We'd never been on this small of a ship before, but we loved it. Prior reviews commented about the age, but overall, the ship was in good shape. What impressed me was the staff. Our housekeeper, waiter and assistant waiter were outstanding. Being a smaller ship, we saw more of the Captain, the main staff, and the Cruise Director and Assistant Cruise Director, who are husband and wife, than we normally do. Having a cabin on Deck 7, it was only 2 floors to the Windjammer to get coffee, and only one floor to the Diamond Lounge. You didn't have to walk far to get anywhere. I didn't expect much of the entertainment, but was pleasantly surprised. Earl Turner was an all-around entertainer. Perhaps geared towards the older crowd, but he put on quite a show. If you ever get to see Ivan Pecel, you are lucky. Very funny while juggling an axe, bowling ball and an egg. We we're were not overwhelmed by the comic, but we were tired and the theater was half empty. as it was for most shows. The late night comic show was the last night, and we didn't make it. The production shows are so-so repeats, but the musicians and dancers are very talented. Its not their fault that RCL keeps recycling uninspired material.
We were not used to the Centrum being used for so much. They held some of the silly competitions there, which were well attended. The pianist was very talented.
I got up and took some short runs most mornings. The ship's track on Deck 10 is almost 1/4 mile, which was a nice surprise. The equipment in the fitness room was not in great shape, and not too many machines.
Food was surprisingly good, given the reviews. It was mostly hits, and a few misses. The misses were the crab cake Eggs Benedict (mostly breading) and most of the dishes made with salmon. I don't know what they did to ruin it, but all of us agreed that the cooked salmon dishes were "pungent". My personal peeve was that the beef on weck in the Park Cafe was served only as a snack, and they didn't have horseradish. (They did hunt some down for me the last day, and then delivered the sandwich to me at my deck chair. I wanted to give a WOW card for that). Some hits were the crab cakes as an appetizer, the escargot and the Steak Diane on Day 7. Breakfast in the MDR and Windjammer was the same menu each day, but generally good. They had omelets made to order in both places. Lunch in the Windjammer did mix it up, and better than some other ships. They had a Mongolian stir fry to order where you picked your own ingredients, and a cook stir fried it for you. We went to Chops one night, and were not disappointed.
Embarkation was the fastest I've ever experienced. They have a new system, which worked for this ship. Debarkation was also easy. We took a post-cruise tour to El Yunque and then to the airport, so we were off very quickly. Being a small ship, there were fewer bags in the terminal than we're used to seeing.
For ports, we went ashore at Punta Cana via tender, and most of the shops at the port were closed, as it was Sunday. We didn't go in to town or a beach, so I'll reserve judgment. They did have decent entertainment and cold beers. We shopped at St. Thomas. We actually had a good time with the Colette and Bianca, the shopping guides from the ship. I'm usually turned off by the ship's guides, but they were a fun couple. For Martinique, we walked the town on our own and ate at the open air food market. Lots of fun (it was for me) when you don't speak any French, and they didn't speak English. St. Lucia got cancelled over the Corona scare. They replaced the stop with Dominica. We took a taxi tour, and had a good time. Recommendation, that if you ever go, don't take the first taxi you see. They were much cheaper 1/2 block away. We paid $120 for 6 of us in an air conditioned van vs. $200 the first guy said was a bargain. The last port was Barbados, which was our favorite. We went through Calabaza (booked on our own), and it was a 5 star day of snorkeling. Saw turtles up close, sting rays on the sand below us, 3 ship wrecks and lots of fish. Happy to see that the coral is still in pretty good shape. Crew and food were outstanding.
Typical balcony room. The bathroom had been updated. Great housekeeping We were near the front of the ship, so it was an easy walk to the Windjammer (which is in the front) to grab a couple of cups of coffee and return to the room before breakfast.