42 Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Europe - Western Mediterranean

This ship is way too big and carries too many people. We did the western European cruise so every day there were five to six thousand people attempting to have breakfast at 7 am in order to make their tours. The line for the main dining ... Read More
This ship is way too big and carries too many people. We did the western European cruise so every day there were five to six thousand people attempting to have breakfast at 7 am in order to make their tours. The line for the main dining room was huge. We had to settle for the fare of the Park Cafe which was rubber eggs on cardboard muffins. The coffee was good. We did order room service for breakfast one day. A tablespoonful of cold scrambled eggs , cold greasy sausage and no knife or fork. Since the gratuities were included in price the crew had no incentive to treat the passengers well. We had to search for a room steward. I waited on a long line the first day to change my dining from early to late as we found out our tours got back just at dinner time. After being assured all was changed to our satisfaction, I received a note on my door stating that we would be at the early dining. None of the crew seemed to know what was going on and didn't care. I really believe right from embarkation we spent most of our time waiting on very long lines. This ship was designed by accountants who figured out that you can squeeze several thousand people onto a floating vessel and attempt to sell them some overpriced crap at every turn. Feed them poorly, treat the like prisoners, overcharge them for drinks ($15 for a martini) and let them watch cheap theatrical events. You must go to the uppermost decks just to see the ocean. Never again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
Embarkation was the fastest and easiest ever! The logistic of this ship is amazing. The shows are very high quality. Don't miss Mamma Mia's show. This Cruise has 5 ports of call. Naples, Italy: close to the Amalfi coast, we ... Read More
Embarkation was the fastest and easiest ever! The logistic of this ship is amazing. The shows are very high quality. Don't miss Mamma Mia's show. This Cruise has 5 ports of call. Naples, Italy: close to the Amalfi coast, we visited Sorrento, Pompéi and Positano (on the Amalfi coast) with Fabrizio (Leasure Italy) and I would recommend him to anyone who wants to have a perfect day in this port. He modified our itinerary to avoid the heavy traffic, added a stop in Sorrento to an olive local factory after I mentioned my interest about it and brought us to a little restaurant for lunch where we were treated like family. Barcelona: A guide brought us to the cathedral designed by Gaudi, design and Colors are remarkable. We also visited one of the house he designed and we could recognize his style. The Guell park also designed by Gaudi was the best part of this day. Palma de mallorca: a good way to visit this port is to get on the public bus (Line 1) and go into Town for 1.5 euro per person. You can go up to the cathedral by bus if this is what you wish to visit. Nice Island with alot of flowers and old mills. Marseille: we had booked a tour with Viator to visit a vinery but our tour guide notified us of the obligation to cancel our tour because his vehicle was controlled by a police roadblock and they confiscated the vehicle because of the yearly vehicle Check was pass due. Since we only found out about this cancellation on the morning of the tour we were kind of forced to use the shuttle offered by RCCL at 23$/pers to go into Marseille center (8kms). In this port we took a mini train which brought us to the cathedral up in the mountain for 8euros/pers. Nice little which permited us to not have lost our whole day with this last minute cancellation. La Spezia: we went to Florence (2hrs drive) to see the David of Michael Ange and then we drove (1hr) to Pisa to climb the tour for which we had a reservation made about 1 month priori to our visit our driver was very informative but the guide in Florence was ordinary. The best part of this tour was the stop we did at Michaelangelo plans to see the city and the bridge from this point. With these ports, there isn't enough time explore the ship and do everything this ship has to offer. We did do the zip Line which was alot of fun, we did not have Time to try the flowrider but it seemed like people on it were having a great time. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
As an experienced traveller, I was looking forward to my first RC cruise. There were definitely positives, but also a few large negatives. Food - good selection, no complaints. Not excellent food but definitely good. Windjammer has ... Read More
As an experienced traveller, I was looking forward to my first RC cruise. There were definitely positives, but also a few large negatives. Food - good selection, no complaints. Not excellent food but definitely good. Windjammer has long wait times in peak hours. Dining room - slow service. Disappointed by attire on formal nights ... people wearing Jean shorts, etc were allowed in. Ship - beautiful. Well maintained, huge, very spectacular Staff - overall excellent. Friendly and informative. Only negative is the up selling that is a constant on this ship - staff are always trying to get you to spend more money. Spa - average. Massage was ok. Tried to up sell many expensive spa products after. Very pushy when I said no thanks. One lady said "if you cared about your health you would buy this" Huge corporate group - the group from omni life (over 3000 people) were awful. These people were pushy, rude, inconsiderate, entitled.. and did not even pay for their cruise!!!! It shocked me that RC catered so many activities to this group who were on a free trip instead of people spending hard earned money for their vacation. Many many people on the ship complained about this group. Hopefully royal carribean will recognize that having such a huge group on board is detrimental to the experience of the other guests ... especially this incredibly rude and disrespectful group. Overall - ports were amazing and the ship was great ... large group ruined it for many people ... would never travel with RC again if they were having a large corporate group on board. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
Shame on Royal Caribbean! This was my 3rd time on Allure, I'd done a back to back 4 years ago during spring break with a sold out ship and it was nowhere near as messed up as this cruise was. A company chartered this cruise ... Read More
Shame on Royal Caribbean! This was my 3rd time on Allure, I'd done a back to back 4 years ago during spring break with a sold out ship and it was nowhere near as messed up as this cruise was. A company chartered this cruise for over 3000 of their sales people. These people totally overwhelmed the ships crew, the ship, the open spaces - in other words EVERYTHING! It began at the port in Barcelona. Apparently there was a table with refreshments - cookies, water, lemonade. I wasn't aware of this because the purple shirts (the huge group wore purple shirts) surrounded the table like a colony of ants. My sister witnessed purple shirted people stacking cookies 5 high then biting into them like a sandwich. They also drank their water/lemonade then simply dropped the cup on the ground, which created a very wet and sticky floor. The Royal Promenade on the ship - forget about it. You couldn't get through it because of the masses. The Windjammer - Hah! Aside from being pushed and shoved while purple shirts scrambled for food, the platters were quickly emptied and the Royal Caribbean staff was very slow to replace. We found this to be the case throughout the cruise. Thirsty? Good luck. As soon as the drinks were set out on trays (if they were) they disappeared. Staff simply did not keep up with demand! I've just spent a lot of time complaining about the overwhelming rudeness of many of the purple shirts but it all falls on Royal Caribbean. The staff should have been replenishing the drinks, bowls and platters before they were emptied in the Windjammer and every other open dining area. The staff should have had more Spanish speakers since the group was South American and most of them apparently didn't speak English. The staff should have never been so frustrated with the group that they neglected to give me the level of service that I've come to expect from Royal Caribbean. How often have you walked down the hallway past room stewards who did not look at you and greet you? If you were on this cruise you would have witnessed it often - on the 6th floor at least. Obviously RCCL is only interested in money. They should have had the 3000+ people take over their own ship. If you want a lobster dinner you are welcome to order it in the main dining room for just $29.95. Are you kidding me?! I paid $35 for a fantastic 5 star dining experience at 150 Central Park. Why the heck would I pay $29.95 for a lobster dinner in the main dining room? If you're looking for a pad of paper and a pen to write a note in your stateroom - forget it. They no longer provide these. The same with the little bottles of lotion. None! Shampoo? The shower has a pump filled with shampoo/conditioner. They DO still provide 2 bars of soap - one for the sink, one for the shower. There is still a hairdryer - who knows for how long. I am thoroughly disgusted and disappointed in Royal Caribbean. I would say that I will no longer cruise with them but I'm already booked on the Serenade in February 2016. My fear is that cruise will have been chartered by a group as well, as it's nearly sold out. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
the ship was much the same as the Oasis of the seas, with one major difference, the staff were not friendly. the check in staff at the port were very friendly and were most efficient, we got through no problem. our cabin was on the aft ... Read More
the ship was much the same as the Oasis of the seas, with one major difference, the staff were not friendly. the check in staff at the port were very friendly and were most efficient, we got through no problem. our cabin was on the aft side, all the amenities that we wanted to do were at the other end of the ship. this meant we had a 10 min walk to breakfast and any show that we wanted to see. we changed tables in the dining room as our waitress was not the best at service or information on what the dishes on the menu were like or what is the recommended dish. the people we changed to were lovely, they remembered what we preferred with our meal. they remembered what bread, deserts and drink we liked. our cabin was a bit bigger than the last one, the sofa sat three people, the bathroom was bigger. our stateroom attendant was very efficient in his job, always greeted us as we left the cabin and as we returned. the entertainment shows were brilliant, the only problem is that I thought the music from the band was much louder than the singing. the aqua theatre shows were the best! with the size of the ship, you would think there would be enough room for everybody. but the windjammer was constantly overflowing, sometimes we had to queue for our breakfast. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
This ship is certainly big and there are so many beautiful features to see. The shows are brilliant particularly Mamma Mia but the Ice Games show and the Aqua Show were also brilliant. The food was a little below the quality we received ... Read More
This ship is certainly big and there are so many beautiful features to see. The shows are brilliant particularly Mamma Mia but the Ice Games show and the Aqua Show were also brilliant. The food was a little below the quality we received on the Brilliance of the Seas earlier this year and the wait staff were overly attentive, constantly begging you to give them a 10 in the post cruise survey. The Cruise Director was hardly ever seen and appeared to be relying on the activities available on the ship to entertain you (FlowRider, mini golf, rock climbing wall, etc) however if you didn't do those there was not a lot else to do. I previously enjoyed The Quest and was upset to hear that it wasn't on the Allure this summer however presumably the CD had been told that he had to have it so he scheduled it for midnight on the night after Rome and before Naples when everyone was worn out and had to be up early the next day, I would assume that given this timing that it was poorly attended. Unfortunately while we were away my husband suffered from gastro-enteritis and was confined to the cabin for 3 days. The medical staff were excellent, the room steward was marvellous and always cheerful even when cleaning the bathroom after my poorly husband. I must just mention the spa. I decided to treat myself to a day pass and was horrified that on a ship of this size the spa was located in the middle of the ship with no views and was a tiny room comprising of 2 shower rooms, 3 sauna/hot rooms and just FOUR stone beds which were permanently occupied by the same sleeping guests. This is the most sparsely equipped spa I have ever been in. Overall would I recommend this ship? Yes without hesitation. Would I recommend this cabin? No, pay the extra and get a standard one. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
Day 1 arrive at port about 10:30 after hunting for a cab from hotel (Hotel Universal)...not a usual issue but there was a parade that closed the street in front of the hotel. Fastest check in ever. Arrived in cab to have our luggage put ... Read More
Day 1 arrive at port about 10:30 after hunting for a cab from hotel (Hotel Universal)...not a usual issue but there was a parade that closed the street in front of the hotel. Fastest check in ever. Arrived in cab to have our luggage put on a dolly and rolled to the ship. Directed to line for previous cruisers, no one in line. Check in and on board in less than 10 min. Ship is large and beautiful but not as large as I expected. Dining room for MyTime is on the 3rd deck and food was excellent as was service. We didn't have the drink packages but I had points from my credit card and had wine delivered to the room....lots of wine. The staff in the dinning room exchanged the bottles that were bought through Royal (vs. the bottles we brought on board) with colder bottles of the same. Cabin was 11610, it is a ocean balcony, couch by the balcony. Bathroom is small like most cruise ships and there is lots of storage. 5 suitcases fit under the bed and there was enough shelfing for 3 people. Room attendant was very nice and kept the room spotless and tidy. Ports: Palma de Mallorca we did a wine tour and visited a Castle Marseilles we did an open top bus of the island not especially memorable Florence we went to Cinque Terre, what a long day especially having to take the train at the end. Would have preferred to take a boat back to the first stop and hiked up stairs to the bus but the bus ended up in a different place so we had to take the train. Worth it though to see Cinque Terre. Just when we thought we would be heading back to the bus they dropped us off at a shopping mall. Other than having nice bathrooms it was a waste of time. Nothing unique one can't find in the United states. Rome we have been to many times before so we took an afternoon tour to Lake Bracciano and a wine tour. This was a most pleasant tour as we were the only tour group visiting the Lake and the wine tour provided lots of wine to drink. Naples we took the tour to Capri. While my husband went up in the chair lift I shopped at some lovely stores. A must buy is Lemoncello. Bring some .50 euro's for the Toilet. We saw Mama Mia which was awesome and a soul group who were very good. Most of the time though we were just tuckered out. I know everyone says this but bring less...Even on formal night many men only wore either a dress shirt and dress pants or dress pants and a golf shirt. No one cared. Debarking, well we were supposed to get 8 am but for some reason got 9. We were at the spot to meet at 8 but we found we could just go to the gangway and our luggage was there within 10 mins. We were at our airport hotel by 9 am. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We just come back from 7 days (East Mediterranean sea) dirty ship and cabin bathroom, understaffed all the time, image a lane of 40 people to get a mediocre dinner, lunch or breakfast at windjagger, always the same food, no new variations, ... Read More
We just come back from 7 days (East Mediterranean sea) dirty ship and cabin bathroom, understaffed all the time, image a lane of 40 people to get a mediocre dinner, lunch or breakfast at windjagger, always the same food, no new variations, you will finish eating a sandwich anywhere...bc you are tired of the same stuff, disorganized staff and unprofessional. My wife get food poisoned, be aware that they never clean your table appropriately after other people finish just take away plates, glasses and silverware, never clean or they use the cloth napkin used by the costumer before to clean your table, that is nasty (checked by myself several times). They charge us double drinks at samba grill restaurant (we experienced a real churrascaria before, this is a real joke), expect a service of 3 hours!!! very slow service, every 20 minutes!!!! another serving of horrible meat, over cooked and flavorless, in the end you are tired of waiting (advise: leave your card on green all the time and refuse a particular meat that you don't like) we commented about our experience to a captain of waiter never get a feedback, nobody speak well English either, another night we went to silk dinner room: 3.5 hours of service....!!!!, slowwwwww service, they didn't find our bottles of wine....pathetic, poor food quality, we get tired of waiting without service and a drama to get seated when we reserved a specific table the day before, we went to there just to make our reservation personally, they lost one luggage so I missed a specialty restaurant dinner the first night, shore excursions desk with people focused on sell, not to inform you, they guessing...reading with you about your excursion....ridiculous, we had to go to costumer services to get some information about our excursions and when you get back from them coincidently never has a free charge restaurant available. Nice ship, terrible staff, the worse service ever received by RCL, this is my 4th cruise with them. We have cruised on another companies and never had to wrote a disappointed review. Allure of the seas no thanks.... Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
I felt that this cruise was very impersonal and that the objective appeared to be to get me to constantly spend more money, despite having an inferior service and facilities than previously. I was also very disappointed with the meals in ... Read More
I felt that this cruise was very impersonal and that the objective appeared to be to get me to constantly spend more money, despite having an inferior service and facilities than previously. I was also very disappointed with the meals in the my time dining room in comparison to those I have received in the past. There were a number of occasions I had to send some meals back. Steak incorrectly cooked and still incorrect after three attempts. Also the Caesar salad looked like it had been made for some time so quite unappetising. Also every night, I had to ask for another fork as they were all bent!! I also felt that we were rushed through. I understand the ship was busy but the tables and chairs were so close together it was difficult to get through. On a positive note on one night in the main dining room we were served by Julio, Jonathan and wine waiter Jackson. This was the only time, apart from the suite lounge, that I felt we were treated as individuals. These gentlemen are a definite asset to the ship. The restaurants that had a supplement that we attended were, however, far superior. I feel I should not have to pay a premium after already spending a substantial amount on the cruise itself. On the marseille day we decided to stay on board and avail ourselves of the ships many facilities. I was very disappointed to see that the majority were closed - even the club suite sun deck which was opened up after I complained. I decided on this cruise ship because of the very good advertising of entertainment and facilities and feel quite cheated that when I wanted to use them they were unavailable. I felt that I had a wasted day. My boys were unable to use the boogie board after being told 'it's shut' 15 mins before closing (was only open for 1 hour anyway. The first hour was for advanced surfing) After I queued for some time at the desk to enquire further as to why they had shut earlier I was told very cheekily 'yes 60 seconds earlier'! I was quite upset but not as upset when I took my boys to the teen club to see all they could do between 11-7pm was use the lounge to get out of the sun! Wow, what entertainment. Gaming machines there