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Need Thoughts on Empress of the Seas

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1 hour ago, ILCTCRUISER said:

However, should one really book a cruise on a ship on which every once in a while, you encounter sewer gas odor?


My house has a spouse, a black Lab, and a chocolate Lab.  

I challenge any sewer system to come up with a smell that is worse than those I run into at home!

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2 hours ago, John&LaLa said:

I board Saturday for 8 days. If internet is good, I may post my experience 

Do let us know how it goes! My biggest concern is the smallness of the ship and how rocky it gets at night. 

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1 minute ago, kyrie said:

Do let us know how it goes! My biggest concern is the smallness of the ship and how rocky it gets at night. 


Call me weird, but I MISS the rocking on the big ships.  

Nothing like being rocked to sleep at night.... love it! 

 

On the big girls, I have to look out a window to know if we're even moving or not!

 

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You know, the only thing I remember from 17 years ago, is the toilets didnt work

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3 minutes ago, brillohead said:


Call me weird, but I MISS the rocking on the big ships.  

Nothing like being rocked to sleep at night.... love it! 

 

On the big girls, I have to look out a window to know if we're even moving or not!

 

 

IMG_20160406_150416.jpg.b8c696c573d1407822a1cfb370c6ba14.jpg

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28 minutes ago, kyrie said:

Do let us know how it goes! My biggest concern is the smallness of the ship and how rocky it gets at night. 

I love the rolling motion of the smaller ships,although I'm aware that can be problematic for some.

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We just finished our 8 day cruise on Empress last Sunday. We were originally planning to go to Cuba but we all know that didn’t pan out. While our room was small, it was definitely bigger than some of the others we saw. It was 7164 and had a cut out area that had a twin bed that we used as a sofa/storage area. The ship was small but you definitely got around quickly and got to know a lot of people. We had my time dining which we thought worked really well. We had the same waiters every night. The pool was really small but had very few kids (there was a kiddie splash area nearby). Our favorite bar was Boleros and our favorite bartender was Louis, who can create many different types of martinis🍸. All in all, I’m glad we went thru with the cruise (the 50% off helped) but I’m not sure we would travel on the ship again. 

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Hey  ZoeyVictoria

 

We were your tablemates on the first Empress cruise back in 16.   I was just thinking sbout you both and eould love to see you again.  Sailing on Serenade eith friends inJanuary.

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2 hours ago, sdteacher said:

We just finished our 8 day cruise on Empress last Sunday. We were originally planning to go to Cuba but we all know that didn’t pan out. While our room was small, it was definitely bigger than some of the others we saw. It was 7164 and had a cut out area that had a twin bed that we used as a sofa/storage area. The ship was small but you definitely got around quickly and got to know a lot of people. We had my time dining which we thought worked really well. We had the same waiters every night. The pool was really small but had very few kids (there was a kiddie splash area nearby). Our favorite bar was Boleros and our favorite bartender was Louis, who can create many different types of martinis🍸. All in all, I’m glad we went thru with the cruise (the 50% off helped) but I’m not sure we would travel on the ship again. 

 

Did they have a nightly diamond event....since there is no Diamond Lounge??😎

Edited by Beachammo

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We were on Empress to Cuba in January.   Loved CUBA but would not sail Empress again.  There was a lot of sewage smell on Deck 7 aft and in the aft stairwells almost the entire cruise.    

 

Our interior room was quite small but not a huge issue as we travel light.   Air conditioning in our room was hit or miss - freezing cold to very warm and not comfortable almost the entire cruise.

 

My time dining was very disorganized and our requests for 2-tops worked on just 2 nights and we had to sit at a table for 10 - ugh - SO not us and dinner took over 2 hours.  Windjammer was oddly designed and had the worst crowding of any ship we have sailed.

 

Boleros was very nice inside but smoking is allowed on its outside portion.

 

Crew was good overall.

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We were on the Empress last month for 8 days and just booked again for 6 days in August. We love the smaller ships. However, no diamond event as previously mentioned, just drinks loaded on your card. Also, not many areas to have a meal, just the main dining room, Windjammer and Chops. We did have breakfast daily in Chops. The Schooner is very large and Boleros is really nice. 

 

Edited by Mary&Jim
Typo

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23 hours ago, crossingfan said:

Hey  ZoeyVictoria

 

We were your tablemates on the first Empress cruise back in 16.   I was just thinking sbout you both and eould love to see you again.  Sailing on Serenade eith friends inJanuary.

 

How nice to hear from you!  I have several cruises in the works, but not the Serenade at this time. I retired in April 2017 and moved with Bob to his house in Ocala.  Sadly, he died very unexpectedly just weeks later.  It makes me smile to remember that Empress cruise with him and the two of you; sharing and commiserating over dinner helped us to see the humor in the situation and actually enjoy the cruise.

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Oh, i'm so sorry that Bob has passed away.  We too so enjoyed you both.  

Are you still in Ocala?

What have youbeen sailing on recently?  We just did Koningsdam for a Greece, Italy Turkey cruise.  It was wonderful.  Do you still have my email?  We need to catch up!

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We sailed on the Empress back in March on a cruise to Cuba.  There were families with little ones, groups from all different nationalities, but much of the passenger makeup seemed to be on the more mature 😊 side.  We have never been on the huge mega ships but are very familiar with the Radiance Class of ships.  With that in mind, the Empress had some really good things going for her.  As previously stated, Boleros was a great area with entertainment.  The Schooner Bar was a great stop before or after dinner.  There was never any problem getting a chair on the pool deck and I particularly liked that there were small tables around the outside of the pool area where you could sit, have a bite or just relax.  The dining staff were great and the food came out hot (that's a pet peeve of mine).

 

On the other side, the hot tubs were not always working.  The Windjammer (on other ships is on the aft end) was up front and not well laid out.  It always seemed congested.  The weirdest thing was that the gym was above the Viking Lounge and was partially open to the lounge area.  You could actually see people upstairs on the treadmills.  The rooms were small but we expected that but I really missed the balcony (only suites have them).  

 

There did seem to be a problem with plumbing in a cabin just down from ours but we never had an odor or a problem in our cabin.

 

Good luck with your cruise planning!

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1 hour ago, Bookish Angel said:

We were on Empress to Cuba in January.   Loved CUBA but would not sail Empress again.  There was a lot of sewage smell on Deck 7 aft and in the aft stairwells almost the entire cruise.    

 

Our interior room was quite small but not a huge issue as we travel light.   Air conditioning in our room was hit or miss - freezing cold to very warm and not comfortable almost the entire cruise.

 

My time dining was very disorganized and our requests for 2-tops worked on just 2 nights and we had to sit at a table for 10 - ugh - SO not us and dinner took over 2 hours.  Windjammer was oddly designed and had the worst crowding of any ship we have sailed.

 

Boleros was very nice inside but smoking is allowed on its outside portion.

 

Crew was good overall.

The sewage smell is still there.  The A/C problem is still there.  Doesn't this speak volumes about RCCL?  Windjammer crowding is still a problem though I'm not sure what could be done to fix that.  How many recall why so many cruises were cancelled after it was brought back from Pullmantur?  Following a refurbishment they blew the whistle.  Galleys and provisioning areas had to be stripped to bare metal.  We had booked B2B jr suites on first cruises out of dry dock.  They were cancelled.  We rebooked those B2Bs a few weeks later.  Roughly 3-4 days before the departure date, they were also cancelled.  We're flexible, so it wasn't a major catastrophe as it was for many others.  Some had family reunions planned etc etc. In the end we got full refund as well as large cruise credit.  It'll be interesting to see what happens with this ship.  It certainly doesn't seem to be a good fit.

 

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On 7/11/2019 at 4:12 PM, John&LaLa said:

I board Saturday for the first time in 17+ years

 

Our sailing is 8 days

My Aunt is on that cruise Saturday. 

