SLIDESHOW: Carnival Vista unveiled

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Connecting guests with the sea

Executives who unveiled the Carnival Vista in New York on Thursday said the new ship would have a strong connection to the ocean and the outdoors.

Mark Tamis, Carnival’s senior vice president of guest operations, said that passengers will be able to “eat al fresco practically anywhere.” Tamis said that the alternative restaurants were moved to Deck 5 from where they were on other ships, so the restaurants could have indoor and outdoor areas.

A new Havana Experience will go beyond the brand’s popular Havana Bar. The bar will lead to a Deck 5  Havana Pool, which by day will be exclusively available to passengers staying in Havana Cabanas that have lanais with hammocks on them.  By night, it opens to rest of the passengers. 

The space is “inspired by the Caribbean and Cuba,” Tamis said.

Carnival’s senior cruise director, John Heald, said the ship design would bring cruising back to the way it used to be.

“So much of the industry is about getting people indoors,” he said. “To put people in the sight and sound of the sea — that is what cruising is about. It used to be that way when I started — that was half the entertainment. Now we’re bringing that back. 

“Cruising is all about the sea,” he added. “It always was and always will be.”

— Johanna Jainchill

An IMAX movie theater and what may be the closest thing yet to a full-fledged amusement park ride at sea will be two of the features on Carnival Cruise Line’s latest ship, Carnival Vista, due in May 2016.

Carnival pulled the wraps off the ship at a news conference at New York’s Lincoln Center.

The reveal showed renderings of SkyRide, a streamlined single-passenger car that runs beneath a track circuit above the sports deck on the aft section of the 4,000-passenger ship.

Vista will be Carnival’s 25th ship overall and the first since delivery of Carnival Breeze in 2012. 

Like the 3,690-passenger Breeze, Vista will begin service in Europe, marking a return of the Carnival brand to that continent following a two-year hiatus after the departure of Carnival Sunshine.

SkyRide is described as the cruise industry’s first pedal-powered open-air aerial attraction. Guests will climb aboard hanging recumbent-like bikes to cycle their way around the 800-foot suspended track with panoramic views from 150 feet above the sea.

Another first will be IMAX, a familiar land brand that operates panoramic theaters for films shot with special cameras to capture wide angles. The screen on Vista will be three decks tall.

IMAX will be part of Carnival Multiplex, a cinematic hub that also includes Thrill Theater, offering a “multi-dimensional special-effects experience. A concession stand with popcorn and movie snacks and a video and arcade room called The Warehouse round out the multiplex.

Two new stateroom categories will be introduced on Vista. Havana Cabanas will have private outdoor patios with lounge chairs and a hammock that face an ocean-air outdoor promenade.

Family Harbor staterooms will accommodate five and be located in a dedicated family zone on Deck 2 that includes a family concierge and the secluded Family Harbor Lounge. 

Carnival will brew its own beer on the ship for RedFrog Pub and introduce a New England-themed Seafood Shack indoor/outdoor restaurant. 

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