With gratitude to my fellow cruisecritic members for their past reviews and responses to my trivial questions, I happily write my review of the NCL Star.
The Star crew is professional and friendly. The activities and shows were entertaining. The food was delicious. We had a great time. Do I have any complaints? Yes, but only one minor one. The ship layout is somewhat confusing. For example, you can only access the kids club from deck 13 aft. However, this in no way affected our wonderful cruise and I highly recommend the star for your next vacation. A quick study of the deck plans of the ship or attending the tour of the ship on the first day (which we did not take advantage of) should avoid confusion.
Below, I will try to touch upon key highlights.
As I already mentioned the crew was professional and friendly. Always greeting everyone with a smile and kind words. I had the best room steward in all of my 7 cruises. He greeted my family of four in the hall on the first day with a handshake and without looking at any notes, greeted us individually by name before we could introduce ourselves. The room steward knew my children loved to see towel animals and made towel animals every night and many times twice each day! The officers were friendly, professional and ubiquitous. I personally witnessed several officers (those that all passengers were introduced to during the first night's show) walking the ship throughout the day checking on the passengers, including the hotel director, food and beverage manager, executive chef and maitre d' at aqua.
The NCL Star's cuisine was wonderful in terms of taste and variety. The Star offers several different restaurants included in the cruise fare, all offering a myriad of delicious choices of food. On my past cruises, my family has generally had most meals at the aft dining room, the more formal of the dining rooms included in your fare. However, this time we generally chose to eat at Aqua as we preferred to not have dress up nightly. We always had wonderful, attentive and friendly service and never really had any wait. We had heard rave reviews about the specialty restaurants which were available for a nominal charge. We chose to celebrate our last night at Moderno. The experience and food were wonderful. A perfect way to enjoy our last dinner.
NCL Star offers a wide array of activities, including some fairly new improvements to kids club activities including lessons and the use of circus equipment-- stilts, chinese yo-yo, devil sticks, and lasso and the use of the sports deck for sports activities. All the children seemed to enjoy the actives.
The adults and children seemed to enjoy the pools, slides and hot tubs. I personally saw the staff asking children to leave an adult hot tub and pointing the children to a different hot tub. This is first I can recall ever seeing on a cruise. Nice to have an adults only hot tub by the main pool. The pools were crowded but no more so than on any of our other cruises.
The theater shows were all entertaining and ranged from extremely talented acrobats, to a magician, Shark Bait- a comical juggling group and the Second City improv group.
On a final note, this was the first cruise I have taken where the crew had cold towels and cups of water waiting for passengers upon reboarding the ship while docked in Bermuda. Unexpected but appreciated. Also, this was the first cruise I have taken where popcorn was served. My children loved getting little bags of popcorn after the nightly shows.
The Star shines brightly throughout.