I just got off the Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas cruising the Mexican Riviera. As one of the highest level cruisers, it is unfortunate that I have to say this ship is tired and dirty and the luxury services that has helped Royal Caribbean maintain a 3- 4 star rating have been cut back at a cost to cruisers.
While on the ship, it was routine to be confronted often during the day with broken, missing or poorly maintained structures. One easy example was that the glass panels at the aft Windjammer dining area were highly cracked and crazed, making it impossible to sit down and view the water through them as many of us have come to enjoy. Their pool and pool area chaise lunges were always dirty and never had a pad on them. Couple that with almost a Gestapo attitude toward passenger use of towels (no one was passing them out, they were stained, dirty and holey, and passengers were faced with a $20 per towel charge if someone happened to pass by and remove your towel so you could not turn it back in.
There was no champagne on boarding, no nightly chocolates, and clearly a much higher crew-to-cruiser ratio than in the past. The food was nothing to write home about and the specialty food areas of the past where cruisers could ask for pasta and other items to their taste and preferred method of preparation were non-existent! That is, mass production was the only choice. A simple pasta prepared in olive oil with your personal selection of spices was not available anywhere at any time!!! Frankly, if this is the current mode of operation on all the Royal Caribbean ships, they should have their rating decreased substantially. This is not a Cadillac, not even a Chevy, but may be becoming an Edsel or a Kia (sorry Kia!).
That said, I have to note that the staff was friendly and as accommodating as they could given their reduced numbers. In particular the Diamond staff did their level best and it was certainly enough, to keep their frequent cruisers happy.
If you have a choice, avoid this boat if possible until someone verifies they have addressed such issues. If these problems are Royal Caribbean wide and includes Celebrity, please post this so I donít waste my time and money on others when I clearly have so many choices for my leisure dollars.