Majesty of the Seas Live Blog

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

In:
08Jul2018

Our last day on Majesty of the Seas is our first sea day and after three port days of activities, we decided to take this day slow and simply enjoy some time to relax.

Naturally, we started off the day by missing most of the morning.  We slept in and eventually got up to the Windjammer for breakfast.  I wish I had something more interesting to share for our morning activities but it was a nice relaxing morning.

We decided to check out the main dining room for lunch. The Tutti Salad station offered make your own salads and a crepe station and it was our preferred choice.  The kids wanted to grab something from the Windjammer and I may have helped myself to the Mongolian grill station while up there.

Our afternoon was a combination of pool time and napping.  In my live blogs I have to remind folks that relaxing sea days for me make for not so interesting live blogs.

Rather than recalling everything else we did on a relaxing last day, I thought I would summarize our experience on Majesty of the Seas.

As someone who has cruised extensively on other, larger ships in Royal Caribbean’s fleet, it took a couple of days to really acclimate myself to the layout and flow of Majesty.  What I mean by that is other ships in the fleet have very similar set ups, but Majesty is old enough that she pre-dates those guest flows.  As a result, I legitimately had no idea where certain venues were and was almost like a new cruiser in that respect.

Friends of mine have said that Majesty of the Seas is a small ship but does not feel like a small ship and I do agree with that sentiment.  The large venues and expansive decks hide the fact she is a smaller ship and onboard I do not think I ever felt the ship was as small as I perceived it to be.

I like having the promenade deck on a higher deck (deck 7) and the pool deck is nicely set up and if blindfolded and put on Majesty’s pool deck, I am not certain I would ever know whether I was on Majesty or a larger ship.  The kids especially liked having Splashaway Bay.

I do want to dis-spell the notion that only the large ships have crowds and lines, because there were plenty of them on Majesty.  For the record, I enjoy the larger ships in Royal Caribbean’s fleet and have come to realize that lines and crowds are just part of the game.  But when I see people complaining about lines on Oasis or Freedom class ships and talk whimsically about the smaller ships that do not, I have to disagree with that notion.  Just like on the larger ships, if you roll into the Windjammer at 9am you will have to do a few laps before finding a table.  Chairs by the pool are probably gone by 8am.  The forward elevator bank is always busy and it can be difficult at times to get a seat in certain lounges depending on the entertainment.

If you are reading all of this and now worried about going on Majesty of the Seas, don’t be.  Lines and crowds are a fact of travel and any mass market cruise line will have them now and then.  None of the lines or crowds I mentioned are a big deal, just something I observed because I have often heard from cruisers who prefer the small ships (like Majesty) for less crowds.  I simply do not think that is the case and that crowds and lines are all relative, and no ship is “crowd free”.  Come in with an open mind and some patience and you will have a great time.

Our oceanview staterooms were more than adequate and very quiet.  Not having a connecting room was a bit more of an inconvenience than I anticipated but manageable.  Our stateroom attendant was fantastic and probably has done the best job of cleaning up after us.

The Voom internet was quite possibly the fastest Royal Caribbean internet I have had not on an Oasis or Quantum class ship. I was quite impressed.

In terms of our itinerary, Cuba was the highlight and likely the reason most people on this ship booked this sailing and it did not disappoint.  If you like Old San Juan, you will love Havana.  Havana has much more history and culture than San Juan and I am glad we took this opportunity to visit.  I really hope my next visit to Cuba is not too far off, because there is a lot more to see and do there.

Overall, I really enjoyed our cruise on Majesty of the Seas for the relaxing, yet fast-paced itinerary we booked.  I am really happy I did not let my back injury stop me from sailing (it has gotten better every day of the sailing) and after all the fun on Explorer of the Seas in Alaska last week, it was nice to take things down a notch.  

Thank you to everyone who followed along this live blog and shared their comments with me.  I had a great time sharing this cruise with all of you and hope you will join me for upcoming virtual escapes on a live blog. My next Royal Caribbean cruise is scheduled to be on Brilliance of the Seas in late September.

Majesty of the Seas Live Blog - Day 4 - Cozumel

In:
07Jul2018

Our final port day takes us to Cozumel. We were not scheduled to arrive until 1pm, which is good and bad.  The good news is, we could all sleep in after a few days of busy mornings.  The bad news is it made planning difficult for what to do since so many activities in Cozumel revolve around a morning arrival.

We got up around 9:30am and got the kids going (no easy feat) up to the Windjammer for breakfast.  It was a slow morning, but it did feel nice not to be rushed.

After breakfast it was down to Cafe Latte-Tudes for a much needed caffeine break.  They serve Starbucks beverages in the Starbucks cups (as opposed to some Cafe Latte-Tudes/Cafe Promenades that have switched over to Illy).

The rest of the morning was easy going as we just relaxed.  We did not have that much down time because right at noon we arrived in Cozumel, a full hour early.  The Captain announced we were cleared by local Customs officials and we would have an extra hour in port.  It has been really nice having bonus time in each port.

We got our swim suits on and decided on a beach day.  Since we were arriving in the early afternoon, we decided to head to one of the more popular beaches in all of Cozumel, Paradise Beach.

Paradise Beach is a short cab ride away ($15 one way) from the port area.  

The great thing about Paradise Beach is it is a pay-as-you-go place.  You simply pay $3 per person for access to the facilities and then only pay for what you order. They did not charge us for the kids.

Paradise Beach has a large pool area along with an even larger beach area.  

The pool had lots of space, including some easily identifiable shallow areas that were great for the kids.

The beach is a large sandy beach with lots of seating.

I was concerned that since we were arriving so late, and that there were two other Carnival ships in port, that Paradise Beach might be too busy.  Luckily, our servers found a very shady spot (as in dark, not creepy) near the pool.  

It was really hot and humid so we all jumped in quickly to enjoy.  I prefer a pool to the ocean, mainly because it is less messy. Nonetheless, my wife and kids swam in the ocean too for a short while.

Ordering food and drinks was easy, with an army of waiters walking the grounds to take our orders.  Shout out to Josue and Arnie for great service!

We spent the afternoon at Paradise Beach soaking in the sun and enjoying time in the pool and ocean.  As the afternoon wore on, a lot of the Carnival guests left since their ships were departing before us.  

By early evening, we decided to head back to the ship and take showers. I would have liked to stay later (our departure was scheduled for 9pm), but it was quite warm and humid out and I have three more stops in Cozumel scheduled for later this year.

Back onboard Majesty of the Seas, we each took showers and changed to get ready for dinner.

Dinner was quiet this evening, as I think a lot of people were still on shore or recovering from their activities.  With all aboard time being 8:30pm, I am sure a lot of people skipped dinner in the main dining room.

For our evening entertainment, we headed to the theater to see “Boogie Wonderland”.  The show is a tribute to the songs of the 60s and 70s.  Great performance with lots of energy.

Tomorrow is our last day onboard Majesty of the Seas and it is a sea day.

Stray Observations

  • The drink card appeared this morning. $75 for 10 drinks
  • Paradise Beach does not take American Express.  I chose poorly in my credit card roulette game this morning.
  • The port area in Cozumel is quickly turning into a labyrinth, second to only the port area maze of Costa Maya.

Majesty of the Seas Live Blog - Day 3 - Havana, Cuba

In:
06Jul2018

The day I have been looking forward to the most and quite frankly the impetus for booking this cruise is here!  Today, we docked at Havana, Cuba.

Our tour was set to start early, so I set my alarm for 6am because I wanted to be able to see at least part of the sail into Havana harbor.  When I first got outside, it was still before dawn and the ship was waiting for the pilot to arrive.

I went back inside for a few minutes and then darted back out when I saw we were on the move.  Sailing into Havana harbor was beautiful and it was the perfect temperature outside with the morning sun barely coming up.

We all had breakfast in the Windjammer and then took the kids to Adventure Ocean.  We anticipated the fact it would be hot in Havana and the focus on history and culture would not be something kids under 10 years old would really understand.

The Captain announced once the ship was cleared that we would have an extra hour in port today, pushing all aboard time back to 4:30pm. Sweet!

We headed to the A Chorus Line theater to meet with our group.  We had booked the Old Havana sightseeing tour.  Pretty much all the Royal Caribbean excursions met in the theater and there was quite a long wait to actually get into the theater and get your sticker.  This was followed by another wait for your group number to be called.

Once the group was called, we were escorted off the ship for more lines.  

First was Cuban Customs, where they check your Visa (provided by Royal Caribbean) and your passport.  Then you have the opportunity to convert your currency to the Cuban currency.  I changed $200 just so I knew I would have enough to cover any souvenirs, food, transportation, food, coffee, tips, or food I might purchase.

We then walked downstairs to meet our group and wait for the bus.  It took a little over an hour from when we first got to the theater to when we actually boarded our bus.

