Norwegian Dawn Cruise Review by newmexicoNita
- Sail Date: February 2019
- Destination: Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Oceanview Porthole Window
Though sailing out of San Juan can be a hassle, it is always fun to spend a night there prior to sailing. Our travel agent found the hotel, Villa Herenica, for us. It is a quaint B&B near Old San Juan. Built in the 1600s with much of the old charm, it is not for everyone, but we would stay there again in a heart beat. The staff was friendly and helpful, the place was clean and the breakfast choices the best we have had at other B&Bs. I will only add, the rooms were very small but worked out fine for 2 people. The "girls" were already there and had their own room.
Our taxi ride was longer from the airport because of rush-hour traffic. After visiting with the girls for awhile, we decided to order a pizza and have a quick bite to eat before heading for bed. The B&B offers a huge dining room that guests can use when ordering food from local restaurants. When breakfast was over the next morning, we were off to the pier to board the ship. Then the wait begins. It took us awhile to get into the terminal but, with wheelchair assistance, we were whisked right though. Before we knew it, we were sitting in O'Sheehan's ordering an adult beverage and lunch.
Actually, everything moved smoothly the entire cruise.
Lots of highlights, but one of the biggest was our wonderful M&G, followed by a huge slot pull with 65 participants. We, for once, came out a few $$ ahead; that, of course added to the fun. A second highlight were the friendly passengers. Probably the nicest we have ever met on over 40 cruises. For the most part,I can say the same about the crew. There were crew members that, after meeting us once, remembered our names. Naturally, we did run into a few - as in other places - who acted like their job was not for them. Another high point was the usually great entertainment.. Hubby made it to the showroom once; none for me. Many other great venues, a variety of talented musicians, on the ship made it foolhardy to seek out the shows.The reception desk personnel went above and beyond. We had lost a page of our return- flight information and a female dialed AA for my husband so he could get the information he needed to book our transfers. I could could go on and on about some of our positives experiences but I think I have taken up enough time and space. I will add just one more thing: we booked a tour through our TA for Antigua. One of the stops was the Dock yard where we did a quick tour and had time to do some shopping. I found a T Shirt really wanted but she didn't have one in my size. Instead of trying to push something else down my throat she advised me where, in town I might be able to find one. I was so impressed I wish I had gotten a card so I could recommend her to others. Because we have visited most of the islands in the past we didn't do a lot of excursions but the ones we did do we were overall happy with. We love Aruba, and Barbados. The caves are a must for those who have not been to the port.
There were a few low points: 1- service and food in La Cucina (except for Hubby's large shrimp) was not up to par with other specialty restaurants on the ship. We were not thrilled about Los Lobos, but that had more to do with where we have lived and our view on what Mexican food should be. Our cabin steward seemed to be lacking initiative. Normally when you have a cabin below balcony class, you can ask for a coffee pot. She had no idea what I was talking about. I presumed she was new to her job but was very friendly. Command of the English language may have created a problem. Another low point was one of the ship-sponsored tours; it was not as described but, on a positive note, one of the couples on the tour went to the tour desk and complained.His complaint, I will add was done in a polite manner. NCL gave us a 1/3 discount credit, an actual refund, not an OBC. Using a makeshift arrangement of chairs, we were able to enjoy some pool deck time in spite of mobility problems. Chairs for the handicapped were gratefully put to use in the Garden Cafe.
I will add that we would cruise the Dawn anytime if we could just find a way to get to the ship without changing planes 2 or 3 times. The Sun used to be our favorite ship, but the Dawn may have moved above her in our minds.
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
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