Anthem 2 Nighter
k_hamilton | August 30, 2013 | Royal Caribbean International | Anthem of the Seas
We parked with AB Parking at the port within walking distance of the terminal. Royal Caribbean check in staff were greeting passengers with an ipad and were scanning your seapass & checking your passports. I think from leaving the car to boarding the ship it was 5 minutes!
We were allocated a wonderful balcony cabin right near the forward lifts. We didn??t experience any noise from the lift area or outdoor corridors. The cabin seemed very well layed out, nice and light & airy. Nice not to be faced with the usual dark wardrobe-type area as soon as you walk in as this cabin had built around the bed was so it didn??t seem as enclosed. The cabin was a good size with sitting area, big mirrors and modern d??cor. I was pleased to see tea/coffee making facilities, plus the usual in-cabin hairdryer and complimentary toiletries in the bathroom. The bathroom had a decent size shower and proper perspex shower screen. Again lovely modern d??cor.
We logged onto te Royal IQ app as instructed in our in-cabin ‘Cruise Compass’ newsletter, and here we found out which dining we’d been allocated. On the first evening we were seated on a table of 4 in the American Idol restaurant, and on the second evening a table of 6 in the Chic restaurant. The menu was wonderful with a great choice of meat, pasta and fish dishes. The four main dining rooms Chic, American Idol, Silk and Grande all had food choices on these menus.
There are 18 dining venues aboard Anthem, including Jamie Olivers and a Japanese restaurant, however the specialty venue Wonderland was an exclusive a la carte restaurant which people were raving about. Based on the Alice in Wonderland theme, this intimate, 62-seat restaurant offers an edgy and surreal dining environment, with imaginative d??cor and superior cuisine. We were also impressed with the Bionic Bar, where the bar tenders are two mechanical robot arms! You place an order via a tablet, then watch as it??s mixed with laser precision by these mechanical geniuses. Each evening before dinner we sat in Michael’s genuine Pub -not only did they serve great drinks but they also came round with the most delicious canapes, perfect for a tasty treat before your evening meal.
This ship has by far the most technologically advanced entertainment I have ever seen at sea. Two70 was an amazing entertainment venue, the 270-degree screens offered expansive sea views during the day, but by night they transformed into a real visual feast. Known as ‘Vistarama’, these screens are an engineering marvel as they transform the outside view into gaint tv screens, showing scenes that are either real or imagined, for example a city skyline, or a scene from a movie. Two70 holds concerts here too, apparantly the American Philharmonic Orchestra play here, and you’ll be able to see the whole orchestra projected onto the screens.
In Two70 you could watch ‘Spectra’s Cabaret’, a leap ahead of the usual cabaret you would expect to see and there was a real buzz around the ship about how great it was. On the second evening we watched the musical phenomenon ‘We Will Rock You’ in the Royal Theatre. A good sized theatre, we had excellent views even from the back and thoroughly enjoyed the high standard of show.
Us ‘young ‘uns’ enjoyed The Music Hall after dark, a really cool venue with live bands with a real moody night club feel. We danced the night away to 80’s tribute band The Wild Boys who were excellent.
During the day you wont get bored. From the RipCord by iFly?? skydiving simulator, to the jewel-shaped capsule of North Star which ascends over 300 feet above sea level offering views of the ocean, the ship, and ports, there are many wow factors on Anthem. Also we experienced SeaPlex where people were zooming around in dodgems or trying circus skills like trapezing. We didn??t brave the FlowRider?? surf simulator but it did look like fun. Anthem has an indoor swimming pool too so for any grey days sailing from Southampton this might come in handy!
The kids areas on board were amazing. Alongside the usual poolside activities, kids can try surfing and skydiving simulators, plus the Seaplex centre (with hot dog vendor!) which includes bumper car track, sports such as basketball, table tennis, roller skating and an Xbox One lounge. Kids clubs available with organised activities for separate age groups; Royal Babies & Royal Tots (hourly fee of $6 applies for daytime, $8 for night nursery), Aquanauts 3-5 years, Explorers 6-8 years, Voyagers 9-11 years), plus ??hang out?? and gaming areas for teens 12-14 years and 15-17 years with with flat screen TVs, books and games on offer. There is no charge for the kids clubs, although there is a late hourly fee that applies after 10pm.
Fun activities, a myriad of dining options and something for kids and adults alike. I??d definitely receommend this ship to families with children of any age as parents can feel reassured that their little ones will be occupied throughout the cruise, whilst still experiencing excellent standards of food and service you would expect on any cruise. I think couples from 20’s up to 60’s would definitely appreciate the fine selection of dining an entertainment venues, but i personally don??t feel that passengers much older would be as keen. The ship is huge, so lots of walking around and a busy/loud atmosphere when walking down the main promenade might be a little overwhelming for some. I think singles would probably enjoy it, especially if there were organised meet & greets for solo travellers, otherwise you may feel a bit lost on such a big ‘un by yourself.
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