Sail Date: September 2012
First cruise for us so we went with an open mind. On the advise of a cruise adviser we settled for Adventure of the Seas as it catered for a 17 year old. My 17 year old was not disappointed. We flew from Gatwick to Malaga. The flight ... Read More
First cruise for us so we went with an open mind. On the advise of a cruise adviser we settled for Adventure of the Seas as it catered for a 17 year old. My 17 year old was not disappointed. We flew from Gatwick to Malaga. The flight with British Airways went very smoothly. We were a bit uncertain where to find the Royal Caribbean rep when we arrived at Malaga but eventually found them outside of the terminal building guiding everyone towards the coaches. Once we had located the rep this all ran smoothly. We arrived at the ship terminal. As a first time cruiser we found this a bit bewildering. Our luggage was already finding its own way on-board ship so we just joined a queue and hoped we were in the right queue. Basically that is all you need to do. The queue led to a check in desk where we gave our details, showed our credit card that we had registered with and were then given our sea passes. Then we were confronted by an array of confusing stands (My time dining, soda packages, etc). As first time cruisers we weren't sure if we needed to do anything here but basically you didn't.........everything on offer at the check in terminal was also on offer on-board so best to just walk past it all really, it is just a sales pitch. So, one final show of sea passes and we were then confronted with a "photographer" before we then made our way on board! Security photos were taken at the embarkation gate and then we were free to roam the ship. Our rooms weren't ready until 1.30 but we only had half an hour to wait. We opted for a balcony room on Deck 6. It was bigger than I expected with a drop down bed for our son. Personally I found the decor perfectly adequate and didn't think it looked dated at all, it was light, airy, comfortable and above all spotlessly clean. Our cabin steward kept it that way for 7 days. I cannot speak highly enough about the service provided by the cabin steward. The bathroom was "compact" but perfectly adequate for a 7 night stay and plenty of hot water, and a constant stream of clean towels (many very cleverly made up as animals, a very nice touch). We found Deck 6 to be a good place to be in the ship, it was half way between everything and very quiet. The inside cabins opposite us though looked over the Royal Promenade which was great for parade nights as they had a birds eye view of the entertainment but I suspect a little noisy due to their position. I personally wouldn't choose an inside cabin on decks 6, 7 or 8 of this ship as they all overlook the Promenade. I have read many reviews about the problems with smoking and vibration on this ship. As far as smoking goes we didn't find it a problem and we are very anti smoking. Some people did smoke but we just moved on elsewhere, the majority of the ship was smoke free the week we went and we didn't find it a problem at all. The ship did have a slight vibration, as this was our first cruise I can't compare it to other ships. Someone did say it was because the ship had a propeller (I thought all ships had propellers but who knows). It was a mild vibration, not a bad one. We didn't feel it at all in our cabin but it could be felt at the rear of the Windjammer, in certain bars and sometimes up by the pool. It wouldn't put me off going on this ship again though. The food was amazing. We had planned to use the dining room but spent a whole week in the Windjammer. The choice was exceptional and we never had a bad or indifferent meal there. It did get very busy at times, we just learnt to avoid the busy times. Food is on tap on this ship 24/7 if you take into account the Cafe Promenade which is open all night.....it really isn't worth fighting over a table when an hour later the buffet will be virtually empty and all the food still there waiting to be eaten! There were 3,500 people on our cruise. 2,500 of them were Spanish, 600 Brits and the rest made up of a lot of other nationalities. Lovely to see a very strong contingent of Irish on board as well. However, given the Spanish contingent it is safe to say there was a very Spanish feel to this cruise. The entertainment did slant to the Spanish as well but the Cruise Director Abel (let's call him the compère of the evening) did a great job of making sure everyone knew what was going on in both Spanish and English. Abel was very entertaining and TBH was better than some of the evenings entertainment. The entertainment in the Lyric Theatre was a mixed bag but we went every night and it is worth doing that because you somehow start to feel a part of the ship and Abel kept us up to date with what would happen the next day. I speak highly of the Cruise Director, he did a great job. The entertainment is down to personal taste, we enjoyed some of it but not all of it. I was concerned that prices on board would be high. To be honest they were high compared to where I live but this is an all inclusive cruise, you only have to spend money if you choose to. Alcohol I thought was on a par with any European country we have visited. Cocktails were 7 - 9 US Dollars, Beer 6-9 US Dollars. Wine was the worst, it averaged 8 US Dollars a glass and a bottle ranged from 25 - 35 US Dollars (given I can buy a very good wine in a local supermarket for £5 sterling I thought that was steep). And of course there was a 15% service charge as well......I feel sorry really for the bar people as given the prices you are very reluctant to add a tip to the bill as well given a service charge has already been added.....just hope they get to see some of it in their pay packet! On the plus side bringing your own alcohol on board is strictly controlled. This led to a very calm and safe environment on board ship I thought. We didn't see one incident of an alcohol fuelled difficult situation on board at all. Also it was quite funny watching everyone dressed up in their finery on the formal night, then pushing and shoving to get to the "cheap" jewellery and watch sale after dinner. Everyone loves a bargain so don't be tempted to buy gifts from the shops on board, wait until midweek when the inevitable "sale" starts! So Ports of Call. We had only booked an excursion to Rome preferring to savour life on board as it was a first time cruise. When we docked at Valencia you could get the ships shuttle for 15 euros per person but apparently being a Sunday Valencia is very quiet so we chose to sit up on deck and sun worship (a little bit of heaven because the sun is a rarity in Wales). Our first day of sea was very rough and there were quite a few people looking a bit green but the sea sickness tablets from Guest Relations seemed to work a lot better than any bought at home from the chemist so worth bearing that in mind. Rome unfortunately for us was a washout because it didn't rain, it poured it down. We just joined the Rome fashion of the day and bought brightly coloured macs off the street vendor. A pity but you can't control the weather. The excursion however was led by a very knowledgeable lady and I can't fault the excursion itself........need to go back to Rome one day and see it in the sun. We didn't get off at Livorno again preferring the sundeck but you can get a 5 euro return bus ride into Livorno if you haven't booked an excursion. Adjaccio was lovely, the ship docks right at the pier and you can walk off the ship into the town. From a port of call point of view this was the highlight for us. Valencia, Civitavecchia and Livorno were very much a dock area (which is fine if you have an excursion but not very picturesque if you choose to stay on board). Ajaccio though was lovely. I was concerned that a cruise would not interest a 17 year old without his big brother this time but it was fine. Day one he found the sports court and started kicking a football around on his own. Football is an international language and he soon had people joining him. He made friends from the UK, Ireland and Spain and we saw very little of him for the whole week. He was happy so were we! There was a 15 to 17 year old club, no young children or adults allowed...it worked well and a 1 am curfew for all teenagers under 18 was great, he was back at a sensible time so we didn't need to worry and the ship was quiet at night. Overall I loved this cruise, can't wait to do another one. Nothing is perfect and I know past reviews have highlighted a few concerns which are probably justified to certain degrees but in the greater scheme of things we had a fantastic week and wouldn't hesitate to go on this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
We joined this Canary Island cruise because of the interesting ports. We booked through a local travel agency and also booked a pre-cruise hotel night in Malaga. PRE CRUISE HOTEL RCCL got us a room at the Hotel AC Malaga Palacio. We ... Read More
We joined this Canary Island cruise because of the interesting ports. We booked through a local travel agency and also booked a pre-cruise hotel night in Malaga. PRE CRUISE HOTEL RCCL got us a room at the Hotel AC Malaga Palacio. We took a taxi from the Malaga airport to the hotel for 20 euros. We were greeted at the reception by a helpful young man who spoke good English and we were informed that we have been upgraded to a junior suite. That was a pleasant surprise. The Junior suite was indeed spacious with separate living area. The bathroom was well appointed. The hotel package included buffet breakfast and transfer to the ship. It was a modern hotel with wi-fi in the public areas and in the 15th floor restaurant. EMBARKATION Embarkation was efficient because we did the online check-in earlier. We were surprised that there was no one to greet us once we got through security and were on the boat. Luckily I studied the deck plan beforehand and knew where to go to get some food. All the cabins were not available until 1:30 p.m., so new passengers had to take all their carry-on luggage with them and wandered around. As the ship was very large (142,000 tons), there was a lot of room to roam. The rooms were ready slightly ahead of schedule. CABIN Our cabin was what was expected of an outside deluxe balcony cabin except there was a CRT television (not flat panel). The bed was quite firm. I had read some previous reviews noting the lack of usual toiletries. The fact was RCCL provided only bar soap for the shower and shampoo/bath gel in a dispenser in the shower stall. There was no conditioner or body lotion. I visited a friend's junior suite cabin and found that they had flat panel television and bottles of shampoo etc. Our cabin steward was very good and kept the room very tidy. WINEJAMMER CAFE We went to the Windjammer Cafe at the rear of the ship for lunch and noticed that six out of twenty or so back double-glazed windows showed signs of condensation inside. There was very little service in the Windjammer Cafe throughout the cruise. There were a lot of assistant waiters around but they did not actively greet the guests or served lemonade or coffee. There was one at sea day when we noticed that there was no one around to clean the tables at 4:30 p.m. (afternoon tea time) for the whole rear section. There were also numerous occasions during breakfast that I noticed wet floors that was not cleaned up right the way, posing a hazard to the guests. ROYAL PROMENADE The Royal Promenade was a four storey high inside social area. There were shops and restaurants and was particularly busy at night. The inside rooms facing the Royal Promenade would probably have a lot of noise at night. There was a 70's music party one night starting at 11 p.m. and the atmosphere was very lively. The shops featured the usual souvenirs. ENTERTAINMENT The production shows were done in the Lyric Theatre and they were so-so. The highlight performance was a group of four Spanish men called "Forever" and they sang like Il Divo. That show was very entertaining. We also attended an Ice Show in Studio 3 which was eye-opening. The cruise director, a Swiss fellow, spoke fluent English and Spanish alternatively and he was entertaining himself. FOOD The food was mediocre but got better as the cruise went on. We went to the specialty restaurant, Portofino, on the second night of the cruise for $20 each person. It was supposed to serve Italian food but we found it tasted like a North American restaurant food. The service was excellent. The wine selection was not that "Italian" either, just the general wine list on the ship. There was an Italian night in the main dining room (we chose the early sitting fixed time) but again the food tasted North American. Our waiter and assistant waiter were very good at serving our table of eight. We noticed that there was no baked Alaska any time during the cruise but requested it anyway. To our surprise, they brought us individual dishes of baked Alaska the next night. Wine selection was good but soft drinks were expensive ($45 plus tips for one week). PHOTOGRAPHY The photography service was mediocre as well. There were photographers trying to take pictures throughout the ship but they were not enthusiastic enough. The photo gallery was poorly organized and it was difficult to find one's own photos. SMOKING Our biggest displeasure was the amount of smoking on board. Smoking was allowed in the British Pub in the Royal Promenade as well as the swimming pool area. We found that we ran into the smell of cigarettes in more places than other competitor cruise lines. WEAR AND TEAR The ship was built in 2001 and I understood that it is due for an upgrade in 2014. But there were signs of wear and tear throughout. Besides the condensation problem on the rear Windjammer Cafe windows, there were also signs of lack of repair. For example, three out of the four elevator call buttons in the starboard side front elevators on the eight floor were cracked on the second day of the cruise but were never replaced. There was cracked paint at the base of our bathroom shower door and around the waste container. We did not find our balcony inviting as the floor was worn and our friends made the same observation in their superior balcony cabin. DISEMBARKATION Disembarkation was very efficient. Crown and Anchor Society gold members had special disembarkation lounge in the Mozart Restaurant. Suite and other higher level guests also had their separate lounges. We utilized the RCCL's port to airport transfer. After picking up our luggage, we stepped out of the terminal building but were nearly lost. There was no RCCL representatives to point us in the direction of the appropriate buses. The transfer was handled by some Inter-cruise port staff who spoke little English. Luckily we had adequate time and eventually found our bus. Once at the Malaga airport, there were RCCL representatives to help guests find their check-in counters. SUMMARY All in all it was an enjoyable cruise with great ports. The ship needed some maintenance and upgrade. The overall service level was definitely not as good as similarly priced competitors. The problem probably lies with the management as the individual staff members worked very hard to make it enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
Valencia boarding - Not great, but pleasant enough staff, and I guess they dont see enough cruise ship departures to warrant better efficiency. Hated being 'bused' to the ship side. Cabin - Junior Suite, very nice, the added ... Read More
Valencia boarding - Not great, but pleasant enough staff, and I guess they dont see enough cruise ship departures to warrant better efficiency. Hated being 'bused' to the ship side. Cabin - Junior Suite, very nice, the added 'luxury' of having a walk-in wardrobe was very much appreciated, as was the larger balcony and seating area, nice to escape to when the crowds get too much. Deck 10 was VERY handy to nip up to the Windjammer Restaurant and then retreat quickly to your stateroom with a plate of food for some privacy! Kettle and china mugs a noticeable treat. Food - Overall good. Noticed more and more people choosing the Windjammer in the evening rather than choose the main dining room. Great variety and I felt more experimentation by the chefs at this venue. Opted to ignore Portofinos for this trip, it lacked much atmosphere in its styling when I've eaten there previously. Milk Shakes are KNOCK OUT at Johnny Rockets, a whole meal substitute in itself. Entertainment - Hit & miss. The Cruise Director Abel clearly loved being on stage and featured in many comedy sketches, perhaps a little too much! He had a good energy though and blended his English & Spanish translations seamlessly, for that he should be applauded. As for his accessibility and visibility throughout the day/night, he could improve on. His Activities Manager seemed redundant compared to the "International Ambassador" who had real charm and great chemistry, and a much meatier role. Entertainers - The only real stand out moments were the dancers in the production shows and 'feature dancers, and of course the Ice Team, who performed brilliantly on such a small Ice Rink. Andre the Ice Captain was incredible, and consistent too. Special mention should go to the Female Lead Singer on this ship, who sadly left all her colleagues in the shade with an INCREDIBLE voice, range, tone and volume. Well done, it was MUCH appreciated. The Gaucho show, Juan and Iris (or something similar) was DREADFUL. Sorry you two, time to hang up your bolo's and retire to the desert. Live music and Orchestra always work hard and are as good as any other ship. Thank you. Ship Appearance and Cleanliness - Excellent, well maintained and weathering well. However I would like to ask the interior designers of most of the Royal Caribbean fleet of ships, WHEN were floral pastels and coral coloured furniture EVER in fashion? I feel as if I've entered the minds and set of a Golden Girls episode from the 1980's. Time to SERIOUSLY re think and up your game RCCL. Fellow Guests - Good mix of all nationalities, although I assume mostly Spanish and then British. I like cruising with the Spanish, they have fun, join in and seem to really enjoy being with each other and in their family groups. I did not witness any anti social behaviour and would encourage everyone to mix and exchange pleasantries freely, as it was ALWAYS reciprocated. Ships staff & crew - The higher up the management, the more disappointed I was. A severe lack of presence from the hotel director or any of the senior staff throughout the week. A video 'goodbye' at the farewell show typified this rather lazy attitude to mixing with the guests. The room attendants, bar staff and waiter staff were all excellent, with no exception. Shore excursions - Average value for money, choose VERY carefully. The new flat screen tv's and in room booking system worked brilliantly, well done RCCL. I booked a shuttle to Malaga airport with the Guest Relations desk several days before our arrival. I was greeted with attitude and disdain when I queried the procedure and lack of ticket/voucher from the female desk officer. As it happened I DID need something to present to the coach/tour rep on departure, and felt bad for not chasing it up. Not what I would expect from their ship staff. Fitness Centre - Great facility, well used, shame about the staff. No presence - at all! Guests were bare chested, on equipment in towels and swim wear, wearing flip flops and wedge style shoes, but nothing was ever said or monitored. Royal will only address this fleet wide problem when an incident and subsequent legal challenge occurs. Not good enough and just not SAFE. Shopping - No surprises, no changes, usual product ranges, usual variety of tat. Watches are always a good purchase and they DO have a good range throughout the week. "Gold on a chain" really needs to GO, it dumbs down their guests and it dumbs down their branding. I wanted to buy several greetings card whilst on board, (Birthday, Anniversary etc) and no such product was offered. Surely they could make money and offer a range of cards to offer? Crown & Anchor Club/Events. Attended two events, which is more than can be said of any of the onboard officers/staff. Absolutely no information or presentation about future cruise itineraries, fleet movements or ship building or enhancements. Hardly encouraging me to excite or book my next voyage! Complimentary drinks are always a pleasant enough reason to attend, and the dance exhibition/ice dancers q&a was a great touch. The second, higher tier event was simply a 'free drink' event. I've been to so many better within the company. Royal Promenade - I did find myself sat there thinking, I could be in a shopping centre in Shepherd's Bush. I understand WHY it's there, the WOW factor and on board spend/revenue. But I'm over it now, and want a connection with the view, the ocean, the sky, and the weather, if I'm choosing to holiday onboard a cruise ship! Disembarkation - Very quick and very efficient. Well done team Malaga. It was a shame the heavens opened and then caused a certain amount of panic and crowding due to everyone taking shelter from the rain. In summary, a good holiday, but I'm tired of this size/class of ship. Royal are a great brand and I do enjoy them immensely, but in future with any choice I make, I will avoid booking Voyager class and above. My last cruise was onboard the Jewel from Harwich, a whole different atmosphere and ambiance, I recommend you all browse the entire fleet, and make your holiday choices - wisely. Thank you Royal Caribbean, and Adventure of the Seas for a GOOD holiday experience. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
My cousin and I had looked forward all year to going to San Juan, St. Kitts, Aruba, St. Thomas and Curacao. We arrived a day earlier and stayed at the Sheraton (Convention Center). This should have been a clue as to how it was going to ... Read More
My cousin and I had looked forward all year to going to San Juan, St. Kitts, Aruba, St. Thomas and Curacao. We arrived a day earlier and stayed at the Sheraton (Convention Center). This should have been a clue as to how it was going to go. The adults as well as children knock you out of the way if they want to get in front of you with not even an excuse me. On the cruise I was knocked out of the way by a child of approximately 10 years old while trying to take a picture of an ice sculpture on deck. His parents did nothing . His parents had a clear shot of what he did. For the first two days of the cruise the children dominated the ADULTS area: the pool and the hot tub. Finally, on the second day, a staff member did say something to the parents who had a BABY (of about 5-6 months) in the ADULT hot tub. This is both dangerous for the child and VERY RUDE and INCONSIDERATE to other people. My cousin and I went to the theater twice to watch a movie and were tormented by LOUD and OBNOXIOUS teenagers both times. ROOM: The junior suite was wonderful. This is the best cabin on a ship I have ever had. I usually have a balcony. There was even a tub! The room was spacious and the balcony wonderful Our room steward, Aloma, was excellent. Dining: I was very disappointed in the dining room. The first night we sat at a table by the window and loved it. The second night our table number had been moved to another table. I asked about it and was told that the first night was a mix up. I still find it strange that 2 people got a table by themselves by the window while my cousin and I and another couple are switched to the next table. The staff did not even try to see what they could do to try to make up for the switch. The food was okay, so we did not go back until lobster night. We found that we loved the Windjammer. The food was better, more selection, and nicer staff. The staff in the Windjammer could not do enough for us. I was carrying soup for myself and my cousin , when a waiter stopped me and took them. He carried them to the table for me. However, while getting sanitizer a child put her hand on top of my cousins. This is so unbelievably rude. The food at Johnny Rockets was excellent. However, the waitress was very rude. My cousin and I arrived early before noon and were told we could wait if we wanted. So, we waited on an outside table by the window. At noon, the waitress on our end waited on the family behind us that showed up approximately 25 minutes after us! We waited 30 minutes for them to open and everyone got waited on but us! I stopped one of the waiters and told him we still had not been waited on while everyone else had. He was asking the waitress why she had not waited on us and she she told him the other people were here first. I lost it. Normally I am meek, mild and non-confrontational. But after being pushed, shoved (have a large bruise on my arm from a child knocking me into a wall), no peace on the ship without some adult or ill mannered child aggravating me, I marched in there and said "oh, no mam I have been here since 30 minutes prior to opening. Do you think I got a "I am so sorry mam, I am so sorry I did not see you, I apologize let me get your order?" Oh no, I got "it not my fault" very , very, rude. She was actually indignant to me. Why, because I had the audacity to say something. The food, however, was wonderful. I loved the milkshake and hamburger. Entertainment: I liked it, but there again people were recording and using flash photography. Like I said a sea of rudeness. Spa: The spa treatment was excellent, however, I did not understand my bill. I had to go up to the spa twice. The first time customer service told me to go up there nobody would answer. The second time I thought the manager fixed it. Oh what a nightmare. I had to go to the ninth floor get my suitcase out of the hall and get the product. Then I had to run up to the twelfth floor again. Then I had to put the product back in my suit case and put it back in the hall. The day of return my bill is the same and my cousin's bill is the one that had been messed with and then put back the same. I was told to wait 20 minutes. So, I am so upset I don't even taste breakfast. Then when we go back to the line on the fifth floor; we are told to got up to the spa. Now, my cousin looses it. I am in tears at this point. The manager of the spa then finally explains the bill on the phone. Now, after I hang up I realize that the treatments on my bill are still more than the flyer had said, but I have had enough. I still don't understand the bill. Shopping: The shopping guides are excellent. They are courteous, and extremely helpful. Genuinely nice people. Ross and Christina are the best. Ports: The ports are wonderful, beautiful ports. I love the islands. Excursions: I went on a train in St. Kitts and it is excellent. I took a city tour in Curacao and it was great. I took a taxi to the beach in Aruba, and was absolutely beautiful. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
It seems to us that the lower your cruise ship class is the lower the service. We have decided that in the future we will not cruise anything lower than freedom class as the service we received was not what we have been used to with RCCL. ... Read More
It seems to us that the lower your cruise ship class is the lower the service. We have decided that in the future we will not cruise anything lower than freedom class as the service we received was not what we have been used to with RCCL. Our cabin attendant did not want to be there and pretty much told us that. It was great that RCCL allowed us to bring our own wine on board but it was very frustrating trying to get an ice bucket and some wine glasses. There was some type of coming of age party/gathering by a great number of families for their daughters and although the young girls were all beautiful in their gowns and such it was a bit overwhelming for the rest of the passengers. Loved our balcony but on a couple of nights had to stay in our cabin due to the strong odor of what seemed like marijuana. We were disappointed with Johnny Rockets as we went there for lunch, the sign in the window said they would open at 12 noon and we could see staff inside who could also see us, we waited until 12:20 only to be told by a passing crew member that it didn't open until 2:00. No worries we would just head down to the windjammer but it leaves the question why didn't the staff inside come out and inform us that the posted hours were incorrect? The ship itself is in fine shape considering it is almost due for refit. The remaining staff were all excellent and the new menu in the dining room was fabulous. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
RCI Adventure of the Seas TA Nov 3-18 Malaga Spain to San Juan, Puerto Rico Cabin: Balcony 9250 Diamond SOCIOCATS Precruise We planned a year ago to arrive four days early to see Malaga and the Costa del Sol. Part of the ... Read More
RCI Adventure of the Seas TA Nov 3-18 Malaga Spain to San Juan, Puerto Rico Cabin: Balcony 9250 Diamond SOCIOCATS Precruise We planned a year ago to arrive four days early to see Malaga and the Costa del Sol. Part of the reason (alright the main reason) was to get out of the States and avoid the last 7 days of the election campaign. We did not foresee Hurricane Sandy. Fortunately we flew out of Chicago and left on time (others on our cruise who lived on the east coast did not have it so lucky and many missed the cruise because of the hurricane). Even traveling the great circle route that took us over Toronto and Newfoundland, we could feel the outskirts of the storm roughing us as we flew over it. We love TAs and cruises, we hate today's airline industry. Nine hours of cramped space, no legroom, and hard to recline chairs leaves one with leg cramps and backaches. Of course we had to fly through Madrid. This is a challenge for anyone and I only wish it on my own worse enemies (note to self: avoid Madrid at all costs in the future). Finally arrived Malaga. Pre-cruise, we took side trips to Granada to see the Alhambra and Gibraltar to see the Rock. Enjoyed both of them and they added considerably to the cruise experience. Spent one day on the Hop On Hop Off Malaga bus, taking in its many sites and experiencing as many Tapas as we could manage. Met many of our cruise critic buddies pre-cruise. Had a great time at the Friday night rooftop party. Great group to travel with. Did not participate in any of the ship's excursions so cannot evaluate; anecdotally others said they were excellent and well conducted but expensive compared to the private excursions we set up through cruise critic. Cruise: Note: This review may appear to be negative in tone. However, we have experienced twenty cruises and our expectations are high. Small points as they may be, these items make the difference between an average cruise and an exceptional one. Pluses The ship is in great shape, well maintained, and runs like a charm. Portofinos was outstanding and great value for the price charged. Food was excellent. Only problem was we had to wait as much as 30 minutes between courses--not acceptable. Service otherwise impeccable. But we wish the ship had a CHOPS as well as additional eating venues. Entertainment acceptable nothing terrific. El Gaucho was good. Cruise Director Drew was fine. 4Ever good singing. The Singers and Dancers showed great talent but their "Rock" show was poorly conceived; very few in the audience favored Lady Gaga, Rap singing, or Michael Jackson: Know your audience folks. The all purpose musician was excellent.Lionel Richie impersonator was fine. One negative here: the pantomime clapping routine done before the show by the cruise activities staff was entertaining the first night, okay the second but by the four night and later one it became irritating (annoying and condescending after the second time). The