Just got off the Navigator of the Seas (wonderful cruise!) and was told that beginning Jan. 1, 2008 that RCCL will no longer have their Midnight Buffets due to them being a big waste of food. Most people, they said, just show up for picture-taking and then don't stay to eat. The same fate will occur for the late night Lido Deck Party buffet. They will be having a Bar-B-Que instead of a buffet.
Can't say I will miss this as I have been one of the "picture takers." I am usually up by 6:00 am and three meals a day, especially on a cruise, is enough!
Splendour of the Seas 97
Serenade of the Seas 07
Liberty of the Seas 07
Jewel of the Seas 08
Caribbean Princess 11
Nieuw Amsterdam 11
Oasis of the Seas 12
Queen Elizabeth 12
Carnival Valor 13
Carnival Fantasy 14
Carnival Valor 15
I had a feeling they were phasing them out. If I'm not mistaken, they used to be an everynight thing on alot of ships years ago and then it turned into one night a week and now none....It's funny, the first thing that people who have never cruised ask you about is the midnight buffets. It really is an enormous amount of food and I know alot gets wasted (yes I know they throw it out to the fish or something). The line was also always very long.
Carnival Holiday (1999 ?)
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 2007
RCI Enchantment of the Seas 2009
Very few things on our recent Mariner cruise disappointed us, but this was one of those things! Having worked in catering, I am skilled at making a little look like a lot, and I can assure you that buffet WASN'T a huge amount of food -- and a bunch of those petite fores and cakes were pre-made things, not the creations of the Royal chefs. Instead, it was a whole bunch of "show" (the ice sculptures aren't food, and the statues of the women are something that's been re-used again and again); well, let me clarify: it wasn't a whole bunch of food considering that 3000 people were onboard.
What I disliked, however, was the way the event was scheduled. We were allowed in for 45 minutes to take pictures; my husband and I went in and enjoyed looking around and taking our shots . . . but when the 45 mintues was up, they announced that the picture taking time was over . . . okay, great -- let us eat . . . and they announced it again . . . and again, then we all got the picture: though they didn't say it outright, they wanted us to leave the dining room . . . so we all did, and the line outside was massive . . . we waited 15-20 minutes, and it was really quite late for us . . . we gave up and grabbed some sandwiches from the Cafe Promenade. We weren't alone.
I would not bother with the Midnight Gala Buffet again, so I'm glad to hear that it's being replaced with something else.