We set sail on Feb 15th out of FT Lauderdale FLA, what a breeze this embarkation was for us. We arrived at the pier around 10:30AM and were on board the ship in less than a hour. The ship was not completely booked so there was always plenty of room on the pool decks and through out the ship which is rare.
We had read that the Vision of the Seas is due for a refurbishing sometime this Spring so we expected a little wear and tear to be visible and that was the case nothing awful or unsightly. Our cabin was nice, bed comfortable and just a few minor sighs of age in the bathroom. The television was an older make not the new flat screen that is now on most cruise ships, but it worked quite well and got plenty of stations (CNN, FOX, MSNBC and we were able to watch several recently release movies, which we have never had before. As for the other parts of the ship she needs new deck chairs and tables. There were a few times that we saw workman making repairs to the large sliding glass doors and restrooms.
For the most part the crew was pleasant and helpful except for in a few instances, we found the casino manager rude. And once I went to the Crown and Anchor desk for some info and I couldn't believe the demeanor of the young woman, she acted as though I was really intruding on her time. I was rather shocked to say the least.
Other than that most of the staff and crew were great, loved our room steward BB and the dinner staff were fine. As for the meals, well that could use some improving, we had the late seating of 8:00 and it seemed we could rarely were out of the dining room by 10:00 which made us have to rush to shows or games. All of our group are seasoned cruisers and we didn't recall it ever taking that long have dinner on other voyages.
Now just a little about the ports, LOVED all except Martinique, don't think I'd even get off the ship if it is on our next trip. The people were rude and only speak french. We had to find a money exchange in order to shop or eat, it would have been nice for RCCL to have given us a heads up so we could have been a little more prepared. The best beaches were on Anitqua Dickison Bay, St Croix Rainbow Beach and ST Martin Dawns Beach. All these beaches had amenities like chairs and umbrella to rent. Rainbow Beach and Dickinson Bay were easily reached by taxi costing around $5.00 a person. Dawns Beach was farther we rented Jeeps and drove to that side of the Island, took about 25 min.
If asked would I travel RCCL again yes, would I go on a small older ship like Vision of the Seas probably no. We enjoy the next size ship which I think is Voyager Class, have also cruised on the Freedom Class which is OK.