My husband and I had a great New Year's cruise on the Silhouette. We had an aqua class guarantee and were assigned a great location only a few doors down from the relaxation room.
Ship: The ship is beautiful, new, clean, and well designed. I love the S class ships. The differences on the Silhouette did not impact me one way or the other. The alcoves do block the grass, but not in a significant way. The adult only solarium remains my favorite spot. This cruise had tons of children (expected on a holiday week), yet we were able to find a quiet lounger in the solarium to read, relax, and swim. They have figured out how to do an indoor pool with the traditional chlorine smell. There is also something about having the air-conditioning while lying by the pool that I enjoy.
Service: The service on the ship was excellent in all aspects.
Food: The food was very good to excellent. Since we were aqua class, we ate most meals in Blu. The service in Blu is fabulous. There are almost no kids in Blu (2 people to a cabin deters most families) and the atmosphere is very adult. I liked just showing up when we wanted to. Since this was a getaway without my son, my husband and I appreciated being able to get a table for 2 and getting time to reconnect. We also enjoyed the quite sit down breakfast. The menu is the same each day, but there are enough selections to create a variety of meals across the week.
Speciality Restaurants: We loved Qsine. We have been before, and new some of our favorites. The small plate and family style concept allowed us to try a variety of items. All were excellent. The filet is my favorite along with the lamp chops from the M dish. We also enjoyed the Tuscan Grille. Antipasta was nice and our pasta dishes were delicious. Murana was our least favorite meal. The soufflé for dessert was fabulous and the goat cheese appetizer was very good. The rest of our meal was OK. The service was iffy at times and the atmosphere was a bit stuff for my tastes.
Alcohol Package: We had the basic package as a selection in the 123 prom. We upgraded to premium. We had no issues getting quick service. I used it every morning at the coffee bar and we got plenty of water for on and off the ship. We are red wine drinkers, but not wine experts by any means. We had a selection of choices that varied based on location. I think i went up to about $15 or $16 on one choice in Murano and was not charged extra. The package is convenient and was fun. We are not heavy drinkers, so I don't think we would have "gotten our money's worth" if we paid for it. Since i had it, I did find myself drinking more than normal, which was not necessarily a bad thing. If I was paying, I would buy the premium non-alcohol to get my coffee, water, and non-alcoholic fruity pool drinks. I would pay OOP for some wine.
Cabin: the aqua class rooms are well designed. The fancy shower head is a nice touch. The only issue that I had was that I was having an allergic reaction to something in the room. Had trouble getting hypoallergenic pillows from my room steward, but was assisted by guest relations. In the end, I don't think it helped that much and am not sure what I was reacting to.
Activities: We did not do many activities because I did not find too much of interest for me. I was looking to relex and read, so this was not a big problem. I did notice a distinct lack of activities in comparison to prior cruises. I feel that most of the activities are now tied to some sort of sales or promotion. They are Spa related, art sales, shore sales, etc. The food demos are tied to the special restaurants and even the arts activities that replaced the glass show are at a fee. The captain gave an hour presentation that my husband really enjoyed. Some things I enjoyed in the past just didn't seem to be available. In the past I have enjoyed guest lectures, cooking competitions, the glass show, etc. Even Bingo did not seem to be offered 2X a day as in the past.
Entertainment: We enjoyed the trio that played in the ensemble lounge each evening. I think the variety of entertainment on the ship is good.
Excursions: I think that I am out-growing the ships tours and need to venture out on my own more. Our excursion to grand cayman was not very good. First of all the on-ship staff sent our entire group to the wrong tendor. We had to stand in a hallway for 15 mins while they figured out what happened and brought a tender to the side we were on. The port was a zoo and there was no celebrity rep guiding or organizing us. We waited 30 mins for our tour and then the guide skipped a stop because "traffic was so bad we are behind". No we are behind because you showed up late!!
Ports: Grand Cayman just does not do it for me. This was the second time that we have been. Swimming with the rays is fun, but everything else is too busy and commercial for my taste. We enjoyed cozumel. Had a quick tour of the local ruins and then had lunch at a beach on the water. Jamaica was the big surprise for us. The Royal Caribbean run port in Falmouth is lovely and very organized. The tour wait areas are numbered and everything ran very smoothly. I have not been to Jamaica and did not realize how lush and green it was. Beautiful island and great people. We will definitely go back.
In conclusion, this was a great cruise. We relaxed, ate, drank and spent quality time together. Perfect.