Just off Adventure's last Southern Caribbean sailing before the repositioning, and we had a blast. We've cruised with RCI 6 other times, and this is our 2nd cruise on Adventure, and the service was better on this cruise than any of our other 4 Voyager class sailings...Flight to San Juan was special.. On US Air, got a last minute upgrade to First Class and the flight was awesome...Easy to get a taxi from SJU to the port. Four of us, $26 including 7 bags... Much better than the transfer service which we used last time..Embarkation: Hint: If you are a RCI platinum or above.. find the priority check in line. We were on the ship in 10 minutes while the line to drop off luggage was very, very long..Found our dining room assignment.. just as requested.. Up on Deck 5. Our waiters Deckster and Rondo, affectionately known as Brad Pitt and Spiderman.. were absolutely great all week.. We had dinner each night in about an hour, which was great for the kids.Hint: The "My-Time" dining option put everybody in the Deck 5 level of the dining room.. but there was always a 10 minute wait to be seated.. We were main seating, and always walked right in.. A matter of choice, I guess.. but I dont like waiting in line on vacation...Our staterooms : Connecting staterooms facing the promenade are awesome for a family with kids or teens. I know they are a little small, and have no balcony, but they are functional and the price is right to not jam 4 people in one stateroom.. Our stateroom attendant Rick took care of anything and everything we asked for promptly..Service in Portofino was excellent as always, though we thought the service in Johnny Rockets was a little slow in getting drinks and taking orders, even when it wasnt busy with the ship in Port.If you like mojitos - See Orlando in the Lobby Bar. Best drinks on the ship!!Didn't see many shows.. but the ice show was awesome!My daughters (10 and 13) loved the kids program and the teen club, so my wife and I got to spend some time in the spa and in the casino.. Spa service was great.. we enjoy the Rasul which was great, but the tile in the shower needs some grout and is showing its age a bit..
PR cabins are small, but functional.. Getting 2 connecting cabins is an economical way to cruise comfortably with kids. Having the view of the promenade makes a difference compared to a typical inside stateroom.
We booked day passes at the Almond Casuarina Resort. The weather that day wasnt great and the surf was pretty rough, but we had a nice day and plenty of drinks (all-inclusive), so it was a good time. If I had to do again, the Hilton offers the same program and is closer to the cruiseport, and the beach looks a little nicer.
Walk all the way to the supervised taxi stand at the port. Get a $3pp taxi to Dickenson Bay. Rent a chair and a shade if you like, and have a great day. Two beach bars right there.. much cheaper than a ship beach excursion, and stay all day. Plenty of taxis to bring you back when you have had enough. Great port for a beach day... Some shopping, but a better beach port.
Great shopping, wonderful bar right in the middle of the shopping plaza to grab a beer or fruity tropical rum specialty.. We didnt get out to see much of the island, but it is very picturesque from the ship.. Pretty beaches on either side of the ship..
Booked an "aquaboat" trip online.. Had done it before with a Jeep & Aquaboat tour last time, but there is really no 4x4-ing to do in St Maarten.. When we got there, we had a private van take us to the marina, and we had a private tour of Simpson Bay and Marigot Bay with just 4 people.. This deal absolutely rocked, and at $59pp including transportation to/from the ship, was the best bargain on our cruise..
Fredriksted is a pier with NOTHING to see. We didnt venture out, but the loud religious services near the pier were (sorry) not pleasing. I understand that Christiansted is a better pier or there is more to do there, but I would have rather had a day at sea...