Enjoyable cruise on a beautiful ship: Norwegian Breakaway Cruise Review by retiring soon
Overall Member Rating
Enjoyable cruise on a beautiful ship
Embarkation: New York (Manhattan)
I loved starting the cruise at New York City as it added to the excitement to see Breakaway pictures on the screen in Times Square. Sailing past the Statue of Liberty & under the Verrazano Bridge was also exciting.
We flew into EWR 2 days before the cruise & took the cheap bus to the Port Authority then walked over to "the Hotel @ Times Square" on 46th, 1 1/2 blocks from Times Square. The hotel was nice, had a level entrance, nice lobby area, free wifi & breakfast. It was across the street from a lovely little 9/11 Memorial Park, an oasis amongst the skyscrapers.
We did the HOHO bus tour which is a good deal, 4 loops for $59. We took the downtown one getting off at the 9/11 Memorial (our time to visit had been prepurchased online), then the night/lights trip to Brooklyn.
The embarkation was quick & easy maybe because I'm gold & got to stand in a shorter line. More That's one good thing about NCL you can move up the Latitudes pretty quickly with good perks.
The ship itself is beautiful & pretty similar to Epic which I found myself comparing it to since I had been on it 3 times.
King's Wharf is a lovely place to dock with so many amenities close by. We looked out at the Fort/museum across the beautiful blue water. Inside there was a Dolphinarium which was fun to watch. A little free train took you around the compound to the mall, Snorkel Beach area, cruise ship etc. It was also handy to buy tickets for bus or ferries there. There was also a John Lennon concert in the park on Thursday night.
I'd read about cheap internet around the Island, $15 for 72 hours but at this time a router was not aimed at Breakaway only at Summit at the next dock. I could pick up wifi on the ferry, around Dockyard & in Hamilton too I believe.
The food & entertainment were very good on Breakaway, the only problem being the wait to get into the MDRs sometimes. We found by going right at 5:30 the problem was alleviated. Also check out the touch screen outside the theatre as people were standing in the line waiting when 24 seats were available for booking.
I too was ticked off about the Bingo venue but when I asked the CD she said they can't hold it in the theatre because of the "Rock of Ages" set.
The advertised time for Bingo wasn't even when they began selling cards so it took forever. I didn't bother going back as it was pretty expensive too.
The Cirque show was beautiful however I wouldn't pay for premium again as the regular seats looked better. Watch out for poles when choosing a seat. I prefer the balcony set up on Epic over this arrangement.
We did the ice bar but it seemed pretty lacking in NYC character.
I'd bought a Slot Play coupon pre cruise so did use the casino which was (understandably) smoky in places. The downfall IMO was the lack of $.25 slots, only 4 of which I could find. I had been hoping for the neat BJ/21 machines like Oasis had but didn't find any.
Another thing that didn't impress me was the tv stations available. I'd just been on a Carnival cruise the month before & they had network channels. Even on the ship channel they just kept repeating the Newlywed Game & DWTS when I had hoped to catch the fireworks which we missed due to the crowds. The ship's cam was not working at this time.
I caught the tail end of the cabin crawl so got to see a studio cabin (which I'd stayed in 3 times on Epic) & the lounge. I realize there aren't as many studios available on the Breakaway but that lounge is awfully small & doesn't have the food choices of Epic.
Our Meet & Greet was huge & well attended by officers & Kevin Sheehan. Unfortunately we didn't get to introduce ourselves so if you didn't mingle you didn't meet.
O'Sheehans was a great place to go for breakfast or lunch & we did try the MDRs too. We didn't use the buffet much as we didn't like the layout, too broken up & hard to find things. It was nicely decorated & easy to find a seat. It was nice to have the lemonade & other drinks available & even the wine machine if you're so inclined.
We didn't eat at any pay restaurants having tried them & a Chef's Table on other ships. I did buy a "lobster tail" at Cake Boss & it was good. We never could find the hot dog cart to try a Sabretts which we'd seen many of in New York.
The disembarking was a nightmare. We couldn't hear any announcements & blue which was supposed to leave at 8:15 hadn't been called by 8:45 so we slipped into the yellow priority line (which I was entitled to) as we had a van waiting since 9:00. We didn't actually get to the vehicle until 9:45 so incurred a large penalty.
All in all this was a lovely cruise but I think maybe I expected more after reading about it for months. We did get a book, pin & bag for the inaugural & got to meet Kevin Sheehan but was that worth the extra money we paid, I don't think so.
I am looking forward to seeing Breakaway on "Mighty Ships" which was apparently filming during the cruise. Less
Cabin review: BCE11878
Our cabin 11878 was great, really close to the aft elevators. Our cabin steward Saiful was friendly & efficient. The cabin space is a bit tight with the beds apart but lovely just the same. We heard no noises so that was good.