Finally an Oasis class ship (Allure of the Seas) is introduced to Galveston. It was great not having to fly to Florida or NJ to sail her. The new terminal is well designed, up to date, and relatively an easy drive for us. Allure is the sister ship to Oasis; however, has yet to undergo the upgrade Oasis underwent. Allure has all the original baseline specialty restaurants and clubs and is the only Oasis class ship without the "water toys" - slides as well as lacking the Ultimate Abyss dry slide. All that being said, its still huge and offers 5 separate neighborhoods which gives guests opportunities to spread out an avoid the crowds. I believe there were about 6500 guest when we sailed, but it didn't feel too crowded except in the elevator area after events ended. (Elevator waits is an unintended shortfall in all highly loaded Oasis class ships.)
We had sailed Allure in the past from Florida and found it a solid experience. Service was great, food was the standard new RCL fare. Quality of the 3 specialty restaurants we used: Chops, 150 Park Central, and Giovannis, was very good, but not 5 star. Service was excellent but food was no better than a land based specialty restaurant. We were amazed at the "lack of pool chair hogs" that stake out a claim in the early day on many cruises - the passenger compliment appeared to be pretty well behaved and courteous.
The itinerary consisted of visits to Roatan, Costa Maya, and Cozumel. Ports we've frequented, but didn't minds since this was meant to be a cruise we focused on spending on the ship. Spa services were great, although expensive. We sailed in a Crown Loft suite situated on deck 17 close to the Coastal Kitchen and Suite Lounge. Concierge services lessened the anxiety of having to wait in line for reservations - and allowed for full planning of cruise length dining and entertainment experiences. Dining in the Coastal Kitchen restaurant is a more intimate experience, more attentive service, but the menu really isn't much better than the MDR. Just a more relaxed atmosphere.
Crown loft suite is an excellent room and location. Deck 17 with easy access to the CK and Suite Lounge. This room has 2 bathrooms which can really come in handy. Our loft attendant was fantastic and ensured a perfect anniversary cruise.