Jump to content
Royal Caribbean Blog

Symphony LIVE with Joe - B2B around the Med!


Recommended Posts

Hello all. For this sailing, we are in a Deck 7 forward Virtual Balcony cabin. 

There is a lot more motion on the ocean on SY than her 3 sisters, however I am feeling slightly unsafe in this cabin. The ceiling seems to bang quite loudly at regular intervals. Is it just the location that makes it feel so much more rocky?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 103
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

I've been waiting for a while. Sometimes, I wondered if I would ever get there. Watching everything about the Symphony launching while I was stuck doing a lot of work that I hate and working through t

Matt says: "Please no. The servers can't take it". 

In all my years of following live blogs, I have never, here or anywhere else, come across a disruption such as this, in someone's live blog.  A live blog is one's personal account of their vacation. 

4 hours ago, Joe01 said:

Hello all. For this sailing, we are in a Deck 7 forward Virtual Balcony cabin. 

There is a lot more motion on the ocean on SY than her 3 sisters, however I am feeling slightly unsafe in this cabin. The ceiling seems to bang quite loudly at regular intervals. Is it just the location that makes it feel so much more rocky?

Ocean conditions vary.  The engineer in me very much doubts Symphony is any different in design from a hull perspective compared to Harmony.

I'm on the transatlantic in October so I'll let you know 🙂

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been a bit light on the reviewing, but I have seen both ice shows this week and can provide some thoughts.

1977 was fantastic. Great theming and some great uses of technology to enhance the show. I really liked it.

iSkate 2.0 was also good. It really showcased the excellent abilities of the skaters, however my one criticism of this show is that it didn't flow very well. It felt like several 1m30 numbers one after the other, some of which were completely different (e.g. Total Eclipse of the Heart followed by Heavy rock music). It just seemed to lack an easy to follow storyline. Not the fault of the skaters though - a very talented cast.

Also a bit annoyed at the inclusion of a song from the Greatest Showman. That movie seems to be shoved down people's throats these days. My favorite ever movie came out this year and has a soundtrack with a few songs that would have worked for an ice routine, but it is less well known than TGS. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Joe01 said:

iSkate 2.0 was also good. It really showcased the excellent abilities of the skaters, however my one criticism of this show is that it didn't flow very well. It felt like several 1m30 numbers one after the other, some of which were completely different (e.g. Total Eclipse of the Heart followed by Heavy rock music). It just seemed to lack an easy to follow storyline. Not the fault of the skaters though - a very talented cast.

Interesting. I want to say that this was the name of the ice show that was presented on Freedom back in April, and I had the exact same feelings about it. No real coherent storyline, just the word "Freedom" over and over at the start of each segment, with different themes around the idea of freedom (flight, liberation, equal rights, etc.) set to totally different styles of music in each set. I'm assuming your showing didn't say "Freedom" for each set since that wasn't your ship, but was it a similar kind of idea?

Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, JLMoran said:

 Interesting. I want to say that this was the name of the ice show that was presented on Freedom back in April, and I had the exact same feelings about it. No real coherent storyline, just the word "Freedom" over and over at the start of each segment, with different themes around the idea of freedom (flight, liberation, equal rights, etc.) set to totally different styles of music in each set. I'm assuming your showing didn't say "Freedom" for each set since that wasn't your ship, but was it a similar kind of idea?

Quite similar. Never sailed on Freedom so haven't seen her ice show (and there was no Freedom sign), but it was similar to what you described. Several different numbers and styles following each other. It just didn't flow well. Certainly a very talented cast and the show allowed them to showcase their talents though.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Joe01 said:

Quite similar. Never sailed on Freedom so haven't seen her ice show (and there was no Freedom sign), but it was similar to what you described. Several different numbers and styles following each other. It just didn't flow well. Certainly a very talented cast and the show allowed them to showcase their talents though.

I find this to be the case with many performances - ice shows, aqua theaters, etc.  I have learned to just ignore it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

'This is Michele your Cruise Director, and Ciao Ciao for now!" - Going to miss hearing that on the PA each day.

Just got the luggage tags. Worst part of any Royal cruise, especially when you are unsure of when you will next be cruising (next year doesn't seem to have any Royal ships or itineraries that match).

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ray said:

At least your heading home to a warmer climate 🙂 and no im not joking, its been warmer here than it has in the med 

I noticed that as I was looking at the forecast for some of our ports - it's only 23 degrees in Barcelona - that's been feeling like a cool day lately! 😅

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, hayley_bopp said:

I noticed that as I was looking at the forecast for some of our ports - it's only 23 degrees in Barcelona - that's been feeling like a cool day lately! 😅

30oC in Naples today. Still very warm in the Med. Hoping that Glasgow gives me some rain on Sunday. Enjoy your cruise!

Link to post
Share on other sites

There seems to be a fair number of Scots on this cruise compared to the last one. Definitely an advantage. However, there are only 3 Scottish employees that I know of on the ship out of 2000 (all are Sports Staff). We need more of them here! :4_joy: 

At least it isn't like a ship in the States where we felt like the only non-American guests.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Joe01 said:

There seems to be a fair number of Scots on this cruise compared to the last one. Definitely an advantage. However, there are only 3 Scottish employees that I know of on the ship out of 2000 (all are Sports Staff). We need more of them here! :4_joy: 

At least it isn't like a ship in the States where we felt like the only non-American guests.

First week of school holidays here thats maybe why more Scots. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, Ray said:

First week of school holidays here thats maybe why more Scots. 

Schools in Glasgow finished 2 weeks ago, although I think the summer is shorter in Aberdeen. Nonetheless, nice to see some Scots this time for once.

Link to post
Share on other sites
21 minutes ago, GB66 said:

I’ve really enjoyed your blog Joe. We’re on tomorrow and I’m so looking forward to it 😊

Make the most of your sea day and safe home.

You'll love it here! Will post a summary of the cruise and my overall options when at the airport tomorrow morning. Something to read if you are waiting to board. Overall, it has been great.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, good night Symphony. What an enjoyable 2 weeks! Hope to see you again for my first Royal contract! :4_joy: Fingers crossed that quitting CC may help me get there. Still planning to stay here though.

I've noticed a lot of love on this ship. Hopefully my gym efforts won't go to waste and my next cruise will be with a significant other.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We’re going on Jewel October 24 for 12 night Mediterranean, similar itinerary but a few extra ports. 

My two questions are:

Was a VAT added to your onboard purchases?

How dressy were the cruisers for dinner especially formal nights? If we are dressy casual will we be out of place?

Looking forward to your response. 

Thanks. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

CREW:

Stateroom Attendants - 9 - The Stateroom Attendants that I saw throughout the ship were all very friendly. Whilst nobody will ever live up to my first ever SA from Jewel (a guy named Seville), both of the attendants that I had did the job well and were friendly. I only ever reserve 10 for the absolute highlight employees, but they did a good enough job to warrant a 9.



Cafe Promenade - 8 - The Cafe Promenade itself seemed a bit disorganized this sailing. Again, 10 is reserved for the absolute standout employees (such as Latisha who worked at Cafe Promenade on HM), but the folks there seemed friendly enough. Nobody that stood out too much.



Other Complementary Cafe Staff (e.g. Sorrento's, Park Cafe etc.) - 6 - Not a lot of friendly staff here. They seemed to be going through the motions. Not all of them, but I hate to say that the Sorrento's and Park Cafe staff weren't that great. At Sorrento's, the manager had to serve Pizza most nights (he was friendly). I just didn't feel much friendliness from them. Maybe their contracts are nearly up? Can't give them more than a 6, sorry.

Windjammer - 8 - The waiters mostly seemed friendly, alongside the serving staff and greeters. Despite this, some were over the top. The reason that I am docking from 9 to 8 is that yesterday, there was a manager verbally berating staff in front of customers including a racist remark (akin to something Gordon Ramsay would say). That's completely out of order and I am making sure that it is mentioned in this review. The managers who greeted guests seemed really friendly though.

Playmaker's - 9 - The waitress at Playmaker's seemed friendly, so a 9 for her. It was a port day so not very busy.



Cruise Director - 9 - Michele Scarpato was the CD for these sailings. I really enjoyed him. He is not one that is obnoxious and thinks they are the star of the show or one that is bland and uninspired. He has the right balance of energy and professionalism. Did a great job at 80's night and the various show intros/closings alongside the Morning Show and other events. Visible around the ship as well. The only reason that I can't give him a 10 is that we didn't get to see him do the traditional pool events (Belly Flop) or the evening events (Quest, L&M etc) which are the basics, although that isn't his fault given the format of Med cruises and Oasis Class. Definitely a good one. 

Activities Manager - 10 - Margot van Erck was AM for both sailings  I'm giving Margot a 10 for being the first good Activities Manager that I have seen in years. Very energetic, but not at all over the top and loud like some. I saw her around the ship a lot and she worked with Michele very well in the Morning Show. It was a breath of fresh air to have an AM that was not over the top annoying or one that was bland and was barely seen. She did a great job and would not be surprised if she made it to CD one day (and they made a couple of hints about that in the Morning Show).



Cruise Director's Staff - 9 - There were no bad CS members on this cruise (such as the Bingo guy from Mexico on HM who shouted at guests on debarkation morning and was going through the motions for the entire 2 weeks). The person doing debark on the gangway was much friendlier (I think her name is Gabby). The Bingo Host, Jackpot JP was also much livelier than the guy on HM. Katheryn from South Africa was also a great member of Staff and seemed to be everywhere. The rest were also good, but those are the 3 who I remember off the top of my head.



Sports Staff - I did not interact much with the Sports Staff (too much of a wimp to do some of the sports activities) so can't give a score as such, but from my observations, they came across well. Graeme from Scotland was a highlight on the Staff. He was on Harmony last year and was a great personality on both ships (particularly at 80's night). I recommend that Royal promote him to Sports Supervisor if he intends to stay with them.

Ice Cast - 8 - It's interesting watching a show and then seeing what performers are like when the spotlight is off. The Ice Cast is the only one where this applies. Several members of the cast would get a 9 based on my interactions with them at the Skating sessions, however one came across rather cold and abrupt on pretty much every interaction and also had an argument with fellow members of the cast as to whether or not we could get on the ice for a particular session. I can ignore one 'off' interaction, but as it was almost every time, I have to reduce the overall score to 8. Sorry to the other members though as they were great at the shows (more on that later) and seemed friendly.



Diamond Concierge - 10 - I never interacted with the concierge on the 1st sailing, however we found out that the Lounge offered wings on the 2nd sailing in the late afternoon, so that was where we went each afternoon after the gym. Jackie Yabut was the concierge on the 7/8 cruise and was fantastic. Very friendly and not at all one of the concierges that ignores guests and stays at the desk. She was good enough to warrant a 10. 

Loyalty Ambassador - 8 - Louise Japundzic was the Loyalty Ambassador for both weeks. I knew her from Harmony where she was fantastic. This time, we only interacted with her when we did the B2B process and she did seem slightly stressed out (although to be fair to her, the customer in front of us was a bit difficult). She was great on HM though, so still gets an 8.

Captain - 9 - For Captains, I give 5 points for their skills as Captain of the ship and 5 points for their front of house skills as like it or not, they are in the cruise industry where there are guests and if they don't want to interact with guests, they should go into one of several other maritime industries. With that said, pretty much every Captain in the world will get 5 straight off the bat (bar Capt. Schettino who gets 0). As for front of house skills, Captain Rob seemed like a very personable guy, hosted a great Captain's Corner on both weeks and came across likable. However, there wasn't much announcements (maybe a new policy) and I rarely saw him outside of scheduled events, hence why I am giving him a 9 not 10. Would definitely like to sail with him again though, but please bring back the announcements!

 

As you can see, Symphony has a great crew. Many have been on since the takeout and are around the end of their contracts, so who knows how the crew will be by the time she arrives in Miami? Positive experience all around, with just a few issues.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...