Sail Date: November 2018
First off let me say we have cruised over 35 times with different cruise lines. Royal Caribbean has always been our favorite though and they did not disappoint this time. We are Diamond Members with RC so it takes a lot to impress us. ... Read More
First off let me say we have cruised over 35 times with different cruise lines. Royal Caribbean has always been our favorite though and they did not disappoint this time. We are Diamond Members with RC so it takes a lot to impress us. From the food, to the service to the entertainment everything met or exceeded our expectations. This was a 10 day cruise that left from Ft. Lauderdale and visited St. Thomas, St. Croix, Antiqua, St. Kitts and St. Maarten. We have visited all the islands several times so we didn't do anything special in any of them. If you have never been though St. Thomas and St. Maarten are your shopping ports. There is not a whole lot in St. Croix or St. Kitts to see so we just got off and walked around some before heading back to the ship for lunch. In Antigua we did share a cab with 4 other people and went to a beautiful beach where we spent about 3 hours. The cab was only $6 a person round trip. Only pay for one way though to make certain they come back to get you. For an additional $20 we got a beach umbrella and 2 chairs. I believe the same tour off the ship was $56 a person. If you want a close and easy beach in St. Maarten just take the water taxi into town $7 round trip and you will see the beach chairs and umbrellas right where you get off the ferry. Most places were charging $20 - $25 for an umbrella, 2 chairs, and a couple of drinks. We thought it was a good deal. St. Maarten has many other beautiful beaches though as well, but those you will need to take a taxi to or a tour. This was nice that it was right close to the main street shopping and then you could sit and relax and just enjoy the view. One thing we really enjoyed about the Serenade was that it had an actual Movie Theater and each day it showed a new movie several times so you had options on when to go see it. We are not sun worshipers so it was nice to have something to do in the afternoon beside sitting by the pool. All the movies were current as well. We were in a standard inside cabin. There was lots of storage space. I do always take extra plastic hangers with us. There are never enough in any cabin we have ever stayed in. We did have to tape a towel over the air vent. It blew directly across our bed and we knew we would not be able to sleep with cold air blowing on us so we taped a towel over it and the air flowed down the wall instead and it worked perfectly. We will carry a roll of duct tape with us whenever we travel in the future. We prefer Main dining so we eat with the same people every night. We had great dinner partners and really enjoyed our time with them. A table of 6 is perfect for conversation. There was not one item we ordered that we did not like or had to ask the waiter to get us something else. Everything was delicious. We had only one very small complaint. That being, in the past grilled salmon was offered every night as an alternative along with strip steak and chicken breast. On this cruise instead of salmon they offered a fish of the day. We are not big fish eaters, but do like salmon so that was a little disappointment but again so minor it is hardly worth mentioning. Before sailing though we did book the 3 night Specialty Dinner package for $60 a person. This was a bargain. If you get an e-mail beforehand and this is offered take advantage of it. On ship it was $70. One night at Chop's Grill is $39. We ate one night at Giovanni's and 2 nights at Chop's Grill. Both restaurants are excellent. The filet is top notch and the service is outstanding. Each waiter only services 2 tables so you wait for nothing. Even though we enjoyed everything in the main dining room, as well as, our dinner partners it was nice to have an alternative for those nights. Especially with it being a 10 day cruise. The Diamond Lounge is small and since almost a third of the people on-board were Diamond, Diamond Plus or Pinnacle Members getting a seat in the lounge was difficult so we would just go to the Centrum area and get our drinks before dinner and listen to music there. Bar service in general was more of a walk-up service than waiters coming to you. We found this to be true pretty much everywhere on the ship. Again for us, no problem, because we are not big drinkers. We prefer water and iced tea which we would get from the Windjammer or Park Cafe in the Solarium. Another thing we liked was that the Centrum area was not excessively loud. We were on a Celebrity ship last Spring that had a similar layout as this ship and we could not stay in the Centrum area because there was just too much noise. Again, we have taken a lot of cruises so we have a lot to compare to and we don't always give a ship 10's across the board, but this one we did. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We booked this cruise because it was 10 nights and the itinerary was a good one. The ports of call were good saint kitts was beautiful. The ship was beautiful. I liked the way it was easy to maneuver. The thing i liked was that it had ... Read More
We booked this cruise because it was 10 nights and the itinerary was a good one. The ports of call were good saint kitts was beautiful. The ship was beautiful. I liked the way it was easy to maneuver. The thing i liked was that it had a dedicated theater. Which rccl has done away with on most ships. I just love having a choice to see an in house movie . The movies were good. I loved the windjammer the food was actually excellent. The ribs and the brisket and the all the grilled veggies were very nice. The waffle machine where belgium waffles were made fresh with all toppings every day was a plus. On other ships i have seen frozen toaster waffles. The deserts were good .The dining room was excellent with great service lobster wasn't over cooked and the prime rib was perfect. In fact every dinner we had in both the dining room and the windjammer was perfect. The latitudes coffee bar was great. The service was quick and personal touch was much appreciated. The shows were good but not plentiful which was my complaint. It lacked comedy shows and other broadway type shows. Some days no show at all??? The casino was tight but friendly. The pools were crowded but i usually don't swim since i have a pool at home it's no big deal. The bars were busy and friendly the service was great and the drinks were fairly poured sometimes even generous. I really loved our cruise on this ship .I would do it again on the same ship. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
My husband and I chose this cruise because of its 10 night duration, the itinerary, and the price. The pros: marvelous service throughout the ship, plenty of chairs to sit in the sun or the shade, very relaxed atmosphere, great ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because of its 10 night duration, the itinerary, and the price. The pros: marvelous service throughout the ship, plenty of chairs to sit in the sun or the shade, very relaxed atmosphere, great itinerary, amazing aft balcony, easy embarkation. The cons: entertainment was lacking, food was hit or miss. The ship is not a new glitzy number, but was welcoming and fit like an comfortable old shoe. It was easy to get around, easy to learn the layout. In the center was, of course, the Centrum, where there was music or other entertainment featured most of the time. Speaking of entertainment, there was no pool band due to a last minute family issue for one of the musicians, and this was a glaring miss. In addition, there really was only one big production show, as the new singers and dancers arrived later in the cruise. They actually were quite good. We were introduced to the Royal Quest, and it was a ball! There were a lot of "loyal to Royal" folks on this cruise, and I think it added to the more relaxed tone on the ship. We cruise many lines, but it is always interesting to hear what other cruisers have to say. We would happily sail on this ship again, Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Chose this ship primarily because of itinerary, and in that respect it did not disappoint. Service in the MDR was the best I've had in years, but the food itself was sub-par. We wound up going to the Windjammer on certain nights ... Read More
Chose this ship primarily because of itinerary, and in that respect it did not disappoint. Service in the MDR was the best I've had in years, but the food itself was sub-par. We wound up going to the Windjammer on certain nights (Caribbean night, Indian night) and was blown away with the quality and flavor of the food. Did all three Specialty Dining (Izumi, Chops, Giovanni's) and loved them, with Giovanni's blowing us away with the whole experience. Centrum was nice early in the evening, but often reeked of smoke from the nearby casino. That smoke from the 6th floor even made it INTO MY CABIN ON THE 8th FLOOR! Spoke with manager and said it came from the casino, as they get frequent complaints about it, after I suggested it was someone smoking in a nearby cabin. Same issue with the British Pub - I would have spent more time there, but the smoke drove me away. This was an 11 day cruise, so it was filled with elderly people. Night-life was dead, as would be expected, but I was really surprised to see the Viking Crown lounge closed most of the time, along with the bar closed permanently in the Safari Club. Also, "Rita's Cantina" is now just outdoor seating for the Windjammer. No problems with elevators on this cruise - no waiting the vast majority of the time! Overall, a nice cruise, despite all the smoke. Would do again. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Most of the itinerary was great! Ponce, Puerto Rico was a waste of time. We loved St. Lucia & Antigua the most! We booked this cruise to correspond with our wedding anniversary & the ports of call we had never been to. The ship ... Read More
Most of the itinerary was great! Ponce, Puerto Rico was a waste of time. We loved St. Lucia & Antigua the most! We booked this cruise to correspond with our wedding anniversary & the ports of call we had never been to. The ship & the cruise line were both new to us & unfortunately we would never book either of them again. It was an older ship with a lot of older people on it. The food & entertainment was just average. The Centrum area where they had the main nightly music & bar area was too small. There weren't enough seats for the number of people going there. Many had to stand. A lot of people became sick on this cruise, even a member of the band that played in the Centrum & pool area. Due to his illness, most of the time there was no live music at the pool. The large screen tv at the pool was missing panels, so it was difficult to watch the Sunday afternoon football game there. The towels we were given in our cabin had torn trim hanging from them. It just seemed there wasn't much attention to detail. The breakfast we tried in the MDR was cold. One night I had clam linguine in the MDR & it had a total of 4 small clams in it. Despite all of this, we had a great time because we were in the Caribbean & the weather was perfect! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We were looking for a Southern Itinerary and enjoyed discovering new places. We flew into FLL on Sunday and stayed at the Hilton Marina. The area was not walkable, which was disappointing so we took a short cab ride to get dinner at the ... Read More
We were looking for a Southern Itinerary and enjoyed discovering new places. We flew into FLL on Sunday and stayed at the Hilton Marina. The area was not walkable, which was disappointing so we took a short cab ride to get dinner at the 15th Street - we enjoyed the patio and our fresh fish dinner. The Hilton room was small but updated. There was a shuttle there in the morning for about 7 PP we were taken the short ride to the cruise port. Embarkation was very smooth. Our cabin was Aft - a long walk to all the main activities. Typical balcony stateroom. Unfortunately, it seemed like our neighbors were always on their balcony and very loud (f-bombs flying all the time), smoking too. We weren't really able to enjoy our balcony. We enjoyed my time dining in MDR and made reservations, so no wait getting a table. Very good service. Food was good, not great. We ate lunch at Izumi and it was delicious. We also purchased a deluxe drink package and took advantage of all the options, fresh juice, hot specialty drinks, cocktails and Evian water, it was worth it for us. Daytime entertainment was a good variety, evening entertainment always seems "less than" on the older ships - no Broadway style shows or top-tier entertainment. The musicians around the ship were excellent, as was the orchestra. The casino was disappointing - it really needs an update, from seating to slot machines. There just wasn't much energy going on in there - very different from other RCCL ships we have sailed. I found the ship overall very well kept. A lot of staff cleaning up and wiping things down. Ponce PR - on our own to Serralles Estate - very beautiful home and interesting, short day in town since it was Thanksgiving. St. Kitts - We went to a great beach bar on South Friars Bay. Grenada - RCCL excursion - Island tour, spice growing/processing and waterfall, an excellent day on the island. St. Lucia - Independent tour, 7 hours, catamaran to see the Pitons, Soufriere drive through volcano, botanical gardens and snorkeling. St. John, Antigua - Great day on Turner's Beach. Very few children on this cruise, average age probably 65 plus. It was so nice to have two days at sea on return. We enjoyed how relaxing this longer cruise was for us, as we usually just go for one week. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We signed up for this cruise, for the ports of call, but mainly because we were going with friends who had sailed with RCI before. This was our first time on an RCI ship and because of the Lack of things to do, it will be the last time on ... Read More
We signed up for this cruise, for the ports of call, but mainly because we were going with friends who had sailed with RCI before. This was our first time on an RCI ship and because of the Lack of things to do, it will be the last time on an RCI ship. The pool side daytime movie screen entertainment was, day after day, the same mind numbing drivel. When the cruise line has paid for movies, why not show them during the day instead. And fix or clean the movie screen please, watching anything on a screen with multiple black spots is painful. The climbing wall was closed for maintenance for the first few days. Our cruise director, Carly B, seemed unable to offer any novel activities for those of us not on the geriatric treadmill. Our cruise was over half young or young at heart and yet the activities were almost nonexistent. Our friends, who sailed with RCI before, were equally disappointed. The food in the dinning room and windjammer, was boring, repetitive, and usually either cold, over cooked or unappealing. Despite signs around the pool not to save deck chairs, one couldn’t find one after 7 a.m. to use, staff never once removed towels or books on chairs that were obviously unused. The only saving grace was our ports of call, though some of the excursions were not well sourced out by the cruise line. One, a plantation and beach excursion, was a mixed bag. The plantation was great, very informative, but the beach portion was below par. Yes, there was a beach chair as advertised but you had to rent the umbrella for $5.00, the change room was the bathroom, and the showers were outside so that the sand one inevitably had in ones suit was impossible to get rid of. Another excursion offering a beach break was better and had inside showers, separate change stalls and toilets was much better. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Wanted to return to Bermuda (7-nights), love the repo (12 nights), and love the itinerary for the 10-night at the end. From Day 1 we felt that all crew provided beyond exceptional service! Everywhere on the ship we noted that ... Read More
Wanted to return to Bermuda (7-nights), love the repo (12 nights), and love the itinerary for the 10-night at the end. From Day 1 we felt that all crew provided beyond exceptional service! Everywhere on the ship we noted that Officers not only supervised service, but participated in every aspect in every location. Crew members were always cheerful, many got to know us over the 30 days we were on board. Dining: First, we must compliment Dining Sevices for excellent management and organization of My Time Dining! We have experienced waits on other ships, but Serenade has this well managed. Our Head Waiter, Bassem Romdhane, is the best we have ever met. He personally ensured adherence to a milk allergy menu, even serving some courses himself. On discovering my love of tofu and stir fry dishes, he made that available any time. Also, we were greeted at the DR door each evening by Ayessa Ertugrul, Training Manager, as if she were waiting just for us! She always knew if our table was ready. We felt like king and queen during the entire trip! Concierge Lounge: A huge shout-out to our favorite Concierge Manager, Mario Abba Reyes! He is hands-down the best in the RCCL fleet! We actually book some cruises just to follow Mario, lol! Cabins: Unfortunately, we booked the B2B2B piecemeal, so were unable to get the same cabin for all. All were Spacious Ocean View (2B - 9078, 1104, and 9658) with balconies. We did feel that the decor is becoming a bit ‘tired’ but sheers had been replaced with new on balcony doors and Rooms were clean and well maintained. Cabin Attendants were wonderful and immediately addressed any issues we brought up. Not sure what happened for another reviewer who had mud on their balcony, but we found Attendants cleaning the balconies and outdoor furniture every day! Also, the Attendants moved our belongings for us each move, so no worrying about strangers handling things. Other: We very much enjoyed the musical talent of Damian Joyce in the Pub! Bar service was great there, as well, thanks to bar staff, Itupu, and bartender, Ian. We are not much for the theater entertainment, so cannot comment on that. Centrum duo was great, too. Excursions: We have been to these islands many times so only did a few. On Bermuda we did a private tour with Byways Tours and highly recommend. We love Ffryes Beach and lunch on Antigua. The Beach Rendezvous on St. Maartens was lovely despite some rain - probably the best shrimp sandwich I have ever had at Kim Sha Beach. Am likely forgetting something, but overall we have a wonderful month on Serenade! Can’t wait to sail with her and this amazing crew in April! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Everything was just adequate. The staff was efficient and friendly but the activities were equivalent to Carnival ships — mostly games and related to buying a product or service. No education or culture offered. Food was ok, ... Read More
Everything was just adequate. The staff was efficient and friendly but the activities were equivalent to Carnival ships — mostly games and related to buying a product or service. No education or culture offered. Food was ok, better in the buffet than in the dining room. They tried hard and were as accommodating as they could be but the overall food prep was not as good as other RC ships and a far cry from the quality of Princess or Celebrity. Good for first time cruisers who like sun and sand and drinking. Strangest thing was cruise director reading the newsletter word for word every morning as if she didn’t know what was going on each day. Music was ok but they didn’t have properly timed music — always interferes with dinner or shows. Reasonable cost, sizeable rooms and balconies with very friendly and accommodating staff who go out of their way to help. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
I choose this cruise for the islands it was going too.the ship it self was not a wow factor. But the service given was very good.i did not like the food in the main dining room ,so I eat in windjammer as I had more of a choice.my state ... Read More
I choose this cruise for the islands it was going too.the ship it self was not a wow factor. But the service given was very good.i did not like the food in the main dining room ,so I eat in windjammer as I had more of a choice.my state room was very clean and well keep my room attendant worked very hard. The entertainment was first class especially if you like dancing I had a ball.the service I was given was first class, I loved the ports and all the excursions which was the highlight of my cruise.very friendly staff make me feel at home at all time.getting on or off the ship was very fast and everything was well organised for us. We had staff to meet us off our flight and put us in taxi to our hotel and staff to help us get to the bus to take us back to the airport. Read Less
Serenade of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.0
Family 5.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.3

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