1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
First let me say that my wife and I are not active cruisers, having taken fewer than 8 in our 50 years together. We prefer to plan our own trips and see things on our own. We chose the Baltic cruise on RCI because of the 3 days in St. ... Read More
First let me say that my wife and I are not active cruisers, having taken fewer than 8 in our 50 years together. We prefer to plan our own trips and see things on our own. We chose the Baltic cruise on RCI because of the 3 days in St. Petersburg and we didn't want to try Russia on our own. It was a mistake we will not make again. If we ever cruise again, it will not be with RCI. Embarkation was smooth and painless thanks to the pre-cruise checkin process offered on the RCI website. The food and service on Serenade of the Seas were good. The food in the Windjammer was plentiful but if you dine there every breakfast, lunch and some dinners, it becomes somewhat repetitive and is often quite crowded. All the staff that we came into contact with were very friendly and helpful. The entertainment was acceptable but not exceptional. The ABBA show was very nice, but some of the entertainers in the Centrum were boring. The cabin facilities were nice but somewhat tired, especially the carpet and sofa and the in-room amenities were non-existent. Having said all of this, the cruise would have been enjoyable if not for the way Royal Caribbean operates. Everything is designed to sell, sell, sell. They start trying to upsell you the moment you step on the ship with upgraded meal packages, drink packages, photos, excursions, etc. The price for internet service was especially outrageous. Over $26/day for a single device. Very annoying. As for the ports of call, it seems that they berth the ship as far away from town as they can to encourage passengers to book their overpriced excursions. They provide very little information on where the ship is berthed or what transportation options there are to reach town. There were no port briefings on things to see so if you don't take their excursions you have little idea of what is available. If you don't want to use RCI's excursions at each stop you must do a little research prior to your trip. Try to find out where the ship will be berthed in each port and what types of public transportation is available. The daily tip sheet provided to the staterooms provided very little information. If you wish to explore on your, you must plan ahead. Before you leave home, print out a map of each town you will visit and decide what sites you wish to see. If you decide you don't want to do this and let RCI do it for you, that's your choice of course, but be prepared to travel with bus-loads of fellow cruisers and to pay RCI's exorbitent excursion prices. Prior to our departure we used the internet to pre-book our excursions in St. Petersburg and Warnemunde for far less money and with far fewer passengers. For the other ports we used the public bus system, taxis or our feet to get around. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I choose this ship because the itinerary that was excellent, specially for the 3 day stop at St. Petersburg (Russia). The embarkation process was very smooth and quick, no more than 5 minutes to complete all process. The ship is ... Read More
I choose this ship because the itinerary that was excellent, specially for the 3 day stop at St. Petersburg (Russia). The embarkation process was very smooth and quick, no more than 5 minutes to complete all process. The ship is small and quite old but it doesn't seem old just not modern. The Ship has all what you need to expect from a RCI cruise, big atrium, pools, kids zone etc... In this trip I had 2 staterooms, one oceanview (7008) and one Balcony (8056). The cabins were normal, not big but also not very small, good for 2 or even 3 people. The bedding was nice and also the storage spaces. What I really dislike was that the only amenity Royal gives to customers in Oceanview and Balcony was a 1 in 3 Shampoo-Conditioner-Shower gel....even MSC or Celebrity gives 3 different bottles for different products! The food was ok, not specially good. The Windjammer Buffet Is ok but always the same food for a 10 day cruise is absurd. The main dinning room was also ok, the service was good and food also good. I purchase the unlimited specialty restaurants and was good because the food at Izumi, Giovannis and Chops is excellent but the ship is so small that paying the unlimited specialty restaurants is not worth it (just for Serenade), in other Royal ships you have more choices and it make sense. If you like Coffee...its horrible, even the speciality coffee. The worst thing about the entire cruise was the entertainment, the night shows were horrible, definitely Royal needs to upgrade the shows at smaller ships, the company concentrates a lot in larger ships but not in smaller. Overall, the service was good, the cabins are spacious but they have a lack on amenities. the ports of call were amazing. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Chose this cruise due to its unique ports of call and its timing with school holidays . We are aa family of 5 and booked two cabins one balcony and one internal cabin opposite each other. Ship appeared modern and well maintained, as its a ... Read More
Chose this cruise due to its unique ports of call and its timing with school holidays . We are aa family of 5 and booked two cabins one balcony and one internal cabin opposite each other. Ship appeared modern and well maintained, as its a smaller boat only additional activities offered are put put golf and rock climbing . Boarding was poor , we purchased the Key program which was meant to give preferred boarding but as we were unable to pre check in online (even after trying for weeks) we were given absolutely no preference at check in. In whole found The Key program disappointing with little preferential treatment. The cabins were extremely comfortable and gave the best sleep Ive had in long time- only tip is bring some tape to help with the block out curtains as the nights are very short. Plenty of storage space . Reflections restaurant service was stressed at busy times , Food quality was poor e.g. crab cakes using artificial crab sticks, prawn cocktail with no cocktail sauce. tried it twice then never ate there again. Preferred paying the extra to eat at the premium restaurants : Giovanni's and Chops Grille were excellent from both a food quality and service perspective although they could perhaps offer daily specials to add variety to the menu. The buffet restaurant was pretty good for breakfast and the occasional lunch if your still hungry. Gym was well fitted out but tended to be busy and not quite big enough . Even though the weather was cold the pool was warmed - probably about 22 deg C so cool but comfortable enough for a quick dip. Purchased the deluxe beverage package for myself which was well worth it especially with fresh juices at breakfast , coffee , bottled waters and open bar with some great cocktails- only point is the wines within the package weren't great and ended up paying extra for better quality wines . The kids didn't get any beverage package and it was fine. Bar options were good and never too crowded except maybe for Centrum. Kids club was great and kids spent most of the time there. We had a 2 yr old and left him a lot at the nursery where he was well looked after and reasonably priced. Entertainment on the boat was pretty average - went to a couple of shows and left early . Spent a few nights playing $5 blackjack in the casino and was a great way to meet fellow travelers. Staff extremely friendly and attentive throughout - except as noted during busy times in Reflections. Port of calls- Geiranger was amazing and if your fit enough get an ebike for assisted ride to enjoy the views . Tromso the most disappointing stop as we booked the huskies tour and on a 3 hr tour kids only got less than 20min with the huskies. Hannisverg just to walk around the town was nice, also good location to get an bike and head out for a ride for some great scenery and try and head over the mountain to the Cape ...I only made it halfway. Alesund, is a nice city just to walk around and explore. Flam is a really pretty town to walk around and the tour on Flam railway is the only tour of the trip we would recommend.Stavanger was pretty town but 3 cruise ships arrived at same time - did the Leyford cruise which was pretty boring with a lame lunch stop for waffles - would not recommend it - better to try a trip to Pulpit Rock. In all, apart from Flam railway the organized tours were disappointing. One of the good benefits of The Key program was the a la carte breakfast on the departure which was a relaxed way to finish the cruise. It was our first cruise and definitely enjoyed the experience and would do it again. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Have never traveled to this area before and always wanted to go to Russia with my family. The staff was superb and their diversity made it a lot of fun learning about all the different countries. Dining was awesome. Food and service ... Read More
Have never traveled to this area before and always wanted to go to Russia with my family. The staff was superb and their diversity made it a lot of fun learning about all the different countries. Dining was awesome. Food and service at the Chops Grill was on par with Ruth Chris - excellent. Entertainment was excellent. The shows varied and the singing and dancing was the highest quality. We also had lot's of fun with Trivia & Scavenger Hunts. Many activities you could enjoy with your children/grandchildren. Had a great time with my son at the Casino. We learned Texas Hold em and Craps. Staff was excellent in teaching the games. Ports were well selected and excellent. Should be noted that in mid-May, temperatures are 45 - 65F. Ship was very clean and everything worked well. Superb cruise. Tour of St Pete area by T J Tours "Dina" was efficient, informative, humorous and completely enjoyable. Have not had a better day in many Moons. Cruise was well designed with ports and cruising time. Had a food tour in Stockholm which was great. Even focused on the differences between Finnish, Swedish and Danish cusine. Salvaged ship museum was very impressive and had a human interest with the ship sinking on the maiden voyage. Tallin and Helsinki we enjoyable and easy to see on your own with children. Great people, clean and great food. Had been forewarned about difficulties in Russia, but the tour which did not require a visa had us breeze through the many lines and bottlenecks. Also included a nice lunch Russian style. Could not have been more pleased. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I chose this cruise because of the ports: departing from Copenhagen, then Stockholm, Tallin, st Petersburg, Helsinki, back to Copenhagen. Overall - Amazing location, very friendly cruise staff, great service and food, we were surprised ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the ports: departing from Copenhagen, then Stockholm, Tallin, st Petersburg, Helsinki, back to Copenhagen. Overall - Amazing location, very friendly cruise staff, great service and food, we were surprised by how swift embarkation at ports were. Just check in was a little long. We arrived CPH on day of embarkation at 7am. There was already cruise staff holding a sign asking if anyone has booked cruise transfer to port. Nonetheless , my group used public transportation to Oceankaj by train then bus 25/27. We spent about 1+ hour at check in counter, we were told that it is the first sail of the year, staff was still on training to the new system as happens that system was down. I completed online check in but staff can not locate record so we have to complete whole check in process again. Team did not collect passport from us at check in, which again create a little hassle when we are on board. Cruise staff has to come to us to collect it. Once we board, staff with yellow t shirt was at every floor to help answer questions and help people familiarise with the cruise. This is my 2nd cruise with RCI, serenade of the Seas is a smaller cruise then before (quantum class cruise) which means less people, and less crowded. Never very difficult to get table at Windjammer. Dinner at main dining room was fab. Good food and attentive service. Same table and wait staff everyday Remember to download their app if you need to know info in other language. My family benefited from using the app as info were listed in chinese for them. Not really long lines at customer service. Staff are much more friendly, Cruise Director David is always around, can feel that he cares about customers. The cruise is a little dated but well maintained. Lots of storage space. Our housekeeper Sean is amazing, always checking if we are ok. Great shows and always good music on board. Less entertainment facilities on board then quantum class cruise, but I did enjoy my ‘do nothing’ time. Amazing ports especially Stockholm. Hop on hop off bus was waiting right outside departure gate for travelers. Tallin is an easy port, within walking distance to old town. Helsinki ‘s port was a little far away from downtown. Even excursion staff is unsure which port cruise will use 2 days before arrival. Wrong info given at the leaflet distributed on board. We joined independent excursion at St Petersburg, we can only depart ship 90 min after docking time. Have to let those joined cruise shorex depart first. We traveled in smaller group and with early entry to Hermitage plus an additional subway ride. Overall good cruise experience again. I would recommend this cruise and route. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I spent a lot of time giving feedback at the end of this cruise on their survey. Below are my comments to RCI (with edits). We had sailed on the Royal Princess recently (I know it's a newer ship and a different class) so we could ... Read More
I spent a lot of time giving feedback at the end of this cruise on their survey. Below are my comments to RCI (with edits). We had sailed on the Royal Princess recently (I know it's a newer ship and a different class) so we could make direct comparisons easily. I hope they use some of the comments to improve the experience for others. This is not a new ship but well maintained with a very friendly crew. We enjoyed the rock climbing and tried to participate in many of the activities offered. We just sailed on the Royal Princess about 8 weeks ago so it was easy to compare our experiences. Both cruises were enjoyable BUT the Princess cruise was more enjoyable overall. We embarked in Ft. Lauderdale and it was not as nice looking a terminal as the Princess cruise from the same port. The buffet on the Princess cruise has a much bigger selection and really really good food and an insane variety of foods from different cultures. It was so good, we hardly went to eat in the dining room. To get superior food on the Serenade we had to eat in the dining room. We also enjoyed the buffet service better on the Princess cruise. There seemed to be more staff at the buffet to get our drink orders (no having to get up to get our drinks) and tables were cleared very often on the Royal Princess. The dining room staff on the Serenade were very good and charming. Also, little touches like water and wet face clothes after an excursion were not done on the Serenade. To return towels after an excursion we had to return on the Lido deck (long hike after a tiring day). Also we felt we were charged more for services like laundry (we loved the self-serve laundry on every deck on the Princess), photos, spa, etc. We felt the Princess had better value for us in general and a more pleasant overall experience. Our experience on the Serenade was good but it could have been excellent. We did love seeing Captain Aris around all the time. And the entertainment staff, dancers and singers were very fun. We loved the Switched On Band and tried to dance as a family overnight with the band! We participated in the mob dance (thanks Naomi!). We also enjoyed the Flag Ceremony and the Farewell Ceremony as we know the crew really work hard. We also thought the entire crew were friendly and charming from our Steward to the Wait Staff. In terms of hand washing, the Royal Princess has very efficient had washing stations before entering the buffets and restaurants that were enforced. We loved that. We know the Serenade is an older ship but during a retrofit, you should do that (safety first). The small outdoor movie screen also has a pixel issue. The app on the Princess allowed your party to text/message each other for FREE! The RCI app is looks beautiful but not as useful for our family to communicate with each other around the ship. Also your TV, doesn't allow people to select movie and shows on demand (which we had on the Royal Princess). We liked how it was announced by the captain on the first day that everyone fist pumps on the ship and does not hand shake. We enjoyed hearing from the