10 Royal Caribbean Ovation of the Seas Cruise Reviews for Senior Cruises to Asia

We went for this ship because of the advertising and the promises for the sail of a lifetime, Instead we experienced the worst cruise ever, 3 hours in Beijing lined up to board ship,booked a Junior Suite and unlike other ships it ... Read More
We went for this ship because of the advertising and the promises for the sail of a lifetime, Instead we experienced the worst cruise ever, 3 hours in Beijing lined up to board ship,booked a Junior Suite and unlike other ships it counted for no privileges at all even though it was advertised that suites would have there own speciality dining room when we asked why we couldn't make a reservation we were told that the restaurant was fully booked even though we paid the extra money for the privilege. The main dining area has a limited selection and is almost the same menu every day and the food is always cold and sloppy, speciality pay for restaurants are crap eg: Jamies Italian, Chops etc: overpriced and even home cooking would make it look like rubbish. Entertainment was poor and act mostly provided buy the crew were lame. Ports and Shore excursions should have been named shore extortion's, eg: $75.00 US per person for a bus to the centre of the city on a make your own way excursion and the price in a Taxi $18.00 for 2 to the same place. 2 hours lined up to just get off the ship in Singapore was the end of our cruise from hell NEVER AGAIN Royal Caribbean.....4500 People on board with no direction and poor facilities Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
I chose this cruise as part of a tour to China Warriors and Walls experience. Embarkation at Tianjin was utter chaos, queues to check-in were chaotic, unorganised, and very very long. The immigration process was equally bad taking hours ... Read More
I chose this cruise as part of a tour to China Warriors and Walls experience. Embarkation at Tianjin was utter chaos, queues to check-in were chaotic, unorganised, and very very long. The immigration process was equally bad taking hours queuing. Our luggage was taken at 11.15am but was not delivered to the cabin until 8.20pm. The food in the main restaurants was poor. Mashed potato, undercooked carrot and broccoli served with every main meal. Service disorganised and waiters very defensive when complaints made about food being cold. We abandoned the main restaurants and went to the self service where at least the food was hot even though finding a table was a struggle. Drinks were very expensive with 18% tax and gratuity added approximately $22 for 2 drinks. The specialty restaurants were excelkent. Wonderlad was a fabulous experience and Chops Grill superb. Entertainment was poor. Insufficient shore excursions for the number of passengers on board. There are very classy shops in the Royal Promenade, but the sales items sold each night on stalls down the centre are complete rubbish, cheap tat that would not be sold in any if the shops on board. Debarkation at Singapore was horrendous. The ship was 5 hours delayed into port due to a medical incident which meant transfer times to airports etc were disrupted greatly. Passengers were told to join the express exit carrying their own luggage which resulted in hundreds of people queuing for over 2 hours to debark. Unfortunately the Ovation of the Seas is not on my favourites list and I cannot recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We wanted a taste of Vietnam and this cruise after returning from London to Hong Kong was a good way to break up the trip to Adelaide. The good First of all the ship itself is gorgeous, the cabin was excellent and I had the best ... Read More
We wanted a taste of Vietnam and this cruise after returning from London to Hong Kong was a good way to break up the trip to Adelaide. The good First of all the ship itself is gorgeous, the cabin was excellent and I had the best night's sleep. Their care and attention in preventing any outbreaks of norovirus was excellent with being guided to the wash basins outside the main buffet dining room Windjammer. Children will enjoy this ship but many of the things are extra cost. The staff were excellent and tried to assist with the things that were horrendous. The entertainment Pixels was excellent and very professional. The Bad The crowds were unbelievable and very off putting. This went hand in hand with the noise, the pushing and the shoving. And I am horrified to say- the spitting! The ship left from Hong Kong and probably 95% of the passengers were Chinese. The menus catered for these passengers. The programs on the TV catered mainly for Chinese. Anytime it was necessary to queue this was forgotten or just not adhered to - the crew tried their best but giving announcements in English to a crowd of Chinese is just not going to work. I don't know why it is so hard to have the tenders available to take passengers back to the ship. Coming back from Nha Trang - after the bus ride there was a wait in the very hot sun and humidity of over an hour to get on a tender. The food was not great and all of the complimentary restaurants had the same menu. The speciality restaurants had a charge of US$41 per head. The shops on board are all designer labels and not an option for most travellers that actually save for a holiday. The Spa on board - so,so - not particularly professional. If you wanted to watch a movie in your cabin it cost US$15.95 Disembarkation from the ship was OK but after this point getting into Hong Kong was a nightmare. 100's waiting for taxis. If I were travelling with a younger family I might consider the ship again but certainly not from an Asian port. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
