Odyssey of the Seas is the newest ship in Royal Caribbean’s fleet. We are back from 7 nights onboard this second Quantum-Ultra class vessel and want to report on all aspects of the ship. From dining, to onboard activities, entertainment, and more, we rate it all in our Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship scorecard review.
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Odyssey of the Seas Cruise Ship Scorecard Review
Boarding Odyssey of the Seas was organized and efficient.
Since we completed our check-in on the Royal Caribbean app a bit late, we were assigned a later than desired boarding time. Despite some emails requesting us to stick to our embarkation time slot, we did arrive early to the port.
Thankfully, we were allowed to proceed with the boarding process.
Having all of our documents and required tests ready, it took about 25 minutes to go through the three step process. This included verification of passports and vaccine cards, security, and the actual check-in process. From there, we walked right onto the ship around 11:45 am.
Getting off the ship was not much work either.
We were assigned group 14 luggage tags, which gave us a departure time of 8 am. Since we were not in a rush to get off the ship, we left two suitcases outside of our room the night before disembarkation.
With new COVID protocols in place, guests on Royal Caribbean are allowed to wait in their staterooms until their departure times. Once our luggage tag was called, around 8:15 am, we were off the ship and through customs in about 20 minutes. Luckily, there were no lines and no wait times.
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One improvement from other Quantum Class ships is that Odyssey of the Seas now has two outdoor pools, unlike the forward covered pool on Quantum and Anthem of the Seas.
During our Bahamas cruise, the midship Caribbean pool was still the more popular of the two pools though, along with the 2-story Lime and Coconut Bar.
Still, the smaller second pool, with two adjacent whirlpools and a smaller Lime and Coconut rendition, was a nice alternative.
Additionally, there is the forward Solarium, which is perhaps my favorite in the fleet. The artfully designed cascading water features, coupled with the various seating options, gave this area character.
With our sailing at 2,348 passengers, the ship was not even half full. So, we never had issues finding seats on the pool deck or grabbing a signature Lime and Coconut drink from the bar.
Odyssey of the Seas boasts the largest SeaPlex in the fleet. This massive indoor space on Decks 15 and 16 is home to various activities, including several sports.
In fact, there are so many things to do on Odyssey of the Seas that you might not have enough time in just one week.
The SeaPlex changes function throughout the day. When the court is open for free play, cruisers can partake in games like basketball, cornhole, pickleball, or even archery, all of which are complimentary.
Of course, the court also functions as a space for this class of ships’ popular activity- bumper cars.
Moving outdoors on the sports deck, it wouldn’t be a Royal Caribbean ship without a rock climbing wall or a Flowrider surf simulator.
Another staple of the Quantum class, and perhaps the most advanced sports feature, is the Ripcord by iFly. On port days, this sky diving simulator is complimentary. Cruisers can enjoy 60 seconds of flight time for no added cost.
However, there is also an enhanced experience on sea days. For $49, cruisers get the opportunity to double their air time and get more hands-on instruction.
Finally, new to this class of ships is the Sky Pad. This virtually enhanced trampoline activity is a complimentary first come, first serve activity and a great addition to round out the sports deck fun on Odyssey of the Seas.
When sailing on mega-ships, service can vary greatly. Happily, we can report that the service on Odyssey of the Seas was consistent across the vessel.
Our interactions with the staff were friendly, and they were eager to assist.
On Day 1 when we had some issues with our app and pre-cruise purchases, Maria at Guest Services was extremely helpful. She went out of her way to ensure everything was rectified.
Our stateroom attendant Maybel was always quick to say hi and ask us how our day was going. Additionally, Ronald and Mia in the main dining room were friendly, efficient, and worked well as a team.
Other casual dining spots and bars around the ship seemed appropriately staffed as well. Our food orders were quick and served hot.
With Royal Caribbean’s COVID restrictions, many bars have designated spots for ordering drinks and picking up items. This did lead to some queuing, but nothing too excessive.
Kudos to the hardworking team on Odyssey of the Seas for making our trip a truly memorable one.
Across seven days on the ship, the Cruise Director Mike and the activities staff offered the typical daytime activities, including events on Royal Caribbean’s private island of Perfect Day at CocoCay.
Some of the cruise activities included puzzle challenges, trivia, and sports.
There is also the North Star, which provides amazing panoramic views from high above sea level. This aerial gondola is the tallest in the fleet, rising 1.2 meters taller than other Quantum-Class ships.
When the ship is docked at a port of call, this experience is a free approximately 9-minute ride. Reservations are highly recommended, as this activity does book up quickly.
On sea days, North Star costs $29 per person. This extended session takes you up and then over the sides of the cruise ship for an approximately 19-minute ride.
New to Royal Caribbean is the 4D experience Zone Zero. This up-charge ($18) game lets teams of 4 players compete in a virtual reality challenge. Unfortunately, this activity was closed for most of our cruise due to technical issues.
So, it looks like we need to sail on Odyssey of the Seas again to test it out!
Our Odyssey of the Seas ship scorecard review wouldn’t be complete without discussing dining!
There are plenty of casual dining options throughout the ship.
One of our go-to locations is Café Two70. The menu here has been enhanced for both breakfast and lunch. In the morning, there are selections of hot breakfast sandwiches, pastries, and a bagel bar with plenty of toppings.
In the afternoon, paninis and wraps, a custom salad bar, and the signature Royal Kummelweck sandwich will have you coming back for more.
Another spot that you can’t miss is the poolside El Loco Fresh. With nachos, tacos, quesadillas, rice, and a custom salsa bar, each stop offers something new to try.
Loyal Royal cruisers will be familiar with line’s pizza shop. Sorrento’s is open most of the day and is the only late night dining spot. There are also other snacks available at Café Promenade 24 hours a day.
If you want a specialty coffee, you will need to visit the coffee shop at Café Two70. Or, you can pay for Starbucks which is not included in the Café Select coffee card or Royal Caribbean Deluxe drink package.
Our only complaint is that the coffee shop at Café Two70 did not open early enough. There was often a line waiting for the venue to open.
With the current Royal Caribbean COVID restrictions, the Windjammer was only open for breakfast and lunch on our Odyssey of the Seas cruise. Normally, we are not fans of the buffet anyway. So, we ate here only once for some custom omelets.
Main Dining Room
We had My Time Dining during our Bahamas cruise on Odyssey of the Seas. We dined in the MDR three times and ate at specialty restaurants the other days.
Before the trip, we pre-booked all of our dining times on the Royal Caribbean Cruise Planner.
Arriving at Deck 3 for My Time Dining around 6:30 pm, there was often a short queue even for those with reservations.
During our visits, we were able to get a table with the same waitstaff. Though, there was often confusion at the front end, as we were taken to a table that already had guests seated there on two occasions.
However, our dining team of Ronald and Mia more than made up for it. They were personable, and our food was served with precision.
Overall, the main dining room delivered the expected Royal Caribbean experience and food quality.
The crab cake at the main dining room was actually better than the version I received at Chops Grille. Other standouts for me included the prime rib, beef tenderloin, and NY style cheesecake.
During this trip, we dined at specialty restaurants on 4 occasions. So, we were able to get a great sampling of the different options for this Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship review.
New to the ship is Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen. This modern, casual restaurant is a reimagined take on the brand’s Giovanni’s Table found on other ships in the fleet.
We are big fans of this new iteration and actually dined here twice! It features great pizza and well-prepared versions of popular Italian-American dishes. Among our favorite dishes were the meatball, calamari, and chicken parmesan.
We also dined at the line’s signature steakhouse Chops Grille. My steak was perfectly seared to a medium-rare temperature, and the red velvet cake never disappoints. Though, the crab cake was dry, and the service was extremely slow.
Another new addition to Odyssey of the Seas is Teppanyaki. This Japanese-style steakhouse delivered a delicious dinner and a show. With customized seafood, steak, and chicken entrees, along with tasty fried rice, vegetables, and some sake, it was a fabulous night out with friends.
The casual restaurant Playmakers Sports Bar and Arcade is another one of our favorites. This a la carte pub is home to some unbelievable buffalo wings. It also has one of the best beers across the entire ship, the Funky Buddha Hop Gun IPA.
With the cruise line adjusting to cruising during the COVID era, happily, there was much more nightlife on the ship than our previous Adventure of the Seas cruise.
Each night, there was at least one game show or activity in addition to the theater productions. These included cruiser favorites like Majority Rules, Finish the Lyric, and Love and Marriage.
Like most Royal Caribbean ships, there was a variety of live music each evening. A pub guitarist played most nights in the Crown and Compass. The Schooner Bar had piano music, and Boleros offered classic melodies in the early evening and a live band with dance music each night.
The Music Hall was home to several different activities during the cruise as well. DSB, the Journey Tribute Band, was featured here a few nights. They are a must-see for those who like 80’s rock.
In addition to the nighttime activities listed above, Odyssey of the Seas features two distinct entertainment venues with signature production shows.
The innovative Two70 offers a more casual, lounge-like environment. This venue is home to 12K vistaramas and roboscreens to provide entertainment unlike anything else you have ever seen on a cruise.
The new show on Odyssey of the Seas is The Book: Seven Chapters, One Adventure. During this production, guests are transported to a mystical and magical setting. The show features dancing, acrobatics, and visually stunning backdrops. Though, it does lack a cohesive story.
Make sure to get seats in the balcony for the best views, as the show occurs all around the venue.
The equally stunning signature show in the main theater is The Effectors. This super hero inspired show is full of digital effects and high energy. With use of digital screens, lasers, and drones, it is possibly the most technologically advanced production that we have ever seen on a cruise ship.
The other main theater production is ShowGirl: Past, Present, Future. We saw a version of this show on our Navigator of the Seas Bahamas cruise, but we just couldn’t find time in our schedule to see it this trip.
The main theater also featured a few headliners, which were pretty average for a cruise. Among them were a comedian, the dance troupe Tap Factory, and a female vocalist.
Bars and Lounges
For our Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship scorecard review, we made sure to visit every bar at least once. Not to mention, we sampled at least one signature drink at each venue.
Like the recently amplified ships in the fleet, the outdoor pool bars on Odyssey of the Seas have all been branded as the Lime and Coconut. These three bars offer a new menu, including the Lime and Coconut cocktail.
Several other bars on the ship feature the new Royal Caribbean standard bar menu. Some of the tasty libations include the strawberry blonde, cool as a cucumber, and the pineapple guava sangria.
Of course, many Royal Caribbean classics are also onboard Odyssey of the Seas. You can mix up mojitos and live music at Boleros. The line’s signature piano bar offers classic martinis like our favorites, the lavender daiquiri and sidecar.
The Bionic Bar which debuted on Quantum of the Seas is also back on Odyssey of the Seas.
Two significant menu changes are at the English pub, the Crown and Compass, and the Two70 Bar. The pub menu is condensed, and there is no longer a signature drink menu at the Two70 bar.
We stayed in an Oceanview balcony stateroom on Odyssey of the Seas. Our cabin, 13578, is considered a 2D forward cabin on the starboard side of the ship.
Immediately upon entering the room, the bathroom was to our right, and the bed in the middle of the room. Closer to the balcony was the desk and couch.
This setup was traditional and easy to maneuver.
For the full week onboard, this cabin actually offered more storage space than we needed. That is saying something for us!
The two closet areas on each side of the bed had enough hangers and shelf space for our clothing. The strategically placed compartments above the bed are ideal for additional storage. I wish more ships had these.
The large couch served as a good place to do some work, and the desk was ample space for the Princess to get ready.
Compared to other cruise ships, the room felt on par width wise, but did seem a bit longer. The bathroom was also on par with most cruise ship cabins. Although, our balcony felt a tad on the small size.
Overall, this cabin was the ideal home away from home for the week.
With Odyssey of the Seas sailing at less than 50% capacity for our cruise, evaluating crowd control is a bit difficult.
Odyssey of the Seas definitely felt more like a pre-COVID cruise. Certainly, it was one of the busier cruises we have been on this year.
For the shows, the prime seats in the vaccinated area were filled close to 30 minutes prior to showtime.
Included activities such as iFly and North Star were completely booked by the early afternoon on embarkation day. Similarly, many of the specialty restaurants had no availability at desirable times after the first day.
Certain bars were more popular than others, like the Schooner Bar and Pub. On the other hand, there was never much of a crowd at Boleros, Giovanni’s Wine Bar, or the Bionic Bar.
On the outdoor decks, the crowds were manageable. Even late risers could find a decent spot to lounge near the pools. Likewise, the indoor Solarium never seemed too busy.
At night, the Esplanade came to life. Honestly, it felt good to see things getting back to normal. Yet, there were still places you could go to avoid these busier areas.
Odyssey of the Seas Cruise Ship Scorecard Review Recap
Odyssey of the Seas is the perfect blend of traditional Royal Caribbean elements with the namesake class exclusives. Still, the ship maintains its own unique character.
With unique décor and artwork throughout the ship, as well as minor design changes, the well-crafted layout makes Odyssey of the Seas the perfect ship.
Odyssey of the Seas is a mega-ship with a small ship look and feel. While it has been years since we sailed on the Quantum Class, we felt right at home after the first day. From the more intimate Esplanade and Via, to the popular Two70 and Music Hall, we quickly remembered why we love this class of Royal Caribbean ships.
Some may miss the outdoor amusements like the waterslides or mini-golf, but the other unique activities make up for it. Combining the best attractions and activities from the fleet, there is always something to do on this ship.
The enhanced SeaPlex, with new virtual reality attractions and Playmakers, is a nice escape from the heat. While the Caribbean pool deck is the perfect spot for some sun and fun.
The food on Odyssey of the Seas often exceeded our expectations as well, with Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen and Teppanyaki being great additions to the ship.
Odyssey of the Seas is ideal for families, couples, and even multi-generational groups looking for one of the most technologically advanced cruise experiences. We would certainly cruise on Odyssey of the Seas again!
Do you agree with our Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship review? Have you sailed on a Quantum Ultra Class ship yet? Drop us an anchor below to share what you love about Royal Caribbean cruise ships.