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Walked into this cruise experience with expectancy, yet sprinkled with a little apprehension, because I've heard tons of good reviews about the Royal Caribbean cruises in general but read a few negative ones about Ovation in particular. I have to say there are elements of truth in former reviews, both good and not so good that I have read (which I will elaborate on), but the overarching sentiment from both my partner and I is a tremendously positive one! Decor & Design - Ovation played it down a little with the carpeting and wall paintings. I have no point of reference with other Sister ships, as this is the first time I have been on a Royal Caribbean Voyage. That said, the Colour scheme and design of the ship's interior wasn't as vibrant as Costa Victoria's (an Italian cruise that I sailed on just a few months back). However, there were artistic delights scattered about the ship, like the red suspended pellets at the boarding entrance at deck 5, and the painting with moving shapes (from different angles) outside the Two70 cafe. There were also framed paintings in our Stateroom balcony room, which was pleasant to the eyes. The kids' pool at deck 14 was a visual delight, bursting with colors and magic-like wonder. The rotational use of venues like Seaplex and Two70 for different activities throughout the day was also a fantastic maximisation of space. The 31million dollar Two70 threatre/stage had impressive placements of entrances of performers from above and below, and cleverly designed glass panels overlooking the ocean that would transform into a mega screen in the evenings for musical performances. The threatre design was highly sophisticated, though we would never have guessed the hefty cost of the setup! Cleanliness - Hailing from the one of the allegedly cleanest and greenest city in the world, Singapore, even I was impressed by the cleanliness of the ship! Perhaps because of its newness, even the carpeting in my Stateroom was super clean. By this, I mean my feet remained clean even after walking barefoot on the carpet for minutes. Not a trace of dirt!! Public restrooms were also squeaky clean, with a very helpful automatic flush system. I felt at home using the restrooms. Shower heater was super good, with a default anchor temperature of 40degrees, so we wouldn't freeze during our baths. And there are hand sanitizers EVERYWHERE on the ship to prevent food poisoning or hygiene issues. Cheerful staff would usher you to wash your hands with soap at a rinse corner before each meal at the Windjammer buffet restaurant. "If you're happy and you know it, wash your hands" they would sing! Service - Service attitude was good, very good, or brilliant. I do not remember having met any unhelpful staff on board. Most were smiley and cheerful; in high spirits. You could tell the passion they had for sailing or their jobs from the way they talked or greeted you. These included the food staff, random staff we met on board, or staff we asked directions from. Mike the director particularly made our cruise experience very pleasant by being a highly entertaining and humorous emcee for activities and news anchor on the daily activities update. Our stateroom attendant was extremely friendly and innovative - folding artistic creations out of towels to decorate our bed each day we walked in after cleaning. One day it was a rabbit, another day it was a cat, and another day it was two swans. Activities and Shows - Threatre/Musical Productions were definitely the highlight and selling point of Ovation of the Seas. 'Pixels' and 'Live. Love. Legs' were pulsating with energy, and performed by an extremely talented cast of amazing Singers and dancers. 'The Beautiful Dream' proved to be another level of exceptional, with terrific singing and dancing, and most importantly an impactful plot that moved many to tears. Also, the singers were brilliant and sang with so much gusto and emotion. Game shows were fun and engaging, and brought nostalgic delight to many elderly folk! Food - Lunch on our first day at Windjammers buffet was terrible. We were shocked as to why every dish was at best mediocre when there was so much variety. Thankfully, that was the ONLY time we had terrible food there again. Dinner food at the same buffet restaurant was decent, and breakfast every day after at the Windjammers was an absolute delight and pleasure to wake up to. Their breakfast spread was really yummy (and it was consistently yummy for 3 days that we had breakfast there)!! We tried dinner one day at The Grande, which is basically one of four complimentary dining a la crate restaurants. Not good. Only appetisers was so-so. My Vietnamese fried rice was too salty, and dessert wasn't impressive either. This restaurant was a no-go for us after, because at least Windjammers offered variety, and we could choose which food to pass and which to eat more of. My partner and I booked a dining slot at specialty restaurant Wonderland, for our last night on board. It was a good decision. Food wasn't conventionally yummy, but it was one hell of an interesting and whimsical gastronomic journey, and quite yummy too. Every item came with a story line, about fire, sea, earth, sun, or ice. Our waiter explained everything with great zest and patience, allowing us generous amounts of time to snap photos of our dishes. Spoons and forks were also whimsically designed. And if you are in the mood for alcohol, try the Berlinger White zinfandel by the bottle. It was the most affordable on the menu, and I'd go as far as to say it was the BEST white wine I have ever tasted in my life. The sweetness was ON POINT, the taste was refreshing, and it was so easy to go down. Puts moscato to shame!! In other words, the whole dining experience was unforgettable - ambience, queerness, and pleasantness combined. If you are looking for a good/decent cruise to take for your next holiday, Ovation is really a good recommendation! And there's no harm doing this experience multiple times too! Thank you Ovation and all staff members for a wonderful holiday!! *P.s. The ship has a humongous and impressive gym, although I didn't utilise it*

Outstanding experience with terrific service and performances!!

