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The ship: This ship is dated. We had a penthouse suite. The balcony decking and handrails are warn, splintered, dried out and faded. The suite is dark and laid out in a peculiar fashion making it awkward to get to the bathroom and main closet. Although a queen bed is advertised, a king was furnished. It was not comfortable however. Reading light in the cabin is insufficient. Although the view from the balcony, overlooking the aft of the ship, is terrific, the noise from the propellers is very loud. We were with another couple and could not find a public place to sit down and relax or read. All the space has apparently been consumed by specialty restaurants. This was the biggest problem with this ship. The food: The penthouse comes with the privilege of breakfast and lunch in Cagney's restaurant which is outstanding. The food and service is great here although the menu does not change during the cruise. Buffet food is "slop". Of our 10 or so meals in the public dining rooms, very few of our orders were correct with missing or incorrect dishes served. The service staff was not friendly, the dining rooms noisy and had a typical wait for seating during dinner hours. Food in the "pay per dine" restaurants was a cut above and highly recommended, though costly. We did not have to wait for seating in these. Room service sandwiches were good but typically missing the chips and pickles that were advertised. The penthouse came with a chilled bottle of sparkling wine on arrival and a evening plate of goodies which was nice. Tips: Watch out for the $12/day per person added to your bill for tips. These can be eliminated but the staff will belittle you when attempting to eliminate them in favor of manual tips for those staff members deserving. Ports of Call: The ship docked, no tenders, in all ports. The off and on were handled well. The Alaska ports are great and good for self walking tours. There isn't much to see in Port Rupert, BC however. Fitness/Spa There was no attendant in the fitness area, nobody to answer questions. The sauna and steam room required an additional $99 much to my disappointment. Entertainment: The women in our party walked out on all stage entertainment except for the acrobatic dancing. They judged it very poor. Cabin Service: The Butler and cabin attendants were very good, friendly and efficient. Overall Impression: The ship is dated, small, confining and in need for balcony maintenance for a major cruise line. The freestyle dining is good, though expensive, if you stick to the pay per meal restaurants. Would we cruise NCL again, no!

A 2nd Class Experience for a Penthouse Customer

Norwegian Star Cruise Review by elcaringo

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2010
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Aft-Facing Penthouse with Large Balcony
The ship: This ship is dated. We had a penthouse suite. The balcony decking and handrails are warn, splintered, dried out and faded. The suite is dark and laid out in a peculiar fashion making it awkward to get to the bathroom and main closet. Although a queen bed is advertised, a king was furnished. It was not comfortable however. Reading light in the cabin is insufficient. Although the view from the balcony, overlooking the aft of the ship, is terrific, the noise from the propellers is very loud. We were with another couple and could not find a public place to sit down and relax or read. All the space has apparently been consumed by specialty restaurants. This was the biggest problem with this ship.
The food: The penthouse comes with the privilege of breakfast and lunch in Cagney's restaurant which is outstanding. The food and service is great here although the menu does not change during the cruise. Buffet food is "slop". Of our 10 or so meals in the public dining rooms, very few of our orders were correct with missing or incorrect dishes served. The service staff was not friendly, the dining rooms noisy and had a typical wait for seating during dinner hours. Food in the "pay per dine" restaurants was a cut above and highly recommended, though costly. We did not have to wait for seating in these. Room service sandwiches were good but typically missing the chips and pickles that were advertised. The penthouse came with a chilled bottle of sparkling wine on arrival and a evening plate of goodies which was nice. Tips: Watch out for the $12/day per person added to your bill for tips. These can be eliminated but the staff will belittle you when attempting to eliminate them in favor of manual tips for those staff members deserving.
Ports of Call: The ship docked, no tenders, in all ports. The off and on were handled well. The Alaska ports are great and good for self walking tours. There isn't much to see in Port Rupert, BC however.
Fitness/Spa There was no attendant in the fitness area, nobody to answer questions. The sauna and steam room required an additional $99 much to my disappointment.
Entertainment: The women in our party walked out on all stage entertainment except for the acrobatic dancing. They judged it very poor.
Cabin Service: The Butler and cabin attendants were very good, friendly and efficient.
Overall Impression: The ship is dated, small, confining and in need for balcony maintenance for a major cruise line. The freestyle dining is good, though expensive, if you stick to the pay per meal restaurants.
Would we cruise NCL again, no!
elcaringo’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Dining
Public Rooms
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Cabin Review

Aft-Facing Penthouse with Large Balcony
Cabin SF 9236
Dark, balcony in need of refurb, difficuly access to main closet and bath, small for a penthouse suite, great view of aft, noisy due to engine wake when on the balcony.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins