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Sail Date: October 2015
We are 65 yr.old fit seniors who booked this when first offered since Norfolk is 2 hours from home. We self-parked in the closest Main St. garage across from the Port at 10am for a flat cruise rate of $105. Convenient with easy walk across ... Read More
We are 65 yr.old fit seniors who booked this when first offered since Norfolk is 2 hours from home. We self-parked in the closest Main St. garage across from the Port at 10am for a flat cruise rate of $105. Convenient with easy walk across the street for embarkation. Service fast and courteous in the terminal. Onboard by 11:15am. First time on Carnival so wandered the ship. Older ship but clean. Once we figured out the layout it was easy to get around. Yep, lots of pink as well as smoke in the casino, but we knew that before arrival. Very friendly crew most everywhere. Were impressed to see constant cleaning - swabbing floors, wiping tables, walls, stairs, everything which continued throughout the cruise. Had "anytime" dining so were relegated to the Black Pearl Restaurant on deck 3 for dinner unless we chose Lido buffet or other Lido options. Dining room salmon and beef were fine. Enjoyed shrimp, spring rolls, salads for appetizers, all were good. Breads were quite tasty. Melting chocolate dessert was excellent, but the cheese cake was surprisingly "plastic". Other food was good enough in the Black Pearl but nothing to rave about. Interesting scramble for best table assignments each night but seems to work. Enjoyed the "intermission" dancing/singing by waitstaff! We had breakfast early from the Lido buffet. Mostly had omelettes (good) and cereal with good coffee. Lunch was often from the Deli at the stern (deck 9). Very good "to order" sandwiches. Note: lots of seating for Lido (deck 9) if you also include the convenient deck 10 mezzanine areas which overlook the buffet areas. Our cabin 7354 was fine even though it was just across from a crew service door. We found it to be quiet and comfortable with the best steward we've ever had (10 cruises). Pandita (and his team) were attentive, friendly with big smiles, careful to accommodate our "early to bed, early to rise" routine and had everything refilled and sparkling despite a bit of age on the room. What a treat! From our room we easily used stairs up or down to keep up our physical activity instead of using the gym. In Bermuda we bought passes (bus/ferry) and one day rode the bus from the Dockyard all the way to St. Georges, getting off in Hamilton to walk around and sightsee, again at the old Swizzler Inn, then on to St. Georges. Nice area with cobblestone streets and shoppes. Took the ferry back from St. Georges to the Dockyard. Another day we spent strolling the Dockyard and touring the national history museum which was very interesting! The rainy, windy third day we took the ferry to Hamilton and returned by ferry. Fun, easy trip to get us off the ship on that last day. Weather on the return to Norfolk was quite windy but we enjoyed sitting at the stern holding onto our hats, as did many others. Fun in the sunshine and hot tubs. We enjoyed some of the music offered in the atrium, laughed at one early comedy show, but otherwise did not participate in onboard entertainment. Mostly enjoyed reading, walking about, people-watching, and drinking beer/sipping wine at the stern or on our balcony. Disembarkation for us was a breeze. We didn't buy liquor onboard and were glad we didn't. Pickup was on disembark morning! and the line was very long which slowed many people down. We carried our own luggage and were off, in the car and on the road by 7:30am! We were glad to see Bermuda - clean, polite, saw no panhandling - and may visit there again, and would easily choose Carnival to get there. All in all, a good, comfortable, pleasant cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2015
Just returned from a Bermuda cruise on the Splendor. We had a blast! Yes, it's the pink biscuit ship that needs a facelift, but everything was great on our trip! Our stewart Gede was fantastic! Our inside cabin was small of course, ... Read More
Just returned from a Bermuda cruise on the Splendor. We had a blast! Yes, it's the pink biscuit ship that needs a facelift, but everything was great on our trip! Our stewart Gede was fantastic! Our inside cabin was small of course, but had everything we needed. The food in the dining room was terrific as was our head waiter Jose. There were only 2 elegant dress nights and the rest were cruise casual, which was new for us and a nice addition. The Lido had Mongolian, Tandoori, Pizza, Bruger station, Rotisserie station upstairs and the poplular Burrito Bar. Everything was great and the staff were all very friendly! The shows were great, especially in the Punchliner Comedy Club! We had 2 comedians on the way to Bermuda and 2 new comedians on the way back to Norfolk. They were hysterical! They have PG shows early in the evening and 18+ shows later in the evening. Kevin the Cruise Director was very funny!! The pools and hot tubs were very popular! The last sea day, they had Towel Animal Theater....towel animals filled the Lido Deck in front of the movie screen! It was adorable! We loved getting a new towel animal every night! Bermuda was fantastic! We went to the Crystal Caves and Sea Glass Beach, which we had not seen on previous trips there. The bus rides were very long, but the drivers were always helpful and looked out for us so we would get off at the right stop. The locals were very friendly was well. We have already booked our next Carnival cruise to Alaska! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2011
My husband and I sailed the Carnival Glory, from October 16 -â€" 22, 2011. This was our 19th cruise, our 13th on Carnival, and over our 13th Wedding Anniversary. We have also previously sailed on Celebrity, Cunard, Holland and ... Read More
My husband and I sailed the Carnival Glory, from October 16 -â€" 22, 2011. This was our 19th cruise, our 13th on Carnival, and over our 13th Wedding Anniversary. We have also previously sailed on Celebrity, Cunard, Holland and Norwegian. This was a six day sailing out of Norfolk, VA to Bermuda. It seemed like most of the passengers were from Virginia. We drove to Norfolk the day prior to sailing, and reminisced since our Navy days... It had been about 10 - 15 years since we were there and things had changed a lot. Embarkation was a breeze, once we cleared security we proceeded to the Platinum check in and were immediately processed. From there we were provided VIP cards and allowed to move to the head of the line to board the ship. We booked an Ocean View cabin, the room was plenty big enough for us and our belongings. It also had a sofa, which could have been used to accommodate a third person. We again opted to have all of our dinners in the Supper Club. Mr. Cruise Cat and I are not foodies, we prefer the Supper Club because it is quieter and less crowded than the dining rooms. But the food is definitely better in the Supper Club. As always, the food was perfect, the service flawless and the experience wonderful. Also, it's important to mention that the service and food was as delightful on the last nights as it was on the first nights. We've been on other cruise lines where the service and food quality in the specialty dining areas hasn't always been upheld throughout the entire cruise. The rest of the meals were standard for Carnival... We had breakfast and lunch on the Lido deck each day. Breakfast was pretty much the same each day, and there was the same large assortment of lunch options. We had deli sandwiches, pizza, burgers and all that. We spent some time in the casino and came out a few dollars behind, but nothing too serious. We didn't attend any shows, as those aren't really our thing. Since we had so many days at sea, we watched a bit of television, but it was limited. We are booked on a 17 day cruise next year, from Hawaii to Sydney, Australia, and will remember to bring our laptop and an assortment of DVDs. We realized a few years ago that Bermuda is a place best visited by cruise ship. Flights, hotels and restaurants and all that for a trip to Bermuda are very expensive. A cruise is less expensive, and a better value for your time and money. There was just a day and a half in port, but that was plenty of time for us. We rented scooters in Bermuda and visited the pink beaches. It was very windy that day, which made riding the scooters kind of slower at some points, and we were not able to get in the water at the pink beaches. But it pretty fun zooming around and all that. We talked to some other passengers that used the Bermuda bus system, and we were glad we did not do that. Apparently, the busses stop every couple of blocks, and it took over an hour to get from the pier area to Hamilton. (The island is about 22 miles long.) There were a couple of negatives about this cruise, but not too much. There were some parts of the ship where you could smell garbage, but they were few and far between. I hope those odors weren't near anyone's cabin, that wouldn't have been very nice. Also, there were a couple of times when the aft pool was covered, and it didn't seem necessary. We couldn't find anyone who could provide any information on when it would be removed, so we moved to the mid-ship pool. It wasn't the end of the world, but we really prefer the aft pool without live music or kids. And finally, none of the hot tubs seemed to be working very well. They were warm, but not really hot. The aft pool, however, was steaming hot one day. I still haven't figured that one out yet! As we sail more and more cruises, these reviews get harder to write. We are pretty familiar with what we are going to get, especially with Carnival, and have yet to be disappointed. Overall, it was a lovely cruise and a great way to see Bermuda. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2010
Our first cruise was a 7 night in '09 on Freedom of the Seas out of Port Canaveral. This ship was a bit of a "step down" but thoroughly enjoyable. Embarkation: we were within a day's drive of the Norfolk cruise ... Read More
Our first cruise was a 7 night in '09 on Freedom of the Seas out of Port Canaveral. This ship was a bit of a "step down" but thoroughly enjoyable. Embarkation: we were within a day's drive of the Norfolk cruise terminal so we opted to drive this time. The terminal is in downtown Norfolk within close proximity to large downtown hotels. We did not spend the night in a hotel as we're retired military and had access to the much less expensive option of staying at the navy base 10 minutes away. The buses from the off-site parking lot began running at 10 a.m. Porters took care of the bags and we were off to the terminal several blocks away. We were the first bus to arrive but were held in the terminal for a couple of hours along with all the other later arrivals due to technical difficulties at the terminal. Since we were early we had comfortable places to sit. Others were not so lucky - they were lined out the door. We boarded the ship and headed to Windjammer for some lunch and another place to wait as our rooms would not be ready 'til 1:30. The rooms were ready when promised so we took our carry-ons to the room. Always bring your essentials (including bathing suit and gear) in your carry-on! Our luggage didn't make it to the room until 6 p.m. We retrieved it from a cart that had just arrived on the deck. Had to do that on our previous cruise as well - - again, it's small stuff. We had a balcony stateroom on deck seven. The room was very comfortable. The ship was just out of dry dock and was very clean, just like new. Only the balcony showed signs of age: a little rust, etc. Food: We reserved two nights at Chops Grill - well worth $25 (gratuity included) for the superior food. Otherwise we had dinner three nights at Windjammer as on our last cruise we were disappointed in the main dining room fare. We had breakfast and lunch in either the main dining room or Windjammer. On this cruise the buffet meats were a little overcooked so we made good use of sauces or the made-to-order stations: omelets, carving station, mongolian bbq, etc. Buffet desserts left much to be desired. Only a couple of times did we find a dessert that we wanted more than a few bites of. Service: no complaints about dining service or stateroom service. Our attendant, Samantha, was very cheerful, sweet and attentive. Always kept ice in the bucket and the room spotless. We only attended a couple of the shows but enjoyed what we did see. Disembarkation: does that ever really go right? We opted for express since we had a car nearby. At some point, a rumor spread quickly that they had called for express departure guests to go ahead and gather at 4th deck. However customs was not ready for passengers so we had a glut of people on 4th and 5th deck all gathered waiting to leave. The staff, including cruise directors, jumped in to help with luggage and try to smooth out that little bump in the road. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2009
Pre Cruise - D (For American Airlines)We left on a stormy evening in St. Louis.  When we arrived, our American Airlines flight was already delayed 3 hours.  By the time we ate a little dinner our flight was canceled.  The next flight ... Read More
Pre Cruise - D (For American Airlines)We left on a stormy evening in St. Louis.  When we arrived, our American Airlines flight was already delayed 3 hours.  By the time we ate a little dinner our flight was canceled.  The next flight was next morning, and it was full.  We should have been on that flight because my husband is platinum on AA, but they overlooked us.  There was no way we would make it to Norfolk, VA to meet our cruise before it left.  All of the flights to and around Norfolk were cancelled.  Plan B was to drive to Norfolk from St. Louis (15 hours!), and it was storming, as I mentioned before, and there were tornadoes on the path to VA, so we moved to Plan C.  Plan C was to use our trip insurance to pay for a flight to meet the cruise at its destination, Bermuda.  That wasn't going to work as well as we thought, so we moved to Plan D.  Plan D was to check flights again going anywhere near Norfolk.  Most of those were also canceled because of the weather.  However, there was one flight going to Reagan- D.C.  It was leaving at 11pm ish.  We hopped on that flight, and then arrived at Reagan at around 2am.  We rented a car from Hertz...who knew they were open!  We climbed into our Nissan Altima with some life-saving equipment - a Never Lost - a.k.a. GPS.  Since we had the Never Lost, we decided to do some impromptu sightseeing around Washington D.C. before driving 3 or so hours to Norfolk, VA.Norfolk, VA / Embarkation - A+We arrived at the cruise terminal via a taxi ($28 +tip for both to ride) from the airport where we dropped off our rental car.  There were no lines at all when we arrived at 11am.  We were finished with the embarkation procedure at 11:30am.  No upgrades for this cruise.   Cabin - AOur cabin was 4749 (inside cabin) and we had a wonderful cabin steward that we never saw except for the first night, which we were fine with.  He was so thorough and came in to do his work while we were not there.  We loved his towel animal creations.  The bathroom was a good size for a cruise ship bathroom, and we had ample closet and drawer space.  The bed was comfortable.  I would recommend bringing a power strip if you have a few things that you would need to plug in.  We were charging various items, and I was using a hairdryer and straightener at the desk area.  Overall, we really enjoyed the location of our cabin in terms of proximity to the elevators/stairs.  We didn't feel a lot of rocking, and we felt like we had a wonderful cabin.  Overall, this was the largest inside cabin I had ever stayed in.  Cruise Experience - ADinner was something we always looked forward to each evening.  We selected late seating and a table of two.  We were pleased to see both requests were honored.  It was such a wonderful experience to dine in the Great Gatsby Dining Room.  We ate every night in the dining room because the quality of the food was so superior, we enjoyed our surroundings, we like to get dressed up, and our wait staff was the BEST!  Our waiter was Jozef, our Assistant Waiter was Karl, and our headwaiter was Kirk.  All were excellent servers, and eventually by the end of the cruise, they learned our preferences.  I always like iced tea with my dinner, so it was waiting for me when we arrived, and Christian prefers ice water.  I also always have dessert, and I love decaf coffee with lots of cream.  We always started dinner with an appetizer like shrimp cocktail, escargot, or mushroom puff pastry.  There were so many to choose from, and the menu changed each night.  After appetizers, we always had either a soup or salad.  Our favorite was the lobster bisque, but I also liked the minestrone, pumpkin bisque and chilled strawberry soup.  Our favorite salad by far was the caesar.  After that we always had an entree.  Our favorites were the prime rib, lobster tails, shrimp scampi, and pork.  They had really fancy names I can't remember right now.  The lobster tails were the best I have ever eaten.  The desserts were to die for!  I loved this decadent chocolate/ fudge dessert.  I asked for more!  The cheesecake, pots de crème, and all chocolate desserts were heavenly!The buffet in the windjammer was above average, and we really enjoyed the variety each day and the fresh brewed Seattle's Best Coffee.  We dined in the dining room once at breakfast, and it was a wonderful experience.  Mostly for breakfast and lunch we prefer to eat at our leisure and not get dressed up, so the Windjammer was perfect for our preferences.We felt like the entertainment and activities that were offered were fair.  We didn't attend the shows because we much preferred to sit in one of the lounges or walk the promenade deck in the evenings.  We enjoyed using the Fitness facilities, and we thought the rock climbing wall was challenging and so much fun!  We did enjoy the main pool and the solarium.  There were not any children in the adult pool in the solarium, so it was easy to relax with adults if we chose.The only real complaint about my cruise experience I had was that the Internet was expensive and slow.  We had a deal going through on our home, and we wanted to see our son on Skype.  We did get to check email, but Skype didn't work.Bermuda - AThe natives are so friendly, the public transportation is wonderful, and most parts of the island are not trash-filled like other islands we have been to.  It is an expensive island, but if you do most of your eating on ship, you won't break the bank.The first day, we bought a ferry and bus pass onboard that had to be redeemed at the ferry terminal.  After we redeemed our tickets, we hopped on a ferry to St. George.  It was a nice ride, and there was a friendly Bermudian working who gave us tips about the island.  St. George is a quaint town.  The shopping isn't great, but it was fun to look.  We did make our way to Alexandria Battery Beach to explore the Battery and pick up a treasure trove of sea glass.  This was one of my favorite things we did on Bermuda.  We ate lunch at a cafe, walked around King's Square and took pictures.  We then took a bus to Hamilton.  We took pictures, shopped for some souvenirs and did a lot of walking around the city just to take it in.  The second day in port, we took a bus (which broke down) to Gibb's Hill Lighthouse.  The views were fantastic!  This is a must see.  We also went to Horseshoe Bay.  It was a little crowded, but the beach and facilities were very clean.  We then went into Hamilton to go to Fort Hamilton.  That was a great free attraction, but it did need to be cleaned up a bit.  We did some more sightseeing, took a ferry back to the Dockyards, and then ate a late lunch on the boat.Disembarkation - AThis was a smooth process.  We ate breakfast, and then we walked to the Palladium Theater for Express Walk-off.  It began promptly at 7:30am.  The only complaint we had was that people didn't fill out their declaration cards prior to getting to customs, but that was not Royal Caribbean's fault.  After getting through customs, we took a taxi to the airport for our flight, which returned us safely to St. Louis.    Overall Impressions - ARoyal Caribbean is going to be our cruise line of choice from now on, and we loved Grandeur of the Seas.  This ship was comfortable and inviting, and the staff was top-notch!  Thank you to all involved for making our cruise vacation phenomenal! 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Sail Date: August 2008
On August 2 my wife and I cruised on the Grandeur of the Seas for 5 nights. I was a little apprehensive about cruising with RCL. I am not a big fan of brand names that are constantly running commercials or are too mainstream. However, RCL ... Read More
