Review of Explorer Of The Seas deck 14 (Viking Crown Lounge-Izumi)
Viking Crown Lounge & Bar is an indoor observation lounge (capacity 252 seats) with slanted windows and comfortable seating. The Crow’s Nest (83-seat observation room) offers top-ship panoramic views. This is among the ship’s best vantage points for taking pictures and enjoy the ports of call arrival and departure maneuvers.
Dizzy’s (Lounge & Bar, 96 seats) is a jazz club with its own bar, dance floor and bandstand for live performances. Here are also held Explorer Academy classes (daily) and the “Murder Mystery” (dinner show).
Izumi Japanese Cuisine (menu) is the RCI’s signature pan-Asian cuisine specialty restaurant with mostly traditional Japanese dishes (sushi-teppanyaki-hibachi, tableside cooking). The restaurant is a la carte priced and open for Lunch (seadays only, between 12-1:30 pm) and Dinner (between 6-9:30 pm). Reservations are required. The restaurant is comprised of a sushi bar (sushi/sashimi) and another section with 2 hibachi stations. The menu includes sushi rolls, signature rolls, sashimi (2- or 5-piece, also combo platter), sukiyaki, yakimeshi, ishiyaki (grill / chicken, beef), wakame salad (seaweed), pan-fried gyoza dumplings, hot/cold appetizers, premium seafood (tuna, shrimp, lobster, eel, crab), desserts (ice cream, pancake, caramel flan, dessert sampler) and specialty drinks (cocktails, beer, sake selection). Edamame soybeans and miso soup are complimentary. Izumi has Teppanyaki menu (for iron griddle-cooked food) and Omakase menu (Chef’s choice).
Izumi Express is the Royal Caribbean’s new “sushi to go” option available fleetwide since July 2016. The “take-out sushi” is fresh-made and of premium quality. The new option is a great choice for families with kids (avoiding the formal sit-down meal) and for all passengers willing to enjoy this popular Japanese food somewhere else on the cruise ship (incl in their cabins). Izumi Express sushi ordering is via phone (any one on the ship, incl the cabins) and also by going to the Izumi restaurant and placing your order there. Guests can order any item from Izumi’s sushi menu during the restaurant’s operational hours. The staff takes the order and provides a time window to pick it up (usually within 10-15 min). Meals are in to-go containers (plastic, transparent) and conveniently bagged up. Quick and easy takeaway service is provided by the new Izumi Express carts (colored in black) offering up to 8 pre-packaged sushi rolls.
Diamond Club (27 seats) is an exclusive bar lounge for Diamond, Diamond Plus and Pinnacle Club passengers (by the RCI’s loyalty program). The lounge (open between 8:30-11:30 am, and 5-8:30 pm) offers complimentary amenities and concierge service, including personalized stationary, served Continental breakfast (8 – 10 am), Hors d’oeuvres and petit fours (served, respectively, before and after dinner), complimentary self-service bar (free drinks), reservations (specialty restaurants, shore excursions/tours, Beach Cabanas), Salon/Spa appointments, show ticketing assistance, media borrowing (music and movies on disks), business services (faxing, copying), private party arrangements.