This is a comprehensive review, and it will help you plan your trip on this ship.
Overall I enjoyed many aspects of the ship, but there were a few things that really brought down the enjoyment, and many of them can be fixed, if they choose. You will notive many more negatives then positives. But overall, it was a fun trip. Not sure I would do that ship again, or Norweigan, but its still up in the air.
Cabins – if you can, it’s worth it to upgrade to the Haven suites. They have a process that you can bid on a suite after you have registered for the cruise, and I strongly recommend this.
The Haven suites are larger, nicer, and have a completely separate area. It also has the following:
• Private area separate from rest of ship
• Concierge private to haven guests
• Private bar
• Private Restaurant - worth it just for this. Had breakfast outside there every morning.
• Private Pool - tiny
• Private laying out area - nice to have
• 2 Jacuzzis - really nice to have
Negatives of the ship
• Smoking in Casino effects all 3 main floors of the ship. I cannot stress how annoying this was. Because you can smoke in the casino, and the casino has an open atrium to the other 2 main levels of the ship, most of the areas of the ship smelled like smoke.
• Smoking in general is not segregated enough. If smoke bothers you, then this ship will annoying you. They have on the pool deck a separate smoking section, but its not segregated enough, and the smell permeates half that deck of the ship!
• Food at non-specialty restaurants was just fair.
• Pool was just too small, and had a lot of people sitting in it all the time, which made it useless unless you were single and wanted to be squished next to many other people.
• Everything has a charge – the arcade games were insanely expensive, and my son ended up spending a LOT.
• Unlimited Dinner package isn’t unlimited – turns out you only get 3 specialty restaurants with that package.
• Bingo – wow, just don’t waste your money. Its $49-69 per bingo round, and it lasts 20 minutes and was a giant was of time
• The people who make the announcements are Pilipino (who are really nice and great to have helping you on the cruise), but having them make announcements is not smart. They need someone who has English as their first language making the announcements.
• Mojito bar – we found ourselves parked on the couches outside the Mojito bar almost every day.
• Howl at the Moon (piano bar)– a lot of fun and a good way to spend your night. We got especially lucky that the last night of the cruise, was the last night for many of the entertainers on the ship, and they all came to Howl at the Moon. They ended up with over 15 different singers and dancers partying it up, and singing and dancing, and it was a blast.
• Teppanyaki - Even if you don’t like this type of food, the cooks entertaining you by singing is totally worth it.
• Savor, Taste and main dining – the food selection is very mediocre and not really worth it. But its free, so many end up choose them.
• Lu Cuccina – Italian, and the food and ambiance was good
• Wasabi – sushi bar – small, and not always easy to get a spot. The food and selection was very mediocre and normally I would not recommend it, but wow is it cheap. A normal dinner for 4 cost $50, and the same dinner would have cost $100 or more.
• Moderno – Brazilian steak house – surprisingly good! If you don’t eat meat, the salad bar is the best on the ship!
• Million Dollar Quartet – worth going to, great singers and performers
• Didn’t make the other shows…
• Let me be really straight forward – the Belize private island just sucks – you are basically stuck going to their private island on Belize, and it just is not worth the time. It is not that attractive, and it looks like they did a Disney port, on a budget. The Clamshells are NOT worth the $29 each. The zip line was fun, but not worth $75. There is no shade on this island, and it just really was not fun for anyone.
• Costa Maya – We visited the Mayan ruins and it was hot and dusty and just not worth it.
• Roatan – We liked this place. Its beautiful and has a lot going for it. We did a snorkeling excursion (not through the ship) and it was quite fun.
• Cozumel – This was our favorite stop. We did the ATV tour and it was a blast. Then we went to a private beach called Paradise Beach, and it only cost $3 per person and was perfect.
I cannot stress how vital it is to upgrade to the Haven suites if you can.
Do the bid process for one after you register, its worth it!
Totally a bust, not worth it at all. Read my main review