Heart of the Sea: Oasis of the Seas Cruise Review by Anaxagoras408
Overall Member Rating
Heart of the Sea
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
I am an experienced cruise traveler with many miles of sea travel aboard a wide range of vessels, but nothing, in any of my past experiences compare to this ship. I usually shy away from the larger ships, but this time I opted for the Oasis, if for no other reason, just to get a look at the ship.
As I approached the RC pier from the airport and captured the first sight of the ship I (honestly) was awestruck by the size of the ship. It dwarfs even the larger of the cruise vessels currently plying the Eastern Carib routes. Even with its towering vertical height the design maintains a certain elegance and, well concealed, attributes of both speed and maneuverability. Find it hard to believe that something that weighs on the order 220,000 tons, can plow the More Caribbean at 30 knots? Well, Oasis can!
Just like Christmas!....as you walk up the gangway, you've seen the box, but the real treasures are inside! The functional design of the ship clearly represents a herculean effort of both concept and execution. Not merely the run of the mill type of facility, at all, but rather, cutting edge engineering.
The interior unfolds as a sprawling complex of habitats, that run the entire spectrum, from the quiet of Central Park, lined with superb restaurants, to a complete shopping mall with informal dining (everywhere).The design concept is sort of a mirrored system of balconies, one set facing Central Park and the exterior ones facing the sea. The sight of the lush green of the interior park is so unexpected and enchanting that, frankly, upon first sight, I was just speechless.
There are bars of many different tastes and venues, some of which offer live music performed by exceptionally talented artists, particularly the Black Pearl classical duet.
The ship boasts an exceptional wine list, and the multi bottle packages are populated with quality selections (the Mer Solie Chardonnay is thunderous).Tucked into a corner of Central Park you will find Vintages wine bar. Although Vintages is not inexpensive venue, it has a tremendous wine list, that includes some of the Caymus Select wines, and the Belle Glos Pinot Noirs. The staff there is knowledgeable, polite, and efficient.
I want to stress that every aspect of environ has been carefully thought out with this design. On the bow of the ship, above the Bridge, is the Solarium section. It's the adults only area that has is own bistro, hot tubs, and mini-pool. Again, the design here is cutting edge, with huge glass defectors that keep the rain off of you while still allowing air to circulate. Flowing water is everywhere, with a sort of creek system that wraps around the bistro. You can have any portion of your wine package served here, as well as the dining room.
For a vessel that is nothing less than a floating city, you will quickly discover that there are many places aboard that you can find quiet and wonderful tranquility.
The cabin quality is excellent. Honestly, the beds are some of the best I've ever slept in and are covered with super high quality linens. Cabin maintenance is timely and through. I'm a big fan of very early coffee drinking and I set up a reoccurring room service delivery for 5:30 AM each morning and the delivery time never varied more than two minutes. The ship cleanliness is way above average. Each venue is equipped with modern dispensers for hand sanitization.
Food quality aboard is exceptional. Each meal at the Opus Dining room was point on perfect. The casual dining is also quite good, and is sprinkled throughout the ship.
The RCC staff aboard is one of the best I've had the pleasure to sail with. I carefully listened at one of our stops while a young woman of the RCC staff worked with a rather ornery client. She was polite, and caring, in a situation where I (personally) would have been a little less caring.
This ship may not please everyone (who is lucky enough) to get aboard, and it will never be an intimate small cruise experience. That having been said there is something about the scale of the Oasis that's a rather humbling experience. Yes, the stops on the Eastern Carib run were gorgeous...but real star here is the ship itself! Buy a ticket....sit back....and enjoy the ride! Less