11 Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas Cruise Reviews for Holiday Cruises to Caribbean - Western

Let me first say that we have cruised out of every cruise port in Florida on alomost every cruise line and I have to say that the embarkation from Port Everglades on this ship was one of the smoothest we have ever encountered. That does ... Read More
Let me first say that we have cruised out of every cruise port in Florida on alomost every cruise line and I have to say that the embarkation from Port Everglades on this ship was one of the smoothest we have ever encountered. That does not mean that there were not lines inside the terminal, but that things flowed quickly and efficiently. The staggered boarding times probably helped with this process. Also, with boarding after 2pm (as we did) our staterooms were all ready and our bags quickly arrived and put in our cabin by our cabin steward while we explored the ship and searched out the best places to grab a drink and a snack. I would suggest ignoring the urge to be one of the first to board the ship and either enjoy Fort Lauderdale in the morning or start your journey from your home distination a little later in the morning (in our case about a 3 hour drive). As a family traveling with two boys (18 & 9) we found that this ship provided lots of options for everyone. Although it is a large ship with lots of passengers, other than dining in the Windjammer buffet and the New Years party on the Royal Promenade, things were not what I would call "overly crowded". On the first couple of sea days the pool decks were near capacity with sunbathers but chairs were still available. There were some lines at the Flowrider, Zipline and on the Sports Court, but about what you would expect on any other cruise line. The "Neighborhoods" provided lots of different options during the day. - Decks 15 & 16 - sun, pools and sports - Royal Promenade - a a nice climate controlled place to people watch, shop, get a drink or a snack. There are a number of street parties that take place here in addition to the big New Year's Party that was on our sailing. - Boardwalk - a place where you feel the breeze and hear the waves and where you can to watch people on the rock climbing walls, watch the big screens (which had a lot of football games during college football bowl week and NFL playoffs) or snacks and drinks at Ritas or Johnny Rockets. It seemed to me that the surcharge kept people out of Rita's unless they were going there for food, although it was a nice place to watch all of the activities on the Boardwalk. Except for when events were going on at the Aqua Theatre (football or show) this was a quite place with lots of families with smaller children. - Central Park - a very nice, quiet location with a couple of boutiques and dining locations. During the day, the Park Cafe was a good location for a snack. Also a nice place to sit and read a book. The park like atmosphere is pretty unique to a cruise ship. Although open the the elements if it is raining the spot is pretty quiet during the day and then a bustling dining hotspot at night. - Solarium - a nice covered adult only area with its own pool, jacuzzis, bar and bistro. While this adult only ahea usually feels cramped on most ships, We did not feel that way on this ship. The area covered multiple decks and had several more different sections if you wanted away from most people. The upper area also became a dance club late in the evening on a couple of nights. Overall, we felt there was something for everyone. For example, out kids never saw Central Park until we took them for dnner there one night. We finally broke down on the last day and told them about the awesome prime beef sandwich that they have offer during the day. Our cabins were on deck 7. We found this as very convenient for everything except going to the pool and sports decks. Since we prefer to use the stairs instead of the congestion of the elevators most things are a short up or down from deck 7. - down 1 deck to to the Boardwalk - up 1 deck to Central Park - down 2 decks to the Royal Promenade - down 2 decks to dining in Adagio (My Time Dining Option) - down 3 decks to the Amber Theatre or Ice Theatre - down 3 decks to the Casino The only times that we utilized the elevators were trips up to decks 14-15. Let me just mention the dining time options. All but two of our dinner meals were in the main dining room, We chose the "My Time" option and set the reservations prior to departure according to our expected ports or entertainment options. The time varied each night but each night we started in the Adagio deck 5. When we ate early (arrive between 5:30 and 6:30) we were seated with the same waiter and assitant waiter and did not have to wait to be seated and dinner flowed smoothly over an approximate 1 1/2 hour period. When we ate late (after 7pm) we would have to wait for a table assignment and may have been asked to move to Adagio 3 or 4 for dinner. Not a problem, but the dinner seemed to be more rushed as they were trying to get you out before the late dinner seating. Ultimately I liked being able to set my own time for dinner. I did feel like I was being "nickled and dimed" a little bit with all of the premium charges. Even when we ate at Chops, the option for a dry aged steaks was an up charge, which seemed rediculous after paying $35 per person already (one of which barely ate anything other than the bread). The regular filets were great anyway. I also thought the prices for the photo's rediculous, but of course bought 1 or 2 anyway. I had a couple of trips to Guest Services, and there was always a line with a 10-15 minute wait. I found the staff as courteous and helpful. We had noticed that our RCI onboard credits had not been applied. As it turned out th problem was with the paperwork the travel agency either processed or failed to process and not necessariely RCI. Ultimately, the travel agency blamed us for not completing all of the paperwork (their job I thought), but agreed to refund the credit amounts to our credit card. I mention this only because I have never had it as my responsibility to "redeem" cruise line onboard credits so you may want to watch this on your own booking. Read Less
Sail Date December 2014
Along with 6,190 other guests and some 2,800 crew, my wife, son and I have just completed a magical cruise aboard "the world's largest ship", the Allure of the Sea's. Only mention the numbers because we also spent ... Read More
Along with 6,190 other guests and some 2,800 crew, my wife, son and I have just completed a magical cruise aboard "the world's largest ship", the Allure of the Sea's. Only mention the numbers because we also spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at Disney World with some 100,000 others on each day and could not move! When you then factor in the two days at Disney World cost me MORE than a week at sea, the "World's Largest Cruise Ship", (sorry, we were constantly reminded of this all week), wins my vote hands down!!! OK, firstly, the shows! My wife and I are regulars on both Broadway and the West End in addition to taking in numerous shows on annual Vegas trips and the Allure offers many that are at least the equal. Chicago and the special effects laden, Blue Planet along with two ice-shows, (How to Train Your Dragon and the superb Ice Games), Aqua shows, (Madagascar, (a must for the kids), and the unbelievably breath-taking OceanAria are just awe-inspiring! You then take all the other on-board entertainment, (zip-line, flow-rider, a host of other sports activities, the music, the comedy), and the week passes at a very unfair pace as within no time at all, it's all over! The Activities team is awesome, even if Ken Rush was a little tiring by the end of the cruise - sorry Ken, just tone it down a little and you will be as enjoyable as many of your other RCCL peers - oh, and there is no "I" in team! Albeit a little out of sequence, I wish we had had one or two US Congressmen or Senators aboard our ship who had to go through the same disembarkation process we did. As ever, RCL were superb the way they organised off-loading 6,300 people, but to US politicians, you should be ashamed as to the impression your hard-pressed Border Control folks left us with about the US. 6 poor souls who did their best to clear us, but given that they only looked at our passport photo-pages and then at us, why did it take 75 minutes from stepping off the ship to clearing immigration? OK, rant done, back to the positives. We had a well-appointed Junior Suite on Deck 9 mid-ship which despite everything that was going on, was remarkably quiet. It was kept wonderfully clean and tidy by our cabin attendant Hardier, despite our, (9-year old's in particulars), best efforts!!! My wife absolutely loved the walk-in cupboard and is already asking for one at home!!! The food, overall, was excellent. Chops Grille, 150 and Giovanni's were exceptional, with the staff and quality of food being way over and beyond at the first two. The Park Cafe is superb for lunches and the hot dog stand is super cool! Windjammer is as it is, given it caters to the masses and was not bad. Special mention however must go to both our waitress, Alison, and her assistant Leylani, in the Adagio restaurant - they're two VERY special RCCL people who went out of their way to help and get anything we wanted. Given Adagio caters for 4,500 to 5,000 people across two nightly sittings daily, there is a lot about quality and service many of London's supposedly finer 5-star hotels could learn about when they come to delivering charity events, weddings, bar mitzvah's and the like!!! Some cautionary words, and sorry about this Royal Caribbean, be very careful when "shopping" aboard. The prices are much higher than what you can get elsewhere, especially their "special offers". I looked at one watch which was retailing for $700 in their 25% off "promotion" that sells for around £300 in a regular jewellers back in London. The excursions are very expensive and with a little research and planning, can be done at a fraction of the price yourself. Yes, RCL will tell you the ship will leave if you don't get back on-time if you are NOT on their excursions, but just a little planning and allow yourself time to get back to the ship and you you will save yourselves a lot of money!!! Finally, special mention for Captain Jonny. This was our 5th RCCL cruise and 6th in total and never have a I met a more wonderful and hugely enthusiastic, (given his 38 years, 19 as captain), skipper. He just loves meeting passengers and going around his ship, he asked me THREE separate times during the week how the cruise was going and for comments. His "Ask the Captain" hour towards the end of the cruise was very I informative, not at all boring, (given the types of questions posed by some cruise "junkies"), and his routine was the equal of many a stand-up comedian - a truly, truly wonderful captain who so very obviously loves what he does and interacting with as many of his guests and crew, (you should watch his daily log on the in-room TV). To him in particularly, and to Alison, thank you for a very special and highly memorable vacation - we are really looking forward to sailing with you again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
I should first say that we love cruising with Royal Caribbean. We have sailed on Voyager, Navigator and now Allure. Embarkation: Super easy and fast at Fort Lauderdale, we arrived around 11am and by 11:30 where already onboard. It helps ... Read More
I should first say that we love cruising with Royal Caribbean. We have sailed on Voyager, Navigator and now Allure. Embarkation: Super easy and fast at Fort Lauderdale, we arrived around 11am and by 11:30 where already onboard. It helps when you have platinum or above. Food: We chose my time dinning and the first night was incredibly busy. The line for guests that has reserved a time was HUGE and the line for those who did not was double. However, the menu was really good compared to the previous selections (before menu change) and well the service was excellent. We were lucky enough to be seated with Roxana and Moises at the Adaggio dinning room and let's just say we ate with them every night. They where amazing. NOTE: The windjammer is SUPER small, well actually, we were told is is the same size, 800 guests, in all ships. This makes a HUGE difference when you think that there are 6000 people on board. The other dinning venues, the hot dog place, and the sports area dinner and the pizzeria and promenade cafe are great. The best overall is the park cafe. Specialty Restaurant (150 Central Park): Very expensive, but VERY nice for a treat. TIP: there is a regular menu of $40 p/p and another for $75 for royal wine pairing p/p. Now, this is NOT either or it is $40+$75 p/p. Just saying, dont be surprised. In the end it is worth it. Entertainment: Chicago was GREAT, the Aqua Theater show was amazing, if not heartstopping and the Blue Plannet show was also great. The ice skating show was the same as in previous RCI ships. The comedy show was excellent, however, it was already ALL booked even on the first day, so be fast. In case you dont make reservations, dont worry, just stand in line and you will get in, it is worth it. Excursions: In Labadee, the zipline is super expensive. Just beach and relax is good. In Jamaica, the river tubing and ziplinning is AWESOME. Great guides, includes lunch. The water is COOOOLD. In Cozumel, there is an excursion called Passion Island by Catamaran. There is NO catamaran, it is a regular ferry. But the excursion is AMAZING. For $75 p/p you get all inclusive drinks (alcoholic), lunch, and water sports. The cruise director ALLAN is super good, probably the best on RCI. Overall, I really enjoyed this ship, however it is tooo big and I prefer the Navigator/Freedom style ships. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
Just came back from a wonderful holiday cruise celebrating the new year. Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas was fantastic. Traveled with 18 family members and had the best time. With kids ages ranging from 6-14, the ship met all our ... Read More
Just came back from a wonderful holiday cruise celebrating the new year. Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas was fantastic. Traveled with 18 family members and had the best time. With kids ages ranging from 6-14, the ship met all our expectations and then some. First Port was Labadee Haiti. I have to say one of my favorites. The ammenities that were offered and the location was absolutely perfect. Calm, warm, crystal blue water. Great activities for all ages. Though the weather could have been better. Mostly cloudy all day!!! For those of you going to Cozumel, I would really suggest Mr. Sanchos. This is an all inclusive beach resort, offering food, alcohol, tons of activities along with a water park, swim up pool bar for a reasonable price. The service was fantastic and our waiter, Marino, was always there. This is a must for all to visit. Anyone cruising out of Miami, Port Everglades or Ft. Luaderdale and needs a fanatsic transportation company, we found Jiffy Jeff Transportation. Fantastic service for a great price. 14 passenger Mercedes van. Jeff is so easy to work with. Look him up. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
I wanted to payback all the tips and info I was able to garner from CruiseCritic so here goes ... Embarkation - smooth and quick - 20 minutes from taxi to on-board. Disembark - tedious waiting, but functionally smooth. Dining - ... Read More
I wanted to payback all the tips and info I was able to garner from CruiseCritic so here goes ... Embarkation - smooth and quick - 20 minutes from taxi to on-board. Disembark - tedious waiting, but functionally smooth. Dining - Windjammer is the typical buffet cafeteria food - so-so. MyTime dining in the Adagio was fine. Waiter (Ted) was fantastic and food quality was better than average but not great. Wipe-out cafe is great snack food and really appreciated the pretzel dogs and frozen yogurt. Promenade Cafe - good snacks and anytime food (24 hrs). Enjoyed my evening cookies before bed. Park Cafe - busy but food was good. Roast beef sandwiches are hard to beat. Johnny Rockets was great but I don't get the idea of $5 cover and I still have to pay for a milkshake. Doughnuts were very much appreciated every morning on the boardwalk. Specialty Dining - Chops Grille was outstanding and the value ($35/pp) was terrific 4 1/2 stars. 150 Central Park - OMG! Very unusual food selection but quality, presentation and taste were unrivaled Five Stars. Giovanni's was more food than you could possibly eat and the service was terrific. Food quality was four and a half stars. Shows - Chicago was great production, but needs an intermission. 90 minutes in those seats would be hard for anyone. Oceanaria was fantastic and to think they do this while the ship is bobbing and weaving around the seas is pretty impressive. Blue Planet was also fantastic. Comedy shows were very entertaining, although not necessarily appropriate for anyone under 18. DreamWorks shows at Aqua Theater were fun and kept the kids entertained. Excursions - Nothing booked for Labadee, Haiti, but the Dragon Zip Line looked fun. I was content to float around the private bay. The locals will hound you to buy their trinkets. In Jamaica we booked the combo Ocho Rios and Montego Bay trip. There really is not enough time to climb the falls, and make ti to Montego Bay for shopping and lunch. Cozumel was the Jungle Buggy and Snorkeling at Punta Sur - Fantastic and the guide (Adrian) was entertaining as well as informative. On-Board the ship only felt crowded at meal times and getting on and off. Otherwise, plenty of deck chairs, plenty of activities, and as with most cruises, more than sufficient opportunities to eat! The Zip line was fun, albeit short. Didn't use the Flow Rider pools but was entertained by everyone else that did. All-in-all a great experience. Beware there are a lot of things that are chargeable (cupcakes, milkshakes, Starbucks, etc.) but we still didn' spend an exorbitant amount. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
This was a family cruise for us with myself, my wife our 15 year old daughter and my mother-in law. The cruise started on November 18 and ran through the week of Thanksgiving. We live in the Fort Lauderdale area so it was a short cab ... Read More
This was a family cruise for us with myself, my wife our 15 year old daughter and my mother-in law. The cruise started on November 18 and ran through the week of Thanksgiving. We live in the Fort Lauderdale area so it was a short cab ride for us to the port. My mother-in-law has some mobility problems so we bought a wheel chair with us but even with that getting on the ship on the first day and getting off on the last day was easy. It took about 30 minutes to get on board on the first day and about 45 minutes to an hour on the last day to get off the ship. It took longer to get off because we had to go through Customs. THE FOOD: The ship is certainly very impressive with its array of shops and restaurants and we really liked the variety we had when choosing where to eat. We had read a lot of reviews about how bad the Windjammer Cafe was, but that was not our experience. We ate at the Windjammer Cafe three times, once for breakfast and twice for lunch and we found that there was a good variety of food choices and we were always able to find a table. Is the food gourmet? No, but we found the food quality to be good and the service was also good. If my mother-in-law needed something (a drink or a food item) she would ask an attendant and they would get it for her. We ate at four speciality restaurants during the cruise. 150 Central Park, Chops Grille, Izumi and Giovanni's Table. 150 Central Park was absolutely awesome. We were served a six course meal and the staff would explain each dish and its ingredients. The presentation of the food as well as the taste of each dish was excellent. The size of the portions of each course are small, but after six courses you will not walk away hungry. I thought it was one of the best meals I had ever had. Chops Grille was also excellent. The steaks were of high quality and they were cooked properly. The side dishes were also excellent. The mashed potatoes were made from scratch and were great. The vegetables were seasoned well and not over cooked. Another great meal. Giovanni's Table was also very good. The meal was five courses and after three courses we were already pretty full. The food quality again was excellent and the service was very good. I personally liked Izumi, but two people in our group are not big sushi fans and they struggled to find something that they liked. We did try the "Hot Rock" and it was fun to cook your own meat. But if you are not into all that effort just order something that they cook for you. I think Izumi is a good restaurant choice but make sure the people in your party like sushi or Asian food. If they don't they may be disappointed. Overall I thought the speciality restaurants were well worth the extra money that they cost. The other restaurants that we liked and ate at often were the Solarium Bistro and the Park Cafe. We ate most of our breakfasts at the Solarium Bistro and loved it. They offer a lot of healthy choices and a lot of fruit selections and it was never too crowed. We also loved the Park Cafe for lunch because you could build your own salads and they had a good selection of soups and sandwiches. The panini sandwiches were great and I loved the famous roast beef sandwiches. I am a meat eater and I ate many of those roast beef sandwiches during the cruise. Here is a tip for all of you roast beef sandwich lovers. Tell them to put double meat on the sandwich. They don't care and will do it for you and you get twice the beef. THE ENTERTAINMENT: We went to all of the shows. Our typical schedule was to have dinner and then see a show. All of the entertainment was excellent and was far better than any of the shows we have seen on other cruises. Chicago was a true Broadway caliber production with excellent singing. Oceanaria is a great water show that is nearly on par with a Las Vegas show. Blue Plant is another great show with again excellent singing and an impressive stage and props. The Comedy show was also good and funny but it was R rated. Nothing too bad, but just know