My wife and I recently returned from a great cruise on Anthem. This was our 1st time on this ship and doing this itinerary.
We flew from Houston to Newark and the pier was a 15-20 minute Uber ride from the airport. No problems getting uber at the EWR.
Security and check in at Cape Liberty was extremely smooth and rapid. We were on the ship in 10-15 minutes!Our departure from NYC was delayed from 4:30pmThursday till 5:30am Friday due to weather en route to Boston.
Because of the delay, as a special treat, Captain Srecko Ban, took the ship on a spectacular “tour” up the Hudson Thursday night, for fantastic views of the Manhattan skyline, the Statue of Liberty and the Verrazano bridge! This was definitely a highlight of the cruise.
We have been on Voyager and Freedom class ships, the layout of Anthem is very different. It has a smaller feel to it eventhough it actually is larger. It has beautiful artwork and venues we have not seen on other ships like the 270, Music Hall and Sports Plex. We enjoyed the North Star and were able to ride it several times during the cruise without reservations or long lines. We enjoyed happy hour in the Diamond Club and the staff there was very nice and attentive.
We ate in the dining room most nights. We did my time dining. The food was very good. We did have an unusual experience the 1st night, the waiter barely spoke (Table 613). He took our order, brought us our food and that was about it. Subsequent nights we were placed in another area supervised by Head Waiter, Mary (Tables 574 & 584). She and our waiters Ronald and Robert were outstanding. They provided an excellent level of service. My only complaint is the repetitive request to provide an excellent rating on the survey. That wasn’t necessary and really started to detract from the excellent service we received. We liked the fact that there were other complementary dining venues: near 270, in the solarium and the hot dog place in the sports plex. We did not do any of the additional premium restaurants.
As far as entertainment, there were a couple of very good comedians and a great acapella group: Mo5aic The Spectra show utilized a lot of cool technology but we thought it was weird. The show “We will rock you” was very long and slow moving. The Schooner Bar Piano Player was not among the best we have heard.We did enjoy the Royal Swedes in the Music Hall.
The ports were new to us and we enjoyed them without going on paid shore excursions.
The dock in Boston was close to Quincy Market and the Boston Commons. Portland Maine is a quaint town and had lots of shops and restaurants serving Lobster nearby. Bar Harbour offered free shuttle service to Acadia National Park (ended Columbus Day). Admission to the park was $15 per person. The park itself offered beautiful views and lots of opportunity to see the fall foliage.The public gardens and Maritime Museum were walking distance in Halifax. The weather was bad in St John so we did not explore much there.
After dinner, we frequently went to the Solarium and relaxed in the Hot Tubs. My wife enjoyed playing pickle ball in the Sports Plex. We did not get around to doing the bumper cars but that looked like fun.
We enjoyed Anthem and all of the amenities and service and highly recommend it!
Our cabin was inside with a vitrual balcony. There was lots of storage space, the bathroom was larger than on other ships. The virtual baloncy added alot and made the room seem larger than it was.