First time on a cruise greater than 7 days and first time visiting Bonaire, Aruba, and Curacao. Went with a family of 12 ranging from the age of 2 years old to 60 years old.
Embarkation: A total nightmare. I have been on 15+ cruises and have never experienced a more disorganized port than the port of Miami. I am a Diamond Member and it took me over an hour from arriving at the port to boarding the cruise. The line for first time cruisers was more accommodating and those individuals were on the ship after 15 minutes. Completely nonsensical.
Crowd: Sorry to say this was more of a geriatric cruise 60+. My husband and I both in our 30's had a very difficult time finding others in our age range. My guess is that most people our age do not have the vacation time available. I'm assuming this is common with cruises over 7 days, something to consider.
Dining: Again sorry to say really poor. My family love to dine in the main dining room but the service and quality of the food was atrocious (aside from the dessert). We dined in the main dining room only twice then resorted to dine the rest of the days in the Windjammer. The selection in the windjammer was much more vast than the dining room and tasted better. Breakfast in the Windjammer is basically the same every day, as is lunch. Dinner in the Windjammer had some variation. I highly recommend the fried chicken, surprisingly delicious.
Specialty Dining: Choppes Grille I recommend the chocolate lava cake with ice cream, by far the best dessert on the ship.
Entertainment: Highly recommend the ice skating show, it is magnificent.
Service: Overall the service was magnificent. Our stateroom attendant on deck 9 was wonderful as was Clinton Batista in the Windjammer, very hard working, awesome employees! We had one unpleasant encounter with a female pool deck attendant from Brazil, the only bad apple of the bunch.
Ports: We rented a car in each island and it was the best decision we made. Curacao was our personal favorite with beautiful beaches. Bonaire has amazing snorkeling but no beaches technically, very windy! Aruba was surprisingly our least favorite, very commercial, very windy!
Debarkation: We chose to debark with the self assist program (where you carry your own luggage) from 7:30 - 8 am. VERY DISORGANIZED. Again it took us one hour of waiting in line to leave the ship. Many guests were cutting the line and simply walking off the ship when many of us were waiting patiently, very rude.
Miscellaneous: Having traveled with nephews ages 2, 4, and 6 I would not recommend this cruise for kids, there is not much for them to do on the ship and these islands are not for them. Oasis of the seas is fantastic for kids, I would sail that ship instead. I noticed the sea around these islands are very choppy, the boat would move and shudder pretty frequently, so anyone that gets sea sick easily, I would reconsider traveling this route.
The cabin was spacious and very nice. I have to downgrade the rating due to the plumbing. The shower in the cabin would overflow often, thus we would have to reduce the pressure of the water. Our stateroom attendant was magnificent, our room was always immaculate. Whenever I called rooms service for extra towels, robes, and an issue with my safe they were very prompt. I must say the overall service for our cabin was amazing, thank you to those employees.