Take it from someone who currently calls this place home; the Oasis of the Seas is certainly something special. I’m well aware that cruises aren’t for everyone, trust me; I never thought I’d vacation on a cruise, never mind be contracted to perform on one for six months.
However, working on a ship of this class for such a great company has changed my perspective and if you’re skeptical about cruising, I’m hoping this will change yours too.
To anyone considering going on a cruise, I highly recommend cruising with Royal Caribbean, and taking a chance with the Oasis class. As someone that works for this company, I cannot speak more highly of the way the company treats both their guests and employees, coupled with their motives for providing the most innovative, luxury guest experience.
If you’re still not convinced, just think of it this way; as soon as you get inside, it’s basically a floating city.
If your argument is “Well I don’t like crowds”, trust me when I say, because of the massive size of the vessel, you will not feel like you’re crammed on the ship with thousands of other people (even though you are).
The Oasis of the Seas was the first of its class, stretching 1,187 feet long, 215 feet wide, and 30 feet draft. There are 18 total decks, 16 of them for guests, 24 guest elevators, 2,742 staterooms, 15 Bars and Lounges, 9 complimentary dining venues, 11 specialty restaurants, 7 different ship neighborhoods, and endless entertainment provided throughout.
If you’re worried about the cost, let’s do a quick, rough breakdown.
To sail on a 7-Night Cruise to the Caribbean, for two guests, its anywhere from roughly $600-$1000 per person depending on the luxury of the stateroom. That’s anywhere from $85 – $142 per person, per day including food, drinks, activities, entertainment, and transportation to stop in three different Caribbean ports. If you put together a trip for seven days, visiting three different ports with all of the above included, my guess is that you’d be spending more money and it would be such a hassle. This way, you get everything you could need and more right at your fingertips without having to do anything yourself.
If you’re still not even slightly interested, then you should probably stop reading now. But for the rest of you that are still with me, take a look at my insider’s guide on the best way to navigate your experience onboard the Oasis of the Seas.
The Oasis of the Seas:
As I mentioned above, the Oasis is an enormous vessel. Royal Caribbean is a global cruise line striving for innovating “firsts” on the seas. In 2009, the Oasis of the Seas redefined cruising, with its themed neighborhoods, jaw-dropping entertainment, and programs that appeal to both families and adults together and separately.
When you first step onboard, it can feel a bit overwhelming; you may feel lost and disoriented. However, once you start exploring around, you’ll find that it’s architectural structure and design makes it easier to help with the flow of people, therefore never feeling crowded. Royal Caribbean also thought out interior and exterior signage so that passengers are always aware of where they are on the ship. In addition, there are interactive maps located in various areas around the ship, as well as an easy to use, internet-free application that can help you find out what activities and shows are available, make reservations for shows and specialty restaurants, and an easy-to-read map of each guest deck.
The simplest way to think about the ship is by separating its distinctive neighborhoods.
Central Park (Deck 8)
The Oasis of the Seas brings the outdoors onboard with the Central Park neighborhood, a revolutionary design in the center of the ship that opens to the sky and features 12,000 lush, tropical greenery, canopy trees, seasonal flower gardens, and sere
ne pathways spanning the length of the deck. This upscale public gathering place, creates an ambiance aboard the ship unlike any other providing guests with a unique, open outdoor experience. Combined with the live music, specialty restaurants, and perfect night lighting, Central Park is a groundbreaking experience and a must-visit on board. Here you will find four of the specialty restaurants including 150 Central Park, Chops Grille, Giovanni’s Table, and Vintages.
The Pool and Sports Zone (Deck 15 and 16)
The Pool Deck and Sports Zone spans the length of the ship and activity zones for those young and young at heart. The Pool Deck and Sports Zone includes four different types of pools and Jacuzzis, two FlowRider surf simulators, and an adult only pool area known as the Solarium. The open-air Solarium offers an adult only pool, two whirlpools, and four cantilevered whirl pools suspended above the ocean. In the Sports Zones, guests can find two FlowRiders, basketball fields, ping-pong, rock climbing wall, nine-hole mini golf course, and the first ever zip line at sea spanning 82 feet (25 meters). Throughout the week, guests can be a part of volleyball, water polo, sexiest man competitions, and much more. For the younger ones, Royal Caribbean offers a kid’s designated H20 Zone marked by a giant with slides and water fountains, as well as an infant dedicated swimming pool. And of course, more lounge chairs and umbrella’s perfect for relaxing on sea days.
Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center (Deck 5 and 6)
Spanning various decks, guests can find the Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, a center that encompasses multiple amenities dedicated to maintaining guest’s health and fitness while onboard. Here guests can participate in various workout classes such as yoga, kickboxing, Pilates, cycling, strength training provided by person trainers on board. For those looking for a more personal experience, one-on-one personal training sessions are available. The Fitness Center offers vacationers a varied selection of workout equipment with over 150 exercise machines. The Vitality and Sea Spa includes a Thermal Suite with heated tile loungers, sauna, steam room, 29 personal treatment rooms, and a wide variety of health and beauty services.
Boardwalk (Deck 6)
The Boardwalk is a neighborhood inspired by seaside piers and is constructed with detailed perfection. The Boardwalk is an area for the entire family to enjoy and includes dynamic elements such as the colorful original carousel, casual diner style eateries, retail outlets, and carnival games.
Here, you will also find the Aqua Theater, an amphitheater-style space overlooking the ocean front. The Aqua Theater here is the first of its kind, serving as the stage for Olympic-class divers and synchronized swimmers to perform their two shows, Oasis of Dreams and their supplementary kid’s comedy dive show, Splish Splash.
Royal Promenade (Deck 5)
The Royal Promenade is the main deck and access point to all other locations aboard the ship. Royal Caribbean carefully designed the Royal Promenade to be a main marvel for guests to gather for all their shopping and entertainment needs. When guests arrive on board, they’ll notice the natural lighting that was carefully constructed to give the promenade a more outdoor feel. Walking across the promenade is a feast for the eyes, offering something for everyone. Grab some bubbly at the Schooner Bar overlooking the Promenade, a cup of joe at Café Promenade, or a delicious mojito at the popular Boleros Latin dance club. Guests can participate in trivia at various bars, try out their tune at the On Air Club Karaoke bar, pose for a family photo session at Focus Photo, and so much more. The Royal Promenade is also a logistical hub where guests can figure out any problems with Guest Services or book and explore tours at the Shore Excursions desk. The promenade is even the main entry and embarkation point for guests, tactically putting guests right in the center of everything the moment they step on board.
Youth Zone (Deck 15)
Royal Caribbean’s Youth Zone is home to the award-winning Adventure Ocean Program, dedicated to creating the safest and most entertaining experience for kids on board. The Youth Zone covers over 28,700 sq. ft (2,669 sq. meters) of different common play areas including the Workshop, Imagination Studio, Adventure Science Lab, and the Adventure Ocean Theater. Not to mention, two teen only zones, the Fuel Disco and the Living Room.
Entertainment Place (Deck 4)
Entertainment Place is precisely what you’d think. Take the glass staircase down from the Royal Promenade and find yourself in the heart of the ship after dark. The entertainment district is the home to a variety of more intimate venues sharing a variety of entertainment options to provide something new each night. For instance, in Studio B, guests can experience, Frozen in Time, an ice show based on the fairytales of Hans Christian Anderson, performed by the international ice cast. Guests can also have a laugh at Comedy Live or have a drink and listen to smooth jazz at the intimate Jazz on 4 club. On another night, guests can venture to Opal Theater and see the production cast perform the Broadway Musical Cats or Come Fly With Me, a show including incredible singers, dancers, and acrobats. Whatever you’re into, you can find it here and much more.
Shows and Activities:
The shows onboard the Oasis of the Seas are one of the best added aspects to the cruise, but maybe I’m just biased. Onboard the Oasis of the Seas, there are seven primary shows guests can experience including Frozen in Time, Oasis of Dreams, Splish Splash, Cats, Come Fly With Me, Headliner Show, and the weekly Comedy Show. Of course, there is much more offered including endless live music around the ship in a variety of genres from different specialty bands, the DreamWorks Parade and Meet and Greet, Meet the Stars, as well as other supplementary shows performed by the featured artists onboard that vary each week.
Frozen in Time
Frozen in time is the featured ice show based on the stories of Hans Christian Anderson performed by the international ice cast (that’s me!) and a featured sand artist. The show follows the stories of the Snow Queen, the Red Shoes, the Ugly Duckling, and the Emperor’s New Clothes. Definitely a must-see when you’re on board the Oasis, and that’s what I’ve heard from the guests, not just my opinion.
Oasis of Dreams
Oasis of Dreams is the primary aqua show onboard that immerses spectators in a creative experience, performed by Olympic class divers, acrobats, and synchronized swimmers. The story transitions through a series of dreams and leaves the audience on the edge of their chairs – and if you’re in the first three rows – soaked in water. Guests can expect to have an action packed experience filled with 17 meter high dives, flying acrobats, trampoline specialists, and special effects.
Splish Splash is the supplementary dive show onboard the Oasis, performed by the international aqua cast as well. Kids and families can expect exciting, well-performed tricks with a comedic twist.
Cats is the famous Broadway music taken straight off of Broadway and put onboard the Oasis. Everything from the choreography to the costumes and set, are set directly from the well-known musical. This show has two acts, spanning roughly 2.5 hours including intermission and is performed by talented professional dancers and singers from across the globe.
Come Fly With Me
Come Fly with Me incorporates Royal Caribbean’s production dance cast, specialty singers, acrobats, and featured aerialists. This story takes the audience through a heightened experience, following the main character experience and enamored by everything that flies.
The Headliner Show features a different world-class show every week ranging from cover bands, impressionists, comedians, ventriloquists, and even more. Check for your cruise to see what’s in store that week on board!
The comedy show is performed from comedians around the world providing high quality entertainment, audience involvement and participation, and a lot of laughs.
I’ve just barely scratched the surface of the entertainment and activities that are onboard the Oasis of the Seas. In addition to the activities mentioned above, the highly attentive Royal Cruise Staff ensures more than enough for guests to do during both sea and port days. Such activities include and are not limited to trivia, bingo, Finish that Lyric, Quest gameshow, Love and Marriage Game Show, Sexiest Man Competition, Scuba Lessons, Cooking Classes, Alcohol Tastings, Salon and Spa, Art Auctions, Workout Classes, Casino, Kids Center, Outdoor movies, and so much more that’s fresh and new each week.
Often times when going on an “All Inclusive” vacation, you’re not quite sure that really means. For Royal Caribbean, there is a wide variety of options on different supplemental packages to enhance your cruising experience, but also provides enough included in base price to satisfy. For Royal Caribbean, alcoholic and soda beverages are not included in the price, as well as the specialty dining. However, you can enjoy yourself at any of the following:
- Dining Room
- Wipe Out Café
- Café Promenade
- Boardwalk Hot Dog Stand and Ice Cream
- Central Park Cafe
The Specialty Dining on the Oasis of the Seas is a nice change of pace for guests who want something a little more than what’s included in the base price. The Specialty Restaurants on this class of ship include:
- Jonny Rockets
- Izumi Hibachi and Sushi
- Chef’s Table
- 150 Central Park
- Vintages Tapas and Wine.
Most of these restaurants charges guests a cover fee, rather than priced ala carte. Just remember that these restaurants require a reservation so plan ahead!
Bars & Venues:
As you can tell by now, the Oasis has a lot to offer. There is so much going on around the ship at all times, more than guests could have imagined. When you come on board, be sure to check the Cruise Compass or the app to know what is going on where. Some of these venues you should know include Jazz on 4, Champagne Bar, Schooner Bar, Dazzles, Rising Tide, Central Park, Promenade Pub, Starbucks, Casino, Boleros, and much more.
My hope is that this can help guide you through your week at sea. Take a chance and explore the opportunities that this amazing ship has to offer!