Cabins received an upgrade as part of the ship's refurb and now have fancier pillows and duvets and cute new bathroom tiles that feature fish. But they are still small, and the balcony cabins have verandahs barely big enough for two white plastic chairs.
The four basic types of cabins include inside (measuring 149 square feet), outside (porthole or picture window, 157 square feet), balcony (172 square feet with a 29-square-foot balcony) and suite. Furnishings are pretty basic -- a bed, desk, couch (that converts to a single bed) and coffee table. Closets are on the small side, and storage space is otherwise in short supply, but it's OK for a ship where fancy duds are not required.
Bathrooms are the one aspect of the cabins that's actually oversized. They come with large showers, center sink areas (with storage shelves for your toiletries) and toilet compartments with door that close. This is a nice feature for those traveling with friends or who otherwise want privacy, but the toilet compartments are tight, and we heard more than one large person complaining the space was too claustrophobic with the door closed. Pack your own soap if you like a bar; here, you'll only get liquid dispensers of soap and shampoo.
More than 300 cabins are interconnecting, a benefit if you are traveling as a family. Most outside cabins have balconies, and these are accessed through full-wall sliding doors, meaning you have a great view, even when the doors are closed.
There are seven suites and 11 junior suites (NCL calls them Penthouse suites), luxurious spaces with features that include oval-shaped whirlpools, living room areas with dining tables, walk-in closets, CD/DVD players and refrigerators. The eight Category AC junior suites are notable not for their size (414 square feet with 22-square-foot balconies), but for their reasonable price -- they average $250 to $350 per night -- and because they boast bathrooms with one-way, floor-to-ceiling windows, so you can look at the sea from your whirlpool. Five Deluxe Penthouse Suites measure 507 square feet with 48-square-foot balconies, and two Owner's Suites measure 513 square feet with 92-square-foot balconies.
All Penthouse suites and above come with butler and concierge service and access to Cagney's Steakhouse on an exclusive basis at breakfast and lunch. The concierge makes dinner and shore-excursion reservations, sets up special requests and airport transfers, and arranges for priority disembarkation. There is no dedicated concierge lounge, but the concierge can be reached by phone or approached in person during Cagney's breakfast and lunch open hours.
Tip: Since quiet spaces are at a minimum on this ship, booking a balcony is a particularly good idea for those who want quiet reading time outdoors.
Our major disappointment was the up-grade of our balcony stateroom. Expedia agent had mentioned an up-grade. We were looking forward to a large room/suite at the back of the ship. We got a tiny room, tiny shower, no tub. There were 3 of us. When the sofa bed is pulled...continue
This was our first cruising experience with NCL, formerly we sailed mainly with Royal Caribbean. Although we were a bit afraid that the Freestyle concept would be not our thing, we did like it. Surprisingly there was another unexpected problem: it turned out taht our...continue