Labadee

Royal Caribbean completes Adrenaline Beach work in Labadee

In:
Category: 
17Nov2017

After a few months of work, it appears at least some of the beach enhancements at Adrenaline Beach on Royal Caribbean's private destination of Labadee are complete.

RoyalCaribbeanBlog reader twangster shared photos from his visit to Labadee that occured today.

In September 2017 there was construction on the Labadee beach with areas sectioned off by fences.

The work is now complete and they have introduced small bump outs into the water complete with palm trees as a mini-oasis.

There are three such areas under the length of the zip-line.

This side of Labadee faces the Atlantic Ocean and large rocks serve as a break wall to protect from crashing waves

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Each of the three bump outs feature a number of palm trees for shade.

These areas provide a relaxing panoramic view of the water complete with the sound of waves crashing against the rocks to soothe you to sleep as you enjoy a Labradoozie.

Unrelated to Adrenaline Beach, the over the water cabanas at Barefoot Beach are still missing. Those cabanas are missing due to recent hurricane damage.

Comparative look at damage to Labadee cabana hurricane damage

In:
Category: 
09Oct2017

Hurricane Irma caused some damage to the cabanas at Barefoot Beach, and we have a look at the exact nature of what has changed.

Luckily the noticable damage from the hurricane was mostly relegated to some cabanas on Barefoot Beach, which is the Suites only area.

Royal Caribbean Blog reader twangster took photos of the damage on an October 2017 cruise, which we can compare to photos of Barefoot Beach from last year.

Here is a photo taken from Oasis of the Seas in October 2016. The impacted Cabanas are highlighted.

A similar photo from Harmony of the Seas taken October 2017.

Here are some close ups of the those Cabanas from October 2016. Note the concrete stairs between the over water Cabanas for water access, that will be shown later in another photo.

In this photo, you can see the railings of the stairs used for direct access to the water.

Here is what is left of the same area, October 2017.

Anchored in the bay of Labadee off Columbus Cove there was a work barge full of sand that is being used to replenish the beaches.

25 tips for a great day at Royal Caribbean's Labadee

In:
29Aug2017

Royal Caribbean's private destination of Labadee in Haiti has been a popular cruise destination for many years, and whether you are planning a day for the first time or fifteenth time, it seems like there is so much to see and do.

We decided to share our top tips for the best things to see, do, eat, and explore on Labadee.

1. Labadee is quite beautiful when you see it in person and via photos, but underneath that gorgeous blue water are some rocks.  You should consider buying water shoes to use in Labadee (and other beach stops during your cruise).  Water shoes are easy to pack, fairly inexpensive, and make exploring the underwater world of Labadee super easy.  It also makes getting around Labadee, both on land and in the water, simpler and easier.

For adults, try the Aleader brand water shoes for men and women because not only do they protect your feet, they also do not look like typical water shoes.  For the kids, try the Northside Brille II Water Shoe for girls and the Aleader Boys Water Shoes.

2. There is no need to worry about being hungry on Labadee, because Royal Caribbean provides lunch on the island at three different locations.  Lunch on Labadee consists of salads, burgers, hot dogs, chicken and more freshly prepared food.  Lunch begins serving at 11:00am.

3. Just like onboard your Royal Caribbean ship, the SeaPass card is the primary method of purchasing things on Labadee.  The only exception are the craft markets, where locals sell items to you.  It is probably a good idea to bring a little bit of cash with you, but your SeaPass card works in most places too.

4. The premier attraction in Labadee is the Dragon's Breath Flight Line.  From the mountaintop launch point, guests glide down the zip line over the ocean at speeds of 40 to 50 mph.  It is not just a fun thrill, but also provides the best view of Labadee available.

5. If you are interested in having some extra privacy, or cushier accommodations in Labadee, then you should consider renting a cabana or beach bungalow.  Each provides a secluded spot for you and your family to enjoy.  Guests can reserve a cabana or beach bungalow before their cruise, by visiting Royal Caribbean's Cruise Planner.  They can also be rented once onboard the ship, but they tend to rent quickly.

6. If cabanas or bungalows are a bit out of your price range, beach beds and beach loungers are two inexpensive rental options that also provide a more comfortable day in Labadee.

7. If you are looking for a bit of nature, be sure to check out the nature trails, located throughout Labadee.  Labadee has a lot of natural beauty to behold and walking around will give you a good sense of the layout of the beaches as well as an appreciation for the natural wonders. Be sure to bring your camera.

