Queen Latifah was named godmother of the new Carnival Horizon at the ship’s official naming ceremony in New York Wednesday night, and Travel Agent was on hand to explore the new Carnival Cruise Line ship. We’ve rounded up the details on what sets the ship apart from its sibling vessel, the Carnival Vista.
Dr. Seuss-themed WaterWorks: Building on Carnival’s longstanding partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprise, the Carnival Horizon has the cruise line’s first Dr. Seuss-themed WaterWorks water park. Located on Deck 12, the area has a number of attractions based on classic Dr. Seuss characters, including two big waterslides inspired by the Cat in the Hat and Thing 1 and Thing 2. Other touches include a 300-gallon tipping bucket inspired by the Cat’s famous hat, along with a kiddie splash zone with a number of spray toys.
Guy’s Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse|Brewhouse: One of two new dining venues on the new ship, this BBQ joint is the latest collaboration between Carnival and Food Network star Guy Fieri, who was on hand for a ribbon cutting ceremony immediately prior to the ship’s christening. Travel Agent got a chance to sample the menu of BBQ classics and side dishes; particular standouts were the dry-rubbed Blue Ribbon Chicken and the Trash Can Nachos, which are topped with pulled pork. The venue is also debuting four new craft beers – a porter, IPA, amber and an ale – brewed onboard in what’s being billed as the first North American brewery at sea.
Bonsai Teppenyaki: The other new restaurant onboard is Bonsai Teppanyaki, the first teppanyaki dining venue in the Carnival fleet. This venue offers a wide-ranging menu of Japanese dishes, prepared by chefs with a dramatic flair at stations in the center of the venue’s two eight-seat tables. Since seating is limited, we’re told that reservations are recommended here.
Expanded Shopping: The ship’s retail area is the largest in the fleet, spanning two levels in the ship’s atrium on decks 4 and 5. Among the offerings here is the first Victoria’s Secret store at sea, as well as returning favorites such as the Hip Fish and Front Street jewelry stores; the Cherry on Top candy shop; and the Portside duty-free store.
New Artwork from St. Jude’s: In the ship’s atrium, the central Dreamscape funnel will display artwork drawn by children from St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. The move is the latest in Carnival’s partnership with St. Jude’s, which has raised $16 million over the past six years, Carnival President Christine Duffy told Travel Agent and other media during a presentation the day of the naming ceremony. Duffy said that the cruise line is on track to exceed its $18 million funding commitment by 2020.
The ship also includes a number of features from the Carnival Vista, including the Sky Ride bike-in-the-sky attraction, an IMAX theater and the Havana bar and staterooms.
For the rest of the summer the Carnival Horizon will sail out of New York on a schedule of four-day Bermuda and eight-day Caribbean cruises. Starting in September, the ship will reposition to Miami for year-round six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises.