Grandeur of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Eastern

Contributor Level: Third Mate

Experience
1 cruise (first)

Review
1

Helpful Votes
8

3 out of 5

LONG CRUISE, SMALL SHIP

Sail Date: January 06, 2015

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Traveled As: Family (older children)

Room Type: Inside

My family and I enjoyed the cruise overall, but there are some elements that we didn't expect to have issue with.  Leaving from Baltimore puts you at sea for 2.5 days heading to Labadee, Haiti and then 3 days on the return trip to Baltimore.  Grandeur of the Seas is a fairly small ship, and we quite frankly ran out of things to do.  There were shows and trivia in the bars/lounges and of course the casino, but you can only keep entertained with these things for so long.  Most of the entertainment was geared towards a senior crowd (75% of the passengers), which myself, my husband, and 2 teenage daughters found to be a bit boring. We couldn't go up onto the pool deck because of the temps the first day and a half and last two days, so we were searching for something to do within the ship.  The staff and crew was amazing, and they were the highlight of the cruise.  Always accommodating and going out of their way to chat with us and keep us entertained.  The food was great, but I wouldn't recommend going to any of the specialty restaurants that are an extra charge - the food was comparable to what you are served in the main dining room each night.  Drinks were strong, which isn't a bad thing, but we are not quite sure that we drank enough to offset what we paid for the drink package. I would HIGHLY recommend that you sign up for excursions that get you out of the ports of call.  The ports are bombarded with locals trying to sell you stuff and you don't really get to see any of the landmarks, beautiful scenery, or natural areas of any of the destinations.  It is worth the extra money to get on a catamaran, a tour, something to get you out of the port.  In St. Thomas, we went on the 'Fast Cat Snorkeling and Honeymoon Beach Catamaran'  I would give that one 5 stars every day of the week.   Overall - we were on vacation in the Caribbean, so  I can't complain too much.  If you are going to spend the money on a cruise, spend the money to fly to Florida and get on a bigger ship.  Grandeur of the Seas is not the ship unless you enjoy a smaller ship and can self-entertain.   

Ship Quality
Ship was outdated and you could see the wear and tear in different places.
Food and Dining
Great food, never went hungry. Drinks were strong.
Service and Staff
Joyappa and Diego in the Great Gatsby dining room and our housekeeper in room 3007. He was awesome and took great care of us. Marky Mark from Upstate NY was amazing, he always went out of his way to chat with us and make sure we were having fun!
Entertainment
Some entertainment was awesome - trivia and poolside activities. Shows in the Palladium were a bit boring.
Children's Programs
Onboard Activities
Destinations and Excursions
St. Thomas is the only one that I would go back to. The ports are flooded with locals trying to sell their goods, and you don't get to see any natural, historical, or scenic places while in port. It's all about shopping :(
Cabin / Stateroom
There was a constant 'banging' in the room, almost like pipes were rattling or something. It kept us up at night. In 1 of the 3 rooms my family had, there was a pole running down the middle of the room for utilities that had to be worked around.
Baltimore, Maryland
It was efficient and well organized to board and disembark the ship
Labadee (Cruiseline Private Island)
Beautiful location. Great beach. Vendors were pushy and scary. Don't go into 'vendor alley' - stay on the beach.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Get ready to walk through Old San Juan. Don't have time to go to a beach.
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas
St. Thomas is beautiful and there is so much to see! Book excursions and see as much as you can while you are there! Very clean and hospitable.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten
Let off in a dumpy shopping district. Locals were pushy and in your face. Beach was ok, but dirty.

Tip

We had 'My Time Dining' and still ended up with the same wait staff each night in the Gatsby - which was awesome. Bring a book or two to read to keep yourself entertained. Wi-fi, even though purchased on board, did not work. Don't waste your money. You get cell service in Puerto Rico.



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