Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line, and Glenn Aprile, the brand’s director of new builds product development, hosted a press conference to share what clients can expect onboard Carnival Venezia when it sets sail year-round from New York beginning in June 2023.
Duffy indicated the new series of vessels — which will also include sister ship Carnival Firenze from Long Beach, Calif., in 2024 — will be dubbed the Venice class. And Aprile added they will feature the same general arrangement as the line’s existing Vista class, but with “unique Italian styling.” Both will be operated by Carnival crew and feature the brand’s signature fun elements.
Staterooms and suites will feel familiar to those in the Vista class, but with Venetian flourishes and glass shower doors in the bathrooms. Local customers will also appreciate U.S.-style electrical outlets and USB charging ports.
Instead of Havana cabins, however, Terrazza staterooms will be Italian-themed with exclusive access to the aft-located Carnevale Lounge for continental breakfast, visits during the day and a special sail-away party with live music at the alfresco Terrazza Carnevale. Unlike on the Vista class, though, there is no pool here — but Carnival will be adding two whirlpools. At night, the space will be open to all passengers.
The hub of activities onboard will be the triple-decker atrium inspired by Piazza San Marco in Venice, Italy. The space and its cocktail bar and stage will host a Captain’s Venetian Toast, as well as live music from Carnival’s Celestial Strings show. Guests will have the opportunity to purchase or bring their own decorative masks for the occasion.
The Gondola Lounge will host other activities and live music in the space where Ocean Plaza is located on Carnival’s other ships. And for families with children, the line’s kids’ clubs will be reprised, as will WaterWorks with water slides and SportSquare and its ropes course.
The lido deck is “maybe my favorite spot onboard,” said Duffy, which on Venezia is a two-level, fully themed space with columns, fountains, a pool and eateries under a retractable magrodome cover. Events here will include an Italian sail-away event amid a street party atmosphere that will extend into the evening after dinner. Customers can also anticipate bocce, ping pong, foosball and even gelato- and pasta-eating contests.
The Italian Riviera-style lido will also serve the first of the ship’s updated dining. At Rococo, for instance, “Baroque Goes Pop” and frozen drinks will be available from a playful setting with art and drinks to match — everything from margaritas and daiquiris to limoncello and bellinis. And opposite the bar will be JavaBlue Cafe, which will have coffee and gelato this time around.
Poolside, the ship will feature a Guy’s Burger Joint and its menu classics, plus a pepperoni pizza burger and the Big Mozz, topped with mozzarella cheese. But instead of a BlueIguana Cantina, Tomodoro will offer “Mexitalian” fusion. Think the usual tacos and burritos, but also meatballs and Sicilian chicken.
Elsewhere, La Strada Grill will prepare Italian street food and sandwiches, and Frizzante will pour beverages with bubbles such as prosecco and Italian beer, as well as coffees. Meanwhile, taking the place of an Alchemy Bar will be the equally interactive Amari, serving favorites from Alchemy in addition to cocktails such as the negroni, americano, Amalfi martini and sbagliato.
The ship’s main dining rooms are Canal Grande and Marco Polo. Canal Grande will don Italian motifs and a full-scale gondola, which will also host The Chef’s Table experience. Both will feature dishes from Carnival’s classic Cucina del Capitano, while a new, yet-to-be-detailed specialty Italian restaurant will be showcased as an extra venue for sea day brunches and dinners. Duffy teased an oven that will specially bake focaccia bread.
Teatro Rosso will feature staged productions including “Color My World” from the line’s latest ship, Carnival Celebration, complete with a live artist and assistant propelling the narrative. Other Playlist Productions coming to Venezia will include “Broadway Beats,” “Epic Rock” and “Vintage Pop,” as well as the Family Feud Live game show.
All of this is in addition to Carnival favorites that will also appear onboard, such as Heroes Tribute Bar & Lounge, Piano Bar 88, Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse, Bonsai Sushi, Seafood Shack and a Cloud 9 Salon & Spa.
Starting June 15, 2023, Carnival Venezia will sail on a wide variety of itineraries (22 in total) across 10 different durations to 25 ports of call in 14 countries. And then later, on the West Coast in 2024, Carnival Firenze will depart year-round from Long Beach, Calif.