We took the Royal Caribbean's Enchantment of the Seas a Vision Class Ship out of Norfolk, VA's Half Moone Cruise and Celebration Center on June 3, 2010 for 9 days. I've heard other people complain about the parking downtown so we had a friend drop is off so we didn't have a problem with it. The worst part for us was making the turn into the Cruise Terminal; the City of Norfolk really needs to work on that. The best suggestion I can offer is to make a loop and coming straight into the terminal rather than attempting to make the turn from downtown or from I-264. We had to wait for about 15 minutes to make the turn but other than that it was very painless and the remainder of the embarkment process and the return disembarkment went very smoothly. Kudos to the Norfolk Port as it quiet lovely, I don't understand why there are not more cruises out of this Port, it seems as though it is a quite a waste to let the terminal be idle. Many of you may know that the Enchantment of the Seas underwent a major refurbishment in 2005; there was an addition of 73 foot to the midsection to lengthen the ship. Although the Enchantment was originally launched in 1997, I'd say that the renovations made her much fresher and contemporary. Enchantment's renovation is said to be the most complicated ever undertaken by a cruise line. Considering that it is the biggest cruise ship ever to be lengthened. The ship was actually sliced down the middle, and then a newly built midsection was slotted in between the two halves. As a result of the stretching, there was room for new facilities, from a fabulous new pool area to an alternative gourmet restaurant and a Latin-themed nightclub.
The ship also received an extensive refurbishment that, though not comprehensive, refreshed the ambience. It's got one of the most beautiful sun decks/pool decks at sea, not only is it spacious, with plenty of room for everybody, but it also possesses unique features, such as a multi-colored splash pool, the Oasis bar with sea view stools and the elegant if slightly futuristic-looking suspension bridges that sway over the area. They also added a Jump Zone, it's a bungee trampolines and a Rock Climbing Wall. I did not try either of them out however. I did watch a competition but with the Wall being on the very back of the ship it wasn't much room to gather and watch.
Instead of a standard buffet, there's a food court-like venue, Windjammer Marketplace with stations that include Mediterranean fare, salads, a rotisserie, desserts and more. The ship gained an alternative restaurant, Chops Grille not to mention other noshing "boutiques" like Seattle's Best Coffee and Ben & Jerry's. We enjoyed the Coffee bar but found out almost too late that the cookies and pastries were free when you got your coffee there. While on the subject of coffee, the absolute worse coffee is served in the Windjammer. I chose to eat in the dining room instead or just had room service for breakfast instead. The itinerary from Norfolk was to San Juan, Puerto, St Thomas, VI, Samana, Dominion Republic and Labadee, Haiti. We didn't get off the ship in the ports except in St Thomas because we have seen the islands many times and wanted just to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet.