1. Home
  2. Cruise Destinations
  3. USA Cruises
  4. Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades) Cruise Port
  5. Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades) Cruise Reviews
Cruise Ratings
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
I was on the Christmas 2017 Allure of the Seas cruise. My wife and I had a balcony room. We have done about a dozen cruises, the last several on Royal Caribbean. As a matter of fact, this was our second time on Allure. There were a few ... Read More
I was on the Christmas 2017 Allure of the Seas cruise. My wife and I had a balcony room. We have done about a dozen cruises, the last several on Royal Caribbean. As a matter of fact, this was our second time on Allure. There were a few good things about the cruise. But, there were several things I really found disappointing. The Positive 1. The room was nice – it’s always nice to have, at least, a balcony. We stayed in 12250. 2. Southside, the group playing a lot in Dazzle, was fantastic. We danced to them almost every night. We used to teach ballroom dancing so a great dance band is a must. 3. Ate at two different specialty restaurants – Japanese and Mexican. Both were great. 4. The show at the Aqua Theater was awesome. The performance of Mama Mia was first class. The Monopoly ice show was pretty good – except for the obvious commercials for the different venues on the ship. The Negative 1. Excursions. We wanted a catamaran ride to a snorkeling spot on St Thomas. We went to the Excursions desk and told the guy there what we were looking for – a boat with netting we could lay on while sailing, only about a dozen or so people on the boat. We showed him the excursion we thought would fit. He upsold us to a more expensive one. He told us the “fastcat” was exactly what we wanted AND it included a stop at a private beach and lunch. NOT! The boat was more a cattle car than a catamaran. There must have been 100 people on the boat. We had to walk through over 4 ft deep water (over sharp rocks) to get to the private beach – several people fell in the water because the rocks were so sharp. And, no, we couldn’t swim to the beach – we were holding towels and such over our heads. Then, if we wanted lunch, we had to buy it! This was the worst excursion I have ever had. Avoid the “fastcat” excursion in St Thomas. 2. Tips. Paying tips up front with a pre-designated price is a TERRIBLE idea. It was obvious that no one on the ship was motivated to go the extra mile to try for a better tip at the end of the week. They really need to go back to the envelope system where you determine the tip at the end of the cruise. I saw lazy service in our room, in Silk (where we ate every night), at the clubs, and around the pools. 3. Soft Drink Package. I bought this on my last cruise and it went great. This time, not so much. Using the little sticker on your card to get a soft drink in the clubs or the shows marked you as a second-class citizen. Several people would order soft drinks around me. Everyone would get a can of soda with a glass of ice. I got some sort of nasty tasting fountain drink. The first night, in Boleros, my wife ordered a glass of water and I ordered a diet coke. The water was free UNTIL the waiter saw the sticker on my card for pre-paid soda. Then, he tried to charge my wife for her water. 4. Cleanliness. The boat looked like it was maintained by slobs. In the Windjammer, there were times that a table would stay dirty for 5 or 10 minutes before cleaned. The bathroom in our room constantly smelled like an old bathroom in a rundown gas station. 5. Dining. I am used to having things move along at dinner – you finish one course and the next is right there. We always do early seating. This cruise we were in Silk. At our table, the service was so slow, I felt like ordering out between courses. There were times our plates sat for over 10 minutes between courses. Half way through the week they gave us new wait staff. Not much better. 6. Room Service 1. When did they start charging for room service? It used to be free. But, all you could get for free now was the continental breakfast. Everything else costs almost $8.00. It is starting to feel like they are nickel and diming us. 7. Room Service 2. We had a door hanger to fill out for room service. After the third day, the floor supervisor came to see us to tell us we needed to use the TV order system instead of the paper they provided. He was rude and condescending. But, we tried the TV system and it was terrible. You could not specify the quantity of items you wanted and there were real long menus to go through to get to the items you wanted. We have become loyal to Royal Caribbean up to this cruise. Now, we are seriously thinking about a different line next time. Bottom line, I expect to be WOWed on a cruise. This time, it was just a yawn. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
We were looking for a Christmas vacation without any of us having to cook or plan events. This was definately the best family Christmas week for the 20 of us!! Our group ages ranged from 5-85 yrs old and every one of us had a fantastic ... Read More
We were looking for a Christmas vacation without any of us having to cook or plan events. This was definately the best family Christmas week for the 20 of us!! Our group ages ranged from 5-85 yrs old and every one of us had a fantastic time! Embarking was a breeze. We had checked in prior to boarding so the process was quite seamless. The ship itself is beautiful! We were just in awe of the size. Our 10 cabins were closely situated on the 7th level that was actually a very convenient location. We mostly walked to the different floors as it was great excercise and faster than the elevators. Impressed on how quiet the cabins were even though there would be alot going on in the main areas of the ship. Best way to communicate is with Post It notes. Just stick them to the doors to let your party know where you are or change of plans, etc. We brought walkie talkies but didn't end up using them as the channels would connect with strangers. The doors are metal so you may bring anything magnetic to decorate your door to make it more distinctive. Food was great with numerous choices...no complaints. With at least 7 teenagers in our group there was never a problem in this dept. We opted not to buy a drink plan. There was always plenty of water, lemonade and ice tea at all hours. Service was the best. The ship's staff are top notch. Waiters in the main dinning room were awesome for both our tables! They were very attentive and super friendly. The cabin cleaning staff always had a smile anytime of the day. Our cabins were always clean and we loved the evening turn down. Towels were replaced at least once per day. It seemed like we always had clean, dry towels. There is the option to buy bottles of wine that they will servce at dinner with the prices being quite reasonable. The liquor store on the boat is also very well priced. MaMaMia is definately a must see!!...they really put on a great show! It was so much fun to stand up and dance at the end of the show along with the actors up on stage. We used the fitness room nearly everyday. Quite busy in the mornings but a machine was always available. There was never a dull moment...always something to do regardless time of day. Memories from this trip will last a lifetime!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
This was our second Christmas cruise with RCCL with the first one being in 2015 on the Serenade of the Seas. This was just as good, if not better!! We were happy to see Christmas caroling and midnight mass being offered again as well. ... Read More
This was our second Christmas cruise with RCCL with the first one being in 2015 on the Serenade of the Seas. This was just as good, if not better!! We were happy to see Christmas caroling and midnight mass being offered again as well. What also pleasantly surprised us was the amount of people at midnight mass. The group that traveled was my family of 4 and my in laws. We had a total of three staterooms, two junior suites and one interior. Our cruise was the second after the big norovirus break out, and the staff was on top of making everything clean and safe for the passengers. However, you still had people not doing their part, "washy washy" and picking food up with their hands in the windjammer. Gross! We now have been on the Indy four times now, and we have LOVED every trip on her. Even though she will be going into dry dock in April for a major refurb, she is in excellent condition. RCCL really takes care of their ships and if more people would be aware of how poorly they treat public and stateroom areas you would never know she is 10 years old. People just don't care anymore. Ok, that's my only rant for this review. All of the staterooms in our group were pretty much Freedom class categories of Junior Suites and Interior. All of them had everything in working order, nothing had to be fixed or attended to during our voyage. We had two different stateroom attendants, one for the junior suites and one for the interior. THEY BOTH WERE AMAZING!!!! Not much more I can say about them. Ok, one more thing, Perfection For Dining, I truly am not going to sugarcoat anything in my reviews: MDR=Breakfast and Dinner, menu has had things we have not seen before, service was impeccable, food taste and temp was perfect. We only skipped dinner twice for the specialty restaurants. Chops= Our son was celebrating his 17th birthday on board, and he wanted to have a special dinner there. The experience was phenomenal from the start. We had an awesome waiter, who really made the occasion fun and special, and he covered the table with special decorations when we arrived. The Diamond Concierge even arranged for a special cake to be made for the occasion. And the food, as always, was amazing! This was our first time in Chops since the new menu was rolled out, and although some things were taken off (i.e. French onion soup, red velvet cake), there were some nice additions that changed the dining experience in a good way. Giovanni's= After ordering way to much food in times before, we finally did Giovanni's in way that allowed us to enjoy the whole experience. We focused on the apps and the pastas, and we didn't order a lot of them either. But what we did order was amazing, and the desserts did not disappoint either. The service was amazing, and were happy to see that Giovanni's will remain on the Indy post-refurb. Being a flow family, we gravitated towards the flowrider for most of the cruise. The sports staff made our time there enjoyable. It was our daughter's first cruise where she made the cut to do stand-up surfing, and the team was really helpful with her first few runs. Under their guidance, she was surfing like a pro by the end of the cruise. Ports= My only observation in regards to ports was St. Maarteen. As we were the second Royal Ship to return post hurricane season, the islanders were very happy to see us. I am glad we could bring back tourist dollars to one of the hardest hit ports. We traveled to Maho Beach and the devastation was seen everywhere. I only wish them the best as the recovery efforts will be a long journey. Summary=We enjoyed every bit of our cruise on the Indy, We can't wait to sail on her post refurb. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
First I'd like to state that we are Diamond Plus member and this was our 4th sailing on the Freedom of the Seas. We were very disappointed and a very big let down by royal Caribbean cruise line. We have always loved the Freedom and ... Read More
First I'd like to state that we are Diamond Plus member and this was our 4th sailing on the Freedom of the Seas. We were very disappointed and a very big let down by royal Caribbean cruise line. We have always loved the Freedom and have always had great food, great entertainment and great service. This was a New Years sailing and I expected Royal to go above and beyond on this Holiday sailing but they went down and below. We were on the President's cruise on the Allure in September and it was magnificent and we were expecting the same on the Freedom. This was the worst cruise that I have sailed with Royal. The food in the windjammer was repetitive, tasteless and lacking choices. The menu in the dining room was not desirable. Thanks to Kemesh the dining room manager, we were able to get special meals on 3 nights. Giovanni and Sabor were very good, but you shouldn't have to eat in the specialty restaurants to get good food. The headliner show was great. Same theatrically shows that have been on the Freedom for years, didn't bother to see them. Magician was good and a special show with a singer was also good. The Cruise staff was lazy and the Cruise director was barely seen. Activities were boring and never started on time. The piano man was great, he had a big crowd every night. Dj's were horrible and since they turned the night club into Sabor, there is little space up in the crown for dancing. Most of the exercise equipment in the gym needs repair or replacement. The ship is aging and needs to go to dry dock. We will not sail on the Freedom again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2016
Ship tired rusty dirty carpets and old fashioned in the public areas. The cabins were clean comfy beds and clean linen and towels cabin staff excellent. Bar staff over worked tiered and stretched. Main Dinning room staff ... Read More
Ship tired rusty dirty carpets and old fashioned in the public areas. The cabins were clean comfy beds and clean linen and towels cabin staff excellent. Bar staff over worked tiered and stretched. Main Dinning room staff overworked hence sloppy our table of 8 never got our food together on any courses and 7/10 in was warm to cold! The food was very good when we got it hot we felt sorry for the chefs all there effort ruoined by waiters not getting the food out quick. Also the wine waiters were very slow in the main dinning room. Ship Didn't feel Christmassy only one xmas tree! More effort was made for new year but the music in the main centrum was disastrous slow and boring. Properly our fault for choosing a cruise in the school holidays but was very surprised to find so many un accompanied children approx 8 years upwards charging around playing in the lefts pushing past elderly people being very load and hogging the hot tubs! Cannot understand why the UNDER 18 curfew is 1am yes 1 am! Every day. And New Year's Eve 12 to 17 years olds till 2am! Hence there was sick in the corridors! Many we saw drinking alcohol from the free champagne on New Year's Eve. Lastly royal Caribbean managed to leave 4 of our party of 8 stranded at Miami airport after they cancelled our flights home! Still waiting for an explanation and apologee as there 4 reps in the airport were not willing to assist us - we had to sort out our own flights home and hopefully we can reclaim the fee £1500 per seat back! So cruisers beware. We will never use this company again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2016
We chose to do this cruise as it encompassed both Christmas (which also happens to be my son's birthday) and New Year's Eve--many other cruise options offered just one or the other. For such a big ship, I was surprised to have ... Read More
We chose to do this cruise as it encompassed both Christmas (which also happens to be my son's birthday) and New Year's Eve--many other cruise options offered just one or the other. For such a big ship, I was surprised to have to go looking for food when I felt hungry. I am an experienced cruiser, and couldn't believe that buffets and snack-style restaurants had very short hours throughout the ship on a daily basis. That being said, we went through a few things that we'd never experienced on a cruise and couldn't believe they happened to us: 1) On my son's birthday, December 25th, we visited the Central Park 101 restaurant to celebrate. The staff assured me that the table would be decorated, etc. While we were seated promptly, none of the promises were fulfilled. No decorations, and very poor service--as a matter of fact we even had to ask multiple times for the bread. This was also the day after we went to the Chops restaurant which was amazing and had set the bar very high. Being that we had such a positive experience the day before in Chops which has the same price tag as Central Park 101, we complained about the subpar service and the forgotten decorations. The manager was extremely rude and told us that we should just go back to Chops if we liked it better there the night before. After hearing how rude he was being, my son who never complains at restaurants spoke up and let the manager know that this was no way to be treating customers, specially on a holiday like Christmas! 2) Upon re-embarking the ship at port on the following day, the card scanner started going crazy when my son handed the security guard his card with the screen reading "security alert". Security made a huge fuss out of this and said that my son had to go to emergency services immediately yet didn't want to tell us what the issue was. Being that my son had just turned 23 and that I paid for the cruise, I wanted to know what was going on, so I went to guest services with him. I was worried that he wasn't telling me something because I never had to deal with something like this. Long story short, after treating us like criminals and putting us into a room in which they alerted us that they would be recording us with both "audio and video" (!), it turned out that on the first night of the cruise, my son got flagged in the system for "providing alcohol to minors". He recalled the event, and it was the first night at the Sushi restaurant when he gave his younger (18) sister a sip of his drink so she could try it. Having done a Costa cruise in Europe prior to this one, he actually thought the drinking age was 18+, and when the hostess went up to him to alert him that it was actually 21+ on the ship, he apologized and never gave my daughter a sip again. Apparently the misunderstanding wasn't resolved because they put us through hell for something unbelievably innocent. In the end they realized how ridiculous it was and even sent us a bottle of champagne to our room for blowing the situation out of proportion. What a stressful situation for no reason at all... Ridiculous. 3) New Year's Eve... We have done New Year's Eve on other ships before and had an amazing time. Expected nothing less on such a beautiful ship as the Allure. First, our cabin steward threw away a shopping bag containing various New Years hats, masquerade masks, noise makers, etc. that had already made it through the first 8 nights of our cruise thinking that it was trash. I don't know how you can possibly think all of that is trash when it is quite obvious what it is for. Additionally, the celebration party was subpar. Balloons were dropped from the ceiling to little fanfare, and made for a truly lackluster experience. 4) We asked for breakfast room service 6 times, via hanging the request card on our door before the cut-off time. It was only delivered once. Unbelievable. 5) While there were a few nice employees on the ship, it's noteworthy to mention that many were noticeably in a bad mood, which is very atypical of ship crew that are normally very nice to guests. I don't know if this was the end of a lot of crew's contracts or if management was mistreating them but something was definitely off. The ports of call were great, and the ship itself was very nice. However, on our overall experience we were truly let down as experienced cruisers. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
To enjoy a special Christmas and New Years holiday vacation in which I treated my sons and their wives (40 ish adults) I booked this cruise expecting an enjoyable 10 days. I Have been on over 40 cruises to date and previous ones without ... Read More
To enjoy a special Christmas and New Years holiday vacation in which I treated my sons and their wives (40 ish adults) I booked this cruise expecting an enjoyable 10 days. I Have been on over 40 cruises to date and previous ones without the whole family that were outstandingly good, this one was a sad disappointment in so many ways, outstandingly bad. TERRIBLE - food, service, attitude. VERY, VERY short buffet hours yet, 20 minutes before afternoon closing buffet ran out of french fries and hot dogs, and the cook REFUSED TO COOK ANY MORE THAT DAY! At three different meals in the buffet, diet Coke was unavailable because they were out of syrup or was not mixing right, the other fountain in the buffet also was not able to provide diet coke either, no one seemed to be concerned about getting machine fixed. - - We were charged for drinks that were supposed to be included as one of our DIAMOND STATUS drinks between 5pm and 830pm, had to go to the service desk twice to get account corrected. - - In one of the ports, St Martins I believe, the ship blew away from the dock during boarding, fortunately no one was injured but it took 20-30 minutes to get the ship tied up properly and the gangways functional again. - - the bottom of the pool is in absolutely terrible condition, mirrors in the cabin bathrooms are black along the bottoms and sides because of damage or age, wiring on deck five atrium speaker was haphazardly attached to glass and mirrors for 3-4 feet with pieces of black electrical tape - - The dancers in the production shows were good, but the singers and the song selections were poor. - - The orchestra was performing well but sounded poor because the sound-man/sound mixer person hasn't a clue or has a tin ear (get him some training or get someone else) - - the pool attendants were not enforcing the time limit rule on unattended deck chairs, so it was impossible to get one for ourselves - - the teenagers on board were not made to follow the curfew and were out running around all hours disturbing others - - these are the major issues I can recall, but it appears to me it is a top down problem on this ship, or maybe corporate down problem. I do not plan, even though I have diamond status and get some good perks, to ever cruise on Royal Carib. again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2015
I have been on two Princess cruises previously in 2013, a 7 day on Ruby and 10 day on Emerald. At the time I told Princess that the food and service was excellent but the space was so cramped we would not travel with them again. We saw ... Read More
I have been on two Princess cruises previously in 2013, a 7 day on Ruby and 10 day on Emerald. At the time I told Princess that the food and service was excellent but the space was so cramped we would not travel with them again. We saw the Royal and decided to try a newer ship. We had a Premium Deluxe Balcony. !. The music offered was fantastic both bands and individual performers. We both enjoy music, not particulary shows. Though the Saxophone Show was great. 2. The service was excellent. 3. Even with this largest balcony we were shocked at the tiny cabin. I think the Interior on the Royal Caribbean and Carnival are the same size. 4. My husband remarked after we were on the ship four hours, "Everything is so cramped". 5. The food was unremarkable, not bad but not exceptional as we thought three years ago. We could see the cuts made by Princess during those three years. 6. We told Princess that we would not travel with them again because we were horrified by the lack of hygiene by passengers in the food areas and the failure of Princess to direct passengers to wash hands as I've seen on my previous twenty cruises in the last six years. This newer ship had lovely handwashing alcoves before each entrance to the Buffet. No crew member directed anyone to them. I asked a crewmember in the Buffet why and he responded that passengers had complained that they were being told to wash their hands. So they were told not to do so. I saw at most ten people using them in our ten days on the ship. As we entered the Buffet there was no crew member placing a dab of Purell in anyone's hands. When I asked another crew member she also responded that they were told not to do so nor to direct passengers to Purell stands beside the plates and bowls. I saw less people using these than the handwashing alcoves. In the Dining Room, elevators and Buffet I saw passengers sneezing without covering their faces with anything. On the ninth day of the cruise in the Buffet a woman reached around me as I was using the tongs to remove some food and grabbed food directly from the buffet tray. I said, "What are you doing" and she responded, 'Huh". The lack of hygiene was appalling. By the sixth day I was hearing passengers saying in elevators and beside us in the Buffet and Dining Room that people were getting sick. Surprise! We will never cruise on Princess again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2015
This was my 3rd cruise on Princess, and the first on Emerald. I understand that the ship just came out of dry dock, but I couldn't really figure out what had been updated other than the Effy jewelry boutique that took up a large ... Read More
This was my 3rd cruise on Princess, and the first on Emerald. I understand that the ship just came out of dry dock, but I couldn't really figure out what had been updated other than the Effy jewelry boutique that took up a large amount of the shopping area. I'm not sure why Princess cruises made the decision to give so much real estate to such an expensive jewelry store. The pieces are terribly overpriced for mass produced jewelry in my opinion and they were pushing it hard. I'm not sure if this jewelry line meets the demographics of the Princess customer base, but time will tell. Embarkation was a breeze- and my daughter and I were on the ship in less than 10 minutes. The Muster drill was rather disorganized and took much longer than previous cruises. When I embarked on the ship I immediately called for reservations and was informed that Sabatini's Italian restaurant no longer existed. It has been replaced with the restaurant called "share" which comes with a $39 per person cover charge. Needless to say my husband and I did not eat at "share" but we did dine at the Crowne grill and were not disappointed. We did not have hot water for the first two days, and learned from other passengers that this was a problem for them as well. Air-conditioning did not run cold but this was ok with us as we tend not to like air-conditioning anyway. But for some people it was a real problem. I didn't let this ruin my cruise so I just took cool showers quickly and spent most of my time outside. We were upgraded from an ocean view to a premium balcony room which was nice but honestly I wouldn't of paid the extra money for it. The balcony was almost as big as the room and we didn't use it as much as I had expected. The ride down was very rocky and there were gale force winds according to the captain. At one point the pools had to be drained and closed because they became unsafe due to the movement of the water in the pools. I was up in the sanctuary area for most of the sea days and the noise from the wind was extremely loud but again I didn't mind- it's a cruise after all and you can expect wind and other kinds of noise. One issue with the sanctuary area is that you can hear some of the loud talkers down at the Lotus spa pool. They really should have a better way to soundproof this since you're paying $40 a day for the sanctuary area. In the main pools there were quite a few kids that were rough housing unsupervised which was a nuisance. Also, pools were pretty deep starting at about 5'3" which made it difficult for the young ones to swim around. There was no dedicated kids pool which would have been a good idea given the amount of children on board. This could've also mitigated the problem with some of the kids jumping and creating mayhem at the same time that adults and other kids wanted to swim. This resulted in most folks hanging onto the edges or trying to swing while avoiding the constant jumping in and pushing of the unsupervised kids. I actually saw some concerning behavior from the kids on the pool deck and became worried about safety and the deck attendance would not do anything. There was a group of kids that was really loud and splashing during the movie at night and one passenger got angry and yelled at them to be quiet. I'm a parent myself, and I really like kids but this just got really out of hand and affected other peoples enjoyment. My seven-year-old enjoyed the pelicans kids club. In her words- I really enjoyed the kids club. Because we got to go inside and ride bikes and do all these fun stuff. Had a pajama party which is really fun and we we got to do all these fun crafts and play with the Wii, which was where we we have a remote and we dance with that. We also got to do these fun crafts like making Masks and making bracelets and there was also a jungle gym which is pretty fun and you have to take your shoes off to go in , and before you go in the kids club you have to wash Your hands. The buffet food was unremarkable. There is decent salad at every meal. I agree with some other recent posters that the service in the dining room was excruciatingly slow. One night it took us three hours to have dinner. Staff were not particularly attentive and did not refill drinks in a timely manner. Most of the food arrived cold or lukewarm at best. This was one of the main reasons that my husband and I went to the crown grill for three of the nights. Since this is a Christmas cruise we had expected a special meal on Christmas evening. In fact this was touted as one of the features of the Christmas cruise. We were disappointed that there was really nothing special although there was some bland turkey and cranberry sauce but not the extravagant buffet or dining room event that we had expected. Santa made an appearance and gave our presents to the kids which was a bonus, and my daughter seem to have a great time with that. I still have the coffee shop at the international café, the pastries were outstanding. Entertainment was lackluster, but pretty standard in mainstream for this cruise line. We were in bed most nights by 10:30 PM so I can't speak for the late-night entertainment or the clubs. With all that said, I still like Princess and have two more cruises booked with them. A cruise is a cruise and it's what you make of it and I like cruising princess. I do think they need to make some improvements as I mentioned. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2015
We had a two week cruise around the Eastern and Western Caribbean on the Nieuw Amsterdam at the end of January 2015. After a flight from London Heathrow on an American Airlines plane, there was a weather system of some sort so hours of ... Read More
We had a two week cruise around the Eastern and Western Caribbean on the Nieuw Amsterdam at the end of January 2015. After a flight from London Heathrow on an American Airlines plane, there was a weather system of some sort so hours of turbulence made the flight uncomfortable, we made it to Miami. As the ESTA system was supposed to make life easier for tourists I don’t know what went wrong there but it took us over two hours to get through immigration. If we ever go on a Caribbean cruise again it will not be through the USA. We spent one night in the Sonesta hotel in Fort Lauderdale then boarded our ship. There was some problem at the boarding stage so it took over two hours to get through the system. We were in an inside cabin 7105 and it was quite comfortable. The air conditioning worked reasonably well but was slow to react when changing the dial, the bed was comfortable and the shower was very good. There was only one chair so being in the cabin wasn’t that comfortable. The first week we sailed the Eastern Caribbean to Grand Turk, Puerto Rico, St Thomas and we were supposed to stop at Half Moon Cay but the weather dictated we didn’t so we had an extra day at sea. It was cold in the evening on that part of the cruise and seemed to rain every night. The second week we sailed to Half Moon Cay, Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Key West. The weather was warmer for this week. We paid $45 each for a trip on Grand Turk and it was money wasted. There is very little to see there. On Tuesday January 27th we booked a trip for the following day on Puerto Rico at a cost of over $100 for two. I became ill the following morning so couldn’t go on the trip and my wife didn’t want to leave me. I spent two days in my cabin, missing Puerto Rico and St Thomas, and when my wife went to see the Shore Excursions team they said that we would have to cancel the excursion on the Monday, the day before we booked it, to get a refund. That made me mad. They have no idea of customer service so that makes me think I shall never use them again. We did several other trips with the ship and in the main they were ok, especially the one in Cozumel where we went to see the ruins at San Gervasio. However, on Key West we took an elongated trolley trip but there is very little to see outside of the main town. I had been led to believe that the USA was cheap but Key West is certainly not. The food on the ship was quite good with breakfast and lunch in the Lido being very good. However in the evening there was little on offer and I can only assume the management are of the opinion most people would eat in the main restaurants, which is not the case. We only eat in the main restaurant twice during our cruise. The first time it took two and a half hours and although the second time it only took an hour, we had a table for two, the restaurant was freezing so we were glad to get out of there. The entertainment was pretty good with the star of the cruise being a Steel Band from Trinidad called Island Magic. The BB King Blues Band are very good. Overall the Nieuw Amsterdam is a cold ship with air conditioning making many of the public rooms feeling inhospitable and on several occasions we had to leave an event because it was just too cold. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
'What plans do you have for your day today?' - 'Did you have a nice day?' - 'Where are you going to eat?' - 'What did you think of the entertainment?' These are examples of the opening conversation ... Read More
'What plans do you have for your day today?' - 'Did you have a nice day?' - 'Where are you going to eat?' - 'What did you think of the entertainment?' These are examples of the opening conversation lines we did not hear from our Concierge except 'Good Morning' and we only got that as a begrudging comment before she returned to her computer. Not on this ship - Everyone made you feel as though you were on a really friendly ship and everyone including the deck and service crew gave you a cheery wave -- that was on Norwegian line. The only time anyone spoke to us was when they were trying to sell you the overpriced jewelry and spa services. And the lifts were a joke. The aft (front) lifts went to the 6th floor but you could not access the back of the ship from there you had to go to the 7th floor and then walk along to the middle to go back down to the 6th. ??? The ship itself was fine. The suite cabin we had was smaller than we normally get and we found our friends who paid less got a bigger suite two floors below. Certainly if it was my first time on a cruise I would think it excellent but unfortunately it seems I have been spoiled by Norwegian line. Just to top it off we dined in the crab shack on the penultimate night and when the waiter put the napkins around my friend's neck he said 'How tight would you like me tie it?' and made a hanging motion as if to hang her. This was unfortunate as her son had actually hung himself five years before. We larfed and larfed over that one............!!   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
My wife and I are frequent cruisers (19), with 13 on Princess and the others spread between Royal Carribean (1), Carnival (2) and Celebrity (3). We started with Princess on the Golden and to be fair, that class of ship remains my ... Read More
My wife and I are frequent cruisers (19), with 13 on Princess and the others spread between Royal Carribean (1), Carnival (2) and Celebrity (3). We started with Princess on the Golden and to be fair, that class of ship remains my favourite, although lately we prefer Celebrity. I won't talk about the ports as they are common to all lines. Specific Positives about Princess in general: (1)Food is very good ( a notch below Celebrity but above Carnival). (2)Love that they have multiple entertainment theaters (Vista Lounge in the rear and Princess Theater in the front, plus piano bars so you can usually find something you like). (3)Service/Staff is excellent (notwithstanding they have eliminated many positions - no longer have wine stewards in the dining room and you have to go to the bar to get a drink when on deck). Specific Negatives about Princess in general: (1)For a cruise line that pioneered anytime dining, anytime diners are now almost second class citizens. They have always had three dining rooms however previously one was reserved for set seating and the other two for anytime diners. This was our second cruise with Princess this year and on both cruises one dining room was specifically set aside for set seating, however one of the remaining two was reserved for set seating until 8:00pm, leaving only one dining room for anytime diners wanting to eat before 8:00pm. As both these cruises left from Florida, most anytime diners wanted to eat between 6:00 and 7:00 leading to long lines and wait times. I know many Europeans like to eat later so it may work there but not on cruises from North America. (2) I know many people love the Movies Under The Stars, and I would have no problem if it was only under the stars, but during the day the sound system is so loud that if you want to relax and read a book in peace and quiet you are almost obligated to pay the money for the Sanctuary (was that the plan?). Specific Negatives about the Royal Princess: (1), (2), and (3) - Balcony size! It is ridiculously small. We had a mini suite and were constantly tripping over either chair legs or each other's legs trying to manoeuver around the balcony to sit down. Forget trying to entertain guests on the balconies. (4) WARNING - do not book a balcony cabin at the rear sides of the ship. The glass walkways on Lido deck that hang out over the side at the back of the ship allow people to easily observe the balconies (no privacy) and for balcony rooms on the upper decks, walkers can look right into the cabin. (5) The proximity of the redesigned Wheelhouse Bar to the Crown Grill, without a full wall between, and both open to people walking by, eliminates the sanctuary feeling of the old Wheelhouse Bars and the romanticism of the specialty restaurant. Specific Positives about the Royal Princess: Can't really come up with any specific to the ship as basically I think Princess "missed the boat" so to speak, on this design. But I'm prejudiced, as I stated earlier I prefer the Golden/Grand class. Embarkation/Disembarkation- My wife and I breezed through both although we are Platinum so we had Preferred Embarkation, and we have GOES for returning so we had a priority line for customs - NOTE - there are no signs or other indications that a GOES priority line exists, you have to ask. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
We fear that the days of feeling like Royalty while traveling as a verandah-balcony-class passenger are slipping away. The Cruise Industry may be following in the steps of the Airline industry in their effort to economize. Space is tighter ... Read More
We fear that the days of feeling like Royalty while traveling as a verandah-balcony-class passenger are slipping away. The Cruise Industry may be following in the steps of the Airline industry in their effort to economize. Space is tighter and services and amenities are being "redirected" to maintain profitability. As long-time balcony-cabin cruisers our first shock came when we saw the small 4 ft x 10ft balcony in cabin V5084 with just enough room for two of us and a couple of chairs, an ottoman, and tiny 18 inch high table. Balconies on older ships were significantly more spacious. Our Upper Verandah room was just above lifeboats #8 and #6 on Port side. The balcony was private and well protected from rain by a large overhang above, the only intrusion being maintenance crews greasing the lifeboat hoist mechanisms - which they did while docked on days 2 and 6 of our cruise. The cabin was small but adequate with very comfortable bed, and an additional couch and desk area. Bathroom with shower and small tub were fine (incl shampoo & conditioner & soap dispensers), though we wish there had been a night light; instead we kept the bathroom light on with door closed at night since light switches were hard to find in the dark. 2 cozy robes were provided. Closet space was ok but poorly illuminated. Three life-vests occupied the top shelves of the 3 closets --- these would be better stowed in the difficult to open cabinets above the couch. Volume on the small TV was poor while watching movies, even at max setting. Closed-captioning was definitively a help, but did not always work for some reason. Fortunately channel 44 announcements came through loud and clear. The morning sun was quite obvious since the curtains were not room-darkening enough. We faced away from land at Half Moon Cay and in Key West. The next shocker was the coffee - something that was always a treat on Holland in the past. It was downright mediocre and not becoming of the Dutch tradition of a "lekker kopje koffie" (delicious cup of coffee). The Half and Half was thin and milk-like. No doubt the motivation is to economize with cheaper beans and to drive coffee aficionado's to deck 11 Explorations Cafe, which features a Starbucks type coffee-shop that charges extra! Likewise, internet access is available but slow and expensive ($55 for 100 minutes). We had an excellent signal in our room, but just signing on and getting our backlog of messages consumed several minutes each time. Wi-fi calling was impossible on my t-mobile phone since the connection was too slow. The cabin stewards did their best, were pleasant, and were obviously being pushed to their limits: one afternoon my wife accidentally spilled some crackers in front of the couch, and while the room had been turned out nicely for bedtime, we found crumbs still all over the floor. When we asked about this the next day our cabin steward indicated they only had time to vacuum in the mornings. The ships' staff were excellent as always, and seemed to be even friendlier than we remembered in our past travels ... plenty of "good mornings", "how are you", "have a nice day", etc. The TAMARIND restaurant in particular was a truly exceptional experience! For the $20 extra cost you are treated to an extraordinary oriental meal, and my 1-1/2 inch thick wasabi-encrusted filet mignon put any other meat served in Lido or the Rembrandt restaurant to shame - especially the 3/4 inch drab filet they served on Steak & Lobster formal night (Note: we never ate at the Pinnacle Grill, so can't compare). Food quality and selection in general was very good and we never had stomach issues. We do suggest you plan on eating outside of "normal" hours since rush hour gets really busy. The elevators were TERRIFIC!!! Super fast and efficient with lovely waiting areas that were tastefully designed, and with roomy staircases. We loved the outside elevators with their awesome views. Other areas of the ship, in particular the main Lobby & Atrium on decks 1 & 2, seemed small and narrow, though most of the time they were not crowded. The Casino was ok but the older-type 25 cent slot machines we like to play were on the smoking side, and ventilation was inadequate to prevent drifting smoke from becoming unbearable at times. Neither of us felt compelled to attend evening performances in the Queen's lounge, and we missed the ol' days of magicians, comedians, and hypnotists. The shops are excellent, brightly lit with plenty of selection in a wide variety of prices. There was a sidewalk sale one day on Lido but due to maintenance on the the sliding roof mechanism the trapped heat and humidity from the pool and all the passengers present was stifling as we waited in long lines to pay the cashiers. The SPA was fantastic though expensive (as usual). We consider it a treat and don't mind the surcharge, though we did opt for shore days when rates were discounted. The facilities are lovely, and the very capable massage therapists had wonderful attitudes. The nearby Gym has plenty of room and equipment, with nice sea views. Exercisers have plenty of opportunity to walk on Promenade, the observation decks, and play tennis/soccer/basketball etc. on the very nice net-enclosed Sports deck. The Eurodam is equipped with the latest stabilizing equipment, but I doubt those were needed during our cruise since we had such perfect weather throughout our 7 day trip. Cabin V5084 is located exactly midships and therefore already extremely stable. We hardly felt the waves and it was only the soft vibrations of the engines that reminded us we were on a ship. In fact we didn't even experience the after cruise wave sensations that normally stay with us days after a cruise ends. So, while this new ship is technologically more advanced, for us the bottom line feeling was that of a cheapening of the cruising experience. New cruisers may have a completely different opinion, but we can't help make comparisons to our previous trips. The economic reasons are understandable, but nevertheless we will avoid the Eurodam, and its sister the Nieuwe Amsterdam, in our future travels. We hope that the older ships will maintain their stature and dignity long enough for us to enjoy a few more cruises before those too get redesigned to achieve financial efficiencies.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
Overall, we were happy with our cruise. We did B2B 4 and 5 night cruises. This was our first Princess cruise our others were four Celebrity and one Carnival. The ship was beautiful and was very nicely decorated. We enjoyed Grand Turk and ... Read More
Overall, we were happy with our cruise. We did B2B 4 and 5 night cruises. This was our first Princess cruise our others were four Celebrity and one Carnival. The ship was beautiful and was very nicely decorated. We enjoyed Grand Turk and Princess Cay. Our Cabin Steward, Pol Mateo, was fantastic. Tatiana, from Vines, was also excellent. We liked the food and the entertainment. Christmas was fun. We enjoyed the Crown Grill. The casino staff was great. In other words, They did the big things very well. Princess failed in our opinion, in the little things. There were never enough towels, they allowed people to reserve pool chairs for hours without being there, they did not clean up dishes around the ship, the lines for Anytime Seating for dinner were extremely (1 hour +) long, I paid for a coffee card and never received it (even after 4 tries), unlike Celebrity you rarely saw the senior crew members, they let children swim in the adults only pool, there was no benefit in having a mini suite over an inside cabin. I know this was a B2B of short cruises over the Christmas break but we did not feel as if we were being treated like we did with Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
We were on the Dec 22-27th cruise to Cozumel and Princess Cay. We are experienced cruisers and have travelled on Ruby Princess, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity before. We go on cruises with the mindset that we are going to be flexible and ... Read More
We were on the Dec 22-27th cruise to Cozumel and Princess Cay. We are experienced cruisers and have travelled on Ruby Princess, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity before. We go on cruises with the mindset that we are going to be flexible and have a fun time! I have to admit I was disappointed though within the first 15 minutes of exploring the ship but tried to focus on the positives throughout the trip. We had 2 mini-suites on the 9th floor: D305 and D419. Our group consisted of 2 adults (ages 42 and 43) and 3 teens (13, 16, 17). Pros: Boarding process was a breeze. Very organized. Rooms were clean and the attendants were friendly. Balconies were spacious. Uncovered but worked well for sun-bathing. Nice variety of pools on the ship. Movies Under the Stars was a hit with my family. We especially enjoyed the pizza served on the pool deck, International Cafe, and the Casino. Nice movie selection in the cabin. Princess Cay was clean and offered something for everyone. A fun beach day! Cons: Pool towels were not available on Day 1. Must use beach towels from your cabin. Note: pool towels were older and need a refresh. Some of the furniture in the buffet dining rooms are showing their age and need to be replaced. The food selection at the buffet was odd and not appealing. There was a long line to get food at the buffet on Day 1. Something I have not experience on other ships. Passengers were grumbling. Noted a few young passengers with poor buffet etiquette so we did not return. (Ex: sneezing without covering mouth) The most alarming to us was the brown water (color of cola!) coming out of faucets and shower head intermittently in both cabins starting on Day 2. We were told this was happening on the starboard side of the 9th floor and a plumber would need to work on it. This continued through the end of Day 4. We brushed our teeth with bottle water (provided by us) and went to the pools and hot tubs vs taking a shower with contaminated water. This is an older ship that has doors in some common areas (busy pool/elevator areas) that you need to use your hands to pull/push vs being automatic. I was surprised Princess did not upgrade these doors to touch free to reduce germ transfer among passengers. We tried to ignore the flaws to the best of our ability and have a fun Holiday vacation. Would I cruise on this ship again? No. We much prefer the Celebrity Cruise Line. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
This was our second cruise. Our first was a great experience with Royal Caribbean. Based on reviews, we decided to go with Celebrity this time. The experience was a great deal of fun with plenty of opportunities for relaxation; but was it ... Read More
This was our second cruise. Our first was a great experience with Royal Caribbean. Based on reviews, we decided to go with Celebrity this time. The experience was a great deal of fun with plenty of opportunities for relaxation; but was it worth the cost, and did it live up to its 5 star rating? Embarkation was smooth and painless. The Constellation had docked at terminal 4. This is a brand new building with a well organised and friendly staff. We were through the terminal and on the ship in about 15 minutes. Once on the ship, we received a complementary champagne, were just about to start exploring, and the sales pitch began. We were immediately approached by a hostess from the specialty restaurant "Ocean Liners". The hostess thrust a menu into our hands and began giving us details about the menu, service and value we would receive at this restaurant. We responded that we had already booked and paid for the other specialty restaurant "The Tuscan Grill". This did not halt the sales pitch. Feeling a little pressured, we relented and booked in for that evening. We then decided to head to our stateroom, on our way out of the lobby, we were approached by a host from the "Tuscan Grill" specialty restaurant with a similar sales pitch. He only relented when we explained that we were already booked into the Tuscan Grill and provided details of which night we were booked in. From there, we went to our stateroom. We had booked 2 inside staterooms on deck 3, one for my husband and I, and one next door for our teenage son. We were pleasantly surprised at the size of the staterooms, much bigger than on Royal Caribbean, and very well laid out. The bathroom was large enough to move around in, and the shower was huge (huge in ship terms, which is small, but much larger than the one we had on Monarch of the Seas). There was plenty of storage. So much in fact that we didn't use it all. The rooms were clean and comfortable, and the housekeeping staff met us at the door to introduce themselves. Throughout the cruise they were very friendly and always available. The Constellation has several specialty restaurants, a main dining room, and a buffet. Ocean Liners is their signature specialty restaurant, and that is where we dined on the first evening. The service was flawless. We ordered ala carte and were not disappointed both with taste and presentation. My son had the rack of lamb, I had the chateaubriand, and my husband ordered the lobster, which was prepared table side by our hostess. My husband a I enjoyed a couple of glasses of wine from the wine package we had previously ordered (the 5 bottle classic wine package). Upon leaving the restaurant, we were approached with the bill, which showed that they had originally charged us for the wine by the glass, then realized they had confused the classic wine package with the classic beverage package, reversed the charges, and told us that the remainder of our wine would be sent to the next restaurant, The Tuscan Grill. The following evening, we went to the Tuscan Grill. Once again, the service was impeccable, and the food amazing. My husband had the rib eye steak and says it was the best steak he has ever had. I had the fillet mignon, and our son had the lobster penne. The desserts were "to die for". Again, my husband and I enjoyed wine with our dinner. We had informed the waiter that we had the classic wine package and that our wine was supposed to be sent over. At the end of the meal when the bill came, we were charged for the wine. They had once again confused the beverage package. The maitre'd apologized for the confusion, admitted it was their mistake, but refused to reverse the charges. We paid, then went to Cellar Masters where after about five minutes, it was sorted out by a very helpful staff member. The remainder of the cruise, we went to the main dining room. The food was amazing, however the service was far less impressive than in the previous two restaurants. Each time we ordered something "extra" (pop, espresso), they immediately asked for the sea pass and presented a receipt to be signed, instead of waiting until the end of the meal. We selected the anytime dining which worked out well. We were able to sit at our own table and book any time we wished. For breakfast and lunch, we went to the buffet. The buffet was average, as to be expected when serving over a thousand. Activities were scheduled throughout the day, appealing to a wide variety of people. There was ballroom dancing, live entertainment in the theatre, and bands both on the pool deck and in the lounges. We especially enjoyed the trivia game shows, and the comedian showing in the theatre. There was also plenty of opportunity to sit back and relax in the many quiet areas on the decks. Our 16 year old son enjoyed the teen club activities. Our ship docked in Cozumel on Dec 24. There were several tours available to choose from. We wanted to see the Myan ruins. There was an 8 hr tour, and a 4 hr tour. We chose the 4 hr tour rather than spend hours on a bus. We really enjoyed this trip. We went to the ruins in San Gervasio, then a bus ride to The Mayan Cacao Company. The trip was very interesting, great people, very informative guide. There was plenty of opportunity for photography. On Dec 26, we docked in Key West. We decided not to book an excursion, instead opting to walk around on our own. We purchased tickets for the Hemingway House and the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum from a local vendor. The Hemingway House was amazing, and again, plenty of opportunity to wander around and take photographs. We very much enjoyed this. Next, we went to the Mel Fisher museum. Again, very interesting with amazing artifacts. Great value for money on these excursions. On Dec 27, the last day of the cruise, the ship docked at its final destination, Fort Lauderdale, at around 7 am. Since our flight was not scheduled until 7 pm, we chose to do the shopping excursion to Sawgrass Mills Mall. We were to meet our tour guide in the theatre on deck 5 at 8:45am. Our guide was then meant to escort us through the disembarkation process. However, at 8:05, an announcement was made for those of us going on this excursion to go to deck 3 and disembark. I immediately went to deck 3 and explained the confusion of the contradicting instructions to a staff member. This staff member seemed confused, spoke to someone on the radio, then said we needed to come to deck 3 right away and disembark. Therefore, we followed her instructions and disembarked. After clearing customs, we went to the front of the terminal. There was some initial confusion as we did not see a tour guide or bus. After asking several terminal staff, we were approached by a tour guide who said that we were late. We explained that were told to disembark. He said we did not follow instructions properly, then he left. About 5 minutes later, we were met by a second tour guide who was extremely helpful and informative. He said the bus would arrive shortly and stayed with us and the other guests who had begun to arrive, assisting us with our luggage, very nice. We were driven to the mall, and dropped off with a time to meet for transport to the airport. Unfortunately some people chose to be 45 minutes late for the meeting time, making everyone else late for their arrival at the airport. We were in no danger of missing our flight, but other travelers were, due to the inconsideration of people who chose not to meet the timings. The positive point about this excursion is that we didn't need to worry about our luggage, which was kept on the bus during the shopping trip, and we didn't need to try to find a taxi. The Celebrity Constellation is one of Celebrities older ships. It received a remodel to upgrade some of its amenities but is still showing some signs of age. The staff was courteous and friendly and for the most part very helpful. Celebrity sell themselves as an upscale cruise line. However, despite paying more for this cruise, we feel the service was not as good as our Royal Caribbean experience. We had a great time, and will probably sail with Celebrity again, but would like to try a different ship.   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
Just finished our cruise and omg, it was an amazing ship! We embarked from Port Everglades and I have never in my life been without internet access that long, but that's the point of a cruise, right? To experience it all? We did! We ... Read More
Just finished our cruise and omg, it was an amazing ship! We embarked from Port Everglades and I have never in my life been without internet access that long, but that's the point of a cruise, right? To experience it all? We did! We started our trip staying at the Quality Inn & Suites Airport/Cruise Port South. This is key: THEY HAVE A FREE AIRPORT SHUTTLE AAAAAAAAAND A FREE CRUISE SHUTTLE! Well, at least FROM/TO the airport and TO the cruise. It's $10ea to get a shuttle back to the hotel from the cruise port, which isn't bad. The rooms were musty smelling, but overall nice-ish. The chairs had stains and the bathroom floor left much to be desired, but the curtain is curved, so at least it doesn't touch you. Wish the cruise one was curved! Also, gotta love the sign telling you to not steal the towels, they are inventoried. You get what you pay for spending $99 a night, but it's next door to the Oakwood Plaza where we got a bunch of last minute stuff. That strip mall has a LOT. Getting on the ship early is key! I was expecting to queue for hours....we got on the shuttle from the hotel at 10:30. They ask you to tell them the night before you need a ride and they ask you what ship/day and they assign you a time. They have a huge mini bus that takes passengers to cruise port, because they attach a mini UHaul looking thing to the back to store everyone's luggage. We were at the cruise terminal 15 mins later. You can have your luggage checked from the curb and put on the ship or, if like us, your luggage is small enough to go through the airport scanner looking thing, you can bring it on the ship yourself. We only had a duffle bag each, so this is what we did. HAL lets you bring ONE 750ml bottle of wine or champagne for EACH person (assuming 2 ppl per room), no hard liquor or beer on the first night. The Dollar Star in the plaza next door sells CHEAP wine, $4/10 that people were going crazy over because it's GOOD cheap wine, so we bought 2 bottles on board and had to sadly toss the half drank chardonnay at the scanner. You can also bring booze you buy on board and they hold it until the night before for free...or you pay an $18per bottle corkage fee. We got our alcohol back the last night. From there you have to go through HAL front desk to get your room key, show passport etc in a terminal meets a hotel front desk. They give you a cruise group number in line to get to this and after you check-in, you sit and wait to be called to take escalator up to get on ship. Total time between getting off of shuttle and on to the ship? Maybe 20mins. Then again, we were also SUPER early. Our number was in the teens to get on. Other passengers told me their wait to just be called was like 45 mins. Anywho, they make you scan your card and sanitize your hands to get on the ship. All of the crew were very friendly all of the time, even when you knew they wanted to smack you or the person treating them rudely. They were all genuinely nice to me, because I wasn't rude to them. Then again, like I said, even the people I wanted to harm FOR them for being so rude were treated calmly and politely on this trip. We carried our own luggage on and the stewards meet you all along the way and at the elevators to direct you to your room on the first day. This was helpful and nice. Our room was right in the middle of the ship and close to the elevators. Score! It was an HH Obstructed View room, which just meant the lifeboar was RIGHT outside your window. We came in and checked out our room. Plenty of space to put your items for a long or short trip. They give you a daily tri folded itinerary. This ship uses a LOT of paper. They need to automate it somehow and make it a channel,too, to save on paper! We dropped our stuff off and went exploring....ie....to get food. O.M.G...as a first time cruiser, we decided to forgo paying for meals, so we stuck to Lido dining on 9 and once or twice the Vista Dining Room on 3 for our meals. Vista for dinner on the majority of nights was formal or semi formal. One guy declined wearing a jacket. Seriously? They give you one if you don't have it. He had a sweater and slacks and said no, so they declined him entering. You could have taken the jacket off at the table. We did Vista Dining once for lunch and once for dinner and just did Lido all other times. Lido is come as you are all the time and is open ALL the time, so we started our journey there and spent all of our time there for the most part. They have Asian, deli, bistro, ice cream, drinks and salad bar. Each table is pretty much ocean view. One side of each station is always open, both sides are during lunch and dinner. We never made it to breakfast and never utilized the free room service. If we wanted to eat, we could go ourselves. It was useful if you were doing shore excursions and wanted to sleep in, but even then, they slipped us notices the night before port saying it would be better to just go upstairs to the dining, since so many would use room service. We ate A LOT. Soda is not included in meals, so we stuck to water, iced tea and lemonade. It was a nice change. Other than at the salad bar, they serve the food to you and the wait wasn't really that long, even when there was a line. Why they individually heat up pasta in skillet at the salad bar is mind boggling. Do you know how much time that delays? It saves on freshness, though. So they don't waste. The variety of food reminded me of my college. Pizza, pasta, ice cream, meat, salads, sandwiches. It was 4.75/5, only because of the whole pasta delay. But yes, the food was great. The BB King All Stars were great entertainment on the ship in the Queen's Lounge and once in the Vista Lounge/main stage. There were also Zuiderdam singers and dancers, but the BB King people made the trip SO much better. We were never bored on the trip. We slept a lot, ate a lot and just sat on the deck a lot watching the world go by. Deck 3 has chairs everywhere and up on 10, the observation deck. We noticed that is NOT the case with the other ships we saw. Celebrity X gives everyone their own veranda with 2 chairs and you could walk between them! The deck everyone uses had like 2 sets of chairs. How un-inviting. We thought we had a big ship, until other ships like Celebrity, Norweigan and the Disney one made ours look like a tugboat. Even with 1900+ passengers, it never felt that way. It sure wasn't loud on the ship. It was peaceful the majority of the time. Like our own huge private yacht. The staff were great. Always polite and never cross. Hamish the cruise director was a riot. I liked that he seems to like his job. Allegra was another story. The "free" jewelry she is hawking at you to get is just costume jewelry in each port. Beware. Yes, this cruise is said to have an older crowd and sometimes it was like walking behind dinosaurs because people are so slow, but when I'm that age, would I want someone to treat me this way simply for being alive? Heck, the passengers who were older were the life of the ship! Dancing and participating in the events. I had a great time. I even had lunch one day with an older gentleman when we were docked in St. Martin/Marteen who just decided to sit at my table while I was off getting lunch, because he said he lost his wife, but we were at sea, she'd show up eventually. I came back to my table that had my bag at it and I was like "hello, how are you?" Did I expect to see him at my booth? Nope. But hey, we were at sea. Live in the moment. I was able to wave at him when I saw him on the ship on other days, same as the couples who sat at our table when we ate in the Vista Lounge. Being friendly is key on this cruise. Strangers talked to us all the time, simply because we made eye contact. We went to Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Martin/Marteen and Half Moon Cay on this holiday cruise. We were in each port just long enough to not wear out the welcome. I spent a lot of $ in ports, but it was well worth it. The ship also gives you sturdy navy and beige booksized totes with their logo and name on it. It screams I'M A TOURIST while in port. I cared before the first port, at all the following ones, at least one of us carried ours. It was raining on day 2 when we got to the first port of Grand Turk, but 20 mins later it stopped and was sunny skies ALL day. Make SURE to call your bank to tell them you will be out of the country, so when you use your card in different ports, you won't get locked out at the first attempt. I called my bank and gave a heads up a month before the trip in case I forgot. I had to tell them every port and which days I'd be there. The front desk also lets you use their courtesy phone to call your bank or card company for free, as my family member had to do on day one. I shut off my cell's data, roaming and backround data while still in FL and put it on airplane mode JUST to be sure. The ship has it's own time that may not match your own, but you can always turn to the "where are we?" map channel that has the date, time, ship location and temperature. If you have a magnetic wallet, don't keep your room key in it. I demagnetized mine TWICE before having to keep it in the separate padded insert you get at check-in. At the end of the trip, you still have to go through customs. That was the longest line we were in the whole trip. Because we again, carried our own stuff, we got expedited disembarkation. It took us about half an hour to get off the ship and wait in the customs line. The ship was going SUPER fast home, because we were back in FL by like 6:15a and that was even including the 90 mins we moored off the coast of Half Moon Cay as they tried to locate two passengers the day before. We were at the airport by 9:30a, which sucked, because I booked a LATE AFTERNOON flight, thinking it would have taken longer. This included stopping at the post office at 8a and waiting an hour for it to open. The ship was not rocky at all. So if that is what they were like WITHOUT the stabilizers, well gee, wonder what it is like WITH them. Don't get me wrong, you FELT the up and down, up and down, up and down when in the front of the ship in the Crows Nest, Vista Lounge or observation deck, but only there. I definitely will cruise with HAL again. For a holiday cruise, the price was great, less than $500 and that included the upgrade to HH. I only got the room around Thanksgiving....so it was a steal. Thumbs up!   Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
Cruised Western Caribbean on HAL Eurodam over Christmas/Hanukkah week December 2014. Third HAL cruise, first time Caribbean. First Eurodam experience. Previously traveled on Zuiderdam and Oosterdam. Traveled with hubby, 15-year-old son. ... Read More
Cruised Western Caribbean on HAL Eurodam over Christmas/Hanukkah week December 2014. Third HAL cruise, first time Caribbean. First Eurodam experience. Previously traveled on Zuiderdam and Oosterdam. Traveled with hubby, 15-year-old son. Sister-in-law and her family of four (hubby, two adult children, ages 21 and 24) also took this cruise. Pre-cruise -- we flew from LAX to MIA on Saturday for a Sunday departure out of Ft. Lauderdale. Did not want to risk connecting flights flying across the country during the holiday season. Arranged for HAL transfer to Ft. Lauderdale and then ended up renting a car in Miami for the 20 minute drive to Ft. Lauderdale. HAL would not refund the transfer fee of $30 pp even with advance notice. Once you book that it is non-refundable. Learned a lesson there. Stayed at Marriott Spring Hill Suites, took their free shuttle to cruise terminal on Sunday morning. Learned that we needed to book shuttle immediately upon check in as they, too, sell out space (even though they are free)! Hotel was sold out and everyone staying there was cruising, too, not only on HAL but on many other ships that dock at Ft. Lauderdale. Cabins -- we originally booked a Superior Verandah Suite on deck 6, midship as we have had great experience with the extra room there for teen son who is 5'11". One month before embarkation we received an email from HAL asking if we'd like to upgrade to Neptune Suite for additional (discounted) cost. We did this and moved to Suite 5186 with is a Neptune Suite aft corner balcony room on deck 5. Will try to attach photos as I could not find specific reviews for this room. Will detail that below. Suffice to say we were extremely pleased with this room. The bathroom size is the same as the Superior Verandah suite however there is an additional small dressing area attached to the bathroom with three extra closets and a separate vanity/drawer area. This room is somewhat smaller than traditional Neptune suites apparently, due to the increased balcony size. We liked that. This room also only holds 3 people -- the sofa bed is for one. The balcony is the draw as is the aft view. We heard no extra noise due to being at the back of the ship. The only drawback from Neptune amenities was that it is located on deck 5, not 7, as the other suites of same category are. The view is tremendous and you get a nice feeling of being alone on the sea when you are outside. Port vs. Starboard location -- our cabin had port and aft view. Port side on this trip will bring sunrise right into your room. December weather was cloudy at night so the only sunsets we saw generally were off the aft of the ship (great for our room!). Port side had view of Half Moon Cay beach, Falmouth terminal and old town, George Town from afar (tender port) and was facing away from Key West). Starboard side had awesome view of Cuba as we cruised by it from Bahamas to Jamaica. It faced away from most ports with the exception of Key West. Wind tended to be more of an issue on port side -- we rarely sat out on that side of the balcony due to the wind. I'd personally choose starboard for this cruise at this time of year. Food, Main Dining Room -- always great. This cruise no exception. Portions seemed on the smaller side which we liked as we didn't feel overwhelmed with various courses. We chose "at will" dining and never had to wait for a table for 7. Ate there 5 nights. Food and service spectacular every time. This was the best dining of the three HAL experiences. Don't know why -- the level was just raised in our opinion. They stressed attention to any food allergies or preferences (gluten free in ours). All great. Food, Lido Buffet -- ate here three times. Consistently great on all three cruises. Noticed special attention to water delivery around the machines as they are trying to prevent people from filling water bottles / cross contaminating I suppose. Ebola was in the news just a month earlier and special attention (we were grateful for it) was paid to keeping everything sanitary. Food, Tamarind -- a new restaurant for us, located on 11th floor, midship elevator. Wow, the bar here is the best on the ship! Gorgeous with wrap around glass windows at the top of the ship. Beautiful Lido pool view at night. Empty when we were there. The Asian inspired dinner we had was exceptional. Innovative food combinations, gorgeous presentation and many courses. Super service -- women are the servers here vs. men in all other dining rooms. Husband had a great sake with his dinner. We love it so much we had lunch there the next day (lunch is free), but we left in the middle of the lunch because of the slow service (it took over an hour to get through soup and salad alone), plus a very sick, sniffly, coughing, sneezing woman was right behind us. Unpleasant but would recommend this location for dining. Food, Pinnacle Grill -- again this was our best Pinnacle dining experience ever. Dinner was perfectly prepared, service exceptional. Steaks cooked exactly as requested, fun appetizers and decadent desserts. Had a lovely Oregon Pinot Noir that evening -- truly a treat. Pinnacle Grill is always a special occasion and though we never dined there for lunch, we were treated with breakfast there daily due to our Neptune suite privilege. This was a highlight of our cruise. Husband and I had a quiet time there every morning and loved every minute of it. Entertainment -- HAL always mixes it up and we've found ourselves doing different things each cruise. This time we were treated to a super group called BB King's that played in the Queen's Lounge. The group was from Memphis and they were amazing. The singers blew everyone away -- their energy and the band's professionalism and enthusiasm brought us back night after night. They got everyone on the dance floor (holiday cruise had quite the age range) and this will be a memory forever. The other groups and shows on the ship were good -- the piano bar fellow was kind of a drag (way different from other HAL experiences). Cruise director was great and the games runner did a super job -- don't know when he slept. They had good diversity of choice for the demographic. We were never bored and our teens and young adults had a blast. Honestly, we were tired when we got off the ship because we had such a good time. Pools -- The pools were not heated I think -- at least the aft pool wasn't, or if so, it was still really cold. This pool was stated to be for adults only though, being a holiday cruise, kids were in it (only ones to stand the temp!), not little ones however, and no one made a fuss. The deck area was hot in the sun, so we used the outdoor shower/rinse off to get wet and then lay out. We were disappointed with the layout of the Lido pool on the Eurodam -- the cabanas take away from table seating areas and therefore everything is crowded on deck. Add in the merchandise tables with T-shirts for sale every day -- too much stuff going on for relaxation. They should take away the clothing for sale tables and put back pool accessories (tables and lounge chairs). The food at the Dive grill rock, however! Order there and take away to a better, quieter location. Fitness Center -- HAL ships are pretty much all the same -- though we were treated to an announcement of a new configuration coming soon. That being said, the fitness centers on the three ships we've traveled on are pretty much the same. I did use the elliptical trainer and the treadmill twice at 6:30-7:00 in the morning (coming from PST, no problem!). Room is clean, equipment fair to good shape. The audio/TVs attached to the machines have seen better days but they worked. Hubby and niece took a yoga class and they liked it but said it was too short. 45 minutes, not enough time to stretch and benefit. Would have preferred 1 hour. Other days I strolled deck 3 roundabout early in the morning (3 laps = 1 mile). They have outlawed jogging/running for fitness so power walking is as fast as you can go on HAL these days. Who is in a hurry anyway? :-) Shore excursions -- our experience with cruising is that you never really get to know a country when you cruise. The cruise experience is more ship related with a time out at various locations. Holiday cruises are even more so as we hit our favorite port (George Town) on Christmas Day when most shops, restaurants, etc., are closed. Plan your trip accordingly. Service -- HAL has exceptional service. I cannot compare it to other lines as we've not tried them, but we love the fact that they include tips in your bill and you can at will gift extra or not. We've never had a bad experience and it continues to draw us back. They do spoil you for the real world. End of cruise -- we took a cab from cruise ship to Ft. Lauderdale airport. Cost us $20 (including tip) for the three of us and we were able to fit our four bags (two of which were large checkable suitcases) in the cab with us. Line to get cab was strangely short -- had to wait 10 minutes only. Don't know if we got lucky or if that's always the case. We felt lucky for sure! For us now, 7 days is too short of a cruise. Would love a 10 day choice as we are planning for leaving only the day after we arrive for a week. We had an amazing time - this cruise ranked as one of our best vacations ever.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
