Jewel of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Contributor Level: Third Mate

4-6 cruises


Helpful Votes

2 out of 5

Why I will probably not cruise Royal Caribbean again.

Sail Date: June 14, 2014

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Oceanview

(1)  We reserved our hotel near the "normal" cruise ship docks, but RC docked on the other side of the city, costing us excessive taxi fares.  (2) There were virtually no water fountains on the ship.  There was one in the fitness center, but after the first day, it carried an inop sign.  When we purchased bottles of water to quench our thirst, they charged an additional gratuity fee in addition to the one we paid in our original contract.  (3)  In the daily bulletin, they stated that no shorts, tank tops, etc. could be worn at the evening meal in the Windjammer, (the buffet).  Fortunately most passengers ignored this.  (4)  The ballroom dancing was very inadequate or undesireable.  They had two good bands, but always relegated them to the Centrum which had very inadequate seating as well as being a heavily trafficked area  of the ship, which made dancing almost impossible because of auxillary traffic through that area.  They had several night club type venues that would have been very good for this, but they had less important functions going on in these or they were idle.  (5)  Some of the fitness machines needed some maintenance.  (6) The meeting with the captain and other officers of the ship was excellent, except for the cruise director.  When registering our complaints with her, she just responded with, "I'm sorry".  (7)  Some of the auditorium performances were good, others were not.  Also the timing of the stage performances seemed to be such that we had to miss other functions or dinner. (8)  Our room attendant was very good, but we have never had a bad room attendant on any of our other cruises.  We normally cruise on Norwegian.

Ship Quality
Food and Dining
The executive chef was from India, and his preferences were somewhat exhibited in the choices of food.
Service and Staff
Every employee ce encountered was very cordial, except the cruise director, who was not quite to my liking.
Some of the stage entertainment was good, but two were not worth the effort.
Children's Programs We had no children in our entourage.
Onboard Activities
We were not real pleased with the on board activities, such as the ballroom dancing. The beautiful and large Vortex lounge was reserved for disco dancing at some hour. That would have been a great venue for ballroom dancing.
Destinations and Excursions
We enjoyed our shore tours, however two of them were a bit strenous for some of the older/oveerweight folks. The distance they had to walk to board the shuttles was excessive for a few folks.
Cabin / Stateroom
The cabin attendant was excellent, and deserved an extra gratuity.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
We enjoyed San Juan a lot except for Royal Caribbean being at the other (Pan American) port which cost us excessive taxi fare.
Philipsburg, St. Maarten
Since we have been to St Maarten several times, we did not buy a tour here.
Basseterre, St. Kitts
We bought the narrow gauge train tour that circled the island. This was excellent, except we had to endure a lot of exhaust odors from the engine.
St. John's, Antigua
This was an interesting tour, but we did not receive our free drink that was promised!
Castries, St. Lucia
St Lucia was great. Our tour took us to various parts of the island, and particularly to the Pitons, that are almost always pictured of St. Lucia. We endured a little bit strenous hike up to heaven (as they said), but it was good exercise.
Bridgetown, Barbados
We just went ashore on our own, and just exlored Bridgetown . We did some shopping here.


There was a nice circular bar near the pool, that served only drinks. On Norwegian, that same venue was a "standup or takeaway eatery". On a particular evening what they were serving in one of the cover charge restaurants was the same as in the buffet. I'll take the buffett any day!

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