I read very review on the Allure for months,weeks, days up until our cruise on Alril 6th. Part of the excitement is the anticipation. So to pay it forward....
On our trip were: Myself, DH, DD & SIL and our 7 month old grandson.
Staterooms: ocean view balcony on Deck 11
Embarkation: we arrived at 10:30, walked through security the proceeded to check in. We waited in line for about ten minutes. There were more RC agents coming in at 11:00. Check in was quick (we had set sail contract printed from home) then we went upstairs to wait for an hour or so. The only advantage to early arrival to the port is that they do seat you in the order of arrival to board the ship. Suite/DiamondPlus and up go aboard first. We wanted to be early so that we could rent ship phones as there are only a limited number. We felt like with babysitting our grandson, we'd like to be able to communicate with his mom and dad and vice versa. This was a good decision as we used them often. Yes walkie-talkies work sometimes, but there are many people on each channel. The ship phones have an option to locate your other party. We loved this. We went directly to deck 14, card room and were third in line.
Dining: I must say that there are so many options for food, everyone should be happy. "Free" venues were spread out so no one place seemed crowded with the exception of Windjammer. Even that was quick seating and maybe a 3 minute wait. If it was crowded, they seated you. That was the end of anything good about The Jammer. As others have reviewed, the quality of food is school cafeteria at best. The waiters used to come around and offer more drinks, condiments etc. not anymore...this didn't deter us from eating quite well many other places....the Jammer was a last resort a few times. Park Cafe was delicious and fast. Roast beef, sandwiches, made to order salads, other types like paninis, desserts etc. very good. The Promenade Cafe with croissant sandwiches, cookies, coffee, teas was always open for a quick snack. Sorrentos pizza was good too. Out on the Boardwalk the Hot Dog place was yummy. Johnny Rockets was ok. The MDR was very good. Service was excellent. They even puréed chicken & broccoli for the baby! We dined at 150 Central Park for Specialty Dining one night. Just DH and me. Wow! Fantastic service and food. Very nice. Vintages Tapas twice was quiet and good. We had coffee, croissants, and fruit room service each morning:-) On time and they call ahead to tell you it's on the way.
Shore Excursions: Not much to say here as we only shopped a little. We'd been to these ports and just wanted to stay aboard. DD and SIL did rent a jeep from Alamo on Cozumel and had a blast!
Entertainment: Top notch..... Chicago, Ocean Aria, Blue Planet are as everyone has said are really good! We saw a comedian who was quite funny too.
Royal Babies and Tots: This was our first experience with a baby on board. RC definitely knows babies! We played in a wonderfully equipped playroom. The staff was friendly, helpful and genuinely enjoyed children. As our sweetie was young, we didn't use the sitter service but the children we observed were engaged and having fun. RC (for a charge) delivered diapers, pack n play, and baby food to baby's stateroom.
Stateroom: we enjoy a balcony and did this cruise too. Yes the rooms appear small but there was plenty of storage and we even had places that were empty all week! Closet by the sofa in this cabin which is less congested than by the bed. Beds were so comfortable. We slept very well. Our cabin steward was Rodney John and was very professional, positive, helpful and did an excellent job. We tipped him extra accordingly. A few doors down where our DD was...different attendant and not so good. We appreciated Rodney.
Service in general: every RC employee we encountered was smiling, ready to help, doing a good job. I realize some folks just can't be pleased and treat these hard working folks poorly. What clods:-(. We appreciate service and say "thank you" a lot!!! Have to mention Sashko in Windjammer....our DD dropped her I-phone in water....a $600 mishap. I ran up to Windjammer and asked fir a bowl of uncooked rice....he looked at me kind of funny, then said "let me see what I can do." It took about 5 minutes and here he came with a big bowl!!! Now this was way above and beyond AND it took four days but the phone came back 100%!!! At the same time DH had called down to room service and they said they'd try to help. Next thing he knew they knocked on the door with...yep uncooked rice and a big bowl!!! We were impressed!
Disembarkation: we opted to self debark and left about 9:00. It went very smoothly and fairly fast. There were 6 immigration officers and the whole process took less than 30 minutes! We used South Florida Shuttle service. Kudos to them. We follows their instructions and called before immigration and called again outside. They were there in less than 5 minutes. Car seat, good service and not expensive. We'll definitely use them again.
In conclusion, we cannot wait to rebook the Allure!!!!!