7 Night Mexican Riviera (Los Angeles Roundtrip) Sail Date: December 07, 2008 Ship: Vision of the Seas Cabin Type: Inside Traveled As: Couple Reviewed: 9 years ago
For a 10-year-old ship, it was in excellent shape. Everything was extremely clean and the crew was warm and welcoming at all times. This was our first cruise and we were celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary. We couldn't have chosen a better cruise line or ship. We felt as though we were special despite choosing one of the less expensive staterooms.
Food and Dining
5 out of 5
The dining experience was quite good. My wife and I have enjoyed fine dining all over the world and were pleasantly surprised with the good quality level of the entrees and variety offered. Each day the staff prepared new gourmet dishes for us to enjoy. There were many dining options for us to eat, though larger ships often have a few extra restaurants that the Vision of the Seas didn't have. The service was superb and the wait staff went above and beyond to leave us satisfied.
5 out of 5
My wife and I worked for decades at major Las Vegas Strip hotels. The entertainment on board the Royal Caribbean Vision of the Seas did in fact rival Las Vegas. We saw comedians, singers, dancers, a ventriloquist, a major production show and plenty of smaller bands all over the ship. The activities around the pool and in the lounge are designed for passengers to mingle and get to know each other. Although this was our first cruise, we met dozens of other couples that have 25-50 cruises under their belts. Each and every couple we met said that John Blair, the Cruise Director, is the best in the industry. John was awesome.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Beyond reproach! The wonderful people on board that made the day to day operations run smoothly were always pleasant and friendly. We had a genuine sense that they enjoyed their jobs and wanted us to feel at home. It was great getting to know them and hear their stories. The 795 crew members came from over 50 different countries. They spend 6 months on the ship before going home to see their families for 6 weeks. Then they do it all over again. Despite being away from their families for so long, they seem to enjoy working on the ship. Captain Ingar Neerland seems very proud of the crew under his command.
5 out of 5
The ship, The Vision of the Seas, is 80,000 tons, and the largest ship that can fit through the Panama Canal. Newer ships eclipse the Vision in size and amenities, but we felt that this was a great size; not too small nor too big. The crew knew our names and we were able to get to know MANY of the passengers and have a good time. Any larger and it would have been more formal and impersonal. It was very clean and the layout was easy to learn and navigate. The decor didn't appear to be dated and there were plenty of amenities for us to enjoy. So much, in fact, that we didn't find much time to read our books because we stayed so busy.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
The size of our stateroom was larger than we expected. For a large interior room, we felt very comfortable at all times. It was in great condition and always clean for us. The Hotel Director, Benny Weidacher, went out of his way to make our stay as enjoyable as possible.
It is a nice port, but we were inundated by vendors and boat tour operators for blocks after getting off the water taxi. We found the best response to all of them was to simply say, "No thank you" and continue walking. The food and drinking games at the Giggling Marlin are a must see. It's an easy walk from the pier.
Don't Miss: The Giggling Marlin
We enjoyed a van tour by one of the longest running tour guides - Mazatlan Frank. We saw much of Mazatlan and had time in the afternoon to explore on our own when the tour was over. We booked the tour directly from Frank's website and he was waiting for us when we came off the ship. Google Mazatlan Frank and view the tours he has available.
Don't Miss: Mazatlan Frank's Tour
By far, our favorite port. We booked a tour through "Bike Mex" prior to taking the cruise. The mountain bike tours they provide are as strenuous or relaxing as you want them to be. We wanted to see the real Puerto Vallarta. Oscar, the owner, took us through the agriculture area just outside the downtown area where we stopped and took lots of photos and handed out LOTS of candy to the poor kids in the outskirts. We swam in a river and had lots of great contacts with the locals. It was much better than eating and shopping at the tourist areas. Lots of fun and memories to last a lifetime!
Don't Miss: Bike Mex Tour
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