We went on this cruise because we won a "free" cruise from listening to a time share presentation. (Hubby and I have sailed on Carnival before but this was our first time on Royal Caribbean). By the time we upgraded to a cabin with a view (no balcony) and paid the taxes and fees it was far from free.. Embarkation was a nightmare. We received an email the day before saying the ship would arrive late and that we should arrive between 5-7 pm. Apparently all the other passengers received the same e-mail because it looked like everyone was arriving at once. Traffic was a nightmare and dangerous. Stood in line for an hour. Once we finally got on the ship we were in our room for a couple minutes when a crew member came in and said we had to go to the muster drill. Some passengers were not even on the ship yet. Then we went to the main dining room where there was open seating for dinner. Service was very slow and food was okay. We heard later that it was a rough trip back and even the crew got sick. So I'm willing to give them a break, but it wasn't a great first impression. Our cabin was nice enough and bed was comfortable. There was enough storage but the bathroom was small. We usually had breakfast in Windjammer and it was okay. Omelet made to order was good. Lunch in Main Dining Room (MDR) was good but slow. We ate dinner in the MDR every night. It was good but there wasn't much variety. Steak was too thin. The desserts and service were very good. Our cabin steward, Oliver, did a good job keeping ice bucket filled for my husband's bum knee. The decor of the ship is nice and understated. There are kiosks that give directions, what's happening on the ship, and menus. Good job on those. We docked in Bermuda on the third night. Arrival there is another story but we did get our overnight and partial day. Before that we went to a couple of lectures about Bermuda which were interesting. We took a shore excursion to a secluded beach that included lunch, beach equipment, access to a nature reserve, and rum swizzles. My lunch (local fish sandwich) and swizzles were good. The man who served us did a good job. But the beach was rocky and we spent almost as much time getting to the beach and back (almost an hour each way) as we did at the beach. On the way the bus driver told us about Bermuda but didn't talk much on the way back. Bermuda was not really what I expected. There were very few flowers. There were lots of colorful houses close together. I certainly wouldn't want to drive on the island. We also took the tour of the ship's kitchen with brunch and unlimited mimosas. Tour was interesting but wasn't thrilled about the brunch menu. I got a refreshment package and enjoyed the mocktails. The hot tubs were too hot. On the last day there was a very nice salute to veterans ceremony. Beatlemania was a good show. Broadway was so-so. I didn't know many of the songs but there was a live band. On the last night the show wasn't presented because the ship was rocking. One of the two comedians was okay. I didn't appreciate the literal bathroom humor from both. Disembarking wasn't as bad as embarkation but was late. I probably would not go on this particular cruise again but I would consider cruising on Royal Caribbean again.
Oliver kept the cabin clean and ice bucket filled. He also made us some nice towel animals.