49 Tampa Repositioning Cruise Reviews

This was our first trans-Atlantic cruise so we were very excited and a little nervous. We enjoyed every minute of the trip! The staff was attentive and very friendly. The food was way above average. The fellow passengers were lovely ... Read More
This was our first trans-Atlantic cruise so we were very excited and a little nervous. We enjoyed every minute of the trip! The staff was attentive and very friendly. The food was way above average. The fellow passengers were lovely people. And most important, the seas were calm throughout the journey! As vast majority of our fellow travelers were seasoned cruisers and I heard that about 80% had diamond status or above with RCCL. We have already signed up for another TA next May. The shows were just ok, but the bands were awesome! Kinetic band always entertained the audience and played great dance music. We had an interior cabin which was small as we expected, but we spent very little time there. The fitness center is also sort of small and limited. We selected my time dining for dinner and had wonderful service and great meals. It was a wonderful cruise across the deep blue sea! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
The itinerary caught my eye, embark Tampa , visit 6 Caribbean ports, disembark NYC.We arrived the evening before the cruise, ate locally and got a good night's sleep at the Quality Inn. Arrived on Sunday at the port with everyone else ... Read More
The itinerary caught my eye, embark Tampa , visit 6 Caribbean ports, disembark NYC.We arrived the evening before the cruise, ate locally and got a good night's sleep at the Quality Inn. Arrived on Sunday at the port with everyone else going on the cruise ( or so it seemed) ,boarded about 1 hour 15 minutes after arriving. The Pearl is an older, smaller ship but in my opinion a nice ship to spend 11 days aboard. An adult pool as well as a children's pool is always a nice touch. The chair hogs were out in force & policing was near non existent which takes away from those fun in the sun sea days by the pool. We found ourselves hiking up to the sun deck to find chairs,ok but not easy to take a dip in the pool. The bars ,restaurants and public areas were all enjoyable.Getting reservations in the specialty restaurants was a challenge. We were forced to take an early evening dinner reservation toward the end of our cruise, either hat or a 9-10PM seating,no thanks. Indigo & Summer Palace were excellent food & service ,only one night were we made to wait for a table. The cabin was on deck 5,outside window, noise level, very quiet ( restaurant above so no noise at night).We saw several shows, all good, Stardust Theater seats were not comfortable for any length of time. The lounge entertainment was good. Casino , only one roulette table & it was always crowded.The service throughout the ship was exceptional, thank you to the crew for a great time aboard The Pearl.Loved the ports with the exception of St. Lucia ,nice Island but the excursion detoured us to a beach that was over run with locals in your face selling booze & trinkets,sometimes uncomfortably, almost threatening. Don't do the St,Lucia Beach break. We loved the other ports and the excursions chosen, all professionally run, We will sail with NCL again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This was a cruise to a place I always dreamed of visiting - CUBA. That was the highlight of the cruise. Embarkation went very smoothly. We had a 12 show time and we were on board eating and playing cards by 12:30. Due to an serious ... Read More
This was a cruise to a place I always dreamed of visiting - CUBA. That was the highlight of the cruise. Embarkation went very smoothly. We had a 12 show time and we were on board eating and playing cards by 12:30. Due to an serious fall, my niece broke her leg and rented a knee scooter which met the size requirements of Carnival. It was to be in the room by 2pm. At 2:15 we entered the room and there it was. Perfect. 4pm we set off from Tampa. We arrived at Key West the next day at noon. We hung out on the ship while in dock, lazing around and enjoying each other's company. We took off from Key West, spent the night in the casino and in the morning arrived in Cuba. Disembarking was also made easy via customs, even though explaining an e-cigarette met with odd looks. Off we went to meet up with Jorge from Blexie who proudly drove us around Cuba explaining various areas, customs and culture. It was a long awaited experience and not a moment of regret. Back on the ship we dressed and got ready for a night at the Tropicana. An incredible show that made the trip even more memorable. We were sailing by the time we woke for two sea days and just remembering what we experienced. The trip back home was a little rocky, but not sickening. The temperature was too cool to be outside, so it was back to the casino. We arrived in Tampa, disembarkation went well and now I spend my time remembering the sites and sounds of Cuba and the wonderful crew of Carnival. It was perfect!!