Sorry for the delay in posting. I left my laptop on the ship. Each of us thought someone else had it. It was moved from the top of the table to the floor so I missed it. DW thought I took it, I thought DW had it. When we got home I noticed no one had that bag. At 11am I called RCI customer service Rose, and explained what happened. She said that emailing is the only way they can communicate with the ship. Jason Bovery, Lost and found Coordinator took over and emailed the OA Front Desk Manager on the ship. Today, one week later via FEDEX I have my laptop. Thank you RCI for great customer service.
Today is our last land day before our cruise tomorrow. We will be on Oasis of the Seas from 7/30-8/6. Doing an eastern Caribbean sailing with stops at Nassau (7/31), [ 8/1-sea day]St Thomas ( 8/2), St. Kitts (8/3), sea days 8/4 and 8/5, returning to Ft. Lauderdale on 8/6. This is our 7th RC cruise. We are me, 60yo, DW 56yo and DS just turned 18yo. This cruise is to celebrate our 19th anniversary and DS graduation from HS.
DS will be sharing in this blog his views of being on his first cruise without participating in the adventure ocean program.
We are staying in an owners suite cabin, 11240-on the hump, so we can share our experience on the "new suite" amenities. We are laid back types and believe any day (almost) on a cruise is better than a day not on a cruise. We do not go to "happy hour" in the DL or SL, just enjoy a more laid back evening. We are also sailing with a long time friend of mine from HS...haven't seen him in 18 years; never met his wife. That alone may provide interesting stories. He too has never cruised before, that will provide interesting stories. They are staying in a balcony room. So far our plans are to eat in the MDR the first night, Coastal Kitchen the second night. Our TA has given us $900 OBC; $100 of that must be used in specialty restaurants. We are considering 150 CP, eaten there before and loved it and Giovanni's table (never eaten there). We usually do not eat in the MDR, so other eating venues are up in the air. Izumi is on our short list, may do it for lunch along with sabor. I will be blogging and periscoping ( @socialwork911) everyday..so if you need a vicarious cruise come along.
oasis day 1
Arrived at the pier around 10:30am; 15 minutes to get our sea pass, waited on soft cushions in the suite area. Boarding began at 11:30am...we went right to the suite lounge on 17, being greeted with mimosa and fruit juices...there was a nice lunch buffet..paella, steak, steak fries, chicken, salmon and assorted cheese/fruit. The coffee machine was working-so I had my first cappuccino. The SL is a beauty. I think it was the old crown lounge. It has floor the ceiling windows, very bright and airy feeling. Half of the space is the SL and half is the coastal kitchen. While there we met Federico Taylor and Claudine Benjamin the Concierges. They we very nice and friendly.
Bought a 3 night specialty restaurant package, $90 a person. We are planning on going to Giovanni's, 150 central park and chops. While in the lounge we moved our Iphones to the ships Voom; as suite guests we get "free surf and stream", which worked great throughout the cruise. While finishing lunch I get a test message from my HS friend-haven't seen him in 18 years and never met his wife. I leave and go the champagne bar to meet them. DW and DS stay in SL and finish lunch. I was great meeting him, like I saw him yesterday. His DW is a licensed clinical social worker like me so we have lots in common too. After a drink with them they announced the rooms were opened, so we arranged to meet up at sky bar after muster.
Our room, OS, has a great "living room", a couch that opens to a queens size bed, chair with ottoman, regular chair, big double sink bathroom, Jacuzzi tub, separate shower, long and wide veranda with 2 lounges a table and chairs for 4. Met our stateroom attendant, Donna. She seemed very nice. We thanked her in advance for taking care of us during our vacation, gave her $20 "tip-bribe?" Asked her to make sure we always had ice, extra towels, remove refrig. items-as we brought a 12 pack of soda with us...we placed a luggage tag on it and left it with our luggage at the pier.
Muster drill was fine..then went to sky bar for sail away, it was hot up there. Had a drink did a short periscope...then back to room to get ready for dinner.
We were planning to go the MDR for dinner the first night with our friends, but went to the solarium cafe instead.
Solarium food was Mediterranean; you could order from a menu and buffet, sort of...we ordered steak from the menu..got slices of steak-very dry...some good buffet dishes were kebobs, ceviche, watermelon salad, deserts. Service was very good..food no so much..if we had to pay I'd be very upset...I recommend you pass on this restaurant.
Luggage arrival very sporadic...mine came about 2pm-with our case of soda; DW came at 3:30, DS never arrived. Our attendant Donna was unable to find DS 's bag. After dinner he had to go to customer service. He was taken to a room to see if it was there with other bags whose tag "fell off"...wish the old tags came back....but it as there...he was very happy...so were we.
After dinner we walked around the ship. What a beauty; don't ya just love being on a cruise-we do....at about 10pm, went to see what DL looks like..the old concierge lounge on deck 11..meet Dudley Jean, Diamond Concierge..he was really nice...got us..really my son...some food as he is always hungry. He also got us some drinks...I was surprised since happy hours was over.
