All I can say is that I can totally NOT relate to anyone giving the Grandeur of the Seas good reviews! Our experience on this May 24th, 2013 FIRE Of the Seas cruise out of Baltimore was FAR from a vacation or good time to say the least! If you have previously cruised on the Carnival Pride out of Baltimore then you will be thoroughly disappointed with this ship in comparison.
Here are some comparisons of our experience on RC's Grandeur vs Carnival Pride:
Grandeur - you get a mini bar stocked with super tiny bags of peanuts, snickers, other tiny candies and a few bottled waters. Liquor is not stocked nor allowed in the rooms. You can only order beer and wine to your room via room service.
Carnival Pride - you get a mini bar stocked with assorted sodas, large bottled waters and liquors in your stateroom that get replenished everyday during daily room service cleaning or at your request.
Grandeur - Where More
do I start...we never formally met out stateroom attendant until about Day 2 when we happened to bump into him in the hallway on our way to dinner. We had no way to contact him directly, so anytime we needed anything we had to call the Information Desk (they were even worse in the service department because they NEVER followed through on any of our requests as they stated). They would frequently forget to replenish our toilet paper and never would replace our towels/rags after removing used ones during the daily room service cleaning. It got to the point that I had to actually roam the hallways to find our stateroom attendant and ask for toilet paper, towels, rags, etc. My husband and I had to actually share a hand towel to wash up because we had no rags for a full day. We also never received our daily cruise itineraries on time, so a majority of the time we never knew what was going on, where we were, lunch times, etc. Overall extremely unorganized and poor communication.
Carnival Pride - Our stateroom attendant came and introduced himself minutes after we checked into our room on Day 1. There was a direct number to contact the stateroom attendant anytime you needed something. They were extremely efficient at replenishing toiletries and never once did we have to ask for any standard toiletries or towels. They were great about ensuring we had our cruise itineraries the day prior so we knew what was going on.
Grandeur - We were advised by Information Services that only people with Suites could order movies to their rooms. Even though it's advertised as being an amenity in the stateroom pamphlet, you cannot view your SeaPass charges on your flat screen TV. You actually have to trek to Information Services and stand in a long line anytime that you want to review your charges. The TV's were not interactive at all as advertised, so you also cannot book excursions from your room. Also the USB connections on the TV to watch our own movies via our devices did not work. The only weather station they have only includes the temparature in Celsuis, so you never know what temparature it is if you are from the U.S. Also on all of the interactive screens on the ship only show Celsuis. Big oversight on their end!
Carnival Pride - although their TV's are not flat screen, they are all interactive. You can check your charges, book excursions, and even order room service from the luxury of your room. We never had to go to Information Services for this reason. Had a station to show what the wind speed was, tide information and the weather was in Fahrenheit!
Grandeur - If you are under 35 or like to have fun in general, stay away from this ship. The entertainment on this ship is clearly geared towards a more senior crowd. There was little to nothing going on other than constant Bingo, a non-impressive performance of YMCA by a group of unimpressive men, a few Oldies themed dance nights (and I mean REALLY Oldies nights) and a few gymnastic rope performers. I don't know about the kids programs but I can tell you that I was constantly witnessing Terrible Two tantrums and babies crying everywhere, so I'm assuming they may not have had many activities for kids either.
Carnival Pride - has entertainment for all ages. You rarely saw kids on the ship other than playing in the pools and on the pool slides. There were shows all day (literally) everday. Between comedians, game shows, etc. We witnessed all ages having fun - from seniors, 20 somethings, middle ages, to kids dance clubs. No one feels left out.
Grandeur - generally not very friendly and seemed like they almost never knew the answers to anything (Info Services, Food Services, etc), which became frustrating. We witnessed and personally experienced a number of staff members being rude or short to cruisers asking questions.
Carnival Pride - you almost have to run from the nice people bc they are so open and ready to have a friendly conversation with you. Staff was always super nice and if they didn't know the answers would always research and get back to you within seconds.
There is so much more, but these are the important highlights. Overall the Grandeur is not worth the 42 Million Dollar renovation, nor is it worth the higher rates than Carnival Pride. Save yourself the money and don't cruise on this ship! Less