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This was our second cruise on the Bliss in just over six months, and the ship itself is still gorgeous. The staff was excellent, as always, and the room was comfy. It's just a few nit-picks that drop the cruise from excellent to very good. Some have nothing to do with the ship, they are actually about Norwegian itself, but it reflects on the ship. First, the cruise fares are through the roof. This is going to put everyone's expectations higher, so it is easier to fail. Secondly, Norwegian changed the UBP just before we sailed, and moved one of our friend's drinks of choice into the excluded range. So, while it didn't directly affect me, I heard about one of our friends potentially having to pay $4 per drink while on a all-included drinks plan and I had to think "What else are they going to change before we sail?" A company should not cause angst in customers paying to relax. On to the ship - we had a mini suite with an extended balcony (cabin 8726), and most of the extended size went to the balcony itself. Compared to the handicap balcony we had last time, this room was cramped. There was storage but no drawers, which was strange. There is plenty of suitcase storage under the bed. The bathroom was large and I liked the shower. The balcony is large, but it is narrow and long, so it is like looking down a tunnel to the sea. It does have room for a table and chairs and two loungers. The way the ship is shaped, most of the balcony is open to the decks above, so if you look up, you will see people looking down at you. Wave. Dining was good - we had the dining package for three nights and two Platinum Plus dinners, so we were pretty much covered for the week. We had dinner at Cagney's twice, Teppenyaki, Le Bistro, Los Lobos and Q. Cagney's and Le Bistro are still my favorites and are consistent. Teppenyaki is fun and the food is good - plus they will make combinations for you that aren't on the menu. Los Lobos is pretty decent Tex-Mex food. Q is decent but the portion sizes are small for the prices and very small if you are going to call yourself "Texas BBQ." I don't know of another place that cuts the meat off the bone on beef ribs. The beef ribs were decent but the portions were tiny. We enjoyed Food Republic once but it was never open again while we were ready to eat. The hours are very limited which is strange for a venue that takes up that much space and has a dedicated (it seems) staff. We had lunch at Margaritaville twice. I can't stand the pricing options but the food is good. The burgers are really tasty and the nachos are good, but the idea of each person getting an appetizer, a main and a dessert at a bar makes no sense. My wife got the nachos as an appetizer and couldn't finish her meal. I don't understand why it is not just ala carte. Their hours are limited, as well. This was the "mega ship" Eastern itinerary - St Thomas, Tortola and Nassau. We had two sea days out and a sea day in between Tortola and Nassau, so there was plenty of time to explore the ship. St Thomas and Tortola are still recovering from the hurricanes, but are making progress. We did the KonTiki excursion in St Thomas and it was a lot of fun, including a decent amount of time at Honeymoon Beach. We just wandered in Tortola, which was a mix of finding fun shops and depressing from the still-boarded up buildings. We didn't get off the ship in Nassau - and apparently weren't alone. Why don't they go to GSC? Archie was one of the best room stewards we have ever had. He always seemed to appear when we needed something, and every request was handled quickly. My wife needed a egg crate topper for the bed to help with her back, and it was installed quickly. There are no AC outlets near the bed. Each bedside lamp has a USB port but no outlet. If you have a CPAP or other device, bring an extension cord. The outlets are on the wall by the desk on the other side of the room. Embarkation was smooth, and we were onboard rather quickly. We arrived at the port about 11am. Cabins were ready just after 1pm, which is usual. Disembarkation went smoothly, as well. I was not wild about the itinerary, but we wanted to sail the Bliss again, since our first sailing was in Alaska, so we didn't have much ship time. It is a beautiful ship. The Observation Lounge was a great addition - especially for those of us who miss the Spinnaker Lounge on the Jewel-class. However, it is as subject to chair hogs as the pool deck, and people go there to sleep. I have a feeling most of the nappers are the ones who sail inside cabins "because we're never in our room", so they camp out in the lounge. It does give the effect of a high-quality homeless shelter at times. The snacks there are very tasty and the views are excellent, even if someone is sleeping between you and the window. Beware on the photography! The photos taken in the restaurants are now sold separately, they are not part of any photo package. So, when the photographer takes your group photo in Cagney's, it will be printed and presented to you before your meal ends. You can buy it or not - but that's your only chance to purchase it. This seems like a rip-off especially since my wife had pre-purchased a photo package and those weren't included. So, I am beginning to understand the "nickel and dime" refrains from other passengers. I did enjoy the cruise, but a Norwegian cruise is not the value is was a couple of years ago. This is the first ship where I did feel really claustrophobic - when we left Jersey Boys (an excellent show), the mobs of people between the theater and the Local (needs a new menu) were a bit overwhelming. I do think I prefer smaller ships. I would sail the Bliss again for the features I like because they are more than the features I don't like. However, it would have to be a lower price point to make up for the extra charges.

Almost, but not quite perfect

Norwegian Bliss Cruise Review by xriva

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: February 2019
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Large Balcony
This was our second cruise on the Bliss in just over six months, and the ship itself is still gorgeous. The staff was excellent, as always, and the room was comfy. It's just a few nit-picks that drop the cruise from excellent to very good.

