Received the Royal Treatment on our First Royal Cruise: Freedom of the Seas Cruise Review by LParente
Overall Member Rating
Received the Royal Treatment on our First Royal Cruise
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
Embarkation: We arranged for Tiffany Towncar to pick us up at the Hyatt at 9:30 the morning of the cruise. our driver, Jack, was friendly and gave us an interesting bit of trivia as he drove us to the port. We arrived at abot 10:15 and there was a small line already formed at the entrance to the terminal. They let us in just before 11:00. The check in process was smooth. We got on the ship at 11:15 and headed right to the Windjammer for lunch. We lounged by the pool for a bit after lunch. Our cabin was ready at 1:15 when we went to check.
Cabin: We were very pleased with the size of the cabin and balcony. The bathroom was smaller than on Disney, but adequate. We found there to be plenty of storage in the cabin. Our stateroom attendant was very More friendly and kept the cabin very tidy.
Dining: We had breakfast in the Windjammer six out of the seven mornings. The selection was pretty standard, but there was always something we could find that we wanted. We did order room service one morning. we left our order out the night before and it arrived on time. We had lunch in the Windjammer three times. There was a wide variety. We ate in the MDR once. The salad bar was delicious. We had the lunch buffet on Labadee which was fine. We ate off the ship in both Cozumel and Grand Cayman. we grabbed some midday and late night snacks on the Royal Promenade frequently. All were yummy. Our dining room staff was wonderful. We took part in My time Dining and were seated at the same table with the same staff each of the five nights we at there. We usually dined around 6:30 and only had to wait once for around 5 minutes. The meals in the MDR ranged from just OK to very good. We had reservations made in advane for both Chops and Portofino on the nights where the menu in the MDR didn't appeal to us. Both specialty restaurants were delicious and well worth the extra fee.
Shows: We enjoyed all of the shows. The Quest was a great deal of fun to watch. The comedians were very funny. The ice show was enjoyable. We were always too tired to stay up late for any of the musicians in the bars or clubs.
Ship: Freedom is a beautiful ship. It was not at all difficult to get around. I though it might be because of the size, but this wasn't the case. The Royal Promenade was fun to stroll around and people watch. The Solarium was our favorite place to hang out on sea days besides our balcony. The ship supposedly had over 1,000 kids on board, but it didn't seem this way. The entire crew was a delight to deal with.
Ports: We found Labadee to be beautiful. We just lounged on the beach all day. We walked through the market quickly, but felt a bit hassled. Nothing major, just too pushy for our taste. We also had stops in Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel.
Disembarkation: We chose to take part in the luggage valet program. The fee was $20 pp, but well worth it for us. We lefty our bags out the night before and didn't see them again until we arrived back in Milwaukee. We ate in the Windjammer around 7:00, went back to the cabin to grab our things, then hung around the library relaxing for a bit because our car wasn't coming for us until 9:00. They were backed up in calling the colors of luggage tags by about 1/2 hour, so it was a bit hectic, but we were able to disembark whenever we wanted. Our car was waiting and we got back to the airport quickly, but with a sad heart!
I LOVED this cruise and plan on cruising again with RCCL in December. Less
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