8. Columbus Cove is the least crowded beach in Labadee, but can be a far walk to get to.  Look for a complimentary ferry ride that takes guests from the dock that your cruise ship is docked at, and brings you right to Columbus Cove.  Not only is it quick and convenient, but it provides a beautiful view of Labadee.

9. If you need to get around Labadee without walking, Royal Caribbean provides a complimentary shuttle service that takes guests all along the middle of Labadee.  There are clearly marked tram stations, where you can grab the next shuttle.

10. Young children may find a lot of fun at the Adventure Ocean Oasis, located roughly in the middle of Adrenaline Beach.  This is a splash pad area, with fountains, geysers, and buckets of water spraying everywhere.  It can be the perfect spot for children to play, and for you to cool off.

11. Speaking of Adventure Ocean, Royal Caribbean's award-winning children's programming, Adventure Ocean, will be open while the ship is docked in Labadee.  This can be a great option for adults who want to take in an excursion, but need supervision for their children.

12. Your Royal Caribbean drink packages will work while in Labadee, just like they do onboard the ship.

13. Kids (and those young at heart) will gravitate towards Arawak Aqua Park, which is an aqua park in Columbus Cove. There, you will find floating trampolines, pyramids and water slides.

14. There is also the Dragon's Splash Waterslide located nearby to the Aqua park and features a 300-foot slide that drops you into a 18-foot splash zone.

15. Royal Caribbean provides two major spots to do some shopping in Labadee: the Artisan Market and the Artisan Village. The Market is more of a store, with pre-set prices and offering hand-made goods. The Village is more of an open air market, where guests are expected to haggle with the vendors. Keep in mind that both places take cash only.

16. A day in Labadee offers a lot, but you will want to pack water resistant sunscreen, hats and sunglasses for a day in Labadee. You may also consider bringing your camera, beach toys, and other fun options.  If you forget something in your stateroom, you can always go back and get it!

Consumer Reports recommends two sunscreens that are great for use at the beach. If you prefer a lotion, try the Coppertone Water Babies SPF 50.  If spray sunscreen is more your style, the Neutrogena Beach Defense Water + Sun Protection SPF 70 received high marks.

17. Barefoot Beach is reserved for guests residing in Grand Suites and above.  It is an exclusive perk for suite guests, and the only area in Labadee where all guests cannot go.  If you happen to be staying in a suite, Barefoot Beach is a great choice for the smaller crowds.  Plus, there is an exclusive lunch buffet reserved just for suite guests.

18. Labadee itself has an interesting past. It was named after the marquis de La Badie, a Frenchman who first settled the area in the 17th century. The peninsula was named Labadie, although Royal Caribbean spells it "Labadee" to make it easier for English-speakers to pronounce.

19. There is a swim-up bar at Adrenaline Beach, where guests can wade through the ocean to the bar, climb up and order and enjoy a drink.

20. If you are looking for other fun excursions in Labadee, consider parasailing, renting a jet ski, deep sea fishing, or even taking a ride on the alpine coaster.  All can be reserved prior to your cruise, via the Cruise Planner.

21. The official drink of Labadee is a Labadoozie.  It is a fruit concoction, that is served with rum.  You can order them without rum as a cold treat for kids.

22. Royal Caribbean added in 2016 a DreamWorks photo safari excursion, which might be a great family activity on Labadee. There are two excursions to choose from, both of which include a DreamWorks photo safari for kids to enjoy.

23. A good way to stay hydrated is to bring bottled water with you to Labadee. There are water fountains around Labadee, but the convenience of having water bottles is a great perk.  Bottled water is included with the Deluxe and Refreshment packages.

24. There are not many of them, but towards the interior of Labadee you can find hammocks to enjoy.  Go early if you want to grab one.

25. Read the Labadee map before you arrive to get a basic understanding of where things are located, how to get to the area you want, and get a good understanding of what is available in Labadee.  All too often, we spot guests arriving in Labadee that are unaware of where things are located.

Royal Caribbean plans beach enhancements at private destination of Labadee

In:
Category: 
07Aug2017

Royal Caribbean announced new beach enhancements for its private destination of Labadee, that will begin this month.

Adrenaline Beach will be undergoing a beach enhancement, beginning on August 14, 2017. The footprint and quality of the beach and surrounding areas will be nourished. In addition, reef balls will be added to increase the tranquility of the water and to provide exciting new marine habitats and snorkeling paths for cruise line guests.

Work will take place in four phases from August 14th through October 2017. Work will not take place when guests are on the island.

During the enhancement, some beach bungalows may be have obstructed views. Please note that the lounge chairs at Adrenaline beach will still be available.

The surrounding beach will be unaffected and will remain open for guest’s enjoyment.

UPDATE: We noticed on Royal Caribbean's Labadee map that Adrenaline Beach cabanas are listed, which would be a new addition.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean adds new swim-up bar in Labadee

In:
Category: 
18Apr2017

Royal Caribbean has opened up a new floating bar for guests to enjoy at its private destination in Haiti, known as Labadee.

The new floating bar is located at Adrenaline Beach, and is surrounded by water. Guests simply walk through the ocean to the bar, climb up and order and enjoy a drink. Royal Caribbean Blog reader Sebastian Söderström shared these photos, from his recent cruise stop on Independence of the Seas.

The floating bar is located underneath the zip line, which should provide for some fun views as guests enjoy a beverage at the bar.

Royal Caribbean added a floating bar to its other private destination, CocoCay in the Bahamas, last summer and has become quite popular with guests.

Do you want to try this bar on your next cruise stop in Labadee? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

Barefoot Beach Cabanas on Royal Caribbean's Labadee

In:
06Mar2017

Barefoot Beach on Royal Caribbean's private destination of Labadee is a private beach that is reserved for suite guests and Pinnacle Crown and Anchor Society members, and it includes a variety of cabanas to compliment a day at this exclusive beach.

In addition to the cabanas at Nellie's Beach, Barefoot Beach cabanas are available for an additional cost for guests to reserve. Guests may reserve cabanas at Barefoot Beach via the Concierge or via the Excursions desk onboard. These cabanas are provided on a first-come, first-served basis.

There are three kinds of cabanas available for rent at Barefoot Beach

  • Standard ($295 per cabana)
  • Hilltop ($395 per cabana)
  • Over the water ($495 per cabana)
  • Beachfront ($395 per cabana)

Barefoot beach cabana layout map

Standard cabanas are in the main part of the beach, surrounded by trees and hammocks. They are ideal for guests who desire easy access to the beach and other activities in port of Labadee. These cabanas are wheelchair accessible; guests will need to able to climb 2 steps.

Hilltop cabanas offer breathtaking views of Labadee and the ship, providing excellent picture opportunities and a quiet environment to relax away from the crowd. These are the most private cabanas. They are not wheelchair accessible and guests need to climb a full flight of stairs and walk across uneven surfaces to gain access.

Over the water cabanas are in a premium location above the ocean, with direct access to the water and beach. These cabanas are not wheelchair accessible, and guests will need to walk in the water and up the stairs to get to the cabana.

Beachfront cabanas are next to the beach at the waters edge with full views of the bay. They are not wheelchair accessible, however guests with limited mobility may access them.

Cabana reservations are for the entire day in Labadee, and charges are per cabana and not per person. Each cabana can accommodate a maximum of up to 6 guests and includes a variety of benefits

  • Dedicated cabana attendant service
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Complimentary snorkel gear
  • Complimentary water floating mats
  • Upgraded private BBQ buffet access
  • golf cart service to anywhere on Labadee

Upgrade buffet available to Barefoot Beach guests only

Barefoot Beach bar

Spotted: Labadoozie Tiki mugs on Labadee

In:
Category: 
11Feb2017

No visit to Royal Caribbean's private destination of Labadee is complete without the official drink of this oasis, the Labadoozie. And now, Royal Caribbean is offering new tiki cups that will let you toast to good times in style.

Thanks to Melinda for sharing these photos!

This new cup design is available as a souvenir cup and sold at many locations in Labadee. The cups come filled with a Labadoozie, and cost $15.28 with alcohol, or $10.18 without alcohol.

Like all souvenir cups, these are not included in any Royal Caribbean drink package, but can be purchased a la carte with the SeaPass card.

Do you like these tiki cups? Will you buy one on your next visit? Share your thoughts in our comments!

Six fun things to do in Labadee other than sitting at the beach

In:
Category: 
21Jan2017

Everyone loves a good beach day, but sometimes you want to branch out and, to borrow a phrase from a past Royal Caribbean marketing campaign, get out there. Royal Caribbean's private destination of Labadee is well-known for its amazing beaches and serenity, but for those that want a little more active fun, here are some suggestions for what to do on your next visit there.

Ride the longest zip line over water

As soon as you step foot onto Labadee, you will likely notice the zip line cables extending down from the top of a nearby mountain, which seems to draw many guests who want to experience it for themselves.

The Dragon's Breath zip line takes you 500 feet above the beach as you reach speeds of 40-50 miles per hour. The zip line is 2,600 feet long and begins atop lookout mountain, and will take you above the ocean and land.

Arawak Aqua Park

If your idea of a good time is jumping, falling and canon-balling into the ocean off giant inflatable objects, then Arawak Aqua Park is perfect for you.  While there is plenty of time spent in the water, unlike a day at the beach, this aqua park is all about expending a ton of energy in this fun marine playground.

Floating trampolines, pyramids and water slides await you as you jump, climb and splash to your heart's content. It is fun for kids and adults who want to keep cool while having a lot of fun while enjoying picture-perfect views of the turquoise sea around you.

Parasail

To get a full appreciation of Labadee's natural beauty, one needs to go about 400 feet in the air on an exciting parasailing adventure.

Going up in a parasail provides one of the best views of Labadee, your Royal Caribbean ship, and the surrounding area. Guests take a scenic journey to the parasailing area, where they fly in tandem high above Labadee.  Without a doubt, you will not find another view like this one.

Jet Ski

Anytime I think of jet skiing in Labadee, I am reminding of this classic Royal Caribbean television commercial.

Regardless of your nostalgia, a jet ski ride is the perfect way for anyone that wants to take a high-speed adventure through the waters of Labadee.  This is great for anyone that wants to indulge their sense of adventure and enjoy Labadee's natural beauty with the wind in their hair.

Deep sea fishing

Did you know you can go fishing while in Labadee? Royal Caribbean provides a 3-hour fishing voyage off the coast of Labadee, where your Captain takes you in search of saltwater fish to catch.

Guests embark on a 25.5 foot boat for an opportunity to try to find and reel in various large fish, such as marlin, tuna, wahoo and mahi mahi. 

Alpine Coaster

Located 680 feet up on Santa Maria’s lookout mountain, you will find the Dragon's Tail roller coaster, which is an alpine coaster.  You may have seen these sort of rides at some ski resorts during the summer months. 

Essentially it is a single car vehicle that races down a track at 30 miles per hour and features 360-degree turns as well as dips, waves and curves, you can catch glimpses of the ocean.

Royal Caribbean provides update on damage to CocoCay and Labadee from Hurricane Matthew

In:
08Oct2016

Ever since Hurricane Matthew passed through the Caribbean, many Royal Caribbean fans have been concerned about what damage the storm had on the cruise line's private destinations.  Royal Caribbean CEO Michael Bayley shared an update with guests aboard Allure of the Seas.

Thanks to Kathy Van Wormer Sanders for sharing this letter

Here is the excerpt from the letter regarding Labadee, "In Haiti, the area near Cap Haitien that is home to Labadee was thankfully spared the worst of the storm.  Our staff was able to remain onsite throughout the week and is making sure the facility is in a clean and safe condition.  The school we operate for local children was closed for several days but class will be back in session next week."

In regards to CocoCay, there were fewer details that Bayley shared, "There are fewer details to share yet in the Bahamas, but he need will no doubt be great, and we will do all we can to assist.  We are in contact with the Bahamian government to understand their most urgent needs and how we can help."

Royal Caribbean is also providing aid and supplies to the people of Haiti, as outlined by Bayley in the letter, "Together with our longtime NGO partner, the Pan-American Development Foundation (PADF), we are already providing relief supplies to affected areas near Port-au-Prince, and have established a matching fund for contributions.  PADF is using our seed money to purchase tarps, water, rice and beans for areas hit by the storm.  There's good news, in that hospitals are operating, but that means medical supplied will be needed soon.  We have also sent trucks with mattresses, sheets and blankets to some hard hit areas, and our ships will also be dropping off supplies."

Royal Caribbean is actively working on providing ways for its guests to donate to help support these efforts, "We expect to have our relief plans for the region fully shaped in the next few days, including ways guests can help."

If you would like to donate towards the rebuilding efforts, consider a donation to the Help Haiti Now effort by PADF.

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