The Cruise Critic Forum for our cruise was entitled, "Cure for the Winter Blues" and it sure turned out to be true!
Sunday: Embarkation was a breeze. Able to board at noon. Windjammer was not too crowded and food was fine. We at a delicious meal at Portofino with our traveling companions. The service was excellent. RCCL offered a buy one get one free for Diamond Plus for the first evening, so it was a great deal. The Welcome Aboard Show was OK. (RCCL Singers/Cast, comedian John Caponerdly.) We did not see his late night adult comedy show. Always enjoy the live music of the orchestra.
Monday: Cruise Day. Enjoyed a quite day at Sea. We had another good meal in MDW (early seating.) Our waiter, Michael was fantastic. I had the scallops appetizer; roasted duck; and dark chocolate souffle for dessert. Yummy! Others had beef tenderloin and Bailey's creme brulee and raved about them. The show was "Invitation to Dance", with Ballroom Dancers and RCCL cast. Also OK.
Tuesday: St. Lucia - We went on an excursion organized by a fellow cruise critic forum member. There were 17 of us who went on a 7 hour catamaran sail. We saw piton whales, did a little snorkeling (not the best place, but OK.) AND of course saw the Pitons. Lunch was included and I had mediocre cold chicken (Could have also ordered king fish.) The crew was great and the beer and rum punch were plentiful. Well worth the price we paid. Oops! Apparently, did not apply enough sunscreen. Was really burnt by the end of the day and had 5 more days of fun in the sun to go. Finis Henderson was the entertainer for the evening. By far, this was the best show we have ever seen on a cruise! This guy can do everything from Michael Jackson to opera.
Wednesday: Barbados - We went on a 4 hr RCCL excursion. Catamaran sail and snorkel with the turtles. Seeing the turtles was really cool, but we renamed the excursion, "swimming with the snorkelers." We were not the only boats at the location, so it was very crowded. The ocean was beautiful and we was right in front of Rhianna's mansion. Afterwards, we joined our friends at Boatyard Beach. For dinner we had lasagna, eggplant, caprisi salad and sticky pudding for dessert. The Ice Show was the entertainment for that evening. One needed to pick up tickets in advance for the 7 or 9 PM show. They also showed a movie in the big theater. (You could also see the Ice Show on a couple of evenings at 5 PM.)
Thursday: Antigua - We took a bus ($6 each) to gorgeous Jolly Beach. For $15, you get 2 beach chairs and an umbrella. I had always wanted to try coconut juice right out of the coconut. They lopped a hole in the top and stuck in a straw. Cost was $5 with or without rum. (had it with rum, of course.) I had one of my favorite dishes for dinner, crab cakes. I ordered 2 of the crab cake appetizers, but bless his heart, Michael served 3 on one plate. Had the molten cake for dessert. The production show was Las Vegas themed and was OK.
Friday: St. Maarten - We took a bus to Moho Beach to watch the planes land. We got a terrific spot at the Sunset Bar and had a dreamy mango/rum drink. Watching a 747 appear out of the sky and come in so low, was a sight to behold. The MDR served lobster, which was very good and grand marnier souffle for dessert. The entertainer was Gary Williams. He was pretty good. He primarily sang "Rat Pack" songs and the show had a cabaret feel to it.
Saturday: St. Croix - We walked to a nice beach. Water was warm and clear. Beach Chairs and umbrella were $19. We had lamb shanks for dinner and sherbet for dessert. The Farewell Show included a comedian who was silent. Audience members threw a hat he could catch on his head and he did a bit of juggling. The cast danced and sang. It was OK.
Sunday: Back in San Juan - Disembarkation took a while. Bags were all there and waiting. The line for customs was long and slow. We asked some folks in line in they wanted to share a cab to airport and the trip was fast. Cost was $15 each couple.
Summary: Our room was nice and well maintained by Allen. The weather was great. It showered once or twice each day, but passed quickly. The crew was friendly and attentive. Mercedes, the Cruise Director, did a nice job. We particularly liked the Activities staff members Bjorn, Sam and Victor. Food is mentioned a lot, because it was so wonderful. We went on a Med. Cruise on the Seranade this past year and the food was awful. I was afraid it was the new menu and was pleased that this ship did it so well. We were fortunate to be seated at a table with very nice people. By the end of the cruise we went places on the ship and the beaches together - and have vowed to all cruise again next year.