Booked this sailing with my family back in February. Myself, my wife, son (14) and daughter (12), my parents, one with somewhat limited mobility sailed from Bayonne on 7/13/18. We all live 30 minutes from the port, so transportation was easy. My family took our car, dropped off at the baggage drop, left family, parked, met inside, simple as can be. My parents took an Uber for $28, simple as can be.
Get through security, brought 6 bottles of wine since we had 3 staterooms, got through no problem. There was a little bit of confusion checking in, as we were going to be switching up room assignments, my mom with my daughter, dad with my son, wife and I by ourselves. They had the adjoining staterooms. We booked Promenade View, deck 7. They told me that we would be able to re-do our rooms at Guest Services when we get on board.
We all go up the escalator, get on the gangway, take a selfie, walk onto deck 4, kids were astounded as to the enormity of the ship! I've done massive research, but nothing compares to actually walking on board! We left our house at 10:30, got on the ship at 11:30ish, so we had time to kill before the rooms opened up at 1. We walked around the ship, got our bearings (still took 2 days) and went to Guest Services. They said that nothing can be done until AFTER muster drill. That made absolutely NO sense, being that our muster stations were different after we changed rooms. No big deal, went to the Windjammer, hard to find a table, made a table for 5 work for 6ppl. Enjoyed the lovely views of Cape Liberty...LOL!
1pm, doors to hallways open up, waited a little while to get our luggage, then had muster at 2:30. By then, the drink package was paying for itself, which made me ease my tensions a little bit. Went to muster, then right to Guest Services, waited 10 minutes online but was seamless once we got to the right person to straighten it out. All Seapassses in hand, with the correct rooms, credit cards on file, etc.
We booked MTD, because we didn't want to eat at 5:30, and thought the later seating would interfere with shows. Went downstairs to Sapphire Dining Room on Deck 3, made reservation for 7:45, earliest they had. We show up a little bit early, waited on line, and then were seated AT 7:45. We sat at table 158, our waiter was Arnold, and his assistant watier was Noor. These guys impressed us so much with their attentiveness that we then made sure we had a standard booking at 7:15 at their table every night, they were SPECTACULAR!
Kids went to Optix teen club after dinner for their social, and both made friends. My son, who is like the mayor, was traveling in 3 different groups! We were thrilled that we didn't have to worry about them as much as we thought we would.
Saturday morning was great, everyone did their own thing. My son and I went to the Dog and Duck, where I had a couple Bloody Mary's (morning tradition) and watched the 3rd place World Cup Game. Go Belgium! It was a great experience! Afterwards, trying to find everyone in my party was an arduous task to say the least! Wife tells me she'll be at the pool, she's gone, she's looking for me, yada yada yada. Besides the fact that there were NOWHERE NEAR enough deck chairs, the 6 of us had to share ONE lounger! Finally found everyone. Did the Flow Rider and the water slides. TIP: DO NOT DRINK AND GO ON THE BLUE WATER SLIDE!!!!!!!
Saturday night dinner service, Captain had to stop the ship for an unfortunate medevac, which put us an hour behind schedule. Luckily the patient is doing well! Sunday morning, Bloody Mary's in the hot tub, port side, watching the World Cup Finals! Too bad France won, was rooting for Croatia, along with most of the people on the pool deck! We ended up being able to watch most of the game that started at 11am, with the delay, we docked at 1pm, so the timing was perfect.
Disembarking at Cape Canaveral was simple. Cape Canaveral, however, was a wasted port, IMHO. If you're not spending $160PP to go for the day to Disney or Universal, you're stuck with going to NASA for almost $100PP, or do as we did, take an Uber to Coco Beach and Ron Jon. The only good thing that came from that is that I walked across the street to Walgreens to get a couple magnetic dry erase boards, which saved our sanity! These worked GREAT! Kids left notes to check in, we left notes as to our wearabouts etc. Got back on the ship about 3pm, went to the pool, hot tubs, chilled out and relaxed.
