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mommy3

Just off the Enchantment...

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We just got back yesterday from the 4 night Enchantment sailing to Key West and Cozumel. Thought I give a review of our trip.

We unfortunately left the morning of the increased terror alert and didn't find out the new rules until we got to the airport at 7:30am and it was chaos. But we made the flight (barely) and were looking forward to our cruise (without kids this time!).

I must say I was a bit apprehensive after reading the bed bug threads on this forum (but we had none!!). Also, we had gone on the Carnival Miracle 6 months ago which being a newer ship set the bar high.

Embarkation at about 1:30 was very smooth. We got on, and was able to go immediately to our cabin due to checking in later. The cabin was smaller and not at thoughtfully designed as the Carnival Miracle - but I expected this from an older ship. The bathroom was probably only half the size of the Miracle bathroom and wasn't nearly as nice (the Miracle had Dove body wash, condition and shampoo along with one of those nice waterfall shower heads). The cabin showed only basic wear and tear, nothing too bad.

Overall, the ship was well maintained with the exception of the main pool deck - they had put blue indoor/outdoor carpet down which appeared to be difficult to clean, and was buckling at certain points. I didn't like how it never looked clean. We spent most of our pool time in the adult only Solarium, which was extremely nice (something the Miracle didn't have). The RC workers were quick too to let any parents who brought their kids into that pool know that they needed to vacate.

I did notice that the glass doors that separate the various parts of the ship seemed to be full of handprints, but I chalked that up to the many kids on board (approx. 500!). However, there were many more workers on the Miracle always wiping down the common areas. I had read about the reserving of lounge chairs on this board and we could hardly ever find 2 seats next to each other during the main part of the day. People would just leave their pool towels on the chairs and we would never see anyone come back to the chairs - some would leave them while they went and did other things such as eating, etc. This never seemed to be a problem on the Miracle for whatever reason - maybe if the Enchantment had more seating, people wouldn't feel the need to hog the chairs?

Food - We greatly enjoyed the dining room dinners- we had a great wait team of Ronald and Dennis, both from the Phillippines. Dinners were good (comparable to the Miracle) and desserts were much better. However, the Windjammer food lacked alot. We had sailed the Sovereign 3 years ago and had thought the Windjammer was great. Breakfasts were not very good unless you wanted fruit and yogurt/muffins - the hot items were pretty bad good. Plus the selection was much less than the Miracle - this is just a function of the age of the vessel as there simply wasn't enough space to offer much more. Lunches were better and we always found something to enjoy. We had a very hard time finding a seat at any point for breakfast or lunch within the air conditioned Windjammer - clearly that space is not big enough to accommodate the number of people on board. I think the set up of the tables led to alot of this - they had alot of 6 person tables that would get fully taken up by 2 people. On the Miracle they had very large tables that sat 8 (you could easily pull up 2 more chairs) which led couples to actually share the table sitting at the 2 ends but not feeling uncomfortable doing so - plus the overall buffet area was much larger on the Miracle. The late night food availability wasn't very good - they had pizza/hamburgers/hotdogs/fries and such in the Solarium (strange placement for the kid type foods to put it in the adult area). The pizza and fries was actually very good despite some posts I had read here (we didn't have the burgers or hotdogs). They always had some other items -rolls, pound cake etc. but the sweets which my DH and I would grab while on the Miracle (the brownies, cookies) were not available on the Enchantment unless you ordered room service. What little sweets that were out in the Solarium weren't very good. Additionally, the ice cream wasn't open except during the daytime and it was frozen yogurt that again wasn't very good.

Entertainment - the one dance/singing show - Theater to Stage was OK - it started out pretty mediocre (not inspired at all) but got better as the show progressed. The other entertainers onboard - the comedien, the puppet guy and the jugglers were all outstanding. We went to both the family and adult version of the comedian and both times had a ball. The love and marriage show is good anywhere/anytime! Although we didn't have kids with us, we only got to dance once when we joined the salsa dancing lesson. All of the nights onboard, the Cruise Compass would say at 10:30 there would be DJ James in the Viking Crown Lounge with a party - but he never started until 11:30 and we were so worn out, the one night we waited for him and he didn't play a good dance mix, we gave up. The dancing on deck the 3rd night was mostly line dancing which my DH wouldn't consider.

