Oasis of the Seas Live Blog

Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Day 5 - Sea Day

In:
03Apr2015

I woke up early, well early for me on vacation, at 7:30AM and quickly changed for the pool deck.  I'm pleased to the sun finally came out!

I was so excited, but sad to see all the beach chairs were all taken again.  I was thinking, what time to these people come out here? After seeing chairs with towels in them for an hour I asked the pool attendant to remove their belongings, which he did.

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Moving into the early afternoon the pool deck was packed and everyone was having such a fun time.  

Lunch at Johnny Rockets

For lunch today we all went to the boardwalk for some burgers and fries.  The cover charge here is $5.95pp and everything is included.

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I always get the smokehouse burger and lots of fries and onion rings.  One of the waiters recognized me from the last time I was on board, so that's always fun catching up.   Now I'm going to share one of my secrets about cruising with Royal, the apple pie desert at Johnny Rockets is the best you will find period.  I discovered this many years ago, and always make sure I grab a piece or two.  

Afternoon on board

After lunch I went back to the pool deck for a few more hours of sunshine. 

The band had made an appearance playing the typical poolside Caribbean jams.  I do like on the other class ships, the band is right beside the pool.  

On Oasis class there are 4 large pools on the top deck and the band is in the middle of them.  They have the H2O Zone for the children, the sports pool for pool games, the main pool, and the beach pool. 

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The beach pool is my favorite pool, because they have tables and umbrellas.  

Evening - Formal Night

Tonight was our second formal night so we all got cleaned up for a perfect evening.  It does not take me long to get ready, so I headed to the diamond lounge for the first time. 

Since all my travel partners were not diamond I only went for one cocktail.  They had some snacks out, but I passed on them trying saving room for lobster night.

My group all met up in Vintages for some wine and taps.  They had free taps available tonight, with cheese and grapes.  The decor in this venue is absolutely beautiful, and very intimate. 

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Dinner - Main Dining Room

I'm going to be honest I tried to talk my group out of the dining room tonight, but I'm glad they didn't listen.  The service was absolutely outstanding, we asked them to speed the service up so we could make the 70s party. 

My brother ordered the chops steak for $16.95 and we actually thought it was better than the other night in Chops.  My lobster was so good my waiter brought me another without even asking. 

It was nice to have some lobster again, because I sail on Enchantment a lot and they don't serve lobster on the weekend sailing. 

Evening Actives 

After dinner we rushed to the room to change clothes for the 70's Street Party on the Royal Promenade at 10PM. 

There is a lot of singing and dancing, and it was a blast.  The dancing lasted until 11:00.   Then we explored the ships in and out of venues looking for live music. Well on the Oasis that’s not very hard to find since there are so many options.  We explored the pub and Jazz on 4. 

But the best entertainment of the evening goes to the comedy show at midnight.  They had two lines once we arrived those who had reservations and those without, I don’t think anyone got in without RSVP so be sure to book ahead.  The comedy show is very intimate show since only around 100 people are in there and you get the chance to interact with the comedians. 

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The jokes are very adult rated, so no kids here. 

Shortly after the show we called it a night and rested up for our day in Cozumel tomorrow!  Hope y’all are enjoying as much as I am sharing.  

Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Day 4 - Falmouth

In:
01Apr2015

Royal Caribbean Blog contributor Michael Poole is on Oasis of the Seas this week reporting all about his cruise experience.

Good morning from beautiful Jamaica! 

I didn’t have any set plans today, so we thought we would do a little shopping around the pier and then head to the beach. 

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For those who have not visited Falmouth, Royal Caribbean has spent millions on this brand new pier for their ships to visit.  The pier is the nicest I’ve ever seen, but you are limited it activates if you don’t wish to go outside the closed in area. 

My girlfriend shopped around and I went to Jimmy Buffet’s Margaretville, for the classic Jamaican beer – Red Strip.  These were $6 each and included just steps away on board, so I just had two. 