captain as he seemed to really participate in the events. We enjoyed the dance classes by professional dancers (the dance team was very good) and we enjoyed the meet and great with the dancers and singers on the last day. Loved the live music around the ship and in the theatre! We liked the actual glass shower doors (no mess). The spa double charged me for a service (no way I could get my pedicure twice on the same day). I went to speak with Mina (spa manager, it was later in the evening). Instead of processing the refund right away, she said she would need to speak to her team first and find out the reason for the mistake. This is not good customer service - she should have processed my refund immediately and then spoken with her staff the next day. We enjoyed the egg drop, ship building battle (our kids won), mob dance, napkin folding, towel folding, bartender show, 70's night and 70's night dance training with Naomi. My husband showed up for the darts and table tennis contests but no staff were at the "events" so the passengers did their own "contests and games" which was too bad because he won both competitions. We thought this cruise's entertainment was more fun but our general feeling was that it could have been a better overall experience in the other areas. The Ft. Lauderdale terminal did not look nice at all on departure; it should be renovated so keep that nice ship feeling all the way through. The terminal didn't understand that Global Entry passengers should have a separate line to get to the customs agent! We had to speak to someone to help us with that and thankfully, he understood and helped us. Finally the kids club, our 10 year old preferred the one on the Princess and thought it was really restrictive on the Serenade and never wanted to go there as she wanted free time to do her own thing in the club. The photos, we liked the experience on the Princess better (they also retouch your photos for free on the Princess). As we "collected" the photos, they kept it for us so it wasn't a chore to find them all the time, we purchased them on the ship (we were told they didn't have enough room on the Serenade to do this). and they used the bar code to put the digital photos right away on a USB stick for us so I was not concerned about an email coming to me. The photo package for all the photos were also more affordable on the Royal Princess. It seems like such a waste of printed photos to have them all displayed and most of them trashed. All ships should have computer terminals that with a simple swipe of your sea pass card or medallion, you get to see all of your photos on a screen and get your digital files emailed to you or on a USB stick. Not environmentally friendly at all and waste of your staff resources. No more printed photos! Who really wants 8 x 10s! We just want to post on social media and be done with it or just print out a few at Costco. We loved how often we saw or heard Captain Aris around the ship. He looks like someone who enjoys his job! We would love to see a female captain one day. We enjoyed the dining room staff, especially manager Kaviraj and his staff Sheldon, Maynard and Hurray. Special acknowledgement to Adikash who made a wonder paper jumping frog for my child and her cousin. They loved it! We enjoyed the soft serve ice cream in the buffet and the sorbets in the dining room. Sanya, our steward was great and we loved to hear her laugh. Napkins should be available at the self service drink stations. We also thought the buffets hours were odd on the Serenade (they close at 9:00 and before lunch and before dinner) because it never closed on the Princess during the day and was open to 11PM every night! Tip for muster station info on the sea pass cards, put the deck number on it too. Hand sanitizers should also be located right by the food at the buffet too. I didn't trust that everyone had clean hands so after handling the food serving spooks and ladle, I sanitized my hands again but had to walk all the way back to the hostess or the front doors. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Serenade of the Seas Review March 15th-25th Sailing Stops: St. Thomas, St.Croix, St. Kitts, Antigua, St. Maarten Once again, another amazing cruise onboard the Serenade of the Seas. Just as a little background, I’m a mid 30’s ... Read More
Serenade of the Seas Review March 15th-25th Sailing Stops: St. Thomas, St.Croix, St. Kitts, Antigua, St. Maarten Once again, another amazing cruise onboard the Serenade of the Seas. Just as a little background, I’m a mid 30’s Diamond+ single cruiser and this is my 2nd time on this ship, and 3rd time on a ship of this class on RCCL. Although the ship is a bit small, and one of Royal’s older ships, it’s still provided a great vacation. The entire staff was amazing and gave great service at every corner of the ship. The ship was very clean and at times it felt like you have the entire ship to yourself, not nearly as cramped or busy like the bigger ships. Before getting into a short overall review about this cruise, I wanted to get some acknowledgement to some all-stars I ran into on this ship. Josepher Lead Bartender: This man was all over the ship, taking care of our drinks at the Pool bar, Diamond Lounge, and Night Club. His service, personality, and friendliness are 5 stars. Every time I saw him, he would always take time and stop to have a conversation about my day. One of the best bartenders I have ever ran into in my cruise history. Ervina and Rulof Beverages: These two gems are amazing married individuals, that also provided the highest level of service at the Diamond Lounge and at the night club until 2-3am. This was a primarily older aged cruise, and night life was, well … non existent haha. So, majority of the 10 nights, it was just Rulof and I, chatting all night. Both Rulof and Ervina made some of the best drinks onboard and provided the best company throughout the cruise. I wish them both the best in the future, and the best for their family. Hannif Beverages: My goto guy at the 2nd floor pool bar and at the Safari Lounge. Great personality and quick & accurate service each time I visited him (and I visited him A LOT haha). Cheers Hannif! JJ and Mario Diamond and Concierge Lounges: Great people that always greeted you with a warm welcome and 5 star service in the diamond club. And Last but not least, our amazing Dinners Staff - Grace, Jerry, and Ty Grace Waitress: Fantastic service each and every night from this trio. Grace is a sweetheart that did a superb job getting us top tier quality service every night. One night my fish looked a little dry as she presented to me, without even batting an eye, she told me it looked too dry and sent it back. She had a replacement meal out in under 5 minutes that was cooked perfectly. Ty Beverages: Jerry Assistant Waiter: Jerry and Ty took care of all our drinks and water like clockwork and were always smiling and having a lot of fun with us. Ty is all over the ship as well, and someone you want to make friends with on day 1. She delivers drinks at the pool, the main dining room, and Main Lounge during the shows. Now onto the cruise itself… The ship is very clean, very beautiful, and is a perfect way to see some amazing destinations with friends or loved ones. For singles, it may be a bit of a different story. Most of the ship was mid 40’s and above, which provided a very relaxing vacation, but it seemed like everyone was asleep by Midnight. There were no specialty nights at the club like on most ships (silent disco nights, dancing under the stars, etc) The entire ship was dead past midnight. RCCL should organize cruise staff to relax and dance with guests at the club during some of the first nights to get people to dance and have fun (much like they do with the poolside sea day dancing). HOWEVER, the best cover band I have ever seen on a cruise ship played almost every night until midnight in the Centrum, “SWITCHED ON Band” ! An absolute fantastic show, and they did such an amazing job performing for us every night. I believe they are new to the RCCL circuit. My family saw them during the winter on Anthem of the Seas, which I think was their first ship, and we were fortunate to have them transfer to Serenade just before our trip. Amazing, amazing band, and make sure to check them out on Instagram “switchedonbandmx” and on facebook. The music in the irish pub was also superb, and he did a great job on the acoustic guitar, I believe his name was Julio. Great voice! The stops were beautiful, all of them. There was not one stop I did not enjoy. (I will post our stops below with pictures). The at sea days were fun, with all the standard contests (belly flop, sexiest man, volleyball). The live entertainment on the pool deck was very enjoyable also, and they did an excellent job. Overall Cruise Rating PROS: Excellent service everywhere you turn Very relaxing and enjoyable cruise SWITCHED ON BAND! Ship is smaller than most, but has great comfortable feel to it Great Food and Drink Service Beautiful stops on a long and relaxing 10 days PRO/CON (this may apply differently to different ages): Due to it being longer than a week, the average age may be above what you’d like CONS: Serenade does not have a lot of the amazing activities which are provided on other Explorer and higher, class ships (Slides, Flow Rider, 24/7 pizza, dancing under the stars). Nightlife past midnight was dead. No activities like silent disco, or outdoor parties. Accessories in the camera shop are VERY overpriced (SD card for my GOPRO was $70.. same card on amazon is $14) 400% markup! Amazon search before you buy on ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
