This was first time cruise for me and I WAS NOT Disappointed! I booked my cruise with a cruise travel agent which made it extremely easy from start to finish. The ship was very clean when we boarded and kept that way during the entire trip. They were very timely in leaving the port of departure and returning on time. Every thing was so organized from the moment we stepped on board to the time we left. Our cabin attendant kept us informed everyday with the Compass to let us know what was going on and how to do our luggage when we departed.
The food at the Windjammer was pretty much the same from day to day. I heard the Chinese food that was served every other day was great but I did not get a chance to try it. Longer breakfast hours would be a real plus if they were extended a bit more. Lunch in the Windjammer was pretty much the same day to day as well. Great place to order a fresh omelet with whatever you want in it or an egg over easy, etc. very fresh! My Fair Lady was great! We ate dinner there every night and had the 6pm assigned eating time. The other meal time is 8:30 or you can chose "My Time" and eat when you chose. I enjoyed the set time because we ate at the same table and with the same people every night. We had a fantastic table with great conversation and we made a bunch of new friends. Our head waiter, Peter was very nice and helpful. He even gave all the women at he table a copy of the chilled soup recipes! The chilled soups served daily at dinner were outstanding! Every night of the 12 day cruise had a new chilled soup and I looked forward to that as my starter every night. Our Table waiter was Indra and he was from Indonesia. He was unbelievably great. He remembered all our names, and was so attentive and helpful. He had a great sense of humor. He brought us extra desserts each night so we could actually taste each dessert. we could not have asked for a better waiter! His assistant waiter was Oswald and he was outstanding as well! He even remembered what each of us drank every night for the dinner and exactly what flavor of tea we preferred. Can't ask for better than that! Food selection was great too, good variety to choose from. One night I did not like my fish and Indra went back a got me a new dinner of something else I chose. So accommodating! Breakfast at My Fair Lady was great too. The pancakes were terrific and so were the eggs benedict and the salmon, capers and cream cheese on a bagel.Eating formally at breakfast was a nice change from the Windjammer. If you have time in the morning My Fair Lady was great but if you were in a rush or don't eat much breakfast than the Windjammer would suit you better. Lunch at My Fair Lady was wonderful too. The make your own salad was phenomenal. The servers actually make your salad for you; you just pick out the ingredients and they put it together for you and mix it.
Staterooms were great, plenty of room and lots and lots of storage. The towel animals were fun and entertaining. Our cabin attendant ,Tanya from Bulgaria, was very friendly and accommodating as well. Our room was immaculate every day with clean towels even though we did not ask for clean towels. The shower was a bit small but how much time do you spend in the shower anyway!
Ship Staff Quality
The ship staff were very pleasant. every time you passed by one they smiled and greeted us with pleasantries. They are very hard workers and they will help in any way they can. They were always willing to stop and say hello and ask if we needed any assistance. The people at the Guest Services desk were fantastic as well helping us on excursions and recommending the best ones for what interested us.
Entertainment & Activities
The entertainment was pretty good even though I never heard of any of the entertainers. I especially enjoyed the magic show and the comedian with his duck! Very funny! Activities were pretty good, lots of bingo, karaoke, and singers all over the ship. Good for the older crowd but not much for the younger crowds. It was hard to get a seat if you were going to the shows because they filled up real fast. People would claim their seat an hour or more before the shows. And even though they say you cannot save seats and it is first come, first serve, people do it on a regular basis and save not one seat but 4-6 seats. Shows generally ran 45 minutes to an hour.
There was a shopping guide on board the ship, Paige, who did a few shows on how to shop in all the ports we went to. She was extremely helpful and handed out discounts like they were candy. She gave some great talks and told us where the best shopping and prices were. I was very pleased with my purchases and the prices I paid and all the freebies along the way.
I really enjoyed the library for some quiet time and I found the trivia and Sudoku puzzles fun to do everyday.
The fitness gym was small but than it was never full of people and machines were always available. They had just about everything machine you would need or want. The attendants were very friendly and helpful.
I did not use the Spa but I was told it was very nice and chairs overlooking the water were very relaxing. They had a variety of different treatments to chose from at very affordable prices for a spa.
Pools and Sunning
The selection of pools was good for kids as well as adults. There was plenty of seating if you got there early on the sunny days otherwise you might have to go to the upper deck 10 to get a lounge chair. I did not go in the jacuzzi but they were well used from what I saw throughout the weeks. The bar attendants were johnny on the spot to get you drinks from the bar. The solarium was nice if you wanted to stay out of the sun or if it was a breezy or cool day outside.
Overall it was a great trip! I would definitely cruise with Royal Caribbean International again and again.