Introduction to the Carnival Splendor

| July 9, 2008

Carnival's newest and largest "Fun Ship" to date is ready for her July 10 debut in Dover, England.

Carnival's newest and largest "Fun Ship" will be christened on July 10 in the U.K.. The godmother to the ship will be the British actress, Myleene Klass, also a chart-topping singer, selected in order to pay tribute to the ever-growing British audience for cruising. For the same reason, the naming ceremony will be held in Dover, England. This will be the first time Carnival has ever launched a new ship in Britain.

A ship's naming ceremony always involves a bottle of "bubbly," as the British say, so Carnival is using a special British vintage of sparkling wine known as Nyetimber English. The company also announced another "first:" A Royal Navy diver will be lurking underwater near the ship, who at the appropriate moment will ascend a rope with bottle in hand and smash it against the hull.

Atrium Floor   Atrium Bar and Dance Floor

Both Nyetimber English Sparkling Wine and Myleene Klass are associated with a well-known British retailer, Marks & Spencer. The wine is available there, and the actress is their official face and spokeswoman. To mark the occasion, Nyetimber is sacrificing one of its most acclaimed and rarest vintages, the 1994 Blanc de Blancs.

Carnival Splendor Design Motif The newest Carnival ship will have a new class designation, although she is not be much bigger than the most recent Carnival ships, Liberty and Freedom. Here some new features, especially in the spa areas and in a greatly enhanced water park, with slides and other aqua apparatus; but other design innovations that had been so far kept under wraps.

Atrium Stairs   Atrium bar

One thing that will surely be a surprise is Farcus' interior design, since every Carnival ship is unique in its interior décor -- unlike some cruise lines that make every ship of a given class nearly identical.

Farcus usually turns to the name of the ship for his design inspiration. So Carnival Splendor's design will be based on "splendid things," the line hinted.

"When I thought of the name of the ship, it brought to mind all the splendid things there are in the world," said designer Farcus. "The central idea that ties the rooms together is the concept of fine, luxurious, sumptuous elegance. So, we used elements like pearls, gold leaf and wood grains to give the ship a feeling of richness."

Atrium from the Top Down

The manner in which Farcus has used these things will be the biggest surprise about Splendor. He has never been accused of understatement. We will get pictures of the new ship's interior up on our site as soon as we can get onboard.

The heart of every Carnival ship is the atrium, and Farcus describes the Splendor atrium as "Pure Design." Here is the description as supplied by Carnival: "The walls are decorated with a composite material made of stainless steel and four-inch circular cutouts backed by pink-stained wood and black pigment rubbed into the grain, along with gold-leaf beams and arches illuminated with hundreds of sparkling lights.

Coffee bar   Dining Room

"The atrium balcony and main staircases carry on the stainless steel motif, with railings that have a circular textured glass infill with orange and red glass jewels fused on and topped by a pink and black-grained wood handrail. The common areas - elevator lobbies, stairwells and promenade - have the stainless steel, gold leaf and wood elements adapted to the location."

New Lido Pool Area In a departure from previous Carnival classes, Splendor features a Lido pool area two decks high that for the first time on a Carnival ship can be enclosed by a retractable Sky Dome. Within this space will a 270 square foot outdoor video screen dubbed Carnival's Seaside Theatre. Also within this space are two hot tubs, two bars and two food service lines.

Jogging Track   Pool Deck Sun Areas   Inside the Lido area

This newly enclosed Lido pool area -- the largest enclosed space on any Carnival ship -- will be decorated with plants and can be used for all kinds of gatherings, day and night and in any weather. It will include a two-level, Art Deco-styled poolside eatery called the Splendido.

Water park Slides   Pool Deck Sun Fun   More Water Park

Directly above the Splendido is the Pinnacle Supper Club, with a skylight for nighttime views of the stars and a glass dance floor suspended over the two-deck high mini-atrium that Farcus says will assuredly be a conversation starter.

Also near the Lido Pool is a two-level, 5,500 square foot children's play area featuring a water spray park.

Outdoor Aft Pool Deck The pool deck area aft of the Lido restaurant is always a favorite for Carnival guests. Splendor's will be better than ever, with the area paying homage to the great ocean liners of the past. As with those great liners, there will be an unimpeded view of the ship's wake. The interior will also pay homage to the liner days with molded teak wall paneling and bars, and serving lines built in the style of the hulls of famous ships.

Aft Pool Area   Special Sushi Food Stations

These serving stations will feature new offerings for Carnival ships; one will offer Tandoori cuisine of India, the other a New York-style deli offering traditional sandwiches and side dishes.

Largest Spa Facilities Yet The Carnival Splendor spa will encompass over 40,000 square feet, including the line's first thelassotherapy pool covered by a glass dome, as well as an elaborate thermal suite and 17 private treatment rooms. Close to the spa area are 68 Spa Cabins, specially located for patrons to take maximum benefit of the spa facilities.

Pubic Room Details Royal Flush Casino: Poker fans will appreciate the central theme of the onboard casino. The walls will have depictions of the most famous hand in games the chance, the Royal Flush. The hands will emerge from the walls like sculptures, while the poker hands in the ceiling décor will change electronically.

Spectacular Spectacular: The main showroom for production shows features "sparkly fiberglass stage curtains" all around, so the "whole room becomes a stage," according to Farcus. Large glass-beaded chandeliers are suspended from the ceiling.

Red Carpet Dance Club: This all-purpose dance club will "turn every guest into a celebrity as they walk along a VIP line of mannequins waiting behind a velvet rope waiting to enter the club." Inside the club, the walls portray images of paparazzi and reporters - complete with flashing camera lenses, to complete the celebrity illusion.

El Mojito Promenade Bar: Perhaps in anticipation of the day when Old Havana again becomes a favorite cruise destination, this nightclub features the look of a typical sidewalk café in the famous city. It features Spanish columns topped with classic domed lights and lanterns. Terracotta floors meet aged stucco walls festooned with colorful Cuban posters.

The Cool Jazz Bar: This room is a tribute to one of the most famous players ever, trumpeter Miles Davis. The room is decorated with artwork inspired by him, as well as various pictures of the jazz hero and his sheet music.

El Morocco: The secondary showroom in the aft area of the ship is a tribute to the famous 1930s New York City nightclub of the same name. It boasts zebra-patterned banquettes and walls adorned in palm trees, lanterns, and murals with scenes of Morocco.

Our House Sports Bar: This lounge welcomes you to "our house" so guests get the feel of "home team advantage." Throughout are models of famous stadiums in glass display cases. The décor is red, white and blue bunting to celebrate all-American pastimes.

Our House Sports Bar   Aft Pool Area

California Roll: This promises to be the most elaborate sushi bar on a Carnival Ship yet. Walls will come alive with sculptured koi fish painted in Day-Glo colors. While the front bar is natural river rock, all of the room's tile work is natural mother of pearl.

Summing Up Carnival Splendor The ship is a celebration of all the fun things in life: sports, good luck, fine surroundings and good health. As the ship debuts in Dover this week, look for an extensive assortment of pictures in CruiseMates appearing on Friday.

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