This was my third cruise. The first was RCCL’s Freedom of the Seas. The second was Princess’s Sapphire Princess. I am handicapped and needed a scooter to get around.
The cruise was great over all bookended by some missteps by RCCL.
The embarkation was a nightmare. There was a computer glitch that greatly slowed the debarkation of the previous guest. My wife and I had to wait about an hour outside for a wheelchair. Once inside, I was dumped in the Promenade at the pizza joint, with no wheelchair. I had to walk to the aft elevator and the all the way to our state room at the forward elevator. A very long walk for me.
We were in a handicapped cabin, 10162. It was nicer then the HC on the Sapphire. I was in a regular cabin on Freedom. The bathroom was smaller the Sapphire, but I liked it better. The balcony had a nice, unobstructed view. Our attendant was Iputu, who did a good gob and was always friendly and helpful. It was a straight shot into the door from the elevator, which is wonderful for the scooter. There was also plenty of space in the cabin for the scooter.
We sailed the Eastern Caribbean. I am not going to review the three stops. But, we did enjoy the Western Caribbean much better.
The MDR on the Freedom was terrible. The Sapphire was good. The food in the Allure’s MDR was excellent. We had five dinners there: two good meals, two great meals and one stinker. Our waitress was Jane, assistant Oscar and the head waiter was Ryan. We somehow were assigned to a table for two. I had the best crab cake I ever had there. I would have liked more sugar free desserts. My only negative comment involves the passengers. On the other cruises dinner was very precise and organized. On the Allure many of the passengers waltzed in 15 to 60 minutes late. Some obviously enjoyed being noticed. This threw the timing of the meal into chaos and really took away our enjoyment.
Windjammers are known for bland, almost inedible food. This one did that tradition proud.
The Central Park Café was a great spot for lunch. I got some wonderful roast beef sandwiches and my wife loved her salads. The desserts were good too.
I had three or four of the best hotdogs in my life at the hotdog stand on the Boardwalk. Chops was outstanding also. This was the first and last time we ate at Johnny Rockets. My burger was incinerated and we paid almost $21 for an awful meal.
See Oceania. (sp) It is great. Blue Planet is also a must see. Ice Games is an OK way to kill an hour, but it was not that good. The Dream Works parade the last night was fun also. We did not see Chicago.
We really enjoyed the ship. It is truly a marvel. I got around fairly well with the scooter. Getting an elevator was sometimes hard, but it was not too bad. It is really hard to believe that there could be six thousand other passengers. The crew was helpful and friendly. But, not as helpful and outgoing as on the Freedom or Sapphire. I have a speech impediment and the crew invariably asked my wife what I wanted, even our wait staff. I know a lot of it was because English is a second language for most of the crew, and I get the same thing in the States, but it did take away from my vacation.
The Boardwalk was probably my favorite spot. We spent most of our down time in the Solarium. Kudos to RCCL for putting the casino in a corner by itself. On the Freedom and Sapphire we, and families with children, had to walk through the casino several times a day.
My one recommendation is to have more activities in the daytime for the nonathletic. When you are reading for several hours a day, you begin to wonder if you are getting your money worth.
We had a small problem with customer service the night before we left.
The Allure is a wonderful ship and I would sail her again.