Over all this cruise was good. We are a couple in our late fifties, unmarried and were looking for a cruise with few children therefore chose dates not associated with holidays. The ship itself was great but not accommodating for that many people especially good weather sea days (decks packed like sardines,difficult to find seats at garden cafe, casino insane. Mandara Spa was the biggest disappointment. I was told initially that I would be able to use the hot tub after my massage, only to be told it would be an additional fee after the fact. Also I was unable to use my "Spa Finder" gift card on board as stated on the Mandara web site. Two requests to speak to the manager were never addressed.
Ship staff was courteous but "robotic" throughout, ie no personal touches or attention. This observation was supported by frequent cruisers on board this sailing. Also be prepared to get your hands sprayed with sanitizer before every meal and then some. Being a nurse I can fully appreciate this so I didn't mind it. We only used Spice H2O(adults only area)once(while ship was in port). It was always crowded and there was no continental breakfast as stated on the 2 mornings we tried to go there.
We did the Orient Beach Excursion in St Maarten which was great, on time, organized, clean, beautiful beach, good lunch, attentive tour staff, only $2 per person for an umbrella. The St Thomas Magens Bay excursion left much to be desired. Driver was temper mental toward other drivers on road (scary)and the beach itself with all it's beauty was hindered by the many hoards of cruise ship people (and yelling kids, $15 for 2 beach chairs that "you" drag a good ways to get away from the hoards. This beach cannot accommodate that many people..a huge disappointment. We did not do Atlantis due to other negative reviews but heard the cable beach excusion was good. We stayed on board in Nassau and lounged in Spice H20 until about 2pm (deserted and wonderful) after most people had gotten off then went ashore to the shops....good decision.
Entertainment was top notch for all shows. Food could have been better in the regular restaurants, mousses were more like creamy jello and chicken terrible. We ate in Cagney's-good (extra $25pp), Le Bistro-very good (extra $25pp)and Terrapani-very good (extra $20pp. The best desert was the chocolate mousse cake at Taste and the creme brulee at Le Bistro. Best meal-Le Bistro, best regular restaurant-Manhattan Grill. Oh and FYI they consider a root beer float to be a drink not a dessert ie food therefore charge extra. Also all sodas are extra $2 so they offer a mug for $50 to get unlimited soda. And if you drink water take a case of bottled water with you otherwise $2.50 a bottle or $5 from mini bar.
Stateroom-no complaints, plenty large enough for both of us, ++closets, shower/tub with enough room for two, loved the balcony(big), only draw back was that you can hear your neighbors loud and clear when the door is open but when closed it's fine. Be advised room service offers continental breakfast only (nothing hot)
Casino-TIGHT SLOTS!!!(this seemed to be the general consensus among the slot players) We spent a lot of time in there, very crowded, not once did I hear, or hear of any major jackpot winners. Disembarking and embarking no problems, very organized. Major drawback-we opted for the bus transportation provided by NCL from Ft Lauderdale to Miami Port-fine, but the return was way to early...the latest bus was at 10am for our 5:30pm flight so therefore stuck in the airport for 6 hours. We will look into other options next time for return transportation.
Thinking Royal Carribbean next cruise.