going in there is some sexual content and swear words. The Headliner show was good. It was four singers and dancers that performed Motown music. I liked it but some people did not and my 15 year old daughter had never heard any of the songs. It as a good show but maybe not for everybody. They also had 3-D movies every day throughout the cruise at different times and we enjoyed that. On Thanksgiving day they showed Rise of the Guardians that had just been released. We also had an absolute blast at "The Quest." The Quest is an audience participation game show where they split the audience into groups and ask for various items that the people may have. Each team gets points for who gets the item first. It sounds simple but it was very funny and a great time for everybody. There is something going on all the time and if you check the schedule you can always find something to do or some place to go. One week is not enough time to do it all. But you will have fun. THE ROOMS: We had two ocean view cabins that were side by side on Deck 11, cabins 11698 and 11700. Deck 11 was great, not noisy at all. We loved the ocean view rooms and we often would sit on the balcony and just enjoy the water. We found the room to be fine for two people with enough room. Once you unpack and put your suitcases under the bed there is plenty of space. If you put more than two people in the room it may be a little tight. Also I have a bad back and the bed was great. The mattress was firm and I did not have any problems. THE PUBLIC SPACES: The public spaces on the ship are great and you often cannot believe you are on a ship. Central Park is a lot of fun and you can hear birds chirping and singing all the time. Also at night they often had someone performing music in Central Park. Sometime it was classical music other times something else. It was great. The Royal Promenade on deck 5 is really amazing when you see it with the shops, bars and restaurants all in one place. It is a great place to have a drink or a cup of coffee and hang out and people watch. At times I felt like I was sitting in the middle of an upscale mall but it was all fun. ROOM SERVICE: We did a lot of eating on this cruise in many of the restaurants but we also ordered room service late on several nights. We got cheese plates to go with wine or sandwiches or extra desserts because we just felt like eating more. The room service was reasonably quick (within 30 minutes-they would tell us it may take longer but it never did). The food was excellent. One night I ordered a steak sandwich and it was literally a real steak on a bun-not just some meat thrown on a bun. The cheese cake from room service is also very, very good. It has excellent flavor and it was not too heavy like some cheese cakes. I ordered the cheese cake more than once. Also, they told us almost all the food is made from scratch no canned items. THE SERVICE: We had excellent service throughout the cruise from our room Stewart, to our waiters or anyone else we encountered on the ship. If we needed anything all we had to do was ask and we had what we asked for within a reasonable amount of time. THE CROWDS: We went on this cruise during Thanksgiving week so I assume the ship was at or near full capacity. But we never felt crowed on the ship. We did have a person using a wheel chair so sometimes we had to pass on an elevator because there was not enough room to fit the wheel chair. But that is to be expected and even then it was never a big problem. If we waited a little bit we would get an elevator. Even at the Windjammer Cafe that we had read many reviews saying it was crowed we did not have a problem. Was the Windjammer busy at times? Yes. But not so busy that you couldn't get your food or find a table. Crowds were never an issue for us on the ship. In conclusion, this cruse lived up to all of our expectations and then some. We had a great time and would do it again in a heartbeat. We loved our cruise experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
November 20, 2012 sail date. Had to do the Allure once to see what all the fuss was about. The ship is a virtual city. The best entertainment of any cruise. You must order tickets in advance for all the important shows, which is all of ... Read More
November 20, 2012 sail date. Had to do the Allure once to see what all the fuss was about. The ship is a virtual city. The best entertainment of any cruise. You must order tickets in advance for all the important shows, which is all of them, or be very early on the ship and wait in line at the box office. I's not like other cruises, where you eat dinner and then make your way to the theater. The key shows each night are in different venues. Box office lines can be long for people who didn't get tickets/reservations in advance of the cruise. There is also standby line before the show starts and may get in that way as many did. The Aqua show with high divers was phenomenal. Chicago was very good. The cast production of Blue Planet was also excellent. The bands around the ship were very good and dancing to rock, salsa, big band etc etc . The karaoke, the pub singer with sing along, all very good and entertaining. never a problem getting beach chairs at any pool; great jacuzzis too. The ship never feels crowded. it's a behemoth There is so much to do for children and teens and they all appeared to be having a great time and making new friends...better than Disneyworld and the Nick parks we were told..and parents get to have their own time without worrying about children. No family vacation can match this, especially for what you get for the money. The 20-40 somethings also were having a great time Labadee is great and much fun for families, with beach, BBQ, Waterpark, zipline, coaster, littler shops etc. RCI did a great job with Falmouth, Jamaica. Lots of shopping right off the ship. we did Dunns river falls also, which was unique and a fun excursion. missed the trolley which takes you out of the shopping compound to the real Falmouth--$18 person i think ..will get it next time..dont have to book this on board , i believe..almost like a ho ho trolley. Cozumel is always great..did the unlimited snorkel which you walk to from the ship..next time will do paradise beach on own..shopping is great and fun in cozumel, as usual. Dining highlight was the specialty Italian restaurant in Central Park, as people said it would be. Food and service was extraordinary. The touch screens around the ship are a tremendous and very helpful improvement. Things we missed were : it almost didn't feel like you were at sea. There is a lack of personal aspect, it is so big. There is no wrap around deck on the 4th or 5th level, like with all other ships. There is a jogging track on 5th level , but no deck chairs for people to read and be close to the sea. At night that is one of my favorite aspects of the cruise--- to and feel and hear the ocean , and/or smoke a cigar [I am a cigar smoker]. Also, there is no collection of tables outside of the windjammer to eat breakfast or lunch outdoors--another favorite aspect of ours. There are serious over indulgences, like some developers who went wild when money was easy to come by. Like a levitating bar, which seems hugely expensive for the return--a silly extravagance. Central park was overdone, and many of the restaurants seemed mostly empty many times. The last days of Pompei. The food in the Main dining room, dinner was so mediocre to poor, we were surprised and did not expect it on RCI. Service was very slow. The first night they served prime rib, which was such a cheap, poor cut of meat, I was very disappointed in RCI. So we started eating dinner in the Windjammer...not too bad, and interesting variety. and no long waits. Service was very good in the windjammer. The MDR has a salad bar for lunch on sea days, as do other RCI ships which is great. Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
From the time we arrived to the time we left this huge ship we had the best cruise vacation you could have, how could you not. We arrived at the port at 1045 am we parked at park and go great deals. The ship let us on around 11:15am. ... Read More
From the time we arrived to the time we left this huge ship we had the best cruise vacation you could have, how could you not. We arrived at the port at 1045 am we parked at park and go great deals. The ship let us on around 11:15am. First stop was Balleros to drink frozen mojitos best on any ship. The cabins were not ready until 1pm so we had lunch at windjammer. The food on this ship was so good any were you went but the windjammer. I would recommend the first day to eat at the park cafe on deck 8 central park. The ship is so huge and large your jaw drops as you walk on board. We checked out our table and had to change it to add 2 more people in our group. The cabin was so large and the view was perfect. We had dinner at chops and 150 central park in the week. Both were excellent. We had lunch at the Japanese restaurant and ritas mexican both also excellent. The shows and we saw all of them were the best shows we have ever seen. I have been on many cruise ships and shows and never were they as good as the Allure. The best show is the chicago and the water show. The bars and lounges always had great music around the ship. The restaurant food was also very good. The service on this ship is out standing. We had great weather all the way threw. I would recommend the rising tide bar its great for people watch. Every port we went to it was very easy to get on and off this ship. Cabin lady we had was very very good. The ship art is so different and has so much to look at all the time. I used the zip line that was such a thrill. debark was so fast and not in your face loved it. Labadee in Haiti was fantastic and hot. The dock is so much better then tendering. We lay out that day on the beach. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Travelled out on the 9/11 sailing on the Western Caribbean route. I did not intend writing a lengthy report repeating what everyone else has said about this wonderful ship. We sailed on the Oasis last year so knew roughly what to ... Read More
Travelled out on the 9/11 sailing on the Western Caribbean route. I did not intend writing a lengthy report repeating what everyone else has said about this wonderful ship. We sailed on the Oasis last year so knew roughly what to expect, and had a great vacation. Stayed overnight at the Embassy Suites in Boca Raton very good managers reception and breakfast, hotel good standard. Dropped our Hertz car off at the airport only to be told that there was not a shuttle to the port?? Employee took us to the port in the car and dropped us off Embarkation was a breeze. We were allowed in the staterooms at 1pm, and the luggage arrived at 1.05pm. Note: Alcohol checks in hand luggage were very strict. I noticed rum runners being confiscated, and we had 4, single glass sized bottles removed. (These were given back on the Thursday night - so we still drank them onboard) Ports of Call are what they are, orchestrated by RCI, with Labadee being our favourite, despite the flies getting to my bbq before I did. Falmouth - we went on the Martha Brae rafting tour. Had a wonderfull raft captain called Ray, who wore the biggest blue rasta hat. He sang to us most of the way down when not giving informative information. We called him "Rasta Ray". Cozumel - caught the Independance Day parade. Not often you get anything free in Cozumel. POSITIVES: MDR Staff were excellent, with special praises to our waiter SABIT from Macedonia, and JUNE from Philippines on the front desk. These worked like crazy to make sure we had a great time and always made sure we got our pre booked times. In my opinion, these two stand out from other cruises we have taken. Always a smile and a chat. COCKTAILS: The ones we had from the bars were always worth the money plenty of alcohol in them. CHEFS TABLE: Absolutely brilliant, and together with the 5 wines and 1 champagne, well worth the $75 a head. Worthy of several Michelin stars. We shared this experience with 12 wonderful and extremely sociable table mates.Just need to try the recipes in the cook book we received. PARK CAF: Love this place for breakfast and lunch can't stand the queues and mass produced food in the Windjammer. UNFORTUNATELY NEGATIVES: HYGIENE. Having been made to sign a declaration about my hygiene at embarkation, I found it unacceptable to find numerous examples of unclean cups in the Promenade Caf area. Having to pick up 6 cups with lipstick or food debris, before I found a clean one is unacceptable. This happened on more than one occasion. I have been involved in HACCP standards, and RCI should be reprimanded. I brought it to the attention of Guest Services, who went immediately into the kitchens. Later that night, G Services placed two bottles of wine in our stateroom with an apology thank you. I then noticed that only paper cups were available the next day!! The following night we had a knock on the door, and found room service delivering a tray with a dozen chocolate covered strawberries, as an apology from the Prom caf. The best is yet to come when I took a bite, I noticed that a long, thick black hair was encased in the solidified chocolate mine are grey!!. Trying to stop myself vomiting, I threw them in the garbage. RCI must do better!!. CRUISE DIRECTOR: Who was he? Conspicuous by his absence, someone told me his name was Ken Rush!! Worst cruise director so far - Bring on Richard Spacey. SHOWS: Adbacabera were billed as the Ultimate Abba tribute act whilst they were ok, I have seen much better in Europe. CASINO: I would like to know how RCI claim to have one half of the casino No Smoking!! The whole place smells of smoke, and so do your clothes after a visit. OVERALL: We met some great people,e and had a great holiday on board, followed by another great week in Boca Raton. The one bad apple did not spoil the barrel!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
So just got off the World's Largest Cruise Ship with Royal Caribbean "allure of the Seas." We booked one year ago and there are simply no words to describe how amazing and incredible this vessel really is. She is absolutely ... Read More
So just got off the World's Largest Cruise Ship with Royal Caribbean "allure of the Seas." We booked one year ago and there are simply no words to describe how amazing and incredible this vessel really is. She is absolutely in a league of her own. I sincerely praise Royal Caribbean for the innumerable hours on designing this state of the art "gem". I will give you more or less as much description and recommendations and ideas that our family experienced. Embarkation A total of 20 minutes from the time we went through security and were in our stateroom aboard the ship. The only thing you require upon entering the check-in area is your confirmation sheet and passports. What we were really impressed by; was the security, everyone is thoroughly checked. We also liked that sea pass cards hard restrictions fro children under age, and allowed parents to include what they wanted on their child(s) sea pass cards. Unlike other ships, all children must check-in with the youth desk and receive a color-coded identification bracelet. Emergency Drill Like other ships, people ignore this procedure, however, Allure runs this extremely effectively. Every room is evacuated and tagged on the door handle, and you must go to your correct muster station where your sea pass card is scanned. All passengers must be accounted for, and if not you will be paged and hold back all passengers until you check-in. Short film to watch, and best part, no need to carry life jackets with you. Departure You can arrange the night before for self-checkout, this requires taking your own luggage. Otherwise is the same as most ships and lengthy at times, but be patient. This is not a Royal Caribbean issue, it is simply Immigration procedures and how fast "they" want to work and please the people. However, unlike most ships where there are never enough porters, there is abundance. Stateroom We were very fortunate enough to have stayed in an Aquatheatre Stateroom (10730). It is located at the rear of the ship, which initially we had concerns, but due to the size and width of the ship, we NEVER once felt we were sailing. Allure sails extremely smooth with very little to no vibration, we never once felt we were on a ship. This stateroom is an experience you will never have, it is very spacious, and generous with cupboard, drawer and shelving. It has a master bedroom with a king size bed, 2 night tables, mini bar and a large dresser full of drawers and a cupboard for hanging. The bathroom is small, but has a sink, toilet, and bathtub with shower inside; plenty of space to put all your belongings. The second room had 4 single beds, which were bunk beds; our kids loved it, great concept. The living area consisted of a small round table for two, sofa, coffee table and large counter area, which had a mini bar. All rooms had new HD Samsung plasma TV's. There is another small bathroom with a sink, toilet and stand-alone shower. The entrance area was large, and we were able to keep our stroller there open and all our shoes without having to worry about any space. The biggest bonus, you are able to see the Aqua shows all the time on the luxurious balcony this stateroom provides, it is immense, with tons of sitting options available. We ate our breakfast outside most mornings. The only few comments I would make, yes, it is a little further to the elevators; I feel that this type of stateroom should offer some sort of complimentary laundry service. The minibar was also sparse but we never required it, with the amount of food and beverage options you have. Room Service was also very good and easy to do through the TV set. Concierge Club All suites have this option you can use on Deck 8, it is very convenient if you need help to book specialty restaurants, excursions... They offer complimentary beverages and small snack items. It is very comfortable and beautiful and quiet to relax in. We never used it, other than getting a reservation changed for us. Food & Beverage Our only negative encounter was we were never assigned a table at Adaggio, but the problem was solved efficiently and the Dining Room Manager was extremely apologetic. We sat at table 203, but for only two meals. We booked mostly specialty restaurants through the recommendations of others. The Windjammer has a huge assortment and variety of food; this still always feels packed and always difficult to find a table, especially breakfast and lunch hours. A good alternative solution, which is much less crowded, is the buffet in the Solarium, which offers a healthy breakfast. Most juice is complimentary for kids; we also purchased a water package, which were big bottles of Evian, which you will find in your stateroom upon arrival if you purchase. Dining Areas (a) Park Cafe - Upon arrival this is the first place we ate, and highly recommend create your own salad or the amazing roast beef sandwich. The kids loved the grilled cheese sandwich; it is complimentary to eat here. (b) Sorrento's - You can create your own oven-baked pizza, which takes 5 mins, or try one the many delicious selections offered daily. It is complimentary to eat here. (c) Dog House Boardwalk - Make great hotdogs and make different state favorites (d) Promenade Cafe - Try the Caramel coffee, made with Seattle best coffee. Not complimentary. (e) Starbucks - Can find all your favorites and yes it is the "original" and only starbucks on a cruise ship. Not complimentary (f) Cupcake Cupboard - Great cupcakes with all sorts of cool decorations. We did not know but if you have kids, they have decorating sessions, you need to book these in advance as space is limited and this is the first thing that gets filled by bookings. We could not participate, but gives us something to look forward to next time. They also sell great nostalgia gift items. (g) Johnny Rockets - At lunch here, loved the complimentary fries and onion rings, onion rings amazing. Kids said hamburgers amazing, they do offer a healthy choice, I would recommend the tuna salad sandwich. Specialty Dining - Need to book in advance and your stateroom will be charged immediately, if you do not cancel within 24hours of showing, you will be charged regardless, so keep this is mind when booking. If you do not book in advance, extremely difficult to get reservations. (a) Chops Grille - Not a place to wear jeans. Delicious food had the 10 oz. filet cooked to perfection, mushrooms and asparagus side dishes, and asparagus yummy!!!!! We also tried Apple pie and mud pie, I am not a dessert person, but they did not need to wash the plate once my husband was finished. One recommendation not for kids under the age of 12. This is not complimentary. (b) Samba Grille - Can definitely dress casual - jeans. It is located in the solarium and all appetizers served buffet style. Meat on skewers is offered for entrees. If you were choosing among specialty dining, this would not be one of my picks. (c) Giovanni's - Can definitely dress as you wish, located in Central Park, and I would recommend dining outdoors. Food delicious, appetizers Carpaccio filet mignon, caprese salad for two. EntrEe Filet was scrumptious. Great dining experience, we ate here twice. Good dining place for children, have a kids menu. Kids loved chicken noodle soup, ask for extra noodles. (d) Izumi's - Can definitely dress as you wish. A great Japanese dining experience, everything is amazing. Good for kids too. Places for kids (a) Adventure Ocean - I can only say wish I was a kid again. Sponsored by Fisher Price and Crayola, so that alone tells you all the activities they can do. The play area is gorgeous, amazing and the schedule of activities is abundant and original. The kids are more than entertained, and the staff is awesome. There is a load to do; they provide a lunch from Windjammer if your child stays, however after hours and dinner there is small minimum charge of $6.00 dollars. They have 3 groups; 3 to 5, 6 to 8 and 9 to 11, and other places and lounge bars for teenagers, as well as a fully equipped arcade, which we never used. No diapers allowed, all kids need to be fully potty trained. (b) Royal Babies and Tots Nursery - We were concerned with a new environment and faces our 3 year old may be scared to be alone, she was so at home. She loved the