Until the Vista launches in 2016, the Breeze is Carnival’s newest ship. It is from the Dream Class, currently Carnival’s biggest. The Breeze launched in 2012. Decor on the ship is Caribbean casual. Breeze is 1004 feet long with a passenger capacity of 3690 and crew of 1386.
Breeze has the features of other dream class ships with outdoor movies on the Lido deck, waterslides, and a splash park. Like her sister ship, the Magic, Breeze has SportsSquare with a ropes course, mini golf, pool tables, and other games. There are also features unique to the Breeze like the 5D Thrill Theater, which will also appear on the new Vista. This theater down on deck 5 plays short 3-D action movie features with moving seats and well-timed air and water that will really make you feel like part of the action.
Entertainment on the Breeze also includes trivia and other games, stage and comedy shows, a piano bar, nightclub, and Hasbro the Game Show. After all the fun and food it’s good to know that if you need to wash your clothes the Breeze, like all Carnival ships, has self-serve launderettes. You don’t even need quarters as these machines operate from your sail & sign card.
Breeze has plenty of food options. Besides the main dining rooms and Lido buffet passengers can also eat at the Blue Iguana Cantina or Guy’s Burgers at no extra charge. Guys now has veggie burgers. They’re not on the menu. You have to ask and then wait for them to cook, but it is nice that they are finally available. On Sea days at lunchtime anyone willing to brave the long line can have barbecue at Fat Jimmy’s also for no charge.
For a little extra the Red Frog Pub serves up some excellent Pub Grub. I do mean a little. At just $3.33 per item or $2.22 for the cake it is well worth it. Bonsai Sushi serves sushi by the piece, the boatload, or anywhere in between. Cucina del Capitano has a surcharge of $15 at dinner, but at lunchtime it’s free. For those looking for an evening of fine dining a visit to Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse may be in order. It’s the fanciest eatery on board and comes with a surcharge of $35. Room service has both free and pay extra items.
Breeze has two pools on the Lido and hot tubs on several different decks including on the adults only Serenity deck. The Serenity deck also has a hammock. Just one. It had four when we took the transatlantic crossing several years ago. It could have used more rather than less.
A few other things have changed since our first cruise on the Breeze. The EA Sports bar is gone and the large screen TV’s have moved into the casino. This is not a good thing as the casino is now larger and more open to other areas. With the greater number of people smoking in there now that they aren’t supposed to smoke on the balconies it means some smoke escapes into Ocean Plaza on one end and part of the hallway by the shops on the other.
We had a balcony room on the ocean crossing and never could use the balcony due to other people’s smoke. Carnival has tried to do the right thing by making balconies non-smoking, but they need to give the smokers an enclosed lounge of their own where they can keep the smoke to themselves rather than allowing it in the casino where their smoke drives away other passengers who might otherwise use it.
The waterpark on the Breeze is a good one. It has two slides, the twister and the drainpipe. I liked the twister better, John liked the drainpipe. It also has a lot of water features in the splash park which besides giving people a place to splash and play they also keep the area at the slide exits and stairways up to the slides through the waterpark wet which means not having to walk on hot decks in bare feet on the way up to the slide. There is a dry way up for those who want to go up the deck stairs, but the wet way is much kinder to bare feet.
The Breeze is trying out a couple of Carnival’s new ideas. They have the American Table menu in the Main Dining Room. It gets a lot of complaints on facebook, but we liked it just fine. Some of the complainers sound uninformed enough to have never actually tried it. They also have the new format for the FunTimes, which we did not like at all. It is a lot smaller than the old one. It doesn’t have as much useful information and what it does have is hard to find and all crammed together in microscopic writing. Of course some people have gone all electronic and don’t use the paper copy at all any more, but there are still plenty of people using the paper version. Its one redeeming feature is less paper used so less waste generated.
The stateroom TV’s have a lot of useful options. Besides watching TV on them you can do things like see the menus for the whole cruise, check your sail and sign account, buy shore excursions, see where the ship is, or check out the bow cam view. It also has the dining room dress codes which is a good thing because they are no longer published daily in the FunTimes like they were in the old version. On the Breeze the bow cam channel is still a full screen view of just what the bow cam sees which is really nice, especially for those in an interior room who want to use it like a window. Some other ships now show just a small bow cam view and all sorts of stats which is informative, but useless as an electronic window.
There is always something to do on the Breeze, whether it is relaxing in a hot tub or on a deck chair, trying to work off all the cruise food at the gym or on the outdoor walking track and fitness equipment, participating in games or activities, watching shows or movies, or just watching the ocean go by. Spa appointments are available for all sorts of different massages or treatments. Of course eating is always an option. Besides all the different options for meals three times a day, Pizza and ice cream are available 24 hours and free popcorn is ready at the start of the evening’s outdoor movies.