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gargeo83

March 16-24 Solo Independence Picture Review

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This is my first attempt at a review so any tips or suggestions as I go along will be appreciated.

Some quick cruise history about me before I begin. My first cruise was in 2006 on Caribbean Princess. After that cruise, I was hooked. I like getting to go to different locations but only having to unpack once. I enjoy meeting people on a cruise as everyone is so friendly. Next was a large family Alaska cruise on Celebrity Millenium in 2008. Following that was Liberty of the Seas in 2008 also. That was when I got interested in the big ships. I had heard a lot onboard about Project Genesis, now Oasis/Allure of the Seas.

I followed news on those ships very closely and watched the ceremony of Oasis arriving at Port Everglades for the first time which of course ending in me booking a cruise on Oasis. So I did Oasis in 2010 and 2011. In 2012 was my first solo cruise and it was on Carnival Liberty. Which finally leads to this Independence cruise. Ok enough about me, let’s get to ship talk.

 

 

 

 

March 16-24 Eastern Caribbean on Independence of the Seas

 

 

 

 

This is my second solo cruise and I really enjoy going solo as it is very easy on cruises to meet and talk to people.

I pre-purchased the Premium Beverage package online for a few reasons. It wasn’t about making sure I drink enough onboard to break even or more but it was about not having to have a suitcase full of receipts when I get back, it was about getting to try new types of drinks and not worry about paying for them or if I don’t like them, and more importantly, it was about already knowing what by bill was going to be and already having it paid off before I got onboard. So if there are any questions about the package please feel free to ask.

I also purchased Chops steak house for the first night. I didn’t do any shore excursions as they are more fun with someone else with you and I always enjoy having an empty ship while in port. I did get off the ship and walked around each port but I won’t have answers to any questions about excursions. My apologies. I do have copies of all the Cruise Compasses and a fair amount of Food Porn for you foodies out there.

 

 

 

 

Pre-Embarkation Day

 

 

 

 

I like to fly done the night before Embarkation because it just feels more relaxing to take a flight down and staying in the hotel. Also not having the added stress of a horrible flight delay is great. So I flew down March 15 and arrived to a sunny and warm Fort Lauderdale at 10:00am. Grabbed a cab and off to my usual pre-cruise hotel in Fort Lauderdale, Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina. I like to stay as this hotel because it has balconies that have a great view of the port.

 

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(View of the Port from the hotel room)

 

 

 

I make sure to set the alarm clock for 5:00am to watch the ships come into port in the morning.

Walked around the area for a little bit and then had lunch at Bimini Boatyard which is only a 10 minute walk from the hotel across 17th St.

 

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It was then back to the hotel for 5:00 sail-away with a quick stop at Wal-Greens for some sail-away beer on my balcony. After watching Celebrity Equinox and a Holland America ship leave it was off to bed to prepare for an early 5:00am rising

 

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Stayed tuned for an early morning picture show of the ships coming into port. Also, if there are any tips from you review veterans to make this more interesting please let me know. Thanks

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Many thanks for taking the time to do a review of your time on the Indy.

We will be doing the med in July.

Looking forward to hearing about this ship before our first sailing on her.

It especially gives me something to read whilst I wait and wait for July to come;)

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Thanks for sharing your cruise adventure with us! Solo cruising is the best!

 

I'll be going solo in a few weeks and decided to do the drink package too, I like the reasons you did it and like you said will most likely try some things I normally won't and won't have to worry about if I don't like it that I wasted money.

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Day 1-Embarkation Day

 

 

I was up at 4:10am and beat the dreaded alarm clock noise that was set for 5:00. Looked out the window and was glad I got up as I could see lights off into the distance. First one due to come into Port is Independence of the Seas

 

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Indy making its way into port at 4:27am

 

It didn't take the ship long to be coming down the channel past the apartment buildings and give me a great view of the ship at night.

 

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Next in was Oasis. Even after being on this ship twice before, the size of Oasis is still impressive

 

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Just a quick note, I know these pictures are not the greatest in quality, I was using two new cameras. I promise the quality will get better as I figured out the camera settings later. So please stay onboard (no pun intended) with me.

 

Next up was MSC Poesia,

 

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Then Caribbean Princess,

 

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Liberty of the Seas

 

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There was also a Holland America ship that came in but I didn't get a picture of it.

 

Next up is the checkin experience and interior pictures of the ship during my early exploration after boarding

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So far, so good. I am leaving on the Indy this Saturday. It is my first solo cruise. I almost booked yours, but the 30th worked a little better.

