The Rome Lounge, spanning decks 3 and 4 aft, is Triumph's main theater. This is where you'll find evening entertainment with vocalists, the Triumph Dancers and the Triumph Showband. (The ship has not switched over to the line's glitzy Playlist Productions.) Other activities there include game show events, large screen trivia contests and Seuss-a-palooza Story Time. Drink service is available.
Looking for a hairy chest contest? You've come to the right ship. Sea days on Triumph have mixology contests, trivia games, shopping and spa "lectures," art auctions, bingo and "Dive In" concerts and movies broadcast on the Seaside Theater above the main pool. The Underground Tokyo arcade has air hockey, skeeball, pinball and a few video games.
Carnival has made comedy a centerpiece of its cruises, and the nightly shows are extremely popular. (We couldn't find seats the first night we tried to go.) Look for PG shows early in the evening, with things getting raunchier as the night goes on.
The Monaco Casino on Triumph takes up a fair amount of room on Deck 5, with a stage for live music and a rollicking bar for smokers. Options include Texas Hold 'Em, slot machines, blackjack, craps and roulette.
Karaoke takes place every night in the Oxford Lounge. Other evening events include Liars Club, dance parties on the Lido Deck and Motown Guessing games.
The bars are hopping on Carnival Triumph, not surprising given its homeport states of Texas and Louisiana; these people know how to day-drink. Mixed drinks and buckets of beer are what you'll find most people imbibing, to a soundtrack of live music and loud dance tracks by the pool. This is not the ship for oenophiles or quiet conversation.
Capitol Lobby (Deck 3): This bar in the ship's grand atrium attracts a crowd right after embarkation and on port days. There's music both before and after dinner, until late.
EA Sports Bar (Deck 5): Never miss a game while you're at sea. Coverage on a typical cruise could include the NBA Finals, the Women's World Cup and hockey.
Casino Bar (Deck 5): The Monte Carlo casino takes up a wide expanse of Deck 5, and there's a large bar to keep the gamblers going. Live music also plays there, which is a nice touch. Smoking is allowed, and it's open late.
Alchemy Bar (Deck 5): Carnival's nod to the craft cocktail craze shakes up martinis and mixed drinks with ingredients like elderflower liqueur. Try the Cucumber Sunrise, a vodka drink made with watermelon syrup and garnished with fresh cucumber. Note: Most drinks at Alchemy Bar are over the $10 limit for the line's Cheers drink package program.
Venezia (Deck 5): Triumph's cigar bar also has music before dinner (from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.) and after. It's open late.
Oxford Lounge (Deck 5): This book-themed space tucked midship on Deck 5 has a genteel library feel to it. Too bad it's headquarters for karaoke.
Big Easy Piano Bar (Deck 5): Exactly what the name implies, this oyster-shell-bedecked bar gets rowdy with people howling along to their requested favorites. It's open 9 p.m. to late.
Hollywood Lounge (Deck 5): Triumph's disco draws the ship's partying crowd with '70s and '80s night, free sparkling wine for women and modern dance music. Smoking is allowed, and it's open 10 p.m. to late.
Club Rio (Deck 5): Home of the Punchliner Comedy Club, this space on Deck 5 aft packs people in for PG shows in the early evening, followed by adults-only laughs after 10 p.m.
BlueIguana Cantina (Deck 9): Margarita madness holds forth at the drinking arm of Carnival Triumph's Mexican restaurant on the Lido Deck. Finding a stool at BlueIguana Cantina during peak tanning hours can be difficult.
RedFrog Rum Bar (Deck 9): Opposite the main pool from BlueIguana, the rum bar serves up all kinds of beachy drinks, plus Carnival's own RedFrog Beer. Both RedFrog and BlueIguana are prime people-watching spots during the day.
Pool Bar (Deck 9): With no visible name, this bar offers drink service to passengers who choose this quieter corner of the Lido Deck.
Carnival Triumph has three pools, a water slide and five hot tubs onboard.
On Deck 9, the main pool, named Continental, has RedFrog on one side and BlueIguana on the other, with a phalanx of deck chairs arranged in amphitheater style. These chairs face the large Seaside Theater screen, where movies and concerts are broadcast. There are two hot tubs nearby.
Also within the main Lido area is a second pool, close to where the Carnival Twister water slide discharges its frolickers. This pool is kid central, with a hot tub just for the young set.
There is a smaller pool, along with two hot tubs, at the back of Deck 9. This pool area, called the New World, has a retractable roof so you can lie on deck chairs even when the weather is poor. This area is quieter than the main pool, but you'll still see lots of kids there, as there's no adults-only area on Triumph.
The 214-foot Carnival Twister water slide is in the central Lido area. Accessible from Deck 14, the slide splashes down near the Universe pool area. Kids need to be 42 inches tall to ride.
Triumph has a mini-golf course on the port (left) side of Deck 12, while the right side has beanbag-toss games and Ping-Pong. There's also a basketball court that seemed to get quite a bit of use during nice weather. Shuffleboard is available on Deck 14, inside the jogging track.
The ship has plenty of spots to work on your tan. Besides the chairs that are near all of the pools, loungers are available on each side of the ship on Deck 10 and by the funnel on Deck 14. The loungers are rather simple -- no special cushions -- but they do the trick.
Most guest services are located off the Grand Atrium, which opens on Deck 2 and spans the entire height of the ship. The Art Gallery is almost invisible, tucked away on Deck 2. On Deck 3, there's a lot more action, with guest services and the shore excursion desk on either side of the Capitol Bar.
Moving up the Atrium, you'll find the photo gallery on Deck 4. There's also a nice card room/library on this floor (although some of the bookcases were impossible to open).
Deck 5 is Triumph's shopping hub. There's a store that offers duty-free alcohol and Carnival logowear, as well as toiletries. Across the atrium, you'll find a jewelry store and another shop that has duty-free makeup, purses and resort wear.
The Internet Cafe is tucked away in a corridor just off the Oxford Lounge. Wi-Fi is available shipwide, although it can be very slow in cabins. Cost for Internet plans is as follows: $29 for 45 minutes, $59 for 120 minutes, $89 for 240 minutes and $159 for 480 minutes. You can also pay as you go for 75 cents a minute.
Self-service laundry facilities are located on various decks ($3 per wash or dry). You can also send your laundry out to be done.
The spa and salon are on Deck 11, aft, combined with the fitness center. The spa itself is rather simple. There's no separate place for customers to chill out before their treatments. Instead, you wait in the busy salon area for your provider to get you.
Triumph offers a variety of massages, facials and body treatments, many of which are discounted during certain hours or when the ship is in port. Still, the treatments are expensive for what you get. (For example, a 50-minute hot stone massage is $149.) We're not sure who thought it was a good idea to put the spa underneath the kids club and basketball court, but noise is noticeable during treatments. The hard sales pitch that the masseuses, employed by Steiner, give you at the end of your treatment is also counter-productive.
Located alongside the spa, the salon offers manicures, pedicures, up-dos, waxing and barbering services. Manicures start at $45, pedicures begin at $65, and a shampoo with blow dry is $35 for short hair, $39 for medium and $49 for long. Teeth whitening and acupuncture are also available.
Additionally, there's a spa menu just for the younger set, with "ice cream" manis and pedis, mother/daughter treatments, a spa ice cream party for kids (ages 2 to 12) and a teen spa pamper party for ages 13 to 17.
The fitness center is behind the spa on Deck 11 and, oddly, is only accessible through the men's and women's locker rooms. The space has floor to ceiling windows, although the dark color scheme makes it seem more cramped than it is. All the standard gym and weight equipment is there, as well as cardio machines like ellipticals, treadmills and stationary bikes. It's open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
There's a separate room for classes, although the most interesting ones -- spinning, Pilates and yoga -- have an extra fee.
Saunas are free of charge and are located in the locker rooms.
There's a jogging track located around the funnel on Triumph's upper-most deck.
Carnival has a reputation as a family-friendly line, and Triumph is no exception. During the summer, there can be as many as 1,200 children younger than 18 onboard. The ship has an extensive kids program with events and activities geared for different ages. The minimum age for sailing on Carnival is 6 months.
A nice addition to the Carnival kids programming is Seuss at Sea, a line-wide initiative that -- gasp -- encourages children to read. At least once a sailing, there's a Seuss-a-palooza parade, where kids are given Seuss bedecked banners and noisemakers and are led through the ship by the Cat in the Hat, Thing One and Thing Two, shouting "Seuss is on the loose!" There's also a Dr. Seuss Story Time in the main theater and, for those who want to pay extra, a Green Eggs and Ham breakfast with the characters.
Carnival breaks its kids club, known as Camp Ocean, into the following age groups: Penguins (2 to 5), Stingrays (6 to 8) and Sharks (9 to 11). Parents can check their kids into Camp Ocean starting at 10 a.m. on sea days and 7:45 a.m. while in port; after a short break of a few hours in the afternoon, activities resume at 7 p.m. and go until 10 p.m. Counselors will take kids to a special dinner on the Lido Deck at 6 p.m.
Activities for Penguins range from movies and crafts to song times and pajama parties. Stingrays and Sharks are more active, with dodgeball games and Jenga challenges, scavenger hunts and paper airplane contests.
Kids do not have to be potty trained to participate in Camp Ocean. Children younger than 2 years can go to Camp Ocean during certain hours, but there is a baby-sitting fee.
Baby-sitting is also available from 10 p.m. until 1 a.m. through the "Night Owls" program for ages 6 months to 11 years old. The cost is $6.75 per hour, per child, plus a 15 percent gratuity.
Activities for this age group don't start until noon, presumably so everyone has time to sleep in. They include late-night pizza parties, scavenger hunts, card games, karaoke meetups and mini-golf outings.