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Norwegian Spirit Cruise Review by Witling

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Norwegian Spirit
Norwegian Spirit
Member Name: Witling
Cruise Date: February 2012
Embarkation: New Orleans
Destination: Western Caribbean
Cabin Category: BA
Cabin Number: 10636
Booking Method: Cruise Line
See More About: Norwegian Spirit Cruise Reviews | Western Caribbean Cruise Reviews | NCL Cruise Deals
Member Rating   5.0 out of 5+
Dining 5.0
Public Rooms 4.0
Cabins 4.0
Entertainment 4.0
Spa & Fitness 1.0
Family & Children Not Rated
Shore Excursions Not Rated
Embarkation 5.0
Service 5.0
Value-for-Money 5.0
Rates 5.0
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Ship Facts: Norwegian Spirit Review (by Cruise Critic!) | Norwegian Spirit Deck Plans
Great Cruise
There are many, many reviews covering the main points. I'll try to touch on a few things that were pertinent to our cruise and some things you don't always see.

I was traveling with my wife. We're not gourmets or 5-star types so it doesn't take much to please us. I've been to many Latin American countries and my wife is from Colombia so the language and living conditions we saw of the locals were no surprise to us.

The ship can be a little confusing to get from one place to another but there are maps located at each stairway. Sometimes it's easier to get from one end to the other by staying on levels 4, 5, 9, 10 or 11 then going up or down as needed.

Our "Casinos at Sea" cards were waiting for us in the room. Of course both had to be replaced in the casino since neither worked. We also had our free drink cards attached but I never noticed anyone paying for drinks in the casino so I'm not sure that was such a big perk.

The point system is so bad you would have to make some substantial wagers over the length of the cruise to make any dent in your bill. Together we each played about 12 hours at quarter video poker and I played at least 10 hours of $25 per hand blackjack and ended up with around 1100 points. That would have gotten me about $11 off my bill if I had bothered to even look into it.

Here are the highlights:

1. Everything went as planned. We had great weather and calm seas from the first sea day on and made all of our port calls. Getting on and off the ship at Embarkation, ports and debarkation was painless. Just be patient.

2. Met a great group of people from our Roll Call. Special thanks to cmitch9999 for her work online and on board. People often take for granted all of the behind the scenes activities that go on when traveling. Some get paid for their work but she did this just so everyone could enjoy their cruise a little bit more.

3. Spirit is a nice ship. It doesn't have all the latest and greatest extras as some of the other ships but there is something for everyone and everyone is very friendly and helpful.

4. The food in the buffet was good. The food in the Windows and Garden dining rooms were also good. The one night we tried one of the specialty restaurants was at Cagney's. The room is nice and the wait staff attentive but we paid $20 each ($5 discount to generate business) and got basically the same meal we could get at the other two main dining rooms.

5. The room (balcony 10636, aft, port side) was "tidy" but we don't require much space. The balcony was about 3 feet wide but still enjoyable, especially with a cup of coffee in the morning. The rooms were surprisingly quiet. I never even heard the toilets flush in the adjoining rooms.

6. We saw each show except the final night and they were all entertaining and just the right length (45 minutes).

Jorgos (illusionist, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3a1F7_0cISo)

and the Duo Acrobatics (husband & wife team) were outstanding.

Tip: Enter on Level 8 (balcony) and go down the aisles from the back (top).

7. We missed the White Hot night but heard there were about 100 people there and they had a good time.

8. We also missed the Chocolate Night (too busy in the casino).

9. The casino was smaller than I thought from the photos and it got a little warm but the smoke was never a major factor (and I hate smoke). They have a nice table of snacks from 11-1AM each night.

10. The video poker pay schedules aren't the best on the lower-rated hands but the higher jackpots follow the norm. I managed to hit a Royal and 4 Aces (no kicker) plus a number of other 4-of-a-kinds playing Dbl Dbl Bonus and 4 deuces playing Deuces Wild.

11. The Blackjack has typical Vegas rules (H17, DAS, DoA, no RSA, etc) using 8 decks. Avoid play for under $25 per hand or they will be using CSM machines. Single deck pays 6-5 for a blackjack. I don't recall seeing anyone playing on that table. Dealers and pit critters were friendly and I managed to walk with a profit.

12. I specifically selected this travel date (Feb 26-March 4) to avoid Spring Break. Thus we only saw about 10 kids under the age of 15 and they were always with adults. Saw no rowdy teens or "hip hop" types. I would put the average age of the cruisers at about 62.

The only negative to the trip was when I got very ill (you don't want to know the details). I have no idea where or what I got but it didn't affect my petite wife and we ate and drank basically the same things throughout the cruise. I tried to be conscientious in washing my hands and what I touched.

The ship works very hard to prevent illness with hand sanitizer machines all over and having someone standing by to spray your hands before entering the buffet and the two main dining rooms.

So even with the illness it was a great trip.

Publication Date: 03/07/12
Read the Western Caribbean ports review by Witling
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