Just got back from a 7 day Western carribbean cruise on the Allure of the Seas. The entire trip was perfect - not one complaint.
We flew in from NJ the day before. Stayed at the Embassy Suites on 17th for one night and then took a taxi to the port in the morning.
Boarding - Boarding was quick and easy. We stayed in a Grand Suite so we had priority boarding. Got to the pier around 11am and was on the ship (eating in the Windjammer by 11:30am)
Room - We stayed in a Grand Suite (10260). It was very nice. I would definitely book it again. Spacious. Clean. Well laid out. The bathroom was great. The beds were comfortable. The double balcony was awesome. Especially loved the lounge chairs. Quite a few power naps were taken on the balcony that week.Because we were in a suite, we had access to the Concierge Lounge. It was great. If you can afford it, I definitely recommend a grand suite or higher on the Allure. It will just make your cruising experience that much better. It is a great ship. But if you cruise in a suite the ship rises to the level of amazing.
Service - Awesome! Every RCL staff member we met was fantastic. Everyone was polite, helpful, energetic and knowledgable. They all went out of their way to make sure our vacation was nothing short of perfect.
Food - Please note... I am an extremely picky eater. My standards are quite high. I am used to eating at the finer restaurants. The main dining room on the Allure was great! I have never looked forward to eating in a dining room on a cruise ship before. We booked 2 specialty restaurants (Giovanni's Table and Chops). Both were incredible. But if you want to save some money, you can just eat all of your dinners in the main dining room. Every evening, the menu was different. Every evening the meals were great. I was in a party of 7. Every person in my group loved their dinner every single evening. Our waiter Cristian (who has since been promoted to Giovanni's Table) was the best waiter I have ever had on a cruise. I can see why he is being promoted to the specialty restaurant. He is that good. If you are reading this, Good luck Cristian. I hope we see you at Giovanni's Table the next time we cruise the Allure. He had a great attitude. He was warm and friendly. But he was also extremely knowledgable and a true professional. He always explained the menu to us. Every evening he'd give us his recommendations - Every one was spot on! He would also tell us what the special was for the next night so we could plan ahead. The one evening he even suggested we change our specialty restaurant reservation because it was lobster night. Good call Cristian! We happened to also have the best head waiter in the history of cruising. His name was Cesar and he was the best! He was great with the kids and great with the adults. He was always around making sure everything was perfect. No job was too big or too small for him. He cleared the table when things got busy and the other people needed help. He cut my son's steak when our waiter was busy helping another table. He was just great. Ceasr and Cristian made our dining experience memorable.
Things to Do Onboard: If you are bored on this ship, there is just no hope for you. There's the Boardwalk, Royal Promenade, Central Park, cupcake decorating, casino, bingo, lots of pools, game room, bars, flow rider, zip lining, mini golf and the list goes on and on.
Entertainment: The shows were all great. Just book your tickets in advance so you get the time you want. Do not miss the aqua show.
Shore Excursions: We went on 4 excursions. All were great. I highly suggest you book your excursions through RCL. They are so organized and you get a lot of bang for your buck.
The last morning... Our last morning on the ship was sad. Our perfect vacation was coming to a close. Because we had an early flight, we had to get off the ship at 7:30am. The staff was great. Breakfast was really good. Everyone was still warm and friendly (We had been on a cruise or two in the past where we have been given the cold shoulder once tips were given - and we are generous tippers.) Getting off the ship was quick. Getting our luggage was a breeze. There were plenty of taxis to get us to the airport. It was the perfect conclusion to the perfect vacation.