Anthem of the Seas, the latest fleet addition from Royal Caribbean International, and a ship that I have just spent the last 2 days aboard – this is what I thought of the UK’s brand new smart-ship.
First of all, she is huge, but in a good way, and she is certainly a superb choice of ship for those cruising with teenagers, or young couples that want something a little more exciting from a holiday at sea.
As soon as I boarded I began exploring and my first onboard stop was the Royal Esplanade area on Deck 4. Boleros, La Patisserie, Michael’s Genuine Pub, Sorrentos, Café Promenade and a few shops could all be found here. Directly above on Deck 5 I found the Bionic Bar, Wonderland, Izumi, Prime Table, Chops Grille, Schooner Bar, Jamie’s Italian, and Café Two70. The Bionic Bar was brilliant, I couldn’t take my eyes off it and I wandered past on several occasions to see the robots in action. I also had a look in Wonderland and discovered that it was smaller than I had expected, but it really did have that Alice in Wonderland charm – but with a dark twist. I am sure a dining experience here would be just that!
My accommodation was a balcony cabin on Deck 10 which was spacious, beautifully decorated and had a rather nice bathroom! I was quite pleased with my abode for the 2-nights, although the air conditioning wasn’t quite cool enough for my liking.
On Deck 14 mid-ships I found the Sky Bar, NorthStar, Pool Bar, Pool, H20 Zone, Johnny Rockets, Windjammer Marketplace, Solarium, Devinly Decadence and Coastal Kitchen. I really liked the mid-ships pool area and it offered a great view of the NorthStar when it was in action. The Solarium, which was located forward on Deck 14, was a wonderful area and it was even more beautiful when delicately lit in the evening. The whole space is enclosed in glass, so you can imagine what the views are like.
On Deck 15 I found Gigi the Giraffe. I had made it my mission to take a selfie with her and once that task was complete I sat watching people take on the power of the FlowRider and the RipCord – I wasn’t quite brave enough to try either, but it was a beautiful day and the odd splash of water from the FlowRider made me feel like I was on holiday.
Monday evening came quicker than I expected and dinner for me would that evening would be a steak experience at Chops Grille. I devoured the pan roasted jumbo scallops to start, they were delicious as was the 9oz Filet Mignon I chose for main course. It was cooked perfectly and incredibly juicy. For dessert I selected the Red Velvet Cake and what a slice of cake it was. I could have melted away beneath the table after one mouthful – it was the nicest Red Velvet Cake I have ever tasted!
Following dinner I enjoyed a few drinks in the Schooner Bar before heading down to the Music Hall, which was packed with hundreds of people having a rather good time. The Music Hall is spread across 2 floors and it was probably my favourite of all the indoor areas on-board. It had a very rock’n’roll feel to it with a twist of something naughty and I really did like it. I also loved the chairs that were covered in feathers and the sugar skull painting on one of the walls.
Before I knew it I was 300ft above the ship on the NorthStar. I am not great with heights, but I was desperate to try it and I am so glad that I did. It was incredible! It felt a lot higher being up there than it looked from down below, but I would definitely do it again. Cruising on Anthem of the Seas or Quantum of the Seas? Then make sure you do it too, the photo opportunities are awesome!
I explored SeaPlex during my time on-board, racing round the bumper car track not once, but twice, and I popped my head into a few of the kids club areas – all of which were of a decent size and had more than enough happening to keep kids of all ages happy for hours every day.
Anthem of the Seas was my first Royal Caribbean experience and I really did enjoy it – some things offering more of the WOW factor than others – but one of my favourite things about the ship has to be the wristbands. I would love to see something like that on all ships. They are convenient, waterproof and it saved me a lot of time – no rummaging in my bag for a card!
Would I recommend Anthem of the Seas? If adrenaline rushes and lots of action, adventure and things to do are high on your priority list during your time on-board then yes, she is the one for you!
Images Courtesy of Royal Caribbean Press Center and Danielle Fear.