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In contrast to Vegas, 18 year olds can gamble on cruise ships... so my nephew, whose favorite movie is "Vegas Vacation" wanted to go on a cruise so he could gamble. He is still in high school so we had to do a short cruise where he could miss a day or two of school only. My TA found this cruise for us. We chose an AE cabin (it was the best we could reserve about 60 days prior to sailing). There would be three of us in the cabin: my nephew, my mother (his grandmother) and me. We utilized the mini-suite to sleep 3 people separately. It was fine for 2 nights but I would have preferred more room. With the bed pushed apart to make 2 beds it was difficult to use the closet and with the sofa bed out there was hardly room for the furniture and access to the balcony and fridge. But we managed. Hey, we were on vacation. The room was clean and we never had to ask for anything. We flew in to NYC a day early and stayed with friends. That was nice. We took a cab to the port and embarkation was easy. I had ordered the birthday package and the room was great! There were banners and balloons and a very nice cake. It was well worth the money in my opinion. Besides, I am not sure how I could have snuck in early to decorate. This way we all had the element of surprise. Next, thanks to CC I knew to go to the Main Restaurant and not the buffet. I do not like buffets and avoid them whenever possible. When my nephew and I went to the casino we were in for a surprise. All of the table limits were very high $25 for blackjack and $50 for Pai Gow Poker (which we had both learned to play recently). It did not take long for us to lose a bundle. I was a BJ dealer for a long time so I was doing everything right. But when you split and double down at $25 a pop - and the dealer draws to 21 - OUCH! We did play slots. There were plenty of all amounts. Luckily we found a blackjack machine in the lounge that sat 5 people. The minimum bets were $5.00 - now you're talking! It was a hoot. There were digitally enhanced buxom female dealers. Everyone was cracking up. But who cares? SInce we all won and won and won. I never even cashed a traveler's check. My nephew got to play a lot of blackjack and he was happy. That machine saved us! We went to dinner in Salsa night one for IL POPO - this is my mother's favorite NCL restaurant and her favorite NCL dish. It was just as tasty as when we had it on the Jewel last year. Salsa was wonderful. We all loved it. (Being from Texas I was not impressed with the salsa or guacamole, but what can you do when you are out of Texas?) The next night was my nephew's birthday celebration and we ate at Le Bistro. Now the day before I had made reservations (right after embarkation) and they had us in the "wine cellar". Well, when they went to seat us it was just a place in front of the restaurant where the piano player is. It might be ok if you don't care about atmosphere, but I was disappointed to not be in the very nice dining room with the nice artwork. When I expressed my unhappiness they cheerfully offered us a nice table in the back, near the Renoir. Voila. It was perfect! We made friends with the people next to us and enjoyed wonderful conversation. My nephew and I split the Chateaubriand (an extra charge) and it was wonderful - fork tender. My mother had escargot and filet mignon. We all had chocolate souffle. I can't imagine a better celebratory dinner. We had breakfast in the main dining room both mornings. It was fine. Nothing special - but it gave us the morning fuel! We tried to have a late night snack in the Blue Lagoon but we soon found what a difference a ship makes. I loved the Blue Lagoon on Jewel. On the Dawn it is a loud teen hangout. There is no way to have a conversation in there. The first night I had a treatment in the spa. It was an exfoliation and massage. I am not a big fan of ginger so they used coconut. It was great. After my body was rubbed with the salts I was able to shower in the same room and then have the massage. It was a splurge, but worth every penny. Besides, I received a $100 OBC from Cruise Rewards (more later. Played bingo a few times, never won. It was very expensive in my opinion. But on such a short cruise I went for the gusto and played the computer. What the heck. Was able to play the morning and movie trivia games. My mom and I came in 2nd on morning and our team won the movie trivia thanks to my mom's historical movie knowledge. It was fun. Because of the short cruise length, no internet cafe, shopping or the like. I never used the outdoor pool or hot tubs, but a lot of people did and seemed to be enjoying themselves. Disembarkation was slow, but hey, everyone was leaving. Since this was a 2 nighter we all had to transport our own bags all of the time. It was a little hard on my mom (we tried to help her but she wouldn't give up her suitcases). I much prefer the traditional way of leaving the bags outside the door the night before leaving. I booked the Cruise Rewards and have already reserved an AC PH on the Sun for next February. I think the Dawn is a lovely ship. I had a great time. The crew was very nice and I am a fan of Freestyle - so what's not to like! My one complaint was that I could not find a decent cup of coffee in the late evening (the Java cafe had just closed). Luckily in my AC PH I will have a nifty coffee maker with a great brew. In closing, this was a wonderful trip to give my nephew. I don't think we could have come up with a better present for him. Besides, the additional time in NYC (Broadway Shows and Restaurants) was a real treat too!

