monakayk Posted September 22, 2006 #1 Share Posted September 22, 2006 Just back: RHAPSODY OF THE SEAS Review (9/10/06-9/17/06) My DH and 2 DFs just got back last weekend from our 7 day cruise on the Rhapsody of the Seas. Below is a review of our cruise. We flew into Houston on the 7th to have 3 days before our cruise left to tour Houston and Galveston. Our first major stop was to tour NASA. Had a great and very FULL day there. It is a 'do not miss' for everyone. Many volunteers that work there are retired employees of NASA. In fact one gentleman who was in the 'shuttle' area used to work in the control room. He was VERY informative and was a lot of fun to talk to. After our tour of NASA we drove over to KEMAH BOARDWALK. We enjoyed a great seafood dinner at the 'Flying Dutchman' Restaurant and had the best seafood I have ever had in my entire life. And believe me that is saying something, because I have lived most of my life in TX and in SC and fresh seafood was something I regularly had! In fact we liked the food so much we went back there the next night. On the 9th, we drove down to Galveston. For those of you who want to rent a car from Houston and drop it off in Galveston...use Enterprise Car Rental. They did not charge us a drop off fee. We knew they would charge one from Houston to Galveston and not for the second rental for one day going back from Galveston to Houston to catch our plane. But as it turned out...we were not charged a drop off fee at all. So do check them out..they had great rates and service too! While in Galveston we toured two historical homes...Bishop Palace and the Moody Mansion. Both are beautiful and well worth seeing! We had dinner at Casey's Restaurant on Sat. night. I have to admit that after having seafood at the Flying Dutchman in Houston, Casey's could not stand up to it. We were a bit disappointed in Casey's. We arrived at the cruise terminal around 12:30 PM. We were one of the first of about 40 people there. So really we did not have to rush to get there. In fact we did not board the ship till well after 1 or pretty close to 1:30 PM (if memory serves me correct). However, something that I did not see mentioned on these boards...they served water/lemonade/cookies/pound cake at the terminal, which was nice while we waited. Chairs were plentiful if you did not wait till the last minute to arrive. Getting on the ship was easy since we did the online check-in. We were so excited to board her...taking photos as we boarded. We went to the Meet and Mingle and were very happy and please to have meet (in person) some of the great folks who have posted on these boards. It was fun to see them at various times on the ship and also arrange to have two members to join us at our table for dinner. If you have not registered yet for your cruise M&M...do so..you will not regret it and will meet some of the nicest people ever...We Did! Our cabins were on Deck 7. Some mention has been stated in previous post about vibrations on the Rhapsody. I will give you my/DH & our 2 DFs opinions on this subject. The Rhapsody DOES have terrible vibration in many areas of the ship. Our cabin (7115) had it horribly throughout the entire voyage. It did lessen at times, but we felt it the entire time in our cabin. Our DFs cabin (7103) felt it also, however, not as much as we did in our cabin. Also, in the dinning room we sat on the top level near the end of the balcony at table 115 and it was felt again each and every night. The worst nights we felt the vibrations in the dinning room was on the 1st night and also the 2nd to last night. In fact, we made jokes about it as we noticed, while we were holding our menus, that they shook so badly in our hands that it looked like all of us had the 'shakes'. So the vibrations in parts of the ship is quite bad and need some attention by RCCL. As for service on the ship, we had excellent service everywhere except for our steward. We had a different steward than our DFs and they always had ice on time in their cabin and their steward was somewhere near by whenever they needed him. Ours...well all I can say, is....on the last night I had to run him down just to get ice at 6:45 PM and he actually gave me a lame excuse about not getting to my cabin yet and would be there in a while. I just looked at him astonished he would put me off, while I was standing there at my cabin! Needless to say, I asked him to wait a minute..grabbed my empty ice bucket--handed it to him and asked for ice then and there. I would not have minded waiting, but we was meeting our DFs in the Game Room (right down the hall) to watch the sunset on the balcony and did not want to miss it because of slow service. I know many of you will bash me for not being more patient, but this WAS the last night on ship and we had put up with no ice in our bucket till well after 9 PM each and every night! Entertainment was great. We really enjoyed the shows in the theatre...they were