This Allure of the Seas review will cover both the basics of the Royal Caribbean ship as well as some of the finer details that make a big difference on your cruise. The Allure is the sister ship of the Oasis of the Seas – and the big sister at that, being about 2 inches longer at 1,181 feet. But a big more length is not the only difference between the 2 ships, although eerily similar at first glance.
The Allure is the largest cruise ship in the world and the newer of the sister ships. With over 225,000 tonnage the Allure is able to carry 5,400 passengers on its towering 16 decks at speeds of over 22 knots.
Itinerary and Ports
The Allure sails from Fort Lauderdale, Florida and hits some of the following ports that are mainly in the western Caribbean with: Haiti, Jamaica, Cozumel, Nassau, St Thomas, Philipsburg, St, Maarten, and St, Kitts. Right now all of the cruises on this vessel are either 7 night or 9 night cruises, most of them being for 7 nights.
The cabins are both modern and cozy in this huge ship, and there is a wide variety of rooms to choose from. There are rooms that have balconies right over the Aqua Theater, rooms that have balconies over Central Park, rooms with 2nd story lofts and balconies, and spacious family suites as well. The largest stateroom is the Royal Suite with Balcony at over 1,700 square feet, and the smallest is the 149 sq. ft. Interior Stateroom. Each room comes with a flat screen TV from which you can order room service, book excursions, and check out the daily itinerary.
One of the coolest features of the cabins is that they come with an iPod dock and speaker so you can charge up your iPod or iPhone and play your music in the cabins. There are actually two docks for each system so you can use both if you want.
Cabins to watch out for. According to cruiseadvice.org some of the best cabins aboard the Allure of the Seas are on decks, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 17. The only real decks that have been reported to have problems are the staterooms on deck 3, and this is mainly because of noise issues with the deck being so close to the live music and dancing. So if you are a light sleeper you might want to avoid these staterooms.
Dining and Food Options
There are dining options everywhere on this massive ship, but the main dining room is probably where you eat most of your meals. This Opus takes up 3 decks and has a spectacular chandelier in the middle. Royal Caribbean offers “My Time Dining” which allows you to show up for dinner anytime between 6pm and 9:30pm, but you need to tip ahead of time. Your maître d’ will not know when you are arriving so your table may not be ready right away with “My Time Dining” so be aware of that.
There is a great place for a hotdog or brat on the boardwalk, and it’s open pretty much 24/7 so you can eat there whenever you want.
Some of the restaurants on board the Allure include Chops Grille, Solarium Bistro, The Seafood Shack, Johnny Rockets, Park Café, 150 Central Park, Giovanni’s Table, Izumi Japanese Cuisine, Windjammers, Vitality Café, Wipe Out Café, Ice Cream Parlour, and of course you can always order in room service.
Ok, you coffee addicts, you are going to love it when I tell you that there is a Starbucks on board the Allure of the Seas. First one on a cruise ship of this caliber, in fact. Though there is a full Starbucks menu, even big fans of the chain may not be drinking all their coffee from here though. You have to pay extra for your cup of joe, and with plenty of “free” coffee to drink on board the ship, you may just want to save those precious pennies.
Love Broadway musicals? Well for the first time ever, a cruise ship now offers the hit musical “Chicago: The Musical” as part of its entertainment. The Amber theater seats over 1,400 people and allows you to watch an extremely professional production of this successful Broadway show with quality sound and quality talent to go along with it. Oh, and there is a full orchestra to go along with the show. You might have to pinch yourself to be reminded that you are on a cruise ship.
Don’t forget to see the “How to Train Your Dragon” ice show on the Allure’s skating rink. It’s more of a kids show but it still highlights some acrobatic skating escapades, jazzy effects, and a lot of noise. The costumes are hysterical and very well done too.
The Blue Planet program is full of theatrics, acrobatics, twirls, and all kinds of spectacular effects and takes place in the Amber Theater as well. It really is great performance by high caliber talent that can both sing and perform circus-like feats for an awe-inspired audience.
Just like the Oasis of the Seas, the Allure has its own Aqua Theater as well and it offers a spectacular performance of diving, fountains, music, and a well put together program to entertain you with a storyline.
The 3D movie theater will blow your mind. Not only is the sound quality and picture quality amazing, but how cool is it to watch a movie in 3D on a huge screen while drinking your favorite beverage on a cruise ship? Since Royal Caribbean has contracted a deal with DreamWorks you can guess what kind of movies will be shown. They use the same theater where you will be watching “Chicago” so there is plenty of room for everyone.
The Allure features a full size basketball and volleyball court in one that is surrounded by a wall of glass to keep the balls out of the ocean and on the court. There are also little hockey goals for either street hockey or soccer. The court is on the top deck across from the mini-golf course, between which is Central Park below. There are several Ping-Pong tables on the ship as well as a zip line that runs across the ship over Central Park. It doesn’t go very fast, but it’s a nice addition to the cruise ship.
Pools and Hot Tubs
The pool deck is spacious and partially enclosed by glass so you don’t get slammed by the fierce winds of the Caribbean too much and can be surprisingly quiet. There is a beach pool, main pool, solarium, sports pool, and an H2O zone for the kids to play in and splash around.
Taking from the success of the cantilevered whirlpools on the Freedom of the Seas, Allure of the Seas has integrated these whirlpools as well.
The Flowrider is always a lot of fun for cruisers and there is usually a line. But the cool thing is that Allure has 2 of them. The flowrider will allow you to boogie board or surf on a constant stream of water that usually ends up in someone getting wiped out and can just be fun to watch if you are not adventurous.