First let me say this was my DW and my 4th visit to Bermuda. The first visit we spent 4 nights at The Southhampton Princess. We enjoyed ourselves so much we returned 5 years later aboard the Celebrity Horizon. This was our first cruise experience and I must say Celebrity impressed us so much we have become regular cruisers. Our third trip to Bermuda was out of Boston aboard Norwegian's Majesty. I must say that was the worst cruise experience we have ever experienced. That did not deter us from traveling back because Bermuda is such a wonderful place to visit and the people are the most pleasant you will meet. During our most recent visit, we flew via Jet Blue into JFK the night before and stayed at the Embassy Suites near Battery Park. Our first experience with Jet Blue and hopefully not our last (Great Airline). Embassy Suites gets a thumbs up as well. We were comprised of 3 couples with over 30 cruises total experience between us all. We have cruised with Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Princess, Holland, Cunard, Disney, Norwegian and Carnival. I state this not to impress anyone but to lend credibility to my critique.
We arrived at the port around 11 AM Sunday morning and were greeted immediately. We were presented with board numbers and asked to complete normal documentation that had not been completed online. The Manhattan Terminal was very comfortable with easy access to Lavatory facilities. We were summoned at 11:30 to process our boarding passes and at 11:45 were allowed to board. This was probably one of the fasting embarkations we have ever experienced. There was no mad rush and we boarded smoothly and quickly. Understandable our staterooms were not available for us to enter so we headed for the Lido. No sooner had we finished eating it was announced that we could enter our cabins.
The cabins were as spacious as any we have stayed in. The bathtub was nice but was not large enough for lounging. Probably great for bathing small children. The beds were as comfortable as our bed at home. There was only one issue in the cabin and that was some creaking noises during the night. Once you got to sleep though it had no affect on our rest.
The ship is easy to maneuver around and the only time we had difficulty with elevators was during disembarkation and that was to be expected. It was no big deal for us because our rooms were already on the main deck.
Some have complained about the age group on the ship. Sure its an older crowd but I must say they were a lively older crowd. There are not real great locations for dancing but that was not our primary reason for being on the ship. The singers on this cruise were as good as any I have heard and the Comedian was a riot. You didn't see much of the Cruise Director but that was no big deal because we weren't look for someone to hold our hand during our vacation.
The food taste and presentation was as good as any Cruise Line we have been on. The service was not stellar but acceptable in the Dining room. I don't blame the waiters as much as I do the open seating. I really think they need to tune open seating up a tad. We never felt rushed and I guess that's why we were accepting in some of the service short comings. I still give the stewards high marks for their efforts.
Photo shop does a nice job. The casino is small but adequate (you can lose just as much in a small casino as a large one). The show area was well laid out for the size of the ship. They had a few shops and some of their prices were very good along with selection. Again keeping in mind the size of the ship.
What can I say about Bermuda. It is a wonderful place to visit. The beaches and water are beautiful and pristine. The residence of the island truly make you feel welcome. I can not say a negative thing about Bermuda. I guess having 4 days of sunshine and no rain can help a lot.
Disembarkation was a breeze. It took us no time to get transportation back to JFK for our flight home.
Would we cruise Holland again? You betcha.
The only negative I have to say about the cruise is the tendering at St George was not difficult, in fact the ferries were very comfortable but it made for an awful lot of lost time on the Island. The tenders only rain every 2 hours each way. St George is a beautiful town and there used to be so much activity and neat little shops to visit. That is not the case now because of the lack of cruise ship activity. I hope that this can be corrected soon because St George deserves the tourist trade. Hamilton is a great location to dock, (better then the Dockyard) but St George is a nice break.
I just want to say visit Bermuda. If you want to experience beautiful beaches and feel safe then you can't go wrong.
**Just one note. The cabin steward will clean your cabin as quickly as possible, however if you want to expedite your room being tidied up, there is an insert that you can place in your key slot that says "Please Service" on one side and "Do Not Disturb" on the other. Keep this in mind.
Hope this review has been helpful