Initially we were very excited about our Christmas cruise but became concerned after reading many reviews. We have cruised on three different cruise lines in a Europe and South Pacific and the second time on RCL.
The ovation is amazing, from the very quick seamless embarkation, clean stateroom, service, activities and food choices amazing! We had 2 balcony staterooms one for us and one for our 4 kids. One kid ended up in our room on the fold out sofa. Kids ages 9, 12, 14,16 and not one complaint of boredom even though they had no WIFI for 10 days. When I was researching I couldn’t find a review of Christmas, RCL do an amazing job, there are Christmas decorations, activities, Christmas movies, craft, Christmas food including cookies and milk leading up to a big day of celebration, Santa’s arrival, free gifts for kids under 18. These were very thoughtful and useful.
In terms of drinks, we bought the deluxe package, I’m not a big drinker but it definitely works out, bottled water, fresh juices, specialty coffee and wine and cocktails, book on cruise planner prior when it goes on sale.
Lots of sales of jewellery and watches, don’t buy in first few days, as they go up to 75 percent off!
My sister in law was seasick, they sell tablets in the merchant store but give them away for free at reception.
On Christmas Day we booked a specialty restaurant “chops Grille”, food 9/10 but they didn’t have the same Christmas frivolity as the other restaurants, they offered us this for 49 usd adults and kids above 12 and 10 for kids, they said no charge for kids at the end. No Christmas pudding or turkey on menu but apple pie was to die for.
They work so hard to make sure everything leads to a great holiday, free ice cream all day on the pooldeck, blankets for watching movies under the stars on the pooldeck.
We bought a paradise lotto ticket, $2.00 a game and won $100 usd which we used to credit our account.
The activities director is a crack up and there are so many family friendly activities and challenges you can join in or just watch. Caribbean music on the pool deck really makes for a great atmosphere, there is the main pool, a second undercover pool and the adult solarium.
The food in main dining is great, the buffet has a theme section each night and the variety for gluten intolerant, vegans and vegetarians is great, not that this was us!
Oh and the gym was huge and free, we used it most days.
Overall a great experience, would love to do it again next year! Everyone had a great time, I couldn’t fault it, and we are well travelled.
We bought obstructed view, 300 per cabin cheaper still view of ocean.