We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had never been to South America or south of the equator.
EMBARKATION: Awful No porters to take our bags. We stood in line in the hot sun to check in our bags. Then we were given a number and told to sit in a non air conditioned warehouse until our number was called. Announcements were made in Portuguese except for the number. When our number was called we were bussed to the ship. We stood in another line at the Four Seasons restaurant on board to check in. At least we could go directly to our cabin. NCL staff at the Meet & Greet said the Sun's position at the pier was changed at the last minute and the check in area assigned could not accommodate the technology needed to check in at the pier.
DINING: There was never a wait at the Seven Seas main dining room. Staff was pleasant and attentive. Great menu and service for breakfast. We asked to share a table and met some wonderful fellow cruisers. We tried 3 of the specially restaurants, Teppanyake, Le Bistro and Cagney's. There was never a problem to get a reservation. The food was excellent. Service was a bit slow at Cagney's and Le Bistro. Not sure I would pay the surcharge if the specialty restaurants were not included in our fare. The Garden Cafe, buffet was smaller than on other ships, but never seemed over crowded and we always found a table when we went for breakfast and lunch. Variety was okay. Would have like to see more salads at lunch.
CASINO: DH had some trouble with a slot machine eating his cash that wasn't resolved by the casino staff so we avoided the casino for the sets of the cruise.
LIBRARY: Is open during posted hours to check out a book. They have a variety of fiction and non fiction in several languages. There are shelves of books you can "borrow" at anytime without needing to check them out. The "taken-return one" concept.
MANDARA SPA: Convinced DH to try acupuncture for orthopedic issues and pain. Dr Christine was patient, explained what she was doing and made recommendations. i got a hair cut and style - fine. Massage was super! Liked that we could use the sauna and steam room without charge. Staff was pleasant.
ENTERTAINMENT: Thank you NCL for knowing you audience! We were mostly a over 50/60 year old crowd. The Argentinian "Beetles" were such fun. The 16 member song and dance cast are very talented. Just a pet peeve of mine - If you are doing a production based on the 60s or 70s put in some dance moves from that era in you numbers and costumes that reflect that era. Pay attention to the lyrics. In Burt Bacharache's "I say a little prayer for you" not once did the singer fold her hans as if she were saying a prayer - just wiggled her hips.
ENRICHMENT: The lectures on the ports were pretty good. They include history of the area and not just shopping.
We did not take any ship shore excursions.
DISEMBATKATION: You are bussed from the ship in Buenos Aires to the terminal. It is a working industrial port so this makes sense for your safety. This may be one of those times when it is best to arrange transpiration to the airport or hotel ahead of time. The lines for the taxis are long and sometimes confusing. A piece of our luggage got put into another cab by mistake. Scream! Eventually the dispatcher found the cab and it was brought back to us after over an hour. Whew! Also, things will go smoother if you know a little Spanish.
Great location near aft elevators that go up to the buffet and down to the Seven Seas main dining room and the Stardust theatre.
Seemed more spacious that other balconies we have had. Lots of storage spaces. Bathroom is adequate with shelves on either side of the mirror. Wish the hair dryer was not in the bathroom, but by the vanity mirror in the cabin. No little coffee table in front of the couch, but really didn't miss it. Randolf, our cabin stewart was awesome. He greeted us by name every morning, made sure we had ice each day and seemed generally interested as if things were going okay with us.
We had a fabulous tour of Rio before the cruise with Ederson found through Trip Advisor. He really is a professional. His English was good. He knew his way around the city. Was attentive to our needs and wishes. A really positive experience.
We had a day in port in Rio after we boarded. We decided to just go to Aqua Rio, a nice aquarium within a short walk of the ship. Very pleasant and easy.View All 15 City Tour Reviews
We booked this private tour after looking at tours on Trip Advisor for 4 couples . Our tour guide, Luis and driver picked us up on time. The van was clean and comfortable. Luis' English was good. We saw the sights of Sao Paulo. The amazing thing was that Luis went out of his way to find life saving medication for one of our group, who had run out of that medication. He made calls, found a pharmacy and helped with the language barrier. Just Super. We were back in plenty of time to catch the ship.View All 6 Sao Paulo Tour Reviews
We walked off the ship and at the end of the pier locals were selling a city tour, 3 hours for $20 each in an air conditioned bus. Guide on the bus spoke good English and Spanish. Great for the money.
There is a post office for post cards and a WIFI center at the end of the pier.View All 62 City Tour Reviews