On August 2 my wife and I cruised on the Grandeur of the Seas for 5 nights. I was a little apprehensive about cruising with RCL. I am not a big fan of brand names that are constantly running commercials or are too mainstream. However, RCL exceed our expectations. There was a total of 8 of us and we had a smashing time! For those of you who were on the cruise, we were the ones with the t shirts! We called ourselves project inebri(eight) and we definitely achieved our objective! This was our first time on Royal. I previously cruised with my wife on the Crown Princess for our honeymoon. My wife cruised with Celebrity in the past. Every aspect of the cruise was a good experience. Embarkation- Norfolk, VA was an easy port to cruise from. We live on Long Island in NY and flew from LaGuardia to Newport News. We had almost no wait to board the ship. The employees of RCL even volunteered to film us with our video camera, while we were checking in. Food- The food quality and variety was quite good and I think better then the food on the Crown Princess. There was a lot more variety on the menu. Even though I like anytime dining, I had a great experience with traditional on this cruise. The Lobster was exceptional and I honestly did not taste anything that wasn't good. The food in the windjammer cafe was very good considering it is buffet. We ordered room service for breakfast almost every morning. Try the smoked salmon and brie sandwich!!! Drinks- We had quite a few drinks on this cruise and every drink was of good quality. The Bloody Mary special is a must! My wife particularly enjoyed the Lava Flow, it was a drink special! My friends warned me that drinks would be astronomical in price, I could not disagree more. Considering the fact that we are used to bars in NYC, we felt he prices were reasonable. Service- The service was quite impressive. Our assistant waiter, Amel, was hysterical, he really went above and beyond to entertain us, even though he did pretend to spill coffee on me. The bartenders and servers all knew our names by the end of our cruise. They especially remembered my brother and his friend, I think they really enjoyed the libations! On the last night of the cruise, we ordered a special cake for one of our friends who was cruising with us. When the cake arrived, it was frozen. Even though the head waiter explained that is how the cake is supposed to be served, he removed the $12 charge for the cake. That is what I call good service! The whole crew on the Grandeur did a good job and went out of their way to provide personalized service. Public rooms and facilities- Even though this is one of the smaller and older RCL ships, the public rooms were clean and kept in good condition. The Solarium was a nice place to get away from the crowd and go for a swim. The spa was very clean and I definitely enjoyed it. The lounges are nice and the dining room is well decorated. Maybe this ship is not quite as glitzy as others,however, it is in good condition and has a lot to offer. Cabin- Our cabin was a balcony stateroom. For a cruise cabin, it was of decent size and had a good amount of storage space. The bathroom was a little bit worn but was clean. the balcony was a decent size,however, they could have fit a bigger table on the balcony. I highly suggest going for a balcony stateroom. Port of call- This cruise docked at King's Wharf, Bermuda. People who have cruised to Bermuda have told me it is better to dock in Hamilton or ST. George. While this might be true, we enjoyed our port of call. Snorkel Park is right next to the dock and they had a fun beach Party the night we were in port. The band was great and the beach and walls of the fort make for a great setting. There were a million stars in the sky the night we went to the beach party. Overall, I had a good experience at this port and the ferries are ready to take you to Hamilton and Saint George. We took a bus to Horseshoe Bay beach. This was one of the nicest beaches I have been to. I probably liked ST. Thomas and Puerto Rico a little bit better,however, Bermuda is safe and very nice. Cruising is my new favorite way to vacation. Even though I was first turned off by the ubiquitous RCL brand,I am hoping to cruise on a larger ship in the RCL fleet. I hope the level of service and attention to detail is as good on the rest of the ships as it is on the Grandeur. This was a great cruise and an overall great vacation! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2008
This was our very first family vacation, let alone a cruise. Things went so perfectly smooth, it was almost unbelievable. We live local to Norfolk, so we drove to the ship about 11:30a.m. to check in. There was no line, which was amazing ... Read More
This was our very first family vacation, let alone a cruise. Things went so perfectly smooth, it was almost unbelievable. We live local to Norfolk, so we drove to the ship about 11:30a.m. to check in. There was no line, which was amazing to me. The ID check and boarding was so fast. Once we were on board they did tell us our rooms would not be ready until 1pm, so we took that opportunity to check out the ship and buy the soda package. The ship was so beautiful and there was staff everywhere and so willing to help and always with a smile. I wish people on land were like that. Anyway, once in our rooms, we took the time to unpack. The room was much larger than I thought it would be. Don't get me wrong, it was small, but after researching every day, I was expecting it to be the size of a closet and really it was much nicer than that. The bed and pillows were fabulous. The bathroom, on the other hand, was extremely small. After we unpacked, we headed out to the top deck where the pool was. The entertainment staff was all ready to go and trying to get everyone involved in dancing and just having a great time. They did have a band on the pool deck and they were just fabulous as well. The staff was always attentive and ready to serve drinks. We went up the the Ocean Adventure for the kids. We have a 7 year old boy and knew he would want to be up there playing with other kids. My son loved it and if he wasn't in the pool with us, he wanted to be in the Ocean Adventure club house. He didn't even want to go to the magic show. They had so much entertainment. Bingo, trivia games, belly flop competitions (which my husband entered), talent show for kids, The Quest, Marriage and Love Game, Party Zone for kids, Clubs for adults and teens. We were never bored. We did spend a lot of time by the pool as well (it is salt water, which I was not aware of) So, we got to Bermuda around day 2.5, I think. Anyway, I wasn't too impressed with the town, but the waters were amazing. Perfectly clear. You could see fish swimming next to you as you would be swimming. We didn't do any excursions, we did take the bus and ferry over to St. George's and walked to Tobacco Bay. It was all so beautiful. The cruise director and staff put on a show with the locals off the ship and it was as well very nice. Oh yes, the food was wonderful. I think the only thing I would have to complain about is the coffee. We did have a formal dinner, which the dinner was amazing as always, but you were just dressed up. The wait staff knew us by name and had drinks and fruit ready and waiting for us when we arrived. Perfect service!!!! One more thing, I did have one of the spa treatments.....Ladies Night Out....Wonderful.....but is costly. I don't know if I would say worth the price, but if you have the money, go ahead and get it.....it was very nice. Have a wonderful time.....I sure did!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2008
Arrived in Norfolk via limo after a short hour and a half ride. Embarkation was a breeze and we were eating lunch in the Windjammer shortly after noon. Travelled with DH who is handicapped and in wheelchair so I had the regular worries ... Read More
Arrived in Norfolk via limo after a short hour and a half ride. Embarkation was a breeze and we were eating lunch in the Windjammer shortly after noon. Travelled with DH who is handicapped and in wheelchair so I had the regular worries since this was our first cruise. Truly I worried in vain because EVERYTHING was totally accessible and the staff were simply incredible. If it looked like we needed help, someone was there and I never had to ask. Balcony was even accessible and room was spacious with plenty of storage. Courtney, our stateroom attendant was quite attentive and we enjoyed having conversations with him. The ship is older but very well maintained and immaculate. We did formal night in the Great Gatsby and the food and service there were top notch. Other times we ate at the Windjammer buffet and were quite surprised at the selection and how tasty everything was. Plenty of activities to keep you busy, shows were well attended and the staff was superb. Bermuda was a gorgeous island and we thoroughly enjoyed. Had a private 5 hour tour excursion which left us speechless. Bermuda is very clean and the locals are extremely proud of their island and willing to show it off. Debarkation was simple and we were off the ship by 8:00 and I was at home doing laundry by 10:30. Everyone should try a cruise at least once. It is so relaxing and Royal Caribbean has set the standard for us. It was our FIRST but we are already planning our next one. Thanks to the staff of the Grandeur for making our first cruise so enjoyable. See you next year! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2008
This is my first review of my first cruise - Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas, departing Norfolk, VA, July 19, 2008, sailing to King's Wharf/Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda, a delightful 5 night cruise for our summer family ... Read More
This is my first review of my first cruise - Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas, departing Norfolk, VA, July 19, 2008, sailing to King's Wharf/Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda, a delightful 5 night cruise for our summer family vacation! What a fun adventure! This was a terrific experience for our first cruise! Prior to departure, we completed our preboarding information online at the RCCL website, and we printed out our SetSail passes, which paved the way for a smooth check-in process at the pier. Being new to cruising, we were not familiar with some of the onboard options - purchase of a soda package and limiting the dollar amount of charges allowed on our son's SeaPass cards - we were told these could not be completed online or by phone prior to boarding, but once onboard, we could visit the Purser's Office to make arrangements. Once onboard, the soda package was easy to purchase, and well worth the investment for our teenagers; we never were able to clarify that a maximum dollar amount could be imposed for onboard charging for the teenagers' SeaPass cards, but fortunately this did not cause any problems for us. A month prior to departure, we signed up for two land excursions online at the RCCL website; these included a bike tour of Bermuda and a snorkeling excursion. Our party of four included myself, my husband, and our two teenage boys, ages 14 and 16. We actually live in Virginia Beach, VA, and so we had to "travel inland" to depart from Norfolk, VA! A neighbor volunteered to drop us off at the pier at 2 p.m., and we quickly caught a taxi home upon return, creating for a smooth departure and return with no airport or hotel hassles. Wait time in line at the pier for check-in was minimal; the line moved quickly, although there was quite a crowd checking in. We opted for "self check out", where we carried our own luggage on disembarking, which went smoothly. We used the envelopes provided for staff gratuities, and delivered these personally with a big "thank you" to the fantastic RCCL staff for the wonderful personalized service provided to us during our cruise. We sailed on RCCL's Grandeur of the Seas; the description of the ship on the RCCL website is very accurate. In the weeks prior to departure, we "explored" the ship using the virtual tour and deck plans on the RCCL website. We chose adjoining staterooms on Deck 2, which were nicely furnished and always spotlessly clean! The room safe and nightly chocolate mints were nice! Our room steward introduced himself immediately, as we arrived, and always made himself available should we have need for him throughout our cruise. The Grandeur of the Seas offered two choices for dining - seated dining in the Great Gatsby Dining Room or casual dining in the WindJammer Cafe; snacks/ice cream were available in other locations. The food was outstanding, with multiple choices for every palate! We opted out of the "formal night", choosing instead to enjoy the casual atmosphere and wide array of foods in the WindJammer Cafe, as we continued to do for several meals. We chose the late seating in the Great Gatsby, and we did enjoy meeting our table mates. There were plenty of activities for all of us! The teenagers enjoyed the rock climbing wall, the outdoor swimming pool, shuffleboard, and pingpong, but didn't seem to want to participate in the ship's organized teen activities. The daily printed announcement of ship's activities provided up to the minute choices of things to do for all ages. Quiet time can be enjoyed in the stateroom, the Library, or the Card Room. The ship's channel on TV provided more details on the day's activities. We tremendously enjoyed the shows; we attended a fun wine tasting class. The boys participated in several contests poolside, and enjoyed the Teen Lounge. The "port shopping class" provided information on local shops, along with maps, and the live presentation was taped, then replayed on the ship's TV channel throughout the day prior to arrival in Bermuda. The exercise equipment in the Fitness Center was well maintained and readily available. The jogging track was my favorite place to be at 6 a.m. - wonderful to jog or walk and watch the sun rise and feel the ocean breeze! Bermuda - We arrived in Bermuda about 7 a.m. All locations in the Royal Naval Dockyard are within walking distance of the pier - be sure to take comfortable walking shoes/sandals. Our shore excursion on our first day in Bermuda was a snorkeling trip which we had booked through the RCCL website prior to departure. The boat picked us up at the pier on time, and provided drinks to and from the reef where we snorkeled. The equipment was well maintained and the staff were very helpful! We snorkeled for a little over 1 hour, then returned via a "scenic" route to the pier. The water was very clear with many fish to see! This shore excursion was fantastic - we all enjoyed it tremendously!! By the time we showered, changed clothes, and ate lunch onboard, it was late afternoon. We opted to go shopping/exploring in the Royal Naval Dockyard for a couple of hours, and then ate dinner at the Frog and Onion Pub to celebrate our son's birthday. This was fun, but by doing so, we missed lobster dinner onboard!! Ooops! A country music festival was held that evening in one part of the Royal Naval Dockyard; we stayed for awhile, then returned to the ship. Our second day in Bermuda started off with breakfast onboard, then a shore excursion of an electric bike tour of the island - this was fantastic! A real close up view of Bermuda, along with a knowledgeable guide to provide background history of the island, it's people and places!! The bikes were great - the electric motor provided enough assistance to make the ride moderately strenuous, but not intolerable for those of us who are not in tip/top physical shape!! We returned to the ship about 1:30 p.m., ate lunch, and decided to stay onboard. We didn't spend a lot of time in Bermuda, but it seemed to be just enough! We had a couple episodes of light rain throughout the cruise, but no rough water. My oldest son did experience some "seasickness" enroute one day going, and one day returning, but dramamine seemed to control it. I think he had to become accustomed to the motion of the ocean! A few tips - it's great to watch the departure from Norfolk from a window seat in the Viking Lounge!! As for shopping, there are some fantastic onboard deals the last day at sea!! Be sure to check them out!! Plan to visit some of the other cities in Bermuda, in addition to the Royal Naval Dockyard. Be sure to stop by Snorkel Bay for a refreshing dip in the ocean - it's within walking distance of the pier at Royal Naval Dockyard, and you can provide your own snorkel equipment or rent it!! This was a wonderful cruise for our family, and we will gladly travel with RCCL again!! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2008
Family travel - My husband and myself, our three grown children and their spouses, and six grandchildren, ages 24, 23, 22, 18, 16, and 12. After driving to Norfolk, VA, we spent the night at the Marriott Waterside, a beautiful hotel in ... Read More
Family travel - My husband and myself, our three grown children and their spouses, and six grandchildren, ages 24, 23, 22, 18, 16, and 12. After driving to Norfolk, VA, we spent the night at the Marriott Waterside, a beautiful hotel in walking distance of the harbor. We arrived at the port around 11:30am, dropped luggage and I waited at the cruise center while my husband went to park. About 45 minutes later, he arrived from Cedar Grove parking lot, 14 blocks away. It seems they don't separate the cars coming in to park only from the ones dropping luggage, so you wait in line behind those without the right change, the ones with charge cards (we were told it was cash only), and the ones who had not even put on their luggage tags! At the new Half Moone Cruise Center, embarkation was uneventful and easy after online completion of sea pass information. We were told 1pm for cabins, so we proceeded to Windjammer Cafe for lunch. What a zoo - people wandered the food stations with no direction and no clue. People came at you from every direction; enough to rattle the strongest traveler. After recent trips with Holland America and Celebrity, we were quite unprepared. We were not impressed and wondered how sanitary it was with all those hands, including many children, dipping in. We became increasingly aware that they do not provide hand sanitizing stations like we have found on other lines, not even at the dining rooms or the gangway after a day in port. We felt this was irresponsible, considering the number of recent illnesses on ships. We went to our balcony cabin on deck 7 at 1:30pm and our luggage arrived around 2:30pm. We were fortunate - others were still waiting at 5:30pm. Room steward, Al, popped in to introduce himself - he gave us fantastic service. No surprises in the cabin - nice balcony w/ 2 chairs & table. Very good storage for clothing & "stuff". Bathroom smelled pretty bad - drat, forgot my 'stick-up'. Other family members on deck 4 said there was a strong mildew smell as you went from the public areas to the cabin hall. It was obvious there had been a water problem, they replaced some carpet in public area while in port at Bermuda. Lifeboat drill at 4:30 and sailed on time at 5pm. There were plenty of sail away activities; the ship is beautifully decorated and once people got into their cabins and settled down, the crowds were excessive only in the Windjammer Cafe. The solarium is beautiful w/ pool for age 16+ and grill w/hamburgers, fries, etc. Our 12 year-old was disappointed; the rock climbing wall was not open the 1st 2 days due to excessive winds (understandable, of course). In port, time slots were few and personnel not available. Last day, openings for 12 year-olds were limited - competitions for adults?? With this not available, arcade was about it. He ran up a $70 bill before his parents realized that this activity was not blocked on his sea pass because it was a 'leased activity'. Does this mean he could have also purchased Ben & Jerry's ice cream? We're not sure 'cause he didn't try. Dining in the Great Gatsby dining room was impressive. The food variety and quality was good; our waiter, Robert, and assistant, Margaret, were excellent. We resolved to spend much time in this place rather than Windjammer. We found lounges and special food spots everywhere. Entertainment was fair; we did enjoy Dockyard Festival put on by Grandeur on shore; street festival atmosphere w/local craft booths, a stage for music and a performance by Mark Angelo, a very funny comedian/juggler. The 1st night production number was only fair (no orchestra), so we skipped the 2nd one - mistake, everyone said it was great music from the the 70's, 80's, and 90's! Maybe they should reverse these two, with the good one first to bring folks back. We lucked out - the original Rhondells, a beach music group from the 60's, were cruising w/a group of fans and did a public performance the last evening. They were terrific and the dance floor stayed full. Viking Crown lounge was hopping every night for the young (and young at heart) adults. We arrived on time in Bermuda and disembarked easily. The first day, some of us took the ferry to meet a Bermudian friend at the Botanical Gardens which were gorgeous. Our friend gave us a first class tour with lots of information about the island life in general. Cost of living is very high w/ $8 gasoline and $4 loaf of bread. Their rain water collection system, using terraced roofing and underground storage tanks, was fascinating. Some of our group took an excursion to a beach for snuba (a cross between snorkeling and scuba), kayaks, paddle boats, and other water toys. It was enjoyed immensely. Later, 12 of our 14 went out on jet skis from Sea Venture, in Southhampton Parish (booked online but not through cruise line). This met with approval of all, saying the guides were very good. Those going should know that there is a regulation saying only 10 people per guide, so 2 members of our group went with a different guide. The second port day some of us took the bus to Horseshoe Bay Beach. ABSOLUTELY BREATHTAKING! The water is turquoise and clear right to bottom, sand really is pink (from bits of red coral) but not hot to touch; the rocks are beautiful, and there are life guards. Be sure to walk to the far end and go through the rocks to the other side . . crashing waves on the rocks, so pretty. Prettiest beach ever - better than Hawaii. The facilities were fair, not the cleanest. Caution: be sure to check your umbrella for working parts. Ours did not work well, but because we didn't take it back as soon as we realized that (it was a long walk), we lost our deposit - they said we brought it back broken! Chair rental was $10 + $5 deposit per chair and umbrella the same. You put up your own umbrella. It is a pretty long walk up a steep hill to the bus, but there is usually a fellow with a van who will take you to the top for $1 a head - best money I spent all day! We did not eat there, so cannot speak to that. My recommendation, bring a piece of fruit and bottle of water from the ship. We found buses and ferries to be the best mode of transportation. You can get a pass (on the ship) for $12 (one day) or $20 (two day) which covers all buses and ferries. Service is excellent with buses running about every 15 minutes and ferries departing about every 30 minutes. That said, you will need plenty of time - lots of stops take up lots of time, so it may take longer to reach your destination than you thought. Be sure to look around, the bus is like a tour if you sit near the driver and ask questions. Meet some locals - they love bragging on their country. Children are polite and courteous and were observed giving up their seat on the bus for an elderly person. Three of our group left Horseshoe Bay Beach a little late and only with the help of the $1 van and the city bus did they make it back (10 minutes before sailing)! The city bus actually brought them, and others in similar situation, all the way to the dock, far beyond their usual stop! We all found the Bermudian people to be extremely friendly and helpful. Haley, Robert and Abigail, employees at the Front Desk, were very helpful and friendly. Haley, particularly, helped us with a wine order situation and also with several other questions along the way. Our shore excursions were booked online, so we had no experience with the excursion staff on board. The staff in the photo shop were not very helpful but our party of 14 purchased about $200 anyway. I guess they knew that. Three of our group used the spa; hair salon and massage were good experiences. The 'gym' was very small and crowded, w/ people waiting in line for machines. We took advantage of the "carry your own luggage" deal and walked off the ship about 7:30am. By 8:00am we were in our car, leaving the parking lot. But, we'll be back, hopefully soon!! We rate the overall experience Excellent and recommend the Grandeur of the Seas. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2010
Review Ship Name: Enchantment Of The Seas Departure Port: Norfolk, Virginia  Ports of Call: Norfolk, Virginia; Kings Wharf, Bermuda Sail Date: May 1, 2010 Over all this was a good trip. We had a handicapped accessible cabin deck 2, ... Read More
Review Ship Name: Enchantment Of The Seas Departure Port: Norfolk, Virginia  Ports of Call: Norfolk, Virginia; Kings Wharf, Bermuda Sail Date: May 1, 2010 Over all this was a good trip. We had a handicapped accessible cabin deck 2, inside (just about as cheap as they come). Pleasantly surprised by the cabin. It was much bigger and nicer than I was prepared for. While on board we booked another cruise on Enchantment Of The Seas for 2011. Day one, late departing Norfolk. I think that was not the fault of the cruise line. Late leaving Bermuda. I think that was not the fault of the cruise line. Arrived on time in Norfolk, but late in getting off the boat. I think that was not the fault of the cruise line. Almost all of the crew were great. Several had accents that made them hard to understand. The first thing that I did was tell the cabin steward he would get a bonus if he kept my ice bucket full. He exchanged my ice bucket for a larger one. He kept it filled; I gave him a bonus. The food overall was good, but not great. My standards are very high. Our assistant waiter, in the main dining room, did not hardly say a word to us. Did not keep water glasses full and did not keep the bread coming. We ate at the main dining room or the buffet, depending upon our schedule. Food, again was good, but not great. We ate all 3 meals at each location, at least once. Breakfast in the main dinning room had a very good cereal/fruit bar, mix your own. Lunch in the main dining room had a very good salad bar, build your own. Dinner entries in the main dining room were small. Several times I ordered 2 of them. Lots of smoked salmon at breakfast and lunch, and sometimes at dinner. I like smoked salmon. Had some unidentified fried fish on the buffet that was not good. Had some tempura shrimp & fish in the main dining room that was very good. We shared one piece of pizza in the Solarium, the crust was not thin but taste was OK. The hot tub in the Solarium, was not very hot. We did the fountain soda package. My wife did not like the taste of the diet fountain. One time the fountain was not working and we got a can of diet coke. Wife liked that better. She will not do this package on our next cruise. No choice for diet drinks. Only used the main pool twice. The first time I had the crew help me out with their chair. That was a half hour process that involved 3 men and 2 women to figure out how to use their equipment. The next time I used the ladder and did not hurt myself. Again, I have limited mobility. The shows were good. I liked the comedies better than the singer. I played a lot of Blackjack in the casino. I won. We had 2 days in port. The first one we did a private tour that I had arranged. Special handicapped van with tie downs for my power chair The second day we stayed on board and had no kids or crowd in the main pool. Nice quite day. In my power chair, Enchantment Of The Seas was easier to get around in than the Monarch Of The Seas. Things I packed and did not need: Power Strip Things that I packed, and was glad I did: Sun tan lotion Hat Swim suit. Power Chair Money An extra bag for purchases and final day's clothes Passport Sun Glasses Book Things I did not pack, but maybe I should have: Room air freshener. Crystal Light Lemonade to go Read Less
Sail Date: May 2009
DH and I chose to celebrate our 1st Anniversary by taking a 5-day cruise to Bermuda on Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas.  We sailed her for our honeymoon last year and really enjoyed the attentiveness and excitement of the crew.  ... Read More
DH and I chose to celebrate our 1st Anniversary by taking a 5-day cruise to Bermuda on Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas.  We sailed her for our honeymoon last year and really enjoyed the attentiveness and excitement of the crew.  I gained 8 POUNDS throughout the cruise last year and my focus this year was fitness and eating healthy.  We arrived in Norfolk, VA at 12 pm and with a quick shuttle ride to the cruise port and a smooth check in process, we were on the ship by 12:30 pm. We went up to the pool deck until the rooms were available around 1:30 pm.  We were surprised to find out that many of the crew members that made the cruise special for us were not aboard a year later.  We had another cruise party director other than Dan Dan the Party Man and Mama was no longer passing out Bingo Cards.  The cruise entertainment staff did a great job keeping us entertained this cruise but we found ourselves getting nostalgic for last year's staff.  The entertainment shows also did not change much from last year so most nights were spent up in the Viking Crown Lounge Cigar Bar.  We were so pleased the first night to find Ken still working there since he made our cruise last year.  Now on to my fitness efforts... Grandeur of the Seas has a small spa and fitness center up on the 9th floor with 4 treadmills, 2-3 ellipticals, exercise bikes, free weights, and weight lifting machines.  It also has a space for group classes.  It was very busy in the mornings between 7-10 am and although signs were posted everywhere that there was a 20 minute limit on the cardio machines, it was still hard to find an open machine.  My goal was to workout at least 30 minutes a day whether it be taking an exercise class or scaling the rock climbing wall.  It became routine for DH and I to head up to the gym first thing in the morning and then head to the Windjammer for breakfast everyday.  I stuck to the Vitality meals and ate plenty of fruits and vegetables throughout the day.  I also was amazed at the classes available now for people wanting to live healthier.  I learned how to increase my metabolism, foods to eat to keep my belly flat, and even was able to get a body composition analysis (BCA).  The BCA gave me my optimal weight, body fat percentage, lean muscle percentage, and an idea of how water is utilized in my body. DH and I enjoyed the couples warm stone massage.  I also tried the Ion Cellulite Reduction treatment that was supposed to remove toxins from the body and help you lose inches in trouble areas but didn't see any difference afterwards and I refused to purchase a $500 lotion that you apply for 60 days for increased results.  Dislikes: 1.CD skipped making it very difficult on Name that tune game.2. Purchased 2 day bus and ferry ticket at Excursion Desk which were not honored when we arrived in Bermuda. I had to purchase the 2 day pass again and had slight difficulty getting a refund from the Excursion Desk the next morning.3. Billing Mistakes: Some of the Spa Charges that should have been on my account appeared on my husband's account and the gratuities should have been solely on my husband's account.  We fill out receipts and paperwork specifically informing the purser's desk where the funds should go and it is frustrating to have to wait in line at the end of the cruise to correct billing errors.Likes:1.  The food and our dining staff was exceptional... Thanks Carlos Vasquez and Mr. Small!!!!2.  Ken in the Viking Crown Lounge.       Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our first time on SPLENDOR, and our seventh on Carnival, and I will have to say, the Fantasy and Spirit Class of ship is MUCH more to our liking. The first thing to hit you (slap you in the face kind of way) is all that ... Read More
This was our first time on SPLENDOR, and our seventh on Carnival, and I will have to say, the Fantasy and Spirit Class of ship is MUCH more to our liking. The first thing to hit you (slap you in the face kind of way) is all that PINK!!...from Deck 3 all the way to Deck 11. You enter the elevators, again...pink. You go to the MDR's (3 of them) Gold Pearl, Black Pearl, Pink Pearl, and they are all trimmed in.....pink. The room we had was quite nice, quiet, great view, and, amazingly, under the Gold Pearl MDR (lower level). Biggest problem here was we never met our room steward for the first time on day 3, and my wife on day 5. We had to repeatedly ask for ice, and one day all the lighting in our room went out. I was able, after a search, find our steward, and he went into some side room, diddled a few things, and the lights came on. Again, I had to go to him to let him know they were working again. The food was not up to the usual standard, and several times it was difficult to find what we wanted for dinner. Several times we didn't even finish what we ordered. The disembarkation was the only day that the buffet scrambled eggs were done correctly....otherwise I ordered "over easy" . The bacon was limp, but, when we talked to the Executive Chef, there is bacon nearby that is crisp...but you have to request it. If you want to play trivia, GREAT! It started early in the morning, and went on all day. Bingo was way overpriced, many times the games were the center 9 (small "X") and at $20 for the tickets (3) it got very expensive very fast. After talking to a few of the ship staff, I got the impression that the SPLENDOR is not a happy ship. Whether this is because of senior staff, or contracts, whatever the reason, there is a wave of discontent. Maybe the 2 days of sailing without passengers will help that. All in all, it was ok...not great, not the worst. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2010
