Let me summarize some of the basics.
Travel and embarkation. We had our flights booked by NCL and flew in the same day (I know not the best plan). Our flight was booked for 6:00 am landing at 9:00 am in Seattle. I checked the airline schedule, and there were at least 3 other flights that were leaving after ours that would have still been able to get us to Seattle in time, so I was confident that we would be able to make it to the ship even if there was a glitch with our flight. Embarkation was smooth and easy. We dropped our bags at the pier, then went next door for our antigen test. That was quick and easy. We weren't too concerned as we had done a PCR test 3 days before to be safe. Once we had our clearance, we went to check in, got our key cards, and then had to wait about 15 minutes till we were able to board. I think it helped that this cruise did not leave the United States, so there were not extra requirements imposed by the ports of call. We were on the ship by noon, eating lunch at Savor restaurant.
Rooms were ready about 1:00, and our bags were delivered by about 2:00. I realize that we were sailing at reduced capacity, so it was easier for them to distribute bags quickly, but the process was smooth. Our room location was great, and the room was clean and ready. We did have to help our neighbors figure out that they needed to put a card in the slot by the door to turn on the electricity for the room. But that is an energy saving feature that is important for the ship. More comments about the room are in the Cabin Review below.
We put in an upgrade bid to a Spa Balcony cabin. We are very glad we did, we were awarded room 15844. The balcony rooms are adequate there is plenty of room for 2 but it might be a bit crowded with three. Everything is compact, as is to be expected in most cruise cabins, but the decor was nice, and being a Spa room, it included upgraded toiletries L'Occitane shampoo, conditioner, body wash, hand soap and hand lotion in pump dispensers, and had robes and slippers ready for us in the closet. It was a just a couple cabins down from the rear stairwell, and one flight up to the spa where we enjoyed full access to the Thermal Suite every day. Because of the size, I might have rated the room a 4 but the service we received from Mary Joy our cabin steward was exceptional. We requested extra pillows, an egg crate mattress topper, and an oversized robe for me, and she was able to accommodate those requests immediately. I would absolutely stay in another Spa Balcony, or basic balcony, but in the future I will look for one that has the bed closer to the balcony to allow easier access to the closet area.
If you have the chance to cruise Glacier Bay, don't miss it. Only one ship a day is allowed to cruise Glacier Bay, so most cruises to Alaska do not have the opportunity to enter the park. You will get great views of several glaciers, and learn about the advance and retreat of glaciers that is happening. (yes some are advancing). We were blessed with perfect weather the day we were there, but even if it was cloudy and rainy, it would have been spectacular!!