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This was our 2nd cruise, and the 2nd with Royal Caribbean. As in the past, travelling by air, especially in the summer warrants an extra day to make sure there are no airline delays in arriving on time at your embarkation port. My wife, younger son 22 and his fiance, and older son 29 who had a close friend join him travelled together. We left Philadelphia at 8:15am on Saturday 8/11 the day before the cruise. We flew AA this time and in fact must've had a tail wind because we arrived 1/2 hour earlier than expected at 11:30am. The flight was interesting as my son asked the stewardess at 11am what time we would arrive while she was passing out a second round of refreshments, and she responded with 12 noon as expected. Ten minutes later, the pilot came on and said we were 48 miles from San Juan and would be landing in about 10 minutes. Rush, Rush, Rush by the cabin crew to retrieve the unused refreshments as apparently there was no communication from the cockpit that we were arriving that much sooner. Upon landing we went to the baggage claim area and retrieved all of our luggage. Since we were 6 people with luggage and were travelling to Old San Juan to stay at the Sheraton, I thought it would be more practical to arrange for a limo service to take us all together. I contacted Fairway Travel by e-mail in San Juan, who was recommended by our cruise agent, and as promised, they were there at 12 noon waiting for us in the baggage claim area; loaded all of our luggage and ourselves and took us directly to the Hotel. In addition, I had arranged to have us picked up the next day at 11 am to transport us to the Pan American Pier where our ship was leaving from. The drivers were great, and it eliminated any anxieties of getting where we had to be, when we had to be there. The Sheraton Old San Juan was great. We had reserved 2 double bed rooms and when we arrived, since only one was available, they upgraded one of the rooms to a suite at no additional cost that had a balcony and overlooked the pier and ships. Our kids urged us to have dinner, etc at Senor Frogs, which was located next door to the Sheraton and we had a ball, including free entertainment. On Sunday morning, upon arriving at the pier at 11:15am, our driver obtained a porter for our luggage and all we had to do was get in line. At 11:30am the line started to move and the processing with Sail-Pass went very smoothly as we were on board in about 20 minutes. Since our access to our respective cabins was not till 2pm we proceeded to take care of a few items. 1st of all we booked our dinner in Portofino for Tues eve. If you want to make sure you're not locked out of that dining experience, it should be the 1st thing you do when you get on board. Next we purchased the non-alcoholic (soda passes) for the week, and went to have some lunch in the Windjammer restaurant. At about 1:45pm we proceeded to our cabin on the 9th deck and our Stateroom with Balcony was ready. We met Julian our cabin steward, who was GREAT ALL WEEK !!! Anything we needed, extra towels, etc. was taken care of immediately. I guess because we had a porter take care of our luggage, we lucked out because our luggage arrived about 10 minutes after we got to our stateroom. Only 1 piece of luggage was delayed, as my wife decided to put her laptop in it instead of carrying it on-board with her, and when it was scanned by the ship's security staff they held it and requested that we come down to Guest relations for it. They told me when I retrieved it that it was the ship's policy not to leave it outside of the stateroom, since it contained the laptop, but to make sure we were given it directly. The 1st afternoon since the ship was not leaving the dock until 8:30pm was spent around the Solarium Pool, and its hot tubs. This ship has a separate pool area with 2 whirlpools for 21 and over, which for us was a pleasure, since our kids were older and didn't need supervision. We had selected the later seating at 8:30pm and had a very nice table location for the 6 of us next to a window. Our waiter was Domingo who told us at the end of the cruise that he had been working on about 4 cruise ships with Royal Caribbean over the last 20 years and that he was retiring in December. Shirley was our assistant waiter and Mustapha was our head waiter. All three (3) waitstaff persons were very friendly and went out of their way to make sure that we had excellent service and if anything additional was needed just to ask. Long 1st day, so my wife and I went to bed early. Our 20 year olds with us obviously thought that went to heaven and partied and partied. On Monday, which was a cruising day, we all relaxed and enjoyed ourselves. Dinner that night was the 1st formal nite and my wife I met the Captain at the reception before dinner. Previous to the cruise I had booked an excursion at the end