Tag: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line

Symphony of the Seas

Royal Caribbean celebrates christening of Symphony of the Seas

Posted By : Courtney Anderson/ 789 0

Actors Alexa & Carlos PenaVega, with Son Ocean, Host Celebration at the Cruise Line’s New Terminal A

MIAMI, FLORIDA, 2018-Nov-19 — /Travel PR News/ — It’s official, Miami’s newest ship has come in. Royal Caribbean International celebrated the homecoming of the world’s largest cruise ship with the naming ceremony of Symphony of the Seas, the 25th ship in the global cruise line’s impressive fleet. Symphony was named by Royal Caribbean’s first-ever Godfamily, actors Alexa and Carlos PenaVega, who along with 23-month-old son Ocean, were on hand to christen the ship and bestow a blessing of safekeeping over her crew and guests. Having celebrated many happy occasions onboard the cruise line’s Oasis Class ships, the naming ceremony marks the avid Royal Caribbean fans’ biggest adventure yet with the cruise line.

With almost 1,000 guests in attendance, Symphony of the Seas was christened while dockside at the cruise line’s new state-of-the-art Terminal A at PortMiami, making for the largest naming ceremony in Royal Caribbean’s history. The customary event was infused with modern day elements – ranging from an electronic violinist who serenaded the crowd throughout the ceremony, to a stunning sail away performance by nearly 400 choreographed drones – and also incorporated a number of local Miami touches. Florida International University’s Marching Band kicked off the celebration, while students from Miami Southridge Senior High headlined the occasion on stage with a rousing drumline performance. Through Royal Caribbean’s partnership with the GRAMMY® Museum, Miami Southridge Senior High was one of 20 high schools within the Miami-Dade County Public School District that received a Royal Caribbean-funded grant through the GRAMMY Museum® Signature Schools program, which supports music education programs in underserved high schools.

Joining sister ship Allure of the Seas at Royal Caribbean’s state-of-the-art Terminal A, Symphony will sail 7-night Eastern and Western Caribbean with featured visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay, the global cruise line’s newly revealed private destination in The Bahamas. The 170,000-square-foot Terminal A, nicknamed the ‘Crown of Miami,’ is the most innovative cruise facility in the U.S. with an expected $500 million in revenue and addition of 4,000 jobs to Miami-Dade County. It is anticipated that Royal Caribbean will welcome at least 1.8 million guests at PortMiami, representing no less than 30 percent of the port’s projected traveler traffic. For more information about Symphony, visit RoyalCaribbean.com/SymphonyoftheSeas.

Symphony brings to life every family’s vacation dreams with a bold lineup of energy-filled, heart-pumping experiences. The new ship offers the chance to go head-to-head in a glow-in-the-dark laser tag adventure, take the plunge down the Ultimate Abyss – the tallest slide at sea towering 10 stories high – or soak up some sun after getting drenched on epic waterslides and FlowRider surf simulators. After a day at play, families can dine at a variety of venues that will keep taste buds tingling, including Hooked Seafood, Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade and El Loco Fresh for Mexican street-food fare, all before picking up the sweetest of treats at Sugar Beach. Adding to the excitement is the Ultimate Family Suite, a one-of-a-kind, two-story home away from home designed for both the young and young at heart, where families can enjoy a signature in-suite slide, private cinema, building block wall, Luckey Climber vertical maze for kids and whirlpool, among other premium services and amenities.

Royal Caribbean International is an award-winning global cruise brand with a 49-year legacy of innovation and introducing industry “firsts” never before seen at sea. The cruise line features an expansive and unmatched array of features and amenities only found on Royal Caribbean, including jaw-dropping entertainment and industry-acclaimed programming that appeals to families and adventurous vacationers alike. On board, guests are catered to with the cruise line’s world-renowned friendly and engaging service by every staff and crew member. Royal Caribbean has been voted “Best Cruise Line Overall” for 15 consecutive years in the Travel Weekly Readers’ Choice Awards.

Oasis-Class Ship

Western Caribbean cruise with Royal Caribbean

Posted By : cruising/ 0 0

OASIS OF THE SEAS What a ship! So much to do, you actually need to create a schedule for yourself. Every night you get their “Compass” itinerary sheet for the next day. I found myself circling things I wanted to do so I wouldn’t miss out or forget. The kids club, Adventure Ocean was a hit. You could tell all the kids there loved it and didn’t miss not hanging out with their parents. We saw CATS on Broadway at the large theatre, the Ice Skating show was the best and we thoroughly enjoyed watching movies at the outdoor movie theatre in the evenings. I’m sure I have left a ton of things out, we did so much!

I had a BOARDWALK BALCONY Stateroom – 1 king bed, 2 night tables, loveseat. And to make it even better it had an interior view of the ship – we looked out over the Boardwalk – my son thought this was very cool, it was perfect. This is a great alternative to having an outside stateroom with a balcony. Only thing I would say is that it could be a bit noisy at times.

Ports: Labadee, Haiti; Falmouth, Jamaica and Cozumel, Mexico, with 2 days at sea.

Labadee – this is Royal Caribbean’s private beach resort – this was the perfect way to spend a beach day without feeling like you were missing out on exploring an island. We did the venture out and do the dragon coaster thru the mountains for $26USD. Found out they charged someone else $10 so be careful not to get conned. The shopping market is run by the locals, a lot of them had the same product and we found that they were very pushy.

Jamaica – we did Jewel Runaway Bay Resort for the day. It had a great waterpark for kids and adults alike. The Jerk chicken was delicious!  I organized this myself, not through the cruise lines shore excursion option.

Cozumel – stayed on the ship that day, we had all been there previously so we felt it was a good opportunity to take advantage of all the ship has to offer while others were off exploring. I pampered myself at the spa and my son went to the kids club.

Food on the ship was fabulous. Breakfast and lunch were great in the Buffet, lots of options for everyone to choose from. We tried to eat at slightly off peak times just to cut down on waiting in lines.

Main dining had a nice variety every day but also had the standard/same menu every day so you knew there was always something you would enjoy – like the FRENCH ONION SOUP, it was DELICIOUS, I had it almost every day. The service there was so attentive and our server was amazing – we jokingly asked him if there was any curry and he said we have chicken curry, I will bring you a plate to all share. And everyday after that, he would bring out a plate of indian food for us to share. Such a nice touch and something he didn’t have to do for us!

We ate at 2 of the specialty restaurants. 150 on Central Park was fine dining and it was very difficult to make a decision on what to eat. Luckily there were a few of us so we were able have a taste of almost everything. The Lobster Gnocchi was perfect and my father had the Lamb Duo – I only got one bite it as he wasn’t interested in sharing after his first few mouthfuls.

We also had the opportunity to eat at the Mexican restaurant, Sabor, which is located on the boardwalk. It was pretty good – we all had the build your own tacos and we enjoyed the Guacamole with house-made tortilla chips and salsa.

Overall I was impressed with the service and staff – everyone was happy to help and would go out of their way to make sure we had a great time. The ship was very clean and well maintained. I was impressed with the stability of the ship as it was something I was a little concerned with, I barely ever felt it move. Generally I have been on All-Inclusive vacations so having to pay for a lot of the extras did take some getting used to but we were able to take advantage of a promotion when we booked that included the Soda Package for free – which was great to have. I would definitely look for that type of promotion again when booking as it adds a lot of value while onboard.

This was my first cruise and will NOT be my last. I had a wonderful experience and plan to cruise again and again! I would recommend this to family and friends who want to book a fun, active vacation.

 

 

Contributed by Meera La Rose
Vision Travel, a Direct Travel Company

Oasis-Class Ship

Western Caribbean cruise with Royal Caribbean

Posted By : cruising/ 0 0

OASIS OF THE SEAS What a ship! So much to do, you actually need to create a schedule for yourself. Every night you get their “Compass” itinerary sheet for the next day. I found myself circling things I wanted to do so I wouldn’t miss out or forget. The kids club, Adventure Ocean was a hit. You could tell all the kids there loved it and didn’t miss not hanging out with their parents. We saw CATS on Broadway at the large theatre, the Ice Skating show was the best and we thoroughly enjoyed watching movies at the outdoor movie theatre in the evenings. I’m sure I have left a ton of things out, we did so much!

I had a BOARDWALK BALCONY Stateroom – 1 king bed, 2 night tables, loveseat. And to make it even better it had an interior view of the ship – we looked out over the Boardwalk – my son thought this was very cool, it was perfect. This is a great alternative to having an outside stateroom with a balcony. Only thing I would say is that it could be a bit noisy at times.

Ports: Labadee, Haiti; Falmouth, Jamaica and Cozumel, Mexico, with 2 days at sea.

Labadee – this is Royal Caribbean’s private beach resort – this was the perfect way to spend a beach day without feeling like you were missing out on exploring an island. We did the venture out and do the dragon coaster thru the mountains for $26USD. Found out they charged someone else $10 so be careful not to get conned. The shopping market is run by the locals, a lot of them had the same product and we found that they were very pushy.

Jamaica – we did Jewel Runaway Bay Resort for the day. It had a great waterpark for kids and adults alike. The Jerk chicken was delicious!  I organized this myself, not through the cruise lines shore excursion option.

Cozumel – stayed on the ship that day, we had all been there previously so we felt it was a good opportunity to take advantage of all the ship has to offer while others were off exploring. I pampered myself at the spa and my son went to the kids club.

Food on the ship was fabulous. Breakfast and lunch were great in the Buffet, lots of options for everyone to choose from. We tried to eat at slightly off peak times just to cut down on waiting in lines.

Main dining had a nice variety every day but also had the standard/same menu every day so you knew there was always something you would enjoy – like the FRENCH ONION SOUP, it was DELICIOUS, I had it almost every day. The service there was so attentive and our server was amazing – we jokingly asked him if there was any curry and he said we have chicken curry, I will bring you a plate to all share. And everyday after that, he would bring out a plate of indian food for us to share. Such a nice touch and something he didn’t have to do for us!

We ate at 2 of the specialty restaurants. 150 on Central Park was fine dining and it was very difficult to make a decision on what to eat. Luckily there were a few of us so we were able have a taste of almost everything. The Lobster Gnocchi was perfect and my father had the Lamb Duo – I only got one bite it as he wasn’t interested in sharing after his first few mouthfuls.

We also had the opportunity to eat at the Mexican restaurant, Sabor, which is located on the boardwalk. It was pretty good – we all had the build your own tacos and we enjoyed the Guacamole with house-made tortilla chips and salsa.

Overall I was impressed with the service and staff – everyone was happy to help and would go out of their way to make sure we had a great time. The ship was very clean and well maintained. I was impressed with the stability of the ship as it was something I was a little concerned with, I barely ever felt it move. Generally I have been on All-Inclusive vacations so having to pay for a lot of the extras did take some getting used to but we were able to take advantage of a promotion when we booked that included the Soda Package for free – which was great to have. I would definitely look for that type of promotion again when booking as it adds a lot of value while onboard.

This was my first cruise and will NOT be my last. I had a wonderful experience and plan to cruise again and again! I would recommend this to family and friends who want to book a fun, active vacation.

 

 

Photo c/o Royal Caribbean Cruise Line

Mega Ship Experience on the Allure of the Seas

Posted By : Rene Schneeberger/ 0 0

With cruise ships getting bigger and bigger these days, many travelers wonder what that experience is truly like.  I had this same question and frankly some hesitation about sailing on a mega ship for years as I love to cruise on small intimate vessels between 250 and 1000 passengers.

However, in early January, I found a killer rate for a balcony cabin at $750 per person (normally these run for $1100 or more) and took the plunge by boarding Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class vessel Allure of the Seas for a 7-night exploration in Fort Lauderdale.  This review will take you through my week aboard.

As you can see from the picture I took in San Juan, the sheer size of the Allure of the Seas trumps everything in its sight.  Note the smallest vessel on the picture, Holland America Line’s Eurodam (2nd from the left) is itself not that small with 2104 passenger capacity. However, the Allure holds 3 times as many with 6488 passengers on my particular sailing.

Boarding/Disembarkation

It was a busy Sunday at Port Everglades with 7 vessels in port.  I was concerned at first that boarding would be a major effort.  However, I can attest to the fact that I have never boarded a ship faster. We went from curb side to cabin in 20 minutes – Absolutely amazing.  The entire experience reminded me of how Lufthansa boards 500 passengers on an Airbus 380 in 45 minutes while it takes as long or longer to get 120 passengers on a Boeing 737.  The lesson here is that “size matters” as it permits the use of better access infrastructure which Royal Caribbean purpose built at this port.

Similarly upon return, the ship crew is well versed in guiding guests to the gangway and off to customs.  We did the return journey in about 35 minutes from cabin to curb.

Amenities & Activities

One of the biggest advantages of a ship of this size is the space available for entertainment and activities.  Guests will notice right away that they are on a Mega ship the moment they step on board.  Large public spaces abound with expansive lounges, theaters and innovative activities to choose from.  My favorites were the Show lounge where I saw Mamma Mia and Blue Planet as well as the Aqua Theatre with the fantastic “Oceanaria” show. From a dining perspective, there are plenty of options as well, albeit several had long wait lines.  My personal tip is the Park Café on Central Park with fresh salads, sandwiches and paninis.   Favorite meal on board – Captain’s table which was a fantastic small, group experience with a $95 charge per person.  It is well worth the cost as it includes the 5 course gourmet meal and accompanying wine pairing.

Positives

With over 220,000 Gross Register Tons, this class of Mega-ships provides a smooth cruise experience even for folks worried about seasickness.  The ship just doesn’t move, even with decent waves, the motion is not noticeable.

Service and attention to detail by the crew was on par with smaller vessels and there is plenty of staff to serve large number of guests aboard.  Our stateroom a Category D2 Balcony on Deck 12, facing the ocean was very well laid out, had plenty of power outlets and the beds were very comfortable.  We toured a couple of Mini-suites which is the category I would pick on a future cruise.

Not a dull moment aboard either.  With flow riders (surf simulators), zip line, rock wall, ice rink, shows, games, movies, and so much more, there is always something happening aboard and the week just flew by. I used the walking/running track on deck 3 daily and I found it to be the perfect hide-away to enjoy ocean views on the handful of deck chairs in the very aft of the vessel.  Go check it out.

Challenges

To illustrate the biggest challenge, see the picture above.  Finding deck chairs on sea days was a frustrating experience to say the least.  There just are not enough spaces on deck for 6000+ people to lounge.  I have noticed the same issue on NCL’s Epic, Breakaway and Getaway where, to make matters even worse, the forward portion of the ship is taken up by the Haven – a Private Suites Club.  Another area of improvement for Royal Caribbean is the main dining room where during dinner service, noise levels are astronomical.  While the food was fine and the service attentive, don’t plan on a romantic dinner date or long conversations.  You would have to upgrade to Chops or Café 150 to have a tranquil dinner experience.  Mind you that these specialty dining venues cost from $35 per person and up – money well spent a couple of times during the voyage.

Tips:

  • Ask your travel advisor to book your show tickets in advance and know that you can see any show again on a stand-by basis. (Line up begins about 1 hour prior to the show).
  • Upgrade to Balcony or higher category for enjoyment and higher floors.  The lower levels are prone to noise from the 4 story boardwalk and all the activities going on.
  • Consider some of the “upgrade” restaurants and book them in advance (especially the Chef’s table)
  • This type of mega-ship is ideally suited for multi-gen family gatherings and for cruisers that want to experience the “latest & greatest”
  • Ask your travel advisor to plan custom shore-excursions (not booked with the cruise line) as a means to get away from the crowds and get personalized service – often at lower per person costs than the ship excursions

Final Reflections

After a week aboard, I was sad and at the same time glad to leave the vessel.  I am satisfied that I took the time to experience a Mega Ship with all its technical marvels, full-length Broadway shows and all the world-class entertainment.  Yet, my personal preference remain smaller, more intimate vessels of the 200 to 1100 category.  Peace and tranquility with plenty of personal space are more in line with my expectations than sharing lobbies, elevators and public spaces with crowds usually seen at malls.  It is a personal choice of course, and I heard many guests on board that were totally enamored with Allure and its sister ships.

Voyager of the Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

The incredible Voyager of the Seas® introduced many of the iconic features that Royal Caribbean guests still love today. Conquer the rock-climbing wall, or find your adventure on the basketball court, ice-skating rink or mini-golf course. If it’s zen you seek, achieve it poolside or at the relaxing VitalitySM Spa. Liven up your nights on the Royal Promenade, with parades, dancing, and duty-free shopping deals. And bring along some friends—with spacious public areas, enhanced staterooms, and a spectacular three-story dining room, this ship has room for your whole crew.

Rest & Relaxation:

  • Virtual balconies
  • Panoramic ocean view staterooms
  • VitalitySM Spa with 100+ treatments including medi-spa treatments and acupunture
  • 3 pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat*
  • 6 whirlpools
  • State-of-the-art Fitness Center, with classes including yoga and tai chi

*During inclement weather and select hours, the ship may permit the Solarium Pool to be used by persons under age 16 provided they are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

Action & Adventure

  • Rock-climbing wall
  • Ice-skating rink
  • Mini-golf course
  • Basketball court
  • Jogging and in-line skating tracks

Vision of the Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

On the now more beautiful Vision of the Seas, you’ll never lose sight of why you came onboard – thanks to all new features, from new restaurants to new technology to a new home ports in Tampa and Ft. Lauderdale. Enjoy new staterooms, the Centrum experience – a high-flying aerial acrobatics show – and an outdoor movie screen. There are also 5 new dining experiences onboard, including family-style Italian trattoria, Giovanni’s Table, the complimentary Park Café, Izumi Asian Cuisine, the intimate Chef’s Table, and our signature steakhouse, Chops Grille.

All our signature favorites are still onboard, including the VitalitySM Spa, the adults-only Solarium pool*, the Casino Royale®, and spectacular Broadway-style entertainment It’s all here – on one amazing vacation.

Rest & Relaxation:

  • VitalitySM Spa with extensive treatment menu
  • State-of-the-art fitness center, with classes ranging from aerobics to kickboxing to yoga
  • 2 pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat*
  • 6 whirlpools
  • Outdoor poolside movie screen
  • Concierge Club and Diamond

*During inclement weather and select hours, the ship may permit the Solarium Pool to be used by persons under age 16 provided they are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

**Concierge Club reserved for Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Crown & Anchor Society members, and select suite guests. Diamond Lounge available for Diamond and above tier level members.

Action & Adventure

  • Rock-climbing wall
  • Upper-deck jogging track
  • Video game arcade
Symphony of the Seas

Symphony of the Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

Explore all of the endless ways to play, dine and drink onboard Royal Caribbean’s newest ship.
The new Symphony of the Seas℠ is here — a perception remixing, memory maxing mic drop. It’s all the greatest hits, including the ten-story test of courage, Ultimate Abyss℠ and twin FlowRider® surf simulators.

Serenade of the Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

Good morning, sunshine. Wake up onboard Serenade of the Seas®, a dreamlike ship that’s sleek and sunlit, with panoramic vistas and wide-open spaces at every turn. Acres of glass enclose a nine-story central atrium, while glass elevators and floor-to ceiling windows ensure incredible views throughout your day. Bask at the tranquil Solarium pool, recharge at VitalitySM Spa, or reach new heights on our signature rock-climbing wall. When the sun goes down, the night heats up with Broadway-style shows, Casino Royale®, plus 16 bars and lounges that never feature a cover.

Rest & Relaxation:

  • 3 pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat*
  • 3 whirlpools
  • VitalitySM Spa with 100+ treatments
  • State-of-the-art fitness center, with classes including yoga and tai chi
  • Library and card room
  • NEW Stateroom amenities such as flat screen televisions and new shower floors
  • NEW Poolside, outdoor movie screen
  • NEW Concierge Club and Diamond Lounge**

*During inclement weather and select hours, the ship may permit the Solarium Pool to be used by persons under age 16 provided they are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

**Concierge Club reserved for Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Crown & Anchor Society members, and select suite guests. Diamond Lounge available for Diamond and above tier level members.

Action & Adventure

  • Rock-climbing wall
  • Mini-golf course
  • Basketball court
  • Jogging track
  • Video game arcade

Rhapsody of The Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

From the snow-capped mountain coasts of Alaska to skyline views of Sydney, Australia, Rhapsody of the Seas® delivers an unforgettable cruise experience, no matter the hemisphere. Get out to sea and relax away the stress of life on land – at the VitalitySM Spa or glass-canopied Solarium adults-only pool*. This is a ship built for adventure, too, with rock climbing, the Casino Royale®, and entertainment including shows, live music, plus bars and lounges that never have a cover. Now there’s even more to love on the newly revitalized Rhapsody of the Seas®, featuring our fleet’s newest offerings.

Rest & Relaxation:

  • VitalitySM Spa with extensive treatment menu
  • State-of-the-art Fitness Center, with classes ranging from aerobics to kickboxing to yoga
  • 2 pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat*
  • 6 whirlpools
  • Stateroom amenities such as flat screen televisions, new bathrooms and completely remodeled interiors, including new linens and furniture
  • Poolside, outdoor movie screen
  • Concierge Club**

*During inclement weather and select hours, the ship may permit the Solarium Pool to be used by persons under age 16 provided they are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

**Concierge Club reserved for Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Crown & Anchor Society members, and select suite guests. Diamond Lounge available for Diamond and above tier level members.

Action & Adventure

  • Rock-climbing wall
  • Upper-deck jogging track

Radiance of the Seas

Posted By : Alka Subin/ 0 0

Hungry for a dazzling at-sea experience that combines sleek swiftness, panoramic vistas, and an array of our best new dining options? Look no further than the newly renovated Radiance of the Seas®. With acres of glass enclosing the nine-story central atrium, elevators facing the sea, and floor-to-ceiling windows throughout, you’ll never be at a loss for an incredible view. Plus, we’ve just added eight new dining experiences, ranging from casual eats at Boardwalk Doghouse, to the family-style Italian fare at Giovanni’s Table, to the sizzling skewers of Samba Grill Brazilian Steakhouse.

Other new features include a Royal Babies & TotsSM Nursery, VIP guest lounges, and an outdoor, poolside movie screen showing first-run movies day and night. Whether you seek adventurous activities, relaxing moments, or fine fare, Radiance of the Seas has the features to please every taste.

Rest & Relaxation:

  • 3 pools including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat*
  • 3 whirlpools
  • VitalitySM Spa with extensive treatment menu including massages and acupuncture
  • State-of-the-art Fitness Center, with classes including yoga and tai chi
  • NEW Concierge Club and Diamond Lounge**

*During inclement weather and select hours, the ship may permit the Solarium Pool to be used by persons under age 16 provided they are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

**Concierge Club reserved for Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Crown & Anchor Society members, and select suite guests. Diamond Lounge available for Diamond and above tier level members.

Action & Adventure

  • Rock-climbing wall
  • Mini-golf course
  • Basketball court
  • Jogging track
  • Video game arcade