By Richard Tribou, Orlando Sentinel
December 13, 2011
In the great Carnival Cruise Lines shuffle, the port of Tampa's new vessel is the 2,052-passenger Carnival Paradise.
The Paradise, which had been sailing Mexican Riviera cruises out of the Port of Long Beach, replaces the Carnival Inspiration, which now heads to California for year-round service. The Paradise will sail four- and five-day western Caribbean itineraries. The four-day trips leave on Thursday and head to Cozumel. The five-day trips leave on Mondays and Saturdays and visit Cozumel and Grand Cayman.
The ship joins the Carnival Legend, which is based at the port year-round and sails seven-day Caribbean cruises. Carnival is the only line based the whole year in Tampa, which in addition to the Legend and Paradise currently features 3 other ships, the Royal Caribbean Jewel of the Seas, Holland America ms Ryndam and the Norwegian Star, which will be replaced in 2012 with the Norwegian Dawn.
Carnival has been sailing year-round from Tampa since 1994. The line says it expects to carry around 300,000 passengers from the port in 2012.
"With its convenient location, excellent facilities and proximity to top tourist attractions, Tampa has become one of our most popular homeports and Carnival Paradise will provide an exciting and affordable short cruise option from Florida's west coast," said Gerry Cahill, Carnival's president and CEO.
The Fantasy-class, 855-foot Paradise was built in 1996 and refurbished in 2005. The theme pays homage to ocean liners of the past with venues such as the Queen Mary Lounge, Normandie Theater, Rotterdam Bar and the Leonardo Lounge.
It has three pools, one with a spiral water slide, two formal restaurants and other dining options, a health and fitness center, jogging track and adults-only spa. Click here for ship details.
You can view itineraries and book a cruise on the Paradise through our partner Cruise.com or contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit carnival.com.
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