We arrived early and, after a short wait on line, we were checked in and sent to another holding area. We waited for approximately 30 minutes and were boarded in order as we were seated. As always, the staff pointed everyone in the direction of the buffet but it can be a zoo on embarkation day. Knowing the layout of the ship we went straight to the dining room, which was almost empty, for a nice relaxing lunch.
The staff was quite pleasant and willing to assist. The cabin was small but comfortable and our cabin steward Tittithas did an excellent job of keeping our room in order. We always used the card provided behind the door to enable him to clean our room when we left. It was helpful leaving him a note to let him know what we needed rather that giving him a verbal request. Many people on previous cruises complain that their requests were not fulfilled but the room stewards have several cabins to attend to so we found that the note did the trick.
We opted for Traditional dining and had early seating in the Coral Dining Room. We got the feeling that a lot more people opted for Traditional dining on this cruise as the Coral's early seating was designated for Traditional only. We cannot say enough about the staff. For our first dining room breakfast we were served by Evgenia of the Ukraine. She was wonderful so we requested her each morning. For dinner we were served by Gerardo and Ace of the Philippines who were absolute gems. Laurentiu the Head Waiter from Romania also treated us extra special.
The ship was kept quite clean and the staff was up quite early cleaning the deck and arranging the tables. There were always places available to relax and I would say that overall this was an excellent cruise.
Please bring a power strip as power outlets are limited and if you have several gadgets it will come in handy. Also, the room safe is extremely small so you can barely fit your wallets and travel documents in there so your iPads will definitely not fit. The shampoo/conditioner provided is of very poor quality. Our hair stayed dry and trashy the entire trip as we didn't bring our own.
As usual there were inconsiderate passengers who left dirty glasses and plates in places not even close to a dining room. There was also a gentleman who was smoking in a non-smoking area of Deck 7 and he just dropped the cigarette on deck without putting it out. Thousands of lives can be put in jeopardy because of inconsiderate smokers so please do adhere to the ship's rules regarding smoking.
WiFi on board was quite costly and is very slow so not even worth purchasing. We just used free WiFi in the ports.
I was quite worried because of all the negative reviews posted here but went with an open mind and had no problems whatsoever. All public bathrooms and areas were very clean and toilets flushed with no problems.