My husband and I took a cruise out of Boston to Bermuda with four friends in August of 2010.
First of all, embarkation was great. Quick, easy, effortless. However our cabins were not accessible so we were herded with the rest of the cruisers to the buffet dining area. I am aware that we could have opted to go to the Windows dining room, but we figured we'd go check out the buffet. I was immediately concerned by the lack of seating. Finding a place for 6 of us with carry-on luggage to squeeze into was a nightmare. Eventually we did get a table by standing near one until the people seated there moved and we did enjoy a nice lunch with plenty of different options to choose from. By the time we were done eating, our cabins were available.
My husband and I booked late so we had an interior cabin. Unlike our friends who all had a rather plain cabin in the lower decks, we were given a very nice cabin (#10681) that appeared to be far more spacious and better designed than the regular interior cabins. We loved it. It was nicely designed, plenty of storage, and seemed to be tucked away from the main traffic pattern. Later we learned that we were backed up to the hallway with the daycare and dreaded the noise that was to come. That never turned into being a problem. With the exception of the door closing repeatedly in the morning, we never heard noise from the daycare at all. Nor did we hear any noise coming from the kiddie pool located outside of the door near our cabin.
Our only issue with our cabin was a toilet that seeped from the bottom emitting a foul odor periodically throughout the cruise. Our room steward did an amazing job of staying on top of cleaning the leakage as frequently as possible so that we could get through the week without being driven from the cabin. There was also one point when the toilet wouldn't flush at all. We overheard our cabin neighbors complaining of the same thing, so we called our steward who called maintenance. The issue was fixed within 15 minutes. Apparently it was some sort of fuse or power issue that controlled the vacuum for the toilets.
Safety drill--no issues. Quick. Easy. Best one we've ever done.
Entertainment on this cruise was good (but not great) with the exception of the hypnotist who we just didn't enjoy at all. We aren't the type to get up and leave mid-show, but for that one we did. It was ridiculous and misplaced, in our opinions. LOVED the acrobats. The rest were just good. Enjoyable. Not amazing, but good enough. No complaints. The cruise entertainment staff worked their butts off to be sure that everyone was having a good time throughout the entire cruise. They did a great job.
Food was fine. We did pay the fee to go to Cagney's Steakhouse and didn't find that it was any better than the food we received in the main dining room. Murder Mystery dinner was a hoot!
Alcoholic drinks is where we had a problem. (a) overpriced (b) very little alcohol (c) I think they were reusing the pineapples on the day that the drink special was served in a pineapple shell. Here's why:
I purchased one of the specials and it was brought to me with an umbrella sticking out of the top of the pineapple (just like all the others that they were giving out.) My husband also ordered the drink. I stole his umbrella and tucked it into the top of my pineapple so that we'd know whose was whose. Mine now had 2 umbrellas and his had none. As we were sitting there,I poked a series of holes in one of my umbrellas using my long nails. So one umbrella was now lined with a series of slits making it look latticed. I finished my drink and the waiter came and took away the pineapple shells. 30 minutes later our friends arrived and ordered the same drink. Imagine my HORROR when I noticed that one of our friends was drinking from a pineapple shell with two umbrellas stuck in the top--one of which had a series of slits in it. I confronted the bartenders and asked to be shown where the pineapple shells were being discarded. They said they were down in the kitchen and would not show me. To this day I swear they reused them. Gross. Gross. Gross. Never again! We stuck to bottled alcohol from that point on.
The Pub Crawl--none of the four of us enjoyed any of the drinks offered, but it appeared that many of the others participating did. We would not participate in this again. Also the "burp" contest at the end was just crude and ridiculous. I was embarrassed for Norwegian that they would do such a thing.
Bermuda--our favorite island of all that we've ever visited. Beautiful. Clean. Friendly inhabitants. Lots to do. We can't wait to go back. NO complaints whatsoever. I highly recommend the Crystal Caves and Fantasy Caves as well as Horseshoe Bay.
We did not purchase excursions. We instead purchased the bus/ferry pass that you can buy right out at the octagon shaped building just beyond the pier. I think we paid $30 for three days (each) and we were able to go to all of our destinations using that pass. We took buses and ferries with no issues.
Despite the pineapple issue, we would gladly go on this cruise again, and we look forward to checking out the Norwegian Dawn (which has now replaced Spirit for this run.)
Hope this helps!