A little disappointing

Ovation of the Seas Cruise Review to Hawaii

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 30

Overall rating:

4 out of 5
Ovation of the Seas

11 Night Hawaii Northbound (Honolulu To Vancouver)

Sail date: May 02, 2019

Ship: Ovation of the Seas

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 10246

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

A little disappointed overall due to itinerary changes (didn't really feel like the HAWAIIAN cruise we originally signed up for), main dining room quality of food, and felt lack of organization related to The Key benefits, photo pre-purchase, and tendering. At the end of the day, any vacation is a good vacation, but it didn't quite live up to our expectations based on previous Royal Caribbean experiences.


4 out of 5
Quick and easy embarkation, though it was odd getting on and not sailing away until the next day.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
Main dining room experience was very disappointing - food quality was poorer than past cruises, and some food was cold. Specialty restaurants were fantastic, and buffets and room service were as expected.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
played on ping pong, foosball & air hockey tables - no wait. Waits for other activities were typically long. Was able to make a reservation for North Star, but only on a cruising day, which left little to see. Hot tubs weren't really very hot, but we spent quite a bit of time in the Solarium ones. Solarium deck chairs were usually all occupied or "reserved" from sun-up to sun-down.


3 out of 5
As expected, but we didn't attend the main shows (Pixels, Live, Love, Legs, etc). Saw Pandora's Box Aerosmith cover band (just ok), the comedian (very funny), and a few other bands. Paul O'Shea piano bar performances were very energetic - he's incredibly charismatic and entertaining (really draws a crowd).

Children's Programs

Did not cruise with children

Service and Staff

4 out of 5
Staff members were all very friendly and passionate about their work. Bar staff was exceptional at North Star bar (Sony, Manoj & Baptista). Daillon (Room Steward) was so friendly and helpful. Wait staff in main dining room (Chic) were friendly, but chastised us repeatedly for missing dinner when we had conflicting activities or selected Specialty Dining - not very professional.

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
We were very impressed with the cleanliness of this ship - cleanest we've ever sailed on! Design-wise, it was VERY frustrating to have the walking/jogging track on the deck where people are milling about, lying in deck chairs or trying to watch the movie. I'm not a jogger, but you could see how frustrating it was to have people constantly in the way, moving about in all directions.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
Cabin was as expected - lots of storage (love the storage bins above the bed!) A little odd to have pot for hot tea in the room, but no coffee.

Ship tip

Make reservations ahead of time for everything from Specialty Dining to activities - all filled up very quickly.

Ports of call

Honolulu, Oahu

4 out of 5
Honolulu is beautiful. Visited Waikiki Beach / shopping area and toured Pearl Harbor. USS Arizona Memorial was closed so it was disappointing not to see that during our tour. Due to coast guard security check, it was odd to embark but not sail away the same day.

Cruise Kilauea Volcano Did not visit port

Was removed from itinerary, though we were not notified of the change

Lahaina, Maui

4 out of 5
Charming town, but would have really liked to have had enough time to see more of Maui like Hana, which was too far away given the time we had. Tendering was a nightmare!

Victoria, British Columbia

5 out of 5
Didn't know what to expect at this port, but was very pleasantly surprised. Victoria is a very charming destination. Butchart Gardens is a MUST-SEE (especially in early May as things are in full bloom); just allow yourself enough time b/c the shore excursion tour didn't give us enough time to see it all. In our opinion, Craigdarroch Castle can be missed, as far as we are concerned. Victoria is a destination we'd like to go back to explore more!

Vancouver (Canada Place), British Columbia

4 out of 5
Arrived night before disembarkation, so we were able to get off the ship to see the city. Was nice.


5 out of 5
We had "The Key", so disembarkation was very easy. We enjoyed a delicious breakfast, and then proceeded to the stairs next to the Shore Excursions deck and walked right off of the boat. Our luggage (again tagged as "The Key" was in the first section as soon as we got off. We grabbed our luggage and proceeded right to the airport transfer area where we walked right onto the bus with no wait.
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