This was a 10 night cruise over Thanksgiving. This was my first cruise with Royal Caribbean. (Previously, I had been on cruises with Norwegian, Celebrity and Carnival). I had a great time and experience on all my other cruises, but not on Grandeur of the Seas or with Royal Caribbean.
Things to know before booking with Royal Caribbean/Grandeur of Seas:
1. Toilets do not flush properly in either the rooms or in the common areas....a common occurrence experienced by many. (While others have commented about bad odors, we did not experience bad odors in the common areas despite the problems with the toilets). I thought the common bathrooms were kept clean,
2, The elevators work very inconsistently....OFTEN skipping over the 7th floor. Many were complaining about this issue and it was never corrected. It is an older ship. Be warned it you need to rely on elevator access. We ended up walking a lot of stairs.
3. There is a nice feature of having electronic boards by the elevators that told you about daily activities. However, these electronic boards were incorrect at times, sending you on a wild goose chase to find the proper floor or location of an activity.
4. This ship was improperly managed on so many different levels. For Puerto Rico, the ship made an announcement that it was time for people to come down to get off at this port. Rather than letting people of, they kept us trapped like sardines for a long time with NO INFO. When I finally asked for info, the Royal Caribbean employee told us that they are getting off people on tours first, and hence that is why we are packed in like sardines without moving. When I made the suggestion, that next time they should let all the tour people off before making the announcement for everyone to come down, he told me no announcement was made! Well a couple hundred of my sardine friends, assured him that the announcement was made!
5. This cruise was on Thanksgiving. The ship ran out of Turkey and pumpkin pie early in the evening. They knew it was Thanksgiving and should have planned food accordingly. A bid disappointment.
6. SHOPPING ON THE SHIP: BE WARE: I purchased a piece of costume jewelry for $40. The Royal Caribbean salesperson, threw down the receipt and said sign here....Well I actually took the time to read my receipt and the Royal Caribbean Salesperson added in a tip for $29.97!!!!!! Imagine all those who just sign quick without reading.
7. My husband bought a bottle of rum in Labadee. Royal Caribbean holds it until the end of the cruise and then it is supposed to end up back in your room. Well it was never delivered to us in our room as promised. When we called to inquire, Royal Caribbean told us it was lost! My husband was upset because it was a unique kind of rum with a cool bottle. Royal Caribbean did in fact give us a different bottle of rum in the end.
8. KIDS CLUB - Wonderful, and safe! Daughter LOVED it! They have great hours for the kids club compared to other ships. Can not rave enough about the kids club.
9. Pool. The outside pool is either 1 foot deep or 5.6 feet deep. If you are shorter, you can not stand in this pool .
10. Captain - The captain on this ship was consistently wrong about the weather and overall they did not provide us with information when we went through waves up to 40 feet high and winds of up to 90 mph. Everyone was sick (including crew for about 24 hours) Captain advised the bad weather would get better by 6 pm....but it did not get better until 6 am!
11. My TIme Dining: This is not on your time....like on Norwegian...It is either 5:30 pm or 7 pm. or after 8 pm. If you go to the 7 pm dining you will likely miss shows as it takes about 1.5-2 hours in the restaurant.
12. No picture at all in our cabin.
13. Food: Food overall was pretty good. Waiters work so hard! No good dessert on the entire ship, which was a shock!
14. Lack of staff: In comparison to other cruise ships, there was a lack of staff here. The tables by the pool constantly had dirty dishes on them from prior guests.
Overall, there was nothing Grand or Royal about this vacation....A big disappointment! Be warned, there are much better ships and cruise lines!
Beautiful.Butterfly farm: Walking distance from ship. Very inexpensive ($25 for 2 adults, one child). Pretty butterflies and gift shop. Nice to do with children. Can only spend about an hour there.Corral World, again inexpensive, great to do with children. You can book activities of swimming with various animals. It is an aquarium like setting. They have lorikeets to take pictures of. A good way to spend the day with children. We did this on our own with a taxi.