8 people travelling together (Hubby & I (late 40's); 2 daughters (24 & 19); sister & brother in law (mid 50's); nephew & wife (early 30's))
This is just a summary. If you would like more details, or have any questions, let me know and I will post them.
The ship was great, the food was great, the service was great, the excursions were great. In a nutshell, it was ...ummm...GREAT!!!...
My room steward (Nylo) was good. On the first day, I gave him $20 and asked him to keep two ice buckets full and to make sure he replenished the diet coke in our fridge. He didn't go out of his way to do anything special, but he did do what was expected.
Food: The food was very good. We had late seating. The meals always arrived hot. Everything was prepared perfectly. Not once did we have to send anything back or did we have any complaints. Our waitstaff (Reg & Adrianna) were wonderful and we did tip over the recommended amount.
We ate at Portofinos one night. Great food, prepared and presented wonderfully. Well worth the $20 per person (plus tip) charge. I'm sure that same type of meal at home would cost well over $50-60 per person. I highly recommend it.
Johnny Rockets: I ate there once (my daughters, several times). The only charge was for shakes and sodas.
Aruba: The men golfed, while we ladies did the Fun Cruise and Beach Bash. Enjoyed the beach so much decided not to go back on the catamaran, but stayed a while longer and took the public bus back to the ship. In the evening we did the "Bar & Pub Crawl". That was a riot! Had a great time!
Curacao: Hubby & I and daughters did the Dolphin Swim. Awesome!! doesn't even begin to describe it! A bit pricey but we are sooooo glad we did it. Its an experience we will never forget! And for whatever reason, the two dolphins loved my husband. They were always right next to him.
St Maarten: All of us did a little shopping, then hubby, daughter #2, nephew & wife went scuba diving while Sis, bro-in-law, daughter #1, and I went to Orient Beach. Beautiful beach. Nude sunbathing area. I don't mind seeing nude people, but why is it that the ones that are walking around nude are the ones that should be keeping their clothes on???...
St Thomas: Hubby & bro-in-law golfed while the rest of us went shopping and Sis, nephew & wife took a cab to Megans Bay. Eventually, we all met up at the top of Paradise Point for some "bushwackers" ( a really good frozen drink), then back to the ship just in time.
On the ship: Unfortunately, we didn't make any of the shows, except the midnight adult comedian show, which I felt was just "so so". My husband is a big blackjack player so he spent a majority of his time at the tables. At the end of the cruise he was exactly $50 ahead. Not bad considering how large his bets were and how many hours he spent at those tables! :-) I spent a lot of time in the various bars and pubs and disco with my nephew & his wife and my two daughters (24 & 19). It was a great bonding time for me and my daughters and its taken 19 years, but I have finally been officially labelled by my younger daughter as "cool"!... We discovered that the Adventure had 13 bars (14 if you count the bar in my room with my....shhhhh....smuggled on booze...), so we made it our goal to get a drink from each bar. I'm not sure about everyone, but I know I hit my goal!
We bought a racehorse on the first sea day and participated in the owners race on the 2nd sea day. We had an intense, but friendly, rivalry going on with a couple of young guys that bought a horse also. They had also made friends with my daughters, so we saw them alot. It was a close race, but the other guys won. They were nice enough to buy all 8 of us a round of drinks to celebrate.
2nd sea day we all got our massages and facials. I've had many massages over the years and I would rate mine as average. Maybe I'm getting jaded, because the rest of my family called their massage experiences wonderful.
A bit about the whole water issue. I hadn't really given much thought to the tap water on a ship until I started reading these message boards. So, I paid more attention to it on this trip. I had a junior suite with a bathtub and when the tub was full of water, the water looked dirty. One night it was dark gray, another night it was kinda brownish, and yet another night it looked kind of yellowy. I can now say that I would not drink the water that came from the sink. However, water from the Windjammer and other food or drink places looked and tasted fine.
Embarkation: We got to the port around 11:45ish. Because we are Crown & Anchor Platinum members (and we were all in junior suites) we had our own special area to sit in. We were allowed on around 1:30ish. We were among the first 25 people or so to board.
Debarkation: They call you off according to your flight times. We had a 2:30 flight so our time was called around 9:00, however, we all weren't quite ready to leave at that time, so we didn't disembark until 10:00ish. Took about 1/2 hour to get off the ship and thru customs.
San Juan airport: Got a large taxi van to take us to the airport. As soon as we got out of our cab, we had 2 porters help us with our luggage. Other people were standing in huge long lines while the porters took us right up to check in....that was done in 5 minutes. We stood in the security line for about 1/2 hour. By the time we got to the front of that line, I would say the people that had just arrived had a good hour, or longer, wait. The bottom line....get to the airport early...and use a porter...its worth the 10 bucks we tipped each of them.
All in all it was one of the best cruises I've taken. I don't know if its because of the family members that went with us, or what, but it was great!
We were thinking of taking our 19 yr old son on AOS (he might be 20 by the time we go on). What did your daughters do on board as I know the teen clubs were closed to them. He is not a disco, gambling or drinking kid. He will probably do the rock wall, swimming and basket ball, but was looking for evening activities. Hope you can help with some suggestions.
I'm so sorry that I can't answer your question as my both my daughters are drinking, disco type people. And, thanks to their Dad's influence, gambling people too. Dad loves it when they sit at the blackjack table with him. (Dad fronts them the money, and they have to pay him back from their winnings. He doesn't just teach them the facts of the game, he teaches them how to place sensible bets and so far, they've always come out ahead.)
Thanks for the review on the Adventure. My wife and I are going on the same itinerary October 17th. This will be our 13th cruise, but ist on the Adventure, even though we've been on the Navigator twice. We are splurging this time and will be in an Owners Suite. I guess if you loved the Junir Suite, I would think we should enjoy the Owners Suite.
Sorry we didn't get a chance to talk more onboard, but I agree with everything you said. It was a great cruise on a great ship.
I was Orient Beach with my grandson Tyler the same time you were. I was the guy who almost drowned after falling off the banana boat. Good thing I didn't ... otherwise I would have missed the three people walking down the beach buck naked, with only a hat on the man as attire. Tyler said they were "bad."
The group surprised me and my wife with a renewal of vows on Saturday (our 28th anniversary) at the chapel on Deck 15, and then a nice reception on Deck 14 after dinner. It was a perfect bow on a wonderful trip with 37 family members and friends.
Now I have to deal with cruise withdrawal ... and for some reason, I wish I had a Johnny Rocket's chocolate milkshake.
Thanks so much. I'm going on the Adventure in Febuary. I can't wait!
Sovereign of the Seas 2/03
Navigator of the Seas 2/04
Adventure of the Seas 2/05
Serenade of the Seas 2/06
Monarch of the Seas 7/06
Liberty of the Seas 8/07
Majesty of the Seas 5/08
How nice that your family surprised you like that. I bet you had the best time with everyone!
It was so nice of you to have called me that day. I didn't think about it at the time we were talking, but I should have gotten your cabin number so we could have maybe set up a time to meet.
I missed the buck naked man....on Orient Beach... I did, however, see three ladies just as we got to the beach (we were on the first bus so we were first ones on the beach.) I missed you on the banana boat. I saw the boat, but didn't pay attention to anyone on it. I took a walk along the beach in both directions and mostly saw topless women....and one naked man, but he was sitting down so nothing really showed.... Your family wasn't the ones that were sitting in sand in the water alot were they? Well...whoever they were, I commented to my family that they looked like they didn't get to the ocean very much and looked like they were having so much fun! I hung out in the water quite a bit, fighting the waves. We were sitting in the row of chairs that were closest to the water.
I have a friend who is interested in a Hawaii cruise next year, so when you come back from your cruise, please post (or email me) and let me know how it went. Thanks! Take care! :-)
Laurie, I don't think that was my family. I was there with Tyler, and a family of four that was with our group. They love the water. The son (age 27) did some scuba diving out by that island out there in the water, and the daughter (31) and father did the banana boat with me as well as jet skis. The mother broke her wrist in Taiwan earlier this year and didn't get in the water.
I will definitely let you know about Hawaii. However, I'm not really expecting anything like Adventure of the Seas. That will be rough to top. But I will let you know when I return.
I'm also going to do a review of the AOS cruise, pobably starting on Friday.