After reading all the reviews we were a little apprehensive about the trip. Boarding at 11:00 was quick and easy. We had lunch in the Taste restaurant when it opened at 12:30, to avoid the crowds at the Garden Cafe. It was very pleasant with good service. Since the room would not be ready until about 2:00 PM we found a seat and people watched and explored the ship.
When we arrived at the room it was clean and everything was in its proper place and brand new. The room has many closets,drawers,cabinets lights, and plenty of storage for everything. We liked the shower and toilet being in separate enclosures. The sink is small but very much like you see in modern home bathrooms. The shower is not transparent as you might have expected. When taking a shower ,with plenty of hot water and pressure, you can not see individual body parts you can only tell there is a flesh colored object inside,I am sure the airport scanner shows more. There is no carpet by the shower only a plastic wood grained floor and a bath mat is provided and the door did not leak. Did anyone think of drying in the shower enclosure? A solid plastic curtain also available to cover the toilet and shower area when desired. The bed is a little short but very comfortable and has great sheets. By the bed there are switches to turn on and off all lights.
The Garden Cafe had a great selection of food for both breakfast and lunch.Plenty of duplicate stations so there was never a wait for a certain kind of food. We were still discovering new stations after 6 days. It may have taken a few minutes but we always found a clean table. Fresh Roasted chicken, hand carver pork,real ice cream,many different luscious desserts, fresh steamed vegetables,wraps,many omelet,pancakes, waffles stations,soup, were some examples of the food selections. Ate at the Manhattan Restaurant 4 times before 7:45PM and never had a Wait. They had a special Christmas and New Years Menu. Always 4 new items a night. Service and selection was good and everyone seemed pleasant. Did see the Dining room manager walking around every night. The French Restaurant was very good. Two for one Martinis were available in one of the bars every night. Two for $9.95. Did not see any other 2 for 1 drink specials!!! Ice water,hot or cold tea and coffee were always available at automatic dispensers all day.
We were Mid Ship in one of the bump outs so it was easy to go to either elevator depending on where on the ship you were going. Except for the first and last days getting an elevator was no problem. In fact the ship never seemed to be crowded ever with about 6,000 people on board for Christmas Vacation.
The pool was the hard to get to as so many kids were on board this trip. There are about 2,000 pool chairs on board but not all are around the pool. The music was very loud at the pool and Spice H2O, with a teenage type Movie playing very loud at the adult pool one afternoon. Why would you want to watch a movie when you are surrounded by the beautiful ocean at a pool?? Try the 18th deck for chairs and a relaxed quiet atmosphere. I did not like the fact that a pool chair could be saved all day and never used by the person putting a towel on it.
We did not care for the Blue Man Group , but did like Howl at the Moon piano guys. They did mention more then once, that your song would have a better chance of being played if you sent money to them. Wine can be taken to any bar if you have it left from dinner.
We had a half day of high winds and rough 16 foot waves but the lower mid deck areas were not that uncomfortable, only the top decks and very front and rear of the ship.
About 100 miles from Key West, last day of the cruise, a passenger had a medical emergency and had to be air lifted off the ship by hosted basket. Very impressed with the Coast Guard helicopter coming to the ship and the captain and the crew for their timely and professional attention given to the passenger.
Leaving the ship for shore excursions involved no lines with two doors being used. Leaving the ship at the end of the cruise was fast and easy. Since it was New Years Eve that night we didn't have to have the bags out until 1:00AM. How they got them off and arranged by color tags by 8:00 AM the next morning was amazing!
In the entire 7 days we did not have a problem. We are only two people, having cruised many times and I really can't understand all the problems others seem to have.