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Enchantment of the Seas Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
1887 reviews
4 Awards

Gringo on a Latin cruise

Review for Enchantment of the Seas to the Southern Caribbean
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First Time Cruiser

Rating by category

Public Rooms

Additional details

Sail Date: Jan 2009
Cabin: Junior Suite with Balcony

If you have the opportunity to take a Royal Caribbean cruise out of Central or South America ... take it.

My wife and I were on the January 10, 2009 Enchantment of the Seas cruise from Colon, Panama to Cartagena and Santa Marta, Colombia and the Netherlands Antilles. When booking the cruise we weren't told that the ship's language for everything would be Spanish, or that two thousand of the twenty-two hundred passengers were going to be Spanish speaking Latin Americans. A few weeks after booking, Royal Caribbean did offer us the chance to cancel without penalty, but having made our air reservations, the offer could not be taken. Not that we would have. As a former bilingual educator, (I am not Hispanic), I speak reasonable Spanish and my wife has some facility with it. So off we went.

I'm not Pollyanna. There were culture clashes and you have to be able to either tolerate or enjoy them. The talking, the obstructive milling around, the physical closeness and crew relations come to mind. Large numbers of people never stop talking. Loud and rapid, all at the same time and never seeming to stop: in the pool, on the pool deck, in the bars and the photo gallery, during dinner, on the elevators and during the shows. Why go to the theater if you're going to talk through the entertainment? At first you are angry. Then you get included. Just because you don't understand is no reason not to join in. No one's in a hurry. Six or seven members of a family may sit down in the stairway. Every thing is blocked, nobody moves, no one gets excited. Eventually you get to go on your way. The same at a buffet line where time must be taken to choose among ten different items. The line waits. At first my New York City blood boiled. But I learned to enjoy the expectation. After all, what could I do about it? Eat in the Dining Room, or breakfast at 8:00 am when only the 150 Americans are awake? Latin Americans don't have the same sense of personal space as English speakers. Conversations are held at close range, inches away. And ten people climbing into and out of (mostly into), a six person hot tub, does challenge our Anglo-Saxon sense of propriety.

Cabin Review

Junior Suite with Balcony

The Jr. Suite with large balcony was great, but the closet doors would open and close with a thud as the ship rolled in rough seas.

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