After having the worst cruise and land tour, on their sister company ,The Millennium by Celebrity in Alaska in May, I was skeptical to go back to Royal Carrabean, but our cruise was just fabulous !! We were 9 people, family vacation, ... Read More
After having the worst cruise and land tour, on their sister company ,The Millennium by Celebrity in Alaska in May, I was skeptical to go back to Royal Carrabean, but our cruise was just fabulous !! We were 9 people, family vacation, had four cabins and found the service amazing! The ship is refurbished and really looks good.Unlike Celebrity who did nothing for us, Royal Carrabean gave amazing customer Service and went out of our way to make us happy.We had two small children in our party, 4 and 6, and they had plenty to do , even if at this time of year there are not many children on board.They have mini golf , mountain climbing and fun activities and games by the pool. Our cabin person was great and was there to attend to every need. The food was great both at the buffet and at the dining room.We had dinner very night in the dining room and the service and food was lovely.The shows were very professional and a lot of fun.The cruise director was very visible and put together great shows. Live music all over the ship. By the pool, by the bars and in the lobby, you could dance or just listen any time of day.Was presently surprised at how spacious our inside cabins were and the cabins with the two children had bunk beds which went up during the day.The gym was good, except that they charged too much for spinning classes that were not worth it.Ports of call were all beautiful.Two days at sea, Ponce, Porto Rico, St.Kitts,St. Lucia, Grenada,Barbados and Antigua.Two days at sea at the end. Perfect itinerary for a large group.We all enjoyed it very much and would recommend it to anyone. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our 6th cruise with Royal Caribbean and our third on Serenade on the Seas. We were looking forward on cruising again with Serenade 9 years later. My husband and I were traveling with a young child and 2 seniors. Embarkation ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise with Royal Caribbean and our third on Serenade on the Seas. We were looking forward on cruising again with Serenade 9 years later. My husband and I were traveling with a young child and 2 seniors. Embarkation On departure day, our hotel had a a shuttle taking us to the cruise terminal around 11 am. Embarkation went smoothly enough. We were early enough to grab some lunch at the Windjammer even though it was already a total zoo. I remember an announcement asking passengers to eat and leave promptly to let other people have a chance to sit down and eat - don't think it worked well. Cabin Our cabin was nice (standard) and fairly well maintained, although some fixtures, shelves and towels looked a bit tired. We got decent service from our stateroom attendant. Dining The Windjammer was a zoo, same as always. The food was quite adequate, however. We felt we always had to get there early to avoid being trampled or run over by scooters. Staff-wise, it was hit and miss. Most were friendly, but I found those working at the coffee and drink stations often inattentive and slow. In the Reflections dining room, we only went there for dinner. We tried breakfast on the first sea day and the service was so slow and mediocre that we gave up. Our dinnertime wait staff, Randolph and Marisol, and head waiter Oscar were efficient and friendly, especially when it came to our young son. On the second night (first formal night) we found a group in hawaiian shirts and shorts sitting at our table and eating our bread. I assume this was confusion on their part and not the staff's fault. I really hope so, anyway. We had to ask for a change of cutelry and bread baskets. As for the food, the menu was quite repetitive and the quality inconsistent. I believe it was the exact kids menu every day. I often went with our waiter Randolph's suggestions, which worked out pretty well for me. I can't say the same for my in laws, who were mostly disappointed in their choices and often went to the 'staple' choices. I wish they had less few huge tables (10-12 people). They are very loud and seem to drain way more attention and time from the wait staff. Not everyone is travelling in a huge group. We went to Chops Grille one evening, and Giovanni's Table twice. The atmosphere was quieter and the service more attentive at both venues, but I remember being more impressed with the food in our past Serenade cruises. Giovanni's pasta in particular didn't 'wow' me on this cruise - it should have - so I'm not certain what accounts for the decline in taste and quality. Entertainment I didn't attend the evening shows but I overheard favorable comments from other passengers. I enjoyed the guitarist and pianist playing in various lounges and bars and in the Centrum. There was a band playing a bit too loud in the Centrum at times - glad my cabin was not too close. My son enjoyed spending time at Adventure Ocean and in the kids' pool and slide. The staff were really friendly, patient and attentive; I guess it helps that there were very few children on this cruise. Overall appearance and layout The ship size offers a balance of accessibility and diversity. It is well laid out generally. I wish there was just a bit more in the shops. Not much in terms of clothing and always too much jewelry. How many watches do you need? Since cruising with Serenade 9 years ago, I noticed quite a few renovations and changes to the ship, most unfavorable in my opinion. The Centrum has been redone. I miss the lighted staircase. It is a high traffic area so it would benefit from more access points. The elevators were slow and packed as always. The 13th deck is a total mess. The Vortex has been massacred to house two separate areas, with an 'exclusive' Diamond club. The separation is artificial and looks awful, the view is gone and there is almost no seating space. The Hollywood Lounge is now a Concierge Club. To me, it seems the Safari club would be a better venue for private events and to host the frequent cruisers. I understand these senior cruisers need to feel pampered but Royal Caribbean should really concentrate more on attempting to cater to Platinum, Gold, and new cruisers. On the subject of elitism, it seemed to us the elevators seemed rigged to favour the 13th floor for these 'elites' - we kept seeing empty elevators bypassing our floors and going directly up top. Disembarkation Always my least favorite part, not just because the vacation is over. Having to get up as early as possible to try to grab a table at the zoo-like, completely packed Windjammer is never my idea of a good time. It seems everyone is a bit more rude than usual. We were able to get off in a timely manner, found our luggage fairly quickly and had to wait in line for a while to clear customs. We wanted a porter but weren't able to get anyone - none were available when we needed one. Oh well, at least we saved a few bucks. Other observations -The staff was not too pushy overall - good! I've been on cruises where the photographers and other sales staff were way more agressive. -Photography is really getting pricey. -Dress code: Would it be possible for Royal Caribbean to let passengers know in advance at the very least how many formal nights to expect? There used to be 'smart casual' and other theme nights, and 3 formal nights for longer cruises. Now it's all casual except for 2 formal nights, a suggestion that is taken very lightly by a large portion of the passengers. Had I known about these decreasing standards, I would have packed different clothes. Overall, the ship still looks great, the crew is friendly, and the cruise experience wasn't bad. The problem is that we saw a huge decrease in quality and service since we last cruised on Serenade. Royal Caribbean has been disappointing us in the past few years in favor of other cruise lines offering more value for money. What we noticed the most this time around, though, was the obvious favoritism towards the frequent/lifetime cruisers. We would not encourage first time or less experienced cruisers to cruise on Serenade. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
