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Age: 34

Occupation:Loan Officer

Number of Cruises: 6

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Mariner of the Seas

Sailing Date: 2010-03-5

Itinerary: Mexico

My Second cruise with RC and my first after a 12 year break trying different trips. I've been in the Caribbean 4 times and Alaska once. Perhaps it is a sign of the times but I was not impressed with the cruise on a whole. The Mariner is a nice ship. Very clean and well designed. The Casino is a bit on the small side with out dated Slot Machines crammed too close together. Ventilation of the smoke was poor. The Buffet/Cafe also gets pretty jammed when busy, with the tables pretty close together on the sides of the ship. Spa facilities were very nice and the Climbing wall was pretty cool. Elevators were a bit strange. I would have the button pressed only to see an empty elevator pass on by through the glass or on the screen. Apparently the program seemed to be that once I pressed the button, one elevator was headed my way. If it made stops it eventually got to me but someone above me presses their button the second car goes right on past me up to them. Mass chaos both getting on and off the ship in LA but that is normal with the quick turnaround they have. LA Porters are very busy people.

Overall I'd give the Mariner food a 2 out of 5. I understand they have a wide variety of people on the boat from around the globe but the food was pretty bland on average. Sure the lobster and prime rib in the dining room was very good but selections beyond those were definitely not 4 star. Buffet was pretty good but the sushi was not very good. Most deserts that I had besides the cookies seemed to be "whipped". Sure it might be better for me AND a whole lot cheaper for the Royal C but it is definitely not on par with previous cruises that I've had. A sign of the times I guess, we'll see on the next cruise.

We had a open deck cabin right off Level 8 next to the Internet lounge. Twin beds were a bit on the short side for someone like me: 6'4" with feet just a bit over the end. Nice and clean on the most part except, and here is one of the big negatives from the cruise, they had "stained" but clean sheets on the bed. The stain wasn't on the inside of the sheets.. Plainly obvious when the bed was made, I was shocked to see it. During the week we even had a couple of towels that were also stained. Not the Destination cruises I used to go on years ago.

Cruise staff we're friendly and fun. Activities seemed to be aimed more towards the retired crowd though there are plenty of bars and the Night Club Dragons Lair. Wait Staff seemed to be under trained or just doing a job. Not all of them of course but most weren't talkative. Bingo is far too expensive to play. Swimming Pools were relaxing off hours and always had kids in them while sailing. I don't think the teenagers left the hot tubs until curfew.

Bargains and Haggle pricing. Don't pay what they tell you at first.. negotiate down. Beware the Time Share folks.

I guess I'll put my main negatives here.

Dining room- first night, 3 chipped glasses at our 6 person table. In my opinion, this should never have happened in the main dining room. I can understand this happening at the Buffet or bars but the Dining room? No more parade of Baked Alaska?!? Fire and Insurance, ok I can understand that one. Midnight Buffet. One night on the Pool deck. Selection, a couple 6ft tables of food. Not Impressive.

Stateroom- See above

Help Desk - On the final night of the cruise, my mother , who is handicapped, was feeling under the weather and finally decided to use a wheelchair after walking around the whole week. We only needed it to go to dinner. I went down to the desk to request the use of one. The gal, Karin I believe her name was, looked over and saw that one was available and then told me 'I'm sorry, we started collecting the wheelchairs at 6pm so that we can have them available to offload the next morning in LA'. I said I only needed one for the next hour so that I could wheel my mother to dinner and then I would bring it back.. She once again refused. Ninety minutes later, I went back down after helping my mother walk slowly to the dining room and back. Karin was out from behind the counter and I waited until after she left to go up and ask the manager if I could borrow a wheelchair. " No problem, do you have your ship pass".. No questions, no mention of collecting it. No problems. "Karin" has been reported but that was a lousy final night.

Would I go on another Royal C Cruise.. Of course!! It's still a cruise and was relaxing. I'll just try to lower my standards a little bit next time.

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