Carnival Spirit Cruise Ship
This article is part of a series showcasing cruise ships on the seven seas. Before we begin, we'll do a quick overview of cruise terms - to help you better understand the maritime terms which come with describing cruise ships.
Gross Tonnage: Gross tonnage is the standard measurement of size of ship in the cruise industry. Despite the sound of its meaning, a gross tonnage is actually a measure of interior volume of space onboard, rather than actual ship weight. 1 gross ton is equal to 100 cubic feet of interior volume.
Knots: A knot is the standard speed measurement of a cruise ship, or any maritime vessel for that matter. One knot is equal to one nautical mile per hour (a nautical mile being 6076 feet, rather than 5280 for land miles) 1 knot is roughly equivalent to 1.15 mph.
Beam: The width of the ship, measured in feet or meters.
Draft: The depth of the ship below the waterline. If diving underneath a vessel, this is how deep you would need to dive to reach the keel (bottom) of the vessel.
Guest Capacity (Double Occupancy) - Measured in terms of 2 guests per stateroom. Maximum capacity is a different measurement which is a function of the exact lifeboat capacity onboard. I.e., a cruise ship is not permitted to sail with a full guest and crew count which exceeds the lifeboat spaces available.
Carnival Spirit Statistics
Gross Tonnage: 86,000
Guest Capacity: 2,124
Length: 963 ft
Beam: 106 ft
Year Built: 2001
Shipyard: Kvaerner Masa-Yards Helsinki, Finland
Ship Class: Spirit Class
Cost: $375 Million USD
Ever been Onboard a Carnival Ship?
All of Carnival's ships have a unique theme in each public space, designed around the central concept of the vessel. Though vessels built in the same ship class have similar deck plans, no two ships in the Carnival fleet have the same interior design. The Carnival Spirit's central concept is famous artistic styles. Throughout this ship and this entire class of vessel, you'll notice a very strong attention to detail towards artwork.
The ship's public spaces are named after many classic icons. Onboard, you'll step into the Spirit Atrium - one of the tallest in Carnival's fleet complete with three glass elevators. Walking forward, you'll enter the Louis XIV Casino, forward to the Champions Sports Bar, Club Cool Jazz Club and the Fountain Cafe. All the way forward, you'll find Pharaoh's Palace main lounge - the main theater onboard.
This class of ship has a 3 deck high theater, with an interior promenade wrapping around the space underneath the stadium seating on the second deck of the theater. Just below the main theater, you'll find a cabaret lounge where comedy shows are often hosted. Here you'll find Versailles - a very ornate lounge boasting artistic works throughout.
Heading all the way aft, you'll find yourself in the empire dining room - an elegantly designed two story main dining room complete with a central grand staircase. One deck up on the Atlantic deck you'll find a wedding chapel, library and the Shanghai Piano Bar - unique spaces for differing needs. Each space onboard is different and offers a new surprise which really makes exploring the ship a lot of fun.
Stateroom categories range from interior (no windows, though cozy), to ocean view, verandah (balcony) and of course, suites. There are many categories to choose from. Keep in mind, when booking you can either have the ship select the room for you, or you can do it yourself. The ship will often provide free upgraded categories (from my experience) if you let them choose - which is a nice bonus.
However, if you do want to select, you'd want to shoot for a room close to one of the major elevator banks and ideally low and center if you are prone to motion sickness and would like the least vibration. Any room however will suit you well as guest rooms are not located in the very noisy and heavy motion areas. That's reserved for the crew!
This industry is based heavily on seasonality. That is, if you are looking for the lowest-priced cruises, you'll want to shoot for an off-peak voyage. (Generally Fall and Winter Sailings) If your travel schedule is limited and you don't mind paying the extra price tag, sailing during peak times is great. (Summer, Spring Break and Major Holidays)
Keep in mind the cruise fare you pay generally determines the stature of your fellow guests. Pricey cruise? Expect elegant travelers. Cheap cruise? Expect college students and retirees. Of course every sailing does have a good mix and you can always find fellow cruisers with similar tastes in mind, given the number of guests sailing onboard.
Looking for the deck plans? Check out this official page
If you are looking for current pricing and availability for a cruise, Carnival's site offers up the latest information at Carnival.com. Keep in mind the ships do relocate often so any specific itinerary for this ship will change with time.