501 Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Caribbean - Eastern

My husband and I cruise a lot. We have cruised on Carnival, MSC, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean. I think about 15 in total. We have only been on Royal Caribbean twice. This last time we went on Harmony of the Seas. The ship was beautiful ... Read More
My husband and I cruise a lot. We have cruised on Carnival, MSC, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean. I think about 15 in total. We have only been on Royal Caribbean twice. This last time we went on Harmony of the Seas. The ship was beautiful but it was just another cruise ship. We did not like that we had to make reservations for the shows prior to departing. While at sea one of our shows was cancelled and the new time for us was at 10 pm. We had our small grandchildren with us so this time was not good so we missed the show we really wanted to see. The food was pretty good and the shows that we did get to see were good. The cabin- a balcony- was typical. The ship, although it did have all the bells and whistles, was pretty much the same as all the other ships. We found that unlike MSC or even Carnival, Royal Caribbean over charges for everything and they automatically add tips onto EVERY little thing. THey even charged a tip on a little overly priced plain popcorn that we purchased for our grandsons to have during a show. Carnival gave us popcorn for free. We did not like that our grandsons were too small to go on the water slides- even though they were big enough on the Carnival Breeze. In fact, the water park on the Carnival Breeze was far superior to the Harmony. BUT, the main reason we are giving only one star is because when we returned home we were charged $200 for a deposit on a future cruise. Neither I nor my husband authorized this. We had not been interested in a future cruise at the time of the cruise. We had JUST returned from a European MSC cruise (AWESOME EXPERIENCE-LOVE MSC) So, although we are planning on a cruise out of China, that is not for at least another year. When we called Royal Caribbean to inquire about the charge we were basically told that the charge was NON REFUNDABLE! HUH? How is a charge that neither I nor my husband authorized be non refundable? When we departed the ship we were given a printout of our charges and nowhere was there a mention of a future cruise deposit. Well after an hour on the phone only to be accused of having second thoughts and therefore wanting our money back we hung up on Royal Caribbean. We immediately filed a complaint with the BBB and contacted our credit card company. Now, our future cruises will definitely be on different cruise line. Shame on Royal Caribbean for treating their customers so rudely. NEVER AGAIN ROYAL CARIBBEAN! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Embarkation and Disembarkation were very smooth and quick, no issues there. My wife and I have now done 4 RC cruises. There were 9 of us on the cruise and overall the ship was fine. We loved the RC app to find and book activities on the ... Read More
Embarkation and Disembarkation were very smooth and quick, no issues there. My wife and I have now done 4 RC cruises. There were 9 of us on the cruise and overall the ship was fine. We loved the RC app to find and book activities on the ship. You can also add activities to a calendar to keep track. The only issue with the app is the chat feature which i found not useful at all. Half of us were not connected, there were no pop ups on your phone when someone was trying to chat, etc. I would say that the ship was beautiful and had allot to offer as far as activities and excursions. There were a TON of kids on this boat I am guessing it was fall break so that was a little challenging at times. The elevators were packed out and the best option was to walk the stairs. The food was all great I thought. We did Coco Cay, St. Thomas and St. Marteen. Coco Cay was beautiful and the food was amazing. Our kids did the water park pass and loved it. We did a catamaran trip to St. Johns from St. Thomas. The snorkeling over there on the reef was great. At St. Marteen we just took a water taxi from the port to the beach across the way. We rented 2 chairs with 5 drinks for $25-not a bad deal. I still think the drinks are WAY overpriced. We did not do the drink package and I believe we came out ahead by not doing this. They should offer some different kind of drink packages rather than all you can drink. Maybe like a 4-5 drink a day package or something. The DR service was great along with the food. We did not go to the DR every night as we went to the hibachi, pizza and snack places the other nights. The hibachi is well worth the $45 pp charge! They give you more than enough food and the entertainment is well worth the price. There were a couple bars-one on the central park deck and the other on the pool deck where the service was very poor. Overall the service was good, but not as good as on previous RC cruises. Our room attendant was not very interactive with us and did not do the towel animals every night. Allot of the employees seemed overworked and cranky. We just didnt think it matched up to previous cruises. I would probably do another smaller ship next time. The Grease show was good, but NOT child appropriate. The Fine Line show was top of the list and MUST SEE. We skipped the Columbus show and some went to the ice show as said it was good. It was good to see the second largest ship in the world but probably not again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Generally: The entire family (us, our kids, and our grandkids) agreed a couple years ago to book this cruise. So with the 12 of us we boarded (quite quickly and without delay) the Harmony of the Seas finally this past week. It is still ... Read More
Generally: The entire family (us, our kids, and our grandkids) agreed a couple years ago to book this cruise. So with the 12 of us we boarded (quite quickly and without delay) the Harmony of the Seas finally this past week. It is still a new ship, and it is ENORMOUS. I prefer a smaller ship for cruising but this was the best thing for our large group of varying ages. The trip was overall fantastic. There are lots of activities for adults *and* for the kids. I was very skeptical of the child care on a cruise ship, but the grandkids LOVED it. There is a lot of food to suit most tastes. The windjammer buffet is super clean and well stocked. The Main Dining Room Staff adjusted quickly to our request for a large table that our travel agent hadn't passed through AND accommodated the couple of dietary issues my family has with ease. My cabin was clean, everything worked in there, and it was surprisingly large (interior balcony). Cabin steward was fantastic. Nice bonus was the USB charging outlets. By the way, getting OFF the ship was surprisingly fast and efficient as well at the end of the cruise. The REALLY Good: Now, for what really stood out to my daughter and I. The PADI dive shop staff on this ship is FANTASTIC. We had always wanted to learn to scuba dive (Open Water course). We decided to do it on this trip. Having done the 'book work' before boarding, we received *excellent* instruction on board. Francois is the dive instructor on this boat. He works alongside Kelly who is ALSO fantastic and helped us on occasion, but this was Francois' week to teach/dive so he was our lead instructor. Francois is the real deal, having been a commercial diver as well. He takes diving seriously (in a fun way), and makes sure everyone both feels safe and (more importantly) is safe - but he ALSO makes sure you're having fun and that you have enough freedom to LEARN. He will push you but also will slow down to work with you where needed. I highly recommend any and all excursions/activities with Francois and/or Kelly in the PADI dive shop. It's up on 15. Go there. You won't be sorry. Special mention also to 150 Central Park restaurant which is just fantastic chef-inspired food and drink. Well worth the upcharge for the service staff alone, but the food is also mindblowingly good. Entertainment not to miss: Grease. Comedy. Columbus was also pretty funny/good. Things to skip: The ice show is a mess, though the little kids loved it. Also, the elevators are overcrowded and slow. All in all, highly recommended. Did I mention I really think highly of the PADI DIVE SHOP yet? :-) Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Harmony. Cruise Sept 8,15-2019- Survey. * This was our 3rd sailing on Harmony, my wife & I have also been on the Oasis and the Allure several times, we are at the Diamond level.. We went on the Harmony again on May 3, 2020. My ... Read More
Harmony. Cruise Sept 8,15-2019- Survey. * This was our 3rd sailing on Harmony, my wife & I have also been on the Oasis and the Allure several times, we are at the Diamond level.. We went on the Harmony again on May 3, 2020. My overall review on the Harmony.... * Coco Cay experience was Great!!! Beautiful island!!! Perfect Day at CocoCay.. * The Royal Caribbean staff overall on the ship seems very happy which in turn gives good service, from taking care of our room to the restaurants service. * For what ever reason the Beds are still very uncomfortable in our room. We have taken Royal Caribbean many times and this time the beds were not that comfortable. * My wife and I thought that the Entertainment was not up to par compared to the last time we were on the Harmony. Had no problem with the Entertainment on the Oasis and the Allure and the last time we were on the Harmony was very good and we have been on these ships many times before. The water show which was always very good wasn’t very good this cruise. Heard other people saying the same thing... * It seems as the wi-fi was not as good on the Harmony this time compared to other Royal Caribbean ships. This time it kept freezing up and was very slow. * Many times the elevators were not enough to handle the people on the cruise, had to wait a long time to use elevators. * Item of great concern to us was the designated Smoking Area by the pool area should be moved to another floor/level or another part of ship... It’s a shame that the Smoking Area has to be by the pool on the 15 Floor where Kids & Adults have to walk through this area and subjected to the smoke from the cigarettes/pipes & cigars, the smell is just horrible. Need to move to another area..... away from the pool area. * Lobster night was great and our waiters in the dining room were excellent and our room attendant did a great job with our room.... * Very disappointed with the Diamond Club on the Harmony, very small room compared to the Oasis & the Allure. The Diamond Room on the Harmony is about half the size of Diamond Rooms on the Oasis & Allure. The Diamond Rooms on the Oasis & Allure Have two levels/floors, the Harmony only has one level/floor. Also, very disappointed with the Casino regarding table games. On the Harmony Casino you don’t have a game named “Let It Ride”. There were at least 3 or 4 tables in the Casino that had dealers just standing there with no players at their tables. I have been on the Oasis & the Allure and they have the table game “Let It Ride”, it was very popular there. They should get “Let It Ride” card game on the Harmony. * Starbucks that’s normally on the Fifth Floor/Level like the Oasis & Allure was moved to Boardwalk on the Harmony, in my opinion this was a bad move.... It should be put back on the Fifth Floor/ Level.... There are some problems with the Solarium, there’s no pool as there is on the Oasis & Allure and there seemed to be a lot of kids in the Solarium very young age when there is a sign that states no children under the age of 16. Who is suppose to enforce this. **Even though we had some concerns as stated above we had a wonderful time on Harmony the week of, Sept. 8-15, 2019.. Harmony ship is amazing!! My wife and I are both Diamond Members..... Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise because we thought the eastern itinerrary would be amazing, sadly we were sent to costa mesa (basically ghetto mexican port) and cozumel who anyone who cruises sometimes do not even get off at... and of course the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we thought the eastern itinerrary would be amazing, sadly we were sent to costa mesa (basically ghetto mexican port) and cozumel who anyone who cruises sometimes do not even get off at... and of course the perfect day at coco cay, which isn't so perfect honestly. Let's start out with the good. The ship has so much to do and see, for all walks of life. We found the golf area at night fun, there is lots to do for anyone. Our cabin was spacious and always clean, so no issues there. Let's talk about dining. Windjammer .... Same food for breakfast every morning, i mean what can they do? You name it, they have it.. Except peanut butter? weird. Ever notice how hard it is to find blackberries on a cruise ship? No complaints about selections at the windjammer, they always have the basics, except for the last 2 days of the cruise.... they mixed their own yogurts, and only put plain yogurts out... then miraculously the last day when the new people were to board.... they found other flavors again in prepackaged. The freestyle soda fountain is HORRIBLE.... It either never has ice... or the soda is unavailable.... It took 3 days till deck 15's coke zero would work.... and then other times it was offline. In the windjammer on several occasions coke zero was unavailable. up on 15 the outdoor eating area,,, had trash left HOURS after they closed, fries on the ground etc... It was just gross. Only happened one night i saw. Service was overall mediocre with some of course usual very good service members. Overall friendliness was around a 6 out of 10. The elevators is ATROCIOUS, everyone was using stairs because of how bad the elevator situation is... Luckily we were on 14, so going up to 15 and 16 was quick and easy, but on several occasions it was difficult to get down to boardwalk or promenade or even central park because we waited 5-10 mins for an elevator. Just not ok. Towel animals for the kiddos, were 3 out of 7 days. Our room steward made sure we had ice as requested every night, which was great. Main dining service was great, they got some stuff wrong, but were overall friendly and attentive. However, i am not sure what changed.... but the menus are the same every night but maybe 1 app/main/desert changes... So much for nightly unique menus.... Seems to eat well on this ship , as in the best quality food, you have to pay...We used our vouchers for jamies.... which was very good, and by far the best meal we had, service by josh 1? i forget, was good, but it just took too long, with a 3 year old, eating for 90 mins is just too long. We were asked if we had a show, we should of said yes. This is my tip, say you do, whether you do or don't.... they worked fast, but seemed under staffed... By far the busiest of all restaurants.. Johhny rockets was decent, they bring you lots of sides before the burgers come, for the price it's worth it. Embarking was a breeze, and a 9-930 debark.... was A BREEZE.. literally we were in the garage 5-10 mins after we exited the ship. I've never seen anything like it. THANK GOD, no more picking up bags before customs... whoever made this change, deserves a raise, sadly 3 months ago at canaveral on disney... it was still the old way. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This cruise ship and itinerary were chosen because the dates coincided with a school break for my 12 and 8 year olds. We had 2 connecting ocean view balcony rooms. The cabins had plenty of storage space and enough room for us. Any more ... Read More
This cruise ship and itinerary were chosen because the dates coincided with a school break for my 12 and 8 year olds. We had 2 connecting ocean view balcony rooms. The cabins had plenty of storage space and enough room for us. Any more than 2 in a cabin would definately be too crowded. Embarkation was really quick, and we were on the ship in about 20 minutes from arriving in the first line. We were on the ship by about 11:45. Be advised you will have to wait until about 1 pm to get into your room. We all enjoyed the water slides and Ultimate Abyss slide. My kids loved the rock wall and flow rider, as well as the ice skating. The cruise was fully booked but never really felt like it. Our itinerary was changed due to the hurricanes in the Eastern Caribbean, and we headed to the Western Caribbean instead. Beautiful weather every one of the 7 days. Fine Line show was great. Heard the other shows were really good too but I didn't attend those. Cons: Food quality wasn't the best, and menu didn't change that much. Breakfast was pretty bad all over, except for Park Cafe and Main Dining Room No way to get around the casino except to go up or down a floor to get to the other side- could have maybe had one less row of slot machines to make some sort of path around. Kids had the time of their lives... Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
It was very obvious that Royal Caribbean has cut costs on a lot of stuff. I am not sure if it was just this ship (should be the best since it was the most expensive) Or if Royal Caribbean just cut costs everywhere. Food quality was not ... Read More
It was very obvious that Royal Caribbean has cut costs on a lot of stuff. I am not sure if it was just this ship (should be the best since it was the most expensive) Or if Royal Caribbean just cut costs everywhere. Food quality was not good and was the same almost every night, Cleanliness of staterooms and ship where bad, Not kept up with maintenance, Hallways smelt like mold, Feces on my toilet after asking them three times to clean it from previous people, All the way down to not having towel animals made every day only 3 days of it (this does not cost money should do every day my kids enjoyed it). Staff did not have to work for tips since it is added on to EVERYTHING (even the electronic bar that made our drink) so they did not have to work for the money which definitely showed. There used to be different shows everything with NO reservations. Now there are reservations with the same 3 shows 2 of them being musicals which we do not enjoy we like more circus olay stuff. No seating the first day at breakfast so had to wait with food until someone stood up and we could get their seat. If I hadn't cruised with royal Caribbean before it would have been an okay trip. But VERY disappointed because I knew how good they used to be and it was not that great. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Harmony of the Seas 9/15-22 Review Overview: I will start off by saying that this is going to be a very, very long review (better go get a cup of tea if you actually read through all of this). The poor weather gave me a lot of time to ... Read More
Harmony of the Seas 9/15-22 Review Overview: I will start off by saying that this is going to be a very, very long review (better go get a cup of tea if you actually read through all of this). The poor weather gave me a lot of time to sit around and type. This is my 7th cruise in total and 4th cruise with Royal Caribbean. This is my third Oasis-class ship. Our group is a party of three adults. While we enjoyed this cruise a lot, I personally feel that the service on the Allure was better than on the Harmony. Despite being a newer ship than the Allure, we also felt that it was not maintained as well as the Allure too. One morning in the Windjammer, there was a large amount of ants accumulating by the window, which we promptly told a worker about to hopefully clean up. We noticed the dining area is a lot more creakier. They must have made some budget cuts to both the complimentary and pay for dining options, as the buffet menus were quite repetitive and menus posted on the RCCL website for pay-for dining places were not the same as in the restaurants. I think it is tough being one of the most popular--if not the most popular, cruise ship on the seas, which is shown by how much wear and tear is showing. Still the stars of the cruise as usual is the support staff on the boats, who do everything they can to make sure you are having a good experience. I noticed that they had a separate line for Key purchasers for getting on board and getting off the ship, but it did not seem to make much difference to me, as people were still getting on/off at the same time they were. We were on the boat by 11AM and had no issue with reserving restaurants and setting things up. I guess it would matter if you come really early, or want an escort to help you carry things? Weather: Now by no fault of the cruiseline, we experienced quite a turbulent ride for a large part of the cruise. When we left Port Canaveral, it was definitely rocky, but the ride back home was even worse. Whatever storm system (I know TS Jerry is not too far behind us) was present, it seemed to have taken a liking to Harmony and it followed us home. The boats constant rocking back and forth was so intense, people were flung around all over the place. Some people mentioned that this movement was worse than experiences in Alaska. You can hear to howling of the wind, and the rain was heavy and constant throughout the two sea days. They closed the pools for a large part of Sea Day number 2 because the pool ended up being some crazy wave pool, but the hot tubs were open if you did not mind sitting in the tub with rain pouring down on you. The weather also caused the internet to drop throughout the day as well. I was hoping by the last day on the ship the weather would be better, but unfortunately, it continued to be rocky until we reached the shallower waters closer to Florida. I think this impacted people's ability to come out of their rooms because for the most part, the public spaces appeared to be fairly empty. The pool deck was a ghost town with the exception of the smoking area. The CD mentioned that there were swells up to 15 feet. Bad weather also makes a mega ship lose its magic, as shows, activities, and public areas were cancelled or closed. I'm sure the cruiseline was thrilled for cancelling shows and activities, as more people seemed to spend money gambling, shopping, and drinking on board. While bad weather can come at any time of year, I would say take this into consideration if you do choose to travel during hurricane season. Also, if you have a chance to catch a show, go on a water slide, down the Abyss, or ride on the FlowRider earlier in the week, do it then because you may not have a chance on the latter half! Pre-Cruise: This cruise was booked at the last minute (less than 2 months prior to the cruise), so I had to do a lot of last minute planning without doing the thorough review check prior to the cruise. I had been watching the spaghetti models during the week prior to the cruise, as Humberto was lingering close by Florida, but thankfully he choose to boomerang back into the ocean, and we were able to land in Orlando on time. For flying, we took JetBlue to Orlando Airport. The JetBlue terminal was not connected to the main terminal area, so for those who are coming through JetBlue, prepare to take a short tram ride to the main terminal in order to get to baggage claim--as non-primary English speakers, my parents told me that they would feel nervous if they were travelling alone, as they would not feel confident going around the airport in this manner, but I felt the tram system was very straight forward. I had compared pricing between paying for a LYFT/Uber for 3 people to get to Port Canaveral vs transport services, and in the end we decided to go with GoPort. They have various packages posted on their website to choose from with a whole range of pricing. We are not picky people and are always looking for a good deal, thus we looked for more of a budget hotel. We at first were thinking of choosing a hotel by Port Canaveral, but I noticed the GoPort site had hotels by the airport instead. Each hotel has different designated pick up times when they leave for the cruise port. We wanted a hotel that would allow for us to get to the cruiseport fairly early, thus we chose the Holiday Inn Orlando Airport. The customer service for GoPort were super friendly and helpful, and they allowed up to 3 days to cancel/change without incurring a penalty. The Fly Snooze Cruise package for three adults ended up being about 230 bucks which includes pick up from the airport to the hotel (this is scheduled by you calling your hotel after you get your luggage and going to the designated pick up locations), two queen beds at the hotel, and round-trip transportation to and from the Port Canaveral cruiseport. The hotel itself looked recently refurbished, but some parts of it seemed to be a bit dated. The air conditioner was a bit loud and not as cool as we would want it to be, and the television's screen was all messed up. They had a mini fridge in the room. Unfortunately, there is no included continental breakfast at the hotel, but they do have a restaurant plus a cafe there (and a small snack shop). I ordered the breakfast sliders from the cafe (where it was about 10 bucks and tax), and it was easily sharable for 2 (we shared it amongst all 3 of us because we only wanted a light breakfast) people. Although the pick up time is set for 9:45AM at this hotel by GoPort, it is recommended that you show up at 9:30AM per the hotel staff. However, even showing up at 9:30AM, we were the last ones getting onto the bus. The commute time was about 45 minutes to Port Canaveral from the hotel, and it was an easy ride given it was a straight shot to the terminal without traffic. Once you get to the cruise port, the GoPort workers leave out everyone's luggage to grab any last minute things, and then a porter is already standing there and tells you to leave your luggage. Now when we were heading to the Allure last year at Port Everglades, we had encountered a pushy porter who was demanding tips from people (trying to say that if you didn't tip him, you shouldn't expect your luggage to show up to your room), but Port Canaveral has signs all over that tipping is not mandatory and should be based on service. I am always happy to tip people who are kind and hardworking. This was the fastest check in/embarkation line we had ever experienced. I guess the initial groups had already gone in, thus it was a direct walk straight onto the boat after a brief check in and security point check. The security lady we had spoken to was claiming that anyone who had beverages were supposed to dump it, but we had a couple bottles of soda/water, and it went through without issue (other people had entire cases of soda and got through fine as well, but some poor guy behind us was trying to chug his overpriced water and chucked the rest). As a side note, we had some time to kill once we had landed in Orlando, and after checking in, we decided to take a LYFT to Boston Lobster Feast over on International Drive. The ride from the hotel to the restaurant was 17.50. BLF is an AYCE seafood restaurant, and they have two locations. Early bird pricing if you come in before 6PM is 50 dollary doos while after 6PM is 5 dollars more. Early bird time was a good time to go, as while the restaurant had a lot of people, lines were quick. What is included in things like lobster (one at a time, but they always had a huge pile and it was easy to get as many as you wanted), snow crab legs, Cajun seasoned blue crab (the best thingy they had IMO), steamers, assortment of fried seafood, selection of cold seafood like raw oysters, etc. My parents were skeptical at first, but they were very happy we ended up going there. After we finished eating at the restaurant, we took a LYFT to Disney Springs, which costed 12.59. I have to say, for people who are not familiar with the area, the entrance way for ride-sharing companies like LYFT/Uber was confusing as heck! Our poor driver (who did not speak much English) was having a hard time finding the entrance, thus I just told him to drop us off at a nearby parking lot and that we would walk the rest of the way. The ride back was also a nightmare, as it let us choose a spot we were standing at, but then later without warning mentioned that we had to go elsewhere to a designated pick up spot for LYFT/Uber riders. Thankfully our rider was super sweet and would have waited even if we didn't make it in the 5 minute waiting time limit, but we put our cardio skills to the test and made it with seconds to spare. I do not think someone who was not physically well could have made it across Disney Springs in time, especially because of the lack of signage and crowds). Disney Springs was a nice place to just do a casual shop and stroll, but all of the Disney folks and kiddies were also thinking the same thing. Thankfully I purchased a bottle of water and soda at the mart by Boston Lobster Feast, as one bottle of soda/water at Disney Springs costed over 4 dollary doos--yikes. Our LYFT ride back to the hotel was 23.23 plus a very generous tip for our kind driver. Cabin: Normally, we try to book a Boardwalk balcony cabin because we enjoy the perks that come with the room, but there were none left by the time we tried to book the areas we would like, thus we went with a Central Park balcony for the first time. I was a bit hesitant in choosing a CP balcony, as my experience in the past has been always that the CP area does not have good air circulation and is fairly hot because of it. It was not as bad (we are on the 12th floor). It was also quieter than the BBs as well, as we do not have to listen to the late night water shows. You can hear people on the pool deck (the people who tend to be the loudest are those who are going on the water slides and screaming their heads off), and at night you can hear musicians playing things like Jazz, but the locks on the balcony blocked out most of the noise and never interfered with our sleep. As for the cabin itself, I very much like how they redesigned the cabin spaces compared to the Oasis/Allure. It just seemed like there was more space, and less bumping into things. Instead of the fold out couch taking for a huge space, they redesigned the couch bed to be more of an extra long twin style. It was comfy for me, but the blanket for the couch was a bit small (only the width of the bed) and the sheet cover kept falling off the blanket, so at times I would wake up at night exposed to the cold. It was nice having two closets and two sets of drawers. The mini fridge also seemed slightly bigger. As for plugs and ports, there is two USB ports directly into the wall (which I found to be a slow charger for my cellphone), and three regular ports by the desk, and then more plugs by the bed. It used to be a big deal having multiport plugs in your room, but all we really needed was one of those multi USB ports on this ship. Rug had stains and looked worn. I think RCCL has stopped changing bedsheets daily for quite some time now. Towel animals were presented in our cabin about three times during the week. Since this is a CP balcony, we had the Eat Drink Discover perks attached to the room, but since we already ordered the unlimited dining package, we did not use the free lunch for two (which you can choose between Jamie’s, Sabor, or Johnny Rockets). The room came with a bottle of wine, in which we do not drink. I called CS to see if this could be exchanged to anything else, but unfortunately it cannot, so we decided to just bring this home for my sister. Our booking agent also threw in a bottle of wine, thus we had two bottles of wine waiting for us (I was curious and looked up the wines online, and they are priced at $8.50 per bottle). I would like to note that RCCL did put out a notice that they are going to be ending the Eat Drink Discover perks in the future. The bathroom layout is similar to the Allure/Oasis, but the sink is slightly bigger, so it is less messy splashing when washing your face. They continue to be lacking in the cold water department. The soap/shampoo continues to be a bar of soap and the "2 in 1" shampoo/body wash in the wall dispenser. The shower was a bit inconvenient when you are getting out, as it is not the slide door they had on Allure but a door that automatically tries to shut itself when you open it (I would push the floor towel to block it from closing when drying). Hair dryer is in the drawers by the mini fridge and tissues. In order to conserve energy, the Harmony requires you to put your card key into the slot by the door in order to keep electricity going through the room or else it times off. While our room was nice, the halls of the cabins was another story. After we finished lunch at Jamie's, we walked back to the room...and oh goodness. It was the strongest smell of sewage ever that reeked up and down the halls around our stateroom. Everyone who was walking around the halls were all complaining, disgusted, and gagging from the rotten smell which seemingly no one was handling. Finally, it seemed that enough people called and complained about the sewage smell, and someone from maintenance came by. It seems that they tried to wash the carpets or something, but this only made it worse. Going forward, it just smelled of moldy mildew and sewage. I am very sensitive to smell, so it was unbearable to even try to walk to the room (thankfully our room did not smell). Once again, it seems that no one was doing anything about the smell that was leaving an entire hall of guests feeling grossed out. I jumped into the long line at customer service, and I brought it up again, frustrated that it is 8 hours later and it still smelled of sewage and mildew. The CS rep looked more annoyed than helpful, but she called the maintenance person, where they said an "accident" happened and that they will not be able to do anything until the next day, where they would again try to wash the carpets and dry them. I asked if they could spray something at least to make the smell less, which again the girl looked annoyed as heck and buzzed back to the guy to do something. Unfortunately, nothing was done, and the hall from like rooms 12250 through 12175 had to endure the horrible smell. Frustrated by the lack of interventions, I tweeted a word of complaint directly at RCCL, and they responded back to me in less than 5 minutes, asking me for the deets (social media speaks louder I guess). They told me based on the info, there was nothing they could do. However, the next day, they did shampoo the carpets again, which took away a lot of the smell (it still smells like mold by rooms 12250), and they also sprayed some pleasant fruit smell to try to mask what they could. I also received a follow up call from maintenance asking if I felt that the issue was resolved, which was nice. Our room attendant was very kind and always happy to open the door for us if our hands were full of stuff. If you bring mugs/drinks back into the room, remember to leave it outside of the room, as the stewards will not take it away otherwise. On Night 5, we had an issue with our toilet in that it would not stop flushing and filling with water. I was standing in the bathroom and brushing my teeth, and I noticed the toilet water was getting really high, in which it promptly continued to fill until it overflowed. Thankfully, flushing the water down the drain prevented it from overflow, thus I left my father on flush duty while I called maintenance (though I felt bad the neighbors were stuck hearing the toilet vortex flush every 15 seconds), which took about 10 minutes for someone to actually show up. It was fixed in about 10 minutes, where a cleaner came promptly after to wipe up any mess. On Night 6 and 7 because it was windy and stormy, we noticed that the balcony door was letting air in from outside, causing a high pitched sound throughout the day/night, but thankfully we are deep sleepers and it did not keep us up (I also sleep with earplugs, which helped). A few days into the cruise, they do add a Laundry offer into the Compass, where it is Wash and Fold Laundry Service—1 bag for 34.99, in which they state they will wash things like pajamas, socks, underwear, shorts, swimwear, and t-shirts. The notice also came with the Luggage Valet offer to pay the cruiseline to send your luggage directly to the airport for a fee ($25 plus the airline fee for baggage check-in). Internet: We ordered the 2 Surf + Stream package, where the pricing did drop to about 21 dollars for 2 lines, which was not as low as the internet package deal I saw on Allure last year, but still not bad. I noticed that the login method has changed since I had been on the Allure last year, where they have you log into the Harmony Guest WiFi and create an account. You need to put in information like your name and year of birth, and then you make a username and pin number for your password. I had issues with creating an account, but thankfully on the first day on the ship, they had a bunch of people standing in the promenade area in green shirts helping people with set up. Lo and behold, they put in my first name wrong, so that was the reason why I couldn't get in on the first time, but it only took about 5 minutes to resolve my issue. I have done some speed tests, and the download speed usually ran around 6 mbps during the days, and around 1.5 mbps at night time. I was able to stream videos and music on my phone without much issues. I was able to FaceTime with my sister while we were at CocoCay with only a couple brief hiccups (if you have an internet package, you can use it on CocoCay). As a note, there is no cellphone tower on CocoCay, so there will be reception (I tried to use Verizon roaming and saw it said: No Service even when roaming was turned on). The upload speed is a different story. No matter what time of day it is, the upload speed was slow. Whenever I tried to send a picture to my family, it would take about 5 minutes per image (each picture was ballpark 1.8 mb). FYI on Day 5, the Cruise Compass had a deal where you can purchase 1 SURF + STREAM package for 1 device for 50 bucks...not quite sure how much of a deal that really is, but is an option for those who did not want to pre-purchase. Dining: This section will be quite extensive, as we had the unlimited dining package. I would like to start off by saying that to us, the package was an amazing deal (we purchased it at a discount price of 175, which is not the lowest it goes, but still reasonable). At the same time, I feel that the package made eating sometimes almost an obligation more than an enjoyment, and at times I felt we would over eat more than what we would do if we didn't have it. I think we would have been much happier with the 3-night dining package instead of the unlimited, but it gave us the chance to try every specialty restaurant at least once to be able to plan for our future cruises. The UDP allows for you to eat at as many restaurants you want for dinner and also lets you eat lunch on embarkation day and sea days. On the Allure, we had to run up to a specialty restaurant to make reservations, but on Harmony, there were two stations in the promenade right upon entering that allows for you to set up your dining schedule there. As I am a planner, I already came with a list of restaurants and times that we would want to eat at. We were unable to get a reservation to 150 CP for Day 1 (unless we wanted to eat at 8:30PM), thus we had to switch up the schedule a bit. Since we are early eaters, getting a 5:30PM reservation was not a problem at all on any other day. As a note, Chops is a very popular restaurant--we tried to change the date around, but we were told that Chops was booked for all early dining times for the rest of the cruise unless we wanted to eat at 8:30PM or later. Now I know there has been some debate and talk about the UDP and whether or not people can order multiple entrees during a single dining session, but honestly, the amount of food you get is already so much, I could not imagine eating more than one entree. To summarize, here is the dining specialty dining venues I personally would rank (excluding Johnny Rockets) from best to worst:1) Jamie's (great for both lunch and dinner) 2) Chops (Lunch options too few imo) 3) Sabor (food great, but it is too hot at lunch) 4) Wonderland (weirdness aside) 5) 150 Central Park (too monotone for flavors between apps and entrees 6) Izumi (Asian food that didn't taste like Asian food). Make sure you plan out your specialty dining ahead of time and how long it takes to go through a meal. Lunch was 60-90 minutes long. Dinner was typically 2 hours, though Wonderland was over 2 hours. If you are tight on time, the waiters were happy to accommodate, which shrunk our dinner time to like 75 minutes. Okay, now the verbose section about what we ordered and what I thought! After setting up our dining schedule, we went up to Jamie's Italian to make a lunch reservation right for 12PM when they opened. The lunch menu was a limited menu in comparison to the dinner menu, but still had a good amount of choices. We went all in and ordered a heck of a lot of apps including the famous meat plank, crispy squid, black truffle arancini, garlicky prawns, and ultimate garlic bread. The meat plank came out first, and this of course if the post-it-up-on-social-media-for-the-oohs-and-ahhs choice. The meat plank wow'd us so much that I forgot to take pictures of the rest of the appetizers like I normally would. Our favorite apps were the crispy squid and the garlic bread. The black truffle arancini was also very delicious, but a bit too heavy, and the garlicky prawns were overcooked and hard to pull off the shell. For the entrees, my dad and I both ordered the JI burger and my mother just ordered an entree sized portion of the famous prawn linguine. My dad also had ordered a side of seasonal greens and I the arugula and parmesan salad, but both items were both forgotten about and not brought (which ended up being okay because we were stuffed). The burger was delicious, as the hamburger meat was actually ground up tenderloin with the right amount of fat to meat ratio. I didn't care for the caramelized onions though. My mother enjoyed the pasta, but I would like to note that the sauce is quite spicy, so people who cannot handle spicy may want to consider another option. Even though we were full, the waiter encouraged us to try dessert, thus my father ordered all three flavors of sorbet (raspberry, mango, and I think lemon), while my mother had the lemon cheesecake, and I the tiramisu. All three desserts were shared and were excellent, though the tiramisu was not as coffee and bold as the tiramisu we had at Giovanni’s on the Allure last year, thus I feel the cheesecake was the winner (some of the sorbet was pretty sour, but refreshing). For dinner on the first night, we went to Wonderland. Now, my parents are pretty conservative when it comes to eating, and I was worried about how much they would be receptive towards modern gastronomy cooking. We also were still not hungry because of our big lunch at Jamie's. Since the dinner is more of a culinary experience than a big sit down food shovel, it worked out in the end. I would like to note that our dinner actually took about 2.5 hours to complete! Elton was an excellent culinary guide though, and he was patient in handling my folks and their skepticism. He took over the ordered for the small plates by asking us what types of foods are our preferences vs strong dislikes. I definitely would have to say that if you are not a bit adventurous and open-minded about eating, this restaurant may not be the best choice for you. As one of the first people in the restaurant, many on-lookers would stare at what was being brought to us and watched for our reactions when eating/drinking the dishes. Thankfully, if it was something we liked, in the end it was only about one bite, so not much was wasted. The weirdest thing that we had was the Liquid Truffle Mushroom Risotto--it literally looked like an eyeball on a spoon, and the moment it touches your tongue, it pops and delivers a bath of mushroominess down your throat. The plate that most surprised us was the Tomato Water, as I thought it would be gross, but in the end it tasted like cool tomato soup with bread dipped into it. The Birds Nest is the best--take out your video recording app choice. My parents had fun eating the smoky bird nest because that is the first time they had something of that nature. For the entrees, you choose from Earth--Chicken, Pork, and Short Rib or the Sea--Halibut and Branzino. It is intended for people to share the entrees, thus we ordered the short rib, halibut and the branzino. The short-rib was a beautiful plate and was very tender. The halibut was cooked in a bag and the mushroom sauce made it physically look unattractive, but the fish was cooked well. The branzino was aesthetically pleasing, but there was actually not that much fish and the sauce was not my favorite. The desserts were the most memorable part of the meal. We ordered the The World, Forbidden Apple, and the mushroom dessert that I cannot remember the name for. The World in the end was too sweet/rich our liking, but the effects of the melting dessert was fun. The mushroom dessert was adorable, and we enjoyed the meringue. My dad said that his favorite restaurant on the whole ship was Wonderland for the experience. On Day 2, we stopped at our perfect day at Coco Cay, thus for lunch we ate on the island. I feel that the selection choices were a better than on Labadee. My favorite part was the taco station, where the carnitas was well cooked and seasoned, with the addition of the salsa bar. There also was the standard burger/hot dogs, but they also had a salad bar, panini sandwiches, and fruit/desserts like cookies. For dinner, we ended up going to 150 CP. Overall, the food at this restaurant was a bit...heavy down to the delicious bread they served at the start, to the appetizers and entrees. I did not think my ordering choices out well, and thus I ordered the Sunchoke Velouté and Braised Short Rib for the app and Roasted Tenderloin for one (it says two but they can make it for one). My father also ordered the velouté, and Roasted Organic Beet Salad for apps and the Pan Seared Veal Medallions for the entree. My mother the Seared Honey Glazed Scallops and the Caesar Salad for apps and Lobster Thermidor for the entree. Just like at Jamie's, another item was forgotten and they never brought out the Caesar Salad, but it worked out in the end because I was not a fan of the velouté, but my mother liked it and ate it in my stead (she felt that it tasted like a broccoli soup, but the seasoning was unusual for me). The apps in itself were almost like mini entrees. The tenderloin was a perfectly cooked medium rare along with the veal, but eating two beef dishes in a row was a bit too much for me. I did enjoy the vegetables that garnished the plate more. The lobster thermidor was a bit on the small side. We ordered the Fried Cheesecake, Peanut Butter Chocolate Tart, and Hazelnut Passion Fruit Bar to share, in which we all agreed that the Fried Cheesecake was the best out of the three. Again the chocolate tart was delicious and not overly sweet, but was too rich after a heavy meal. On Day 3 (Sea Day), we decided to try Sabor for lunch. Now my mom is not a fan of Mexican food, but she was willing to give it a try, and actually enjoyed a few things I was unable to get her to try before. The biggest issue with Sabor at lunch is that the sun is beaming down, and even if you sit by a fan and in the shade, the air circulation is not that great and we actually had to rush the end of the meal because we could not breathe. It is better during dinner time because of this. We started off with the guacamole--being from Massachusetts, most avocados you buy are unripened and super green in color. These avocadoes were most definitely ripe and softer guac than we are used to. It was pretty good, but nothing to write home about. We ordered several small plates, which included the Spicy Beef Empanadas (not impressive), Red Snapper Ceviche (the sauce was delicious and made this the best starter), Fried Chile Calamari (seasoned differently than Jamie's, but it was like crispy than Jamie's as well), and Chicken-Stuffed Jalapenos Wrapped in Bacon (too salty for our liking, but still good nonetheless). We also ordered tacos, where I ordered the Pulled Pork, my father the Grilled Cobia (fish), and mother the Shrimp Taco. Each taco order comes with more than enough meat to fill three taco tortillas and they bring the salsas/toppings as well. The carnitas was very good. For dessert, we ordered only the churros because we were about to pass out from the heat--it came with both a chocolate and cream cheese-like dipping sauces. For dinner, we went back to Jamie's. The dinner menu is very similar to the lunch menu, with the addition of some of their more pricier options like lamb chops and short-rib. As a note, the menus on the Royal cruise planner is NOT the same menu you get on board. This time we had a wonderful waiter Antonio. Having eaten too many heavy meals already this cruise, I wanted to opt for something lighter. We started off with the crispy squid and garlic bread again, but we also tried the Creamy Burrata (super soft mozzarella cheese with the most delicious slow-roasted tomato topping over it). For dinner, my father had the Eggplant Parmigiana (I do not like eggplant so I did not try this), my mother the Prawn linguine again, and I ordered the Jamie's Caesar Salad, which is as basic as you can get. Our waiter felt that we should try something else on top of this though and insisted that we try the Lamb Chops, thus he ordered us an additional entree. I for one do not like meat like lamb, goat, or veal, but I did try a bite, and it was definitely well cooked and good quality. My father ended up liking it so much he ate the whole thing (and was stuffed from eating two entrees). We also ordered seasonal greens on the side, and lo and behold for the second time at Jamie's we were not given our sides, but again we were full and felt we were better off. For dessert I tried the Pavlova, and my goodness was this too sweet. The meringue was not too bad, but the raspberry sauce on top was so sour and sweet I could not eat more than a couple bites. Our overall experience was so good at the restaurant though! On Day 4, we went to the Windjammer for lunch and my goodness. Because of the boat getting to St. Thomas at 12:30PM, everyone else had the same idea to eat lunch right before the boat was letting people off. I had never experienced such a crowded buffet before. The serving stations are circular, and it was tough to figure out where the start/end of the lines were. If you do not have an excursion to get to right away, I suggest you wait 30 minutes more for an easier lunch experience. For dinner, we went to Chops--a place we had already eaten at on the Allure. Unfortunately, the host of the restaurant must have been having a bad day or something, as he was not the nicest person I had ever met (raising his finger/hand in front of our faces because he wanted to talk with the restaurant reservation person before us). Also, when we sat down, we told our waiter (while this guy was still around) that we had a show to get to and that we would not have that much time, in which the host in a "joking" manner told us that we should then go and get burgers instead. Yikes. Whatever, our waiter was kind and did whatever he could to make our dining experience as quick as possible, but still presented us with a good quality meal. I ordered the Lobster Bisque (rich with a deep taste of lobster) and Jumbo Lump Crab Cake (full of crabby goodness), which I had both on the Allure, and they are still as great as I had remembered them to be. My parents also both got the crab cake, but my dad also got the Wild Mushroom Soup and my mother the Caesar salad. My Angus Filet Minion was cooked more medium than medium rare, but still perfectly seasoned that I did not even need sauce. My father had the Prime NY Strip Steak and my mother the Spicy Jumbo Shrimp (the 5 pieces of shrimp were so large my mother had a hard time finishing). The sides again were good, but nothing to write home about. For dessert, I ordered the Warm Apple Pie a la Mode (the pie crust was not crispy but the apple was well cooked), my father the Key Lime Meringue Pie (the best dessert we ordered even if the meringue was a bit too sweet), and my mother the New York Cheesecake (pretty standard). Normally, the dinners take the full 2 hours, but we were able to finish in about an hours-time thanks to our waiter. On Day 5, we planned for a dinner at Izumi--the sushi side. Our family have been to hibachis in the past, and none of us care for the show and the meal. With the UDP, you are allowed to get 35 dollars per person, which can be pooled for the entire table. In all honesty, this is the first restaurant that we ate at that we felt was overall "mehhhh." It started off with complimentary edamame. We received the Shrimp & Vegetable Tempura next, which was much heavier and oilier than tempura we had elsewhere. What was worse, as the onion piece I bit into felt weird, and I saw that I had bit into a huge mound of flour. I pointed it out to the waiter, stating that everything else was fine, but she insisted that we get another order of tempura free of charge, so incoming another round of greasy tempura no one really wanted to eat but ate because we did not want to waste food. We shared a Rainbow Roll (standard), Izumi Spider Roll (pretty good, but heavy on the unagi sauce and fell apart with each bite), and the Baked Snow Crab & Salmon Dynamite (warm roll that was good). The rice did not seem like sushi rice. For entrees, my parents both got the Yaki Udon (my father the tofu and mother the shrimp). The portions were ginormous and neither could finish off the entree. The tofu did not go well with the yaki udon at all, as it was just huge thick blocks of fried tofu plopped on top. The noodles were pretty sweet as well. I ordered the Spicy Miso Ramen, which tasted less like miso and more like oil. Unlike the thin sliced pork I am used to at restaurants, they gave you three huge slabs of pork as well. Definitely not our favorite place, but we would consider giving it another try...maybe on a different cruise. On Day 6, we decided that for lunch we would eat at Johnny Rockets, but we all agreed that we needed a break from the specialty restaurants tonight, thus cancelled our second reservation to Izumi and planned to eat at the Windjammer instead. Johnny Rockets was crowded as usual, and you have to wait a bit if you want a table inside the restaurant. We are glad that we did wait, as it began to pour rain fiercly and people were huddling onto the counters inside with their food. As an FYI, Johnny Rockets meals comes with free sodas which they can give you a to-go cup as well (with paper straws). If you have the UDP like us, you can easily go back to Johnny Rockets and get sodas or snack on things like onion rings with somewhat ease (if it is busy, people may notice you at the counter until the head host guy tells a waiter to attend to you). The poor workers there are stretched too thin between making milkshakes, taking orders, cleaning up, and having to stop to sing and dance. I think the chefs as well were overwhelmed, as I had ordered a Smoke House burger, but found all of my toppings were added to my mother's chicken melt instead. Tonight is second formal night (lobster night), but we did not feel up to going to the MDR. The Windjammer was having "Mixed Grill" night, and thus we were excited when looking at the food options, but unfortunately everything was very dried out and inedible. We were also excited at first because they had "kimchi salad," as we are Korean and were missing Korean food. Unfortunately, it was nothing close to real kimchi minus the fact they used napa cabbage (tasted like they were trying to make kimchi candy or something). Our sweet restaurant worker Yuni told us that the cruises that go specifically to Asian countries have the authentic Asian foods. Given the quality of the food at the Windjammer, we decided to go back to the specialty dining for the last day. On Day 7, we went to Chops for lunch. The lunch offerings seemed much smaller than I expected (less than what even the RCCL app showed). I started off with the Charred Beef Carpaccio, while my father started with The Wedge, and mother the Wild Mushroom Soup. For entrees, I tried the NY Steak Salad, while my mother chose the Caesar Salad, and my father the 8 Oz. Angus Filet Mignon. The Caesar salad gave you the option of picking your protein. The salad was delicious, but if you came hungry, it may not be enough for a big appetite. I ordered vanilla ice cream for dessert and my father the Warm Chocolate Cake. For dinner, we returned back to Jamie's for one last time, where thankfully Antonio was working again. We ordered the Ultimate Garlic Bread again, but this time it was different than how it was made before, in which the waiter informed us that the chef wanted to try serving it to us in this style to see what we thought. We tried the Tomato Bruschetta as well, where the toppings were good, but the bread itself was so crunchy that we had difficulty biting into it. For dinner, I tried the Baked Lasagne, which was good. Thanks to Antonio, the Arugula and Parmesan Salad came this time around. Entertainment: I will start off by saying that I oftentimes use cruising to try to reset my sleep schedule all messed up from stress and work, thus I did not do much late night things to review on. Most of the shows had a stand where you can buy popcorn and movie candy boxes. Prepare to come at least 20 minutes before a popular show if you want a decent seat that isn’t behind a pole. They block off sections for Pinnacle, Grand Suite, Diamond Plus, Key people, but the rest of the seats get released about 10 minutes prior to the show which anyone can take after. We went to see 1887: A Journey in Time (the ice skating show) on the first night, and surprisingly enough, the seating was empty up until the last few minutes of the start. My folks are always a big fan of the ice shows because of the costumes. If you sit close to the rink, remember to bring a light sweater, as it can get chilly in there! The Las Vegas Tenors were here to perform the Headliner Show. They were definitely talented, but it was not what I was expecting. They would talk about how people would expect them to be opera (which I wish it were), but it was much more pop, country, rock mixes. 1/3 of the time was them trying to advertise themselves to get more social media clicks. 1/3 of the time was these low-brow jokes making fun of the overweight singer of the trio. The audience overall seemed to be having a good time though. The Fine Line Aqua show, as with all aqua shows was entertaining, but I noticed that this show was more focused on dancing (almost like I was watching Stomp and not a water show). Less diving into the water. Prepare to be splashed like heck if you're sitting in the front, and the person who is suspended in the air would make her rounds above the audience in the center, dripping water along the way. The highlight feature of the show is a man walking 55 feet up in the air on a tightrope--if you actually want a good look at this (I was stuck watching it for the most part on the video screen), sit either in the center or the right-hand side (when you walk in) as if you are too far left, it is blocked from your view. Get there at least 30 minutes before a popular show time if you want to try to get one of those lawn chair seats that have a drink holder instead of the hard benches. We tried to sit through Columbus, but the storyline itself was not really our thing, and just like on the Allure with that planet show, they just took modern songs and remade it to fit the show. My mother was looking forward to watching Grease, but because the boat was rocking so much, the last show on the boat was first delayed (in which people must have realized there was little else to do when so many areas of the ship/activities were being cancelled because of the rough seas, thus they just stayed in the queue for an extra hour), and then we were told that they were planning to cancel it. The cast felt bad that so many people were going to miss the show, that they decided to do a "concert" version of the show, where they talked through the show and just took turns singing their songs in front of mics with the band playing. They dedicated to sing for an hour straight, thus the crowd was appreciative of their efforts. They were definitely a talented group, but of course people were a bit disappointed they didn't get to see the whole show. Public Spaces: As I had already been on the Oasis and the Allure recently, the layout of the ship is similar with a few exceptions. For those who are looking for a quiet place to read, on the fifth floor in various spots around the jogging track area, there are lounger chairs under covered areas. While there is still sea air circulating the spots, it may be too warm and humid for some to be comfortable, but it fairly quiet. There are lounger chairs in the back of the boat on the 5th floor, but they are moreso sitting upright. For the casino, I noticed that there is one less stairwell heading up and down from the promenade area (the spiral stairs) in comparison to the Allure/Oasis. The casino has also been split to a smoking side and non-smoking side. Quarter dropping machines are on both sides. The Windjammer entrance and layout is slightly different than on the Allure/Oasis. Harmony funnels people to the side entrance, where there is a handwashing station there. The happy-happy washy-washy people at the entrance did not have the hand sanitizer that often, thus I question if people washed their hands less because of it. RCCL must have made some cut backs or changes to their buffet options, as we had noticed the variety and selection differed from our stay on the Allure. My dad was used to having cold unsweetened tea available for every meal, but they limited the mornings to orange juice, apple juice, water, milk, and hot beverages. Lunch/dinner had the inclusion of the unsweetened tea and the strawberry kiwi drink and some other fruit beverage. If you want milk at night, you can ask one of the restaurant workers, and they will get it for you from the back. The service as always was spectacular, and staff always was happy (at least on the outside) to get you a drink or silverware. I laughed on the day they had the server ringing a bell and going around to advertise ice cream. On Day 6 for breakfast, one of the head waiters came up to us and invited us to do the Bottomless Galley Brunch (I am unsure if they meant this as complimentary vs if we were to pay), where he told us that they would have offerings like sushi from Izumi, but given our bad experience with Izumi, we passed on this offer. I wish the Windjammer could stay open an extra hour later, even if it just to allow drink service and maybe some desserts, as for my family, it is more comfortable, quieter, and easier to find seating in the evenings after a show over sitting in the promenade. Windjammer did have their themed nights, whether it was Mongolian night (where you can get stir fries), Crepe Day/Night, Mixed Grill Night, Mexican Night, and of course the chocolate buffet (was the same night as Mexican night). Windjammer has an electronic sign every day that announces the dinner theme for you to plan accordingly. Oh, and Windjammer does offer a "gluten free" section. I noticed they started putting up barriers at certain stations at times to prevent people from self-serving things such as during Chocolate Buffet night where they blocked off the area and had someone serving the cakes for you, and the ice cream machines would have someone stationed there at times handing them out. We did not eat at any of the MDRs during the entire cruise, thus I cannot comment on them. Central Park still has poor air circulation and is warmer than the Boardwalk area typically. We went to NEXTCRUISE to talk about booking our possible next RCCL cruise onboard (you can either write your name for a block period of time vs walk-in queue), but the onboard credit offering for a 3 adult Balcony cabin was only 50 dollars, which is actually less than what we get from our travel agent, thus we did not feel the need to buy it on the boat. The main theater’s layout looks identical to the Allure’s. The chairs have these nearly useless drink holders. If you sit in the aisles, prepare yourself to have to get up several times during the show to let people in and out. Activities On Board/Fitness: Okay, I will be honest with you in saying ahead of time, I was quite a party pooper and did not do much activities on the ship because I spent a lot more time catching up on sleep than I had expected. They did have shows like the Love and Marriage show, The Quest, The Family Quest that normally I would like to attend, but I didn't make it to any of them. I was planning on doing a lot more things onboard the ship during the last two sea days heading back from St. Martin, but lo and behold the weather would make me give up on such plans. People seemed to have gone hog wild for the flash sales in the promenade—especially for $10 everything (swimsuit cover ups, clutches, accessories) and the 2 for $20 Port t-shirt sales. For fitness, I was looking on the itinerary for a Zumba class, but did not see any listed, thus I spent most of time walking the track instead. Cannot comment on the gym much since I didn't exercise in there, but it seemed pretty similar to the Allure. The television in the room was bad and I did not see any movies on there, but some of the public spaces had movies playing (Avengers, Aquaman, etc.). Ports and Excursions: The three ports that we went to was: 1) Coco Cay, 2) St Thomas, and 3) St Martin. If you want to get a good view of the ship pulling into port, we actually had more fun going onto deck 5 around the jogging deck, as you could see the pilot boat come close by the ship to ensure it was steadily coming in to dock. This is our first time going to Coco Cay, thus I specifically picked this itinerary for the sake of going there. The island ended up being much smaller than I had expected, but I did not notice any damage from the recent hurricane that unfortunately ravaged part of the Bahamas. You can pick up beach towels either up on the 15th deck (which was recommended to not be held up by a crowd) or before you leave the ship. We were the only ship there for the day, thus we got the whole island to ourselves, thus there were plenty of beach chairs to go around. We made it to Chill beach area and we quickly got into the water. Beach is a little bit bumpy, so those with sensitive feet may want to get water shoes. I saw several people with snorkel equipment, but did not really see fish around. We did see a jellyfish floating in the area on its own. Unfortunately, the perfect weather turned quickly, where for about an hour or so, it began downpouring on the island. Thankfully there was no lightning/thunder, so people were able to stay in the water, but the beach umbrella did not do a great job keeping the water away. I felt bad for those who had paid for those beds (very few people were actually there) given the downpour. Thankfully, the rain went away around noonish. Chill beach is close by the free eatery, which included more options that Labadee did (see the Dining section). We did not go over to the free pool area, nor did we pay to go into the water slide section, thus I cannot comment on that. I would definitely want to go back to Coco Cay in the future! The next port was St. Thomas. For those who lingered on the ship, you got to hear them test the fire drill and evacuation, where they tested a bunch of the evacuation boats (which was amusing to see float around). We had already been to St Thomas in the past, but many people feel it is one of the better places in the Caribbean to shop! St Thomas has flat rate taxi costs which is listed right by the exit of the port area. Always check and confirm with the driver before getting onto the taxi though. 2+ people reduces the cost of transport. To give an example of pricing, it was 4 dollars each way for 3 of us to go to downtown shopping area from the cruiseport. It would have only been 4 dollars for us to go to Emerald Beach, 10 dollars for Magens Bay (they do charge admission here), and 10 to get to Coki Beach. We did not feel the need to go to the beach, thus we went to the downtown shopping area. Unfortunately, they are doing full on construction of the road in the shopping area, thus people were squashed in walking on the sides--it would likely not be easy to push a wheelchair down such narrow ways. People seemed to jump upon the jewelry for sale. We went into the Tiffanys store just to see what they offered (mainly older products), and the pricing was the same as the Tiffanys back at home, but you do not have to pay for taxes of course. For US Customs, they do note that a person can purchase up to 800 dollars in merchandise in port/onboard, but that you can spend an addition 800 if purchased in the US VI (if you are American). This also pertains to cigarettes if they are a product of the US VI (+800 cigarettes) and booze (+4 Liters) if it is product of US VI. One of the stores offered free samples of rum made in St Thomas, which was delicious thus we bought the last two they had out for the day (Perserverance Bay Cream Liqueur, which tastes kind of like Sheridan's if you ever tried that before, but better!). There is also the small stalls market by the shopping area if you are looking for cheap souvenirs that is cheaper than the port shopping area. Remember, the port time is not until 12PM, thus it was already hot and humid when we ventured out. As a side note, Verizon claims that St Thomas was included in my cellphone package, thus I did not have to pay extra to use my phone on the island, and the reception was overall pretty good. Most of the jewelry stores offer free bottles of water to those browsing, and some offered some form of a free gift for browsing as well. For those who like Alex and Ani, there is a store there with a pretty large selection including those that are exclusive to the island. For St Martin, this is our third time back there, and again we were just here last year, thus we decided to spend more time on the boat. I think there was a lot of others who decided the same despite the weather being great. We spent time just in the cruiseport shopping area. If you are looking for the cheapest cigarettes (I do not smoke but I bring them back as gifts), we found that Admirals had the cheapest prices (cheaper than on the ship) and more of a selection (most cartons of 200 appeared to be about 30 bucks a pop duty free). Admirals also had deals on other souvenirs (B2G1F and such). FYI if you are looking for international snacks, they have a decent selection as well (Korean cup ramen bowls, Indian snacks, European chocolates like Kinder and Toblerone). The port area has cheap 5 dollar t-shirts if you want something bare minimum. Very easy for functionally limited people to ambulate around with a scooter with the exception of some of the stores. The last call ship boarding was supposed to be at 3:30PM, but they gave everyone an extra hour. Fellow Passengers: For the most part, fellow passengers continue to be well mannered and not a problem traveling with. I love how diverse the passengers are becoming. Despite being at full capacity, the ship rarely felt crowded. One thing I had noticed is that the number of motorized scooters has drastically been increasing since being on the Oasis and Allure. There were quite a few passengers renting scooters, but did not know how to drive them well, thus they would end up blocking traffic, running into the backs of people's legs, or needed the staff to park them in places that wouldn't block people from getting by. Scooters are no longer limited to one group of people, as it is young and old and of all shapes and sizes. I'm glad that the cruise line can accommodate for people with disabilities, but they need to do a better job with doing education/management. I heard one guy in the casino state that he felt he was a walking target by the number of people in scooters ramming into his legs and nearly knocking him over. Despite being school time, there were still plenty of kids on board, but they were typically well controlled by their parents. Kids seemed to enjoy the waterslides a lot. Only once we saw a group of unsupervised, rowdy kids in the Windjammer (the kids were shouting and playing catch with a football in the Windjammer, making a mess while a poor waitress was trying to clean up after them and make sure they didn't hit other passengers). Unfortunately, on the day of disembarkation, we had encountered an awfully rude couple. The cruise workers told us to await in Boleros instead of lining up for the self-departure. Once we were cleared and the line was moving, we were trying to move with all of the other people out of the area, but this couple decided to single out my parents, jabbing their fingers in their faces and telling them to get to the back of the line and saying rude things. Their manner obviously showed that they assumed my parents were line-cutting, non-English-speaking individuals that targeted my folks out of all of the others they just let pass by, thus my mother said that we--just like all the other people were moving to the back of the line. Gross. Maybe they were upset they didn't get their 5th helping of donuts and bacon at the buffet this morning and were ravenously hangry. This self-assist departure line moved very quickly too, thus we were off the boat no more than a few minutes after those racist clowns. I think the number one rule people broke during this cruise was filling personal water bottles at the water/ice dispensers despite signs asking people not to. Oh, and a very important shout-out to all the mommas and poppas out there in the audiences, who scooped up their crying child and went out of the show areas until they were soothed! You da real MVPs. Disembarkation: We never received a printed copy of our stateroom invoice on the last day, but I was able to double check through the emailed statement (the RCCL app was not always accurate). FYI, in a clear, enclosed bowl close by the Bionic Bar area on the promenade, there is a place you can write down your purchases at any of the RCCL onboard/RCCL trusted partner stores, which states that it covers up to 30 days if any issues with the merchandise were to come up. I know that people are scared of facial recognition and the government being able to track/stalk people and all, but oh boy did it help make this process wayyyyy easier. I was a bit nervous on how Self-Assist Departures would go, but GoPort recommended us doing so to get off the ship quickly. Our flight was at 12:30PM, thus we finished our breakfast and got down to the promenade at about 6:45AM. US Customs did not clear us until about 6:55AM, but as I had said in the previous section, the line looked long, but moved very quickly. Getting off the ship was easy even carrying luggage, as most of the time the ramps were all going downhill and easy to wheel them down. The line pretty much was constantly moving with very little stops along the way. We did not need to fill out a declaration getting off the ship of the things we purchased. We would just look at a camera, where they would take a picture and if you are not a suspicious person, I guess they just move you along, as we off the ship by 7AM and on the GoPort bus by 7:20AM. They had all the signs for where to go if you are doing rideshare apps vs shuttles, and GoPort had a sign leading you to one of the furthest spots away, but very easy to find. All we had to do is give our name and number of people, and the driver took our luggage and our bus left by 7:30AM. 45 minutes later, we arrived at MCO, where everyone got off. They stated that all people checking in were to head to the third floor, while those catching Ubers go to the second floor. Check in at Jetblue was fast, and after we dumped off our luggage, we went to the security line, which has an electric sign to tell people of estimated wait times. TSA Pre-Check has their own separate line on the side. At 8:30AM, the estimated wait in the line was around 13-18 minutes. Please bear in the mind that MCO has a lot of children coming through, who usually needs extra time with security line process. We took the tram over to our Gate area, where it had a few eating options and gift shop area. They had a water bottle filling station around Gates 20-29. My parents and I realize now we can easily make it with plenty of time to spare to get to the terminal, but this only happened because everything went smoothly. Final Thoughts: Maybe because this was our third Oasis-class ship in a row, we have hit the point where there is less excitement for all the extra bells and whistles on the ship. Service for the most part was fantastic, and we had a great time despite all of the issues along the way overall. While the weather was crazy, it did not hold us back from having a great time. I think we may try to find a smaller ship that is more port-intensive for our next cruise to see how quality stands. My folks still would be happy trying Symphony as our next ship as well though. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
My wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas for the third time, embarking in Port Canaveral and sailing to the Eastern Caribbean on September 15, 2019. My wife has to use a wheelchair for going more than short distances; therefore, ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas for the third time, embarking in Port Canaveral and sailing to the Eastern Caribbean on September 15, 2019. My wife has to use a wheelchair for going more than short distances; therefore, this review will highlight our wheelchair experience (perhaps providing an assist to someone looking into travelling with a wheelchair), followed by highlights of the ship staff and the food. Wheelchair experience: A critical key to a very good wheelchair experience is letting Royal Caribbean know your need and plans. They will provide a “pusher” and a wheelchair if requested. We have our own wheelchair, needed to get into the terminal when boarding and back to our vehicle when leaving. Pushers are available just inside the terminal entry for people who use their wheelchairs. They did guide us through a wheelchair dedicated security line and up to the boarding area on the second floor. A ship crew member becomes the “pusher” in that area and got us up the ramp and onto the ship. The pusher continued until we arrived on deck 17 at the Coastal Kitchen and Concierge Lounge, a terrific assistance because we had small carry-on luggage pieces. (Don’t forget to tip). There is no on-board wheelchair assistance. We found most passengers to be very considerate of our wheelchair situation when entering and exiting elevators and venues. It does require an occasional wait when elevators are full. Major venues like the theater, ice rink and aqua theater have places for guests in wheelchairs. The Windjammer also has reserved tables for wheelchair users. Disembarkation also requires a little planning. “Pushers” are made available and there is a meeting area for them. We met ours in the concierge lounge and were guided very quickly off the ship to the transportation area. Elapsed time for the process was about fifteen minutes. The key, again, was planning and coordination with the RCCL and ship’s staff. Wheelchairs can make for awkward and difficult inconveniences. RCCL and the Harmony of the Seas staff eliminated those for us. Harmony staff: The ship’s staff were excellent! They were knowledgeable, friendly, helpful and cheerful. Their service started with the Greeting staff in the terminal, the pushers, and security. It continued to the Coastal Kitchen assistant maître d and concierges to our room steward. It continued with the casino staff and venue hosts. It is nice to introduce ourselves and learn a little about several of the staff members, many worth noting here. Our room steward, Janelly, was cheerful and met our expectations for every action we needed. The Asst. Maitre D, Ace Angeles and his assistant Nino efficiently seated us at every meal we had in the Coastal Kitchen. The wait staff included, John, Steve, Laurance, Dana, Rico and Lotoyo as well as a few others. The Coastal Kitchen process allowed us to meet several of them. The Chef, Henry, was also out and about at nearly every meal. Express any concern and Ace was on it. The concierges Jeremias and Mohammed were available and happily assisted with reservations and wheelchair arrangements. The “Next Cruise” bookers, Ines and Emma, were expert and efficient. Notably, Melbourne, a ship bartender was our pusher getting off the ship followed by Brian who got us to the transportation area. Want to learn about the home countries of the staff members? Just start the conversation. We met staff from the Philippines, Ireland, Indonesia, Dominican Republic, Florida, Bosnia, Jamaica, China, and Ukraine. Many had several years of experience with Royal Caribbean and had travelled on many ships to several countries. They frequently have great hints for places to see and visit. Food: Dining is a primary reason we enjoy cruising. Royal Caribbean and the Harmony of the Seas do a good job at presenting good food efficiently. It is a great opportunity to try foods that would normally be unavailable or unknown. Most of the foods we tried were very good. There were a couple we tried that we didn’t care for. We ate most breakfasts and dinners in the Coastal Kitchen, a few lunches in the Windjammer and one lunch each in Sabor and Izumi’s teppanyaki (prepared at the table). Breakfast choices included more than we would ever select from a la carte to a full breakfast. Eggs any way we wanted, Belgium waffles, bacon and sausage, pancakes, juices, toast including a bun like sourdough, fruits, and very good coffee. The waffles with syrup, whipped cream and fruit were especially good. The Windjammer buffet lunches were excellent opportunities to try new or unusual (to us) dishes. Salads, burgers (good meat), roasts, chicken, and pasta were always there. Ethnic choices included American, Oriental/Asian, Indian, and Mexican. There were numerus dessert choices including three flavors of ice cream every day. We had a Mexican food lunch at Sabor on the Boardwalk. Nice choices and flavors. We also had lunch in Izumi with meat and seafood choices. Both gave us more than we could eat. There was a charge for these lunches in the specialty restaurants. Dinners in the Coastal Kitchen included choices of appetizers, soups and salads, and entrees. We had filet mignon, prime rib, branzino, cod, lamb loin, shrimp cocktail, crab crusted flounder, roast duck, lobster, baked Alaska, ice cream, creme brulee, and nice selections of breads. The fish are usually nice choices on cruises with the branzino and cod being especially good. The meals in the Coastal Kitchen were served by a very experienced group of waiters, and prepared by Chef Henry and his staff. There are several other dining venues on the ship including the cafes, Sorrento pizza, the solarium bistro, Johnny Rockets, and the other specialty restaurants. Too many for us to try this cruise. Conclusion: The RCCL Harmony of the Seas cruise experience was very nice. We got along well with the wheelchair. We enjoyed the services of a very professional and experienced staff. The food was very good. We’ll be back. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any ... Read More
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any future cruises. If you have the money for a suite, it is 100% worth it. EMBARKATION- Being a suite guest, you have your own entrance and get escorted to your own personal attendant. My family and I were checked in via a tablet, had our pictures taken, and were on the boat in under 10 minutes. Fantastic. I was also carrying a bit of an injury and was limping about, but was very delighted that I was offered assistance by at least 6 people making my way to the ship. MUSTER DRILL- A note on everyone's favorite muster drill. I have been on 6 cruises all on different ships and the muster drill on the Harmony of the Seas was by far the worst of all. Most of the muster stations are located on the promenade level and not even in actual locations (i.e. the Casino or MDR). They are just located in "areas" of the promenade (mine was near the bionic bar), and they cram so many people in these "areas" and they want you to watch an instructional video on 40" TVs. The video also was made to "entertain" as you are following a spy across the ship and on the mission, the spy comes across "tips" to follow in the event of an emergency. I would assume it was not very easy to follow for most and due to the noise level of all the guests around you crammed into these stations, it is not easy to hear. Knock on wood that there is never an emergency on the Harmony, because I have the feeling it would be a disorganized mess. DEBARKATION- Another suite guest perk is that you meet in the fabulous coastal kitchen at 3 pre-determined meeting times. There was breakfast or hors d'oeuvre being served by 7am and then groups are personally escorted by the concierge all the way down in a priority elevator which makes no stops to the luggage pick-up location. Probably took us 10 minutes to get off the ship. SHIP - I have also sailed on the Oasis of the Seas and if you have been on that ship, you have been on the Harmony. Sure the Harmony has a few more amenities and entertainment, but it honestly didn't feel like I was on a completely different ship. Elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation (if not a suite guest) and immediately after shows or events as all guests filter out of them. I didn't ever feel like the ship was crowded at all, even in the pool areas on sea days (the pools are another story). I also mentioned to my wife that I didn't think the boat was anywhere near capacity either, so that could have been why. There need to be more pools or the pools need to be bigger. On sea days the pools are packed, so basically you are just standing in the water. My son likes to move around in the pool, so he didn't enjoy them as much and spent most of his time in the kids water area. I stayed away from the pools because I don't need to be in a pool with 50 people all with drinks in their hand which they are probably spilling. I'll pass. Another perk of being a suite member is that you can get towels without scanning your seapass card. Other guests must scan their seapass to get a towel and if not returned, you get charged $25. Suite gets get as many towels as needed and don't need to worry about returns (although we always returned ours). ENTERTAINMENT - Only caught two shows as we chose to relax on sea days. Did see the ice skating show 1887 which I liked, but wasn't very interesting according to the wife and son. The Line water show was great and we even ran into some of the performers on the non-performance days. KIDS CLUB - Hours are 9-12, 2-5, 7-10, and after hours which you pay $7 an hour for. My son who is 6 enjoyed the activities and was even asking us to take him on sea days! Must be good! FOOD - Suite guests get access to the coastal kitchen and to my family the Coastal Kitchen was the star of the cruise. They serve Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and hors d'oeuvre and there is a happy hour between 4:30 and 8 where select alcohol is free. Let me repeat this for all my alcohol consumers, there is FREE alcohol on a cruise ship. To me, that alone was worth having access to the Coastal Kitchen and my family had dinner there every night. It is also a more relaxing environment as there are 100x less people dining there as in the MDR. Breakfast and Lunch are your standard fare and the selection is the same everyday. But the dinner menu changes nightly and the food was very good. There was lamb, filet mignon, lobster, duck, salmon, you name it. There really was no need for us to eat in the MDR. The Coastal Kitchen was also were we met the service star of the cruise Rico. Wow, Rico was one of the best servers I have had the pleasure to meet anywhere. Knew everyone's name and beverage of choice on Day 2. Never let your glass hit empty before the next drink was on your table, gave excellent recommendations to eat. Rico is a treasure on this ship. Sorrento's - Decent "fast food" pizza. Johnny Rockets - Breakfast is free and the food is good. Serve omelettes, breakfast sandwiches, and pancakes. Windjammer - Horrible. Cold, Bland, Tough, all adjectives you don't want associated with your food. STAY AWAY! Park Cafe - Decent selection of "healthier" options like panini's, salads, pre-made sandwiches and salads. Nice eating area in Central Park Boardwalk Dog House - Pretty good dogs, that tasted fresh. I went with the Coney Island Dog with onions and sauerkraut. EXCURSIONS- Perfect Day at CocoCay was great. We were the only ship in port and as I stated earlier, I don't even think our ship was at capacity, so the island did not feel crowded at all. My family rented a cabana in the Water Park, which was very nice and convenient with a personal waiter, locker, and plenty of water as it was HOT. I was able to get on all the water slides (note that two of them get long lines the slingshot and the daredevil's peak (the tallest slide). My advice is to hit these slides right when you get off the ship or right at the end of the day or else you will be waiting in a long line. There was a storm off the island that caused the park to shutdown for about an hour, so many guests left back to the ship as Royal was refunding half day passes. My family also went up in the Hot Air Balloon which was cool, but not worth the money for the 10-15 minutes you are up there. Note for those with kids that 48" is the magic number to get on most of the slides. My son is 44" so he was limited on the slides he could get on, but he LOVED the wave pool. It was HOT, but being in the water felt great. San Juan - We did the El Yunque Natural Rainforest walking tour from El Yunque Tours which is a bit a ways from the ship. There is a 45 minute narrated bus ride to the site, where the guide gives you background on the history of Puerto Rico, the impact of the hurricane, and the El Yunque site. When you get to El Yunque, you have four stops. A brief 15 minute stop at an observation tower, which gives you great views and picture taking opportunities, a 5 minute stop at a waterfall on the side of the road to take a group photo, a stop to gear up where you are provided with backpacks, bug spray, water, snacks, umbrellas, and towels. Very high marks for the tour company for providing all these items. They say they are the "one stop shop" operation. Last stop is a good walk to a natural river pool to swim swim for about 20 minutes before heading back to the ship. High marks for Angel, Jorge, Michelle, and the owner Mike who are very knowledgeable and informed about the island. Returned to do a bit of shopping around the port. Shopping is better in Saint Maarten. St. Maarten- I did the Snuba Adventure through Snuba SXM. Great team of 3 (Sheldon, Mitch, Jonas (captain), are very laid back, but very knowledgeable. They stated that the hurricane had damaged 90% of the coral on the island and you could tell. I have done Snuba on 3 other occasions in different locations and I saw the least amount of fish in Saint Maarten. The water is nice and clear though and they have the staged helicopter and shipwreck underwater you can see. Still fun. My wife and son did the Pinel Island excursion and said they had a great time on the white sand beach. Iguanas everywhere that you can feed, my son loved that!. Did some shopping at the shops in the port area and found great deals on souvenirs, alcohol, and jewelry. Better deals than seen in San Juan for sure. Overall, the family had a great time and my son was asking if we could stay on the ship for a few more days. I have always been a fan of Royal Caribbean and we are looking to do a Mediterranean cruise next year. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The service at dinner was great. And the visit to Magen’s bay was fantastic. Other than that, the weather was quite unpredictable, coco cay was not perfect, all excursions cancelled because of stormy weather, we were able to enjoy part ... Read More
The service at dinner was great. And the visit to Magen’s bay was fantastic. Other than that, the weather was quite unpredictable, coco cay was not perfect, all excursions cancelled because of stormy weather, we were able to enjoy part of the day. Be warned that you cannot do lap swim on the ship, the pool is very small, crowded and dirty. Jacuzzi was good. They put the smoking section near the swimming pool. You will smell quite a bit of ship exhaust in the sports area and the aqua theater. The surf rider if you don’t know what you are doing don’t ride the surf, you can get seriously injured. The food was okay, most of it was salty. The breakfast and lunch have little variety, if you have a balcony get it at mid or front section to avoid the exhaust. We did not do the tour on st marten , the beach there are many scammers trying to get you pay fit chair and umbrella. It is not a bad cruise, we had plenty of bad luck, it is definitely one of the worst I had gone, the cabin lock did not work at first Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
EMBARKATION-Very organized, quick, and easy DEBARKATION-Easy and well explained the night before and the day of leaving SHIP-Exceptional, elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation,also after the popular shows. Best ... Read More
