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Sailing on this cruise were myself 56, husband 55, son 25 and his fiance 25. This was our second cruise on Anthem. We drove from our home in Northern Virginia to the cruise port in Bayonne on the day of sailing, a Thursday, and traffic was amazingly smooth. And it is so nice to drive to port and not have to worry about the weight of your bags or whether they will get lost! We unloaded our bags and then parked our vehicle in the parking garage, which was $22 per day. When you enter the garage you are given a ticket that you must not lose, because when you return from the cruise, you insert your ticket into the kiosk outside the garage, and make payment, then hand one of two receipts to the attendant when you exit in your vehicle. There are staff members at each point in the parking garage (entry, exit, kiosk) to provide assistance. There is a wait upon returning from the cruise to get into one of two elevators to get back to your vehicle (lots of people and luggage), but other than that, it was a smooth process. Also, there 3 or 4 floors, so don't forget where you parked! The check in process once inside the port was very quick and efficient, and then we were ushered to the waiting area to await boarding, which took place at about 10:45. (Just FYI, if you are in the market for a new lanyard, they had several different styles for sale in the port area, but only a very limited choice once on board. I was considering one of the blingy ones since we were turning diamond unofficially on this cruise, but thought I'd wait and buy it from one of the ship's shops. Buzz, thank you for playing. There were none. Just thought I'd mention it.) Of course like most folks, we headed to the Windjammer for lunch. Food is a very personal thing, so I won't say much about it, but I must comment that Anthem has really upped their game in the Windjammer, as the lunch provided was probably the best tasting one we have ever had on boarding day. For all other meals, we ate in the dining room with anytime dining on level 4, American Icon and Silk. Breakfast is served from 7:30-9:30, and lunch from 11:30-1. For both of those meals you do not need a reservation, you just walk in and can choose to sit alone or with other cruisers. There is also a small buffet to go along with the menu. Our waiter Widia and his assistant Amaliya in the Silk dining room were terrific and very personable. Our first port of call was King's Wharf, Bermuda. We have been to Bermuda on a few occasions prior, so we just decided to take the shuttle ($7pp each way) to Horseshoe Bay Beach. The beach was pretty crowded, but nice when looking out on the water with the large rock formations, but not as pretty as those online photos depict. If you look closely in the sand you can see streaks of pink sand. They have facilities and you can rent 2 chairs and an umbrella for $50, two sand chairs and an umbrella for $45 (I think), and an open tent with 4 chair and a bucket of beers for $150. We thought all that was expensive, so we put our towels down near the rocks in a shady spot, since we had not intended to stay long. Be on the lookout for the pretty Bermuda Longtail seagulls flying overhead. On our way back to the ship we elected to take a taxi because we wanted to stop by the lighthouse. There are such beautiful views of the island from here, whether or not you choose to climb up to the top. I don't like heights, so I stayed in the parking area! You can see the ship in the distance. There is a small gift shop here where I bought two water color prints. However, I found them cheaper back at the cruise port. At port there is a shopping mall with trinkets and souvenirs, plus other nicer clothing stores. Be sure to have your photo taken under the Moon gate near the ship. Our next port of call was St Maarten. We chose to do the Screaming Eagle Beach and Snorkel catamaran, a ship's excursion. The vessel is in great shape and the staff are very nice. However there were many young children, one of which cried for half of the sailing. I think they need to reconsider raising the age limit on this excursion, as it was a bit scary for preschoolers to have to don the life vests, plus alcohol is served on board. One set of parents chose to snorkel, leaving their child on board crying with another member of their party. Other folks were tipsy, and it just doesn't seem like an appropriate environment for small children. That's just my opinion. The snorkeling wasn't that great, and the waters were a little rough at the beach where we stopped on that day. There were plenty of life vests, snorkeling equipment and pool noodles. The lunch served was very skimpy, just half of a sandwich with a few extra halves if some wanted seconds. Our next port was San Juan, Puerto Rico. We just walked around and happened to stumble upon the 'umbrella street', which is at the far end of Calle Fortaleza. I'm one of those folks who researches our ports, but for some reason I was unaware of this, so it was such a happy surprise to find. We stopped nearby at one of many bars that offered Pina Coladas 2 for $10. The last stop was Labadee. We hung out at Nellie's beach. Lunch is served in one of 3 areas, so you won't have to go back to the ship unless you choose to do so. They serve burgers, chicken, sides, fruit, drinks etc. There are also bars close to the beaches and a shuttle system for getting around. You use your cruise card for bar purchases but will need cash if you choose to go over to the craft market for souvenirs. We have avoided this area in past years after encountering overly aggressive local sales folk. We tried it again this time because my son's fiance wanted to look for gifts for her family. We did not feel badgered or pressured at all while looking around this time. Not sure if they were busy with other cruisers, or if there has been a change in the way they are interacting with potential customers. The ship is in beautiful condition, and we never felt particularly crowded except for the usual times, such as embarkation lunch in the Windjammer, or when a show lets out. There are the typical elevator crowding issues, especially on disembarkation day. This sailing had a lot of young children, and many elderly individuals with mobility issues. There were a lot of scooters and wheelchairs, and many cruisers who were not making it any easier for them to get around. I can understand the frustration on both sides, though. We enjoyed Spectra's Cabaret in Two70 (best seats are in the center, get there early) and We Will Rock You. The singers are outstanding. It was hard to sit thru the entire almost 2 hour production of We Will Rock You, as there was no intermission. I have heard that folks leave during intermissions and don't return, so perhaps that is why they performed the production all the way thru without a break. We did not make it to The Gift on this sailing. The day after we left Labadee and headed north for home, there was a medical emergency on board. The Captain said that someone walked into the medical treatment area with a serious condition. It was determined that it would be contraindicated for the patient to be flown off the ship, so we set course west to Nassau. The patient was off loaded at about 1am, and then we headed back out to sea. That following morning the Captain announced that instead of getting back to Bayonne on Saturday morning as scheduled, we would not arrive until about midnight, and passengers would depart Sunday morning when customs agents and port workers would be on duty. When the announcement was made about our delayed return, internet was made available to all passengers, and RC said they would pay up to $200pp for domestic flight change penalties, and $400pp for international flight change penalties. A letter was sent to all cabins outlining all the details. Also, when we paid to retrieve our car on Sunday from the garage, we were not charged for the extra day. Royal Caribbean handled the situation very well. So, that's how our 9 day trip became 10.

The 10 Day 9 Day Bermuda and Caribbean Cruise

Anthem of the Seas Cruise Review by cruisemoxy

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
Sailing on this cruise were myself 56, husband 55, son 25 and his fiance 25. This was our second cruise on Anthem. We drove from our home in Northern Virginia to the cruise port in Bayonne on the day of sailing, a Thursday, and traffic was amazingly smooth. And it is so nice to drive to port and not have to worry about the weight of your bags or whether they will get lost!

We unloaded our bags and then parked our vehicle in the parking garage, which was $22 per day. When you enter the garage you are given a ticket that you must not lose, because when you return from the cruise, you insert your ticket into the kiosk outside the garage, and make payment, then hand one of two receipts to the attendant when you exit in your vehicle. There are staff members at each point in the parking garage (entry, exit, kiosk) to provide assistance. There is a wait upon returning from the cruise to get into one of two elevators to get back to your vehicle (lots of people and luggage), but other than that, it was a smooth process. Also, there 3 or 4 floors, so don't forget where you parked!

The check in process once inside the port was very quick and efficient, and then we were ushered to the waiting area to await boarding, which took place at about 10:45. (Just FYI, if you are in the market for a new lanyard, they had several different styles for sale in the port area, but only a very limited choice once on board. I was considering one of the blingy ones since we were turning diamond unofficially on this cruise, but thought I'd wait and buy it from one of the ship's shops. Buzz, thank you for playing. There were none. Just thought I'd mention it.)

Of course like most folks, we headed to the Windjammer for lunch. Food is a very personal thing, so I won't say much about it, but I must comment that Anthem has really upped their game in the Windjammer, as the lunch provided was probably the best tasting one we have ever had on boarding day.

For all other meals, we ate in the dining room with anytime dining on level 4, American Icon and Silk. Breakfast is served from 7:30-9:30, and lunch from 11:30-1. For both of those meals you do not need a reservation, you just walk in and can choose to sit alone or with other cruisers. There is also a small buffet to go along with the menu. Our waiter Widia and his assistant Amaliya in the Silk dining room were terrific and very personable.

Our first port of call was King's Wharf, Bermuda. We have been to Bermuda on a few occasions prior, so we just decided to take the shuttle ($7pp each way) to Horseshoe Bay Beach. The beach was pretty crowded, but nice when looking out on the water with the large rock formations, but not as pretty as those online photos depict. If you look closely in the sand you can see streaks of pink sand. They have facilities and you can rent 2 chairs and an umbrella for $50, two sand chairs and an umbrella for $45 (I think), and an open tent with 4 chair and a bucket of beers for $150. We thought all that was expensive, so we put our towels down near the rocks in a shady spot, since we had not intended to stay long. Be on the lookout for the pretty Bermuda Longtail seagulls flying overhead. On our way back to the ship we elected to take a taxi because we wanted to stop by the lighthouse. There are such beautiful views of the island from here, whether or not you choose to climb up to the top. I don't like heights, so I stayed in the parking area! You can see the ship in the distance. There is a small gift shop here where I bought two water color prints. However, I found them cheaper back at the cruise port. At port there is a shopping mall with trinkets and souvenirs, plus other nicer clothing stores. Be sure to have your photo taken under the Moon gate near the ship.

Our next port of call was St Maarten. We chose to do the Screaming Eagle Beach and Snorkel catamaran, a ship's excursion. The vessel is in great shape and the staff are very nice. However there were many young children, one of which cried for half of the sailing. I think they need to reconsider raising the age limit on this excursion, as it was a bit scary for preschoolers to have to don the life vests, plus alcohol is served on board. One set of parents chose to snorkel, leaving their child on board crying with another member of their party. Other folks were tipsy, and it just doesn't seem like an appropriate environment for small children. That's just my opinion. The snorkeling wasn't that great, and the waters were a little rough at the beach where we stopped on that day. There were plenty of life vests, snorkeling equipment and pool noodles. The lunch served was very skimpy, just half of a sandwich with a few extra halves if some wanted seconds.

Our next port was San Juan, Puerto Rico. We just walked around and happened to stumble upon the 'umbrella street', which is at the far end of Calle Fortaleza. I'm one of those folks who researches our ports, but for some reason I was unaware of this, so it was such a happy surprise to find. We stopped nearby at one of many bars that offered Pina Coladas 2 for $10.

The last stop was Labadee. We hung out at Nellie's beach. Lunch is served in one of 3 areas, so you won't have to go back to the ship unless you choose to do so. They serve burgers, chicken, sides, fruit, drinks etc. There are also bars close to the beaches and a shuttle system for getting around. You use your cruise card for bar purchases but will need cash if you choose to go over to the craft market for souvenirs. We have avoided this area in past years after encountering overly aggressive local sales folk. We tried it again this time because my son's fiance wanted to look for gifts for her family. We did not feel badgered or pressured at all while looking around this time. Not sure if they were busy with other cruisers, or if there has been a change in the way they are interacting with potential customers.

The ship is in beautiful condition, and we never felt particularly crowded except for the usual times, such as embarkation lunch in the Windjammer, or when a show lets out. There are the typical elevator crowding issues, especially on disembarkation day.

This sailing had a lot of young children, and many elderly individuals with mobility issues. There were a lot of scooters and wheelchairs, and many cruisers who were not making it any easier for them to get around. I can understand the frustration on both sides, though.

We enjoyed Spectra's Cabaret in Two70 (best seats are in the center, get there early) and We Will Rock You. The singers are outstanding. It was hard to sit thru the entire almost 2 hour production of We Will Rock You, as there was no intermission. I have heard that folks leave during intermissions and don't return, so perhaps that is why they performed the production all the way thru without a break. We did not make it to The Gift on this sailing.

The day after we left Labadee and headed north for home, there was a medical emergency on board. The Captain said that someone walked into the medical treatment area with a serious condition. It was determined that it would be contraindicated for the patient to be flown off the ship, so we set course west to Nassau. The patient was off loaded at about 1am, and then we headed back out to sea. That following morning the Captain announced that instead of getting back to Bayonne on Saturday morning as scheduled, we would not arrive until about midnight, and passengers would depart Sunday morning when customs agents and port workers would be on duty.

When the announcement was made about our delayed return, internet was made available to all passengers, and RC said they would pay up to $200pp for domestic flight change penalties, and $400pp for international flight change penalties. A letter was sent to all cabins outlining all the details. Also, when we paid to retrieve our car on Sunday from the garage, we were not charged for the extra day. Royal Caribbean handled the situation very well. So, that's how our 9 day trip became 10.
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Cabin Review

Ocean View Balcony
Cabin 6D #8522
We had 2 balcony cabins. #8522 and #8520. My husband and I stayed in #8522, bed by the bathroom. On Anthem, this is not an inconvenient situation like it is on other class ships, as there are two closets, one on either side of the bed. That way two people aren't trying to get to the same closet, and you don't feel squeezed when getting dressed. Now they are smaller closets, of course, but we had plenty of room and hangers for 9 days worth of clothes. There is a very small bedside table on either side of the bed, just wide enough for my ipad. There is ample storage over the bed, but a little more difficult to get to. There are plenty of outlets to charge your devices. There is a small, empty refrigerator to hold drinks that you bring back to the room (I recommend the flavored waters from the Windjammer), and several dresser drawers.
Deck 13 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins