Norwegian Star - Mexican Riviera: Norwegian Star Cruise Review by no1here

Norwegian Star 5

Overall Member Rating

Norwegian Star - Mexican Riviera

Sail Date: January 2006
Destination: Mexican Riviera
Embarkation: Los Angeles
We booked our cruise just 4 weeks before sailing, so it we were already aware that our cruise had changed its ports of call from Acapulco and Ixtapa to Manzanillo and Mazatlan. Stops were also made to Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta.

Reading the various reviews I was curious as to what our experience would be on an NCL ship. We cruised the Mexican Riviera with the Princess Star in 2003 and had a great time. First off, the variety and selection on NCL was terrific. Princess had a version of freestyle dining but NCL are the masters. There were 8 choices of places you could eat for dinner. 4 of which did not require a cover charge. The only restaurant we ate with a cover was Cagneys Steakhouse. My wife and I had the filet mignon and whole lobster. It was delicious and worth the extra money. I do recall, however on Princess having lobster in the main dining room, this was something that never happened with NCL. My wife also enjoyed the finger foods served in the casino. More

The entertainment was terrific. There were 3 piano players who performed nightly in the various bars on board. One of them, Jeffrey Allen, performed an Elton John tribute show on the last night that was awesome. The Jean Ann Ryan Company performed the other main stage shows on several of the nights. The shows were quite superior to what we saw onstage with Princess. The Fallons, a married couple who did magic, were quite captivating. Our comedian wasnt very funny.

Some negatives would be the fact that NCLs prices are quite expensive and they try to constantly to sell you, up-sell you, and resell you everything. The soda card was $46. Princess was only $14 but now I understand they charge $18. Now this paid for it self considering that sodas cost $6 each on NCL. I definitely drank my moneys worth. I also got a 60 minute massage package with the spa. It was a back massage, hot stones and some reflexology. My Romanian masseuse was terrific. The whole experience was quite enjoyable until the very end, after I had already paid for the services and even gave an extra tip on top of the automatic 15% that had been tacked on. She shows me these three massage oils and lotions that she suggests I use and then says I can have them for only $150! That was more than I paid for the massage with the gratuity. I declined the oils but couldnt help feeling a bit disenchanted by the whole thing. The pictures taken on board are also quite expensive.

We brought our 7 month old baby on board. We also brought my sister-in-law to baby-sit. The four of us fit just fine in a cabin with 3 beds. One dropped down from the wall. They provided a crib for the baby the suited us fine. We brought a pack n play but didnt need it. There was a refrigerator in the cabin which came in handy. The dining room staff was often helpful when it came to finding us a secluded table to avoid baby noise bothering other guests. The dining rooms had high chairs which were quite handy. Several times we requested and received a small plate of mashed potatoes to feed the baby. Since she is so little we had to bring her with us everywhere or have my sister in law watch her, which is what we had expected. They did sell diapers on board, but luckily we brought enough baby supplies. To bathe her, one of us stood with her in the shower while the other one cleaned her. It all was much smoother than we expected.

The embarking and disembarking both required a bit of a wait. Lots of standing in line. However, the lines moved rapidly. Since we were on the 4th deck, we were in the last group to disembark. Also note that being on deck 4 my mean having people lining up in your hallway when using the tenders in some of the ports.

The crew were mostly Romanian and Filipino. Waitstaff were hit or miss with friendliness. Our stewards were from St. Lucia and Indonesia. They were both excellent. The crew were friendly and helpful more often than not.

We will go with NCL again, if we can get another bargain cruise like this one. Less

Published 03/07/06

Cabin review: OG4538 Oceanview Porthole Window

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