This cruise was a christmas present from my son. I was excited to try a new cruise line. We had only cruised with Carnival in the past. We spent the night prior in Miami and went to South Beach where a fight broke out between two groups of stupid kids. Other than that it was ok.
The morning we went to the port was a complete and total mess with 5 ships in port that day. Navigator had Terminal A which is nothing more than a make shift terminal made of 2 tents. They had been late getting into port so was delayed on boarding. They had people just standing in line wrapped around the parking lot with no type of shade for hours but did give out bottles of water (not cold). Embarkation for some passengers was over 3 hours long. Luggage took forever to be delivered b/c it was left in piles in the parking lot until right before departing.
The food in the main dining room was decent, a bit better in flavor than Carnival but not a large selection. We ate at Chops Grille which was amazing and worth the extra price. We also ate at Izumi twice which I think was the best food on the ship. You can even get it to go which is good. We ate on the Lido for dinner once which had a good selection. Lunch on Lido was pretty boring with everything being pretty much the same thing everyday. We ate lunch at Johnny Rockets once which has a fee of $6.95/pp for all you can eat if you dine in or one meal if you get it to go. It does not include milkshakes which you have to pay over $5 extra for which is ridiculous. We ordered breakfast room service most days and it was typical eggs, bacon, sausage, breads, pastries, coffee, and juice. Time slots for delivery are every 30 minutes (FYI they deliver at the very end of your 30minute slot most times).
Overall service was mostly good. The pool deck could absolutely use more bartenders and waiters on sea days. There were only 2 on 2 of our 3 sea days if you could even find them. The last day was a bit better. Towels on the pool deck are horrible. They are like your basic bath towels from Walmart-towels in bathrooms were much better. Carnival definitely has RCCL beat on pool towels. One pool bar upstairs did a great job at getting drinks in a decent amount of time which the bartenders on the downstairs bar were slow and didn't seem to know how to make drinks. Most of the staff looked miserable and even though they would help you when you asked they really didn't seem like they wanted to.
Entertainment/Activities - basic cruise ship entertainment, nothing exciting worth talking about
Labadee Haiti -great little island, got the beach lounger for 2 which was a good little investment, lunch on the island was the typical hot dogs and burgers that you could get on the ship so again nothing exciting. good service and beautiful beach.
San Juan Puerto Rico -many ships in port that day, our time was 2-10pm which sucked because you didn't have alot of time. We just walked around and did some shopping. Most of the deals they talk about online and on the ship are not that great so not really worth it.
St. Maarten - we did the Maho beach experience ($45/pp) which was a lot of fun. There was an air conditioned bus ride that took about 30-40minutes due to Maho beach being nearly on the other side of the island. The beach is beautiful but small and the Sunset Beach Bar is right on the water where you can get drinks, food, souvenirs, and you can rent chairs/umbrellas ($20)and a waiter will bring you drinks (not included). You can sit on the deck and watch the planes depart and arrive or on the beach. The gazebo bar sucks for service, not nearly enough bartenders and if you're a guy or a woman with a shirt on and a woman removes her top lets just say you are getting moved to the back of the line (they get served first). You get about 3 hours on the beach before you take the bus back which is an even longer ride due to traffic, they will drop you off to shop but you have to take the water taxi, regular taxi, or walk back to port.
It could be due to cruising during the school year but there were many more older people on the ship. Most of the Diamond/Platinum or whatever they are on RCCL we met were very rude, like they think they are something special. One gentleman who was a new Diamond/Platinum told us they were very rude to him because they felt he did not dress up enough for their "meeting" in the lounge. Not a big party ship in my opinion which is fine. The typical parents who don't watch their kids of course. At least 3 kids whipped out on the pool deck and hit their heads and no one could find their parents.
Overall the ship is in decent condition. There are some crappy areas of the ship that need some work, our cabin was a deluxe balcony on deck 8 which is a good location. Lots of room with king size bed and sitting couch, vanity. Bathroom is decent size and looks like your typical bathroom. We did have a few days where our flush button didn't work but was fixed quickly. Our room steward did a great job on getting whatever we needed and keeping our room in good shape.
Make shift terminal that was unorganized and had people standing in the sun without shade for hours.
Very beautiful beach
Just walked around town.
Maho Beach ExperienceView All 117 St. Maartan Airport Tour Reviews