It's 11pm and since we have an early excursion tomorrow, on the dock at 7:45am, at Nassau Bahamas we went back to the room.
The ship must have hit the edge of a storm because there was some movement, not enough to affect us. But my friends who are first time cruises had to visit the infirmary to get meds and needed to recuperate and cancel their land excursion the next day.
Our attendant is not doing a good job...despite asking and giving her a thank you $20, no sheet on the bed for our son, no slippers(we did have robes), no menu's for restaurants and in-room breakfast and no extra bath towels, did not empty the refrigerator so we could put our soda in it. I will speak with her tomorrow and her supervisor if necessary.
Day 2 Nassau, Bahamas port time: 7am-2pm
Woke up at 6:30am. DW and I went to SL for coffee and danish. DS went to windjammer. He had miso soup and fish. He said it was fresh.
Before we left I saw our room attendant and spoke with her about our needs. She was very apologetic and ensured us all would be taken care today.
Today excursion on Nassau is riding a segway on blue lagoon island. We booked this through RCI, $124pp. This is a new excursion for RCI. We met our group on the pier at 7:45, walked to the end and boarded a two level tour boat. Nice 20 minute narrated ride past Atlantis hotel and multi-million dollar homes. Blue lagoon Island is a private nice property. On this island you can snorkel, play on beach toys, swim with dolphins/stingrays/sharks/sea lions. After a brief practice we were off for a 1 1/2 hour ride through the beaches and forest area around and through the island. Stops included a few bridges with great water views and a castle tower. On the ride back they took the segways off turtle mode (max 6mph)..and we were free to ride at 13mph, this also sharpens turning capability. The excursion included unlimited bottled water, a 5x6 picture for each participant and a book on the history of blue lagoon island. We also got a tour of the dolphin/sea lion training center. Our return boat back to the pier was at 1pm. This excursion is highly recommended. Sadly the port time is very short.
When we got back, we headed to Sabor for lunch. I had a margarita, which is made with orange juice..I did not like it and prefer mine with just lime juice. I had the tuna taco, very fresh and highly recommended. DW and DS had the calamari. Very fresh and highly recommended. After lunch we went back to the room for showers and a nap.
Our room attendant took care of everything as she said she would. We had no issues with her service throughout the rest of the cruise.
Dinner was at coastal kitchen tonight. We were allowed to bring our friends who were not in a suite...thank you coastal kitchen Maitre'D. The food and service were excellent; what a great perk for suite guests.
After dinner we all went to see Frozen in Time, the ice skating show. Started off slow, but got better. It is hard to skate on a moving ship. after the show we walked around the ship, got a cappuccino from the DL and back to the room.
Day 3 - Sea Day
Sea day for me means sleep in day. DW and DS went to breakfast early at windjammer. At 9am I went to CK for breakfast. It was so calming to eat there..food was fresh and hot, great service. After I walked around and scoped. While scoping near the flow rider, two people from our M&M walk up to me to say hi. They also asked why I missed the M&M this morning at 10am. I couldn't believe it...The invite said day 3...in my mind day 3 is Wednesday...forgetting they meant day 3 of the cruise...dumb me. I apologized..I really wanted to go..I love M&M's....we had 62 registered and they said about 20+ showed up.
For lunch we went to park cafe for those great roast beef sliders..then back to the room for a nap.
Giovanni's was our first venue for dinner as we had the 3 restaurant package. Our friends also joined us, along with our DS. I tried the steak...not so good..DW had the osso buco, she liked it. DS had fish which he like. The waiter brought out all the appetizers on the menu to share. He also gave us all the deserts..nothing special, very disappointed in the tiramisu. The good news of this meal, was they didn't charge us for my DS to eat. The manager came over and said since we did really eat much of our main course, no charge for DS. Again great customer service, loyal to royal.
Had a few drinks and off to the head liner show; Slippery When Wet-a Bon Jovi tribute band. Being a rock and roll person, along with my friend, this band did not entertain us. Their singing was off and poor guitar work did not make it. His DW liked the show..my DW did not come, as she is not into rock music. DS went off on his own too. After the show I went to DL to get a cappuccino and back to the room. When I get there, DW and DS are asleep.
Day 4-St. Thomas
Having been here many times, we decided to stay on board and make the ship today's destination. DW,DS and me had a leisurely breakfast in the CK...love when the ship is empty. DS goes to the gym and we walk around. Lunch was at Park Cafe. The 10 drink card was on sale today, $93 which include 18% tip, so we bought it. Had an afternoon drink in the SL and met up some m&m friends and their daughter; sorry forgot your names, but they were very nice. After back to the room for a nap.
Our friends went on an excursion; "bus" ride-they said more like an open truck, magens bay and then shopping in town. The ride they said was scary, going through 'bad" parts of town in an open truck on wooden benches. The beach they said was great and shopping was good.
Dinner was at chops for us and DS. DW and I had great steaks and DS had seared tuna which he said we really good.