but things locked away and no one in sight to ask! Unable to look round any shops as all shut until late pm. Even one that had provisions such as sun cream etc was open once a week! If I needed/wanted anything I would've had to have got a taxi into town first. I really just wanted a look round but EVERYTHING was shut incl casino. If I decided to spend a week on board without getting off the ship at all I expect to be able to use the facilities that sold the cruise to me. The other issue with the suite sun deck was no telephone for me to be able to ring our room which I needed to do and no power supply that I could use. I found this amazing - what if there had been an emergency on deck 17? I was directed to deck 16, went into the solarium but the phone there was dead. I was then directed to a phone by the lift- I could hear my husband but he couldn't hear me. I eventually got through to him on my fourth phone! My next 'wasted day' was on the trip to Florence and Pisa. I can't even begin to describe what a terrible day it was, mainly due to the tour guide. She spent the majority of her time on her phone, gazing at photos of I can only assume a boyfriend she'd had an argument with, sleeping or shouting at the guests that they were not listening to her! I kid you not - was like a very bad school trip and when one guest fell all she was bothered about was signing a form and then held her board up to continue walk back to the ship, whilst he was still sat shaking. In all, a disappointing week away, albeit very expensive. Would I travel again on the Allure? Probably not. Would I travel with Royal Caribbean? Well I was planning a cruise in the future around the emirates but I suppose that depends on the answer to the numerous complaints I made onboard which actually spoilt my holiday. I have spent quite a lot of money in the past and don't want to be throwing more money-and more importantly, time - away that could be used elsewhere. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
We travelled from within Spain by car to Barceleona the day before we were due to sail. Parked in the World Trade Centre Car Park, using their cruise parking deal, and stayed in the hote located above it - the Eurostar Grand Marina. The ... Read More
We travelled from within Spain by car to Barceleona the day before we were due to sail. Parked in the World Trade Centre Car Park, using their cruise parking deal, and stayed in the hote located above it - the Eurostar Grand Marina. The hotel was good with fantastic views of Barcelona and literally just a few minutes from the cruise port, visible from the hotel. Embarcation at noon was smooth, with no queues. Of course not all 6000+ guests were boarding as several thousand had already boarded in Rome. This also meant that as some people were ashore on excursions we had no trouble having a mid-day snack at the Park Cafe. Our cabin was ready promptly at 1 o'clock. CABIN 11329 a boardwalk cabin at the very rear of the ship is fantastic. Great view of the sea and the shows at the aquatheatre. As well as the climbing wall and any other activties going on in the boardwalk area. No noise at all from neighbours and with balcony door shut tight no outside noisde either. No tea/coffee making facilites but you can overcome this by ordering room service. DINIING is a weak area. We had booked "my time dning" and had made reservations for each night but in spite of this we still had to stand in a long queue on many nights before being seated. It was the same on the Oasis of the Seas last year. Cannot understand why they can't get a handle on it. The food was the usual cruise fare. Waiter Pablo and his assistant were fantastic, as was head waiter Omer - not forgetting June at dining room reception. We had breakfast in the main dining room and also lunch on the few days it was open, which was ok but the staff were not a patch on the evening waiters. There is no egg station anywhere, so avoid the omelettes - I ordered one and it was like a piece of rubber. I noticed that the buffet area also had pre-cooked omelettes - never seen that before. The Windjammer restaurant is awful. Too small for size of ship. We did not go ashore at all the stops as we had visited the places before and here again is where the ship is lacking. On port days, in spite of the fact that lots of people stay onboard, the activities are very limited. They are only all operational on sea days, which as this cruise only had one sea day, speaks for itself. We had a wander ashore at Spezia, which is quite a pleasant little place. At Naples we left the ship early and caught the hydrofoil to Sorrento and spent the day there. It is very easy to do on your own. The boats to Sorrento are at the same port, just a couple of minutes from your cruise ship. It takes around 40 minutes to reach Sorrento. Boats for Capri leave from the same place. The shows we saw were excellent: Mama Mia, Blue Planet, Ice Games, Aqua Shows We left the ship at around 8 o'clock in the morning and again everything was totally relaxed even to the point of no taxi queue - we walked straight up to a taxi. One point about the taxis - they charge whatever is on the meter plus so much for each suitcase you have. We had one hiccup: we had packed 2 bottles of wine, as now allowed by RCL. However, the case was held back on Deck 2 for it to be opened to show it was not spirits. We were not told what had happened to the missing case. We had to make our own enquiries to try and find it. We don't object to them checking it but they could have contacted us, the cabin number is after all on the luggage label. Lesson - bring any wine in your hand luggage. We were disappointed that many guests made no effort to dress for dinner but it seems to be the norm on these mega ships. We were also amazed to see that a couple of the loft suites had fixed up a washing line on their balconies - in full view. The ship, like the Oasis, is a wonderful specimen of engineering and something to see,which was the reason for taking this cruise as my daughter wanted to see it, but it is nothing like real cruising. It would make a good resort hotel berthed somewhere, perhaps moving location every so often, rather than cruising. Another point: if anyone is looking for the "secret" balconies on decks 11 and 12 - they have disappeared and have been replaced by extra cabins. Maybe was done during recent refit. The wonderful viewing area on Deck 14 is not promoted but is easy to find - go to Deck 14 and on port side (left) go as far forward as you can and follow Sundeck sign. Make use of it before they decide to use it for more accommodation as nobody goes there!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
With a family of 8 we booked the OS and 2 Ocean View D4 rooms. Kids room service is limited,they made mac & cheese only because Mum was in the OS they told me,otherwise std pizzas,nuggets etc. there is no proper menu in the rooms.We ... Read More
With a family of 8 we booked the OS and 2 Ocean View D4 rooms. Kids room service is limited,they made mac & cheese only because Mum was in the OS they told me,otherwise std pizzas,nuggets etc. there is no proper menu in the rooms.We tried all the specialty restaurants, all had a cover charge but it was reasonable for what you could eat. American icon had an average selection of food and was commercial and packed , lacks personal touch from servers who bugged us for good reviews on our survey. Everything had an extra charge even espresso after dinner,which for the price you pay when you book RCC initially one would expect, free popcorn at the carousel at least. The casino charges for water, coffee and any kind of this was shocking ,usually Casino's have free drinks. Staff seem programmed to attend to guests in a hurried fashion in all restauranst,cafes, no personal care at all. Room attendants good, baggage handlers efficient.The spa was pleasant, however again, therapists are always trying to sell you a beauty product which can be annoying especially when you want peace and quiet during your massage.Gym is top notch. Windjammer very average selection. Coastal on deck 17, good menu for dinner but it only changed once during the 7days. Kids club, you can't just sit and colour in the art room unless you are booked in for an activity at a specific time, everything was always locked and had a sign, we are at dinner, or we are at lunch, there was never anyone around we could ask anything, no reception in kids club, only one play area for under 5's where we could hang out at anytime. Kids club needs more staff and activities for kids who are not booked in to the programme which should be available. Arcade games should be free for the kids, again you have to pay. No cinema onboard-however kids movies are screened in kids club. We attended the ice show which was good. Enjoyed watching the salsa and karaoke .Overall an average experience in comparison to Disney cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
My 18 year old daughter and I just got back from our cruise on the Allure of the Seas. The ship is big, but it never felt overwhelming to us. We loved all the interactive signs to help you get around easily. There was always something ... Read More
