Thought I would write a quick review since I just got back home yesterday....
Background info: Itravelled with my parents and sister and all of us we have gone cruising on Princess,Carnival, NCL a few times. We visited St Thomas, Curacao Aruba (we went to Palm Beach) and St Kitts (wentto Cockleshell beach – TIP: walk past the Reggae Beach Bar and go to “Loxeen Beach Hut” chairs to rent are only $4 but free if you buy drinks).
The only new port for us was Curacao. We took a cab and went to Mambo Beach over there. ($3.50 entranceand $3.50 for chair rental) Really nice beach.
We flew into San Juan the day before. We stayed at the Best Western Condado Palm Inn and Suites. Great hotel for a pre-cruise stay. It was a 10 minute drive to the Pan American Cruise port and 20 minutesfrom the airport.
We got onboard the ship at 2:30pm. It took almost an hour after standing in line which I was surprised about. I thought it would be a shorter line at that time.
The only thing was that since it docked at the Pan Am Pier you couldn't walk to Old San Juan easily so before we boarded the ship we left the hotel and did some exploring (which even though I have been there before I love walking in Old San Juan!)
So a few things about theship - I knew after reading here on CC that the rooms may not be the best. Westayed in an interior room. It was fine. The couch looked worn out but the roomitself was very clean and we really only went there to sleep and shower. Ienjoy having balcony cabins but since we had 4 port days I was ok with havingan interior cabin. Honestly, my favourite part of an interior cabin is havingthe best sleep when there is no light coming through any windows/balcony butthats just me!
The public areas pf the ship werebeautiful and clean. We enjoyed lounging in the Solarium in the late eveningsbut during the sea days we found a quiet spot on Deck 4 with a nice view of theocean.
Food: Really enjoyed the dinner in the MDR. But I wish there were more Asian (Chinese, Thai and Indian) choiceson the menu. The food was good on the dinner menu and the waiters were always telling us to tell them if we didn’t like something because they would bring ussomething else!
We did mention to the chefsthat we like Indian food so every day they would send us a plate of different types of curry. I also love Jamaican goat curry so the chef sent a huge plate for myfamily one night.
DO NOT MISS LUNCH in the MDR. They had this amazing salad bar and pasta station. When we were there theywere making seafood pasta. So good!! Also I strongly recommend the palm sugar chicken you have to try it!
We also had Breakfastalmost every day in the MDR. So much calmer and relaxing!! They also have a “buffet area” which is nice too.
As for the Windjammer – a lot of selection. Again – I wish there were more Asian choices. On the last day for lunch there were stir fried noodles which was good. We missed lunch most days because we were in port so we would grab pizza from the promenade deck which was great ...oh and the Chicken Roti Wrap was amazing in the Promenade Cafe as well.... definitely try it!
Entertainment: This could definitely be improved on. I enjoyed comedian Rich Evanovioch the first 2 nights but after that it went downhill. The other performances was an impressionist, then a stunt show and then a finale show. The Royal Singers and Dancers shows werenot great. I’m not saying the performers were bad just the shows itself. They should have more variety – maybe an acrobatics show or Caribbean Themed shows like they have at all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean. Definitely more latenight comedy shows needed as well.
Ports: They were all great –my favourite was the first day when we went to St Thomas we took a ship excursion to St. John’s ($29 USD per person). Note: Only the ferry ride was included once you get there you are on your own. We went to Trunk Bay which was excellent. If you have been to St Thomas many times like I have definitely do this tour. (St John on your Own).
Cabs were easy to get a teach port. We spent between $5-$7 pp getting to the beaches.
Overall – we had a great vacation. Customer service throughout the ship was excellent. Every crew member we encountered there always willing to help. I would definitely sail on this ship again!
The only major complaint mysister had was that getting access to her VPN through the ships WIFI was extremely slow... even though she purchased the most expensive package!! They did end up crediting her account 10% off so that was something good. But just keep this in mind if you need internet for work.
Hopefully this review helps, if you have any questions feel free to ask!
This port is ok, I would not really recommend it. We took at cab to Cockleshell Beach. If you go there - TIP: walk past the Reggae Beach Bar and go to “Loxeen Beach Hut” chairs to rent are only $4 but free if you buy drinks).
Took a cab to Mambo Beach. It was $5 a person for the cab and then we went to the beach. Entrance fee of $3.50 and another $3 for each chair rental. Its worth it. Beautiful beach surrounded by shops and restaurants. Very calm water with lots of families there.
Take some time to explore Old San Juan! Go in the day before your cruise.
There is a free trolley in Old San Juan that goes around the town and you can hop on and hop off. TIP: Go wait at Stop 14 which is across from CVS near the cruise port dock. Its the last stop on the line and you can get a seat. If you wait at Stop 1 there is always a crowd (unless you are there first thing in the morning at 9am!!).