I want to ask the experienced Carnival cruisers out there who have seen FunShip 2.0 what they think.
If you already know, skip the next part: a synopsis of what it includes:
Carnival "Funship 2.0" - a $500-million investment in entertainment upgrades to its entire fleet
1) Carnival just named former TBS late-night talk show host George Lopez as its "Director of Comedy." The popular comedian will appear on Carnival cruise ships though pre-recorded audio and video messages. More importantly, he is isaid to be responsible for finding the comedic talent for the Punchliner Comedy Clubs aboard ships in the Carnival fleet. Carnival Comedy Club shows feature two different comedians doing two or three shows nightly. Now there will also be a "comedy brunch" added to each cruise.
2) Popular Food Network personality Guy Fieri created a new shipboard dining spot called "Guy's Burger Joint" to serve top quality beef hamburgers and hand-cut French fries at no cover charge.
3) Carnival has also joined up with EA SPORTS; a division of game maker Electronic Arts specializing in sports video games such as Madden NFL, NBA Elite and NASCAR. Carnival will install EA Sports Bars on its ships featuring real sports on flat screen TVs, real-time game score tickers, trivia contests, video game tournaments, bar snacks and a drink menu for people of all ages.
4) Based on the popular Family Game Night television show from the Hasbro Network, Carnival created theater productions called "The Game Show" with a series of six new games based upon Hasbro themes including Sorry Sliders, a giant shuffleboard court; Simon Flash, where two teams of four guests wearing giant lighted color boxes compete to repeat color sequences; Yahtzee Bowling, using a giant ball and larger-than-life bowling pins; Operation, a Skee-ball-like game board where balls must fill different slots on the patient's body; and Connect 4 Basketball, a checkers-based game using basketballs.
5) The RedFrog Bar - to serve the new private label Carnival beer, ThirstyFrog Red, this bar is juxtaposed across the deck from another new theme bar called the
6) BlueIguana Cantina, a Mexican bar and restaurant featuring freshly made burritos, tacos and an on-site tortilla making machine.
7) For after dinner entertainment Carnival has found DJ Irie, said to be already famous in Las Vegas and Miami, who will operate the "DJ IRIE's Spin'iversity" to develop the skills of future ship-board DJs within the Carnival fleet.
8) Carnival has teamed up with Playlist Productions to update the current onboard production shows. The shows, originally created by leading producers, directors and choreographers who have worked on Broadway and London's West End, include Motor City, based on the 60's Motown sound; Divas, based on the shows of iconic female entertainers, Latin Nights! and The Brits!
Okay - that's it in a nutshell - those of you who have seen it. Is it an improvement over previous carnival entertainment? Would you go out of your way to book a Funship 2.0 ship, or is not a deal maker or breaker for you?
I have been on only two Carnival cruises since 2011 and think it is a pretty good value. Last year on the Miracle from New York I noted some improvements over the first Carnival cruise I took on the Ecstasy. Compared to the other cruise lines I have been on (Celebrity and Costa) I think Carnival gives more for the money spent. I think the improvements are needed to be competitive. Celebrity food and entertainment was better than Carnival but more expensive. The fact that Carnival comes close makes it a better value. In 2 months I will be cruising on Princess for the first time and look forward to seeing how it compares with Celebrity.