20111005

Carnival ships revamping drinks venues

Last year I finally broke down and took my first "pleasure" cruise. I hated it.

From the time we set foot on the Norwegian Cruise Lines love boat it was one non-stop bazaar, with staffers of all sorts trying to sell you an array of goods and services. Before leaving the Port of New York, we decided to check out the cocktail lounges, since we were waiting to meet up with some friends and we had been promised at least six different bars by the NCL literature.

What we found, besides poorly stocked bars that couldn't come through on my first two drink orders taken directly from the menu, was that one bar had been divided into three parts and given three different names and decors. Six bars, my eye.

Now I read that a fleetwide overhaul plan for Carnival cruise ships unveiled this week includes plans for five new branded drinking venues to be installed on multiple Carnival ships over the next four years as part of more than $500 million in upgrades.

I hope for the sake of Carnival's customers, these bars -- three of the designs are shown below -- are indeed standalone venues.

Incidentally, among other Carnival changes are a deal for on-board burger joints created by TV personality Guy Fieri and hiring entertainer George Lopez as its creative director for comedy and the rebranding of its shipboard comedy clubs around the star.

Red Frog Rum Bar design.

A sports bar branded around video game manufacturer EA Sports. 

The Library Bar with automatic wine dispensers.


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2 comments:

under the hill said...

Yuck!
I have no wish to travel on a floating casino and mall. The best mode of travelling I have discovered thus far has been European River Cruising. I have been on several including one on my own. I can not say enough about how wonderful an experience this was!

LOLA said...

Have to agree about the so called pleasure cruises. Just went on my first cruise and also hated it. Scheduled everything, floating bazaar (good name) and constant photographers (a species of which I am but not quite the same cut of cloth) - to top it off I got terribly sick from onboard FLU, had a trip to the med team, had shots, meds, confined to cabin for over 24 hrs. It was pure hell - a cabin with NO windows. Would have been better off staying at the last port and flying home. I will either fly or drive from now on. Or I just won't go.

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