Notes from Royal Caribbean's Quantum of the Seas dining event live blog
"Will the menu's be the same every night at the new dynamic venues?" - The menus will be consistent which is why we encourage our guests to try out a new venue each night. Menus can be previewed now for every restaurant through this link: Royal Caribbean International - Royal Caribbean Home Page
Happy for Jamie Oliver to be on board. So much choice, this is going to be fun and yum!
Yes, it will be fun. I am a fan of Jamie Oliver too and love his approach to food. Oddly, some people on the Facebook Royal Caribbean pages seem ready to commit ritual suicide over this new approach. Perhaps they'll come around and at least try something new before they climb back into their Buick LeSabre comfort zones.
I just read the Insider email about this and I have good but also some mixed feelings.
I love that traditional seating has been eliminated but I can see that this will shake up a hornet's nest of response from traditional people.
I don't like the fact they are "encouraging" everyone to book their dinner reservations before the cruise. I really do not like having to pre-book dining. I want the flexibility to decide, the same day, when and where I will be dining. It has always worked well on NCL for us.
Also: The idea of having to book a reservation for the main dining or complimentary venues is going to further shake the hornet's nest.
Overall, I have to say that I'm a bit tepid over the whole thing. I like that they have diversified their restaurants and brought in some "Celebrity Chef" restaurants but I'm not sure about the regimentation required by the guest to figure out what, where and when they want to eat before they set foot on the ship.
This will be interesting to see the responses from traditional Royal Caribbean guests.
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...before they climb back into their Buick LeSabre comfort zones.
That's a little condescending! Everybody has their own opinions and their own likes and dislikes. Just because people may have a different opinion doesn't mean they should be stereotyped and ridiculed!
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I'm feeling iffy about it too - I don't want to make reservations for each night's dinner before I cruise- how do I know what time I want to eat or where....? What happens to all those people who are not online and can't pre-book, I guess they will get what's left over. I'm a bit concerned I won't be able to get my choice on the day.... the variety is excellent though,but I know I will avoid 'gourmet' and go for home comfort food more..
Yep, I really loved my Buick LeSabre, but I know what you mean. People are so resistant to change! I am so in favor of getting rid of fixed dining times, but it was not clear to me whether or not this change accomplishes that.
On the other hand, I don't want to have to pre book everything. The cruiselines, including NCL with their freestyle dining, do encourage that, because to know how many are dining in each venue makes their planning so much easier. The reality for NCL, and my guess is for RCCL as well, is that most people have no interest in reserving far in advance, and some will do it the day of, and most will just wing it and walk up, if that is allowed.
Comparing it to NCL's concept, if my understanding of how RCCLs will work is correct, NCL has retained their big MDR, with live music and fairly casual dress, while RCCL eliminates theirs and replaces it with 5 small venues. These venues will differ in theme/decor and menus, but the menus will remain fixed daily. NCL 's three MDR venues have one fixed side, and the other side changes daily.
I think it's a step in the right direction for RCCL, but it will be interesting to see if their cruise prices go up to cover these changes. I would have to really like the itinerary in order to make me book their already higher fares.
Love this idea. Such an array of different foods and styles. Really smart of RCI's part to come up with this innovative idea.
Well, I think NCL actually came up with this concept long ago, but RCCL has tweaked it a little. The main differences are that NCL kept a big MDR, but added smaller free dining venues in addition. All of their menus have one "fixed" side and one side that changes daily, along with chef specials. I think there are 30 some menus that rotate. On RCCL, the menus are all fixed, but each venue has a different menu.
It's an interesting take on the freestyle concept. I think it is just a matter of time until you will see this type of thing on all cruiselines. Most people are no longer interested in having the cruiseline decide when and where they eat.
But people do love that big elegant dining room, especially with live entertainment and supper club type atmosphere. Even those who love traditional dining would find freestyle in that atmosphere easier to take.