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Millions were spent on the latest update of the Monarch of the Seas and although the new rock climbing wall made the headlines, most of the budget went into the food and beverage facilities and furnishings.

The two main dining rooms onboard the Monarch, Claude’s and Vincent’s, are similar in layout; they differ only in their décor. Both are full-width and well-lighted. Though perhaps a bit austere in ornamentation, and despite the relatively low ceilings (a noticeable trait seen on most accommodation decks), they’re very pleasant dining venues with a raised center section and lower perimeter seating with comfortable banquet seating.

The Windjammer Café is all-new. The buffet-style restaurant now features bistro-style food stations, each catering to whatever tastes your taste buds are craving – from fresh turkey or roast, to pasta, pizza, salads, and a tempting assortment of desserts. Come for the food, stay for the atmosphere; the two-level café’s skylight bathes the room in natural light and the furnishings are nicely-crafted in rattan and comfortably cushioned.

The upper deck of the Windjammer Café is largely devoted to the upscale Jade Sushi, an Asian fusion alternative restaurant. Choose from an a la carte sushi selection or opt for one of three complete menus, each modestly priced from about $6 to $12 per person. Plus, no other place on the Monarch (save maybe the Viking Crown Lounge) offers the views out to sea to match those of Jade Sushi. You could get used to this!

Making the morning coffee run onboard the Monarch is easy. Latte-Tudes is centrally located on Deck 5 and the quality Seattle’s Best brand makes the run well-worth the trip. Coffees, espresso, and teas are available all day long and the modest extra cost is billed to your shipboard account. Ditto for the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream counter next door – it costs extra but this corner of the ship is one of the busiest! There’s plenty of “atrium-view” seating nearby.

If you’re out and about around midnight, you’re sure to notice the waiters carrying trays of snacks and sweets. They call it their Midnight Delight – you’ll call it yet another excuse to eat. Still hungry? Pick up the phone and call Room Service. It’s available on the Monarch 24/7.

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