Second Mate

Joined: 04/19/2014
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About The1edge


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The1edge's Past Cruises

Rhapsody of the Seas

December 2016 - Rhapsody of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Navigator of the Seas

September 2015 - Navigator of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Radiance of the Seas

April 2015 - Radiance of the Seas to South Pacific

Independence of the Seas

March 2015 - Independence of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Great Family Cruise

This was our annual family cruise, and we traveled with our grown children and 3 grandchildren, ages 1, 2, and 6...8 total, in three staterooms on level 9.  We always use , because of their outstanding cruise specialist, Patti Opera.  We are experienced cruisers, and prefer Royal Caribbean, as we have found that they deliver a consistently great cruising experience.  The itinerary included St. Maarten, St. Kitts, San Juan, and Labadee.  We loved the fact that it was an 8 day cruise...we felt the extra day was a "bonus."  As always, there were a few "standout" members of the cruise staff that made our cruise memorable.  In this case, it was our entire dining room wait staff.  Our waiter and assistant waiter, Randy and Julius, were outstanding.  The anticipated the needs of our grandchildren, and brought out their food early each meal to keep them occupied and satisfied.  The Head Waiter, Vivek, was the absolute best Head Waiter we have experienced.  He was personable, and highly involved with our service every evening...ensuring we were all (including the kids) enjoying our dining experience.  He even performed magic tricks for the grandkids.  Overall, another outstanding experience with and Royal Caribbean.

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Freedom of the Seas

October 2014 - Freedom of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Another great experience on Royal Caribbean

I am an experienced "cruiser", and this was my 4th of the year.  My son and I decided to take advantage of a "last minute" offer on Freedom of the Seas, visiting St. Maarten, St. Thomas, and Coco Cay.  We have been on the Freedom before, as well as its sister ship the Independence.  It is a large ship, but is easy to navigate, and we never felt crowded.  I greatly appreciated the "no smoking" section of the Casino.  Our dining experience at Chops Grill was outstanding.  Our stateroom attendant was "Susie", and she was terrific.  The only "hiccup" was that the specialty coffee machine in the Diamond Lounge was out of service for most of the week...something I really missed. 

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Allure of the Seas

August 2014 - Allure of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

First time on the Allure

Although we are seasoned cruisers, and have been on many Royal Caribbean ships, this was our first time on the Allure.  We had read reviews and seen pictures, and while the ship looked beautiful, we had some concern that it might be just too big.  Still, we thought it would be worth a try, so we booked adjoining balcony cabins on the 9th deck.  From the moment we entered the ship we were blown away by the spacious public spaces.  It was around 1 pm when we boarded, and we went directly to our cabins where our luggage had already been delivered.  We unpacked, and then went to the pool deck to relax and let my grandson enjoy the H20 Zone (kids pool area).  The entire week was spent relaxing, exploring the ship, enjoying Nassau, St. Maarten, and St. Thomas.  Our dining room service and food was outstanding, as was our cabin attendant.  The ship was at full capacity, but with the exception of the Windjammer (buffet) it never seemed crowded.  After having a difficult time finding a table there, we decided to take advantage of the information available on the cabin  TV which told us which restaurants were busy and which had immediate seating.  There are a tremendous number of complimentary dining options, and we found all of them to be great.  The ship is stunning...Central Park and the Boardwalk were great places to relax and people watch.  The Allure is a very large ship, but still had the Royal Caribbean "personality" ...just with many more venues.  One final point...the childrens program (Adventure Ocean) is absolutely outstanding.  This is my grandson's 4th Royal Caribbean cruise, and his favorite part of cruising is being able to go there.  If there are any potential cruisers out there that are apprehensive to take small children on a cruise, take our word for it...they will have a ball!

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Serenade of the Seas

April 2014 - Serenade of the Seas to Transatlantic

Great Transatlantic Cruise

Big Smile


We are very experienced cruisers, with most of our experience on Royal Caribbean...we prefer this line because they have consistently delivered a great cruising experience.  This was out second Transatlantic cruise with Royal Caribbean.  Our first one was very good, but this one was great.  The Serenade has been recently refurbished, and the entire ship sparkles.  From the moment we boarded, were impressed with the friendliness of the staff.  In fact, we were extremely impressed with the entire crew, from the officers to the various service teams.  This was our first cruise as a "Diamond Club" member, and really enjoyed the various amenities that status offers.  This ship is smaller than most of our previous cruises, but still has all of the features that larger ships in the fleet have.  The food was outstanding, and much better than our previous transatlantic.  We dined in all of their specialty restaurants at least once, and they were all wonderful...with the exception of "Rita's Cantina", which seemed like a mediocre Tex-Mex restaurant you could find in any city.  The Main Dining Room food and service was among the best we have ever had.  We liked the fact that we had a stop in the Caribbean before making the crossing.  St. Maarten is one of our favorite ports, and was a nice day ashore before the 6 consecutive sea days.  We had never been to the Canary Islands or Spain, so this itinerary was great for us.  We ended in Barcelona, and spent an additional 4 days in that spectacular city.  For those looking for a great ship, staff, and itinerary, this one would be tough to beat.

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Navigator of the Seas

April 2014 - Navigator of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Another nice cruise on the Navigator.

This was the third time we had cruised on this ship.  The first was in 2003 when the ship was only a couple years old.  Last year we took a 16 day Transatlantic, and enjoyed both immensely.  This time, we took advantage of last minute pricing.  The ship was just refurbished in December of last year, and looks great with all the new carpet and other fresh touches.  The new Sabor restaurant is outstanding.  On this trip, there seemed to be many crew members in training, and although the service we received was great, there seemed to be something "off" with them.  There seemed to be morale noticed it when they weren't engaged with a guest.  Not many smiles.  Also, they need to update the mattresses and the pillows...both are too hard for my taste.  I am a big fan of RCCL, and cruise with them pretty much exclusively.  Although this cruise was not the best one I have taken with them, it was still significantly better than those I have taken with other cruise lines.  And I would still recommend them highly.

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Jewel of the Seas

October 2013 - Jewel of the Seas to Caribbean - Southern

Navigator of the Seas

April 2013 - Navigator of the Seas to Transatlantic

Carnival Dream

August 2012 - Carnival Dream to Caribbean - Eastern

Carnival Dream

January 2012 - Carnival Dream to Caribbean - Western

Freedom of the Seas

July 2011 - Freedom of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Serenade of the Seas

September 2010 - Serenade of the Seas to Caribbean - Southern

Independence of the Seas

March 2010 - Independence of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Carnival Valor

May 2009 - Carnival Valor to Caribbean - Western

Carnival Pride

January 2009 - Carnival Pride to Mexico

Carnival Victory

March 2008 - Carnival Victory to Caribbean - Western

Jewel of the Seas

March 2007 - Jewel of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Radiance of the Seas

October 2006 - Radiance of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Voyager of the Seas

March 2006 - Voyager of the Seas to Caribbean - Eastern

Grand Princess

March 2005 - Grand Princess to Caribbean - Western

Celebrity Constellation

March 2004 - Celebrity Constellation to Caribbean - Southern

Navigator of the Seas

April 2003 - Navigator of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

The1edge's Tips

Labadee (Cruiseline Private Island) - Loved the relaxing day. be sure to get off the ship early so you can claim your perfect spot...particularly if you have need of constant shade.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten - If you just want a beach experience, there is no need to pay for an excursion. Just take the water taxi into town, and get and take advantage of the beaches there...$25 for an umbrella, two loungers, and a bucket of beer!
Independence of the Seas Independence of the Seas - If you are traveling with a large group (over 4), it is sometimes difficult to find a table in the Windjammer during peak breakfast and lunch hours. The staff is great in assisting you finding a table, but if possible, you will find it much easier if you go a bit earlier or later.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten - Maribel's Half Day Catamaran was a great time sailing, snorkeling, and enjoying the water and scenery.
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas - Shopping was great. If you have already been to Magens Bay (which is incredible), a good alternative is Emerald beach, which is just a few minutes from the ship.
Port Canaveral, Florida - We flew in the day before the cruise, and rented a car (one way) at the Orlando Airport. We enjoyed the afternoon, and it was nice to have our own transportation...and the price was less than our shuttle or taxi fares would have been.
Freedom of the Seas Freedom of the Seas - I have always booked balcony cabins. This time, however, we took advantage of a good rate on an oceanview cabin. It was great...we were able to take advantage of the water view without the expense of balcony.
Nassau, Bahamas - Dolphin Encounter was great fun for my son and grandson
Allure of the Seas Allure of the Seas - The Park Café in Central Park is a great place for breakfast and lunch.
Barcelona, Spain - This has become our favorite city. Can't wait to return. We stayed 4 days at the Princesa Sophia Gran Hotel, located close to the Barcelona soccer stadium. Wonderful hotel, great staff, incredible included breakfast buffet, and great location.
Malaga, Spain - Great stop. City was so clean and friendly. Interesting architecture and historical sites.
Tenerife, Canary Islands - Very interesting port. Tenerife is a nice city. We regret not doing an island tour. We did a wine tasting tour instead, and didn't see as much of the island as we would have liked.
Cartagena, Spain - Like Malaga, only smaller. Wonderful tapas restaurants and fun place to people watch. Friendly people.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten - Wonderful port, with great shopping...especially watches and Jewelry. Great beachfront restaurants as well.
Serenade of the Seas Serenade of the Seas - The Park Cafe on deck 11 became our preferred stop for breakfast or a quick snack. It is located in the Solarium, and is less busy than the Windjammer buffet. Isabel, is a gem. She also serves at Chops Grill, and we enjoyed her service immensely.
Navigator of the Seas Navigator of the Seas - The cafe on deck 5 is great fora quick cup of coffee, great sandwiches, pizza, and cookies/pastries. And, they remain open when the buffet and dining room is closed.

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received a helpful vote on their Navigator of the Seas cruise review - Another nice cruise on the Navigator.

checked in for the roll call for Feb 21, 2017 cruise on Voyager of the Seas!

received a helpful vote on their Navigator of the Seas cruise review - Another nice cruise on the Navigator.

received a helpful vote on their Navigator of the Seas cruise review - Another nice cruise on the Navigator.

added Dec 3, 2016 cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas to their profile.

commented on a Explorer of the Seas cruise review. - "You probably shouldn't be eating that much salt anyway! RCCL probably did you a favor. So sorry to hear of your runny noses, too. Next time, pack h..." read more

received a helpful vote on their Allure of the Seas cruise review - First time on the Allure

added Aug 11, 2012 cruise on Carnival Dream to their profile.

received a helpful vote on their Freedom of the Seas cruise review - Another great experience on Royal Caribbean

received a helpful vote on their Freedom of the Seas cruise review - Another great experience on Royal Caribbean