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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Am 70, fairly fit, travelled with fit wife, both do not eat meat. Prefer quality over quantity. Have cruised many times before, but first time on NCL. Balcony on 10th floor. NCL has a culture problem in that do NOT pay attention ... Read More
Am 70, fairly fit, travelled with fit wife, both do not eat meat. Prefer quality over quantity. Have cruised many times before, but first time on NCL. Balcony on 10th floor. NCL has a culture problem in that do NOT pay attention to details with both admin, food and service being second rate. Most staff were either poorly trained or poorly supervised/managed Examples When booked was given 5 free offers. Letter in room said we only had 3, went to reception said ignore letter and that we had 7 “freebies” Cabin size small, especially toilet and shower, toilet paper cheap and nasty Went to freebie French restaurant( freebie offer of 2 nights free eating) on entering the restaurant had to wait 10 minutes for a waiter, although there was only 1 other table occupied. Observed a server walking along carrying plates and coughing without covering his mouth, restaurant manager ignored the coughed. Ordered appetisers, which were extremely poor, and not eaten, then walked out. Manager did not ask if we enjoyed the food or why we were leaving. At breakfast for first few days, overeasy eggs were served hard and poached eggs just warm on soggy bread and were left uneaten, no questions asked by wait staff. Rest of cruise ate cereal and toast. Ate dinner in main dining room. For the first time ever I sent 5 dishes back to kitchen, white fish over cooked to dry, and other dishes served just warm. Last 3 nights ordered mashed potato and broccoli as main meal. The NCL fish “speciality” is a frozen crumbed fillet of ? However night wait staff were excellent as were desserts. Buffet meals were poor and had the quality of a $7.99 all you can eat place. The entertainment except for last night was poor, 2 nights of magic a ballroom dancer night, a classical pianist etc, on other cruises these acts would be in the atrium The crowning disaster of this cruise was it’s engine failed, meaning we missed three ports and terminated at Barcelona rather than Rome. Communication to passengers was a shambles, however Ncl provided $300 per person in air fares and 50% refund in cash and 50% in credits for future cruises, not that I would ever travel with them again. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
First of all the staff on the ship was amazing. This review is solely to the Management of the Pearl. My wife and I planned for months for our honeymoon to Europe that was ruined by Norwegian. The ship set sail from Amsterdam and ... Read More
First of all the staff on the ship was amazing. This review is solely to the Management of the Pearl. My wife and I planned for months for our honeymoon to Europe that was ruined by Norwegian. The ship set sail from Amsterdam and everything seemed great. We sailed for 8 days and stopped at 6 amazing ports. It was on the 9th day that the cruise went downhill very fast. An hour before arriving at Palma de Mallorco the captain came over the speaker and said there was engine problems and we would be going straight to Barcelona. This meant another day at sea that was not planned. We arrive in Barcelona at 10 pm and are allowed off the ship to "explore" even though the port is several miles from town. The next day we were told that instead of sailing at 5 pm we would be sailing at 8 pm to Monte Carlo. After 8 pm passed we were now told that the ship was would sailing to Livorno at 6 am the following day. After waking up that morning and still being at port we know something was very wrong. Meanwhile all over the internet there were articles about how the ship we were on had already canceled the next cruise. After waking up going to the front desk we were still told they were "ready to sail" and the ship was just waiting on clearance from the port. But, now we would be going straight to Rome. This means missing 4 ports. At this point I went on the internet and booked the first flight I could from Barcelona to Rome. We were finally given a letter later that morning saying the ship would not leave port and to find our own way back home. After being lied to for 4 days about every thing that was going on we were beyond ready to just get off the boat. We were also told that they would compensate our flights up to $300, what a JOKE! When i returned home and submitted the airline tickets an automated message said I would receive a response in 28 days. The way the management handled the situation was a joke. Instead of just telling the passengers the truth, they lied and lied to keep us on the ship. Us being on the ship meant more gambling, more drinking, more listening to the band play the same 5 songs over and over. It was just more money in their pockets and they didn't have to deal with over 2000 angry passengers. I will NEVER cruise with Norwegian again! Not because the ship broke down, because I understand that things do happen. Because, we were lied to for days and were basically told get off the ship and deal with it. The food on the ship was mediocre at best. The only thing was decent was the wings and nachos. The entertainment was rather boring. If you enjoy listening to the same 3 bands play the same 5 songs over and over than this is the perfect cruise for you. Everything on the ship cost extra! You would think paying this much for a cruise that some of the activities would be included but I was wrong. As for our balcony state room, it was very clean and modern. The bed was comfortable and our house keeper was very attentive. The shore excursions were organized but very expensive. We learned it was way cheaper to book the exact same excursion on our own that thru the ship. Also, some of the excursions didn't start till 2 after we were already docked at the port which meant 2 hours wasted. I would NOT recommend for anyone to sail with Norwegian! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
You know how you really look forward to something, I mean, you get excited... You spend a bundle, prepare, hype it up... Well, don’t do that if you are taking a Norwegian Cruise. They don’t care about you, and if you have problems and ... Read More
You know how you really look forward to something, I mean, you get excited... You spend a bundle, prepare, hype it up... Well, don’t do that if you are taking a Norwegian Cruise. They don’t care about you, and if you have problems and try to contact them...they’ll ignore you. They’ve ignored me. They ruined the trip of a lifetime, and didn’t even care enough to answer my numerous contacts to guest relations. Sadly, the ship failed me. We missed 4 ports. The vacation was ok, until it wasn’t. It really should have been more than ok. Even before the electrical problems that stopped us in Barcelona, everything was just so-so. The room was mostly clean, the food was mostly good. The activities were nice, the bars (only had soda so cannot rate alcohol purchases) were good. Overall the ship was, like I said OK. For the money, I’d highly recommend finding something else. The food buffet was pretty good. The dining room like slightly upgraded cafeteria food. The staff members were pretty good. The entertainment staff were by far the most friendly. Activities were fun, so was Bingo. The excursions were below average, excursions taken on other cruise lines were way more comprehensive and interactive. In general, I’d recommend Carnival over Norwegian. I would never cruise Norwegian again, and sadly, my friends all agree as they’ve had their own bad experiences. Never, ever go with a company that won’t even follow up. Pure scam. Particularly since I’ve contacted guest relations twice, and have not heard a word. It shows me Norwegian cares absolutely nothing for their passengers. Do yourself a favor and avoid Norwegian like the plague. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise for just one reason, the itinerary. The ship in general is very mediocre. The food in the main dining room, and buffet were on par with my company's cafeteria. The only difference was that this buffet had a few ... Read More
We chose this cruise for just one reason, the itinerary. The ship in general is very mediocre. The food in the main dining room, and buffet were on par with my company's cafeteria. The only difference was that this buffet had a few more choices. The hamburgers were precooked, tasteless and dry. You could get a better one at Burger King. On other ships we have cruised on we were tired of lobster by about the third day. We were on this ship for 11 days and could not buy a lobster in even the specialty restaurants. The cabin was nice, but we had to pay a substantial upgrade to get a room similar to what was standard on other ships we have sailed on. On a positive note the entertainment was good, and the entire staff was polite at all times. Under normal circumstances I would give this ship a C rating. Due to the mechanical problems that left us stranded in Barcelona, and forced us to miss three of the scheduled ports I will give it and F. I will be very surprised if NCL will make me whole on the 36,000 extra Frequent Flier miles I had to use in order to change my flight departing from Barcelona instead of Rome because the ship could not make it there. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
