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This cruise was a combination of Good/Excellent and Poor (with some neutral thrown in) - getting us to a "GOOD" rating. Have cruised with Norwegian exclusively for last 6 vacation – not sure about the next. Excellent/Very Good The staff - Save for a few miss-charges on the account and an inability to get us the water ordered, were great. Always well intended, very courteous, attentive and helpful. The bar and lounge staff were excellent – funny, engaging and most knowledgeable. The wait staff as well – especially efficient. Specialty Restaurants – Los Lobos, La Cucina and Le Bistro were wonderful. The food was prepared and presented very well. Service and pacing were spot-on. Le Bistro was one of the very few (3) establishments I have ever gotten a steak cooked correctly (Bleu). Other Restaurants – For its intent, the Garden Café was very good. Laid out well and the food stations were run efficiently (passengers aside!). A very good selection of food types and styles. The Local was a good addition and nice “stop in” place. Well situated. And good wings! The Ship – Nicely laid out with seemingly something different around each corner. Bright where it should be and softer when needed. Well decorated but not gaudy. A very good, fun ship to cruise on. The observation deck was wonderful. Entertainment – Other than SIX (talented performers – disjointed plot and execution) the shows we saw (see comment later) were phenomenal. Length and timing were very good. Very talented personnel. Logistics – Best embarkation process I’ve ever seen – bar none! Valet Check worked nicely (until Alaska Air lost a piece of luggage). Off/On Lines were long, but crew worked it well. Phone app worked well and was much easier than lugging paper around and standing in line for reservations (although it did cost $10 – really, they don’t make enough everywhere else!) Poor Specialty Restaurants Q was disappointing. Nice venue and concept but the food was mediocre at best. Brisket dry, chicken tough (and no indication of smoking), ribs tough (but tasty), sauces one-note and not authentic. Accompaniments not well flavored. Teppanyaki was mixed. Food was good (best shrimp of the trip) but organization was non-existent. Chef nearly left off part of three (3) meals until remined and was constantly trying out out-shout the other chef. Seemingly staffed sufficiently but not effectively. Request for some drinks went ignored? Dessert took 10 mins after meal to appear without anyone asking for drinks or other (while at least three (3) people stood around looking to clear dishes). Much worse than last experience on smaller ship. Ocean Blue was the worst of the bunch! Timing of the meal was way off – bought entrée before was done the salad (“wedge” with the lettuce cut the wrong way). Pasta in the seafood pasta was cut and over cooked, used old bay scallops and older shrimp. My fish was overdone and seared on the wrong side (skin wet and flaccid) and the flavors were just not exciting – very bland and “out of a bottle” tasting. Logistics – Two (2) stops of less than 5 hours (one at night) for a ship this size just did not make any sense (one of which we couldn’t execute due to weather). Gave a couple of hours in port at best with 4000+ passengers trying to get off/on. Would do better with one less port and more time. Entertainment – Limiting passengers to three (3) shows (without letting them know until trying to book the 4th) during the entire 7-day cruise was not good. One would expect access to nightly shows without having to queue up in “Stand-By” lines (and a port call at 2000-0000 does not substitute as a show!).

An interesting mix of Good and Bad

Norwegian Bliss Cruise Review by mltremm7

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Mid-ship Mini-Suite with Balcony
This cruise was a combination of Good/Excellent and Poor (with some neutral thrown in) - getting us to a "GOOD" rating. Have cruised with Norwegian exclusively for last 6 vacation – not sure about the next.

Excellent/Very Good

The staff - Save for a few miss-charges on the account and an inability to get us the water ordered, were great. Always well intended, very courteous, attentive and helpful. The bar and lounge staff were excellent – funny, engaging and most knowledgeable. The wait staff as well – especially efficient.

Specialty Restaurants – Los Lobos, La Cucina and Le Bistro were wonderful. The food was prepared and presented very well. Service and pacing were spot-on. Le Bistro was one of the very few (3) establishments I have ever gotten a steak cooked correctly (Bleu).

Other Restaurants – For its intent, the Garden Café was very good. Laid out well and the food stations were run efficiently (passengers aside!). A very good selection of food types and styles. The Local was a good addition and nice “stop in” place. Well situated. And good wings!

The Ship – Nicely laid out with seemingly something different around each corner. Bright where it should be and softer when needed. Well decorated but not gaudy. A very good, fun ship to cruise on. The observation deck was wonderful.

Entertainment – Other than SIX (talented performers – disjointed plot and execution) the shows we saw (see comment later) were phenomenal. Length and timing were very good. Very talented personnel.

Logistics – Best embarkation process I’ve ever seen – bar none! Valet Check worked nicely (until Alaska Air lost a piece of luggage). Off/On Lines were long, but crew worked it well. Phone app worked well and was much easier than lugging paper around and standing in line for reservations (although it did cost $10 – really, they don’t make enough everywhere else!)

Poor

Specialty Restaurants

Q was disappointing. Nice venue and concept but the food was mediocre at best. Brisket dry, chicken tough (and no indication of smoking), ribs tough (but tasty), sauces one-note and not authentic. Accompaniments not well flavored.

Teppanyaki was mixed. Food was good (best shrimp of the trip) but organization was non-existent. Chef nearly left off part of three (3) meals until remined and was constantly trying out out-shout the other chef. Seemingly staffed sufficiently but not effectively. Request for some drinks went ignored? Dessert took 10 mins after meal to appear without anyone asking for drinks or other (while at least three (3) people stood around looking to clear dishes). Much worse than last experience on smaller ship.

Ocean Blue was the worst of the bunch! Timing of the meal was way off – bought entrée before was done the salad (“wedge” with the lettuce cut the wrong way). Pasta in the seafood pasta was cut and over cooked, used old bay scallops and older shrimp. My fish was overdone and seared on the wrong side (skin wet and flaccid) and the flavors were just not exciting – very bland and “out of a bottle” tasting.

Logistics – Two (2) stops of less than 5 hours (one at night) for a ship this size just did not make any sense (one of which we couldn’t execute due to weather). Gave a couple of hours in port at best with 4000+ passengers trying to get off/on. Would do better with one less port and more time.

Entertainment – Limiting passengers to three (3) shows (without letting them know until trying to book the 4th) during the entire 7-day cruise was not good. One would expect access to nightly shows without having to queue up in “Stand-By” lines (and a port call at 2000-0000 does not substitute as a show!).
mltremm7’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-ship Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MC 12796
Although the room was smaller than previous ships (Suite) it was sufficient with enough storage. The bathroom was larger and very nice with a VERY good size shower for a ship (Important – I’m 6’2”/250) and comfortable bed. Balcony walls were a bit higher and more private - nice.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews