Sail Date: October 2014
We spent the week before the cruise wondering if we were going to Bermuda after all, and we did. Hurricane Gonzalo hit the island the week before, and the sailing before ours found themselves in the Bahamas. This was our first trip on the ... Read More
We spent the week before the cruise wondering if we were going to Bermuda after all, and we did. Hurricane Gonzalo hit the island the week before, and the sailing before ours found themselves in the Bahamas. This was our first trip on the Dawn. We have cruised to Bermuda three times, once 10 years ago on the NCL Majesty. Embarkation-We live within a hour of the pier so after an easy drive in, we dropped off our luggage at the entrance to the terminal we headed upstairs to security and into a line that moved quickly. We were through in about 10 minutes, and check-in took even less. We were in an Aft Penthouse Suite and so from check in we were directed to a special desk and met our butler Mark, and our Concierge Virginia. We were escorted on by Mark and could drop off our carry-on bags and told we could eat lunch at Cagney's which we did. Both of these perks were a great introduction to the ship. I have read many reviews with negative things to say about the Dawn. First I did not think the ship was tired or old at all. It was clean and bright, our cabin and balcony were in excellent condition and very clean. It can be a bit confusing to get around, I understand they have added more cabins which seems to have changed the flow. The crew and officers are everywhere and very visible we went to several of the information sessions with the officers, and even the production cast. Cabin- Our cabin was a suite 10728 was in a great location, and being on the back of the ship there was an excellent view every day. The large balcony with the cushion lounge chairs was one of our favorite places on the ship. It got a bit hot in the afternoon in Bermuda, but most the of time it was just fantastic out there. We loved the large closet, and all the drawers and shelves in the dressing area. We were pleasantly surprised to find lots of extra's, an umbrella, clothes brush, slippers, robes, and lots of great Elmis soaps and lotions. The TV has a DVD player that also plays CD's. We brought a few. We also borrowed DVD's. The location is very quiet, and not far from the stairs. Our steward Flores Patrick was excellent, he was very efficient and kept the cabin clean and was always pleasant when we saw him in the hall. Our Butler Mark Santos was great providing snacks each day around 4pm. We also had him bring breakfast a couple of mornings of the sea days. He kept us updated with information also, including how to use the priority de-embarkation. Another great perk. Food I have read reports about the food most of them negative. There were a few misses but mostly hits. The lunch at Cagney's on the first day was very pleasant, we sat by a window, we choose sandwiches that came with perfectly cooked french fries. With the freestyle dining we decided to keep trying different venues. We had a wonderful dinner in Cagney's, both the food and service were excellent. Dinner at La Cuchina was just OK, the risotto with shrimp and asparagus came with lots of risotto in a heavy cream sauce with three shrimp, and a couple tiny pieces of asparagus.My husband had the lasagna which he said was nothing special. We ate at Teppanyaki and found the food very good, lots of choices of meat or fish and we enjoyed watching the chef work his magic. The green tea ice cream and cake we different and delicious. Every meal in the Venetian was excellent, both the food and service. We went to Aqua too, and I tried a Schezwan chicken that was very salty, and not very tasty. They serve the same food as the Venetian so I just didn't choose well. We noticed that there were few people in the Chinese restaurant also, this must not be their strong point. The buffet was not our favorite. The cafeteria style set up creates lines, and I found myself waiting behind people getting omelets when I was just trying to get to the scrambled eggs. Each line had different food choices. So my husband and I had to look at all the lines before choosing which one to stand in. The food I ate there was good, the chicken salad was superb, as were the salads, and the pretzel rolls. There were only cookies in the childrens area, we did ask and received some. Most of the deserts on the buffet were very rich and not to our liking. I did enjoy the ice cream at Sprinkles by the pool. We ate lunch there most days. Freestyle dining at the restaurants worked great, we only waited one night for about 15 minutes and were given a beeper and a coupon to take to any lounge for a glass of champagne Entertainment We saw the shows which were consistently excellent, Second City was lots of fun. Jose and Patti were wonderful, we saw most of their shows in the Atrium and Stardust Theatre. Fitness Center We used this most days, the machines