The Anthem of the Seas is almost an exact twin sister to the Quantum of the Seas and is the second in an entirely new class of ship for Royal Caribbean, its has a guest capacity of 4,180 passengers based on double occupancy, mostly in balcony cabins. The Quantum of the Seas has been relocated to China after doing a short season out of Royal Caribbean’s port in Bayamon, NJ. (Image courtesy RCI – click to enlarge)
Diana Bloss and I did a two night pre-inaugural cruise on the Anthem and this is barely enough time to see all of the features on the new Mega cruise ships that are today’s norm. It certainly is not enough time to actually experience the many dining and entertainment options that the Anthem has to offer.
Accommodations: The standard outside balcony cabins are well designed and are a generous 198 sq ft plus a 55 sq ft balcony. What is NEW on the Anthem are the virtual balcony cabins! These are standard inside cabins with a project balcony view on the largest wall in the cabin with curtain to conceal the balcony when desired. I must admit when I first noticed this is when I left my cabin and the inside cabin across from my balcony cabin had the exact same view as if
I was sitting on my sofa. The views are live 24/7 and are exactly what you would be seeing if you had a balcony in your cabin from that cabins perspective. In other words port and starboard cabins do not have the same view. I would expect to see more ships will be using this technology very soon.The ship also offers a nice assortment of suites from the very popular Loft Suites to the very affordable Jr Suites with numerous sizes in between. The Royal Loft suite is 1,640 sq ft with 3 different balconies and two different levels. Of course these suites enjoy numerous amenities and private function areas.
Activities; What is most impressive on the Quantum Class ships is the mind blowing array of activities available. North Star is a 14 guest glass ball that takes you up over and around the ship while at sea for an incredible 360 degree view of the ship and her surroundings. If you ever wanted go sky diving but jumping out of a plane is not your idea of fun try Rip Cord a sky diving simulator that is amazing and easy and fun to do. Try your hand at surfing on the Flow Rider or see how high you can get on the rock climbing wall. Looking for something a little more tame how about bumper cars or roller skating in Sea Plex, the largest multi purpose activity room at sea. This is only a partial listing of all of the activities available and trust me you’ll need at least five days to try them all out.
Entertainment; The Anthem of the Sea also offers great night time entertainment. The musical “We Will Rock You” is as good as it gets and you honestly would expect to pay $100.00 or so in Vegas to see this show and it’s all live music by a talented cast. The two level Music Hall featured a very, very good rock band in a great club atmosphere including pool tables.
For something entirely different at sea you have go to Two70 during the day, this aft end room is a casual bar, eating and coffee area during the day but watch what happens at night the, technology is amazing! They claim they make this room anything you can think and photo and I believe them. The show that was running during our brief cruise was called an Aerial Show however it is a totally involved sight, sound and light spectacular coming at you from all directions. Truly incredible and totally unique to Quantum Class ships.
While the Bionic Bar is not meant to be entertainment it is when you are watching a bionic arm take your drink order and then make it up right in front of you. Who said everything on a cruise ship had to be practical.
Dining Options; The dining experience on both the Anthem of the Sea and her sister the Quantum is very similar but vastly different to the rest of the RCI fleet.
There are four main dining rooms with different cuisines ranging from American to Pan Asian and each dining room’s décor is distinctively different fitting the food theme. So while you do have a “main dining room” so to speak, you actually have four very different dining options to choose from.
Additionally you have a selection of other dinner venues that do carry an additional charge. Of course there is the standard buffet restaurant which serving breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as small gem of a buffet in the Solarium which is a tranquil hide-away. Royal Caribbean’s signature Sorrentos is always service pizza it seems.My favorite new addition is Michael’s Genuine Pub with craft beers and real “pub grub”. Other restaurants of note are Chops Grill, Izumi, Wonderland (which you have to see to believe) and Jamie’s Italian.
I hope you get the idea why you really need about 5 nights to sample most but not all of what this ship has to offer.
Cruising Schedule; Based year around out of Cape Liberty (Bayonne, NJ) the ship will do Caribbean Cruises in the Winter months and ideally for our market, 5 night cruises to Bermuda – Spring thru to the Fall months.