Carnival Vista Media Day
Tommy Davidson and Hyacynthia Leonce
By Dr. Hyacynthia M. Leonce, Entertainment Reporter
Carnival Vista Media Day was a great success! “The 3,934-passenger Carnival Vista isn’t just the line’s newest, largest and innovative ship — it’s a true “floating resort” offering a host of on-board amenities and facilities.” Going through the media entrance was easy with even the security staff with friendly smiles, and they even spoke nicely compared to security staff at other places. While waiting for the PR people of Carnival Vista, I spotted Tommy Davidson, the comedian. I was trying not to stare, but I had to go up to him to make sure. So I slid next to him and spoke softly like an old friend. “So, what’s up?” I said, “you doing okay today?” And he spoke, I was pleasantly surprised. So, we chatted for a couple of minutes and I was right that was him. The man had me cracking up! Before I politely exited, I asked for a picture, and he even gave me a couple jokes cracking on me and was nice enough to take a picture with me. What!! I haven’t even started my tour, and I am meeting famous people already.
Upon entrance to the ship the mood was festive with Soca music playing in the Atrium with a live DJ. My “Wow” factor was the LED Column with changing scenes, one of which was a tall aquarium with dolphins. Awsome! Magnificent! I couldn’t take my mind off it, and have you seen winding steps in glass? Amazing! The Atrium was designed with beautiful holiday decor; it’s the season to be merry!!!
We were asked to meet at the Red Frog Pub & Brewery. “Carnival Vista’s RedFrog Pub & Brewery is the result of a unique collaboration between Carnival and Miami-based Concrete Beach Brewery. Concrete Beach is an Alchemy & Science brand, an independently operated subsidiary of The Boston Beer Company. Alchemy & Science is home to other such popular breweries around the country, including Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles and Coney Island Brewing Co. in Brooklyn, N.Y. Each of these breweries produces beers specifically inspired by and brewed to be representative of their respective locales. The resulting examples include such beers as Tropic of Passion, a passion fruit wheat beer from Miami, Angel City IPA from L.A., and Coney Island Mermaid Pilsner from New York.” We got to go inside the actual tanks, cool, if you are a beer drinker – all the beer you can drink!
Inside the Red Frog was the sweet sounds of Caribbean music playing. The media group sat around talking while appetizers were passed around by the wait staff. The Waitstaff offered food samples from various restaurants on the ship. We were also invited to taste the beer and other drinks. My favorite drink was what they called “Pain Killer,” a virgin drink so I don’t know why they called it a pain killer but…anyway, it was made with coco-nut cream, pineapple and orange juice, with nutmeg on top. Delicioso!! My favorite food was the spicy fried shrimp. Carnival Vista did not disappoint! Guy’s Burger Joint is certainly “a guest favorite.” The lines were long at the burger joint. “Guy’s freshly made burgers, hand-cut fries and innovative toppings was created in partnership with Food Network personality Guy Fieri.” Since guest could fix their own toppings, I believe it created a frenzy.
One of the bar waiters was Patrick Chester, who was from my Island of St. Lucia. He stated that he had worked with Carnival Liberty for two years and when his contract ended six months ago, he was afforded the wonderful opportunity to work for Carnival Vista. Patrick stated that he enjoys what he does and his moto is “If you have happy employees you have happy passengers.” Well I think you got that right Patrick!
While I was in the Red Frog I met Robyn Fink, Director, Consumer Public Relation, who would later be our tour guide. She stated that she moved to Miami on March 1st from New York to work for Carnival Vista to be around her nephews. When asked what she liked about Carnival she relayed “I love it because I learn some-thing new every day. I am so grateful for my team.” Robyn was friendly seeing to it that we all got the information we needed. She was a great tour guide.
John, the Grand Embassador, stated that approximately 4,000 plus people disembarked the ship earlier. What an astounding number. He officiated over the traditional exchange of plaques with Captain Stephano. Rudy McBean, who has worked for Carnival for 16 years, was given a plaque for his years of service. He reported that he has recently left Carnival, but currently works as the Manager for the Port of Operations. When asked about his job he conveyed, “It’s making sure the ship turns on time, goes on time and she leaves on time.” What a serious job; that’s a lot of people you have to coordinate with for all this to happen. By the way he is from Jamaica, an Island man! Kudos to you Rudy!
Last but not least, what I would like to mention is the Havannah Suite which I believe many in South Florida would enjoy. This bar gives the guest a taste of Cuba with its mojitos and Cuba Libre. The sampler plate includes ceviche de mariscos, ropa vieja and pan con bistec.”
All in all this ship is amazing. I have not even gotten a chance to mention all the activities on board. Vista “features an unparalleled array of entertainment and adrenaline-inducing thrill experiences, including the cruise industry’s first IMAX Theatre at sea, SkyRide, an open-air cycling experience suspended high above the ship’s top deck, as well as a multi-sensory, 455-foot-long water tube slide called Kaleid-O-Slide. Additionally, spectacular new Playlist Productions show and a number of exciting new activities are being introduced to provide an unprecedented variety of entertainment choices.
Carnival Vista also features a suspended 270-foot-long ropes course, an exhilarating, high speed Twister slide, an aqua spray park with a 300-gallon tipping bucket and a huge array of other outdoor and indoor entertainment options.
Carnival is also introducing several new activities including the South Beach-inspired Serenity Nights, a Rock-N-Glow 80s Deck Party and an Island Deck Party as well as a murder mystery experience.” Just to name a few things that you can do on the ship. I cannot possibly include everything the ship has to offer in this article. Carnival Vista is a whole world by itself. Come on guys, save up your dollars and go cruising Carnival Vista style. You wouldn’t be disappointed!