Explorer of the Seas Cruise Review by essgee2: Disappointed with Explorer of the Seas on our first cruise....
Overall Member Rating
Disappointed with Explorer of the Seas on our first cruise....
Embarkation: Bayonne (Cape Liberty)
This was our first cruise and we were traveling with 14 other family members. I will start with what we DID enjoy - the food and service in the dining room was outstanding. Quick, efficient and delicious.
Leigh, the cruise director, and his counterpart (Erky from Turkey) made the shows and Game Shows funny, entertaining and seriously made everyone in our party laugh - from adults to kids. The parades and '70s party on the Promenade were VERY crowded and very frustrating.
That was about all we were happy with.
The buffet, while it had a large selection of food, was terrible. The food was always lukewarm-cold at best. the Windjammer Cafe was so-so, with a very limited selection of food. We did not try any other restaurants, nor did we try room service after another family member telling us it took TWO hours to order a pizza that couldn't feed all four in their party.
The pools were so crowded that we were unable to find beach chairs on two of the More days. To stand around awkwardly with your beach bag, towels and a drink in hand was annoying. On two separate occasions, we had to give up finding chairs by the pool and ended up finding other random things to do. It was very disappointing. We did devise a plan to get off the ship on our first day docked in Bermuda and just walk around the Naval Dockyard for an hour, and then get back on-board and take advantage of everyone else being off the ship and boy, are we glad we did that. For over an hour, we had the entire pool to ourselves AND our pick of chairs. On our last day at sea, we could not find a single available beach chair ALL day, except for when it started to drizzle. SO disappointing.
We did one excursion to Horseshoe Bay Beach and enjoyed it despite the high winds and rough water. We didn't go into the water but the view was beautiful and worth the visit. Less
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Our rooms were on Deck 3 and located not far from the Chamber nightclub. BIG MISTAKE. We were kept awake EVERY night from 11pm until the wee hours of the morning with thumping bass blasting out of the nightclub. (The one except was the "Silent Party" in which guests wore headphones while in the club. It was the one night we actually were able to sleep. Bring EARPLUGS if you will be staying on Deck 3.)Onto cleanliness - This was MY area of concern as I have an autoimmune disease that requires me to be on immunosuppressants. This means my immune system is shut off. So clearly, I was concerned about how clean the boat would be and discussed at length with my doctor steps I could take to make sure I stayed healthy. I brought disinfecting spray, wipes, and small carry-along bottles of hand sanitizer, as well as knowing there would be hand sanitizer everywhere on board. The ship, as a whole, was clean and well maintained. The pools, bars, stores and decks were all very clean. The cabins, not so much. The small chair in our room was FILTHY. It had stains running down the front and sides. They come in twice a day to clean and give fresh towels but I would still see random dirt, pieces of soap, etc in the shower indicating it wasn't cleaned at all. I cleaned the entire bathroom every day on my own and made sure to wipe down the TV remote, light switches and other spots I know can be overlooked.We also had two instances in the dining room where two people in our party had filthy water glasses. (not just dirty; FILTHY)Tip: *Bring your own disinfectant and hand sanitizer. The elevator buttons are disgusting from such frequent use. Also, you sanitize your hands when entering the dining room then end up touching menus that look like they've never been cleaned. Keep sanitizer in your purse/pocket or get back up once your menu has been taken and use the sanitizer at the entrance to the dining room.We will not be taking a cruise ever again... unless it's on a private yacht. ;)
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