Anthem of the Seas Review 3nts 3rd – 6th May 2015
Let me start by saying that these are our thoughts & observations – mine, Hub’s & our 18yr old Son !
We parked in Blue Car Park, walked across the road into the Terminal and were met by rows of check-in staff in Blue tops all holding tablets and we were checked in, through Security & Onboard all in 10 mins !
First impression ? WOW – Just WOW !!!
Met with a glass of Champers & chance to have a wander and a first look along the Royal Esplanade. Very similar to the Royal Promenade, just smaller. As we boarded just after 11am (we were in Group A) we decided to take as many photos & film as much as we could straightaway, so we started at the top on Deck 16 and worked our way down...
After lunch the Staterooms were open so we went down to our D2 Superior Balcony #11692 on Deck 11. Found a sealed envelope outside with 1 x Seapass card in, the other 2 x plus our 3 x RFID wowbands were on our bed. Very happy with our stateroom & pleased to see it did have the ‘Double’ Sofabed we had specifically requested for our 6ft 2” Son who does not sleep easily on a single sofabed. Our case arrived, so we unpacked then headed out to explore some more. Had a go on the Bumper Cars in SeaPlex then made our way up to Deck 16 Aft for Sailaway as we wanted to get some good shots and filming of the 3 x Queens that followed us out of Southampton – Victoria, Queen Mary 2 & Elizabeth as well as Fred Olsen’s Balmoral & P&O’s Azura.
At 5pm, Hub & Son went to sign in for their iFly appt. Safety briefing etc took about 40 mins, then they arrived suited up in blue overalls with helmet, up at the iFly and had their go first in their big group of about 12 people – they loved it ! After all of the Group had finished the instructor did a Demo of how it should be done – WOW !
We had booked our Dinner & Show reservations pre-cruise and Day 1 we had We Will Rock You at 7pm so we went to have dinner in the Windjammer - lots of choice & a great relaxed atmosphere ! We Will Rock You was Fantastic – NB. Do Not Leave Until the Very End, lots of people left before the wonderful ending...
Day 2 – We did the ‘Bruges & Belgian Chocolate’ RCI Tour and very glad we did. Quick half hour coach trip from the Port of Zeebrugge and we then had a walking tour around Bruges (our Guide Frank, retired Teacher, was very good and so funny !) including the Chocolate Museum with a lesson on how to make all types of chocolate plus tastings !! We had about 45 mins Free-time for shopping before returning to Anthem. Tonight it was Dinner in Chic in which both food & service were also very good then down to Two70 to watch Spectre’s Cabaret – I don’t want to spoil this for anyone, so I’m just going to say that it is Unique & Must be seen !!!
Day 3 – We caught the Port Shuttle bus out of Le Havre port into the town & ‘The Docks’ a Mall built in the old dock buildings. We have been to Paris before so we were happy to just have a laid back morning and after a pleasant couple of hours shopping, we caught the bus back to Anthem and spent a relaxing afternoon in the Solarium. Tonight we had Dinner in American Icon Grill and again food & service was very good. We saw the Headliner Show in the Royal Theatre tonight with Paul Zerdin – Ventriloquist. We had seen him before on Indy, but he is very good and very funny !
One slight gripe is that there was nothing arranged for 18-21yr olds to meet-up & introduce themselves – in my opinion, this should have happened on Day 1 after the 15-17yrs 411 !!! Obviously they are not allowed in the Teen Club (as we were told by one of the crew outside) so I do wonder how this age group are meant to meet others their same age onboard ? We are hoping that this will be rectified before our 14 nights cruise on Anthem in July...
We booked this 3 nighter to a) get us up to Diamond C&A and b) to try out Anthem before our 14 nights around the Med on her with 7 friends, in July...
It is our opinion that RCI has taken the very best of their ships and mixed them with the very best of Celebrity ships – then raised the bar considerably - to produce Anthem of the Seas...
Anthem is a stunning ship...
Every single member of Crew spoke to us as we passed them - before we had chance to speak to them first... N.B... Special Mention to Roxana Oros who we met whilst she was working in the Windjammer on Oasis in April 2010 (and we haven’t seen her since then) but she saw us walking along the Royal Esplanade on Sunday night (3rd May) and she recognised us and hugged us all – now THAT is a proper WOW Moment !!!
We purchased the Soda package for myself and Hub (Our Son doesn’t drink soda so is happy with the included juice & water drinks) and we were very impressed with the Freestyle Coke machines, lots of different choice, however you have to carry your cups around with you to use them, so here is a suggestion... Couldn’t the WOW bands be programmed to include drinks packages? Then plastic throwaway cups could be stored near the Machines, where you just swipe your Wow band at the Machine to get a drink ??? Could also save RCI some $$$ by not having to provide the thick tall plastic glasses that they do at the mo ??
As this was only a 3 nighter, we had the ‘Taste of Anthem’ Menu’s in the restaurants which included a couple of choices from each of the Complimentary Restaurants. Although this was not a problem to us, we are looking forward to experiencing the full Dynamic Dining choices in July !!
We really, really like Anthem of the Seas and we are looking forward to cruising on her again for 14 nights in July 2015 !!!
Well Done RCI, you have produced another Fantastic Ship with Wonderful Crew & Amazing Shows !!!
Ample storage for the 3 of us. Comfortable Double Sofabed for our 6ft 2" Son to sleep on. Liked having a kettle with Teabags, sugar & milk in our stateroom. Really like the location set back from the corridor, was quiet and not too far to walk to the elevators ! Happy that we have again booked this same stateroom for our 14 nights cruise on Anthem in July !!!
Walking Tour with Chocolate Museum. Frank the Guide was excellent ! Note of caution: most of the surface you walk on is small cobbles so make sure you wear your comfiest flat shoes !!View All 51 Walking Tour Reviews
Just caught the Shuttle Port bus into the Town then onto 'The Docks' Mall for a couple of hours shopping, then back to the ship as we have been to Paris previously....
Booked our own parking directly with ABP Southampton & we were directed to park in Blue Car Park opposite the Terminal.
Check-in experience was Fantastic ! Quick, seamless and very efficient !!!
Nothing else to say really !!!