The shows every night were average or below standards and guests have to queued up a long line to get in. Not too many entertainments spots within the ship liked we experiences with Voyager of the Seas or Navigator of the Seas before. A la ... Read More
The shows every night were average or below standards and guests have to queued up a long line to get in. Not too many entertainments spots within the ship liked we experiences with Voyager of the Seas or Navigator of the Seas before. A la cart foods in the restaurant were quite simple and repeated the same every 2 nights. Big chaos in the restaurant in the first few days, guests had to queue up a long line to get in and in the same table some guests already finished dessert and another still waiting for appetizers and finally they forgot to serve tea or coffee after meals. Very disappointed experience so a lot of guests have chosen to go to the Buffet areas instead. We did book 5 Balcony rooms but ended up with 4 Balcony rooms ( 8 completely new to Royal Caribbean) in deck 9 and we had to stay in Interior state room in deck 12 ( we are Gold member of Royal Caribbean). We did complained about this several times but nothing happened. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Having only been on 1 cruise prior a short 3 day one, we chose this cruise purely for the ship. The location was then selected and as it had a number of stops to break up the trip and went for this one with stops in Vietnam and Thailand ... Read More
Having only been on 1 cruise prior a short 3 day one, we chose this cruise purely for the ship. The location was then selected and as it had a number of stops to break up the trip and went for this one with stops in Vietnam and Thailand before arriving in Singapore. We also had not visited HK before so that was an added bonus to fly in a few days prior to look around. Despite the stops, we could have done with more days at sea as there was so much to do on the ship. The ocean was flat all the way and was perfect. The weather had a few overcast days but only rained once or twice. We expected for the size of the ship it would be overcrowded and embarkation and disembarkation at the Ports and pre/post cruise would be a nightmaree but it was a painless experience. Some of the prior reviews rated this negatively and I guess they have put more focus on this as the wait times were minimal and we got on and off the boat easily. For the number of people (around 4300 guests) it did not feel crowded at all, there was always plenty of space. We had an interior stateroom with a virtual balcony (9185) and it was excellent. We have stayed in a balcony room before so wasn't sure what to expect but I was more than happy with the room. Friends stayed in a balcony room and the size and layout was exactly the same except for the balcony. The virtual screen provided a good look at what was going on outside the ship but we hardly noticed as we were never in our room. Once we left in the morning we didn't return until night before getting ready for dinner or to go out. We did the most of the activities on board, Eye in the Sky, I-Fly (sky diving), roller staking, bumper cars, rock climbing, basketball, ping pong etc. There was a lot to keep you occupied. All of which was great fun. I travelled with a group of 10 (5 couples, no children). There were not many young kids on board that we saw, and same for teenagers. However, there were specific kid and teenage activities arranged and the sporting area (ping pong, roller skating, basketball, volleyball, bumper cars, xbox lounges, foozball etc.) as well as the arcade would be awesome for them, it was pretty impressive. My teenage son was a bit envious he didn't come! We saw the Love Legs show (may have the name wrong) which was excellent. Great singers and performers. Entertainment was generally high quality. The ship has a huge lounge called the 270 which has screens that cover all windows. One of the shows Pixels that you had to book for showcased the facility with moving screens, light show etc. The show was a bit out there but it was good to see the full capability of the facility which is pretty amazing. The food was excellent in most of the facilities. Fine Dining was a bit disappointing and the standard was ok, but not great. We had better meals in the Windjammer (buffet) and ate there on most occasions. I think this was consistent with most travellers as we tried fine dining again on day 4 or so and there was hardly anyone there and they were so grateful we went back. Again, meal was ok and we didn't return again. The buffet at Windjammer was very good quality, could not fault it. So much variety and suffice to say we ate a lot! We also pre-booked Jamie Oliver and Chops Steakhouse both of which were very good as well. The food was unlimited and we paid around $35-40 pp pre-booked and it was well worth it. Plenty of other places to eat but we did not try them all. Also did room service breakfast before tours in Port and this was also good. A few in our group smoked and there was a good area on the pool deck with nice lounges and you could open the windows. A few commented this was a lot better than other cruises where you can be stuck in a tiny, crappy area. We booked our own tours rather than go with the boats which was perfect for a group. We used a Company called "Shore Excursions" in both Vietnam and Thailand. It was much better as we did not have to wait for other people and could adjust the itinerary on the day. The itineraries and tour guides were great and would highly recommend this as well. As you can see by my novel - we loved our time on Ovation!!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Just wanted a short holiday cruise so chose this one. Ship is magnificent very large!!! Everything was carried out well. Beautiful meals in the 3 restaurants. All the little eateries were great as well. We were on a cruise with about 4000 ... Read More