Monday at Coco Cay was great! Besides the fact that my son decided to leave his SeaPass card in his room, we told him to meet us back down on deck 3 at Lyric Theatre. He made it back there 45 minutes later, because he didn't listen....Kids.....We got on a tender right away, got to the island at 9:45. Checked kids into the Teen Adventure, wife and I went Jet Skiing. We had the time of our lives! Got everyone back to the beach, had a great bbq lunch and the skies OPENED UP! It was a MAJOR rainstorm! Wife, daughter and I were on our way back to the tender when this happened, I think I'm still drying out!
Tuesday in Nassau was nice. We booked a tour on our own. There were 5 ships docked including 2 from Carnival, Disney Dream and Majesty of the Seas. We were the LAST and FURTHEST slip. Not good for Dad, as he has problems walking long distances. Finally made it to the front of the pier, our tour met at the green gates on the left, with all the other boat tours. We booked the Land and Sea Tour from Seahorse Tours, and it was fabulous! Would definitely recommend them. This is the same tour the Disney line books on their ship. Was able to get him a bus back to the ship, which was great!
Last two days at sea were tremendous. The shows were great, really enjoyed the Headliner Show, we had a great ventriliquist one night, and Michelle Balan was the comedian the last night.
Of ALL the shows and game shows, our favorite was The Quest! DEFINITELY Adult Only!!!!! The Love and Marriage was great, as was the Ice Show!
Now, if you've stuck with me so far, I'm going to backtrack a bit. Night 1, at 2am (so technically Day 2), our lovely female teenager next door neighbors (yes, we had an adjoining room, had NO idea until we got on board) decided to Facetime their boyfriends, yes at 2am! Loud as anything! Wife knocked on the door asked them to quiet down. Took a few, but they finally did. We literally could hear them breathe, that's how loud it is. Next afternoon of Day 2, at 6:45, we're getting ready for dinner, and LOUD RAP music is BLARING, thinking it was coming from MY room! This was OFFENSIVE music! I knocked on the door, and politely asked them to lower it. They gave me major attitude and refused to turn it down. It got verbally abusive (yes, on both sides, guilty as charged), and security knocked on their door. Heard every word of that conversation, then they come to my room to take our side of the story. They told us to call them if it happens again, not to confront them. OK....
Day 2, into Day 3 at 4AM, these two come flying in their room, loud as anything. Instead of calling security, we knocked and politely asked them to be quiet. They obliged. Next night, 5AM, SAME THING! So this is 3 nights so far with interrupted sleep.....Wife went to Guest Services and filed a complaint. They said that they would take care of it. Later that night, we got back to the room at about 11:15, was watching the All Star Game, and I hear them with boys in the room, as if they're having a party. AT midnight, they stopped or left, thinking that they were spoken to, GREAT! Well, 2am, 4am and 5:30am, they come back into their room making all sorts of noise. I went to Guest Services and explained to them the situation and that nothing was done. They immediately moved my room to a forward balcony room, and offered me 15% discount on my next cruise. So who's the winner? Well, I think I made out better. It was a shame that it had to wait til Day 5 to get it taken care of.
Bottom line, food was good, not GREAT. We had cabins 7301 and 7303 adjoining, which were interior promenade view, spacious enough, and then 7291, which was the same. We then got moved to 7228, Starboard side forward, EXTREMELY spacious, and didn't want to leave!
Entertainment staff was terrific! Clo was our CD, and Magic Marvin and Prince were her "sidekicks". All shows were professional and truly enjoyable!
Glad the ship is skipping Cape Canaveral next year, wouldn't get off the ship if we went back there again.
Favorite food was the Beef Carpaccio appetizer, think was day 3 or 4? Also LOVED the Lamb Shank on day 7. Lobster night was terrific, had a few of those, plus an END CUT of Prime Rib!
Drink package was well worth it for wife and I. I know its "against the rules", but we gave our refillable drink cups to our kids who didn't have a package. No harm, no foul. They enjoyed it! Was even able to get my mother a drink or two! We did bring some expensive wine on board for dinners. Was able to get a bottle decanted when needed, and chilled when needed too.
Was VERY impressed with the amount of top shelf liquor on the drink package, as a bourbon drinker, was drinking Four Roses Single Barrel all day, every day, about $50/btl retail, so therefore a tremendous value! Wine choices a bit limited, but made it work.
Hope you all enjoyed my review! Read Less