Our tour would take us to four major historical sites around Havana via a well-air conditioned motor coach bus.  Having the bus was great for the longer rides between stops.

Our first stop took us to an old cemetery that dates back hundreds of years.  Some of the mausoleums and tombstones are beautiful.

The next stop was Revolutionary Square, where many famous political speeches and rallies were held.  

Some important buildings surround the square.

Next we headed to a large statue of Christ that overlooks Havana harbor, with a nice park around it.  It also provides an excellent view of downtown Havana. There may have been more to see along the way, but I fell asleep.

Our final stop took us to an old Spanish fort at the mouth of Havana harbor.  

At this stop, you have the opportunity to also purchase some souvenirs, cigars or rum.

We generally liked the tour, although it was slow moving.  To be fair, group tours are usually slow moving so this was not a surprise.  It allowed us to see some of the most important historical sites in Havana and the air conditioned bus was lovely.

After the tour concluded, we walked around Havana to have lunch and see what the city is all about.

We ended up having lunch at seafood restaurant, which was okay but nothing special.  Since our tour did not end until 1:30pm, we were quite famished and wanted food.  

I went with the grilled fish while my wife ordered the grilled chicken.  

After lunch, we walked around the streets of Havana and did a little window shopping.  

Havana reminds me a lot of Old San Juan, but it seems like many more historic buildings in Havana have survived.  Even with my bad back, I found it easy enough to walk the streets and the locals were quite welcoming.

Probably the biggest surprise to me in Havana was the welcoming nature of the Cuban people.  For lack of a better word, Cuba has been vilified in the United States for so long and it was interesting to see not only do they not hate us, but they have monuments to famous Americans. 

With the hot afternoon sun, we decided it would be a good time to head back to the ship.  As we walked back I found a classic American car taxi and we hopped in.  The driver said it was a 1949 Chevy Deluxe.

He took us on a quick tour to the Capitol building, and pointed out a number of sites before heading to the ship.  A great way to wrap up our day in Havana.

Getting back onboard Majesty of the Seas went smoothly, with just a couple of lines for security and customs. 

I really enjoyed Havana and would love to explore more of the city on my own.  Like any new port one visits, you have to start with the major sites but on subsequent visits you get to see more of what the city is really all about.  

Back on the ship, I hosed myself down in the shower and we picked up the kids from Adventure Ocean.

I headed up to the pool deck to watch sail away and found a shady spot with a breeze.

We took the kids up to Johnny Rockets for dinner.  The price is now $9.95 per person, but my kids love that place.  I did not eat, but between my wife, two kids and two milk shakes it only cost us $30 (thanks to some creative math from our waiter).  Not too shabby.

We took a stroll down to deck 5 to check out the shops.  It kind of amuses me how a ship as small as Majesty has some massive spaces dedicated to shops and lounges (relative to the larger ships).

Dinner for me and my wife brought us to the Main Dining Room, and it happened to be formal night.

After dinner we went to the casino to see if luck was on our side.  Roulette did not go so well to start with, but I won it all back in blackjack and between the two of us we walked away with the same money we started with.  That is better than losing!

To round out evening, we took in some piano music in the Schooner Bar.

Tomorrow, we will be in Cozumel around lunch time.

Stray Observations

  • Everyone on a Royal Caribbean tour got a free bottle of Evian water.  
  • Voom internet is great on Majesty.  I uploaded 50 photos (12 mb) in about 2-3 minutes.
  • In addition to the conga line the waiters did in the main dining room, there was a macarena dance session. Never saw that before.
  • Oddly on the first night we had the “new” main dining room menu but tonight was the “old” menu.  No spaghetti bologense for me.
  • Fellow Disney World fans, does the sign for The Spectrum remind you of something out of classic Epcot Center?
  • One thing I did not expect on Majesty of the Seas was for the ship not to feel as small as it is. What I mean is due to the large lounge sizes, and expansive decks, it feels much larger.

Majesty of the Seas Live Blog - Day 2 - Key West

In:
05Jul2018

Our first port of call on Majesty of the Seas brings us to Key West, Florida.  Well, eventually we will get there.

The schedule called for a 1pm arrival, so it half sea day, half port day.

I woke up at 8am to start my work day.  Today is the only day of the cruise I will be working remotely.  I think it worked perfectly to have my work remote day be the day we are in Key West, as that means I will have a strong cell phone connection.

I grabbed my morning coffee and bagel from the Windjammer. Certainly beats making it at home for myself!