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After about an hour of shopping I was ready to head over to Red Strip Beach and then it happened…it started down pouring once again.   This is so frustrating, but what can you do?  We decided to go back on and enjoy some hot tub time, has anyone noticed this is becoming a trend? 

Afternoon on board Oasis of The Seas

This afternoon my girlfriend and I went down to the pub for some pints.  Since she does not have the drink package, she used her Crown & Anchor BOGO coupon on a Stella. 

The ship was mostly empty, so I guess every decided to wing it in the rain and stay in Jamaica.  After a few pints, and I might say that term a little loosely we were ready for an afternoon snack.  It’s almost funny when you are talking about all the options on board for a snack, so we went for hot dog on the boardwalk at Dog House.  This was my first time ever trying one of their hot dogs (which are free) and I must say, simply amazing! 

We actually ran into my brother and his partner and they now wanted to get off in Jamaica.  The ship was docked from 10am-7pm, so getting off at 4pm (again) left us plenty of time.  They mostly did some t-shirt shopping and about an hour later we headed back to the ship.  I thought everything was overpriced so no shirt for me, maybe in Cozumel. 

Dinner at Chops

For pre dinner drinks I went to vintages for some caymus wine (those who wish to know it’s $22 glass).  I thought it was strange how empty the bar was, but they said it was common on port days.  They had little table set up with taps for $10pp, I passed on this since we were going to Chops Grill.  

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Our dinner reservations were at 8PM, and the restaurant was completely full. Our waiter said they service around 220 passengers a night, so I suppose that’s why the price went up to $39pp supply-demand. 

The quality of the meal was amazing as always, but the service was not so much. 

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The waiter kept saying sorry for being so slow, but I think he was just overworked with tables.   He didn’t charge us for the sparkling water, or the difference in wine price vs package.  The unlimited package covers wine up to $12, but we were all drinking wine that was $14. I noticed they still bring you all the sauces to pick from for the steak, on the Enchantment/Liberty they just come out in the Red Wine Sauce. 

By this point we were getting close to the 3-hour mark and had a show to get to so we left right at 10pm. 

Headliner Show - Mo5iac

My brother talked me into going to the headliner tonight and boy was I glad he did.

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This was a group of five guys who preformed with no instruments, which means all the sound we heard all night, came from their voices.  They would sing songs, with making it sound like they had a full band with them. 

It’s hard to describe the show, but was without a doubt the best show I’ve seen on any cruise.  The crowd was on their feet multiple times cheering them on and clapping.  If you ever get a chance to see this group on board, believe me don’t miss it. 

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The show ended close to midnight and that’s where I called it a day.  

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Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Day 3 - Labadee

In:
31Mar2015

Royal Caribbean Blog contributor Michael Poole is on Oasis of the Seas this week.

I haven’t been to Labadee since 2012 and I was really excited to go back and explore. 

We docked at 8:00am and had the whole island to ourselves, well all 8,490 of us. 

 

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We had originally tried to get a cabana, but we were unable to reserve one.  Now our plans were wide open and we took a shuttle over to Columbus Cove.  This didn’t take very long and I actually enjoyed the ride over taking everything in. 

Once you get to Columbus Cove you walk past some shopping, but we didn’t bring any cash with us so didn’t bother stopping. 

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By now it was 11AM and they were starting to serve lunch, so we went straight to buffet.  This is the standard island lunch; serving ribs, jerk chicken, and burgers.  I thought the lunch was fine and nothing to get excited about, but I will say go early!  I saw the line an hour later and it was long, plus all the tables were full. 

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Afternoon in Labadee

Well there was very little sun out but that was fine because we were sipping on a labadoozie. 

This is the signature island drink and it’s included in the ship drink package.  However, if you don’t have the drink package the cost is $14 for the drink, but you do get to keep the cup. 

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By this point in the afternoon 3:00 – it’s starts pouring and I mean down pouring.  I laughed to my brother and said, “Just one more reason I like Coco Cay better.” 

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We had a great time but we haven’t seen sun so far this the cruise.  We rushed back to the ship, well everyone did the same so the lines were long to re-board. 

Once we got back on board we headed to the pool deck to relax in the hot tub.  Well there was only one thing left to do… Nap! 

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Dinner at Sabor

Tonight we headed back to Sabor for dinner at 8pm and it was packed! 

I didn’t take my camera again since I posted pictures of our lunch from yesterday and ate the same food.  I will note the service was a little slow tonight, but we didn’t mind since we had Patron Grand Margaritas flowing. 

My girlfriend does not have the drink package and the waiter just put her drinks on my card with my package.  I didn’t ask him to do this and was fully prepared to pay for hers, so extra tip for him. 

Evening Actives

After dinner we headed over to dazzles and the entire Cat’s cast was singing 80’s tunes.  This was the moment it hit me, you don’t get this kind of entertainment on the smaller ships.   If you haven’t listen to me on the podcast, I am a big fan of the smaller ships, but I’m really enjoying myselfd on Lady O. 

Headed off to explore in Falmouth, Jamaica and the sun is FINALLY out!   I’ll share my day with you tomorrow.  

Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Day 2 - Sea Day

In:
29Mar2015

I had placed the room service breakfast card out for 7:30AM delivery and it arrived ontime.  I requesting orange juice to surprise my girlfriend with mimosas on our balcony, but we got apple juice – well it’s the thought that counts right?

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By now it was getting close the 8AM and I wanted to head up to the pool deck because I know how the pool gets on the first sea day, well any sea day really.  And sure enough we were already beat by all the chair hogs.  We found a seat, just not front row center, cruise life problems.  

Checking Out Pool Towels

Royal Caribbean recently changed the process for getting pool towels, where you no longer have to scan your sea pass card to check out a towel.  Well I guess they forgot about Lady O, because guess what - I had to provide my seapass card and check out a pool towel.  I’m not sure if they are bringing to program back or they just forgot to change it on Oasis.  This is really annoying because you have to stand in a line to return the towels, or to simply get fresh towels. 

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I’m currently writing this from the Beach Pool with my feet in the water, and the sun’s starting to come up.  Today should be a great day, I look forward to sharing my day with you on the next post!  

Well I’m sad to report we never saw the sun today, just clouds and high wind.  This did make me a little sad, but a cloudy day at sea is better than a sunny day at work.  Around 11:30AM we decided to head to the boardwalk and eat lunch at Sabor. 

This was my very first time dining at this restaurant, and based on all the reviews my expectation were pretty high.  Well they lived up to what I was expecting and surpassed a bit. 

We started out with some Margaritas, which are included in the unlimited alcohol package.  Followed by some guacamole, which is made table side, I do recall its $4, and worth every penny.  For lunch they had beef/chicken tacos and I had a chicken Quesadilla.

Cats

Since the weather was not up to par today we headed to our reservations at Cats at 2pm.  This is the first full length Broadway show at sea and they have intermission halfway through.  My thoughts on Cats are the performance was outstanding, actually the best I’ve ever seen.  The story line is very slow, and I saw people walking out quite often. 

I must report about an hour in I actually left myself, I think during the 80’s this was an amazing show but times have just changed.  I would recommend seeing Cats it just wasn’t for me. 

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Afternoon Time On Board   

Well now what should we do, it’s the afternoon and we are hanging out on board?  Well I wanted to take my girlfriend on the rising tide bar since I’ve talked about it so much.  This is a moving bar that takes you between deck 5 and deck 8; once we got to Central Park we grabbed a snack at Park Café.  They have a great salad bar with so many toppings, you could latterly eat here every day its so great. 

Formal Night

Tonight was formal night and the Captain’s reception on the Royal Promenade.   If you recall from last week’s podcast this is one of my favorite traditions and just makes me so happy.  Everyone is all dressed up and free champagne is offered for everyone.  The captain came out and introduced his team and does a quick intro about the ship. 

One interesting fact is our sailing; March 28th holds a record for the most people ever on a cruise ship.  Our total with crew and passengers is 8,490 people on board.  The captain said this has never been done before between the Allure and Oasis, so very cool! 

Dinner

Tonight we headed to the main dining room and we were on deck 3, which is the American Icon Grill.  I’m going to be honest I tried to talk my group into something else, but off to the dining room we went. 

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Dinner was at 8:30pm and surprisingly not that bad.  I had the lobster bisque soup, well okay I’ll be honest I had two lobster bisque soups to start.  Followed by the filet of beef and it was amazing! 

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I couldn’t believe the quality of the beef for the main dining room.  The service was a little slow, but the waiter said many times, if you want me to speed up tell me.    

Overall was a great day after all.  The weather is something you can’t control so I don’t let that control my vacation.  You just have to find something else to do and on the Oasis that is not hard.  

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Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Day 1 - Embarkation Day

In:
28Mar2015

Royal Caribbean Blog contributor Michael Poole is on Oasis of the Seas this week.

I have been counting down to this day and it’s finally here!

My plan was to sleep in since I had such a full day on board, but who can sleep in when they are going on a cruise?

Woke up around 6am and looked at the webcam of the Oasis already dock and watched her sisters, Liberty and Independence pull up. To say the excitement level was up is an understatement. We found a nice local diner for breakfast and cruised around town to kill an hour.

As we were pulling up to the terminal I saw a Walgreens right at the light, so we stopped in there for some last minute items.

10:00AM – Headed to the pier.

Usually I arrive around 11:30AM and walk right on, but we wanted to rent a cabana in Labadee so early we went. Once we arrive to the pier there was very little traffic, so maybe this 10AM stuff is not so bad.

They were not boarding yet so we all sat in the Diamond section. This is one Crown and Anchor perk they allow you to bring non-diamond members with you. At 11:40AM they started boarding suite guest, and down the C&A tiers.

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Finally Onboard

We are finally onboard, now what? Well we headed to the excursion desk and didn’t have much luck there booking a cabana, “suite only” Oh well.

I decided to head up to central park for lunch at Park Café. I was going to have lunch at Sabor, but I was not that hungry so we all had a small salad. After which we headed over to check out the menu for 150 Central Park – Guess what they are doing ½ off the first night, that’s right dinner for $15pp! We are dining tonight at 8pm, so review on dinner tomorrow night.

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Overall thoughts so far on Oasis. The ship looks great, I can tell the flooring on the boardwalk looks very fresh, and the dining room is ready for dynamic dining. My cabin is on deck six right by the boardwalk, so it’s nice to run out there for a cocktail. Also, my cabin is 6274 D8 Balcony on the port side, very nice cabin and I’m so sorry for not taking pictures, but I will.

This evening we are having dinner at 150 Central Park and then headed to the Aqua show, which is my favorite show all week.

Drink Prices 

There are four of us in my group and three purchased the unlimited drink package at $49 per day, totally $404 each. I feel like Royal might be pushing more people to this package, because the cost of cocktail A la Carte have gone up. My girlfriend Courtney ordered a Stella Beer it was $6 + 18% = $7.44, also a Mojito was $12.

So if you are on the fence about the drink package, this might push you over the “value” mark.

PS. I thought you should know I currently at the pub writing this… Let me know what you what to know about Lady O!

For the sailaway we met new friends for the at the wipeout bar.  This is a great place to enjoy the sailaway on the Oasis.  The views of south Florida as you sail into the gulf are quite amazing.  After spending an hour or so we decided to get ready for our dinner at 150 Central Park. 

Dinner at 150 Central Park

As I mentioned earlier, they were doing a half off price to dine here for the first evening, so only $15pp cover charge.  The Oasis was in for a dry dock in November and 150 had some changes.  Previously they had a six course tasting menu, which is actually how it still is on the Allure.  However, now 150 Central Park is a full meal, with four courses, with much larger portions. 

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I’m going to be honest I was not really excited about coming back here, because last time I didn’t enjoy the tasting menu, but boy am I glad I did!  This meal for $!5 is the best value and quite frankly maybe the best meal I’ll have all week.  The service was top notch and yes they try to sell you a cookbook, a kitchen tour, bottles of wine – but I just say no thank you. 

Since my girlfriend did not have the drink package I brought a bottle of wine to dinner, no problem and Royal no longer has the cork fee.  Now I was sipping on the cucumber Martini, which is only serve at 150 and it’s the best martini I’ve ever had.  I usually don’t enjoy Martini’s because how strong they are, but you couldn’t even taste the alcohol.   We had a fresh salad, veal pasta, filet (I asked for two cuts of meat), and chocolate pie.   My brother does not like chocolate, I know who doesn’t like chocolate, but they ran over to chops for a blueberry cheesecake for him. 

For the value, quality, and service you can’t go wrong dining here. 

Post Dinner - Aqua Show

After dinner we changed and headed to the boardwalk for the aqua show.  I don’t make it to all the shows, but this is one I don’t miss.  In fact, I might even try to go see it again! 

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I like the show so much because you can’t find something like this on any other royal ship, well maybe you can on the Allure.  The show only last 40 minutes, but you need to arrive at least 30 minutes early for a seat.  After the show we wanted to do a little dancing, but most everyone had called it a night, so we followed and got a greats night sleep. 

Oasis of the Seas Live Blog - Preamble

In:
26Mar2015

Royal Caribbean Blog contributor Michael Poole is about to go on Oasis of the Seas this weekend  and here's his preview of his cruise!

Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class ships, which the first debut in 2009, are still one of their flagship vessels in their fleet. They are 225,000 tons, holding 5,400 passengers and 2,300 crew-members, which make them the largest cruise ships at sea. There are currently two Oasis class ships: Oasis of The Seas and Allure of The Seas. Oasis came out first in 2009 and sister Allure followed shortly after in 2010. These two cruise ships offer something unique that you can’t find on any other cruise ship.

What makes Oasis Class so unique?

The Oasis Class was a game changer for Royal Caribbean and for the cruising industry. In fact, they have seven unique neighborhoods that really create a wow factor. One of my favorite neighborhoods is central park; yes real living plants at sea! You can find hundreds of plants, intimate dining experience, and who can go without a little shopping. If a romantic evening is not your style, you can venture off to the boardwalk. This is generally for the kids with wooden carousel, but who says the adults can’t have fun too! At the end of the boardwalk you can find an open-air aqua theater, which is my favorite show at sea. The aqua show features dancers and high divers into a small pool with choreographed music, and did I mention this was on a cruise ship?

I’m Cruising on Oasis of The Seas - Western Caribbean

Now that we have briefly discussed the Oasis Class and what they have to offer, I’m excited to say I’m sailing on her tomorrow! That’s right I’m headed out to sea for a seven day Western Caribbean cruise and plan on bringing you with me, well at least virtually. Joining me on this cruise will be my girlfriend, my bother, and his partner. This will be my third time on an Oasis Class ships, but it’s been a few years, so I’m very excited needless to say!

Some of the topics I’ll be blogging about, but certainly not limited to are: Ports of call (Labadee, Falmouth, Cozumel) dining experiences (Chops, Sabors, Giovanni’s Table) and who knows maybe 150 Central Park. I’m also purchasing the unlimited alcohol package, so I’ll be able to provide feedback on the package. We are planning on going to all the shows, but I’m known to be a beach bum and often refuse to leave the pool deck until the sun goes down.

My girlfriend and I are driving down early Friday morning, since I live in South Georgia. This will be her third cruise, I've taken her on Enchantment and Liberty recently, and so this is her first Oasis Class cruise. We plan on spending the afternoon on the beach and having dinner in Fort. Lauderdale. My brother is flying in via red-eye, so we will pick them up at 10pm.

Feel free to post any questions about Lady O.

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