Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Royal Caribbean cruise on Allure of the Seas - At Sea

 Cruise from Galveston - Allure of the Seas

September 24 - October 1, 2023

I had found a great price on a cruise out of Galveston on one of Royal Caribbean's Mega ship.  We drove down on Saturday, 23 September.  Had intended on stopping to do some birding enroute, but got a late start, so just drove straight to Hotel - Travelsuites by Marriott.  Did stop at Humble for a late lunch at Cici's Pizza.  Starting our overeating early!

Got settled into our room & took a walk on the seawall until sunset.  Very pleasant, a bit hot, but the ocean breeze kept it comfortable.  Saw & reported some birds on Ebird.

Had our lovely buffet breakfast at the hotel & took the short drive to our parking spot at the Galveston port.  George dropped me off & parked the car.  It was the easiest embarkation we've ever experienced.  Our show time was 12:30p, showed our paperwork, went through security scan & showed our paperwork and we were in our cabin by 1:05.  It was amazing.  Barely quit walking for the entire process.  That even included dropping by the Guest services area for our safety briefing check in!!

 We put away all our hand carry luggage, admired our cabin & headed out to familiarize ourselves with our home for the next 7 days.  Sent a couple of pictures to friends!

We quickly discovered that this is the most beautiful ship we've ever been on!!!  First stop was the Ticket office down by the Amber Theater, Comedy Theater, & Ice Rink.  We moved some shows around so that they were all in the evenings.  Very accomadating.  There are 3 distinct areas - Deck 5 has the Promenade deck & you can walk almost the entire length of the ship (about a quarter mile!!).  It has Guest services, several restaurants including Sorrento's for free slices of pizza, & multiple bars including the floating one that moves from Deck 5 to Deck 8.  A band is often playing from a balcony on Deck 6.  No real places to dance though - one at the Latin bar, but the only time we walked past when a band was playing, the floor was taken up by a father playing with his 2 year old daughter.  Humm?  Then there was the Boardwalk, Forward of Deck 6, with the full size Carousel, Hot Dog House, Mexican food & Johnny Rockets burgers, Aqua show theater & rock climbing.   Then we found our favorite place - Central Park on the 8th floor.  It has trees & feels like a real garden.  Has Park Cafe where we entended to eat at some point, but never found the time.  And our favorite bar - the Trellis bar.  We met our favorite bartender later that evening - Putra from Bali.  He was a sweetheart.

We made it back to our cabin to find our luggage had been delivered & I got everything all unpacked & put away.  Sat down to play my games & got lost in the time.  As we were leaving the port, George started spotting dolphins!  I saw them & ran for my camera, but we were running late for our 5pm dining time & George wouldn't let me take pictures!!!  Phooey!  Didn't get any pictures of our first meal, but met the 2 couples - one young sweet couple with 2 children (not on board) from San Antonio - Yolanda (I think) and Lewis.  Also Marie & Keith (he kept wanting to talk politics and had leg problems) from Denver, CO.  Our waiter was Jayson from the Phillipines and our asst waitress was Jenny (not her real name that I couldn't spell or remember) from Madagascar!!!  They are both excellent.

Our first evening entertainment was the IceSkating Show.  We were totally blown away!!!!  The quality of the skating was simply amazing!!  It was a 45 minute show & it was non stop action.  We absolutely loved it.

We wandered around the ship a bit afterwards trying to decide where to purchase our wine for the room.  Didn't want to have to go too far from the cabin.  Tried the Diamond Lounge first - it only served drinks from 5-8pm.  No good.  Upstairs, but all the glasses were plastic.  Tried the Trellis Bar in Central Park & fell in love.  From then on it was our go to bar & we would get one wine after the evening entertainment, then back back down twice for the other 2.  It closed at 11pm.  Putra was our go to bartender & he consistently overfilled our glasses.  George always for a Cab - Kendal Jackson if they had it and I got the Malbec (just because it was $14 which was the limit for the 4 drink coupons we got each day!!).   Finished up the evening lying on our comfy kingsize bed watching Suits or AGT.  Lovely first day on board.

Monday was a day at sea.  We slept late, went up to have lunch at the Windjammer buffet at 11:45am and wandered the ship a little.  We stood & watched the body boarding & surfing.  It was really cool.  The only person we saw that was any good was a large pale fat man.  Just shows you shouldn't stereo type!!  I spent some time on the balcony looking for sea birds.  I took a nap & just relaxed totally.

Enjoyed dinner.  Can't believe I never took a picture of the location of the table.  We were on Deck 4, but right against a window with beautiful view of the water.  Rather small table for the 6 of us, but still nice.
We didn't have an entertainment booked tonight, so just wandered around a bit, then up to the room for an early night of Suits with our 3 wines from Putra.

On Tuesday morning, we had an invitation to a Priority Event for Diamond & above at 10 am at the Aqua Theater.  We went & enjoyed it.  It was beautiful weather & I saw Frigate Birds!  They welcomed us with a Mimosa and then after the standard dog & pony show, they gave us a private preview of the Oceaniaria show.  It was magnificient!  Can't wait to see the whole thing!!

We wandered around a bit waiting for the buffet to open (tried the Park Cafe, but it was closed).  Had a great lunch & then back to relax in the cabin until dinner.

Dinner was marvelous (no pictures!!) and then we went to the Oceanaria Show.  Got there quite early at the advice of Yolanda & Lewis, thank goodness.  We were able to secure good comfortable seats.  It was a fantastic show!  Started with some silliness - a guy dressed as a silly fat woman came down our row & almost sat on my lap.  A guy dressed as a carnie came & chased her away & they played a game for a bit of cat & mouse.  When she fell in & then he fell in, the actual show started.  It was amazing.  A combination of "water dancing" and diving, & acrobatics.  My favorite was when the several of the guys started jumping & tumbling on the trampoline & would bound up onto a shelf & back down.  Also a girl did an amazing tumble with constant circles.  Here's a link to the show from You Tube


Anyway, it was an amazing show.  We are so blown away by the talent on the ship!!!  The show was about 45 minutes.  We got out wine from Putra & finished out the evening watching Suits.  Tomorrow is our first port with excursion - Roatan, Honduras.