The ship itself is 110,000 tons, and our 15th December cruise held 3300 passengers. The interior decoration is good but not as beautiful as the Vision and Radiance class ships of RCI.
The design is poor in some respects, one being that one of the two dining rooms can be reached only by taking the elevators or stairs down from the aft part of the ship causing some crowding and delay. Also, this dining room, which is used for all the open sitting breakfasts and lunches, is located right over the engines, thus causing a lot of vibration.
The best feature is that the casino, show room, shops and most of the lounges and bars are all located on the same deck.
The food in the dining room is excellent, probably the best I have had in 17 cruises. The Lido deck cafe also has good food with two serving lines providing what is called the Grand Buffet and two other lines serving ethnic foods which change every day. The only problem is that all the salad items are located on the same lines causing longer waits. There are also cubicles serving Chinese foods and one serving sandwiches as well as a grill for hot dogs and hamburgers and a 24 hour pizzaria with six different types. Both ice cream and frozen yogurt are always available, and there is a midnight buffet each day. The ship is really "Fat City!"
The Cruise Director, Corey Schmidt, is the most talented that i have seen, and the two song and dance reviews are superb!! Other entertainment was typically Carnival with a sword swallower, magician, mo-town singer etc. Music everywhere is very loud and rock oriented.
Money raising activities are everywhere with wall to wall photographers, bingo up to three times a day, the largest casino I have seen on a ship and a lot of art auctions.
One good thing: Most of the waiters were recruited from Eastern European countries and speak excellent English.
Some bad things: Service is only adequate, probably because the tips are added to your sign and sail account. I usually tip extra, but not on this cruise. There is no regular news or sports channel on the TV, and the NY Times news bulletin was only available once during the week. The ship is cold inside all the time, and there is no heat in the cabins. Many passengers wore socks on their feet and robes when they went to bed in order to be warm enough to sleep. Many passengers wore sweaters and windbreakers all over the ship and even over their formal attire.
In summary, if you want a reasonably priced cruise with excellent food and entertainment,
loud rock jumpy music everywhere and cooooold temperatures inside all the time, cruise the Conquest.
Re: Short Subjective Evaluation of Carnival Conquest
Hi Paul, We were on this cruise also and your impressions are pretty much dead on with ours except for the music and cabin temp.
There was a thermostat in our cabin we used at night to keep us toasty and Carol who played the guitar at night in the casino lounge was a nice change from the loud rock and roll in other areas.
We are night owls and found the place dead after 11:00 pm. The last night folks somewhere on our deck were whooping it up for one last good time but even that ended well before 12:00 a.m.
As for the service, we wondered if the ship cleaning at the begining of the cruise knocked everyone off schedule and they never recovered. They also had pipes burst in the galley that created a huge mess on day five that had folks up in the middle of the night cleaning.
This was our first Carnival Cruise and we were prepared for the worse but it turned out to be wonderful. We will definitely sail again and because of the proximity to our home, it will probably be on the Conquest.
Also of note is you are not doomed to be pulled on a life raft back home if you lose your S&S card. We lost ours in Cayman and it was replaced with no problem.
I am glad you enjoyed your cruise. I really liked your review.