Mariner of the Seas Cruise Review by kurtl
- Sail Date: May 2004
- Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation went very well. Debarkation was even quicker. And when they say not to use the escalator if you cannot hand carry your luggage, please listen to the nice port people. My wife didn't and down, down, down bounced her big garment suitcase. Fortunately it was only me at the bottom and I saw it coming, plus it stopped before it got to me anyway:)
I have to say there were only a handful of people my age or younger. Which I sort of expected and really didn't mind. But the activities and programs are geared to the older folks, in my opinion. So after 3 nights everything became redundant. For example, bingo, karaoke, or a piano bar show were the highlights so maybe that will give you a hint. The ice show under the big top was great. Always attend these things on the second night of showing so the cast can get the bugs out on the first performance.
Our room was great, we took a ton of stuff and unpacked it all and still had cubby space available. Having a balcony was nice but we didn't use it all that much. The ship rocked a bit and the itinerary was very windy most of the time. We couldn't use the rock wall a couple of times because of it. Not to mention they had designated (short) periods of time when the wall was open. The captain kept saying the wind was normal so I don't think I'll be sailing that way again.
The ship itself was super clean and immaculately maintained, hats off to Jefferson who was always working his butt off every time we saw him.
The food was okay, 5 out of 10 at the buffet, average I guess. We had poor service at Chops, the steak house, the food was good, not stellar or anything to write home about. Whatever you read about Chops or Portifino's, don't believe the hype.
If I had to do it over I would just go to the dining room for everything, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The food was consistently good and service was very good as well.
The entertainment was okay, 1 out of 2 comedians was pretty good. All of the couples we hung out with became extremely bored. If you are the restless type that likes to have a variety of activities to choose from, cruising might not be good for you. I should have followed advice given to me... take a 3 or 4 night cruise to get an idea of what to expect then you'll have a better idea if cruising is for you. If I ever cruise again it will be to Alaska.
All of the people we talked with had the same opinion, everything we would have wanted is in the USA. From Florida to Hawaii and Alaska, the Pacific Northwest to Eastern Sea board, we would have seen some beautiful country and not had to walk through a 3rd world country to get there where the locals have forced grins because they depend on you for their very livelihood. We did get to meet some nice people granted. But St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and Nassau would get a 3 or 4 out of 10 stars for ports. Not impressive and you really don't have any time to absorb the culture if that is someone's reason for going.
I must say that we didn't see many kids but they were there I think. Johnny Rocket's was okay, we have the chains out here in San Diego so no surprise there. If you want to hear YMCA sang 2 or 3 times during your lunch then this is the place for you.
Oh one more thing, the 4 story "mall" called the Promenade was a huge let down. Looked beautiful but only a handful of shops on the floor level only, the rest were bars with guests rooms above.
Oh yeah, loved the gym, needs more free weights though. It is beautiful too;)
Hope this accurate review helps would be cruisers.
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