This past Saturday I was invited by Royal Caribbean to sail the revitalized Navigator of the seas. I took my daughter along to experience the changes on the ship with me. She’s been hounding me for a while to go back on a Royal Caribbean ship. This was a perfect getaway, a Saturday night gone and back home for a full day celebrating Mother’s Day.
This sailing was a special one night sailing for invited guests. Most of the guests were travel agents although some industry insiders were also invited to have a cruise night as well. Some agents were given multiple cabins so they could invite along special clients who they feel would enjoy the experience. Regardless the event was talked about by various folks on some sites such as cruise critic.
The cruise departed generally like any Navigator cruise would around 4:30pm from Galveston. We sailed on a Saturday instead of the normal Sunday afternoon. Because they didn’t have to load luggage the folks working the dock had a simpler time getting the ship off easily on time. This also served to make it an easy debark the next morning as everyone was only allowed to bring what they could carry themselves.
The ship was revitalized earlier this year. This time new cabins were added, mostly all cabins with a view. These cabins look down at the heliport and out the bow. These cabins have a great view when sailing in and out of port. Additionally, the ship received some new dining venues as well as a very well liked sports deck feature a new FlowRider.
Among the new dining venues are Sabor, for modern Mexican cuisine, Giovanni’s Table for Italian, and Izumi Asian Cuisine. Chops and Johnny Rockets remained although Chops did get an updated menu. Ben & Jerry’s ice cream also remained aboard which was quite nice. I enjoyed some Cherry Garcia while aboard.
Of course the ship got lots of nice interior and exterior touch-ups to make her look as nice as can be. The cabin colors changed to a nice blue which to me is more appealing. The ship looked to be very clean and well painted everywhere I looked. Windows were clean, carpet was new and clean. Crew were always scurrying about cleaning up any messes that did occur.
On this cruise the bar staff, were stressed to the limit many times with super high volume requests for drinks. Fortunately they didn’t have to run charge slips because this was an open bar cruise. Many of the guests were enjoying a variety of drinks. We enjoyed the food and beverage service we had while aboard. My guilty pleasure this trip was a double dose of Johnny Rocket’s chocolate milkshakes.
Overall we found the crew to be refreshingly helpful and caring. Although I am sure all were on absolute best behavior with the top two executives from Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, the parent company aboard, we found the help and service offered were genuine. Crew did whatever they could to help with any requests we had. Fortunately all of our requests were quite simple as there were no issues on the ship to cause us to ask for any additional help.
I’ve always enjoyed our trips on Navigator before the revitalization. The ship is fresh and with the added venues especially the flow rider, it’s going to be a big hit with families who choose to cruise her now. With the great service we received anyone wanting to get away for a week is in for a treat aboard the new Navigator of the seas.
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