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise because it provided a way to get to Europe fairly economically when you consider all room and board and good food and entertainment and excellent childcare and programs included! We got to see many beautiful places on ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it provided a way to get to Europe fairly economically when you consider all room and board and good food and entertainment and excellent childcare and programs included! We got to see many beautiful places on our cruise and had the option of taking paid for excursions or venturing out on our own. Excellent staff and service! We didn't want for anything! All of their staff are friendly and helpful and it was so fun to meet people from all over the world. Royal Carribean had a great mixture of staff from various places around the world and it was fun to talk with them and learn from them! Their programs for our children were excellent. Our children had so much fun and it provided my wife and I to have a true vacation. All the ports we stopped at were beautiful and fun to explore. It was also nice that at one of the ports they offered complimentary shuttle into town. The food was excellent and plentiful and they even had gluten free options. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We like transatlantic cruises. This was one of the finest. We made new friends, and fully relaxed with the activities provided. We especially enjoyed Charlotte and her watercolor classes, and the lectures on medicine. Cigar/cigarette smoke ... Read More
We like transatlantic cruises. This was one of the finest. We made new friends, and fully relaxed with the activities provided. We especially enjoyed Charlotte and her watercolor classes, and the lectures on medicine. Cigar/cigarette smoke is highly offensive to me, and gives me migraines, and yet the casino was one of the freshest we ever experienced, as we occasionally passed through it. I did comment to guest relations about how much nicer it is. It was great that the Diamond Club area was expanded, due to the high number of Diamond, etc. guests on the ship. We really enjoyed the Happy Hour, the snacks and the fun with friends. On other ships we have been able to eat and enjoy the Pinnacle club, as well as top shelf dinners, because we had a Jr. Suite. This was not applicable on the cruise, which was a little disappointing. And I wish I had known how disappointing the internet would be, as I would not have purchased it. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We did the trans Atlantic crossing. the ship was quite, not a lot of children on it maybe because it was a 14 night cruise and not school holidays in the USA. Meet some fantastic people on this cruise. the staff were wonderful and helpful ... Read More
We did the trans Atlantic crossing. the ship was quite, not a lot of children on it maybe because it was a 14 night cruise and not school holidays in the USA. Meet some fantastic people on this cruise. the staff were wonderful and helpful in many ways. We are diamond member with crown and anchor, so spend some time in the diamond lounge, JJ was a very good host and a very pleasant lady. the ship was clean and tidy, meals were had mostly in the dinning room at night, the wait staff were excellent. there was plenty of entertainment on the ship, from ship board activities to the shows in the main the theatre. The activity manger and there staff did a good job with all the activities they put on. We visited Key west and the canary islands. I would do the crossing again in a few years. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Toronto airport was shutdown by ice- we had to fly out of Detroit, and missed our Cruise out of Tampa. As a result we had to get on 1 day late in Key West. We had made flight arrangements will HAL, and they were great! They put us in the ... Read More
Toronto airport was shutdown by ice- we had to fly out of Detroit, and missed our Cruise out of Tampa. As a result we had to get on 1 day late in Key West. We had made flight arrangements will HAL, and they were great! They put us in the Marriott at Tampa airport ($219 per night) and covered our flight to Key West. Food and Service was wonderful. Ship was a little tired- faded carpets (so what). TV service was intermittent and limited. DVDs were often scratched and unwatchable We were not informed that 4 ships would be docking in Punta Delgada so independent tours were not available. Main dining room open for breakfast only 8am to 9am. We were very satisfied, above comments are not intended to be overly critical, just to advise future travellers not to expect perfection. Holland America is our line of choice, after sampling most others ( no Carnival Line party atmosphere, no Cunard snootiness, just friendly excellent service). Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was a great cruise. It was a smaller ship than what we are used to but we thoroughly enjoyed the whole cruise. We booked most of our excursions from SPB Tours and would highly recommend them. The groups were small and the guides ... Read More
This was a great cruise. It was a smaller ship than what we are used to but we thoroughly enjoyed the whole cruise. We booked most of our excursions from SPB Tours and would highly recommend them. The groups were small and the guides were very knowledgeable. In Normandy we booked thru Overload Tours and they were fantastic. What a great tour. Would also recommend them. The room was large and even had a bathtub. The ship was very clean and the crew were awesome. Food was fantastic and had not one complaint about the food. Both the dining room and the Lido Market got high marks. All the open spaces were very clean and I found that there were lots of places to sit and just read or relax. They had a cruise EXC on board who told quite a bit about each port that you were going to. She was not affliliated with the shore excursion desk so she was very informative and not pushing the cruise ship excursions. We enjoyed all the ports we went to. I'm glad we went at the beginning of the cruise season as I can see the ports getting very crowded and very busy at the different places. I would definitely recommend Holland America. All in All a Great Cruise!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We had a wonderful time on board of The Brilliance of the Seas, crossing the Atlantic Ocean from Tampa to Amsterdam. Our cabin was really nice and more spacious as we would have thought and was kept tiptop by the crew. Dining was really ... Read More
We had a wonderful time on board of The Brilliance of the Seas, crossing the Atlantic Ocean from Tampa to Amsterdam. Our cabin was really nice and more spacious as we would have thought and was kept tiptop by the crew. Dining was really good (too good, according to the weight I gained.. and I did a daily work-out in The Gymnasium!!) Grace and Dmytro served swiftly, kind and patiently at our table and the menu was really superb, compliments to the Chef and his crew two. We had some meals at The Windjammer Café and that was really good too, but sometimes it is hard to find a nice table. We really enjoyed the entertainment on board. There was a 9 man band with 4 fabulous vocalists, lots of nice other live music during the day. Some shows, like the juggler, were not our cup of tea but other guests seem to have enjoyed these shows also. Because of the weather we had to change the route and two ports (Waterford and Dublin) had to be canceled. We went off the ship for a nice walk in Porta del Gado on the Azores. We have spend two days in Cork and we have visited the town on one and made a short bus tour across the island the other day. We had always thought a cruise was boring and we were scared to get seasick. We had a pretty rough ride according to the captain but except for a less steady walk, we really enjoyed our days at sea. After 15 days we have arrived in Amsterdam and...we have booked another transatlantic cruise in 2019 with Royal Caribbean from Barcelona to Miami. Traveling with a cruiseship to or from the US is so much relaxter than traveling by plane, no jet lag! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
It was a great time. All the staff where so nice. We love the size of this ship. Easy to get to know everyone. We where in cabin 9050 which said it had a 25% obstruction from a window cleaning ladder.It was not bad and did not obstruct our ... Read More
It was a great time. All the staff where so nice. We love the size of this ship. Easy to get to know everyone. We where in cabin 9050 which said it had a 25% obstruction from a window cleaning ladder.It was not bad and did not obstruct our view too much.But the divider between cabins had a big gap so we could see the people next to us if they where on their balcony. The cabin was a great size and we booked this cruise late so not many to choose from. But this would not be my first choice. The food was good, shows where OK the smaller ships don't tend to have the best acts.Room attendant did a great job. I think all the staff work so very hard. We did miss two ports in Ireland due to a storm, but it was very nice of Royal to give us a voucher for money off our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
First of all a transatlantic cruise is the way to go if you love cruising! The Jade was recently refurbished and it is lovely.The entertainment on the ship, especially the Element show was fantastic ! We really enjoyed eating at the ... Read More
First of all a transatlantic cruise is the way to go if you love cruising! The Jade was recently refurbished and it is lovely.The entertainment on the ship, especially the Element show was fantastic ! We really enjoyed eating at the specialty restaurants, especially Le BISTRO and La Cucinca. Don't miss the crepes on the Lido deck , they were outstanding. I'm not going to give details of the ship, but to share how fantastic the Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle influenced our cruise! We had organized games, tour's and a fun room crawl.I can honestly say that it was one of the most fun and enjoyable experience that I have had on a ship ! Thanks to CC and will be signing up on every Roll Call. We're booked on the Epic in January and on the Bliss in May for a Panama canal cruise! Look for solivitagal on roll call ! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was one of our choices for choice of cruise to spend our honeymoon and we are very happy that we did. The ship as itself is beautiful and had just been refurbished. The staff work extremely hard to keep the whole ship extremely clean ... Read More
This was one of our choices for choice of cruise to spend our honeymoon and we are very happy that we did. The ship as itself is beautiful and had just been refurbished. The staff work extremely hard to keep the whole ship extremely clean and well kept. Our room steward Alvin kept us not wanting for anything. He was excellent at his job. Could not have asked for more. The food was above average. We did not eat at the buffet but once and that time we did it was pretty good. We are our dinner at the Grand Pacific and everyone there were excellent. Especially our servers Mary Ann and Elaine. The wine Steward Armando kept us well stocked on our drinks of choice. The grills outside were okay and the pub had a few good items on the menu. The specialty restaurants were the same as there other ships and we did not try them as we have before and not a huge fan of any of them. When we did have need of anything from guest services they were very good and had our questions answered. All the public areas were kept extremely clean for our enjoyment. The entertainment crew on board were fine. The shows were pretty entertaining but nothing to write home about. The live music was okay. They played the normal bingo and other games of such. Did enjoy the library and game room and they have a good selection of books and games. There casino was a decent size and as a few other reviews have stated about the smoke smell being a but I did not think it was. Overall will we cruise with NCL again? Yes, most definitely. Everyone that we met took a very special interest in there line of work and did there job to perfection. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Firstly, we chose this cruise mainly for rest and "landed" in the UK without the dreaded jetlag! We stayed in the Westin, very close to the port pre-cruise and had a complimentary van transfer which took less than 5 minutes...$20 ... Read More
Firstly, we chose this cruise mainly for rest and "landed" in the UK without the dreaded jetlag! We stayed in the Westin, very close to the port pre-cruise and had a complimentary van transfer which took less than 5 minutes...$20 tip shared between hotel bell-boy and driver for this excellent courtesy. The embarkation experience was fabulous...we left the Westin hotel at 10.50am and stepped onto the ship at precisely 11.30am. Check-in was quick and smooth, and we were card number 2 for Platinum boarders. Suite guests were called at 11.15, and Platinum at 11.20....smoothest, quickest check-in ever on 39 cruises so well done Tampa and NCL. When we boarded, we were advised cabins would be ready by 1.30pm however I wandered off to our cabin and it was ready so we dropped our roll-on luggage and headed for lunch, our first of many fabulous meals. We found the Garden Cafe buffet met our expectations for breakfast and lunch...it is a buffet, very busy, so do bear that in mind! We found the Alizar MDR provided better service than the Grand Pacific, to be fair we only had 2 evening meals in Alizar, and 1 in Grand Pacific. We had 2 free Speciality Restaurant meals (Platinum perk), and purchased a further 8 as UDP. We had 3 Cagneys (superb), 3 Le Bistro (excellent), 2 Moderno (very good, but a "meatfest"), 1 Teppanyaki (OK, but experienced previously) and 1 La Cucina (poor). On the final evening, we went to the Garden Cafe to work around our packing and were very satisfied. Having sailed the Jade 3 times previously, we found the refurbishment had provided tasteful decor in the Atrium, and general public areas....nothing Wow factor, but well appointed. The cabins are also more tastefully decorated...my wife expressed this as more warm colours overall, and some lovely grey tones also. The pool area is also much better, having removed the slide and also the Hawaiin themes, so more area around the pool. To be honest, whilst all of these changes are very good, the refurb did not quite meet our expectations with some areas not refurbed at all e.g. the Magnum/Le Bistro area on deck 6. That said, we were told that the furniture for these areas was coming from Italy, and would be changed either at Southampton or Hamburg during the first couple of sailings in Northern Europe! That will make for some minor disruption, I guess. Entertainment overall was very good, we particularly enjoyed the evening music around the ship at Atrium and also Magnums area and also the young Argentinian couple around the pool during our sea days...they were fabulous. They commenced their contract this cruise, for 3 months, and my forecast is they will also be utilised for evening music in Northern Europe. The Main Theatre shows were good overall, especially Elements, but the "comedy juggler" and "illusions" stuff is old hat for us now so we didn't do them. Given this was a Transatlantic Repositioning cruse, the ports were excellent with Key West and Miami, then Ponta Delgada in the Atlantic, followed by Cobh in Ireland and Falmouth in Cornwall England. Very satisfied with them overall. NCL try to offer a fairly priced "basic" experience with upsells for those who wish them. I read many complaints on CC about nickel & dimeing, but none of those are necessary if you want only the basic experience. In our experience, as we do, most passengers go for something in between i.e. do some of the upsell stuff, but by no means all of it. Most of the cabin flyers we receive, end up in the trash bin! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We spent 4 weeks in the USA and choose the relaxing way to get back home. Upon arrival in Europe, we have done away with the time difference and are ready for the everyday life. This was already the 6th time we came home by cruise after ... Read More
We spent 4 weeks in the USA and choose the relaxing way to get back home. Upon arrival in Europe, we have done away with the time difference and are ready for the everyday life. This was already the 6th time we came home by cruise after our stay in the US and it was definately not the last time. We like the Jade, came home on it last year also. The crew is great, the layout of the ship is very good. Enough space indoors and outside to walk around. Many different restaurants, bars, lounges and places to sit and rest. Nice library, game room casino and a conference center where we could come together as cruise critic group. The group coordinator spoilt us by bringing water, juice and cookies in every day.She even exchanged our hand written "CC" sign with a nice, big, laminated printed sign. We felt very welcome throughout the cruise. Anytime dining suits us very well. We had 6 special dinners in our package and bought another 4 on top of it. Le Bistro, La Cucina and Cagneys were our choices and we had 10 really special, wonderful dinners. The other 4, we went to the Grand Pacific, were they held a CC table for us so that we sat with different people of the group which worked out very well. The food and service there was also really very good but the noise is extreme, That is the main reason why we prefer the specialty restaurants. We did not participate in activities and shows/demonstrations organized by the ship, so we can not say anything about that. We really wanted to try goofy golf but just had no time. Maybe next time. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
First time cruise because spouse did not want to fly. The Rhapsody is the right size ship. Captain took a course avoiding rough water. Worst movement was no different than flying in turbulence. Really enjoyed talking to all the different ... Read More
First time cruise because spouse did not want to fly. The Rhapsody is the right size ship. Captain took a course avoiding rough water. Worst movement was no different than flying in turbulence. Really enjoyed talking to all the different crew members. Appreciated the First Officers two meeting wit veterans. My wife and I had a nice conversation Mr Lena. We also like the Parade of Nations by the Crew. The singing by the waiters in the main dining room was a fun time. Since we are no big drinkers we did not purchase the package. We did not know what to expect on the cruise so we are very pleased with the results. Having been in the United States Air Force I have always preferred to fly across the ocean. This cruised changed my mind because of the ability to move around instead of being cramped in. if able we will book the Rhapsody again same time next year. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Our over all experience was excellent ! The ship is beautiful and in excellent condition (especially for being 20 years old). Our cabin was small but functional and comfortable. I found the mattress to be too soft for my back. Our ... Read More
Our over all experience was excellent ! The ship is beautiful and in excellent condition (especially for being 20 years old). Our cabin was small but functional and comfortable. I found the mattress to be too soft for my back. Our Stateroom Attendant, Iketut Merta, got a board for under the mattress, which helped greatly. Iketut also did a great job attending to our cabin. He always had a smile and a towel animal for us. The food and dining experience were very good. The Windjammer Cafe staff did a great job keeping the food lines full and the dining area clean. We ate most of our breakfasts and lunches there. We dined each evening in the Edelweiss Dining room. The dining room is beautiful and in excellent condition. Our waiter Prithviraj Mohunan and assistant Ruben Canee were very friendly and attentive. The entertainment on the ship was very good. Standouts were "Shades of Buble", "Stephani Parker" and "The Rhapsody of the Seas Orchestra". Activities Manager Dani Domas was very entertaining and did a great job leading Zumba classes. We also enjoyed a few late nights in the Viking Crown Lounge. The Lounge was outstanding, however the DJ didn't always play at the time, (nor the type of music) that was scheduled. The LGBT events were kept very quiet and were almost non existent. This was our first repositioning cruise. We met several people who cruise frequently. They all ranked this cruise as one of their best overall cruise experiences. The ship, service, food, and weather, were all very good and made for an excellent experience. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was our second transatlantic cruise and also second cruise on Rhapsody. We like crossings and the stops in Key West, St. Maarten, Cartagena and Malaga before arriving in Barcelona definitely were a draw for us. The ship is small as ... Read More
This was our second transatlantic cruise and also second cruise on Rhapsody. We like crossings and the stops in Key West, St. Maarten, Cartagena and Malaga before arriving in Barcelona definitely were a draw for us. The ship is small as ships go these days, but was smooth as silk for the crossing. Embarkation in Tampa was without any problems. Staff there are very accommodating. Ship was very clean and room attendant awesome. We were pleasantly surprised with the quality and taste of the food in the main dining room. We have had problems on previous cruises, but I can't say anything bad about Rhapsody. Service was excellent. Chops and Giovanni's were also excellent. I purchased the 5-night package and we dined in Chops 3 times and Giovanni's twice. Again, service and quality of the food was great. We don't normally go to the evening shows, but on Rhapsody we did find ourselves not only going to the shows, but enjoying them tremendously. Was disappointed in the shore excursions offered. Took a tour in Malaga which basically was a waste of time. Did our own thing in Cartagena, and found a great place for lunch. To sum it up, Rhapsody is a good choice for cruising. We are booked on the same crossing in May 2018. Ports are a little different, but we are looking forward to getting back on Rhapsody once again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
The cost and the date of the cruise The crew is excellent and eery one tried to please. The movies I ant say enough about Best of any ship I have been on. Activites were good to keep us busy for the crossing The internet needs work as it ... Read More
The cost and the date of the cruise The crew is excellent and eery one tried to please. The movies I ant say enough about Best of any ship I have been on. Activites were good to keep us busy for the crossing The internet needs work as it does on all Royal ships. The food in the dining room was not served hot. The windjammer food was pretty much the same thing for lunch each day. The diamond club host was very attentive and helpful The diamond club servers were the best on the ship. I Liked the fact that the cabin staff did not leave carts in the halls all day. The theater entertainer was weak on this ship Out of 14 nights I only stayed for the whole show on 2 nights I usually go each night ad sit down front. Would be nice to get a bigger shower but I understand if we dot. I love the Brilliance Im sure after the redo it will be even better. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We had always wanted to spend time at sea. We heard about repositioning cruises and chose this one. We had no idea what to expect and were absolutely delighted with certain aspects of the cruise. We did not expect the ... Read More
We had always wanted to spend time at sea. We heard about repositioning cruises and chose this one. We had no idea what to expect and were absolutely delighted with certain aspects of the cruise. We did not expect the internationalism of the staff, nor did we expect the compact cabins to be so beautifully designed and comfortable. We liked their decoration, the sumptuous and copious towels, the fine bed linens and excellent lighting. The sea was much more important to us than games or shows. We loved looking out our window (deck 4, port side, outside cabin) before gong to sleep at night. We enjoyed walking or sitting and reading on the promenade deck. We loved looking at the ship's wake or standing in the bow. We had trouble finding a quiet place for a pre-dinner drink. Perhaps this was because we were newcomers and there were places that we didn't know about. We finally resolved this issue by having a drink in our cabin. We took a lot of our breakfasts and lunches in the Main Dining Room. It was a treat to be served and we did enjoy meeting different people at each meal. Being pampered by our room steward Krishna, eating delicious food served by graceful s servers, sea gazing, spending time in our cabin were the parts of the cruise that we enjoyed most. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Wanted to visit ports in Italy so travelled across from Tampa the trip across was relaxing and had lots of fun people. The crew provided so many activities that I hardly had time to sit and read. Shows and entertainment was the best we ... Read More
Wanted to visit ports in Italy so travelled across from Tampa the trip across was relaxing and had lots of fun people. The crew provided so many activities that I hardly had time to sit and read. Shows and entertainment was the best we have had in 25 cruises. Room was great though showers were tiny but did have strong flow of water. Not big drinkers but they had a package of all non alcoholic beverages which was perfect for us. Only waste was fresh juice as limited time available. Did 6 pm dining so we had time for evening activities. Food was very good and served by an excellent staff. Also did Chops which was okay. Had better on other cruise lines as there were few choice and steak was available for no charge in dining room to get your beef fix. Really enjoyed Giovanni's. Amazing choices and the steak I had their was the best. Went 3 times. Really fun if you have more than 2 as they bring lots of appetizers and side dishes. Plus the tray of deserts were small portions so have more than one. Enjoyed all ports. We used Viator to book and were extremely pleased. Got to Barcelona ready for 12 more days of intense ports. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Funny how we had come across this cruise. This was a post retirement cruise originally booked on a 22 day Holland American TA which cruised through the Mediterranean and ended in Rome. Back in August we were advised that the ... Read More
Funny how we had come across this cruise. This was a post retirement cruise originally booked on a 22 day Holland American TA which cruised through the Mediterranean and ended in Rome. Back in August we were advised that the Oosterdam's repositioning itinerary was switched to an Alaskan location and they offered to switch our booking with our discounted fare intact to a different ship. What we couldn't agree on what was the difference in accommodations from a private balcony aboard the Oosterdam to a Lanai (Balcony on shared deck) on the Westerdam. As it was we were left scrambling to find a new cruise with a different cruise line. Royal Caribbean most nearly duplicated the lost itinerary and it was only a couple of months prior to sailing as we started exploring airfares that my wife expressed an interest in a TA. It hit me then that the Brilliance was repositioning to Barcelona and was the same ship that we had been booked for the trip to the Med on. My wife admitted that she was concerned about the length of the TA and the number of sea days but after awhile she really grew to enjoy them and their relaxed atmosphere. Our longest voyages prior had all been 7 day trips. Sometimes it made getting off on excursion days debatable... (But make certain you get off the ship at least). It was a fantastic trip and if you have the time a really great way to enjoy a cruise ship and an affordable fare. We were cheated out of nothing regarding ship entertainment or food. If anything there seemed to be less pressure to buy drinks and what not. Overall a very relaxed atmosphere on board. If I had to list a problem, and certainly this was nothing that RCCL could have done anything about were the seas. Across the mighty Atlantic there is a great variety of weather to be encountered. We had a couple of rough days, nothing really dramatic just enough to make you a little unsteady on your feet with the winds out on the open deck strong enough to push you around a little. I learned two valuable tips though on this cruise that I would like to share. First thanks to all the Cruise Critic members. You're posts and tips are invaluable to the less informed cruisers. One night while perusing our roll call one of the members advised that he was giving up his aft cabin on Deck 9 as he was switching to a different cruise. I jumped at the opportunity, logged onto the RCCL website, found the cabin, contacted a RCCL travel agent and for just a couple of hundred dollars more had upgraded to the slightly more spacious aft cabin with the larger balcony and wake view. This only happened due to staying informed here on Cruise Critic. I responded to another post on Cruise Critic. A group of experienced cruisers who had cruised together previously had arranged to have a table in the MDR late seating together. A late cancellation opened a couple of spots and the post was asking if anyone wanted to join them. We took a chance and how fortunate we were. It was a delightful group of RCCL Diamond Plus members who sort of took us under their wings. But it was the diversity of their life's and backgrounds that made dinner such a fun experience each evening as we shared our days and our stories and our enjoyments with each others. We left having felt after 14 days we had made friends for a lifetime. So the next time you cruise, instead of leaving it up the Maitre D', try your own little social experiment and put yourself a large table together made up from the many fine folks of Cruise Critic. Be certain to change seats every evening, just to break things up and enjoy the best two hours of every day. All it takes is one person requesting the cruise lines to "link" your reservations and can be handled quite easily. Trust me, it is one thing you will never regret doing. This was supposed to be a review of our voyage on the Brilliance of the Seas and has turned into a review of Cruise Critic but it was only through CC that our stay aboard the Brilliance turned as memorable as it was. Overall our voyage was most definitely worth awarding Five Stars. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I spent 21 nights on The Vision of the Seas starting with the transtlantic cruise to Barcelona and then the cruise from Barcelona to Venice. Captain Merek is amazing! He was the most visible and interactive captain I have ever sailed with. ... Read More