 

I'll be tuned in until Saturday morning as it will be helpful to hear a recent, solo Indy review.

 

Thanks.

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Can't wait to read more of your review and see more pics as I am sailing on her in December.

 

What kind of drinks are included in the drinks package and how much is it? I mostly drinks those sweet mixed drinks so are you limited as to what you can get?

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Can't wait to read more of your review and see more pics as I am sailing on her in December.

 

What kind of drinks are included in the drinks package and how much is it? I mostly drinks those sweet mixed drinks so are you limited as to what you can get?

 

There are 2 drink packages. The Classic one is $45 per person per day and includes beers,house wine by the glass, juices and sodas.

 

The Premium Package is $55 per person per day and includes everything the classic has and all frozen drinks and all cocktails including premium brands.

 

Each person in the cabin that is 21 and over has to purchase the package if one person in the cabin does. This is to prevent sharing.

 

So if you prefer the sweet mixed drinks you will need the premium package. I hope this helps. If you have any more questions feel free to ask. :)

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Day 1 Continued

 

After waking up early to watch the ships come in I needed a nap before packing up and leaving the hotel. Woke up at 9:30 and got a great picture of all the ships in port today. Again this is why I book this hotel, because of the view from the balcony.

 

 

 

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Checked out of the hotel at 10:30 and got into a shuttle van that was only $6.00 per person.

 

 

*Cruise TIP alert*: Since Independence is at terminal 29, which is the furthest terminal, you will be dropped off last. Other people in my shuttle van were going to Caribbean Princess and Oasis of the Seas. Having taken a cab from the terminal to the hotel on disembarkation day I realized the mistake I made. The shuttle took 45 minutes to get me to the terminal. The cab is 15 minutes and only $12.00. So it depends what you would rather have. If you are looking for a fast drive to the terminal to beat the lines I would advise taking a cab. Yes the shuttle is half price but 3 times as long due to where Independence is docked.

 

Arrived at the cruise terminal at 11:15 and noticed a long line up outside. Dont let this discourage you. It moves fast. You then go into the building and start the winding back and forth in the Security screening line up. Again, this moved pretty fast. Also, when you disembark the ship a week later you will say to yourself "I wish I was in that lineup again". So dont let it be a bad start to your cruise. Remember, you are on vacation!

 

 

After the Security screening the process is even faster. Since I am a Crown and Anchor member I could either go to that line to get my Sea Pass card or I could get in the deck number line. I noticed the deck 8 line had no one in it so I went there and got my Sea Pass card and the Security photo taken.

 

 

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Once you get your Sea Pass card you go up the stairs to get the onboard photo the crew always take. After that comes the moment we all wait for... the first steps onboard. On Independence you board on Deck 4 Port side.

 

 

 

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From curbside to stepping onto the ship was 40 minutes. Once onboard it is time to explore the ship. Cabins are not ready until 1:00pm. There is no need to go and see if you can get into your cabin earlier as the doorways to the cabin hallways are blocked off with doors, and a sign saying they will be ready at 1:00pm.

 

 

*Cruise TIP alert* Many people head straight to the Windjammer restaurant Deck 11 Aft. This makes it very busy on embarkation day. Cafe Promenade on Deck 5 have a good assortment of small sandwiches and pastries. There was never a waiting line. Also on the Deck 5 Royal Promenade is Sorrentos Pizza, which I decided to grab a slice of before some serious ship exploration.

 

 

 

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After a quick snack it was time to explore.....

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Since I was previously on Liberty of the Seas I knew the layout of Independence. But that didn't take away from getting pictures of the ship

 

First up was the Royal Promenade on Deck 5.

 

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Edited by gargeo83

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Schooner Bar on Deck 4, Forward. This is where the majority of the trivia contests take place.

 

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Mini Golf course Deck 13 Aft.

 

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Alhambra Theatre Deck 3 and 4 Forward

 

 

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Dining Room Deck 3, Romeo and Juliet, Deck 4 Macbeth, and Deck 5 King Lear all Aft of ship

 

 

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After exploring for a little bit I noticed it was 1:04pm. So I decided to see if my cabin was ready. Cabin pictures and details up next

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I am enjoying your review. Do you have any idea why the text keeps going instead of wrapping around? Or am i the only one who has to scroll back and forth to read it.:rolleyes: I love sailing solo also.

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I am enjoying your review. Do you have any idea why the text keeps going instead of wrapping around? Or am i the only one who has to scroll back and forth to read it.:rolleyes: I love sailing solo also.

 

It is because some of the photos are a lot larger for some reason, therefore the text will carry on until the edge of those photos.

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I am enjoying your review. Do you have any idea why the text keeps going instead of wrapping around? Or am i the only one who has to scroll back and forth to read it.:rolleyes: I love sailing solo also.

 

I believe it is because of the last picture I posted, of the dining room, came out bigger than the other ones. My mistake. Glad you are enjoying the review so far

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When I first booked this cruise I booked an inside Promenade view stateroom. Problem is that the last few cruises I have done I have had a balcony. Once you do a balcony it is hard to go back. So after careful thought I decided to upgrade to a balcony. Since I am a fan of the Port Everglades webcam, and I always enjoy sailaway, I made sure that I got a cabin on the port side of the ship so I would hopefully be seen at sailaway. I did a lot of research on the cabin location to make sure I didn't end up with one of the balconies that had the bronze reflective glass. I had this on Liberty of the Seas and found that you can barely see through the glass. So after many image searches and deck plan counting I found one that was right next to one of these bronze glassed balconies. That would make it even easier for friends and family to spot me on sailaway.

 

I had cabin 8558, port side balcony cabin. As you can see in my previous picture of my Sea Pass card, your cabin number is posted on the bottom left of the card but for Security reasons they dont include your deck number.

 

So I put my card in the door and heard that wonderful beep sound, opened the door and saw my home for the next 8 days.

 

 

 

 

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The cabin was very clean and spotless. There was not one thing I have to complain about the cabin. The balcony was alot bigger then I remember from being on Liberty. It was so big that I saw one of the room attendents bringing a pool lounger from the pool deck to someones balcony.

 

I read other reviews on here previous to my cruise that had complaints about service from room steward. I have no complaints about mine. The first day she came and introduced herself and asked me if I needed anything. I asked her if I could have ice in my room. She said "No problem" and made a note on her worksheet. The rest of the week I had ice in my room delivered twice a day. I never had to ask for anything the whole week. Bathroom was always clean and spotless.

 

 

 

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I am seeing all your text as small and having to scroll too!

Great review so far.

I will be on indy on dec 1st!

 

 

Sorry. I think once this post goes to the second page and that big picture of the dining room isnt there then you shouldn't need to scroll.

 

Thank you for following along so far and please keep reading. Indy is a great ship and I am enjoying doing this review

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It wasnt long until I noticed my luggage was waiting for me in the hallway. So I dragged it in and started the great task of unpacking and hanging up my clothes for the week. Lots of closet space and a neat hanger on one of the doors for ties.

 

 

 

 

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Another great thing about Royal Caribbean is their laundry service. As usual us guys are horrible at packing and of course many of my formal clothes were wrinkled beyond belief. So I found the laundry bag in the closet and filled it with clothes to get pressed. I managed to get 4 shirts and 3 pants in the bag at a cost of only $13.00. There is a form attached to the bag that has the price of each type of clothing listed as well as what service you would like. You could have your clothes just cleaned or just pressed or both for a discount. Just stuff the bag with the items and fill out the form on the front of the bag. Then just leave the bag on the bed and at turn down service that night they stateroom attendant will take the bag for you.

 

 

 

 

 

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*Cruise TIP alert* This clean and press service takes around 24 hours for your clothes to be returned. The second night is always formal night. So make sure to check your formal wear the day of embarkation. If you notice it needs to be pressed, and you leave it out the morning of Day 2, you will not have it ready in time for formal dinner that night. Perhaps a request to the stateroom attendant would speed the process up. But to be sure, have the clothes in the bag and ready to go on Day 1

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After unpacking and enjoying the sights and sounds from my balcony it was time for the 4:45pm muster drill. I was very impressed to see that everyone was on time for this because when I was on Carnival Liberty last December there were many people late and many people showing up with booze in hand. Since the muster drill is at 4:45 all bars and food areas close at 4:15. Once you arrive at your Muster station you are asked for your cabin number and then checked off on a checklist by the crew member there. Your muster station is on your Sea Pass card in case you forget. If you look at my post of my card you will see it on the right hand side in big letters. My muster station was C08. It is also listed on the back of the door to your cabin stateroom as well as a map to help you get there quickly. All muster stations are on Deck 4. Life jackets are not needed at the Muster drill. I knew many people dread the Muster drill but I will say it again, at the end of the week when you are disembarking you will wish you were at the Muster drill again because that means you have the whole week ahead of you.

 

 

Once the drill is over its sail-away time!!!!!!!!

 

 

I grabbed a drink of the day and headed back to my cabin in hopes I would get shown on the webcam.

 

 

*Cruise TIP alert* For those of you that have purchased, or plan to purchase the drink package, you can check your account review on your TV in the stateroom. I would advise to do this, as twice I was charged for a drink I either didnt order or shouldnt have been charged for. It was not a big deal, as all you need to do is go down to Guest Services on Deck 5 Aft, and they remove the charge right away. But if I didnt notice it then I would have had to deal with it on Disembarkation day when the bill gets slipped under your door at 6:00am.

 

 

Once in my cabin I found a neat option on the desk. It was an on off switch for the ship wide annoucements. You can turn it off and turn it on with volume control. When it was turned on and there was no annoucements it would play music.

 

 

 

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I noticed on previous sail-aways that the webcam seems to focus on people with flags. So I made sure as a proud Canuck to bring a Canada flag and hang it on my balcony in hopes the webcam would focus on it. Also since it was St Patricks Day the next day I wore my green shirt hoping that would make my chances of getting on the camera even better.

 

 

 

 

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Well thats all for tonight. I will continue tomorrow with pictures of sailaway and results of my quest to get on the Port Everglades webcam. Also tomorrow is my Day 1 dinner at Chops Steakhouse review.

Thank you to all of you who are following along with this review.

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Thanks for putting the effort into writing your review, it's always nice to see how Independence is doing, and see some up to date pictures as well. :)

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Loving the review so far! I appreciate you taking the time to post so many photos and so much information it's really helps make the days go by until I'm on this ship!

 

Love the Canada flag too!

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I will be continuing this review tonight for all who are interested

 

Yes, please!

 

. . . and thank you!

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Great review with some fantastic photos (looking forward to your Chops review too!)

 

I'm on the Indy with my girlfriend for our very first ever cruise in May (to Norway), so I'll be following your updates very closely! :)

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We didn't care about the food, didn't see any shows and we sang karaoke a couple of nights (first night was much better, second time was a train wreck but it was still fun :D )

 

For us the best part of the cruise was the Flowrider and sports staff, they ROCKED. We were there every morning for advanced standup surfing and, for the most part there were just 5-6 other guys and me (Oh, Raptor's wife here). We took our own flowboards and had a blast :)

 

 

 

It was the cruise of a lifetime.

 

E

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Quickly before sail-away started I wanted to set up my laptop for wireless internet connection so I could find out through email if I managed to get on the webcam.

 

 

*Cruise TIP alert* This tip only applies to people who bring a laptop to use for the internet. If you are only using the wireless internet connection to send emails back home to family and friends here is what I did. The connection is pretty slow and is at a price of $0.65 per minute if you dont buy a package. So to save on minutes open up Microsoft Word or any other word processing program. Type your email in the program and then copy it. Connect to the internet, log onto your email, then paste the message you copied from the word processor. A long email back to family and friends now takes only a couple of minutes.

 

 

After sitting up my wireless connection it was back to the balcony to hear the ships horn blow and to watch as we pull away from the dock. As usual you cannot feel the movement of the ship as it pulls away from the dock.

 

Down the channel we went and then made a turn to the starboard side. At this point it was fun to see many people sitting in their backyards and waving at the ship. This is also where the webcam was so I started taping with my video camera and also waving at the same time in hopes of drawing attention to myself to appear on the camera.

 

 

 

 

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As you leave the port you get a great view of the coastline on the Port side of the ship.

 

 

 

 

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It didnt take long until the skyline of Fort Lauderdale was far off and we were in open water. At this point it was time to check email to see if I was successful with getting on the webcam. I was excitied to learn that I WAS successful. I even got a freeze frame picture from the sail-away sent to me....

 

 

 

 

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The upgrade of the cabin paid off. Now it was time to do some more ship exploration at night before my 8:00pm Chops dinner. I always enjoy seeing the different lighting of the ship at night.

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First off for the night shots is the Royal Promenade Deck 5. At the bottom of this picture you can see part of the Schooner bar Deck 4 Forward.

 

 

 

 

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Another picture of the Royal Promenade taken from Deck 8

 

 

 

 

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Next is a picture of the kids H2O Zone.

 

 

 

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Another shot of the H2O zone taken from the Olive or Twist lounge Deck 14 Aft. The reason for me taking this picture is I wanted to show the kids area to my sister because I know my neice would have alot of fun playing there. Im trying to get them to go on a ship.

 

 

 

 

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For help of getting around the ship, and knowing where you are, in each elevator lobby signs are posted for reference

 

 

 

 

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At this point I checked my watch and noticed it was time for Chops Steakhouse dinner. Chops is located Deck 11 Aft on the Port side as you enter the Windjammer Restaurant. On the Starboard side is Portofinos, an Italian resaurant. Perhaps because tonight was the first night, there was no line at all. I just told the host my cabin number and was seated right away. It is a very large restaurant with many tables so there is no need to worry about lack of availability. This dinner can take up to 90 minutes to complete so if you are in a hurry to get to a show this is not the place to eat. For a starter I had the Ceasar salad which was a large portion but very good. I ordered the Filet Mignon as my main dish. When the steak was brought to me I was also given 4 separate side dishes which included a baked potato, asparagus, broccoli, and mushrooms for the steak. The mushrooms were amazing with the steak. I also was given my choice of sauce for the steak. I choice Bearnaise but there was also the choice of a peppercorn sauce. The steak was one of the best steaks I have ever had. I almost didnt even need a knife to cut into it. Very tastey and worth the extra price to dine there. Because I was solo I felt very bad that I was able to finish all of the sides and some of it went to waste. For 2 people the amount of the sides were the perfect portion. It was too much for 1 person however.

 

 

I apologize as this is the only dinner I didnt get pictures of because I forgot to take pictures as I was enjoying the dinner so much. If you are a steak lover then this is a must onboard the ship. Between the dinner and the atmosphere it is worth the extra price to dine there. Also the service was exceptional.

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After a large and filling meal at Chops I needed a nice late night stroll. I forgot that on this class of ship there is the Promenade Deck 4 that goes out over the side of the ship. It was a great place to get some pictures

 

 

 

 

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*Cruise TIP alert* On this deck smoking is allowed on the Port side of the ship. So for the non-smokers if you are wanting to sit and relax without the smell of smoke I would suggest going to the Starboard side.

 

 

Well that is all for now. The hockey game is about to start and as a Canadian we are obligated to watch or else we lose our citizenship. ;)

 

 

Next up is Day 2 at Sea Day, Captains Welcome Gala and I promise, Food Porn!!!

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Another picture of the Royal Promenade taken from Deck 8

 

 

 

 

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So funny, we were on this sailing and that is a picture of my DH in the blue shirt, lower right hand side walking with my DD and myself.

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For us the best part of the cruise was the Flowrider and sports staff, they ROCKED. We were there every morning for advanced standup surfing and, for the most part there were just 5-6 other guys and me (Oh, Raptor's wife here). We took our own flowboards and had a blast :)

I will be doing this cruise next year during the same week as you just did. I am addicted to the Flowrider and hope to be there every morning for the advanced sessions since it is usually less busy. A couple of questions for you...did the advanced Flowrider sessions start at 8 or 9 am on the Independence (I seem to remember 8am on the Liberty, but they were at 9am on the Oasis). For those sessions, were there just that 5 or 6 people right from day 1 til day 6? I know that every week on the ship is different, but if there is only 5 or 6 for the sessions, I will be ecstatic!

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I will be doing this cruise next year during the same week as you just did. I am addicted to the Flowrider and hope to be there every morning for the advanced sessions since it is usually less busy. A couple of questions for you...did the advanced Flowrider sessions start at 8 or 9 am on the Independence (I seem to remember 8am on the Liberty, but they were at 9am on the Oasis). For those sessions, were there just that 5 or 6 people right from day 1 til day 6? I know that every week on the ship is different, but if there is only 5 or 6 for the sessions, I will be ecstatic!

 

It started at 8 am to 9 for advanced stand up and 9 to 10 (last day was until 11) for stand up, where the sports staff will help load you. Yep, we had it all to ourselves (just the 5-6, sometimes 7 of us) for the entire cruise and it was AWESOME :D I will say this though, purchase a shortie wet suit. We ended up renting them from the dive shop because the first three days were so windy and COLD, brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

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It was pretty cool that you got noticed and photographed by the port webcam! :)

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I'm debating whether to book this ship for next year so looking forward to the rest of your review!

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Fellow Canuck here and we were on the same cruise! (escaping our Canadian winter)

 

We have NO complaints about the ship, staff, or ports. (well, my 2 teenage dd's have a complaint ... they were accosted at every port as soon as we got off the ship with "braid your hair? braid your hair?" and for the record, NO, they didn't want their long hair braided). The wait staff was excellent. The room steward was great. The ship was clean. All of the staff seemed happy (although our assistant waiter did tell us that he has to be).

 

It was an excellent 8 nights. I felt that I didn't get to do everything on the ship that I wanted to do. Needed a few more days ;)

 

Also, I specifically booked this ship for my teenagers - expecting them to lap up the activities (rock climbing, flow rider, etc). They didn't use a thing! Yeesh.

 

dd#1 did go ice skating 1 night with the teen group. She did say that in true Canadian style, all of the teenage boys from Canada played hockey and of course she can skate. She said that many of the teens had never ice skated before (gasp!) and that most of the newbies just watched and didn't try it. DD's comment on the ice rink (besides it being tiny) was that the ice was different. That when you fell, you were soaking wet (hard to keep it frozen in the Caribbean) and that when you went to stop, you came to an immediate dead stop. That there was no "glide" in the ice.

 

dd#1 almost didn't go to the teen events being as she'll be 18 next week ... she thought she was too old for it. But, she did go and met quite a few teens. The "Deck Patrol" was pretty good at getting the teens back to their rooms by 2:00am. 'Course the last night the group of them pulled an all nighter (on the helipad deck) and she didn't come in until 5:00 (ahem, her parents were awake and none too impressed - mainly because we couldn't sleep with her being out).

 

We had connecting rooms and had the door between our rooms unlocked and open. It was great to be able to have the use of 2 rooms.

 

We did MTD with pre-booked reservations each night for 6:00pm. We had the same table with the same 2 waiters every night. They were fantastic.

 

We didn't do any excursions except in Labadee, dh and dd#1 did the zipline and we got 2 beach mats.

 

We loved the shows. The ice skating performance was fantastic (how do they fit that many skaters on that small of a rink?). The singers/dancers were very professional. The 1st show was the best (fairytale theme). The last show (Under the Big Top Tent - Circus theme) was their first night performing it .... they seemed a tad tentative.

 

The guest group that performed Frankie Vallie were awesome! I'd watch them again anytime. The Romanian Pianist was exceptionally talented. (we didn't stay up late to catch the Comedian).

 

re: Formal Nights - I'm glad I packed my dh's suit ... he would have felt under dressed otherwise. People were more dressed up then they were last summer when we cruised to Alaska. (just my observation)

 

We ate most meals in the main dining room. We only ate in the Windjammer on the first day (lunch) and disembarkation day (breakfast).

 

My 15 yr old is anti-social, hates crowds and noise, and rarely speaks. I set her up in the "Solarium" (adult pool area). She was able to sit in the shade and enjoy her book without being confined to her room. (she also spent some time in the library).

 

Can't wait to do it again!

Edited by simply coffee

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dd#1 did go ice skating 1 night with the teen group. She did say that in true Canadian style, all of the teenage boys from Canada played hockey and of course she can skate. She said that many of the teens had never ice skated before (gasp!) and that most of the newbies just watched and didn't try it. DD's comment on the ice rink (besides it being tiny) was that the ice was different. That when you fell, you were soaking wet (hard to keep it frozen in the Caribbean) and that when you went to stop, you came to an immediate dead stop. That there was no "glide" in the ice.

 

dd#1 almost didn't go to the teen events being as she'll be 18 next week ... she thought she was too old for it. But, she did go and met quite a few teens. The "Deck Patrol" was pretty good at getting the teens back to their rooms by 2:00am. 'Course the last night the group of them pulled an all nighter (on the helipad deck) and she didn't come in until 5:00 (ahem, her parents were awake and none too impressed - mainly because we couldn't sleep with her being out).

 

Can't wait to do it again!

 

My DD is a figure skater and did the advanced skates as she brought her skates from home. She was the only one on the ice. She said the same thing, it was soft ice with lots of grooves. She was able to jump fine, but had a hard time with the spins and also said there was no glide. Made what they do in the show more impressive. The concierge was able to get her backstage to meet the ice cast after the show and they told us it takes months to really get used to the size and surface.

 

My teen boys had a blast on this ship. There was a very nice and active group of kids (in a good way). I met their friends during the week and I was impressed with what a polite group they were. They have been texting and facebooking since we got home.

 

We will do this sailing again without a doubt. The eight days was perfect, the ship, the crew, everything was just wonderful. Our favorite cruise so far.

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