Just came off of the 5-day Bahamas cruise from Miami which departed Feb 7th. I booked the Aft Penthouse Starboard stateroom ("The Lyra Suite") and it was unbelievable. I was traveling with my cousin on a girls weekend. Let's start with the Embarkation process:
When we arrived, we were asked our cabin number, and when we told them, they escorted us right into a nice separate room where our pictures were taken immediately and we were issued our cabin key cards.
Then we were escorted past ALL of the other passengers into an awaiting elevator which took us directly upstairs, where we had our picture taken quickly and then we were escorted right onto the boat. No lines, no waiting. VERY big bonus with booking one of the suites!!
After we arrived on the boat, we were escorted to the Steakhouse where our Concierge, Ana Maria, was waiting for us. She allowed us to take a seat and order lunch and then came over to answer any and all of our questions. She gave us her extension # in case we needed anything at all. After lunch, we went to our cabin to check it out.
We giggled with delight as soon as we entered our suite. Cabin 9275 is a HUGE 2-room suite (2 separate bedrooms) with 2 sliding glass doors (one from each bedroom) leading to the HUGE balcony. Very comfortable breeze without being too windy out on the back of the boat was a big bonus.
The rooms were very clean, polished, and looked very recently updated. The carpets were not worn, and the furnishings and fixtures looked very new. The bathroom was very big compared to most staterooms, and it even had a separate whirlpool tub. The room has its own espresso maker which is stocked every morning by our darling butler, Johan. It had a fridge, plenty of wine glasses, and a bottle of complimentary champagne chilling for us.
Every evening, Johan would ring our doorbell and present us with chocolate covered strawberries or a cheese and fruit plate, etc. We really looked forward to that every day.
Each bedroom had its own flat screen TV, and very decent lighting. I cannot say enough about the suite. It was amazing.
We loved the food everywhere we ate. The main buffet was always buzzing, but not overly crowded. There were also other buffets located in different areas, and there was always plenty of hot and cold food, beverages and treats, with very small to no lines.
The steakhouse (Cagney's) food was wonderful. For suite guests, breakfast and lunch are served there (along with the other reservations-only restaurants) and the food is top notch. Crab Cake Eggs Benedict, lobster tails, and steak, of course, to name a few of the fabulous entrees you can expect there.
The casino is fun, but I wish they had more tables. The slots were very generous!
The pool was NEVER overly crowded, which is one of the best things about being on a ship that makes a stop every day. You're never at sea all day, so the boat is never full except for at night. There are so many things to do that not one of the activity areas is too crowded.
We saw the variety show and it was a compilation of several of my favorite new musicals (Wicked, Movin' Out, etc.). The White Hot Dance Party was a total blast, as well.
We found that the bar tenders were consistently generous with their "pouring techniques", which made our bar tab remarkably low. We really appreciated the reasonable drink prices, and the very friendly bar staff.
What we did not expect but were so pleasantly surprised to see was that the other cabin stewards ALWAYS smiled at us and told us to have a nice day and we imagined that they had very difficult jobs to do and put in long hours. Their effort to make sure we were always welcome and appreciated as passengers did not go unnoticed. Two stewards in particular were just a riot... they taught us how to make some pretty crazy towel animals, and they weren't even our stewards. Their attitudes and commitment to service was superior.
The ports of call were exactly what we expected. Beautiful beaches, and reasonable excursions. Our favorite by far was the Segway tour of Nassau. Their guides were hilarious, professional, and made sure that safety was the #1 priority. They took the time to explain the various points of interest, and seemed very proud of their island. I highly recommend this excursion. They were really great. And it's only 2 hours, so you don't lose the whole day.
Overall, we loved this cruise for every reason. I give it 5 out of 5 stars.