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Dan Hislop

Age: 47


Number of Cruises: 4

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Splendour of the Seas

Sailing Date: May 19th, 2007

Itinerary: Europe

Splendour of the Seas is one of the older Royal Caribbean ships. It is showing its 11 years in many ways. The carpets in the common areas are in need of replacement, which they were installing at night during the cruise, and many pipes were breaking, including one in the wall adjacent to my Junior Suite, causing us to have a wet floor in part of our cabin for the last 4 days of the cruise. The pictures in the rooms are badly faded and much of the surfaces show many years of wear and tear.

The food was not quite up to the standard I was used to on previous Royal Caribbean cruises, that I have taken to the Eastern Caribbean. I was on the larger, newer ships like Mariner of the Seas. Not that you couldn’t find some good dishes to eat, and the King and I dinning room had good service and many quality dishes, but the larger ships sailing to the Caribbean were a bit better. I can say that there is a big difference between the newer mega ships of the Royal Caribbean line and the older ones like the Splendour. The staff is also at a little different level. One of the crew admitted to me that many of the people on this ship were taken off of the better ships and assigned to this one, due to poor performance and customer relation problems. The Grand Princess was at most of the same ports at the same time as our cruise. We wished we were on her rather than the old Splendour.

The ports were nice, but the excursions on the buses were long and hot since the drivers don’t seem to know how to operate air conditioning controls on the relatively new buses that were supplied. That baffles me. I am glad I went in May because the temperatures that people will experience in June through August are going to be too hot for my taste. Climbing the steps leading to the Acropolis in temperatures in the high 70s F was tolerable. But in the 90s F, would be too hot for me. Just be prepared to walk a lot in all the ports in Greece and Croatia.

The other two things to do at port are jewelry shopping and eating. The food at the ports was very good wherever we went. Pricey, but good. You can’t count the number of jewelry stores at these ports. I suggest you think about buying one expensive jewelry item per person to remember your trip by, but expect to pay more that you would for a similar item in the US, and remember the fact that you’re paying the Euro conversion price, about 30% more.

So to sum up, the ship was a bit of a disappointment, but acceptable as long as your cabin doesn’t flood like mine did. The ports are nice if you like to walk and see lots of ruins and go shopping for very expensive jewelry. Be nice to your fellow passengers and make lots of new friends and the whole experience will, overall, be memorable and enjoyable.

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