Our day of arrival started off as expected. We boarded around noon and headed straight to the main dining room. Lunch was as expected and its a great place to have a quiet lunch. Up on the main decks it was crazy with all 4100 passengers hanging out on two decks.
The cruise director announced right at 2pm our rooms were ready. Hubby and I headed to our 2 (not 1) studios to get unpacked and play with all the buttons. We had to play hide and seek to find all the switches to turn on the lights. One of our adjoining studios lights kept shutting off so we put our hotel card in the holder so it stayed on.
Not alot of storage in the studios. However what I discovered part way through the cruise was that under the beds are baskets for storage. Since we had two rooms we used the bed as our 'dresser'.
The rooms were lovely and it was awesome to have two showers, two toilets, and two sinks. For those of you who need a hairdryer they are not in the studios so request one early on. I heard alot of folks who had the inside rooms were complaining big time. Nobody else was complaining.
Dining was nice. We stayed in th e main dining rooms, Shegan(sp?) and the cafe. I was very impressed with the cafe. It seems to have gone all the way from one end of the ship to the other. The only thing that stopped it was the pool. The cafe is set up with 4 pod sections. Forget the deserts at the cafe. They were all horrible. The indian food was awesome. I was in heaven with the indian food. The one disappointment I had was on Thanksgiving Day. First there was no pumpkin pie on the ship. The turkey dinner was just a tad bit better than a frozen dinner. Sad.. WE had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner when we returned.
Some observations we noticed from a larger ship were as follows:
You definitely have more side to side movement. You always feel like someone is rocking you to sleep.
The upper decks are very windy. The first day it was overcast and with the winds it was quiet cool, too much to hang out by the pool.
We registered for all the shows. Blue Man was fun to watch. Second City we saw at the 11pm show so it was definitely adult cartered. I enjoyed it. We also saw Second City Murder show. It was good as well. The Legend of Concert was very disappointing. And the Circus one we canceled after discovering the 'tent' was so tiny that any time of entertainment was going to be a major let down. Howel at the Moon was awesome. We had a special appearance of the fiddler from the Circus show. He came in and played a couple of songs. Awesome. Oh and let's not forget the comedian, Jeff. He was so enjoyable to watch. OH and beware that with rough seas the Circus show will be cancelled. We had it cancelled three of the 7 days at sea. One thing that was disappointing was some of the shows, such as Second City, had various venue for their shows. Unfortunately you could not enjoy but one.
Being in the studio was nice and we saw the single cruisers having get togethers each evening. We had a private event with the Captian and Jeff the magician/comedian. He was even better in person. The single group did alot of stuff as a group.
In other ships that we have sail folks learned out names and we saw our room stewart everyday. On the Epic we saw them but nobody knew our name. It was just status quo to them .. just get the rooms cleaned.
The casino is in the center of the ship and you have to walk through it all the time. Plan on smelling smoke all day and night. The ship has tried to keep the smoke under control with air filters in the corners but they are not successful.
The tv shows have been changed. All the movies that you could watch on tv before are now pay per view. OH and the ice bar you have to pay just to enter. Go Figure.
Our ports were lovely. We took a bay cruise in St Martin. The first part was a ride around the island with plenty of time to stop and take photos. Upon arrival at the bay folks had a hour to shop. We didnt care to shop, so we hung out on the boat and looked for our own boat. I know it was there as I requested it to be relocated from. (heehee) We sailed the bay and drank lots of rum punch.
In St Thomas we took an island tour and my husband was in love with the island. I had spent 10 days there in my youth so I knew I loved the island. Hubby and I will be returning to stay for vacation.. NO cruise.
I've been to Nassua so this time we took the SeaWorld explorer. It was awesome! Take it and you wont be sorry. After that we went to Hard Rock and I ordered one of the plastic guitar drinks. I got drunk.. ;)
The cruise was lovely. Sad we didnt have enough entertaining. Beautiful ship. Will we sail it again.. Not sure.. I had sea sickness. Still trying to recover.