staff, adored all the Fisher Price toys and fun films. They provide lunch, if you require special things they accommodate for such. They provide you with a bag which you need to bring each time you drop-off, which should have extra diapers or pull-ups, bottle, sippy cup and change of clothing. They will provide you with a telephone, so you can be reached, please note this phone does not work off ship, so if you are going to port, notify them. This is not a complimentary service and the cost is $8.00/hr. Note: They do change diapers and pull-ups. (c) DreamWorks - We kept this under the radar so our children would be surprised, but yes, Shrek, Fiona, Puss n' Boots, Alex, Gloria the Hippo, Owl, King Julien, How to train a Dragon and the Penguins are all aboard the Allure of the Seas. There are plenty of venues to meet such characters. They offer character breakfasts scheduled at 8:00am only on sea days, need to pre-book this, there is no charge for it, just ask which days which characters will be at the breakfast, they do not all come. You can take your own photos here. There are photo sessions, you cannot take your own pictures, Royal Caribbean photographers take them and you must purchase them if you want. Sail away DreamWorks Aqua show the first day in the aqua theatre, daily parade (times vary), How to train a dragon ice show and a Madagascar how to entertain me Aqua show. The characters also make plenty of appearances with the kids at Adventure Ocean where they participate in activities and they can bee seen on the Promenade and Boardwalk for photo ops many times of the day and evening. (d) H20 Zone - What a colorful and fun place for kids to run in and out of sprinklers, whom needs water slide. They also have a pool not too deep, and a fish bowl, which all the kids LOVE, it is a pool that swirls kids round and round. Hot tub for kids also available in this area. NOTE: There is no diapers allowed in any pools, and unlike other ships, there is pool deck control and they are very strict and will pull the kids out. There is one small-designated area for children in diapers available. All children's pools are chlorine filled. (e) Flowrider - A cool place to learn how to boogie board or surf. Children fewer than 52 inches cannot participate. You must be 52 inches to boogies board and 58 inches to surf. They are very strict and will measure all children before attempted to sign them up. We took a semi-private lesson and it is fun, we had a hard time grasping the concept. Remember to bring your sea pass card, as you need to sign a waiver. (f) Zip Line - Cool concept, a short thrill ride. Children under 75 pounds cannot participate. I was the only person who did it, you must sign a waiver so sea pass required and all loose items, including all jewellery must be removed. (g) Rock Climbing - Loved, they give you shoes, no need for socks if you do not want, also need to sign a waiver, so seas pass card required. Remember when you ring the bell at the top, grab rope and push off rocks with your feet, not like me who dangled and made twirls coming down. (h) Basketball Courts - We as a family never used them, but my son used them when he was at Adventure Ocean camp and loved them. (i) Ping Pong Tables - Never used (j) Mini Putt - Never used (k) Ice Rink - We never used it, but check times for age groups, it is never a general skate for all. Don't forget socks and long pants. Places for Adults (a) Pools -There are many to choose, we used one, all adult pools are filled with seawater and filtered. Chairs are abundant and under no circumstances can you reserve seats, they do not allow this. (b) Bars - We never used them, did notice Vintages, a wine place looked gorgeous. So plenty for us to do when we return again. Places to hang out (a) Boardwalk- coolest places with tons to do. Don't miss the candy store, tons of goodies as well the store sells crayola products and Hello Kitty items, as well as Royal Caribbean stuff. They have Smile, fun place to take your kids for a photo op with costumes, tons to choose from. Pictures start at $25.00 or you can buy packages. They have a Build-a-pet store and how can one forget the carousel. My kids loved this, and it is fun and the carvings of the animals on this carousel are spectacular. (b) Promenade - Regalia has not your ordinary junk jewellery like other ships, they sell very good quality items and a lot of beautiful stuff. There is a guess store, and of course your fragrance and duty free liquor store. They have a few apparel stores that sell beautiful designers items. They have really made shopping fun aboard this ship. Need to try the elevator bar that goes up and down, we never got into it, but looks cool. (c) Central Park - There are few words to describe this wonderful place that they have so elegantly and thoughtfully created. The live foliage, trees, plants and greenery are gorgeous. You can stroll through on the pave uni stones, and sit and relax on the park benches. You must go and check out Britto Gallery, and if you are up to a family picture session, a must is at Picture this with Victoria. She is incredible and we were fortunate enough to have spent time with her, and come out making a gorgeous and memorable album of our time on the Allure of the Seas. Reserve in advance. Also, don't forget to take a peek at the first Coach store on a ship. Shows - In order to see what you want, book in advance, otherwise you wait in stand by line outside. If you do have reserved seats make sure to get there 15-30mins prior to show time or they give your seats up to stand by (a) Chicago - Good production, 90mins, artists very talented, however found show time at 10:30pm was very late, and unfortunately a lot of people left during the show, or you had someone snoring next to you. All seats are good, we sat Mezzanine. (b) Oceanaria - A show you must not miss. The acrobats and divers are beyond talented and this show keeps you on your toes the entire time. A fantastic production, very entertaining. First 3 to 5 rows, you will get wet. (c) Ice Games - Based on the theme of Monopoly, costumes amazing, but overall it was an average production and found some of the skaters lacking in ability. (d) Headliner - This show stars Earl Turner and his son Anthony, and they are absolutely incredible and talented. You must make sure to get seats on the floor as close to the stage as he is interactive with his audience in a very good way. A definite see!!! (e) Comedy - Never attended (f) Let me Entertain me - A kids aqua show with the DreamWorks characters from Madagascar, check for times. No reservations needed, this is free seating. First 3 to 5 rows, you will get wet. (g) Casino - Never attended, still hate the idea in order to get to Studio B (Ice rink) and Amber Theatre, you have to walk through and they allow people to smoke. It smells!!! (h) Disco Party - Located on the Promenade, and fun, for everyone. Cool to see how they start the party and then gets a little boring. (i) Dazzle's - has a great disco party for all kids ages from 9:00-10:30pm most nights, it gives balloons to the younger kids, and play today's greatest hits and music. Also great for parents as they have a bar you can order alcoholic beverages. Ports - The ports are not what attracted on this cruise it was the boat, the ports we could have done without! (a) Labadee, Haiti - Beautiful Island. If you are a suite stateroom, you can rent a Cabana at their private beach. It is awesome. Royal Caribbean has created this