PORT CANAVERAL — Carnival’s brand new ship Mardi Gras set sail from Port Canaveral this past Saturday.
The ship’s first guest cruise includes visits to San Juan, Amber Cove and Nassau.
The long-awaited Mardi Gras features BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea, and is also the first cruise ship in the Americas powered by eco-friendly Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). The 180,000-ton ship is home to six distinct themed zones with a variety of food, beverage and entertainment options, including dining venues from Emeril Lagasse, Guy Fieri, Rudi Sodamin and its Chief Fun Officer Shaquille O’Neal.
To celebrate the maiden voyage, Carnival President Christine Duffy and Mardi Gras Captain Giuseppe Giusa led a ‘Back to Fun’ ribbon-cutting ceremony officially welcoming guests on board.
“Mardi Gras has been five years in the making so to finally welcome guests on board to experience this one-of-a-kind ship is something that we’ve been looking forward to for a very long time,” Duffy said.
Added Giusa: “Today was a truly emotional moment for our entire Mardi Gras team. Having the distinction as the flagship of Carnival Cruise Line is a great honour and our entire team is ready to provide our guests with the vacation they have been so patiently waiting for. We are ready to get back to fun!”
Mardi Gras is the fifth Carnival ship to resume service with additional vessels set to restart operations soon.
By October the cruise line expects to have 15 ships sailing – more than half its fleet.
Carnival Celebration, sister ship to Mardi Gras, is scheduled to debut in late 2022 from PortMiami, along with an as-yet-unnamed ship slated to enter service in 2023.