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Check out more than 100 Carnival Jubilee photos


Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have a cruise ship almost entirely to yourself? I have, and for two days this week, I had the chance to experience it. I was one of just three non-employees on Carnival Cruise Line‘s new Carnival Jubilee, the third ship in the line’s Excel Class, which gives a nod to some of the brand’s original vessels.

I was visiting the vessel before its first official revenue cruise, which began on Saturday.

Not everything was open during my time on board, but that’s because there weren’t enough people to warrant it. That changed soon after I left the ship on Saturday. More than 6,200 passengers embarked Carnival Jubilee for its first sailing, a 7-night voyage to the Western Caribbean. The ship was sailing completely full.

It was nothing short of magical to see the final touches for Carnival Jubilee’s first sailing come together.

A metal wall sculpture depicts Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

The crew was busy preparing – polishing brass, shampooing carpets, washing linens, stocking the onboard shops, rehearsing shows, doing meal service dry runs and putting up the last of the holiday decorations that have taken up residence in just about every public space. (The first voyage is happening over Christmas, after all.)

During my short visit, which included a quick sailing from Galveston, Texas, where Jubilee is based, I toured several types of cabins, caught two of the theater shows, ate at six of the ship’s restaurants and snagged enough coffee from the onboard cafe to stay awake for what feels like a week. I also checked out the Bolt roller coaster – one of just three at sea – and the ship’s new Golden Mermaid and Dr. Inks bars in the ship’s “Currents” zone, which features an under-the-sea theme that celebrates ocean life.

The ship’s bell from the original MS Jubilee is displayed on the new Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

So, what was it like? Here are more than 100 Carnival Jubilee pictures so you can sneak a peek before you sail on this phenomenal new ship.

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Cabins

Carnival has come a long way since the days when its staterooms were colored like cotton candy. Instead, its newest vessels are done up in neutrals with calming accents of blue and green, depending on the cabin category.

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On my sailing, I was in a 341-square-foot Ocean Suite capable of sleeping four people with a queen bed, a twin sofa bed and a single bunk that pulled down from the ceiling. In addition to tons of closet and drawer space, there were two TVs, a sizeable balcony and a ton of USB ports.

An Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The bathroom in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Half of the closet in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Half of the closet in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The vanity area in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A mini-fridge in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The hair dryer in an Ocean Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
My Ocean Suite slept four people and had eight USB outlets. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Elemis shower gel and shampoo are available from in-shower dispensers. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

I also had an opportunity to check out a couple of other cabin types, including a 158-square-foot inside that sleeps three people, a 243-square-foot Family Harbor ocean-view room, 249-square foot Cove Balcony accommodations, a 341-square-foot Spa Suite and an 861-square-foot Excel Aft Suite.

An inside cabin on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
An ocean-view Family Harbor stateroom on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A cabin bathroom on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The lounge for passengers booked in the Family Harbor area of Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A Cove Balcony cabin on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A Cove Balcony on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A Spa Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A Spa Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The bedroom of an Excel Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The living room of an Excel Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The bathroom in an Excel Suite on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Restaurants

Carnival Jubilee’s restaurants are elegant but fun. Whether you’re enjoying the Hogwarts vibes provided by the central lighting in the main dining rooms as the waiters dance or admiring the glass fish on the wall at Rudi’s Seagrill, there’s always something to talk about over dinner.

The Pacific dining room on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Carnival Kitchen on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Emeril’s Bistro 717 on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Chibang! on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Coastal Slice pizzeria on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Beach Buns deli on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
La Cucina on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Fahrenheit 555 steakhouse on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Mad Sizzle, one of several venues that’s part of the Street Eats area on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The BlueIguana Cantina on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Seating at the Lido Marketplace on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Seating at the Lido Marketplace buffet on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Lido Marketplace buffet on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Shaq’s Big Chicken on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Bonsai Sushi on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Food and drinks

I’m just going to say it: Carnival’s food is severely underrated. It’s consistently some of the best I’ve eaten at sea, and the wide variety of cuisines — from Italian and Asian to seafood and steak — means there’s something to please even the most picky eaters. Plus, you can’t beat the value, with free options like burgers, pizza, burritos and fried chicken.

On my sailing, I tested out fare from The Pacific main dining room; Chibang!, a combination Asian and Mexican restaurant; Rudi’s Seagrill, a for-fee seafood eatery dreamed up by food artist and chef Rudi Sodamin; Guy’s Burger Joint, which serves up complimentary burgers designed by Guy Fieri; and Coastal Slice and Beach Buns, two counter-service areas that offer free pizza and deli items in the ship’s The Shores zone.

Avocado toast from the breakfast menu in The Pacific dining room on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A breakfast bowl from The Pacific dining room on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Spring rolls from Chibang! on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Tortilla soup from Chibang! on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Queso fundido from Chibang! on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Hakka noodles from Chibang! on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Ringer, one of several burgers available from Guy’s Burger Joint on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A four-cheese pizza from the Coastal Slice pizzeria in The Shores zone on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Vanilla French toast from The Pacific main dining room on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A fried shrimp starter from Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
White chocolate bread pudding from Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Crab-stuffed lobster tail imperial at Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A crab cake from Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A house tossed salad from Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Lobster macaroni and cheese from Rudi’s Seagrill on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

And, what would a Carnival sailing be without testing a few tipples? After dinner on the first night, I ventured to the Golden Mermaid Bar, where I ordered the A Pearly Bubble, a mixture of gin, St-Germain liqueur, white cranberry juice, dragon fruit and lime juice. Meanwhile, a friend tried the Sapphire Sparkle: lemon rum, blue curacao, white cranberry juice and aquafaba.

After that, I headed around the corner to Dr. Inks Ph. D., an octopus-themed watering hole in the Currents zone, which carries an underwater theme, and tried a Snapping Pop (Swedish Fish candy-infused vodka, triple sec liqueur, maraschino liqueur, Pop Rocks and green apple candy). I also started each day with a coffee from the JavaBlue cafe in the Grand Central zone.

A bartender puts the finishing touch on the A Pearly Bubble drink at the Golden Mermaid Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A Sapphire Sparkle from the Golden Mermaid Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A bartender pours two Snapping Pop drinks into glasses at the Dr. Inks Ph. D. bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
An iced mocha from the JavaBlue cafe on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Bars and lounges

As with all Carnival ships, there are plenty of bars from which to choose on Carnival Jubilee. For me, the three most notable are the Golden Mermaid, Dr. Inks Ph. D. and the Center Stage Bar. The first has a golden vintage theme that evokes buried treasure, and it serves interesting concoctions that include smoke bubbles and glitter.

Dr. Inks, found in the ship’s Currents Zone, focuses on life under the sea and features appearances by a new character, Dr. Inks, an octopus who has a doctorate in philosophy, pet butterflies and a sizeable collection of eyeglasses in different colors and styles. On that menu, you’ll find more smoke bubbles, as well as whimsical ingredients like Pop Rocks.

Meanwhile, the Center Stage Bar offer standard drinks but in a central location near the atrium. With its iridescent accents and combination of shapes and colors, it gives me subtle Joe Farcus vibes — appropriate for a throwback Carnival ship.

The Golden Mermaid Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The seating area near The Golden Mermaid Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Marina Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Digital screens in Carnival Jubilee’s Currents area. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Center Stage Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The ocean life-themed Currents zone on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Punchliner comedy club on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Piano Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
JavaBlue cafe on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Dr. Inks Ph. D., a new bar in the Currents zone on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Alchemy Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Limelight Lounge on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A seating area near Alchemy Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Havana Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The entrance to Guys Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The bar at Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Seating and a stage for live music at Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A gaming area with foosball at Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Heroes Tribute Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The RedFrog Tiki Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The RedFrog Tiki Bar on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Entertainment

Limited entertainment was offered when I sailed Carnival Jubilee, but I did have a chance to see the ship’s brand-new theater show “Dear Future Husband.” The premise is that a couple plans a wedding on a cruise ship, and they bring their friends. We follow them through the pre-wedding party shenanigans, the prep and the ceremony, all set to popular songs like Bruno Mars’ “Marry You” and, of course, Meghan Trainor’s “Dear Future Husband.”

When the show ends, passengers are encouraged to head from the Jubilee Theater, where it takes place, to the ship’s Limelight Lounge for the “reception,” which features a DJ playing music for dancing. (Don’t get too excited, though: the happy couple won’t grace attendees with an open bar.)

