This was our first Springtime cruise. It turned out to be a beautiful time to cruise. The weather was 80ish everyday, we only had rain 1 day, and our sunsets were beautiful. It was also the longest cruise we have taken and on the smallest ship we've been on.
We had reservations about being on a smaller ship---thought the lines might be longer and bought seem more crowded, but it was actually the opposite. Plus the people we met throughout the cruise we kept running into and it was like cruising with a bunch of friends. We liked that we could walk from one end of the ship to the other in about 5 minutes.
We had booked a BB verandah suite guarantee cabin and about 10 days before our cruise we were assigned an A verandah suite---065. We were a little concerned about the location--the last one on the Navigation deck. I saw that there was a bar on the other side of our room on the Seaview Pool deck and we were on the side where smoking was allowed. What I couldn't see from the deck plan on the HAL site is that there is also a large storage area by the bar and that was probably directly next to our room and verandah. We never heard anything from the side of our room. We did hear chairs being moved around for about 5 minutes most mornings, but it really wasn't loud enough or long enough to bother us. I've also read that some people on our deck could hear the basketball court on the 12 floor, but we were far enough away that we never heard that (except when we were in the Lido restaurant late at night and it was LOUD)! Our cabin and the cabin next to ours were not covered by the Lido restaurant overhang. We liked that, although I've read where some people liked the overhang. We liked the wide open views of sunset. The verandah was rather small for a suite, but it was very private. We also ended up really liking the location being so close to the elevators and Seaview Pool. We also liked being so close to the stairs to take them up to the Lido restaurant. Our cabin steward was great. The only thing that did perplex me was that the category of that room was being changed from an A to a BC shortly after our cruise. We really liked the location of this room and wouldn't hesitate to book it again.
We had the anytime dining and met the most interesting people at dinner! Our servers were all very good as was the food. Even the desserts on board this ship were the best we've had on any ship before. It usually took about 1 - 1.5 horus to eat, but that seems normal on cruises. A couple times they had special bar b qs on the Lido deck, so we ate there on those nights. One night we even got our dinner from the Lido restaurant and sat out on the back Lido deck and watched the sunset go down. There was no one else out there.
We had the free Pinnacle dinner with the Explore 4 promotion. We were assigned dinner at 5:30 the 1st night. Our dinner was very nice. The restaurant wasn't even half full at that time and service was great then.
We thought the entertainment was the best we've seen on a cruise ship. The Hal singers and dancers were very good. The other entertainment in the Showroom at Sea was very good, too. I was probably most surprised by the beautiful music Elon made with the steel drums on the Lido deck.
I did a couple of the digital classes. It's nice that it's offered and it's kept up to date. We also enjoyed the culinary exhibitions. We even enjoyed the movies shown in the culinary room most evenings at 7:30.
My husband prefers the sea days, but I love the port days and chose this cruise for the ports: St. Maarten; St. Kitt's; St. Vincent; Martinique; Barbados; St. Croix; and Half Moon Cay. We love beaches and snorkeling and planned most of our port days around that. We were not disappointed!
I have lots of pictures from the ship and our excursions here: