Splendour of the Seas Ship Review
The 69,130-ton, 1,804-guest Splendour of the Seas was the second of Royal Caribbean’s six Vision-class ships, launched in 1996 just as the megaship era was getting up to speed.
Today, she and her sister ships are downright tiny next to their newer fleetmates, measuring about half the size of the Voyager- and Freedom-class ships and a third the size of the Oasis-class ships. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, since midsize ships can be cozier and easier to get around.
But all in all, the Vision-class ships are a mixed bag, offering some of the attractions and amenities of Royal Caribbean’s newer vessels but also feeling a bit dated, with more glitz than subtlety in their 1990s designs.
Public Rooms on Splendour of the Seas
Most public rooms are located on Decks 4 and 5, radiating out from a central seven-story atrium full of faux palm trees and glass elevators. On Deck 4, there’s the glittery 42nd Street Theatre, the flashy and crowded Casino Royale, the nautically themed Schooner Bar for piano entertainment and relaxation, and the Champagne Bar and Terrace at the foot of the atrium itself, which offers musical entertainment to go with your bubbly.
The central area of Deck 5 is dominated by five small shops, while the Top Hat Lounge, up toward the bow, offers a mix of live music, dancing, and entertainment. Up at the top of the ship, Deck 11’s Viking Crown Lounge is an observation lounge by day and disco by night.
For kids, the Adventure Ocean playroom on Deck 10 is stocked with toys and games. Teens get their own Optix Teen Disco right next door, along with a small video arcade.
On Deck 9, you can swim or lounge in the spacious main pool area or chill out in the Solarium, with its retractable glass ceiling and vaguely Roman design motifs. Just astern, the spa and fitness center offers the usual selection of treatments, steam rooms, and saunas, plus small aerobics and workout rooms. There’s a sports court out back for basketball and other games, and one deck up is a rock-climbing wall, a miniature golf course, and a jogging track.
Dining on Splendour of the Seas
An extensive revitalization on November 25, 2011, added more than twice the number of dining options previously available to guests on Splendour of the Seas.
- Boardwalk Dog House: Guests can choose from traditional hot dogs, wieners, brats, sausages and other delicious linked meats and a variety of toppings to split a long bun (open for lunch and dinner, complimentary).
- Chef’s Table: An exclusive experience co-hosted by the Executive Chef and Sommelier for an intimate wine pairing dinner of five courses (open for dinner, $95 cover charge).
- Chops Grille: Royal Caribbean’s signature steakhouse will be located adjacent to the Viking Crown Lounge and features a menu of prime cuts prepared a la minute (open for dinner, $30 cover charge).
- Izumi: Featuring mouthwatering flavors and a sushi bar with hot-rock cooking, the pan Asian cuisine restaurant is a no-hassle, authentic dining experience. Izumi will be located adjacent to the Viking Crown Lounge (open for lunch and dinner, $3.00 cover charge for lunch and $5.00 for dinner plus a la carte menu pricing).
- Park Café: An indoor/outdoor gourmet market featuring salads, sandwiches, soups and pastries (open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, complimentary).
- Viking Crown Lounge: The line’s signature space will feature a new menu of classic dishes such as jumbo shrimp cocktail or Kobe beef sliders, Asian inspired tempuras and soft shell crab and much more (a la carte pricing).
Staterooms on Splendour of the Seas
Staterooms aboard the Vision-class ships tend to be small and have seen a lot of use in their decade and a half of service. Standard outside staterooms are only about 150 square feet, and come with a TV, a small sitting area, a vanity, and a small bathroom.
If you want a private balcony, you’ll have to bump up to a 190-square-foot Superior Oceanview stateroom, which also offers a minibar, small sitting area, and lots of storage space. The top-of-the-line accommodations are the 1,002-square-foot Royal Suites, which come with separate living room and bedroom, a huge marble bathroom with a whirlpool tub, a baby grand piano, and a 139-square-foot private veranda.