Three weeks ago I had the opportunity to board the Carnival Splendor in Port Everglades (Ft Lauderdale).
While I was touring the vessel I took the opportunity to photograph the ship for CruiseInd. This review will cover the public areas and staterooms.
All Carnival ships have a theme and some are more subtle than others. The Splendor’s theme is splendid things. It’s also predominantly pink all over.
The ship is quite unique to Carnival’s fleet but not to Costa. Costa has 4 similar ships in their Concordia-class of vessels. (Yes- THAT Concordia!). She’s essentially an evolution of the Conquest-class ship with some minor changes. The Splendor was originally ordered as part of a 6 ship Concordia-class order with Fincantieri. However Carnival Corp. transferred the last ship to Carnival Cruise Lines to bridge the gap between the Carnival Liberty and the Carnival Breeze. As a result there is only one ship like her out there. However she will be transferred to P&O Australia in 2019.
Let’s start the tour with our noted obligatory photos.
Obligatory elevator lobby photo
Obligatory stairway landing photo
The bottom-most deck normally accessed by the public contains only cabins. There’s both inside and outside cabins with windows and portholes on this deck.
Deck 02 also contains only cabins.
Deck 03 is where the public areas start. It’s also where you enter the ship when first boarding.
There’s a promenade on either side of the deck, but it’s not connected in the bow or stern. It’s usually pretty quiet out here during sea days. At the very front of the deck is the ship’s main theater, the Spectacular Spectacular main lounge.
Just past the entrance to the lounge are the guest services areas. On the port side is the shore excursion desk and on the starboard is the pursers desk.
Immediately aft of those is the bottom floor of the Splendor lobby. Direct above that is the Splendor atrium.
This is also where you enter the ship when you first board. Walking through the lobby there is a small corridor with the art gallery on the starboard side. At the end of that hallway is one of the two main dining rooms, The Black Pearl.
At the very aft end of deck 03 is the second dining room. Deck 03 is one of those split decks that Carnival ships have. That means you can’t walk all the way from the front to back, as the galley sits in between the two dining rooms. If you click on the deck plan you’ll understand what I mean.
Before entering the dining room, the Conquest-class of ships have this neat mini-atrium. On the Splendor it’s called the Golden Atrium.
At the end of the atrium is the second dining room called The Gold Pearl.
Deck 04 is slightly narrower as this is where the lifeboats are. On this class of ship, they are recessed inboard and adjacent to it is the boarding area. During normal ops, this area is only used during the muster drill.
At the very front of Deck 04 is the start of the second level of the main theater.
Exiting the theater, you walk down stairs, and past the forward elevators, you enter the second deck of the main atrium.
At the far end of the atrium is the ship library.
Adjacent to the library is the photo gallery. Next to it is the Circle C club for 12-14 year olds.
Hidden between the library and the photo gallery is the second entrance to the top level of the Black Pearl dining room.
On the far side of the dining room you can enter a stairwell. Through that is a narrow corridor that takes you to the conference rooms.
Through that is the Robusto bar and lounge.
Through there is the second level of the Golden atrium. Walking through there you reach the second level of the Gold Pearl dining room. The windows on the far side over look the ship’s wake.
At the very front of deck 05 is the top level of the main theater. You mainly access the top level though the stairs on Deck 04. However there are also stairs that go to deck 05 as well.
Just past this is the start of the Fun Shops. These are the duty free boutiques onboard.
Aft of the shops is the top floor of the main atrium. Although it continues to the very top of the vessel, this is the highest floor where you can walk around it.
Surrounding the atrium on the port side is the EA Sports Bar.
On the starboard side, towards the back of the atrium, is the candy store Formalities.
As you exit the atrium towards the starboard side, you immediately enter the Oceanview Promenade. This is the ship’s main promenade. At the main entrance to it, the casino sort of spills out into it.
Heading aft on the promenade you pass a small desk that had the sign up area for Carnival’s credit card and future cruises.
Adjacent to that is the onboard internet cafe.
Right next to that is Cafe Fans. The specialty coffee bar onboard.
Right next to that is the entrance to Club O2. The ship’s club room for teens.
Hidden staircase down to the hallway in front of the conference room.
Walking past that is the taste bar.
Just past that is the ship’s arcade. Unlike the Conquest-class, the teen area and the arcade do not connect. I learnt this the hard way.
Exiting the arcade, you’re back on the Oceanview Promenade. Located towards the end is the red-carpet entrance to the ship’s nightclub Red Carpet Dance Club.
We’re now reaching the end of the promenade. This is where the El Mojito wine bar is located.
Exiting the promenade you enter the top level of the Golden Atrium. On the starboard side is the Grand piano bar.
The Splendor’s Blues bar, the Cool Lounge, is located on the starboard side off the Golden Atrium.
At the very end of the Golden and continuing all the way to the end of the deck is the El Morocco aft lounge. This serves as the alternate lounge onboard the ship.
Deck 6 contains cabins. It’s the first level where the outside cabins have balconies.
Deck 7 also contains cabins. The midship ones are all suites. Deck 06 and 07 also feature a fairly quiet open deck at the front. You have a fantastic view over the bow looking straight ahead.
Deck 8 is also all cabins. At the front is the bridge and officer cabins.