Just returned from a Christmas cruise on the Brilliance of the Seas. This was our seventh cruise, but our first on Royal Caribbean. First off, we are not very picky people, but my husband and I were not very impressed with this line. The ship was OK in appearance and seemed kept up well. Staff, for the most part, was friendly and helpful. Embarkation and debarkation was a breeze. I have to say they have that under control.
That is about all the positives I can say about this cruise line. The buffet area was adequate with seating, but the food selection was very poor. We only had breakfast and lunch there, but it seemed that there was always the same thing to select from with not much variety. There is also the Park Cafe in the Solarium pool where you could also get lunch or breakfast and this was the only area open late at night. It was hard to find even a cookie at night if you were up late and looking for something to snack on. What happened to the late night buffets? The food in the Dining room was edible, but nothing spectacular. I don't think there was one meal I care to rave about.
We had My time dining and were able to get a reservation each night with little problem. They tried to sit you in the same area each night at the same table which was OK. We had a different table on 2 nights and that waiter seemed to be asleep at the job. We waited for about 10 minutes for him to appear and when we asked for a cocktail we waited at least another 10 minutes for someone from the bar staff to show up. Each night with this waiter, dinner took a ridiculous amount of time. The other waiter was much more attentive.
The theater shows have really gone down in my opinion. They were just OK entertainment. The centrum area in the center of the ship had musicians or some performance happening in the evening, but the area was way too small to accommodate all of the guests who wanted to view what was going on. Sad that they would construct such a small area for a ship carrying over 2000 people. Main pool area was also inadequate. In order to get a lounge close to the pool you needed to get there very early in the morning or you were out of luck.
Another point, Royal Caribbean does nothing to enforce it's own rules . Shorts for men were not allowed at dinner in the dining room according to their own policy, but I saw numerous of guests dressed for the beach being seated for dinner. No one did anything about it. Truly doesn't bother me what they are wearing, but don't make rules if you aren't going to enforce them.