Let me start out by saying that my husband and I have been on almost 30 cruises. Only a couple of them have been less than terrific. This was one of them.
Embarkation was excellent given the fact that the ship was full. The cruise line used 2 terminals to board the 4500 passengers and it was a pleasant experience.
When you enter the ship, you are not entering into a beautiful atrium which is what we expected. Instead, we entered on deck 4 near the comedy club. The ship itself is very pretty, but it is also very dark with very few windows. Part of the thrill of cruising is seeing the sky and sea out the windows.
We decided to go to O'Sheehan's for lunch rather than submit ourselves to the throngs of passengers with luggage at the buffet.
It was very relaxing and we ate a couple of times at O'Sheehan's later in the week.
Our cabin was ready when we finished eating, so we headed up to deck 9. We were a party of 3 couples and had balcony cabins all in a row. My husband and I had the one with the bed nearest the door (we hated it). As a previous cruisecritic member stated in their review, THERE IS NO BATHROOM. There is a small cubicle with a shower to one side of the door and a small cubicle with a toilet to the other side. When you get out of the shower to towel off, you are standing right in front of your cabin door. A couple of times one of us was standing there when our cabin steward knocked! Yikes!
The sink in the room (which is very small) is so close to the edge of the bed, that you can brush your teeth while seated LOL.
The food was hit or miss during the cruise. We did 4 premium restaurants (La Cuccina and Le Bistro were just OK) Cagney's Steakhouse and Teppanyaki were wonderful. The main dining room was kind of bland. The staff also seemed very overwhelmed and had way too many customers to take care of. Service was slow.
The pool deck is a joke on sea days. The pools are very shallow and tiny with people standing shoulder to shoulder in them. The main pool had the added joy of 6 or 7 toddlers in diapers in the pool with their parents. Obviously nobody could read the pool rules on the big sign next to the pool. None of the staff seemed to be concerned either. The water was positively murky after a few hours. GROSS! The adult pool in the aft is slightly larger than a hot tub and also packed.
The entertainment was great (Blue Man Group, Legends etc.) And our weather was spectacular as well as spending time with dear friends. Would I do another NCL cruise. Maybe. (?) There is an awful lot of competition out there and I have had better service, food etc on all cruiselines except for MSC.