Empress of the Seas (RETIRED) Cruise Review to Bermuda

Contributor Level: Deck Hand

Experience
2-3 cruises

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0

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4 out of 5

A Great Cruise

Sail Date: July 29, 2006

Reviewed: 10 years ago

Traveled As: Family (young children)

Room Type: Oceanview

The Empress of the Seas is a smaller ship which made an interesting contrast to some of the other ships we have been on. It was nice in things like the waiters remembered what drinks you liked (in the bar areas not your dinner waiters_

Pros: The overall service

Cons: Timing on the kids club

Food and Dining
Perhaps because the Empress is small it lacks some of the options and variety that is found on the larger ships. There are 3 basic options - the main dining room, the Windjammer and Portofino which is the Italian restaurant that is available to guests 13 and over and requires reservations. At dinner the Windjammer and the main restaurant generally had the same choices. The main restaurant is very nice and the service is excellent.
Cabin / Stateroom
The staterooms are smaller than on other ships however, the ship has been in service for 16 years so it is not the size of the ships that are setting sail for the first time now. Closet storage is ample however drawer space is very limited. There are shelves available in the staterooms but with 3 people storage was a little short. Our phone didn't work which made it difficult to order room service. Once we reported the phone problem there was a crew member there within 10 minutes (at 11PM) to start trying to fix it.
Ship Quality
The Empress of the Seas is a very nice ship, clean and well taken care of.
Service and Staff
The ships staff is excellent. They made every effort to remember our prefrences -- one waiter in the theater overheard a joking comment I made to my daughter about the color of the umbrella in my drink and went back to the bar and got me the color she had. Then the next night we attended another show and the same waiter saw us coming in remembered the drinks we had had and again brought us extra umbrellas. As silly as that is it made me happy to see that. Another example would be the phone is the stateroom at 11pm they started trying to fix it and were in and out of our room numerous times that night and then the next morning there was a team of people in the hallway all working to fix the phones it was amazing to see them working so hard on this problem.
Entertainment
The shows were excellent. There were plenty of options available every day even in port. Everything I attended or watched seemed to be handled by knowledgeable staff.
Children's Programs
The kids programs were age appropriate and enjoyed by the three children I had signed up. The club is small but seems to make the most of every inch of space that they have. The staff seems to really enjoy what they do. The keep the children busy which is wonderful -- they also try to teach them things in fun ways and they do make it fun. My only complaint is that the hours they are open made it impossible for the other 3 people in my party to take part in certain excursions. Children must be picked up at noon and then they open again from 2pm - 5pm and then from 7pm - 10pm. A four hour excursion that starts at either 8:45am or 1:30pm dosen't fit with their schedule so we either had to forgo the excursion or pay $1.00 per MINUTE of overtime starting at 16 minutes after the closing time. At night, the 10pm pick up can be rolled into the "late night party zone" but that is also an extra charge of $5.00 an hour per kid.
St. George's, Bermuda
Very much enjoyed our experience here. Went to Tobacco Bay which is a small beach.
Don't Miss: Bermuda Aquarium and Zoo, Crystal and Fantasy Caves
Hamilton, Bermuda
Being that we had more time here we were able to do more things. Buy a public transportation pass which is good for ferry's and buses. Its a great way to get around and see things.
Don't Miss: Wednesday nights street fair is a lot of fun.


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