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gambee

Nov 4, Allure of the Seas, Western Caribbean - A Review and Complete Pictorial Guide!

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Looking forward to more of your review. We were on Allure for b2b cruises last month. Loved it!

 

The pictures are wonderful and, for me, just the right size.

 

Thank you for your nice comment, glad you're enjoying. More to come.

 

You are quite welcome :D and I totally agree on your picture size compromise. They seem to be a good size. I was just casting my vote (and hopes) that you wouldn't be shrinking them. When I see thumb nails I cringe.. my blind eyes see nothing but blur :rolleyes:

 

Me too, sometimes some people have some wonderful pictures, but are just too small to appreciate. I will most likely keep them this size, everyone seems to like them. I hope you don't get bored with all the posts I just did. I don't want to lose any followers with boring posts. Feel free to comment if I boring you, it will help me keep on track.

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Thank you for the size change. this one is perfect on both my laptop and my "bi screen" computer screen at work.:) I tend to get discouraged when I have to scroll back and forth to read a review and give up. I am looking forward to following along over the course of the review.

 

I am also impressed by your picture quality and am interested in your camera, You do a very nice job.:cool:

 

I am slightly puzzled, I have not changed the size. Maybe one of my old pictures was larger and that was the one messing up your view.

 

I agree, overly large pictures that make reviews unreadable are a big turn off. That is why I picked this size, it flowed perfectly on 4 screens that I tested it on.

 

Thanks for the compliment on the pictures. :) it is very much appreciated.

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Thank you for your nice comment, glad you're enjoying. More to come.

 

 

 

Me too, sometimes some people have some wonderful pictures, but are just too small to appreciate. I will most likely keep them this size, everyone seems to like them. I hope you don't get bored with all the posts I just did. I don't want to lose any followers with boring posts. Feel free to comment if I boring you, it will help me keep on track.

 

Not boring at all... actually very relaxing after a stressful day.

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Ok folks, I am out for the night I have to work all day tomorrow and need some sleep. I will attempt to post before going to work, but wont promise anything, it depends at what time I wake up.

 

I hope everyone enjoys what i've done so far. I am only 2-3 posts away from boarding the Allure, by tuesday I think I will be able to post day 1.

 

Feel free to ask questions, I will try to answer them tomorrow at work.

 

Thanks for following.

 

Night night everyone :)

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DSC04304_zps6f1b4500.jpg

 

This shot is excellent!!! Great action shot. This picture tells alot of stories. The size of the swells, a surfers delight, jet skier gawking, and the rock dwellers taking photo's...:)

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Hi Gambee,

 

SUPERB start for what will no doubt be one of the best reviews ever on Cruise Critic. I'll be on Allure in three weeks (December 2nd) so this comes at a perfect time. I'm flying into FLL on Nov. 30th for a 2-nt pre-cruise and staying at a hotel on SE 17th St.

 

My question is this: On Dec. 1st there will be EIGHT cruise ships in port and I want to take pictures of them as they leave. I won't have a rental car, and the best place for sunlight placement seems to be the south side of the ship channel off of John U. Lloyd State Park. Is there a way to get there (taxi?) so that I can take some great pictures? Sunset is at 5:28pm and the park closes at sundown. Any advice? THANKS!

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BTW...great pics and keep them coming! At this rate i am so excited that your thread will probably last an entire week!!!..just like your journey :)

 

I have got to comment on your pics from that vantage point (the south rocks to the inlet where the ships go out to sea).

 

We stayed at the Lago Mar a few Marchs ago on our way to sail the Allure. Having already sailed Oasis just 2 months prior we were so excited to go walk out to the rocks and see her sail away on saturday.....just me and the teenage kids. Well i can tell you i almost lost my kids to the sea (drowned) , as the Oasis sailed by and a HUGE wave off the ship came and about knocked all 3 of them off and the waves were so violent afterwards there would have been a small chance they would have swam to shore ....but slight.....super scary! Not to mention all the other folks around us were caught off guard and also scrambling for the beach....but RATS ( very large rats the size of small house cats) live in those rocks and when the wave hit it disrupted their Joo Joo and they were scampering around and sqweeling like a horror movie!!!!....it was a sight and an experience i, nor my kiddos, will never forget!.....

 

None the less....we are set to sail the Allure once again this March and we are once again staying at the Lago Mar resort just to have close proximity to this blessed sail away event of the Oasis a day before we board the Allure.....but this time we will NOT be climbing out on those rocks!!!!!!.......

 

.....lesson learned :)

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Gambee, We were on this cruise as well and had a wonderful time. Will look forward to your review and know it will be very enjoyable. Thank you for doing it.

