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Despite being launched back in 1998, Vision of the Seas still upholds its title as one of the freshest and innovative ships in the line. During her dry dock in 2013, Vision of the Seas has been decked with the Royal Caribbean staples – more dining options like Giovanni’s, Izumi, and Chops Grille; R Bar, alfresco movie experiences, updated cabins, and the six-deck atirum called Centrum. The bountiful floor-to-ceiling glass walls is also one of Vision of the Sea’s appealing aspect, integrating the sun, sea and the sky into the interiors of the ship. Daytime attire is mostly casual, other than the two formal nights (on seven day voyages). Royal Caribbean passengers are charged $13.50 per person, per day ($16.50 for suite guests) and can be prepaid or added on a daily basis to the passenger’s account. Guests can add or remove gratuities by visiting the guest services desk.

Accommodation

Since its 2013 refurbishment, all cabins in Vision of the Sea’s are all outfitted with new bathrooms, carpeting, furnishings, decor and flat-screen LED TVs. Standard cabins start from 12 square-metre, featuring a twin bed convertible into king, vanity area, safe, hairdryer, some have sofa beds. Two new categories were also added during the refurb: a bigger, 44 square-metre Family Oceanview; and the Panoramic Oceanview. Suites, sorted into five types, offer private balconies, sitting areas with sofa beds, private bathrooms with bathtubs and minibars. As part of Royal Caribbean’s innovation, cabins include iPads that can be used throughout the ship to access daily schedules and onboard accounts, surf the Web, watch movies, make dining reservations and place an order for room service. suite passengers also enjoy access to the Concierge Club, priority check-in and tendering, luggage valet service, access to dining room menus for room service, complimentary clothes-pressing on formal night and priority debarkation.

Food

Aquarius Dining room, the main dining hall in Vision of the Seas, has open seating for breakfast and lunch. As for dinner, Aquarius offers two assigned dining times: 6pm and 8:30 pm. Guests can opt to be flexible with ‘My Time Dining’ where they can just walk in whenever they feel like anytime between6 and 9:30pm. Buffet meals are always served at Windjammer Cafe or choose lighter options at the Park Cafe. At a fee, guests can try more unique restaurants like an exclusive meal at Chef’s Table, asian dished at Izumi, family-style dining at Giovanni’s or steak at Royal Caribbean’s signature steakhouse, Chops Grille. Room service is available 24/7. Late-night/early-morning orders (between midnight and 5 a.m.) incur a $3.95 surcharge.

Activities

Vision of the Seas has one main pool on Deck 9, with four shaded hot tubs surrounding it. Adjacent to the pool area, is the adults-only Solarium featuring an all-weather sliding-glass roof, the new Park Cafe and the two-deck Vitality Sea Spa and Fitness Center. The spa has a Mayan theme, with a gently trickling “wall of water” feature in its relaxation room, designed by artist Neil Dawson Baker and called Chalchiuhtcu after the Mayan water goddess. It offers the usual professional treatments such as facials, massages, reflexology, scrubs, to collagen-boosting facials and hot stone massages to detoxifying body wraps and teeth whitening. The gym is well-equipped and has a separate dance studio. Guests can take advantage of free classes, or enroll themselves in Yoga, Pilates or kickboxing classes for $10 per class. Vision of the Seas also has a sports court, jogging track and Royal Caribbean’s signature rock-climbing wall, all on Deck 10.

Families

Careful thought is evident in Vision of the Seas’s Children’s facilities. Activities for kids below 18 years old are age-specific and are centered on Deck 10. The Royal Babies and Tots Nursery, open from 8 a.m. on port days and 9:30 a.m. through midnight is a playroom/drop-off program for kids aged 6 to 36 months. It has Fisher-Price toys; a flat-screen TV playing children’s shows; Crayola art supplies; and a separate sleeping area with cribs. Parents can drop-off their kids for $6 per hour, per child, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and $8 per hour, per child, from 5 p.m. until midnight. Adventure Ocean features various activities for kids from 3 to 17. Older teens have exclusive access to the disco where they can enjoy dancing and mocktails from 8 p.m. until 2 a.m. The “Late Night Party Zone” or the group-babysitting program operates from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. and costs $7 per hour, per child. In-cabin baby-sitting is also available from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. but comes with a $19-per-hour charge for up to three children within the same family. Parents must book this service 24 hours in advance.

Verdict

– Cruise Passenger 

– Cruise Critic 

“Vision of the Seas, with its slim funnel placed at the very aft, is a ship that the whole family can enjoy, and offers a good choice of restaurants and eateries.”

– Berlitz

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