A short review of the short four-day sailing on July19th out of NYC. I read anegative review of this particular sailing this morning and it made me want towrite my first ever review. The ship isreally quite spectacular. I was veryimpressed with the layout and the amenities it has. My wife and I were in an interior room in theHavana area and thought everything about the Havana area was great. The staff members were pleasant, courteous andvery helpful. I just want to highlight a few specifics andgive my opinion.
Havana area and bar: As I stated earlier, this is a special place. It is quiet and relaxing. It is basically a cruise within a cruise. When we would venture out to the other areasof the ship and see the mass of humanity we were glad that we had our ownlittle oasis to return to. At night theLatin band (Mambo Magic) was fantastic and had the place hopping. I really believe if you can afford theupgrade you should do it. This area iswell worth the extra money.
Restaurants: Sincethis was only a four-day cruise we decided not to do the main dining room, butinstead did specialty dining.
Lunch: Guy’s Burgers are free, and they are the best burgersat sea. We also had lobster rolls at theSeafood Shack. Two lobster rolls and fries for $12 is not a bad deal. Our last sea day we had Pizza delivered to usin the Havana area from the Pizza joint on Lido. It arrived 11 minutes after I placed theorder and was hot and delicious. This is something that Carnival is piloting onthe Horizon through the Hub app. Youplace your order and provide a selfie along with your location on the ship andthey deliver it to you for $5. Hopefully this will be used on all ships in thefuture.
Dinners: We atedinner at Guy’s Pig & Anchor the first and last nights of the cruise. The food was delicious. I cannot recommend this place enough. If you like BBQ ribs and chicken, then youhave to eat here. They also offer a limited menu for lunch at no cost. We also ate at JiJi Asian Kitchen and Cucinadel Capitano, and both meals were very good with WAY TOO much food to finish.
Bars: All of the barswe visited were fantastic, but I have to point out a few of our favorites. The Pig & Anchor was great. Dorde and hisstaff were awesome. They also serve aBloody Mary that is to die for. Simplythe best I have ever had. They use avegetable infused vodka that is just over-the-top. They also have a few really good beers. I thoroughly enjoyed the Parched Pig SmokedPorter that is brewed on the ship. Wealso enjoyed the Atrium Bar especially when the string trio, Imprint, wasperforming. We always enjoy the AlchemyBar and the one on the Horizon certainly did not disappoint. The folks workingthere not only made great drinks, but they also entertained while they madethem. They were very friendly andoffered to make specialty drinks that were not on the menu. We loved it!
Ship layout: ThePromenade is really well designed. Theuse of the outdoor spaces to enhance and accompany the indoor spaces is reallyspecial. When I cruise I love to be constantly aware of the ocean. This ship really nails that. I really loved the way created the indoor andoutdoor spaces on the Horizon. Lido isalso quite big. The buffet area isreally large with a lot of selections. Idid not really eat there, but I did frequent The Sweet Spot every day. Yum.
Features: SkyRide…Iwaited in line but gave up after twenty minutes or so. It looks like a lot of fun and I willcertainly do it next year when I sail this ship again. WaterWorks was very nice, and the waterslides were fun. Kids will love thisplace.
Comedy: We saw onecomedy show in the Limelight Lounge. Hewas okay, not great, but okay. The spaceis good, and the bar staff hustled as usual to make sure your glass was alwaysfull.
Playlist Productions: We were already booked for this shipfor an 8-day cruise next July out of Miami, so we only wanted to see one show,Celestial Strings. We saw it, but it wasnot actually the show. The seas werekind of rough as we made our way back to NYC, so the show was modified quite abit. The string trio performed while thecast sang from stools set on the stage. Iwas disappointed, but I understand why they had to do it. The ship was really rocking that day.
A few final thoughts: I have read complaints about the “confusing” elevators on this ship andI think if you have problems figuring out these elevators you may just want tostay home for your own safety. Theelevators work by selecting which deck you want to go to and you are assignedan elevator that will take you there. There were roughly 5,000 people on this cruise and we never waited longfor an elevator. I just do not understandwhy people complain about them.
Hopefully you sail this ship and determine for yourself. A cruise is what you make of it.