We decided to try an extended cruise after many 7 day cruises on Carnival and Norwegian. This 9 day cruise turned out to be perfect for us and was also a perfect experience for our first time cruising firends.
The cruise started with 2 days at sea which allowed us to have a once in a lifetime private vow renewal ceremony performed just before sunset by cruise director Vincent. We want to say a special "Thank You" to Dela our special services coordinator for creating such a unique venue for our service. She was able to close off the entire starboard aft corner of deck 8 the Waterfront deck for our ceremony. This meant we could exchange our vows in front of the friends who had joined us and then celebrate with a special cake and champaign while having the ships professional photographer Zoe create some amazing sunset images for us to cherish forever.
Vincent not only made our service one to remember but his famous "I'll Sea Ya, When I Sea Ya!" became our mantra as our paths crossed several times throught to the week. The same was true of Dela as she was always around on different days to talk about the days activities and make sure we were enjoying our trip.
We began the weeks evening events with "Burn the Floor" and all were blown away with the top quality stage performance of everyone. Our first time friends were especially excited, coming form the Midwest, we don't often get this calliber of show at home. Months before the cruise we reserved floor seating at "Cirque Dreams and Steam" and so I ended up sitting 2 feet from the stage in an intimate theater with less than 150 people. It was the most amazing show I have ever seen, especially up that close. We closed out the week with "The Million Dollar Quartet" which turned out to be one of the best Broadway calliber shows we've every been to.
The rest of the evening where filled with a number of high quality bands in the Atrium area and Syd Norman's Pour House including a great Eagles tribute band. If you can't find entertainment on this ship every evening, then shame on you because it's out there.
The dining was amazing on this ship. During the week we tried Tropicanna, Taste, Savor, the Garden Cafe, and O'Sheehan's, then did fine dining at Moderno, Teppanyaki, and La Cucina as well as the Cirque show which counted as one of our specialty meals. We also caught lunch at Wasabi one day and the sushi was amazing.
We did have a couple of bumpy mornings while trying to tender off the boat. We later found out that the delays were due to events happening on shore and were not the fault of the crew as many impatient people tried to push. This was a unique experience also since the Getaway uses it's own lifeboats and crew for tendering.
Shore excursions were all fun but we loved a private charter for diving and snorkelling on Roatan the best of all. The reefs are beautiful and the water is crystal clear.
My wife spend time each day in the Thermal Spa as well as a couple massage days at Mandara Spa. She loved the salt room and thermal loungers. Our next cruise will be on the Epic where we have already booked a spa mini suite because she convinced me that I will enjoy the relaxation too.
Our room was a mini suite on deck 13 and it worked out to be the perfect quiet retreat at the end of very long days. While the room itself felt a little smaller than other mini's we've been in, the bathroom with it's large double sink and large shower were the biggest we've ever had. You can't beat a private balcany for an early morning cup of coffee or a beautiful sunset. One feature we found was that if you get side by side rooms with friends you can have the staff open a swing door out on the patios to share that outer space while keeping your rooms private.
The Getaway had just been refurbished in March and everywhere you looked you could see a fresh look and feel which was nice considering some of the older ship's we have been on. This ship offers a number of large gathering areas. The Atrium and O'Sheehan's were always the place to meet new people. The Sugarcane Mojito Bar was another great social site with a welcoming piano player always within ear shot. It was nice to be able to walk through these bars and out a door to the Waterfront if you wanted some fresh air or just to sit and take in the beauty of the open water. We liked the Waterfront much better than the enclosed promenade areas on ships like the Jewel.
This is a ship we would recommend to first timers and seasoned cruisers alike. We like that it's currently sailing from New Orleans which is a great centrally located option and city with it's own rich history. It's our belief that anyone can find somethings they'll love on this ship. In fact, there was so much to do that we never had time to try the water slides, climbing wall, or ropes obstacle course.
I'll close with a line you'll hear often if you choose to Getaway on your next big adventure. It comes from the the ships cruise director Vincent, where he loves to say "I'll Sea Ya, When I Sea Ya!"
We loved our mini-suite although the main space seamed a little smaller than other ships the oversized bathroom more than made up for it. The bathroom included a large double vanity and large walk in shower with massaging body jets.
The patio space was narrow but I wasn't out there to dance so it worked out well for our trip. We found that you could have the staff open a connection gate to expand patio space to two cabins if you were traveling with family or friends in the next cabin.
Embarkation day was marred with delays as the terminal was opening for the first trip of the new season. We also had flight delays getting to New Orleans on American so we were happy once finally on the ship.
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