Ovation of the Seas Cruise Review by M-Y

19 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2017
  • Destination: Asia
Walked into this cruise experience with expectancy, yet sprinkled with a little apprehension, because I've heard tons of good reviews about the Royal Caribbean cruises in general but read a few negative ones about Ovation in particular.

I have to say there are elements of truth in former reviews, both good and not so good that I have read (which I will elaborate on), but the overarching sentiment from both my partner and I is a tremendously positive one!

Decor & Design - Ovation played it down a little with the carpeting and wall paintings. I have no point of reference with other Sister ships, as this is the first time I have been on a Royal Caribbean Voyage. That said, the Colour scheme and design of the ship's interior wasn't as vibrant as Costa Victoria's (an Italian cruise that I sailed on just a few months back). However, there were artistic delights scattered about the ship, like the red suspended pellets at the boarding entrance at deck 5, and the painting with moving shapes (from different angles) outside the Two70 cafe. There were also framed paintings in our Stateroom balcony room, which was pleasant to the eyes.

The kids' pool at deck 14 was a visual delight, bursting with colors and magic-like wonder.

The rotational use of venues like Seaplex and Two70 for different activities throughout the day was also a fantastic maximisation of space. The 31million dollar Two70 threatre/stage had impressive placements of entrances of performers from above and below, and cleverly designed glass panels overlooking the ocean that would transform into a mega screen in the evenings for musical performances. The threatre design was highly sophisticated, though we would never have guessed the hefty cost of the setup!

Cleanliness - Hailing from the one of the allegedly cleanest and greenest city in the world, Singapore, even I was impressed by the cleanliness of the ship! Perhaps because of its newness, even the carpeting in my Stateroom was super clean. By this, I mean my feet remained clean even after walking barefoot on the carpet for minutes. Not a trace of dirt!! Public restrooms were also squeaky clean, with a very helpful automatic flush system. I felt at home using the restrooms. Shower heater was super good, with a default anchor temperature of 40degrees, so we wouldn't freeze during our baths. And there are hand sanitizers EVERYWHERE on the ship to prevent food poisoning or hygiene issues. Cheerful staff would usher you to wash your hands with soap at a rinse corner before each meal at the Windjammer buffet restaurant. "If you're happy and you know it, wash your hands" they would sing!

Service - Service attitude was good, very good, or brilliant. I do not remember having met any unhelpful staff on board. Most were smiley and cheerful; in high spirits. You could tell the passion they had for sailing or their jobs from the way they talked or greeted you. These included the food staff, random staff we met on board, or staff we asked directions from. Mike the director particularly made our cruise experience very pleasant by being a highly entertaining and humorous emcee for activities and news anchor on the daily activities update. Our stateroom attendant was extremely friendly and innovative - folding artistic creations out of towels to decorate our bed each day we walked in after cleaning. One day it was a rabbit, another day it was a cat, and another day it was two swans.

Activities and Shows - Threatre/Musical Productions were definitely the highlight and selling point of Ovation of the Seas. 'Pixels' and 'Live. Love. Legs' were pulsating with energy, and performed by an extremely talented cast of amazing Singers and dancers. 'The Beautiful Dream' proved to be another level of exceptional, with terrific singing and dancing, and most importantly an impactful plot that moved many to tears. Also, the singers were brilliant and sang with so much gusto and emotion. Game shows were fun and engaging, and brought nostalgic delight to many elderly folk!

Food - Lunch on our first day at Windjammers buffet was terrible. We were shocked as to why every dish was at best mediocre when there was so much variety. Thankfully, that was the ONLY time we had terrible food there again. Dinner food at the same buffet restaurant was decent, and breakfast every day after at the Windjammers was an absolute delight and pleasure to wake up to. Their breakfast spread was really yummy (and it was consistently yummy for 3 days that we had breakfast there)!!

We tried dinner one day at The Grande, which is basically one of four complimentary dining a la crate restaurants. Not good. Only appetisers was so-so. My Vietnamese fried rice was too salty, and dessert wasn't impressive either. This restaurant was a no-go for us after, because at least Windjammers offered variety, and we could choose which food to pass and which to eat more of.

My partner and I booked a dining slot at specialty restaurant Wonderland, for our last night on board. It was a good decision. Food wasn't conventionally yummy, but it was one hell of an interesting and whimsical gastronomic journey, and quite yummy too. Every item came with a story line, about fire, sea, earth, sun, or ice. Our waiter explained everything with great zest and patience, allowing us generous amounts of time to snap photos of our dishes. Spoons and forks were also whimsically designed. And if you are in the mood for alcohol, try the Berlinger White zinfandel by the bottle. It was the most affordable on the menu, and I'd go as far as to say it was the BEST white wine I have ever tasted in my life. The sweetness was ON POINT, the taste was refreshing, and it was so easy to go down. Puts moscato to shame!! In other words, the whole dining experience was unforgettable - ambience, queerness, and pleasantness combined.

If you are looking for a good/decent cruise to take for your next holiday, Ovation is really a good recommendation! And there's no harm doing this experience multiple times too! Thank you Ovation and all staff members for a wonderful holiday!!

*P.s. The ship has a humongous and impressive gym, although I didn't utilise it*
M-Y’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
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Cabin Review

Cabin 10714
Cabin was a little tinier than expected, but very comfortable, functional, and clean.
  Ovation of the Seas Deck Plans