Here's my thoughts on our Allure Sept 4th 2011 sailing. My husband and I traveled with 167 Cruise Critic members and we had such a great time onboard. We were called the Hurricane Dodgers and we did just that. We dodged Hurricane Katia that week in the eastern caribbean. But here is how our vacation on her started.
Embarkation: Very smooth. By the time we knew it we were boarding the ship and getting our welcome aboard pic taken. We boarded the ship at 12:30 after driving to Port Everglades. By 1:30 we were in our cabin.
Cabin: Balcony deck #11 11218- very clean and the bed by the balcony door instead of the closet the way I liked it. After reading the cruise compass briefly we went to Windjammer for the welcome aboard lunch.
Dining room and shows: We had 2nd seating which we like at 8:30. Food during the week was very good. Love the seafood selections. All the shows were very good too! Fell asleep during the last 15 mins of Chicago though but it was pretty good for the most part.
Specialty Restaurants: Only booked Ritas Fiesta and that was alot of fun with the dancing and all. The Mexican hats they give you are like child size so it didnt fit my head. They were very small. The light up necklace is cute too. Food was good and plenty and lots of dancing even on the boardwalk. Come hungry. The only dissapointment was Samba Grill. Our waiter was awful and kept bringing unseasoned meats to our table on a dish instead of the sckewers. The Gaucho servers are assigned tables and ours was super slow to bring us the meats. The dont free roam to all the tables like I am used to back home at Texas De Brazil. You are assigned a Gaucho and he kept excusing himself for the slow meat service. It was awful and not worth the $25.00 per person to eat there. Rccl needs to improve this concept and improve the service. Desserts were sparce and only 3 selections. A watered down Flan, a choc cake and tiramisu. The only nice treat was the Brazilian dancer who showed you a few samba dance steps which I already knew how to do. Don't think will be eating at Samba Grill again next year when we sail Allure again.
Dance classes were alot of fun to watch. Loved the Flash Mob dance and the Michael Jackson dance class. Also the parades were great. There was always something going on down in the Royal Promenade. Allan Brooks was very funny. This sailing was his last before he went on a short vacation back to his hometown in Montreal Canada. Loved his babbling Brooks show every morning on the in cabin tv. He was funny indeed. My fav was the 70s disco party in the Royal Promenade. I loved it since I grew up listening to that music.
Excursions: Since we have been to the eastern caribbean so many times we didnt book any excursions other than just hang around the pier and go back onto the ship. To me the ship was the destination it was so beautiful. Allure docks in Crown Bay St. Thomas so make sure you check out the huge iguanas that hang around the pier there when you get off. They are on the rocks and on the sidewalk by the shops.
We had a fantastic week on the Allure and met alot of nice friends. We loved her so much that we booked her again for next year in Sept on 9/9/12 this time to the Western carib since I want to see Falmouth Jamaica.
The ship was beautiful, loved seeing the Dreamworks Characters and the food on board was really good. My husband found alot of Indian specialties that he liked. I for one loved the seafood including the lobster night.
Debarkation was a bit of a mess cause you have alot of people at one time looking for their luggage and alot of lines to check out with customs. It was like organized Kaoss! We finally found our luggage and drove home. We cant wait to sail Allure again next Sept she was sooo beautiful. More beautiful than her sister ship Oasis I thought. Hope you enjoyed reading and Bon Voyage!!