This was my third cruise with Royal Caribbean. So I'm not much of a cruise fanatic. Kudos go to everyone. Boarding was a breeze despite computer problems. Security present and friendly. Carlos, my cabin steward, went above and beyond ... Read More
This was my third cruise with Royal Caribbean. So I'm not much of a cruise fanatic. Kudos go to everyone. Boarding was a breeze despite computer problems. Security present and friendly. Carlos, my cabin steward, went above and beyond the call of duty. Servers in Windjammer and the restaurant on top of it. Food in Windjammer better than ever. Entertainment surprisingly good. I was disappointed on the last cruise. Shopping Goddess, Maia, helped us get a great deal at Diamonds International. Leaving was piece of cake too. Ports: Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, St. Lucia, and Antigua. We picked this cruise due to the ports. Snorkeled at 4 of 5 destinations. Highly recommend Woodwind in Bonaire and Spencer Ambrose Tours Jalousie/Sugar Beach break in St Lucia. Book them early. They both have dedicated followers. Also loved Playa Puerto Marie in Curacao. Warning...it's $50 cab ride one way. But you will not find many tourists on the beautiful deserted beach with a great reef right off the beach. So it was worth it to us. More port/destination info on TripAdvisor. Things that need improvement. The sofa in my cabin was worn to the point that the fabric on the arms were gone. I know it's an older ship. But since they changed the back cushion, someone must have seen the damage. Next, when we went to the dining room at 530, the host said there was no record of my reservation. I showed my documents with the reservation scheduled during booking and pretty much the told me too bad. This was the only person who's service stunk. An apology would have been nice. Now I could only make reservations for 5pm or after 730. This was due to the significant number of seniors who had grabbed early times. Anyway, got a table after a 30 minute wait. Our server, Boy, was wonderful as was his assistant whose name I cannot recall. That being said, first time food in Reflections was disappointing. During my last cruise, food was vastly superior. The menu in Reflections was available in the Windjammer, so we gave up on the restaurant. Summary: I would probably try a different cruise line next time. Many of the hardcore cruisers were disappointed and suggested alternatives. But I got a great deal and sometimes you get what you pay for. Overall, had a great time. But the competition for my travel budget is fierce. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this trip because of price and destinations. We usually cruise with Carnival which offers basically the same thing but for less money. Although we enjoy the Royal experience, we do not see paying more for the same thing. This was ... Read More
We chose this trip because of price and destinations. We usually cruise with Carnival which offers basically the same thing but for less money. Although we enjoy the Royal experience, we do not see paying more for the same thing. This was a great deal and we could not pass it up. The ship is showing a little age but is still well kept and lots of open spaces. If you are in to laying out and working on your tan however space is a problem. You have to get up early to stake out a chair or two. We only succeeded in doing so one day. The chairs are not enough to cover everyone. More space than chairs. Enjoyed playing shuffleboard on deck 5, there are several others spread out over the ship. Putt Putt was fun as well as watching pickle ball, basketball and a nice pool area for kids to play. Caught 3 new movies which was a plus, however the shows were a little disappointing. The entertainment brought in, was great! A magician and Hypnotist were absolutely fabulous. We went to all 3 shows the hypnotist did! Live music was good, spent several hours in Centrum and other areas listening. Cassie was part of cruise team, she did trivia and other games. She was far better than cruise director who was a let down. He did not interact with passengers and never spoke to us even in passing. Seemed more interested in showing how many languages he could say hello in before shows. Food was a hit and miss. Buffet was actually better than Main Dinning room. The Main Dinning room only changed a couple of things on the menu each night. But the buffet was constantly changing. A little disappointed in desserts though, too much mousse! Oatmeal raisin cookies were a hit with the wife. We had a ocean view room which was very open on deck 7. No noisy neighbors and the ship itself was very quite, no heavy vibrations like some ships have, even when coming into port. Marion was our room steward and did a great job. Room was always spotless and he was always checking to see if we needed anything. Each port was fun and exciting, some more than others. Antigua was the least favorite although they have 356 beaches. Not much else to see or do. We took city tours at each location. Cost was $25-$30 each and lasted from 3-4 hours. We took notes so that when we return we will know where and what we want to try and do. We ate Roti in Barbados which were good and a little spicy. Went to St. James church, which is over 400 years old. Fed monkeys on the street and ate some sugar cane cut down by our driver. In Antigua we visited Nelson's Docks, ate fingerling bananas, coconut bread and learned some history. Grenada was beautiful with all sorts of trees and spices. Saw nutmeg, cinnamon, turmeric, soursap, ginger...all in one place. Also visited a waterfall and watched divers who dove for you if you gave them a donation. Ate at B.B.'s restaurant which was just a short walk back to ship. We had dish called "meaty Mia", which was chicken cooked in coconut oil, served with sweet potato and ham mash...fantastic. Visited sugar plantation in St. Kitts and ate at small restaurant recommended by driver. Lots of great memories made and tons of pictures. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise primarily for the date of departure, the itinerary, and the cruise line, Royal Caribbean. The Dining Room service was outstanding, from the assistant waiter, the waiter and the Head Waiter. They went above and beyond ... Read More
We chose this cruise primarily for the date of departure, the itinerary, and the cruise line, Royal Caribbean. The Dining Room service was outstanding, from the assistant waiter, the waiter and the Head Waiter. They went above and beyond to prepare special dishes of Filipino food as a surprise for my wife. The Windjammer Buffet was top-notch and the selection was abundant. The choices in the Main Dining Room were above average, but more than familiar to those of us who cruise with RCCL frequently. The ship was spotlessly clean and well maintained. The entire crew was friendly and appeared to be very happy with their employment. Serenade of the Seas is just the "right size" for us. Although RCCL announced that the ship was "sold out" full, nothing appeared to be overcrowded and there was virtually no waiting for using any of the venues on board. We encountered absolutely no difficulties or disappointments on this cruise. I give my highest recommendation for Serenade of the Seas and I would definitely cruise on this ship again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We have been in many cruises all around the world but this one was really terrible...the first impression was of a old ship with no so much space in the public areas..for sure need an improvement..then the cabin was very disappointing ... Read More
We have been in many cruises all around the world but this one was really terrible...the first impression was of a old ship with no so much space in the public areas..for sure need an improvement..then the cabin was very disappointing because was very small to be a balcony cabin and when we opened the sofa bed for our daughter there was no space to move around the cabin and no space from our bed to go to the bathroom!! The shower had a broken door so we cannot use the first day because you cannot close it and we have to wait until the next day for somebody who came to fix it!!When we arrive at the buffet we realize this ship was not like any other we tried before...very poor food..zero quality and there was not anything you would like to eat....12 days at the buffet they have the same things..when they try the "theme" night was even worst..the quality of food was very low..the pasta was already done..was cold and they put the sauce on the side(we are from Italy and we know exactly how the pasta must be done)....the indian food was another tragedy..the papadam looks like the chinese clouds..no real indian food at all..they never put any japanese food..any sushi...the quality of this buffet was scandalous!!!Usually you find supervisor on the buffet area but not here....the service and cleaness was VERY bad...several times we found pieces of omelette on our chairs for breakfast and the table was very sticky. I'm not surprised that many people on board get sick with the norovirus!!The entertainment was zero..we have been to the Cinema and the movie ended 10 minutes before the end and the day after on the same place the air conditiong was not working...the big screen by the pool area was a ruined screen full of squares....never again with this ship but may be never again with Royal Caribbean because is impossible that they are not aware of all these problems specially in an expensive Christmas cruise of 12 nights..Last year same Christmas period we travelled with Princess..another world in every single aspect...Trust me,is the first time I'm doing a complaint for a cruise but I think people must be aware and for sure is better to buy another cruise.Bon voyage! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
12 nigh cruise with good ports (2 of six new to us). lobster on last night excellent (as opposed to past rccl new years cruises). shore excursions extremely over priced. Some excellent shows. food in windjammer very good with lots of ... Read More
12 nigh cruise with good ports (2 of six new to us). lobster on last night excellent (as opposed to past rccl new years cruises). shore excursions extremely over priced. Some excellent shows. food in windjammer very good with lots of choices. dining room food good for the most part. tables not cleaned nor dishes removed in windjammer. had to ask every time we were in there. spent lots of time in schooner bar . bartenders keith and romondo. my time dining for the third time. this time we were able to make a reservation for the set time every night. same table. same servers. 7:00 reservation better than 6:30 or 8:00. on the last three sea days i learned that i had to get up at 6:30 am to reserve chairs in solarium. on first sea day all chairs were reserved with towels by 7:00 am. solarium opens at 8:00. All chairs reserved by 7:00. It was myself and teo other people in solarium until almost 9:00. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This was our 1st 11 day cruise. We really had no expectations, but the staff and crew pleasantly surprised us. Always smiling. Always a friendly hello. Always helpful. They came across as enjoying our company, and worked well together. ... Read More
This was our 1st 11 day cruise. We really had no expectations, but the staff and crew pleasantly surprised us. Always smiling. Always a friendly hello. Always helpful. They came across as enjoying our company, and worked well together. The crew/county scavenger hunt was a great, fun family activity! Loved the spa and thermal suite. And the gym. The classes and activities were great for everyone of different skill levels. Finally, the itinerary was great for us. A wonderful sampling of the variety of islands in the Caribbean. A bonus was the science talks given by Andrea the cruise director. A night under the stars searching the constellations. A lecture on mathematics, fractal geometry, and the golden ratio as seen in nature. I really have nothing negative to say. If there is one thing that I could say, it was there was too much to choose from. We did not relax as much as I thought because of all the offerings and activities going on. I can enthusiastically recommend this cruise for all people! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
Chose this ship primarily because of itinerary, and in that respect it did not disappoint. Service in the MDR was the best I've had in years, but the food itself was sub-par. We wound up going to the Windjammer on certain nights ... Read More
Chose this ship primarily because of itinerary, and in that respect it did not disappoint. Service in the MDR was the best I've had in years, but the food itself was sub-par. We wound up going to the Windjammer on certain nights (Caribbean night, Indian night) and was blown away with the quality and flavor of the food. Did all three Specialty Dining (Izumi, Chops, Giovanni's) and loved them, with Giovanni's blowing us away with the whole experience. Centrum was nice early in the evening, but often reeked of smoke from the nearby casino. That smoke from the 6th floor even made it INTO MY CABIN ON THE 8th FLOOR! Spoke with manager and said it came from the casino, as they get frequent complaints about it, after I suggested it was someone smoking in a nearby cabin. Same issue with the British Pub - I would have spent more time there, but the smoke drove me away. This was an 11 day cruise, so it was filled with elderly people. Night-life was dead, as would be expected, but I was really surprised to see the Viking Crown lounge closed most of the time, along with the bar closed permanently in the Safari Club. Also, "Rita's Cantina" is now just outdoor seating for the Windjammer. No problems with elevators on this cruise - no waiting the vast majority of the time! Overall, a nice cruise, despite all the smoke. Would do again. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
I choose this cruise for the islands it was going too.the ship it self was not a wow factor. But the service given was very good.i did not like the food in the main dining room ,so I eat in windjammer as I had more of a choice.my state ... Read More
I choose this cruise for the islands it was going too.the ship it self was not a wow factor. But the service given was very good.i did not like the food in the main dining room ,so I eat in windjammer as I had more of a choice.my state room was very clean and well keep my room attendant worked very hard. The entertainment was first class especially if you like dancing I had a ball.the service I was given was first class, I loved the ports and all the excursions which was the highlight of my cruise.very friendly staff make me feel at home at all time.getting on or off the ship was very fast and everything was well organised for us. We had staff to meet us off our flight and put us in taxi to our hotel and staff to help us get to the bus to take us back to the airport. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
First, being a Boston resident, I am thrilled to board the Serenade close to home. I have done this sailing three times and have loved each one. The staff on the Serenade is wonderful. They will go the extra mile to get things done. The ... Read More
First, being a Boston resident, I am thrilled to board the Serenade close to home. I have done this sailing three times and have loved each one. The staff on the Serenade is wonderful. They will go the extra mile to get things done. The entertainment on the ship is diverse and upbeat. The ship was clean and shiny. The cruise director is full of energy and fun. Everyone has their own preferences and Royal does their best to accommodate everyone. I’m not saying they are perfect, but pretty close. I spent a lot of time in the Diamond lounge and the wait staff there is fantastic. The drinks and appetizers are delicious. I love the ports but I really don’t even get off half the time. I’d rather stay on the ship! I just wish there were more sailings by RCCL from Boston what return to Boston post cruise. I think I would be sailing every month! Loyal to Royal!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We choose this cruise because my daughter had never been to Bermuda. We stayed two nights at the Marriott Long Wharf in Boston and did a tour with Sam I Am. It was a terrific historical tour of Boston, Cambridge, and Lexington. We ate ... Read More
We choose this cruise because my daughter had never been to Bermuda. We stayed two nights at the Marriott Long Wharf in Boston and did a tour with Sam I Am. It was a terrific historical tour of Boston, Cambridge, and Lexington. We ate at Legal Seafood across from the hotel and the food was very good. We took an Uber to the port from the hotel and did not wait very long to get on the ship. We had an aft cabin and the views were amazing. The water in Bermuda is so blue. We ate most of our meals in the main dining room. We did the Chef's table and that was excellent. We took a ship excursion in Bermuda which was an island tour on a small bus and saw the entire island. We had a catamaran tour scheduled but it was too windy so it was cancelled. The third day in Bermuda we took the trolley into the Clock tower mall and shopped, got a t-shirt at the Frog and Onion, some t-shirts for the girls at Davisons and headed back to the ship. The shows were good even though I had seen them before on my Back-to-Back I took in June to the Arctic Circle and Baltic (Russia) area. Many of the activities were in the Centrum area, the Tropic duo played nightly and they were very good. We returned to Boston a day early as there was a Nor-easter storm coming in. Immigration was done on the ship and some locals got off and went home. We stayed on and relaxed for the day, glad they came in early because the storm was rocking the boat in port and it rained hard and was very windy. Debarkation was easy, we took an Uber to the airport and went home that afternoon. This was a great tour, the ship was clean, the crew was friendly, our servers were terrific, and we had a very nice time in Bermuda. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
I recently took a cruise from Boston to Bermuda 9/31/18-10/7/18. I love taking the cruise ship out of Boston it’s very convenient for us being only 45 minutes away, no flying. Also, Royal Caribbean leaves on Sunday afternoon at 5:00. Our ... Read More
I recently took a cruise from Boston to Bermuda 9/31/18-10/7/18. I love taking the cruise ship out of Boston it’s very convenient for us being only 45 minutes away, no flying. Also, Royal Caribbean leaves on Sunday afternoon at 5:00. Our designated arrival time was the earliest scheduled for between 10:30-11:30, we were there at 10:15 sharp and we were allowed to board the ship at 10:25…….. 10 minutes later. I love this!!! NCL makes you wait until noon. I know it’s petty……. but I love that little perk! Yes! Being a gold member I did have priority boarding anyway. The Sunday departure is GREAT because there’s no traffic whatsoever around the cruise terminal or in or out of Boston on Sunday compared to Friday departures and arrivals on NCL. Also the construction from 93N to the terminal is complete now and it’s exit 18, right onto Congress Street and straight to the terminal entrance, very easy to get to now that the constructions done in that area! Royal Caribbean... to start……… I can’t stress this enough……. the staff was SUPERB!!!!!! They actually had crew members wearing bright yellow T shirts that read “ I can help you ask me any question you’d like”. Also the food was outstanding! from the main dinning to the buffet!!! The entire crew we engaged, was always pleasant, and willing to help! We sampled virtually everything in the buffet. Our head waiter Danny from Indonesia and his assistant waitress Elaina from Romania were the best team I’ve ever experienced on or off a ship in any restaurant! Our water glasses were never below ¾’s full, the second we were done with our entry or desert the setting was cleared……. I love that….. it shows they’re paying attention to their guests!!!! Truly a pair of professionals!! I also liked the fact that when we were sitting on the ship the waiters throughout the ship would be walking around with a variety of drinks…..NO!!! Not pushing alcohol but delivering, cold drinks such as: lemon aid, strawberry drinks, ice tea, hot coffee, hot tea, and water. Yes… of course they would take an alcohol order as well. Love that, service with a smile!!!! I have not been on a RCL cruise in 9-10 years. I am a gold member with both cruise lines. In 2009 I left from the port of Seattle, Washington on the Radiance of the Seas which was a cruise to Alaska. If you have never done it…it’s a must!! For the past 7 years I have been taking the NCL Dawn from Boston to Bermuda. What a difference! I read on line the Dawn would be repositioning south and the NCL Gem would be replacing her departing from Boston on Fridays starting in 2019 at 4:00 in late April early May. The parking this year has changed from last year back to the garage, the open parking lots at the pier are now specifically for monthly parking only. Parking has increased from $140.00 a week in 2017 to $175.00 this year :( Ouch!! It has changed ownership, but they now take Master, Visa, Amex, and I believe Discover, NO MORE CASH PAYMENTS!! Our room location was deck 10 1002 forward sweet 2 port side (left) we always get a balcony forward this seems to be the quietest part of the ship for us. Plus 1 floor up for the pool, food and sun, 3 floors down to the theater. Now being located on deck 10 which on this ship just happens to be the first deck under the pool deck and jogging track. I could hear the joggers very early in the morning but it was very, very faint. There are plenty of elevators on board no problem with overcrowding or excessive waiting. We were allowed in our rooms at 1:00 and had our luggage by 5:00. The ship was immaculate!!! The room was adequate like all the rest but…. the bathroom shower was very, very tight!!! I have to say the shower is very small and the only negative thing on the ship!! I’m 6’ tall 180 lbs. on the thin side and I was bumping and banging my elbows the whole time I was in there….. it’s tight!! Think NCL dawns toilet area with the sliding door, That’s the size of your shower. It’s very small!! All and All GREAT trip! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
The Serenade of the Seas is an easy ship to navigate and the Cruise Port Boston staff is great. Security is tight in Cruiseport Boston (fine with me!) but the embarkation process is a breeze. Fun to see the airplanes flying overheard ... Read More
The Serenade of the Seas is an easy ship to navigate and the Cruise Port Boston staff is great. Security is tight in Cruiseport Boston (fine with me!) but the embarkation process is a breeze. Fun to see the airplanes flying overheard departing from Logan Airport in Boston, Staterooms were not ready til 1:00 PM so you can check out the ship's public areas. Stop by any bar and Purchase or Open your Beverage package and have a Bon Voyage drink. This is also a good time to take the Spa Tour and check out the Fitness Center, You can sign up for Spinning Class etc. Bingo was fun. Different prices each dat depending on what they were offering. I did not win. Someone did win a Cruise for Two at the end of the Cruise Bingo. The Quest was very fun as well as the love and marriage show. We want to go again! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Starting with my first Royal Caribbean Cruise 15yrs ago, then multiple Carnival Cruises after that, we decided to choose Royal Caribbean again because of how much we enjoyed the first one. After 5 Cruises prior to this one in 2018, I’d ... Read More
