Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)
Majesty of the Seas
Ship: 306 out of 500
Accommodation: 117 out of 200
Food: 221 out of 400
Service: 258 out of 400
Entertainment: 63 out of 100
Cruise: 247 out of 400
Overall Score: 1212 out of 2000
Majesty of the Seas Statistics
Size: Large Resort Ship
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean International
Former Names: none
IMO Number: 8819512
Builder: Chantiers de l’Atlantique (France)
Original Cost: $300 million
Entered Service: Apr 1992
Registry: The Bahamas
Length (ft/m): 879.9/268.2
Beam (ft/m): 105.9/32.3
Draft (ft/m): 24.9/7.6
Propulsion/Propellers: diesel (21,844kW)/2
Passenger Decks: 11
Total Crew: 827
Passengers (lower beds): 2,380
Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 30.8
Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 2.8
Cabins (total): 1,190
Size Range (sq ft/m): 118.4-670.0/11.0-62.2
Cabins (for one person): 0
Cabins (with private balcony): 62
Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 4
Wheelchair accessibility: Fair
Cabin Current: 110 volts
Casino (gaming tables): Yes
Slot Machines: Yes
Swimming Pools: 2
Hot Tubs (on deck): 2
Self-Service Launderette: No
Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No
Onboard currency: US$
This well-worn resort ship is for casual family cruising
Overview. This fairly smart-looking resort ship provides well-tuned, yet impersonal, short cruises (three- and four-day Bahamas cruises year-round from Miami) for a lot of passengers. The dress code is ultra-casual. You will probably be overwhelmed by the public spaces, and underwhelmed by the size of the cabins.
The Ship. When first introduced, Majesty of the Seas (together with her sisters Monarch of the Seas and Sovereign of the Seas - now operated by Spain-based Pullmantur Cruises) was an innovative vessel. Royal Caribbean International’s (RCI’s) trademark Viking Crown lounge and bar surrounds the funnel and provides a great view, but it has no soul and looks dated. The open deck space is very cramped when full, as aboard any large ship, although there seems to be plenty of it. There is a basketball court.
The interior layout is a little awkward, as it is designed in a vertical stack, with most public rooms located aft, and the accommodation located forward, which ensures quiet areas. There’s an impressive array of spacious and elegant public rooms, although the decor calls to mind the Ikea school of interior design, despite a revitalization in 2007 when cabins were refreshed and more casual eating options introduced. A rather pleasant five-deck-high Centrum lobby has cascading stairways and two glass-walled elevators.
There is a decent two-level showlounge and a selection of shops, albeit with lots of tacky merchandise, and an ‘All items at $10’ store - good for souvenirs. Casino gamers will find blackjack, craps, Caribbean stud poker, and roulette tables, plus an array of slot machines in Casino Royale.
Among the public rooms, the library is a nice feature for quite relaxation, and there is a decent selection of books. An Internet center has 10 workstations, but the cost is quite high; the ship is also Wi-Fi enabled - but there’s a charge. The entertainment program is quite sound, and there’s a decent range of children’s and teens’ programs (teens have their own chill-out room - adults not allowed) and cheerful youth counselors.
Because the public rooms are mostly located aft, with accommodation in the forward section, there is often a long wait for elevators, particularly at peak times after dinner, shows, and talks. But at least the restrooms are quite welcoming.
Niggles include the nickel and diming that goes on everywhere you turn. But, this is a bit of a party ship, with lots of karaoke, smutty comedy and silly participation games.
Accommodation. There are several categories, priced by grade, size, and location.
Suites. Thirteen suites on Bridge Deck are reasonably large and nicely furnished (the largest is the Royal Suite), with separate living and sleeping spaces. They provide more space, with better service and more perks than standard-grade accommodation.
Standard cabins. The standard outside-view and interior cabins are incredibly small, although an arched window treatment and colorful soft furnishings give an illusion of more space. Almost all cabins have twin beds that convert to a queen-size or double-bed configuration, together with moveable bedside tables, and flat-screen TV sets. All standard cabins have very little closet and drawer space - you will need some luggage engineering to stow your cases. You should, therefore, think of packing only minimal clothing - all you really need for a short cruise.
All cabins have a private bathroom, with shower enclosure, toilet, and washbasin. All cabins are provided with good mattresses and duvets.
Dining. There are two main dining rooms: the 675-seat Moonlight, located on the lowest level of the atrium lobby, and the 697-seat Starlight, one deck higher. When you book, choose one of two seatings, or ‘My Time Dining’ (eat when you want, during dining room hours at tables for two to eight). The dining operation is well orchestrated, with emphasis on highly programmed, extremely hurried service that many find insensitive and intrusive. If you want a premium-quality all-American filet steak, you can have it for an extra cost.
For casual breakfasts and lunches, there’s Windjammer Marketplace (the source of most complaints received from passengers). It is split into various specialty areas including American, Asian, Latin, and Mediterranean fare. Compass Deli is a bar in which you can make up your own sandwich.
Johnny Rockets is a 1950s retro diner for fast foods such as hamburgers and hot dogs, sodas and shakes, located on an upper deck section of the Windjammer Marketplace (a cover charge applies, and there’s an additional cost if you want a classic milkshake to go with your JR burger).
In Sorrento’s (for American-Italian pizzas) there is no extra cost.
Café Latte-tudes serves Seattle’s Best Coffee brand (extra-cost) in paper cups. And for ice cream lovers, there’s Freeze Ice Cream.
Entertainment. A Chorus Line is the ship’s principal showlounge; it has both main and balcony levels, with banquette seating, but many pillars supporting the balcony level provide less than good sight lines from the side seats on the lower level.
RCI’s large-scale production shows are extremely colorful spectaculars with high-energy hype, presentation, and glitz. They are fast-moving, razzle-dazzle shows that rely a lot on lighting and special effects, but have little or no storyline, often poor linkage between themes and scenes, and choreography that’s more stepping in place than dancing. Strong cabaret acts are also presented in the main showlounge.
The entertainment throughout is upbeat but is typical of the kind of resort hotel found in Las Vegas. There is even background music in all corridors and elevators, and constant music outdoors on the pool deck. Live music is provided in a number of bars and lounges by solo entertainers and small bands.
Spa/Fitness. The Majesty Day Spa has a gymnasium with aft-facing views and high-tech muscle-pumping equipment. There is an aerobics studio, and classes are offered in a variety of keep-fit regimes. There is also a beauty salon, and a sauna, and 10 treatment rooms for pampering massages, facials, and so on. While the facilities are not as extensive as those aboard the company’s newer ships, they are adequate for the short cruises that this ship operates.
For the more sporting, there is activity galore - including a rock-climbing wall with several separate climbing tracks. It is located outdoors at the aft end of the funnel.