All Testimonials

Our client's review who sailed on RCCL Adventure of the Seas from San Juan

My Travel Consultant: Jennifer Chedore, CTC

Linda, London, ON - (trip to San Juan San Juan Puerto Rico)

We had a GREAT trip. Everything went smoothly and we enjoyed ourselves very much. Here are some thoughts that might help future clients.

Pre-cruise stay in Old San Juan:

Sheraton Old San Juan in a good location. Walking distance to anything that you want to do in the old city. There are two FREE trollies that transport both tourists and locals around either the perimeter of the old city (green trolley) or traverse the narrow old streets (white trolley). We used them several times. Stops are well marked and very convenient to the Sheraton. Lots of shops and services to choose from in Old San Juan. Room was an ample size. We had a partial view of the harbour. Regretfully the rather small window didn't open so we could not enjoy the Caribbean breezes. This would have been a nice touch. I would definitely request a room on floor 8 or 9 which are still standard rooms but have the Juliet balcony. There a relatively few of these rooms that front the harbour so I suspect that they are at a premium. I tried to get one in the week preceding the cruise. They noted my request but wouldn't guarantee. I even tried the 30th anniversary "card". I think that you pay a fair amount for location for this hotel.

Apparently RCCL built their own pier hence the reason that they don't use the one across from the hotel. It was about a 10min cab ride and cost around $10 for the two of us plus $1 for each bag. Looks like you could walk it from the hotel but it would be a long, hot walk with bags in tow.

If people want beach and old San Juan experience you could stay in what I believe they call the "Condado" area where the hotels on the beach are located. I suspect that it would be about a 10min cab ride into old San Juan. Opinion only but the UNESCO world heritage site designation for the colonial city must have been given in better days. While not devoid of charm, particularly in some areas, old San Juan has elements that appear a bit "tired". Most planters on the street are full of weeds or some plant that has seen better days. Several homeless folks sleeping in nooks and crannies, benches on the street. At times only there was definitely a urine smell as we walked through the streets. (It wasn't either of us:-) They seemed to somehow clean up the town and it definitely has more exuberance when the ship is in port. However, all being said, lots of restaurants, good shopping and some colonial charm. The El Morro fort is well worth the trip located at the outer edge of the old town. Quebec City has way more charm in my opinion!

Cruise:

No hitches on embarkation or disembarkation. I think that getting on the ship went more quickly than any of our other times. GREATLY appreciated the free spa treatment, specialty dining experience and the gratuities being paid! First hot stone massage... I died and went to heaven for an hour!

Ship itself is lovely. I felt that it was fresh and rejuvenated. Hardworking mostly very friendly staff. Some of the bartenders can be a bit devoid of personality. Stateroom was typical. Good closet space. Relatively comfortable bed. It is nice that they will allow you to bring on up to two bottles of wine for the room. For the men, would be nice if they could bring a 12 pack of beer for the room too. Don't really get the difference.

Food:

Good. Not as good as Celebrity or Princess but better than Norwegian and equal to or slightly better than MCS. In the main dining room if you stick with the chicken, fish, pasta dishes they seem to be better quality than the beef dishes. Paul enjoyed a steak similar to the Keg at the speciality restaurant. Otherwise steak choice looked a bit like the old Ponderosa quality of beef. Lots of fresh choice on the breakfast/lunch buffet. You could also choose to order off the menu in the main dining room for brkfst and maybe lunch. The "My Time" dining needs to be booked early if you want your preferred time. We would have preferred a 7pm but could never get that despite booking shortly after initial embarkation.

Drinks: If you do not get a drink package expect to pay a minimum of $8 and up for a glass of wine. A rum punch or margarita was $14 by the time you paid the mandatory gratuity. I thought that this was ridiculous. As well, they are stingy with the drink packages in that they do not include any bottled water, juices, etc..  Tell clients to really think about what they will drink in a day not just including alcohol when determining whether they want a drink package or not. A couple of bottles of water in the room each day or offered for FREE as you get off the ship for excursions would be a nice touch on their part.

Entertainment:

Pool area came alive on the SEA day. Would have been nice if some of this extra effort on RCCL's part was offered on port days too. Evening entertainment was okay. Somewhat limited. Shows were okay.

Ports:

Typical bombardment of "port shopping" in every port except San Juan. Barbados and Castries had the most choice outside the port area. Unique little market in Castries that was definitely local. Bridgetown had the most shopping outside of San Juan with a proper downtown and upscale stores. Given that I perceived these Islands to be more upscale than Mexico, Cuba and DR, I was shocked at the poverty in St Kitts and Antigua once you were outside the port. We did island tours on both of these locales and St Lucia, Barbados. The housing was very poor. There was garbage everywhere around the houses and the roadside. The people had very little. I guess that the collapse or significant scaling back of the sugar industry has really impacted these poor folks. I felt grateful and indulged for what I have. The taxi driver in St Kitts pointed out areas of the downtown to stay away from b/c you will be robbed. This was not far from the port.

I would recommend RCCL to other folks. I do find that they try to scale back in some areas or charge too much or charge at all for some items on the ship (bottled water, cocktails, fitness classes, yoga). They showed the same Celine Dion concert video four days around the pool in the PM. They showed the same three movies in the evening. It is little changes as I have mentioned that would make guests feel like their $ and entertainment experience was valued more.

A great trip and so glad that we took time celebrate our 30th anniversary and figure out that we still like one another. There is nothing like a Caribbean breeze as you sip an indulgent drink waiting to go and enjoy your dinner! Thank you for your help. I always feel like we are in good hands with you. Thinking about the next trip...what southern destinations can I fly to out of London this winter that would leave on a Sat or Sun or late on a Friday for the March Break week?

Thanks Jennifer! 
Linda

 

I want to go to San Juan

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