Our friends decided to go to the windjammer for dinner...they liked it.
Oasis of Dreams for us all tonight...very good show...afterwards a drink and back to the room.
Day 5- St. Kitts
Had breakfast at SL and then got ready to be on the pier at 9am for our segway excursion $109pp). I know, you're saying another one...but we have never been to this island, love segways, are not beach/water people..to each their own.
Our friends went snorkeling.
After meeting up with our group, the usual 15 minutes get your segway legs and off we went. Traveled through the town to an old fort...stopped for pictures and history lesson. Once here, they took us off segway "turtle speed" and we were able to ride. Great view from the top of the hill..seeing the bay and Oasis below. Then up and down some hills to Palm Court Gardens..a nice relaxing garden hotel property. Some free drinks there, a botanical walking tour..then back up and down the hills to the pier; they provided free bottled water throughout the tour. We walked around town for a while..took some pictures with monkeys and went back to the ship, around 2pm.
After a shower and nap, since tonight is formal night, we ordered to eat lobsters in our room. Room service was perfect and nothing beats eating on the veranda of the Owners Suite.
Our friends were so pooped out from snorkeling that they came back and went to bed.
We had a few drinks while waiting for Rock-a -Rokie...it's karaoke with a live band performing behind you. I was hoping to sing, but they didn't have many rock songs; so we listened..sadly only 10 people seemed to be there....after back to DL for cappuccino and bed. DS was already a sleep when we got in at 10:30.
Day 6-Sea Day
The 3 of us had a great breakfast at the CK. Walked around, saw the belly flop contest. We all had lunch at johnny rockets...we saw a women win $4700.00 on a slot machine...took our afternoon nap...so stuffed from JR that we didn't have dinner.
Participated in the classic rock trivia contest at the schooner bar...a couple from our m&m were on our team...we scored all the songs correctly...we even knew the name of the band for each song...RCI highlighters were the prize. Our sailing friends went to dinner at the WJ after this..we walked around the ship and had a drink.
Day 7- Sea Day
The last day is always bitter sweet. Sad that it is the last day, thankful that we could experience a cruise. Breakfast for 3 at CK...we love this place. Back to the room to begin packing. This afternoon we went to see CATS...We love Broadway shows..DW saw the show in NYC awhile ago; I've never seen it....this show was very slow moving and we left at intermission. We went back to the room for a nap. DW said she didn't think it was that slow moving the first time she saw it.
Dinner for 5 tonight at CK...the food did not disappoint. I had the veal chop, nice and tender. While our friends went back to pack, DW and I went to comedy club..very funny. We finished up packing. My HS friend and I went to have a final drink and laughs together. We had $860 OBC; we were unable to spend it all..after all tips and expenses we got back $80 the last night..enough to cover the car service home.
Leaving the ship:
We decided to use the concierge walk off assistance. We met him at 8:30am in the champagne bar. Went out a side door, our luggage was in a small area and 3 customs agents were assigned to check us out. Off the ship and in our cab in 20 minutes.
Overall a great cruise and recommend Oasis to anyone. The staff were friendly. We did not go to the MDR so we cannot comment on that. We do not gamble, but the next cruise office is a draw for us...we booked a cruise on Harmony of the Seas for 12/16/17...getting $200 OBC from RCI and $710 from our TA. We wanted to go to Izumi, but never got around to it. We utilized our diamond benefits of 3 drinks, free spins in the casino and free pictures. We will turn diamond plus on our next cruise.
Comments and impressions from my just turned 18yo son:
Not being able to participate in adventure ocean was a bummer and IMO, RCI does not make it easy for my age group to meet people. I am not the type of person who will walk up to someone and say hi, but if someone starts up a conversation I'm all in. That said, I was unable to meet anyone to regularly hang out with during the cruise
My dad gave me a $100 budget for the cruise. I used this for playing video games, virgin pina coladas and candy. For the most part I went to gym everyday...great equipment. Used the flow rider, zip line, rock wall, ice skating and played ping pong and entered every ping pong event. Played ping pong with my dad too. This is the first trip where I ate dinner with my parents in specialty restaurants...loved the tuna in Chops and calamari in Sabor. Of course played games on my iphone too.
I did go to the class on making sushi at Izumi..that was fun and the food was great.
I saw some meet up groups for 18-21yo's, but they started at 11pm...nothing during the day.
I love cruising...this is my 8th one. Despite no adventure ocean, I'd go on another one; and looking forward to HOS next year.
Comments from my friends who are first time cruisers:
First let me say DW and I are hooked on cruising. We had an ocean balcony room on deck 11. If possible book a suite...love the benefits of SL, CK and the bigger cabin/veranda; our next cruise will be in a suite. All the staff were friendly and our room attendant was good.
It is important to check the reviews of excursions before booking them. We basically spend lots of time around the pool during the day...get there early for a good chair. We had the PP drink package and made good use of it.
Getting off the ship and to our cab took us 2 hours from start to finish.