My parents took us on this cruise as a way to introduce us to one of their favorite past times. While it wasn’t flawless, it was incredible and we cannot wait to cruise again!
HIGHLIGHTS: staff, beautiful ship, fun atmosphere, cabin
LOWLIGHTS: leaving :(
The first two days of the trip were rough seas. The ship’s staff did everything they could to help make us comfortable. 4/5 of us did just fine while one person spent one day a little green, but recouped with Dramamine and Sea Bands.
On/Off: Embarkation was easier than I anticipated. Disembarkation was as well despite some guests immediately reverting to rudeness once we returned to port.
Ship: The ship itself is beautiful! She had everything we needed and even in 7 nights we didn’t see or do everything. I have heard many complaints about the layout of the ship, but there wasn’t a smoky smell throughout-just in certain areas of the casino.
Cabin: Our cabin had a balcony and was more than enough space and storage. We were comfortable for our entire voyage. Our room connected to my parents on deck 13. It was a great location especially to Splash Academy dropoff/pickup on deck 12.
Dining: The Garden Cafe on deck 15 was my son’s favorite and had varied, tasty options. Occasionally something wasn’t up to par, but it is what it is but you can go pick something else and find your favorites. The hash brown circles in the morning were a must!
During our trip, they went from self serve to staff serve due to Coronavirus and the staff handled this gracefully. I honestly wish it would stay this way.
Teppenyaki was good for our first night, but not as incredible as I expected based off reviews.
The Manhattan Room was hands down one of our favorites. Chrisologo was one of the best servers I have ever had anywhere! The food was delicious and the menu changes slightly each day.
La Cucina was good per my parents report. Moderno Churrascaria was okay- seemed rushed, but the food was good- especially the fried yucca, Brazilian cheese bread, and white rice.
The American Diner was slow and stumbly for service, but the food was phenomenal and it was a nice little escape.
Entertainment: Wonderful! Highly recommend the Howl at Sea experience. My son loved Splash Academy and the kids pool. Decks 17 and 18 were closed due to high winds for almost all of our cruise so no bungee jump, mini golf, or ropes course, but we had plenty to do and this didn’t alter our experience.
Service: I cannot day enough about this! These crew members were out of this world and went out of their way to ensure a good time was had and Coronavirus changes were implemented smoothly. This was all despite the fact that the cruise industry was shutting down and they would be out of jobs for the foreseeable future. I applaud them for being away from their families for so long and bringing so much joy despite some pushy, elitist people on board.
Great Stirrup Cay cancelled due to weather. I was fine with this as I wouldn’t have wanted to tender in the waves we were riding.
Ochos Rios Jamaica offered great excursions and was enjoyable. Do the chair lift and bobsled even if wary of heights it was a highlight and not as scary as I thought!
Grand Cayman was fun, but the tendering process back to the ship was long and hot. We waited in line for an hour due to difficulties, but staff brought drinks and cool towels out.
Cozumel another tendering mess, but I think this was less due to NCL and more due to world events. The port itself was fun and I wish we had been there longer!
Other: My son had to visit the hospital for bronchitis and the nurse, Diogo, and doctor were fantastic, caring, and thorough!
No trip will be perfect, but you gettin out of it if you can go with the flow. I am already researching other cruises and contacting NCL about the staff members I have mentioned here.
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