December 2015 - 4 Night Western Caribbean (Miami Roundtrip) Cruise on Carnival Ecstasy
Pluses: The ship, the staterooms, the staff, good value for the price
Minus: The food, staged shows, constantly being up-sold drinks, photos, and shore excursions.
I had a fine time on this vacation - with the goal of quality time with my 18 and 22 year-old daughters. We had a nice room on the boat (for not a lot of money), the out door area were a great way to spend the day just relaxing and the destinations were fine. This is what I wanted and this is what I got.
However if you want fine dining, luxury, and top of the line entertainment, look else where. In the main dining hall there was a decent variety of choices but the portions were small and average. My shrimp cocktail had 6 small shrimp (just above salad size) and the entrees were no larger than the appetizers plates. The pasta I had had a grainy taste to it and the sauce was bland. Although the drinks were fairly priced, they were watered down. I will give props to the chicken fingers at the casual dining area. Some of the best I had.
The staff was attentive, service was good, and everything was clean and neat.
As I said the 4 stars for a basic family cruise that allows for time spent together on the ocean.