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My husband and I thorougly enjoyed the cruise! Our mini suite with a balcony was large enough and nicely appointed. The ship seemed huge, and lots of people seemed lost lots of time. Carry the little map of the ship with you. We enjoyed the freestyle dining and thought the food was good overall. We paid the surcharge and dined one evening in Le Bistro where the food and service were excellent. The chocolate fondue was to die for. However, my husband wasn't thrilled with the upcharges in the selected restaurants so we usually dined at Aqua which was fine. We dined one evening at La Trattoria where my pesto linguini was good but my husband's spaghetti was just so so. We didn't like the lack of atmosphere there because it's a section of the Market buffet area that they have attempted to separate with screens. We enjoyed Endless Summer one evening and liked the location above the Atrium. We enjoyed the free room service in the mornings so we didn't have to dress to go to breakfast to get coffee. The room service selection was limited, but we sometimes went to second breakfast like the Hobbits. My husband liked the ice cream every day from 2:00 to 4:00. I enjoyed the wine tasting for $10, $5 of which you got back if you bought a bottle of wine. It's neat that you can buy a bottle of wine any time, and they'll keep it in their cellar to use on future nights in any restaurant. We were fortunate to have good weather so we made it to every island. We were a few hours late getting to Maui because of a medical emergency during the night. (We understand that bad weather and emergencies can change a trip drastically.) We followed much of the advice of other cruisers on this website and rented a car (before we left for the trip via the internet, much cheaper than Norwegians' offer of a Budget car once you are onboard) in every port. We stuck with Dollar because it was cheaper. They had a convenient shuttle waiting for us in every port and shuttled us back to the ship at the end of the day. They provided maps and info at every location. We upgraded to a convertible when we could, and that was worth it in the beautiful weather. We took other cruisers' advice and did the helicopter tour on Kauai with Safari Helicopters (booked before we left via internet, much cheaper than the ship's helicopter excursion and cheaper than booking Safari when we docked). In each port, we hit the ground running and saw all we could, usually doing 2 or 3 things while people on the ship's excurions had time for 1. The lines to book excursions on the ship were often long, and we were glad we had done our homework beforehand. We made the best of the Fanning Isl. jaunt but agree that the cruise will be nicer in June 2004 when the Star will cruise only in the Hawaiian Islands. As I understand it, there will be a 7 day cruise on which you'll spend more than one day on each island. On the present cruise, we definitely ended each day wishing we could have spent more time ashore. Yet, this cruise was a great way to get a taste of Hawaii. We had 4 days in Honolulu (mostly in the rain) before we left for the cruise, and that was very nice. We had time to tour most of Oahu, hike Diamond Head, visit the Bishop Museum (very good!), and enjoy the beautiful island. We agree that Walmart is a great place to buy tacky souvenirs and any kind of Hawaiian wear you want. Also, we liked Longs Drugstore for jams and macadamia nuts. We never made it to Hilo Hatties, but the ship sure recommended it and people seemed to like shopping there. Onboard shopping was good, especially the day they pulled out a table full of sterling silver jewelry. I saw the exact same slipper (flipflop) and plumeria (flower) jewelry in shops in towns for twice the ship's price. Plus, there's no tax on the ship. My husband thought the cigars in the Galleria area were reasonably priced and fresh. I enjoyed the hula lessons and crafts with Cathy Foy, a former Miss Hawaii. She was a lovely person. The lectures about Hawaiian history and culture by Eddie Chang were very interesting. The Polynesian Patangi dancers were excellent and seemed very authentic, performing dances from vaious parts of Polynesia. (Whoever said they didn't learn anything about Hawaii and its history weren't paying attention!) The entertainment aboard ship was excellent. All the shows in the Stardust Theater (Andrew Lloyd Webber, It's Fame, Cirque Asia, the magician, and Roger Carr's cabaret show) were very good. Get there early for a seat. The Filipino group playing in the Atrium around happy hour every day were good. They play everything from the Beach Boys, Simon and Garfunkel, and Neil Diamond to Patsy Cline and Hank Williams, Jr. Roger Carr in Gatsby's is entertaining and developed quite a fan following. My husband enjoyed the Havana cigar bar off Gatsby's, but you can't hear the music from there. The comedian in the lounge was funny, and there was quite a crowd there. I took one step class in the fitness center and thought the instructor from the Czech Republic was excellent. Wish I had taken advantage of more of the free classes there. Some classes, such spinning, have an upcharge. My husband had a long wait to use the free weights on one of our days at sea. We didn't take advantage of any of the spa's services. They were quite expensive. The deck and the jogging track are nice, but the wind can blow you away at times. Warning: people stake out deck chairs around the pool early in the day and it's hard to find a spot. We definitely would recommend this trip and this company. The staff were knowledgeable, professional, and helpful. Patti, the cruise director, does a super job and is very approachable. She really means it when she says she's there to answer any questions and to help in any way.

Norwegian Star - Cruise to Nowhere

Norwegian Star Cruise Review by Page Walden

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2004
  • Destination: Nowhere
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Mini-Suite with Balcony
My husband and I thorougly enjoyed the cruise! Our mini suite with a balcony was large enough and nicely appointed. The ship seemed huge, and lots of people seemed lost lots of time. Carry the little map of the ship with you.
We enjoyed the freestyle dining and thought the food was good overall. We paid the surcharge and dined one evening in Le Bistro where the food and service were excellent. The chocolate fondue was to die for. However, my husband wasn't thrilled with the upcharges in the selected restaurants so we usually dined at Aqua which was fine. We dined one evening at La Trattoria where my pesto linguini was good but my husband's spaghetti was just so so. We didn't like the lack of atmosphere there because it's a section of the Market buffet area that they have attempted to separate with screens. We enjoyed Endless Summer one evening and liked the location above the Atrium. We enjoyed the free room service in the mornings so we didn't have to dress to go to breakfast to get coffee. The room service selection was limited, but we sometimes went to second breakfast like the Hobbits. My husband liked the ice cream every day from 2:00 to 4:00. I enjoyed the wine tasting for $10, $5 of which you got back if you bought a bottle of wine. It's neat that you can buy a bottle of wine any time, and they'll keep it in their cellar to use on future nights in any restaurant.
We were fortunate to have good weather so we made it to every island. We were a few hours late getting to Maui because of a medical emergency during the night. (We understand that bad weather and emergencies can change a trip drastically.) We followed much of the advice of other cruisers on this website and rented a car (before we left for the trip via the internet, much cheaper than Norwegians' offer of a Budget car once you are onboard) in every port. We stuck with Dollar because it was cheaper. They had a convenient shuttle waiting for us in every port and shuttled us back to the ship at the end of the day. They provided maps and info at every location. We upgraded to a convertible when we could, and that was worth it in the beautiful weather. We took other cruisers' advice and did the helicopter tour on Kauai with Safari Helicopters (booked before we left via internet, much cheaper than the ship's helicopter excursion and cheaper than booking Safari when we docked). In each port, we hit the ground running and saw all we could, usually doing 2 or 3 things while people on the ship's excurions had time for 1. The lines to book excursions on the ship were often long, and we were glad we had done our homework beforehand.
We made the best of the Fanning Isl. jaunt but agree that the cruise will be nicer in June 2004 when the Star will cruise only in the Hawaiian Islands. As I understand it, there will be a 7 day cruise on which you'll spend more than one day on each island. On the present cruise, we definitely ended each day wishing we could have spent more time ashore. Yet, this cruise was a great way to get a taste of Hawaii.
We had 4 days in Honolulu (mostly in the rain) before we left for the cruise, and that was very nice. We had time to tour most of Oahu, hike Diamond Head, visit the Bishop Museum (very good!), and enjoy the beautiful island.
We agree that Walmart is a great place to buy tacky souvenirs and any kind of Hawaiian wear you want. Also, we liked Longs Drugstore for jams and macadamia nuts. We never made it to Hilo Hatties, but the ship sure recommended it and people seemed to like shopping there.
Onboard shopping was good, especially the day they pulled out a table full of sterling silver jewelry. I saw the exact same slipper (flipflop) and plumeria (flower) jewelry in shops in towns for twice the ship's price. Plus, there's no tax on the ship. My husband thought the cigars in the Galleria area were reasonably priced and fresh.
I enjoyed the hula lessons and crafts with Cathy Foy, a former Miss Hawaii. She was a lovely person. The lectures about Hawaiian history and culture by Eddie Chang were very interesting. The Polynesian Patangi dancers were excellent and seemed very authentic, performing dances from vaious parts of Polynesia. (Whoever said they didn't learn anything about Hawaii and its history weren't paying attention!)
The entertainment aboard ship was excellent. All the shows in the Stardust Theater (Andrew Lloyd Webber, It's Fame, Cirque Asia, the magician, and Roger Carr's cabaret show) were very good. Get there early for a seat. The Filipino group playing in the Atrium around happy hour every day were good. They play everything from the Beach Boys, Simon and Garfunkel, and Neil Diamond to Patsy Cline and Hank Williams, Jr. Roger Carr in Gatsby's is entertaining and developed quite a fan following. My husband enjoyed the Havana cigar bar off Gatsby's, but you can't hear the music from there. The comedian in the lounge was funny, and there was quite a crowd there.
I took one step class in the fitness center and thought the instructor from the Czech Republic was excellent. Wish I had taken advantage of more of the free classes there. Some classes, such spinning, have an upcharge. My husband had a long wait to use the free weights on one of our days at sea. We didn't take advantage of any of the spa's services. They were quite expensive. The deck and the jogging track are nice, but the wind can blow you away at times. Warning: people stake out deck chairs around the pool early in the day and it's hard to find a spot.
We definitely would recommend this trip and this company. The staff were knowledgeable, professional, and helpful. Patti, the cruise director, does a super job and is very approachable. She really means it when she says she's there to answer any questions and to help in any way.
Page Walden’s Full Rating Summary
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