Just wanted a short holiday cruise so chose this one. Ship is magnificent very large!!! Everything was carried out well. Beautiful meals in the 3 restaurants. All the little eateries were great as well. We were on a cruise with about 4000 chinese which was a little daunting but the staff treated us "internationals" very well indeed.As only 6 day cruise ports were limited Beijing Kumamoto and Hong Kong. We made some great friends who we hope to keep in contact with in the future. Probably would not go on an all asian cruise again. Would rather leave from Australia and return to Australia. I am not keen on flying so probably would stick to just flying to or from Hawaii and cruising the other way. Maybe just around Australia next time. Ovation was absolutely beautiful and I would recommend it to anyone, as I said very large and did not feel much movement from the rough seas we experienced. As I said limited Ports we had adays tour of Beijing going to Forbidden city, Jade factory, great wall and a health clinic. In Kumamoto we caught the bullet train in to see the Castle and had a bite to eat before getting normal train back to meet up with the shuttle to take us back to the ship. Hong Kong was great shopped and went sight seeing. We dined at three restaurants and found the service and the food wonderful So in all a lovely cruise> Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
First, we have cruised over 50 cruises with different cruise lines. Good- new technology was awesome. We loved the Pixels show in the 270 degrees theater. Also the North Star, I-Fly, bumper cars, Bionic bar were all very nice. ... Read More
First, we have cruised over 50 cruises with different cruise lines. Good- new technology was awesome. We loved the Pixels show in the 270 degrees theater. Also the North Star, I-Fly, bumper cars, Bionic bar were all very nice. Cabins: The ship was very nice with the newest technologies. The cabinet and associated spaces are generous, with amply storage, a nice size bathroom, large flat-screen tv, two USB connections for charging your devices, a euro connection and two US 110 plugs. This variety of electrical types and quantities are equal to or superior to most of the ships we has cruised. This probably falls under "service", but the cabin attendant was new to the job, at best. On several occasions, we had to request essential items, over the past 32 years of cruising, we have come to expect as "standard", like two towels & facecloth, a shower mat, soap in the shower dispensers, ice when an ice bucket & bottle of Zinfandel are present, I think a lot of this poor service can be traced back to mandatory gratuities. Dining - specialty dining package purchased and we still had to pay extra for some item. (Lobster, filet mignon). Food was no different than in regular dining rooms. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We felt in love with cruising after our retirement. This was our second time with Royal Caribbean. Because this Ovation Of The Seas, advertised as a mega new ship, my husband and I would like to have a go as we have never been on such ... Read More
We felt in love with cruising after our retirement. This was our second time with Royal Caribbean. Because this Ovation Of The Seas, advertised as a mega new ship, my husband and I would like to have a go as we have never been on such sized ship before. A wrong decision, extremely disappointed. Compared with Princess, Holland American and Celebrity cruises etc what we had in the past, this mega ship was no better than the Costa Victoria. Dining was hopeless, portions served in the main restaurants were small , [though we could do the double helping]. For example, lamb shank, it was originally small in size, but they cut the shank into half to serve on the plate, never seen on any ship before. The buffet area was like a battle field, food was ordinary , stir fry meat, fried rice, noodle and some oriental stews. The salad greens were the best among all. Something like sausages meat loaf served as carvery and one night we had roast pork belly. Cooked vegies was not enough. Over all, far from our expectation. Apart from that, the quality of the passengers was another problem. It was a big relief for us once we disembarked and vowed never again ! Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
We chose this ship to take in Vietnam, South Korea and China, however, the Ovation of the Seas has 4,000 guests with very inexperienced staff especially when it came to the excursions and getting off at the ports! In Ho Chi Mihn City (Phu ... Read More