Nephew's 18th Birthday - Gambling Cruise

Norwegian Dawn Cruise Review by DMH15

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: April 2008
  • Destination: Nowhere
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
In contrast to Vegas, 18 year olds can gamble on cruise ships... so my nephew, whose favorite movie is "Vegas Vacation" wanted to go on a cruise so he could gamble. He is still in high school so we had to do a short cruise where he could miss a day or two of school only. My TA found this cruise for us. We chose an AE cabin (it was the best we could reserve about 60 days prior to sailing). There would be three of us in the cabin: my nephew, my mother (his grandmother) and me. We utilized the mini-suite to sleep 3 people separately. It was fine for 2 nights but I would have preferred more room. With the bed pushed apart to make 2 beds it was difficult to use the closet and with the sofa bed out there was hardly room for the furniture and access to the balcony and fridge. But we managed. Hey, we were on vacation. The room was clean and we never had to ask for anything.
We flew in to NYC a day early and stayed with friends. That was nice. We took a cab to the port and embarkation was easy. I had ordered the birthday package and the room was great! There were banners and balloons and a very nice cake. It was well worth the money in my opinion. Besides, I am not sure how I could have snuck in early to decorate. This way we all had the element of surprise. Next, thanks to CC I knew to go to the Main Restaurant and not the buffet. I do not like buffets and avoid them whenever possible.
When my nephew and I went to the casino we were in for a surprise. All of the table limits were very high $25 for blackjack and $50 for Pai Gow Poker (which we had both learned to play recently). It did not take long for us to lose a bundle. I was a BJ dealer for a long time so I was doing everything right. But when you split and double down at $25 a pop - and the dealer draws to 21 - OUCH! We did play slots. There were plenty of all amounts. Luckily we found a blackjack machine in the lounge that sat 5 people. The minimum bets were $5.00 - now you're talking! It was a hoot. There were digitally enhanced buxom female dealers. Everyone was cracking up. But who cares? SInce we all won and won and won. I never even cashed a traveler's check. My nephew got to play a lot of blackjack and he was happy. That machine saved us!
We went to dinner in Salsa night one for IL POPO - this is my mother's favorite NCL restaurant and her favorite NCL dish. It was just as tasty as when we had it on the Jewel last year. Salsa was wonderful. We all loved it. (Being from Texas I was not impressed with the salsa or guacamole, but what can you do when you are out of Texas?)
The next night was my nephew's birthday celebration and we ate at Le Bistro. Now the day before I had made reservations (right after embarkation) and they had us in the "wine cellar". Well, when they went to seat us it was just a place in front of the restaurant where the piano player is. It might be ok if you don't care about atmosphere, but I was disappointed to not be in the very nice dining room with the nice artwork. When I expressed my unhappiness they cheerfully offered us a nice table in the back, near the Renoir. Voila. It was perfect! We made friends with the people next to us and enjoyed wonderful conversation. My nephew and I split the Chateaubriand (an extra charge) and it was wonderful - fork tender. My mother had escargot and filet mignon. We all had chocolate souffle. I can't imagine a better celebratory dinner.
We had breakfast in the main dining room both mornings. It was fine. Nothing special - but it gave us the morning fuel!
We tried to have a late night snack in the Blue Lagoon but we soon found what a difference a ship makes. I loved the Blue Lagoon on Jewel. On the Dawn it is a loud teen hangout. There is no way to have a conversation in there.
The first night I had a treatment in the spa. It was an exfoliation and massage. I am not a big fan of ginger so they used coconut. It was great. After my body was rubbed with the salts I was able to shower in the same room and then have the massage. It was a splurge, but worth every penny. Besides, I received a $100 OBC from Cruise Rewards (more later.
Played bingo a few times, never won. It was very expensive in my opinion. But on such a short cruise I went for the gusto and played the computer. What the heck.
Was able to play the morning and movie trivia games. My mom and I came in 2nd on morning and our team won the movie trivia thanks to my mom's historical movie knowledge. It was fun.
Because of the short cruise length, no internet cafe, shopping or the like.
I never used the outdoor pool or hot tubs, but a lot of people did and seemed to be enjoying themselves.
Disembarkation was slow, but hey, everyone was leaving. Since this was a 2 nighter we all had to transport our own bags all of the time. It was a little hard on my mom (we tried to help her but she wouldn't give up her suitcases). I much prefer the traditional way of leaving the bags outside the door the night before leaving.
I booked the Cruise Rewards and have already reserved an AC PH on the Sun for next February.
I think the Dawn is a lovely ship. I had a great time. The crew was very nice and I am a fan of Freestyle - so what's not to like! My one complaint was that I could not find a decent cup of coffee in the late evening (the Java cafe had just closed). Luckily in my AC PH I will have a nifty coffee maker with a great brew.
In closing, this was a wonderful trip to give my nephew. I don't think we could have come up with a better present for him. Besides, the additional time in NYC (Broadway Shows and Restaurants) was a real treat too!
DMH15’s Full Rating Summary
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