of the cruise for a tour of Old San Juan, which when finished would take us directly to the airport. That worked out well on our previous cruise, as we had no hassles with getting off the ship (1st in Line) and zipped through customs and our baggage was taken care of and was waiting for us at the airport. I had reserved a tour of St. Lucia privately which I will get into shortly. We booked a number of excursions earlier in the day as they were filling up fast. On Tuesday, our 1st port of call was Barbados. We took a short shopping tour earlier in the morning and took an excursion with a Catamaran snorkeling with the large Sea Turtles in the afternoon. The trip was great, including unlimited liquid refreshments. Because of Hurricane Dean raising its ugly head, the Captain made note that it was possible some of the islands might be averted and or if it affected San Juan on Sunday, we might have a free day staying out at sea. That did not materialize. On Wednesday we docked in St. Lucia. As I had mentioned earlier we reserved a tour of the island privately for the day. I had read on other reviews that the BEST TOUR GUIDE on St. Lucia was COSOL at www.cosoltours.com We were not disappointed. The tour of the island started as soon as we got off of the ship and was non-stop fun and entertaining. COSOL WAS PHENOMENAL. In fact he was our personal driver and there were 6 others in our air-conditioned van. He knew everything about the island, and made many stops to the points of interest (Sulfur Volcanoes, Waterfalls, etc. ) We stopped at numerous local produce stands and were provided with samples just harvested. (Bananas, passion fruit, pineapples, etc.) Specialty foods such as Johnny cakes, warm bread and cheese just to name a few. Plenty of liquid refreshments too. Soda, local beer and home made rum punch). We were provided access to the beach at Jalousie Plantation resort for swimming. The private beach was nestled between the 2 piton mountains, and the warm water was crystal clear. We were back at the pier in plenty of time to do some shopping before getting back on board the ship. On Thursday we arrived in Antigua, and we used it, other then going into town to look at some more shopping and touring as a rest day. Hurricane Dean was starting to show it's muscle as the ship, as big as it was, started to wobble in the ocean. Fortunately we left Barbados and St. Lucia the day before the Hurricane winds arrived there. Thursday eve was the 2nd formal nite for dinner and service in the Main Dining Room was very good. I should mention that on three of the days on Board we ate in the main dining room for breakfast, and the rest of the days we had our lunches at the Buffets in the Windjammer and Island Grill. Food was good and service as well. On Friday after a rocking nite on ship we arrived in St Maarten. My wife and I had spent an entire week 2 years ago on that island. We had booked an afternoon on Orient Beach (Our 20 year olds had heard a lot about the NUDE beach) but unfortunately for them, the excursion was cancelled because of the weather. We took the water taxi into town, did some more shopping in downtown Phillipsburg and relaxed the rest of the afternoon and evening on Board. Each evening there was plenty of entertainment going on from the Ice Show, to live entertainment in the main theater, as well as Karaoke and other musical groups performing throughout the ship. On Sat we arrived in St Thomas and had a number of excursions for the afternoon between us with more shopping in the morning (St. Thomas had the best prices for shopping for just about everything than the other islands) Because of the rough water from the outer bands from Hurricane Dean. They were cancelled. My wife and I were supposed to go on the Atlantis Submarine and the kids were to done dive suits for underwater viewing of sea life, and that was the only disappointing part of the trip for them, but beyond anyone's control. The immigration process back into the US in the morning before getting off of the ship took about 5 minutes and after spending extra time for shopping we relaxed on Board. On Sunday morning we had quick breakfasts like everyone else in the Windjammer because we were scheduled to be 1st off of the ship for our walking tour excursion. Our flight back to Philadelphia went smoothly, although because the flight didn't leave till 5:55 pm we had a number of hours to kill in the airport. Had lunch and took it easy. In summary, we had a fantastic time, the weather was great except for the last few days, but not unbearable, and Royal Caribbean made our trip a great experience. Kudos again to COSOL in St Lucia for our tour of the island. Anyone going to St. Lucia MUST contact him in advance to reserve a tour with him. You won't be disappointed. Looking forward to our next cruise over XMAS from Tampa to Cozumel & Yucatan, on the Grandeur of the Seas.

Adventure of the Seas - Southern Caribbean

Adventure of the Seas Cruise Review by Frank

Trip Details
This was our 2nd cruise, and the 2nd with Royal Caribbean. As in the past, travelling by air, especially in the summer warrants an extra day to make sure there are no airline delays in arriving on time at your embarkation port. My wife, younger son 22 and his fiance, and older son 29 who had a close friend join him travelled together. We left Philadelphia at 8:15am on Saturday 8/11 the day before the cruise. We flew AA this time and in fact must've had a tail wind because we arrived 1/2 hour earlier than expected at 11:30am.
The flight was interesting as my son asked the stewardess at 11am what time we would arrive while she was passing out a second round of refreshments, and she responded with 12 noon as expected. Ten minutes later, the pilot came on and said we were 48 miles from San Juan and would be landing in about 10 minutes. Rush, Rush, Rush by the cabin crew to retrieve the unused refreshments as apparently there was no communication from the cockpit that we were arriving that much sooner. Upon landing we went to the baggage claim area and retrieved all of our luggage. Since we were 6 people with luggage and were travelling to Old San Juan to stay at the Sheraton, I thought it would be more practical to arrange for a limo service to take us all together. I contacted Fairway Travel by e-mail in San Juan, who was recommended by our cruise agent, and as promised, they were there at 12 noon waiting for us in the baggage claim area; loaded all of our luggage and ourselves and took us directly to the Hotel. In addition, I had arranged to have us picked up the next day at 11 am to transport us to the Pan American Pier where our ship was leaving from. The drivers were great, and it eliminated any anxieties of getting where we had to be, when we had to be there.
The Sheraton Old San Juan was great. We had reserved 2 double bed rooms and when we arrived, since only one was available, they upgraded one of the rooms to a suite at no additional cost that had a balcony and overlooked the pier and ships. Our kids urged us to have dinner, etc at Senor Frogs, which was located next door to the Sheraton and we had a ball, including free entertainment.
On Sunday morning, upon arriving at the pier at 11:15am, our driver obtained a porter for our luggage and all we had to do was get in line. At 11:30am the line started to move and the processing with Sail-Pass went very smoothly as we were on board in about 20 minutes. Since our access to our respective cabins was not till 2pm we proceeded to take care of a few items. 1st of all we booked our dinner in Portofino for Tues eve. If you want to make sure you're not locked out of that dining experience, it should be the 1st thing you do when you get on board. Next we purchased the non-alcoholic (soda passes) for the week, and went to have some lunch in the Windjammer restaurant. At about 1:45pm we proceeded to our cabin on the 9th deck and our Stateroom with Balcony was ready. We met Julian our cabin steward, who was GREAT ALL WEEK !!! Anything we needed, extra towels, etc. was taken care of immediately. I guess because we had a porter take care of our luggage, we lucked out because our luggage arrived about 10 minutes after we got to our stateroom. Only 1 piece of luggage was delayed, as my wife decided to put her laptop in it instead of carrying it on-board with her, and when it was scanned by the ship's security staff they held it and requested that we come down to Guest relations for it. They told me when I retrieved it that it was the ship's policy not to leave it outside of the stateroom, since it contained the laptop, but to make sure we were given it directly.
The 1st afternoon since the ship was not leaving the dock until 8:30pm was spent around the Solarium Pool, and its hot tubs. This ship has a separate pool area with 2 whirlpools for 21 and over, which for us was a pleasure, since our kids were older and didn't need supervision. We had selected the later seating at 8:30pm and had a very nice table location for the 6 of us next to a window. Our waiter was Domingo who told us at the end of the cruise that he had been working on about 4 cruise ships with Royal Caribbean over the last 20 years and that he was retiring in December. Shirley was our assistant waiter and Mustapha was our head waiter. All three (3) waitstaff persons were very friendly and went out of their way to make sure that we had excellent service and if anything additional was needed just to ask. Long 1st day, so my wife and I went to bed early. Our 20 year olds with us obviously thought that went to heaven and partied and partied. On Monday, which was a cruising day, we all relaxed and enjoyed ourselves. Dinner that night was the 1st formal nite and my wife I met the Captain at the reception before dinner. Previous to the cruise I had booked an excursion at the end of the cruise for a tour of Old San Juan, which when finished would take us directly to the airport. That worked out well on our previous cruise, as we had no hassles with getting off the ship (1st in Line) and zipped through customs and our baggage was taken care of and was waiting for us at the airport. I had reserved a tour of St. Lucia privately which I will get into shortly. We booked a number of excursions earlier in the day as they were filling up fast. On Tuesday, our 1st port of call was Barbados. We took a short shopping tour earlier in the morning and took an excursion with a Catamaran snorkeling with the large Sea Turtles in the afternoon. The trip was great, including unlimited liquid refreshments.
