My DH and I were on the Sept.4 sailing of the Oasis of the Seas with the Cruise Critic ROLL CALL group called "Labor Day Cruisers" who made our cruise even more enjoyable! We drove up from Miami to Ft. Lauderdale and arrived at the port at 10:30 AM where we quickly parked in the lot across from the ship and walked into the terminal. Check in was fast and easy and we were escorted to the waiting area for Diamond Plus. They had coffee and water available as well as a large sign indicating which restaurants were open for lunch after embarkation. The first item said: Opus Main Dining Room - Lunch Deck 4, Open noon - 2:30 PM - Exclusive lunch for Suite and Diamond Plus guests (more on this later).
We boarded the ship at 11:45 AM and went directly to the Opus Main Dining Room to check out the location of our table (#651). It was located on Deck 4 and was a table for two as we had requested. We had Main Dining (Traditional) at 6:00 PM. We were very happy with our table location against a railing overlooking Deck 3 of the dining room. A very considerate waiter walked by and asked if we would like a photo with our table, we said yes and he took one. I then asked him where the Exclusive lunch for Suite and Diamond Plus Guests was being held. He was very polite and nice, but said he didn't know, but would ask. Shortly, a supervisor came back with him and said they had no information about such a lunch. I showed the supervisor my photocopy of the sign in the boarding area (courtesy of a previous poster), plus I had also taken a picture of the sign that day, but no luck. Everyone apologized profusely for the misinformation. My DH and I agreed that this was disappointing since we had hoped to avoid the frenzy of the first day lunch, but we quickly regrouped and went up to the Solarium Bistro where we had an excellent and healthy lunch.
After lunch, we went to check out our cabin, 12717, Cat. B2 Boardwalk Balcony. It was absolutely spectacular! The cabin was beautiful and, contrary to many previous reports, definitely large enough and the air conditioning worked perfectly at all times. Our bed was by the closet with the desk by the balcony. We appreciated this arrangement since the mirror over the desk reflected the light coming in and made the cabin appear more spacious and airy. We were located Starboard side directly over Johnny Rockets (and the happily-returned Balloon Boy). We could easily see the Aquatheater (and watched many shows from our balcony),the ocean and the wake, the Johnny Rockets dancing waiters below, the zipline just above us and the Concierge Lounge and Dazzles as well as the Carousel and people walking near the Miniature Golf Course. I never felt that people were looking in our window. We kept the sheer curtains closed when we wanted privacy and the heavier ones shut at night. Our cabin steward, Justin, was outstanding. He did a fantastic job and was one of the nicest people we met on board.
We had a wonderful Sailaway Party with our fellow Labor Day Cruisers. Thanks to Katie, Brian, Scott, Tug, Lynette, Barbara, Mary and Roger and all the rest of you for your kindness and tips before and during the cruise. We also had a wonderful Meet and Mingle Party (thank you Royal Caribbean) followed by a fun Cabin Crawl (thanks to all who participated).
We had dinner at Chops the first night at 6:00 PM. There was no crowd, the waiter was very attentive and helpful and the food was outstanding. We both had the 10 oz. filet mignon and it was perfectly cooked and delicious. We sat at a table for two by the window looking out onto the beautiful Central Park. We were celebrating our wedding anniversary (although Chops didn't know that) and we just happened to sit next to a bride and groom who had just been married, she was still wearing her wedding gown, and two other anniversary couples. It made for a very special evening.
We did not visit any other specialty restaurants, but enjoyed all the meals in the Main Dining Room. We also enjoyed breakfast on our balcony two mornings, and we tried the famous pretzel dogs in the Wipeout Cafe. The Windjammer was extremely crowded, probably our least favorite restaurant.
Things we just loved: Walking in Central Park (especially at night), walking on the Boardwalk, walking on the jogging track, walking in the Royal Promenade, seeing our photos the new easy way, breakfast and lunch in the Concierge Lounge, touring the Bridge,listening to the bagpiper,and all of the shows. We enjoyed all the shows in the Aquatheater, Earl Turner was very good, "Frozen in Time" was amazing, the Comedy Club had really funny comedians, "Come Fly with Me" was impressive and very entertaining. Richard Spacey was awesome, he is the best Cruise Director on the High Seas!!
We never felt the ship move, our cabin was quiet, and we slept very well every night. Our only problem, as others have mentioned, was trying to see and do everything in seven days. That is called a high-class problem!
Debarkation was the easiest and most well-organized we have ever experienced. We chose to walk off with our suitcases and were in the elevator (not crowded, by the way) at 6:15 AM when we heard the announcement that the ship had been cleared. We got off the elevator and walked off the ship with no waiting at all. We were crossing the street to the parking lot at 6:18 AM. Amazing!!
Congratulations, Royal Caribbean, on your beautiful and innovative ship.