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I booked a last minute porthole cabin on the deck 4. This cruise jammed five ports into seven days (Halifax, St. John, Portland, Bar Harbor, and Newport, which was canceled due to weather). The Dawn's refurbishment had varied results, but you can't change the architecture and in that regard, the Dawn will always be inferior to the NCL Jewel Class. The decor ranges from mystifying (the artwork in the Venetian) to tacky (the 1970's shopping mall-style atrium). I would advise anyone booking the Dawn to AVOID DECK 4! I was kept awake for half the week with a rhythmic metallic banging every ten to 12 seconds! Despite reporting it, no solution was found until it seemed to go away on its own - only to be replaced with more random noises. As a single traveler, my beds were pushed together to make one big bed. The only problem is this left little room to safely get into bed on either side due to the built-in desk on the right and the 'stored' bunk on the left, which juts out eight inches into the room. Who looks at this and says "that's okay?" The solution was to push the against the left wall, which was okay for me, but what if a couple were in that room and wanted a double bed? They would have to disturb their partner to get in and out at night! My bedside tables looked like they were from the original 2002 design and were eroded and chipped at the edges. The shower temperature nob was missing its button and sharp metal edges were exposed. The closet hinge was detached. Again, who looks at all this and says "that's okay?" Deck 4 was once shut down completely for a crew drill. The two tender ports used deck 4 as well, so our corridor was a windy, cold, crowded place for two full days. Don't get me started on the elevators, which were a real trial for even the most patient traveler. The ship tries to be accessible, but trips over itself in the customer service area of accessibility. Activities are often held in the atrium, three steps up from the floor. The Venetian Restaurant has ONE elevator to avoid its idiotic grand staircase, but just try to get the staff's attention when they are all on a staircase behind you when you enter! This was a Canada New England cruise, but the only lobsters you'll find are on the postcards. Not even in the premium eateries! The NCL menus are all the same whether you are in Cairo or California. The Venetian (the main dining room) serves brown and serve previously frozen sausage and deep fried hash brown patties - McDonald's at Sea. Worst thing about NCL - they NEVER STOP UP-SELLING! Nearly everything except a game of trivia costs an added fee. I was getting target marketed sales pitch letters and robo-calls IN MY CABIN! I had to demand to be taken off the list. Still, every announcement for activities at sea is for things that require a fee. The staff is generally very nice and super accommodating, except for one woman at the Shore Excursion desk who barely looked up and never spoke while I was telling her how their "HIGHLIGHTS OF ST. JOHN" was a misnomer. The first stop on the bus was a view of the reversing rapids that was dominated by a HUGE Paper Factory belching white effluence into the air. The second stop was a cross between a craft fair and a supermarket. The third stop was closed! All the while, feedback from the guide's microphone and condensation on the bus windows due to the weather. Neither driver nor guide knew what to do about these conditions, despite their experience. If I wanted to see factories and shopping centers I could have stayed in New Jersey. Even if it had been a clear, sunny warm day - St. John was a massive let-down. For Newport and Portland, NCL's only help for those not using their own tours, was a poster board next to the customer relations desk. No map, no shopping tips, no restaurant guides - nothing. Just one bulletin board for everyone wanting to plan their own day off the ship. The Dawn should be retired. It will never satisfy the experienced cruiser.

Not Dirty Dawn, But Extremely Disappointing Dawn

Norwegian Dawn Cruise Review by Papermoon4

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2019
  • Destination: Canada & New England
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Oceanview Porthole Window
I booked a last minute porthole cabin on the deck 4. This cruise jammed five ports into seven days (Halifax, St. John, Portland, Bar Harbor, and Newport, which was canceled due to weather). The Dawn's refurbishment had varied results, but you can't change the architecture and in that regard, the Dawn will always be inferior to the NCL Jewel Class. The decor ranges from mystifying (the artwork in the Venetian) to tacky (the 1970's shopping mall-style atrium).

I would advise anyone booking the Dawn to AVOID DECK 4! I was kept awake for half the week with a rhythmic metallic banging every ten to 12 seconds! Despite reporting it, no solution was found until it seemed to go away on its own - only to be replaced with more random noises. As a single traveler, my beds were pushed together to make one big bed. The only problem is this left little room to safely get into bed on either side due to the built-in desk on the right and the 'stored' bunk on the left, which juts out eight inches into the room. Who looks at this and says "that's okay?" The solution was to push the against the left wall, which was okay for me, but what if a couple were in that room and wanted a double bed? They would have to disturb their partner to get in and out at night!

My bedside tables looked like they were from the original 2002 design and were eroded and chipped at the edges. The shower temperature nob was missing its button and sharp metal edges were exposed. The closet hinge was detached. Again, who looks at all this and says "that's okay?" Deck 4 was once shut down completely for a crew drill. The two tender ports used deck 4 as well, so our corridor was a windy, cold, crowded place for two full days. Don't get me started on the elevators, which were a real trial for even the most patient traveler.

The ship tries to be accessible, but trips over itself in the customer service area of accessibility. Activities are often held in the atrium, three steps up from the floor. The Venetian Restaurant has ONE elevator to avoid its idiotic grand staircase, but just try to get the staff's attention when they are all on a staircase behind you when you enter!

This was a Canada New England cruise, but the only lobsters you'll find are on the postcards. Not even in the premium eateries! The NCL menus are all the same whether you are in Cairo or California. The Venetian (the main dining room) serves brown and serve previously frozen sausage and deep fried hash brown patties - McDonald's at Sea.

Worst thing about NCL - they NEVER STOP UP-SELLING! Nearly everything except a game of trivia costs an added fee. I was getting target marketed sales pitch letters and robo-calls IN MY CABIN! I had to demand to be taken off the list. Still, every announcement for activities at sea is for things that require a fee.

The staff is generally very nice and super accommodating, except for one woman at the Shore Excursion desk who barely looked up and never spoke while I was telling her how their "HIGHLIGHTS OF ST. JOHN" was a misnomer. The first stop on the bus was a view of the reversing rapids that was dominated by a HUGE Paper Factory belching white effluence into the air. The second stop was a cross between a craft fair and a supermarket. The third stop was closed! All the while, feedback from the guide's microphone and condensation on the bus windows due to the weather. Neither driver nor guide knew what to do about these conditions, despite their experience. If I wanted to see factories and shopping centers I could have stayed in New Jersey. Even if it had been a clear, sunny warm day - St. John was a massive let-down. For Newport and Portland, NCL's only help for those not using their own tours, was a poster board next to the customer relations desk. No map, no shopping tips, no restaurant guides - nothing. Just one bulletin board for everyone wanting to plan their own day off the ship.

The Dawn should be retired. It will never satisfy the experienced cruiser.
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Oceanview Porthole Window
Cabin OF 4626
I would advise anyone booking the Dawn to AVOID DECK 4! I was kept awake for half the week with a rhythmic metallic banging every ten to 12 seconds! Despite reporting it, no solution was found until it seemed to go away on its own - only to be replaced with more random noises. As a single traveler, my beds were pushed together to make one big bed. The only problem is this left little room to safely get into bed on either side due to the built-in desk on the right and the 'stored' bunk on the left, which juts out eight inches into the room. Who looks at this and says "that's okay?" The solution was to push the against the left wall, which was okay for me, but what if a couple were in that room and wanted a double bed? They would have to disturb their partner to get in and out at night!

My bedside tables looked like they were from the original 2002 design and were eroded and chipped at the edges. The shower temperature nob was missing its button and sharp metal edges were exposed. The closet hinge was detached. Again, who looks at all this and says "that's okay?" Deck 4 was once shut down completely for a crew drill. The two tender ports used deck 4 as well, so our corridor was a windy, cold, crowded place for two full days. Don't get me started on the elevators, which were a real trial for even the most patient traveler.
Deck 4 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • City Tour
    HIGHLIGHTS OF ST. JOHN - The first stop on the bus was a view of the reversing rapids that was dominated by a HUGE Paper Factory belching white effluence into the air. The second stop was a cross between a craft fair and a supermarket. The third stop was closed! All the while, feedback from the guide's microphone and condensation on the bus windows due to the weather. Neither driver nor guide knew what to do about these conditions, despite their experience. If I wanted to see factories and shopping centers I could have stayed in New Jersey. Even if it had been a clear, sunny warm day - St. John was a massive let-down.
    View All 32 City Tour Reviews