Launched: May 1997.
Cruising speed: 22 knots.
Number of passengers: 1,998 at double occupancy.
Staterooms: 999; 229 have private balconies, 593 have ocean views, and there are 287 with third and fourth berths. This ship also has 14 wheelchair accessible rooms.
Where she cruises: Alaska, Australia/New Zealand and Hawaii.
Rhapsody is one of Royal Caribbean’s Vision Class of ships, boasting features including an impressive seven-deck atrium called the Centrum, a multi-million-dollar art collection, and plenty of attractions for families, including multi-berth staterooms. She is also one of two of the line’s vessels calling Australia home during Wave Season.
Who Should Go?
Couples, families, and people looking for an active and affordable vacation.
Things You Might Not Know
Part of Rhapsody’s impressive art collection is the Diadem, a huge structure which hangs in the atrium of the ship, constructed of wood and metal with a blue and green planet-like orb in the centre.
Rhapsody has four basic grades of accommodation ranging from interiors to spacious suites. All are simply and tastefully appointed with twin beds which convert to a double, a private bathroom, television, telephone, mini-bar, hairdryer and air conditioning.
Interior: Three categories, with the large and superior categories having a vanity area.
Outside: Two categories, with the large stateroom having either a window or portholes and vanity area, and the family stateroom accommodating up to six people with a sitting area.
Balcony: One category with a sitting area, and a balcony area of 41 square feet/3.8 square metres.
Suite/Deluxe: Five categories. Royal Suites have a separate bedroom and king sized bed, a whirlpool bathtub, living area and a baby grand piano. Owner’s Suites have a queen-sized bed and separate living area. Royal Family Suites have two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Grand Suites and Junior Suites have generous bedroom and living areas.
Facilities and Entertainment
This ship has something for everyone. There is a decent sized spa with a good menu of services including a popular YSPA for tees, a well-equipped fitness centre for working off cruise ship food, and beauty salon for some primping. Rhapsody also has a outside running track, a small golf course and one of Royal Caribbean’s signature rock climbing walls. For water lovers, there are two pools, and six whirlpools, and kids and teens have their own dedicated clubs, complete with a gaming arcade.
Entertainment is comprehensive, ranging from Broadway-style shows to live music. There is the standard casino on board, a variety of bars including one dedicated to champagne, and the Viking Crown Lounge, a glass-enclosed venue which offers stunning views perfect for a sunset cocktail. This ship also has theme nights, ranging from rock ‘n’ roll and disco events, to toga parties and extravagant masquerade balls.
The main Edelweiss dining room has three options depending on your choice. You can opt for My Family Time Dining, which is great if you are travelling with kids under 11, as it speeds up the service for them (40 minutes) and then has them heading off to the Adventure Ocean kid facilities to leave the grown-ups to enjoy a more leisurely time alone. Another option is My Time Dining, which allows you to make a reservation at the time of your choice, and there’s also Traditional Dining in one of two fixed sittings at assigned tables. There is a Windjammer Cafe for casual buffet-style dining for breakfast, lunch and dinner, 24-hour room service, but no alternative or specialty restaurant.
The Low Down
This is a great ship for short-range cruising, offering plenty of accommodation options, plenty to do on sea days, and flexibility with dining options. The only thing missing for those who like a bit of variety with dinner is a specialty restaurant.