EMBARKATION-Very organized, quick, and easy DEBARKATION-Easy and well explained the night before and the day of leaving SHIP-Exceptional, elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation,also after the popular shows. Best to take stairs, if you are able. Staterooms are very adequate for three people, four people would be tight. Bathrooms are definitely a one person only. Definitely bring your own shampoo and conditioner (none provided). Our room 12581 & 12580 were well appointed and very quiet. Water slide lines can get long, but they move quickly and they are well worth the wait. The Abyss, dry slide, is fun, but not as challenging or scary as they make it sound. Many of the activities are well supervised and cover everyone’s choices from small children to adults. SPECIALTY RESTAURANTS- 150 North Central, Chops Grille, and Izumi Hibachi are amazing. Service was outstanding and menu choices covered anyone’s pallet from meat to vegetarian. Beef choices was excellent and very good quality. Seafood was very tender, large portions and the shrimp was large and meaty. AMERICAN ICON GRILL DINING ROOM-Service was excellent and main entree choices was excellent. EXCURSIONS-Perfect Day at CocoCay for our day was cut short due to severe storms. While we were able to go on the slides before the storms rolled in, were a lot of fun and yes, the lines do get very long. If there is lightning within 10 miles of the island all water slides get shut down. They do reopen when they get the “all clear” signal. Unfortunately their was such a severe storm that hit the island they shut down the island and very efficiently had everyone get back on the ship. Royal Caribbean is such a high class ship they refunded everyone’s money if they paid for the Thrillpark portion of the island. St. Thomas-We had seen the town and did shopping on pervious cruises, so we opted for the St. John On Your Own. DO NOT , I repeat DO NOT. Do this tour!! This was totally misrepresented in the excursion detail. It showed and explained that you would be dropped off at a beach and be picked up at a designated time to get back to the ship. WRONG! We were dropped off at a pier and told if you want a beach you had to walk three miles one way in very unsafe conditions. Dirt, rocks, and stones on a man made path. Nobody knew that we went this way and we were all in bathing suits and flip flops. Finally made it to Honeymoon Beach, no chairs, no drinking water, and nothing around. Please do not do this tour especially if you have younger children. St. Maarten- we chose the Power Boat tour with lunch. Well worth the money and excellent narration of the island and the many different areas. Overall this was more than all of us ever expected. Looking forward to going on another Royal Caribbean cruise in two years. Have to save money for the newer ship in 2021. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Everything restaurant I visited was great. I found a lot of free food restaurants. I loved the Bars and Central Park. The free performances were awesome. Making the free reservations to be closer to the stage was nice. The Rising ... Read More
Everything restaurant I visited was great. I found a lot of free food restaurants. I loved the Bars and Central Park. The free performances were awesome. Making the free reservations to be closer to the stage was nice. The Rising Tide Bar was fun. But make sure you use the restroom before time for it to rise because it will rise without you. So your spouse might be traveling without you on board. Remember you can always catch it in Central Park if that happens to you. Also if you want a lounge chair near which ever pool you pick be there very early. Guest will put a towel on 15 chairs even if their friends and family aren't there yet. Some people are very inconsiderate. This is my second cruise on Royal Caribbean, but I have cruised on another cruise line about 8 times. I will be cruising again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise specifically because it had childcare service for our two year old toddler. We are a family of four with 2 kids a nine year old and the toddler. The itinerary was ok as we have been to the Caribbean many times but ... Read More
We chose this cruise specifically because it had childcare service for our two year old toddler. We are a family of four with 2 kids a nine year old and the toddler. The itinerary was ok as we have been to the Caribbean many times but not to Labadee and we’re eager to explore San Juan. The ship is beautiful and embarkation was a breeze. The ship is tastefully decorated and a welcome relief from the garish decor of the Carnival ships. There is lots to do and we took advantage of all of it - the pools, slides, carousel and the zip line. We chose a boardwalk view cabin to save on cost. The room was small but had good storage. The bathroom was small but adequate. The balcony is teensy. There was a partial ocean view. We did not partake in much of the entertainment but what we did see was top notch. The bars were all very good but beware of high drink prices - think $13 Mojitos. Basic beers are $8 plus the high tips just makes the drinks even more expensive. We did not buy the drink packages and our final tab confirms we did not drink enough to justify it. We like to stay in shape and the fitness center was well equipped but sometimes very crowded. There is access to a very nice jogging track. I like to use the sauna to detox and relax but there is none - except in the spa for a fee. :-( The food was hit or miss. I had high expectations with RCL but was frankly disappointed. The Windjammer was fine good choices and mostly tasty but the food in the main dining room consisted of over cooked seafood or grisly steaks. My wife, a vegetarian was lacking in choice as there we nearly none. Desserts were blah. Service was spotty as well. The cabin steward was ok but we received towel animals only two nights where on Carnival it’s every night. My kids get a kick out of it. In the main dining room we chose my time dining due to the lack of information on the babysitting service prior to sailing.. I didn’t realize My Time meant waiting 30-45 minutes for a table! All this while paying for child care. :-( Ports: LABADEE We loved Labadee so many activities and very nice. Wish we were provided a list of activities or a map beforehand we could have planned it better. The zip line looked real fun. SAN JUAN We didn’t go due to protesters in San Juan. i understand the reasons for safety sake, but no alternative ports offered as well as no credits. Not good customer care if you ask me. ST MARTIN We took an independent excursion to the beach it was just ok. The island is very dry right now and recovering from the hurricane. PROS: Our kids loved the ship my toddler especially loved the carousel. The camps and baby services were excellent. The pools and amenities were really good, lots to do. Entertainment was top notch. Good and varied bars. CONS: Average food especially in the MDR. High drink prices, and the TIPS. Oh my you are now paying $58 per cabin for a family of 4 PER DAY! Plus drink tips! Yikes. I also felt that RCL should have offered something for the loss of one port. We got nothing. Wait times in the MDR were ridiculous. Would I sail RCL again? Probably not, at least for a while. They charge a premium over the other lines such as Carnival and NCL, presumably for better food and service. But the gap is closed and I don’t see the need to spend the extra $$. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I traveled on this cruise with my (extended) family, including 2 children. We had a great time. The kids loved the buffet, and one enjoyed the kids' club and the sushi classes. I took the other on the "all access" tour--it ... Read More
I traveled on this cruise with my (extended) family, including 2 children. We had a great time. The kids loved the buffet, and one enjoyed the kids' club and the sushi classes. I took the other on the "all access" tour--it was expensive as heck, but I don't regret spending the money. The food at the buffet was good, especially the curries. The MDR did a decent lunch and an elaborate-looking buffet. My cabin was nice--the porthole window was great. My steward was attentive and nice--I actually ran into him "too" often because the facilities he needed were close by. He always seemed to be standing in the corridor when I went to my cabin. The shows were all wonderful, although the comedians were a 7 out of 10 at best. Labadee was fantastic. Maho Beach was theoretically very good, but that excursion didn't go terribly well for me in a few ways. All of the members of my party took issue with the safety video at muster, with one going so far as to address it with an officer. I really hope Royal does something about it. It's a waste of time AND doesn't impart the needed safety information. It fails in every way. Another member of my party was upset at being unable to book our group into dinner (MDR) a good 3 or 4 days in advance. Someone else went to Guest Services over it and got it fixed, leading to the first person being even more upset that it seemed to be about who you know or "who" is asking--in other words, why deny the first request and then have another crew member override it? People shouldn't have to go to Guest Services for a simple dinner reservation. Embarkation went fine. The transfer to and from the airport also went fine. I was on Symphony of the Seas not long before this one, and they were pretty indistinguishable. I'd be happy to sail on either one again if it fit my plans and needs. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My wife and I sailed on Oasis of the Seas last year and decided then how much fun a family cruise would be. We booked our Harmony of the Seas trip while on Oasis. We had both our children and their families with us. Grandchildren ranged ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on Oasis of the Seas last year and decided then how much fun a family cruise would be. We booked our Harmony of the Seas trip while on Oasis. We had both our children and their families with us. Grandchildren ranged from 5 to 18, and all 11 of us had a ball. The balcony rooms, drink packages for adults, and non alcoholic packages for everyone else made this extra special. We didn’t eat at any of the specialty restaurants but didn’t need to. Our 16 year old granddaughter took pictures of her dinner multiple times to send to friends because it always seemed special and fancy. She also took full advantage of the running track with our daughter every morning. Puerto Rico was canceled due to unrest there, but there was so much to do on the boat we didn’t miss it much. We attended all of the shows, did putt putt, rock climbing wall, zip line, and all of the slides multiple times. We also did the beach rendezvous to Kim Shaw beach and found it better than expected. Lunch was top notch and drinks were included. We all loved Labadee. The older kids did the zip line, and the younger kids did the coaster with a parent. When my wife and I went last year the line for lunch was an issue on Labadee, but this year it wasn’t a problem at all. We also managed to ’Escape the Rubicon’. All of the staff on Royal Caribbean were super friendly, the kids loved the washy washy girl, and our waiters were almost like family each night. This was a dream Cruise for all of us. My wife and I have only sailed on Royal Caribbean and we see no reason to change to anything else. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I have been on a total of 5 cruises, this was my 2nd time on Royal Caribbean. This was by far the worst experience I have had. There are those experiences you look forward to once you finally make it on the ship. You hear people talk ... Read More
I have been on a total of 5 cruises, this was my 2nd time on Royal Caribbean. This was by far the worst experience I have had. There are those experiences you look forward to once you finally make it on the ship. You hear people talk about the giant party at the beginning as you sail away from the dock. You can't wait to see it for yourself, well my family and I where all ready for the sail away party but NOTHING no music or dancing on the top deck just tons of people confused. Apparently on this ship they try to crame 6500 people on deck 5 where you can't even move or see anything. Just imagine being in a small mall like setting, trying to watch a concert or show. With 6500 other people. No bigger them a basketball court. Having little kids with that many people is not safe. So we missed out on a lot of activities on that floor due to the safety of my children. And of you are interested in food at anywhere close to that time you are out of luck if you want to sit and eat as a family on your family cruise. The food was just ok nothing blew me out of the water. I have been on other cruise lines where the food was fantastic this was by far the worst food. Same thing over and over nothing different and the same all of the ship. You want the same burger you have 4 different places to get it but nothing different. The desserts were pathetic!! The pop machine where broken so you get flat 2 litters of Sprite to drink!! I mostly come on cruises for the food and energy you get from all the music and staff that make it fun. But I didn't get that energy till the last day on the ship. Kids things this was by far my most frustrating part of this cruise. If you say you are going to have face painting from 230-430 and someone gets there at 345 and they tell you sorry that your kid can't get it done because the line is too long is not ok!! This happened multiple times to use and not just on the face painting. It also happened on the moon light rockwall climbing which we got there an hour before it was supposed to close and was told no. If you tried to rock wall climb in the daytime your hands got burned so needless to say that was out. But once we walked back by the face painting booth to see all the kids with face paint and see different people at the end made me furious. They picked and chose who got to get the face painting done. Not a happy momma!! I also purchased the Deluxe Beverage package for my husband and I. I did this so I could order whatever I wanted and not worry about the bill at the end of the cruise. We that didn't work because I would get charged anyway even with my package. So I would have to take time out of my day to go down and sit in the line to talk to the guest service and explain what I ordered. One day while i was at guest service ( which i had to go to at least 5 times) I asked about the wrist bands you could purchase instead of your card. I was told they didn't have anymore which I thought was crazy because it was only the 1st full day of the cruise. He told me the inventory was gone. I am sorry were we not just docked so you could restock your inventory?!? Don't have something for certain guest and not all 6500 people. If I want to purchase something then I should be able to purchase it. And if I waited till maybe day 3 or 4 and they had sold out, I would have understood. But don't say you just don't have enough for everyone. That is crazy to me. Don't plan on using their app to message back and forth while on the ship. You spend more time fighting to keep it up on your phone and miss out on the messages you thought sent. The TV in your room was pointless!! Other cruise lines give you some type of free movies to watch and decent TV. Not on this ship! This ship you get to watch Duggie Hauser family matters and cricket! And the next day can watch the same episode again!! For a ship to not have a huge sporting event on somewhere in the ship is crazy!! On the same cruise line I have been talking about throughout this post they put the the world series games on over the pool so anyone who wanted to watch could and also had a pub in side that had it on aswell. Which means people with kids could still let the kids play while they watched the game. But you could watch Cricket anytime of the day. So as my mom was sick in bed the last 3 and half days she hated the TV! The kids splash pad was great except you had no room to move on the deck around it. The chairs with stools where on top of each other and if you had time to stand up and move you would trip on the one next to you. Another problem I had was this all inclusive?? What does that mean?? Because you had to pay 2.50 per bag of popcorn the side of a juice box! How is this all inclusive??? Other ships give you blankets as much popcorn as you want and a great movie!! The Icecream was so monitored you couldn't even make your own cone!! The kids always look forward to coming back from dinner and seeing what animal they made well we only received 3 out of 7 nights. My other cruise line we received 7 or 7 ! It is all about how your staffs energy reflex on to us as passengers! We really looked forward to this cruise because it was geared more towards kids then before. I will say of you have young kids this is not the ship for you!! Go on the Carnival you will have the time of your life and worth every penny. I do want to say that I had one great experience on this ship and that was our very last night our server Joseph and his right hand man made my girls laugh so hard and finally got to see what I was hoping for the whole cruise! They did magic tricks and even got to see the "pet" mouse!!! They truly made the last night special. I even had to head back early to make sure our luggage made it out by the door in time. He helped my husband carry all of our desserts from the hall back to our room!!! Thank you for making that one night special!! Needless to say I will most likely not go back on this ship while my kids are young. Thanks Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Best Family Vacation we could have asked for. 2 early 50s adults with 18 and 22 y/o. Had two rooms (not together - decided late in process to get the 18 and 22 a separate inside room - best decision ever.) We had room 9594 - with large ... Read More
Best Family Vacation we could have asked for. 2 early 50s adults with 18 and 22 y/o. Had two rooms (not together - decided late in process to get the 18 and 22 a separate inside room - best decision ever.) We had room 9594 - with large balcony. Food - we ate in MDR each night. Loved our waitstaff and was generally pleased with dinner options. The staff was very accommodating if our food wasn't exactly what we wanted. Breakfast and Lunch were mainly in the Windjammer or Solarium. LOVED Park Cafe in the morning - they had breakfast sandwiches/burritos - which broke the "buffet" style offerings. We had to change from My Time Dining to Second Session dining (b/c we made the room switch and ALL my reservations - dinner and shows were cancelled - DUMB way of doing it). But 2nd session worked great with our schedule. Stayed late at the pool or didn't have to rush when we were in port. Doors open at 7:45 and stay open until 8:15. Mini Bites was awesome if we wanted late snack to hold us until dinner. Room - Was awesome. We had balcony/ocean view. We had the larger balcony which gave us lots of room. Before dinner was heaven just sitting there watching the ocean go by. Our room steward was Ricardo - and he was a pleasure to work with. He even went out of his way for our kids room - b/c they were in the inside rooms and we couldn't find their steward. RC had them as one King bed and he called down and got it separated into 2 twin beds. Excursions - we hit a home run in both St. Thomas & St. Martin. CoCo Cay - we just went to beach, snorkeled on our own, visited the Oasis Pool, played in the Sand VB tournament, and ate at the Chill Island Grill. CHAIRS are everywhere. No need to worry about that. St. Thomas - we did the Champagne Snorkel Tour. TOP NOTCH! Staff was awesome, takes you to National Park on St. John - great snorkeling, ride back was super relaxing. A bit of traffic getting to and from so not much time to do anything else, but there are great little shops right at the dock, so easy to grab a few t-shirts before getting back on boat. St. Martin - we did the Rhino Rider tour. Again - excellent staff, FUN boats, they take you to a beach, let you snorkel for about 30 mins (snorkel are okay - nothing too exciting) and then you head back. Heading back they allow you to go rouge a little bit so was fun racing through the waters). After the excursion, the original bus driver had asked if anyone wanted to go to Maho Beach (were the planes fly over) and had a small bus ready to take us and another family over, leave us for a couple of hours and then came back to take us to the boat. We ate lunch and watched the planes. 2 hours there was too much time - but a fun experience. It is super crowded there. Ship - so much to do. We found the shows a little long and repetitive, but was glad we had made reservations. There were always seats for those that didn't make reservations, so don't stress on that part. The planned activities (i.e. - Pool VB, Belly Flop contest, Cannonball contest, etc. were a hoot and made our kids trip). The Bionic Bar was so fun...the drinks we made were hilarious and often tasted like cough syrup but is worth spending time there. Enjoyed Dazzles - was late to the talent show - but heard it was awesome. Casino seemed hopping. Didn't spend a lot of time there. And all the different little bars with music playing was very enjoyable. Really liked the Solarium when you wanted down time...soft jazz music played here (I read a complaint that there was no music here - but we had music every time I went in) Pools - pool for everyone. 2 middle pools were for everyone. 1 adult pool (16+ and life guards stick to that policy), 1 kiddie pool. And again - always found a chair. Sometimes not exactly where I wanted to be - but usually one would open and I could move. And lots of chairs in the shade too. (Never made any of the hot tubs - but SEVERAL on the pool deck) Drink Package - we did the Deluxe package with alcohol and felt like we got our money's worth. Always grabbed bottled waters on way to room. Great way to try new drinks, had wine at dinner, also includes milk shakes at Johnny Rockets...so a little of everything. Bartenders and Pool Runners were always around and never had to wait long. Check in/check out was a breeze. We did send our luggage down the night before and it was right where they said it would be. Customs looked like long line but went fast. What I would change: Bring back plastic straws (or at least give you that option) - and yes I understand the environmental aspect...but the paper straws fell apart before you could get a drink down. I bought a "special" cup that had lid and straw at CoCo Cay and poured my drinks in it all week. Highly advise. Photos - give more details on checking out your picture package. LAST NIGHT was disaster in this area. Pictures were supposed to all be picked by 11 PM. At 9 PM all the computers were going offline and people were getting frustrated. I think if they would let you look at them in your own room, this area would not get crazy. Make the store near Mini Bites - open at better times. If in port it was closed, and during sea day it was only open for 2 hours. Always crowded. And you might want to add a few more "phone" accessories. As one child needed ear phones and other charger - and no where to get either (that we found). All in all - GREAT vacation. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We took our adult kids and grand kids (19 in total) and chose this ship because we had done Oasis in the past and the kids liked it. Also, we live in central Florida so it was easy to get everyone to the ship. The Harmony was nothing ... Read More
We took our adult kids and grand kids (19 in total) and chose this ship because we had done Oasis in the past and the kids liked it. Also, we live in central Florida so it was easy to get everyone to the ship. The Harmony was nothing short of spectacular. We parked at Park Port Canaveral lot and got to the ship fairly early (noon) so check-in was a breeze. We were hesitant to do the buffet on embarkation day so we went to the Solarium buffet instead. It was much quieter and the food was fine. Dining: We had early dining for the group (2 tables of 10) and the only disappointment was that they have moved the dining to 5:00. That is very early, particularly on a port day. But we couldn't do my-time dining for a group of 19. The ages ranged from 5-up and all enjoyed the food immensely. We had 2 different waiters and asst. waiters and all were some of the best we have had on our 42 cruises. Nobody had a 'bad' meal any evening. Even the free steaks were quite good. Our teenaged grand kids are huge eaters and the waiters seemed to love trying to fill them up. We usually ate breakfast and lunch in the restaurant also and the food and service were great. We did have lunch at Jaimie's Italian in Central Park one day and it was fabulous. I highly recommend it. Ports: The revamped Coco Cay is beautiful with much better seating and more food options. Some of our group paid for the water park and were disappointed with the very long lines and crowds. They said that they would not do it again in the future. St. Thomas and St. Martin were simply standard Caribbean islands. Certainly nothing special. The kids all did water-related shore excursions and were happy with them. Entertainment: Here is where we had some disappointments. Usually we love the ice skating and aqua shows. The shows on the Harmony were terrible. They made no sense and were not well-choreographed. Neither show did a good job of showing off the talents of the young performers. Everyone leaving the Fine Line Aqua Show was saying 'what the heck was that all about?'. Really bad. 'Grease' was fine (singing, acting all ok) but we were surprised at the amount of sexual innuendo since we had 9 kids under age 18 there. The one bright spot was the group Mo5aic. We had seen them on the Oasis and they were fantastic. Activities: There seemed to be the standard activities and nobody seemed bored. We had good weather so the kids spent a lot of time on the water slides. We like to dance, though, and found there was basically no chance for ballroom/swing type of dancing. We were on the ship on the 4th of July and they did a great celebration. The running track was great as usual as was the gym. All the staff seemed happy and seemed to enjoy this ship. Complaints (gotta have a couple): This ship has the HOTTEST elevators we have ever experienced. No air conditioning and very crowded. Everyone was talking about it. Miserable when you were stopping at every floor. Prices of drinks. It used to be that drink prices were about half of what you would pay in a restaurant. Now they are more than you would pay. We paid $42 for a bottle of wine that we purchase regularly for $12. Our kids were glad that they had carried on wine and just had a glass in their room before dinner. Also, a glass of fresh orange juice at breakfast was $8. REALLY, $8?? Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Sailing on the Harmony is like sailing on a mini-City. There’s always something to do and always something new to explore. Embarkation- well-organized. The parking lot is a little crazy, but once you’re out of your car it’s ... Read More
Sailing on the Harmony is like sailing on a mini-City. There’s always something to do and always something new to explore. Embarkation- well-organized. The parking lot is a little crazy, but once you’re out of your car it’s smooth sailing to the ship. Cabin- the cabin is a cabin. Go for the balcony room. There are inside balconies that overlook the central area of the ship, but the outside balconies offer much more privacy. Luggage fits nicely under the bed and out of the way. Closets and drawers offer more space than I expected. Our attendant was outstanding. Fitness- The fitness center is quite large. Many cardio machines and many weight machines. Free weight area could use an upgrade. The running track is extremely nice (although it has only one running and one walking lane). I ran 4-5 miles every day. My only complaint here is that there is no free sauna and steam room. No excuse for that. Outdoor activities- the Solarium is the quiet place to hide out! Designed for 16+ guests, it offers plentiful seating, a bistro, and several hot tubs. It would be nice if there were a pool here, but it’s a minor drawback. The main pool deck is pretty routine with salt and fresh water pools. The biggest problem here is that no ship with 6500 passengers is ever going to have enough pool space for sea days. It’s just super-crowded. Other activities include water slides (OK), zipline (pretty lame), rock climbing (definitely fun), flow rider (super fun), scuba lessons in the pool (we didn’t try that), and ice skating (my family enjoyed it but each session is only 20 minutes and the ice gets pretty rough). I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but you get the idea - LOTS of stuff to do. Entertainment- our sailing offered some of the best entertainment I’ve encountered on a cruise. You have to be early to get a good seat and be sure to reserve a seat online before the cruise. Tip for first time cruisers - if you go to nothing else, go to the Love and Marriage game show. It’s a must. WiFi- They advertise the fastest internet on the Seas. Fastest speed test I ran was 3.76 down/2.01 up. It was also a little spotty and downright awful at times. It’s the most overpriced choice on the ship, but they know people will still buy it. At least you can stream shows and the picture is decent. Main Dining Room- We ate in the American Icon for My Time Dining. They were totally disorganized the first few nights. The lines to get in looked like Wal-Mart lines for Black Friday. It got better as the week went on. We ate there 6 nights with 3 different wait staffs. Service was good only twice. The menu was pretty repetitive and I thought the food was rather bland. My family’s favorites were the spaghetti (offered 3 nights), chicken bread (offered most nights), and chicken parmigiana (offered only once). The biggest disappointments were the turkey and the ahi tuna. Desserts were very ordinary. On the bright side, breakfast in the American Icon was very very good. The offer a buffet as well as a la carte dining. I highly recommend the American Icon for breakfast - but check the hours. Windjammer- the main cafeteria gets pretty crowded, so seating can be a problem. Lots of variety in the food and, if you don’t like something, just get something else. Upgraded dining- with tons of free food available every moment of the day, we’ve never felt the need to pay in one of the specialty restaurants, but on this trip we had vouchers for one lunch and one dinner. For lunch we tried the Mexican restaurant on the Boardwalk. My wife thought the guacamole was the best she’d ever tasted. Otherwise, nothing special. For dinner, we visited Chop’s Grille. The steaks were very good and the sides were a little better than what is available in the main dining room. Desserts were very good - definitely better than the main dining room. It’s also much quieter. Overall, Chop’s Grille is a nice choice if you don’t mind spending a lot of extra money. My family won’t be. Best other choices- Solarium for breakfast. Park Cafe in Central Park, and Sorrento’s Pizza all day long. Those 3 are always good. Cleanliness- the crew do an amazing job. The ship is very well maintained. Route- the Eastern Caribbean isn’t a very good route. Our cruise had 3 stops and, while RCs waterpark at CocoCay is fun, none of the ports are the kind you’ll remember the rest of your life. While I would gladly sail on the Harmony again, I would never sail this route again. Excursions- CocoCay was fun. We spent the extra money for the water slide area and it was worth it. On St. Thomas we chose the BOSS undersea adventure. You get 30 minutes to snorkel and 30 minutes on your underwater jet ski-like rider. It was a fun day although there weren’t as many fish to see as I expected. We did the horseback ride on St. Maarten. It was maybe a 45 minute walk along the coast with a short plunge into the water. Maybe a little boring for most, but we liked it. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Great trip! We were worried about sailing on a mega ship but we were pleasantly surprised. The only time we had issues with crowds were during evening dinner hours. The elevators were extremely busy during this time but we had to wait ... Read More
Great trip! We were worried about sailing on a mega ship but we were pleasantly surprised. The only time we had issues with crowds were during evening dinner hours. The elevators were extremely busy during this time but we had to wait due to one member of our party using a scooter. We enjoyed the food in Windjammer, American Icon dining room, Small Bites, and Johnny Rockets. There were plenty of activities for children on board. My 6 year old had lots of fun on the abyss, mini-golf course, rock climbing wall, and carousel. He was disappointed that he was not talk enough for the water slides. Cocay was a fun stop for the kids. The water park was great and we also had fun snorkeling. We took a private handicapped accessible island tour on St. Thomas and a snorkeling excursion on St. Martin. Harmony of the Seas is a great ship and we can't wait until we can cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Hi, I have received so much help from posts on Cruise Critic, I thought I would pay it forward with my own review of our seven-day cruise last week on Harmony of the Seas. First, a little info about us. I was traveling with my DH, ... Read More
Hi, I have received so much help from posts on Cruise Critic, I thought I would pay it forward with my own review of our seven-day cruise last week on Harmony of the Seas. First, a little info about us. I was traveling with my DH, his three siblings and their families. There were 11 of us (six cabins) and we were all on Deck 9, forward. My DH and I have cruised many times on RC, but none of the other folks had ever been on a cruise. Since our nieces are in college and our nephews in high school, we didn’t experience Adventure Ocean or the teen programs. We all arrived in Cocoa Beach the afternoon before and stayed at the Holiday Inn-Cocoa Beach, next to the Publix. We hit a slight snafu when the hotel decided to arbitrarily change our hotel rate ($40-per-room increase). We had a copy of our confirmation with the rate displayed, but we were told that they could change the rate at check-in. The desk staff was not very friendly and we had to call corporate to get it resolved. Not a great way to start a vacation, but we vowed not to let it damper our trip. Because of the way we were treated and spoken to, I can’t recommend this hotel to anyone. The next morning, we took a private shuttle, booked via Larry’s Limos, and arrived at the terminal at 10 a.m. since I like to get to the ship early! In fact, we also used Larry’s Limos for our shuttle from MCO to the hotel the night before and I highly recommend them. Very fair rates, and they were very prompt and friendly! Security and check-in were a breeze and we were walking on the ship around 11 a.m. Of all the embarkation ports we have used, Port Canaveral was the easiest and quickest that I have experienced. They have really figured it out! We headed to the Windjammer for lunch and then spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the ship. Muster went very smoothly and we set sail promptly at 4:30 p.m. The rest of the review, I will break down in categories. CABINS We were all on Deck 9 forward, near the elevators. Two of us had balconies and had the divider removed. The other four were inside cabins directly across the hall. My sister-in-law had connecting cabins with her two sons. All of us commented that there was plenty of storage room. I was impressed with how the bathrooms were laid out. Plenty of storage and the shower seemed bigger than smaller ships we have sailed on. Because there was so much to do on the ship, we really didn’t spend much time there other than to sleep and dress. DINING We did not eat at any specialty restaurants, so I can’t comment on them. We had breakfast each morning in the Solarium Bistro and loved the quiet atmosphere versus the Windjammer. It’s the same food, but less people and a more relaxing area. We also had lunch either in the Solarium Bistro or Windjammer, based on what part of the ship we were at once we realized we were hungry! I realize food is very subjective, but we enjoyed the breakfast and lunch offerings at both locations. For dinner, we had early Traditional Dining in Silk. Our oldest niece has severe food allergies and the staff was wonderful in addressing her concerns and providing her meals each night without the worry of an allergic reaction. In fact, the waiters and entire staff provided top-notch service to all of us each night. The food was very good, and my only “criticism” is that I have noticed over the years that the offerings tend to repeat more than they used to. SHOWS We had reserved all the shows prior to sailing, so we had no problems seeing them. The Fine Line was fabulous! By far the best show at sea I have ever seen, especially considering we were on a moving ship as they were performing their high-flying acrobatics. The second aqua show later in the week was fun, if not a little “campy.” We also enjoyed Columbus and the ice show, 1887. Again, Columbus was a little “campy,” but it was funny and enjoyable. The comedians on board were also very good and provided a lot of entertainment. I did not see Grease, but those in our group who did attend really liked it. The only show none of us made it to was the Headliner Show. GENERAL ENTERTAINMENT We saw a few entertainers at Dazzles. Very good singers and the variety of music offered something for everyone. Some of us participated in karaoke and we only wished it was offered earlier than 11 p.m. so we could have participated more often. CASINO The casino was a pretty good size and we never really had trouble finding a seat at the blackjack table. Half of the casino allows smoking and the ventilation system worked pretty well in keeping the air pretty good. I wish they didn’t allow smoking at all, but it didn’t bother us too much. The wait staff was a little slow at times bringing drinks. OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES We were lucky to have fabulous weather the entire week, so the pools and whirlpools were always crowded. That being said, our group never had trouble finding lounge chairs by the pools and we never had to deal with “chair hogs.” The kids enjoyed the water slides as well. We also played mini-golf and table tennis. None of us dared to try the flow riders, but enjoyed watching those who did. A couple of us experienced the Abyss and zip-line and enjoyed those as well. COCO CAY Since my husband and I aren’t really “beach people,” we decided to stay on the ship and explore. The rest of our family spent the day there and really enjoyed swimming and hanging out at Chill Island. They all said they would love to go back again. They did not use the water park or other “paid” options. ST. THOMAS We did not book an excursion, but took a taxi into Charlotte Amalie and went shopping for jewelry and other souvenirs. All the taxis have specific rates posted based on where you want to go, so no one needs to negotiate or worry about being taken advantage of. After shopping, we took another taxi from downtown to Magens Bay. We took a wild ride over the mountains to see this beautiful beach. The roads are very narrow and the locals seem to have no fear when navigating them! We really enjoyed Magens Bay before heading back to the ship. Our taxi driver also stopped at a couple of lookout points for us to take pictures. All in all, we all enjoyed St. Thomas. ST. MAARTEN This was my first time back to St. Maarten since the hurricane and you can still see restoration projects in process. Our group took the ship’s excursion to Maho Beach. Many in our family are aerospace enthusiasts, so we really enjoyed spending the day watching the planes land. This really isn’t a swimming beach (there was noticeably less sand than our previous visit before the hurricane), but our nieces and nephews did take a dip in the water. The adjacent restaurant, Sunset Beach, offers a great outdoor space to sit and have lunch while watching the planes land. We all enjoyed having a Guavaberry Daiquiri with our meal. The food was excellent and plentiful as well. Typically, I am not a big fan of large groups on a tour. However, this time, it worked well since we were only going to one location and no one on the bus was interested in stopping for optional photo ops or stopping in downtown for shopping. PORT CANAVERAL I have cruised out of many different ports over the years and this was by far the best experience I have had with a port. From baggage handling to check-in to customs and ground transportation, it was such a smooth experience. I look forward to many more cruises out of Port Canaveral! GENERAL OBSERVATIONS We booked this specific cruise because we knew Harmony would offer something for everyone. Harmony is a beautiful ship and in great shape! It was so smooth, it didn't feel like you were on a ship. Before the cruise, I was concerned about potential crowding problems. These concerns were unfounded as the layout of the ship and “neighborhoods” really spread folks around. The only time I really noticed the crowds was when the shows let out and at lunch at the Windjammer. Almost everyone on the ship seemed to be having fun and we only observed a couple of people who weren’t in the best of moods. This was a fabulous vacation for our entire family and are thrilled that our “cruise newbies” really loved the cruising experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
My son, daughter-in-law, two granddaughters, wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas departing on June 9, 2019 returning on June 16, 2019. The itinerary was Perfect Day at Coco Cay, day at sea, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and two ... Read More
My son, daughter-in-law, two granddaughters, wife and I sailed on the Harmony of the Seas departing on June 9, 2019 returning on June 16, 2019. The itinerary was Perfect Day at Coco Cay, day at sea, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and two additional days at sea. Our staterooms were 7630 and 7632, adjoining Jr. Suites. Note that my wife and I are experienced cruisers with more than 20 cruises, most with Celebrity and Royal but with others as well. This cruise vacation is summarized below. We live in Orlando so getting to Port Canaveral is an easy drive. We left the house at 9:45 and arrived at the port about an hour later. I dropped off our bags passengers and parked in the onsite garage which was very convenient though a little pricey. Check-in was very quick as we used the Royal App and had all information on our cell phones. I purchased the digital photo package on-line prior to the cruise so we had numerous photos taken on boarding. The on-line price for the package was $249, onboard it was over $300 (although Royal had different promotions for it throughout the week). Our rooms were obviously not ready so we headed to Park Café for lunch and to make our home base until the rooms were opened up which occurred at 1:00 as advertised. While others were getting their lunch I headed up to Country Kitchen to make our dinner reservations for a party of 6. This was my first disappointment on the cruise. I asked for reservations at 6:00 each night but was informed the restaurant opens at 5:15 so I could have 5:15 or after 7:00. They told me that they only had two tables for 6 so that was my only option. After much haggling they gave me 5:45 for the first 3 nights but 5:15 for the remaining nights. I chose to chill and explain the situation to my son and daughter-in-law but they were not happy as 5:15 as it was way too early for them. 5:15 was too early for my wife and I as well for that matter. Getting two young children (5 & 23 months) and themselves ready by that time would significantly eat into their afternoons. In hindsight I should have bumped up my issue to a higher authority above the restaurant manager. This situation resulted in much stress each afternoon but we all coped the best we could. I am not sure why they couldn’t accommodate my request as the restaurant was half empty each night and they easily could have created a table for 6 as they did one night. After lunch we headed to staterooms and met our stateroom attendant. As always the rooms were very nice and spacious with lots of storage space. If within your budget I would highly recommend booking a Jr. Suite as it just makes the cruising experience a little more pleasant. We had the divider opened between our two rooms making it essentially a two room suite. The grandchildren enjoyed being able to come over at will. Our stateroom attendant was friendly and did a great job doing his job. I would say he exceeded my expectations for service. Day two was supposed to be our Perfect Day at Coco Cay. It turned out to be anything but perfect. I bought tickets to the Thrill Water Park for all (the 23 month old was free) paying a little over $300 on-line prior to the cruise. I did my research and both my son and I clearly understood the restrictions for the 5 year old and what she could ride. However once inside the park what we thought the 5 year old could ride she could not even though she was well over the lower height restriction. The problem, we did not put a life preserver on her, our bad. But the life guards did not advise or direct us to do so either. They simply said she could not ride. Also for the adults the wait times on the rides were anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. They also closed the rides for 2+ hours do to lightening in the area (10 mile radius) although it never rained on site. Bottom line is that in a best case you could get maybe 5 rides in. In our case after taking time out for lunch and letting the kids play in the areas outside the water park none of the adults rode any of the thrill rides. The next day I received a message asking me to review the Perfect Day at Coco Cay and I gave it a very negative review. Subsequently I was contacted by guest services to clarify my review and in that conversation I requested compensation for my dissatisfaction. At first they offered 25% refund, which they were refunding everyone because of the weather closing, but I was adamant that I received zero value for my money. After two additional conversations with guest services and the manager of shore excursions they refunded me my total amount. I am happy that Royal eventually took my complaint seriously and did what I believe is right but I am disappointed that it took so long to do so. Bottom line is make sure you are willing to wait on long lines and maybe get only a few rides in. Also if you have a young ones over 40 inches but not yet 48 inches put a life vest on them (note though I only saw a 48 inch height gauges no 40 inch gauges). Also RCL should figure out how to accommodate chaperones who do not ride on the attractions such as older grandparents, why charge someone who is not using the facility. Will I use the facility again, maybe, but at least I will go in with full knowledge that I am just giving Royal my money with little value in return. Other ports were essentially noneventful. Getting off and boarding at each was easy and quick. We didn’t take any tours and simply made them beach days. In St. Thomas we took a taxi to Emerald beach which worked well for us. In St. Maarten we took the water taxi to town and rented chairs and beach umbrellas. We also had a great lunch in town in a restaurant along the boardwalk. The water taxi worked out well so I would recommend it if it works into your plans. On previous cruises to St. Maarten we simply walked into town which is an easy walk. Our dining experience onboard was mixed. We only used Windjammer for breakfast and lunch a few times. I was very disappointed in the breakfast served there. In the past on Harmony you could get eggs benedict there but not on this cruise. Also in the past you could get omelets made to order, no more, only pre made omelets. Pancakes and waffles were also pre made and were cold and dried out. You could get fried eggs to order though. Lunch in Windjammer was a little better. Windjammer food quality and choices though are simply declining. We went to American Icon twice for breakfast and it was ok but not great. I ordered eggs benedict and the eggs were over cooked and the Hollandaise Sause was dried out on top. Second time I simply ordered eggs over medium and they came out as you would expect. They also had a very good French toast that I enjoyed. In short I would say everyone in our party enjoyed their breakfasts in American Icon. The best breakfasts we had on the ship however was at Johnny Rockets, killer omelets with nice country fried potatoes in a nice location on the ship. Also Johnny Rockets had plenty of seating and service was quick and friendly. We also used Mini Bites a few times for lunch and snacks and were pleased with the offerings there. We ate dinner the second night of the cruise in Wonderland as my wife and I enjoyed it on our last cruise on Harmony. No so much this time. We simply remember the dining experience being much better. The meal was ok but nothing to write home about. We used a specialty dining coupon we had from our TA and in retrospect we should have eaten at Park 150, we have never been disappointed there. All other dinners were in Coastal Kitchen. The reservation times aside the staff there was spectacular. They honored our every request including asking for several items from the MDR. They were great with the children. The food offerings there however were not as good as I remember it on past cruises. One of the reasons I book a Jr. Suite is to dine in Coastal Kitchen. In the past we found it better than any specialty restaurant on the ship, but not on this sailing. We found the menu selections ordinary, nothing special. The head chef came by each evening and one night I asked him if the menu was his or Miami’s, he said Miami. Too bad, I think in the past the chef may have been given more flexibility to use their creativity in creating dishes. The food was not bad, just not the exceptional dining experience I have become accustomed to. One big mistake serve what is on the menu, one night they said they had Pear Salad but when it was served it was apple salad with a different dressing. The server should have known that the Pear salad was not available. No killer nightly dessert either, just ho-hum. As with Windjammer dinner in Country Kitchen appears to be on the decline, at least on this ship. The nightly entertainment was enjoyable. We have been on Harmony in the last 18 months so the shows have not changed. Make sure you make reservations online well in advance on line, we did and it worked out great. Although we enjoyed the shows we look forward to RCL rolling out some new shows on Harmony. I found the musicians on this cruise to be outstanding, better than I have been accustomed too. The two comedians onboard Nery Saenz and Heath Harmison were fantastic, very funny guys. The Headliner Showtime act, Tribute Band, Private Stock, was ok but not a great show although many in the audience enjoyed them more than I. Another new item I did not appreciate was the large number of reserved seats for suites (Grand and above), Diamond Plus (not there yet, maybe never) and Pinnacle as well as seats for those that purchased The Key. It used to be that the first couple of rows were reserved for Suite guests, now 2/3 of the seats in the center section are reserved for the above, very disturbing. It simply means getting in line early at the front so you can run to get your seats when the doors open. This simply creates more stress and watch watching during dinner. Guess it is just another indication of the cruise line going back to the class system; regular paying customers are not as appreciated as they were in the recent past. Daytime activities onboard were very good and what have become accustomed to. Note however a change in the procedures on the Flow Rider. My son is a very experienced Flow Rider having sailed on Freedom, Independence and Harmony. He signed the waiver, got his wrist band and was in line for about 30 minutes for the standup Flow Rider when the attendant told him he needed to ride the knee board Flow Rider first and get a different colored wrist band. So this cost him about an hour of wasted time in total. He should have been advised of the change in procedure when he signed the waiver. He complained and they began making announcements to this requirement, it would have been nice if they were making announcements prior to his complaint. Apparently this is a new procedure implemented a few months back, not sure what its purpose it has. I do not like writing what is mostly a negative review, particularly since my past sailings on RCCL have been outstanding. So what is my take away, will I sail with Royal again, sail on Harmony again? Probably yes to both depending on value and the itinerary. As I live in Orlando I will likely sail on whichever Oasis class ship Royal is sailing from Port Canaveral, not sure it is worth the drive to Fort Lauderdale or Miami for me. But given the value of the cruise and itinerary driving south is always an option. Will probably only sail RCL though with grandchildren, for me Celebrity is still my go to cruise line and ships. But I will also be looking more closely at Princess as I have had good past experiences with them as well. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We' cruised on the Allure out of Ft Lauderdale the past two years and wanted to try a new new ship. We traveled to CoCo Cay, St Thomas and St Marteen on the trip. OUr daughter and her best friend just graduated from college and the ... Read More
We' cruised on the Allure out of Ft Lauderdale the past two years and wanted to try a new new ship. We traveled to CoCo Cay, St Thomas and St Marteen on the trip. OUr daughter and her best friend just graduated from college and the trip was a gift to them. We took the Cortrans shuttle service from the Embassy Suites airport hotel in Orlando to the cruise port and from the cruise port to the airport at the end of the cruise. Relatively inexpensive, timely, friendly and comfortable. Embarking at Port Canaveral was a breeze. On the ship in 15 minutes from the time we stepped off the shuttle. The Harmony is big, beautiful, and busy. Longer lines than the Allure, but nothing severe. All the shows were fantastic, and the food was great. We tried the Abyss slide (very cool, only slightly terrifying at the beginning) and the water slides. Both were fun. We also did the Escape Room on the trip and found it very entertaining. We did "escape" with ten minutes to spare lol. We've done the zip line and rock climbing on previous cruises. The water view rooms we booked (3654, 3656) were fantastic! Quiet, convenient and perfectly situated. After the cruise the wife and I both agreed that we liked it better than our previous interior balcony view rooms on deck 12 on the Allure. Steps from the elevator and main dining room, but around a corner so there wasn't much foot traffic going by, and plenty of room to move inside, with lots of storage. St Thomas, St Johns and St Marteen have all come a long way from the hurricane damage of 2017. We love St. Marteen and toured the nation park on St. Johns. It was incredibly beautiful and we would love to go back. On St Marteen we toured Ft Luis in Marigot and took the See and Sea tour at Grand Case. Much cooler than I expected! Saw sting rays, sea turtles and a barracuda at the reef. The "kids" did the sting ray excursion at Coco Cay and the Sea Lion excursion at St. Thomas and can't stop talking about them. And speaking of, Coco Cay was wonderful. Lots of activities on the island, beautiful beaches and the water was amazing. We went kayaking and saw coral reefs and sting rays swimming by. Also spent some time swimming in the huge freshwater pool. We both liked it even more than Labadee. Dining room was excellent as always and it seemed that the staff on the entire ship have been given happy pills. The crew members on RCCL have always been great, but this was over the top. You always felt like a VIP every time you interacted with a crew member. All in all a great time! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This was my 9th and LAST RC cruise. It started with the most disorganized safety breifing and got worse fron there. The VOLUME of music is intended to cause hearing loss. Not just the venues, the music playing around the ship. The ... Read More
This was my 9th and LAST RC cruise. It started with the most disorganized safety breifing and got worse fron there. The VOLUME of music is intended to cause hearing loss. Not just the venues, the music playing around the ship. The pool deck is so loud you cant hear someone speak directly in your ear. There are NO quiet places to smoke and only one quiet place without A/C to play games. Don't ask the crew where or when anything is- they do not know or care. We tried Trivia but the two spermalougers were snarky, condescending jerks. RC sold us a cabin with noise intrusion nightly (from an aqua show) without telling us. We gave RC four weeks to apologize, refund, or respond and we got nothing. The Columbus Musically has multiple burping lines. It's a cross between Pirates of the Pinzance, spring time for Hitler. To say it was terrible would be to give it too much credit. There were plenty of things to do for an upcharge- escape room, specality resturants, zip lining. The Kareoke bar is only open for two- three hours per day even though it is a kareoke specific bar called "on air". Generally open from 11pm u til 1:30 AM. Not all of us need liquid courage. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Harmony of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.6
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 4.3
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.3
Family 5.0 4.3
Enrichment 2.5 3.9
Service 3.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.9

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