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We chose this cruise because of the wonderful array of Baltic sea ports and excursions. While the stops exceeded expectations in almost every case, the shabby condition of the ship and the indifferent food and service left us with a negative feeling. Food service - even in the specialty restaurants - was always rushed. We repeatedly had to ask that service be slowed down and that not all items be served at one time. In the main dining room, food choices were lackluster, and food was rarely served hot. In Le Bistro, I was served tepid French Onion Soup; a request for a warmer portion resulted in another lukewarm offering. Cagney's steakhouse served excellent filet mignon, sauced well, but the waitstaff was completely unable to order/serve cocktails correctly. A request for a vodka martini, "up" with olives, was met with a neat vodka, no garnish. My request for a list of after-dinner drinks resulted in a menu of all Mojitos. The servers really pushed and rushed us through that meal. The buffet was terrible - food was rarely labeled, and when it was, labels were difficult to read. The food quality was substandard, and seldom more than "warmish". Shore excursions were, for the most part, excellent, with well-qualified guides. The great exception: Copenhagen. This is a congested city, and the "tour" featured the back of the bus in front of us, crawling through traffic. The guide repeatedly walked off and left guests, failing to return to the agreed-upon "meeting spot", resulting in delays. She also, after 3 hours, was unable to direct guests to a bathroom. Ultimately, guests demanded to be taken back to the ship, some hiring taxis when the guide refused. The cabin was decent, and our cabin service was excellent. The bathroom, however, was so cramped that there wasn't room in there to change your mind, let alone anything else. The toilet space was designed for a child of 10; other guests told us they could not even use their cabin bathroom, but were forced to use public toilets. I'm 5'10", and my knees hit the wall every time. We've traveled on 4 other cruise lines, and never had such a cramped space. Finally, the overall condition of the ship gives the feeling of "shopworn". The lobby and bar furniture had upholstery which was worn and frayed at the corners and edges of cushions. The sofa in our cabin was also worn and shabby. We asked to have the balcony chair replaced, as the fabric had been shredded where it joined the frame - which was covered by a towel when we arrived. We had sailed on this ship on an Alaskan cruise some years ago; the intervening years have not been kind to this faded gem.

The oyster would be embarrassed about this Pearl!

Norwegian Pearl Cruise Review by Europhile

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2019
  • Destination: Baltic Sea
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Balcony
We chose this cruise because of the wonderful array of Baltic sea ports and excursions. While the stops exceeded expectations in almost every case, the shabby condition of the ship and the indifferent food and service left us with a negative feeling.

Food service - even in the specialty restaurants - was always rushed. We repeatedly had to ask that service be slowed down and that not all items be served at one time. In the main dining room, food choices were lackluster, and food was rarely served hot. In Le Bistro, I was served tepid French Onion Soup; a request for a warmer portion resulted in another lukewarm offering. Cagney's steakhouse served excellent filet mignon, sauced well, but the waitstaff was completely unable to order/serve cocktails correctly. A request for a vodka martini, "up" with olives, was met with a neat vodka, no garnish. My request for a list of after-dinner drinks resulted in a menu of all Mojitos. The servers really pushed and rushed us through that meal.

The buffet was terrible - food was rarely labeled, and when it was, labels were difficult to read. The food quality was substandard, and seldom more than "warmish".

Shore excursions were, for the most part, excellent, with well-qualified guides. The great exception: Copenhagen. This is a congested city, and the "tour" featured the back of the bus in front of us, crawling through traffic. The guide repeatedly walked off and left guests, failing to return to the agreed-upon "meeting spot", resulting in delays. She also, after 3 hours, was unable to direct guests to a bathroom. Ultimately, guests demanded to be taken back to the ship, some hiring taxis when the guide refused.

The cabin was decent, and our cabin service was excellent. The bathroom, however, was so cramped that there wasn't room in there to change your mind, let alone anything else. The toilet space was designed for a child of 10; other guests told us they could not even use their cabin bathroom, but were forced to use public toilets. I'm 5'10", and my knees hit the wall every time. We've traveled on 4 other cruise lines, and never had such a cramped space.

Finally, the overall condition of the ship gives the feeling of "shopworn". The lobby and bar furniture had upholstery which was worn and frayed at the corners and edges of cushions. The sofa in our cabin was also worn and shabby. We asked to have the balcony chair replaced, as the fabric had been shredded where it joined the frame - which was covered by a towel when we arrived.

We had sailed on this ship on an Alaskan cruise some years ago; the intervening years have not been kind to this faded gem.
Europhile’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Balcony
Cabin BA 10104
While this was covered in my overall review above, I would advise you to get a suite if you are physically challenged or weigh more than 225 pounds. Otherwise, you cannot use the commode in your own cabin.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins