3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
I choose this cruise for my daughter's birthday and because we've never been to Cozumel. The ship is beautiful and that's probably the only positive thing to say. If you're looking for a party cruise this is most ... Read More
I choose this cruise for my daughter's birthday and because we've never been to Cozumel. The ship is beautiful and that's probably the only positive thing to say. If you're looking for a party cruise this is most definitely not for you. To begin with the food was horrible. Throughout the entire cruise there were maybe 2 items that I enjoyed and that was the small hibachi area on the last night and the tiramisu from Reflections. Our wait staff in Reflections were nice but very slow and not attentive at all. While we were waiting for our entrees some people were already ordering desert. Every cruise that we take we ALWAYS go to our reserved dining and we just couldn't do it on our last night. We couldn't handle how boring it was and seeing the same food options over and over. Absolutely disappointed with the food options on this ship. The burgers, chicken sandwiches, fried chicken completely disgusting. The windjammer closes at 9 and there are no other options to eat anything else other than from Park Cafe which had very limited items as well. The entertainment was not that great either. The best show for us was the first one with the actual comedian. Normally cruises will have several options on the same night with a musical show and comedian show but in these 4 days they only had 1 comedian show and we were not happy with that at all. As for the musical shows again we would normally stay for all the shows on other ships but we had to walk out on one specific show that said that this band playede different genres and for us they played only 2 and this is not the music that we listen to. Overall very sad options. The music that the cruise played were all the same ones from every ship. Royal Caribbean needs to try to bring on different passengers from all era's not just one. Housekeeping may have worked all day however we kept getting dirty towels every night with nasty looking stains. Just gross all together. This cruise definitely catered to more older and conservative people which need to realize that the port out of Ft. Lauderdale will have diversity and I'm not sure where the majority of these people came from but it was very uncomfortable hearing all the comments and seeing the reactions when they came across people that didn't look like them it was just awful and in South Florida we have people from all over the world so for the sad and miserable people who cannot handle that, then they need to pick a cruise elsewhere. Cozumel was very nice and affordable I would definitely go back. Truly disappointed with the Serenade of the Seas and i would not recommend anyone that I know to book with this ship. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
The room we had was beautiful and clean. Our room attendant was excellent. But the bar service was not good, the casino had old machines and didn’t pay, no good headline shows. Food was excellent in Giovanni’s. The bartenders was not ... Read More
The room we had was beautiful and clean. Our room attendant was excellent. But the bar service was not good, the casino had old machines and didn’t pay, no good headline shows. Food was excellent in Giovanni’s. The bartenders was not very attentive to the customers, some of the alcohol was not available on the 3rd day, casino had all old machines, bartenders was not very attentive in the casino, The headliner shows were not very good, They had one night theme party and then nothing after. You pay all this money for the cruise plus the drinking package just to find out there are plenty of extra charges like bingo games, they have a drink of the day and you have to pay extra for the cup. The spa was absolutely beautiful, the staff was very friendly and very attentive to our needs. This was our 3rd cruise and this is the first time I actually had complaints. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
This was the first sailing out of Ft. lauderdale after the ship had returned from dry dock for 3 weeks getting a face lift. The ship looked first class with all new carpet throughout. This also made the ship smell fresh. The Serenade of ... Read More
This was the first sailing out of Ft. lauderdale after the ship had returned from dry dock for 3 weeks getting a face lift. The ship looked first class with all new carpet throughout. This also made the ship smell fresh. The Serenade of the Seas is very easy on the eye, with beautiful art and soft neon lighting throughout. The food quality in Windjammer was a step above our previous experiences at the much larger and newer RCCL ships (we have been on over 20 RCCL cruises). The staff was also extremely pleasant & accommodating at every level. It may have helped that they were either new to the ship or back from vacation, as I previously stated this ship was in dry dock for repairs and refurbishment. Our cabin was in great condition, with ample space & plenty of room for our belongings (though you have to look hard to realize that there are storage cabinets behind mirrors). There was absolutely no foul smell anywhere on the ship during this cruise. Our cabin steward was wonderful & left us towel animals on 3 of the 4 nights. We ate at each of the specialty restaurants & once at the main dining room. Both Chops & Giovanni's Table were excellent, with great service & very accommodating to our every wish (even multiple entree's). Izumi (japanese restaurant with sushi options) was not up to par for a dinner experience, better to go there for a lunch. The main dining room was pretty, not extravagant, and the food was average, which isn't bad considering that they cook for close to 2000 guests. I'd recommend that you pre-purchase a specialty dining package for at least 3 or more nights. Surprising to see lifeguards at each pool during all open hours (even the adult only pool in the Solarium). I'm assuming that this stems from the unfortunate drowning of a child on the Anthem of the Seas last year. Entertainment was again, better than I expected for the most part. The house orchestra that accompanies the main shows is really talented & 9 pieces! The comedian was top-notch & provided both a family show & a late night adult show. There always seemed to be live music playing somewhere on the ship all day & night long, so there is no dearth of entertainment, dancing, singing, etc. The bars are scattered throughout the ship with plenty of different seating options. We did partake of the Diamond lounge a few nights & found that to be a bit limiting in both seating & food options. Keep in mind that those that qualify for the Diamond lounge can now get up to 3 free drinks at any bar on the ship during those same open hours of 4:30-8:00pm, so there really is no reason to go to the lounge itself. The Concierge lounge for suite guests is smaller, with the same nasty food options, but their lounge does provide a very nice ocean view.There is a nice, but small cinema on board where we saw a very good film, they also show G-PG rated movies on deck on the big screen at night. The gym is in excellent shape with ample equipment & no problem getting a machine. There is also a self serve laundromat which comes in handy for those longer duration sailings. Embarkation was very efficient, and disembarkation was extremely streamlined (no need to fill out a customs form any longer). The Serenade of the Seas is a very lovely ship that caters to adults primarily (not much for teens or young adults), the ships size is just perfect (not too small or too large) & it appears to be priced right for a very comfortable and memorable vacation. My only complaint is that RCCL continues to allow smoking in it's casino. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
we chose this cruise ship because we are going on it in May 2018 for the Dave Koz jazz cruise in Copebhagen getting on and off the ship in fort lauderdale was amazingly fast. The food in Giovanis was fantastic and the ... Read More
we chose this cruise ship because we are going on it in May 2018 for the Dave Koz jazz cruise in Copebhagen getting on and off the ship in fort lauderdale was amazingly fast. The food in Giovanis was fantastic and the buffet was one of the best I have ever be en to. we were on another cruise line 2 weeks earlier and this ship even though smaller was far superior to the other line in all places on the ship The cruise director was truly into it the whol time on the ship. She was very much knowledgable about anything and everything that oging on. Her assistants and other helpers were also very much aware of the items that we needed to make this a great c ruise. We are looking forward to our Jazz cruise in Copenahgen on this ship because of the Safari club and the Centrum and the great venues their that will make it a extravanganza for music and jazz. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
A little background first, then a bit long, but ultimately fair review. I am a 61 year old widower with a decent amount of cruise experience.This was my 2nd with RCCL (although the 1st one was some 25+ years ago) to go with 4 on Carnival, ... Read More
A little background first, then a bit long, but ultimately fair review. I am a 61 year old widower with a decent amount of cruise experience.This was my 2nd with RCCL (although the 1st one was some 25+ years ago) to go with 4 on Carnival, 1 on Princess, and 1 on NCL. I traveled with my 32 year old single son. This was also his 2nd on RCCL to go with 2 on Carnival and 1 on Princess (all with me). We try to go on these cruises as often as possible as we don't live together and we don't see each other as often as we would like. We chose this cruise for many reasons...length, itinerary, and our schedules being the main reasons. We have been very happy with Carnival, but with RCCL having a good reputation we booked this 12 day repositioning cruise. Due to RCCL's reputation we expected a (slightly) superior experience than Carniva.This is where our disappointment originates. There were many areas that the cruise lines were equal, with Carnival superior in some areas.There were NO areas that we thought RCCL was better than Carnival. Plus there were several glitches/snafus that also contributed to this middling review. Let me first say, even though the remainder of this review will have the negatives, especially compared to Carnival, we still had a great time and given the variables of itinerary, cost, etc. we would not hesitate to take another RCCL cruise. Also, our cruise last year on Carnival was on a similar ship (size, age, etc.) so that it is a fair apples to apples comparison. Let me also say that the staff and crew were wonderful and faultless. All this being said, lets go to the review: Transfer from airport to ship: We prepaid for this transfer. Landing in Boston we found no one meeting us. We asked at information booth where the RCCL transfer people were, and were pointed to a couple of ladies nearby. Introducing ourselves, they said our names were not on the pick-up manifest.After a very short, pleasant discussion they said it happens every now and then, and it was no problem to bring us to the ship...Glitch #1. Embarkation/Check-in: Major line, very slow moving, took around an hour (maybe more)...in all of my previous cruises never more than 15 minutes. In later conversations aboard ship with other passengers, this opinion was pretty much consistent...Glitch #2. Dining Room: In booking this cruise we arranged for a table for 2, we were put at a table for 8 with 6 other passengers...glitch #3. (fortunately it was a great group and we all became very friendly). Informal (buffet) dining: While RCCL Windjammer buffet is basically adequate, Carnival has, in addition to the usual type buffet, "action" stations: Deli, Indian , make your own burritos, 24 hour pizza, a burger station (with tie in to Guy Fieri), a fresh Mongolian wok station, plus others...Major advantage to Carnival. Main dining room: Basically equal to Carnival....reasonable quantity of choices, well prepared, tasty, etc. One difference with Carnival, which may or may not matter to you: Carnival main dining experience much more festive...wait staff usually in aloha-type dress (except on formal nights) with a silly, nightly dance and/or song number with the guests. RCCL dressed in informal dress twice (of 12 nights), and sang on 2 nights...personally I really enjoy the festivity of the Carnival dining room. Room service: We didn't use it, but at the same time would have been disappointed to find out that except for the continental breakfast, it now contained a $7.95 fee... first time I've seen a cruise charge for room service . I wonder if the profit made on this will overcome the negative image it gives the cruise line. Beverages:Again an area where RCCL takes a back seat to Carnival. First, soda ....Where Carnival charged $2.25 for a soda, and a bit over $5/day for its unlimited package, RCCL charges over $8/day for its package. I had no intention of getting the RCCL unlimited package until I discovered they were charging $4 per soda. So I bought the package anyway. Later on I discovered my preferred soda, Coke Zero, was only available in a few of the venues. (available at all Carnival venues)...a day or 2 later I complained and was able to cancel the package (prorated). As for alcohol...I'm not much of a drinker, consuming less than a dozen alcoholic drinks in a year. I usually will have a couple or 3 drinks on a cruise. Day 2 I ordered a banana daquiari....only to be told that RCCL doesn't do them.Really???, not exactly an exotic drink! I had a strawberry daquari instead, which was my only alcoholic drink of the cruise . For the remainder of the cruise it was the free lemonade and iced tea....no soda, no alcohol... One plus for RCCL...they offered a 10 for $75 discount card for drinks, which my son bought. Activities: On par with Carnival, however could be scheduled better to limit conflicts, with some venues underutilized and others overcrowded (especially the "Centrum", the main center atrium of the ship...Too many activities there with minimal seating/standing space.) Entertainment: Another area RCCL inferior to Carnival. Where Carnival uses a lounge specifically for comics and each night has at least 1, and sometimes 2 comics, each sometimes doing a family show as well as an adult late night show...RCCL had I think 5 comics with only 1 doing a 2nd show for the entirety of the cruise, all in main theatre. The other "talent" is pretty much equal...a few "production" shows, a singer or 2, etc. Also, most shows only done once, creating conflicts with scheduling. Movies: While Carnival usually showed 2 movies on the big outside screen nightly (usually themed, with popcorn available), RCCL rotated maybe 6 movies for the 12 nights (same ones in multiple venues). Also, except for the movies, some football games and baseball play-offs, big outdoor screen usually displayed screen saver...on Carnival, most "dead time" filled in with music videos. Some comments on the ports, not really specific to RCCL: St. Kitts: We just walked the port area, shopped a bit, had lunch ashore. Pleasant enough. Antigua: Beach excursion with lunch included...pretty beach, adequate lunch, shopping at port. no problem. St. Lucia: BIG PROBLEM: another beach excursion, no lunch though. Asked tour guide if it was safe to leave stuff on beach chairs. She said no, and told us to leave wallets on bus where driver would be hanging out. While returning to ship, my son and I discovered we both had cash removed from our wallets (we figure $100-$140 total). I suspect driver, can't prove it though.Reported it to guest services, filled out paperwork, interviewed by ship security, but I expect nothing will come of report. Another, more minor issue, locals selling cheap trinkets to the tourists. Every few seconds another "vendor" would approach with his/her wares.A polite, "no" would send them away, only to be pestered a few moments later by another. Curacao: another beach excursion, prettiest beach of the 3...some more shopping, no problem. Aruba: submarine excursion.Went 150 ft. down, around reef, sunken ships....awesome...pricey, but worth it. Disembakation: went fine, no problems. To summarize: Surprised that RCCL gave me an inferior experience compared to Carnival, but none the less even with issues stated, had a great time, made new friends of former strangers sitting at table. Great staff and crew. Won't hesitate to cruise on RCCL in future, but if all things being equal, still would lean to Carnival.....until RCCL steps up its game. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
We like the cruise because it was convenient for us leaving from Boston. This was our third time doing this repositioning cruise. The stops are really good. We booked again for next year. The ship was in need of a facelift and was ... Read More
We like the cruise because it was convenient for us leaving from Boston. This was our third time doing this repositioning cruise. The stops are really good. We booked again for next year. The ship was in need of a facelift and was heading to dry dock for some work after this cruise. They now have life guards that hover at the edge of the pool. I was swimming alone in the solarium pool and the guard stood over me. As I swam 20 feet to the other side he walked along with me. It felt very intrusive and could have been done better with some common sense. I saw eight people slip and fall on the pool deck. That seems to be the much bigger hazard. We had a great time at the Diamond Lounge. There were many fun loving people there and the bar tenders were great. We normally like to gamble every day but the table games that they had weren't great. There were several Black Jack tables that were always empty and the Caribbean Stud table was almost always empty. There was one 3 card Poker table that the dealer had to maker out a waiting list for. They could easily swap out one of the Black Jack tables for a Let It Ride Table. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
Liked itinerary, love the islands, especially St. Lucia. Relaxing and good food and service, also liked the music around the ship. Was a little upset that I did not receive body lotion in my cabin since I am diamond plus, don't ... Read More
Liked itinerary, love the islands, especially St. Lucia. Relaxing and good food and service, also liked the music around the ship. Was a little upset that I did not receive body lotion in my cabin since I am diamond plus, don't think it would have cost more than .30 cents, think Royal Caribbean is cutting back on so many things, but did without. The ship was clean, lot to do, had a very nice dinner table. Met friends I cruised with in the past and we had a lot to talk about, met a lot of new friends. We had a very nice table for eight for early dining, enjoyed going to dinner with a lot of conversation, very relaxing. Halloween party was very nice, danced a lot, and loved a lot of costumes? All in all it was a great relaxing cruise, this was our fourth time doing this itinerary and thinking of doing it again next year, we have not booked it yet. Our table at dining was 227, and Ben Amor and Hakim were excellent, could not do enough to please us. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
I was overall happy with cruise for the most part. I would rate the cruise as follows, 60% as fun, entertaining, and enjoyable. 40% not so much, a lot of waiting in lines on numerous occasions. Maybe this is normal, but as a veteran, the ... Read More
I was overall happy with cruise for the most part. I would rate the cruise as follows, 60% as fun, entertaining, and enjoyable. 40% not so much, a lot of waiting in lines on numerous occasions. Maybe this is normal, but as a veteran, the Army might be more efficient in this area and vets know what I mean, a lot of hurry up and wait. Dinning room meals were disappointing, buffet eating was better by far, more choices not as much waiting. But then you had to serve yourself, I know some people like to be waited on. Shows and entertainment venues were very good, lots of laughs. Room was better than expected, we were in room with large port hole window, I would recommend a balcony if on a warm weather cruise. This cruise had many seniors, of which I am one, so some patients is required from younger individuals. All in all I would go again in the future, I would not go on a ship that holds more than 2,500 people, I can't imagine a ship with up to 6,000 passengers. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
A group of friends chose this cruise to see the New England/Canada Fall colors. This was my first cruise; however, several members of the groups had cruised on Royal Caribbean cruises before and highly recommended it. My experiences, as ... Read More
A group of friends chose this cruise to see the New England/Canada Fall colors. This was my first cruise; however, several members of the groups had cruised on Royal Caribbean cruises before and highly recommended it. My experiences, as a whole, were very positive. The space in our stateroom was adequate. I appreciated the in-room safe, plenty of closet space with hangers and shelves, drawers and lighting. The bathroom was not cramped. The shower had good water pressure and temperature throughout the cruise. The towels were clean, but some were a bit ragged on the edges. Our room attendant did a nice job keeping our room clean. She was very pleasant. We all enjoyed the talented entertainment and many of the games available, especially when out at sea. Fabulous food and dining staff!!! In general, excursions were fun with exception of tour in St. John. The Tour guide was lackluster. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
I'm usually a fan of Royal Caribbean and have had two previous cruises with them that I would rate as excellent, but this one wasn't. My wife and I were celebrating our 20th anniversary and I had pre-booked an ultimate ... Read More
I'm usually a fan of Royal Caribbean and have had two previous cruises with them that I would rate as excellent, but this one wasn't. My wife and I were celebrating our 20th anniversary and I had pre-booked an ultimate anniversary package, only to find that after I got on the ship it had been cancelled by Royal Caribbean without any notice to me. Then when I tried to re-book it, I was told that they don't carry the items on the ship and therefore couldn't provide it. Instead they offered the minimal. Hugely disappointed. Activities on the ship - not varied enough and fairly standard. Talent on the ship - below even cruise performers. No-one was notable and none of the performances were very inspired. Ports of call - okay, but not much variety in the shore excursions between each of the ports. Got "excursioned out" because the lack of variety. And too cold to hit the pool on the days of sailing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
The main reason I (we) chose this cruise was because of the venue - fall colors. Although the colors had not yet peaked, the colors were turning and were quite beautiful It's all about timing (and luck). We were just a little too ... Read More
The main reason I (we) chose this cruise was because of the venue - fall colors. Although the colors had not yet peaked, the colors were turning and were quite beautiful It's all about timing (and luck). We were just a little too early to get the full advantage of the fall colors. But the venues were great - Hallifax, Portland, Bar Harbor and Boston - all great stops. Having sailed many time of Celebrity, I did see some difference in what was supplied in the staterooms. On Celebrity I always got shampoo, conditioner and body lotion. This did not happen on the RC cruise. We only got shampoo and we had to ask for additional bars of soap half way into the cruise. The crew on the ship were fantastic - very pleasant and helpful. We are looking forward to our cruise in February on the Serenade of the Seas to the Caribbean. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
The Serenade is a nice smaller ship,,, not as well kept as it should be. A little dirty in some places. The Internet is terrible,, can't log on,,doesn't stay connected,,and so slow,,,,,,, with staff only available at ... Read More
The Serenade is a nice smaller ship,,, not as well kept as it should be. A little dirty in some places. The Internet is terrible,, can't log on,,doesn't stay connected,,and so slow,,,,,,, with staff only available at certain hours,,, not worth the cost !!!! Crew & Waitstaff are GREAT!!!!!,,,, Food as fine as any ,,,,Better then most,,,, Only real complaint was the Whale watching Tour in Halifax NS,,, One trip out,, for 1 hr. pa system only working in lower covered deck,,could not hear anything that was said.. 1 hr. Trip back,,, no whales at all !!!! Main observation,,, Boat Captain, First Mate, NEVER LEFT THE BOATS WHEELHOUSE, EXCEPT TO GET COFFEE, Never even explained what to look for to spot a whale !!!!Upon return, the locals explained that most all of the whales have moved farther south to breed in the caribbean seas..55 people paid 60 $ for a cold boat ride,I will be complaining to RCI for my refund>>>>> Read Less
Sail Date: August 2017
Iceland is a very popular destination so we wanted to check it out. Done it and not impressed. If you had seen Niagara falls then the waterfalls in Iceland has nothing to brag about. The geysers are puny compared to the geysers in New ... Read More
Iceland is a very popular destination so we wanted to check it out. Done it and not impressed. If you had seen Niagara falls then the waterfalls in Iceland has nothing to brag about. The geysers are puny compared to the geysers in New Zealand and even the geysers in Yellowstone. What a mess it was in Copenhagen, the transfer from the airport to the port was totally disorganized. There was no one to greet the passengers or to direct us where to wait for our transfer. When we finally found a representative she directed us to a space in the terminal with no seats available and had to wait over an hour for the buses to be loaded. The disembarkation was a total disaster. Guests who opted to do the express (lagging their own luggage) were instructed to clear immigration at 6AM, didn't get close to seeing the immigration till 7 AM then we were herded to the outside deck on 5 and left there to wait and wait. We must have waited in the cold for almost an hour and a half. No one was told what was the delay. A lot of us missed our flights. We had a 10 AM flight that we almost missed. Until today no one from RCCL has said anything about the delay. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
Generally we prefer the Oasis class ships due to the amazing entertainment, but we decided to give Serenade a try because of the itinerary. We did have a concern that 29 days on a smaller ship might get a bit old, but because the first ... Read More
Generally we prefer the Oasis class ships due to the amazing entertainment, but we decided to give Serenade a try because of the itinerary. We did have a concern that 29 days on a smaller ship might get a bit old, but because the first two cruises (Baltic and Norwegian Fjords) were so port intensive that we never felt tired of this ship. The final cruise, a TA stopping at Iceland and Halifax on its way to Boston, was fun as well. Seas a little choppy and windy in the beginning, but still had lots of fun. The staff was a great family and 29 days gave us plenty of time to become friendly with them all. Even our first captain (Thor) jammed on his guitar with Topi and the Topcats! While we were on-board they rolled out a new puzzle game played with teams...FUN! If there was a disappointment, it was the food. We did enjoy Chops several times during this adventure, but we found the dining room food was ordinary. However, that wouldn't stop us from taking this ship again if it does other equally exciting ports. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
Staff great with exception of crown and anchor director who seemed to cater to a select few. Very evident that ship is in desperate need of updating. Had a balcony yet cabin was smaller than a postage stamp..not much can be changed there. ... Read More
Staff great with exception of crown and anchor director who seemed to cater to a select few. Very evident that ship is in desperate need of updating. Had a balcony yet cabin was smaller than a postage stamp..not much can be changed there. You get spoiled on a larger ship. Will keep this in mind when booking next cruise. Children allowed in pools constantly and hot tubs became swimming pools for the children. Saw a baby with parents who was not trained in the pool on numerous occasions and in hot tub when signs clearly state no children who are not trained. KIDS allowed to jump in the pools when again signs clearly state this is prohibited. When I told the attendant, he stated that this could not be enforced. TAKE THE SIGNS DOWN IF YOU HAVE NO INTENTION OF ENFORCING THEM. NOT A PLEASANT EXPERIENCE AT THE POOLS AND HOT TUBS DURING THE HOURS KIDS WERE PRESENT. We are glad we are Crown and Anchor but see so many cutbacks since we began cruising in 1982. Sad. Do not want Royal Caribbean to become like Carnival. Food was good but again quality has slipped somewhat. Dining service outstanding..great personable staff. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We were organizing a three generation girl's tour, with my mother (87 and spry), daughter (35 and an experienced traveller) and myself (64, small mobility issue). Our plan was to stop over for 3 days in Iceland, and then visit family ... Read More
We were organizing a three generation girl's tour, with my mother (87 and spry), daughter (35 and an experienced traveller) and myself (64, small mobility issue). Our plan was to stop over for 3 days in Iceland, and then visit family in Denmark, and we decided that this cruise would give us an opportunity to extend our trip and get a brief overview of other countries we had only experienced through the news and history books. The planning went extremely well. We had a day in Stockholm before embarking, and used a HOHO bus to get a look at the city. The airport was quite a distance from the city and from the port, so allow time to get to your destination. The ship, Serenade of the Seas, was huge! It is quite new, and has deservedly won an award for the best crew team at least twice. We were impressed with the crew who proudly represent 65 nationalities, and that there were 53 nationalities in the guest makeup. It was like a little world within the ship - only a friendly, accommodating world with people getting along. Also the efficiency of loading the equivalent a of small town onto a ship in 3 hours and getting them all happily established in their quarters was wonderful to see. It was a real pleasure that the Captain of the vessel, Captain Tor, was Norwegian. His patter was excellent, and we loved seeing him appear at so many of the events, and interact with the passengers. His jokes were great, (I hope the Chief Engineer finds the keys to the ship) and he plays a mean guitar! We booked the 6:00 pm dining hour, for dinner, although we don't normally eat that early. However, we wanted to be free to enjoy the other evening activities. The meals were lovely, and varied. A little bland, but that is to be expected when planning food for 2,500 people of 53 nationalities! One night, after talking to a crew member about his country, we asked if the kitchen could prepare a special Philippine dish, and the next night it was proudly presented to us! And it was delicious! Our servers were friendly and all of them were professional, efficient, and extremely helpful. We enjoyed the variety of the Entertainment and activities on board, although with 5 days of shore excursions we didn't have a chance to climb walls or use the pools. But we did enjoy a couple of Spa experiences including excellent foot reflexology from the lovely Peruvian, Dio. The shows were entertaining, varied, child friendly. Everybody seemed to be happy with the shows. Topi, the Entertainment Director and Aysy, were approachable and charming. Aysy is Russian and gave a great presentation on Russian history and culture. Regarding the Ports of Call and shore excursions, all were interesting and exactly what we came to see. It was a shame that 7 huge Cruiseships came into St Petersburgh for the same 2 day period. This was not the fault of the Serenade of the Seas, but it took over two hours to clear the customs to start our tour of St Petersburgh. We were 2.5 hours late starting on the itinerary, and already tired from standing in line. The crush of tours through the main attractions was very difficult - hot, crowded, and we had to keep following our guide and keeping an eye out for the other people in our group. The variety of things we saw was excellent. I used Alla Tours for the two day excursion, and also for a evening Ballet performance of Sleeping Beauty. Tip: In Tallin, it is possible to walk independently around the old walled town, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and truly beautiful. We found a good map, and explored on our own, which was a good change from chasing tour guides in St Petersburgh. (But thank heavens for the tour guide in St. P!) We did not travel with children, but we were impressed by the number of families on board. They all seemed to have a great time, and many of the families we talked to had children who love cruising, because of the activities. I have only one point I would like to make concerning the level of "upselling" on the ship both before, during and after the cruise. It was incessant and confusing. Offers for extra restaurants, drink packages, spa packages, sales in the gift shop, casino packages, and book your next cruise really took away from the experience. I actually felt at one point that we might not get access to water unless I bought the water package! However, outside of that small concern, which we soon learned to ignore, we had a great trip. And give me a trip with that many ports of call any time! (Especially in a comfortable climate - I don't like hot weather, or lying around any time). Happy cruising, and thank you Serenade of the Sea! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
I wanna visit St Petersburg so I choose this cruise. Come on board to enjoy good food and good service. Embarkation and disemarkation went smoothly.no need to wait too long. cabin service are excellent staffs very polite . Dining ... Read More
I wanna visit St Petersburg so I choose this cruise. Come on board to enjoy good food and good service. Embarkation and disemarkation went smoothly.no need to wait too long. cabin service are excellent staffs very polite . Dining room service excellent the waiter Judas a very cheerful guy always has a sense of humour.and the assistant waiter Nykyta he is a very helpful and smart guy . I ordered hot milk for my coffee once and the following days of the dinner time I dont need to ask again and he remember to bring me the hot milk. excellent service. After dinner we will enjoy the show at the theater. good show especially the Rock and Roll time.I love the class to teach cha cha and enjoy to take part. overall the service are excellent . I will highly recommand my friends to join this cruise and wish to board this ship again in the near future. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2017
It is our second cruise with Royal Caribbean and we were extremely pleased with almost everything. The staff is amazingly friendly, the ship is well designed and equipped, very clean and the service is outstanding. Food is great, ... Read More
It is our second cruise with Royal Caribbean and we were extremely pleased with almost everything. The staff is amazingly friendly, the ship is well designed and equipped, very clean and the service is outstanding. Food is great, entertainment is excellent, attractions, shopping, rooms and rooms service are outstanding as well. We were impressed with the abundance of activities on board that we used mostly on our day at sea since every day we were ashore as well enjoying the ports of call. There were as well many options for touring the cities and actually the attractions offered were much more than we could possibly enjoy. This gave every passenger a multitude of choices and everybody could choose his preferred activity. The ship was designed with attention to disabled people needs that could participate and it was amazing to see how they enjoyed the cruise as well. There is no doubt in our mind that our next cruise will be with Royal Caribbean as well. ITZIK MONEL and LILI Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Rude staff, poor service, very unresponsive to needs. Food quality was very bad. Breakfast: Orders that had any variation from the menu, for example no cheese on my egg, were often wrong because the staff did not understand english ... Read More
Rude staff, poor service, very unresponsive to needs. Food quality was very bad. Breakfast: Orders that had any variation from the menu, for example no cheese on my egg, were often wrong because the staff did not understand english well. It took may attempts to fix wrong orders. It took 25 minutes to get a cup of coffee in the dinning room. Orders were missing toasts. The list goes on. Bars: Rude staff. Even the main bars were missing drinks from the menu. Bar tenders were not willing to fetch the drinks from another bar or order the bottles for their bar. They made us go around fetching drinks form bars across the ship. Customer Service: Very poor grasp of english language. Based on their responses, it was evident they did not understand the question. Internet: Very bad quality. Signal dropped every five minutes. I took my device to the help desk. The tech representative tried to connect to the wifi, saw the errors message pop up, then asked me what is the problem. When I asked him to look at the error message, he looked confused and said would you like a refund. A friend on the ship told me to turn of the wifi and then turn it back on, problem solved but with no help from the staff. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary since we'd heard from multiple people that a Baltic cruise was a "must do". While we were very impressed with the ports of call, the ship left something to be desired. We had read that ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary since we'd heard from multiple people that a Baltic cruise was a "must do". While we were very impressed with the ports of call, the ship left something to be desired. We had read that the boat had recently been remodeled and you could tell that it had a minimal face lift - new carpet and artwork. The boat itself was very clean and the service was great, but that's the extent of nice things i can say about the boat itself - This cruise felt like a constant quest for RC to get as much money from you as possible - There were hardly any activities on board that didn't come at an additional cost. In the dining room, every menu came with "up charge" items and we were even told that we couldn't have breakfast in the dining room one morning because they were doing a brunch that was an additional $35. We ate in Chops Grille the last night of the cruise because of a good experience we had on another cruise and we were very disappointing. Our service was better in the main dining room and my husband had to send back his steak twice and it was still not correct. We wont be going back to chops again. The windjammer was pretty terrible as well. I was very surprised at the poor quality of the food on this cruise given the opposite experience we've had with RC on other cruises - we chalked it up to the fact that they were probably sourcing from different areas given the area of the world and had less selection. Room service is also no longer included outside of toast, coffee and pastries. Very dissapointed at how nickel and dimed we were given the cost of the cruise itself. Aside from the food - our service and experience was great. If i had to do it over again i would choose an itinerary that skipped Estonia and Latvia. Russia 2 day tour was fantastic but strenuous - be aware of that if you are not an active person. Finland Icebar tour way exceeded our expectations and ended up being a favorite. Estonia bike tours were a cluster. No organization, Not enough helmets, not enough warning for participants that you need to be a seasoned bike rider to do this tour. We were ok but lost 2 families along the way due to bike wrecks - the tour guides were not really keeping track of everyone either. Taste of Latvia tour was disappointing but cheap. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
I didn't know much about Royal Caribbean that's why I wanted to try to make a cruise with them..and I certainly made a good choice!!! In my opinion the best one I have tried concerning Food and drinks...very good organization in ... Read More
I didn't know much about Royal Caribbean that's why I wanted to try to make a cruise with them..and I certainly made a good choice!!! In my opinion the best one I have tried concerning Food and drinks...very good organization in global and a nice ship .Recomendable.!!!!!! There are a lot of activities, evening shows are very pleasant. What definitely paid my attention is that the ship has a lot of bars and you don't have to wait long time to get your drink...everything goes very smoothly because there are a lot of possibilities to get your drinks on different floors on deck ship as well outside as inside. Very good organization to get on board and to go out, nearly the city so in many cases you can almost walking and otherwise they offer transporte possibilities quite smoothly. Good service on board, the only thing i would suggest...the best way to choose your cabin is in the middle of the ship..because with bad weather the ship can move a little bit, so if you have the possibility choose a good central cabin. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
I choose this cruise only because of it itinerary only. It is the only cruise line that offer 3 days in St Petersburg. Now that I have gone, I think 2 days will be enough which mean many other cruise lines to choose from. I have been ... Read More
I choose this cruise only because of it itinerary only. It is the only cruise line that offer 3 days in St Petersburg. Now that I have gone, I think 2 days will be enough which mean many other cruise lines to choose from. I have been with Princess cruises, Celebrity cruises and P&O. I have never experience a cruise which just want to push the customers to buy and buy. First, throughout the ship, there are booths setting up trying to sell customer drinks and to sell customers to take pictures. The very one thing that turns me off is that they even sell you to pay extra to go to other speciality restaurant right in front of the main dinning room and while you are already sitting at your dinning table inside the dinning room. Imagine the situation that we are walking into the main dinning room or when we are already sitting down at the dinner table, preparing ourselves for a fine, nice dinner and someone is telling you to spend some money in other better restaurant. What does this mea to men? Does it mean the restaurant that we are going to dine is not a good one? I honestly don't think this is a good idea to try to get income this way. Also, they are selling Sushi inside the dinning room while we are having our meal. Both Princess and Celebrity offer customers the opportunity to go inside the kitchen to have a look of how's the catering job done. For Royal caribbean, it request us to pay for a look. Well, speechless. Overall, food is very average. In the main dinning room, the food is serve cold even it is suppose to be hot dish. The presentation of soup is so awful as you can clearly see the soup spill around the bowl. I have never seen this kind of food presentation in other cruise line. If they make an extra effort to wipe the bowl slightly, we would not notice about it. Royal Caribbean close its buffet restaurant between lunch, and snack and dinner. Princess and Celebrity never close it even though they are changing their food as per different section time. Service desk staff - unbelievable rude. First, they don't carry smile. Even when I settle my payment, they don't even say thank you. I was in a group of 13 and we were allocated in 2 different disembarkation time. I asked for some luggage tags which matched the other group. I was given that at the first time with no problem. Then after 20 minutes, I get back to the same staff and get 2 extra tags. He look at me and said "you have taken too many tags". I told him I have got 13 people and each of us have 2 or some of us have more luggage. I am not asking to waste it". After he heard of this, he turn his back to me going to get the tags for me but without saying a word. As a customer, I feel very bad being treat like this. I just not feeling comfortable. For entertainment, their show is okay despite some are really boring. People have to leave just after the show start. There are several nights that they only have 1 show for the whole night. That's just mean some of the customers are going to miss out. I am very sure that I will not get on Royal Caribbean anymore. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Great itinerary and great time on this trip. Easy checkin and disembarkation. Getting into Russia was a little slow the first day but quick and easy the next two days. All ports where great, but Helsinki was our least favorite. We could ... Read More
Great itinerary and great time on this trip. Easy checkin and disembarkation. Getting into Russia was a little slow the first day but quick and easy the next two days. All ports where great, but Helsinki was our least favorite. We could have used another day at sea that day instead. Entertainment was good, food in main dining room was ok. We always found something we liked and our waiter and assistant made the experience fantastic. Awesome cabin steward, attentive and helpful. Cruise director was ok, not great but not bad. Ship was clean and well maintained, some areas could use some sprucing up, but all in all looked good. All cruises are what you make of them, instead of looking for negative things embrace everything else and enjoy everything else. The ports of call was a great selection and learning their history and enjoying the local flavors and brews makes the experience that much richer. We would go again in a second. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
this cruise went where we had been wanting to go. service in all areas was excellent I have no complaints. because we were sailing up to where the sun doesn't set the interior cabin was the way to go. could have used a small nite ... Read More
this cruise went where we had been wanting to go. service in all areas was excellent I have no complaints. because we were sailing up to where the sun doesn't set the interior cabin was the way to go. could have used a small nite lite in the cabin to see to go to bathroom in the reflections dining room we had a wonderful tale for the four of us that were traveling together and our waiter cedric was the best his asst dana was fanstatic. they always were a step ahead of our needs. was nice to be spoiled!! the shows were very entertaining and funny at times.. everyone is so talented in their perspective jobs. it made for a very smooth voyage. with the world being the way it is in todays time, it was wonderful to see all people smiling and greeting other people with respect. maybe the world should take a lesson from cruise ships with people from all over the world on it. wow that's the kind of world I would like to see thanks for the great trip Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We choose this route because we wanted to visit the baltic and this was a perfect experience. The entertainment is fantastic the musicians are really good (all of them), dining experience is fantastic the only problem is when you want ... Read More
We choose this route because we wanted to visit the baltic and this was a perfect experience. The entertainment is fantastic the musicians are really good (all of them), dining experience is fantastic the only problem is when you want to have dinner because there hours which can be very busy. We took the St Petersbourgh shore excursion due to problems with visa, but they are very expensive so we rather walk or take the bus. Cleaning in the Windjammer could be better during lunch time. Very nice service in board, the barman were attentive and fast, the pool is nice but full of kids so we end up in the solarium (no kids). The ports of call were fantastic, and they give you enough time to visit without any problem. The only problem I found from shore excursions is they are very slow as some people are always complaining they have to walk. Read Less
Serenade of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.0
Family 5.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.3

Find a Serenade of the Seas Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise