My Husband and I decided to book our 1 year anniversary cruise through royal Caribbean since we had heard so many good things about it. We sailed on carnival for our honeymoon and had a blast!! So we decided to give the company with 5 stars a shot.
We booked our cruise on Royals Enchantment of the Seas for May 19th 2011 leaving out of Baltimore,Maryland. We would be returning on the 28th. during our cruise we would visit 4 ports..San Juan Puerto Rico, St.Thomas,Dominican Republic, and Haiti.
We got into Baltimore a few days early and had the chance to go to an Orioles game and visit many different places. That was nice. We stayed at the the Days in booked through stay123.com we had a room for 79.00 a night and then we paid a one time fee of $22.00 to leave our car parked at the hotel while we were on our cruise. The hotel provided a shuttle to and from the port. That was nice considering the port was going to charge us $150.00 for parking.
We arrived at the port and i must say it was nothing spectacular. Nothing like the view we seen leaving out of Miami. It like the port was sitting in the middle of an old ship yard. not anything to take pictures of. It was also raining and cloudy. Security to me was a little unrealistic making one man take off his clothes because he kept beeping. The poor fellow was like 85 years old. My husband also had a hard time going through security and he didn't have anything to make the machines go off. We have no idea what happened there.
As we are sitting in the port waiting to board we are looking around at our fellow cruisers and we notice about 70%of them are over the age of 60. What have we done/? Another young couple next to us said the same thing.
We finally board the ship and entering it was nothing great either. It didn't give us the WOW factor like the carnival ship we had been on. It was pretty but not that pretty. The ceilings were low and it just looked old fashioned.
They had fruit sculpted into animals which was cute but that's it..just cute.
we were informed our rooms were not ready so we could go to the Windjammer to have lunch. We walk in and it is small. Not enough tables for everyone and with it raining,who wants to sit outside. We push our way through the crowd to see whats for lunch. i thought I was at a retirement home with the food options. corned beef, stew, salad,sandwiches...what is this?? I found the burgers. not cooked fresh off the grill to your bun like on carnival but rather sitting in a pan with grease on the bottom. cold and not very tasty. the buns were hard from sitting in the air and the cheese wouldn't even melt. yuck!!!
finally we make it to our room. it is a little bigger than our room on carnival but the TV? It definitely needed and upgrade. It was very small..like a 13 inch and it was facing the wall not the bed. it was hard to watch TV while resting. our guy that cleaned the room was weird. he went through our stuff to find sunglasses which i don't think is right. he would throw our bags on the bed or couch and leave them there. i don't think he should have even touched our personal belongings. he didn't get a tip. that's why i don't prepay my gratuities. our room was toward the front of the ship on the 3rd floor. we felt a lot of the boats movements which did make us sick and we needed some medicine for motion sickness the first couple days.
The doors to the rooms we found to be heavy also and there is no vent in the bathroom. Not good.
We did like the fact that the ship offered a pool with fresh water in it though during the day it was full but very peaceful at night. My husband and i took advantage of the peaceful swimming at night but found the guys that clean the deck watch us like a hawk. I felt like a criminal. The solarium was nice for adults but very hot. they never opened the roof..which i don't know if it even opened. We didn't go in there much except to get pizza when the windjammer closed which was alot. On carnival we could go into their dining area all day and there was always something being cooked.
The entertainment was dull. Nothing went on the first day really. The comedians were ok. I wouldn't say they were extremely funny and they kept their stuff PG for the elderly. There was a juggler..and dancers. the dancers did the same stuff every night just to different songs. It kinda got old after a while but there was nothing else to do. Karaoke was not fun either. The host was dull and not very entertaining. Hardly ever was there anything going on out on the deck. several days they had a Jamaican band out there but i just thought they would change things up. by 9 every night the pool deck was empty. the halls were empty. there were shows going on but other than that nothing.
by 12 everyone was in bed unless you were in the viking crown lounge which was the dance club. it consisted of mostly chairs. the dance floor was probably as big as a nice sizes storage building. you could fit maybe 20 people comfortably. It was the same thing night after night. the music wasn't good at all. it was like the DJ played what he liked and nothing to keep the crowd entertained.
my husband and i decided one night to walk every floor because we were so bored and we noticed that the 4th floor smelled like sewer really bad. It was quite gross. The ship just isn't for me and Royal is more for the older crowd...like the ones with walkers. Yes there were walkers on there.
The ports were nice. We loved the Dominican Republic. Royal told us that the Dominican republic was a newer port to them and there was no need to take money. There were excursions you could book through them but other than that you could just walk around. We had to tender in. so when we got there we found it to be a totally different story. there was all kinds of stuff to do. there were even tours that went to the waterfalls for 25.00 a person instead of the outrageous price that royal wanted. we were mad that they had lied to us and the tour guides there and the the people who walk you to the water fall depend on our money for survival. we always buy from the locals and nothing that says made in china.
when we got to Haiti it was a private island owned by royal. I found out that royal only pays Haiti a small small amount per person to be on the island. i was disgusted. they are poor. there were these Haitian men working on the private island and royal brought in all this food for the cruisers and do you know those men said they aren't allowed to eat it that royal only provides them with water or lemonade. some people went and got those men a plate of food. all the food left was brought back on the ship to be thrown out. That makes me sick to my stomach. i will never sail on royal again. The service was ok and our dining room waiter was awesome but as far as the ship,entertainment,and food? No thank you. Don't think you can order room service when ever you want..they charge for that too and add a gratuity onto it. carnival does not. if you choose to sail with royal or you choose to sail this ship..good luck to you and happy sailing. I will be waving to you from one of carnivals fun ships!!