Embarcation in Miami was quick per usual with RCCL. We (my wife, 11 year old daughter and I) explored the ship and then headed up to the Windjammer for lunch--typical fare--adequate but nothing outstanding. This was our 16th family cruise and our 7th straight Thanksgiving cruise. We have cruised on RCCL (Diamond now), Celebrity, Princess, Holland and NCL, but prefer RCCL because of the variety of activities for children (it allows for a lot of adult time). We had a mini suite and it was more than adequate in terms of space, bathroom, soundproofing, etc. The balcony was somewhat small, but ok.
It took forever for our luggage to arrive, shortly before our dinner. We shared a table with my wife's parents who accompanied us and a delightful family of 3 from England. The dining room is attractive and service was friendly but somewhat slow. The food varied from barely adequate to very good. We had dinner at Chops for our anniversary and loved it. We felt that the onion soup was among the best we ever had, even in Chicago where we live. My wife's filet was perfectly cooked and had a delicious peppercorn sauce. My rack of lamb was huge, cooked perfectly and delicious. We had eaten at Portofino's several times previously and found Chops superior. It was well worth the surcharge. My only complaint with Chops was the wine selection--not enough high-end wines, and none by the glass.
Breakfast in the dining room is fine, while the Windjammer is adequate. Lunch is only served in the dining room on certain days--very unfortunate. The salad bar in the dining room is a great idea, but a pasta bar (like Princess has) would be a plus. In additon, the lunch menu stays the same--rather boring.