I had a quiet morning, and kept the in-room TV on to have some music playing and see when we would arrive in Key West.

As luck would have it, we arrived early and guests could go ashore by noon.  On top of that, the Captain announced we would stay an extra 45 minutes in Key West, with the all aboard time moving from 6:30pm to 7:15pm.  I was very glad to have some bonus time in Key West when done with work.

For lunch I grabbed something from the Windjammer.  We discovered that on Majesty of the Seas, the Windjammer has two parts and if you walk to the back, you will find additional buffet stations and seating.

Back to work in my room, I had a fairly regular day at the office with a few calls.  

While I worked, my wife and kids went to the Key West aquarium.  They bought tickets directly via the aquarium web site and walked to there via Mallory Square. My wife texted me that it was a bit of a dud, in the sense there was not much to see at this aquarium.

After signing off, I met my wife and we walked back into Key West to have dinner.  It was really hot out, so I think the only prerequisite we needed was somewhere with air conditioning.

Luckily, a viewer on Periscope recommended the restaurant that he bartends at, El Maison de Pepe.  It is a Cuban restaurant and a good way to compare and contrast their food to the real thing tomorrow.

Shoutout to JC!

We took a walk through Mallory Square after dinner before heading back to the ship.

Since we ate dinner in Key West, we decided to skip dinner in the main dining room and opted to take it easy.  We started off with going up to the Viking Crown Lounge on Deck 14 to admire the view and for my wife to enjoy a complimentary drink during Diamond happy hour.

Essentially, part of the Viking Crown Lounge becomes the Diamond Lounge each evening.  There is the usual assortment of appetizers and complimentary drinks.

At about 7:30 or so, Majesty of the Seas left Key West and began our just over ninety mile voyage to Havana.

We got the kids and wrapped up our day with some night swimming in the pool.  We decided to have an early evening since tomorrow will be a long (and extremely hot) day in Havana.

Stray Observations

  • The TV in our room has two channels dedicated to views outside the ship. One is at the bow of the ship and the other above the pool deck.  
  • My work VPN worked flawlessly with Voom using Cisco AnyConnect.
  • Compass Deli is unique to Majesty of the Seas is a cross between Cafe Promenade and Park Cafe.  Great spot for snacks. Last night they had sliced pastrami.
  • I swung by the pool during a coffee break today and I cannot recall the pool ever being quite this empty on a port day.

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

In:
04Jul2018

Our cruise day is here!  Believe it or not, there was some doubt that I would make this cruise as late as yesterday.

Yesterday I threw out my back and was barely able to walk.  We went to the hospital to seek treatment and luckily modern medicine helps mitigate the pain quite a bit. In the end, I told my wife if I am going to be somewhere with back pain, I would rather be on a cruise ship than at home.

We drove to the Port of Tampa from our house in the greater Orlando area.  Since it is the Fourth of July, there was no traffic and we arrived to the Port of Tampa right around 10:30am.

Majesty of the Seas was docked in the main terminal, so I took advantage of the valet parking ($95 for the duration of the cruise).  Check-in was a breeze and by the time we got our SeaPass cards, they were already boarding guests. 

We entered Majesty of the Seas in the Centrum and instantly we noticed how different Majesty looks compared to other ships in the fleet.  It still feels like a Royal Caribbean ship, but it is probably the first time in a long time that I really have no idea where anything is.

Like any cruise we go on, we started with lunch at the Windjammer.  

After lunch the kids wanted to hit the pool.  I enjoyed sitting in the shade and watching the stuff.

Our staterooms were ready at 1pm. We have two non-connecting Oceanview rooms.  

The word “oceanview” is a stretch, as it has a window that looks out to the promenade deck outside and  the ocean beyond it.

While not the largest room ever, it does the job and it will work for the port intensive itinerary we are sailing.

We then headed up to Adventure Ocean to register the kids.  I was quite surprised how large the Adventure Ocean area is, especially considering how small it was on Rhapsody of the Seas.

I decided to stop by the Vitality Spa to book a massage for me.  I rarely get massages, but I felt that it might help with my back.

At this point, I was feeling pretty tired, so I decided to take a nap.  One of the side effects of my back pain medicine is sleepiness.  I guess a lot of naps are in my future!

Muster drill was at 3:30, followed by sail away.  

Unfortunately the sail away celebration was hindered by a passing afternoon thunderstorm.  

On the bright side, the storm kept temperatures down and it was enjoyable to be outdoors for muster drill and sail away.

