My husband and I vacationed for the first time since 1993 without kids, siblings, or other relatives or friends. We planned to get much needed r&r.
Our flight from Philadelphia landed at 10:20am. We had booked the RCI bus to the pier. We picked up our luggage and met the bus for the 10 minute ride to the pier. We arrived at the pier around 11:30 and were on the ship 1/2 an hour later.
We went to the Park Cafe for lunch, it was crowded, but we were able to get a table. I guess the word is out on that one. Our stateroom was ready at 1:00pm on the nose and our bags were already there. We unpacked, freshened up and went to explore the ship. The room was small, but no more so than any other chip. It's a good thing there are directions and interactive screens all over the ship, or we would never have gotten anywhere!
The Central Park an Boardwalk neighborhoods were very impressive. Central Park is very tranquil and the Boardwalk is lively, as expected.
We ate in the MDR every night except one, we were assigned a table for four but the other couple wanted a table for two so we ate Aline. The second night we expected to be alone again but an elderly couple joined us. They were a lively couple and had interesting stories of there lives in Cuba when Castro took over. We even exchanged emails at the end of the cruise. We were never disappointed in the food and the service was excellent. Our waiter was Sander, our assistant waiter Barbara and our head waiter Gabriel. This was the first time that we actually got to know our head waiter! He was always present helping to clear a table or serve a dish, we were very impressed.
We had booked a snorkeling excursion in Nassau. The only problem we had was the number of people on the excursion. There had to be 50 of us which made it very crowded in the water.
In St. Thomas we booked a tour of St. John, unfortunately the ferry to take us to the island was going to be an hour late and that would be too close to other plans, we went shopping instead. We had no problem getting a refund.
In St. Maarten we went on the America's Cup Sailing Regatta excursion. It was fun! We actually worked the boat! The only setback was when my husband got seasick, but we would do it again.
On board we went to the casino saw the shows and went to the Prohibition Party. We mostly relaxed. The Solarium was beautiful but very hot. It is completely enclosed in glass with very little shade. We would have loved to spend more time there, but there were only 12 out of maybe 40 lounge chairs that were shaded, so we spent time at the main pool where shade is more readily available.
Chops grille was excellent the food and service were great.
We had breakfast at Johnny Rockets and the Windjammer besides the MDR. We only went to the Windjammer twice all week, we found that the way the stations were set up there was no real flow and people just jumped in front all over the place. We had no problem finding a table though.
I purchased the classic romance package and was quite impressed with it. It started with a bottle of champagne I our room with chocolates covered strawberries. The first formal night (yes, we do dress up), we had little appetizers and desserts in our cabin. There was also a special "breakfast in bed" and a free 8x10 silver frame. Very nice package.
Chicago was great as well as Blue Planet and Oceanaria.
All in all it was a relaxing cruise. We were so impressed we booked a cruise for next year on Allure with our daughter and her family and my brother and his wife.