Liberty of the Seas Miami Pre Inaugural
Embarkation: this is sort of irrelevant because we had no porters, had our luggage in tow and it took a while for everyone to board, but it was really fun because of the circumstances, a free cruise for all the invitees. We hardly noticed the time.
Cabin: We lucked out on our deck 6 cabin with balcony as RCI chose our cabin for us since it was on their dime. It was beautifully furnished and with ample space and of course, the new bedding which was luxurious and comfy. The only negative comment I can make here is that the pillows were too plump for me, I'm used to down pillows...and the duvet was a tad heavy and hot. I should have asked the steward for a lighter throw, but with all the fun activities we tried to pack into 2 nights and days, we fell asleep too quickly to really care. I just loved the big fluffy white Turkish towels. Mmmmmm! I really loved the balcony, our first, and yes, we will want to always book them. I liked the floor which was some spongy rubbery material that felt really good under your feet.
Service: Cannot say enough about the service par excellence. As usual, the crew and their hospitality and solicitous service is what makes Royal Caribbean the best in the business.
Ship: Liberty is all it was advertised to be and so much more. Firstly, she is the most beautiful ship I have ever had the privilege of cruising. No detail has been left undone to make her the most elegant, refined and fun to sail ship afloat. The artwork around the ship is unparalleled in my opinion. From Dale Chihuly glass to fantasy figures, to the framed movie promo photos in the hallways and the moving interactive pieces niched into the walls, everything was impressive. A well planned aspect was the lighting. Real attention was paid to color and placement of accent lighting of public areas right down to the bedside lights (which included LED reading spots built into the standard bedside wall-mounted lamps). I especially loved the carpeting in the beautiful and elegantly clad dining rooms, each one in a different color and motif, my favorite being deck 5 Botticelli, which had gorgeous topaz blue and cream carpeting. So many crystal chandeliers and intricate inlaid wood paneling were everywhere in these rooms and made dining an unbelievable experience. Only the best of construction materials has been used with a real eye for detail.
Food: Windjammers food is about as expected. I like most of it but some things are just cafeteria food. The fruit is always good as are the desserts. It always seems to me as if a food service staff of non Americans is trying to adapt food to an American pallet and it just doesn't come off. However, I will continue to eat there on off dining times, etc. The Asian themed Jades is a nice addition to the mix but I don't really expect hot lamp food line veggies to taste like wok stir fried ones. So it works for me. The star for me here is the dining room food, which I would rate as good to very good with Portofino and Chops as excellent, even though they were closed this time. I had the fillet of beef that was the chefs special and it was outstanding and presented well. I have always wished that the dining room would follow the American taste for hot bread instead of serving it room temp, but I guess that's not going to happen. As usual, the soups were excellent. I heard no complaints except my own about the beef fajitas, which were what we in south Texas would call quesadillas not fajitas. They were not served in the classic Mexican way as fajitas here are but were toasted. At least the meat was tender but sparse. Desserts were pretty good, although I will not compare them to the ones we first had on Rhapsody 3 years ago, which were exceptional. All things considered, I am always content with the food on an RCI ship.
This was a cruise to nowhere, so no excursions to report on. However, we did do all the water themed activities and really enjoyed the H2O Zone. It will be hard to keep the adults from taking over this place. They heat the doughnut pool for the kids to just the right temp, not too cold nor as hot as the jacuzzi's so I loved that. I don't think many people knew it was heated. It was rather windy and cold out so most people except the real swimmers stayed out of the water. The doughnut pool was a "secret", shhhh. We did Flowrider and I can report that you should try it yourself. Not too terribly hard to ride the easy whole body method. Just don't try to be a hot rod and you'll do fine. While you're in the solarium pool, don't miss the underwater murals in the swim up area under the bridge. If you don't get your hair wet and look at it underwater you'll miss the reef fish on the wall. It's cool. Also, the pools are not salt water, they are fresh water, with a salt sanitizing system. We have the same for our pool at home. I feel it is far superior to chlorine systems. Doesn't hurt your eyes and is like swimming in a saline solution. You'll like the water.
Shows: The ice show is not to be missed, as has been said before. It was so good, I would repeat it every show time. The costuming was glitzy and fabulous and the skating was extraordinary. The death defying spiral, head down is frightening and hard to watch but spectacular. This was a highlight of the entertainment. We missed the production show this time, too much to do, but will be sure to see it in September when we cruise Liberty for our 7 day booking. Matt Yee, another experience not to be missed. Never had so much fun! Be sure to be there or be square if he is on the ship when you go.
In summation, I really cannot say in words what a good time you will have if you book her. As for size, yes she is big, but so big you don't notice any crowds to speak of, big enough to work off those extra calories walking from one end to the other, and big enough to make you feel safe too. We loved it, loved, it loved it and cannot wait to repeat in September....hurry hurry hurry September!