Every pearl has an imperfection: Norwegian Pearl Cruise Review by hartsnvt
Overall Member Rating
Every pearl has an imperfection
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation Day: We flew from Hartford, Ct to Fort Lauderdale via Southwest which was disappointing as the plane was dirty and bare bones. I also do not like not having a seat assignment. You basically have to purchase their program ($10 each way) to get priority check in so you have a better boarding position. We arrived at FLL and went to the baggage claim area to fetch our luggage and find the NCL representative. We found our luggage but there was not a NCL rep to be found. Eventually I asked the Royal Caribbean Rep where I might find his NCL counterpart and he pointed me to a small desk between baggage carousels 4 and 5. I wish that info had been available to me in my EDocs. Once aboard the bus we motored to the pier in Miami which took about 45 minutes. We arrived at about 12:30 and boy was it mobbed. The line snaked around the side of the building out in the hot sun. Coming from Vermont it felt good but I was glad I had my bottled water as I was seeing some people melting in line. After about 30 minutes in line we went through security and found ourselves being checked in by a very friendly and helpful pier agent whose name I have forgotten (I have a baaad memory for names). We were whisked through check in and up to have our first (of many) photos taken. We did not purchase that particular photo as we were all disheveled from being up at 4:00am and looked absolutely spent. Once aboard I finally felt like we were on vacation but I did miss the welcoming champagne or juice from cruises years ago. I will add that we do not carry a credit card and it was no problem to board and add cash at the guest services desk. Our cabins were available so we dropped off our stuff and per CC recommendations we headed to the Summer Palace main dining room. We were seated at the aft window where we looked at another NCL ship that was behind us. The dining room had about 5 tables occupied and I really appreciated the CC advice to eat hear instead of the crowded buffet, Thanks!!!. The food was really good and the service also. Our journey through food and ocean had begun!After lunch (around 2:00pm) I went to guest services to add some cash and sign up my daughter (20) with a permission form to drink wine or beer. I will say that having 3 employees on embarkation day is not sufficient. (Especially when one left and then there were 2). it was easy to add the cash but the woman would not let us complete the permission form because we had different last names, really? I gave up and went the next day and it was no problem. Needless to say I was getting cranky so we went back to our cabin to find that our fridge had not been cleaned out which was not a big deal. However my youngest daughter is a diabetic on a pump and not only was their fridge not cleared out so she could store her meds, it was locked! I kept asking different room stewards if they were hers, and no one was. I did ask one if they could find her room steward and let him know that her fridge had to be unlocked as soon as possible as her ice packs were melted and her meds had to be refrigerated. It was puzzling that even though our cabins were across from one another we had different room stewards. Both of my daughters went to bed after a very quick muster drill at 3pm. DH and I decided to explore the ship and watch the sail away party on the pool deck.
I found the ship to be very clean and not too crowded considering the ship was sold out. The crew was stellar except for a few moments. Our aft balcony was amazing except our slider would not always latch properly and slammed open and shut during our rough sea night(which was a blast!) I see that this has taken much too long to write. Suffice it to say we did enjoy our final vacation together and I thank NCL for making this possible. As I head into surgery this Friday I can say that we all had a wonderful time and I only wish I could cruise again. This was port intensive and was great for everyone to explore new places. If I could ever cruise again I would sail to Bermuda and be able to explore it in its entirety. Thanks to CC members for all of your advice as I used it a lot during our cruise! Our "pearl" cruise was a wonderful adventure and though not perfect it was as beautiful as the treasure found in the ocean! Less
Cabin review: B110168 Aft-Facing Balcony
Aft Balcony (B1) 10168 was great! The bed was the most comfortable bed I have ever slept on. (2 twins form queen). Good storage space and don't forget to put luggage under the bed! Bathroom was good size for a cruise ship with sliding doors for the shower and separate toilet area for privacy. Plenty of shelves for stuff. I liked the fact that the hair dryer was in the room near the balcony door which freed up the bathroom. Our balcony was larger than BB balconies or other afts on different decks. It was 10 ft x 8 ft. Deck 10 so only cabins above and below. No ash, little wind and little vibration. Awesome view of the wake and on each side! Our daughters had the inside across from us (10167) which had the head of their beds facing forward instead of side to side. Their bathroom was different with the toilet area and sink area together. (They did not have the slider toiler area that we did).Read All Aft-Facing Balcony (B1) Reviews >>
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