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Norwegian Breakaway Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
3652 reviews
2 Awards

NCL Breakaway - another great voyage. (Very long)

Review for Norwegian Breakaway to the Southern Caribbean
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10+ Cruises • Age 60s

Rating by category

Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: Jan 2016
Cabin: The Haven Forward-Facing Penthouse with Balcony

NCL Breakaway trip – 14 day to S Caribbean. A Magical Mystery Cruise that was indeed magical. NCL had just learned that it had to eliminate the 2 day cruises it had scheduled between all the 12 day ones, and we did not know for the longest time how it would affect our cruise. It was driving us NUTS! So our Roll Call named itself the Magical Mystery Cruisers, as it was a mystery to us! They added those weekend days to our 12 day one, and I don't believe anyone was disappointed in the outcome. :) We were in the Haven room, 10706, front facing penthouse. We had a fantastic time, met some great, fun people, and are hoping to do it again – real soon. All in all, the Breakaway is not my favorite ship of the fleet, mostly due to its decor and lack of Spinnaker Lounge, but some of the activities and features are wonderful.

Also, for the most part, this is a relatively objective review, stated from my point of view, just stating the facts as I see them. All my statements are my opinions. The point is to distribute information that others may hopefully find useful. So here we go:

Got to the pier around 11. Had friends drive us in so there was no need to worry about the parking at the pier.

Cabin Review

The Haven Forward-Facing Penthouse with Balcony

Cabin H7

Room details

This was a two part suite, with a bedroom, separate from the living area, featuring a large porthole window that looked out over the bow of the ship. The bed was comfy, and enormous, with mounds of pillows and an elegant look. It has storage space everywhere especially in the form of deep, deep shelving behind cabinet doors at or below knee level. And 2 enormous drawers. There were closets encompassing the entire wall at the foot of the bed, which was wonderful and easily reached. In that wall were 2 clothes closets, about 18" wide with 2 shelves below clothes hanging area. Big storage area over TV (quite a ways “up” for short people) Everything else was "down". They could have made nice useful closets or shelves or drawers even at body level that went on either side of the round window but they just had one enormous, open, deep and basically cosmetic shelf about 30" high. Window seat sized but oddly shaped, due to the slope of the front wall and the curved edge of the front of the ship. The walls in this room were clad with some kind of plastic/vinyl so were not magnetic. One larger closet alongside bed, but not as conveniently placed so not used quite as much. 2 plush velour robes and slippers. Very elegant room. I hope to be be posting this same review on the NCL board shortly, to which I will try to add the appropriate pix, if I can figure out how to do it right, so if you want the pix, check it out!

The living area contained a table and 4 chairs, as well as a couch, TV,(the power button on neither remote worked, nor on the replacement remotes that the steward brought. No biggie. We just used the on-off button on the TV itself.) and armchair. Lavazza coffee machine. Butler, Akhmad, replenishes stock of coffee pods and creamers daily. There was a bottle of champagne and fruit basket with flowers on table. Exchanged champagne for red wine. Tons of storage space, with cavernous shelves behind doors almost all very low to the floor, and virtually hidden. Had to push the drawers and doors in to release the catch. Took us a while to get used to that, but once we got home we found we were pushing all the drawers and doors to open them instead of doing it the regular way. Was funny. Considering the average age of the passengers on this ship, I would think that many of them would be hard pressed to use this storage space. Many people used walkers and scooters, and I doubt there were enough accessible staterooms to accommodate them all. I thought of my own parents often and thought of how they would not be able to live here without toppling over regularly. The living room had the only truly useful shelves for easily accessible storage on the walls. Everything else was “down”, not at waist level where it’s easy to use, but down below the hips, and in many cases, below the knees. Couch doubles as a bed for a third person, but is hard foam. Not real comfortable for sleeping, I wouldn't think, but great for just sitting and watching TV. Two hassocks that double as tables with removable tops for storage within. Small rounded desk with puny shallow drawer. Interesting fact about many of the drawers was that the drawer front appeared quite deep, but the drawer bottom was way elevated on it, leading to a very shallow drawer. That was unfortunate, because I always have tons of papers and I had no place to store them neatly. So everything had to stay piled on the desk. Since the desk was small, and housed the phone, a special Haven phone for contacting the butler, etc, and a desk organizer that held pertinent info about the ship, etc, there was not enough room for much more.

Enormous bathroom with big tub, huge shower and separate toilet section enclosed with foggy glass. Pocket door between bathroom and bedroom. Dual vessel sinks. Scale.(that's just mean!) Vanity. Virtually no shelf space on the counter around the sinks and what little there was practically completely consumed by the vessel sinks. I took a water glass and put it in the corner next to the sink so we could stand up toothbrushes and paste and the like in it so I didn’t have to bend over and fish those items out of a drawer each time, as there was no cabinet to put them in. It was strange also, because if you left the hand towels on the bar below the sink, they interfered with the opening and closing of the drawers. We ended up pulling the towels off and leaving them in the small space next to the sink, which drove the steward nuts, because the towel bars had to have towels on them in order to look nice, so he would leave the ones we had taken off next to the sinks, and put new ones on the bars, which we took off so we could use the drawers… you get the drift. No shelving up the side walls. Two big drawers under sinks which was the only place to put toiletries. The narrow shelf under the sink was very inconvenient, as you couldn’t see into it without bending over 90 degrees or more, so we didn’t use it. Elegance with no practicality. The vanity drawer could've been about 3 - 4" deep, but was only about an inch due to the elevated bottom panel. Too shallow even for my skinny round brush. So most stuff ended up on top. The hair dryer was in a bracket on the wall considerably far under the vanity, forcing one to bend over and reach around. Not easy on the shoulder (mine happen to be not that great), and quite challenging when the ship was pitching about in rough weather. Once again I thought about people with flexibility issues. Form over function. Phooey. Two small shelves on wall over the enormous tub, not within easy reach of the tub or the vanity either. Not designed for anyone planning on actually using them. They should have been on the side walls adjacent to the sinks. (Hubby, however, greatly enjoyed his soak in that tub.) The shelves all have glass fronts so things don't roll off but there's adequate room underneath the guards for thin things to slip under. Could use more counter space. I hope I don’t sound too negative. We loved this room, but it had some major negative design issues that could be detrimental to some people, and I like to call things the way I see them so that others can be prepared. The bathroom was delightfully huge, elegant and a pleasure to move around in (mostly because you COULD move around) The shower… oh, that shower!! My favorite part of the room. It had a large (like, bigger than a dinner plate!) “rain shower” type head directly overhead that showered water on you gently but firmly, not pelting you or dribbling on you. It also had nozzles on the pipe below in two places that you could direct wherever you wanted. You could use them individually, or together, with or without the shower overhead. There was a large alcove on the side, plenty big enough to store all your shower sundries. The stall was big enough so you could completely step out of the water if you wanted.

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