We just returned from our cruise yesterday morning. I was traveling with a group of 18 people. (Friends and Family). My husband and I celebrated our anniversary on board.
To start, embarkation took FOREVER! We waited in line for an hour and a half. Those who had the Haven rooms were able to check in and walk right on. Our friends who had this room checked in and ate lunch and we will still waiting in line at the port.
Mini Suite: We decided to upgrade to a mini-suite and it was very nice. The room attendant was very good and our room always looked nice. The bathroom and the room were very spacious and it was a nice treat.
Pool Area: Very nice but way too small for a ship this size. They really messed up by giving the Haven guests their own pool area with multiple Jacuzzis and a retractable roof. This left the main adult pool very small with only 4 Jacuzzis. The slides were very cool and the kids we traveled with had a great time on them. The bars were nice and the bartenders were great here.
Entertainment: We were able to see Rock of Ages which was awesome as well as The Second City which way ok. We really did not like the fact that the entertainment was not in the theater every night like we had on previous cruise lines. Personally we looked forward to that. Also, the theater seats were very uncomfortable.
Dining: Absolutely horrendous. The only time the food was enjoyable was when you had to pay the extra service charge for the specialty restaurant. We had to spend a ton more money every night so we could have a good meal. We ate at the La Cucina( Italian) and the appetizers were outstanding. The main entrée however was a joke. The sauce tasted like Chef Boyardee. Moderno (Brazilian) was nice and the food was just ok. It definitely needed to have more flavor. Teppanyaki (Japanese Hibachi) was very good and we had a great time. Everything was fresh. Cagney's Steakhouse was outstanding. The whole entire meal that we each had was delicious. The Noodle Bar and The Raw Bar were also great. The sushi was fresh and cold. All of the specialty restaurants were great, excellent service, fresh food and great atmospheres. The Buffet and Savor (The included restaurants) were awful. The service was horrible. Thursday night the group went to eat at Savor and we were sat. Once sat, we sat in the chairs for 20 minutes before we were given ice water. After another 20 minutes we still did not have anyone acknowledge us even for a simple appetizer. We were all very hungry and frustrated. We decided that we had enough and walked out. The hostess decided to chase us down to see what happen and we told her. It was really disappointing. Those who worked in the included restaurants seemed miserable. Never a polite greeting and it seemed like we were a bother to them. Not a very happy experience.
The Buffet: The food was THE SAME every single day! They hardly have that many choices as it was and to not change it up made it worse. The bread was extremely stale. Literally, the hot dog rolls cracked. The buffet set up was very poor.
Private Island in Bahamas: We really enjoyed Great Stirrup Cay...BEAUTIFUL! They really did a great job of making it look nice. The lunch BBQ was the worst setup ever. We had to wait in line for burgers for 45 minutes. Very poor setup and most of us guest were angry and starving.
Our friend had her watch stolen out of her room on the last night and had security involved. Security then ripped their room apart and gave them an attitude as if they were making it up or one of their friends stole it. Not a good situation and very poor help from NCL. Our friend never found her watch and the NCL rep told her to call the headquarters to see if they can help which is a joke.
The unlimited beverage package is very well worth the price. The drinks on board without the package are VERY expensive. If you plan to have a few good nights, I recommend it.
Anna Maria, the bartender are Shakers Martini Bar outside was awesome! She was on top of it at all times. Always remembered what everyone was drinking and you never had an empty glass.
The photographs taken on board were nice but they should have had some kind of deal for those who purchased many like myself. I bought 5 photos which was $100 and didn't even get a free ship portfolio or anything.
Carlo's Cake shop was hardly open so we never got to go in but they did sell some items in the coffee shop on deck 6. The treats were all delicious and of course that's more money!
O'Sheehans is one of the places that is included and auctually had good food.
Room service takes forever so be prepared. The pizza for room service is good but they charge you $5 for it and it also takes forever.
The Glo Party was a good time as well as Latin Night in the Bliss Night Club.
I nor the 18 people I traveled with will EVER travel with NCL again. We have traveled with Royal Caribbean many times and plan to stay with them and their positive attitudes. We could not wait to come home to have real food that wasn't stale as well as choices.