Carnival Cruise Line has been steadily rolling out announcements regarding its upcoming LNG-powered cruise ship, the Mardi Gras
. The new record-breaking boat is named after the company's first ship and will debut as part of Carnival's 50th anniversary celebration.
Photo via Carnival
The Carnival Mardi Gras
Previous announcements focused on the dining
and outdoor entertainment
, but now we're learning more about where passengers will sleep and the ship's other entertainment offerings. The new XL-class ship will have the most suites of any Carnival boat with over 180 suites across 11 styles, all with brand new designs with modern travelers in mind. Extra shelving near beds and plenty of plugs, including USB ones, were added to meet the electronic-centered needs of today's passengers. Floor-to-ceiling glass sliding doors to balconies, easy-to-convert sofa beds, glass-door showers, and customizable storage options all also give the ship's staterooms a more luxurious, open feel. Over 70 percent of Mardi Gras' staterooms have an ocean view or balcony. With over 180 suites, Mardi Gras has the most staterooms of any Carnival ship.
Carnival brought in English design firm DCA
, a go-to firm for companies looking for luxury design.
"We took a unique approach to our stateroom design with Mardi Gras, utilizing DCA's design experts who are well known for innovative product design and partnered them with Miami-based interior architect Studio Dado," said Ben Clement, Carnival’s senior vice president of new builds. "DCA employed a thoughtful guest-centric approach gleaned from observations of how our guests use their space in conjunction with their vast experience in product design to make the staterooms as comfortable and functional as possible."
Mardi Gras will also have an all-new Premium Level Excel Suites. These 32 suites are spread across four styles including regular Excel Suites, Corner Suites, Aft Suites, and two Presidential Suites. All of the Excel suites have balconies and in-suite dining areas. The Presidential Suites have the largest balconies of any Carnival ship. Bottomless Bubbles soda package, room service and laundry service are also provided with all Excel level suites. Fruit baskets and sparkling wine greet passengers when they first arrive to the Excel suites. Excel suite guests also have unlimited access to Loft 19, a new limited access pool deck concept that draws inspiration from luxury resorts.
Other categories include the Havana Suites with private patios and direct access to The Lanai; the nautical-themed Family Harbor Suites; the sleek modern designed Ocean Suites; and the Cloud 9 Spa Suites, which come with a scrub kit and special privileges at the onboard Cloud 9 spa including two fitness classes plus access to the ship's Thermal Suite.
Entertainment on the ship ranges from the world's first roller coaster at sea to the biggest water play area of any Carnival ship. Classic staples like putt-putt golf, basketball and a ropes course can be found in the SportSquare area. Carnival's first true comedy club will offer nightly shows.
Along with more traditional entertainment, the ship will also host Family Feud Live
in both family-friendly and adult-oriented versions. Using the same format as the iconic game show, Family Feud Live
will have two competing teams of five people each going through the classic game show rounds like Face Off and Fast Money. Family Feud Live
on the ship will be hosted by ship's cruise director. The onboard game show will take place in the Grand Central zone, which features ocean views via three-deck-high floor-to-ceiling windows. Bonsai Sushi, Bonsai Teppanyaki, the comedy club and a piano bar will also be found in this area.
Nearby in the New Orleans-inspired French Quarter zone, the entertainment continues with a jazz club and Emeril's Bistro 1396, Emeril Lagasse's first cruise ship restaurant.
But he isn't the only celebrity chef with a presence on the Mardi Gras.
Guy Fieri will have two restaurants on the ship, including a burger joint that is included in all dining packages. Other dining options include the New England-inspired Seafood Shack; The Chef's Table, which consists of a tour of the kitchen and an intimate dining experience hosted by the boat's culinary staff; JiJi Asian Kitchen; family-style Italian cuisine in Cucina del Capitano, which is decorated with officers’ family albums; a taco and burrito stand; and Carnival’s flagship steakhouse, Fahrenheit 555.
Mardi Gras will enter service at the end of August next year with a small selection of European and New York-based voyages before beginning year-round seven-day cruises out of Port Canaveral where a new $150 million terminal is currently under construction.
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Photo via Carnival
Carnival Mardi Gras' new terminal at Port Canaveral