I spent 21 nights on The Vision of the Seas starting with the transtlantic cruise to Barcelona and then the cruise from Barcelona to Venice. Captain Merek is amazing! He was the most visible and interactive captain I have ever sailed with. He has a great sense of humor. He sang for us, did most of the announcements himself during the cruises and kept us informaed of weather conditions, birthdays, etc. , judged the Chopped contest and even stood near the gangway to personally say goodbye to every guest as we departed the ship on both cruises. It was obvious that he set the tone for the other officers, staff and crew. The head chef came around the main dining room and the windjammer asking for guest input. Guest services personnel, bar tenders, servers and stateroom attendants were all great. I anticipated poor entertainment on the crossing and I was totally wrong. We had excellent entertainment and additional activites. I certainly hope Captain Merek is promoted to a newer, larger ship soon and I look forward to sailing with him many times. If I had to find a negative, it would be the decline in the quality of the food, however, I have noticed it on the last few ships I've sailed, so it is not unique to the Vision. I completely enjoyed the crossing and highly reccommend it to anyone wanting to relax. The cruise from Barcelona to Venice was not quite as enjoyable due to the abundance of rude children (and their parents). I will stick to cruises that originate in the USA in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
For an older ship the Brilliance was in good shape. Plus the staff was excellent. We felt like RC put gave their best to a repositioning cruise. Entertainment and food was not sub par for this cruise, in fact it felt like it was ... Read More
For an older ship the Brilliance was in good shape. Plus the staff was excellent. We felt like RC put gave their best to a repositioning cruise. Entertainment and food was not sub par for this cruise, in fact it felt like it was increased for this cruise. Embarkation was the smoothest in our 6 cruises. We took UBER from the hotel to the port. Seamless and saved money. People in the lobby were wondering how to get to port. UBER is the answer. For a smaller ship we did not feel like just a number. But part of the cruise. It rained in all the ports we went to. Puerto Rico, Malaga, Gibraltar and Barcelona. But it was fine in that 14 days on the ship was the adventure. Malaga seemed underrated, we really enjoyed the port. 10 sea days was great! Did not get bored but filled the days with rest, eating, rest, eating and rest. You get the idea!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We chose this ship because we had been on it before. The ship is in the smaller class so less passengers makes it more intimate. The crew and on this ship is awesome. When we partied, they partied with us. The entertainment was top notch ... Read More
We chose this ship because we had been on it before. The ship is in the smaller class so less passengers makes it more intimate. The crew and on this ship is awesome. When we partied, they partied with us. The entertainment was top notch although we had seen some of the performers before. Great food, great service. I highly recommend the galley tour with the special lunch that follows. We already planned our next cruise on this ship for January, 2017. We ate mostly in Windjammer due to convience and the great variety of foods. Every night had a different theme. Although this ship is older, we did not experience any problems with things not being up to par. If you want a fancy ship, try the new huge ones and pay twice the price. My only complaint is that I wish they had more seating in the sentrum. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
The crew - from maintenance and housekeeping to the captain and his officers - and their commitment to customer service made the difference for us. It felt as if every Royal Caribbean employees was working to ensure that we had a great ... Read More
The crew - from maintenance and housekeeping to the captain and his officers - and their commitment to customer service made the difference for us. It felt as if every Royal Caribbean employees was working to ensure that we had a great experience. We enjoyed meals at two of the speciality restaurants-Chops and Giovanni's Table-in addition to lovely dinners in the main dining room and breakfast/lunch in Windjammer. The Champagne Brunch with a behind-the-scenes tour of the galley with Executive Chef Andrew Carmichael was a highlight of the cruise. We booked one shore excursion with RC because of the limited time in Gibraltar and were so glad we did-it was excellent. While we never made it to any evening shows in the Pacifica Theater, we did enjoy the nightly music in the Schooner Bar. Brilliance is older and smaller and beautiful with beautiful views at a wide variety of levels. We enjoyed this transatlantic crossing on the Brillance so much that we've already booked another for 2917. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016

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