Embarkation - breeze, arrived at port around 11:30 and was on ship by noon. I love sailing from Norfolk. Ship - clean, easy to navigate mid-size ship. Pool area was spacious and plenty of lounge chairs at any given time. Solarium is ... Read More
Embarkation - breeze, arrived at port around 11:30 and was on ship by noon. I love sailing from Norfolk. Ship - clean, easy to navigate mid-size ship. Pool area was spacious and plenty of lounge chairs at any given time. Solarium is always a nice place on a RCCL ship. Most of the time people kept the kiddies out of the area, which was nice since we left our teenagers at home for some peace and quiet. Junior Suite was nice size, slightly larger than Carnival's balcolny rooms. Bathroom on the small size and no jacuzzi tub. Lifeboat drill was quick and the staff made it fun for once....reminded me of the Southwest stewardess'. Casino kinda small but enjoyed losing my money there anyway. One night was smoke free, which was a nice touch. Not very many activities on the ship. I found myself wondering around looking for something to do. Fitness area / Spa was ok, suprised they had no saunas or jacuzzis...missed that. Fellow cruisers - average age of 60+, but a very friendly group. Just made getting around a little slow. Very few kids as school is still in session till mid-June here. Service - Bar staff always friendly and quick. Room steward efficient, but nothing above and beyond. Dining room staff VERY slow and inefficient. After two nights of waiting almost 45 minutes to even get the appetizers, we decided to stick with the Winjammer buffet. Port - We loved Bermuda. The ability to buy a bus/ferry pass with unlimited day use for $12 and go wherever we went was wonderful. The island is clean, safe and everyone is very helpful and friendly. We even got our camera returned to us when it was left on a bus from Hamilton to St. George! Scuba Dived the second day. Good, but not our best dives ever. Food - Subpar. This is the third time I have been very disappointed with the food. The dinner menu selection is heavy on seafood, which if allergic, limits you. Steak could be ordered either med rare or med well. This really equated to raw or burnt and it was quite grizley. There was nothing that stuck out as good in the entire week except the Mongolian BBQ in the windjammer one night. The desserts were never tasty and seemed to come from a frozen Costco type variety. I have to give Carnival a huge "A" for food compared to RCCL. One more gripe. For what RCCL charges, why is the self serve ice cream only open a during Windjammer hours? Why is the drink station not open 24-7? It really annoyed me to not have basic coffee available to me unless it was during Winjammer hours...otherwise you pay for it, or need to order from room service. Carnival has this beat too. Disembarkation - great. We received our express tag given we were carrying off luggage. Started calling colors at 7:20am....ours at 7:40am. Very organized, was off ship, through customs and in a cab by 7:55am. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2010
Weather was perfect and Bermuda was beautiful. Rode the ferries and buses to get around. The ferries were quick but the buses were slow. If you want to see all the sites, then a taxi tour maybe the best bet. We went to the Crystal caves, ... Read More
Weather was perfect and Bermuda was beautiful. Rode the ferries and buses to get around. The ferries were quick but the buses were slow. If you want to see all the sites, then a taxi tour maybe the best bet. We went to the Crystal caves, Horseshoe beach, Hamilton and the Royal Dockyards shops and maritime museum. We never made it to St. Georges but we had been there before. The staff on the boat were wonderful and the dining in the My Fair Lady dining room was very good. The buffet was OK..nothing to get excited about. I was in an inside room that looked very worn and obviously did not get any updates in the recent dry dock. It had enough storage but was basically a place to sleep and shower only. You did not want to hang out there it was so small.This room was on the 7th deck and was shaped horizontally(felt cramped) and was next to a crew exit where they brought up luggage and was a little noisy at times. If you have this room, bring earplugs if you are a light sleeper. The bed was hard and not as comfortable as I would like. I wanted to save money this cruise but it definitely was smaller than I thought it would be! Luckily this was a 5 day only. Everything needed updating including the bed, chair and TV from 1990. The public rooms were nice though and the chairs in all those areas are comfortable. This is one of the oldest boats RCL has so my guess is she maybe retired in the near future. Who knows. It is obvious they are putting their money in the newer boats and the latest built ones. The shows in the theater were very good and we went to all but one comedian show. The captain and staff were wonderful and very personable and made the cruise. Great service!! This was a good cruise and fun. I would have liked another day in Bermuda but overall I cannot complain. Best weather ever and a great time of year to go! I do believe the cost was high for the cruise overall for 5 days. I do not know if some of that was due to port fees or not. I have found cruises for 7 days with NCL cheaper then this 5 day one. We chose this one to avoid flying and it was convenient for us to drive. The price for the room I was in was definitely too much that is for sure. The spa and fitness area was very nice and they had a great waiting area where you looked out aft to the ocean in a padded lounge chair and filled out your forms. That was nice and comfortable. Lots of seating on the decks but go to the Solarium early if you want a seat in the all adults retreat. They had a fun party at 11pm on the deck in Bermuda overnight and that was fun with lots of food and ice sculptures. Remember the old midnight buffet? It was like that but on the main pool deck. We were walking through the casino to check it out and a lady was screaming and she had one $38,000 on a slot machine. Incredible! I have never seen that happen on any cruise I have been on. We did not gamble but the casino had a lot of machines if that is your interest.The piano man in the Schooner Bar could play well but singing was not his thing if you know what I mean. They had a good rock band playing in the Spotlight Lounge every night so look for them. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2016
only had to travel 15 minutes to port. Rooms were great, but received very poor service in anytime dining. Recommend people sign up for designated time. anytime dining is like a mase that is difficult to get through. Service was lousy and ... Read More
only had to travel 15 minutes to port. Rooms were great, but received very poor service in anytime dining. Recommend people sign up for designated time. anytime dining is like a mase that is difficult to get through. Service was lousy and food was not what we ordered. But I will definitely cruise the sunshine again. Overall we had a great time. Free drinks in the casino, cookies in the room, Free bottle of wine, and we won another cruise. You can't beat those odds. Our Cabin Steward was fantastic, and the help from guest services was terrific. Smoking areas were the best we have ever seen, as many people would agree. Loved the three levels of Serinety, as well as the late movies. Great cruise except for anytime dining, buffett was ok, but a lot of cold fish. Guys was fantastic as was the omlet bar for breakfast. As a former restaurant mgr., I can assure you the hot foods were not hot. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
Carnival is reaching new lows each yr. Hard to book em any more, but we wanted to see Bermuda. The Food was a severe dissapointment. Service just as bad. We expect freshly cooked food in Dining Room, but this was not the case. ... Read More
Carnival is reaching new lows each yr. Hard to book em any more, but we wanted to see Bermuda. The Food was a severe dissapointment. Service just as bad. We expect freshly cooked food in Dining Room, but this was not the case. Entre's were all overcooked, dried out and obviously had been sitting under warming lamps for long times. Ordered a snapper entre that looked like dried out leather-rubbery. All meats are well done plus.. Lido buffet has long lines, dirty tables not bussed, and food that sits out way too long. Had a B-day and my wife ordered a whole chocolate cake to be delivered. Tried to cut into it and the entire icing layer peeled off like it was made of thin rubbery plastic. Awful .. Anytime dining means getting a beeper and sitting down 25 min later. Then having the staff rush your meal to turn the tables. They serve 2 dishes at once to each of us, even though we had no room at the small table for 2. Server puts dirty fork and knife on tablecloth instead of replacing or at least on the bread plate. The desserts look good but have no taste to them..do NOT order the Pumkin Pie if its on the menu..tastes like dried out zuccini clay. Coffee machines are out of order at lido for most of cruise. Had horrible sewage smell thruout the ship for a full night after leaving Bemuda. Casino full of chain smokers and staff take 30 min to get you a drink. Ship rocked continously every moment at sea..reminded me of the Miracle when they ran it for 4 months with an engine out of service on the Alaskan run. No more Capt reception with free drinks for GOLD members. only Diamond-Platinum. Soft serve ice cream machines often out of service. Always a wait for pizza, burgers cooked beyond well done. Splendor has turned into a cheap vegas style junket, where over half are cruising free or near free because of their casino credits. Its a sleazy experience . Read Less
Sail Date: May 2009
Ok first the bad!!! This was going to be a first cruise experience; we got pet sitters, took time off from work, left early to hit Norfolk terminal on time - everything was going well and then we were told we owed $800 more. Imagine our ... Read More
Ok first the bad!!! This was going to be a first cruise experience; we got pet sitters, took time off from work, left early to hit Norfolk terminal on time - everything was going well and then we were told we owed $800 more. Imagine our surprise since we had paid in-full when we booked in February for a May 2 trip. What is worse - no one could tell us why. Just pay up or don't board. We had to stand there for over an hour while they even tried to get there machines to show we paid (at one point it doubled the $800 to $1600!) - which we did since we were told we would lose the $1381.22 we had already paid for the Ocean view room if we didn't pay the $800. We were then told see the finance/accounting controller on board and to go to the Guest relations desk. We get there and are told nope you can't see him because he doesn't see guests. Throughout the trip we received many shrugged shoulders for questions related about this or even as simple as "is the pool 24 hours? or "will buses take us back to the parking lot?". I can understand if they are unsure but they just shrugged off our questions and sent us on our way.  The $800 was a gloomy cloud that ruined it for us. To make matters worse the last full day of the cruise they claimed that $400 didn't go through even though we had checked our credit card accounts. They made us pay that too after they made us come back to the desk several times because most of the guest relations folks had no idea what we were talking about when we came up. The guest relations desk folks were polite but by design very, very unhelpful. Finally we got to call RCI Customer office to be told our travel agent had mistakenly taken a discount we shouldn't have. A discount by the way that should have only cost us $300 to make up for the difference (if you go by our date of booking) and no one at RCI called to tell us was in error - I mean, we gave our date of birth when we did the on-boarding almost two weeks before sailing but they said we were marked for a senior discount and never told us! Therefore Royal in my eyes will always be the pirates of the sea. They went for an extra $500 that we probably would have spent on the boat anyway but with happy, relaxed grins on our faces. Remember RCI - happy people spend more.  Instead I spent the bare minimum I had to on the ship and was sad about the sudden upcharge and lack of help. It was sad that my happiest moment was getting off the ship and coming home!  We couldn't even hear over half of the announcements in our room during the day without running to open the door to hear them. The food was the same all the time everywhere - no variety! Always Asian or mediterranean, which is fine for  a night but not the whole trip. The toilet wouldn't work half the time, the bed curtain was missing and several drawers kept getting stuck out and wouldn't go back in without a lot of effort.  When it is all said and done it is obvious Royal didn't want the business of us two 25-45 somethings, and we are now happy to oblige by taking our future wedding plans and wedding guests elsewhere.  GOOD Stuff still happened: The only fantastic persons was Wendy and Haimi (sorry if we got the name spelled wrong). They were always friendly, helpful and made us feel like we were welcome. They even gave us a quick towel folding lesson! The two Bermuda excursions were also fantastic. We did Hartley's helmet dive - Greg H. himself took our group out and even if you can't swim and don't like to go under water or get your hair wet you will enjoy this! BTW - you won't get your hair wet because the helmet you put on to go under is perfect, plenty of oxygen and no water gets in the helmet. We loved him and Rolf (sorry again if named is wrong!) Greg obviously loves the marine life and what he does. We love our CD with pictures. A few young ladies were scared to go under and he showed a great deal of patience and superb customer service trying to balance everyone's experience and ensuring we all had a chance for this great adventure. He saved our cruise trip from being a complete unhappy disaster!  The cave tour to the Prospero caves at the Grotto hotel was also fantastic - we even swam in the underground cave lagoon; a little cold but a fun experience to brag about!  It is amazing to hear about its formation but sad to see that previous tours had left trash...so please don't.  On our own we went to Alexandria Battery beach to pick up tons of sea glass (it isn't much of a beach but what fun we had picking up the glass) and Dorey snorkel park. Both very lovely - the water is so blue! It is obvious that the Bermudians care about their home and keep it very clean. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Food was served cold most nights in the dining room. Guys was our savior. Food selection in dining room very limited. The entertainment or lack of, was horrible. The Floor shows are 2nd rate and they no longer have a show band. It's ... Read More
Food was served cold most nights in the dining room. Guys was our savior. Food selection in dining room very limited. The entertainment or lack of, was horrible. The Floor shows are 2nd rate and they no longer have a show band. It's obvious they are cutting corners and staff is limited. No nightlife except for the casino. The staff where all very friendly. They all really work hard to be helpful. The bars where under staffed and getting a drink was a challenge. The food has always been good on all of the previous cruises and I'm not a picky eater, most of it tasted like hospital food. Entertainment, Nightlife, Music, Floor Shows etc. where all absolutely a joke. This was a short but expensive Cruise and I knew when we had to wait 45 minutes to get in the dining room the first night, it wasn't looking good. I guess everyone else shared the same dining experience. We walked right in the next 2 nights and we opted out on the dining room the last 2 nights. The Fun Ship ain't no fun anymore! This was my 6th cruise with Carnival and unfortunately my last. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2009
This was our first cruise, and it was a post poned honeymoon that my husband & I never have had the time to take. It was just the two of us and we were definitely on a budget. We opted for one of the interior rooms, but made sure we ... Read More
This was our first cruise, and it was a post poned honeymoon that my husband & I never have had the time to take. It was just the two of us and we were definitely on a budget. We opted for one of the interior rooms, but made sure we were on one of the higher floors. We stayed on the 8th floor of the Grandeur. The room was actually bigger than I had imagined. The bed was very comfy, except that since its two twins pushed together to make a queen, sometimes we would wake up with a big crack in the middle of the bed it seemed like because the mattresses didnt sit up beside each other very well. The room was always very clean, the maid staff was great! We only saw them on the first day, so they could tell us what to do with towels and the little cards that go in the key slots on the door. After that we never saw them...only the remnants of always coming back to a clean room! The entertainment on board was pretty good. We saw a movie in the palladium theater on a rainy day. And we went to one of the late night shows in one of the lounges. We didnt see the comedian or anything like that, we stayed busy doing our own thing most of the cruise.The pool in the Solarium was our favorite...probably because its 16+ to get in (or supposed to be anyway!!!) The pool outside was always really loud with music. There were a lot of families with kids, and teenagers in that area. So we stayed in the Solarium where it was much quieter, I could read and still get some sun because they opened up the glass roof when the weather was nice. I also layed out on the top deck (deck 10) at the back of the ship by the rock wall. Its fairly quiet back there also, and not a lot of traffic because the rock wall isnt always open.The drinks were always very good, and pretty strong! Which surprised me (pleasantly). They were usually between $7.00-$9.00 (with a 15% gratuity already included in the price) so we never tipped ontop of the price. Bermuda was GORGEOUS. I cant wait to go back. We were docked in the Royal Naval Dockyard. We opted to go to the beach the first day we were there. The beach was beautiful, and not very crowded. We took the bus (which is a great way to get around there! I highly reccomend it!) to the beach for the day, and then back to the ship in the early afternoon to grab some food. Then we took the ferry (your bus pass is good for the ferry too) over to Hamilton. Unfortunately, the town was closed because of a holiday while we were there, but otherwise it looked like it had a lot to do.We were going to eat dinner in Bermuda...there are two places right near the dock, the Frog & Onion (mostly burgers...kind of a pub type place) and Bonefish. We ended up not eating at either because Bonefish was pretty pricey for dinner, and we weren't in the mood for burgers. Now, for the bad..... since this was our first cruise we had read reviews, asked friends and done as much research as we could before going. One of the main things that we were looking forward to was the food on the ship. You always hear about how good the food is and how theres always an abundance, but for us this was no where near the case.The food quality was quite poor in both our opinions. While there was plenty to choose from in the Windjammer, the food lacked taste and quality. I compared it to a low-grade golden corral (if that). Please keep in mind this was merely our experience... Even at dinner, the food was very poor. We chose the my time dining (which i wouldnt do again), and ate in the main dining room 4 out of the 5 nights we were onboard. One night I had shrimp ravioli that was pretty good, and other night we had lobster that was good. Other than those two nights, both myself and my husband left feeling not very full because we didnt eat our entire meal because of the taste. The my time dining seemed very chaotic. We had a different waiter every night, and we always felt rushed. The traditional dining part of the restaurant seemed much more calm, and we noticed that the waiters would act differently toward their tables. For instance, you always hear about people saying they had lobster one night and their waiter asked if they'd like more? Well they never asked us. As a matter of fact, we noticed a table that had traditional dining- same waiter every night, and they waiter came out with big plates of lobster tails asking his table if they wanted more. Our waiter never asked us...he barely ever came to our table! And I honestly dont think it was just that one night, each night we had someone different, and none of them were overly friendly or helpful. All in all, we had a good time. I think we might go back again.... it might take some convincing on my part though. I was very disappointed in the food quality, however... I have heard rumors from people that the food on another line has gone by the wayside as well, due to cutting costs instead of upping ticket prices. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2005
I recently returned from a cruise to Bermuda. This was my 6th cruise and absolutely one of the best. Bermuda is a beautiful island. Compared to the islands of the Caribbean it has to be my favorite. The high standards and lack of poverty ... Read More
I recently returned from a cruise to Bermuda. This was my 6th cruise and absolutely one of the best. Bermuda is a beautiful island. Compared to the islands of the Caribbean it has to be my favorite. The high standards and lack of poverty on this island are definite plusses. This was my first cruise on Celebrity lines and I have to give it 5 stars. I admit I was apprehensive because of the size and age of the ship. Once aboard I was amazed at how good the ship looked. The bar areas, dining areas, shops, etc.. were in great condition. Embarkation took about 5 minutes. My hat goes off to Norfolk. The crew was the best I have ever had. Very professional and constant pampering. Our waiter Jafry and assistant waiter Iwayans were excellent. Such hard workers and they took their jobs very seriously. The entertainment was so so, although I did enjoy the comedian and the band Illusion very much. Debarkation was also very easy. The seas were somewhat rough on the way back, but any time you cruise in the Atlantic you should expect this to happen. I hope that Celebrity will consider returning to the port of Norfolk. It was a wonderful cruise and I will definitely sail with Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2005
We found the Norfolk terminal easy to find. We were on the boat very quickly. Upgraded from a quad outside to a suite once we got on board. We found the ship to be very clean and in good condition. It is not glitzy, but we knew that when ... Read More
We found the Norfolk terminal easy to find. We were on the boat very quickly. Upgraded from a quad outside to a suite once we got on board. We found the ship to be very clean and in good condition. It is not glitzy, but we knew that when we booked it. We wanted to go to Bermuda and thought this was a good way to go. We had read the reviews regarding rough seas. This is correct. There is some rough sea just after leaving Norfolk and coming back in. Going we had clear skies, but still had some real sway. Coming back we had a storm with swells. Lots of people were sick. This is a smaller boat and you will feel the movement. During the storm, you could not walk down the hall without running into the walls. The staff was very attentive. The shows were pretty cheesy with 2 nights of a comedian we enjoyed, but found the Celebrity dancer shows the other 3 nights to be less than entertaining. The casino is small, but adequate with $5 blackjack tables. The casino is closed while in Bermuda. The food was good. It was better than on Carnival or Royal Caribbean cruises I have been on. We really liked our suite. It had a king bed, a sleeper sofa and still could handle a rollaway. Had a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom, although, my family would never use a tub on a cruise. The pool area was typical with salt water pools. Had trouble getting a lounge chair at times when at sea. The water in the pool splashed out as the ship swayed. I thought Bermuda was a unique island. It is very clean and the people are friendly. We are big beach people and did not find the Bermuda beaches to be to our liking as much as those in Caymans, Virgin Islands or Mexico. The beaches are much smaller in Bermuda. The weather is great in Bermuda as it was 83 with no humidity in late June. We did the Hartley Helmut Dive excursion. Some people may find it too scripted, but my entire family loved it and would do it again. The other days in Bermuda we went to Horseshoe Bay and Tobacco Bay beach. Tobacco Bay was very small, about 50 yards wide, but had a great pool-like cove with no waves that was great for swimming and snorkeling. Horseshoe Bay was bigger and scenic, but very crowded. We choose these two beaches because they had facilities for eating and changing and were convenient to the ship. You could easily walk to Tobacco Bay while docked in St. George. Horseshoe Bay was a $16 taxi ride from the Hamilton stop. The ship was literally parked on main street in Hamilton, very convenient. Overall, if you like to cruise, the Horizon is a very clean, nice ship, with a good staff and the food is good as compared to others. I would not go as far as others that say it compares to the best restaurants they have ever eaten at, but it is better than 4 other cruises I have been on. The burgers and hot dogs at the grill were really good as was the pasta at the pasta bar. We ate in the main dining room every night and found the menu to always have and entree we liked, but did not find any side items that were that good. If you are looking for glitzy with high octane shows, this may not be the ship for you. You also should seriously consider the rough seas issue. Even in late June, this boat did sway, and, when a storm came up, it was very tough to handle the sway on this boat. Take lots of SCOPACE (the patch in a tablet form), it works well. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2005
We selected this particular cruise based on the very reasonable price for a "best available outside cabin" (which resulted in a cat 05), the easy access to Norfolk from our home in NC, our desire to see Bermuda as well as our ... Read More
We selected this particular cruise based on the very reasonable price for a "best available outside cabin" (which resulted in a cat 05), the easy access to Norfolk from our home in NC, our desire to see Bermuda as well as our previous wonderful experience with Celebrity on our first cruise three years ago -- It was just coincidence that our ship was again the Horizon. We were initially a little concerned over the fact that the ship would be 3 1/2 years older and scheduled to depart from the Celebrity fleet this fall but we were pleasantly surprised that the evidences of wear and tear were minimal. Embarking was a breeze as was disembarking - Our hats are off to the port of Norfolk/Celebrity as we found it much better organized than Miami. The food in the main dining room was superb at all three meals and very passable in the buffet. A very nice new touch was the excellent Sushi service each afternoon in a portion of the buffet area which made a perfect snack for we late seating diners. The standard outside cabins on Horizon are a very comfortable 172 sq ft with more than adequate storage. The service staff on Horizon were all truly excellent and upon questioning several of them they confessed that they much preferred working the smaller ships (Horizon and Zenith) and felt a sense of camaraderie with fellow staff members and more chance to get to know the passengers. This is a wonderful way to experience Bermuda with a day and a half in St. George and four days in Hamilton with your luxury hotel tied up right in the middle of downtown. With a four day unlimited bus/ferry pass at just $35 each and a good guide book there is absolutely no reason to book the overpriced ship's excursions. Bermuda is truly different from the Caribbean Islands with an almost total absence of poverty and the most friendly native populace we have experienced anywhere in our travels. In closing we have to say that this may have been the all-time best vacation we have experienced and Bermuda is on our "will return" list!! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2005
I read many reviews of the Horizon before leaving Norfolk on June 25 for a six night cruise. I had some concerns but I am happy to report that the cruise was absolutely fabulous. We were on board the ship and eating lunch in less than ... Read More
I read many reviews of the Horizon before leaving Norfolk on June 25 for a six night cruise. I had some concerns but I am happy to report that the cruise was absolutely fabulous. We were on board the ship and eating lunch in less than twenty minutes. We had our swimsuits in our carry on luggage so we were on the pool deck in rapid time. The excellent service began immediately. The Horizon crew was truly remarkable and pampered us in every way. The food was excellent in all venues. We had the early seating in the Starlight Dining Room and were assigned to Table 61. Our waiter Jafry and our assistant waiter Iwayans were cordial, informative and professional. They were 5 star in every sense of the word. We usually had breakfast in the Coral Seas Cafe which offered a huge variety and surely had something for everyone. The entertainment was excellent. We particularly enjoyed the band Illusion. They were very versatile and we only wish they had played more. The comedian, Dave Gavin was great. Heaven must be like Bermuda. I hope to return with my family in the very near future. I am sad that the Horizon has been sold as I would take this same cruise again if available. I hope Celebrity will return to Norfolk when our new terminal is completed. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2005
Just back from a wonderful six days on the Horizon. I was a bit concerned by some of the reviews that I read concerning the condition of this ship and the embarkation in Norfolk. But for the excellent rate we received booking this cruise ... Read More
Just back from a wonderful six days on the Horizon. I was a bit concerned by some of the reviews that I read concerning the condition of this ship and the embarkation in Norfolk. But for the excellent rate we received booking this cruise we were willing to take a chance, we are Captains Club members and booked a guaranteed category 9 stateroom, But much to our surprise we were upgraded to an outside category 6. This ship has one of the best crews we have ever encountered, Every crew member we met was a true professional, from the room steward up to the captain. The ship is small by today's standards and is very easy to get around. The embarkation took a total of 8 minutes (I timed it). we practically walked right on the ship. The room is 172 sq ft with plenty of storage for those who tend to over pack. The food was excellent in the Starlight rest. Just so- so in the Coral Seas Cafe. Yes, there were a few stains here and there on the carpets in the public areas and the mattresses in our cabin were in need of replacement, but overall we thoroughly enjoyed this ship and we would highly recommend it to anyone wishing to cruise to Bermuda on her before she is sold at the end of the season. Read Less

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