Welcome home to me and goodbye to the “Allure of the Seas”!
We cruised on the new: “Allure of the Seas”, the newer of two ships that are Royal Caribbean’s latest and greatest “Oasis” class vessels. This massive new class of ship sports over 225,000 tons of love, thousands of crew members and over 6000 passengers to mingle with while at port or sea. We found her to be a bonafide modern marvel that blew our expectations and minds right out of the clear blue Caribbean waters. Aside from being a beautiful and unique ship, the Allure offered boundless Vegas class entertainment, tons of “Dream Works” characters running around allowing photo opportunities for the young and old alike. Live shows and parades featuring Shrek, Fiona, Kung Fu Panda, the Penguins of Madagascar and the rest of those casts went on during the entire trip, fun for all.
Right out of the chute, Royal Caribbean is giving Disney and their theme cruise ships one hell of a run for their over priced money. As far as I’m concerned, Disney may as well start packing and tuck Donald and Mickey’s tail between their legs and run. The Oasis and Allure ships are newer, bigger, better and bolder, not to mention much less expensive to cruise on, serious competition to say the least. The Allure and her sister ship Oasis also offer the most technologically advanced cruising experience available in the world at this time. All the techno wizardly stuff was truly beneficial to the experience as a whole and was seamlessly integrated into everything from the flat screen interactive displays inside the staterooms and throughout the ship to the controlled lighting and sound that created artificial ambiance that set any mood that the ships cruise directors desired you to feel anywhere and at any given time, you have to see it and feel it to believe it. Suffice it to say that this was the greatest cruise experience of our lives. Thank You Royal Caribbean!
What about the food?
The food was really good. I would love to say great but that would be a stretch if everything is being considered as a whole. The dining room fare was typical cruise ship, a bit of hit or miss with a few shining moments, our service was beyond reproach. We did choose to dine at the specialty restaurant “150 Park Central”. At $40 a head is was well worth the price and we will dine here in the future if we cruise this ship again. The menu was pre-set which was a totally new experience for us all. My Sister and brother in- law are vegetarians and the chef accommodated them by modifying their dishes without complaint or condition, nice. We all felt like a million bucks at the end of the service, the wait team that served us really did their best to make it a special dining experience, the food was off the hook avant-garde and delicious. Without missing a beat everyone at out table exclaimed that this venue provided us all with the finest dining experience of our lives to date. Thumbs up again RC…..well done!
The main eatery was at the Windjammer. This buffet-dining room was always crowded with many ill mannered people who would fight for a seat, bump unapologetically or cut lines to get at the last morsel. We did dine here on a few occasions but avoided it for the most part because of the above. I couldn’t find fault with the staff at the Windjammer, considering what they must deal with on a daily basis they are my heroes and were the finest crew I have ever seen working in a Royal Caribbean Windjammer dining room. The real problem lies in passengers with no manners coupled with space and seating that should have been larger, a recipe for disaster. How the staff managed to maintain cleanliness, calm and keep a smile during the chaos blew me away, I would have gone postal and lost it in one day! Props to the staff. The sad part about all of this is the fact that the food in the Windjammer was surprisingly good with an eclectic mix of offerings from around the world. I especially enjoyed the Indian foods and the killer soups, there was something new every time we were here and always something for everyone. As far as soups go, a great soup has always been hard for me to find on a cruise ship, thankfully not the case on the Allure. I had some of the finest crab and asparagus soup among many others that have ever touched my lips. To list all the soups sampled would take too much time so let’s just say they were all great with tons of flavor and all with a homemade touch. Well done once again RC!
There were many other free dining venues such as the Park Café that whipped up fresh, made to order Panini’s and the most delectable roast beef sandwiches my wife and I have ever had. The ship even has a “Dog House” that had amazing sausages that are worldly variations of the venerable Vienna. My wife and I have never had a hot dog on a cruise, this was the exception and we wouldn’t think twice about doing it again on our next trip. We never quite made it into Rita’s Cantina for the Mexican fare or Johnny Rockets for all American staples but plan to on our next visit as we heard some positive feedback from fellow cruisers. Seven day’s was not enough time to sample it all; we should have done a back to back!
When will be our next cruise on the Allure? Dunno, we might try the Oasis next year just to mix it up a bit. The first thing we need to do though is to get Johnny and SoupA-Libre to commit. My family and friends had a blast but having the SoupAday crew along for the next one is something that just has to happen.
Thanks for continuing to follow our adventures on SoupAday.com. The best is yet to come!
Ovvverrrrr Nnnn Out!
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