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Looking forward to more of your review. We were on Allure for b2b cruises last month. Loved it!

 

The pictures are wonderful and, for me, just the right size.

 

 

How was the change over from week one to week two? I am doing a B2B in July on the Allure. Thanks.

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Hi Gambee,

 

SUPERB start for what will no doubt be one of the best reviews ever on Cruise Critic. I'll be on Allure in three weeks (December 2nd) so this comes at a perfect time. I'm flying into FLL on Nov. 30th for a 2-nt pre-cruise and staying at a hotel on SE 17th St.

 

My question is this: On Dec. 1st there will be EIGHT cruise ships in port and I want to take pictures of them as they leave. I won't have a rental car, and the best place for sunlight placement seems to be the south side of the ship channel off of John U. Lloyd State Park. Is there a way to get there (taxi?) so that I can take some great pictures? Sunset is at 5:28pm and the park closes at sundown. Any advice? THANKS!

 

Thank you very much for your wonderful comment, posts like yours are the ones that one looks for encouragement. I hope I can give you all the info you're looking for and more.

 

As far as your question goes. Notice that I say John has better lighting like I said, but I am not sure if I said this already, I like the north side better, parking is the only issue for me. Due to the longer distance from the ship and the ability to climb the rocks a little higher the results are in my opinion better. Another thing to note is that with a sunset that early you might need a tripod and lighting would really not play much of the game for better results, maybe a little but for the most part the little light comes from the back only with a slight shift northwards.

 

To be honest I am waiting for the sunsets to start a little a little earlier to be able to get some nice night shoots.

 

All that said I am sure you can catch a taxi to take you there, but the problem is on the way back. You would have to call a taxi and somehow pay extra for him to go in to pick you up, I am not sure if anyone would agree to do that. Or maybe even ask the taxi that took you there to come back, pre pay him the entrance to the park and pray that he will come back and get you :D. I would offer you a ride there, unfortunately I work that night, there is no way I can get out of not working during that time, sorry.

 

My final recommendation is to go to the north inlet, I can guarantee you that with so many ships in port this will be an experience to remember. The most ships I had in port was 3, I can only imagine what 8 ships feels like. You will not be disappointed, just be careful with rocks and the tripod placement might be a little tricky, but not impossible.

 

Hope that helps, feel free to ask more questions.

 

Once again thanks for joining in :)

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Gambee, We were on this cruise as well and had a wonderful time. Will look forward to your review and know it will be very enjoyable. Thank you for doing it.

 

We had an amazing time, like I told my mom, like I told my mom "I think this vacation has to be in my top 3 list". Thank you very much joining I hope you enjoy the review :-).

 

 

Looking forward to following along. We'll be on the Allure in three weeks so I'm really interested in your review and pics !!

 

:)

Dee

 

I hope I can be of help for your upcoming cruise, enjoy :)

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BTW...great pics and keep them coming! At this rate i am so excited that your thread will probably last an entire week!!!..just like your journey :)

 

I have got to comment on your pics from that vantage point (the south rocks to the inlet where the ships go out to sea).

 

We stayed at the Lago Mar a few Marchs ago on our way to sail the Allure. Having already sailed Oasis just 2 months prior we were so excited to go walk out to the rocks and see her sail away on saturday.....just me and the teenage kids. Well i can tell you i almost lost my kids to the sea (drowned) , as the Oasis sailed by and a HUGE wave off the ship came and about knocked all 3 of them off and the waves were so violent afterwards there would have been a small chance they would have swam to shore ....but slight.....super scary! Not to mention all the other folks around us were caught off guard and also scrambling for the beach....but RATS ( very large rats the size of small house cats) live in those rocks and when the wave hit it disrupted their Joo Joo and they were scampering around and sqweeling like a horror movie!!!!....it was a sight and an experience i, nor my kiddos, will never forget!.....

 

None the less....we are set to sail the Allure once again this March and we are once again staying at the Lago Mar resort just to have close proximity to this blessed sail away event of the Oasis a day before we board the Allure.....but this time we will NOT be climbing out on those rocks!!!!!!.......

 

.....lesson learned :)

 

I actually think it will last more than a week, the pre-cruise experience I pre written, it was a lot of work. I am just doing some final editing prior posting it. I have a lot of work to do organizing notes, pics and documents.

 

I agree those rocks can be very dangerous, but to be honest I have to say I have never seen a scene like the one you described, it must of been horrible :(. You can always just stay in the sand section like many do, I never took my mom to that side to keep her safe. But if I did, I am sure she would of stayed by the sand. I have to say that I can't wait to go there in late december to get some great night pictures.