As this time, probably the whole world knows about the disaster European trip provided by the Norwegian Pearl . However, I wanted to point that I consider that all the blame should be taken by the Norwegian Pearl management and/or ... Read More
As this time, probably the whole world knows about the disaster European trip provided by the Norwegian Pearl . However, I wanted to point that I consider that all the blame should be taken by the Norwegian Pearl management and/or corporate team for the way that they manage all the situation and information about the defective engine on board during this time. The did not share any information, and when they did it was inaccurate and no in timely manner. It was really hard for us as a client to make a decision since we really were getting the right information at the moment correct time. We have the impression that every piece of information was managed to avoid any confrontation with the already unhappy clients onboard. I worked at the hospitality business, I understand pretty well that at times you would need to deal with contingencies and technical issues, but the way that Customer Service team as well as the management team deal with these problems make the whole difference for the guests in house. I am very disappointment with the decision made at times for the management and how they deal with the information; then on top of that NCL corporate, decided to compensated the next cruise 100 % for their trip and the 100 % for the future cruise reservations. Meanwhile, our compensation was 50 % for the current trip and 50 % after the fact that we suffered all the inconveniences and having the bad service delivery by NCL during this trip. I would be more agree to a 50 % for the current trip and the 100 % for the future cruise as a token of their appreciation of all the troubles that we have to go thru during this experience. Please feel free to reach me out if you need more information. Today , I have trying to reach Guest Relations team from Norwegian and I have been on hold for more than an hour. I will try another day, but I have not seen any compensation so far for Norwegian Pearl bad experience. I hope that they doo Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Cruise: 13-day Italy France & Spain: The Rivieras We planned an extended family vacation. Decided to upgrade t3 mini suites and looked forward to a great and once in a lifetime cruise. The ship itself is the perfect size ship in ... Read More
Cruise: 13-day Italy France & Spain: The Rivieras We planned an extended family vacation. Decided to upgrade t3 mini suites and looked forward to a great and once in a lifetime cruise. The ship itself is the perfect size ship in my opinion, feels big, but small enough to nollt have a ton of overwhelming people. Background: - Frequent cruise family: Many cruises on NCL, Princess, Costa and Carnival PROS: - Ship is in nice condition. - Ship is a great size. - Ship is smooth at sea, smooth like butter. - Most of the cleaning staff is top notch friendly. - Most of the crew is very professional and friendly - but not all. - Entertainment was mostly Good to Excellent. A few shows were so-so - House band was pretty good. - Did I mention how smooth this ship sails? Fabulous ride! - Easy boarding and exiting the ships at all ports. - Some of our tour guides were absolutely wonderful. CONS: - Food is mediocre, dining is nothing like on Princess or Costa. Wait two hours to be served in the main dining rooms. Wait staff do not come do refills. In 10 days they have not started order with the lady at the table, every other fancy dining room on other ships have pepper and cheese guys that come to the table. Food is rarely delivered to the table hot. Mostly lukewarm, probably because the dinner takes 2 ours to serve in a half empty dining room. - Some salads came with greens actually wilted brown of old age. - Food is always just a rehash of the previous day. It gets old, fast. - Not once did I find crab or lobster on the menu. Even Carnival has this on some nights. - Trout dinner was actually a plain piece salmon. - I was given wrong menu and embarrassingly tried to order things that was not available. - 3 nights, wrong dessert was brought. - Prepaid water package was not delivered. Staff was really confused. Two days later we were billed by the bar for the pre-paid package again to our room. I spent several trips to the main desk to fix billing issues. Seems like the NCL billing system is pretty flaky... watch your bills! - Most desserts are not the real versions of desserts. Cheesecake is nothing like real cheesecake, not even the fake boxed powered cheesecake, Chocolate Lava Cake is a cold cupcake that has a little bit of chocolate drizzled on it. German Chocolate Cake is just old chocolate cake with a weird jello type topping, not like a real German Chocolate Cake. Scooped Ice Cream is excellent though! - Cheese and fruit selection is the worst I have ever seen in any ship or land buffet. Never have I seen a ship only offer the same 2 or 3 cheeses the whole time, no grapes or other fruits, maybe an apple or orange or some sort of fruit salad that is not very fresh tasting. - Never have we had the head of the restaurant, or any other of the management crew come to ask how things are. Every other cruise line asks all the time how service is, usually nightly. Our last NCL cruise was much better in this regard. - Some of the crew seems to have a do not care attitude, but most are friendly. - Some of the pool area furniture smells like urine. Maybe just a bad night to sit on the poolside couch. - Did not see much security, Frequent weed smoking on top upper deck by "young adults" - several nights in a row. Never saw any staff policing that area and I believe it is a non-smoking area. MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENTS: - Engine problem has forced skipping the two ports most passengers booked the cruise. During the white-hot dance party most people were booing on the deck. I am pretty upset at missing Monte Carlo. That was the reason I booked this trip. - Room 11500, could be one of the best values of the cabins available. BUT all night long, you are subject to what sounds like a washing machine finishing a spin cycle every 25 minutes. Just as you fall asleep, boom! It sounds like you are being flooded with water. It is coming from the deck above. ALL NIGHT LONG!! We have not had a good night sleep since we boarded. 11500 has one of the best decks ever, not windy, great forward and side view. Too bad inside is like living in a washing machine. The spa is locate above, but at 3am it should not be running like a dang washing machine. - NCL Excursions are too rushed and a waste of money and time. Paris was a bus trip where they dropped 2 miles away from the tower with only enough time to barely see one sight, our bus was in a hurry to get us back and we were back with nearly 4 hours to spare on the ship. It would have been nice to have 1 more hour in Paris. PLUS the bus guide decided not to not take us to the half of the promised sights. - Barcelona NCL Hop-on-hop-off bus tour stopped far from the major sights. We noticed that the other brands of Hop-On-Hop-Off bus brands stopped at the gates of the popular sights. Had I know this, I would have just done it myself and saved walking miles on one of the hottest days of the summer. - Longer days at ports would be nice. Most were too rushed. - Waiting for NCL excursions take about 1/2 hour too long to wait to be called. It would be nice if they were more prompt with the time called on your ticket. So for now, most of the ship is pretty mad that we are missing major ports due to whatever problem the ship has. I understand that things happen, but for this one cruise, the ports we are missing are ones that most passengers were waiting for. We will see how this finishes out in the next two days. I still think NCL could be one of the best out there, but for now I am feeling disappointment. I will give NCL benefit of the doubt for the next few days. I hope they read this and address some of the issues. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We were so excited to go on this cruise! We went on board and had a great onboard experience. That night we went to the show and it was blah... we both agreed it was because we are spoiled in San francisco with off broadway shows. ... Read More
We were so excited to go on this cruise! We went on board and had a great onboard experience. That night we went to the show and it was blah... we both agreed it was because we are spoiled in San francisco with off broadway shows. At the show- that was the first and ONLY time we saw the cruise director Pedro. He was MIA for two weeks- we “heard his voice through the ceiling” for announcements but never saw him around the ship at events or welcoming people on board. We saw the ACD Sandra during events, bingo and pool parties. We then got word that our ship was not in danger but would be slipping ports to go into Barcelona early, to fix the problem. 2 days after that we had a 745am announcement saying: your cruise is ending here and we will not be going to our ending point (Rome) and we were to find our own transportation home or to Rome. Let’s just say- LACK OF COMMUNICATION! we heard announcements around 3 times a day from that first day to Barcelona to them telling us this heartbreaking news. Ncl said that they would cover $300 travel reimbursement (which couldn’t change our flights home) but it did cover the cost to Rome... but with 2300+ passengers booking flights, they all were booked within an hour- and WiFi was shutting down! It was a —it show! We were then given a letter (an official one with a stamp and signature because the first one did not have it which didn’t make it official) staying we can use ship as hotel until Friday at noon. We stayed on the ship until 3 am Friday and got the first bus to the airport. (No organization for the shuttles for ncl and people were running over the older passengers to get on the bus). We then realized all the times we had to taxi from the terminal to Barcelona main square took all are Euros! We didn’t spend frivolously at all- but Barcelona but transportation was expensive ! Still never saw the cruise director :/ Front of house organization was nowhere. Guest service answers were “we will make an announcement when we know”... guess what- I got a spa appointment on the first day in Barcelona and that person told me we would be in Barcelona for at least two nights SO the crew knew more that what we were told! 1) yes grateful we were in Barcelona and not at Sea... but the information upfront would have been appreciated 2) refund was already issued but the alcohol package was still fully charged (including those gratuities) 3) WHEN IN SPAIN PORT IF TOU GET ALCOHOL NCL CHARGES AN EXTRA TAX- even on top of alcohol package. 4) a few staff members that did make end of trip tolerable under circumstances: Aditya in indigo dining he impressed us from night 1 and we requested his table daily. Sandra ACD who was more of the face of the Pearl than the actual CD 5) will we cruise again on NCL? We will stay domestic and use our 50% off and see if the service and entertainment is better. After that cruise we will decide if we will ever do NCL again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Our bucket list cruise did turn out to be a "Cruise of a lifetime", but, not in the way we hoped. Arrived 3 days early in Amsterdam and had a wonderful time exploring that city. Embarkation was a breeze and we were delighted ... Read More
Our bucket list cruise did turn out to be a "Cruise of a lifetime", but, not in the way we hoped. Arrived 3 days early in Amsterdam and had a wonderful time exploring that city. Embarkation was a breeze and we were delighted with the cabin (11134), initially. Evenings were interrupted by folks playing basketball dspite the sign stating activities were to end at 5 PM. So easy to fix, just put the balls away! Dinner the first evening in the Summer Palace proved to be on par with an Applebee's. Formality of service proved to be nonexistent, quality of food was mediocre. Exploration of other options proved more fruitful, specifically, Indigo and Cagney's with formally trained servers. The entertainment, overall, was quite good. There wa an acrobat male and female team that were incredible. The ships crew of singers and dancers were on par with other cruises. Their "Legends" show was outstanding. Activities were spotty, poorly timed and some never happened. Service was subpar compared to other cruise experiences. Having numerous mishaps it appears that communication is their biggest pitfall. All mishaps (but one) were rectified, but, only after having to be (begrudgingly) a squeaky wheel. This was a repositioning cruise that came up short as one of the ships engines experienced problems that were not rectified. Our cruise ended 2 ports early and missed another enroute. This was my first Norwegian cruise and will be my last. Poor communication, training and management failing to manage seems to be the primary problem. Yes, a cruise of a lifetime and one that will never be forgotten. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Sad to say that it was the problematic PEARL. Rumors of previous problems; and true to form this boat died and we were left stranded on our own about 2/3 thru cruise. Attempts to continue along the Med coastline was cancelled.. This was a ... Read More
Sad to say that it was the problematic PEARL. Rumors of previous problems; and true to form this boat died and we were left stranded on our own about 2/3 thru cruise. Attempts to continue along the Med coastline was cancelled.. This was a 2week cruise covering a lot of ports, thus the reason to book it. Food was very good. Specialty options are well worth the extra money and highly recommend. Free style cruising is an understatement. If you think dressing up for dinner is tough, this is for you. Unfortunate that guidelines of some decorum are ignored and not enforced. Drink prices are over inflated especially with some better known brands. Surely it is a motive to justify the drink package. Be careful on ordering a double. Some standard Drinks with a better brand can we $20 PLUS tip. Higher than NYC or Vegas pricing. Some bartenders are poor, just make the drink to an exact shot and move on. Find a good one and you will be better treated as a repeater. Steam and sauna area in Spa is a high daily charge in the spa. First I ver experienced to charge for this . Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We choose this ship due to the itinerary which was one of the few things we ended up happy with. We booked initially in Dec. Two weeks after final payment the price on our trip dropped by more than 60%. I was offered a $250 on board credit ... Read More
We choose this ship due to the itinerary which was one of the few things we ended up happy with. We booked initially in Dec. Two weeks after final payment the price on our trip dropped by more than 60%. I was offered a $250 on board credit as a consolation to the almost $7000 drop. Not ever cruising NCL prior I was baffled. I have never seen a cruise line struggle to fill cabins to the extent they created such a massive drop. That should have been our first clue! We boarded the ship and there was a massive wet brown stain on my carpet that the room steward tried to cover with the ottoman. The sheets were stained in three places and the mirror had two large handprints in the middle of it. Second clue? After calling housekeeping and front desk and to deal with the carpet I was told they would replace it in two days. Three days later they finally did. We went to La Cucina on the first night and were told my sons dining and drink packages were never paid for. They were part of our fare and had the receipt. They refused to acknowledge the receipt I had with me saying they had to make contact with the mainland. For 5 days they could apparently not make contact with the mainland and it took me having to have my husband call from the US to Orlando to have this fixed. It was their mistake. They somehow dropped it from his booking. No apologies from anyone. That seemed to be the theme throughout the cruise-we had exactly 4 crew members on the cruise that made our trip enjoyable and I will make a point to send a card to NCL about them because the rest of the crew just did not seem to care about anything. La Cucina was a huge disappointment and we barely ate our food. When the waiter picked up our plates he asked how it was and we said "honestly, not very good". He then proceeded to say OK and took our food away...never once asking how he could fix it. Their excursions are marked up beyond belief. We just were flabbergasted that they charged $199 for a Flam railroad ticket when you can walk right off (or better yet book ahead of time) for less than 1/4 of that! The only NCL excursion we did was Paris on Your Own. Our 6 hours in Paris was reduced to 2 1/2. No apologies. They really didn't care. They left over an hour after the ship cleared for no apparent reason. The ship itself is in good condition and we did enjoy and make use of the thermal suite everyday. Food, which I understand is subjective, was not at all the quality you find on Disney or Celebrity or even Royal. We struggled to find anything decent to eat most nights at dinner. You almost have to have a dining package for most nights. And even that is iffy...Cagneys and Le Bistro were good. The Mojito Bar is a bright spot. If you dare to cruise with them head there and hang out with Roberto and drown your sorrows that you didnt pick a better line. The perfect end to the cruise...the last night the sliding door in the shower fell off! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary and all the stops it had to offer. The experiences in these wonderful ports were almost ruined because of the poor customer service provided by this ship. A special mention however goes to our ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary and all the stops it had to offer. The experiences in these wonderful ports were almost ruined because of the poor customer service provided by this ship. A special mention however goes to our cabin steward, Victor, who took great care of us and Reuben's staff at the Java Café who tended exceptionally well to our every drinking need! The embarkation process in Amsterdam was the worst we've encountered in over 12 cruises, making everyone wait in a large room like a bunch of cattle. There were 5 couples in total traveling in our group; the Pearl staff offered nothing to accommodate our group especially on sea days and seemed put-out that we would ask for somewhere to hang out as a group. Food was subpar, even in the specialty restaurants. Getting off the ship at ports was poorly organized as was the process for shore excursions resulting in a chaotic mess at most stops. The worst stop by far was the Tilbury port. If not booked on a ship shore excursion there was no offer of advice or help maneuvering the area - the long lines at the shuttle bus to the train stations could have been averted if the ship offered tickets for sale as they did for other ports; the train tickets to London likewise could have been offered for presale as a service to their passengers. The Pearl did NOTHING despite, we were told, a request from the locals to provide this presale service. It took over 3 hours to get off the ship and to the train station, so any plans we had for London were abandoned. We were fortunate to grab one of London's black cabs - our driver Steve saved the day with a 2 hour tour of London and his entertaining commentary. As Platinum level rewards members, my husband and I experienced no special acknowledgement. Despite what NCL advertises, there is no concierge service and, once again, the desk services team seemed surprised/put out that we expected it. We most likely will be taking our business elsewhere for our next cruise Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Although the Pearl is not one of the larger NCL ships, we chose this cruise for the Itinerary it offered to Scotland, Norway, Ireland, France, London, Belgium and Amsterdam. Embarkation went smoothly in Amsterdam as well as the day we ... Read More
Although the Pearl is not one of the larger NCL ships, we chose this cruise for the Itinerary it offered to Scotland, Norway, Ireland, France, London, Belgium and Amsterdam. Embarkation went smoothly in Amsterdam as well as the day we ended our cruise in Amsterdam. Our ship was very clean, having been refurbished in 2017. We had a Mini Suite on Deck 11 and was pretty nice and roomy for us, considering we usually get Balcony cabins. Our cabin steward was from Indonesia. Dedy was very friendly and helpful to us the whole cruise. The entertainment was outstanding, with at least 11 different shows in the theatre of our 14 day trip. The lounges were great, and we enjoyed the Spinnaker Lounge allot. There were plenty of activities offered during the cruise. Dining and services were pretty good, although some food was not as good as others, we found plenty of venues to eat at, and we mixed it up, having eaten in 5 Specialty Restaurants and the rest in the Main Dining and O'Sheihans and Garden Buffett. Takes at least 90 minutes though. We found the whole staff of the ship very friendly and helpful. The only rudeness we noticed came from ship passengers. I think their expectations are too much and they should research a ship well before choosing a cruise and ship. All of our shore excursions were great! We especially loved our Flam and Geiranger, Norway Fjords scenery. Totally beautiful! We have sailed on the larger NCL ships, Epic and Breakaway before, and enjoyed them. But in our opinion, the Pearl was outstanding for us and we enjoyed our 14 day cruise of a lifetime. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We booked last minute, so right price, right ports and right ship Overall very impressed, but let me break it down. The entertainment was varied, highlight being FUNKY ROOTS who entertained for everyone, the shows were a mixed bag, a ... Read More
We booked last minute, so right price, right ports and right ship Overall very impressed, but let me break it down. The entertainment was varied, highlight being FUNKY ROOTS who entertained for everyone, the shows were a mixed bag, a late night comedian would of been great, also Ge Luz who played some great music in Atrium. The cabin was small, with a bunk bed taking half of the room which we did not require and toliet poory positioned, but Maria was accomodating in every way. Towels were soft and shower powerful which is not the norm. Cruise staff should be more personable than spending time dancing.. All in all, a small ship with personal service which gave us a great holiday overall. I had food poisoning one night due to buffet food left too long outside. We did not use ship shore excursions as ridicously priced and felt shuttle fees are outrageous bearing in mind we arrive and nowhere to go if you dont pay? Food and drink service was superb, in every outlet. staff had a good command of English which is rare to find on some ships and a joy to converse with. The ports were very good, always something to do if you wanted, the local towns a delight. Breakfast in restaurant closes too early and only place you can find smoked salmon? Too much paperwork handed out for daily schedule, so a free online app should be provided, not one you had to pay for. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We initially chose the cruise for the itinerary from Amsterdam which included British Isles,Norway, Normandy and Belgium. We did a combination of NCL excursions and private excursions and all met or exceeded our expectations with special ... Read More
We initially chose the cruise for the itinerary from Amsterdam which included British Isles,Norway, Normandy and Belgium. We did a combination of NCL excursions and private excursions and all met or exceeded our expectations with special note to all 3 excursions in Norway(the majestic fjords were breathtaking), the tour at Giants Causeway with Nigel of Daria ( best 6 pounds I ever spent) and excellent job of Kurt to show us the wonders of Bruge, Belgium The crew on NCL were excellent with special mention of Victor our stateroom attendant, Nikola and Monika in Magnums, Emerson the best bar tender on the high seas in the Whiskey Bar, Cary the most visible and friendliest Hotel GM I have ever experienced, Red our waiter in Summer Palace who has a good voice as well, Stephen Macha Macha wine steward and deck attendant, Cristyna and bar tenders in the Casino and so many other people in restaurants and bars. Thank you and Salamat to all. Entertainment was very good with special mention to great job by Patricia in Magnums, Funky Roots in various locales, The Pearl show singers and dancers and the presentation of Legends Dining was very good to excellent with all 4 meals in Specialty restaurants with our favourite being Cagney's . In the Summer Palace main ding room food was good to very good with our expereience being enhanced by fun and efficient service from Red and his assistant waiter. Dining room captains more attentive than what we usually see. The Buffet was good for breakfast and food good in O Sheehans with service a little uneven. We were so busy with excursions on most did not take in too many activities but did play trivia quite a bit and the activity staff were friendly. Thank you staff on NCl Pearl for a great vacation for my wife and me and our four other travel companions Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and had sailed previously on the Pearl and knew we loved this ship. We enjoyed every detail of every day onboard the Pearl! From our captains ( Captain Paul went on vacation mid cruise and Captain Gio ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and had sailed previously on the Pearl and knew we loved this ship. We enjoyed every detail of every day onboard the Pearl! From our captains ( Captain Paul went on vacation mid cruise and Captain Gio took over), General Manager (Cary Turecamo, who showed us such kindness and kept all aspects of the ship running smoothly), Jana (Group Sevice Coordinator), Alex (Concierge, who graciously helped us with so many questions), and Claudia Ungureanu (CFA, who we loved getting to know and was so generous with her kindness to us) we were taken care of so very well! We had free air travel as one of our perks and all went smoothly. We flew from JFK on Delta to Amsterdam and KLM on our trip back to the states. Both flights were smoother and we were served 2 meals, along with free wifi and current movies. We arrived at the airport Saturday morning and found a representative for our bus transfer easily. Embarkation and disembarkation were a breeze for us. The entertainment was varied for many interests. They even had local group come on board to entertain in Ireland. My favorite show, though, was the Crew Talent Show. This crew is a wonderful group of caring people and it was so fun to get to see them shine in their talents! Our food was delicious. We ate in the main dining area most nights and ate in Le Bistro and Cagneys also. For breakfast and lunch we were blessed to dine in Modernos! Oh, my! The staff there were wonderful and the food was excellent! We were spoiled! We also ate in O'sheehans and at the buffet. Needless to say, we didn't miss a meal. There's a great coffee machine on the back near the Great Outdoors dining area....freshly ground beans. Excellent regular or decaf. The Great Outdoors is the perfect place to eat with wonderful views off the back of the ship. We had a very full itinerary visiting Scotland, Ireland, N Ireland, Norway, France, England, and Belgium. We cannot decide which port was our favorite! We had wonderful weather ( a little rain off and on on one of our days in Scotland), but all other days were beautiful! Do take a rain/windbreaker. I had mine daily and used it for times that it was breezy. We saw such varied beauty in each port that it was breathtaking each day! Wonderful! Our port excursions were as follows: Edinburgh, Scotland Woke @ 5:30...upstairs to see sail in.  Tender over was nice.  Caught hoho very near port.  Easy and a rep helped us with ticket exchange. Bus at 9. Rode several stops and changed to green bus for live commentary. Fun knowledge. Beautiful day...sunny and warmer than we"d hoped. Did the route our on the bus and got off to walk Royal Mile...and find Greyfriars Bobby.bar and cemetery.  Ate at Biblia for fish & chips and soup.  Very good and cute place with good music and wifi. Shopped some then finished the route and back to ship. Tender back was a "TRIP"!!! Wavy and in a lifeboat...what a ride!!!  Rocking and rolling.  Invergordon, Scotland Off to meet Wow Scotland tour.  Nice new van holding 30? Graham..driver, Sandy was tour guide..he was wonderful.. very witty and knowledgeable.  We went to the Edinburgh castle first, with stops for talks along the walk there.  The castle was outside-only viewing but gorgeous views of city and River. Back to the bus for a trip to the Monastery...beautiful area with huge trees and gravesites. On through the highlands with beautiful green vistas of mountains, water, fields of barley for whiskey...yellow fields of canola, pastures of cows, sheep, llamas, pigs, even long haired Scotland cows (coos). Many babies...cows, sheep, swans, chickens, and sea birds.  We had cloudy skies and cold winds but everything was still breathtakingly beautiful.  A yellow Bush, that has stickers but smells like coconut, was everywhere.  Unbelievably lush rhododendron just taking over the sides of roadway ... not native but thriving and invasive. Thistle  just looks brushy, as does lavender...blooms in August but has slight purple hues, not overwhelming like photos appear.  Made it along winding country (1car) roads to Loch Ness ...it is a huge lake, can't see it all!  Didn't see Nessie but we did see rain!  It was an off and on rain all day but didn't overwhelm and we had raingear. It was never hard rain, just slight drizzle but pesky. We went to a battlefield and I didn't walk out to it since raining and very windy/cold.  I did listen to info, then shopped in gift store. Next was Clava Cairns...beautiful and interesting displays of rocks, along with great info of history and folk tales which surrounds them. Very  interesting day with unforgettable scenery! Back onboard ship by 3 to depart at 4.  We were serenaded by an 8-10 piece Highland band...bagpipes & drums.  Played until we were almost unable to see them. Wonderful send off from Invergordon!  Haugesund, Norway... Out on deck while docking.  Beautiful. Off at 11. Free shuttle into town center where we caught the city bus 210 to Skudeneshavn.  It was a beautiful 90 min ride.  We passed thru smaller towns, saw homes, fields of sheep (Rocks piled in lines to form borders between properties. Many little fishing boat hamlets.  So pretty.  Skudeneshavn was so beautiful.  Rows of white houses and buildings with shops and restaurants. All along the most beautiful seaside scenery. The sun came out and we took off jackets...not sure temps but would guess 70s. I walked a trail through a wooded rocky area and saw the Moon stone...local lore is that a meteorite fell but geologists say 800 million years old and think it washed up there with shift from the melt. Interesting. Caught bus back and had the cutest driver...very nice to us, and very professional to be so young. Back in Haugesund to shop and walk around.  Much to see and not much time but enjoyed.  Shuttle back to port at 5. Got windy and cold. Flam, Norway.. Awake 5:30...up to watch entry thru fjords to Flam..breath taking scenery. Quiet and majestic. Off by 8...very easy disembark straight to RR sta.  Stood in line to make sure but already had tickets printed via internet. The ride was great! Scenery amazing.  An hour to top with quick stop for pics of huge waterfall and dancing maiden.  Got video.  Many people got off to stay a bit...some rode bikes down.  Sun came out b4 we got to top.   On decks to see sail away.  Late again due to late passengers..2 this time.  Backing out of port no room to turn yet. Turned on a dime! Amazing! Hated to leave the outside.  Geiranger, Norway... Breakfast to wonderful views of fjord. A few passengers got off in Hellesint. Then we cruised on thru Geiranger Fjord, the longest fjord.Highest waterfalls. Outside to take pics of 7 sisters and Suitor Waterfalls.  Very breezy and cold but surreal. So quiet and majestic. Sitting for great view in Moderno area with chairs.  Nice music. Perfect. Watched Norwegian moving pier...their design.  Like a folding measurer... scissors out to boat...didn't have to dock at pier or be tendered. Great invention. Off before 11.  Beautuful sunshine..warm temps...no jacket needed and by end of day...long sleeves too warm.  No internet here...had it but never connected for us. I walked a path that went around the water and wound by a school, old folks home, church and camp ground.  Many people camping....mainly small campers and many tents. Lovely area right at base of waterfall.  I walked along to near the top of waterfall.  Beautiful, forceful and so clear. Back to shop some b4 tour at 1. Big bus that went on hairpin curves all the way to top...took an hour with 2 viewing stops.  Beautiful...in the snow at the top but not windy and we were warm.  Buses and cars must stop to take turns making curves.  Amazing driving by our driver. We saw so many views of waterfalls, a huge frozen lake and many places to stay overnight.  Saw no wildlife. The top had many photo ops and we stayed half an hour. They're working on a bldg up there so will change soon.  The road closes in early Oct ...impassable.  Has to thaw in late spring b4 any travel on it.  There was an avalanche leading into Geiranger in Dec and they were stuck for 10 days with no transport other than the ferry to Hellesint...takes an hour. We then went to another overlook that had views of 7 sisters waterfalls from different angle.  Also a glass area that a waterfall flows over so u can see thru it. Back onboard at 4.  Cpt speaking now saying we'll  be late because some tour cruise excursions are running late.  Belfast, N Ireland...Giants Causeway Tour was excellent! Driver, guide. FUNNY! David. This tour was great!  We covered Dunlace Castle, Giants Causeway, 2 more castles, old town Belfast with history and reasons.  Saw walled off areas and gates dividing streets and neighbors.  Sad time for them.  But he was SO happy that Belfast has changed *miracle* and growing.  Seeing things they would never have seen in the 70s. So many deaths and devastation.  Saw Titanic memorial... also saw new area of downtown Belfast.  Thru the days we drive through moors, seaside cliffs, beaches near water, farmlands full of sheep and cows.  We also went thru many glens and saw the beauty of so many different kinds of terrain. Throughout the trip, he talked of folklore and history and made everything so interesting.  Never a dull moment.  We heard of trolls, banshees, giants.  Best tour guide ever and certainly worth the price for a day full of beauty and knowledge about Belfast. We ate at a pub at Giants causeway...fish and chips..very good and cute pub. 13.75 pounds. Order at bar and tell table # ...they serve you. Also bus had wifi and a bag in each seat with water, chips, a frig magnet, and postcard.  Great welcome gesture. Back to the ship just in time to board with a few min to spare.  No shopping near port so wasn't tempted to linger. Dublin, Ireland Got off easily in port..just went on our own. Took shuttle to city centre $15 pp... pick up right off ship. Then dropped at Stop 10 (Merrion Square) of hoho...got green bus with live commentary.  Jokes getting a little off color...not for kids.  Got off at Ha Penny Bridge for pics, then walked 2 blocks to pubs & shops.  Wandered around.  Ate fish & chips at Leo Burdocks..neat little pub where many famous folks have eaten. Used to use coal for fuel to fry fish and chips.  Cod very fresh, white, crisp crust. Chips wonderful thick sliced French fries. Went to St Stephens Park..huge with tons of tourists enjoying nature.  Also went to Trinity College. Looked a bit more and found bus to head back at 5.  We lucked out on weather AGAIN.  