February 2021 Carnival Mardi Gras Cruise
We're looking forward to a cruise on a brand new Carnival cruise ship
Carnival's upcoming new ship, Mardi Gras, is the hottest ticket in town! People are really excited about this ship because she's the first of a brand new class of ship for Carnival, and she'll have a number of improvements over all the other ships in the fleet. A ticket to cruise on Mardi Gras has been extremely hard to come by because the global pandemic caused delays in construction of the ship, and this forced Carnival to stop accepting new reservations for cruises on Mardi Gras. But this situation recently changed.
Mardi Gras was originally scheduled to begin service in mid-November 2020... but with the construction delays, that has now been moved back to early February, 2021. It turns out that I'm the luckiest guy in the world, because quite a long time ago, when Carnival first started accepting bookings for Mardi Gras, I booked a suite for the February 27th sailing. At the same time, I also reserved a number of additional cabins as part of a planned group cruise. And if you join our group soon, before it fills up... you too can have the hottest ticket in town!
This is actually going to be very special cruise for me, for a VERY big reason: it's going to be my first cruise after my retirement from my "real job". After 28 years of working for Pacific Gas & Electric Company at the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant, I retired in June of 2020. Come along with me for this cruise and help me celebrate my first cruise as a retiree... a whole new chapter of my life!
The Mardi Gras is a brand new ship that is currently under construction at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Turku, Finland. It's the largest ship ever built for Carnival Cruise Line! Instead of running on conventional fuel oil, the ship will be powered by liquefied natural gas.
Mardi Gras is part of a whole new class of ships being built for the Carnival Corporation. This class of ships is known as the Excellence class. Several Carnival corporation brands such as AIDA cruises, Costa, and P&O cruises will be getting new Excellence-class ships along with Carnival Cruise Line.
I wasn't originally excited about the Mardi Gras when I first saw the deck plans... I think they may have screwed up the Havana area on this ship by moving it from deck 5 aft (on the Vista class) to deck 8 midship. But what finally won me over about the Mardi Gras was a new kind of suite they're offering called an Excel Aft Suite. There will be twelve of them on the Mardi Gras, and my wife and I will be in one of them! What's going to be amazing about these suites is that each one will have a private Jacuzzi on the balcony. Here's an artist's concept of what these very cool Excel Aft Suite balconies will look like...
The most unusual feature on the Mardi Gras will be an actual roller coaster. Mardi Gras will be the first and only ship in the world with a roller coaster on it! Here's an artist's concept of what the roller coaster track will look like up on the top of the Mardi Gras...
This video gives you a better look at the roller coaster...
All of the cabins on Mardi Gras, not just the suites, are going to be quite a bit nicer than those on other Carnival ships. Carnival hired a design firm to come up with ideas to improve the cabins, and the team really came up with some great ideas. Take a look at this video which shows you a full-scale mock-up of a balcony cabin...
Folks that book a spa cabin will have access to a really nice indoor pool within the spa, which is surrounded by heated tile loungers. Here's an artist's concept of what that area will look like:
If you download the Mardi Gras Deck Plans you can take a look at the layout of the ship, and get a feel for what's aboard. You'll see a few things on the deck plans that are quite a bit different than what you may be used to on other Carnival ships.
Our sail date will be February 27, 2021, from Port Canaveral, Florida. We'll be visiting San Juan, Puerto Rico... Carnival's private resort at Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic... and Carnival's private resort on Grand Turk, which features a pretty great Margaritaville with a gigantic swimming pool that you can use at no additional charge. Here's a look at a portion of the pool... it's actually quite a bit larger than what you see here!
I actually picked this particular itinerary because of the visit to Amber Cove. I've never been there yet, and it looks fantastic to me. Here's an aerial view of the pool area and the over-water bungalows...
I love Carnival's other private resort destinations that they've developed, and this one looks to me like it's even better. So, I suspect this day will be one of the highlights of the cruise.
San Juan will probably be a lot of fun, too! I've been there a whole bunch of times, and feel quite qualified to lead our group on a walking tour of El Morro, the old Spanish fort that used to defend the harbor entrance from pirates. So, come along with me and let me show you El Morro that day. As long as you don't have any mobility issues, it's a very do-able walk from the cruise ship pier.
Want To Come Along With Us?
You are welcome to come along with us on the Carnival Mardi Gras! Onboard the ship, join me and some of our other group members for cocktails, or a meal, or a comedy show, or one of the big production shows in the main theater. When the ship is docked in San Juan, come ashore with me for a tour of El Morro, the historic fort. Join us for as many or as few of our group social events as you'd like. Go your own way anytime you want, or tag along with us. It's totally up to you.
If you're interested in joining us for this February 2021 cruise on the Carnival Mardi Gras, please contact my travel agent, Caitlin Gallagher. She's extremely pleasant to deal with, easy to talk to since she lives in the United States and speaks without any kind of an accent, and very knowledgeable about cruising.
There's even a special financial incentive that makes booking this cruise as part of our group more lucrative than just booking this cruise on your own, some other week. You'll get a $75 onboard credit per cabin, by being part of our group. Use that to pay for drinks, specialty dining, gift shop purchases, etc. Also, we booked our group reservation a long time ago, when booking for Mardi Gras first opened up. This was long before Covid-19 disrupted the cruising world. In fact, we locked in the low rates available at that time for several cabins which are still available, and you can take advantage of that by joining our group.
See this page on Caitlin's web site for a little more information. And be advised that all the suites featuring private Jacuzzis on the balconies are already booked... so you'll just have to come visit mine!
Caitlin is the owner of Ambren Travel. There are multiple ways to contact her... pick which ever you're most comfortable with! Visit her web site, check out the Ambren Travel Facebook page, give her a call at the number listed below, or send her an email.
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