First Royal Caribbean Cruise n several years. Ship was immaculate, modern, comfortable. Embarkation efficient and organized. Room was comfortable and well maintained (terrific shower). Health club was one of the best I've been in - especially the instructors/trainers (free). Entertainment fair, but not the caliber of prior years.
BEST of the trip was the Ice Show - best Ice Show I've seen - We had to see it twice. Don't miss it.
Main Complaint (and possible "deal breaker" to prevent my returning to this line) was the dining. First night one member of my family (sister) who was traveling with us in a separate cabin) was not seated at our table, despite my instructions to group our family together prior to the cruise and documented. The second day we were to have a table for my entire family together at a large table, but when we arrived and were escorted to our table the table was full, therefor we (and about four other groups of people) were left standing in the middle of the dining room with no place to go. After being left alone and no one able to secure a table (the people dining around us were noticeably perturbed) I was informed there was NO accommodation. We had to go to the next sitting to be accommodated. They sent us to the lunge overlooking the ship but the lounge turned out to be CLOSED for a private function! At the next sitting, no one seemed to be able to explain anything, we were seated at a table for 10 with only seven of us at the table - awkward for both conversation and our desire to met new and interesting people, one of the reasons we cruise as much as we do. Food was uninspired and "plain" the entire trip - obviously pre-plated and left to sit for some time. If you go on this cruise, avoid "Gianni"- he seemed to be the source of most of the confusion. Also, the poolside Bar-B-Que ran out of food the first day 30 minutes before it was supposed to close, while we were in line. They closed the food line and told us to go "inside" - but one couldn't do that in you swimsuit, so one had to go change. The second poolside meal was "Stir Fried Rice!" Not exactly a poolside choice of food. Last, the large wine list always included wines they were "out" of - one waiter said they had the wine we wanted in another bar on the ship but he was not interested in obtaining it - he reluctantly went after we expressed our displeasure that it was not available - the ship still added 15% for this poor service. The above are MANAGEMENT issues - not individual issues - we'll consider this line again when these issues are resolved.
Leaving the ship worked quite well - better than most.
Hints: Forget this cruise if you want better dining that used to be so common on Royal Caribbean but is no longer present. Service was less than desirable.
DO see the ice show. Do enjoy the great gym/health club - EXCELLENT!
The "Promenade" 24 hour food service was the best fod on the ship - tasteful ,imaginative and fresh - but snacks and sandwiches only.
I hear that next year there are four (4) different lines sailing our of Galveston, the choices may make management improve the deficiencies.