1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
we just returned from our cruise with ncl bliss. i just wanted to say if you use a mobility scooter and are concerned about getting around with the scooter in ketchikan, juneau, skagway or victoria dont be. we traveled to these ports. my ... Read More
we just returned from our cruise with ncl bliss. i just wanted to say if you use a mobility scooter and are concerned about getting around with the scooter in ketchikan, juneau, skagway or victoria dont be. we traveled to these ports. my husband and granddaughter went their own way and i was by myself with the scooter. ketchikan i took myself up to creek street and while i didnt see salmon there i walked up a street on the left followed the stream up and the salmon. went way up past where all the people were and there they were thousands of salmon. wonderful site! in skagway i took the ocean raft wildlife adventure. these ladies went out of their way to make sure i was able to walk (which i couldnt) and brought the bus where they could. in juneau i went to mendenhall glacier. the bus drivers took the scooter and put it under the bus. scooters MUST BE FOLDABLE. otherwise they will not take you. went out 2 miles to nugget falls. wonderful site. great photos. i probably could have done the helicopter and raft excursion but im afraid of heights. went thru the towns w/o any problem including the wood slated walkways. there is nothing to fear but fear itself. so give it a try. you didnt spend all that money to sit on the ship. enjoy! as for ncl bliss itself. i cannot say enough about the service or accommodations on this ship. i saw a waiter go over to a man and cut up his meat. even though this person was with his family and his wife was sitting right next to him. staff at the buffet would ask if i needed a table or if they could get something for me because i was in the scooter. they would ask if i needed assistance with an elevator. embarkation was wonderful. disembarkation in victoria was a bit annoying but then again the staff/crew handled it the best they could and even brought me down a "secret" elevator. the food was great. entertainment at all levels was wonderful. a cruise is what you make of it. we sat quietly in the observation deck reading & playing a game or two. we went to the comics and different bands, and saw havana and jersey boys, played bingo and daily games. its certainly what you make of it. sit like a bump on a log and you'll not enjoy yourself. i have been on other cruises. ncl was by far the best we have been on. a shout out to the maitre d in manhattan who made sure i had my cappuccino in a glass. even though he gave me his card, im sorry i misplaced it. my only complaint was at seattle airport. SMS & Sons Int'l. i did not pick up my luggage at the airport to board flight to nyc. jason who is the 'DIRECTOR' was a rude, nasty, arrogant person. even if i was wrong, he deals w/the public and should be able to control himself, which he cannot. how SMS has this person working for them amazes me and is a loose cannon. cant tell me i am the only one who left their luggage and he tells me 'the fact that you left your luggage @ the airport tells me something about you." i was furious w/this comment and made him know it. glad i spoke w/him after the cruise as he did not ruin it. but management should certainly pay attention to him. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Just off the Bliss on 7/21 and had a great time. It was me, my wife and son who turned 17 on the cruise. We’ve cruised NCL, RCCL and Disney in the past. Overall, we loved our cabin, the ship, the crew, the food and ports. Really ... Read More
Just off the Bliss on 7/21 and had a great time. It was me, my wife and son who turned 17 on the cruise. We’ve cruised NCL, RCCL and Disney in the past. Overall, we loved our cabin, the ship, the crew, the food and ports. Really don’t have any complaints and any hiccups were handled to our satisfaction. Here are the day-to-day details (sorry for typos in advance)… We flew in the night before and stayed at the Edgewater Hotel next to the cruise terminal. We used Aces Town Car Services from the airport to the hotel. They were on time, courteous and the price was very competitive. Great customer service all the way around. We didn’t get to the hotel until about 9:45pm, checked in and headed to the lounge for some food. We enjoyed the food and drink, but it was a bit expensive as we expected. The room was cozy with two double beds but worked fine for a good night’s sleep. On embarkation day, we had brunch at the Six Seven Restaurant at the hotel. Great selection of food and really good service. My son mentioned this was his “birthday week” so our server brought him a special desert…nice touch. After brunch we checkout and walked to the cruise terminal which is literally next door to the hotel. Just a few minutes’ walk. We dropped out bags and headed to the check in line. My son has special needs so we had made arrangements ahead of time for a less crowded check-in experience. I’ll share the details. We were told to use the security line marked “Haven/VIP” because the line was shorter. Since we arrived at about 10:15am all the lines were shorter so it really didn’t matter. We then proceeded upstairs to the “quiet” check in area. It was actually a bit loud, crowded and chaotic but there were plenty of chairs until they call your party to the check in desk. After about 10 or 15 minutes we were called up and check in. Very quick and efficient. We were told to head to the ship but instead entered a room that was packed and standing room only. This didn’t look good. There was an employee right there and I asked her if there was somewhere less crazy to wait and she pointed behind her and told us that was the door to the ship and she was going to open it in two minutes and we could be the first through. Sure enough, two minutes later we were walked up the ramp to the ship. There we were, on board the beautiful Bliss. It was surreal because there was no one else on the ship (I’m assuming the Haven passengers had boarded and where up in the Haven). We went to make go kart reservations in the Social (I think) and then to Teppanyaki to adjust some dining reservations. Just like that we were ready to cruise! We just had brunch so we decided to explore the ship for a while before eating again. We really loved the ship. Everything was clean and new, well laid out and easy to navigate. After our walkabout, we headed to the Local for lunch. Food and service were good. I told my wife we needed to check out the spa. We were given a tour and sold on just about every kind of “treatment” you could imagine, from acupuncture, to massage to hair loss treatments. No thank you. I just wanted to see the Thermal Suite. After we checked that out, our tour guide tried to sell us Thermal Suite passes. I told her no need because, surprise, I had already purchased one for my wife! She visited there just about every day and really enjoyed it. By then the cabins were ready to we headed to our Mini-Suite with Large Balcony – 8126. I was tempted to bid on an upgrade to the Haven in the month leading up to the cruise but am so glad I didn’t. The location was perfect for us. We were steps away from the Waterfront, most specialty restaurant and plenty of bars. Most of the other things we needed to visit were just a deck or two down so no need for the elevators (which could get crowded, especially the forward ones). I’ve sailed the NCL Pride of America before and felt our cabin was claustrophobic. Not the case on the Bliss. While the cabin wasn’t huge, we never felt like were too cramped. We had enough storage for the three of us and the balcony was huge with two chairs, a table, and two loungers. The only downside was it wasn’t covered, and since it rained just about every day, we couldn’t use it as much as we would like. The bathroom was pretty big and the shower was very spacious. Our cabin steward was excellent and always had the room ready to go at the right times. I would take this cabin again in a heartbeat. We had dinner at Cagney’s that night and it was excellent, from the food to the service. My wife and I had the dining package for three meals but I didn’t buy one for my son. Looking at all the menus before the crews and estimating the cost I thought it would be a wash if I paid for his a la cart. That was a mistake. His tab at Cagney’s alone was about $60 so next time I will by him a dining package to match ours. It ended up working out in our favor any, but more on that later. Day two was at sea and we had booked a double go kart ride so I could drive my son around the track. I used to race karts a bit so this was a must do for me. First, we had breakfast in the main dining room (Taste or Savor) as we ended up doing most mornings. Plenty to eat and we always had excellent service. After the first day they remembered us which was nice. And, since my son told everyone it was his birthday week, he always got special treatment. In fact, it felt like the entire crew went out of their way to make sure he had a special cruise. On to the go karts and the experience was pretty disappointing. We were told to arrive about 15 minutes before our 9am reservation, which we did. By nine we were climbing into the kart and ready to hit the track. We would be the only ones on the track, which was actually goo, because the double karts are so wide I don’t think we could have passed anyone. We were told we would get four laps but actually only got three. So, after a few minutes (and about $15) we were done. I think we walked off at about 9:05. That was it? That was it. I wouldn’t do that again. Later we met my wife and had lunch at Food Republic. It continued the theme of good food and service on the ship. We tried a variety of small plates and like them all. I think our total at the end was about $60. We enjoyed the ship that afternoon and then headed for an early dinner at Teppanyaki because we had reservations for Havana at 7:30 that night. Our Teppanyaki reservation was at 5:15 and we were seated at the table by them. By 5:45 all the other tables had a chef but we did not. Since we had a show reservation my wife went to ask when we would get started. Finally, at 6:oo, we get our chef. We sat for 45 minutes with nothing. I though that was strange. Anyway, the chef was good and we enjoyed the food. My wife and I agreed that this was our least favorite meal on the ship. The good news was because of the delay, the didn’t charge us for our son’s meal, which was how not buying him a dining package ended up working out. I though that was excellent customer service. We didn’t ask for anything or make a fuss, they just took care of it. We really appreciated that. I’ve read mixed reviews of Havana but we really enjoyed it. Plot? Who cares? The singing and dancing were really good and we all liked the show. Plus, it wasn’t too long and drawn out. Some have commented the costumes were too skimpy. We live in Hawaii, and if you’ve been to a luau, the Havana costumes were no skimpier than that. Anyway, just our experience, YMMV. The next day we arrived in Juneau, which by far was out most disappointing day. I checked the weather forecast a week out and figured our float plane flight to Taku Glacier Lodge would be cancelled. NCL left us a voicemail in our cabin the day before saying all excursions involving flights were subject to cancellation (of course) BUT they wouldn’t tell us until we were off the ship at and at the meeting point. So, if we’re cancelled, we have little time to find something else to do. I woke up, look out the window, and it was foggy and rainy. No way we were going to fly. However, we had to get off the ship, walk to the meeting point, give the bus driver our tickets, sit on the bus for five minutes only to have the bus driver get back on the bus and tell us we were cancelled. NCL could have been more proactive here to give us better rescheduling options. I hopped off the bus and started to ask around trying to find the one NCL rep that could actually help us find something else. Finally found her. We were scheduled for a salmon bake at Taku Lodge, and my son really loves salmon, so we found another option. We had some time to kill so we walked in the rain into town, had some snack and drinks, and walked back. We didn’t really enjoy Juneau too much. Took the bus to the salmon bake and they did a great job. We all had plenty to eat, and I especially enjoyed their chowder. Our van driver back to the ship grew up where we now live in Hawaii…small world! The next day we had an early, and long, day in Skagway. I think we had breakfast at the buffet that morning and I didn’t like it at all. Two many people and too crazy. I felt like I was always getting bumped into. I’d much rather sit down and be served…just more my speed. We did the excursion where you take a bus to Carcross in Canada and then the White Pass Railway back to Skagway. I love trains and had done this excursion about 30 years ago. The bus ride was really loooooong but the scenery was beautiful. Carcross was our lunch stop and was disappointing. They had the restaurant for lunch, a museum and petting zoo. It was