We chose this ship to take in Vietnam, South Korea and China, however, the Ovation of the Seas has 4,000 guests with very inexperienced staff especially when it came to the excursions and getting off at the ports! In Ho Chi Mihn City (Phu My) Vietnam, we were told to go to collect our tour tickets at 7.45am and we actually lined up at 7.30am, only to find that the line was almost to the end of the ship and many many guests were pushing into the line with no staff controlling the queue, so, consequently we actually got down in the Theatre (where every tour was departing from) at 8.30am and finally left 9am. This tour was only a short event so didn't impact us too much! The experience at Xiamen, China was a disaster!! Our tour was only supposed to be for 3 1/2 - 4hrs - We waited in the queue on the ship again from 10am and finally got down in the ferry terminal at 11.00am and stood in another queue from 11.00 until 12.30pm when we finally boarded our ferry!! We had a very inexperienced guide who gave us no information, just walked and walked and eventually we asked for a "toilet" stop and rest because it was really hot! We visited a couple of different places walking up and down and around in the heat with NO water supplied (fortunately we had one bottle but NO food)! It was a very pretty village but with no information from the guide, it wasn't very enjoyable so we all had had enough and asked to go back to the ship, so, after all our group was together at 3.45pm we headed to catch the ferry back, however, our guide took us to the wrong area and then we had to walk right back around again to the right entrance and then stand for a bit over an hour before we finally got a ferry! All in all, a tour that should have been back early afternoon finally arrived back after 5pm. Then there were no signs to direct us back to the ship and consequently we all walked the wrong way and had to walk right around the whole building and go through customs again. From the Port itself, it is a long walk back to the ship and after the terrible tour we had experienced we were not at all impressed. In fact, Royal Caribbean refunded half the price of our tours after we all complained! We actually cancelled our excursion to Seoul because we had booked a 7hr tour and couldn't go through all that again and we are so glad we did because the ship was meant to leave the port of Seoul at 7pm and in fact the ship was still receiving passengers after 8.30pm! All in all, the Ovation of the Seas is a beautiful ship, but, too big to manage 4,000 guests with not enough experienced staff to make the ports visits run smoothly! We have travelled with Royal Caribbean before but will never go on a ship of this size again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We had a starboard side balcony cabin on deck 13. the overhang was great to keep the sun and rain off of us. however it did have a drawback of blocking your view to look up. another problem with deck 13 is at about 5 a.m. the workers must ... Read More
We had a starboard side balcony cabin on deck 13. the overhang was great to keep the sun and rain off of us. however it did have a drawback of blocking your view to look up. another problem with deck 13 is at about 5 a.m. the workers must clean or straighten the pool chairs on deck 14. It was noisy and we could hear the banging of things moving around above the ceiling. The storage above the bed is a great improvement over the older, smaller ships we have been on. the room had 22 hangers! and the Frig worked very well keeping things cold (not typical on our other 13 ships). I heard so many complaints about the elevators/lifts. A couple never left deck 2 for several days after embarkation. don't know if they were undergoing maintenance or what. the elevators seemed slow to get to the floors. Don't know if there are too few for the amount of people or if the complex programming needed to optimize operations still needed adjustment. The ship is beautiful and the art work is progressive and colorful. The i-pads they have throughout the ship for you to search or schedule activities with didn't work too well. They were slow, froze up, etc. We were impressed with Windjammer although we didn't like washing our hands every time to get in. The food seemed better and a wider selection than in past RCCL cruises. they were prepared for the amount of people who go there embarkation day. They didn't clean up the wash area often enough; paper towels ended up in the sink and on the floor. plus, this activity on the starboard side took up too much room to have smooth egress/exit flow of people during peak times. We also liked the self dispensers for soda and other cold drinks. They worked well and tasted good. Bumper cars often had up to 7 out of service leaving only 11 operational. Heard a few complaints about 40 minute wait times for this. i-fly was fun. Book this before you board or you might not get a time slot. At least on this ship they must have found someone capable to make scrambled eggs. They were not runny or mushy. RCCL didn't provide port maps at the stops so seeing the talks about the ports were beneficial to us. We did not like the ship's musical shows. But others might like the loud music with contemporary dance. The professional entertainers were above average. We only had one shore excursion thru the ship and it was terrible. so don't judge my rating of them by our one bad experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Ovation of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 3.4
Entertainment 5.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 5.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.1
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 4.0 3.3

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