Royal Caribbean reverts to traditional seating in main dining rooms

Dining room on the Independence of the Seas; photo credit Dave Jones

Royal Caribbean International has decided to end its main dining room format called Dynamic Dining, which was launched with Quantum of the Seas two years ago.

Starting with the Nov. 27 sailing of Anthem of the Seas, the main dining room will operate under the My Time Dining system. Ovation of the Seas will make the change on Nov. 23.

Dynamic Dining was conceived as a way of breaking up the main dining room into smaller venues. The Quantum-class ships were built with a quartet of 480-seat rooms that had different menus and themes. Diners could make reservations, and rotate among them.

When more tradition-bound guests complained, an option was added for a fixed early or late seating called Dynamic Dining Classic.

After Nov. 27, the same menu will be available in all four restaurants: Chic, American Icon, Grande and Silk. As on other ships that have My Time Dining, guests can choose their own dining times and table mates. Alternatively, they can choose the traditional early or late seating at a fixed table.

Royal Caribbean said guests booked on Anthem and Ovation who have already selected the Dynamic Dining Classic option for their upcoming cruise will be assigned to either early or late seating to match their original choice of time. Guests who have selected the Dynamic Dining Choice option will be assigned to the My Time Dining flexible option.

Royal Caribbean said guests on the flexible option will dine in the American Icon and Silk dining rooms while guests on early and late seating’s will eat at either Chic or Grande.

In a statement, Royal Caribbean said it decided to end Dynamic Dining after sifting through guest feedback. “Our guests have told us that they prefer the ease of a cruise vacation where they have flexibility without having to plan extensively,” the statement said.

Royal won’t retrofit ships for Dynamic Dining

Royal Caribbean International has decided not to install its Dynamic Dining concept on the Oasis, Allure and Harmony of the Seas, as it once planned to do.

The concept, which splits the main dining room into four smaller themed restaurants, will be limited to ships that have been designed from the beginning to accommodate it, Royal said in a statement.

Currently, the Quantum class ships, including the Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas, are the only ones predesigned for Dynamic Dining.

Dynamic Dining originally also meant elimination of fixed dining times, but Royal later added a “classic” option with early and late seatings.

Royal had already converted the main three-deck dining area on Oasis of the Seas into single restaurant spaces on each floor.

Guests on the Oasis, Allure or Harmony who have already preselected the classic option for their upcoming cruise will be assigned to either early or late seating to match their original choice of time. Guests who have selected the “choice” option will be assigned to the My Time Dining program, Royal said.

New dining program postponed for Oasis-class ships

Royal Caribbean International is postponing the scheduled introduction of Dynamic Dining on its two mega-ships, Oasis and Allure of the Seas.

The alternative-dining concept had been scheduled to debut on Oasis in March, but has now been put off until “later in the year” according to the line’s web page for Oasis.

Dynamic Dining, introduced on Quantum of the Seas in November, eliminates the main dining room in favor of four themed restaurants that serve about 450 diners each. There is also a separate complimentary restaurant for suite guests.

The main dining room on Oasis had been converted into separate restaurants on each of its three decks during a drydock last fall, but the actual implementation of Dynamic Dining is not yet in place.

The three new dining concepts for Oasis were to be American Icon Grill, Silk and The Grande.

Royal Caribbean said it will continue to offer early and late seatings in the main dining room on Oasis as well as the flexible My Time Dining program as an option.

Allure of the Seas is scheduled for a drydock in 2015.