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Serenade of the Seas Review

Serenade of the Seas
Serenade of the Seas
2019 Best for Service

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Serenade of the Seas
4.5 / 5.0 Cruise Critic Editor Rating
to book


Has both an indoor and outdoor pool, as well as multiple dining venues


Lack of Royal Caribbean's signature outdoor attractions might disappoint some cruisers

Bottom Line

Good value-for-money choice for families and groups


Passengers 2,146
Crew 884
Passenger to Crew 2.43:1
Launched 2003
Shore Excursions 598

Serenade of the Seas Overview

Serenade of the Seas is the third Radiance-class ship in Royal Caribbean's fleet. The 90,090-ton, 2,100-passenger vessel fits just within Panamax measurements (with one foot on either side to spare), which means it, like Radiance, Brilliance and Jewel of the Seas, has maximum geographic flexibility and can sail to and from just about any region.

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That flexibility extends to the onboard milieu. Serenade of the Seas' greatest strength is that it offers plenty of options, from dining to entertainment, and yet remains a mid-sized ship. It's a good choice for a wide range of traveler -- including families, singles, couples and groups.

Royal Caribbean carries through this ship the Radiance-class' most interesting distinction is the nearly three acres of exterior glass employed in its design -- including glass elevators with ocean views -- that incorporates the outdoors, beautifully, onboard.

The effect is simply dazzling -- and there are remarkable views from nearly every public room. The decorating scheme itself emphasizes elegance, grace, and beauty, and creates quite a harmonious environment. The ship is very easy to navigate, with indoor public rooms concentrated on decks five and six and more-active areas -- sports deck, pools, spa, fitness center -- on decks 11 and 12.


Included with your cruise fare:

  • Meals in the Reflections Dining Room and Windjammer Marketplace, plus snacks and meals at Park Cafe; room service breakfast (continental breakfast options only)
  • Shows in the main theater and most daily events and activities, unless otherwise noted
  • Use of the gym, but not most classes
  • Use of the rock climbing wall, Sports Court, mini-golf course and kid’s water slide
  • Adventure Ocean Kids club activities through 10 p.m.
  • Gratuities, only if you booked your cruise in Australia and New Zealand in AU and NZ dollars

Not included with your cruise fare:

  • Daily gratuities of $14.50 per person, per day for anyone staying in a Junior Suite or below or $17.50 per person, per day for those staying in Grand Suites and above
  • Room service orders (except complimentary continental breakfast)
  • All drinks except water, tea (including iced tea), coffee, lemonade and select juices from Windjammer Buffet or Rita’s Bar
  • Most specialty restaurants
  • Spa and salon services, most fitness classes
  • Auto-gratuities (18 percent) added to all specialty dining reservations, as well as beverage, spa and salon purchases
  • Select activities including but not limited to arts and crafts classes, bingo, arcade play, alcohol tastings, sushi classes and casino gaming
  • Adventure Ocean programs after 10:00 p.m.
  • Shore excursions
  • Wi-Fi
  • Photos and art purchases

Fellow Passengers

While passengers onboard will vary based on itinerary and time of year, Serenade of the Seas has captured a wide ranging passenger demographic (older in non-school holiday periods, more families during winter and summer holidays). The ship's appeal is, like its other Radiance class counterparts, is its size. It's new enough to feature contemporary amenities (like balconies and alternative restaurants) and yet -- not so huge as Voyager class vessels.

Royal Caribbean Serenade of the Seas Dress Code

Daytime: The dress code onboard is cruise casual.

Evening: Expect a formal night and at least one "smart casual" dinner, which means business formal, thought not quite black tie (think dress slacks and nice sweaters). Only a handful of men wore tuxedos on formal night, and the majority of women passed on the full-length gowns in favor of shorter cocktail dresses.

Not permitted: Tank tops are prohibited in the main dining room and specialty restaurants at dinner. Shoes must be worn in all dining venues at all times.

For more information, visit Cruise Line Dress Codes: Royal Caribbean.

Royal Caribbean Serenade of the Seas Awards

Cruisers’ Choice Awards

2019 Best for Service
2018 Best for Families
2013 Best Overall

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Royal Caribbean Serenade of the Seas Member Reviews

Serenade of the Seas
Sail Date: Feb 2020
As our cruise date approached, I was a little nervous about going on the Serenade of the Seas by Royal Caribbean....Read More
Serenade of the Seas
Sail Date: Sep 2019
Serenade of the Seas Cabin 1050 suite I was concerned about the food as many reviews indicated that the food was not good. We did not find that to be true at all....Read More
Serenade of the Seas
Lachezar Doychinov
Sail Date: Apr 2019
We will certainly recommend Serenade of the Seas to our friends....Read More
Serenade of the Seas
Sail Date: Mar 2020
The March 2nd sailing of the Serenade of the Seas was the first back to back cruise we had ever had the pleasure of taking....Read More

Royal Caribbean International Fleet