Embarkation - You'll see me saying time and time again, Haven is the way to go! The dedicated Haven security line and lounge to fill out forms was awesome! The parking garage being across the street from the terminal (accessible by sky bridge) was quite nice as well. One problem was when we took the elevator to the floor that said embarkation, the door was secured so we had to get backs downstairs to floor level. Not very good signage.
Once we were registered and received our key cards, we were escorted onboard the ship to the Haven area on Deck 17, and waited in the Haven observation lounge while our concierge briefed us on some items of interest. We had lunch in the dining room which was totally awesome (more about dining later) then went to our room, which was a forward penthouse suite on deck 10.
So, having a priority baggage tag means nothing if you’re not on the Haven levels (17 & 18). Even though we were in Haven suites, our luggage on the 10th deck didn’t arrive till anywhere between 4pm and 7pm. We’re seeing inside cabins and others have their bags long before ours. Not quite what you purchase the Haven class for.
Cabin – 10708 - This we found to be the best of both worlds. Haven access and being on deck 10 forward was a plus since decks 6 – 8 were where shops, bars and several restaurants were. The cabin was totally awesome! Separate living and bedrooms. The living room has the balcony and the bedroom the very large window (larger than any ocean view window I’ve ever seen before) plus a bathroom that words can’t describe. The shower with various nozzles was unique, you also have the standard head above as well as a hand held. Plus the bath tub was very nice as well. There was more storage than we could of ever used!
TV’s in both the living and bedrooms are a plus, though good luck getting any American sports on. Seriously, on a Saturday with several top football games on, we get some low rate soccer from overseas? There were several helpful channels that we found useful, we could even make reservations for dinner or shore excursions via the tv. Other plusses in the room was the cordless phone that could be carried by one of us all over the ship. Call from room or any ships phone to reach the other person.
The cabin steward was great, as was the butler. The steward we saw quite a bit, the butler maybe once a day but he always brought goodies and when I would eat breakfast from one of the dining rooms, I could order in for my wife and he’d deliver it. The café (Nespresso) and tea packets were always kept stocked. The refrigerator was a perfect size for putting water bottles in as well as holding the creamer we had requested. You could (but we never did) even order dinner brought in and the butler would set it up as if you were eating in a restaurant, only in the privacy of your room.
Very nice work by the Park service Rangers on their narratives.