Carnival’s Newest Fun Ship Is A Game Changer

Carnival Vista at anchor off Georgetown, Grand Cayman on Wednesday, May 3, 2017. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

I’m currently midway through a six-night Western Caribbean cruise from Miami aboard Carnival Cruise Line’s new flagship, Carnival Vista. Carrying 3,954 guests, this new 133,500-gt ship just marked her first year in service a few days ago.
But Carnival Vista is more than just a new ship; she’s a game-changing vessel for Carnival; a ship as unique and original as Carnival Fantasy was when she entered service 27 years ago in 1990.
Although Carnival Vista looks much like Carnival’s Dream Class (which includes Carnival Dream, Carnival Magic and Carnival Breeze), she is longer, larger, and boasts a brand-new general arrangement plan for her interior public spaces. Because of this, she is the lead vessel for Carnival’s newest class of ship, the Vista Class. The second Vista Class ship, Carnival Horizon, makes her debut next year, and will feature even more new amenities, like the first-ever Dr. Seuss-themed waterpark.

Carnival Vista’s striking Vista Atrium. This is Carnival’s first ship in 27 years to lack a skylight-topped atrium flanked by glass elevators. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

Carnival Vista is Carnival, grown up. The interior décor is more modern and subdued than on past ships, which were notable for the often zany creations of longtime interior designer, Joe Farcus. The neon and brass of the days of old are gone, replaced instead by thoughtful lighting displays, modern digital technology (like the fabulous LED atrium sculpture), and a colour palette that reflects the bright, airy, laid-back destinations that Carnival sails to.
While it isn’t hard to fall in love with the line’s newest features, like the first-ever oceangoing IMAX theatre or the supercool (and superfun) SkyRide, where participants pedal around a track mounted high atop the ship next to the funnel, little touches have also impressed me during my first four days onboard.

The Casino occupies a new space on Deck 4, away from the majority of the ship’s other public venues. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

The Heart of the Vista: Carnival Vista’s secondary “atrium”, as seen from Deck 5. The Casino is located down below on Deck 4 – but thoughtful glass screens prevent smoke from rising up to Deck 5. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

The ship’s Vista Casino, for instance, now resides on Deck 4. That means guests using the majority of the ship’s public areas on Deck 5 no longer have to walk through its smoky wilderness to get to their favourite lounge or restaurant, and can avoid it altogether if they wish. Conversely, gambling mavens can enjoy a high-tech space that spans the entire 122-foot width of the ship.

The RedFrog Pub has been one of Carnival’s most successful innovations, and it returns aboard Carnival Vista with one unique difference: three of Carnival’s ThirstyFrog beers are brewed right onboard! Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

Carnival Vista is the first North American-based ship to feature its own onboard brewery. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

Other fun innovations: self-pour beer stations in the RedFrog Pub, featuring Carnival’s own ThirstyFrog IPA and ThirstyFrog Caribbean Wheat Ale – both of which are brewed right onboard. Carnival Vista is the only North American-based cruise ship to have its own onboard brewery, and you can even take a guided tour of the facility with the resident beer master onboard on sea days.
What hasn’t changed, though, is Carnival’s dedication to providing a fun, enjoyable cruise vacation for cruisers of all ages, backgrounds and tastes.
Our full day-by-day Voyage Report will be published next week. Until then, enjoy this look at Carnival Vista in the Caribbean this week, in pictures.

The Cuban-themed Havana Bar is a brand-new addition for Carnival. Photo © 2017 Aaron Saunders

Located on Deck 5 aft

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