My 18 year old daughter and I just got back from our cruise on the Allure of the Seas. The ship is big, but it never felt overwhelming to us. We loved all the interactive signs to help you get around easily. There was always something going on and we had fun exploring the many things there were to do. We only felt the ship move once the whole week. I'm not sure if this is because of the ship, or the conditions of the water, or both, but no sea sickness at all. It felt like we were on land the whole time. Embarkation/Disembarkation: Couldn't have been any smoother. I was nervous, not knowing what to expect, but it was smooth sailing. No waiting... no line ups. We also brought our own lanyards, and had guest services punch a hole in our sea pass cards. This made life much easier on the ship. Wearing the card around your neck made it easier to access it and also not lose it. Cabin: It was actually bigger than I expected. We had room 9293, a boardwalk balcony room. It was a bit noisy at times, but it was on the other hand fun to sit out and watch all the action down below. Our room attendant was lovely and made sure our room was always spotless and a few towel animals as well. Activities: We took Italian lessons, laid by the pool in the Solarium, did karaoke, rode the carousel, window shopped, went to every show on board, danced at the parties, played at the casino one night, went on a few excursions, oh and did I mention.... ATE and ATE. All in all, such a fun time. We thoroughly enjoyed the solarium. The staff were really good at making sure only 16 and up were in there, which made it more relaxing and quiet for those of us without children. The view from here is lovely as well. The only day it was super busy, was the at sea day. Dining: We did the my time dining, as we were not sure how we would be able to eat at the same time each night, given the different times we arrived back from shore excursions and the times of our show reservations. We just wanted the flexibility of being able to eat in the dining room when it best suited our schedule. 90% of the time, this worked out perfectly well, as given the choice, we are early eaters. What we noticed was that given that the cruise has many Europeans on board... it seems to us that they like to dine later and treat it as an event and take their time. That's all well and good... the problem arises when huge numbers do this at 8 pm and their are only so many tables and people are still using those tables when you arrive at 8 pm. The only night we had to line up for a table for quite a while was the night when we could not get to the dining room until 8:30 due to our lengthy excursion that day. Many were angry and causing a fuss... feeling like their cruise was "ruined" because of the fact that they had to wait for a table (oh the drama). We took it in stride... yes we were tired and hungry and wanted to eat ASAP, but it wasn't the end of the world. We learned from this experience and always went to the dining room for an earlier time and NEVER waited for a table again, and always got to sit in the section of the most wonderful server on board Mary Lee. (If you get the chance to have her... I totally recommend it. Everyone in her section adored her. She went out of her way to make your meal special. She was always cheerful, funny and attentive. It was amazing to see that at restaurant opening, her section was full, when all other sections around were empty. That says something. Great job to her and her adorably sweet assistant server Isabela.) We never ate at the extra restaurants, as we enjoyed our experience in the main dining room and thought the idea of paying extra was silly. We ate lunch and breakfast mostly at the Windjammer. As with the main dining room, if you go early, you will get in no waiting and there are plenty of tables. If you wait til later, then you will probably have to line up. The food in the buffet, was great. Lots of choices, a little salty at times, but still good for a buffet. I am vegetarian, and although there was a little repetition because of my choice to not eat meat, I still enjoyed the food choices on board and easily found lots to eat (too much to eat as my tight jeans will tell you). We also enjoyed the lunch at the Solarium. Smaller buffet, but less crowded than the main buffet. We did Jonny Rockets for breakfast a couple of mornings. It wasn't bad... the toast was always pre made and served as cold and hard as the butter it came with, not a good combination. Drinks: We didn't get a drink package, as we are not soda drinkers and not big alcohol consumers to make it worth our while. The drinks are maybe a little over priced but we enjoyed a few glasses of Sangria (two for one in Vintages from 7-11 pm each night) and some wine with dinner most nights and that was sufficient for us. Shows: We went to Ice Games, Blue Planet, Oceanaria, Mamma Mia, Comedy show (twice), belly flop and sexiest man competitions. All were at least enjoyable. Some were better than others. I thought that the talent in these shows was top notch. I thought that the choreography and concepts of 2 shows were a little cheesy (Ice Games and Blue Planet). Excursions: We only did excursions in the 3 Italian ports. We really enjoyed them for the most part. As with anything, there were good and bad parts to each. We did the excursions through the ship, as being green to the whole cruise experience, we wanted the ease of finding our way around, as well as the guarantee that the ship would wait for us should we be late getting back. It all worked out well. The process of getting everybody to their appropriate bus was well organized and efficient by the cruise staff. Made for a good and relaxed start to each day. Negatives: We didn't like all the upselling on the ship. We get pestered all day in port by pan handler and trinket sellers, only to come back to the ship and be bombarded by photographers, those trying to get you to eat dinner in their restaurant etc. I would like to see that done away with.... cheapens the feeling of being on a luxurious ship.... staff shouldn't have to pan handle. If we want to eat in a restaurant or have our photo taken... we will seek you out... I promise. The line ups were annoying at times, but there were ways to avoid them if you didn't mind going early. The only other thing that was a surprise to me, was how hard it was to meet others (not the cruise ship or it's staff's problem per se). I thought we would meet and talk to lots of people and get to know them, but I found that most people just wanted to keep to themselves. There were so many different languages being spoken on board, which was so interesting to be around, but I think added to the isolation of groups of people. As extensive travelers, we know that no vacation is perfectly smooth. We had a great time and would recommend this cruise to anyone. After reading all the less than glowing reviews on here prior to going, I was worried. After experiencing it and seeing some people's behaviour on the ship, I realize that some people want things to be perfect and have tantrums when something little goes wrong. I saw a lady LOSE it on a staff member when her reservations for the show didn't come up when her card was scanned. I turned to my daughter and said, do you realize what would have to go wrong for me to act that way... they pretty much would have had to have thrown my daughter overboard for me to blow up at someone the way this lady was acting. In the end, the lady and husband were in the show with good seats and all was well, but seriously some people need to learn to relax and treat others with respect and kindness. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
My wife and I just completed our European cruise on August 20th, 2015. We had a great time! The Allure of the Seas is a huge ship with over 5,000 guests but it never seemed crowded. The food was the best that we have ever experienced on ... Read More
My wife and I just completed our European cruise on August 20th, 2015. We had a great time! The Allure of the Seas is a huge ship with over 5,000 guests but it never seemed crowded. The food was the best that we have ever experienced on a cruise. Now, we did eat in the dining room only 1 time and it was good, but the other nights we ate at the specialty restaurants - Giovanni's, Sabor, Chops Grill, and 150 Central Park - and they were outstanding! The ports of call were very fun as well. We did tours for Naples, Mallorca, and Marseille and were very pleased with them. We did a Royal Caribbean excursion to Florence and that was wonderful as well. This is a great way to get a taste of Europe and we will likely go and do it again. Very highly recommend. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
After eight cruises & three previous RCI cruises, we though we'd try the really big ship! Overall the facilities, cabins, pool areas, restaurants, boardwalk, promenade etc have a similar feel & style to Independence & ... Read More
After eight cruises & three previous RCI cruises, we though we'd try the really big ship! Overall the facilities, cabins, pool areas, restaurants, boardwalk, promenade etc have a similar feel & style to Independence & Liberty of the seas. This was a port intensive cruise with only one sea day (I was slightly dreading this, because of passenger numbers) but it was windy & cloudy so pretty empty around the pools. What we didn't realise was that there were two ports where embarkation & disembarkation occurred during the cruise, this meant, for the children, friendship groups changed half way through the holiday, which was a bit of a disappointment for them. There was never a feeling over being overcrowded, except for the first time EVER in my time on cruise ships there were VERY long lines for the Windjammer at lunch & breakfast & My time dining venues (American Icon restaurant deck 3). Food was a good 4* standard. The smaller venues e.g. wipeout cafe had a limited range of choice, but good quality. We didn't eat in any speciality restaurants, as the supplements were large ( e.g. Chops Grill $39 per head extra). Entertainment- in the Aquatheatre the diving show was excellent. Mamma Mia - a full two hour plus show, also very good. Flow riders, climbing walls etc were all up & running most days, with minimal queuing. Food & service was good, but you never really felt like the staff got to know you. Ports of call - Barcelona always lots to do & see. Marseille, we went into town via shuttle bus ($23 per head!), just a few cafes/restaurants & a marina. Civitaveccia, also a free shuttle bus, but again nothing much more than a few shops & cafes ( bit bit run down looking too). Other ports we have been to previously were Pisa, Rome & Pompeii & Palma, so spent most of the time around the pool. Shore excursions to these places have always been excellent on previous trips. I can't say I didn't enjoy this cruise, but there's a different atmosphere altogether. Everyone is so spread out. You can get most of the facilities e.g. flow rider/ climbing walls etc on smaller ships. So, if you want a more intimate personal feel,where the waiting staff & bar tenders know you I would opt for a smaller vessel. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
This was our family's first cruise. We went because we wanted to give our kids a sampling of Europe and a cruise was a good way to easily hit a lot of locations. Overall we were very happy with the trip and it was gave us what we ... Read More