 

Thanks for following along. :)

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Ok guys Like I promised let me just get this boring part out of the way, before I go to work. That way tomorrow I can start the fun part :-).

 

So that last week before boarding was a little hectic, bf with all those test and in addition to that I have a tendency of getting sick before every mayor trip I do, I think it's due to anxiety. So of course this trip was no exception, I was having some migraines and to combat them I took excetrin migraine(the only OTC pill that works). Well long story short I ended up messing up my stomach maybe from too much meds and stress, to the point that I had to call in sick from work on Thursday and just take care of myself. My neighbor made a huge chicken noodle soup that lasted for those days and that is all I ate during those days just to baby the stomach. But like every other trip I end up getting better the closer the travel day is.

 

On Friday I got a hair cut, I was in need of one for some time. But I was holding on for it to be closer to the cruise so I could look my best. Unfortunately the lady took way too much off, but what can you do, its not like I could glue it back on. Haven't you notice how gray your hair looks after a hair cut? Well unfortunately that's my case, but nothing that a little coloring can't fix, shhhhhhh that's my little secret ;). I also tried dieting that last week, but it ended up being a total bust, by the second day I failed to keep my strict diet. So yeah no pounds were lost prior picture madness, I think I actually put some on, oh well, lol.

 

Packing was done the day before the cruise and mostly by mom and bf. He usually takes care of all the packing, a few years ago we visited Europe for 2 weeks and I wanted to fit all my clothes in my backpack, this was during the end of November. Needless to say I did not accomplish this, the camera alone took 1/4 of the bag :D, in the end I was glad he packed, it was so cold in Paris and we needed the extra clothes. Funny note he ended getting us both sick, stubborn as he is, he refused to wear a jacked at the top of the Eiffel tower and yeah the rest is history.

 

Anyway back to the story, we all had our own packing list mom had one, he had one and I had one (he always has one prepared in case of an spontaneous trip, lol), so theoretically we would need 10 bags to fit everyones desires and wishes :rolleyes: (try putting 10 bags into that tinny cabin). I packed my back pack with my essentials, camera of course, cables, chargers, laptop, ect. I also took care of all the documentation and the anti nausea.

 

Here is my list;

 

Door decorations!

Print documents

bring empty sport bottle

Binocular*

all nausea medication

sun block

Hat

Bring highlighter pen

bring shamppo, soap and conditioner

tape for door decorations*

AAA batería for underwater cam

Bring 2 cameras with all lenses, chargers and cables.

tripod

Snorkel equipment

Small umbrellas

suit, sport coat and good cloths

shoes for rock climbing

sleeping pills

excetrin migrane

Anti-Acid meds

Lactose meds

 

 

This was our folder for documents.

DSC04658_zps1dd6732b.jpg

 

I have mentioned before our anti nausea medication. Both mom and I are prone to get motion sickness, so we rather stock up with every possible option than have to experience a bad day at sea. We took Bonine(it works very good for us and does not make us sleepy at all), ginger pills, the pressure bracelets and also scopolamine patches (not in the picture). Obviously we don't take/use everything at the same time, but they are there just in case we need them. Some might call it overkill, but we don't think so, rather be safe than sorry.

DSC04683_zps685d20d3.jpg

 

The medicine bag. I ended using the medicine bag as my camera bag, I love how light this bag is, very easy to travel with. I think its over 15yrs old, she's not pretty, but she is very handy.

DSC04684_zps21329bc6.jpg

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Thanks for doing this! Clearly you've put a ton of work into thinking about what photos people need to see to plan their trips! The annotated google sat maps of Ft Lauderdale are excellent and I think will be a useful resource for many in the future!

 

I'm following along, and hoping your bf turns out to be appreciative of this trip and your efforts to please everyone. You deserve that! Hey, if you run out of cash you can always sell the yacht!;)

Looking forward to the rest of your review:D

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My pinguïn hats ready to go on their first cruise ^--^

DSC04692_zps1e2228c0.jpg

 

 

They took care of the rest of the packing while I was at work. He usually is very proactive about packing, but that week he had 4 midterms so he was busy until the end of the week. The only thing I remember telling him was to split all our cloths in the 3 bags, just in case one of the bags got lost we would all had clothes to wear. I read some reviews were people had their bag lost for one or two days and just in case that happened to us I wanted to avoid the issue of one of us going without clothes. I also tried separating most of the cloths I wanted to take, I've just gotten some new stuff and I wanted to make sure they got it all in the bags. When I got home I took some pictures of the bags just in case they got lost, lost and found would have an idea on what to look for, once again that was a tip from another CC member.

 

My cloths waiting to be packed.

DSC04697_zpse886f804.jpg

 

DSC04702_zpsdd4ecfa0.jpg

 

In the end we managed to fit everything into 3 bags and two carry-ons.

DSC04701_zps329f6ffc.jpg

 

 

 

Two days before our cruise RCCL decided to change their "bring on board alcohol policy" now you were allowed to bring two bottles of wine/champagne to consume on your state room at no cost to you. But if you wished to drink the bottles in any other area of the ship you would need to pay a $25 corkage fee. This was great news as in the beginning I was planning on buying the larger 10 bottle wine package deal to get some bottles into our room and drink in our balcony, but later I changed my mind about it.

 

I told the bf if he could pick me up a bottle of Nobilo for myself and to get something for them, they both like sweet white wines. When I got home I saw the bottle of Nobilo and next to it a 1.5 liter of Moscato, lol. I was like omg you are really pushing it, but in any case we packed them into the carryon and hope they would clear through. I also printed the statement from the UK RCCL site to bring with us, the US site had yet to update their policy. And a few CC goers were claiming issues with their wine being confiscated, I did not feel like explaining this to the staff since it was a new rule. But if I had to, I would at least have something to back up my words.

 

I was also hoping that some people sailing on the Oasis the day before would attempt to bring wine and all the staff would be made aware of the new rule. BTW we still had plans on getting some nice drinks at bars, but this was a nice surprised that I was not expecting. Thank you RCCL, a job nicely done!

 

DSC04709_zpsd80fa4e8.jpg

 

Screenshot2012-11-02at20303PM_zps0ae619c3.png

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Thanks for doing this! Clearly you've put a ton of work into thinking about what photos people need to see to plan their trips! The annotated google sat maps of Ft Lauderdale are excellent and I think will be a useful resource for many in the future!

 

I'm following along, and hoping your bf turns out to be appreciative of this trip and your efforts to please everyone. You deserve that! Hey, if you run out of cash you can always sell the yacht!;)

Looking forward to the rest of your review:D

 

I did indeed put a lot of thought. I basically added everything that was crucial into my pre-cruise planing and maybe added a few extra personal things here and there.

 

The problem with the selling the yacht is that it's a lease, I would have to give them money back if I return it before the lease is over. Trust me I thought about selling it by day 5 in the cruise ;), I was sooooo broke by then :D

 

Thanks for following :-)

Edited by gambee

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Ok folks that is all I have for today and pre-planning, tomorrow I will start to work my way through day 1 of the cruise. I am currently in the process of selecting the pictures that will go into the review. I hope everyone is enjoying, feel free to leave comments or questions. I will try to respond from work.

 

Have a great day everyone! :)

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What an awesome job you are doing! Love the detail and your pictures are amazing! Thanks so much for taking the time - we all can appreciate how much work goes into these picture reviews!!!

 

Barb

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How was the change over from week one to week two? I am doing a B2B in July on the Allure. Thanks.

 

The change was easy. There was a meeting on Saturday am for consecutive cruisers in the Comedy Club. We were able to make dining reservations and book shore excursions and shows for the 2nd cruise. The process for turnaround was explained. If you're changing cabins you pack everything except your clothes on the hangers and the steward moves it to your new room.

 

On Sunday everyone met at 10am in the Comedy Club, got our new Seapass cards and all got off together. We checked out with the old card then waited a bit in the terminal before going downstairs to Customs/Immigration. A quick look at our passports and then it was back upstairs......passing everyone who was waiting to board :).....and clicking in with the new Seapass card. We were then treated to a complimentary lunch in Giovanni's. By the time we finished lunch cabins were available.

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I love them larger as well, but It is hard for some to follow with all the notes, this seems to be a good compromise. Thank you for taking the time to comment and follow me.

 

 

 

I'm already planning my next review and I've been giving this some thought. In my last review I varied the size and that had some unpleasant side affects to the appearance of the review. I think for my next review I'll scale them all to 1024x768 as that seems to be a size most people can accommodate.

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No, just an amateur, I would love to get to a professional level, but that is never easy. I try to teach myself by reading.

Well, you do about the best amateur job I have ever seen!:cool:

 

but RATS ( very large rats the size of small house cats) live in those rocks and when the wave hit it disrupted their Joo Joo and they were scampering around and sqweeling like a horror movie!!!!....

Ok - THAT is enough to keep me off those rocks alone! :eek: :eek:

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Thank you for taking the time to give detailed review along with pictures and tips. This is definitely going to be a terrific read. Thanks again.

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