Some have nothing to do with the ship, they are actually about Norwegian itself, but it reflects on the ship. First, the cruise fares are through the roof. This is going to put everyone's expectations higher, so it is easier to fail. Secondly, Norwegian changed the UBP just before we sailed, and moved one of our friend's drinks of choice into the excluded range. So, while it didn't directly affect me, I heard about one of our friends potentially having to pay $4 per drink while on a all-included drinks plan and I had to think "What else are they going to change before we sail?" A company should not cause angst in customers paying to relax.

On to the ship - we had a mini suite with an extended balcony (cabin 8726), and most of the extended size went to the balcony itself. Compared to the handicap balcony we had last time, this room was cramped. There was storage but no drawers, which was strange. There is plenty of suitcase storage under the bed. The bathroom was large and I liked the shower.

The balcony is large, but it is narrow and long, so it is like looking down a tunnel to the sea. It does have room for a table and chairs and two loungers. The way the ship is shaped, most of the balcony is open to the decks above, so if you look up, you will see people looking down at you. Wave.

Dining was good - we had the dining package for three nights and two Platinum Plus dinners, so we were pretty much covered for the week. We had dinner at Cagney's twice, Teppenyaki, Le Bistro, Los Lobos and Q. Cagney's and Le Bistro are still my favorites and are consistent. Teppenyaki is fun and the food is good - plus they will make combinations for you that aren't on the menu. Los Lobos is pretty decent Tex-Mex food. Q is decent but the portion sizes are small for the prices and very small if you are going to call yourself "Texas BBQ." I don't know of another place that cuts the meat off the bone on beef ribs. The beef ribs were decent but the portions were tiny.

We enjoyed Food Republic once but it was never open again while we were ready to eat. The hours are very limited which is strange for a venue that takes up that much space and has a dedicated (it seems) staff.

We had lunch at Margaritaville twice. I can't stand the pricing options but the food is good. The burgers are really tasty and the nachos are good, but the idea of each person getting an appetizer, a main and a dessert at a bar makes no sense. My wife got the nachos as an appetizer and couldn't finish her meal. I don't understand why it is not just ala carte. Their hours are limited, as well.

This was the "mega ship" Eastern itinerary - St Thomas, Tortola and Nassau. We had two sea days out and a sea day in between Tortola and Nassau, so there was plenty of time to explore the ship. St Thomas and Tortola are still recovering from the hurricanes, but are making progress. We did the KonTiki excursion in St Thomas and it was a lot of fun, including a decent amount of time at Honeymoon Beach. We just wandered in Tortola, which was a mix of finding fun shops and depressing from the still-boarded up buildings. We didn't get off the ship in Nassau - and apparently weren't alone. Why don't they go to GSC?

Archie was one of the best room stewards we have ever had. He always seemed to appear when we needed something, and every request was handled quickly. My wife needed a egg crate topper for the bed to help with her back, and it was installed quickly.

There are no AC outlets near the bed. Each bedside lamp has a USB port but no outlet. If you have a CPAP or other device, bring an extension cord. The outlets are on the wall by the desk on the other side of the room.

Embarkation was smooth, and we were onboard rather quickly. We arrived at the port about 11am. Cabins were ready just after 1pm, which is usual. Disembarkation went smoothly, as well.

I was not wild about the itinerary, but we wanted to sail the Bliss again, since our first sailing was in Alaska, so we didn't have much ship time. It is a beautiful ship.

The Observation Lounge was a great addition - especially for those of us who miss the Spinnaker Lounge on the Jewel-class. However, it is as subject to chair hogs as the pool deck, and people go there to sleep. I have a feeling most of the nappers are the ones who sail inside cabins "because we're never in our room", so they camp out in the lounge. It does give the effect of a high-quality homeless shelter at times. The snacks there are very tasty and the views are excellent, even if someone is sleeping between you and the window.

Beware on the photography! The photos taken in the restaurants are now sold separately, they are not part of any photo package. So, when the photographer takes your group photo in Cagney's, it will be printed and presented to you before your meal ends. You can buy it or not - but that's your only chance to purchase it. This seems like a rip-off especially since my wife had pre-purchased a photo package and those weren't included.

So, I am beginning to understand the "nickel and dime" refrains from other passengers. I did enjoy the cruise, but a Norwegian cruise is not the value is was a couple of years ago.

This is the first ship where I did feel really claustrophobic - when we left Jersey Boys (an excellent show), the mobs of people between the theater and the Local (needs a new menu) were a bit overwhelming. I do think I prefer smaller ships.

I would sail the Bliss again for the features I like because they are more than the features I don't like. However, it would have to be a lower price point to make up for the extra charges.
xriva’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Large Balcony
Cabin M6 8726
This is a large balcony with a medium-sized cabin attached. The bathroom is large and the shower is great. The balcony is narrow and deep so the views are limited until you are up at the rail. It is open to the cabins above, so look up and wave to your neighbors.

It is a forward cabin near the District and Food Republic, but down a hallway, so the noise is minimal. The cabin is very close to the forward elevators which are between the District and Food Republic.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews