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We found ourselves a great discount deal for a Baltic cruise, something on our bucket list and booked with Norwegian as a result, deciding on the mini-suite based on the description of the luxury bathroom and additional space over a balcony cabin. We arrived in Copenhagen 2 days early to enjoy the city, but were shocked by the prices of food, coffee and accommodation! Getting to the ship was relatively easy and very cheap as the public buses run right to the terminal, you just have to ensure you know exactly which terminal as there are two. Checking in and boarding went smoothly, we were pleased that this was fairly hassle-free, but upon reaching our room 12200, with the door wide open and inspecting it, I was really disappointed that we had been allocated a "family mini suite - adjacent to the kids club, and with a bath, not the luxury shower I was expecting. As mature travellers, we certainly didn't need to be anywhere near the kids club, and I totally dislike climbing in and out of a bath to take a shower. I raced down to the guest services desk to ask if we could be reallocated as this was not at all what I expected nor wanted. It took a while to make the consultant understand what my concern was - I got a mini suite didn't I? She explained that the ship was full, but they would try to help us out if possible, but in the meantime, that was our room. My husband then arrived, saying he had been asked to leave the room, as it was not yet supposed to be occupied - no-one had told us that we couldn't go to our rooms at all. We decided to head up to the garden buffet cafe for lunch before it got too crowded and then returned to settle in once the all-clear was given over the ships announcement system. Over the next couple of days, we were invited to look at new room options - one was a downgrade to a balcony room, but the bathroom was even smaller, and the room smaller too. We turned that down but a day later we were offered a mini-suite on a lower floor (8714) which had the bathroom of my dreams (well, ok, the bathroom of my expectation) and a bonus was a huge balcony - but really not used due to the weather. We agreed to change rooms and were pleasantly surprised to receive a plate of chocolate strawberries and a bottle of wine as well for our trouble. (pretty much the only extra we received). Comparing the "mini-suite" room to the balcony room on our previous (Nieuw Amsterdam/Holland America) cruise, it was so much smaller and had no extra touches that made you feel special at all. No robes, no slippers, no water! We got one towel sculpture the whole trip and the room attendant for our second room never bothered to introduce himself and ended up tidying too much away, taking the empty water bottles we were keeping to take off the ship for excursions and also use in the gym. Because this was a budget trip for us, we did nothing that cost extra which meant only the main dining rooms were frequented and free shows attended. One of our main issues with this cruise was the disappointing meals - firstly, freestyle dining means you'd better get there early or you wait up to an hour for a table. Of the 9 nights, we ate 7 in the main dining rooms, Taste, Savor or Manhatten. The decor in these is very subdued - really dark and old-fashioned. Service varied depending on our server, but there was nothing exceptional and some misunderstanding as well. One night, I only wanted a light dinner so ordered an appetiser to come as my main course. Of course, it came once we had finished our first appetiser, and I had to finish it while my husband watched me eat, and then his main arrived and I had to watch him eat. Trying to make the waiter understand we wanted his main course to come out at the same time as my second appetiser was impossible. BUT, the main issue is that of the 7 meals we had we were served cold food on 5 of those occasions! After the 3rd time, we were amazed that it was happening so much. Usually only one of the mains would arrive cold and once, after sending it back it arrived cold a second time, by which time we said, no let's try something else. We shouldn't have to specify to our waiter that we wanted a HOT meal, but that's what we had to do our final night as our experience had been just awful. Most of the food we found tasty and reasonable choices with the chef's special changing nightly. We tried 3 shows, enjoying the Fly Boys and Burn the Floor, but gave up on Rock of Ages after about 15 minutes, the content and story really wasn't great at all. We arranged our own shore excursions - FYI, if you book the Stromma Hop on Hop off bus tours online, you pay less than half the ship prices, and they still pick you up at the cruise terminal and return you there. And in our case, because we didn't make it to Copenhagen, we were refunded the price of the tour. It was easy to walk into Tallinn and around this lovely town (even on a rainy day) as it was in Warnemunde with a local train to Rostock. Helsinki was the hop on hop off, and easy walking around the downtown. St Petersburg, we went for 2 days with TJ Travel tours and they were excellent, definitely recommended (at half the cost of the shipboard options). Waking on the morning we were due to arrive in Stockholm we realised we were nowhere near it - we never made it there - and it took quite some time to have this information communicated to everyone, that the weather conditions meant we couldn't dock. You must be aware that prices for food and drinks in the Scandinavian cities are very high, St Petersburg was much cheaper comparatively. The gym area had a number of machines and exercise areas available, but unbelievably nothing to have water in - only a fountain, so if you are on an hour run or cycle, you would need to hop off to hydrate on a regular basis. Some cups provided would be appreciated. We found it incomprehensible that we couldn't take water on board, or water bottles were not provided in the staterooms. Not at all sure on the logic of this. All in all, the ship was a means to get to some interesting cities we would never have reached otherwise. But we won't look to book on Norwegian again.

Cold food and average service

Norwegian Breakaway Cruise Review by NZcruiser1960

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2018
  • Destination: Baltic Sea
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
We found ourselves a great discount deal for a Baltic cruise, something on our bucket list and booked with Norwegian as a result, deciding on the mini-suite based on the description of the luxury bathroom and additional space over a balcony cabin.

We arrived in Copenhagen 2 days early to enjoy the city, but were shocked by the prices of food, coffee and accommodation! Getting to the ship was relatively easy and very cheap as the public buses run right to the terminal, you just have to ensure you know exactly which terminal as there are two.

Checking in and boarding went smoothly, we were pleased that this was fairly hassle-free, but upon reaching our room 12200, with the door wide open and inspecting it, I was really disappointed that we had been allocated a "family mini suite - adjacent to the kids club, and with a bath, not the luxury shower I was expecting. As mature travellers, we certainly didn't need to be anywhere near the kids club, and I totally dislike climbing in and out of a bath to take a shower. I raced down to the guest services desk to ask if we could be reallocated as this was not at all what I expected nor wanted. It took a while to make the consultant understand what my concern was - I got a mini suite didn't I? She explained that the ship was full, but they would try to help us out if possible, but in the meantime, that was our room. My husband then arrived, saying he had been asked to leave the room, as it was not yet supposed to be occupied - no-one had told us that we couldn't go to our rooms at all.

We decided to head up to the garden buffet cafe for lunch before it got too crowded and then returned to settle in once the all-clear was given over the ships announcement system.

Over the next couple of days, we were invited to look at new room options - one was a downgrade to a balcony room, but the bathroom was even smaller, and the room smaller too. We turned that down but a day later we were offered a mini-suite on a lower floor (8714) which had the bathroom of my dreams (well, ok, the bathroom of my expectation) and a bonus was a huge balcony - but really not used due to the weather. We agreed to change rooms and were pleasantly surprised to receive a plate of chocolate strawberries and a bottle of wine as well for our trouble. (pretty much the only extra we received).

Comparing the "mini-suite" room to the balcony room on our previous (Nieuw Amsterdam/Holland America) cruise, it was so much smaller and had no extra touches that made you feel special at all. No robes, no slippers, no water! We got one towel sculpture the whole trip and the room attendant for our second room never bothered to introduce himself and ended up tidying too much away, taking the empty water bottles we were keeping to take off the ship for excursions and also use in the gym.

Because this was a budget trip for us, we did nothing that cost extra which meant only the main dining rooms were frequented and free shows attended.

One of our main issues with this cruise was the disappointing meals - firstly, freestyle dining means you'd better get there early or you wait up to an hour for a table.

Of the 9 nights, we ate 7 in the main dining rooms, Taste, Savor or Manhatten. The decor in these is very subdued - really dark and old-fashioned. Service varied depending on our server, but there was nothing exceptional and some misunderstanding as well. One night, I only wanted a light dinner so ordered an appetiser to come as my main course. Of course, it came once we had finished our first appetiser, and I had to finish it while my husband watched me eat, and then his main arrived and I had to watch him eat. Trying to make the waiter understand we wanted his main course to come out at the same time as my second appetiser was impossible.

BUT, the main issue is that of the 7 meals we had we were served cold food on 5 of those occasions! After the 3rd time, we were amazed that it was happening so much. Usually only one of the mains would arrive cold and once, after sending it back it arrived cold a second time, by which time we said, no let's try something else. We shouldn't have to specify to our waiter that we wanted a HOT meal, but that's what we had to do our final night as our experience had been just awful. Most of the food we found tasty and reasonable choices with the chef's special changing nightly.

We tried 3 shows, enjoying the Fly Boys and Burn the Floor, but gave up on Rock of Ages after about 15 minutes, the content and story really wasn't great at all.

We arranged our own shore excursions - FYI, if you book the Stromma Hop on Hop off bus tours online, you pay less than half the ship prices, and they still pick you up at the cruise terminal and return you there. And in our case, because we didn't make it to Copenhagen, we were refunded the price of the tour.

It was easy to walk into Tallinn and around this lovely town (even on a rainy day) as it was in Warnemunde with a local train to Rostock. Helsinki was the hop on hop off, and easy walking around the downtown. St Petersburg, we went for 2 days with TJ Travel tours and they were excellent, definitely recommended (at half the cost of the shipboard options).

Waking on the morning we were due to arrive in Stockholm we realised we were nowhere near it - we never made it there - and it took quite some time to have this information communicated to everyone, that the weather conditions meant we couldn't dock. You must be aware that prices for food and drinks in the Scandinavian cities are very high, St Petersburg was much cheaper comparatively.

The gym area had a number of machines and exercise areas available, but unbelievably nothing to have water in - only a fountain, so if you are on an hour run or cycle, you would need to hop off to hydrate on a regular basis. Some cups provided would be appreciated.

We found it incomprehensible that we couldn't take water on board, or water bottles were not provided in the staterooms. Not at all sure on the logic of this.

All in all, the ship was a means to get to some interesting cities we would never have reached otherwise. But we won't look to book on Norwegian again.
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MX 8714
Once we finally got this room allocated, it was ok. The previous family room (12200) had an interconnecting door, which we think affects the soundproofing as the group next door arrived late and talked long! This room didn't have neighbour issues.
Near the front and lower down, meant that we heard the additional docking noises of ropes and anchors being winched out in the early mornings.
8714 had a very large balcony with a table and chairs and also deck chairs
It is called a mini-suite, but its basically a slightly larger balcony room, you get no extras.
Deck 8 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews