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Adventure of the Seas
Enchantment of the Seas
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Quantum of the Seas
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Allure of the Seas
Explorer of the Seas
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  #1  
Old March 29th, 2011, 01:10 AM
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QTMichele QTMichele is offline
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Default Not so "LIVE" Allure of the Seas Review with PIX!

I love reading the LIVE reviews, especially the ones with pictures, but I just can't manage to take the time during my cruise. So, I'm going to pretend and post a "LIVE" review of my Allure cruise from last week (March 20, 2011 - March 27, 2011). I'll be posting tons of pictures too! And, if you hang in there for the long-haul, I'll be posting a final summary and will answer your questions. Thanks in advance for reading!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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  #2  
Old March 29th, 2011, 01:34 AM
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In the beginning...

A few years ago, 2007 to be exact, my husband gave me a cruise on the Mariner of the Seas for my birthday. I fell in LOVE and became obsessed. That obsession led me to the Royal Caribbean VISA card... I use it for EVERYTHING I can!!! Last year it paid off and we earned a free cruise for 2. YIPEE! I booked this cruise with points for my DH and me during the WOW sale which added $100 OBC, then upgraded to a D8 balcony stateroom (#8560). After gratuities, upgrades and taxes/port fees, our cruise was definitely not free, but a great bargain, especially for the Allure. Thank you Royal and Bank of America - I continue to use your card and have earned almost 1/2 the points I need for another "FREE" cruise.

Back to the "Present"...

PRE-Cruise

I am currently 37 and DH is 38 - we're high school sweethearts. AW! We left our three kids at home this trip - the girls had school and we needed some reconnecting time.

On the Friday before the Sunday departure, we flew into Orlando, picked-up our rental car (convertible - how fun!), then drove to DH's brother's home. After two days of visiting (and constantly thinking about my upcoming cruise on ALLURE!), we made our way to the West Palm Beach area to visit my grandmother.



We went to the beach to see the moon rise. Just beautiful - so much prettier than a grainy picture suggests.



After a great visit with family, we made it to Sunday. It's CRUZIN time!!!

We dropped off the rental car at the Ft. Lauderdale airport, then took the shuttle to the port (free from the rental agency). OMG - the Allure of the Seas is HUGE! Even after MONTHS (YEARS!) of reading about the Oasis Class, I was not quite prepared for the size of this lady. Just incredible.






Up Next: BOARDING!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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  #3  
Old March 29th, 2011, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QTMichele View Post
I love reading the LIVE reviews, especially the ones with pictures, but I just can't manage to take the time during my cruise. So, I'm going to pretend and post a "LIVE" review of my Allure cruise from last week (March 20, 2011 - March 27, 2011). I'll be posting tons of pictures too! And, if you hang in there for the long-haul, I'll be posting a final summary and will answer your questions. Thanks in advance for reading!
I'm so proud of you!

Looking forward to it....we're doing a B2B this summer! Can't wait to hear what you thought of Chicago and the Samba Grill!
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  #4  
Old March 29th, 2011, 01:38 AM
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Thanks, Carol! I'm so exhausted right now that I'm having second thoughts. I forgot how much "work" it is to post pictures. <<Sigh>> But, someone's gotta do it, and it may as well be me.
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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  #5  
Old March 29th, 2011, 02:07 AM
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Sunday, March 20, 2011

The first view of the Allure was limited, but quite impressive regardless. I couldn't wait to get on that ship!

The shuttle dropped us off at 11:26AM. We dropped our bags off with the porters and proceeded into Terminal 18. Through security, check in, and across the gangway we went. Time? 11:36AM - TEN MINUTES FLAT! WOW!!!!! Such a great experience from the friendly staff to the efficient use of my time.

We entered the Royal Promenade. This was such a familiar start to our cruise. It wouldn't be long before the famliar became new. And new again. And again. There are just so many extras that RCI has put in place on the Allure. Funny how this ship could feel so familiar and strange at the same time - in a very good way.

We started a mini-tour as we made our way to Central Park for lunch, but didn't get far. Instead, we took an elevator (what?! I thought we were taking the stairs this week in the interest of keeping our weight down?! Oh well, we're on vacation!) to the Windjammer. Our bellies were calling and the tour would wait until after lunch.

The elevator floor thoughtfully reminding us of the day of the week. It was very nice for the first day or two, then it was just plain rude by the end of the week.



My first meal on the Allure of the Seas


I've gotta tell you that my goal was to eat somewhat healthy (I caved by mid-week). If I would've known how good that apple pie-like dessert tasted, I would've caved on the first day. OMG - it was so good!!! I'm really not used to RCI making good desserts! The rest of my meal was decent too. No complaints from me, but, if you've read my other reviews, you'll know I hate to cook and rarely complain about food when others prepare it for me. Even buffet food.

A few notes about the Windjammer. The layout is different - there are two entrances, one on the port side and one on the starboard side. Both entrances lead straight to the buffet (mirror images of each other). We found seating along the sides and the back of the WJ. Although it feels smaller than on the Voyager and Freedom classes, we never had a problem finding a seat for the two of us. Personally, I like the setup better on the other ships - it just felt smaller and more cramped on the Allure. Not a big issue, just my observation.

As for selection, I was not impressed. Sure, there is plenty to choose from, but I think they've narrowed down the options, perhaps because there are so many other places to eat? Regardless, I expected just a little more from the Windjammer. The food was always warm and tasted at least good enough, but I wish there were just a few more options on the buffet. One example, there was syrup and butter next to the pancakes and waffles. I was looking forward to strawberries and whipped cream on my carb-induced-coma breakfast food - something I never eat at home, but they were no where to be found until later in the week. Maybe I just got there too late?

Another thought about the WJ, there were always plenty of staff walking around to clear the tables; however, they were not as helpful as the staff on the Freedom. The Freedom staff bent over backwards to get me a refill, give me a straw, etc. to the point of ad naseum. It was amazing service, and so unexpected, but very appreciated, from a buffet. This was not the case on the Allure. It was a pleasant environment with good service, just different than Freedom. Oh, and no table clothes for dinner.
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Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW

Last edited by QTMichele; March 29th, 2011 at 02:08 AM.
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  #6  
Old March 29th, 2011, 02:35 AM
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Cant wait to read more!!!
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  #7  
Old March 29th, 2011, 07:15 AM
skrapngal skrapngal is offline
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Bring on the "almost LIVE"!!! It makes waiting 11 months a little more bearable.

Thanks for taking the time to post this Michele!!!
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Allure of the Seas - Eastern Caribbean 03/12
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  #8  
Old March 29th, 2011, 07:43 AM
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Yay! Another picture review!!! I'm going on Allure in September and cant wait! I would love some info on the pre-paid resturants and the included ones. We have never paid for speciality dining and not sure we want to on this cruise either but we are not entirely sure what is included and what isnt.

Oh and i found when doing my picture review it was easier to upload to facebook and then in to CC

Carly
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  #9  
Old March 29th, 2011, 08:37 AM
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Default Another chance to "re-live" my Allure cruise!

Michele,

Thanks for taking the time to write your review. Looking forward to reading more of your thoughts.

I'm with you as far as live reviews go. I have no idea where people (like Barbi from Australia) find the time during their jam-packed week to post live reviews. Love both versions, though, so keep those posts and pictures coming! Helps me with my post-cruise withdrawal, which sadly is already into its 3rd week.

Did you meet Barbi during your time on Allure?
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Previous Cruises:

Allure of the Seas -- March 2011
Oasis of the Seas -- August 2010
Liberty of the Seas -- New Year's 2009-10
Liberty of the Seas -- April 2009
Liberty of the Seas -- April 2008
Adventure of the Seas -- April 2007
Explorer of the Seas -- April 2006
Navigator of the Seas -- April 2005
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  #10  
Old March 29th, 2011, 10:22 AM
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Good morning! I'm going to attempt to post some more comments and pictures before I go to the Y this morning. I've gotta work off my fat stores.

Quote:
Originally Posted by charliegirlac View Post
Yay! Another picture review!!! I'm going on Allure in September and cant wait! I would love some info on the pre-paid resturants and the included ones. We have never paid for speciality dining and not sure we want to on this cruise either but we are not entirely sure what is included and what isnt.

Oh and i found when doing my picture review it was easier to upload to facebook and then in to CC

Carly
Hi, Carly. Hang around and you can read about our dining experiences - paid and free. For now, here's a link that lists all the dining on the Oasis Class ships: http://www.creative.rccl.com/Sales/R...rant_Flyer.pdf

I use FB for my pictures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gigi Fan View Post
Michele,

Did you meet Barbi during your time on Allure?
No, we didn't meet. There's just so much to see and do that our paths didn't cross this time.

Okay, time for me to get busy posting!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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  #11  
Old March 29th, 2011, 10:47 AM
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Wonderful! Can't wait for more!
__________________
Please check out my food review of the Oasis. A good resource for Oasis, Allure or just about any RCI Ship!
The Almost Complete Food Lovers Guide to the Oasis of the Seas

Song of Norway-Nov 1991 * Majesty Of The Seas-Sept 1994 * Diamond Princess-April 2004 *
Mariner Of The Seas-April 2006 *
Carnival Valor-March 2007 * Explorer Of The Seas-April 2008
Explorer Of The Seas-July 2009 * Oasis of the Seas-July 2010 * Carnival Glory -July 2011 *
Enchantment Of The Seas-Oct 2011 * Enchantment Of The Seas-Oct 2011 * Allure of the Seas-April 2012 *
Brilliance of the Seas-Nov 2012 * Celebrity Equinox-July 2013 * Celebrity Summit-July 2014 *
Quantum of the Seas-Nov 2014 *
Quantum of the Seas-Dec 2014 * Liberty of the Seas-July 2015



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  #12  
Old March 29th, 2011, 10:58 AM
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patticakes40 patticakes40 is offline
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I leave for the Allure in 11 days! Can't wait to read and see more. Thanks for taking the time to do this!
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  #13  
Old March 29th, 2011, 11:01 AM
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Sunday, March 20, 2011 (continued)

After lunch, we tried to explore the ship a little more. I was anxious to see it all, but, for whatever reason, our exploration was a bust. We went to our stateroom instead. To our surprise, our luggage had arrived by 1:30! I have OCD tendencies and just had to unpack.

Our stateroom is 8560 - bed close to the balcony.


Our stateroom, view from the door to the balcony.



Storage Area


View from our balcony towards the door.


Overall, our stateroom was great. It was smaller than our first balcony on the Mariner (we had a hump stateroom on Mariner, which offered space between the curtain and the balcony doors), but was quite comfortable. I felt the closet space was ample, and the shelving in the closet was good. (BEWARE: The safe was TINY! It held our wallets, passports and phones with little room to spare.) There were only 3 drawers, one of which was shallow and held a hairdryer. Cabinet space next to the mirror and below the desk was fine - good enough to hold toiletries and such. The nightstands were fine, but would be much better with drawers.

Our balcony was very roomy, and a great spot to read and relax throughout the day and evening. I loved the larger and higher table too. Great job, Royal!

Our Bathroom


Bathroom storage consisted of a few shelves large enough to hold toiletries. There were also two longer shelves under the sink counter. Although the bathroom was smaller than on other ships, it felt comfortable. The shower was roomy enough, and the shave bar was a nice addition. Overall, a good use of space. For ONE.

We met our stateroom attendant Joel - such a friendly, efficient man! He was GREAT and worth his tips and more. He called us by name every time we saw him, and always inquired on our well being. He even filled up Jason's cooler without being asked. He was attentive to every detail. THANKS, Joel! (rhymes with Noel)

A few thoughts about our cabin location... in one word: EXCELLENT! We booked a D8, forward, starboard side cabin near the elevators/stairs. The proximity to the stairs was great - so convenient. We were on deck 8 so we had almost immediate access to Central Park. WOW! It was wonderful to go from our cabin to Central Park and all its treasures (food, beverages, comfy seating, etc.). I would highly recommend this location!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW

Last edited by QTMichele; March 29th, 2011 at 11:03 AM.
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Old March 29th, 2011, 11:14 AM
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I forgot to mention, bathrobes were provided in our stateroom. I'm not sure if they were in all staterooms, but they were in ours. (We're Gold members, so not a perk that I'm aware of.)

After I unpacked, Jason took a cat nap while I explored the ship.

I found the sundeck above the bridge wings - great place for views!



Looking up towards the Solarium




This is where we spent our time during Sail Away - great views! We had plenty of company, but it wasn't crowded. "How did they get there?!" was the appropriate look from those looking down on us from the Solarium.

A few more pictures from my first few hours of exploring...

Our first drinks of the cruise. First of many. Too many. LARGE Sea Pass bill for us!


The Beach Pool - my favorite!


View into the Solarium. Another favorite spot.
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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Old March 29th, 2011, 11:21 AM
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Great job! I can't wait to read more
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Previous Cruises:
NCL Norwegian Crown-NYC to Bermuda (2006)
RCI Adventure S. Caribbean-Barbados Route (2009)

Complete Photo Reviews:
RCI Serenade S. Caribbean-Barbados Route (2010)
l Carnival Glory from Norfolk-Bahamas (2011) l RCI Serenade S. Caribbean-Aruba Route (2011) l RCI Liberty to Cozumel (2012) l Fort Lauderdale Pre-and-Post-Cruise l RCI Allure W. Caribbean-Babymoon (2012) l RCI Liberty to Cozumel-Baby's First Cruise (2014)

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RCI Quantum, March 2015
Celebrity Silhouette, November 2015

Norwegian Breakaway, December 2015

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  #16  
Old March 29th, 2011, 11:28 AM
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Solarium



View at the start of SailAway


Dinner tonight was at Izumi. We pre-booked this for $10 per person which was to be applied towards the cost of our meal. However, upon arrival, we were told that the cost if now $5 per person plus the price of the food (al a carte). I had no problem paying the dining fee, but Royal really needs to do a better job at communicating this change or honoring their initial prices. Take note.

Dinner at Izumi








We enjoyed a few sushi rolls, but the Premium Izumi Izumi Package. Overall a nice experience, but I thought the hot rock was a try it once kind of experience. (We just prefer sushi over the hot rock novelty.)
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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Old March 29th, 2011, 11:33 AM
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We went to Izumi (Oasis) the first night too!
__________________
Please check out my food review of the Oasis. A good resource for Oasis, Allure or just about any RCI Ship!
The Almost Complete Food Lovers Guide to the Oasis of the Seas

Song of Norway-Nov 1991 * Majesty Of The Seas-Sept 1994 * Diamond Princess-April 2004 *
Mariner Of The Seas-April 2006 *
Carnival Valor-March 2007 * Explorer Of The Seas-April 2008
Explorer Of The Seas-July 2009 * Oasis of the Seas-July 2010 * Carnival Glory -July 2011 *
Enchantment Of The Seas-Oct 2011 * Enchantment Of The Seas-Oct 2011 * Allure of the Seas-April 2012 *
Brilliance of the Seas-Nov 2012 * Celebrity Equinox-July 2013 * Celebrity Summit-July 2014 *
Quantum of the Seas-Nov 2014 *
Quantum of the Seas-Dec 2014 * Liberty of the Seas-July 2015



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Old March 29th, 2011, 11:38 AM
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QTMichele QTMichele is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianAlt View Post
We went to Izumi (Oasis) the first night too!
Great minds, Brian!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW
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  #19  
Old March 29th, 2011, 11:41 AM
kellyco kellyco is offline
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It looks like from the picture of the bathroom that there were toiletries provided. If so, can you please tell me what they were? I have heard mixed responses to what is included. This is our first trip in a non-suite in a while, so I didn't think any were provided. Thanks very much.

Last edited by kellyco; March 29th, 2011 at 11:43 AM.
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Old March 29th, 2011, 11:53 AM
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We found the video post card booth in On Air. We sent one to our family and friends via facebook. This is what it looked like:











After dinner, I went to Chicago. I was a little apprehensive about this as I'm not a huge Chicago fan; however, it was a great show. At 90 minutes, it's long enough to tell the story, but short enough for those of us (me) who were exhausted.



The Amber Theater was about 3/4 full by the time I arrived, approximately 25 minutes before the show. A certain reminder that getting to the shows early was the right thing to do!
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Michele

Oasis of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 8 February 2014
Liberty of the Seas, 5 Nights, Western Itinerary, 19 November 2012
Monarch of the Seas, 4 Nights, Bahamas Itinerary, 30 July 2012 - REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 12 February 2012 - Pictorial REVIEW
Allure of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 27 March 2011 - Pictorial REVIEW
Freedom of the Seas, 7 Nights, Eastern Itinerary, 3 January 2010 - Pictorial REVIEW (REVIEW without photos)
Mariner of the Seas, 7 Nights, Western Itinerary, 25 February 2007 - REVIEW

Last edited by QTMichele; March 29th, 2011 at 11:56 AM.
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