We did not know what to expect, or what to compare to- here is what we would say:
Food- was amazing. I found the crepe station from 5-9pm in the Garden Buffet and looked forward to a fresh, homemade treat each evening! Our only "extra" restaurant was Cagney's Steak house. We enjoyed it and thought the steaks were great.We ate most of our breakfast's at Garden Buffet. The kids LOVED picking all the things to eat, and we liked eating outside. There are fresh cinnamon buns made each am- but they are way down in the buffet- be sure to seek them out ;). Was frustrated though ( even though we knew before) how much "extra" you would have to pay to enjoy the other restaurants...
Rooms were fine for us. Sure- small but other than sleeping, we didn't spend much time. At night they would pull down the top bunk and put it up in the am- so it didn't seem as crowded as it could be. We loved our balcony- but tip***** The ship should group smokers and NON smokers... we are not smokers and people on either side of us were and there many, many times where we would have to close our balcony door and or/come in for the sickening smell all the time.
Please note- the map on the ship re. the rooms is different than actual layout. If you look our room 14066 looks like it is RIGHT beside the kids club. However it is a maze to get back to our room and is NOT right beside the entryway to kids club. We did like being on deck 14 with the kids as it was only one flight up on stairs to deck 15.
Also- as in other reviews it is NOISY above you...
Kids club- they were great. I was impressed with the quality and security. However I did call them several times, as the back door to the Kids club is NOT locked and I saw staff come and go several times. They indicated that someone is always "watching" the door in the room- but it did/does concern me that the back door is open and unlocked. Even a child could decided to bolt if they wanted to....
Guest Services- unfortunately left with a sour taste in my mouth. LONG story short- we had an on board credit from our travel agent. However because " we booked our Nickelodeon breakfast, Cagney's Steak house dinner and shore excursion ( through the ship)PRIOR to boarding the ship ( as they recommend doing in order to make sure you get your preferred times etc.) they WOULD NOT put our credit towards them. We do not drink and only spent $20 on watches and therefore they took back the non refundable- remaining $130.00 on our account on the last morning.
This was NOT clearly indicated to us prior to booking/boarding the ship or ON the ship and I feel it was a money scam. Someone beside me was just swearing away as they were in the same situation as we were. After arguing for 30 minutes, they offered both of us "credit" to use for pictures. Please keep in mind that we were already LEAVING the ship- and catching a cab for our flight home. The lady beside me took it, but I asked to speak to a manager. Finally after pleading my case- they gave me back my credit.
Entertainment- we had to small kids- 4 and 6 so night life was not in our agenda :) We took them to the blue man group and we all LOVED it! Music in the day was okay- but live band on pool deck was very loud.
Water Slides/pools: kids loved them! There are 2 small pools though and I was surprised how little space there was for water for the kids. Our 4 year old was not quite tall enough for the slides- some attendants let him go- some did not. Also note- people are viscous about the beach chairs- even if you have stuff/towels etc. them - they will move them. There are NO places to sit if you come late morning...
Service- we thought it was great- no complaints. We were very impressed.
Fitness- we LOVED the fitness facilities and were giddy about riding bikes and the floor to ceiling windows.
More tips with kids: bring a noise maker- being on deck 14, it is noisy above. Bring a little bag of special toys to bring to restaurants while waiting for dinner ( Manhattan). Water wings or life jackets, water shoes to help them not slip on deck. Water bottles (especially for port days)and hats that stay on tight ( often very windy and sun hats would blow off).
Hope that helps!