September 2016 - Key West & Cozumel Cruise on Empress of the Seas
For an inexpensive cruise of 5 nights we enjoyed this ship albeit it was tiny compared to others we've sailed on. With about 1500 passengers there were never any lines anywhere, not at the embarkation, the buffet, theaters, dining rooms, disembarkation,etc. The shows were wonderful, food was great, service was friendly, ship was clean. This ship is an older one so don't expect spacious modern decor but for a short cruise it's fine. The gym is small and limited in equipment so jocks might find this to be an issue. There were plenty of activities aboard during the sea days. We saw mostly couples of all ages ,we didn't see many kids on board but did notice group activities were provided for the children. We lucked out with the weather which was sunny and beautiful, had there been inclement weather it would have been very different as people would be inside the ship and space was sparse. There weren't many shops to visit and the limited merchandise wasn't much of a WOW factor as far as we were concerned. The ports were Key West and Cozumel and we've been to both many times before but nonetheless we did enjoy walking around town and seeing the sights.
All in all we enjoyed the cruise and recommend it, do not have real high expectations and you won't be disappointed.....you'll enjoy the cruise once you know what it offers. If you're looking for something SPECTACULAR this is not the ship for you. Try another larger more contemporary one to meet your expectations.