just us and about a thousand of our closest friends. My wife and son really wanted to see a sled dog puppy and got there wish. The train ride was as spectacular as I remembered it, although the rain and clouds made it a bit less scenic. It was such a long, long day that we headed straight back to the ship and didn’t bother walking around Skagway. Next time I’ll pick a shorter excursion and explore the town. We had dinner at Taste or Savor and it was a good as always. The next day, Glacier Bay, was a highlight (as you can imagine). We woke up early so we could be one of the first on the bow when they opened it up. It was a little after 8am when they did and we got a spot right on the rail. It was so cold!! On the way to the first glacier I saw two pods or Orca, a humpback whale, a whale I couldn’t identify, and plenty of otters and puffins. I was really cool. By the time we got to the first glacier the bow was a madhouse, just a crush of people. I realized our balcony was about 50 feet away on the same deck, so why are we with all these folks? We headed back to the cabin and had the same spectacular view all too ourselves. I mentioned we were right near the Waterfront as well, so for the rest of Glacier Bay, we headed there any walked from one side of the ship to the other to catch the best view. It was busy but not crowded at all…and they have bars! Dinner that night was at Q. The portions were so big and the food was good BBQ. They really do a good job with the four types of sauces. Next up Ketchikan, which ended up being our favorite port. I thought our son would enjoy the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show so I booked it on my own. We got off the ship early and made the short walk to the show. We were so early that we needed to kill some time and headed to Creek Street. We were the only ones there (nothing was open) which was fine because we avoided the cruise ship crush of people. Back to the lumberjack show and we had so much fun. Yes it was cheesy but in a good way. And the things those guys can do with saws, axes and logs. Wow! We all loved it and I’d see it again. Next was lunch next door at The Alaska Fish House. Really good fish and chips. We did some shopping and then I had the Ketchikan Historic Walking Tour app on my phone, so we decided to give it a try. It was so interesting. We didn’t have time to get through the while thing, but really saw and learned a lot. Plus, found a spot on the creek where salmon were swimming upstream. Really need to see. Great day in Ketchikan. Another great dinner at Taste/Savor and then off to Jersey Boys. It was another great show and we all loved it. All the performers were so talented. Yes, they say a lot of ‘bad words’ but nothing my son hasn’t heard from me while watching football. Victoria is that short, late night port stop. I had booked a carriage ride with Tally-Ho Carriage Tours. Before that we spent our last day on the ship hanging out and packing. We had dinner that night at Los Lobos. The Mexican food was pretty good, I have to say. Really enjoyed the tableside guacamole. This is where we had the worst service of the trip, very slow and forgetful server but we had time. It was warm enough that we were able to sit outside on the Waterfront which was awesome. Great views of Mt. baker and the city as we ate dinner. I wish we would have had dinner outside more often, it’s a spectacular setting. We got off the ship and walked about 30 minutes to the carriage ride meeting point. Took about a 50-minute scenic trip about the city, very pleasant. They were able to drop us off at the port so we didn’t have to worry about the 30 minute walk back. Appreciated that. It was late, so we had a could of farewell drinks and then off to bed. Early debarkation in the morning. We had signed up for the Port Valet service where they check you in for your flight home and take your bags to the airport for you. The night before they had delivered out boarding passes and bag tags to our cabin. We put the tags on the bags and had them out by 11pm. That morning in Seattle, we got to Taste/Savor at 6:30am, right when they opened for breakfast. I was surprised because it wasn’t crowded at all. For Port Valet, they ask you be off the ship by 8am. The ship cleared at a about 7:15, and we finished breakfast just after 7:30. We had assisted debarkation and met the access staff at the internet café. We waited a few minutes and they escorted us off the ship at the uncrowded rear gangway just before 8am. We merged into a long line with the forward gangway passengers and I thought this might take a while, but the line kept moving at walking pace. We should the customs officers our passports and that was that. Cruise over! Our flight wasn’t until 5:30pm, so I booked a Pike Place food tour with Savor Seattle Food Tours. This was outstanding. It ran from 10am to noon and we hit about eight locations in the market. We tried everything from Greek yogurt, to cheese, to chowder, to donuts, to cherries, to crab cakes and more. Some locations at 45-minute waits for their food but we got to cut the line. Everything was so, so good and we learned about the history of the market. We had planned on eating lunch after the tour but were way too full. Instead we did a little shopping at stopped at a ginger beer bar. Then it was off to the airport. Of course, we didn’t have to check in or check out bags and there was no line at security. Had some dinner and boarded the flight. When we arrived home, our backs were there too. I highly recommend the free Port Valet service if you qualify. Some notes… We did spend a bit of time in the Observation Lounge and it’s a beautiful space. Great for Alaska, of course. It was usually crowded but we tended to go later in the evening and were able to find seating. Have a bar and (usually) some small bites was great. We saw the Beatles tribute band twice. Once in the Cavern Club (get there 45 minutes early) and once in the main theater. They played different sets and were really good. Also enjoyed the band Siglo many times, the piano duet, and the solo piano player. All were great to listen to over drinks. Never tried the pool or slides…way too cold for me. But, there were die hards out there having a great time. It was fun to watch people get stuck on the looping slide! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
First, let me say that we have not cruised in about 10 years. We are retirement age people who cruised often as a family with our 2 children. They enjoyed it more than we did. Recently, we decided to give it a try again and visit some ... Read More
First, let me say that we have not cruised in about 10 years. We are retirement age people who cruised often as a family with our 2 children. They enjoyed it more than we did. Recently, we decided to give it a try again and visit some cities we've never been before, namely Victoria and Vancouver in British Columbia. In the past, we cruised on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Princess. These were standard size ships (2,500 to 3,000 passengers). The Bliss is a new (almost 1 year old) "Mega" vessel with a capacity of over 6,000 passengers (although the ship lists it at 4,000 passengers). And despite its immense size, no matter where you go, you were always jammed in with a huge crowd of people. On this ship, be prepared to do a lot of walking. From the back end of the ship to the front (or other way around). Or going up or down stairs from one deck to the next. The elevators on the ship were always jammed with passengers all day and night long. My wife found it very difficult to get around, having had knee replacement surgery recently. • I'll list all the "pros" of my experience first: • Entertainment: "Jersey Boys" was the best show on the ship. Standing ovation. Get your seat a 1/2 hour before the show starts, because it fills up fast. "Havana" was a good latin song and dance review. Elaborate costumes and stage decor. The stand-up comedians were terrific, hosted by Tim and featuring Jay Black and Larry Omaha. Book your seats on your first day on the cruise at the theater asap. I did not go to the Cavern Club shows. Way too late for us. However, "Siglo", their resident rock band that played at functions around the ship (the atrium and the pool) throughout the day were awesome. Be sure to go to the functions at the atrium, there's a lot games and shows with lots of audience participation. If you can find an empty seat, grab it fast. • Food: The best specialty restaurant for us was Cagney's steakhouse by far. Great Prime Rib (16 oz). La Cucina was good, not great. But "Q" was very disappointing and hardly anyone besides us were in the restaurant. I guess they got the word of mouth on it. The main dining rooms are good, The Manhattan room is the best of the mains, be sure to book a dinner reservation (even in the main dining rooms) or else you will wait in a long line before you are seated. Beware the breakfast and lunch service in the main dining rooms are slow, but sometimes a better alternative than the buffet. The Garden Cafe (the buffet, on deck 16) is a mad house. It's the largest buffet restaurant we have ever experienced anywhere and you can have ANY kind of food that you can imagine (asian, italian, mexican, deli, salads, on and on). But you have to scramble to find an empty table and you have to dodge and weave around the other passengers getting their food. Overall, the food at the buffet is standard in quality. Our cabin: see my separate review • The observation lounge: what could be bad about lying on a long lounge chair with a pillow behind your head and overlooking the ocean along with a drink and a snack, This is the observation lounge, a quiet area one deck below the buffet. • The Cons: • The elevators were always jam packed! I would have taken the stairs if my wife wasn't with me. • Excursions: because of scheduling problems, our time at the cities were very limited to a short quick afternoon. Plus, because of the number of passengers, we were very slow in disembarking the ship. Very frustrating. Overall, the cruise had some great aspects with a few not so great aspects. If you come in with a positive attitude and are not annoyed by the bad aspects, you'll have a great time. If you read this review you will know what to expect and figure out how to avoid the bad and indulge in the good. Good luck. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
I used to love Norwegian. The Epic was my first cruise and I went on several after that before trying Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. One thing I always loved about Norwegian was the value. That has all changed. Now everything costs ... Read More
I used to love Norwegian. The Epic was my first cruise and I went on several after that before trying Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. One thing I always loved about Norwegian was the value. That has all changed. Now everything costs more. Margaritaville has a hamburger I like. When I was on the Breakaway a few years ago I went to Margaritaville every day for lunch. It was like $12 per person. Kind of high but reasonable. Now it’s $15 with a 20% gratuity so that is $18. That hamburger is not an $18 hamburger and lunch for 2 people is not worth $36 and that does not include drinks! All of the specialty dining is more expensive and a la carte. Dinner at La Cucina used to be $14.95 on the Getaway. Now if you get a 4 course meal you are talking $30 to $40. Olive Garden is 10x better than La Cucina and I can get dinner for 2 people for less than $40. NCL wants me to spend nearly $80 for 2 people? They are out of their mind! And one night we got the prosciutto pizza to share. It was a cheese pizza with 5 small pieces of prosciutto. It was not an $18 pizza. I get pizza every Friday from Papa Johns or Donatos and I pay less and get more. Cagney’s used to be a special night; a great filet with delicious sides. This cruise I got an 8 oz filet and it was cooked perfectly but had zero flavor. The chef didn’t even put salt and pepper on it. Luckily I used one of my dining plan vouchers otherwise that steak was $30+. I can get a beautiful filet for $22 locally, put a delicious rub on it, and after 2 hours in my sous vide I have a steak Norwegian would be begging me for. The only positive thing I can say is that I ate in Taste for lunch and dinner because I was tired of paying for food and the food was just as good as the specialty restaurants and the service was 10x better. The servers were very quick and attentive whereas we waited 5 to 15 minutes for the servers in the specialty restaurants to bring us anything. Deck 17 is an epic failure! The doors are not automatic. In order to open the sliding doors, you have to physically touch a sensor. I have limited mobility and I have very limited reach. I could not physically touch the sensor. I tried to use a short dressing stick that I carry to press elevator buttons but the sensors were capacitive so the only way to activate the sensor and open the door was to use an actual human touch. Touch sensors are absolutely and ridiculously stupid! To make matters worse the button is not always in the center of the door. Sometimes it’s on the wall. Has NCL ever met a handicap person with mobility issues? I don’t think they have. We don’t all have full use of our arms. Note: Celebrity ships have similar buttons you have to touch to open doors but their buttons work with my dressing stick. Smart! But wait, there’s more. Have you ever tried to maneuver a 3 wheeled scooter down the length of the ship with beach chairs on either side? If you haven’t let me tell you it’s not an easy thing to do. Now add some wind breakers in the middle and you have a near impossible situation. Now one must try to maneuver around beach chairs and a divider. I have no idea why these wind breakers were installed in the first place. The best part about sitting on the top deck is the ability to stare out at the ocean and have the wind cool you off from the hot sun. If someone doesn’t want wind they can go to deck 16 or the Spice H2O deck. Wind breakers are absolutely and ridiculously stupid! Note: On Celebrity ships there is a walkway at least 10 feet wide all the way down the ship. That means if someone is standing I can go around them. There is also enough room for 2 lanes of traffic. Smart! The Getaway, Breakaway, and Bliss have 28 inches of walkway. That means if I am on my scooter I can’t turn around, people have to stand on beach chairs so I can pass, and the traffic is one way. Stupid! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
When I cruise, which is every few years, ¬I welcome the chance to join a community specific to our choices to be together on an adventure. The community we create is supported generally by the staff of the cruise line. I have needs, but I ... Read More
When I cruise, which is every few years, ¬I welcome the chance to join a community specific to our choices to be together on an adventure. The community we create is supported generally by the staff of the cruise line. I have needs, but I usually accommodate myself. However, on my last cruise I experienced a different community. It wasn’t the fellow cruisers but the actual cruise line that reduced my ability to have fun. I have been home now for 3 days and I thought long and hard about writing this letter. First the compliments which will take up more space than the complaint. Most of your staff were excellent at their jobs, and those who were very new to their jobs can be excused as poor English speakers which led to few interesting misunderstandings which were humorous and easily resolved. Mihael who was my first maître d’ was very kind and sincerely supportive. His commitment to customer service is exceptional and sincere. When we are remembered, we feel valuable, it was very kind. When I dined at Taste he was so kind and helpful. Our room steward, James was very responsive, and great at his job, we a party of 3 adored him, were grateful for his help and kindness, not to mention his towel folding ability was greatly appreciated. The food was great, some of the best that I ever ate. I loved dining in the Manhattan Room, the broths Pho in the Garden Buffet was amazing and lifesaving to both my cabin mate and I. My friend spent a ton of time at the smoker’s area on Deck 17 and had a blast with all the wonderful people she met there. I was very fond of deck areas on 7 that were outside and so comfortable, I found many folks there who like my friends and I enjoyed being out of the harsh sun. We saw everything we wanted to and marveled at the wonders of nature that we experienced. Whales, flying fish and the west coast equivalent of the end of the continent. My ADA stateroom was clean and welcoming. When we began to plan this trip, we were unaware that our cruise began on the day of the show we had waited for 2 years to see, would premier on the first day of our cruise. We were VERY concerned about what we should do, and my internet package which was suggested by one of your call center employees allowed me to watch Game of Thrones, which was an event that my cruise mates were so excited to share. Thanks to that person for making our day. I wish I had written his name down as it was soo special to be able to do that. Attention to hand sanitizing was vigilant and I appreciated the staff assigned to those stations. A couple of my cruise-mates I and have worked in many theatres and we were not very impressed with Havana, as it was a confusing storyline. However, it was well sung, danced and the acting was pretty good. That said, Jersey Boys was a treat to the senses. The singing was great! Despite the noise from below our feet as the show was in its first half hour, and the rolling of the ship, the cast did not miss a beat or step. The lighting was unexpected, and I would like to extend my appreciation for the cast and crew. They transitioned from one effect to costume changes to moving of set pieces in a non-obtrusive manner which is appreciated by those of us who have worked for many many years in this field. One of our party is a Drama teacher and I am a retired stage manager, who is married to a lighting designer. In other words, we know a good show when we see one and we saw a great show on this cruise. The ship is beautiful, huge and well designed. huge It could use better signage, maps and directions as it’s a huge ship and mid ship is hard to find. Now for what was not great, no, not great at all. I was very uncomfortable navigating the halls with your room service carts. I rented the smallest of scooters and still got stuck nearly every day in the halls due to them taking up all the hall space that would allow walking and those of us requiring mobility assistance needed to proceed. Your staff seemed inconvenienced by my NEED to have them position the cart so that not only I but others could navigate to our staterooms from the common areas. A suggestion: can the staff move the carts into the alcoves of the rooms that they are cleaning? Could they somehow be more aware of their blocking the hallways which is dangerous for us. As the rooms they are cleaning are usually empty, this seems like an easy fix for those of us with strollers or other mobility assistance devices required to have the same experience as those who can walk. People are very helpful, but they are not always. Those who can walk are sometimes unaware that they should be more aware of those who cannot walk. I saw parents bring this to their children’s attention, but not for days did it register. I pay to be able to travel without discrimination and the lack of any way to get to my stateroom due to the elevators being crammed full of people who could walk, was really frustrating and off putting since it was easily corrected. This brings me to another complaint. When we who require an elevator to navigate from our staterooms to any place on the ship, we have to wait because there is no room for us in the elevators, We wait and wait for nearly 20 minutes as I did my first day, it seems obvious to me that at those peak hours you reserve a family/mobility assistance elevator for us? That way people like me would not look into an elevator full of people who are clueless and do not even appear to notice that they could use the steps instead of monopolizing the only way we with mobility issues would be able to get to where we need to go, this was true at the muster and every day there was a shore excursion, and again at debarkation. Signage, like busses have reminding people that they can/should give others a chance. This usually applies to those traveling with children, disabilities and others with special needs. To throw us into the general population to fend for ourselves is not a way to assist us with obtaining our needs. Additionally, please provide the ingredients on the menus, like agave instead of honey. I am allergic to agave and when I ate at Margaritaville, I had a salad that had agave instead of honey. I did not put this food allergy down as with my shellfish allergy manage it myself. However, I was sick for 2 days and very uncomfortable and felt terrible. I will never not list that again, however, remember, until this trip and my meal at Margaritaville did I need to even mention it. No restaurant, café, nothing before this instance. And finally, I was called twice from 8:00 am to 8:05 am to ensure that I come to guest services to collect a nonrefundable deposit. Since I was returning my scooter to the same place it was in my plans anyway. When I got there I got into an expected line. I waited while the staff took care of each one of the guests who proceeded me in a very efficient and what appeared to be a very respectful manner. When it came to me, I was asked to wait as the person answered a call, then he went to another guest at a location where they were seated. He then went behind the desk, remember I have now waited in my mobility scooter, while he cared for no less than 3 guests ahead of me while I was seated first in line. As I have mentioned, I waited a lot on this trip and at the end of it demanding that I wait while others were receiving respectful treatment was truly above my patience level. I yelled and pointed at the very rude gentlemen, who sent over a really nice Asian woman, who apologized for my dissatisfaction with my treatment, to which I told her, I appreciated her gracious apology, but it did not excuse the rude behavior that her predecessor had assaulted me with. You see when it has been clear that the only thing about you, that mattered to NCL was the money I spent. My comfort was never a priority, that is a really a bad thing to say about a cruise, isn’t it? As you may be able to tell, I enjoyed this as much as I could, but in the face of rude and disinterested staff, which by the way, this is my 5th cruise but my first and probably last on NCL. You see there was cruise to Greece presentation that my cruise mate and I had always wanted to take, which because of my rude treatment we both decided that we would look elsewhere, I was also interested in purchasing a trip for my sister to Hawaii as a retirement present. One person is responsible for those choices otherwise I would be booked for at least two more cruises for at least 6 more people. This is a very unfortunate choice that I feel I MUST make for my own safety, and the enjoyment of my companions. Please consider that I am aware of the difficulty of managing everyone’s good time and how hard that work can be. However, it was a costly trip, I was denied upgrades because of my mobility disability and the above difficulties made this a very painful experience both emotionally and physically. Getting stuck in the hallway was scary. This was a treat for myself and my friends of over 40 years. They helped me tons. They were not supposed to have to. They are both nearly 70 and they were moving carts out of the way, not your staff, whom were oblivious to what they caused in the hallways and when they were asked for help, they were as I said with few exceptions notably inconvenienced. Getting on board was very efficient both I and my travelling companions were so impressed by your staff and their understanding of the mobility challenged and the same was true once I got a wheelchair and was off on the debarkation adventure. I was so secure in the gentleman who helped me to get off the ship and to the bench before I caught the cab. I found so many comfortable places to rest play and eat. I needed the rest, as did my companions and we all enjoyed the Observation Lounge and the side decks around 7 and 8 which had the perfect shade and temperature for us elder travelers. When I tried to contact the special assistance coordinator, all I got was a form letter, twice. Weather was great, travel to and from was great, only the items listed above were reasons to mention anything other than my appreciation, that said there should be nothing. I was appalled that a person in a walker was left to fend for herself at the dock in Puerta Vallarta. Equally appalling was the fact that this was witnessed by several cruisers and let’s face it the woman using the walker was the most responsible in her party as she was at the dock. Hoping for rescue only to see her chance sail away. NCL is not completely responsible and did everything to warn those who went ashore that they were to keep to ship time, and it was clear that these people were not able to adhere to the rules, nor keep time, it was still horrible to see an elder left at the dock. My culture says that we never leave our elders out. I understand that this is unique. ¬¬¬ Please understand that it is solely my poor treatment at checkout that cost you two cruises, and about 6-10 thousand dollars Thank you for a good time as far as it went. I wish I didn’t have to bring your attention to the details above, but they were glaring to me and deserved comment. I will attempt ¬¬to warn others about the possibilities they may face at the guest services check out desk and, in the hallways, as well as the elevators. To be treated as a lesser species by the very people who are benefiting from my spending, is harsh treatment to say the least. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We had sailed on the NCL Getaway last year so we knew what we were getting into; however, this was during Spring Break time and the ship was very crowded. We are a senior couple and have pretty much decided that if the ship has a water ... Read More
