Ship: A+ BEAUTIFUL! – 3 acres of glass.
Food: B Good
Chops: A++ Kristina, Oscar and the whole team are phenomenal - and the food is too
Windjammer: B It is what it is – a buffet.
Seaview Café: A+ The fish & chips come out looking like Mrs. Paul’s fish sticks but
believe me they are not!!! I’ve never had such fresh fish, we had them 3 times.
Cruise Director Karen Maybury: C We prefer CDs that are natural, not trying too hard.
Bartenders: Champagne Bar – Freddie, he remembers your name and what you like to drink. Shanti & Me-Hai (sp?) at the Schooner Bar were a riot.
Day 1 Wednesday October 12, 2005 Departing Boston Cool drizzle 55° We arrived at the Black Falcon Pier at 11:05 a.m. Checked in with our Sea Pass, got our picture taken for our Sea Pass card, walked through Security. I even turned to the security guard and asked him if it was ok for us to board. He said “hurry and I won’t tell anyone”. I laughed, turned red and walked right on the Jewel of the Seas by @11:15 a.m. The fastest boarding we’ve ever had. It was fantastic not having to take a plane the first day of our cruise. We found our room (8598) dropped off our carry-on then off to explore the ship. She is beautiful, same class as the Brilliance. Luggage arrived @ 1:15 (WOW!). Attended the mandatory life boat drill at 4:30, our Muster station was at the Schooner Bar. Thankfully, our Muster station wasn’t required to go outside. We went back to our room to change for dinner, we had early and for some unknown reason our dinner times were 5:30 and 7:45 instead of the norm of 6:30 & 8:30. I had met our tablemates on-line at www.cruisecritic.com, we decided to link our dining reservation so we could sit at the same table. Even though we hadn’t met face to face it was nice to sit with people we felt we already knew. After dinner we went to the Welcome Aboard Show and then to the Schooner Bar. We met a lot of nice people and the bartenders Shanti and Me-Hei (sp?) were great, they worked very well together. Day 2 Thursday October 13, 2005 At Sea WOW!!! We woke up to VERY rough seas. As my husband was shaving all he said was uh-oh. So we went to the purser’s desk for Dramamine and they gave us each a green apple. They explained that we needed to put something in our stomach with not a lot of moisture. We went back to sleep for a few hours and woke up feeling fine. I only took 2 pictures of the waves. Security had locked the doors to the outside decks and hung signs not to go out because it was too dangerous. We figured about 95% of the ship were in their cabins. We went to the Windjammer for lunch, there were only a few people eating lunch. It was quite a challenge to get our lunch and get to a chair before the ship would dip and your plate would land on the floor. Tonight was Captain’s night. We went to the Captain’s cocktail party then to dinner; there were a lot of empty tables. Marty Allen and his wife were real troopers they put on a great show considering how rocky the ocean was. We then went to the Schooner bar for the piano bar entertainment. Day 3 Friday October 14, 2005 King’s Wharf, Bermuda 82° Arrived at the Navy Dock Yard at 12 Noon (instead of 8:00 a.m.), first people off the ship was at 1:30 p.m. We bought the 2-day transportation pass. Hopped on the ferry to Hamilton, walked up one side of Front Street and down the other, took the ferry back to the ship in time for dinner at 5:30. After dinner we went to the Frog & Onion Pub for a drink, it was too quiet there so we went back to the Schooner bar and listed to a young man Lee Read (looked about 15 yrs. Old – very cute!) play the piano – he was fantastic! He played the piano vs. beating it. We didn’t go to the show Dima Belinski but we heard he was great. Day 4 Saturday October 15, 2005 King’s Wharf, Bermuda 82° 11th Wedding Anniversary. Had breakfast at the Windjammer – WOW where did all these people come from! Glad everybody was feeling better. We decided to just go off the ship and take a taxi tour. We went on a 3-hour island tour. Bermuda is beautiful; too bad our taxi driver didn’t have much of a personality. We came back to the ship had lunch went to the pool for a little while. We had reservations at Chops for our anniversary so we went back to the room and noticed we weren’t moving yet. The ship was waiting for 3 people (young girl, Mom and Grandma) Grandma couldn’t walk that fast so one of the Bermudians on the dock to watch the ship depart got in his car & picked her up and drove her back to the ship. We all applauded from our balconies. We went to the Champagne Bar before dinner, Freddie was great. Chops was perfect as usual. Oscar and his whole team were fantastic. They brought out an anniversary cake and everybody sang to us. It was wonderful. We were so stuffed we gave our cake to the bar staff at the Schooner Bar (Shanti, Eva and Me-Hai). We missed the show but we heard it was great, it was the Royal Caribbean Singers & Dancers “West End to Broadway”. We hit the disco until 2:30 a.m. Day 5 Sunday October 16, 2005 At Sea 85° We sat by the pool all day. MrSully entered the Blackjack tournament, he lasted 3 hands, he was dealt a 14, 15 and a 16. Attended The Quest – what a hoot! Day 6 Monday October 17, 2005 St. Maartin 85° Our favorite! Took a cab to Orient Bay Beach, walked to the clothing optional section, got 2 chairs at the Tiki-Hut. The waves were awesome, bigger than the last time we were here. Unfortunately, with the waves/storms come the seaweed and the turtle eggs. I could only go in the water twice, the third time I just couldn’t get past the seaweed YUK! As our chairs were coming into the shade we started to get bitten so we left. Not really sure what bit us but my legs had a lot of red bumps. Back to the ship in time for another dinner at Chops. After dinner we went to the Champagne Bar and chatted with Freddie. Freddie is great, he remembers your name and order from the first time he meets you, he would even have it ready for you when you sat down. Day 7 Tuesday October 18, 2005 San Juan 85° San Juan has improved over the last 5 years. We walked around, went shopping, and bought a couple of t-shirts and a silver bracelet for our daughter. We were back on the ship by 10:30 a.m. We sat by the pool the rest of the day, loved those drinks in the fresh pineapple YUM. As we were leaving we had a few showers and the Explorer of the Seas pulled into the berth next to us. We loved that ship too. Day 8 Wednesday October 19, 2005 Labadee 97° We have been to Labadee a few times, so we decided to stay on the ship. Good Choice! 97° people said it felt like 120 on the island. We sat by the pool. Due to the short stay at Labadee they had the BBQ on the pool deck from 1:00 – 3:00 instead of on the island. They started setting up at 9:30 a.m. and about 1:15 the grills were lit. They set up several stations to get food which would have been very organized except you had to go to one station for your plate and utensils, another station for ribs, another station for chicken, another for burger and hot dogs and yet another station for side dishes. So by the time you sat down everything was cold. None of the stations were labeled so it was very chaotic. The ribs were awesome, we tried to go back for more but the line was too long. We went to the show “Tango Buenos Aires” it was good, we left after 20 minutes. We stopped by the Champagne Bar to see Freddie, Schooner Bar, then to the Vortex Disco until 2:30 a.m. Day 9 Thursday October 20, 2005 At Sea 88° We sat by the pool for a couple of hours; decided we wanted to see what else was going on around the ship, puttered around the ship. We went back to the pool just in time to see the horse races. The owners race was won by #1 Johnny Damon. Played mini-golf, worked out in the gym. Tonight’s show was Paul Boland “Man of 1,000 Voices”; he was very good, very funny. Being 70’s disco night, we chose to stay at the Champagne Bar until we went to the disco around midnight. Neither one of us wanted to hear the “Tribute to ABBA” or the “Village People”, we had enough of that the first time around. Closed the disco at 4:00 a.m. Day 10 Friday October 21, 2005 At Sea 60° The daily planner stated the temperature would be about 60°, with the wind chill it was more like 40°. We knew it would be a chilly day so we puttered around the ship, bought 3 photos, played Jackpot Bingo – didn’t win L, went to trivia. We had dinner at Chops for the last night. Went to the Schooner Bar for a couple of drinks, said good-bye to the people we met. Declined going to the disco – too much to do tomorrow. Day 11 Saturday October 22, 2005 Debarkation, Boston 60° We chose to carry our luggage off the ship ourselves. Finished packing, went to the Windjammer for breakfast, called the pursers desk to find out what deck we should be on, they said we debark from Deck 5. It took a ½ hour to get an elevator that we could get on, got to Deck 5, waited ½ hour and we were off and waiting for our ride by 8:15, home by 9:15 a.m. We had a GREAT time. This cruise tied with our favorite past cruise (Explorer of the Seas). We have loved all of our cruises and for us there is no such thing as a bad cruise. We thoroughly enjoy our vacations; life is what you make of it and how you choose to react to certain situations, especially situations you have no control over.