Up front I will admit that my review is tainted by the 3 hour wait we endured outside the terminal in 90 degree heat to get on board the NOS and more importantly RCCL failure to step in and address the issue. The power was out in the terminal and I get it is not RCCL's fault but their failure to even minimally deal with the plight of thousands of their passengers stuck outside the terminal on a very hot day was inexcusable. There was no back up plan to get their passengers on board with the average board time being 3-4 hours and about 7 hour to board all the passengers. After obtaining our seapass, the first three RCCL employees we actually encountered were interested in selling us photographs, beverage packages and spa services. Not one person was at the entry to the ship to say hello, offer a cold drink or even offer the slighest of apologies for the delay. The only time anyone spoke to the issue was when the cruise director commented over the airways that the boat drill and leaving the port would be delayed due to the terminal issues. The boarding process was so bad and RCCL response so inadequate that it lingered for us througout the entire cruise making this cruise the worst we ever were on.
Unfortunately, it did not end once we did enter the ship. Upon entering our room, we immediately ran into the foul smell (you guess). I will say that we went to guest services and it was addressed quickly and was not an issue the rest of the cruise. As to the Navigator itself, it was nothing more than okay to us, yes the ship has been updated in some of the common areas but those areas that were not are showing it's age, including our stateroom. The MDR food was fine, with our MDR waiters being the best part of the cruise. On the other hand, the buffet was the worst ever on any cruise we have taken. From breakfast to lunch and dinner the food selection was limited, virtually unchanged everyday, lukewarm with many dishes visually unappealing. We actually enjoy the buffet experience while cruising but this one was rock bottom. BTW, ditto for the food in the promenade cafe. As to the entertainment it was average, with the shows in the theatre bordering on amateur hour. It is clear to us that that the overall cruise experience depends on the level of ship you are on. Having been on the Oasis, Allure and the NCL Getaway all in the past 3 years the level of service offered, the quality and variety of food offerings and the varied and more professional entertainment experience was dramatically different than that on the NOS. As a result of this experience going forward if we return to RCCL it is either the Quantam or Oasis class. We have been on the NCL Getaway twice in the last year and likely will go on the Escape next. We actually consider the Getaway to be the best cruise we have been on and was the best value to boot.
The final fitting end to our Navigator experience was that departure started for those wanting to carry off their luggage at 6:00am which we took part in. Only issue is the the terminal apparantly does not open till 7:00am. Around 6:50am I happened to see several customs officers walking and sipping coffee on their way into the terminal. Around 7:15am and 1:15 minutes after announced departure time we were allowed to disembark. Next time maybe the ship should coordinate with the port what time they actually open for business.
I would talk about the upcharge restaurants and tours but I refused to spend anything more than the minimum on this cruise. We are a cruise short of Diamond status but were so taken back by our experience that it will likely be a long time before we return.
No problem with the size of the cabin but it is showing it's age. Wood trim color is faded throughout. Day 1 foul smell was taken care of when I reported it, actually guest services sent us a bottle of wine which was a nice touch. The balcony windows were dirty. When touching the windows it in the early morning dew it left dirt mark streaks that dried up and we had to look at all day. Attendant finally noticed it on Day 3.