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J&SLowery

Review- Radiance OTS Western 04/04-04/11

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For all those interested:

 

Radiance of the Seas

Departed out of Port Everglades

Cabin: (the coveted) 9256- Port Aft Corner (it really is a nice room and killer balcony)

Travellers: 2- Scheila and I. (My father, uncle, and aunt who are all retiring together also travelled with us and stayed in 9250- Port Aft Side)

 

We all flew in the morning of the cruise. Took a cab from FLL to the pier for $12 tip included.

 

Embarkation-- less than 10 minutes for Scheila and I as we are Platinum and we basically walked up, showed passports, swiped the c/c, received seapasses/photo encryption, and walked on board at 1145am. The other 3 used standard check-in at 1:00pm and had no problems either. Staterooms were not available until 1:00pm, so we just got some lunch in the Windjammer. At 1:00pm the fire doors to the stateroom corriders were opened and rooms were accesible.

 

Ship- Nothing less than spectacular. Clean, elegant, and very navigable.

 

Crew- Again spectacular. Our room steward Teresa and waiter Kristian were wonderful. My mainstay while drinking was the casino, and the casino bar server Matica took care of me and my cruisemates relentlessly. All received additional thanks $$$$ as they made for a wonderful cruise experience.

 

Events- Captains reception and Welcome Back C&A reception were wonderful. The drinks were flowing and the Captain was very personable at each event.

 

Shows- Of the shows we attended, we thought the entertainment was very good. We saw 1 production show, 1 live music event, and 1 comedian/musician.

 

Food- wonderful all week long. Chops was outstanding and I am told by our cruisemates that Portofino was again wonderful. Scheila and I chose not to do Portofino last week as we have eaten there on 2 previous cruises. We ate dinner in the dining room all nights but Chops, and the food was always nicely presented and flavorful. The menu has not changed, but the way I see it thats why they have several choices. Ate breakfast in the windjammer on most occasions. Just be sure if you want eggs, to get them fresh from the omelet station or fried eggs. The eggs on the buffet are lacking, but this has been the case since I have been cruising so its nothing new. Did eat breakfast in the dining room prior to disembarkation, and almost had a problem, but it was corrected. I ordered Eggs Benedict and could have played golf with my yolks. I pointed this out to the server who promptly advised it was the only way I could have them due to "Health Regulations". I promptly advised him I was not buying that story for a second and that I wanted my EB the correct way. He offered me fried eggs over easy... I told him over easy was fine so long as it was eggs benedict (which means runny yolks in pached eggs). He made sure the correction was made. (As a side note, what came to my mind, though I never got a chance to say it, was a comment from Stretch a couple of weeks ago referring to no availability of rare meat in the Dining Room while there was nearly raw bacon available everyday in the windjammer. It was on the tip of my tongue to make the same reference when the server decided he would have have my order corrected icon_biggrin.gif) Alas, the problem was effectively resolved and I was a satisfied person. icon_wink.gif

 

Ports- All were wonderful.

Key West-- We all drank Margaritas (several) and had a Cheeseburger in Paradise

Cozumel-- I played golf. Scheila shopped.

Roatan-- We all went to Foster's beach resort..very nice

Belize-- Snorkeled at Shark/Ray Alley and Coral Gardens-- Spectacular

 

The only bad part of the entire week was dissembarkation at Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale for those cruising novices), which was a nightmare. This was not our first experience at Port Everglades, but with no improvement it will likley be our last. I have sent my comments to the powers that be with RCCL and I will leave it at that.

 

Overall a great cruise. Of course, that's why we keep coming back.

 

Now the planning for October on the Adventure goes into full swing!!! How fitting it was that the AOS program was on the Travel Channel today!!

 

Jay

 

Jay & Scheila Lowery

 

countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=800080&cdt=2004;10;17;22;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500

Until Adventure of the Seas

 

Monarch 05/99

SS Oceanbreeze 10/00

Enchantment 04/01

Explorer (East) 10/02

Explorer (West) 03/03

Voyager 10/03

Radiance 04/04

Adventure 10/17/04

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We sailed on the Radiance 21-28 March and echo your comments, except on debarkation.

 

We had "white" tags, first off, and we were offright on time, got our bags and on the bus in ten minutes. I am guessing that anything other than "first" would get a little more difficult as the crowd grows.

 

Al Rosenberg

 

Navigator of the Seas 06 November 2004

countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=FF0000&cdt=2004;11;06;17;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500

Radiance of the Seas 03/04

Navigator of the Seas 10/03

Carnival Pride 03/03

Norwegian Sun 10/02

Dawn Princess 03/02

Sensation 09/01

Carnival Destiny 03/01

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Pheonix,

 

Golf in Cozumel is at Cozumel Country Club. It is a Nicklaus Design course and in beautiful condition. It is difficult. Many of the ships staff play there as well.

 

We set this up through the ship. The cost was $135 and included transportation to/from the course and range balls. I can't tell you what rentals cost, as we take our clubs.

 

If you book through the ship, you will meet 2 guys on the pier that are tour organizers. They walk you to the taxi stand and pay the taxi $13USD to take you to the course. They give someone in your group $13USD to pay to a taxi for the return trip. The course will call you a cab if one is not already sitting in the parking lot upon your return. Taxi rates are posted, so the amount they give you is what it costs...there are no questions.

 

Jay

 

Jay & Scheila Lowery

 

countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=800080&cdt=2004;10;17;22;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500

Until Adventure of the Seas

 

Monarch 05/99

SS Oceanbreeze 10/00

Enchantment 04/01

Explorer (East) 10/02

Explorer (West) 03/03

Voyager 10/03

Radiance 04/04

Adventure 10/17/04

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We sailed on Radiance March 28-April 4 and agree 100% with your comments. The ship was immaculate, the staff was professional and personable and eveything was as it should be. We had no problem at disembarkation-red tags, third group off the ship. It took us less than 45 minutes from the time they called our color until we were in the check-in line at the airport.

 

Frankly, after two Celebrity cruises, we were very pleased with the improvements we saw on this year's cruise. Compared to our experience on Galaxy last August, this cruise was by far superior.

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We had RED tags and were off the ship immediately, only to get stuck in the front left of the luggage warehouse as they let 3 more colors off right behind us. We were jammed up front and could not get to the back of the line for through the masses of people that accumulated behind us.

 

It took 1.5hours from the time we were announced to get off the ship, to the time were able to get to the taxi stand.

 

It was a bad situation, and I have sent my letter to RCCL advising specifics about what happened.It is my sincere hope that they just correct the situation in Port Everglades, as that is not the final memory they want left with their customers.

 

As I said though, the cruise was otherwise outstanding and I can't wait until October!!!

 

Jay

 

Jay & Scheila Lowery

 

countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=800080&cdt=2004;10;17;22;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500

Until Adventure of the Seas

 

Monarch 05/99

SS Oceanbreeze 10/00

Enchantment 04/01

Explorer (East) 10/02

Explorer (West) 03/03

Voyager 10/03

Radiance 04/04

Adventure 10/17/04

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Jay....Glad you had a great cruise. Radiance is our favorite ship. We will be on her Sunday. Yoohoo! Sorry you had the bad experience in FLL. You will love SJU. We have gone in/out SJU many times and it is our favorite embarkation/debarkation point. While it is not perfect, it is so much better than FLL. Hubby calls FLL "cruise purgatory". We always have trouble getting on the ship in FLL but get over it once we are onboard. We had major trouble boarding last year in FLL. We waited at the airport for 1.5 hrs for a bus. Then the bus driver tried dropping us off at Monarch even though we told her it was the wrong ship. She even unloaded all of the luggage at Monarch and had to reload it when we all refused to get off of the bus because we were at the wrong ship. Then once inside we had to wait in line about 2 or 3 hours even though we are Diamond. They said everyone in the waiting room was Diamond. But we just always expect problems in/out of FLL. Husband nicknamed it "cruise purgatory" back in '98 and it has lived up to its name everytime we are there. Again, sorry you had a bad debarkation experience but glad you had a great cruise before that!

 

Was Capt. Kent there? Do you know if he will be there next week?

 

[This message was edited by skiiergirl on 04-14-04 at 04:06 PM.]

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skiiergirl - On the 3/21 sailing, Darin Bowland was our Captain. I know he was also the Captain on the earlier March sailings. Don't know if Captain Kent was on vacation or moved to a different ship. I was looking forward to Captain Kent because of his singing reputation, but Captain Darin delivered us back home safe and sound. Have a great trip.

 

Kathy

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Kathy...Thanks for the info. We were looking forward to Capt. Ken'ts singing too. But then as you say, as long as the Capt. keeps us safe I am happy with him no matter who he is!

 

 

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