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Allure of the Seas – Day 1, part 2, settling into our cabins

January 3rd, 2012

This post is a description of our cabins, which might be boring to the majority of you (if you even found the other trip reports interesting in the first place). I know that I have liked to read this sort of thing when getting ready for other cruises, so someone may find this useful. If you’re curious about what the staterooms on Allure of the Seas look like…continue…

We booked our cruise in April 2010 (yes, that’s 2010) for our December 2011 sailing. When we booked the cruise, Cullen was only a few months old. We had no idea if it would be feasible for the kids to sleep in the same room or what kind of space we might need for our family. We hoped to have a separate space for the adult or adults who were stuck on kid duty in the evenings while the kids snoozed and the other adults went out to have fun around the ship. We investigated the balcony cabins, thinking it would be wonderful to hang out on the balcony while kiddos were snoozing. My mom was the first to suggest getting two cabins, and I thought that was a silly idea. Then, we discovered that one balcony cabin was almost exactly the same price as two interior cabins (one with an interior window!).

We priced various options including just one Promenade stateroom versus the two connecting staterooms. We were surprised to find out that getting two cabins was only 25% more than getting just the Promenade room. It seemed more than worth it to have both the extra space and a separate space for adults to read or watch TV (or have the option to separate the kids, if necessary). We debated switching to just the promenade room as the cruise neared, but by then booking just one cabin for four people was more than what we were paying for two. We would have had to start a brand new reservation, so the old rates would not have been honored. It pays to book early. After we booked, the rates kept going up. If prices had gone down, we would have been able to take advantage of the price drop.

After having lunch at the Park Cafe, we headed to our cabins. We grabbed an elevator to Deck 7. At this point, we have no idea where we are going. The elevators were all pretty full, so we had to split into two elevators (since we each had a kid in a stroller). One of the neat things on the ship is the availability of touch screen maps.

This was taken later in the trip on the 15th deck, but you get the idea.

So, we quickly found out that one set of elevators is a bad choice for getting to our cabin. Of course, that is the set of elevators we used when trying to find our cabin for the first time. I arrived on Deck 7 and noticed the touchscreen map. I punched in our cabin number, and it located the cabin AND gave me a nice little path showing how to get there. Nice!

The hallways are long. This photo was not even taken from the extreme end.

We also later learned that the sections are color coded. We were in the red or pinkish section at about the spot indicated on this map. These lower tech maps were located throughout each deck as well. See the pink section? That’s us. We were near the middle of the ship, so we were almost at the end of the pink section. Now look towards the aft of the ship (left on this map). There you can see the two banks of elevators that are NOT connected to each other. You can see now that we got off at a very bad spot for getting to our cabin. We had to walk almost the full length of the ship and then double back to the middle of the ship on the other hallway. We didn’t make that mistake again on the ship! It really would have helped to know this ahead of time. The deck plans were all online, and we knew our cabin numbers, so theoretically we could have learned about the location before departing…somehow none of it makes much sense until I’m actually on the ship.

Finally, we arrived at our adjoining cabins. They weren’t connected when we arrived, so this was a little bit of a pain. We had to prop open both doors and kept shuttling stuff between the rooms by going out in the hallway and into the other room. We did manage to get a crew member to open the door between the rooms while we were unpacking.

I was determined on this trip to take photos of the cabins before we made it a disaster zone, so I started snapping photos while the kids were still confined to the strollers.

The first cabin we entered was 7197, the Promenade Stateroom (category PR). It was the larger of the two staterooms at 193.8 square feet, but immediately we were relieved that we had two cabins. We were happy to find that the twin beds were converted to a queen (sometimes they don’t get that quite right upon arrival).

We had a neat bench seat and a window overlooking the Promenade. Of course, I had to check out the view right away! We loved having a Promenade view. The Promenade was on the 5th deck, so we had a nice bird’s eye view of the people below. We were also able to watch one of the parades from up here later in the trip.

As usual, we were happy with the way that the space is arranged with shelves and drawers in various spots around the cabin. We were sure to look for hidden shelves on the desk (next to the mirror) and such. I remember that we discovered a set of hidden shelves on a previous cruise towards the end of the trip! We put all of the kids’ clothes and items in their room. We did the gallon sized ziploc baggie thing again this time. Every ziploc bag had an outfit for each kid, including socks and underwear. It was very convenient for putting them away in their closet, and even more convenient for selecting outfits each day. Maddie selected something different at times, but it was a good place to start.

The adjoining cabin, 7195, was a Large Interior Stateroom (Category L), and we were pleased to find that the bed was in the queen configuration as well. We planned for Maddie to sleep in that bed, and we wanted to place her in the middle of a large bed so that she had less chance of falling onto the floor. She did great on that bed! This cabin was smaller at 172.2 square feet. It’s difficult to photograph the cabins, but the photos really show the majority of the room! Cruise ship cabins are not spacious.

We were disappointed to find that we did not yet have our pack-n-play as this also meant that we weren’t going to be able to get Cullen down for a nap. Maddie and Cullen were excited to have their own room, and Cullen pretended to take a nap on the couch while Maddie covered him with her blanket. We dreamed of that actually working, but we knew that Cullen was not going to nap without a pack-n-play.

The bathrooms were identical with a small shower enclosed with two sliding circular doors that join in the middle. Showering small children on a cruise ship is an interesting process. It was definitely a one at a time type of operation. Fortunately, the sprayer is detachable. We would just put a towel on the floor to keep the kids from slipping, and it wasn’t too bad overall. The shelf space in the bathroom along the side wall and under the sink counter as well as the cabinet under the sink was more than sufficient for toiletries. We definitely did not use all of our storage, especially considering that we stored nothing in the second bathroom. We did use it a few times to hang bathing suits and other wet clothing.

Once we got most of our things unpacked, we went to see how other members of our party were settling into their cabins. Everyone else in our party was in a balcony cabin. Melissa and Jason were directly across the hall from us, so we checked out their room and balcony for a few minutes.

Their room was configured exactly like ours except where we had a Promenade window, they had a balcony. Here you can see more of how the desk and the closet fits into the scene. Jason took this photo from the balcony side of the room, facing back towards the entry and bathroom in the cabin.

And the rest of the room, with this photo showing the flat screen television and iPod dock and charging station that were in every stateroom. Everyone’s balconies had views of other ships before our departure.

As usual, the kids can’t resist flopping around in hotel (or cruise ship) beds! I think that the kids tried out each cabin bed that we visited.

Gabe’s parents were a couple doors down from Melissa and Jason. My parents were on the 8th deck, above Gabe’s parents. Melissa’s parents were down the hallway towards the back of the ship, past the elevator banks.

We were glad that Maddie made some kind of marker for everyone’s doors as this came in handy several times during our trip!

We were glad that we had friends and family willing to share their balconies!

Next up…we explore a bit more of the ship before the muster drill…

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2 Responses to “Allure of the Seas – Day 1, part 2, settling into our cabins”

  1. fran Says:

    Hello Kerry, thanks for posting the photo of room 7194 and 7195. I am thinking to book this 2 rooms too on Allure of the Seas next year. I have 2 kids, and I must book a “connecting” room. I want to know if they are really “connected” because some people complaints that the “connected room” are not really connected as advertised. Do you have the photo of the connecting doors? Thanks so much! Enjoy your blog.

    fran

  2. Tanya Says:

    Thanks for posting these pics! I just booked these same connecting rooms for our first cruise with our kids for July 2014. Was googling to see if I could find the view from this promenade room. Thanks so much for posting! Did your kids participate in the kids’ programming? Ours will be 3 and 6 when we cruise.