Few sprinkles for few min but we weren't out in it. Le Havre, France... Off ship at 8 to nice clean port bldg. Nothing but a place to buy shuttle to town centre. 5 Euros for all day riding.  Gift shop closed still.  Rainy looking.  Going prepared with umbrellas and rain coats.  Le Havre is beautiful but we had plans for Hon Fluer. We walked around for a couple of hours and saw many statues, beautiful churches and buildings. Le Havre was destroyed during WW11 and was rebuilt to reflect its former glory. World Soccer being held here...US womens team plays tomorrow...they won! 11:00 bus to Hon Fleur for 3 hours.  Half hour ride over on Bee Le Havre. Already had tickets from online. Hon Fleur was so pretty.  Beautiful old buildings, churches and a fortress surrounding a port area.  Picturesque views in every direction. It was windy and cool after our 30 min shuttle from Le Havre. But in just a few min the sun was out again and jackets came off.  We watched a pirates ship getting ready to sail and when it started away from shore, fired cannons 4 times.  There were many different plaques and memorials to those who died in WW2...including American soldiers. Among other nationalities. We shared a jambon baguette and frites for lunch ..deja vue moment from 1973. Really nice to be back in France together. After walking around to see everything and a little shopping,  it was time to head back to the ship. Rain held off for our day until we were walking from the shuttle to the ship.  Got a little wet but our raincoats helped. Tilbury, England... Docked at 9. Walked to train station from port...15 min. Brisk walking along nice sidewalk. Bought tickets easily since we beat 1st shuttle bus to station. ( free shuttle) 40 min train ride to Fenchurch station.  Nice train...commuters. off to the Sky Garden.  Had free tour tickets for 11:30. Went thru security before allowed to go up to 35th floor. Elevators fast and continuous run up and down.  At top were wonderful views of London and Thames River.  Going up more stairs gave views of 360.  Different views highlighted on windows with titled bldgs. Down to catch hoho.  Got yellow line with live commentary. Rode to see all around, then swapped to blue line to go by Kensington and Buckingham Palace...mainly can only see gardens...slight/quick view thru gardens.  Rode until time to walk back to Fenchurch by 5 to catch train. No problems. Walked back to ship. his trip was a dream trip for us! Brugges, Belgium We had a shuttle from ship to port building.  Then we took shuttle express to Brugges...it took about half an hour.  We were glad to have pre purchased because they were full. It was 20 each.  The ship offered one for 15 but only took folks to the train station, then they had to get from there to Brugges. They can't deliver to city center so we all walked to town ...took about 30minutes to the square.  We looked around a bit and decided to take a horse drawn carriage ride.  We shared with a couple from Australia and paid 25 euros per couple for a 30 min tour around the old part of the city. (50 Eu for carriage) It was nice on the cobblestone streets. There are so many old beautiful buildings! She took a 5 min break to feed and water Adeline (horse)...we took a pics of swans and surroundings. Finished our tour and went to find canal boat tour.  There was quite a line, but a beautiful day and well worth the wait! Our "captain" was young and very well spoken in English ...also knew so many details about the sites we saw.  The ride was half an hour and we saw so many places and heard the historic details of them.  He was a very good guide.  Also, I sat next to him so had a great view and could hear perfectly. We went to find Belgian Waffles.  YUM! Strawberry and whipped cream on a freshly made waffle from Chez Albert.  So delish..sat on the steps to eat it.  We bought frites from a stand...also very good.  The streets were crowded with people enjoying the day, shopping, listening to street music, eating, loving life. SO many people! I shopped a little more then we headed out on our walk back to the shuttle.  Stopped for a quick walk in Minnewater Park.  Beautiful! Could stay there for hours! So many enjoying the beautiful weather with friends and family. Many locals riding bikes...many school children on tours. Back on shuttle to ship was perfect timing. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This was the most mismanaged cruise I have ever been on. The new crew out of NY didn’t know what the he’ll they were doing! The specialty restaurants were under par. The service was horrible, I gave Cagneys 3 try’s, The same ... Read More
This was the most mismanaged cruise I have ever been on. The new crew out of NY didn’t know what the he’ll they were doing! The specialty restaurants were under par. The service was horrible, I gave Cagneys 3 try’s, The same every time... I was on this ship a year ago and the management was so much better. The shore excursions were a disaster, in Dublin we had only an hour on our hop on hop off bus and had to get off and take a cab back to the meeting point, because we got off the ship so late. In Paris, another joke, I had an 11:30 guided tour at the Louve, which should have been no problem because I’ve been there several times before, again by the time be got off the ship and on our way we were very late, then when we arrived in Paris it was a holiday and the roads were closed off for the bus to park, so we drove around another half hour trying to park. We got off the bus and got a cab, by the time we got to the Louve our tour guide was long gone, we wound up having 90 min in the Louve before we had to catch a cab back to the bus that was just parked on a stree somewhere...6 hours on the bus back and forth to get 90 min in Paris, what a joke! London was another fiasco,.. Belgium was the only port we got out of the ship in enough time to see anything. The sail was rough, I spoke to a girl in my hotel that came in on a Royal Caribbian Ship, she said there sail was great, not rough at all... Then to top it off half the people on the ship had gastritis and were sick, thus the reason the buffets wouldn’t let you serve yourself on day 2 of the sail, obviously the ship was contaminated when we got on board. The entire sail was a disaster and Norwegian should refund all our money! I will never sail Norwegian again! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We’re a young couple from the UK who have cruised before but not with Norwegian – we chose Norwegian for the itinerary. Summary of our experience – the majority of staff were rude and non-English speaking, hygiene was awful ... Read More
We’re a young couple from the UK who have cruised before but not with Norwegian – we chose Norwegian for the itinerary. Summary of our experience – the majority of staff were rude and non-English speaking, hygiene was awful amongst staff making it inevitable that the majority of guests would get sick (turning the ship into a Zombie apocalypse), the food was tasteless, lacked in variety and was often inedible, dietary requirements were not taken seriously (if you are vegetarian you will be fed meat) and if you complain about anything you’re argued with, treated like a criminal and made to feel very uncomfortable for the rest of your holiday. Needless to say we will not be cruising with Norwegian again. Now onto the good, the bad and the ugly: Ship – the ship is a bit dated and the rooms are in need of modernisation. The atmosphere is very casual and relaxed with little dress codes. With a cold itinerary, I would have expected an undercover pool area but there was not, meaning there is little to do when the weather is bad, unless you’re interested in the knitting club… The windows were not cleaned (which I have experienced on past cruises) so guests are unable to see outside clearly. Staff were rude, argumentative and most did not speak good enough English (to the point where they'd take a plate of food away which I told them I had not finished with). Demographics – most guests are elderly and in retirement, from a mixture of countries. I’d say the majority are from the USA. We were surprised that a lot of guests were rude (barging past, making unnecessary comments) which we have not experienced on past cruises. Main dining rooms – we thought flexible dining times would be a good idea, but in reality there were long queues and a rushed, poor dining experience. The food was very hit and miss, sometimes very nice but 50% of the time it would be tasteless and we’d end up going to the buffet afterwards! Although when we complained about the food, the maitre’d would let us customise the menu the evening before if there were things we would like different or changed. Buffet – the food was mostly tasteless, often inedible and had a lack of variety. The only nice thing was the Indian dishes. The traffic light colour signs in the buffet were incorrect every day, even after we informed the chef and maitre'd of this. Their response was the signs are "guidelines" and so those marked vegetarian and vegan could in fact contain meat and dairy. Coleslaw that was marked green (meaning no meat or dairy) in fact had chicken in which I had to spit out. Potato skins that were marked green had mincemeat on top, mixed in with beans. The list goes on. I was also told by the first person I asked that the coloured signs are to be ignored, that they are meant for the staff and mean hot and cold… The staff would use the same tongs to move around the meat dishes and vegetarian dishes – when I confronted one member of staff about it (whilst he was rearranging the vegetarian pizza with the meat pizza tongs) he did not know what the colour signs meant and continued to mix and match. The maitre'd argued with me in the middle of the buffet area, making me feel humiliated and extremely uncomfortable when visiting the buffet again. I felt like a criminal, when all I pointed out was the wrong colour signs and the need to be confident I was not eating meat again. Being vegetarian was not taken seriously so I would avoid Norwegian if you have any dietary requirements. Premium dining package / restaurants – we paid for a premium dining package for 5 restaurants yet only visited 1, La Cucina. We could not use the package at any of the other restaurants, as they did not cater for vegetarians. Teppanyaki does cater for vegetarians but we were told they would have to cook our food in the kitchen area, removing the “live” dining experience and making it pointless. La Cucina was an awful experience and not edible (much worse than the buffet food). When we spoke to reception we could not change the dining package to something else, as we had already visited La Cucina and the bill had been charged to our room, even though I did not eat anything and complained about the food. I was even told by reception to go to the steakhouse and eat nothing, so that my partner could "enjoy the meats", which we could not believe!! Hygiene – The hygiene standards were poor, which we were surprised about due to a virus outbreak reported on the cruise ship during April and May. Hygiene was awful amongst staff, making it inevitable that guests would get sick. Staff would not cover their mouths when they coughed and thus spread germs over the buffet areas. Of course you could not bring this to anyone’s attention as they would (pretend?) to not understand you, argue and treat you like a criminal. Entertainment – the theatre performances were excellent, I loved each one. The majority of performers were external and brought onto the ship for the night. The Russian folklore show was great. We’re glad we didn’t plan to see a folklore show in St Petersburg! Ports – the terminal locations specified on the NCL website were incorrect, and customer services kept providing us with different terminal locations throughout the booking process. Docking at different locations ruined our planned itinerary (Poland, Lithuania and Finland were all wrong). We were not informed of the Visa requirements for Russia when making the booking, even though we specified we were on a tight budget and called to find out all possible costs. This was a huge unexpected expense we were unhappy about. Make sure you check Visa requirements prior to booking, as Visas for Russia cost us hundreds of pounds! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Where to begin...ship is old. Despite upgrade a couple of years ago, still old. Food...generally bad. Cagneys, Le Bistro and Asian were ok. Modenos was well terrible. Buffet was hit or miss. Casino was a casino but if your a player ... Read More
Where to begin...ship is old. Despite upgrade a couple of years ago, still old. Food...generally bad. Cagneys, Le Bistro and Asian were ok. Modenos was well terrible. Buffet was hit or miss. Casino was a casino but if your a player management were cold. Service was generally good. Staff were as friendly as they could be. No point in getting a Haven Suite. Regular Suites got the same thing. They used Moderno or Cagneys for breakfast and lunch for suite guests. Every time went there food and service was deplorable. Guest Service folks were great once you got to them as the lines were unacceptable. Ports are what you expect them to be but if your in Bruge do not book the Express Shuttle. Complete ripoff. Dump you off a long way from town. Better off with a cab. In fact NCL excursions should be not considered. Book a car or a cab. Room... had a 2 bedroom suite. Beware of where you are. We were deck 11. Every morning between 5:30 and 6 heard them setting up chairs etc. Banging was continuous and constant. If your going to northern Europe consider another line. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We went on this cruise for the variety and number of ports. We're trying to see 100 countries before we get to be 100, up to sixty three (63) so far! entertainment was very good. Some shore excursions were excellent, some not so. we ... Read More
We went on this cruise for the variety and number of ports. We're trying to see 100 countries before we get to be 100, up to sixty three (63) so far! entertainment was very good. Some shore excursions were excellent, some not so. we always look for a quiet place to relax and read, while the library is nice it's usually crowded and so we used the spinnaker lounge until the activities crew came in, a nice facility. the ships layout left me wondering who would design a ship that you cannot traverse stem to stern both starboard and port of deck seven? design of the summer palace restaurant was beautiful... But having to use stairs to enter was dumb!! who puts the not smoke free casino adjacent to the theater without expecting smoke to waft into the theater? who designs a bathroom with a water closet so tight you can barely change your mind in it? but it was a beautiful room!! why does senior crew not provide an indication of the daily temperature range for those planning an excursion? put it on the tv or better in the daily paper. how difficult is it to provide such simple info? who charges their crew $15.00 a month rent for their room... Shared with two or three other crew members? who manages a ship where the elevators are controlled during "peak times" to the point where fourth, fifth and sixth floor passengers cannot use them... "you'll need to use the stairs." i feel certain the over crowding could be managed better, stagger the excursion times, stagger the restaurant hours or make them longer, do something!! who designs a movie area in the busy guest relations area of the ship? who designs theater seating so tight you feel as if you're on the toilet in your cabin? i figured out who designs these things... No, no not the architect. i believe it's norwegian cruise lines in an attempt to create as much revenue as possible! They even have a TV channel named "REVENUE." The crew members are the saving grace of this ship... Everyone we encountered was fantastic, helpful, and understanding. but most of them seemed dismayed on the operations of the elevators. There's more but i think i got most of it out... Larry Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this cruise because of the wonderful array of Baltic sea ports and excursions. While the stops exceeded expectations in almost every case, the shabby condition of the ship and the indifferent food and service left us with a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the wonderful array of Baltic sea ports and excursions. While the stops exceeded expectations in almost every case, the shabby condition of the ship and the indifferent food and service left us with a negative feeling. Food service - even in the specialty restaurants - was always rushed. We repeatedly had to ask that service be slowed down and that not all items be served at one time. In the main dining room, food choices were lackluster, and food was rarely served hot. In Le Bistro, I was served tepid French Onion Soup; a request for a warmer portion resulted in another lukewarm offering. Cagney's steakhouse served excellent filet mignon, sauced well, but the waitstaff was completely unable to order/serve cocktails correctly. A request for a vodka martini, "up" with olives, was met with a neat vodka, no garnish. My request for a list of after-dinner drinks resulted in a menu of all Mojitos. The servers really pushed and rushed us through that meal. The buffet was terrible - food was rarely labeled, and when it was, labels were difficult to read. The food quality was substandard, and seldom more than "warmish". Shore excursions were, for the most part, excellent, with well-qualified guides. The great exception: Copenhagen. This is a congested city, and the "tour" featured the back of the bus in front of us, crawling through traffic. The guide repeatedly walked off and left guests, failing to return to the agreed-upon "meeting spot", resulting in delays. She also, after 3 hours, was unable to direct guests to a bathroom. Ultimately, guests demanded to be taken back to the ship, some hiring taxis when the guide refused. The cabin was decent, and our cabin service was excellent. The bathroom, however, was so cramped that there wasn't room in there to change your mind, let alone anything else. The toilet space was designed for a child of 10; other guests told us they could not even use their cabin bathroom, but were forced to use public toilets. I'm 5'10", and my knees hit the wall every time. We've traveled on 4 other cruise lines, and never had such a cramped space. Finally, the overall condition of the ship gives the feeling of "shopworn". The lobby and bar furniture had upholstery which was worn and frayed at the corners and edges of cushions. The sofa in our cabin was also worn and shabby. We asked to have the balcony chair replaced, as the fabric had been shredded where it joined the frame - which was covered by a towel when we arrived. We had sailed on this ship on an Alaskan cruise some years ago; the intervening years have not been kind to this faded gem. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