place and it has all the amenities you need, so you do not need to bring water, towels and carry any stuff off the ship. They golf cart you over, definitely rent a waterfront cabana, comes with loungers, sofa, water cooler with Evian water. They give you chairs at the beach, snorkel gear and more towels if needed. Best part they serve you lunch too, and no need to worry about changing, the washrooms are very good to excellent. Makes you have a hassle free and strict fun in the sun day. (b) Costa Maya, Mexico - never got off, useless port (c) Cozumel, Mexico - We got off without our kids, you must take a taxi and insist to be dropped off at the Forum Shops, usually costs $7.00 by taxi. Stores not like they use to be. So a sum up of our "Allure of the Seas experience, is was extremely positive and hope to travel on her sister ship soon, to experience Oasis of the Seas, and the things we did not get around to doing. We had NO issues and really believe all the problems we have ever encountered Royal Caribbean has fixed and made it a positive factor on their ship. It was an amazing vacation, very relaxing. The staff is super friendly, you never once feel the size of the ship, and there are no places that there is overcrowding other than Windjammer as Breakfast and Lunch. Royal Caribbean you always seem to amaze us, but this time, we have no words, other than thanks for the best Christmas Holiday vacation, and hope to see you really soon!!!! Congratulations on such a successful ship, your competition will have lots to learn and prove to ever match what you have created. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
We flew Southwest to Fort Lauderdale one day prior to embarkation via Southwest, and stayed overnight. We prefer this when possible to allow for a more leisurely morning. My husband and I, and our adult children, the "kids" are ... Read More
We flew Southwest to Fort Lauderdale one day prior to embarkation via Southwest, and stayed overnight. We prefer this when possible to allow for a more leisurely morning. My husband and I, and our adult children, the "kids" are in their 20's. We had sailed on the Oasis in May, 2010, so our expectations were high. We had a Boardwalk view balcony cabin. It had a phenomenal view of the Aqua Theater, and we ended up just watching the shows from our balcony. We also got to hear all the kid based activities and the noise from the Boardwalk. We were told there were over a thousand children on the ship, more than were usual, probably because of the Dreamworks tie in? Although we did like the concept, next time we will do a Central Park balcony, which we have been told were more quiet. The spa was, as usual, lovely. The new specialty restaurants were worth the added expense, particularly the Chef's Table. Although pricey for RCCL at $75/pp, it was well worth the experience, and we will definitely do this again. The Samba Grille was a fun experience, and the big meat eaters in our group were challenged to try everything. The Carnival dancer was alot of fun. Giovanni's Table was excellent as well. I am going to spend time trying to recreate the signature Martini, definitely try it! Rita's Cantina was a big hit as well for lunch, although we were not able to get tickets for the Margarita party. 150 Park was also nice, although I did not like the menu as much as on the Oasis. They did split the week into 2 menus, and if we had known that they did that (Oasis only had 1 menu) we probably would have tried both. Our only real complaint about the specialty restaurants was that the menus are limited. We also ate in the Dining room, but were disappointed by the placement of our table (near a group of several small children, noisy and poorly behaved, although that was obviously not our server's fault) and the crowdedness of the dining room. The tables seemed closer together than in other ships. It was not possible to get any reservations for dinner other than the ones we made prior to sailing, so definitely plan ahead. We tried the dining room, Windjammer, and Johnny Rockets for breakfast, and enjoyed all 3 places, although my husband liked the Asian breakfasts at the Windjammer. Johnny Rockets for lunch was as good as ever. One problem I think we had was the RCTV reservations only let you reserve for how many people are in your room, not for your whole party, so once we figured that out we realized why we were having trouble getting additional reservations in places that seemed to have open tables. The entertainment was the best part of the new experience. Chicago was on par with the Broadway version we'd seen before. The Blue planet was spectacular, and the Aqua shows amazing. We were not able to book tickets for the ice show. Some shows are clearly for kids and families, so make sure you book the one you actually want. Comedy club has adult showings, kids enjoyed those as well. Pool area was comfortable, although as usual the empty deck chairs were on top. Never at a loss for things to do. The Spa and Fitness center is first class. No problems booking our spa treatments. (Although my (adult) kids know the drill and head there to book as soon as we get on the ship!) My husband booked extra services throughout the week, and had no issues. They have enough staff that my daughter and I could get a manicure together, instead of one after the other. The Thermal suite was also a real treat, if you have muscle or back issues, it is probably worth the cost to relax on the heated chaises. The shopping is actually more limited than we expected. The jewelry store on the ship was very high end (like all diamond jewelry, thousands of dollars), which was a problem for my daughter who was used to being able to get a nice souvenir in the jewelry shop. They seem to have eliminated the mid range category for everything, The shops all carried either "kitch" or very expensive, not much in between. I'm not sure if that is usual, or just due to the fact we were a holiday cruise. Really liked the 5th floor walking/jogging track. They included little "Burma Shave" type encouraging sayings that you had to keep walking to read. On at sea days, there is a small area at the back of the ship off the walking track that has deck chairs, and is quite pleasant to sit with a book and coffee. The excursions were excellent.(see my port reviews) On Labadee, RCCL's private island in Haiti, 4 of us did the Jet Skis, and thought it well worth the price, and we also enjoyed just exploring the island. The marketplace is something to miss. Booth after booth of the exact same items, most overpriced. If you do go, take cash (small bills) as the vendors do not take sea-pass or credit cards. Our recommendation is to get a nice tropical drink and catch a hammock! The Holiday touches were fun. We work up one morning with the ship decorated for Christmas. On Christmas day, "Santa" and his elves rode the Wave rider, the zip line, and climbed the rock wall. Surreal. The holiday dinner menu gave a nod to all the winter holidays, and would have been excellent if we had not been comparing it to the Chef's Table. Casino is all electronic and takes only paper bills (USD) or seapass. No more quarters for the slot machine. There is a new 3% charge to get cash on your seapass card in the Casino. Lots of dancing, very good music for all types ballroom, salsa, etc. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
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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