all top-notch and done very well. Derek Lewis in the Schooner Bar was fabulous. Even if you do not do Karaokee....Derek is great entertainment himself. He is funny and very talented!!! Just make sure to not pass through the bar or you might unexpectedly get 'volunteered' to sing, as I was, but done all in fun! The food in the main dinning room was very good. I was very surprised because of reading some post that the food was not good. However, except for the steak, I enjoyed each and every dish I had. Some of my favs were: Pate, Escargot, Lobster Tails, Tiger Shrimp, Lobster Bisque, Lamb Chops, and Crab Cakes to die for! Of course ALL the desserts were wonnnnnnderful! Food in the Windjammer Cafe....was buffet fare. Nothing else needs to be said about that....great tasting food is not what you are after when you go to a buffet anywhere and that is not what you get at this one either on the ship. Room service was wonderful. I had breakfast each morning in my cabin. Also, a note: If you want juice of any type throughout the day, make sure to order enough during breakfast. After that 'hour' of service, a charge of $2.00 per glass is charged with a 15 % gratuity. Make sure to order the 'cheese plate'. It is full of WEDGES of 5 different cheeses....wonderful with wine for a nice cocktail time in your cabin with your DH/DW! Excursions we went on: Grand Cayman--we booked our own snorkel tour with 'Captain Marvin's' . We were VERY pleased with their tour. They were helpful, polite and informative about the stingrays/snorkeling for newbies. We had 3 different snorkeling spots for 3 hours. Our tour was well over 3 hours in all...which surprised us because we thought 3 hours would include the travel time in the boat to the snorkel site. NOT at all...we had 3 full hours of snorkeling and an additional 30-45 mins. in travel time. Which was fine with us...more time to enjoy the ocean. If you have questions about this tour...just post them and I will be happy to answer them for you. Cozumel---we booked the Tulum Mayan Ruins through the ship. We had tried to book through a private company but was worried we would not have time make the last ferry back to Cozumel with them. I still wished we had been able to book privately. The main problem with the ship's excursion was...we had to walk SEVERAL long blocks in the HOT HEAT through town to get to the parking lot to get onto our tour bus. Many pax were very upset about this not being explained more fully on RCCL excursion website. I had known about it because of previous pax post about this tour, but I was still upset that the walk was further than explained. Our tour guide told us they had to park in the "far parking lot" for some reason..which never was fully explained. Also the bus we were on, the A/C was not working properly therefore we were sweating bullets all day in and out of the bus. The tour of the ruins was great. They really are a 'must see', but be forewarned, this tour is NOT for folks that can not endure EXTREME HEAT. It is VERY HOT at the ruins, no breeze except for near the cliff side looking over the ocean. There were older folks in our group who, just after 15 mins. in the heat, had to ask to go back to the bus (which was hot also but at least out of the sun) because of the extreme heat. All in all, I would do this tour again, but would've loved for a bus with proper A/C to give some sort of reprieve to our hot day. Much discussion on these boards have been about the attire on formal nights in the main dinning...I do have to add what I have observed. MOST people were dressed VERY nicely. Only a handful, that I noticed, had casual pants/jeans on those 2 nights. Most women were dressed 'to the nines'/long formal dresses or cocktail party attire, men in suits/tux. We enjoyed the formal nights. It gave us a night to really 'celebrate' in a way we usually are unable to in our routine lives. Other nights in the dinning room: tropical attire/Hawaiian shirts/resort casual/docker pants/polo shirts were the norm. I really did not see many people in jeans during dinner. Disembarkment was a breeze. Since we did not have an early flight back home and could take our time off the ship...that is exactly what we did. In fact (I am not exaggerating) we were the very LAST people out the terminal! All in all...I would most certainly cruise with RCCL again. I loved the Rhapsody...she is a beautiful and lovely ship! I hope TPTB will address the vibration problem...to make her one of the best cruise ship (IMHO). I would most certainly recommend RCCL and this ship to anyone who are considering a cruise. In fact, I hope to talk the DH into cruising again with RCCL hopefully within the next year or two!!! If anyone has questions...please do not hesitate to ask! Sorry this was so long, but I just had so much I wanted to cover. :) Happy Cruising! :) Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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