We sail out of Bayonne each Thanksgiving and meet up with other cruise friends we met on board. So we choose the cruise based on the dates, not the itinerary. Honestly if we were to choose based on itinerary we would definitely not have chosen this cruise. Labadee & St. Thomas great. San Juan and Dominican Republic - yuck, been there, done that and do not want to do it again.
The crew aboard Explorer are amazing. We've been aboard other RCCL ships, most recently Radiance, and they just don't hold a candle to Explorer crew, from a service, sense of urgency and energy perspective. Also the presence and sheer number of officers seen on Explorer is seems so much higher than other ships, and they pick up trash just like the rest of the crew to ensure EX stays beautiful. Yes she's aging, but she's cared for.
This cabin was in great shape, one minor issue with the balcony door where the gasket was loose and you could hear the sea noise through the closed door. It was fixed straight away and the room became quiet again. No heating or cooling issues. The drawers all stayed shut and didn't open/close during heavy seas. Great water pressure in the washroom. There was some noises from deck 11 overhead, some running and some chair dragging but only on one night did it wake us. We would definitely book this room again.
The shows that the singers/dancers do really need to be refreshed. Also - please RCCL, please update the skating show. Spirits of the Season has been there for what, three years?? The quality of the entertainment dropped this trip, the Beatlemania show was awesome, one guest comic was good, the rest was pretty boring or blah. Really thought the entertainment quality dropped this time around.