This was our 6th Christmas cruise but 1st on the Royal. We arrived in FLL a day before the cruise and spent the night at Embassy Suites. We took the hotels's shuttle to the port at 11:00am and were on board eating lunch in the dining ... Read More
This was our 6th Christmas cruise but 1st on the Royal. We arrived in FLL a day before the cruise and spent the night at Embassy Suites. We took the hotels's shuttle to the port at 11:00am and were on board eating lunch in the dining room by 12:30pm. We are Elite so embarkation was quick and painless. We were upgraded to a mini on Marina deck. Loved the size of the cabin and the large bathroom. The only minor issue was a noise during the day from the pool deck above when someone was dragging chairs around or walking in heels. We missed the full Promenade deck as we like to walk in the morning and before dinner. There was a walking /jogging track on Deck 17 but it was not protected from the sun and rain. 7 laps around = 1 mile. We did not use the elevators during the cruise so can't comment on those. We had Anytime dining and usually ate between 6:00-6:30pm. We always shared a table and never had to wait. Food was good but sometimes underseasoned for our taste. Loved the Chocolate Journeys desserts on 3 nights. We ate breakfast in the buffet or International Cafe since we like to sleep in and never got ready before 9:00am to eat in the Dining Room. We missed Christmas wreaths on the tables and Christmas Crackers on Christmas day. Those changes made the Christmas dinner that much less special than previous years on the Emerald. We had lunch at Alfredo's 2 times: pizza was OK but the crust was not salted. The 2nd time we tried the pasta dishes and they were very good. We did not take any excursions and in most ports we did not get off the ship. We enjoyed staying on the quiet ship, reading on our balcony and people watching in IC. We went to see the new production shows. Enjoyed all of them but they are short at 30 minutes. We did not see the other guest performers as comedians, mentalists and ventriloquists are not really our preferred entertainment. We did not like the new theater, prefer the one on the Emerald. This one seems like a cold cinema rather than a grand theater. There are no tray tables in the seats so people order drinks and then leave the empty glasses on the floor, which get kicked by people leaving the rows. You could see old lemons, straws and napkins under the seats. We missed having a priest on board to conducts a Midnight Mass. This time there was Catholic service conducted by the DJ and cruise staff on a bare theater stage without even a Christmas tree. We understand that Princess wants to be politically correct but this cruise was advertised as a Christmas cruise so they could make an exception. There also was no Rabbi so there was an annoucement in the Patter asking for a passenger to conduct Hannukah services. All in all it was a great cruise on a lovely ship. Perhaps if we have't cruised at Christmas so may times before, we would not notice all the little cut backs that made this Chrstmas cruise seem a little less festive.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
Never knew there was such a group as Cruise Critic even though we have sailed before. My Son found the group and I must say it has made our trip so much more enjoyable. Thank you, Marcia, our fearless leader! It was such fun doing the ... Read More
Never knew there was such a group as Cruise Critic even though we have sailed before. My Son found the group and I must say it has made our trip so much more enjoyable. Thank you, Marcia, our fearless leader! It was such fun doing the Secret Santa. Met so many Canadians too. One of the best thing was when on the ship we met members of the CC while walking along or eating etc and it made us feel that we had a family on board. Although there were four of us, it was ever so nice to be on excursions with fellow Members. We met many lovely people and are going to socialise with a lovely couple who lives in the same City. I must say that we had a great time with our guide, Rey with Ricky Ricardo in Costa Rica. He was simply marvellous, tried so very hard to show us all he could and he remembered our likes too. For example I lamented that it was a pity we couldn't visit an orchard farm, he stopped at a house and asked for a couple of orchid flowers just for me! Nest were Andy & Jorge from Cave Tubing Company in Belize. Andy was charming while Jorge the strong silent type was very knowledgeable especially in the rain forest. Had a great time and thanks for the pics, Susan! Other excursions were interesting but these two stood out with that personal touch.   So, I have finally registered myself with CC and am looking forward to receiving and reading all info from Members. Thanks! X X X Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
The restaurant seating "TEAM" needs to take their work a little more serious. You don't seat two English speaking people at a table with six Chinese speaking people. And if the "TEAM" was too busy overlooking names ... Read More
The restaurant seating "TEAM" needs to take their work a little more serious. You don't seat two English speaking people at a table with six Chinese speaking people. And if the "TEAM" was too busy overlooking names (Italian vs. Chinese), then the waiter should have picked up on the situation and rectified the arrangement. We ate in the buffet for the remainder of the cruise. Food was sub-par, especially the beef, and not only in the buffet, but the main dining room also (I ordered the prime rib on the first night of the cruise). Buffet was about as organized as a soup sandwich. Had to hunt for everything I wanted on my plate. Meat in this line, potatoes in that line, veggies somewhere else. The so-called "Cruise Director" is pretty much skating. Not much planning, considering this was a Xmas cruise. A first year Arts & Entertainment student could have planned the five day cruise much better. This was by far the worse cruise I have ever taken, and to think that it was a Xmas cruise was even worse than worse. You people are billed as a five star cruise line...welllllll...that's just a bunch of bull. I've taken many a cruise with a lesser star rating that far exceeded my expectations and would make your outfit pale in comparison. I paid for a premium brand and got stiffed. That won't happen again. On a brighter note, the ship was very clean and bright. Casino....Wife and I playing identical slot machines...cruise cards inserted in each...mine wasn't giving nearly as much points as my wife's, even though we started off with the same amount of money and had equally won/lost the same amount of money when I called a floor mgr??? to inform him something was wrong with the machine/s. He looked, agreed, walked away and was never seen again... We will never sail with Celebrity again. They could care less about the customer. It's all about profit. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
This is my DH's and my 7th cruise and my kids 6th cruise. We loved the ship and staff.....definitely one of the best. Now, Grandpa and Grandma like smaller ships, so for them this ship was too big. Pro's: Beautiful details (ie., ... Read More
This is my DH's and my 7th cruise and my kids 6th cruise. We loved the ship and staff.....definitely one of the best. Now, Grandpa and Grandma like smaller ships, so for them this ship was too big. Pro's: Beautiful details (ie., Central Park, Boardwalk, etc), a lot of activities to chose from (ie., FlowRider, Rock Climbing, Zip Lining, and more), Cleaniness (I was amazed how well they were able to keep this large ship with so many passengers spotless), Embarkation was super smooth and quick, lots of food choices (people recommended the "roast beef" sandwich at Park Café, it was very yummy and what I would call a "Prime Rib" sandwich-it was thinly slice prime rib not shaved roast beef). Con's: Elevators were always packed (no biggie if you are going a floor or two just walk but Grandpa has a bad hip so 7 flights need an elevator and it was hard to catch them), on board they communicated that we would stay on ships time not island time (I've never had that happen and messed up one of our individual Excursions.....We got in an hour late to St. Thomas and not changing time it was 11am ship time but Noon Island time so we missed the Sea Trek at Coral World....disappointing). We made reservations for all the shows in advance. Never had to do this before. Works out just fine if you are a planner...like me...but may be disappointing and frustrating if not. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
This was a beautiful and clean ship. It had everything anyone would want. The guys burgers were very good and easily accessible. The blue iguana burritos and tacos were also very good. The steakhouse was good but a little too fancy for us, ... Read More
This was a beautiful and clean ship. It had everything anyone would want. The guys burgers were very good and easily accessible. The blue iguana burritos and tacos were also very good. The steakhouse was good but a little too fancy for us, however the main course (lobster and steak) was fantastic. The dining room food was OK and kind of bland. No good desserts in the mdr. Shows were very very good, which is a step up from my last cruise. Comedy shows were ok too. Cruise director, Wee Billy is awesome! Very funny and gets you involved. Pool area was nice, they enforced the "no saving" chairs by putting a time stamp on your chair if it was empty. It had a big screen over the pool which was nice for evening movies or early morning news. Drinks were easy to get and did not have to wait too long for them. It was nice to have the options to purchase the Cheers program. It allowed us to try different drinks. Alchemy bar - very friendly mixologists. Great drinks. Embark and debark went extremely smooth for us, very well organized. We had inside cabins, 3 in one and 2 in the other. They were spacious and had built in dressers with enough room to fully unpack your suitcase. Overall, I would recommend Freedom and go on it again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
We sailed aboard the Celebrity Silhouette December 21-28, 2014, and had a great time. The embarkation process was surprisingly easy. We received a voicemail several days before, letting us know when the best time would be for us to ... Read More
We sailed aboard the Celebrity Silhouette December 21-28, 2014, and had a great time. The embarkation process was surprisingly easy. We received a voicemail several days before, letting us know when the best time would be for us to arrive, based on our cabin location. We arrived between 2:00P and 2:30P and sailed through. Once on board, we went to make dinner reservations. Unlike other cruise lines that we have sailed on, if you want to make dinner reservations before the ship sails, you have to pay for them in advance. We wanted to use our shipboard credit to make these reservations, but we could not use it to pay for anything until after we boarded. So, although we made reservations first thing after boarding the ship, we could only get reservations between 5:30P and 6:30P, and even that took a bit of work, as we had to see which restaurants could fit us in on which days. It would be nice to be able to make dinner reservations in advance without having to pay for the upcharge until after we ate the actual dinner. We ate at the Lawn Club the first night. Although Celebrity bills the Lawn Club as a “cook your own food” destination, we did not have to do so. We had salad, pizza, (which they call flatbread) and the rib eye. We really liked the pizza, and found it to be excellent throughout the ship. Our waiter was super. We had lunch at the Porch the next day. It was nice to be outside and my husband and I really enjoyed our paninis. The service was slow, but they only had one person working up there, so that might have been the reason. Monday night we ate at Qsine They offer their menu via iPad, which is more of a gimmick than anything useful. Qsine is basically a tapas place, where you can try many small plates. I enjoyed the crab ball best. My husband liked the Mediterranean lamb chops. Once again, our waiter was super. When we followed his suggestions, we ate very well. Tuesday night was our first foray into the Main Dining room. It was a very pretty space and the food was fine. The sommelier that night was outstanding, guiding us through our beverage choices and ensuring that our glasses were never empty. Wednesday night, Christmas Eve, we decided to have dinner at Bistro on Five. Salad and crepes were just what the doctor ordered after hiking all afternoon. Once again, our waiter was very friendly and accommodating. And, we both really liked the crepes. Christmas night we ate in Murano. We decided to try to wine pairing dinner. The service at this particular restaurant was the best on the ship. We really enjoyed our dinner, although at the end of five courses, we were extremely full! Friday night we ate in the Tuscan Grille. While the food was very good (my husband’s favorite meal), the service was disorganized and chaotic. It took a while before anyone came to our table, and then we were asked to order food before drinks. When we said that we wanted to first order drinks, we were offered only one glass of red wine (we had the classic beverage package – more on that later.) Someone else finally showed up and informed us of our various wine choices. Saturday night we were back in the Main Dining Room. That night, they had a Top Chef menu to order from. The food from that was fabulous! We ate all of our breakfasts and many lunches in the Ocean View restaurant, which offered a buffet. Breakfast was lovely. Most of the lunches were fine, but somewhat crowded. The last lunch of the cruise was a mad-house. There were specialty items, ice sculptures, tons of desserts and huge crowds. If we sail on Celebrity again, we will go to a specialty restaurant for lunch that day. We had the classic beverage package, which allowed us to enjoy all non-alcoholic drinks offered on board, along with beers up to $6 per serving, and wine-by-the-glass up to $9 per serving. It also included cocktails, but we did not partake. The wines by the glass were fine: the cab and the pinot grigio being quite good. The beer choices, however, were skimpy: we could only get Budweiser, Heineken and Corona. That being said, it made the trip easy not having to think about paying for any beverages. However, the beer choices could be better. We had a forward cabin with a balcony on the 7th deck, which we loved. Our cabin attendant, Viviana, was wonderful! She answered any and all questions and took very good care of us. Our cabin was always clean and we really appreciated our own outside space. We spent a good amount of time on our balcony. We were concerned that the boat might feel too crowded, since it held over 2800 passengers. However, the only times it did seem crowded were around the main pool area and at the last lunch. As we had our own balcony, we did not have to wrestle for a chaise lounge by the pool. We heard complaints from other people onboard that is was hard to get a chair and that others would “save” chaise lounges for their friends and family members, even when they were not there. We were lucky not to have to deal with that. We tried to use the jogging track, but unless you want to get up very early, forget it. The track circles the pool area, so people were constantly in the way while setting up their chairs, getting drinks, climbing in and out of the pools, or going somewhere else. Celebrity should really think about repositioning their jogging track for people who want to get some serious outdoor exercise. Although the adults-only pool was advertised as a lap pool, it is not. It is way too small (short and narrow) for any serious lap swimming. However, it was a nice respite from the main pool area madness. We also used the treadmills in the exercise room. It was nice to look out over the ocean as we “walked” along. One of the ship’s engines was out, so we were not able to make San Juan, Puerto Rico, the first scheduled port of call. We heard about this before we boarded through our travel agent. However, it seemed as though quite a few people did not know about this change until they were onboard the ship. They were understandably upset. With all of the pre-cruise emails that we received from Celebrity, asking us to buy things in advance, the cruise ship line should have been able to email most of its passengers to let them know of this change. With the exception of the last day, we booked our excursions with independent operators. We hiked in St. Maartin with Tri-Sport, which was great! We toured St. Kitts with Thenford Gray, which was also fun. We like the smaller groups and more activity, so both of these excursions worked well for us. The last day’s ship excursion (Ft. Lauderdale Land and Sea) started off somewhat dubiously. We had to wait in the bus-loading/parking area for 30 minutes before our bus arrived. However, once aboard, we had a good time and the cruise through Ft. Lauderdale’s canals was super. The boat itself was very well designed and quite beautiful. There was a large open lobby area mid-ship, with two banks of glass elevators. The space was open from the 3rd to the 12th or 14th decks and was spectacular. The ship’s signage and maps were very well done, ensuring that people could get around very easily. And, the displayed art was well-chosen and a super enhancement to the décor. The ship did decorate for Christmas, but it was not over the top and only in the main public areas. We were impressed. All in all, we had a great time and would sail on Celebrity again.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
We sailed aboard the Celebrity Silhouette December 21-28, 2014, and had a great time. The embarkation process was surprisingly easy. We received a voicemail several days before, letting us know when the best time would be for us to ... Read More
We sailed aboard the Celebrity Silhouette December 21-28, 2014, and had a great time. The embarkation process was surprisingly easy. We received a voicemail several days before, letting us know when the best time would be for us to arrive, based on our cabin location. We arrived between 2:00P and 2:30P and sailed through. Once on board, we went to make dinner reservations. Unlike other cruise lines that we have sailed on, if you want to make dinner reservations before the ship sails, you have to pay for them in advance. We wanted to use our shipboard credit to make these reservations, but we could not use it to pay for anything until after we boarded. So, although we made reservations first thing after boarding the ship, we could only get reservations between 5:30P and 6:30P, and even that took a bit of work, as we had to see which restaurants could fit us in on which days. It would be nice to be able to make dinner reservations in advance without having to pay for the upcharge until after we ate the actual dinner. We ate at the Lawn Club the first night. Although Celebrity bills the Lawn Club as a “cook your own food” destination, we did not have to do so. We had salad, pizza, (which they call flatbread) and the rib eye. We really liked the pizza, and found it to be excellent throughout the ship. Our waiter was super. We had lunch at the Porch the next day. It was nice to be outside and my husband and I really enjoyed our paninis. The service was slow, but they only had one person working up there, so that might have been the reason. Monday night we ate at Qsine. They offer their menu via iPad, which is more of a gimmick than anything useful. Qsine is basically a tapas place, where you can try many small plates. I enjoyed the crab ball best. My husband liked the Mediterranean lamb chops. Once again, our waiter was super. When we followed his suggestions, we ate very well. Tuesday night was our first foray into the Main Dining room. It was a very pretty space and the food was fine. The sommelier that night was outstanding, guiding us through our beverage choices and ensuring that our glasses were never empty. Wednesday night, Christmas Eve, we decided to have dinner at Bistro on Five. Salad and crepes were just what the doctor ordered after hiking all afternoon. Once again, our waiter was very friendly and accommodating. And, we both really liked the crepes. Christmas night we ate in Murano. We decided to try to wine pairing dinner. The service at this particular restaurant was the best on the ship. We really enjoyed our dinner, although at the end of five courses, we were extremely full! Friday night we ate in the Tuscan Grille. While the food was very good (Tim’s favorite meal), the service was disorganized and chaotic. It took a while before anyone came to our table, and then we were asked to order food before drinks. When we said that we wanted to first order drinks, we were offered only one glass of red wine (we had the classic beverage package – more on that later.) Someone else finally showed up and informed us of our various wine choices. Saturday night we were back in the Main Dining Room. That night, they had a Top Chef menu to order from. The food from that was fabulous! We ate all of our breakfasts and many lunches in the Ocean View restaurant, which offered a buffet. Breakfast was lovely. Most of the lunches were fine, but somewhat crowded. The last lunch of the cruise was a mad-house. There were specialty items, ice sculptures, tons of desserts and huge crowds. If we sail on Celebrity again, we will go to a specialty restaurant for lunch that day. We had the classic beverage package, which allowed us to enjoy all non-alcoholic drinks offered on board, along with beers up to $6 per serving and wine-by-the-glass up to $9 per serving. It also included cocktails, but we did not partake. The wines by the glass were fine: the cab and the pinot grigio being quite good. The beer choices, however, were skimpy: we could only get Budweiser, Heineken and Corona. That being said, it made the trip easy not having to think about paying for any beverages. However, the beer choices could be better. We had a forward cabin with a balcony on the 7th deck, which we loved. Our cabin attendant, Viviana, was wonderful! She answered any and all questions and took very good care of us. Our cabin was always clean and we really appreciated our own outside space. We spent a good amount of time on our balcony. We were concerned that the ship might feel too crowded, since it held over 2800 passengers. However, the only times it did seem crowded were around the main pool area and at the last lunch. As we had our own balcony, we did not have to wrestle for a chaise lounge by the pool. We heard complaints from other people onboard that is was hard to get a chair and that others would “save” chaise lounges for their friends and family members, even when they were not there. We were lucky not to have to deal with that. We tried to use the jogging track, but unless you want to get up very early, forget it. The track circles the pool area, so people were constantly in the way while setting up their chairs, getting drinks, climbing in and out of the pools, or going somewhere else. Celebrity should really think about repositioning their jogging track for people who want to get some serious outdoor exercise. Although the adults-only pool was advertised as a lap pool, it is not. It is way too small (short and narrow) for any serious lap swimming. However, it was a nice respite from the main pool area madness. We also used the treadmills in the exercise room. It was nice to look out over the ocean as we “walked” along. One of the ship’s engines was out, so we were not able to make San Juan, Puerto Rico, the first scheduled port of call. We heard about this before we boarded through our travel agent. However, it seemed as though quite a few people did not know about this change until they were onboard the ship. They were understandably upset. With all of the pre-cruise emails that we received from Celebrity, asking us to buy things in advance, the cruise ship line should have been able to email most of its passengers to let them know of this change. In their favor, Celebrity did provide us with extra on-board credit for the missed port. However, that just showed up on our account without explanation. We had to ask what it was. With the exception of the last day, we booked our excursions with independent operators. We hiked in St. Maartin with Tri-Sport, which was great! We toured St. Kitts with Thenford Gray, which was also fun. We like the smaller groups and more activity, so both of these excursions worked well for us. The last day’s ship excursion (Ft. Lauderdale Land and Sea booked through Celebrity) started off somewhat dubiously. We had to wait in the bus-loading/parking area for 30 minutes before our bus arrived. However, once aboard, we had a good time and the cruise through Ft. Lauderdale’s canals was super. The boat itself was very well designed and quite beautiful. There was a large open lobby area mid-ship, with two banks of glass elevators. The space was open from the 3rd to the 12th or 14th decks and was spectacular. The ship’s signage and maps were very well done, ensuring that people could get around very easily. And, the displayed art was well-chosen and a super enhancement to the décor. The ship did decorate for Christmas, but it was not over the top and only in the main public areas. We were impressed. All in all, we had a great time and would sail on Celebrity again. Read Less

Find a Cruise

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