I have never felt so strongly about coming home after a vacation and writing a review. Hence- I just got back today and ran to my computer to let future cruisers know about this past weeks experiences. I am so utterly disappointed in this cruise line from its staff, excursions, staterooms, food, etc etc etc. To be fair i will start with the pro's and also give you an idea of the type of cruiser I was. I am 23 and my boyfriend is 31. We are not the super romantic type but this trip was definitely intended to be a nice getaway for the both of us from work, responsibility, etc. We both come from an upper middle class lifestyle- The point of saying this is comparing it to past cruises both of us have been on where we have had anywhere from inside rooms to deluxe suites. We both just really found it pretty stupid to spend so much on the room being that we didn't intend to be in it too often. So here it goes....
-Getting on the ship was extremely fast/took about 15 min from start to finish
-All three ports were absolutely beautiful. The beaches couldn't be nicer- the water was better and better at each port and the shopping was great. A lot of cute little souvenir shops as well as high end designers and jewelry.
-The speciality restaurant Chops grille had fantastic food/along with great service. We had a waiter Cajetan-I remember his name because he was truly the only one who stuck out to me. My boyfriend had found a long piece of hair in his food and the waiter so was fantastic about getting us a new plate along with being super apologetic. The head chef on the other hand- I must tell you depending on where you sit you can have a perfect view of the kitchen and he was "pissed" from our view- when we sent back the food he was talking to the waiter, taking off his hat insisting "THIS IS NOT HIS HAIR". Well I am blonde, and my boyfriend's head is shaved- so a long piece of black hair definitely did not come from us. Anyway back to the positive- the waiter and hostess were fantastic in fixing the problem and giving us comped drinks for the rest of the night.
-Every single thing on this cruise that is good you have to pay for. The food that is "free" in the buffet is absolutely not edible. In the dining room its even worse. After the 2nd night not one of the couples at our table showed up for dinner for the rest of the week because it was so bad. We found ourselves starving at the end of every night because there was not a single thing we ate that was free that we were actually able to consume without feeling the urge to throw up. The drinks are delicious though- but the lack of alcohol for a $9.00 drink is really not ok.
-Second, Almost every employee we came across during our trip felt the need to tell us about their sob story of how poor they are and how they have to support an entire family back at home. Not that i don't feel bad for them but I'm trying to enjoy my vacation- I don't want to feel guilty about not giving them extra tip than whats suggested on tv all day saturday at the end of the week.
-Third, My excursion that we booked through the ship turned out to be a nightmare. They apparently do not do a check on these excursions they recommend because I've never felt so unsafe in my life. We did a scuba experience and were notified ONCE ON THE BOAT that the big bulge in the middle of the boat that we have to watch out for is a hole with the engine sticking out - so please do not step on it because you will get hurt. HM OK? Then, we were notified that if you have any ear problems this was not going to be your day because it will be impossible to equalize your ears so maybe next time you visit? Great so after $84 spent NOW you tell me this. They did specify in the description this excursion was ok for first time scuba divers- NOT REALLY-how is a first timer supposed to know that before booking. Then- as we take off there is ONE tour guide for all 12 people in our group. Her boss said to her "Wait- your the only one going out with all these people. where is everyone else?" her response was - They had something to do- IS this safe? Her bosses response was- "HAHA Okay whatever".....Apparently they must be like royal and are only concerned about getting your money. That being said only 4 people were able to go out at once and we all had to wait on the boat while the inexperienced diver tried to teach people to scuba dive. Need i say not one person was able to go down out of 12 people? When i got back i went to the excursion desk thinking they would be really upset about the experience my boyfriend and I had-The guy i had spoken to was so rude and kept rolling his eyes- They called me later to tell me theres nothing they could do and that they would give me $21 back in good faith.
All of this being said- Believe it or not I am the last person to ever complain or write bad reviews. I just really came home from this vacation today feeling completely upset about the lack of service amongst everything else. To spend hard earned money- hoping for a great relaxing vacation and not getting it is probably one of the worst feelings. I do not suggest cruising with this ship nor this cruise line. Im not sure what everyone finds so great about it but maybe I have been spoiled by much better service in my life- Or should i say respect?