This was our first cruise and we were not quite sure what to expect. To our delight, we had a fantastic trip. We stayed at the Sheridan Hotel and were able to register in the lobby the morning of our cruise. We then took our baggage to the port and then returned our rental car and took the shuttle back to the port. We went right in and picked up our sail and sign card and waited in a 10-minute line to board the ship as they were taking pictures of everyone arriving. We then went to our cabin, which was about 9 ft by 11 ft. We had a cabin with a window and the steward moved our beds together. It was adequate for the little amount of time we spent in our room! Each night our bed was turned down with a chocolate and a newsletter which outlined the activities for the next day. The food was wonderful and we especially liked being at the same table every day and having the same waiter. We never had to wait in line. We just went to our table at our assigned seating time. Our waiter took great care of us and anything we wished, he tried to provide. They have activities for everyone. If you don't drink or want sodas they have free, ice water, lemonade, fruit juice, and various juices. Each evening you have the option to have your picture taken. You are under no obligation to buy the pictures. We found that it was very nice to have a couple of professional pictures taken. The gratuities were something that we worried about. They automatically take $9.75 US per person per day for gratuities. After being there we felt that this was a great deal as they worked hard for their tips! We would have appreciated knowing beforehand that the countries we visited were an hour behind the ship time. In the Grand Cayman, many people hurried off the ship early, around 7:30 AM only to find out that it was only 6:30AM there and the shops did not open until 9:00 or 10:00AM, leaving you with nothing to do. After taking a tour of 3 hours it did not leave us much time to really get a good look at Grand Cayman, as we had to be back to the ship by 4:30PM. It would be nice to have a little longer in port. They have many games going on and it is a good idea to get to those early as they give free stuff away and you only have a chance to get the stuff if you sit on the first few rows. We mostly enjoyed the entertainment. They were very loud and we wished that they would turn the mike down so we could hear the words. We went to every show in the evening, except for the late night comedy. With the exception of one, they were first rate. They have excellent exercise equipment and a jogging track on the top deck. They have pools, a water slide, hot tubs, ping pong tables, shuffelboard and volleyball. Movies played in our rooms all day and night and they changed them 3 times during the cruise. Also on TV, you could listen to previous lectures later on in the evening if you missed it during the day. The first formal night was very formal. Most of the women were wearing formal to the ground formals. Many of the men wore suits but the women were really dressed up! I was particularly worried about getting seasick. We had one rough evening at sea and I did not get seasick at all. In fact, most of the time I totally forgot that I was on a ship and felt like I was in Las Vegas. To disembark, we thought that it would be a madhouse. It was very orderly and it took no time at all. We were on the bottom, the Riveria floor, and we were last. We were off the ship by 10:15AM that morning. We had a wonderful trip and are already planning on taking another cruise. We were treated like royalty by everyone. It seemed like even the passengers were on their best behavior because everyone was nice to everyone no matter what nationality.
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