Magician comedian was adolescent in his humor. Beatles Maniacs the next to last day made up for all the other inconsistencies; it was superb and had the audience rocking both performances. Claire was excellent handling trivia despite some fanatics. Although the prize selection could vary: how many key chains can you bring back anyway? Cannot give enough Kudos to her. Overall personality great!!! Staff is friendly and knowledgeable and helpful. Our cabin attendant wendell always had a smile and a friendly word and was prompt in meeting any of our requests. Food was acceptable but not consistent. We are not gourmets. We believe in small portions and when filled, stop. For the most part food was fine. Sailing has been reasonably smooth. DW loved the artwork on the walls of the ship, the textures, the uniqueness, the colors. The Ice show (Cool art and hot ice) as always was fantastic. The performers are skating at full speed and doing full stunts on an ice rink a fraction of normal size. Astounding. Balcony dividers are permanent metal rather than transparent glass as we have had in the past on other cruises. Disembarkation was a breeze alas a few minutes late courtesy of US Customs. Was off the ship and on a taxi within 5 minutes. Cruise: Minuses Embarkation was very smooth; we were on the ship within 15 minutes. However, we were not allowed in our staterooms until nearly 2pm. A thousand and more passengers in every lounge waiting for over two hours. Could not hear public announcements in the cabin. There was an announcement channel but even switched to "on", one could not hear and had to go outside to the aisle to hear messages. Did not see the cabin attendant at all until 730 the first evening. I had called ahead and asked for an extension cord and distilled water (I have a CPAP). Neither was in the room when we checked in and only when I pressed the case with the steward were they found. Music being played in public areas was way too loud. As always, internet too slow and too expensive but if you must use it for business, there is no choice. Kudos to first cruise line to have an "all you can use it " price available with reasonable speeds. Had to get up at 5am to be able to use it at anywhere near a reasonable speed. Most other cruise ships have additional dining venues beyond the Main Dining Room and the buffet. AOS has only Portofinos, a fine restaurant, but insufficient to meet additional needs. It needs not only a Chops but other venues like Celebrity's Bistro on Five, and HAL's Asian restaurant. Other cruises we have been on have had a wide choice of breakfast beverage drinks available. Here the only options were orange juice or apple juice. Perhaps we got spoiled from having Guava, Passion Orange, and Tomato juice but more variety is equivalent to higher quality. Table service. No teaspoons are in the pre-made rolled packet. This needs to be added. Also, several of the cloth napkins were dirty (multiple stains). And some tableware as well. This all goes under the heading of quality control which at times seem to be lacking on board. Tickets for the Ice Shows were handed out the first day from 930 to 11am. The line was frightfully long and the ship's personnel incredibly slow and incompetent in their handling of the line. Instead of just going down the line and giving out tickets, all had to go to Studio B's box office. And to further upset the crowd, at 11 handing out tickets was stopped: unfortunately instead of stationing someone at the end of the line, the line was cut at the theatre and hundreds of angry cruisers were told they had to go upstairs to Guest relations and stand in ANOTHER line. The closest thing to a riot I have ever seen almost resulted. How stupid and lacking in customer service can you get!!! I do not know who did the decorating of the cabins but the ugly shade of turquoise does not complement the wood tones. Guest Relations speak Spanish very well but have a hard time understanding English. I guess they think being based in Malaga and San Juan means English is second language. The library is probably the worst of any cruise line I have ever seen. Quite a disgrace. both quantity and quality is bad. RCI needs to improve this. We are Diamond on RCI and elite on Celebrity. Happy hour is much more delightful on Celebrity, beers are free and hors d'oeurves are served. Not so on RCI. The Deli on the Promenade which we always love and frequent, was being torn apart as we entered the ship and on that first day the sound of Jackhammers could be heard all around the ship. No explanation was given why nor when it was expected to be back in business. Certainly better communications need be given on this matter. On other ships, there was a small food stand in the pool area to serve those who did not want to change to go eat in the buffet. No such luck here. Plenty of bars but no eatery. i understand the cost cutting on board but you would think they would have different prizes for Trivia than key chains everytime. Slots extremely tight. On land many casinos are required to have 90 cents payback for every dollar; here it could not have been higher than 50 cents. Venues and events did not match up. Events listed for one place were moved to another venue where they did not happen. Saw the Cruise Director at the Theatre Shows and heard him announce activities but did not see him anytime else. Usually see Cruise Directors everywhere on the ship talking and greeting people. Not this guy. Ice Cream. Spoiled by Celebrity's dozen different flavors and different ones each day. On RCI, Ice cream of the day: Vanilla. Need more flavors and choices. Typically Diamond or Elite have robes in the room when one gets there; not the case. We had to ask to have some brought to us. On Previous cruises have had many invitations to special events. On this cruise even being Diamond, none. Supposedly had a Welcome Back party for Diamonds but no invitation was ever received so we missed it. The Casino sponsored a free blackjack and slot tournament to Crown and Anchor members. Over a hundred showed up and the casino had only one table open. It did open a second table but should have planned for the large number that did show up. Poor planning and execution on their part. Twice while in Port, window washers appeared outside our window, once while DW was getting dressed. Not good. Need some warning and clearance. Ate often in the Main Dining Room (Diamond) for Breakfast. Usually took 30-40 minutes each time for our entrees to arrive (How long does it take to cook 2 eggs?). Thrice I asked for Chocolate Milk and three times I ended up getting Cold Hot Chocolate (there is a big difference). Similarly I asked for American Bacon and ended up with English Bacon. Get some English speaking servers and teach them the difference. Pools and Spa and Jacuzzi closes at 10. Since second seating is not over until afterwards or the evening show not over until afterwards, no one attending these events are able to utilize these activities at night. There is no earthly reason why these cannot stay open until Midnight. Think of the Guest for a change!! The ship is in generally good condition. I did notice, however, that outside on our balcony, corrosion and rust has taken its toll on the frame, with ruts as deep as one inch or more. It is unsightly and not confidence inspiring. I have often suggested that the ship's online center should allow unlimited free access to Cruise critic. So far no one has taken me up on the offer--too much common sense I presume. Just noticed something else missing from our cabin. In every other cruise, we have had a tray with a bucket of ice and glasses; not here. I suppose it is available upon request but should not it be standard? On Previous TAs, had multiple Diamond events. Very few here. Surprised to see the room still had the big thick old TVs. I would have thought by now all would be replaced by flat screens. Post Cruise We stayed over in San Juan at the Marriott Resort on sunday after debarking from the ship. This is our standard tactic as we do not have to worry about making the same day flight. Went over and walked around Old Town and tried several delicious restaurants. Flew out monday morning and were home by that night. Cruise: wrap-up: the Adventure of the Seas is an excellent ship with many fine high quality friendly staff. But it needs to take service up a notch before its service can be considered of highest quality. Little things add up and there were too many little things wrong that should not have been and should have been addressed before passengers even board the ship. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Highlights of Cruise: Embarkation in Malaga: This was very smooth. We arrived at the port by about 11:30 AM and were able to easily drop baggage with porters, check-in, and board the ship. On the ship: a) For a long voyage, the JS ... Read More
Highlights of Cruise: Embarkation in Malaga: This was very smooth. We arrived at the port by about 11:30 AM and were able to easily drop baggage with porters, check-in, and board the ship. On the ship: a) For a long voyage, the JS category room is perfect. I appreciated the walk-in closet, larger balcony, and larger sitting space. Plenty of storage for people that pack too much. b) This was also the largest ship I had sailed on and it didn't feel too big or too crowded (with the exception of the promenade during events). c) The Solarium for the adults was a nice area to escape from kids but fortunately being on a long itinerary and during school session, the number of kids was quite small. d) Having access to Starbucks products was a nice touch. Things not so great: a) Granted this was my first time on RCCL, I wasn't aware that you could smoke on your balcony if you request an ashtray. There were many times I was unable to use my balcony because of the close proximity to cigar smokers. RCCL seems to have plenty of spaces for smokers in public areas such as the casino, a cigar smoking lounge and upper deck areas so I don't understand why it is necessary to inconvenience non-smoking guests on their balconies by letting smoking occur. b) There is only one specialty restaurant on the ship, it would be nice to have other dining options. Portofino was an excellent experience, but we only dined there one time. I would have liked to have gone back if it wasn't so expensive. c) Even with a full size tub in our bathroom, I figured the bathroom would look/feel bigger, but it didn't. d) the Windjammer cafe seating is terrible. There are lots of options for tables to seat 4, 6, and 8 people, but when you are a single or two people, it is often hard to find seating at peak times. The layout for seating and the bulky style furniture add to a lot of wasted space. e) Windjammer food was more disappointing than I thought it would be. I expected more variety and that wasn't the case. Also, the quality of things like fresh fruit was lacking. f) Our seating assignment for the dining room was a disappointment (at first). We were at a table of 6 with four Germans that didn't speak any/much English. It was quite uncomfortable at first, but I worked with the MDR staff to change that situation. After the second attempt, we were seated at a different table by ourselves. g) Dining room food was better than I expected it to be, but still didn't please me about half the time. I usually cruise on Celebrity and the food (taste and selection) is much better. I prefer having more options to pick from and having a standard set of options available every day. RCCL was changing their menu service during our cruise so I would be willing to go back and try it again on a shorter itinerary. h) MDR service (for food or beverage) is hit or miss. We really liked our servers, but some days they were great and other days just so/so. We even ate with friends one night in the My Time dining area and were amazed at how much better their service was compared to ours. On Celebrity, I enjoy having a sommelier or other trained wine professional in the dining room to help with selections. Luckily I know enough to make good choices. i) I chose a wine bottle package during the cruise, but found out after a couple of days into a 15 day voyage that at least 3 selections in the highest tier package were not available. It would have been nice if they told me that when I signed up for the package. The items being offered as a replacement were inferior to the options they replaced. j) A/C in our room (9270) didn't seem to be very capable of cooling the room efficiently. I often kept the drapes closed on very warm days to allow the room to cool. Arriving in first U.S. port: Anyone doing research on this topic knows what I mean when they hear the horror stories for clearing customs when you arrive in your first U.S. destination. Fortunately, RCCL got wise and went to St. Thomas before arriving in the final port of San Juan, Puerto Rico. However, it is still a disaster for those persons that are not U.S. citizens. I passed through my processing in about 5 minutes, but I had Canadian and British friends I was traveling with that stood in line for over an hour before they even entered the MDR for processing. It just seems that this process really needs an overhaul so that it doesn't take till 11 AM before you leave the ship and miss half your day in port. Debarkation in San Juan, PR: This process also seemed pretty smooth as long as you don't try to bring banned items such as fruit with you. We were staying on the island for several more days so we opted to leave the ship as late as possible. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Introduction - Last year on Allure we've booked this 7 night cruise through the southern part of the caribbean. Mostly because we wanted to see Aruba and Curacao. We arrived 2 days before embarkation and stayed in the Ritz-Carlton ... Read More
Introduction - Last year on Allure we've booked this 7 night cruise through the southern part of the caribbean. Mostly because we wanted to see Aruba and Curacao. We arrived 2 days before embarkation and stayed in the Ritz-Carlton near the airport (in Carolina). We had a wonderful 2 days despite the rainy weather that saturday. On sunday we made our way to the pier via a SUV booked by the hotel. Day 1 - Embarkation day Arriving at the pier the driver seemed to know what he was doing as he approached one of the luggage boys and got our luggage tagged and on its way in a blink of an eye. The luggage boy pointed us out into the direction of the suites entrance of the terminal building. Here we met a friendly lady of the pier authority which halted us because the terminal building was 'too full to handle more passengers at this moment'. We arrived here at around 3pm and there was a HUGE line of guests in the normal line. We knew that this was going to be different then our experience from Fort Lauderdale. Waited for about 30 minutes we where let into the terminal building, but not before we went through the scanner and everything. From here on out the checkin process was smooth. Nobody was in the suites line in the terminal and our creditcard was swiped and sea-passes given in the blink of an eye, and off to the ship we went. I think we must have been aboard at around 3.45pm. On board we checked our room right away and it didn't seemed to be cleaned very well, which is odd for a OS room. Nevertheless we started exploring this big and great room. It didn't take a long time before we where done and where about to check on our dinning table. Once we left our room we bumped into our stateroom attended. He apologised for the 'messiness' and explained that this was his first day on the job (oh boy ...). He promised all would be fine. Checked the dinning room (table 449), found our table and made our way wondering through the ship. Later that afternoon we set for drink in Cloud 9, which was the DP/Suite lounge and met our lovely concierge (Silvia). Dinner the first night and meeting our waiter (Alifton), head waiter (Donald) and assistant waiter (Lally) was great! Such a dedication to serve us throughout this cruise. Once back in our room turndown service was provided ... but the room ... it didn't looked clean. Day 2 - St. Thomas Leaving the ship to stroll around Charlotte and booked a last minute island tour by one of the people offering it on the streets (20 USD pp, nothing special). Once back in the room at 2pm we noticed that our bed wasn't made and that the room wasn't cleaned yet ... OK, this is starting to be annoying. We brought the issue to Silvia attention that afternoon in the Concierge Room. All would be taken care off and indeed that night our bed was made ... but still ... cleaned? No not really. The shower still looked somewhat dirty and the flooring around the bed wasn't vacuumed. This was also the day we met Ligia, the bartender at the Champagne Bar. We spent most of our afternoons there before the Concierge Room opened (5pm). She is a lovely girl and at the end of the cruise we rewarded her with our WOW card. Day 3 - St. Kitts Got up early again and the the Caribbean Cooks tour. Lovely tour of the Fairview Greathouse and a lovely lunch cooked by the chef. Back on the ship we bumped into someone who claimed to be our stateroom attended. The one attending our stateroom the other day got 'sick'. I wonder ... At that moment we also met the Deck supervisor (Paula) who explained all of the problems and apologised for the situation. Later that night Silvia offered to comp us for Portofino later that week which we accepted. Day 4 - Cruising Did not that much. Laying around in the sun, swim, had some cocktails had dinner. Just enjoying ourselves to the max :-) Oh! we had a wine tasting. Apparently when Adventure sailed in Europe the wine tasting was on the last sea day ... where on the caribbean itinerary its on the first. Most people showed up, not all of them though and they would do it again on the last day. The wine tasting was OK. Didn't pick up a lot of new information, but the wines where fine (all wines from the house of Rothschild). We also skipped dinner in the main dining room and went to Portofino's. And men was that good! I had the tuna and had it done 'as raw as possible ... and it was seared to perfection! Day 5 & 6 - Aruba & Curacao The ports for which we booked this cruise and boy did we enjoyed our days there. We shopped, we snorkelled, we wondered and amazed. One thing that really struck us as dutchies ... all those people who buy Gouda Cheese on Aruba! Boxes ... hundreds of them ... I still can't get my head around it why they love it so much ... We went to see the ice show on day 6 which was a great show to see. Too bad they kept the theater open ever after the show started so people kept running in and out and looking for seats throughout the show. RCCL should close it down when the show starts. Day 7 - Cruising The weather was a bit rainy in the morning, but luckily we filled our time with a indoor 'tour of the house', also called the All Access Backstage Tour. Saw the bridge, Studio B, the Lyric theater, the laundry room, enging control room and the galley. What a work all those dedicated people but into their work to deliver us a 7 days cruise. For those who never did the tour, I suggest it highly! And on this last night we once again found ourself in Portofino. This night I had the Frutti di mare and men was it good! And so comes a 7 nights cruise to an end. ... Day 8 - Disembarkation day Our lounge for disembarkation was Portofino's. We went there and despite of a long wait Silvia never showed up, nor nobody was able to reach her to ask what our departure time would be. Some of our fellow cruisers decided to proceed to deck 4 themselves and so did we. Here we where let of the ship directly with no wait in the terminal for our luggage nor customs. Needles to say it was a lovely cruise, and we will be looking forward to our next one. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
This was out 39th cruise, the 6th on RCI. Our most recent cruise was on the "Oasis of the Seas" earlier this year and before that we had not been on RCI for 15 years, when we took the" Enchantment of the Seas" on a ... Read More
This was out 39th cruise, the 6th on RCI. Our most recent cruise was on the "Oasis of the Seas" earlier this year and before that we had not been on RCI for 15 years, when we took the" Enchantment of the Seas" on a London -- Boston cruise. We weren't all that happy at that time mainly due to a lack of activities. We flew to Madrid and then took the train down to Malaga (2.5 hrs). Stayed at the Barcelo Malaga for one night -- the hotel is connected to the train station and we were happy there. We made our own air arrangements. In the morning we took a taxi (12E) to the port. Got there about 12pm and after a short wait for the security there was no line for the past passengers and we were on the ship within 30 min. after arriving at the port. Cabins would be ready at 2 pm so we got something to eat at the Windjammer. Normally we would book a balcony cabin but since this was our 4th trans-Atlantic cruise and we know that the ocean could be "angry" at times we opted for a cabin on the lowest deck (#2) in the middle of the ship. But, the ocean was calm during the cruise. We were happy with the cabin -- except the old TV and no internet in the cabins. Some cabins had flat-screen TVs where they had to replace the TV. The AOS is due for a dry-dock in 2014 and I'm sure the TVs and the internet will be addressed. The ship has some of the same features of the Oasis (Royal Promenade, Ice Skating, etc.) but she is no Oasis. We knew that of course, so we were not disappointed. She is in fine shape, nevertheless there was more maintenance done on this cruise than any other cruise we have been on. On two port days in the Canary Islands they shut down the toilets for a few hours in the morning. We were off the ship at that time! We also had a power failure at night -- but we slept through it. The most notable maintenance was that the Cafe Promenade was closed. They were replacing tiles. Since this is the only 24-hour restaurant on the ship they had a temporary coffee set-up (right next to Starbucks) and the food was available in the Imperial Lounge (or the entrance to the lounge when it was being used). After about 6 days they had half the cafe open, mainly the counter for food. Four days before the cruise ended they opened the whole cafe. Needless to say, this was not an ideal situation, but I think they had to do the maintenance to pass the US inspection when they got back. The entire staff, without exception, was friendly and cooperative. This was a very international cruise with cruisers from the UK (900), the US (700), Germany (550), Spain (400) and a lot of other nationalities. There were 50 kids and 150 hearing impaired cruisers with about 10 interpreters for the deaf. Most of the activities and shows were interpreted. Almost all announcements were in at least 3 languages (English, Spanish and German). We were quite satisfied with the food. We ate all dinners, except one, in the dining room. One night we ate in Portofino, the Italian restaurant, which is the only alternative restaurant. There is a Johnny Rockets for hamburgers, etc. It's really in a bad location on Deck #12 -- out of the way and easily overlooked. We had one lunch there. There is no pizzeria on the ship, although they have small pizzas available in the Windjammer and the Cafe Promenade. They didn't look all that good to me. We liked to eat early but the earliest reservation I could book before the cruise were 7 pm every night. Once on the ship I was able to change this to 6 pm -- and it appears that 7 pm was when dinner started in Europe, on this cruise they changed it to 6 pm -- the computer had not been updated when I made the reservation before the cruise. We opted for a table for two "My Time Dining" and since we had dinner at the same time every night we had the same table and the same waiter every night. There are very few table for two in the main dinning room but there are many in "My Time Dining". So I would suggest that if you are looking for a table for two take "My Time Dining" and then if you eat at the same time you can still have the same waiter -- it's the best of both worlds. This would also work for larger tables, of course. I think there were also few tables for four in the main dining room (Deck #3 & #4). There was not much demand for "My Time Dining" on this cruise so most of Deck #5 was also regular dining. For "My Time Dining" you will be charged for the tips when you make the reservation or final payment. The only way to avoid this is to change to "My Time Dining" once you are on the ship, then you will be charged once you make the change -- assuming that it's available. We ate most breakfasts and lunches in the Windjammer. It was very crowded on port days for breakfasts. Why was I not surprised that they ran out of bananas after 10 days? Because the same thing happened on our trans-Atlantic cruise 15 years ago. They also ran out of fresh milk, skim milk and chocolate milk. For breakfast these were available in single packages. For about two days they had the kind of milk that you don't have to refrigerate in small packages and then they ran out of those also. But they still had the non-refrigerated milk in larger containers which they served in juice dispensers. I like to think that RCI knows how much food they will need on cruises, so I think this was a cost saving measure. Especially since they did not restock these items in Antigua, our first port in the Caribbean. We took excursions in all ports except St. Marten and St. Thomas which we had been to several times. They were handled well and were interesting. In Madeira we had the only real rain on the cruise and we got soaked to the skin -- but I won't blame RCI for that! If you reserve excursions before the cruise your credit card will be charged right away. First time I ran into that. The internet was about as expected -- not real fast but then it's never fast on ships and it's a lot better than it was a few years ago. The internet center was large -- but I had my laptop along. They were several hot spots on the ship -- amazingly they were all in busy place -- the Royal Promenade, conference center & the Solarium -- doesn't make much sense to me. I found out it also worked in the library and the internet center and I went there. I had signed up for a package, but on three days they also charged me for using the internet. It pays to check your account, which you can do on the TV. We went to all but one of the shows. I liked some better than others, but nobody promised me that the all entertainment would be geared to my taste. There was no comedian on board -- I think due to the many nationalities -- it would take too long to repeat the jokes in 3 or 4 languages, not to mention what they would lose in translation. Two days they did not have any shows. I have seen this on other cruises, although I don't quite understand this. The cruise director was a last minute substitution - I am not sure why, but I do know there were a lot of mistakes made on where things were taking place and sometimes the venue was too small for the crowd. For some reason they did not have any art auctions -- not that I need them! RCI does a good job looking out for it's most frequent cruisers. If you are Diamond and above you were invited to many events. They also set aside two center rows in the theater for "Diamond +" and higher. We signed up for the airport transfer in San Juan -- I should have taken a taxi. They charged $18/p, but we didn't get a ticket and nobody asked for it. You really didn't have to pay. But, the baggage was taken in a truck and we had to wait 30 min. for the truck to arrive at the airport Fortunately we had a lot of time. American has the only club at the airport and since our flight was not leaving till 3:30 pm and I decided to join for one day so we could have a nice place to wait. You can do that even if you're not flying with American, we were on USAir. AA is on the other side of the airport, far from USAir, so it was a long walk, but you can do it once you are through security. The attendant at the club, once we told her we were flying USAir, arranged for a cart to take us back for our flight. Good service AA! This cruise was far from perfect, but we are glad we took it -- and no cruise is perfect, anyway. After not cruising on RCI for many years, we have decided, after taking the Oasis and the AOS, that RCI is a cruise line we will take again. But our next two cruises will be on Princess and NCL, unless there is a good sale on the Allure early next year. 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Sail Date: December 2012
This is our second RC cruise--last one was 7 years ago. Some things very similar--game shows, fun vibe, very friendly and very helpful staff. Some things worse--food has definitely deteriorated. Seven years ago I would have described ... Read More
This is our second RC cruise--last one was 7 years ago. Some things very similar--game shows, fun vibe, very friendly and very helpful staff. Some things worse--food has definitely deteriorated. Seven years ago I would have described dining room food as excellent. This time--fair. Most of the dishes were lukewarm, the vegetables were always undercooked (almost raw)and I am a big veggie fan, and most of the entrees were rather bland. The dessserts were typically excellent. Even the breakfasts were always cold--eggs esp unappealing when cold. Windjammer even more mediocre although fruit always a good option. Some things better--nice layout of ship. Easy to find your way around. Loved the Promenade which was a good gathering spot for people. Loved the Promenade Cafe which was open 24 hours, had excellent sandwiches and always available coffee with hot milk (yum). No pushing of alcohol on this ship which I appreciated. Also found the gym and spa area to be lovely and spotless, the Atrium is gorgeous with a huge hot tub, and the mini golf course well maintained.Ice skating rink a fun addition but rarely open. Our cabin attendant was excellent. Thanks to CC, we asked for an ice bucket early on and it was filled twice a day so we didn't have to go stand in line at the bars in search of ice every day and were not dehydrated. He also provided robes when I asked and kept the cabin beautifully despite our messiness. Our main waiter was efficient and attentive but not particularly friendly. Our assistant waiter, was a gem--22 years old, always smiling. Entertainment--typical. Comedian headliner first day not so great. Production number Vegas night fair. Singers not that good. Loved the Beatles tribute band as did everyone else. Loved the piano bar pianist. Fun place to hang out. Never could find a good place to dance before midnight and we would tucker out by then. They need to find more interesting entertainment for the headline shows. Loved the game shows as always--good for laughs. The parade and Christmas caroling were lots of fun. The Bad--I was unhappy to read that in the previous week a passenger got a bad cold, cough, fever etc. My son and I had the same thing happen despite compulsive handwashing. He was sick for three days--I was sick for two and then cruise was over and I am still recovering (day 5). Ports were OK--not really my favorite as the beaches were crowded and the surf was rougher than I imagined. I thought the Carribean Sea would be flat and gentle, but there were waves everywhere we went except Eagle Beach on Aruba. Curacao was pretty. Highly recommend taking the ship tour to the shipwreck in Aruba for great snorkeling. Best of our trip. We had no problem with rude passengers on our holiday cruise. Everyone was very nice and polite. Ship never felt crowded to me except waiting to get into dining room. Embarking at 5 PM was a breeze and self serve disembarkation also very quick and efficient. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2012
This was a family trip. Myself and my husband and my sister and her husband and their (adult) son. Except for the son, the rest of us are over 50. This was the first cruise that we all did that had a pretty aggressive list of port ... Read More
This was a family trip. Myself and my husband and my sister and her husband and their (adult) son. Except for the son, the rest of us are over 50. This was the first cruise that we all did that had a pretty aggressive list of port visits. I will describe our trip in three categories: The good, the bad and the ugly. THE GOOD: Ship was in ship-shape. All the public spaces were in great condition including the staterooms. Nothing threadbare. The food was fantastic. The wait-staff were well seasoned. We booked the 'Mystery dinner theater at Portofino's'. The mystery was hokey (but fun). The company (others at our table) was delightful and overall it was worth the $60/person charge as the champagne and wine flowed freely as part of the package. The Tiramisu dessert packaged in a dark/white chocolate swirl cup was awesome! We booked one shore excursion (we're cheap). It was a beach trip to Orient beach on St. Marteens. It was very well coordinated. Our hostess was delightful, very informative about the island, the beach and various bits of information and made sure that we all got back on the bus to return to the ship. We sincerely regret not booking beach trips on the other islands. Though we did enjoy exploring Barbados, one of the stops, on our own. Some of the other islands were pretty depressed areas once you get beyond the main tourist shopping areas. Better to go to the beach. The New Years celebration was totally the best!!! We celebrated on the Promenade which included unlimited champagne, balloon drop and the cruise director AND ships captain doing the countdown. This so beats going to any other (northern) New Year's celebration where you have to stand in the cold. The ship shows were really good. The best was Beetlemania! I would have spent a friggin' fortune to see this show on land! It truly was a wow! I've been on other RC cruises with the ice rink and AOC ice show was ho-hum. Nice and worth seeing but ho-hum. THE BAD: Our stateroom attendant was overbearing and self-serving (her only goal was to beg us to give her an excellent review so she could get her bonus). We were surprised to find a pair of men's briefs in one of the drawers. She obviously didn't check all the drawers in the stateroom in prep of our arrival. I have a feeling she won't be around very long. RC is generally very good about stateroom service. THE UGLY: For us nothing. It was a totally awesome trip and we will continue to cruise RC. We did have breakfast with another couple who had booked their cruise while they were on a prior cruise and booked the special romantic package. RC dropped the ball and did not provide the perks of the romantic package and couldn't find their original booking info when the couple complained. The help desk was not very helpful to them and apparently were not very pleasant to these poor folks. Sadly, their customer-no-service lost them two repeat customers. My experience with the help desk was very positive and this included that hectic last day where everyone had questions about their bill, myself included. They had a floater who went up and down the line working to solve problems. And magically (the guy was good!) the line went from 30 people to 6 who actually had questions requiring help desk help. I was therefore in line for only less than 10 min and my question concerning my bill was quickly and satisfactorily answered. Rosietomato Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
We flew on a non stop Delta flight from MSP to SJU arriving at 3pm the day before the cruise. There were no issues with the flight or arrival in SJU. There were tons of people waiting for taxis outside the airport. It seemed as if there ... Read More
We flew on a non stop Delta flight from MSP to SJU arriving at 3pm the day before the cruise. There were no issues with the flight or arrival in SJU. There were tons of people waiting for taxis outside the airport. It seemed as if there was a line for taxis which they were trying to get people to stand in, but it was more of a free for all. We waited less than 20 minutes, got to our hotel quickly. Taxi from the airport to the Comfort Inn Condado was 20$. Comfort Inn is just a few blocks off the beach and was a nice hotel to stay in. For the evening we took the bus into Old San Juan. (OSJ) It is 75 cents and you need to have change. There are several bus stops in Condado, just pay attention to which one you need to go back to. The city busses stop running out of OSJ at 9pm, sp plan to be back by then or catch a taxi back. We walked around OSJ for awhile and decided to have supper at Vaca Brava. It was recommended to us by someone local my husband met on a photography forum. Vaca Brava was excellent! The atmosphere was great, there was no wait for seating or food. The only thing I would change is to go there with a bigger group than the 2 of us. They had a lot of entrees that were set up to serve groups, and they looked great! We got burgers and fries for about $10 each. Very good food. We got up Sunday morning and met some CC people at the free breakfast then went to walk on the beach for a few hours. The surf was pretty high which was fun to watch. Check out time was noon so just before that, we met up with another CC couple to share a taxi to embarkation. Taxi from the hotel to the port was $15 plus $1 per bag, shared, that was a good deal. There were no lines on the road for taxis dropping off. So; our time line thru this embarkation was leave the hotel at noon and were in the buffet line by 1:15. Embarkation was pretty bad from an organizational viewpoint, at least the outside part. First our taxi mates got in the short line, they were suite people and had been on many RCCL cruises so that was nice for them. We got in line to drop off our luggage, then got in another line to get in the building, then got in another line to check in. I really didn't understand that. Carnival takes your luggage pretty much right from the taxi. Made no sense to me to stand in line to drop off luggage that is already tagged. RCCL sells soda and water reasonably priced, Carnival gives free water in line. Oh well. We didn't need it in any case. After getting thru the lines to get in the building, we got in a pretty short line for check in since we were Gold members, only about 2 couples ahead of us. Check in was short, sweet, and the guy was fast and efficient. Helps when all the paperwork is in order. Rooms were not ready yet, so we went to the buffet. I had heard all about the Honey Strung Chicken, so I was ready for it. Yuck! Dried flavorless chicken patty. However there was a ton of other good food, the curry was good, and my more adventerous husband had many different items. We ate breakfast at the buffet every day and a few lunches. The buffets were okay, but we got pretty bored with it after a few days. Not much variety and for some reason they close it at 3 every day. The back part was open until 5 some days (not every day), but other than that, getting back on the ship after a day in port the food was hard to find. We ate at Cafe Promanade a few days and room service one day. The steak sandwhich from room service was excellent. We did not get the soda package so we had lemonade and tea. There were plenty of servers offering refills. The desserts at the buffets were ok, and the fruit offerings were pretty bland. In the Caribbean there should be a better variety, not just melons. We had late seating for supper. We were on the middle level and had great tablemates. Our service was good but not over the top good. As the week went on, service got better, there was mention from servers (and our room steward) about recommendations, so I feel like as the week went on, they figured they needed to be better for recommendations. They tried to imitate Carnival and have the waiters entertain and sing. Pretty bad. The singing was awful, no one took the lead and it seemed like they weren't even singing together. The last night they sang a good bye song and we are pretty sure it was prerecorded and they just played it. The ship itself is great. We used the hot tub in the adult area, and while I have heard it was a traffic area and pretty busy it wasn't as bad as I thought. There were people walking along the sides but they did an excellent job of keeping kids out of the pools and chairs in the adult area. I didn't see it one time!. We love the Royal Promanade! This is probably the one thing that had us book RCCL over other lines. It makes for a great area to walk, people watch, and for RCCL to stage events such as the parades. We had a 9th floor inside room. I want to talk to the person who designed the layout of this room. I didn't care that it was way smaller than any other cruise room I have had, but who put the bathroom light switch behind the bathroom door outside of the bath room? You have to shut the door turn on the light open the door then go in the bathroom and shut the door again. Also when the beds are together you can't walk around to the sides of the bed to get in. For us it was fine to crawl in bed from the bottom, but what about the elderly or people with mobility issues. I was not impressed with the cabin, but it's just a place to lay our heads. The shops have the same stuff nothing really unusual and the watch sales etc are ok. We did enjoy the art work and the art shows, the free champange and chocolate covered strawberries. Since my husband is a professional photographer we didn't use the photographers on board, looks they did ok. The fake backgrounds are pretty cheesy though. The shows were pretty standard cruise shows. What stood out was the ice show. Do not miss this. We did have to go get tickets, but that wasn't a big deal and I don't think they sold out so don't worry about not getting some. There was also a "Tribute to the Temptations" show. That was also excellent. I don't understand the Gaucho Brothers show at all. Two guys twirling ropes with balls on the end? We also went to the party for returning guests, that was fun. Short and sweet with a few free drinks thrown in. The young man who was at the piano bar did an excellent job. One night he had a challenging crowd with some ladies who were having too much fun, but he did a good job of controling them. On our sea day we went to Johnny Rockets. I was very disappointed. We had done this in 07 with our kids and it was a great experience. Seems like the nickle and dimeing has hit this too. I knew it would cost $5 pp to eat there. Last time beverages and shakes were included. This time, not. We had a BOGO coupon for shakes, but the meal still cost us $15. We sat down and got menus. Someone brought us a plate with a few fries and onion rings after about ten minutes. Then we ordered. About twenty minutes later he brought us our shakes. They were yummy, but last time we got the shake cup and the 'extras' in the tin cup they stir it in. Not this time, just the cup. About twenty minutes later we got our burger. No more fries or anything. It would have been nice to get it all at once. Won't waste my money there again, even though, it was a very good burger! The whole hour and some we were there, they only "sang and danced" once. Not a deal breaker for me, but our kids really liked it last time. Monday was St Croix. This was the only stop we hadn't been to before. The weather wasn't the best, just a few short rain spurts, but the surf was rough so the snorkeling was bad. We spend time walking around the town, it is very cute and quaint and what struck us was how few people there were, locals that is. It is one place I would feel comfortable renting a car and driving around. There were several tent type shops that were fun to shop at. We walked along the sidewalk to the right then we walked around the town, then went back to the ship for lunch. After lunch we got suits on and walked up the beach to the left. It was pretty and we did try and snorkel but like I said it was too rough. Tuesday was St Marten. Right away in the morning we went to Maho Beach. We paid $8 pp for a taxi. The bar there was really fun and I got a seat in the shade. My husband spent the morning and early afternoon shooting photos and videos of the planes. Always a good time. We decided we wanted to go to Orient Beach to see what all the excitment is about. Took a long time to find a taxi that would take us. None of them wanted to go that far. We paid $30 and shared a taxi with a couple that just wanted an island driving tour so it worked out good for all of us. It took about 35 minutes to drive there. We spent about an hour there. I can see why people like it, there is a lot to do as far as water sports, lots of bars and shops. Plenty of places to rent chairs from. There was some topless nudity on the normal end of the beach. We didn't go to 'the other side" but we could tell from what we saw that it is not for the conservative. Taxi back was easy to catch, shared was 12$ for the two of us. Wednesday was Antigua. We have been here once before and did the same as we did last time. We walked out from the ship, one block past the big yellow building we turned right and walked to the fish market. It is very crowded as we were walking towards the bus station. Behind the bus station is the fish market. It is fun to see the tropical fish being harvested like we would do to Northern and Walleye. On the other side of the fish market is a grocery store that we go to to buy spices. We then spent the morning walking around the town. We went back to the ship for lunch then got suited up for swimming. We went to Fort James Beach. 6$ pp taxi ride about 6-7 minute ride. There is a new bar there called Millers Bar and it seems they are trying to call the beach Millers Beach. Fort James Beach is a beautiful stretch of sandy beach, crystal clear blue water. It is sandy far out into the water and wonderful for swimming. Not much for snorkeling, you can snorkel but there is no coral which means not very many fish. On one end is rocks, on the other end is the ruins of Fort James. You can walk all around them. It is fun to do, but sad to me that no one is restoring or preserving them. Lots of garbage there too. In port again, Rocketman bar has free wifi, just buy a diet coke for 2$ and he will give you the password. Cheers Bar also has free wifi. However they wanted both of us to buy a diet coke, at $3.50 each no way was I going to pay $7 for free internet. Of course both offer more than diet cokes and would be more than happy for you to buy as much as you want. Thursday was St Lucia. We took the Land and Sea to the Pitons tour. It was a bus tour up the coast to the Pitons, then catermaran back to the ship. It could have been much better than it was. We got on the busses just fine, they weren't too big and our tour guide was knowledgeable. Our bus driver was excellent! Of course we stopped many times for shopping and sight seeing. Each time our guide gave us a time to be back on, and everyone was back on, except, at each stop our tour guide was later and later. At lunch we ended up waiting over 15 minutes for her AFTER everyone else was back on the bus. I went to go get her, her repsonse was "I'll be there in a few minutes' This was after an hour long lunch break. We ate lunch at a restored plantation, the food was excellent and the only thing that marred the experience was that the pregnant lady at our table got a bug in her (very good) mango juice. They wouldn't give her a new cup of juice. After lunch and waiting for our tour guide, we got to the dock to get on the catermaran. We waited over ½ hour for the catermaran to get there. For some reason they just weren't there. It was after 2 before we got on the catermaran. I asked how long the ride was since there was supposed to be a 45 minute swim stop. She told me 3 and ½ hours. Ship was scheduled to leave at 5. do the math. We did get our swim stop and the catermeran ride, but I was not overall happy with the entire experience. On the swim stop my husband saw a puffer fish. That was cool. I wasn't too worried about making it back to the ship, since it was a ship tour they ship were responsible. We were running for the plank just at 5 though. Friday was our last port; Barbados. This is our favorite island and we have been here 4 times. We had decided we would go to Bathsheba Beach to photograph the mushroom rocks, then head to Carlisle Bay to snorkel with the sea turtles. Knowing the bus system we were pretty confident to take the bus. As we were leaving the port we were bombarded by the taxi drivers wanting our business. We thought we would at least ask what they would charge to take us to Bathsheba then back again in an hour. They wanted $130. Yeah no. By time we got to the back of the taxi line, the price was down to $80. We took the bus. What I didn't realize is that there are two bus depots. We went to the close one, to find out we needed the far one. We walked there, about 20 minutes. We got there 5 minutes after the bus we needed left. It leaves for Bathsheba every hour on the hour. We waited for the next one. The bus ride was about 35 min. We spent a very nice hour at the beach and took the bus back it goes back on the hour every hour. Very easy when you know where to go and when to be there. With the delay we didn't get to Carlisle until 2. I figured it was too late to swim with the turtles, but there was a guy who was looking for business. He took us in a glass bottom boat and there was one turtle left it was fun and worth it to me, then they took us over a ship wreck, we got the snorkel there too. Less than an hour, but we only paid $15. There was another family on the boat with us that was charged $22pp. Then we took a taxi back to the ship for $5. Bought hot sauce and vanilla in the port shopping area. It seems like there is free wifi in the port terminal since there were a lot of people on laptops. We didn't use it though. Overall, it was a good cruise, I spent the week in the tropics with my husband and we had a great time. Will I cruise RCCL again? Don't know, the only thing they have over Carnival is the Royal Promanade and that is NOT worth the $500 and more this cruise cost us than what we would have paid for a comparable Carnival cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
We have cruised 17 times in the past, this was our 8th with Royal Caribbean and the most disappointing. The Adventure of the Seas sailed from San Juan, and we should have realized the majority of passengers would be from Puerto Rico. ... Read More
We have cruised 17 times in the past, this was our 8th with Royal Caribbean and the most disappointing. The Adventure of the Seas sailed from San Juan, and we should have realized the majority of passengers would be from Puerto Rico. This meant everything took twice as long - all announcements, shows, etc. were in Spanish & English. The Windjammer was a disaster. Pushing, shoving, etc. just to get food before anyone else? The worse part of the cruise were the many private parties being held. Most evenings it was impossible to walk in the corridors or climb the stairs because of the crowds and so many children. and the entertainment? The final night the show was a man spinning plates on a stick. really? this is the best Royal Caribbean could come up with? On the plus side, the food and service in the dining room was wonderful. The staff went out of their way to welcome and serve us. The disembarking process went very smoothly. And I applaud Royal Caribbean's new system of not using paper envelopes for prepaid gratuities. We will certainly cruise with Royal Caribbean again in the future, but only from Florida. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
All around it was a wonderful Cruise. After reading most of the reviews about this ship, you would have doubts.. First, which nobody said in there review, was that the first day you board the ship, they offer you a package for beer, or a ... Read More
All around it was a wonderful Cruise. After reading most of the reviews about this ship, you would have doubts.. First, which nobody said in there review, was that the first day you board the ship, they offer you a package for beer, or a package for mixed drinks. And it was reasonably priced. Oh by the way you can buy water at the store, before you board the ship. Yes you can bring it on the ship. Another important point. Much cheaper than the water package. The line to board the ship was a little long, but moved very well. After boarding and getting our beverage packages, we went to our stateroom which was ready and waiting for us. Very nice room with balcony. We boarded the ship around 2:30 P.M. I will agree that the smoking on the ship was out of hand. People were smoking where they were not suppose to quite often. But in general most smokers are rude about were they smoke if allowed to. If i owned a cruise line it would be no smoking period. I do not think I would have a problem filling my cruise line either. The ship had some wear on it, but nothing to be offended at. Oh yes by the way, the ship is on its way to be overhauled this summer. The 70's music show on the promenade deck was a great time enjoyed by many. Only show we saw. To busy soaking in the sunshine on the upper deck, or the beach during the day. Pools on the ship where never crowed, and chairs were very plentiful. Took or own cab to beaches, watch the price, could have been cheaper going with the ships trips. Around 60 USD round trip to beaches, with chairs at beach. Most islands were the same cost to go to beaches. St. Croix, was worthless to even stop at. nothing there but a few shops. All the other islands had nice beaches with a lot of shopping if that's your thing. We had the late sitting for dinner. (8:30) which for us, fit our schedule perfect. We were seated with two wonderful couples, one from the UK and one from Ireland. Needless to say it turned into a million laughs, with happy hour starting at 7:45 p.m. eating dinner, and than some late night drinks. We turned into friends in 6 nights. Our waiter and, asst. waiter, where the best there was, hands down. Angelo and Elroy. Thanks guys. The food in the dining room was good, with several choices every night. The Windjammer had a very good selection of different food if you did not want to eat in the main dining room. We met a couple on there 25 year anniversary and there airline lost their luggage. The whole trip they wore the same cloths, but continued to have a good time. In summary we had a good time on this cruise. We are pretty easy going people, and do not knit pick on the little things. We have traveled Carnival before, and really did not see a whole lot of difference in ships or crew. It seem this cruise had a lot of very nice and enjoyable people. Carnival, seemed to be more young people, with a lot of amateur drinkers. We would cruise with Royal again, and we would recommend this to anyone, with a little open mind, and not to be critical about the small and free stuff. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
Background: My wife and I have cruised a lot, mostly on Royal Caribbean, and have "Diamond" status. I enjoy the consistent quality of RCI. We usually take a cruise during January or February to thaw out during the cold winter ... Read More
Background: My wife and I have cruised a lot, mostly on Royal Caribbean, and have "Diamond" status. I enjoy the consistent quality of RCI. We usually take a cruise during January or February to thaw out during the cold winter months. This cruise was a group cruise for us, traveling with family and friends. Reservations were made about 12 months earlier and we were able to book cabins close together. Flight & Hotel: The cost of the flights from DFW to San Juan was high. I opted for the non-stop flight arriving 2 days before the cruise. I had booked a room at the Hampton Inn by the airport. We liked the location of the hotel; there were many good restaurants within a 10-minute walk. There is no hotel shuttle van because San Juan has an agreement with the taxi companies and there are no meters--they have set rates to locations throughout the city, plus the extra charge of $1.00 per bag. From the airport to the Hampton, the taxi cost us $25 ($20 taxi and $5 for 5 bags). The Hampton Inn is an older Hilton property but well maintained. The rooms were very clean and furnishings nice. The complimentary breakfast was typical of Hampton Inns, to include eggs, sausage, Belgian waffles, pastries, etc. The front desk helped us book an excursion trip of Old San Juan and the Bacardi Distillery for the second day ($65 per person). Embarkation: We stayed at the hotel until the 12-noon checkout time, getting a taxi to the port ($23 taxi and $5 for bags). It took about 15 minutes to get to the pier; we arrived about 12:30 pm. A porter took our luggage and we walked into the terminal to the "Priority Check-In". The terminal was very crowded and nobody was being checked in because the line of people waiting to board the ship was so long. We waited about 20 minutes until we could be processed and proceed to Adventure of the Seas. We were in the Windjammer having lunch by 1:15 pm. Cabins were available by 2 pm. Stateroom: We were in cabin 6548, a category D-3, close to the forward elevators. It was very clean but the furnishings were well worn. Our stateroom attendant met us and we requested an ice bucket which he refreshed every morning and evening. Ship Info: Adventure is an older Voyager Class ship. She is beautiful and and clean but worn around the edges and some carpet and furniture is worn. She could use a facelift and technology updates. I heard from the crew that she will go to drydock in 2014. The cruise director mentioned that there were over 3,100 guests on board. Since all the ports of call are close together, the average ship cruising speed was 8 knots. The Captain was Ole-Johan Gronhaug and his personality was the opposite of "Captain Johnny". Anthony Richards was the cruise director and he is like a Ken Rush clone. Dining: Windjammer was typical. We were always able to find a seat. Food selection was very good with many choices and options. Service was excellent. In the evenings we had late dining, usually at 8:30 pm but on the first night it was at 9:00 pm. Our table was a 10-top for our group and we enjoyed the service from our waiter and assistant waiter. The head waiter made an appearance each evening. The menu options have changed, for the better I believe. Each evening there are the basic entrees that are always available and RCI has added appetizers that are on every menu, like escargots, shrimp cocktail, caesar salad. Old favorites are gone (Vidalia onion tart) and new entrees are nice. I particularly enjoyed the chicken cordon bleu. Diamond Lounge: There is no dedicated "Diamond Lounge" area but Adventure provided a "Diamond VIP Event" each evening 5:00-8:30 on deck 14 in the 19th Hole. Soft drinks, champagne and wine are provided free of charge. We enjoyed this Diamond Event each evening (except during the ice show) as it is quiet and Norman provided friendly conversation and great bar service. Other drinks can be ordered with a 25% discount. Diamond, Diamond + and Pinnacle members were provided a special breakfast area with full breakfast and complimentary specialty coffees. The Cafe Promenade is smaller than on other Voyager ships but it's always nice to stop for coffee/tea and a quick snack. Entertainment: I give high marks for the music talent and headliner shows. The ice show was spectacular "Cool Art, Hot Ice"! On Friday, the headliner show was "Tribute, A Salute to the Temptations". Do not miss these entertainers! They were great! Excursions: I booked 2 excursions for us before we left home: In St. Lucia we took the "Coastal Cruise to the Pitons" and it was very nice, a 4 hour catamaran trip to the famous Pitons with a swim break and very good rum punch! The only draw back was during the swim break, when about 8 to 10 men in kayaks, canoes and boats came right up to the catamaran to sell conch shells, coconut birds and other items and they were quite persistent. On Barbados we really enjoyed the "Classic Blends" tour of two rum distilleries. In St. Maarten, we got a taxi and went to famous Maho Beach to watch the air traffic fly into the Princess Julianna Airport. We all had a great lunch at the Sunset Bar and Grill. There was only one sea day to work on our suntans. Disembarkation: Our group stayed together during departure and we sat in the Lyric Theatre for about 2 hours waiting for our tag number to be called. It was a very slow process but not chaotic. Once we departed the ship, it was easy to find the luggage and get a porter. The line to go through Customs was pretty long but kept moving. We easily got a taxi and went back to the Hampton Inn about 12:30 pm. Although check-in time is 4 pm, they gave us a room which was a huge relief. The hotel lobby was filled with cruisers waiting for taxi service to the port. There was a taxi shortage that day due to a big holiday. Other Observations: RCI offered "Beverage Packages" that I never saw before. The "Premium Package" was $55 per day and included "all house wines, beers under $6.25, fountain sodas, well, call or premium brands of liquor and frozen drinks." The "Beer Package" was $45 per day and included "all house wines, beers under $6.25, fountain sodas and frozen non-alcoholic drinks." Before the cruise, I had read many Cruise Critic reviews of this ship and itinerary. I am so glad I did. I thought I was mentally prepared for the Puerto Rican culture. There were many, many PR's on board and like previous reviews, I found them to be loud, rude and pushy. They would intentionally cut in front of you and slam into you if you didn't get out of their way; no common courtesy at all. Conclusion: Would I cruise on Adventure of the Seas again? Yes. Would I cruise out of San Juan, PR again? No. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
Embarkation and debarkation as suite guests went smoothly as did transfers to and from airport. San Juan airport is in need of rehab and updating. It's dirty, unkempt, and expensive except for duty free booze. Ship is also older ... Read More
Embarkation and debarkation as suite guests went smoothly as did transfers to and from airport. San Juan airport is in need of rehab and updating. It's dirty, unkempt, and expensive except for duty free booze. Ship is also older and need of updating. Repair work was constant near our stateroom and there was the persistent smell of methane in one area. One couple we met had it the odor so bad in there room, they had to keep the balcony door open at night to sleep which kept the AC from being effective. They could not be moved to another cabin as the ship was full. One specialty restaurant (Portofino) which was so-so. My T-bone was well cooked and flavorful, but my wife's veal saltimbocca was tough with an odd taste. Room service terrible with consistently cold food. Even in the main dining room, food often served at the wrong temp like cold to lukewarm escargot,and bland (blandest lobster tail ever). Best time on ship was in the Concierge Lounge available to all suite guests except mini suite guests. No extra charge drinks, food with a chance to mingle with a lot of fun people. Grand Suite was roomy with nice balcony, but we did not get the perks advertised (turn down treats, butler service, fresh fruit, et al). Ports were great as were the excursions: snorkeling at Buck Island St. Croix, Pitons St. Lucia, Barbados, with sting rays Antigua, and beach time at Orient Beach St. Martin. The aggravation, however, was our ship was always last in and first out of the ports. Ships coming behind ours especially at Antigua were docked before ours delaying our scheduled arrival by 1.5 hours. Despite the poor food, we would consider going again, but may just go on Celebrity with the same itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
So, this was our second trip on AOS from San Juan. We enjoyed ourselves on the 5 island trip, so we wanted to take the other itinerary this past week. Start with the exceptional: The service is amazing. Even better than the last time. With ... Read More
So, this was our second trip on AOS from San Juan. We enjoyed ourselves on the 5 island trip, so we wanted to take the other itinerary this past week. Start with the exceptional: The service is amazing. Even better than the last time. With the exception of the dining room staff at lunchtime (those guys were ridiculously rude) EVERYONE else was amazing. The bartenders (OH YES, THE BARTENDERS), waiters, room attendants and just about everyone we came in contact with couldn't do enough. I was told by others that felt the way that I did about the service and said that the other ships service wasn't as exceptional. The food and bar was amazing as well... Again, others I spoke to who were on OOS last year and told me that the food was significantly better on AOS. I have the weight gain to prove it. There was a huge contingent from Puerto Rico on board, as well as Canada. Americans, it would seem, were in the minority on this cruise. Now, the not so good. This ship is old. The paint is old, the rooms are old, the carpets are old, the windows are old (and hazy), the bathrooms are old, the pools are old and the technology is VERY old. From old smells, to beat up furniture this ship is way overdue for a do-over. 2015 (when I was told she is being overhauled) is way too far away. I would say overall reasonably clean, but outdated, outmoded and very worn. Rust and corrosion of fixtures is apparent, there are stains and frayed fabrics, carpet and draperies. I even spoke to one of the recently reassigned salespeople when booking another cruise and she was astounded at how beat up the boat was. And... The ugly. One of the folks in my party had roaches - yes, roaches - in his room. RCL dealt with it, but, still... Also, the smoking. Holy Crap. When last on this boat in 2011, you had to work to find a smoking area. Now, it is EVERYWHERE. If your cabin is on the port side, you will smell smoke 24/7, because one of the dozen smoking areas is Deck 11, port side. Smoking on Deck 4, smoking in the casino, etc etc. There is no escaping the smoking. Nearly everywhere you walk it is in your face. The casino chimneys up onto the entire promenade on Deck 5. Walking into dinner or looking at photos on Deck 4 is an assault of cigarettes. If you walk out of Deck 11 port side (right below the running track, BTW) it is a gauntlet of smoking. Families with children or people with asthma, beware. That is a big problem. (Don't really want to go so far as to say ban smoking but shrink the areas and put them in more appropriate places) So in summary, keep the employees, keep the food and drink coming, fix the boat - really fix the boat, and get rid of the multitudes of smokers. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
Overall, a good cruise. Embarkation was very easy, despite all the bad things I'd read about boarding in San Juan. To be fair, we do have priority check-in from the loyalty program. However, check in took only about 5 minutes and ... Read More
Overall, a good cruise. Embarkation was very easy, despite all the bad things I'd read about boarding in San Juan. To be fair, we do have priority check-in from the loyalty program. However, check in took only about 5 minutes and we only had to wait (in seats, with refreshments) for about 20 minutes to get clearance to board. We arrived at the pier around 11:45am and were on the boat enjoying a cocktail before 1pm. So get there early and start your vacation is my advice. THE GOOD The staff on the boat was excellent, truly great service. The ports of call on this itinerary are great, especially Curacao & Aruba. Having never been to the southern Caribbean before, it's now my favorite part. Besides being very beautiful with great weather, the people were all extremely friendly. THE MEDIOCRE The ship is a little old with some outdated decor. But, she's headed for dry-dock this year I think so that's not really an issue. It wouldn't be for me anyway. The food in the main dining room was OK. Nothing was bad, but some nights were definitely better than others. At worst, it was on par with food at an average wedding. We ate in the specialty restaurant on the last night, and that food was excellent. We booked another cruise while on board and were considering sailing on the Adventure again (it flip-flops between 2 different S. Caribbean itineraries). In the end, we chose to book the Jewel because of the specific itinerary and because we like the smaller ship. I would definitely consider the Adventure again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
In Feb 2013 my family took for the first time a 7-day cruise to the Southern Caribbean to visit Puerto Rico, St. Croix, St. Maarten, Antigua, St. Lucia and Barbados. The Caribbean Sea was calm and you could barely feel the boat moving; ... Read More
In Feb 2013 my family took for the first time a 7-day cruise to the Southern Caribbean to visit Puerto Rico, St. Croix, St. Maarten, Antigua, St. Lucia and Barbados. The Caribbean Sea was calm and you could barely feel the boat moving; although we were concerned about motion sickness we were fine. Embarkation and disembarkation went smooth and organized. The ship had ~3000 passengers (80% from US, rest from Canada,Puerto Rico, Europe) with a good mix of ~60% retired people,~40% of them younger with families. We found the itinerary, boat and its amenities (restaurants, Promenade, theater, sport facilities, pools), staff, room and food excellent. The entertainment was very good especially the Ice Show (but the 70's show & disco-we could skip. The Cruise Director was everywhere where entertainment was offered, we taught that was too much). The excursions are a bit pricey, we took our child to swim with the dolphins in Anguilla (from St.Maarten),an amazing and unforgettable experience. I personally do not recommend shopping in ports, you can get the same deal in US outlet malls or department stores and you know that what you pay for is authentic, has warranty and can be returned. I would have liked if among the shore excursions would have been a shuttle to a beach offered, nothing fancy just an organized and safe transportation to a nice beach. This would be a good idea in order to avoid the hassle, harassment and price negotiation with the taxi drivers or unsafe public buses(avoid them, unreliable, we saw a driver drinking beer). Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
My wife and I just returned from 1 week in the southern Caribbean aboard the Adventure of the Seas (February17 to 24). Overall, we had a good time, but there are a few observations we would like to pass along. 1. The crew, as always, ... Read More
My wife and I just returned from 1 week in the southern Caribbean aboard the Adventure of the Seas (February17 to 24). Overall, we had a good time, but there are a few observations we would like to pass along. 1. The crew, as always, saves the experience. How they manage to be so cheerful and competent week after week is a mystery to me. But they do. Here's a special call-out to our head waiter Shirley. 2. RC needs to solicit feedback on the shore excursions they book through their site. Most of them are great, but not all. We took a snorkeling excursion in Curacao on a boat not designed for that purpose with too many people aboard. The decks were extremely slippery when wet and you had to climb a vertical, 8-foot ladder to reach the second deck. Not too easy with your arms full in heavy seas. (Half the passengers were on the upper deck.) It appears that the only important thing to RC is that they get their cut. 3. RC says it "treasures" its repeat cruisers, but does little to attract them back. How many times can you watch the "Love and Marriage Game" and "The Quest," etc.? It is all getting very tired looking. Put in some thought and effort, RC. 4. RC needs to be a little less anal. Activities start EXACTLY on the scheduled time and end EXACTLY on the scheduled time, regardless of cruiser interest or participation. Several times we saw the activity crew stop line dancing and other activities the moment their time was up, leaving the cruisers standing around looking at each other. When there is no conflict for space, why not be a little more flexible? Does the crew have a bus to catch? 5. RC is way past frugal and well into cheap. Every cruise we take, there are more "cost savings" by RC. I fully expect to see coin slots on the bathroom stalls soon. 6. There was a strike at the airport on the Sunday we disembarked. The roads were at a standstill and many people missed their flights. (Our flight to FL was less than 1/2 full.) We had planned a leisurely few hours in San Juan before our flight but a taxi driver warned us about the strike and we headed for the airport instead. All of the hotels had been warned about disruptions several days before, so RC had to have known. But they chose not to tell the passengers, many of whom had planned excursions in San Juan before their flights. But RC said nothing and did not have to adjust people's departure schedules. Funny how things work out. RC needs to start making some effort or else we will find a cruise line that does. Hey, I'll call it The Quest! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
Like a few others we were a bit apprehensive after a few negative reviews of this ship and were pleasantly surprised. Embarkation out of San Juan was quick as we elected to arrive same day via Toronto so did not arrive at port until around ... Read More
Like a few others we were a bit apprehensive after a few negative reviews of this ship and were pleasantly surprised. Embarkation out of San Juan was quick as we elected to arrive same day via Toronto so did not arrive at port until around 3:00 pm. Building was very quiet when we arrived. We were on this cruise with our family and decided to join them at last minute so got an inside which we have NEVER done before. In this case the interior faced the Promenade with the shops etc. so were concerned about possible noise. Only on one night was it an issue but then was quiet by 12:30 so really not a big deal. However would not book an interior again. Food was pretty good. Better as we recall than our last family cruise on Freedom but not as good as Holland America which is what we normally prefer when just the two of us. Our dining room staff Pramod and Bogden in My Time Dining were excellent! They really catered to the teens in our family and made our experience very memorable! We did Portofinos one night and it was great! The buffet was ok although that jar of Sambal Oelek, which I suspect was for the crew, did come in handy as most food was pretty bland. We enjoyed the Latin music in the bar on the higher level a few nights. We did find on one night we sat in one of the other bars and then really loud music started to the point was too loud to even converse. Entertainment overall so-so typical singing and dancing cruise ship fare/comedians. The ice show was pretty good although saw on Freedom and Explorer a few years ago and seems to me was better then. Ports were all typical Caribbean beach type stops with not much else going for them. St Lucia was scenic - did a day long excursion and was a nice over view of the island. Swam with the turtles in Barbados and that was neat! Other ports easy to just do beach on your own. I have to comment on previous posts who complained about the number of Puerto Ricans on board. I have to say firstly - DUH!! You are leaving from Puerto Rico what did you expect?? But I also have to save I would rather be on a ship with predominantly Puerto Ricans than a ship with predominatly East coast Americans! Sorry but just got really tired of seeing the blatant comments of some of the posts! A few folks commented on the condition of the ship but really didn't find anything negative of note. Disembarkment was a breeze with plenty of cabs waiting. All in all a great family cruise to escape the cold Canadian winter! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
My boyfriend and I sailed on the Adventure of the Seas in early March 2013 to the Southern Caribbean out of San Juan, Puerto Rico. I have sailed previously with RCL, Princess, NCL, and Holland America. We had been looking forward to this ... Read More
My boyfriend and I sailed on the Adventure of the Seas in early March 2013 to the Southern Caribbean out of San Juan, Puerto Rico. I have sailed previously with RCL, Princess, NCL, and Holland America. We had been looking forward to this cruise for months in advance, and we had certainly done our research. We booked three excursions (in St. Thomas, St. Kitts, and Curacao) as well as the Mystery Dinner Theatre online before leaving, and we were glad that we did. Once onboard we found that many of the excursions were fully booked, and there were no tickets left for the Mystery Dinner. 1. Embarkation We flew from Montreal, QC to San Juan, Puerto Rico one day before the cruise and stayed at the Courtyard Marriott hotel. Taxi from the airport to the hotel cost approx. $20 USD and it was the same from the hotel to the cruise port. In San Juan there are set rates for cab fare between different areas of the island, so make sure to ask someone at the airport before you leave. We only found out after the fact that our cabbie had overcharged us (only by $3, but still). On the day of embarkation, we arrived at 11:30 AM and joined the slowly growing line to drop off bags to the porters. Once inside the terminal building, it was virtually empty and took less than 15 minutes to check in. We were onboard at 12:00 PM and began our mission of touring the ship. We highly recommend making your first stop the Main Dining Room (MDR). Ensure that you are happy with (a) the location of your table, and (b) the size of your table. This is the time when shuffling can occur. Overall we felt that the highest level up (which is reserved for Anytime dining) had the best ambiance, but the staff were unable to switch us out of Traditional Dining (Anytime was full). 2. Stateroom We liked the location of our stateroom (E1 category, #9542, balcony) as it was close to the aft stairwell. We did not experience much noise, probably because we weren't at the "food end" of the ship. The bathrooms were small, as per usual on cruise ships, but the shower was great! RCL has this curve-out style of shower "door" that makes the shower seem like a little cylindrical pod. Tons of room to manoeuvre compared to Princess showers (and I am definitely on the taller side, too! 5'11" and 145 lbs). The stateroom furnishings were old and showing wear. This didn't really bother us, though. The real issue were the mattresses. They were extremely old and sagging in the centre. Not only were they completely unsupportive, but you were able to feel the metal frame beneath it while sleeping. We asked our room steward three times over the course of the week for some extra padding, but none was ever provided. The small (0.5 inch thick) memory foam overlying the two twin beds, making it into a queen size, was also pitifully compressed. Time for new mattresses, please! 3. Fitness Centre My boyfriend used the fitness centre throughout the cruise, and found it so-so. There was a decent selection of free weights, but a limited weight range. He didn't observe any waits for cardio equipment. 4. Ice Show Very beautiful! A must-see, plus tickets are free. I recommend bringing a little blanket or sweater because the ice arena seating area can be chilly. Be cautious of the insane rush to enter the ice arena before the show. There is no need to panic, because there are LOTS of seats. I saw some poor people get roughly pushed aside by the crowd. 5. Specialty Dining We loved Portofino! We went there twice, once for the Mystery Dinner and another night towards the end of the cruise. Although the Mystery Dinner is fun, we felt that the ambiance of Portofino is much more enjoyable on a regular night. Also, the full menu selection is not available during the Mystery Dinner. Excellent service! 6. Shore Excursions In St. Thomas we did the Sapphire Beach & Island Drive - STF5, and we enjoyed it. My boyfriend found that the snorkelling was pretty good (we brought our own snorkel gear). However, the year previously we had sailed on Princess to St. Thomas and did the full-day excursion to Trunk Bay on the neighbouring island of St. John. I definitely enjoyed that excursion more, because there is a little more wave action and the swimming was fun! There is lots of good snorkelling at Trunk Bay, although when we were there the water was "too cloudy". Also there are these nice shower facilities where you can shower off the salt water and change for the ferry ride back. The only washroom available at Sapphire Bay Beach was small, dirty, and in need of repair. If you do choose to take the St. John Trunk Bay excursion, the best place to sit on the ferry is the very last row on the top deck (next to the rear railing). Yes there is full sun, but you also get tons of leg room (the other seats are very, VERY tight). In St. Kitts, we did the St. Kitts Rainforest Adventure - KT22, and we thought it was a very cool cultural experience. We enjoyed hiking through the rainforest and hearing all that our knowledgable guide had to tell us about the history of the island. It's not an intense hike at all... More of a nice stroll. In Aruba we decided to do our own thing! We had read excellent reviews of nearby beaches like Manchebo Beach and Eagle Beach. We took a taxi (approx. $15 USD) to Eagle Beach, where we hiked around in the sand until we figured out how to rent sun loungers from one of the many beach-front resorts. Basically, stay near the road because that's where the little rental huts are. One of the employees will then carry your cots to where you'd like them. We pulled them right up to the water, and had a great time swimming around. The water is beautiful. However, Aruba was the closest that our cruise came to the Equator. It's about 15 miles north of Venezuela, and very, very hot. We both got a nice lobster-red sunburn, and we recommend multiple applications of sunscreen! In Curacao, we did the Kayak Coastal Adventure and Snorkeling - CUB4. What an awesome experience! Great tour guides, excellent quality equipment, and a very cool snorkelling site! Refreshments were provided, and when we got back to the base, one of the guides cut up a huge watermelon. Definitely our favourite experience! One word of caution: the crossing from the bay to the snorkelling site is basically in the open ocean, and the waves can be a little intense. This is not a laid-back paddle in a lake. 7. Fellow passengers I noticed that several reviews have commented on the number of Puerto Rican passengers onboard the Adventure of the Seas. While there were some Puerto Ricans on board, the majority was definitely mainland Americans and Canadians. I didn't see any issues with politeness on board, except for the regular handful of people who get "spoiled" by the end and decide to boss around their servers. 8. Disembarkation We chose to disembark at 9:00 AM in order to make it to the airport for our flight at 3:00 PM. Disembarkation was speedy and well-organized. We walked off with our own luggage because we weren't sure about that gong-show in the terminal building, and we had read some reviews about hold-ups on the way to the airport. As it turns out, we arrived at 10:00 AM and we weren't even allowed to check in until 12:00 PM. This was an excellent opportunity to catch up on much missed coursework, as the airport is terribly boring and there's nothing to do. Best to eat before you pass security, because there's basically no options on the other side. Overall, this was an excellent cruise with lots of fun activities and ports of call on the itinerary! We would definitely do it again if it weren't for the awful beds in our stateroom. This is something that RCL should address of the Adventure of the Seas.   Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
I usually take 10-day caribbean cruises, as the longer cruise sometimes weeds out the "rif-raf" and the number of children running around is lower on a longer cruise. But the idea of taking 2 back to back 7 day cruises on the ... Read More
I usually take 10-day caribbean cruises, as the longer cruise sometimes weeds out the "rif-raf" and the number of children running around is lower on a longer cruise. But the idea of taking 2 back to back 7 day cruises on the Adventure was worth the risk. I particularly chose these two sailing dates because they were prior to spring breaks, so the ship was not overcome by half the island of Puerto Rico. The ship was in great condition, considering it's over 10 years old. The crew takes great pride in this ship and I have absolutely nothing bad to say about either the ship or the crew. I thought the entertainment was varied, and there was always something to do. I chose the "anytime dining" and was very impressed with the dining room staff - they remembered me after one brief encounter, and always tried to seat me at the same table. Great service and I thought the food was very good. I never ate at any of the restaurants that charge a fee, but I definitely splurged on Ben & Jerry's a few times. For back to back cruisers, they made the process very smooth. I loved that I wasn't rushed out of my room, but slept in and had a very relaxing cross-over day. They gather the back to back cruisers in a common room and walk everyone off together at 10:30, where you then promptly show your passport and turn right around and re-board the ship. Takes 10 minutes and you've got the entire ship to yourself for the day. I would definitely take this ship again as I really enjoyed the varied entertainment options, great ports of call and amazing crew. For a huge ship, it was easy to find intimate spaces and meet people. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
This was my fifth cruise and second on a Royal Caribbean ship. We selected this cruise because my parents had already booked it, and the ports looked interesting. We are a family with two small children - ages 3 and 10 1/2 months at ... Read More
This was my fifth cruise and second on a Royal Caribbean ship. We selected this cruise because my parents had already booked it, and the ports looked interesting. We are a family with two small children - ages 3 and 10 1/2 months at the time of cruising. So if you are looking for reviews of the shows- you're not going to find them here! We were back in the rooms by then. General impressions: we got to the port fairly late in the afternoon after flying all day. Check-in was very easy. The Royal Caribbean transfer was helpful. You board a bus at the airport, and your luggage goes in a small truck. You next see it on board later that evening. It was nice not to have to lug that around - we had enough to handle! Everyone has mentioned how the ship is ready for dry dock, etc. The ship looked great. Not the signs of wear and tear. I think cruise ship decor is kind of tacky and dated to begin with, so I can't comment on that. The room was nice. As always, tons of storage space. Because our kids are so young, sleeping arrangements were a bit tight. We had a pack n play for the baby, and our older daughter slept on the couch. Apollo, our room steward, was great about making up the couch into a bed every evening. We had no complaints about the room or the service we received from our room steward. He knew our names within the first night, and helped us track down missing pieces of luggage when we needed to get the girls' pjs on for bed time. Dinner the first night was a bit chaotic, as we needed to get a high chair and booster seat. Our waitress was fantastic, but her assistant was terrible. On the second night, we actually complained about him. I have never seen any cruise ship employee just standing around twiddling their thumbs, but he was. Our problems were immediately addressed and we received stellar service the rest of the cruise. The high chair and booster were waiting, along with veggies for the girls to snack on. The food was okay. It is clear that they have cut back overall, though you can get shrimp cocktail, etc. every night. But never before would you have seen pasta dishes (absent seafood) on the menus. I will say that I got a pasta dish one night and it was fantastic. We did dine in Portofinos one evening (grandparents had the kids) and it was fantastic. Well worth the $20. The service was impeccable and the food was out of this world. With such a port-intensive cruise, you don't get to enjoy the ship's amenities enough. There is no shame in skipping an excursion in one or more ports! Our 3 year old loved Adventure Ocean. We took her there a few times, for a few hours. Two small complaints- I didn't feel like the staff communicated at all about what she did that day and she got really messy. Twice I picked her up and she was covered head to toe (including her clothes) in marker, and one day clay or paint of some sort. They didn't tell us how she did or what activities she enjoyed. For a young kid, there needs to be more communication. The toy-lending program is great. We borrowed a large back of new Fisher Price toys for the kids to play with in the room. On the port days, they had a room set up for a few hours with toys for the under 3 year olds to play in. It was great for the baby to have a place to crawl around and play. On the one at-sea day, they had play groups for the babies and toddlers. Spaghetti Sara ran these, and was great with the kids. The kid's pool area is nice. Most of it is undercover, which was nice when trying to limit my kid's sun exposure. There is a small slide that goes into 1 ft deep water that my 3 year old loved. There is a small pool that is about 2 1/2 feet or so. There is also a water slide for the older kids. We ate in the dining room for most breakfasts. It was actually easier for us with the kids, because we could either get them something from the yogurt, fruit and cereal bar, or order from the menu (or both). As opposed to the Windjammer, where we had to take turns running up and getting stuff. During port days, the dining room is not open for lunch. This is disappointing, because we love the dining room lunch. We were able to enjoy it on the lone at-sea day. RC does a fabulous salad bar with tons of ingredients. I had a huge pile of prosciutto on my plate. The Windjammer is where we ate lunch the rest of the days. The food was very good, and there was a wide selection. The mashed potatoes were fantastic - very random, I know. Overall, we noticed that they did not push drinks at all. Previous cruises, there was a bar waiter that would always come around dinners pushing wine or what not. We were never asked at dinner about whether we wanted anything other than the lemonade or iced tea (this was fine with us, actually). They also did not push this at all in the Windjammer. The only thing they did push was fresh squeezed OJ at breakfast. The free OJ is just fine! On the at-sea day, the dining room did a chocolate-themed breakfast which was fantastic, including milkshakes for breakfast! The ship was very clean and they were constantly working on it. They were doing some work on our balcony on two different days, but were very respectful when we needed to get in the room to put the kids down for a nap. I did visit the spa on the first full day to get the ginger lime scrub and massage. The prices, as on all cruise-ships, are high. I do wish I waited until later on the week and got a better deal. I got an okay deal. While the treatment itself was good, the spa employee was VERY chatty, and at the end was the product push. But I just come to expect that on cruises. One complaint in general- Royal Caribbean markets itself as a family cruise line. But there are no changing tables in any of the public restrooms. This was a huge pain when it was diaper time. We didn't get to explore as much of the ship as we would've if we were cruising without kids, but we had a great time. Leaving the ship was a small pain. We actually were able to get off early from our waiting area. However, we were told 3 different places to go to get off the ship. It was confusing and a pain, especially with the kids and carry-ons in tow. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2013
Weather was great all except for the last day at sea. I know no one can control the weather. Ports were cool. Each has it's personality making them unique in their own way. Staff was extremely friendly and eager to help and assist ... Read More
Weather was great all except for the last day at sea. I know no one can control the weather. Ports were cool. Each has it's personality making them unique in their own way. Staff was extremely friendly and eager to help and assist in way they can to ensure you have a delightful vacation. Sure, there are cranky and pushy guest here and there, never satisfied, always complaining but you will have that everywhere you go. The food was wonderful in all restaurants. Not every meal was exceptional but overall very good. The servers were fantastic and made a point to anticipate every need. For example, you ask for hot tea after dinner for two nights in a row, you will have it brought to you from then on without requesting it. The cabin steward made sure to watch our routine to know when was a good time to come in to clean and prepare the room. The room was always clean and spotless. About the only criticism was that there were a few food crumbs and old dry-cleaning bags under the bed when we arrived. I made a point to look there after reading some of the threads here. I cannot really comment on the shows because we only saw the welcome show. The ice show lived up to our expectations and was amazing. Not to be missed! I am a little disappointed that we missed the adult Quest activity. I hear that was um, memorable ;-) The captain was always timely with updates on every port (time, weather etc). Very professional and we always felt secure and safe. Loved the Q & A lecture with the captain and hotel manager. We have a few criticisms regarding shore excursions. I will not go into detail here on each but let's just say, a more detailed description of each excursions should be available for those of us that are excessive planners. I would extend some disappointment to the dining staff for failure to enforce the dress code. I realize many guests are lazy and just do not care but at home in a comparable restaurant, they WOULD BE TURNED AWAY and not permitted in. This is no different. If you are asked to wear a suit and tie, do it. If it is casual, it does not EVER mean shorts or tee shirts. Men are the worst offenders. Embarkation was flawless. The only thing that needs improvement would be the logistics of the boarding photographs. It seemed people were continuously crossing the photographers to move on to actually board the ship. Was not quite seem-less but not bad. Debarkation was perfect! Having to process thousands of pieces of luggage in only a few hours to have it all neatly organized in the terminal is amazing! Well done! I would certainly sail on RCL again. Read Less
Adventure of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 5.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 1.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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