We came into Ft. lauderdale on May 12th and stayed at the Hampton Inn North airport and port area. Great beginning, free airport and port transportation. Great service at the hotel and it was reasonable. I've been reading the reviews for this ship for a year since I booked the trip and now I can write my own. Our stateroom attendant and waiter, assistant waiter were excellent. Rooms were always clean and ice bucket full. We had adjoining rooms and it was perfect to be able to go back and forth. Every staff member we encountered was very pleasant and have no complaints. I had been on 3 prior Carnival cruises and this is the first time on Royal Carribean. I booked the trip thru their web site. First cruise for my sister and nieces. The one room was larger then the other by the way the beds were arranged, and nieces had that one , so they were happy. Not much room though to move around if your beds are on the side instead of when you walk straight in. Enough shelfs and hangers for our clothes. The enclosed shower was nice, and you can fit in them, even if you're plus sized. I had signed up for a meet and mingle when I booked the trip, but was never given any info if they had one on this cruise.
We were in awe when we walked on the ship. Never saw anything like it on the other ships. So glad we picked this ship. I mainly chose it since I didn't want to see Hairspray on the Oasis. I had always cruised on the largest Carnival ships at the time, and thought this ship would not move, but was surprised that it did. Thank goodness we all had the scopolomine patches for seasickness. Couldn't have done without it. We ate breakfast at the Windjammer, the Park Cafe, and enjoyed the food. We always found a seat in the windjammer and some mornings the crew found them for us. Food could've been warmer in the Windjammer though. We also ate lunch there and at Park Cafe and there was a large selection . Got the roast beef sandwich , loved it, my niece didn't. Food in the MDR was good, had great service, and the girls felt like queens. There are changes each time I've cruised. They like to decorate the food and plate, which I could care less about. Just give me good food. We didn't do any specialty restaurants. Also went to Sorrento's most nights before bed, and we liked the pizzas. Wasn't crazy about the Solarium buffet at lunch. We went to all the shows, liked them all excpet for the Blue Planet, it was too "out there". Comediennes were great. They had to put an extra show on Saturday night in the ice skating rink, because so many people wanted to see them. I had made reservations for all the shows ahead of time, so we had no problem getting seats. Spent a lot of time at the pools and hot tubs. I had a fall on the pool deck and it was so slippery and we saw others fall or almost fall all week. They need to put something on the deck surface to rought it up. The crew helped me up , but they weren't going to make an incident report, just said to mention it on the survey, which we all did.
Went to Nassau and just shopped. In St Thomas took the power catamaran that took us snorkeling and to Honeymoon Island and it was a great trip. I chose this excursion since it had a canvas roof , since I'm very fair and have to watch even with sunscreen Water was very rough on the way out, as there was rain coming, another thank goodness for the seasicness patch. Many people were getting sick. The beach was beautiful and private. In St, Martin we did an island tour and then shopped in Phillipsburg for awhile when got dropped off. Ate at the Hard Rock and a heads up that the tip is already included , even for just 4 people and there are no free refills on any soda or ice tea, and we weren't told about this. Both excursions were booked thru the ship. Have no complaints about either one. Had fun at the casino. The 70's disco dance party Friday night on the promenade was the best. Cruise director Allan Brooks made it a fun week. He was a hoot. Getting on and off was a breeze. Did the walk off ourselves and the taxis were right there waiting for us, and no wait for empty elevator. At other times there were elevator wait times. People are very rude and are pushing their way on , when you're trying to get off. I did write on the survey that charging a tip for cotton candy was outrageous. Also if they could just put the whole disco party on the week's DVD to buy or sell a separate one. We were in a lot of the tape on the TV, but when the final DVD was available to view, most were cut out and there were a lot of people on the tape that would buy it , just to see themselves. My sister bought it anyway to show her husband the ship. There is so much to do, you need more time to explore it all, but that's for another time. I didn't buy alcohol in the ports , but the cost in the ships store beat all the port shops prices. Was able to print out boarding passes and also they touch screens to find what to do or how to get there, was great too. The character parades were cute. Bought some things at the everything's $10 sale and some watches at that sale. I would go back on this ship in a heartbeat, and hope you will enjoy it as much as we did.