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Sailed on 10 night cruise including Madeira, main three Canary Islands and Vigo. Our slot for embarkation was 11.00 am to 12.00 am. Embarkation went very smoothly, very few queues at check in and we were onboard by 11.15. From parking car to getting on took no more than 20 minutes. Whether this was the same for later times I am unsure but certainly looking from our cabin around 2.00 pm there were no queues for the car park we could see. Also heard no complaints from fellow passengers about embarkation. We ate in the MDR all cruise and the standard seemed very much as it was three years ago when we last cruised with Royal Caribbean. We did My Time dining and although there were queues at 8.00 pm when we tended to go for dinner they moved fairly quickly. I suppose one down side there seemed to be mashed potato with everything. Waiting staff were excellent as ever and we never had a problem with drink orders after the first night. Once the waiters understood our preferences they made sure that our wine was topped up and even asked if we needed top ups without us asking. The wine package seems awfully expensive and cost over £1,000 (bad exchange rate). However with a decent bottle of wine $53 including tip and water at $4 it did not take long for to be worthwhile. Basically five drinks a day. (yes I do drink a lot). Cabin was well maintained and the cabin staff, as always, excellent. Always a smile and even a couple of towel animals. Not had those for a few years. The production shows were ones that we had seen before and probably need new ones as I believe they have been the same for the last five years. Early seating was never full whereas the second seating seemed to be always full with problems getting seats. Seen some comments about the Queen act. I must disagree with fellow critics and say it was probably in the top ten best acts that I have seen on 15 cruises. Could have seen it again. The two ice shows were excellent but again they were the same as 3/5 years ago. The ship seemed quite crowded on the first two days but probably due to the weather being too cold to be outside. The ship probably needs to be refitted soon and we did notice that it was not as clean as a Celebrity X ship. However much better than Princess. The street parties were fun as always but very crowded. Ports of call seemed very short and I cannot understand visiting Madeira on a Sunday when everything is closed. Now for the moan and hence the title of the review. My wife and I have fairly specific reasons for going on a cruise. They are good food, live entertainment and dancing. Part of the reason for choosing Royal Caribbean/Independence is that it has a fairly large dance floor in the Pyramid Lounge and a live band where we can dance. Unfortunately on this cruise a small minority of passengers with young children (under 7) decided to turn it into a children's play area which not only made it impossible to dance until around 11.30 pm but was downright dangerous. One evening (9.45) whilst dancing we ended up with a child between our legs which could have been dangerous to the child (stiletto heel through hand) or us falling on them. The parents/grandparents could not have cared a less. Although there were some efforts by the band and a short notice in the Cruise Compass stating that unaccompanied child were not allowed on the dance floor this was not enforced. I also asked one of the parents of two children who persistently were running on the dance floor to control them and was told it was their cruise as well so go poke it. Although there were only a few people who did dance when there was a good attempt to rid the floor of children there was a loud applause. I fully understand that my wife and I have specific ideas on why we want to cruise which need not apply to many people but in our view there should be a curfew in the Pyramid Lounge after 9.30 for children under 10. We certainly will not be cruising with Royal Caribbean again whilst this continues. After speaking to other members of the entertainment staff it would appear that this problem is becoming more prevalent. However if your idea of a fun night out is watching kids doing cartwheels to music and crawling all over the dance floor then this could be the cruise for you.

Pyramid Lounge creche or for adults?

Independence of the Seas Cruise Review by Kentfred

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: October 2016
  • Destination: Canary Islands
  • Cabin Type: Grand Suite - 1 Bedroom
Sailed on 10 night cruise including Madeira, main three Canary Islands and Vigo.

Our slot for embarkation was 11.00 am to 12.00 am. Embarkation went very smoothly, very few queues at check in and we were onboard by 11.15. From parking car to getting on took no more than 20 minutes. Whether this was the same for later times I am unsure but certainly looking from our cabin around 2.00 pm there were no queues for the car park we could see. Also heard no complaints from fellow passengers about embarkation.

We ate in the MDR all cruise and the standard seemed very much as it was three years ago when we last cruised with Royal Caribbean. We did My Time dining and although there were queues at 8.00 pm when we tended to go for dinner they moved fairly quickly. I suppose one down side there seemed to be mashed potato with everything. Waiting staff were excellent as ever and we never had a problem with drink orders after the first night. Once the waiters understood our preferences they made sure that our wine was topped up and even asked if we needed top ups without us asking. The wine package seems awfully expensive and cost over £1,000 (bad exchange rate). However with a decent bottle of wine $53 including tip and water at $4 it did not take long for to be worthwhile. Basically five drinks a day. (yes I do drink a lot).

Cabin was well maintained and the cabin staff, as always, excellent. Always a smile and even a couple of towel animals. Not had those for a few years.

The production shows were ones that we had seen before and probably need new ones as I believe they have been the same for the last five years. Early seating was never full whereas the second seating seemed to be always full with problems getting seats. Seen some comments about the Queen act. I must disagree with fellow critics and say it was probably in the top ten best acts that I have seen on 15 cruises. Could have seen it again. The two ice shows were excellent but again they were the same as 3/5 years ago.

The ship seemed quite crowded on the first two days but probably due to the weather being too cold to be outside. The ship probably needs to be refitted soon and we did notice that it was not as clean as a Celebrity X ship. However much better than Princess.

The street parties were fun as always but very crowded.

Ports of call seemed very short and I cannot understand visiting Madeira on a Sunday when everything is closed.

Now for the moan and hence the title of the review. My wife and I have fairly specific reasons for going on a cruise. They are good food, live entertainment and dancing. Part of the reason for choosing Royal Caribbean/Independence is that it has a fairly large dance floor in the Pyramid Lounge and a live band where we can dance. Unfortunately on this cruise a small minority of passengers with young children (under 7) decided to turn it into a children's play area which not only made it impossible to dance until around 11.30 pm but was downright dangerous. One evening (9.45) whilst dancing we ended up with a child between our legs which could have been dangerous to the child (stiletto heel through hand) or us falling on them. The parents/grandparents could not have cared a less. Although there were some efforts by the band and a short notice in the Cruise Compass stating that unaccompanied child were not allowed on the dance floor this was not enforced. I also asked one of the parents of two children who persistently were running on the dance floor to control them and was told it was their cruise as well so go poke it. Although there were only a few people who did dance when there was a good attempt to rid the floor of children there was a loud applause. I fully understand that my wife and I have specific ideas on why we want to cruise which need not apply to many people but in our view there should be a curfew in the Pyramid Lounge after 9.30 for children under 10. We certainly will not be cruising with Royal Caribbean again whilst this continues. After speaking to other members of the entertainment staff it would appear that this problem is becoming more prevalent. However if your idea of a fun night out is watching kids doing cartwheels to music and crawling all over the dance floor then this could be the cruise for you.
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Cabin Review

Grand Suite - 1 Bedroom
Cabin GS 1598
Specifically choose this cabin as not below the solarium with its tiled floor. Had cabins under the solarium before and had to put up with constant noise through the day and night with people moving sun loungers, towel trollies at night, ladies high shoes etc. Did notice that there was a rubber walk way in the solarium now which probably reduces some of the noise. Be aware
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

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