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Grandeur of the Seas Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
1,835 Reviews

Nice Cruise, But Cutbacks Getting Annoying

Grandeur of the Seas Cruise Review by knittinggirl

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Oct 2014
  • Destination: Canada & New England
  • Cabin Type: Grand Suite

Grandeur, GS 8016

First time in a Royal Caribbean full suite! To our delight, we received an email from Francis, our Suite Concierge the week before our cruise.

Complimentary drinks in the Windjammer were self-service. The only drinks the staff offered to bring to our table were for fee drinks. Windjammer was packed the times we visited, couples occupying tables for our. At least one couple said they were waiting for someone, but on the way out, no one had joined them.

The Grand Suite was wonderful, except for the uncomfortable furniture. We found furniture in the Junior Suites on other Vision Class ships much better. They painted our balcony railing which meant I could no longer attach our gorillapod to the railing for long exposure pictures. One of the cabin supervisors examined our bathroom, and told me to always wear shoes or slippers because I could pick up all sorts of germs off the floors. Made wonder if they don’t clean as well as they might.

Library was the worst library we’ve seen in over 20 cruises! Only a shelf and a half of books. This is one public space that has really been sacrificed for the benefit of putting more people on the ship.

Room service was disappointing. We didn’t get the items listed on the in-suite breakfast because we didn’t order them during regular meal times. Also, our formal night filet was burned, full of gristle and served with frozen fries.

They offered several combination Speciality Dining Packages while on board, and we purchased the one that included a Izumi’s buffet. They charged us for Chops Grill and Giovanne’s the first night, and didn’t phone or send reservation reminders. We did receive a voice mail for Izumi’s and they charged us for Izumi’s at the restaurant.

With all the news about Ebola, it would have been nice to include an update in the Compass.

Embarkation - We were some of the first to check in! The only problem with embarkation was not being allowed into our staterooms until 1 PM.

Shore Excusions Booking Process - I asked Whitt at Crown and Anchor phone support if one of my preferred shore excursions would be available onboard, and he promised me they saved 25% of the shore excursions for booking onboard. Unfortunately, both of the shore excursions we’d planned to purchase were not available on board. We learned that they save 25% of the shore excursions on board, but if you really want one, be sure to prebook it, because it may not be available.

WiFi Service - Too overpriced and undependable. We got the one hour plan, which let us use that hour over several days. I would have hated to pay their unreasonable price for unlimited service, because we couldn’t connect during the three days at sea. Also, slower then dial up!

For disembarkation we were delighted when, our Concierge, Francis, took us in groups from the concierge lounge all the way down to deck on to check out! No waiting for numbers to be called.

Specialty Dining - I bought the three night Izumi buffet special which also included Chops and Giovannis. We were horrified when they charged us on day one for Chops and Giovannis, and not no reminders on either. We did get a voice mail for Izumi, but no charging until we finished our meal there.

Still cutbacks. Food didn’t seem as good. Cutting back things like 24 hour Windjammer probably saved a lot of wasted food. Cutting out things like pen and paper (which could be used as advertising) and turndown chocolates just makes Royal Caribbean look cheap.

Better detail on the shore excursions needed: Driving Time, Number of Stairs and Number of Steps, Time at each stop. Also, our one moderate excursion was easier for us than the Ultimate Island they had rated mild.

Portland Horse Drawn Wagon - Wonderful slow pace for exploring Portland.

The Ultimate Island Experience - More detail needs to go into the description concerning “Consider Physical Fitness and Medical History When Booking this Excursion.” We figured this applied to hiking trails, lots of stairs, uneven footing, etc. It never occurred to us it would mean getting in and out of the limo. What we didn’t count on was six people entering the limonene from two doors in the back and having to scramble into the inner seats. Those inner seats also faced the cliff on the one-way loop road up to Cadillac Mountain so the beautiful view was behind us. Surprisingly, I had a better view back in 2009 in a 50+ person bus! Royal Caribbean description needs to include photos inside and outside of the limo. And a limo with more doors would be indicated. We also learned there was no front passenger seat, just space for the driver. We had three people with mobility issues. My husband's arm was in a cast from shoulder to hand, both my hands were in splints, and the third guy was worse than me. Each time I crawled out of the limo, the tour driver said he’d seen worse. Shore excursion description needs photos inside and outside the vehicle. The meal was a limited menu, my lobster roll was lobster w/ mayonnaise (no seasoning or herbs) on a toasted bun.

St John Coastal Photography Tour - Wonderful with a lot of time at each stop. Our tour guide also took photos of us at each stop. Would Book Again.

Historic City Tour - Typical city tour. Lovely flowers at the public gardens. Missed several of the sights mentioned in the tour description.


knittinggirl's Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Shore Excursions
Service
Cabin
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Cabin Review

Grand Suite
Cabin GS 8016

The Grand Suite was wonderful and quiet. Very uncomfortable furniture with no back support. Could not watch television from the sofa. We found furniture in the Junior Suites on other Vision Class ships much better. They painted our balcony railing which meant I could no longer attach our gorillapod to the railing for long exposure pictures. One of the cabin supervisors examined our bathroom, and told me to always wear shoes or slippers because I could pick up all sorts of germs off the floors. Made wonder if they don’t clean as well as they might. This was our third full suite! The floor plan was better than our Sky Suite on Century. But we liked the floor plan on the Sapphire Princess a lot better. Like the Sapphire Princess, the Grandeur offered a special suite breakfast in one of the specialty dining rooms. We also had access to the Concierge Lounge. The Sapphire Princess got us into the Platinum and up nightly reception, while the Sky Suite on Century offered us afternoon tea brought to our cabin, cappuccinos and the services of a superb butler. Our concierge contacted us the week prior to our cruise and we spoke with him on the phone with some shore excursion questions. The marvelous way he handled our disembarkation was the best we've had in over 20 cruises! We met in the concierge lounge, and he called us to the elevator and brought us directly down to deck one without any intermediate stops.


Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Horsedrawn Carriage Tour

Grade B - Loved this tour! Nice slow pace!

View All 6 Horsedrawn Carriage Tour Reviews
Island Tour

The Ultimate Island Experience - A better vehicle would have gotten this a 5 star rating. More detail needs to go into the description concerning “Consider Physical Fitness and Medical History When Booking this Excursion.” We figured this applied to hiking trails, lots of stairs, uneven footing, etc. It never occurred to us it would mean getting in and out of the limo. What we didn’t count on was six people entering the limonene from two doors in the back and having to scramble into the inner seats. Those inner seats also faced the cliff on the one-way loop road up to Cadillac Mountain so the beautiful view was behind us. Surprisingly, I had a better view back in 2009 in a 50+ person bus! Royal Caribbean description needs to include photos inside and outside of the limo. And a limo with more doors would be indicated. We also learned there was no front passenger seat, just space for the driver. We had three people with mobility issues. My husband's arm was in a cast from shoulder to hand, both my hands were in splints, and the third guy was worse than me. Each time I crawled out of the limo, the tour driver said he’d seen worse. Shore excursion description needs photos inside and outside the vehicle. The meal was a limited menu, my lobster roll was lobster w/ mayonnaise (no seasoning or herbs) on a toasted bun.

View All 8 Island Tour Reviews
Photography Tour

St John Coastal Photography Tour - Wonderful with a lot of time at each stop. Our tour guide also took photos of us at each stop. Would Book Again.

View All 4 Photography Tour Reviews
Historic Tour

Historic City Tour - Typical city tour. Lovely flowers at the public gardens. Missed several of the sights mentioned in the tour description.

View All 24 Historic Tour Reviews

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knittinggirl
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