This was an anniversary trip from our sons and family. One son and daughter in law went with from Barcelona to Miami with us. Luggage arrived quickly and we toured the ship with 4,000+ other travelers. Interior of the ship's hallways was unusual. The make up/colon counter was in center of the floor surrounded by shops. There was limited room to move. Sales in shops VERY BALDLY RUN. All other cruises we have ever taken hold clearance sales in a closed dinning room, theirs were in the tiny shops. People broke through the roped off areas, shoveling items into their plastic baskets with no regard for others. Watch and jewelry sales also took place in the center of the only passing corridor on that level. There was no place if, God forbid, there were an accident or someone getting ill they would be trampled. Elbows were thrown, people acted like they never saw a T shirt from a place they went to, or a watch reduced in price.
Now the food........
The English pub located next to the $5 per line bowling alley had very bad service, 45 mins. and we got a glass of water while others got service. Our family left and went to the buffet. We tried again and got beverages in juice glasses, uncooked fish and chips and a pot pie that was 1/2 way up in the dish.
If you went to ANY of the special restaurants, service was better, same for the food. Service UNTIL we got one FANTASTIC set of servers, was also bad in the TASTE. Things escalated so much we spoke to the Maiter'D to see if we were expecting too much. He was a gem, He even went so far as to secure us nightly reservations with the same two servers and presented us with a complementary beverage He listened to us and even took a suggestion for servers offering a second cup of coffee during breakfast at the buffet. It is not NCL practice fearing they might insult passengers who were capable of securing their own. We assured him the wheelchair bound, blind passengers and people using canes as well as the man with the service Newfoundland dog would appreciate not spilling hot beverages on themselves or others.. But to continue --
The information desk LACKED INFORMATION. Simple questions could not be answered and they looked several times at the daily bulletin for answers. DAH! If the answer was in there I would not have gone to the desk.
We enjoyed the cruise director and staff. However, in one barroom, from 2-2:45 a spa talk on feet was given. Same room we had 3-3:45. At 2:55, some players began to enter the room since the spa presentation was over and they were packing up. The spa speaker EXPLODED at the PASSENGERS!!!!!! Our poor Cruise Staff host (20 yrs old) was beyond words and tried to make light of it. One couple was so insulted they left before we began our trivia. Afterwards, 5 players went to the desk and asked to speak to a spa representative. She listened but who knows what ever happened. Our cruise staff person asked us not to fuss since they (staff) all have to get along. We then learned that the spa is not staffed by NCL so no responsibility for any liable is on NCL.
As far as the decor, PLASTIC PLANTS REALLY!!!! No receptacles for trash except at elevators so on the plastic plant stands were napkins, nose tissues, and plastic glasses. UCKIE!!! It seemed, if you had the beverage package and went to any of the bars, each served a different size glass, from juice glass to even a ginger ale in a beer glass! More......
When the crew had the Crew Show, there were no seats left in the theater so they closed the doors and told everyone they would broadcast it on the 2 story screen in the atrium and on deck. Don't hold your breath on either place...we went from one to the other and back again then to the information desk and the answer we got was, "I'll look in the newsletter!" So........
After all the things that did and didn't happen on this cruise, we are considering not selecting this line again. We met wonderful people from the Peace Corps to singles, couples in the exclusive HAVEN, to lots of people from all over the world. These people made our trip memorable, not the service, food or ship itself. But after such a bad time for the four of us, we will probably stick with Princess.