August 2016 - Carnival Sunshine to Caribbean - Eastern
I am a loyal Carnival cruiser. Every ship that I've ever sailed on I've been on at least twice--leaving from NY is super convenient and the embark/debark has always been very smooth. I was elated when a "new" boat arrived in NY this year; there are such limited options in general for NY.
Highlights of the cruise: Excellent service, excellent entertainment, excellent food. Carnival has never disappointed me in any of these areas--we even saw our waiter from our last cruise--and he remembered us! Guy's Burger Joint is a great thing-that met and exceeded my expectations. It was great to go to a different port (Dominican Republic) as my husband and I have pretty much been to all the ports that are offered from NY several times...Half Moon Cay is the place I could go to 100's of times and never lose the sense of serenity and "slice of paradise" feeling when I'm there...Our cruise director, Emma, was super sweet and clearly she has a passion for what she does, which is great to see. Missing Malcolm "Woo Hoo" Burn as we sailed with hime 4 or 5 times...but overall Emma was super charismatic and peppy-and lets face it every cruise ship employee works tirelessly most hours of every day so that we can enjoy a vacation...I have a lot of admiration and respect for all of them!
Lowlights of the cruise: The rooms are SUPER dated; and are generally smaller than other carnival ships. The Ocean Suite we stayed in was smaller, and the bathroom size was almost laughable considering it was nearly twice the size on the Splendor. This would all be fine if the prices were not the same--so basically we payed the same amount of money last year for a bigger and better room.
*There were several instances where the food or drink "ran out"---something which I've never experienced on any cruise before. Whipped Cream, Mango (for drinks), root beer, Coors Light, VANILLA ICE CREAM?" Never did get to have that root beer float; the *three* times I went there was no root beer. Carnival, if you are going to have a "Shake Spot," please make sure you have the ingredients to make what is on the menu.
*This casino must have the absolute worst ventilation of any Carnival ship I've been on. And worse still, the cherry smell that they use to cover it up. So its this dirty, cherry, smokey, stale smell--smoking machines are literally right next to non smoking machines. It makes no sense. And don't be to eager to hit 1500 spins to get that free drink card; there were several nights where there were no waiters around for HOURS...and when we approached the bar we were told we had to be sitting at a machine to get served....yet there were no waiters...hmmm..
*The clientele may be changing; several people acted like animals and yelled, screamed, and cursed up and down the halls nightly at 3am..door decorations were stolen and shoes were thrown up and down the hall. One afternoon, I heard a loud noise/yell/scream in the hallway and opened my cabin door to make sure everyone was ok--to be greeted by a classless individual cursing me out to "get back in my cabin" and that this was "her vacation too..." She threatened to "**** me up...." CLASSY people, classy.
*I won't sail the Sunshine again; too small, too dated in many areas, and in my opinion not a good fit for the NY crowd.