The review is for myself - female age 55, and my husband age 53. This was our fourth cruise, having sailed on Monarch twice and Freedom once, all in the past 18 months. We are booked for Liberty next month, Freedom in May and Allure next November.
We drove down from Orlando the morning of the cruise and parked at a local off site parking facility. Quick and easy van drop off and shuttle to the Port Terminal.
We were near the beginning of the line to enter the terminal. It took about 20 minutes to get checked in and up to the area to wait to board. At about 11:15 they started letting us board the ship. I must mention that the ramp to board was very steep, and an elderly gentleman in front of us was have a hard time with his walker. So perhaps there are alternate ways to board that those with mobility issues should look into? For us it was just preparation for the thousands of stairs that we would be climbing over the next seven days!! (Got to burn off those desserts somehow!)
We entered the ship on level 5 - the Prommanade deck. WOW! Everything is so much larger then you see in the photos! The Rising Tide bar was right in front of us and is very unique, going up and down between the Prommanade and Central Park on deck 8. There was lots of room on the Prommanade which is a good thing as most of the events throughout the week were held there. Our only complaint with this area would be the horrible smoke coming out of the Bolero's Bar all the time. We are very smoke sensitive, and quite honestly starting avoiding that end of the the deck just to avoid the awful smell.
Our next stop was deck 8 - Central Park to have lunch at the Park Cafe. Yes, the roast beef sandwiches really are that good! The made to order salads were even better in my opinion and we had lunch here several times throughout the week. Husband had a panini one day and said that it was very good. Central Park really is amazing. Very quiet and serene and overall just a nice place to sit and chat or read a book.
By the time we finished up with our lunch and wandered around a bit our rooms were ready. We had the very last cabin on the Boardwalk - 10329. Our cabin was a sufficient size and very clean and functional. They made use of every last inch of potential storage space. Our bed was next to the balcony, and this made closet access easy. For anyone using a CP machine, there is an additional electric plug underneath the mattress on the right hand side of the bed. DH was happy that he did not have to have an extension cord running across the floor like he has needed on other ships. The view from our balcony was great. We were practically IN the Aqua Theatre! The two huge screens were our own personal big screen televisions! And the view of the ocean and wake were awesome! When we were docked in Labadee, the view was spectacular! Now, would I book a Boardwalk room again? Probably not, but it was fun to have one time since it was such an unusual view. The bonus was that smoking was not allowed on these balconies, so we had clean fresh air all the time!
We had My Time Dining with our travel companions each night at 6pm. In hind sight, I should have booked it later, and we will do that on our upcoming cruises. The first night we had a waiter named Dwayne. He was awful. I am sorry to say this, but he was pushy with his opinion on what we should order and even tried to change what our friend had said he wanted. The next night we asked for someone different and we were seated in Bongay's section. WOW! He was awesome!! What a difference a waiter can make to the enjoyment of your dining experience! We ended up going back to Bongay's table every night. The food overall in the main dining room was very good. One night I ordered the salmon, and it was soaked in butter and very under done. I did not say anything (not my style to complain) but Bongay noticed that I was not happy and without being asked brought me a new plate with well cooked salmon and no butter!
The Solarium was a wonderful area. Adults only, and it really was adults as I never even saw a child walk through the area! There was a fresh water spa pool that had jets that could massage your back and arcs of water that you could walk through. There was also a large hot tub with water that was hot enough, but not so hot to feel like you were cooking. There were plenty of nice chairs and lounger available through out the Solarium on two different levels. If you wanted sun, you sat downstairs. Shade, then upstairs under the roof. The glass window roof seemed to catch the breeze and make the area very pleasant and comfortable. The Solarium Bistro was fantastic! We had breakfast there several mornings as well as a couple of lunches. The food was a more healthy type and seemed more upscale then the offerings at the Windjammer.
The Windjammer. Well, it is the same as every other Windjammer! Not my favorite place to eat. Lots of choices - some of them better then others. The staff were helpful in finding you places to sit and getting you coffee and water refills. We only ate there a couple of times since there were so many other restaurants that we found we preferred to eat at.
The shows were GREAT!! Every single one of them was awesome in our opinion. Hairspray was so entertaining and fun to watch. The cast really did a splendid job on this. Both of the diving shows at the Aqua Theatre were dramatic and very well done. Those high divers had my blood pressure rising for sure! The production show Come Fly With Me was incredible. We liked it so much that DH and I went and saw it again on stand by. The headliner for our cruise was a Abba act. They were good and quite enjoyable, especially if you like Abba music. Our travelling companions liked it so much they went back a second time.
Our cruise director was Richard Spacey. This was his final cruise on Oasis, so I imagine it was a bitter sweet week for him. I am so very happy that we got to have Richard as our CD. We really enjoy the added fun the CD's bring to the cruise and Richard did not disappoint! He made the Love and Marriage and The Quest shows absolutely hilarious! The look on his face when the guy in the kilt bared all during The Quest was priceless!
Halloween fell on day 3 of this cruise. OMG! We woke up that morning and the Prommanade had been transformed into a ginormous haunted house! Huge decorations were absolutely everywhere. I am so glad that DH and I decided to go all out and dress up for the event - not something that we have done in the past 35 years or so! There were literally thousands of people dressed up in costume for the party! So much fun. They had several professional photography 'sets' that were Halloween themed set up and we got some really cute photos. They even had a haunted house that you walked through down in a deck three conference room. A huge amount of work went in to making Halloween on the Oasis a truly memorable experience.
The Sports Deck activities on Oasis were awesome! I did the zip line twice, the rock climbing wall once and the Flow Rider many, many times! The instructors at all the sports activities were very kind and patient and really knowledgeable about their sports. I felt completely safe on the zip and rock wall. The flow rider staff were so nice to work with. I had never tried to do stand up surfing, and I actually managed to stay upright by myself for five hole seconds!! Do not let age stand in your way of trying something new and exciting. I am so glad that I tried everything that the ship had to offer.
We stopped at three ports on this Western Caribbean cruise. The first one was Labadee Haiti, the private beach/island area that RCI rents or owns from Haiti. Now I love Coco Cay, so I was optimistic that Labadee would be just as good, and it was, but in a different way. While Coco Cay is more tropical, Labadee was very mountainous and dramatic. The beach itself where we were was sort of rocky, but the water was nice once you got in. My friend and I did the Dragon Coaster twice and it was lots of fun. You paid $19 for one ride, and you could have two people in the car up to a weight of 360 pounds. Since our husbands did not want to ride, we each bought a ticket and got to ride twice together. It was lots of fun and very fast!
For our next two ports of Falmouth, Jamaica and Cozumel Mexico we just browsed the shopping areas close to the ship and then returned to use an empty ship! This trip was primarily for us about the Oasis, not the ports of call.
All and all we had a wonderful cruise vacation on Oasis of the Seas. The staff were great. The food was very good. The activities were fun. The entertainment was awesome. The ship was incredible and definitely a must see for anyone who enjoys cruising.