The Jubilee Theater on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
One of the Carnival Jubilee singers performs a number during the ship’s “Dear Future Husband” production show. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Performers on Carnival Jubilee get their hair done as part of the ship’s new “Dear Future Husband” production show. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Members of the Carnival Jubilee production cast perform in new show “Dear Future Husband.” ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Members of the Carnival Jubilee production cast perform in new show “Dear Future Husband.” ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Two members of Carnival Jubilee’s entertainment staff get married on stage as part of the ship’s “Dear Future Husband” production show. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
After the “Dear Future Husband” production show ends, the wedding reception takes place in the Limelight Lounge on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Also on Carnival Jubliee is “Rio Carnival,” a show that first debuted on Carnival Celebration. It focuses on the flamboyance of Brazil and its street fair culture, complete with bright colors and sparkling costumes.

Members of Carnival Jubilee’s production cast perform during the ship’s “Rio Carnival” show. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Members of Carnival Jubilee’s production cast perform during the ship’s “Rio Carnival” show. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

The ship’s Grand Central zone, which houses Center Stage, also serves as an entertainment venue. Although no full shows were offered there during my sailing, I did catch a peek at the cast during rehearsal for a special holiday performance.

A view of Center Stage in Carnival Jubilee’s Grand Central zone. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Center Stage in Carnival Jubilee’s Grand Central zone displays a holiday message. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Members of Carnival Jubilee’s production cast rehearse for a special holiday performance on Center Stage. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Top decks

The top decks belong to Carnival Jubilee’s Lido and Ultimate Playground zones. The former houses the ship’s main pool, along with the RedFrog Tiki Bar, BlueIguana Cantina and Guy’s Burger Joint.

The Lido zone’s main Beach Pool on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Lido zone’s main Beach Pool on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Beach Pool on Carnival Jubilee at night. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Just above that, the Ultimate Playground is where passengers can splash down the tangle of waterslides that is Carnival Waterworks, give the ropes course a go, play a game of miniature golf or basketball, or hop on the Bolt roller coaster for an adrenaline-pumping ride.

A sign for the Bolt roller coaster near the entrance to the ride on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Bolt roller coaster on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The miniature golf course on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The sports court on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Carnival Waterworks water play area on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

At the opposite end of the spectrum, the upper decks are also the place to find a relaxing, adults-only spot to sunbathe or soak in a hot tub, thanks to the adults-only area Serenity and Loft 19, a retreat-style area that offers cabanas. Both come with a fee for entry.

One of Loft 19’s cabana areas on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Dual hot tubs in the Loft 19 area on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Spa and fitness center

Carnival has brought its Cloud 9 spa, salon and fitness center to Carnival Jubilee. They feature a plethora of pampering treatments that run the gamut from massages and facials to manicures and pedicures, hair styling and classes like yoga and spin. The fitness center, which is free to use, is equipped with LifeFitness machines, exercise balls, dumb bells and other amenities.

The spa’s thermal suite, which you can access for a fee or with the purchase of a spa treatment, includes saunas, heated tile loungers and a whirlpool.

The Cloud 9 Spa on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The manicure and pedicure area in the Cloud 9 Salon on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The thermal suite in the Cloud 9 Spa on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Cloud 9 Fitness Center on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

Kids club

Camp Ocean, Carnival’s kids club, is impressive on Carnival Jubilee. It’s fun, brightly colored and modern, and it’s staffed by a dedicated team that organizes games, crafts and other activities for children, based on age.

Activities are split into four groups, each with its own designated area: Turtles (up to 1 year old), Penguins (2-5), Stingrays (6-8) and Sharks (9-11). You’ll find Dr. Seuss’ Bookville children’s library in that space, too. There are also two lounges — Circle C and Club O2 — for tweens and teens in a separate area of the vessel.

The entrance to Camp Ocean, the kids club on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
Dr. Seuss’ Bookville on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A table of activities in the Camp Ocean kids club on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The Sharks area (ages 9-11) of the Carnival Jubilee Camp Ocean kids club. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
An interactive display in the Camp Ocean kids club on Carnival Jubilee helps children to learn more about space and constellations. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A gaming room with lots of TVs, video game consoles, controllers and seating in the Camp Ocean kids club on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
A hangout for older kids on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY
The arcade on Carnival Jubilee. ASHLEY KOSCIOLEK/THE POINTS GUY

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