We walked around Majesty of the Seas a bit to try to get our bearings.  

I am intrigued by how large venues like the Schooner Bar and Boleros are, as well as the elevator bank that goes to every other floor.

Next it was time for my massage.  The procedure for all spa services is pretty standard: arrive, fill out paper work, wait, wait, wait and then take massage.  My masseuse was running late and she offered me either a discount or extra time. I opted for the discount as I was not sure how my back would fare.

The good news is the massage felt great and she was quite gentle around my back but was not afraid to work it a bit.  Walking back to the room, I felt “normal” again.

We are in late seating dinner, so we took the kids up to the Windjammer for dinner and then promptly dropped them off at Adventure Ocean.

I must have missed the sailing underneath the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, but I did see the weather cleared.

Dinner was in the main dining room, and we were seated with a couple from Puerto Rico who were on their first Royal Caribbean cruise and second cruise total.  

Following dinner, we thought about seeing the entertainer show, but opted to call it an early night.

Tomorrow we will be in Key West by 1pm.

Stray Observations

  • Adventure Ocean started combining Explorers and Voyagers already.  It did not seem there that few kids onboard to me.
  • The pier agent who checked us in at Port of Tampa recognized me for my work on this blog.  My kids did not understand exactly why this person was so excited to see daddy.  Shout out to Justin!
  • There was a sailaway buffet set up on the pool deck.





  • After sailing on Explorer of the Seas last week, the internet wifi on Majesty of the Seas is super quick!
  • The main dining room features the “new menu”

Live blogging from Majesty of the Seas 2018 - Preamble

In:
01Jul2018

Last week we knocked an item off our cruising bucket list, and this week we are going to do that again with our 5-night cruise on Majesty of the Seas to Cuba.

Ever since Royal Caribbean began offering sailings to Cuba, I have been looking for an opportunity to visit Cuba.  I believe the appeal of visiting Cuba is the combination of a rich culture mixed with history and a dash of forbidden fruit, so to speak.  With Cuba having been off-limits for visiting for most of my life, I am excited to visit this island nation and see what it is all about.

I booked this cruise just a few months ago after looking for something to do over the Fourth of July holiday.  This year it is on a Wednesday, so it is a but of an oddity but worked out perfectly for this sailing.  It all started during a Facebook Live cruise chat when a friend, Jose, asked if I would consider working while on a Royal Caribbean cruise again.  I immediately dismissed the idea, because I tried it last year over the Fourth of July in an effort to save on vacation time.  While we had a good time, overall I did not enjoy the experience of working while everyone else had fun onboard.  It felt too much like being at school while everyone else is off for the day.

Thinking about Jose's idea some more, I considered perhaps the key to a cruise where I work from the ship is best on a sailing that has fewer wor days (instead of a longer sailing with many work days).  After a bit of searching, I found the perfect opportunity.

Like my Alaska cruise I recently took, the itinerary I am booked on may not be the most intriguing itinerary with a stop in Cuba, but it gets the job done.  First, I have never sailed on Majesty of the Seas before (nor any Sovereign Class ship), so I get to experience this class of ship.  Second, I get a day in Havana, Cuba to visit somewhere I have always dreamed of going.  We will also visit Key West and Cozumel.

My family will be joining me on this cruise (wife and two daughters).  We booked two non-connecting Oceanview rooms.  Given the budget, late booking window and port intensive itinerary we will be on, it made the most sense.  Of importance, the rooms are not connecting, which means we have no common door between them.  I thought perhaps my kids (7 and 3) are old enough to sleep in the room without that door, but my wife thinks we will end up with one kid in each room.  

While Majesty of the Seas may not be the largest or newest ship in the fleet, I am looking forward to cruising on her and enjoying a relaxing Caribbean cruise.  Going on a cruise of this class has been a long time coming for me.  I am a self-described "big ship guy", as I prefer the larger ships in the fleet.  However, living in Florida means taking advantage of having so many cruise ships in my "backyard".  Moreover, so many of my friends have implored me to give it a try.  I believe some of the updates made to the ship a few years ago should be a great fit for our family, such as the addition of Splashaway Bay.

Itinerary

This sailing is round-trip from Tampa, FL, and take us to three ports of call, although I will not experience all of them.  Some of the times in port are a bit different than what we're used to and I'm not sure how much of this is because we're coming from Tampa, the routes were taking, or simply what port times were available.

