Carnival Paradise is not nearly as tacky as some of the older Carnival ships. It is much more understated, and has been redone. More elegant lobby with piano insead of glitter and lights. Rooms are bigger on Paradise. But monarch has the charm and elegance that all rci ships have, better food and more options for food, but smaller cabins. I prefer rci, but both are nice choices. Take a tour of Paradise at carnival.com and I think you will see it is not as bad as some carnival ships.