This was our family's first cruise. We went because we wanted to give our kids a sampling of Europe and a cruise was a good way to easily hit a lot of locations. Overall we were very happy with the trip and it was gave us what we wanted. The ship was nearly perfect for us, the excursions were not. Our worst experience with the ship itself was just getting on board. We hadn't even boarded when we were stopped by a pushy representative of Chops Grille who made us feel uncomfortable and pressured. If this had been my second cruise, and not my first, I just would have ignored him. Now I know. After that bad start, I was worried about what we signed up for, but everyone on the ship after that was wonderful. We stayed in two interior rooms. They were in good condition, except for the mattresses which felt a little saggy. The staff kept things very clean and Leo our stateroom attendant was very helpful. We spent as much time as we could off the ship touring Europe during the day. After that we'd eat dinner on the ship and then our teenage boys would play soccer, mini-golf, ping-pong or other games. This was exactly what we had hoped for. We were able to see Europe during the day, but then allow the kids to run around in the evening. They got to play soccer/football with kids from at least four continents. That alone was a great experience for them. The food on the ship is a mixed bag and varies greatly on the location. The Windjammer has a fair amount of selection, is casual, and has a some great views. Just don't expect anything much above cafeteria food. We also ate at Johnny Rockets and Giovanni's - both were fine, but nothing special. The experience at the American Icon dining room was very nearly perfect each time we dined. If I could do one thing differently on the boat I would have eaten there every night. The food was at least great and sometimes spectacular. The service from Dennis and Mickey was the best I'd ever had in any restaurant. We looked forward to dinner there at the end of each day. While the ship was a good experience, the shore excursions were a mixed bag. Majorca - We did our own thing here and walked to the a beach, Cala Major. It is the first beach to the west of the port. A long but do-able walk, if you don't mind walking. It has a bathroom where you can change, but it can get a bit rank as the day goes on so go early. After that we took a cab to Bellver Castle, then walked back down to town and took a cab to the cathedral. All of the sites were interesting and we had a good time on our self-made excursion. Marseille - We took the RC excursion to Cassis. It took us up some spectacular cliffs that offered amazing views of the town. We then drove to a drop-off point and took a smaller train/shuttle into town. The guide provided some interesting info while on the bus, but we were on our own in the town. It is pleasant, but there isn't much to do there except to stroll around and look for something to snack on. The tour left at an odd time, just after noon when the restaurants opened. Since you won't have time to get a full lunch, grab some bread and cheese to enjoy while you admire the view. La Spezia/Florence - We took an RC excursion to Florence. I wish the ship stopped in Livorno because it is about 30 minutes closer to Florence and Pisa. It is at least a 90 minute ride to Florence from La Spezia. Once in Florence we were on the Worst Tour Ever. The guide knew she was horrible and told us where to meet up in case we wanted to drop out - which we did. We had a great time going around Florence on our own, but the tour is worthless. Just take the transfer if you are going to Florence. If you go on your own, my recommendation is after you've seen the Duomo walk across Ponte Vecchio and then head east on the south bank of the Arno. You'll eventually get to a large tower at Piazza Guiseppe Poggi. Take the stairs behind it and climb all the way to the top to Piazzale Michelangelo. You'll be out of breath but rewarded with a wonderful view of Florence. Then come back down and tour Santa Croce - which is interesting, beautiful, and far less crowded than the Duomo. Rome - we booked a private tour in Rome and it was our best tour experience on the trip. Also the most affordable. I wish we had done private tours elsewhere too. Naples - We did the RC excursion to Sorrento and Pompeii. The guide here was much better than the one in Florence. I enjoyed the stop we had at a farm in Sorrento where we learned about cheese making and had a wonderful snack. Unfortunately, we only had an hour in Sorrento to eat lunch. Having been to Sorrento before, this was a painfully short amount of time to have there. I suggest getting some food on the go rather than sitting down so that you can enjoy as much of the town as possible. The tour of Pompeii was well done, although it also felt a little too short. In all of the ports there were better, more affordable options for transportation and excursions than what RC offered. For example I think the transfer to and from Marseilles was going to cost about $30 a person, but we took taxis instead that did the round trip for less than $30 for all four of us. The one exception might be La Spezia since it is so far out of the way and not oriented for tourists like Livorno. The last night we were on the ship we went through some rough seas. The information screen on TV said we were experiencing winds over 105 kph - a little under hurricane strength. The ship was rocking, but I have to commend the crew and designers of the ship because I was shocked at how relatively stable it was given the conditions. We were simply able to sleep our way through it. We took the RC airport transfer in Barcelona. This worked well, but there were also many cabs lined up as we disembarked that could have been options (if your luggage will all fit in a cab). Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Now that I'm back home I can describe this as a comedy of errors, but at the time it felt like an utter fiasco. Our adventures begin at the Port of Barcelona, which really was about the worst port experience imaginable. We were met ... Read More
Now that I'm back home I can describe this as a comedy of errors, but at the time it felt like an utter fiasco. Our adventures begin at the Port of Barcelona, which really was about the worst port experience imaginable. We were met at the airport by delightful (truly, they were cool) representatives of Royal Caribbean (RCI) who conveyed us to the port. From there, God help us. We were supposed to board at Teminal C. Without us or our driver realizing it, terminal C had been closed (no explanation) and so we were brought back to terminal B. Getting off the bus we noticed our bags were still under the (open) bus compartment. My husband mentioned this to the driver who assured us that our bags would be put on the boat for us. This conversation actually happened twice as my husband was dubious. Turns out he was right. We met our bags again three days later in Marseilles. Then the security agent dumps (literally dumps) out the tray containing my son's cell phone, and almost crashes it to the floor in her carelessness. Finally, because terminal C was closed, our boarding took almost an hour from the time we reached the desk because nobody could manage to print, create, or find our sea pass cards. When we got them two of the six were not properly magnetized. And as I said, we found later that night, quite underway on our trip, that we had NONE of our family's bags. We're a family of five, including two teen boys and a nine year old. We were given four tee shirts, a handful of toothbrushes and told if we needed more to ask. When we went back to attempt to procure contact lens cases and solution, we were told that money would be deposited (which turned out to be $200 for the loss of three bags and to take care of FIVE PEOPLE) in our onboard account only after our bags had been gone for 24 hours. We had a cruddy first night on board. Eventually, after a very long encounter with Guest Services, we managed to procure contact lens solution, a case, and some excuse for something for me to sleep in. The next day I spent the entire $200 deposited in our account in the overpriced specialty shops for something to wear to fancy dinner (although they did loan me a skirt, which turned out to be a nice one) and the guys were given tuxedoes from the rental place. At least I have awesome pictures of my men in tuxes. Nothing could be offered for the nine year old, so he wore shorts to fancy dinner. They also washed whatever laundry we could manage to scrape together out of what we had in our carry on bags. However, we almost didn't make it to fancy dinner because the laundry was late being delivered back to us, despite being told it would be delivered by 5:00 "at the latest." The laundry contained some rather essential items, like the nine year old's shorts. I don't want to just complain, so let me tell you some things that went right (aside from getting pictures of my boys in tuxes.) The ship is HUGE and has a lovely central park area for quiet walks or café style dining. My youngest took a super cup-cake decorating class on board. The food was unfailingly delicious (though for a cruise ship menu it was somewhat uninspired) and the staff was (with a few exceptions in the luggage negotiation department) unfailingly helpful and friendly. If you shop (I don't but one member of our party does) the shopping was lacking. This was my third RCI cruise and the first that I didn't thoroughly enjoy, but on the whole it was a typical RCI experience. Many attempts to separate you from a dollar/Euro, but mostly those can be avoided if you are watching money. If you like RCI and can keep your bags about you, then you likely will enjoy the cruise. Adventures continued on our return to the Port of Barcelona. We had a debarkation tour to Monteserrat that was cancelled without notifying us. We *think* we were put on the city tour instead, again without consultation, and that was kind of fine by us. We had hoped for the city tour (cheaper!) but had been told it was full. Unfortunately, the city tour left earlier than our meeting time for the tour we thought we were taking, so we just happened to stumble into the right place (yes, we had also been assigned a different meeting place for our tour) at a few minutes past when the previous tour left (thanks to directions from some helpful crew members who talk to one another on walkie-talkies to keep folks moving along in the right direction). More walkie-talkies and they held the bus, and we debarked quickly since we had our luggage with us, no longer trusting the cruise line with our bags. Sorry to all the fellow travelers who were held up by our late appearance; they must think we're slackers. Excursions (the good, the bad and the ugly): We took the Palma City Sites tour and