We booked a "spa interior" cabin for a very last minute deal - a huge bargain! (You could also go across the hallway for a spa/balcony if you prefer). I would *highly* recommend it!! We were spoiled and pampered! To say it was an "upgrade" from any other cabin we've stayed in is a major understatement!! The decor was swanky and sophisticated, inside the cabin and out in the hallway. Our room steward was seasoned and highly competent!
We had a private entrance to the spa, which was good, because when we went to and from, we were only in our (provided) bathrobes and slippers! In addition to the bathrobe and slippers, we also had special beach towels that were a different color than most on the ship, and we didn't have to check them out, our room steward just replaced them for us when they were wet.
We also had all the spa products free in our room - the soaps, the shampoo, the conditioner, the lotion, and even a fabreeze-like spray for "aroma-therapy"! We also received a 'couples' spa treatment 2 for the price of 1, which we gladly did on our first day at sea, and 3 free exercise classes (which we never did because they were early in the morning!). The entire spa area is 'adults only' and only a handful of guests have access to the entire area in comparison to the 3,000 people on the ship, so it was always a great way to get away from the crowds and find peace and quiet.
But the best part of the spa cabin was the free access to the special 'members only' spa area that had many different rooms to relax in. My favorite was the the thelasso-therapy pool, a giant mineral bath with specialty nozzles to massage every part of your body. It was very quiet and never crowded and just hot enough to relax! You could lay back on the chairs inside the pool and feel the bubbles all over your backside, or you could move to the shoulder nozzles where you could get a great pressure massage on your shoulders, neck, and head.
From there, we moved into the aroma-steam room, extremely hot and steamy, I could only stay in there for a minute or so before moving on to the next room. The beautiful oriental 'tepidarium' room with heated chairs that were designed to align your body as you laid in them. There was yet another steam room that wasn't quite as hot as the first, and then the final room, the 'lanconium', where there were heated chairs to relax in. All the rooms had PERFECT views of the ocean from the very tip-top of the ship where the spa was located.
I never showered in our room because the spa had a beautiful locker room available with gigantic showers with benches and chairs that locked individually, towels and spa products provided. You could also spend time in the general waiting area, there were many chairs and even beds to relax on while enjoying the view and something cold to drink. Specialty water and fruit was provided in the waiting area.
Obviously, the spa was the highlight of being on the Splendor. The major drawbacks of this ship include:
1. Terrible service in the Gold Pearl Dining room - we generally love the dinners in the formal dining room because we get to know our servers well and have fun interacting with them. We had three servers, none of which even tried to interact with us because they were so busy and didn't really speak English. My order was incomplete or wrong most of the nights. A huge disappointment.
2. The 'choppy' layout of the ship. The buffet area was divided into several parts, and many people didn't realize there was a "back" part to the buffet with the same foods which made the main entrance area packed and difficult to navigate at times. Pizza was 24 hours but very slow. At times there were lines 20+ people deep. In addition, there was no central open area to cross the ship. You always had to walk through the casino (smoky) to get to the other side. I had to hunt for the shops and photo shop, it is just all chopped up with only a small atrium in the center.
3. The library and web cafe were lousy. The library was tiny and had very limited hours, and absolutely no view. I didn't even bother to go into the web cafe because it was hidden inside one of the bars and not easy to find.
4. The adults only area was also very tiny and had limited chairs around the pool. It was right by the "Indian" food buffet so they entire area smelled like curry. In addition, the adult lounging area "Serenity" on the upper decks only offered seating - no pool or hot tubs. And the miniature golf course OVERLOOKED the adult-only area, so you constantly had kids walking above you, shouting and playing - didn't feel much like an adult area. I have no idea what they were thinking when they designed that!
In spite of the drawbacks listed, I would choose Splendor over and over again for the Cloud 9 Spa Cabin! If you don't enjoy the spa, there would be no advantage to choosing this ship.