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On 7/11/2019 at 4:42 PM, John&LaLa said:

I board Saturday for 8 days. If internet is good, I may post my experience 

Please do... I enjoy your photos/reviews.

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On 7/11/2019 at 7:05 PM, John&LaLa said:

 

IMG_20160406_150416.jpg.b8c696c573d1407822a1cfb370c6ba14.jpg

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

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On 7/11/2019 at 4:09 PM, cjdixon4 said:

Considering surprising my hubby with a shorty cruise (3-5 dys) next Spring, and I'm looking at possibly trying Empress. Anyone who has been on her, please share your thoughts/experiences on the ship.  Clearly it won't have the bells and whistles of the mid-size or mega ships; but I'd like to know if I should try it or book another since it's one of RC's oldest in the fleet.

Thanks in advance 😉

If this is your husbands first cruise and you are trrying to impress him to taking you on more cruises.............. In my opinion Empress is not the ship to take. Navigator, Brilliance, Mariner or even Enchantment out of Galeveston would be better options.

 

We cruised on her one time on a Repo from San Juan to NYC............Wife and I agreed, never again on that ship. Just to many better options to ever sail on her again.

Edited by Jimbo

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On 7/11/2019 at 2:12 PM, John&LaLa said:

I board Saturday for the first time in 17+ years

 

Our sailing is 8 days

 

Question since you are on board.  I see they have the UDP (dining package) listed in my cruise planner.  Thought that was odd given only Chops.  Do they really expect people to eat in Chops every night?  No other a la carte options so what does UDP do for you on Empress?  

 

Chops on Empress is the only one in the fleet I like but I can't eat there every night.  Will probably stick with a BOGO but had to laugh when I saw the UDP for her so wanted to know. 

Edited by twangster

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35 minutes ago, twangster said:

 

Question since you are on board.  I see they have the UDP (dining package) listed in my cruise planner.  Thought that was odd given only Chops.  Do they really expect people to eat in Chops every night?  No other a la carte options so what does UDP do for you on Empress?  

 

Chops on Empress is the only one in the fleet I like but I can't eat there every night.  Will probably stick with a BOGO but had to laugh when I saw the UDP for her so wanted to know. 

I’m also curious. We still a lot on the smaller ships like radiance and brilliance. When last we were on the radiance of Tampa we found that almost nobody was in the specialty restaurants. The specialty dining manager offered us a phenomenal deal for the week. Essentially $70 to eat as many times as we wanted. I thought that they were being severely under utilized.

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59 minutes ago, twangster said:

 

Question since you are on board.  I see they have the UDP (dining package) listed in my cruise planner.  Thought that was odd given only Chops.  Do they really expect people to eat in Chops every night?  No other a la carte options so what does UDP do for you on Empress?  

 

Chops on Empress is the only one in the fleet I like but I can't eat there every night.  Will probably stick with a BOGO but had to laugh when I saw the UDP for her so wanted to know. 

 

I guess that you work your way through the menu.  🥳

 

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11 hours ago, Jimbo said:

If this is your husbands first cruise and you are trrying to impress him to taking you on more cruises.............. In my opinion Empress is not the ship to take. Navigator, Brilliance, Mariner or even Enchantment out of Galeveston would be better options.

 

We cruised on her one time on a Repo from San Juan to NYC............Wife and I agreed, never again on that ship. Just to many better options to ever sail on her again.

Nope, we're frequent cruisers. Just wanted to check with others on their thoughts regarding Empress. Nothing more.

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16 hours ago, twangster said:

 

Question since you are on board.  I see they have the UDP (dining package) listed in my cruise planner.  Thought that was odd given only Chops.  Do they really expect people to eat in Chops every night?  No other a la carte options so what does UDP do for you on Empress?  

 

Chops on Empress is the only one in the fleet I like but I can't eat there every night.  Will probably stick with a BOGO but had to laugh when I saw the UDP for her so wanted to know. 

 

Yep, Chops is it. Dining on this ship is unique. 

We were able to buy BOGO first night and come back whenever. 

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