Have previously sailed on the Norwegian Spirit. In comparison I found the Pearl was disappointing in a number of areas. Daily information sheets were great but activities on offer less so. The main restaurant dining was a veritable ... Read More
Have previously sailed on the Norwegian Spirit. In comparison I found the Pearl was disappointing in a number of areas. Daily information sheets were great but activities on offer less so. The main restaurant dining was a veritable nightmare with difficulty in finding seats. Overspill areas meant having to carry hot food some distance from where it was served. Food selection was uninspiring. Salad without tomatoes, cooked meat without potatoes!! Fruit juice so diluted it was undrinkable and water that was warm because no ice was available. Asking for a speciality coffee in the Atrium caused major confusion when key card wouldn't be accepted. It took 2 visits to guest services and 2 visits to Atrium bar to get it right. Cabin steward was friendly and attentive as were most of the bar staff but a couple of guest services staff were less welcoming. The shore excursion organised with NCL had far too many for one tour guide to cope with especially as he was trying to talk, without a microphone, to almost 50 people. He didn't even carry an identifying board so people could see where he was!! Privately arranged shore excursions were much better organised and significantly cheaper. On the plus side, embarkation and disembarkation was very well organised and speedy. Have my experiences on the Pearl put me off travelling with NCL in the future, certainly not. Freestyle all inclusive cruising suits me but why is the minibar not included in the package? I enjoyed the cruise because I met some interesting fellow travellers and how else would you visit so many interesting destinations. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
First experience with NCL. Had a bad experience with customer service between booking and sailing. As a first-timer I would have expected more from a company in the service industry to try and build rapport to make me a repeat customer, ... Read More
First experience with NCL. Had a bad experience with customer service between booking and sailing. As a first-timer I would have expected more from a company in the service industry to try and build rapport to make me a repeat customer, but that will not happen. There was a tremendous price drop with nothing to make up for it. Embarkation was frustrating because the key cards they issued in the terminal did not work and we had to wait over an hour for guest services to issue a new one. Disembarkation was super easy, walk off with your own luggage. Ship was fine, some floor plans were a bit confusing. Activities on board could have been scheduled better, but a decent variety of options. Food was ok. Buffet was always very crowded and hard to find seats. Dining room meals took a long time. I liked the casual nature of the ship. Itinerary was wonderful. Amsterdam-Berlin-Gdansk-Klaipeda-Helsinki-St. Petersburg-Tallinn-Stockholm-Riga-Copenhagen-Amsterdam. It was exhausting to have so many ports in a row without sea days, but it was worth it. DO NOT book a St. Petersburg excursion with the cruiseline. There are many companies that you can use that qualify you for the visa-free entry that are much more affordable and use smaller groups for an all around better experience. Most of the ports are easy to do yourself. I highly recommend Rick Steve's Scandinavian & Northern European Cruise Ports book for information about the ports, transportation, and walking tours to do yourself. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We were excited about visiting several countries we had never been to, including Russia. Really did not consider the onboard entertainment; but it was super! The only real issue was excursions. We booked two through NCL and two on our ... Read More
We were excited about visiting several countries we had never been to, including Russia. Really did not consider the onboard entertainment; but it was super! The only real issue was excursions. We booked two through NCL and two on our on. the two we booked were phenomenal, but both the Hop on Hop off in Finland and the guided excursion in Gdansk had issues. To NCL's credit they refunded part of our payment in both cases. Our cabin was very nice, but the cabin steward must have been new. He was very nice, but left things out of place when he cleaned. The bar and restaurant staff were exceptional. A little disappointed in the food in La Bistro and Moderno, but pleased everywhere else. The gym was too warm and we did most of our excersize on the promonade deck even thouigh it was very cool and windy mast days. Overall my wife and I really enjoyed the Pearl and the iternary was once in a lifetime for us. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We had previously cruised with NCL. Consequently the cruise did meet our expectations but did not necessarily exceed those expectations. The staff throughout the ship were wonderful; entertainment and activities were very good; however, ... Read More
We had previously cruised with NCL. Consequently the cruise did meet our expectations but did not necessarily exceed those expectations. The staff throughout the ship were wonderful; entertainment and activities were very good; however, food was average. The food in the specialty restaurants was quite good and I would submit well worth the additional charges. Shore excursions were egregiously expensive and save and except for one or two excursions, the excursions were not very informative. While I understand that it is difficult to provide an overview of a city within 3 to 4 hours, I feel it is important to have the excursions provide some substantive content and allow passengers the opportunity to disembark from the coach and actually experience the city, e.g. a museum and actually see the landmarks. Some of the excursions were simply drive by without any real opportunity to see the landmark that had been pointed out. There was also essentially no time set aside for shopping or free time. Internet usage was also very expensive; it was essential for me to have access to the internet as I was still working on the cruise. Notwithstanding the aforesaid, we would cruise with NCL again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We took this cruise to see a number of interesting ports/countries that we likely would never have seen any other way. Our mini-suite was spacious, with good layout and ample storage for 3-4 for the 2 week cruise. Our steward kept the ... Read More
We took this cruise to see a number of interesting ports/countries that we likely would never have seen any other way. Our mini-suite was spacious, with good layout and ample storage for 3-4 for the 2 week cruise. Our steward kept the cabin clean, we saw him daily, and he was responsive to our requests. We dined at all of the restaurants on board, except for La Cucina. Outside of certain specialty restaurants(Cagney's and Le Bistro), the food quality was merely adequate. Outside of the buffet and O'Sheehan's, all of our meals took between 1 1/2 and 2 hours to complete. Service tended to be cheerful, but slow. This made us gravitate toward the buffet more as the cruise progressed. (Also, when you taste something disappointing at the buffet, it's easy to set it aside and try something else.) We found the afternoon snacks at the Great Outdoors on the back deck to be fresher and more flavorful than the regular buffet.(Don't know if the chef staff was different, but the quality seemed better.) We found the performers in the shows to be skilled, but not particularly exciting. (The Elvis impersonator was very entertaining.) Despite the relative lack of youngsters on this trip, the cruise staff did a good job of keeping our teens occupied till late at night. The adults(late 40's) found enough diversions on board to fill out our sea days.(trivia, games, etc.) As we expected, this cruise wasn't much of a "party". We were glad. We only participated in one NCL excursion. For most of the ports,we used private tour guides, and I think we had better experiences for doing so. One of the best things about this trip-NO Tenders!!! Overall, the cruise/ship were what we expected. We encountered no issues that would prevent us from scheduling another cruise on the Pearl. If you require great food all the time to be happy, this ship may not be for you. Read Less
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