Grandeur of the Seas
by Linda Taylor
January 3, 2008
Our cruise started on Jan. 3rd, 2008 in Tampa, Fl. The day we left was very cold and windy in Tampa. We were hoping for much better weather ahead. We headed to the Windjammer for a little bit of lunch and then went to see our seating for dinner. We were happy with our table which we planned on sharing with friends we were meeting later. Then we started off to find our cabin. We picked an interior cabin for our cruise because we do not spend much time there and for reasons I will get to later we were so glad that we did not spend the extra money for a balcony cabin!
I had planned ahead and packed our clothes for dinner in our carry-on, but our luggage arrived just about 5:00. Dinner in the Great Gatsby Dining room was wonderful. Our waiters were Osbin and Rodney and they were very attentive and remembered our drink orders and our likes and dislikes. Osbin even got my husband to try a few new things, something I can very seldom do. I won't go into the food too much, except to say that it was all very good. I loved the cold fruity soups and the different fish dishes. All the food that we tried each night was delicious and we ate everything.
Key West: This was our first stop. The day was cold and very windy, but the sun was warm. We needed a sweatshirt and wore the tour T-shirt that they gave us also, because as it turned out, this was the coldest day that Key West had seen in almost 5 years. I was so hoping for warm weather. We took the "Taste of Key West" tour. Our guide was very interesting and kept us going for the whole 2-1/2 hour tour. Among other things, we tasted Mahi Mahi, hot pepper sauce at Peppers, Key Lime pie and shrimp. It was a very interesting tour and well recommended.
We returned to the ship just in time to get cleaned up and ready for another fabulous dinner in the dining room. This was formal night. I sent my dress and my husband's suit to be pressed as soon as we got into our cabin the first day, so they were ready and waiting for us when we returned from our tour. We did the formal pictures in the Centrum and then headed for the dining room. Dinner was great, the garlic soup was delicious and my husband loved his steak!
Cozumel, Mexico: This was our second and final stop on our 4 night cruise. We had a Passion Island beach day planned and the sun was shining and very welcoming when we got up. We did breakfast in the Windjammer and dressed in our bathing suits and cover-ups, we headed for the excursion. We had a 30 minute bus ride and about a 15 minute boat ride to get to this private island. Things started out wonderful, but by the time we got on the boat the skies turned cloudy and the wind picked up. The wind got so bad that you couldn't even get near the beach. It got cold and then -- rain! But, our guide "Alex," made the day worthwhile, he was very entertaining and fun for everyone. He learned all 45 names on the bus just by asking one time. He was great! We did some souvenir shopping and then helped ourselves to the buffet. It was authentic and very tasty. The boat ride back was so cold that I sat huddled next to my husband wrapped in our beach towels! When we got back to Cozumel, we did a little shopping and then returned to the ship. We had dinner, then again went to the show, a very entertaining juggler. We made the rounds of orchestra music, casino and shops. All in all it was a good day!
Our last day was a sea day and it finally was sunny and warm, although still very windy. This is why I said earlier that I was so glad that we did not pay for a balcony room. I don't believe that anyone could have made good use of it. It was just too cold and windy. We did spend several hours on deck this last day and sat by the pool where the sun was great!
This was our third cruise with Royal Caribbean and our first on the Grandeur. This ship was very clean and pleasant. Our cabin was small, but had more than enough storage room. We sailed twice before on the Enchantment. All in all, we were very pleased with our vacation and will choose Royal Caribbean again for our next cruise. I think that maybe I will try to stay away from the December-January dates, at least for the Western Caribbean, but highly recommend Royal Caribbean. All the staff were friendly and helpful and the service is great!