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Hoopster95

OVATION May 13-24 *LIVE* in ALASKA w/lots of photos

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1 minute ago, Hoopster95 said:

 

I was in 7606. 7246 is on the hump. Did you check the deck plan when you booked?

There a youtube video of this cabin (google). Circled in red below... Primo location imho.

 

 

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Thanks!! I did pick the cabin and thought it seemed like a good location, but then I saw you talk about the "obstruction" on deck 7 and was second guessing myself!! I got an email from Royal Up and a,trying to decide whether to bid or not. My options are a Jr Suite (which we were in one on the Allure and liked it) or a Grand Suite (which we've never been in one before, so I think that would be really nice)....but the bids seem a little high to me, but Alaska cruises tend to be pricey...

 

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Many were questioning Royal IQ prior to boarding, how it worked, what to do... etc.

It is extremely easy to use and I used it often daily. Very easy to look at the current real time view of the Compass at any time wherever you are on the ship, cancel and re-book events, change dining or events... etc

 

This app only works on board when on Royal wifi. There is also a chat/call function you can purchase for $8 per day. Here you can see when I opened the compass, bumper cars were scheduled.

 

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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11 minutes ago, uncw89 said:

I got an email from Royal Up and a,trying to decide whether to bid or not. My options are a Jr Suite (which we were in one on the Allure and liked it)

 

As mentioned many times on this review and many other threads, this Royal ship is no where close to the same as any other Royal ship in the fleet, and that includes cabin designation and placements. The absolute pro on this topic would be merion_mom if she's still reading this thread... note the same photo below, this time with black circles around various Junior Suites. These cabins would be an upgrade from your current cabin!! 😣 Doh!... and really keep in mind that when you opt for the Royal Up program, you get a new cabin, you cannot change to another cabin or go back to your original cabin... you are 100% stuck with what they give you.

 

In my very humble opinion, stay where you are and spend that saved money on incredible life long memory excursions rather than "walking around port" and pretending you're visiting Alaska... get out there! 😊

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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One of the few disappointments on this ship was the aft deck right above the WJ (just behind the Florider)... on Quantum, they had wonderful furniture lined up along the back railing, with superb views and the ability to have lunch/read/star gaze/etc. here on Ovation this deck was bare. A real shame imo.

 

 

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And here is what I believe to be a very rare photo for two reasons... from NorthStar:

 

  1. I believe Ovation will only be in Vancouver 3 more times, once more this coming Sept and then 2  more times in 2020. In 2021, her transpacific is from Tokyo (instead of Sydney) to Seattle, and thus no need to stop in Vancouver as a foreign port to allow for the PVSA (Jones Act).
  2. Note the funnels retracted, in full view from Northstar. You don't see this often if at all (or ever?) from Anthem or Quantum either.

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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I mentioned often that I'm a real fan of Seaplex on Quantum Class... waaaaay better use for cruisers at all times of the day compared to StudioB on Voyager/freedom/Oasis Classes... plus views everywhere no matter what you are doing here. This is a kids dream... table tennis, air hockey, Foosball, XBox stations, etc... add bumper cars, trapeze/circus school/bumper cars/volleyball tourneys, pickleball tourneys for the adults... you get the picture. A useful space at all times of the day for almost everyone.

 

Note the floor to ceiling windows on both levels... I reported on our final sea day when the captain announced whales on the port side, many of us rollerblading stopped on the edge of the floor to look at at the whales in full view

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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I didn't post any good photos of the indoor pool at all, so I hope these two photos from two angles can perhaps answer any questions anyone may have about what the indoor pool looks like, hot tubs, loungers/tables/seating/etc etc.

 

Note that the roof does slide/retract so in warm climates this area can become an "outdoor" pool as well.

Like almost everywhere else on the ship, pay specific attention to the view of Vancouver out all windows in most all directions. This is a superlative ship for indoor views looking outside.

 

(What was Royal thinking when they brought Explorer here for Alaska????)

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Edited by Hoopster95

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18 minutes ago, Hoopster95 said:

One of the few disappointments on this ship was the aft deck right above the WJ (just behind the Florider)... on Quantum, they had wonderful furniture lined up along the back railing, with superb views and the ability to have lunch/read/star gaze/etc. here on Ovation this deck was bare. A real shame imo.

 

 

IMG_2448.JPG

 

 

And here is what I believe to be a very rare photo for two reasons... from NorthStar:

 

  1. I believe Ovation will only be in Vancouver 3 more times, once more this coming Sept and then 2  more times in 2020. In 2021, her transpacific is from Tokyo (instead of Sydney) to Seattle, and thus no need to stop in Vancouver as a foreign port to allow for the PVSA (Jones Act).
  2. Note the funnels retracted, in full view from Northstar. You don't see this often if at all (or ever?) from Anthem or Quantum either.

 

IMG_2421.JPG

Thanks for the advice on the rooms!

That's too bad there is no seating back there!! Maybe by the time I cruise (end of June), they will have some out there!

Where are some good outdoor spots to sit, relax, and take in the scenery? Weather permitting, of course!!

What about photo op's? Were there any RC photographers taking any outdoor photo's or just the standard indoor photos and backdrops?

Thanks to all the contributors on this thread!! I loved all the pictures and advice!!

 

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Back to the theme of the rare Vancouver sailaway for Ovation, here's a few shots of Canada Place, the Vancouver skyline and our approach to the Lion's Gate Bridge passing by Brockton Point Lighthouse in Stanley Park on the left.

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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8 minutes ago, uncw89 said:

Where are some good outdoor spots to sit, relax, and take in the scenery? Weather permitting, of course!!

Deck 5, either side of ship. Windjammer aft. There are a ton of loungers lined along deck 15 on both sides of Seaplex aft as well as forward against the Vitality Spa

 

8 minutes ago, uncw89 said:

What about photo op's? Were there any RC photographers taking any outdoor photo's or just the standard indoor photos and backdrops?

Photo ops everywhere... look at the photos in this review! Best backdrop possible is the actual view outdoors. 

You bet, photographers were outside often.

 

 

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As you already painfully know by our constant whining regarding VOOM (the lack of) for the entire review, I couldn't post videos unless they were very very short. here's a couple of great ones I wanted to share that evening but just couldn't....

 

Sailaway video ~ it's time to go! Pulling away from Canada Place

 

 

 

 

And the pièce de résistance of this entire sailaway ...  I think I have a great video here going under the Lion's Gate Bridge with full unobstructed view of the clearance under the span as we sailed under. 

 

I'm really proud of this video... I was two fisting it! Sony6000 in one hand taking this video and my iphone7 in the other snapping photos lol! Not too shabby. 😉

 

I was expecting this to be a much much closer call than what it turned out to be as the clearance was supposed to be in the 6 foot range, however it is very clear in this video that clearance was much more than that. I mention on the video that the funnels were at least 10ft high to a cruiser beside me, however Biker had mentioned in this review they are approx 17-18ft... is that correct Biker? raise those funnels full length and I do believe there would be an issue here.

 

 

Edited by Hoopster95

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And for anyone interested in Seattle pre or post...we stayed at the pan Pacific Seattle, it was a beautiful hotel. My only minor not picks are the door slammed shut so we heard our neighbors come and go and the therostat was off by about 10 degrees. On the plus side, they provided complementary Uber or house car (within 2 miles). They picked us up for free and called about 4 Ubers for us the first day back. We went to pikes market, gum wall, Ferris wheel (all just a walk in one location) and ubered to the space needle. 1f1b5d9b1cdf5f7e030ee73e419aa9c9.jpg79e7d1d99270685f29d5a71aeaf652a5.jpg1f852e62b68c959acde625b8876a9864.jpg

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

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And day 2 we did the Mt Rainier tour with tours northwest. We had terrible weather but that's okay bc of how blessed we where during our cruise. It's a long tour, about 10hrs and pick up was at 6:50am! But overall we enjoyed it.

I'll process my Sony a6000 shots later and update if I have anything noteworthy.


We are home safe and sound as well. It was a pleasure sailing with this group. 4e19c121d63325564825726b3ce2c325.jpg6c81ceb1cac06cc2db7a6233b43f18f0.jpg73e8c8bf4cbc272cfeb7651075909dad.jpg3b110620c1a96b4546a129e2d7b2f553.jpg

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

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Hey drusierdmd! You home now? Thanks again for your contributions.

Was nice meeting you. Hopefully we'll cross paths again someday  😊

 

 

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11 hours ago, Sunny AZ Girl said:

We met in the Music Hall at 7:45 as instructed.  We didn't get on the bus until 9:00. We could have lingered over breakfast a little longer. We took advantage of the COMPLIMENTARY Seattle Luggage Valet service. Amazing! We didn't have to deal with our luggage until we arrived in Phoenix. It all arrived as promised.  Those who had luggage picked it up in the designated area in the terminal and it was stored in the bottom of the bus. They had to drag it to the bus and then into the airport after the tour. Leaving the ship was extremely easy. One of our best disembarkments ever. Just don't get on the bus if the name "Kevin" is on the window! 

Perfect - thank you so much for the prompt reply! Unfortunately, my airline does not participate in the valet service, so I'm stuck with dragging my own luggage around, but your explanation really helped. If I stick with the reservation, I'll make sure that Kevin may not be home alone, but at least alone on his bus 🤣

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12 hours ago, Sunny AZ Girl said:

We were in 8520 forward of the lifeboats. We loved the location. The forward elevators are less busy and we were close to the Solarium and the Diamond Lounge. No view obstruction. 

We were in 10558 which was just off the forward elevators.  We also thought forward was a great location on Ovation for the same reasons Ginny have. The only issue was getting up to our room after the show let out. We would often just take the stairs when the elevators where super busy.

 

We are in 10532 for our Transpacific next spring. I was worried it was too far forward but feel much better about it now!

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35 minutes ago, eel said:

We were in 10558 which was just off the forward elevators.  We also thought forward was a great location on Ovation for the same reasons Ginny have. The only issue was getting up to our room after the show let out. We would often just take the stairs when the elevators where super busy.

 

We are in 10532 for our Transpacific next spring. I was worried it was too far forward but feel much better about it now!

Yes.  I would probably chose a cabin a little closer to the forward elevators than the one we had if available,  However, the walk was not bad at all and I will still stay forward of the elevators.  If we want to go all the way aft (Two70, Windjammer, dining rooms) I would take the elevator to a more interesting deck than Deck 8.  Walking past all those cabins was really boring and seemed endless.  For some reason it seemed that they had shortened up Decks 14 & 5!😉

Edited by Sunny AZ Girl

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12 hours ago, uncw89 said:

That's too bad there is no seating back there!! Maybe by the time I cruise (end of June), they will have some out there!

On most ships you can grab one from elsewhere and bring it wherever - on Ovation most rows of loungers seemed to be chained down so you couldn't do that.

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3 hours ago, Biker19 said:

On most ships you can grab one from elsewhere and bring it wherever - on Ovation most rows of loungers seemed to be chained down so you couldn't do that.

Interesting!!

Sunny AZ Girl- Just curious, did you buy the photo package? I usually do so I can get family photo's, not sure if I will this time though! Great CC group photo!!

Hoopster95 and Druisedrmd-I see you both have a Sony a6000!! I have one too!! Did you shoot raw or jpeg? Did you use that for all the video's you took or did you have a video camera as well? Great photo's and video, by the way

 

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1 minute ago, uncw89 said:

Interesting!!

Sunny AZ Girl- Just curious, did you buy the photo package? I usually do so I can get family photo's, not sure if I will this time though! Great CC group photo!!

Hoopster95 and Druisedrmd-I see you both have a Sony a6000!! I have one too!! Did you shoot raw or jpeg? Did you use that for all the video's you took or did you have a video camera as well? Great photo's and video, by the way

 

No photo package.  We each got one free photo with our Diamond status. Some of our friends had the same.  We shared grroup photos.  We also ended up buying just a couple of extra ones.

 

BTW, I also have a Sony a6000.  Great shots!!  We each had our Samsung phones, plus DH ha a great little P&S.  Once I get done sorting through my pictures (which could take awhile) I will post a link onto this thread.

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Ah Ginny... you picked up one of those photos at Hubbard... nice! Lol. great photo of all of us 😀

 

I'll now add a few more thoughts while I've got some time before I get to the ports of call.....

There's definitely two main focal points on this ship for activities that were well used for multiple events at all times of the day.

 

Here's a few more photos of the awesome Two70, definitely a crowd favorite for venue at all times of the day. One of my favorite spots was close to the bar (or at the bar) for the views out the back glass and also being able to see the entire room and stage all at the same time.

 

 

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Bumper cars, roller skating, basketball/pickleball/volleyball and ... ballroom dance class!

Seaplex was used for everything for all ages. And do you think Ballroom classes were popular or no?? 

Take a look below. Definitely check your Compass daily to ensure where the events are taking place, you'll find you may be spending a lot of time in both Two70 and Seaplex.

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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7 minutes ago, uncw89 said:

Did you use that for all the video's you took or did you have a video camera as well? Great photo's and video, by the way

 

 

Thx uncw89. I would guess over 90% of my photos and video were on my iphone as I wanted to do the live review without transferring photos from the camera. 

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A short word on the forward view and site lines of this ship... one of the very few and minor disappointments that is overshadowed by all the massive positives imo. The first couple of shots below are walking from the NorthStar/Pool deck starboard side along the running track to the front of the ship. Every other ship in RC's fleet has a top deck that wraps around the front with gorgeous views looking outward and forward.... not Quantum Class.

 

As you pass NorthStar, pass the indoor pool, you are basically walking right beside the Vitality Spa. 

 

 

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Note the "indent" in the above photo where the loungers end... the photo below is from that exact spot looking overtop of the Solarium Glass. This spot is probably the best views forward from the top deck... not the greatest at all. Keep in mind at this point I have my arm through the opening in the glass to take this photo... what happens to the view out of those glass panels with rain drops or when they're not clean?

 

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As you go fully forward, any front facing view fully disappears... zilch, nada, nothing.

I think you would miss a lot by picking this spot to take photos... many cruisers did and I think it was a big mistake. Thankfully, the amazing Solarium and the bridge wings make up for this in spades.

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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I was able to get the odd comment and series of photos up for dining during the live review... let me share my thoughts on Wonderland and especially Chops.

 

On  night 2, our CC group table met up for our first Specialty experience at Wonderland. I had loved Wonderland on Harmony and Quantum... this one was good too.... not outstanding, just good (I'll rate it a 7 out of 10 for example). The actual venue on the Oasis Class ships is totally awesome in comparison. The venue here on Q Class is about 1/3 of the size and not as whimsical with their art work & furnishings. I also had one of the very best waiters ever on Harmony, with a Vincent Price voice, he was part of the show. Here on ovation there was no "show" per se. Good service nonetheless.

 

If you have never been to Wonderland before, the menu comes to you blank, and you have to "paint" it with water to reveal the hidden menu. Here's Alan doing the honors

 

 

I'll add a few photos of the entrees & desert to refresh your memory form the many pages ago. This is definitely worth a one night event for those you wanting to give something new a different a shot to have some fun

 

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Wonderland serves my very favorite desert ever offered by Royal... "The World". A big chocolate ball with a few goodies hidden inside. So how do you get inside?

 

 

In fact, the waiters were too rushed and ruined this. This is too much caramel sauce and too fast a speed, as the entire chocolate ball is not supposed to melt in it's entirety... just enough to basically melt the top half, leaving a half ball with the goodies inside to scoop out.

Edited by Hoopster95

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On night #3, our CC group went to Chops. This is normally for me a very stable and reliable great meal on every ship I've been on and i always look forward to it... not so this time. This dinner felt like the MDR, very rushed service, staff running around quickly everywhere, and very lukewarm (if not cold) food. The mushroom soup was good (not great), the tuna tartare was somewhat bland, the steak was a perfect med-rare which saved this meal... however all sides were stone cold! Easily they were sitting around for a very long time for the various waiters to grab when the mains were served. We asked for more... when we could flag someone down... they were still cold.

 

I had the chocolate lava cake... not very much lava, and lukewarm. 

 

I believe the venue was minimum 95% full, and it was noted by Rick & Shelley that extra staff was brought in during our dinner. I fully put this on management, as I feel the staffing was inadequate both on the floor and in the kitchen even though they knew the numbers booked for that evening. I figure they prepared all the sides ahead of time (hours?) and let them sit around to get cold and limp. I understand that Rick & Shelley gave our negative feedback to the hotel manager, and their 2nd visit was up to par and very good across the board... very good news.

 

Because I'm used to giving Chops an 8 or 9 out of 10, I'll be kind here and rate them a 7, and primarily because they seemed to have stepped up to the plate for Shelley & Rick on a subsequent night to get back on track.

 

 

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Edited by Hoopster95

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