As the smallest ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet, Grandeur of the Seas retains the classic charm of a 20th century cruise ship, but with meticulous updating and maintenance of public areas. Only the cabins lack modern décor.
The deck plan flows smoothly, focused around a multi-deck Centrum. Some lower decks are split between cabins and public space. The ship features a nice blend of included and for-fee dining options, with a main dining room that goes beyond what we’ve experienced on larger ships, in both service and execution of the menu.
Though Grandeur lacks splashy top-deck attractions found on larger ships, it has adequate pool and sun deck space for its 1,992 passengers, including an adults-only Solarium pool and pair of hot tubs.
Grandeur is a ship that beckons to both new and seasoned cruisers looking for a simplified, lower-cost option for cruising the Caribbean.
From Decks 4 through 8, everything of importance on Grandeur or “Lady G,” as she is often called, branches off the Centrum. Elevator banks and stairwells located there make finding everything from Guest Services to Café Latte-tudes easy. The multipurpose Centrum also functions as a music venue, dance hall, and game venue throughout the cruise. On our cruise, it was the busiest spot on the ship every evening and all day long on sea days. The only downside to that is that centrally located staterooms on decks that open to the Centrum may have some noise issues.
Ocean views are abundant on Grandeur, with large windows in the main dining room, along walkways connecting the primary public spaces and from the traditional outdoor promenade along the sides of Deck 5. The three primary specialty restaurants also have ocean views.
The only attention-getting top deck attraction is the climbing wall, so beyond that and the pool, teens and tweens won’t find much to do. On our cruise they seemed to wander the ship in groups. The most problematic deck plan issue we noticed is the placement of Park Café at the far end of the adults-only Solarium. Since Park Café is the only place onboard to get pizza, that often created a steady stream of kids (both with parents and without) passing through for snacks.
For those cruising on Grandeur to save money, the most economic choices are interior cabins and oceanview, with an abundance of both scattered across all stateroom decks. Balcony lovers have far fewer choices. Cabin décor is quite dated with blonde wood cabinetry, and overall cabin sizes are compact. The good news, however, is that a considerable amount of storage space is squeezed into cabins of all categories –more than you’ll find on many newer ships.
Look for “spacious oceanview” rooms on the upper cabin decks. These have a larger footprint and are centrally located. Perhaps the most coveted cabins onboard Grandeur, though, are the aft facing Junior Suites. Newer ships invariably place larger and more expensive suites in this valuable space, so the ability to book an aft view at a reasonable price is one more economic reason to cruise on Lady G.
Those with motion sensitivity should avoid forward cabins. The smaller size of the ship does tend toward more movement in moderate seas. And anyone who prefers an in-room refrigerator will need a spacious oceanview category or higher for that. Small medical coolers are available for those who need one in staterooms without a refrigerator. You can request one in advance through guest accessibility services or ask for it from your stateroom attendant onboard.
As much as we loved the classic main dining room on Lady G, it is nice to have choices. Food quality was above average in the dining room, adequate in the Windjammer buffet, and superb in the specialty dining venues. We particularly enjoyed Chops Grille, where the experience extends beyond the high quality of the food. From start to finish, it is an event, making it an unexpected bonus of sailing on the fleet’s smallest ship.
Grandeur attracts casino players, in part due to the economics of cruising on a small ship, but also because the size makes the casino itself a friendlier place to play. It’s easy for bar staff, dealers, and the casino host to get to know those who spend the most time in the casino. And one more tiny bonus: In a smaller casino, your odds of winning raffle drawings or hot seat prizes increase just a little.
For the most up-to-date testing, masking, and vaccination requirements aboard Grandeur of the Seas, please refer to Royal Caribbean's health and safety protocols. You can also refer to Cruise Critic's guide to masking requirements on the world's major cruise lines.
Grandeur attracts a diverse group of guests. Adults range in age from early twenties to seventies. Even without kid-friendly top-deck attractions, families looking for a budget cruise are attracted to Grandeur’s lower cost cruises, particularly during school holidays. There are scheduled gatherings for LGBTQ travelers as well as solo travelers. There are accessible staterooms for those who need them and travelers who use mobility aids will find the ship’s smaller size makes it quite mobility friendly.
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