Freedom of the Seas Cruise & Grand Suite Cabin 1260 Review : Freedom of the Seas Cruise Review by EmeraldIsleNC

Freedom of the Seas 3
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Freedom of the Seas Cruise & Grand Suite Cabin 1260 Review

Sail Date: November 2011
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
As I have read from others before I cruised, the time it takes to get on the Freedom and off after the cruise went reasonably well. If you're in a suite or a member of Crown and Anchor you do get the express lane, which makes it faster.

More about the cruise later but first this: Ok I want to dwell here on really my only complaint with this and probably many other cruise lines these days. Communication with the staff. I can assure you there are very few people on the boat that know much more English than their specific task and job description requires. Most staff lack depth with the language especially the wait staff. I found very few staff capable of any conversations past yes no left right. It was very noticeable and a bummer. They just smile and repeat their specific job descriptions mantra. "Did you have a good time today" "What are you doing tomorrow" Past that, I doubt they much know what your answer is. Don't think you are going to have a very deep conversation. Be More patient and get your head right before you go on this ship. No american staff that I saw.

With regard to the ports please read my port reviews on this page.

With regard to food- I did have some ok food, some I didn't eat but 95% I will say was "good to very good". Very acceptable. The dining room staff tried to please. With regard to the Windjammer, which is the most popular spot on the ship, the pool patrons dump into this place at lunch and it's nothing less than a fight for food. To many people for me, I'm disappointed in their excessive buffet lunch traffic. It would HAVE to be a disaster in the summer with more children. The ship needs other lunch options than Johnny Rockets, which is an up charge. Is Johnny Rockets good? Can you mess up a burger, rings and fries?

The cruise director "Grem" was perfect for a cruise this size. He had command of his position on the ship, very likable person and he does a "dark adult" show late the night before the last night. F bombs and all, so be aware if that offends you. I thought it was a good show. You HAVE to catch his early morning TV show in your cabin where he talks about the day's activities. Leno or Letterman has never been so funny.

The entertainment was good the ice show great. See as much as you can.

On ship shopping WARNING- the ship promotes a last day sale on watches to be held in the Promenade. They set up a table, rope it off and have all these watches at 20.00, men's ties, woman's necklaces etc that look pretty nice. (They are cheap watches) but great presents for little folks perhaps. Well don't get caught up in the romance of this sale, 2 hours after everyone fights over them they bring out another container load of china's best. There is plenty of each model to go around, just relax. They will be there for the entire night available.

You know a week on the ship is a long time. I live on a beach and personally I don't invest in a cruise to go lay beside a pool in the sun, arm in arm with strangers. I have all this at home. Nor do I go to use a gym, I have one at home. But let me say this- while there are all kinds of activities on the ship many are less than popular events of interest in my opinion. If your going to go on this cruise do yourself a favor; plan to lay by the pool and use the gym! If you don't you will find yourself somewhat bored at times later in the week.

Bingo- the last time I played bingo was on the last of many cruises I have been on. The one issue I have is this, my goodness they pay out a fraction of what they take in. If you have 10 fingers you can easily count and conclude the win/risk /reward is pitiful.

Casino- Nice, roomy not too smoky. I was lucky enough to hit a few slots and other horrible bets to pay for my cruise but I understand and I hope you do that I am the exception to the rule, I was very lucky. The poker is electronic not real Texas hold em with a dealer and cards. PS the Wheel of Fortune Slot Machine never pays off!Blackjack, roulette and craps are the real deal.

Ship was clean. Room attendant was good and concerned about my thoughts of him.

Tipping- the plan I had was pre paid but really; the head dining room manager .75 a day? You don't get service from him. They take the tip concept to far. Some I actually gave a little more. They tried hard and from the stories have a tough life where they are from.

Beverages- yes you pay for every mixed drink. See the tip is included AND a line for "extra tip"- that's a joke.

Sea Pass card worked great.

Cell Phone Service- Very expensive plus your provider will charge you 3. a minute on average. You can get Wifi and my iPad worked great. Email, browsing. My iPhone didn't work well at all. It is a very WEAK wifi signal at sea. In the room and being patient is where it worked best. On the islands you have a signal but remember to call back to the US, you must insert the country code plus the area code and number. Study up on that plus your cell provider will burn you a new one. Learn how to cut off and on your data roaming. The ship has computers if you need one. (At a cost) in their internet cafe area. Less

Published 11/20/11

Cabin review: GS1260 Grand Suite

Room 1260 is a Grand Suite. The only difference in this suite and a smaller Jr Suite is 1 bathroom vanity sink vs 2 in the grand bathroom and cabin square footage you won't miss. The price different is not warranted. The difference in the more pricey Owners Suite and Grand Suite is the owners suite bath has a bidet and more square footage you won't miss either. I had friends in both cabins. Specifically 1260 is forward starboard side. Excellent location, no noise to speak of, quite floor. I recommend. If I go on this class ship again Id probably downgrade to a Jr. We did have rough seas and the storage cabinet did squeak.

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Port and Shore Excursions

Please read the St Thomas comments; they "all" apply here as well. This island is almost a duplicate of St Thomas however there is a French side of the island (technically a different country) and the Dutch side where you dock. I visited everywhere and frankly my comments from St Thomas all apply here however St Maarten does have a few more visual pleasant sights. In St Maarten I did go to the Bar at the end of the runway and watch the planes land and takeoff while only feet above the beachgoers heads! Crazy. A word about shopping on these islands- I found it quite dis heartening as well as disingenuous that they the cruise line RCCL absolutely pounded the "diamond" value on these islands are the best anywhere theme. If they were honest they would explain who exactly owns Diamonds International. The cruise lines benefit directly from the profits of this firm so I'm told from other sources. Secondly and most important- anyone who buys a "diamond" on these islands has lost their minds. Pay more from a local jeweler. These island jewelers firms push 10% off 20% off 50% off and 90% off. Please, let ME set the price and ill give you 99% off. Just remember 1 thing- it's virtually impossible to grade the level of a diamond from what I consider nothing more than carnival ticket takers. I found a beautiful necklace that had a price of 5400.00. By the time I walked out the door withOUT this bracelet they were down to 1400.00. If they drop a price from 54 to 14 what is it "really" worth? 100.00? It's a fool's game as best I can see. If it's a product you can compare apples to apple such as specific Rolex watches well that's another story. The Rolex dealer gave me a price of 8600. and was "not allowed" to reduce the price however he would give my lady a free bracelet. OK I'm gone again, what's they tell me the real value is?

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