Starting with my first Royal Caribbean Cruise 15yrs ago, then multiple Carnival Cruises after that, we decided to choose Royal Caribbean again because of how much we enjoyed the first one. After 5 Cruises prior to this one in 2018, I’d consider myself experienced and because of that, I have realistic expectations of what a Cruise should entail. Well, unfortunately this one was the WORST ship (Serenade of the Seas) I’ve been on. We travelled with a group of family consisting of ten people in total - 6 adults and 4 children. Three children under the age 10, one being 12 and the adults ranging from 40yrs of age to 60 yrs of age. We were amongst 1800 senior citizens, if not more! (Nothing against seniors, for the record) They should just market this Cruise for seniors, and not families traveling with little ones. 2/3 pools were closed on the ship. Jumbo TV over the main area was broken so there were no movie nights for the entire 7 day duration of the Cruise. Kid friendly night club was closed, as well as most of the child friendly activities weren’t running. There’s one indoor pool on the boat, which was considered “adult only” however nobody mentions that children are allowed to swim 2hrs per day during a scheduled period until the very last day of the Cruise - THANKS! The formal dining service was not very good and the food was mediocre at best. The Matradee (short, balding, mid 50’s, Greek type fellow) responsible for looking after the guests dining experience, purposely ignored our table every night, only catering to the senior citizens. It was almost comical watching him squirm and go out of his way to Ignore our table. We travelled in a pack of 10, it would be pretty hard not to see us!! The daycare centre was phenomenal and for the kids, one of the highlights of the trip. They were excellent with our kids and they enjoyed their time & activities at “Adventure Ocean”. The boat was very dated and it showed in all areas of the ship, There was next to no child friendly live entertainment and unless you wanted to listen to vulgarity, you were out of luck. This Cruise fell WAY below my expectations, especially for the high standard I remembered Royal Caribbean to have. It was such a bad experience, I have no reason to ever book again with them. Carnival Cruise line was way better. SO much more of a friendlier family, single and couples ship and to top it off....so much more affordable!! Royal Caribbean, you dropped the ball big time!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
Very easy to get around the ship. Very colorful, always some sort of the entertainment in the Centrum. EVERYONE aimed to please! Particularly Vince and Julius at Vintages Wine Bar. They remembered what we drank and when we arrived our ... Read More
Very easy to get around the ship. Very colorful, always some sort of the entertainment in the Centrum. EVERYONE aimed to please! Particularly Vince and Julius at Vintages Wine Bar. They remembered what we drank and when we arrived our drinks were poured even before we could sit down -- loved that! The food was exceptional. There were 6 of us and we ate dinner in the MDR each night. Our servers were outstanding and professional (Airel and Odair). The buffet had a good variety and wow the breads - assorted and fresh! Items changed daily. We also LOVED the lunch on sea days held in the dining room. You can order from a menu or have the buffet including hot items, salad bar and carving station, and a very impressive desert table - with cakes at least 10 inches high...yummm! Good itinerary but not at all impressed with St. Johns. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I wanted to take my elderly mother on a calm cruise as a cruise was on her bucket list. When I boarded the ship I ask if I could rent a wheelchair for my mother I was declined do to the face I did not make arrangements when I booked the ... Read More
I wanted to take my elderly mother on a calm cruise as a cruise was on her bucket list. When I boarded the ship I ask if I could rent a wheelchair for my mother I was declined do to the face I did not make arrangements when I booked the reservation. I didn’t think we would need one 3 mo prior to the trip. I was spoken to TERRiBLE by the security personal. After we boarded the ship an after a 2 hour wait to get in our room I was told it was mandatory we attend the safety drill procedure. I could not take my elderly mom there with walking disability down the stairs so I had her stay in the room while I attended.. My mother there has Dementia also. When I returned to the room my mother was not there. I went to the hallway an ask the cabin Stew Ricardo if he had seen my mother.? Ricardo stated he went into the room (I assume to clean as it was not very clean when we arrived) an he saw he sitting on the bed with a blanket. Ricardo then said she said she was hungry then she left the room. I told him I needed to find her she has dementia. I looked through halls of our floor an I found her safe an sound. I was then paged by the security personal. I went to guest services an was invited to an office of the security personal. The female security officer and the male officer spoke to me HORRIBLE!!!!!! The female officer stated the cabin stew stated he found my mother in the room wrapped in a blanket laying under the bed. Complete total LIE. First of all my mother would not b able to get on the floor much less under the bed. Second, ileven if that were true...why would he leave her there?.,I told them that was impossible!!! They then told me the cruise line was never t responsible for my mother and I was not to leave her alone. I told them I would not have left her alone had it not been for their safety procedure an the caregiver who was suppose to be on the trip with us had cancelled the day before., I was shocked humiliated over they way I was treated. Also I ask guest services if I could rent a wheelchair was declined from for the ship and also declined for shore excursions an just walking in the towns when we docked so our entire trip was spent on the ship except for one day we left the ship for Halifax an I thought maybe I could rent a cab. My mother had a very difficult time even walking down the ramp to the port. A very nice man who works for Hop on Hop off ask if we needed anything I explained I wanted my mother to tour the city was unless we hired a cab it wasn’t going to work out. He said if we wanted to take the Hop on Hop off they would help me get her on an off. We did do that an we just stayed on the bus but at least she was able to see the city. This was the only time during this vacation someone treated my mother with kindness and respect. I feel my mother was discriminated against several times by the Cruise Line an will never take another Royal Caribbean Cruise again. Your cruise line should be ashamed. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
This was my second time on a Baltic Cruise and my 2nd time to all ports of call. Even though not new, I really enjoyed this cruise. It was my first time on this ship and only my third time with Royal Caribbean. As with any cruise there ... Read More
This was my second time on a Baltic Cruise and my 2nd time to all ports of call. Even though not new, I really enjoyed this cruise. It was my first time on this ship and only my third time with Royal Caribbean. As with any cruise there were some negatives. Primarily on the up selling and nickel and dime game RC has become. But otherwise I enjoyed the trip very much. Copenhagen is an easy port to use, embarkation was done well and easily. Sea days were relaxing. I enjoyed being on a smaller sized ship. Nothing ever felt crowded and there were always seats and very few lines for anything. The ship is decorated well and bright. The only time things felt busy were breakfast at the windjameer. Especially on sea days. We had a 3rd level inside cabin. No issues at all. It was quite and cool. We experienced great weather on this trip that we were able to enjoy the outdoor areas. The room attendant was great and so was the wait staff. As expected the food in the MDR was good to very good every night. I find this to be the case for European cruises over Caribbean cruises. Windjammer food was good most of the time as well. The cities you see on the Baltics are great. There is so much to see especially in Stockholm and St. Petersberg. Which we have more time there. Estonia a long port day in old town is enough, as well as Helsinki. Make sure you enjoy the departure from Stockholm, some of the most scenic cruising I ever seen. I did not do much on the entertainment side, but what I saw that was offered was good. Activities were not a ton, but it is a smaller ship. The art auctions were LONG though. They give a 10:45 registration but don't start until 11:30-11:45. WAY too long and not enjoyable at all for that long. I hated bingo being electronic and also that they charge for a bingo pen. As typical on a European cruise the casino was never very busy but the staff was good. I was with a larger group so we took shore excursions at all ports. I think they were all very good and did a good job for the time they have. For St. Petersberg is always good to have the longest possible tour given the visa restrictions. Overall, I could not have asked for a better cruise. Copenhagen was easy to disembark from too. And make sure to stay a few days prior or after there as well. 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

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