Ports of Call - we loved Key West - we got into port at 7am, however, no one mentioned that the shops didn't open until 9am. We didn't attend the shopping meeting on board the first night so maybe they discussed this? But docking at 7am was actually a waste if all you wanted to do was shop. But we got off at 7:30 and was happy we did. We walked around the town and had it pretty much to ourselves and the early morning workers. This was very nice especially in light of how busy it got later in the day. It was very hot there - with a real feel of about 108 as a high that day. We had an excursion booked for 10am on the Crazy Boat - I would highly recommend this!! It was a blast and didn't even both my back which I suffer quite a bit from. You ride on a specially designed boat seating 16 people that has twin 650hp inboard motors and does shimmies and 360's in the water - we got drenched but it was great given the heat. Then we took the conch train tour - had the coupons from the key west port of call board for buy one get one free - they didn't give us a hassle at all for using them. This tour was was a great way to see the highlights of Key West and took about 90 minutes. Some of the shops began opening around 8:30 so we had already done a bit of shopping. We walked to Kermits to get a piece of key lime pie on a stick dipped in chocolate - that was awesome!!! Very tart and sweet. Then we visited Kino sandals and I bought 3 pairs for myself, 2 for relatives and even talked DH into buying a pair - these sandals are great (I wore mine for the remainder of the trip) and at $10/pair for handmade leather sandals you can't go wrong.

Cozumel - we went back to Paradise Beach which we visited while on the Miracle. The beach was busier this time as we didn't dock until about 11:30 (one hour late due to the current pushing the ship while trying to get up to the dock). But it was still nice and the water felt great on this 110 real feel day! We then took a taxi into town - most of it looked great as they recover from Hurricane Wilma. There was alot more greenery this time. We shopped awhile purchasing some silver - although the deals weren't as good this time for whatever reason. The thing I like about Cozumel is that I never feel threatened there unlike some other ports we've been to. The people approach you but back off with a simple 'no, thanks' and a smile. The last time we were in Grand Cayman made me never want to go back there again! We got back on the ship just in time to go to dinner. Since we had docked late, they let us stay in Cozumel until 7:30 but the heat had wiped us out so 5ish wasn't too early for us. We watched as a few people almost missed the ship - too much partying in Carlos and Charlies I guess!

Overall - we had a great time and other than the few items I mentioned, the Enchantment was a very nice ship. The staff in every area was exceptional - we even had our toilet break down once but it was fixed within a few hours. Our room steward, Keifer, was great. My DH even managed to win enough in the casino to almost make up for my losses!! We were able to get the Travel Lite slips and leave the ship at 8:15 since we only had 2 carryon pieces. We actually caught a 9:30 return flight home on standby and were home by 1pm!

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Thanks for the review. I'm sailing the Enchantment on 8/28 & after being on the Navigator of the Seas, I'm just a little leary even though I know I'll have a great time. I'm looking forward to Key West (the reason we booked this cruise) but like you, disappointed that we're arriving so early. We really wanted to do some bar hopping on Duval Street - did you notice what time they opened?

 

Thanks,

 

Barbara from Philly

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Barbara

 

We got off the Enchantment the day the op got on. We usually take our vacation in May, this year no exception, and we were on the Mariner, sister to the Navigator. Even though this ship does not have the Promenade and Johnny Rockets, you will love it!!! Matter of fact, for the looks of the ship, we like it better than any ship we have ever sailed. It is beautiful. The one thing I like about EncOS better than any ship is the common areas have a lot of glass in them. Practically anywhere you go you can see the ocean from the inside, not like the Voyager class ship where you practically have to go to the muster drill deck (cannot remember the #, sorry) or the top decks to see out.

 

YOU WILL LOVE THIS SHIP!!!!

 

Tim & Crystal

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Barbara

 

We got off the Enchantment the day the op got on. We usually take our vacation in May, this year no exception, and we were on the Mariner, sister to the Navigator. Even though this ship does not have the Promenade and Johnny Rockets, you will love it!!! Matter of fact, for the looks of the ship, we like it better than any ship we have ever sailed. It is beautiful. The one thing I like about EncOS better than any ship is the common areas have a lot of glass in them. Practically anywhere you go you can see the ocean from the inside, not like the Voyager class ship where you practically have to go to the muster drill deck (cannot remember the #, sorry) or the top decks to see out.

 

YOU WILL LOVE THIS SHIP!!!!

 

Tim & Crystal

 

 

Thanks so much for the info. I was checking out pics from someone on this board (sorry I can't remember who) & the pool bar looks absolutely beautiful. It overlooks the water instead of the middle of the ship. Is it as cool as it looks?

 

I will miss Johnny Rockets, it is lots of fun but I hear now that they charge you to get in - Ouch!. & I'll really miss the Promenade & the French bakery. But I enjoy RCCL very much &, again, I know I'll have a great time.

 

Again, thanks,

 

Barbara from Philly

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We were also on this cruise, with no kids! Just wanted to add a few thoughts.

1. at the pier by 1045am, they opened the ship at 1130am on board by 1142am, no problems

2. Windjammer not as good this time either-just at breakfeast and lunch there.

3. Chops was wonderful alot better than before

4. Belerous Lounge was great awsome Latin band from Miami

5. That blue pool deck carpet drives me nuts too, that is why we sun bath on the top deck, then swim in the solarium.

6. Key west was cool, Duval was up and running, went to hogs breath and sloppy joe's for a few and ate lunch at joes. Not much time to hit them all.

7. Cozumel is our favorite place...still looks bad but the people are great, did the playa mia beach thing.

8. food in the dining room and service was excellent, food has gotten alot better the past few years.

9. First ones off the ship at airport by 9am

10. We are now platinum members...big deal

 

SCOOP

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GREAT REVIEW!

We will be sailing 9/11 on Enchantment so I'm always looking for info on this ship. Sounds like you had a great time!!

I have read on these boards that the cabins are small, especially the bathrooms (another reason to shed 5-10 lbs!!) what type of cabin were you in? This is our first RCL cruise and only our 2nd overall, our first being on Carnival which I thought had spacious cabins.

In Key West, we were just going to do some land sight seeing, but your crazy boat excursion has sparked my interest!! Where did you book this excursion and is it really,really crazy?......we're really not the daredevil type but it sounds like fun. Did you eat at Chops? If so, is it worth the $20 p/p? My DH thinks I'm crazy for trying to learn so much, but I just can't help it!!

Any thing else you can think of to share would be wonderful. Again, great review--thanks!!:)

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Thanks for the input Scoops. BTW, the Playa Mia beach thing - was that just the beach tour or did you do the Mexican Cuizine Tour? We've booked that tour for Cozumel & are really looking forward to it. I believe it's at the Playa Mia beach hotel (or something like that).

 

Thanks again,

 

Barbara from Philly

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We too were getting off of the ship when the OP was getting on. I agree that the public areas of Enchantment were beautiful. They were very contempary with newer furnishings. However, we found that our cabin (a junior suite in the original part of the ship) looked quite dated (think 1980s). There were no signs of wear, just outdated style.

Jump Zone was closed most of the posted open hours due to "high winds". Most of the scheduled open hours were when we were at sea. Of course there would be high winds on sea days. My son very much enjoyed his one opportunity to use Jump Zone but due to it's placement with little to block the wind, it seemed to be under-utilized space. More thought should have been put into the practicality of Jump Zone, how to facilitate it's use in the wind, or it should have been open extended hours when in port.

We found that there was plenty of seating pool-side. We never had a problem finding a chair no matter what time of day we were there.

We had a great time. The service was excellent and the food was good. Enchantment is a good choice.

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GREAT REVIEW!

We will be sailing 9/11 on Enchantment so I'm always looking for info on this ship. Sounds like you had a great time!!

I have read on these boards that the cabins are small, especially the bathrooms (another reason to shed 5-10 lbs!!) what type of cabin were you in? This is our first RCL cruise and only our 2nd overall, our first being on Carnival which I thought had spacious cabins.

In Key West, we were just going to do some land sight seeing, but your crazy boat excursion has sparked my interest!! Where did you book this excursion and is it really,really crazy?......we're really not the daredevil type but it sounds like fun. Did you eat at Chops? If so, is it worth the $20 p/p? My DH thinks I'm crazy for trying to learn so much, but I just can't help it!!

Any thing else you can think of to share would be wonderful. Again, great review--thanks!!:)

 

We were in an outside cabin. The shower was so small, I couldn't easily shave my legs, which I'd have to say is a first! The crazy boat excursion was booked via the RC website. I would think that if you can handle a mild roller coaster then you would be able to handle this - it was very smooth. However, having grown up on a boat, knowing what this boat can do is amazing. And getting doused at every turn was very fun - the driver knew just how to move that thing to get different sections of the boat wet. It was hilarious watching people, because after a few turns, you knew who was going to get it next. I would have to say it was one of the best excursions we have ever done - think it was $39pp - worth every penny! We didn't eat at Chops - usually we are thrilled enough with the dinners on a cruise (especially me who doesn't have to cook or clean!) that we didn't think it was worth it, but alot people rave about it.

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We will be sailing 8/24 do you remember what the dress code was for each night?

 

Thanks

 

On the 4 night sailing, the first, third and fourth night is casual (no shorts) then the formal night is the 2nd night (after Key West). Mostly was observed - I think I only saw one gentleman in a tux and even the ladies weren't too dolled up at our main seating.

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Thanks for the review...we are going 10/19.

 

Did you dock in Cozumel or tender?

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Nice review..fair and balanced as all you had to compare to is Miracle,,you can clearly see the did with RCCL vs, Carnival. I never sailed carnival. But I loved the enchantment..my favorite part? The balcony.. my refuge from any thing any time I wanted:)

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Hey, mommy3 and/or BearySweet2Cruise. . . . Are the balconies on the Enchantment clear glass/plastic (so you can see through them), or are they metal? Can you sit in a chair on the balcony and see the ocean without standing up and looking over the rail? Thanks.

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Great reviews but I have a few silly questions. First of all what the heck does "OP" mean? Second DW and I are going with a D-1 cabin instead of a JS, like how small are the bathrooms in D-1? Does any one know if all Snorkeling is closed in Cozumel or just the ones that I am looking at? And where are these pictures that you speak of? Thank you for the answers, DW and I are sailing 9/21 for our third wedding anniversary.

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Thanks for the excellent review!

 

Quick question - How much was the taxi in Cozumel?

 

Thanks again

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Phillychick, We bought the playa mia beach break tickets via RCCL excursion, this included drinks, beach mats, use of the facility-they give you a color coded wrist band to wear-which indicates what you are entitled to. We had to pay for a taxi on our own-$14 for 1-4 persons, about a 10 minute drive one way. They offered a buffet for $12-14 but we ate from the menu-which was good. They do hold the mexican cusine excursion here. Rented jet ski's also, great price I thought $60 for 1/2 hour which is plenty, fast machines especially on the ocean-not like lake riding.

I wanted to also say we stayed in the new inside cabin deck 4 room 4877 below belerous-you can hear noise coming from there. Cabin was great for an inside, plus the shower was bigger than d1 aft on voyager.

Scoop

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Thanks for the review...we are going 10/19.

 

Did you dock in Cozumel or tender?

 

We docked in Cozumel but because of the current that day, it took along time and we ended up being about 1 hour late getting in - RC did extend the day in port by an hour which I thought was nicely accommodating.

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Thanks for the excellent review!

 

Quick question - How much was the taxi in Cozumel?

 

Thanks again

 

All of the prices are quoted on signs at the taxi stand so there is no guessing. It cost us $12 to get to Paradise Beach and then $18 to get to San Miguel. The taxi we picked up in town to get back to the pier was $6 so they didn't try to cheat us even without it being at the taxi stand. However, the Mexican cabbies are slightly more reckless than the traditional big city American cabbies - I just look in the other direction and pray!!!

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Great reviews but I have a few silly questions. First of all what the heck does "OP" mean? Second DW and I are going with a D-1 cabin instead of a JS, like how small are the bathrooms in D-1? Does any one know if all Snorkeling is closed in Cozumel or just the ones that I am looking at? And where are these pictures that you speak of? Thank you for the answers, DW and I are sailing 9/21 for our third wedding anniversary.

 

OP means original poster. I've never gotten into the cabin categories but I'm assuming someone here will be able to tell you. Our shower was maybe 3' x 3'? Ok as long as your standing upright but you were constantly hitting the wet shower curtain. I'm not sure about the snorkeling - I know that there is a catamaran that takes a snorkeling excursion from Paradise Beach (I think it goes to just beyond the international pier and costs $35pp) and I've heard there is decent just off shore snorkeling at Chakkanaab park. On the pics - I know I've seen personal web pages of someone who took extensive pictures of the Enchantment somewhere on this forum. Maybe someone else can direct you. Hope you have a great time!

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However, the Mexican cabbies are slightly more reckless than the traditional big city American cabbies - I just look in the other direction and pray!!!

 

Hmm... that is distressing... here in NYC I close my eyes and pray!!:)

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Deets

 

I can answer your question about the balconies. They were different from any I can remember. The balcony is a steel structure HOWEVER, the front of them are glass so you can see the ocean. The dividers are also that "frosted" glass.

 

Hope this helps

 

Tim

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Hi all,

First time posting. This will be my second cruise with RC but first was 9 years ago on the Nordic Empress! We are sailing on the Enchantment on 10/28 with 3 kids ages 17, 15 (both girls) and 10 (boy). Hoping there will be enough for them to do so DH and I can have some quiet time alone! I was hoping someone could answer a couple of questions I have about the ship. Do they rent phones (walkie-talkies) so we can communicate with the kids or should be plan on bringing our own? We are staying in adjoining cabins 2047 and 2049. I'm assuming these are in the older section but can anyone clarify that? Would love to see pictures of the ship if anyone has them to share! Any advice is greatly appreciated.

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Hi all,

First time posting. This will be my second cruise with RC but first was 9 years ago on the Nordic Empress! We are sailing on the Enchantment on 10/28 with 3 kids ages 17, 15 (both girls) and 10 (boy). Hoping there will be enough for them to do so DH and I can have some quiet time alone! I was hoping someone could answer a couple of questions I have about the ship. Do they rent phones (walkie-talkies) so we can communicate with the kids or should be plan on bringing our own? We are staying in adjoining cabins 2047 and 2049. I'm assuming these are in the older section but can anyone clarify that? Would love to see pictures of the ship if anyone has them to share! Any advice is greatly appreciated.

 

I would like to know if that is part of the new section also. We are staying in 2048 on the 9/25 sailing....

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