Because of Hurricane Dean raising its ugly head, the Captain made note that it was possible some of the islands might be averted and or if it affected San Juan on Sunday, we might have a free day staying out at sea. That did not materialize.
On Wednesday we docked in St. Lucia. As I had mentioned earlier we reserved a tour of the island privately for the day. I had read on other reviews that the BEST TOUR GUIDE on St. Lucia was COSOL at www.cosoltours.com We were not disappointed. The tour of the island started as soon as we got off of the ship and was non-stop fun and entertaining. COSOL WAS PHENOMENAL. In fact he was our personal driver and there were 6 others in our air-conditioned van. He knew everything about the island, and made many stops to the points of interest (Sulfur Volcanoes, Waterfalls, etc. ) We stopped at numerous local produce stands and were provided with samples just harvested. (Bananas, passion fruit, pineapples, etc.) Specialty foods such as Johnny cakes, warm bread and cheese just to name a few. Plenty of liquid refreshments too. Soda, local beer and home made rum punch). We were provided access to the beach at Jalousie Plantation resort for swimming. The private beach was nestled between the 2 piton mountains, and the warm water was crystal clear. We were back at the pier in plenty of time to do some shopping before getting back on board the ship.
On Thursday we arrived in Antigua, and we used it, other then going into town to look at some more shopping and touring as a rest day. Hurricane Dean was starting to show it's muscle as the ship, as big as it was, started to wobble in the ocean. Fortunately we left Barbados and St. Lucia the day before the Hurricane winds arrived there. Thursday eve was the 2nd formal nite for dinner and service in the Main Dining Room was very good. I should mention that on three of the days on Board we ate in the main dining room for breakfast, and the rest of the days we had our lunches at the Buffets in the Windjammer and Island Grill. Food was good and service as well.
On Friday after a rocking nite on ship we arrived in St Maarten. My wife and I had spent an entire week 2 years ago on that island. We had booked an afternoon on Orient Beach (Our 20 year olds had heard a lot about the NUDE beach) but unfortunately for them, the excursion was cancelled because of the weather. We took the water taxi into town, did some more shopping in downtown Phillipsburg and relaxed the rest of the afternoon and evening on Board.
Each evening there was plenty of entertainment going on from the Ice Show, to live entertainment in the main theater, as well as Karaoke and other musical groups performing throughout the ship.
On Sat we arrived in St Thomas and had a number of excursions for the afternoon between us with more shopping in the morning (St. Thomas had the best prices for shopping for just about everything than the other islands) Because of the rough water from the outer bands from Hurricane Dean. They were cancelled. My wife and I were supposed to go on the Atlantis Submarine and the kids were to done dive suits for underwater viewing of sea life, and that was the only disappointing part of the trip for them, but beyond anyone's control. The immigration process back into the US in the morning before getting off of the ship took about 5 minutes and after spending extra time for shopping we relaxed on Board.
On Sunday morning we had quick breakfasts like everyone else in the Windjammer because we were scheduled to be 1st off of the ship for our walking tour excursion. Our flight back to Philadelphia went smoothly, although because the flight didn't leave till 5:55 pm we had a number of hours to kill in the airport. Had lunch and took it easy.
In summary, we had a fantastic time, the weather was great except for the last few days, but not unbearable, and Royal Caribbean made our trip a great experience. Kudos again to COSOL in St Lucia for our tour of the island. Anyone going to St. Lucia MUST contact him in advance to reserve a tour with him. You won't be disappointed. Looking forward to our next cruise over XMAS from Tampa to Cozumel & Yucatan, on the Grandeur of the Seas.
Frank’s Full Rating Summary
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