriend's first cruise ever, and my third. I was a little concerned about the ship being scheduled to go into drydock in just a few months, but the ship did not seem to be in disrepair or having maintenance problems. On the first day in the promenade hallway near the casino, we noticed some water dripping from the ceiling. We let security know and apparently it was fixed quickly as we went through that area several times and never saw the problem again. Other than that, no maintenance issues.
Service: There was one employee (an assistant manager) in Pixels photos who didn't seem to know the difference between a 4x6 and a 5x7. And kinda insulted my intelligence. Other than that the staff gets high praise all around. Our room steward was Marhar and he did wonderful. Every time we asked for something he had it back to us within a minute. The dining room staff was great and bar staff ranged from ok to great as well. No complaints there. Another thing about Pixels photos: Beware of any "free prints with a purchase of X" deals. The prints they give you are random pics of the ship, not your funpix photos. I found that very misleading. Not using this as a negative mark against the Victory because I'm sure Carnival does this on all of their ships. But just a word of caution.
Food: This is highly subjective but after a dozen or so meals in the dining room on carnival cruises, I have yet to have a meal that I would classify as bad. This cruise was no exception. My girlfriend and I both enjoyed the dining room food. Some of the buffet food is so-so, as to be expected on any Carnival cruise. Just have to know what to look for and what to skip. I finally tried the breakfast omelettes for the first time and now I know what everyone is raving about. They are awesome. Guy's burgers were as good as ever. Pizza is still okay.
Entertainment: The highlight was definitely the live band in the casino bar: Music Boardwalk. They played a wide variety of country, rock, and pop hits. Had people dancing every night. Went to three of the R rated comedy shows and both comedians were great. Karaoke was entertaining as always.
Pools: I love the pools and hob tubs being open until midnight. Other Carnival cruises I did they were open until 10PM. Unfortunately Serenity was closed the last two days because of high winds but we still made the most of the back pool and hot tubs on lido. Love the salt water pool back there, and the Siren's bar is open early-late and never seemed too crowded. I also like the fact that on lido deck there are pool lounger's staggered on the different outdoor decks. Makes things less crowded. We never seemed to have a problem getting a lounger even if we have go up one deck from the pool which doesn't take much effort to do so.
One note about bars: The Blue Iguana Tequila bar closed every night at 6PM. Not sure if this is normal but I wish I would have gotten a little more time there.
Half Moon Cay: Awesome beach port that I want to revisit. The Island Barbecue was ok. Best food on the BBQ was the jerk chicken. also spent time at "I wish I could stay here forever" bar and stopped in at the captain morgan pirate ship bar as well. Soft white powder sand, and turquoise blue water. Everything a Caribbean beach should be.
Nassau: Did the straw market and pirates museum. Followed by a visit to Graycliff's Chocolatier and then Senor Frogs for lunch and drinks. I enjoyed myself enough but I think Nassau will be a one and done port for me. If I ever go back it may be flying there just to do Atlantis. The Pirate's museum is worth doing if you haven't before. Part museum part themed attraction. Takes only an hour to get through.
Overall: My girlfriend loves cruising now and can't wait to go back. We both had a great time and look forward to seeing how the ship changes once she becomes the Radiance.
Interior mid. Was just fine. Two decks beneath lido and two decks above promenade. Close to everything.