I am glad I was able to take my kids to Labadee when they were young.The caribbean we all dream about.I have been going there for about 15 years.Firewalkers,hammocks,a great beach day.Not anymore.The places that my kids used to climb are still there but now they are almost finished building the new bungelows that will be reserved for the suite guests.The place we used to snorkel now has a pier with about 200 jet skis for rent.Want to sneek off with your honey to Dragons Breath for some privicy,watch out for the roller coaster.Did I mention that the new pier is almost done.It will accomadate the Oasis on one side and a Freedom class on the other.Captain told us they expect 8500 passangers a day.I long for the old days
I don't believe the plan is to have the Oasis and a Freedom class ship at Labadee on the same day if they can avoid it. That would be over 10,000 passengers - in fact it could be up to 11,000 if all berths were filled. Just looking at some upcoming cruises, I do see the Oasis and the Jewel at Labadee on the same day (December 13).
While the dock is a good thing overall, for those of us who like those relatively quiet afternoons on the ship it might diminish them. Tenders tend to be something people only want to do one time at a port. When they take it back to the ship they are staying aboard. With a dock at a private resort I imagine there is more coming and going during the day. I guess that will alleviate some crowding though, especially at lunch time when people might prefer the ship.
Anyone remember St. Thomas 40 years ago? Heck even 20 years ago. I went there when I was just a little one, good heavens was it beautiful. Then I went back about 10 years later, it was still like a picture postcard. Now, well, not so much. Don't get me wrong, it's still a nice island, but nowhere near what it used to be. That's why I like St. Johns, Tortola, St. Vincent, St. Croix, etc., better. "They paved paradise and put in a parking lot".
The quest for the almighty dollar marched across the Caribbean basin like fire ants sweeping north from the Gulf coast. The first time I was at Ocho Rios - 1981 - there were two hotels (the Americana and the Royal Jamaican I think), and the only pier was at the James Bond terminal where they load bauxite. Nobody hassled us. We walked to the falls and back, walked all over the town, and never felt concerned. Now I can't stand the place.
But RCI is responding to guest comments too, and they say people wanted more at Labadee. It has the acreage so they are using it. Coco Cay will probably always be as it is, and it hasn't changed all that much over the years other than more permanent facilities being built.
I'll be one of the first people to experience the Oasis at Labadee so we'll know in a month. The thing is they still haven't sold all the cabins so we might be a few hundred people short of a "full" ship.