We had sailed on the NCL Getaway last year so we knew what we were getting into; however, this was during Spring Break time and the ship was very crowded. We are a senior couple and have pretty much decided that if the ship has a water slide and race track on the upper deck that it probably wasn't for us. With that being said, the ship is beautiful. Because it is so new everything is great. We both felt the entertainment was below par, and again, because it was during spring break we couldn't get into some shows because they were booked long before we got on the ship. We like to collect art so we went to several art auctions, as well as some specialty dining experiences. We have been on this cruise with other ships so we are very familair with the ports, so we picked this cruise more for the ship and not the ports. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
The ship was gorgeous. The Pro's Many things to love here. The food was phenomenal. And I loved the fact that most of it was casual, without the sometimes rigid seating arrangements and times I heard some cruise lines use. I ... Read More
The ship was gorgeous. The Pro's Many things to love here. The food was phenomenal. And I loved the fact that most of it was casual, without the sometimes rigid seating arrangements and times I heard some cruise lines use. I was able to eat about anytime I cared to in the complimentary dining fares. The specialty dining was by reservation which I understood. All of which I thought were first class. All the crew members in every aspect went out of their way to help and to serve. With that, I was extremely impressed and appreciative. Being disabled and on a scooter,they were prepared to make things as easy and uneventful as I thought were possible. Well done by the crew. The pool areas, the decks were pristinely maintained and entertainment was provided in which I enjoyed. There were shops on board, that were a bit upscale for my finances, but nice never the less. There was also an art exhibit with art that could be purchased. The Cons Being disabled and in a scooter was extremely challenging on accasions. Cabin area corridors were extremely narrow and at times difficult to navigate. Elevators were extremely difficult for myself and my scooter, as the elevator doors would attempt to close much too rapidly as I was attempted to embark and disembark. The cabin itself, although set up for a handicapped person, with wider doorways for wheelchairs and such, were still extremely difficult for navigation. However, I did manage. To me, the cost was the biggest problem on the con list. And unfortunately a huge consideration. Yes being disabled on a cruise ship can definately be a challenge, no doubt. But I travel alone, and when you travel alone, unfortunately you are subject to what I call up charges. What they are unrelated to how they list the prices, (per person) when you travel alone, you must pay subsidie charges, I suppose to make up for wht the cruise line ould have made if another person s traveling with you. So the bottom line is you I'll always pay more on line to wht couple would pay and you seem to get less. A huge negative in the con column for me as to whether I will be a returning customer. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise because we had not been to the Caribbean before so a 7 day cruise would give us a taste of the area. We also had never cruised on NCL before so we wanted to see how they compared to the other companies we have ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had not been to the Caribbean before so a 7 day cruise would give us a taste of the area. We also had never cruised on NCL before so we wanted to see how they compared to the other companies we have cruised with.(Favourably I am pleased to report) As my wife is in a wheelchair we were given priority embarkation and were on the ship within 20 minutes of arriving at the terminal - no waiting whatsoever. We had a wheelchair accessible balcony cabin which was very spacious and had an electric door opener which made life so much easier. Our cabin steward Raymundo was very attentive and pleasant. The choice of restaurants and bars was amazing - we bought a 4 night dining package and ate in the Bistro, The Cuchina, The Teppanyki and the Q Texas Steakhouse. We also ate in Taste and Manhattan restaurants. All locations had excellent menu choices and the food was good quality and was always served hot. We ate lunch a couple of times in the Market Cafe Buffet and the food again was extremely varied and of good quality. We had also bought the all-inclusive drinks package and found the choice and quality of drinks was excellent - The Chilean Rose wine was particularly good. Although the ship was full for Spring Break if did not seem too busy apart from around the pool on sea days when it was heaving with people. However there were plenty of other places to sit outside (noteably the Waterside) which were really quiet. There was also always plenty of space to relax in the Observation Lounge, We had no troubles with the elevators always being full (which we have had on other ships) apart from when the theatre show had just ended On port days they 'blocked out' 2 elevators specially for disabled passengers and gave us priority access to the gangway. We did not do any organised ship's excursions but just got off and had a wander around the various ports and did some souvenir shopping - We particularly liked the Straw Market in Nassau where we had lots of banter with the stallholders. We saw the Jersey Boys show which was excellent (we had already seen it in the UK a couple of times) and this performance was just as good. It made a nice change from the 'usual' variety show options which you usually get on cruise ships! We also enjoyed Havana and the many game-show offerings which were on in the Atrium every evening. Disembarkation was again no problem with the wheelchair being given priority and the camera scanning made it so mouch quicker than going through Homeland Security. We had purchased a transfer back to the airport and this was on a coach with a wheelchair lift so that was excellent. The only minor irritation was that we were dropped off at the terminal at 11,00 but couldn't check our lugguage in until 15.00 and didn't fly until 19.00 so we spent a boring day in Miami Airport - not NCL's fault but the problem with flights back to the UK not leaving until the evening. In conclusion, we had an excellent cruise and will certainly conside NCL in the future. We have no loyalty to any line as we book our cruise based on Itinary. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because of the size of the ship, the numerous food and entertainment options, and the size of the staterooms. We also thought our 11 year old twin daughters would enjoy all of the activities for them. First, we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the size of the ship, the numerous food and entertainment options, and the size of the staterooms. We also thought our 11 year old twin daughters would enjoy all of the activities for them. First, we spent the previous night in Miami, and stayed just north of the airport to save at least $150 compared to hotels near the port. Uber XL the following morning was less than $30 to the port terminal the next day. Embarkation was super easy! We boarded at 10:30AM, and carried our own luggage. We waited in line less than 5 minutes, and the process was quick and easy. Even though our room wasn’t ready, we were allowed to drop off our suitcases. We stayed in mini suite #10800, and found it to be plenty roomy. The bathroom was large with two sinks, and a large shower. The shower size was important to me since I have some mobility issues after losing my right leg and walking with a prosthesis. A shower chair was provided on request. I was able to get around the room reasonably well, but needed to crab walk past the bed. There’s also a half step up to get in the bathroom, so this was a little tricky. With my prosthesis on, I had no trouble getting in/out of the bathroom. The shower had a perfectly placed grab rail as well. There was a large closet with lots of hangars, cubbies for t-shirts/shorts/etc, and a safe. There were several outlets on the counter next to the TV and above the mini fridge. There were also 3 cabinets with shelves inside below the TV which offered extra storage. The balcony was surprisingly large and had two comfy chairs and a large table. We found our stateroom to be soundproof and never heard anyone above, below, or next to us on either side. Room blackening curtain was fantastic over the balcony sliding glass door. Our steward, Mel, was absolutely fantastic. He spent a lot of time with our girls, and they couldn’t wait to learn how to make towel animals each night, as well as the chance to ask him where he was from and about his family. Mel is a true gentleman. He took great care of our room, and we never wanted for anything extra. Our stateroom was always clean, and always had fresh ice. We never touched the mini bar. We had the Ultimate Beverage Package which was great. Every bar we went to throughout the ship was well-stocked, and we never waited more than a minute for service even during peak times. We also purchased the soda/water package for our daughters which was also well worth it. We typically ate breakfast and lunch at the Garden Cafe on deck 16, and the food was quite good with a great array of choices. For dinner, we went to Teppanyaki twice. This is a must-do, even if you have to pay for it. The chef’s show was fantastic, and the food was wonderful. Portions are massive. Q BBQ was also great, and the short ribs were tender and delicious. Ocean Blue was also excellent. At each of the pay restaurants there are photographers who will take your picture and at the end of the meal offer to sell a package or single photo. This is your only opportunity to buy the photos as they won’t appear on your room account/photo code. We also ate at the Local, and they have fantastic wings. The Manhattan Room was very nice, with rotating menu options and classic menu options that do not change. We thought the complimentary food choices and options were great! Frankly, besides Teppanyaki, I didn’t want for anything else. My daughters always found plenty of things they enjoyed as well and had zero complaints. During our at sea days, we hung out at the pool on deck 16. Be sure to get there by 7AM or you won’t get a chair. It fills up quickly! Service was great at the the two bars. Tipping your server will get you fantastic, friendly, and frequent service. I typically gave $20 each day we were on the pool deck, and in return we were served given ice filled buckets of beer in perfectly timed intervals! Carlo and Joe found us each day. They are both fun to BS with, are super friendly, and are fantastic at what they do! Our girls loved the pool, hot tubs (there are four on deck 17), and also spent a ton of time on the slides. The bands that played daily included Siglo and Familiar Strangers. They were fun, played good tunes, and sounded great! The DJ playing music in between the bands was also good. At night, there were themed parties including 80’s and 90’s night. We loved the pool deck area and spent a lot of time there relaxing. Besides the water park/pools/slides/hot tubs, our daughters and my wife loved the race track. They didn’t do the laser tag. They also loved the ping pong tables. Our girls tried the Splash Academy, and enjoyed the freedom of being old enough to sign in and out after a minimum 2 hour stay. I was surprised to hear how much fun they had there, with age appropriate activities and games - they actually asked if they could go back! The staff in the Splash Academy were great and our girls really enjoyed it. Arriving at St. Thomas, we found disembarkation to be quick and easy. We did the Powercat and Snorkeling excursion, and had a BLAST. The crew with Coolboats USVI were fun, the included rum punch was delicious and plentiful. We first snorkeled and got to see stingrays, turtles, and many tropical fish. Then, we went to the beach for a little over an hour, followed by a cruise back to port with a dance contest. Perception at the time indicated awesome dance skills. Review of video later showed that the rum punch skewed perceptions. This was a great experience and we would do it again. St. Thomas is still recovering from the hurricanes, and there are a lot of boarded up shops. Next, we stopped at Tortola and opted to take a cab to Cane Garden Bay beach on the North side of the island. Cab fare in an open, safari type F-350 was $16 per person round trip. The cab ride was interesting...lots of steep, narrow roads. It took about 15” to get from port to the beach and vice versa. Build in some extra time as the trucks won’t leave until they’re full of passengers. Tortola is also still recovering from the hurricanes. Beach chairs were $20 for a pair with included umbrella. Beer was cheap on the beach, at $3 for a bottle of Coors Light. This is a BEAUTIFUL beach, and we didn’t find it too crowded. We loved our day here and would definitely do it again. Following a day at sea where made port at Nassau. This is definitely a tourist trap type of place and was very busy with a total of 5 large cruise ships in port at the same time. We took a cab to Cable Beach, with round trip costing $8. Beach chairs were negotiated to $30 per pair, and umbrella negotiated to $10. There are lots of people here selling snacks, water, soda, and beer, as well as an endless variety of “stuff” like conch shells, jewelry, swimwear, etc. There are stands selling drinks from coconuts and food. You can also buy fried and BBQ chicken from people selling this out of backpacks. We passed on the backpack chicken, but saw several others brave enough to buy then actually eat the chicken. You can parasail, rent a jet ski, or ride on a towed banana inflatable. The beach was stunningly beautiful, the people were friendly, and we had a great day! We saw Jersey Boys which was good, and we found the Bliss theater to be very nice. We also caught the Beatles show in The Cavern. This show was a blast and the band members fed off the positive vibe in the room that night, playing longer than scheduled. The shopping options were nice, and we stocked up on duty free liquor that was reasonable priced. Our girls loved the charm bracelets with $5 charms of the day. T-shirt sales were held at least twice, with a good selection of 2 for $10 shirts. Disembarkation was super easy, and we chose self-assist. If you don’t mind carrying your own baggage on and off the ship, this is the quickest and easiest option in my opinion. We loved our experience on the Bliss, and look forward to going again next year. We’ll probably try a western Caribbean cruise. Overall, our service and experience was spectacular! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We had a great vacation onboard the Bliss. Food was great and entertainment was varied and excellent. Buffet-Lots to chose from. Standouts were the Mongolian Beef, vetable stir fry, and beef with broccoli. Room service- Great ... Read More
We had a great vacation onboard the Bliss. Food was great and entertainment was varied and excellent. Buffet-Lots to chose from. Standouts were the Mongolian Beef, vetable stir fry, and beef with broccoli. Room service- Great turkey sub, my husband liked the supreme pizza. We ordered often. The Local- Great that there is something 24/7. Good pub food, especially the Asian wings. Q- was ok, other restaurants were better. Cagneys-Food was excellent, service was slow. Le Bistro- wonderful meal. I am not really a desert eater, but they were the bomb. Teppaanyaki-Very good. We had great tablemates and a funny chef. Prohibition show- It was ok, but I don’t feel like it worth $36 each. Adults only for sure. Jersey Boys- We really enjoyed this show. It was face paced and the cast was very talented. Siglo band was excellent as was Tatianna. We took the aft elevators whenever possible. We never had to wait for an elevator. We had a great time and would not hesitate to sail her again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
The ship was very clean, I know it's pretty new but things were always picked up. no litter. With 4 thousand people on board, that's quite an accomplishment. Crew were just marvelous. Service was great, everyone and I do mean ... Read More
The ship was very clean, I know it's pretty new but things were always picked up. no litter. With 4 thousand people on board, that's quite an accomplishment. Crew were just marvelous. Service was great, everyone and I do mean everyone happy smile and a good attitude. We had no problems with anything on the ship. We had an accessibility room that was well laid out and spacious. All the restaurants were great. We went to many of the speciality restaurants and the buffet. My wife especially loved the Teppanyaki for food and fun. The ONLY complaint was the transportation to the airport after d'embarcation, that was supplied by a third party contractor. That was, what we usually called in the military, "A Goat Rope". There was no coordination, everyone stood around wondering where the transport busses to the airport were. Think about it, a thousand or so people standing in the sun wondering "when and where". Not a good way to end a really great cruise. Note to all, at the end of cruise take a taxi to the airport. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
I learned something valuable on this cruise: how to remove gratuities from your account. We arrived at the port and had an easy check in experience. This was around 11 AM and there were no lines and we walked right onto the ship. They ... Read More
I learned something valuable on this cruise: how to remove gratuities from your account. We arrived at the port and had an easy check in experience. This was around 11 AM and there were no lines and we walked right onto the ship. They did not take our pictures but instead use the pictures from our passports. This was a first. The first thing we did was check out the Go Carts and Laser Tag area in hopes of learning about package deals. There was no one there, so we came back later that day. We learned that you need reservations for both of these activities and package deals were expensive. Fine. They were open at the time and so we asked to reserve a spot, now. The crew seemed disinterested but complied and we started off the trip with a Go Cart experience using the 2 seaters. We were asked to watch a video and then the crewmember gave us instructions (while facing away from us). We put on the balaclavas and they slapped on the helmets and we were off. It was fun, but I do not think it would’ve been fun if there were more than 2 go carts on the track. We did not do it again, thankfully. The Laser Tag was also enjoyable, but the video they made you watch had nothing to do with how you actually play the game. It rained on us and so they refunded our play. More on this later. The ship was decent. There is no grand atrium or staircase area but I did not miss it. Instead, it was replaced by the magnificent Observation Lounge. I would have spent more time up here if I could have. Watching the sea rolling forward on sea days and the ship come into the various ports was fantastic. It was crowded during the day and deserted at night. There was one bar up there and no bar service (*see below). A light buffet was provided there during the day only. The other bar areas were OK. Most of the bars have inside and outside options with the Waterfront on Deck 8. Each bar area had a unique cocktail on tap. They were interesting to try, just for the fun of it. Our children, 9 and 10, enjoyed the kids club “Splash Academy”. The kids program is exactly the same across every NCL ship we have experienced so far (4x NCL). My children actually have come to enjoy knowing what to expect. We ended up tipping the kids club staff what we took away from the general gratuities. Will not rehash the pool and lounge chair experience which was exactly as all of the reviewers have stated. We made bets as to which waterslide riders would not make it through both loops (50-50 shot). The food was mediocre, as previously stated. It is worth again stating how the food was often cold in the buffet. Truly remarkable. Fortunately I prefer breakfast and there was always piles of bacon hot and ready. All of the entertainment was painfully loud. Bring earplugs. Now the worst of it: The Service. I have never experienced such a dejected and seemingly miserable crew. There was no personality. There was no service. The bartenders did not look you in the eye. Instead of asking what you were having they just pointed at you. There was no walk around bartender service anywhere except the pool and theatre and even that was very limited. You had to go uo to a bar to get your drink. One of our daiquiris had human hair in it (not ours)! But at that point in the cruise I realized there would be no point to go back and complain. In the buffet, there were no waiters to bring drinks or ask about your day. The waiters were all used as busboys, leering, waiting to snatch your plates. They did not speak to you other than to ask you if you were done. Our experience in the specialty dining restaurant, Los Lobos, was particularly unusual. We started with one waiter who took our children’s orders and explained the dining package options and menu to my elderly in-laws and then left. Then another waiter came with the drink menu. Fine. That waiter then tried to take my children’s orders again, explained a whole different set of dining rules to the in-laws and left no time for us to review the menus before requesting our orders. The in-laws were confused and it became a big disastrous miserable experience. Our physical room itself was to be expected. An outside balcony on Deck 10. It is notable that for a party of four, we were initially only given two sets of towels. We wrote a note to our Invisible Room Steward to get the rest of them. The first night my daughter slept lightly in the upper bunk and so it appeared unslept in. The second night, our Invisible Room Steward did not pull down the upper bunk. Again, we had to write a note to ask him to pull it down. The sofa that converted to a bed was never converted back into a sofa the entire trip. We were taking bets on whether or not the liquid soap dispensers would be refilled before they ran dry (they were, but just barely). It was also notable that our trash bins were not emptied daily. The NCL app is never updated, a joke. Do not rely on it. Unfortunately, we also received spotty paper information in our room. We received the typical and expected Notification on our bed for the first Time Change. When it turned back however, there was no Notification. Fortunately, we did not miss out on anything because of this. We found it a nice surprise that the smokers were confined to a glass box in the casino. On the other hand, as another reviews have noted, there must be a lack of smoking areas on the ship (we are not smokers) and found that many were smoking on their balconies, which was unpleasant for us. Guest services: equally pathetic. Be ready, if you have a problem, they will tell you they cannot handle your problem and try to send you to the department in which the problem arose (request it happen there at Guest Services via phone). Back to the Laser Tag refund. A couple days after our rained out round we checked our account. 2 of the 4 players games were refunded but we had two new charges for games never played. Note that while charges appear, an explanation for the charges does not. Watch your account closely. My in-laws also had charges that were “mistakes”. Getting these corrected was challenging but not impossible. At the end, when I made my “Gratuity Adjustment” the guest services staff did not care to ask why (nor look me in the eye). Just a request to write the reason on the form. They seem well-versed in the Gratuity Adjustment form. We had a new experience leaving the ship and a fast, pleasant one. INS used facial recognition technology on the ship as we were leaving and so we did not have the typical walk through customs. We were not provided with a declaration form which was unusual. Fortunately, we had nothing to declare. We have been on well over 40 cruises and it is unlikely we will return to NCL anytime soon. A shame because we enjoy the NCL ships. Had it been for just one surly staff member or even a whole department we could have forgiven. But the entire crew? Bizarre. Our single excursion was to Virgin Gorda, the Baths. This is an extraordinary place, full of smooth granite boulders that seem to have dropped from the sky, carved into cave-like spaces and caverns by the ocean’s waves. We had read that this place would be a disaster if it was crowded and we concur. We went with the first group of the day and there was only one other ship in dock. It requires a ferry ride followed by a bus ride to get there. The formations were incredible and it was unlike any place we have been to in the Caribbean. It was worth it, but I am certain we would have felt otherwise if there was a larger crowd. It could become a very dangerous place with more people. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This is a beautiful ship. We had a mini suite and thought the bathroom was great. It had a huge double sink with 2 faucets and a big shower. Worth the extra charge for sure! The room is a bit smaller than Celebrity Ships I've been on ... Read More
This is a beautiful ship. We had a mini suite and thought the bathroom was great. It had a huge double sink with 2 faucets and a big shower. Worth the extra charge for sure! The room is a bit smaller than Celebrity Ships I've been on width wise but same length. Nice room. Ample storage for clothes. The only thing I'd recommend is bring a light of some sort for the bathroom otherwise you have to turn the overhead light on during the night. We thought the food was pretty good on the ship. We did speciality dining 6 of the 7 nights and thought the food and service were really good. Ate one night in Taste, the regular dining room and thought the food was pretty good there too. We did breakfast almost every morning at either Taste or Savor and thought they were great. Service was good too. The ship is easy to navigate. Sometimes elevators are a bit full but another one comes along fairly quickly. Thought embarkation and debarkation were very easy. Everyone on the ship always has a smile and really tries hard to make your experience a good one. The Observation lounge is a great place to hang out plus they serve food all day long and there is a bar if you want a drink. As the week went along, more people found this treasure. They have comfortable furniture for reading and just watching the water. Neither of us had the drink package but we did notice that with all the people that did have it, bars were open everywhere on the ship all day long. When we were on Celebrity, it was pretty hard to find a bar open during the day except at the pool. Loved the outside deck that surrounds the specialty restaurants. Great place to hang out on the couches or to take a walk or get a drink. Really nice atmosphere and great place to watch the sun rise or set. On other ships this type of deck view is blocked by the life boats. The boats are on deck 7 on the Bliss a deck below Deck 8 where the specialty restaurants are. The ship definitely has places to view the water all the time; something that was lacking on Royal Caribbean's mega ships. On that ship, I felt like I was floating on an island where I rarely saw the water. NCL knows how to bring the ocean into the cruise experience especially when you eat outside at the specialty restaurants. Now here are my cons about the ship. The pool area is crowded and the music is SO LOUD it literally hurt my ears. I was surprised parents let their little ones hang out there...it was deafening. Actually we found the music was too loud almost everywhere. Couldn't hear the words to the music when bands played. Only the instruments. Love the adult solarium on Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. NCL has a small adult area with chairs and a bar. The only problem is there is no shade even with 3 or 4 small umbrella's. Too bad cause that would have been great. Now for the shows. I liked Jersey boys although its a shorter version of the Broadway production. I left 15 minutes into Havanna. I couldn't get into it. Saw the comedienne's. Hard to get into The Social Club so appreciated the show that happened in the theater one time during the week. Liked the Beatle's tribute although again the music was so loud in a tiny venue. I missed a regular show that you could catch at either 7:30 or 9:30 on Celebrity ships. You always had to make reservations for the shows and they didn't always coincide with the times booked before you get on the ship at the specialty restaurants. Lots of stuff happened in the atrium. It's way too small for the purpose it serves for some of the shows there like the Newlywed game. People were everywhere with no seats. The theater would be a better choice for that and later in the night. The cruise director tried to make it sort of risqué yet there were young kids around cause it was pretty early. Overall, its a great ship that is staffed well. Like I mentioned earlier, the staff is always smiling and trying to make your experience a good one. I would like to see the music at a decibel that doesn't bust your eardrums and make your ears ring along with a show you could see every night with a 7:30-8:30 reservation. (Most shows were in the Atrium then) There is something for every age on this ship for sure!!!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
The embarkation and disembarkation process was very organized and smooth with the exception of the computers going down for a short time during disembarkation, but it was fixed quickly. The ship is easy to get around on, the cabins are a ... Read More
The embarkation and disembarkation process was very organized and smooth with the exception of the computers going down for a short time during disembarkation, but it was fixed quickly. The ship is easy to get around on, the cabins are a little small but they worked for us once we got everything unpacked and put away. There was plenty of dining choices to make so we did not have to eat at the same place every night if we did not want to. The entertainment package go quickly so make sure you sign up quickly if you want to go, otherwise you will miss out. There are plenty of other activities to keep you busy, however the race track and the laser tag also fill up quickly so keep that in mind as well, check out the art gallery and auctions they are interesting, the game shows and other entertainment in the Atrium were fun to sit and watch or participate in. The service was impeccable could not have asked for better service from everyone than what we got, everyone was so helpful always. The elevator can be a little trying as they are always busy but just be patient you will get one. We did excursions in all the ports of call and were not disappointed beautiful and the tour guides were very knowledgeable. We will absolutely go again we are even talking about when and where to now and we have only been home a day. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My husband is disabled. Stroke at 56 years. He was 1 year post stroke. We were on the bliss with stateroom in the haven. Everything and I mean everything was awesome. The butler, steward—amazing room awesome, the restaurant had amazing ... Read More
My husband is disabled. Stroke at 56 years. He was 1 year post stroke. We were on the bliss with stateroom in the haven. Everything and I mean everything was awesome. The butler, steward—amazing room awesome, the restaurant had amazing food. The luxury and privacy amazing....they were always helping hold doors for us etc. we rented a w/c and shower chair and the service for that was excellent. I ordered shrimp, cookies, the b—bon voyage package, and it was all in the room and wonderful. With the haven easier boarding etc. I recommend it. Well worth the price. Want to go again as soon as possible Saw Havana, jersey boys and the cavern-Beatles show, so good I can’t even tell you. So much fun. So talented performers. Stunning cabin, ocean views from living room and bathroom, loved showering with a dazzling ocean view, also they had a great deal on laundry services, daily snacks in the rooms in the haven, also snacks in the haven observation room. So comfy my husband napped I’m the sofa while I enjoyed the stunning view Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
New ship. New look. Great time everything was easily assessable. Food was to die for something for everyone. Drinks were everywhere Could use more somking areas. Will be looking for another Norwegian Cruise to Alaska. Our Steward ... Read More
New ship. New look. Great time everything was easily assessable. Food was to die for something for everyone. Drinks were everywhere Could use more somking areas. Will be looking for another Norwegian Cruise to Alaska. Our Steward took great care of us. Even the Birthday cake and decorations for my wife was welcome. I think I gained 10 pounds!!!!! I will have to go back and try to lose it!!! Hardly no waiting lines for dinners. Restaurants were all very abliging. Took very good care of us. The Japanese Steakhouse provided great entertainment The Steakhouse steak didn’t need a knife to cut with. The Seafood restaurant had scallops that were out of this world. And I didn’t find any deserts I didn’t like The Casino was my favorite place was a winner and a player of tournaments. Lots of entertainment. All of the bartenders worked hard to keep you happy. Tried many new drinks that I never heard of. Didn’t find any I didn’t like. Lol Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We are a family with young children (ages 6 and 12). My son (age 12) is special needs and we were booked in a HA stateroom (5136). This is our 15th cruise, our first time with NCL! We have mainly sailed with Disney and have done a few ... Read More
We are a family with young children (ages 6 and 12). My son (age 12) is special needs and we were booked in a HA stateroom (5136). This is our 15th cruise, our first time with NCL! We have mainly sailed with Disney and have done a few cruises with RCCL and Carnival. Embarkation/Disembarkation - We arrived at the port around 1 pm and because our son is special needs and is in a wheelchair, we were attended to and take care of quite well. Both embarkation and disembarkation was a breeze for us. Cabin - for an HA room that fits 4, you only have ONE cabin choice onboard the Bliss - a family oceanview stateroom. The room was very spacious and had lots of storage space. Beds were comfortable and our stateroom host was very attentive and friendly. This room is by the service/crew elevator and there are a lot of noise coming from that area. In general, noises here and there do NOT bother us but I can see how it can be an issue to others who are more sensitive to sound. Entertainment - Only saw Jersey Boys and it was PHENOMENAL!!! Do not take young children to this show as it is not exactly kid friendly (due to language). The cast was outstanding and amazingly talented. It's a must see in my opinion. Live bands onboard were also very very good. We enjoyed hanging out at the atrium or at The Local listening to them perform. Kids Club - my daughter (age 6) loved and enjoyed her time at the Splash Academy. She went almost every day - an hour or two during the day/night. Counselors were very friendly and the activities were fun and enticing. Specialty Dining - we had a 3 meal package and dined at Cagney's, Teppanyaki, and Los Lobos - all were EXCELLENT!!! Food was great, service was great, everything was well prepared and everyone went above and beyond. Definitely one of the highlights of our cruise! Cruise Staff - 90% were friendly, helpful, and had smiles on their faces willing to help and assist you. Out of the 15 cruises we've done, I would rank this as the 2nd most friendly staffed ship. We had a person or two here and there that never said hi but then again, you will always have that on ANY cruise you go on. For the most part, the staff was fabulous. Laser Tag/Go Kart - AWESOME!!! If you really stop to think that you are doing these activities ON A SHIP, in the MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN - that in itself is AMAZING! While $9.95 isn't necessarily a lot of money to charge to experience it, I'm a bit disappointed that NCL decided to even charge at all. We don't pay to go ice skating, rock climbing, zip lining on any of RCCLs ships nor does Carnival charge to go on their Sky Ride. I just feel that these should have been complimentary. Arcade - we purchased the unlimited arcade pass for 1 person. I believe it was $56 total for 7 days if purchased prior to the cruise and it was WELL WORTH IT!!! Although only valid to use on games with a GREEN slot, my daughter took advantage and played Mario Kart (by The Local) at least 25 times every day. Racing games, basketball, air hockey, and shooting games in the Arcade are also eligible under the unlimited pass (all are coded GREEN). Now let's get on the CONS.... 1. FAMILY pool (right next to the kids splash area) is 5 feet 7 inches deep! You will rarely see anyone in that pool for the simple reason that NOBODY wants to RELAX in the pool by TREADING WATER! Why NCL did not put a shallow area in that pools is crazy to me. Most people would like to take a dip in the pool and be able to stand up in it while enjoying a drink and soaking in the sun. No one wants to be treading water while trying to sip a cocktail. 2. Big screen TV by the pool - plays NCL commercials 90% of the time. On the last night of the cruise, they did play ONE movie. Why not play a movie on the screen multiple times a day?! Having NCL commercials on that big screen majority of the time is such a waste in my opinion. 3. This is our biggest complaint of all - the ELEVATORS!!! Our room was on deck 5, the buffet and pool deck (which we often go to) are both on deck 16. The climb up or down from 5 to 16 and vice versa would often take FOREVER. The elevator would practically stop at every floor!!! The elevators are always crowded and full of people!!!! There is NO A/C in the elevators so you are there cramped and sweating. This was the top complaint among majority of cruisers in our sailing. Everyone was talking about the elevators! OVERALL... Yes, we would sail on NCL again. Yes, we would sail on the Bliss again. The ship is beautiful and though I am not so much into art, I was really intrigued and quite fascinated by the art displayed onboard - cool and very unique!!! Feel free to ask any questions, I'd be happy to answer them for you =) Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Prior to the ship being built , I booked. I followed this vessel for months and read countless posts and reviews-this is unadulterated. I wish I continued on the next 8 day sailing! The embarkation in Vancouver was sketchy-but it was ... Read More
Prior to the ship being built , I booked. I followed this vessel for months and read countless posts and reviews-this is unadulterated. I wish I continued on the next 8 day sailing! The embarkation in Vancouver was sketchy-but it was their first time with the Bliss. From the moment we boarded it was special. Our cabin (13844-balcony mid) was awesome and clean. The Garden Café fantastic-no problems with food or seating as prior reviews stated. Met a great gang at Spice H2O and we gelled (smoking section)...so I missed all other meet and greets. La Cucina was fabulous/Cagneys was good/ Le Bistro awesome...Savor and Taste great...didn't care for the Local.Mario and team at Spice H2O did a great job at bartending and providing exceptional service. Jersey Boys good, ample theatre. The Beatles show awesome! The Casino was also great-wish more machines but they played nicely!!! the waiters and waitresses were phenominal, food exceptional, drinks great, our cabin steward was so so...do the racing experience! I wish they get rid of Margaritaville-it was dead space. Elevators were also fast-not as many reviews stated. What I realized is that you cant please everyone....many passengers would try to cut lines, complain about trivial things, not respect the staff...it is sad. I met many seasoned cruisers who loved this experience for a larger ship I believe I got hung up with many posts and prior reviews but this was exceptional! If staying in Vancouver-Sutton Place is phenominal! Victoria a nice stop, San Francisco was good-did the Hop On Hop Off and not disappointed-only disappointment was the behavior of a few folks who wouldn't disembark for customs and the behavior of the mob to get back on! The only other thing I can say-the karaoke was dull and machine wasn't good....met many nice new friends from all over! Many friendly people! A few that should have stayed home! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
1. when NCL Bliss came to Seattle, we were expecting Epic kind of service or amenities. But the Bliss was way worse than what we were expected. we paid $9000 for 4 of us in same room, the room doesn't have enough closet space or ... Read More
1. when NCL Bliss came to Seattle, we were expecting Epic kind of service or amenities. But the Bliss was way worse than what we were expected. we paid $9000 for 4 of us in same room, the room doesn't have enough closet space or drawers for our close, have to 2 of us has to use our luggage, placing at the middle of the room. 2. can you imagine the Specialty Restaurant served the exact same dish as regular Main Dining Room? ( in this case is La Bistro & Manhattan), it's a rip off. we were on Heaven Category so we got to dine at Heaven Restaurant but the quality was not as good as before, NCL used to serve special meals for each destination like Mediterranean Cruise with Seafood, Alaska Cruise with King crab leg, but with the Bliss none of those (even with Pearl, they don't serve it any more) and the selections are getting scares ..... 3. the dining room hours are so limited you have to rush yourself......... otherwise you end up eating in your tiny room....... the Concierge wasn't helpful unless you pile up the green notes upfront....... very realistic. I do give extra tips for those who worked behind the scene, wait staffs or housekeeper daily...... they are hard workers and were almost at the point being abused by NCL the Only reason I chose NCL is because of my MOM, who is wheelchair-bound, I like the free style..... but the Bliss isn't made for , or accommodated for Handicapped persons. Showroom alone is not made for one...... the wheelchair area were not made for watching the show unless you are really tall, my Mon can sit there but can only watch the wall in front of her..... the rest of the handicapped seats are those 2 rows down the stairs and only have one opening out........ not recommended..... One more thing, you have to check your bill diligently or NCL tend to over charge you unless you complaine. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Low discount no single supplement, last minute cruise. Issue one: I walk with the aid of a cane, in the garden cafe out could take me three trips to get every thing I neefed. Multiple times the zombie bussers would clear my table before ... Read More
Low discount no single supplement, last minute cruise. Issue one: I walk with the aid of a cane, in the garden cafe out could take me three trips to get every thing I neefed. Multiple times the zombie bussers would clear my table before I even had time to start eating, clearly a fresh plate. Chair tipped up indicating table in use, and most times in the disabled section where you would think they would know a passenger might need more time. I complained about this to the section supervisor over and over, no resolution. The bussers acted like robots. By the time i got my coffee my food was gone, or cold. By the way coffee was so hot I got a third degree burn carrying my cup back to my table only to find my food gone. Quite the blister from coffee so hot thst it heated the cup to the point of burning me in a 50 foot walk. Non disabled passengers loved to use disabled sections. Bussers and crew were not proactive in offering help. Only twice did I see them bring coffee around. Garden cafe is way too large. Disabled sections far from hot food. All in all the food was horrible. I tried table service in Savor for breakfast, very slow to get a waiter, more wait then pancakes that were colder then the butter, egges that were cold, dab of cold potato, cold toast Bottom line I cook much better then the ships cooks. The Local with is short menu did okay, to good. I ate there often. I did not eat at the specialty venues as my last years trip with NCL the speciality venues were marginal. I never knew who my room steward/stewardess was,, it seemed like deck five was the junior level workers, by night six, cabin service went sideways, things left un done. I did get a wheel chair embarking, but no help getting off. The crew that did the wheel chair wad only one tipped. Automated booking for shows, all were full, I suspect people booked for every thing and times, leaving everything unavailable in the booking system. Lots of fees for things to do, bringing a nice ship down in class. I dubbed it the Hillbilly cruise line. I paid zero service charge, as there really was no human service. Unknown crew, and robots. They have deliberately sabotaged the complimentary food service in hopes of driving passengers to the pay venues. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Chose this cruise because our last NCL trip was so good. This shop was to big. Getting around was difficult and elevators hard to get on for baby stroller and senior with a walker. People were rude. All of the entertainment was booked ... Read More
Chose this cruise because our last NCL trip was so good. This shop was to big. Getting around was difficult and elevators hard to get on for baby stroller and senior with a walker. People were rude. All of the entertainment was booked up the first day but we feel we paid for something we didn't experience. Kids were very disappointed. And don't waste your money on specialty food package, it was a waste. If you want service you must tip more than the 20% they already add in. Most of the staff was great but people at service desk seemed bothered by questions. Many people didn't want kids on board and it seemed a conflict in some places to have kids. I can also see where the idea of ugly American came from, old white people can't hardly hide their disdain for foreign and minority travelers and I am an old white guy. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this boat because it is a brand new ship, started sailing just two months prior, and we loved the itinerary. The stops were great, we loved the excursions chosen, food was good, service was great, and we took full advantage of ... Read More
We chose this boat because it is a brand new ship, started sailing just two months prior, and we loved the itinerary. The stops were great, we loved the excursions chosen, food was good, service was great, and we took full advantage of the drink package. We enjoyed the shows, bands, live music, trivia, and hot tubs. I was surprised there was no lobster served in the dining room - first cruise I have been on where this was not on the menu. However, the food was food, and we would sail on this boat again. Our first stop was Ketchikan where we did off road vehicles through the woods. This was a great tour. We wish it would have been longer. It was about twenty minutes out and twenty minutes back, but it was so nice to be outside. We spotted a mother bear and two cubs which is a rarity. We felt really blessed to have seen them out in the woods. The tour guides were kind, and informative. Our second stop was Juneau where we decided to go whale watching. We chose Alaska Galore Tours because they had small boats. We were on a boat that held 15 or so along with a boat captain and tour guide. We learned so much, and saw 5-6 whales turning in the water about 15-20 times. Unfortunately, it was raining, but we still would have chosen this tour again. We were supposed to go by Sawyer Glacier, but the weather was too bad as it was very cloudy and icy. We still saw some beautiful scenery from the boat, and it was a lovely evening on the balcony. Finally, our last day was in Skagway. My husband and father-in-law went on a helicopter to walk around on the glacier. it was short, 20 minute ride out and 20 minutes back with about half an hours walking around and learning about the glacier. We would recommend. We also did the train ride up the mountain. It was informative, beautiful, and again, we would do this same tour all over again. The bands at night were great, especially the guy in the piano bar. He was funny and incredibly entertaining. My in-laws loved Jersey Boys, the broadway show. We would absolutely sail on Norwegian and on this same boat again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
This was a cruise for nine people in our party to celebrate birthdays and an anniversary. We couldn’t have picked a better cruise line or ship! What a fabulous surprise! The amenities, food and ship employees and service, as well as ... Read More
This was a cruise for nine people in our party to celebrate birthdays and an anniversary. We couldn’t have picked a better cruise line or ship! What a fabulous surprise! The amenities, food and ship employees and service, as well as the surroundings was 5 Star all the way! As this was my first cruise, I didn’t have anything to compare to but I must say I’ll probably have a much higher standard to gauge any other cruise line or ship for that matter. I was so spoiled by the service, quality of the food and things to do, that it is hard to come back to the real world! And it makes me want to go on another cruise in the next year or so. We were so well treated and I got to meet so many new people from around the world. The shows, art work, pools, food, observation deck, lounges, laser tag, go cart race track (who thinks these things up?!); whatever you wanted to experience was there. One of my most favorite things was learning about the artist who painted the ship (Wyland!); his conservation efforts, paintings and murals and watched his channel when in the stateroom every chance I could get! This man and artist is AMAZING! Amazing and so talented! My next cruise will probably be on the Bliss just because of this artist!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
I have read a few of the most recent reviews and I feel the need to defend NCL because I am hearing a lot of the same complaints I heard on the ship. Yes, there were multiple medical emergencies, that's what happens when the average ... Read More
I have read a few of the most recent reviews and I feel the need to defend NCL because I am hearing a lot of the same complaints I heard on the ship. Yes, there were multiple medical emergencies, that's what happens when the average demographic is 74 years old. There were a couple medical evacuations people never even knew about, that is called HIPPA and a person's right to privacy. The Captain had to make a tough call when the coast guard did not answer distress calls, nor was a medical evacuation possible for a young woman who walked on the boat healthy and fell deathly ill from an infection that later took her life. If that was my loved one, I pray they would make the same choice and I am comforted that they chose trying to save a human life over make a popular decision. I realize there were a lot of disappointed passengers, but please take comfort in knowing that collectively we did everything possible to help save a human life. Now, for my review... Getting to the ship from the airpot in Seattle, the $20 NCL shuttle was easy. They took my luggage right from the baggage claim and the next time I saw it was outside my stateroom door at 6:30pm. An Uber would have been about $40 for a solo traveler, so it saved me money. Check in was easy and I was early, so I enjoyed the Seattle Pike Place Market before returning to the ship for embarkation at 11:30am. I would recommend going straight to the observation lounge if you're like me and need to charge your phone. There are hidden charging ports in the lamps. Comfortable seating and really good food (salmon chowder) were calling my name on day one while the Garden Cafe was over run with people. You are allowed in your rooms after 1:30. I booked my room last minute, no solo supplement for a really great price ($499) with an inside guarantee and was assigned a handicapped accessible inside state room. The room was really spacious and would be great for a person in a wheelchair. I am guessing it to be 200 square feet, the only problem for me was that I confused the lights with the automatic door opener and would accidentally open the door while standing in my underwear. I'm guessing I would have figured it out eventually, but I had a request to change rooms due to a handicapped passenger needing the room. I was asked very graciously and politely, since I'd already shown the neighbors more of me than I cared to, I voluntarily gave it up. Linda, the accessibility coordinator told me that at 24 into the cruise, there were no longer any larger rooms available for an upgrade, but she offered me either a studio or inside cabin plus a $200 on board credit. I happily accepted the studio cabin since I was solo and wanted to have access to the solo lounge. I had a really hard time finding my interior room on deck 13, I felt like I was in a maize, once I switched to room 12517 in the Solo Studio, I never had trouble finding my room again. This brings me to NCL's Solo Cruiser Program. I am so impressed with this program. The Solo Host, Jose Jaramilla, went above and beyond in assisting every solo cruiser whether you were in the solo studios, or not. I met him the at the first meet and greet in the Mojito Bar on the first day and he brought everyone back to the solo lounge and explained the program. An itinerary with show dates and times was provided where selected seating had been reserved for the solo cruisers to sit as a group. It was in the far lower right corner, but at least you weren't sitting by yourself. You could sign up for one or all of the activities and there were daily meetings followed by dinner for those that wished to eat with the group. What a wide variety of ages, 22-75, ethnicities, and personality types. From the introvert to the extrovert, there is something for everyone. Jose did a great job ensuring everyone had a great time. For solo cruising, NCL has my vote 100%. Jose is also seen during many of the game shows and theme parties, which were pretty low key with the generally older demographic, but he is hilarious. The solo cabin itself it small, 99 square feet with less than a full size bed, but it's well designed. The shower and the toilet feel more like you are in a rocket or coffin, so I was really wishing I'd shaved my legs in that handicapped accessible bathroom. There is a virtual window and you do have access to the solo lounge where there is an espresso machine, ice water, fruit, orange juice, and pastries always available. It was very easy to meet other solo cruisers in the lounge which was a huge perk. It was like a little ship in the ship. I did not get in on a free at sea with the super low rate, so instead I brought on two bottles of wine and paid the $15/bottle corking fee. This was enough alcohol for me and the bar tenders were quite pleasant and entertaining even though I wasn't ordering a bunch of alcohol. They seem to keep up with demand and for those that couldn't get drinks fast enough, I would recommend some of the quieter bars like the whiskey bar, wine bar, mojito bar (love Black Cowboy), or the bar in the observation lounge. The atrium bar was always busy, but I thought the guys were great. I loved the adults only Spice H2O for the hot tub to watch the sunset, although it could have been a bit hotter. It was a chilly sprint out and to the heated hallway. It was too chilly for the pool for me, but I did lay out one day and watch festivities. Freestyle dining was made easy, I was always seated quickly with my group and ate in the complementary restaurants except for Cagney's one night and Sushi at Food Republic. I enjoyed the lighter lunch food in the observation lounge, it seemed a little more on the gourmet side. The Garden Cafe was OK, I always seemed to catch the half hour between breakfast and lunch when there was really no food. Kids and adults who love ice cream will be happy, there were numerous Ice Cream Stations, both hard and soft serve, although I'm not positive about the hours. The food in the Main Dining Rooms was good, but not great. If I didn't know any better, I would be more impressed. There was no lobster, not even at Cagney's, salmon the first night and that was fabulous, but I did not catch it on the menu again. I was a little disappointed being it was an Alaskan Cruise. It seems NCL has taken money out of fine cuisine and put it into entertainment as the meals consisted of less expensive cuts of meat, fish and pasta. They were all well prepared and presentation was beautiful, but budget cuts were noticeable for an experienced cruiser. I heard the Q really stands out, but who wants to pay $25 extra for what you used to get for free? The sushi at The Food Republic is amazing and well worth it for about $8/roll. Nolan, the head chef is fantastic and ensures his customers are satisfied with his creations. The Local had Pub-Style food and a nice made-to-order omelet for breakfast with a very friendly staff. Shows and Entertainment...The Jersey Boys is a must see production, as good as a Broadway Show. Havana was very well choreographed. I had hoped to see a comedy show, but lines we long and there was standing room only. The game shows were entertaining as usual, the night life was pretty mild due to the advanced age demographic. I had a great time and feel the crew was vey friendly and courteous. The Social was open late for dancing and as a solo lady, it was an added benefit that not only one, but a male and female security guard would walk you back to your cabin upon request. I felt very safe on and off the ship at all times. Juneau...For those that like to save money, you can take the city bus to the Mendenhall Glacier for $2 instead of $45 for the express bus. It drops you off 1.5 miles away, but it is a beautiful paved trail and I saw a Momma bear and two cubs along the way (escorted by park rangers). I will be going again at least once, if not more. I need to bring my kids to show them the beauty on this side of the country, I am awe struck. Getting off the Bliss proves to be the biggest challenge. If you are in a rush to get off the boat to catch a flight, do the express walk off as early as you can. Otherwise, plan on it taking 1-2 hours to get off the boat from the time you get off the elevator. If you are traveling with anyone that may need any medical assistance or not tolerate standing in a circulating line for that period of time, get them a wheelchair assisted disembarkation. I hope they work the kinks out of disembarkation before they get to Miami for my next venture on the Bliss. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Let me be transparent, I didn't know whether to trust Cruise Critic. I even searched Google and Reddit to see others' experiences on whether this was even a legit website. This is not one of those puff piece reviews. This is a ... Read More
Let me be transparent, I didn't know whether to trust Cruise Critic. I even searched Google and Reddit to see others' experiences on whether this was even a legit website. This is not one of those puff piece reviews. This is a real review written by a guy who went on his first cruise with no set expectations. So here's the story: If Spirit Airlines ran a cruise ship, it would be the Norwegian Bliss. You get nickeled and dimed for literally everything. Want to play laser tag? That'll cost you. Go carts? That will cost you. Bowl in the mini bowling alley that we never saw/heard about until disembarking at the end? That will cost you. Honestly surprised the hot tubs and pool didn't cost you. The cabin was super small. My in-laws her cruised earlier this year with Carnival and said their stateroom was double the size of these. Technology is great, but when you need to leave your room key card in a slot by the main door to get any of the lights to come on, you've gone too far. Our cabin steward was unattentive at best. My wife requested additional pillows and towels multiple times. One day he took away our extra pillow. Never did show up with the towel, so we had to grab one off the maintenance cart. And they wanted $14.95 per person per day as a room service fee to pay him to do his job! If you get bad service, go to guest services to dispute this. You can only do it Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday. Otherwise you're stuck with it. For a family of 4 this would get pretty pricey. There isn't much to do onboard this ship. If you're there to get the ultimate drink package, have a blast, you'll enjoy this. If you are there to gamble, the casinos are right in the middle of the main decks, including a room for smokers that drifts into the main deck area. Wife has asthma, we tried to avoid but it was right in the middle of the ship (floors 6-8 middle). Jersey Boys was well done, but Havana was terrible - seemed like Havana cast was not synced up. So shows came out average. Theater seating also poor. Such a low grade as the seats go from balcony to the floor that you were almost assured to have someone's head in front of you, leaving you with an obstructed view. Especially if you sat in the handicapped section. Food wasn't great. I actually stopped eating onboard mid-cruise because the repetition of the food quit agreeing with me. Lunches don't change in the dining rooms, and the buffets are self-serve, rather than staff serve like at an all inclusive resort. Great opportunity to spread germs. Specialty restaurants were meh. Cagneys was overrated, porterhouse had a funny aftertaste. Old Fashioned they brought me was WAY too sweet, tasted like syrup. Never ordered another cocktail. Craft beer bar The District had disinterested bartenders. Even beers I knew didn't taste exactly right, Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA tasted watered down. Not sure how often the tap/lines got cleaned. Excursions were ok, but in talking with some folks I met onboard many of them found them cheaper by just signing up in town. One family did the dogsled experience in Skagway for $75/person CHEAPER than if they had booked through the cruise line. We also did not get nearly enough time in the ports. 5-6 hours most places. In the time it took to get an elevator (elderly in-laws and wife with asthma), there wasn't really enough time to truly explore these towns and excursions. Disembarking was a clusterf*ck. All week they hype Port Valet to transfer your bags directly from the ship to the airport. The airlines will even waive baggage fees. Wife and I asked 3 different people at guest service about this and got 3 completely different answers. None of those answers stated that you have to leave Saturday when you get back to Seattle. We were to leave Sunday, so apparently we didn't qualify. They waited until after we left the ship in Victoria the night before we got back to Seattle to inform us of this. It ultimately cost us about 7 hours of our time, waiting an hour and a half extra to disembark, getting to the hotel, renting a car, and then coming back to downtown, not to mention the extra time in the lines at the airport the next day. Guest services needs to get their story together. As I mentioned earlier, wife and I got different answers for same question when we talked to multiple people there (you start questioning it after it happens once). When my mother-in-law went down to question some items on her bill, the guest services girl called her a liar when MIL stated she had paid for gratuity and excursions up front. Terrible customer service experience with them. I spoke with at least 2 dozen people at random on this cruise through happenstance meetings. The overwhelming majority took this cruise because it was a new ship. They were disappointed like me. Many had children and remarked that there isn't a kid's club or daycare like some other ships offer. The other reviews hit this spot on. Kids are running wild all over this ship, no parental control in sight. Basically parents expected the crew to entertain their kids without nearly enough for children to do. Note for those who are handicapped or elderly. Hallways are very narrow outside staterooms, difficult for my mother in law to get her walker through them. Also, the gangway ramps in Skagway and Juneau, and even portions of Seattle were too steep. Who does this cruise line think takes cruises? Senior adults need better care and more options to disembark at ports with this cruise line. Thanks for taking the time to read. You work hard for the money you do have, or if you're paying for family to cruise together, you want the best experience for them. My advice, look elsewhere. Every person who told me they took this cruise because of the ship being new said in the next breath they wished they had done this with Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Norwegian Bliss Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.5 4.1
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.8
Family 3.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.5 4.1
Value For Money 3.5 3.5

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