This was my third cruise and first on RC. Totally thought it was enjoyable and worth the money. It is my opinion that if you choose to have a nice relaxing and fun cruise; you will. If you don’t, you won’t.
Like most, I read many reviews before departing on the Grandeur. Now that I’m back, I have determined that each cruise really depends on the person (personality, age, gender, and attitude). Therefore, I recommend you try reading between the lines on what they report if you are attempting to get a good grasp on this cruise line or this ship (especially the negative reports). What I do know, is that every staff member, chef/waiter, entertainer, crew, bartender, cabin server, spa specialist and everyone else that has a role on “any” cruise ship takes great pride in their jobs and what they do. This one was no different. In my opinion, the major difference is the traveler. Yes, I know, some ships may be better, cleaner and provide their own distinctive touch, but the median or starting point of all cruises is high no matter the cruise line.
My experience on this cruise was awesome and I appreciated the hard work and efforts of those who served us. I will list some comments that I hope will help you plan and make your cruise better (both good and bad). It in no way takes away the efforts of the ship’s crew or the cruise line. But a tool to assist you in your traveling desires. Good luck on your future travel!
1. Parking fee in Baltimore is $15 a day if you choose to drive and leave your car at the terminal.
2. Windjammer can get crowded, but be patient. The waiters do very well at cleaning tables and assisting you. Food at the Windjammer didn’t have a lot of flexibility. It’s good and well prepared. But, it’s not dining room quality.
3. They have room service for no fee. My burger and pizza was a little on the cold side when it arrived. But, the seas were rough that day and we were in no shape to face people, so you take the punches. It was acceptable and much appreciated.
4. Our stateroom was clean and well maintained. The gentlemen that took care of us was very polite and hard working. Our only complaint, was that the closet wasn’t big enough to allow some things to be on a hanger and sit straight on the bar (at an angle). But there was plenty of drawers for our things. I recommend bringing a hanger shoe rack that holds 20 shoes or so. Worked great for us and allowed us to save space on the closet floor. Our large suitcases wouldn’t fit under the bed and that was a little challenging, but we managed. Ended up placing it behind the little sofa.
5. There’s a little gem of a food place in the port aft corner in the Solarium. Hit this place in between meals or late night.
6. I got 2 massages and a sea weed wrap and she got the cellulite reduction body wrap and a pedicure. Prices were high but the service was excellent on each account.
7. We got the Soda package ONLY. When you get onboard, there is a cup (sippy) in your stateroom. There are essentially two locations (that we found) to fill them. Both sides of the Windjammer entrances and one between the photo lab and coffee shop. The machine has more than enough selection of drinks. The cup really doesn’t hold all that much and if you fill it, you have to wait 15 minutes to get a refill (timed by the machine). Was told this was to keep from sharing.
8. If you’re an alcoholic and can drink like a fish, get the Alcohol package. But, if you only want the occasional drink in the evening or couple times a day, just hand them your room card and add it to your account. Saved us money in the long run but we got to enjoy several beverages during the cruise. Do the math on the total cost of a package and see what fits you. We also enjoyed drinks during port calls to cut the final charges. (If you go to St Maarten and take the water taxy, they have $2 beers).
9. The Casino is nice but it’s a smoking zone for you nonsmokers. But it wasn’t terrible and we walked through it many times.
10. Getting on and off the ship during port is a breeze. I recommend taking a backpack with meds, towels, sun block, money, and your camera. You can get towels on the 9th deck.
11. The outdoor movies were nice but the variety was small. They play movies at 8:30 and 10:30 pm and one during the day inside. Nice touch though. If it’s cool on deck, grab a couple of towels and cover up.
12. I enjoyed the BBQ’s and food service by the pool deck for special occasions. The music and food outside was a lot of fun and tasty.
13. On our 10 day cruise there were three formal nights. The second one was the evening of our third port call and it was a white night. We had no idea and wasn’t prepared. However, they were letting some people in with t-shirts on formal nights so the policing wasn’t that enforced. But the food was amazing and the atmosphere was very enjoyable. Most people looked amazing.
14. Take a deck of cards or another game and go sit in the Solarium and play.
Like I mentioned earlier, we loved this cruise, but hope these comments help yours to be better.