My friend, a first time cruiser and I(12 cruises) took the 7 night cruise to Bermuda on July 15 to relax and recover from work burnout. I had hurt my back and did not want to get on a plane, even to fly to an all inclusive resort.
It was very easy to get to the pier by taxi and we breezed through security and embarkation. What a pleasure to start a vacation without airport hassle!
We had a balcony cabin with a wonderful feature: our own coffee maker with coffee, tea, milk & sugar. We could start the day with fresh coffee on the balcony in pajamas! We had a great steward who surprised my friend with cute towel animals, made sure we had a full ice bucket and fresh towels and kept our cabin spotless. The cabin had plenty of easy access drawer and closet storage and the bathroom was also roomy and well laid out with an opaque glass enclosed shower and an opaque glass enclosed toilet on opposite sides of the sink, so 2 people could use the bathroom at the same time in relative privacy.
We ate at both the main dining rooms,the buffet, Blue Lagoon and 4 of the specialty restaurants. The food was best in Le Bistro-do not miss the chocolate
fondue. The service in all restaurants was excellent, friendly, smooth and skilled. The sit down breakfast in Versailles was wonderful. The bar service at all bars was also excellent and attentive: we had a great time at the martini tasting.
The best part for me was the spa. I bought a week pass and had sauna, hydrotherapy pool, lap pool and best of all padded club chairs with ottomans and a floor to ceiling glass view of the aft to relax in. I had 2 massages and a facial. The massage therapist was very skilled, better than my regular therapist in NYC and gave me good advice on further therapy.
Excursions: we took the 5 hour ship tour of Bermuda in an air-conditioned bus and were very happy to see all the scenic highlights with great ease.The guide was most interesting. My friend took the ship's transfer to Horseshoe Bay beach:very easy and no worries about waiting for or fitting into the public bus or finding a taxi by herself.
We had a Cruise Critic Roll Call Meet and Greet with the Captain and other officers. The Captain did us a big favor and arranged a special tour of the bridge for us.
Recently my cruises have been on small upscale ships so I was worried about sailing on NCL with 2400 passengers, many of them children and teens. But to my big surprise,the service on NCL was as good as on the upscale lines and much better than my previous cruises on Princess, particularly in the dining rooms and bars and in keeping the ship and the outside decks clean and well maintained.
NCL's Freestyle is very relaxing! It seems to attract friendly and easy going fellow passengers. Since you have so many options in Freestyle, you can tailor your cruise experience to suit yourself. I had the equivalent of a small ship spa cruise but with a better spa and much better entertainment.