My sister and I traveled together and we had a great experience. It was the first on RCI for both of us.
Galveston: We highly recommend the Moody Gardens Hotel. Not only is the room very nice, but we got free shuttle to/from the terminal AND free parking/valet for the car while gone! Not only that, but with fog delaying our departure, they extended our check-out time twice. Very nice to work with. But regarding that fog, it turned the check-in process at the terminal into a disaster. Some people were in line for 3+ hours. And it was hard to even make out the line. It looked like just a large crowd. I was actually concerned for some of the older, more frail-looking people I saw in the crowd.
With the late departure, we started out with open seating in the MDR and we barely got done eating before muster. In fact, we didn't get dessert! :) But really, all was well. We found the food to be very good. I had salmon several times and it was very good (though the last night it didn't seem to have the outstanding flavor it had before). We loved the smaller portions that we were served and that the food seemed so fresh. My sister and I had both been counting calories for a long time (2 years for me) and were concerned about our eating but there were plenty of healthy choices. We didn't always choose the healthiest items, but that isn't RCI's fault. (In case you are wondering, we each gained about 1.5 pounds).
Speaking of watching our weights, we were able to get lots of physical activity aboard the ship. Almost every morning we worked out in the Fitness Center. We loved looking out at the sea while exercising. We also both wear pedometers and were able to count our steps and flights of stairs. One day, I went up 22 flights! We found it more convenient to take the stairs than to wait for the elevators (more on that later). We averaged over 10,000 steps a day. It felt good to be moving around so much though we apparently still ate more calories than we burned!
The elevators were often crowded. A couple of times, it seemed like every man for himself. We had waited through 3 full elevators opening on our floor when a couple of girls walked up and got on the next almost-full elevator right in front of us effectively cutting us off. People are people so that kind of thing will happen occasionally. For the most part, though, we found everyone friendly and engaging.
Our only other complaint would be the smoking, even though it is restricted to only a couple of areas. Really, it was the most bothersome in the casino. I only went in there once and didn't stay due to the smoke.
Our cabin attendant, Zaldy, was wonderful. He went above and beyond the first night to find our luggage. Our main dining server, Yazi, was also wonderful. If we had any complain at all in the MDR, it was that drinks didn't come quickly enough. The assistant finally caught on that we had several tea drinkers and he began to get that to us faster as the days progressed. I always had coffee with my dessert (yes, part of the calories problem, I know!) but several times I never got a refill because the assistant server was no longer around.
Two days before embarkation, we upgraded to a junior suite and we loved, loved, loved our room! The closet was amazing. We could both be in it at the same time if needed. But it was easy for one person to go in and close the door, making it a changing room if needed. The tub/shower was nice with lots of water pressure. The room had tons of storage. We didn't use all the spaces.
The room is on the "hump" which was nice. First, it always helped us know where our rooms was when walking down the long hallway! But really the treat was when on the balcony. It expanded our view.
I'd read somewhere that some junior suites have a column in them that interrupts the view and that was the case with ours. But the good thing is that it provided a nook area on one side of it that we were able to put our larger suitcases (that wouldn't fit under the bed).
I almost forgot about the entertainment. We saw several average shows but were also treated to the Texas Tenors!! They were so good. Because of how phenomenal they were, I will rank the entertainment very high.
Overall, we loved the ship and the trip. Can't wait to do it again!