We had a good time on the ship. We had great service from the room steward and decent service from the dining room staff.
The kid’s club staff were good and there were plenty of activities for the kids.
EMBARKATION: The embarkation was very easy as we had priority boarding (the lines for those without priority boarding looked like no fun at all!!). We arrived at the terminal at 1:30pm and entered the priority boarding area and within a few minutes were at the security checkpoint and through to our rooms!
DISEMBARKATION: This cruise had the best disembarkation that we have seen to date! It was very orderly and the line to get off was not wrapped all the way around the ship, as with previous cruises. The only comment was that Customs and Immigration took 15 minutes for a US citizen and 45 minutes for a non-US citizen, so, if you are a non US citizen make sure you allow enough time to get off the ship if you have a deadline to meet.
The provided transportation from the pier to the airport was extremely poorly organized (on previous cruises all we had to do was exit the terminal and get on a bus then go). We had a wait of at least 45 minutes to get the bus and then our bus had to turn back around to pick up some passengers that had missed the announcement that the bus was leaving! If you’re heading for the John Wayne Airport you have to go to Long Beach airport first. Not really that much out of the way but not a direct route either. A taxi would be a far better option!
DINING: We ate at the buffet and in the dining room. We also had room service for breakfast every morning (except the day of departure). The buffet area was well laid out but the food was at best mediocre. We chose the “Your Time Dining” for dinner and had no problem getting a table almost immediately when we got to the dining room. The choices available at dinner were good but all of the meals when they were delivered to our table were at best luke warm and could only be described as ‘edible’ in quality. The dining room service was good, some waiters were quicker than others, so the service was not consistent. Room service for breakfast was on time but some items ordered were not on the tray!
PUBLIC AREAS: The public areas were okay. The shopping area is really small and when there is a sale on it gets really crowded!
CABIN: The cabin (suite) was well designed with plenty of storage. There is no heating what so-ever in the cabin (not even a thermostat) so we turned off all the vents to prevent the cabin from getting any colder.
CHILDREN’S CLUB: Our grand-daughter had a wonderful time in the children’s club. The kid’s are divided into age groups and there are plenty of activities for the kids to do.
PORTS OF CALL / SHORE EXCURSIONS: The first port of call was Catalina Island.
In order to get to shore we were tendered in. It was very well organized and we had no problem getting a boat when we needed to go ashore. We went on the Inside Adventure Tour. This was a very fun tour as the guide told quite a lot about the Island and it was interesting to see the interior of the island.
The second port of call was Ensenada. We took the Blow Hole Tour and the only reason to take it was to see the area and to take a break from the ship! The bus ride was quite long (50 minutes to the Blow Hole) and the tour guide talked non-stop which was quite annoying, especially as the guide had a very strident voice and the loud speaker was on full volume. When you get to the Blow Hole it is a 5 minute trip to see it but you have to go through the market to get there. We had another 1 ½ hours to spend before the return trip to the ship. It’s actually fun going through the market stalls!