Carnival Spirit didn’t have an extensive sports and fitness program, but it was adequate for a shorter cruise.
Carnival’s over-the-top design team missed the mark here. With tacky murals of Greek athletes lining the walls and an auburn color scheme, the entire facility appeared retro in the worst way. Treatment rooms were cramped and dingy-looking and the salon felt like it was designed for Caesar’s Palace, circa Elvis’ last days.
The facility is managed for Carnival by Steiner Leisure, which oversees spas for a number of cruise lines. We signed up for the Fire and Ice manicure. While we found the 50-minute, $50 treatment competently handled and the arm massage with hot rocks relaxing, the “cooling gel” that was applied didn’t do enough to warrant the name. Overall, treatments seemed pricey to us: 50-minute facials ran $119-$169 and 50-minute massages were $119-$159, or $269 for the couple’s massage. As is typical on most ships, spa treatments (though not those at the salon) were discounted by 10 percent on port days. There were discounts for multiple treatments, and additional offers popped up on sea days.
Other procedures available included teeth whitening, acupuncture, Ionithermie, waxing and men’s grooming. The men’s and women’s changing areas have private sauna and steam rooms, which are open to those not signing up for a treatment.
In contrast to the spa, the small gym—located past all the treatment rooms—was relatively appealing, perhaps owing to a renovation of the ship in January 2012. There was plenty of current LifeCycle cardio equipment—bikes, treadmills and elliptical—and we never saw a line for the machines, all of which faced the forward ocean view. One small problem we noticed was that the room was not adequately cooled, so it got a bit humid while working out.
Fitness classes included yoga, pilates and spinning, priced $12 each ($30 for three sessions). The two-session fitness Boot Camp was $69. A body composition analysis was $35, and a 60-minute session with a personal trainer was $85.
The one element of the ancient Greece (or was that Rome?) theme that was carried from the spa into the gym is a successful one: There is an elevated, indoor whirlpool in the middle of all the muscle-pumping, and this was a pretty nice place to soak after a workout.
Deck 10 offers Carnival Spirit’s walking and jogging track—3½ laps equals a mile, though jogging was allowed only before 8 a.m. or after 8 p.m. Although the forward part of the deck was a great perch from which to admire the view, there were no deck chairs or loungers here. But plenty of loungers were found on the port and starboard sections of the deck, and this was a good place to grab one when options on the Serenity Retreat or Lido Deck ran out.
This small area on deck 11 forward had a 9-hole miniature golf course, ping-pong tables, and a basketball court.
Several basketball games were scheduled in the court during our cruise, as was a round of “adult” dodge ball.
Just out of dry dock following a $155 million renovation, we joined the inaugural cruise of the former Carnival Destiny. The “new” ship, Carnival Sunshine, was not ready for the spotlight. Read More...
Considering an upscale cruise journey? Use our handy guide to distinguish the leading luxe cruise lines from one another. Read More...