First Cruise RockNRoll: Brilliance of the Seas Cruise Review by SueRocks

Brilliance of the Seas 5
Member Since 2013

Overall Member Rating

First Cruise RockNRoll

Sail Date: February 2013
Destination: Southern Caribbean
Embarkation: San Juan
Exciting new experience for me. Read on-line reviews to glean what it would be like, what to expect and what to pack for a Southern Caribbean Cruise. Talked extensively to my brother who has several cruise experiences and my travel agent. Went to the doctor and received a Hepatitis shot and booster as well as a prescription. for possible stomach ailments as a preventative. Didn't need the meds. because the ship had lots of hand sanitizers and the crew kept it very clean. Frequent hand washing was recommended.

My brother was on the cruise with me and was very helpful. Be sure to bring a neck chain and plastic holder for your sea pass, which is the size of a credit card. You need the pass constantly to get into your room, buy stuff on-board and get off and onto the ship. For heaven sake don't loose it, or you are sunk!

The first thing that was lacking was communication between the cabin steward and me. The bathroom cabinet was a mystery until my curiosity got the best More of me 3 days into the cruise and I didn't find the bar frig until 4 days into the cruise. The number of photos taken by the on-board photographers was unbelievable -- every time you turned around they were snapping a photo. Finally, had to brush them off to get a break. The photos were not very good either.

The crew were really nice and they pampered the guests like royalty. A lot of the English, morning announcements were difficult to understand with the heavy accent of the announcer. The music in the Atrium was very professional and a great mix of styles. The pool deck was a constant party and very noisy, however, the Solarium pool was a wonderful retreat. There was dozens of activities available on-board and the movies were shown in several languages throughout the day. I didn't know there were pay movies on TV, but these were twice the price of a cable offering. The Internet connection was very poor and really expensive, so it's better to use a land Internet cafe.

The food was unsurpassed! The menu was varied and everything was fresh. The morning buffet in the Windjammer was incredible!!! Be prepared to gain weight.

I didn't get sick from the ship motion, but just couldn't get my "sea legs". The ports of call were very interesting and the shore excursions went off without a hitch.

The ship was very luxurious and well appointed. A real upscale floating hotel. The only drawback was the room air-conditioning that could not be turned off in order to leave the balcony door open. Thankfully, I took a roll of packing tape with me and was able to block off the side of the vent that blew in my face when I was trying to sleep. Be prepared to have a cover-up for times when the dining room is cooler too. The library is a small oasis of quiet with books you can borrow if you have time to read.

Take a napkin folding demonstration, fitness class or spa treatment. Be prepared to pay 15% on all your extra charges for gratuities. Also, expect to pay gratuities on your bill for 4 serving crew members, and they add it times each number of guests per cabin.

My cabin steward was very attentive and he provided me with fresh towels twice a day and also a turn-down service. He also made up cute towel animals for my room on three nights to add a laugh. Asking for a filled ice bucket every morning was a good idea.

It was an expensive holiday, but a real treat because I deserved it! Less

Published 03/12/13

Cabin review: D29600 Superior Outside View Stateroom with Balcony

Balcony Stateroom 9600. Great overall room and balcony view. Quiet hallway. Docked on that side of ship most time, so saw the port from my balcony. Air-conditioning could not be turned off and the fan blew on the bed constantly. Needed an introduction to the amenities for TV, frig and bathroom. Bed was a little lumpy and the comforter was very heavy. No digital clock, but a wake-up call available. Sofa was threadbare. Lots of mirrors, drawers and closet space.

Read All Superior Outside View Stateroom with Balcony (D2) Reviews >>

Port and Shore Excursions

Agapey Chocolate Factory Tour

The Dolphin Swim on Tortola was fantastic! I would do it again. The photos were taken in quick time and put on a CD, which was reasonably priced. I felt safe and the dolphin trainers were very good. The dolphins seemed to be well taken care of.

Cave Tour

The Harrison's Cave tour was really great. Took a long time to get there and back, but the caves were very interesting and an amazing feat of Mother Nature. The roads seemed very poor, but the vistas were lovely. People friendly.

Harrison's Cave

The Harrison's Cave tour was really great. Took a long time to get there and back, but the caves were very interesting and an amazing feat of Mother Nature. The roads seemed very poor, but the vistas were lovely. People friendly.

Real rough place. Sidewalks uneven and libel to cause a twisted ankle. People were friendly, but it's a place where English is barely spoken. The Tourist Bureau was really great and they spoke English perfectly. Be cautious about your surroundings and your direction, or you might end up lost. A poor area. A good place to buy spices. Nobody will bargain with their prices.

The taxi ride from the airport or back to it is easy to self-arrange. It would have been good to arrive a day early to see San Jauan without having to drag a lot of carry-on luggage and also, not to have to worry about catching a plane or ship.

Read 2981 San Juan Reviews

A poor town, but friendly people. Saw native dancers who were very colourful. Jewelery stores on top of each other! Merchants all like to bargain for their sales.

Read 1322 St. Kitts Reviews

A long walk into the town with very polluted and noisy main road. The streets were very narrow, but the people were friendly.

Don't try to use the dock pay telephones. They haven't been working for a long time, and nobody's put "out of order" signs on them. The price of a call is VERY prohibitive. Went on the Dolphin Swim excursion, which I booked on-line. It was fantastic! Great way to spend a Sunday and the photos were reasonable. Met some wonderful people. First experience with security guards at the dock gateway into the town.

Read 1241 Tortola Reviews

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