Our first stop is in Key West, Florida, where I will work for the day.  I have not decided if I will work from the ship or get off the ship and head to Starbucks.  Perhaps a bit of both.  My wife and kids will visit the Key West Aquarium while I am busy.

For our day in Havana, I booked the Old Havana City Sightseeing excursion through Royal Caribbean. I was leaning towards booking a private excursion with a highly recommended guide, but it provided to be quite difficult to nail down a tour that matched up with our ship schedule.  Instead, I picked the Royal Caribbean excursion that appealed to my wife and I the most.

Our last stop will be in Cozumel, Mexico, but our port hours are quite odd, with a 1pm arrival.  We have not figured out what to do in Cozumel yet, but it is one of the best ports to "call an audible" due to the large array of choices.

What's next

Our Majesty of the Seas cruise begins on Wednesday, July 4th, and I will be sharing the details on the blog, as well as across my social media channels. Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Periscope for live updates throughout the day.

I invite you to share in this experience with me, by posting in the comments for any blog post questions and comments you may have. I try to make these live blogs as interactive as I can, so I want everyone to feel welcome to share their thoughts.

Thanks for reading all of this and welcome aboard our next fun live blog experience!

Majesty of the Seas Live Blog - Day 3 - CocoCay

In:
28Aug2017

Today was our third and final day of the cruise, but I didn’t want to think about that and enjoy my time on the island. We arrived in Coco Cay around 7am and guest can start getting off at 8am.

Currently you must take a tender boat over to the island, but Royal Caribbean is building a new pier here, so they can dock. I like to get over to the island early to take some really good pictures before the guest arrive.

I had a relaxing morning on the island; I noticed there are many changes taking place here. They have added little hotdog carts around the island to grab a quick snack and the are free. I also noticed a lot more drink carts setup so you don’t have to walk over to the full bar for a cocktail. A lot of really nice changes taking place here, and I can’t wait to come back in October.

At 11am they have a little party with the staff on board at wacky seagull area. All the officers come around to talk and just a way for them to say thank you for sailing on Majesty of the Seas. I enjoyed the free drinks and I think I ate 20 shrimps! I noticed they changed how the Coco Loco is made, before it was a red/pink color and now it’s white. Not a big deal, still taste great.

On Board

All on board was 3:30pm and I still saw guest coming back over after 4pm.

I went to the pool deck for a cool down swim and it very busy. They were having the world’s sexy man contest, so I watched that for a while. Thankfully I wasn’t one of those guys up there. It’s pretty entertaining to see guys get up there and dance.

I wanted a little snack before dinner and off to the Windjammer I went. At 4pm on the last day they always put out a nacho bar. This is my favorite, so I made a plate and enjoyed the cool air. They have all the toppings out and you can create them anyway you want.

Evening on board

First I went down to purchase some liquor to take home. I never did this before I moved to Florida, because I didn’t want to fly with it, but whenever I’m driving I usually pick up a bottle or two. Only thing different I noticed on Majesty is, on the last morning you have to go pick it up vs other ships they deliver to the cabin.

Tonight we reserved Chef’s Table, which is $85 per person. I’ve never done the Chef’s table before, so I was really looking forward to this. First we met in Boleros lounge, where they serve you a glass of Champagne. After 15 minutes, they walked us down to the room beside the main dining room for our meal.

We learned about the wines and how they should change the food flavor. I must say, it was one of the best dining experiences I’ve ever had. By the time the desert came I couldn’t even eat it I was so full.

We had such a good table and laughed all night, which really made the experience wonderful.

After dinner I did some exploring around the ship but wanted to get some rest for the drive home tomorrow. This cruise was such an enjoyable weekend getaway. My love for Majesty of the Seas just keeps growing every time I sail on her. Thanks for following along on this quick 3 day live blog. See you again soon on Harmony of the Seas group cruise!

Majesty of the Seas Live Blog - Day 2 - Nassau, Bahamas

In:
27Aug2017

Here we are already halfway through our weekend cruise on day 2, in Nassau, Bahamas. These weekend sailings go by so fast, but oh so fun! This morning I woke up early and waited for the coffee shop to open at 7am. Believe it or not, they usually have 3-5 people lined up ready for them to open. I ordered my large Americano and it was $3, since I don’t have the drink package.

After enjoying my coffee and working on the blog, I decided to grab some breakfast in the main dining room. On Majesty of the Seas they have a Diamond and up section to the dining room. Only real perk here, is not having to “wait” for a table or them to seat you. I ordered an omelet with a side of hash browns; I guess my only complaint was I wanted more! I didn’t order more, but I did grab some fruit they had setup in the middle of the dining room.

After breakfast they had the Crown & Anchor welcome back party in the Spectrum Lounge.

Funny they are talking about how they had the name Spectrum for quite sometime now. They also have conference lounges named after ships in the Voyager class. The party is always a good time, free drinks, and great music.

They talked about the next cruise booking program and how you can take dollars off the next cruise or on board credit. Also went over some new ships entering the fleet, I enjoyed my champagne, needless to say.

It was fun watching us sail into Nassau, Bahamas today. I have so many photos of that lighthouse, but you know I had to take more.

The pool deck was very busy; it felt like a sea day.

I was happy to see Oasis of the Seas dock in port today, they are on a reverse schedule due to the total eclipse special sailing. Oasis of the Seas is truly one of my favorite large ships in the fleet; okay this is a live blog about Majesty, back to topic.

Day in Nassau

Today in Nassau we decided to explore the brand new resort, Baha Mar on Cable Beach.

We took the city bus (#10) over to the other side of the island. The cost for the bus is only $1.25 per person and I felt very safe the whole time. Most of the people on the bus are local residents or local school kids. Once we made it over to the resort I made a comment to my friend Nick, “it feels like we are in a movie or something” we were the only people in the casino that’s one hundred – thousand square feet. While playing they quickly come over and offer you free drinks, you just have to keep playing for more.

They now restrict access to explore the outside grounds, as that’s for guest only. We did request a tour from the front desk and she showed us most of the property. I don’t think she liked that I was taking pictures of everything and thought that could upset some guests. I really couldn’t believe how beautiful the property was, they have seven swimming pools on the grounds!

They offer a lot, but I’m sad to report they have zero plans to ever offer day passes for cruise passengers. My suggestion is booking a room for one day, and enjoying the property since you are a paying guest.

Evening onboard

Tonight we were invited to dine at the Captain’s table with the hotel director, John Denton. We received an invitation in our cabin to meet in the Schooner Bar at 8:15pm for cocktails. They had a large section reserved for us to sit and we all talked until our host arrived.

Once he arrived we talked for a while and then they walked us to the main dining room to the table.

This is one of the nicest meals I’ve ever had, the service and wine was outstanding. We talked about Majesty at the table and her future within the fleet. Majesty of the Seas is going into dry dock in February 2018, so we talked about some options they have for the dry dock.

For the meal itself, I ordered the surf and turf. The steak was wrapped in bacon, so what’s not to love about that! The steak reminded me of a very large filet from Chops Grill.

After dinner we headed up to the under the starts dancing party. The cruise director, Ricky Mathews can create one party. He really knows how to get the passengers involved into the party. I was really surprised to see he joined the ship, as he’s usually on Oasis of the Seas.

That’s a wrap from my day 1 in Nassau, Bahamas. Stayed tuned, tomorrow we are headed to Royal Caribbean’s private island of Coco Cay.

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

In:
26Aug2017

There is nothing more exciting than the day you board your cruise and today was no different. I woke up around 5am in Tampa, Florida and drove over to the port in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The trip over was uneventful and I arrived early enough to have breakfast at Grills beside the port. This has become a little tradition of mine over the years when I sail out Port Canaveral.

Boarding

I arrived to the terminal at 10:20am, first I think it’s easier to pull through and drop your bags off, then go park. This way you avoid pulling the bags through the parking garage to find the porters. Parking for my cruise was $64 at the terminal and you pre-pay when you enter with cash or card.

Boarding started at 10:30am and I must have been one of the first to board because the ship was totally empty for a few minutes. My friend Brandon Owen had a guest pass for the day, so I was able to enjoy a few drinks with him around the ship.

Lunch

We waited to have lunch a little later, since we had such a large breakfast at Grills. Note if you are ever sailing on Majesty of the Seas, they have two Windjammer sections. When you walk in, that’s the busy one, just keep walking back to the other section, it’s almost always empty.

That’s when I found the meat!

They had a rather large cut of pork roast, it was the next best thing to park café. They had plenty of options for lunch, so a little something for everyone. Those who are wondering, yes they had Indian food!

Sailaway

Muster drill was at 3:30pm, and all the bars shut down at 3pm to prepare for the drill.

Nick and I hung out in the cabin until the drill actually started and then went to the dreaded drill outside by the lifeboats. I think this is when I noticed how hot it is cruising in August.


 

After the drill we decided to attend the spa raffle, since it was raining.

If you have never attended them, it’s a short free raffle for prizes in the spa. They are basically trying to educate the guest on their services, while giving away things too. I couldn’t believe it, but my friend Nick won $100 credit in the spa! Sadly, I never win anything…

Evening onboard

Right at 5:00pm we headed up to the Diamond Lounge in the Viking Crown Lounge. First, I noticed how busy they were tonight; usually on Majesty the lounge is kind of slower, since it’s mostly first-time cruisers. But they had a rather large setup of snacks to enjoy while having a cocktail during the sunset.

I really enjoy the lounge on Majesty of the Seas for the views. We ended up staying up here for a few hours making friends. At 7pm I looked around and our table was the only one here, so it really clears out for first dinner.

We originally planned to dine in Chef’s Table tonight, but we waited until the afternoon to book and it was sold out for tonight. Lesson learned, if you want to book something do it right away when you board. We did schedule to dine there night three of the cruise. So we kept things simple and enjoyed a quick meal in the Windjammer. Once again, they had a little bit of everything from Belgian waffles, pulled pork to Chinese food. I was pleased and enjoyed the express option of coming and going, as we wanted.

After dinner we enjoyed some adult karaoke, this might have been the most entertaining thing I’ve ever seen! Well some of them at least, my friend Nick got up there and did some singing to get the crowd really going. After an hour we got that urge to hit the casino. Let’s just say I walked in with no cash and left with $5! I call that a victory. They don’t advertise this well, but there is a Crown and Anchor perk loaded on our sea pass cards for a free $5 in the slot machines. The casino was so busy, a lot of younger cruisers gambling for the first time.

Stray Observations

  • VOOM on aboard with the Diamond Plus discount was $13 for the weekend.
  • They are scanning sea pass cards in the diamond lounge as a trial, however this does not count for the 3 drinks you can use at any bar. So it virtually means nothing, other than handing them your card.
  • The youngest crowd on a cruise ship, I’ve ever seen. I think for the first time, I feel like older guy watching them.
  • VOOM works outstanding, always stays connected and streaming is no problem. It’s one of the few ships I’m able to watch live periscopes.

Live blogging from Majesty of the Seas - Preamble

In:
22Aug2017

Hi Royal Caribbean Blog readers, its Michael Poole and here I am with my next live blog.

In January, I did a 10 night live blog on board Majesty of the Seas, so be sure to check that out. This time I’m headed back to Majesty of the Seas for a quick 3-night weekend getaway. This cruise set sails this Friday, August 25th. Since I couldn’t wait for the Royal Caribbean Blog Group Cruise on board Harmony of the Seas, I had to add something. On this sailing I’ll be cruising with my good friend, Nick Vitani who spends almost every weekend on board.

Itinerary

This quick 3-night cruise will be visiting Nassau, Bahamas and Royal Caribbean’s private island Coco Cay.

In Nassau we plan to go visit the new resort Baha Mar on the other side of the island, which is know as Cable Beach.

For Coco Cay, no real plans but total relaxation. I do plan to take a lot of photos of all the construction of their new pier and report back how things are going on the island. I’ll be returning to Coco Cay in mid October so it will be nice to see the progress being made of the next few months.

Cabin

For this cruise, I’ll be staying in a superior ocean view cabin on deck 9. The actual cabin number is 9078, which is aft. I like the location a lot because it’s right beside the spa and gym, so I might fit one workout in! If you are looking to cruise on Majesty of the Seas, I highly recommend the superior ocean view cabins. Since this ship doesn’t have balcony cabins (other than suites) this is the largest cabin option without spending a lot of cash.

Dining / Drink Package

For this cruise we have decided to dine in Chef’s table. This is a specialty dining option that ranges from $85-$95 per person, depending on the ship. If you are flexible with time and date they are usually running a discount on board to book the first night. In all my cruises I’ve never had dinner in the Chef’s table, so I’m really looking forward to the experience. One perk of this dining option is the wine pairing, is included in the cover charge.

On this cruise I’ll be passing on the drink package, it was $170 for the weekend in the cruise planner. I’ll be spending most evenings in the Viking Lounge watching sunsets and that’s where the diamond lounge is on Majesty. We will see how this goes paying for drinks as I go.

Well friends it’s almost cruise time, please let me know if there is anything you would like to see on Majesty of the Seas. Feel free to comment below on my live blogs and I’ll respond during my cruise. I’ll also be doing live streams on the periscope app, so be sure to follow me @mpoole3.

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