it was awful. Guide did not speak English well and often made little sense. We were told (ON OUR TICKETS) to dress in a way that we could have access to the religious sites, but were not allowed to go into any sites on our tour except the bull ring (which is surprisingly cool). Part of our party took the Palma Beach transfer and loved it. Great beach, a little city tour on the way. We took the Luberon and Lavender tour and loved that. Great guide, beautiful scenery and not too crowded during high season. Lavender part of the tour is clearly meant to encourage spending money, but the products were quality, so I did buy a little. Part of our party took the Aix-En-Province tour and it was the highlight of her trip. Another great tour. Panoramic Pisa was a great tour including the town as well as the tower. The guide was a stitch, seemed at first like he was on dope but warmed up once we got close to the tower and led a solid tour. Part of our party took the Tuscan Wine Tasting tour and hated it. The farmhouse where the wine tasting was done was dirty and the guide was not very helpful. Huge disappointment. All of us took the Imperial Rome tour, which was incredible, even though the heat was brutal. However, this tour was labeled strenuous and for once they weren't joking. My husband is a master instructor in taekwondo and he was complaining about how rough it was. Very hot and a lot of walking. Sites were amazing though. Trevi fountain was too crowded to be enjoyable but the rest was awesome. Naples, the port city itself, was filthy and nobody felt safe there. Don't go ashore on your own, not worth it. We took the Sorrento and Pompeii tour with a cheese making demonstration at a charming farm house. Loved the farmhouse and Pompeii (despite another long trudge through excessive heat, but not as long as Rome) but Sorrento was not much to see. If you are into woodworking, though, Sorrento is very cool. Several sales pitches on this tour made us feel like marketing targets. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
We stayed the first night in Barcelona and that was great from strolling on the La Ramblas to dining under the stars at one of the many beach restaurants, it was so relaxing and prepared us for the next day ready for embarkation. ... Read More
We stayed the first night in Barcelona and that was great from strolling on the La Ramblas to dining under the stars at one of the many beach restaurants, it was so relaxing and prepared us for the next day ready for embarkation. Embarkation to the ship was plain sailing ( excuse the pun ) it was smooth and quick,staying in Barcelona the previous night helped with an early check in. As soon as we were on board we were met with different members of the crew trying to get us to purchase drinks packages and photographers trying get us to pose. we did get the drinks package for the fours adult and the soft drinks package for my Grandchildren, all teenagers. We then stood back and admired the magnificence of this HUGE vessel.It truly is a very well designed and exciting ship to be on. We then headed for lunch on the Windjammer deck to encounter our first queue ( line ) that surprised me owing to the fact we boarded early,about 11.30. The food was ok but not great, it was not displayed as well as I have seen on the other ships I have been on, i.e. Celebrity Reflection .We then explored the ship, grown ups went one way and the Grandchildren the another way. It is a very good ship. We relaxed on deck 15 and christened our drink package with a couple of cocktails and a couple of cold beers. We had a balcony suite on deck 7 which was very clean and well appointed. My Daughter and G H also had the Balcony suite next to ours and we had two ocean view rooms for the grandchildren all beside each other,very convenient. The shows were excellent in the main theatre as were the shows in the Aqua theatre and the ice rink. Up to now good. The main ding room we had was in the Silk Restaurant very nice and the staff were very pleasant but the menus left a bit to be desired, and the photographers were at times a pain in the neck even at the tables. Our first gripe came when we went as a family group on a trip to Marsailles. Although the harbour there is good to see with all the different yachts it is not the safest place to be. We got the bus back to the ship but my three grandsons wanted to stay near the harbour for a wee while longer.They are all teenagers that were above the legal age to on shore unescorted, we gave them extra cash for a cab back to the ship. On the way back to the ship they were held up at knifepoint and all their possessions stolen including their passports. The lads went to guest services to report the mugging but the ship officers failed to let us know what had happened even when the lads were escorted back off the ship and taken to the police station on the Port to file a report. I know it is not the RCLL who caused the initial problem, but what they should have done was informed the parents and grandparents what they were doing then have the decency to follow it up with at least a phone call to our rooms or a visit from the so called Guest services who incidentally knew all about the incident. but we got nothing even to this day we have not heard from them. Shame on them for a lack of duty of care. I still feel angry about their attitude. Tipping. I paid for this cruise for all of my family and paid for the gratuities up front Which was approximately £670 GBP or $ 1050 dollars or 985 Euros all most the price of a cruise, with the tips I always leave for the Room Attendant and Dining staff it would have been. But this ships policy appears to be to extract every penny they can from their guests. The photographs are another issue. The 10 x 8 are about $23 dollars and the 7 x 5 are $17 dollars of which I had some of each size. When I went to pay for them I was charged the higher price for all of them. When I challenged this I was told that all of the pictures were printed on the same size sheets, but the smaller pictures were fringed with tiny pictures of the ship which I would not put in a frame. I told them it was nothing more than a money grabbing con. But because the pictures were very good and they were a good moment with all of my family I purchased them. I said to my wife don,t be surprised if when disembarking from the ship someone grabs us by the ankle and lifts us in the air and shakes us to make sure we are skint. Will I go back on the Allure I don,t think so which is shame really because it is a truly great ship and very enjoyable being on it. I have filled in the questionair they sent to me highlighting my points and like before they have just ignored us. As I have said it is a shame that they feel that a group of 8 people can be just ignored. I feel a wee bit gutted as I write this after me telling my family how great it is to cruise. After everything I have heard about the Royal Caribbean I probably wont use them again. My first and last. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Having heard so much from family ad friends, we got a good deal and decided to have a shot at this cruising experience. The ship is huge! With 5000 people on board, its amazing how good the dining staff are and the individual are we ... Read More
Having heard so much from family ad friends, we got a good deal and decided to have a shot at this cruising experience. The ship is huge! With 5000 people on board, its amazing how good the dining staff are and the individual are we received with our request for vegetarian meals. The kids could decide which starter to have- the waiter brought us both! The same with dessert! The service made the restaurant equal to any Michelin starred eaterie in London. The variety of things to do meant you were never bored - in fact I resented having to go on shore as that meant early starts and missing the peace of the Solarium! As a first time cruiser, I would say the following: 1. Formal means ' dress nice' - you don't have to take a tux! 2. Don't expect to see the ports in depth - its more of a taster for a longer shore holiday n the future 3. If you haven't got a package for it, check the prices! A couple of things that I found annoying on this 'all inclusive' trip - not all restaurants are included. We booked the Italian, realised they could only offer a limited menu for us as vegetarians , for the pleasure of which we would be paying $25 PLUS 18% gratuity PLUS 10% tax = $32 per head plus drinks - an expensive pasta indeed! I bought the Royal Replenish drinks package, and ended up complaining to the F&B department - the price was $19 per day on my invoice, but then they add the inevitable 18% gratuity and 10% tax the end price ended up almost a third higher than I had been told. To add insult to injury, we couldn't use the pack at Starbucks, and fresh juice was only available at Park Cafe, The Vitality bar in the Fitness area, and the Windjammer - all only in the daytime. Fancy teas only at dinner time and premium teas and coffees only in the Main cafe on Promenade deck. Not in room service or other bars! On the second day my daughter was tasting my punch and I got told very rudely by the barman that it was 'illegal' to allow people other than the holder of the drinks package to have a drink - even a taste!! I politely told him what I thought of his customer service skills! Good cruise, but watch out for the hidden extras - in Europe we see an all in price, but the ship uses its American roots in how it advertises prices. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
De luxe ship , huge , full of activities , entertainment . Reasturants , theaters , no shaking , no nausea or sea sickness, very clean , good decoration , excellent service team. Some luxury food was absent such as crabs and lobster . I ... Read More
De luxe ship , huge , full of activities , entertainment . Reasturants , theaters , no shaking , no nausea or sea sickness, very clean , good decoration , excellent service team. Some luxury food was absent such as crabs and lobster . I saw much guests wearin casual in the formal nights .. Shore exursions was too expensive which was not value to the money. Gym and fitness facilities was very good . There was an american mobile network on th the ship which helped me too much because i had got a roaminc service for the internent on my cell phone and it was working good and free. Embarkation service was good and fast. I t was not good for me to pay for a child less than 2 years such as any one paid for an adult guest , although th child has no free baby food and he cost too much in the nursery. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
This was our second cruise (first on RCCL). We were pleased with our cabins (11633 and 11631). We had the partition removed from the balcony so it was like connecting rooms. We had Central Park Balcony - but it was so hot you ... Read More
This was our second cruise (first on RCCL). We were pleased with our cabins (11633 and 11631). We had the partition removed from the balcony so it was like connecting rooms. We had Central Park Balcony - but it was so hot you couldn't use the balcony most days. Next time, we'll splurge and get an ocean view so we can get more of a breeze. Fun Things: The entertainment was pretty good (better than we had on our Celebrity Cruise). Loved Mamma Mia! Since we were gone everyday we didn't experience the Flow Rider, pool, putt-putt etc. but they looked fun. Tours: We booked this cruise as a floating hotel since we had tours scheduled every day we were in port. Two of our excursions were through the ship, the others were privately booked. The ship excursions were uncomfortable - the motorcoaches had NO leg room. It was irritating to continually wait for others in the group who couldn't get back to the meeting spot on time. The tour guides were ok - but nothing to get excited about. On the other hand, the private tours which were through RomeinLimo and Barcelona Day Tours were awesome! Problems: The only minor difficulty we had on the ship was that you couldn't call My Time Dining to adjust your schedule - endless phone loop repeating same message - and you had to go downstairs to make changes in person. Also, the elevators were very slow and strange - 3 empty ones would pass you by and then one with 10 people would stop. It seemed like there was always a long line at Customer Service - they could use more staff in that area. Food: We ate breakfast everyday in Windjammer and it was fine. I like iced tea and they would make it for me each day even though it wasn't automatically available. We ate dinner each night in the American Icon dining room and loved it - food was fine and the wait staff was excellent. We didn't try any specialty restaurants. We did grab lemonade and a cookie each afternoon when we returned from shore at Café Promenade and it was good. Not impressed with the Hot Dog Stand or the Ice Cream Store (single scoop cost $3.20). Starbucks was just what you'd expect from a Starbucks but a little more expensive than normal). Overall, a great vacation. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
I have been cruising since 1980 with several cruise lines. This is my third cruise with Royal Caribbean. I knew going into this cruise that with Royal Caribbean you expect a good price, and they will do the up sell with you to spend as ... Read More
I have been cruising since 1980 with several cruise lines. This is my third cruise with Royal Caribbean. I knew going into this cruise that with Royal Caribbean you expect a good price, and they will do the up sell with you to spend as much money when you get on board. That is just the nature of cruise lines in this category. If you want to spend more on a luxury line, you will have less up sell and more things provided free of charge. That said, I tend to read all these reviews carefully, and yes, it is true. The ship has over 6,000 passengers and most of the time it doesn't feel crowded. The caveat to that is that on this particular cruise there is only one day at sea, so most days people are on land and away from the ship. The only times there were crowd problems is at dinner and breakfast in the windjammer. The ship definitely has a New York theme to it with Central Park, the Coney Island type Boardwalk, etc. The positives on this cruise was that with embarkations in both Barcelona and Rome, and using two terminals for embarking and disembarking, there were no mob scenes getting on and off the ship. Very well done, Royal Caribbean. Even getting off and on the ship in port was fairly easy with multiple gangways. I will also give Royal Caribbean major kudos for letting us disembark at 9AM rather than early, early. So many cruise lines seem to love you then come disembarkation day, they want you off and out of there before sunrise. Being able to get a good night's sleep and being able to stay in the cabin for a while was very nice. The service was better than I had expected and was a pleasant surprise. The dining room staff was great and the cabin steward couldn't have been better. The food was pretty good, although if you wanted a good steak or lobster, that was an extra charge. The one mistake we made was with the anytime dining program. One night we failed to make reservations and waited about 40 minutes and hadn't even gotten close to the hostess stand. The staff was offering 20% off in the specialty restaurants, but you are still looking at an extra charge just to eat dinner. The windjammer was just as jammed as the restaurant, so that wasn't an option either. From then on we made sure we had a reservation before showing up in the main dining room. They didn't answer the phone for reservations after 4PM, which was kind of odd though. You'd think they would take calls up until at least the time they open. The windjammer buffet had a very nice selection of foods which was very impressive. I think almost anyone could find something they like there. There are a few things that remind you that this is Royal Caribbean though. There were voicemails left on our cabin phone multiple days reminding us there there is an art auction (we stopped bothering to check messages after that), there was the bingo that was always promoted, and there was the constant selling of the specialty restaurants. There were people who would go around the ship offering to show you the menus. We made the mistake of looking at the menu, then got the hard sell to make a reservation right now. We learned to say "no" politely like the multiple taxi offers you get when you get off the ship in Naples. They did do something unique in that when the windjammer got full, they would play recorded announcements telling people not to linger and set up a queue where people would wait to get in. We usually went there at odd times, so we didn't get caught by that, but it would be annoying I would think to have to stand in line and wait to get in. I know this might be picky, but there was a dispenser with generic shampoo in the shower, but no conditioner. There was only one spot in the cabin that had an outlet, so nothing could be plugged in bedside. The a/c in the room worked fine. The TV was nice with the ability to check your account and view other services. The entertainment was good, not exceptional. The ice show was surprisingly entertaining. The Mama Mia show was good, but I don't think it was Broadway quality. The Blue Planet had some good special effects, but the attempt at cirque du soleil type production failed badly. Ocean Aria was nice and unique. The bottom line is that this is a mass market ship on a mass market line. They make a lot of money from people once they are on board and that is their model. You just have to have that mindset that occasionally there will be crowds, you will be known more by your cabin number than name, and that there will be sales pitches such as 50% off beer in the same venue right before bingo starts, etc. If you like that popcorn, that's an extra charge. Want ice cream, extra charge. Cotton Candy, extra charge. The destinations make the trip in this case, and this is a reasonably priced way to travel in comfort. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
If you're looking for a modern ship with every amenity imaginable look no further. Royal Caribbean certainly outdid themselves with the Oasis class of ships. A ship this size begs the question, is it possible for a ship to be too big? ... Read More
If you're looking for a modern ship with every amenity imaginable look no further. Royal Caribbean certainly outdid themselves with the Oasis class of ships. A ship this size begs the question, is it possible for a ship to be too big? That question depends on what you're looking for. If you want a family feel where you bump into the cruise director or other key staff members each day then maybe it is a little big. If you want a variety of entertainment, dining and leisure experiences this ship has all you can imagine. This ship, and the other two Oasis class ships for that matter, was created with the Caribbean in mind. We traveled on this ship through the Mediterranean and it was too much ship for that experience. Mediterranean cruises and mid-sizes ships would likely go more hand in hand. There were so many activities and dining experiences we wanted to try but didn't have time because the shore excursions were all day activities as you can imagine. If you're booking a Caribbean cruise and the any Oasis class ship is an option, book it and you won't regret it. Caribbean cruises are ideal for being able to enjoy all of the amenities of the ship and you won't be disappointed with all the Allure of the Seas has to offer. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
To give you an idea of my experience in Cruising I've been on 17 ships (with a mixture of Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, P&O, Princess, Carnival, Norwegian Cruise Line & Thomson) and this was by far the best for us. We had ... Read More
To give you an idea of my experience in Cruising I've been on 17 ships (with a mixture of Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, P&O, Princess, Carnival, Norwegian Cruise Line & Thomson) and this was by far the best for us. We had Inside cabin 7193 which was for 3 of us (2 adults & a 5 yr old) - our room attendant was Blanka who couldn't of worked harder & made our stay all the more plesant with her friendly attitude. My son didn't do the kids clubs as we both work full time so like to spend time with him so much of our time was spent around the splash park... it doesn't get increible busy at this area so its best to get their early for the best sunbeds but for the whole duration we had no problems & was arriving between 8am-10am. Spotlessly clean. The highlight for me was the Carousel on the boardwalk... it was free of charge & you could go on as many times as you wished. Loved the Dreamworks characters... my son now thinks him & Mort from Madagascar are best friends. They made a real fuss of children & allowed you to take your own photos. Dreamworks parade is a must for everyone to watch!! Entertainment blew me away... loved Oceanaria & the Dreamworks at the Aquatheatre. But I also watched Dirty dancing on the cinema screen at the Aqua Theatre & my husband took in Avengers... got to read the newsletter t make sure you don't miss anything as their is so much on. We spent most of our time in the Windjammer (for ease) but also ate in the main dining room, Americon Icon at breakfast, Dreamworks character breakfast, room service, Johnny Rockets & Central Park cafe for the salad lunches. I can't say a bad word about any of it. Considering the amount of people onboard we never had any problems with disembarkation but we were organised & on the early starts chose room service for ease. If your a family with small chidren & go like we did in the middle of a heat wave... I'd say spend the day in La Spezia not Florence as their's a mini train for 5 euros that takes 35 minutes then you can enjoy Rome the next day from Civetcchia. Ignoring everyone who told me not to go into Naples we ventured in & we enjoyed it. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
My wife, daughter and I embarked on this western med cruise out of Barcelona and over all we had a fantastic time. There were some things that we really didn't like about the ship though and hopefully this information can help you ... Read More
My wife, daughter and I embarked on this western med cruise out of Barcelona and over all we had a fantastic time. There were some things that we really didn't like about the ship though and hopefully this information can help you decide if this cruise and ship are for you. The ship: The ship is just as big as you've read. Even though it is huge and the ship was full it never seemed crowded most of the time. Overall the ship is well designed and easy to navigate. The ship is very clean, I didn't find any dirty common areas or bathrooms anywhere on the ship. Our stateroom was a perfect fit for the 3 of us (balcony stateroom inside above the boardwalk), it was clean and we'll cared for like the rest of the ship. The itinerary is fantastic with only one day at sea. Embarkation was a breeze, the fastest I've ever gotten on a ship. Dining: The food in the main dining room is average on a good night, and sub par most of the time. Portion sizes are disgraceful. My wife ordered cheese ravioli one night as her main and she received 4 ravioli, that's it. Just about every night after dinner we had to find something else to eat and by the 4th night I didn't want to go there anymore. The kitchen was terribly slow and it took a full 2 hours to complete dinner every night. Our server Ramil, was fantastic along with his assistant Edgar. They worked as hard as anyone I have seen in the service industry but the food, well you know. Dispute their hard work, it felt like torture in the end. The windjammer we basically only had breakfast in and it was ok. Typical breakfast stuff. Park cafe was pretty good. Those roast beef sandwiches that everyone raves about... Meh. If your from Iowa or some other place with zero sandwich game then you'll be blown away. But people who don't know any better eat subway and like it. We decided not to eat at any of the pay restaurants on board since we payed a lot of money to go to Europe for this cruise in the first place so we took advantage of what was included in the price and if you've read so far you can probably tell we we're disappointed. Apart from average quality mostly, the hours some of the places kept were not to the advantage of the guest. For example, the hot dog place and park cafe were open 10a-6p daily. Basically, while the ship is in port and more then half of the guests were off of the ship. Meanwhile, while the boardwalk is packed at 8pm after dinner the eateries are closed. Clearly a strategy to mitigate loss and steer guests to pay restaurants. On board activities: A ton of stuff to do... If you don't want to get off of the ship while your in port in Europe. Most activities are during the day while most guests are off of the ship with no evening sessions offered. Zip line open from 4p-7p. 3 hours a day, a joke. Flow rider 11-4p. Lol. Stupid dance parties at night and you could have your picture taken by a car with captain Johnny or something on another night... What ever. Kids club: They have one. It's free until 10pm, after that it's like 7$ an hour. Wifi: They have that too! And it's fast! And it will only cost you over 100$ for one device for the week. There is almost zero overhead and almost no cost to maintain this network with the exception of the cost of the equipment when it was purchased, to ask this much is shameful. Excursions: Take them or be prepared to hire a cab at the pier. Where this monster docks, nothing is within walking distance except in la spezia. DO NOT take the wine tasting in Tuscany excursion. They take you to a small winery and you have what amounts to about a glass of wine. Not air conditioned, no cold water to drink. Go to piza, take the train yourself it was a 10 euro cab ride to the train station and 30 euro round trip for 3 of us via the train. Piza is totally walkable if your reasonably fit and you allow yourself a little time. Train ride is a little over an hour each way. Entertainment: The water show on the back of the ship is good. Blue planet is stupid. And ice games was a pleasant surprise. Just my opinion. Blue planet was trying to be a cirque type show... I think. It failed hard. Ice games was funny. Overall I wouldn't discourage anyone from taking this cruise, the ports are the real stars here and the ship is a way of getting you there after all. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
I travelled with a family of 6, using 3 staterooms. After embarking and waiting a few hours all the luggage had arrived except mine. I didn't bother at the time as I expected it would eventually turn up. However just after 10pm, our ... Read More
I travelled with a family of 6, using 3 staterooms. After embarking and waiting a few hours all the luggage had arrived except mine. I didn't bother at the time as I expected it would eventually turn up. However just after 10pm, our stateroom attendant spotted me walking along the corridor and shouted rather loudly that my suitcase was being held due to the alcohol I had inside. I found this to be rather strange as I am tee total and certainly didn't bring any alcohol with me. Down to deck 2 I go. I am met by a lady wearing a suit and two rather large security guards in uniform who look rather menacing. I see my suitcase there and someone has stuck a large sticker with a picture of a whisky bottle on to my suitcase. I point out my suitcase. The lady says it is not RC policy to allow alcohol on board and I need to let the security men search my case and remove it. I tell her they are mistaken and there is no alcohol inside. She replies that it has been seen on the X_ray. I repeat that they are mistaken and ask if they can please remove the sticker and give me back my suitcase. She says I can only get my suitcase once the security guards have searched it so I smile and tell them to go ahead. After rummaging around in my case and spoiling my neatly folded clothes, the two guards look at each other blankly. I ask if they are having any luck. Obviously there was no alcohol there. I did try to tell them that. The first guy looks at me and says " OK, you are free to go ". " Oh no I say, it's not OK. It's pretty far from OK, and I don't need your permission to go. I then ask who put the sticker on my case cos I want that person to take it off again. I also ask why they were so sure that there was alcohol inside and how they could make such a mistake. But it's no use asking as they all go silent on me. No one apologises. I tell them that all they have done is embarrass me but the lady tells me it's alright now and asks me not to make a fuss. I tell her to get her boss straight away but she doesn't. I end up taking my case away and carrying it up to my stateroom. Not a great start to the cruise. The ship is too crowded. I was on the Allure a few years back and it wasn't as crowded then. Some additional staterooms have been added at the expense of public venues. Also, in the solarium, where are the cabanas ? . And what about making you queue for the Windjammer ? I have never on any cruise had to queue to get into the buffet, this was a first. And when you eventually got in, there were lots of free tables. This scheme isn't working RC. You should let us go into the buffet and find our own table. If it's too busy we can go elsewhere. Drinks were way too expensive. A total rip off. A bottle of Bud cost nearly $9. Also, when I pay a cover charge to get into a specialty restaurant ( Chops was $40 ) I don't expect to see further prices on the menu. A porterhouse steak cost me another $20. This meant I paid $60 just to get a steak. I know restaurants at home that are much cheaper than that. I also made the mistake of taking one of their overpriced shore excursions. Problem was, I didn't get to see the place we went to visit. They took $36 per person for a visit to Pompeii. For six of us this came to $216. I found out on the bus there that this didn't include admission to the site. If we had went by train it would have cost 5 Euros return. On the way there the guide on the bus told us we had two hours on our own before we had to go back to the bus. When we got there the queue for tickets was about 3 hours long . As a result I stood in a queue for 2 hours trying to buy tickets instead of getting to see Pompeii. I assumed RC would refund my money. I was wrong. They offered me a 30% discount . They said their tour only promised to take me to the gates of Pompeii. They said they could not know for sure that I wanted to go inside. Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous ? When I buy a $36 excursion to Pompeii I think it is pretty obvious that I may want to go inside. I told them was not acceptable and upon return I have written to ask for a full refund. If I don't get it then RC may have just lost a customer. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Allure of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.4
Dining 5.0 4.1
Entertainment 5.0 4.5
Public Rooms 5.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.3
Family 5.0 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 4.0
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 5.0 3.9

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