work great, and it was not crowded in the afternoon whern we were there. Loved the chilled scented towels. Touring the island There is an information booth inside of the cruise terminal, the women there was very helpful selling us ferry tickets with maps and directions. We also took the $16.00 shuttle to Horseshoe Bay Beach. It takes you right to the beach, and down the steep hill, and then back to the ship. It leaves every 15 minutes. Well worth the price, the pink bus will leave you at the top of the hill. We took the ferry to the Hamilton, and shopped and walked. We went into the city hall and took in two free art exhibits, both we excellent, as well as enjoying this beautiful building. We have been here before and try to do something different each time. The small free museum near the ferry terminal is also interesting. There is a grocery store to the left of the ferry terminal and behind the large yellow bank building Miles Grocery's, there is a sign. It is a great place to get a cold drink. We walked all over the Dockyard, and took in the museum there also. We walked all over the ramparts and found the grazing sheep that keep the grass in check. What a view from up there. This is a fantastic cruise to get away and relax. With there are three sea days which we love, and then 2 1/2 days in Bermuda it is the perfect mix. We are booked again for next May.   Read Less
Sail Date: July 2014
About us.. 6 cruises with 2 on the Dawn.. Couple in 50's  Sailed last year with 4 kids.. This year--just us! Some changes since last year.. Boarding.. We went at 1230 this year as opposed to 1130 last year.. Went right through.. No ... Read More
About us.. 6 cruises with 2 on the Dawn.. Couple in 50's  Sailed last year with 4 kids.. This year--just us! Some changes since last year.. Boarding.. We went at 1230 this year as opposed to 1130 last year.. Went right through.. No crowds at all.. Later is better for sure! Pros.. Staff seemed much more accommodating this year.. Prepaid service charge didn't seem to hinder good service.. White hot party held outside.. Much better than inside.. Our cabin steward Ron was amazing.. Garden Cafe was better than last year for breakfast.. Would stay away for lunch and dinner though Getting a chair by pool seemed easier but could take a little searching.. Seemed like there were more lounges and many appeared to be new.. Nice! Cons.. Food in both Aqua and Venetian -- would describe as adequate.. Not terrible but certainly not delicious.. Ate in Cagney's last two nights and it was absolutely delicious.. Next time would purchase dining option for $119 pp and eat in specialty every night.. Cabin #11572 port side..was very noisy on nights when there was outside music by pool.. Felt like music was in room with us..DO NOT book this cabin if you are someone that goes to bed before midnight.. Last year we stayed on starboard side of ship and heard nothing..we were in 2 bedroom last year and possibly didn't hear due to bedroom not having access to slider (slider was on living room side) Glad we brought earplugs.. Bermuda tips.. Taxi notice.. Sundays taxis are more expensive.. Look for mini busses located just across the street from first line of taxis .. They will take you to horseshoe for $7 pp.. Any day.. If you're a couple and don't want to buy bus pass --can go with them any day for $7.. They just gather a few people to go together.. When leaving beach they are located on right side (left side is regular taxi line) just look for mini busses.. They can usually work out a time to come back as well if you know when you need ride back.. Best snorkeling ... Church bay If you need umbrella .. They don't rent if windy so get to horseshoe beach early to grab spot in shade if its windy or bring your own umbrella if crucial to be in shade.. We arrived on tue to horseshoe beach by 9 and we were alone.. By noon you couldn't walk so crowded.. Go early and enjoy! Took ferry ($8 rtpp) to Hamilton for lunch at Flannagans.. Good food, decent prices for BDA..   Read Less
Sail Date: July 2014
It is very important to separate the sweet smiling people taking care of us from the bean counters you feel lurking behind all the new policies on the ship. So I want to start out by saying Thank you to the great people from all over the ... Read More
It is very important to separate the sweet smiling people taking care of us from the bean counters you feel lurking behind all the new policies on the ship. So I want to start out by saying Thank you to the great people from all over the world who work so hard to make cruising great and always have a smile for us. Regarding the bean counters; we have been cruising for 20 years and have seen the industry change. Last time we cruised we purchased over 300 dollars worth of spa services and were told we could not have a robe and slippers without an additional $30 outlay. This time we noticed that the juice was missing. Then we noticed a slick little glossy on the table advertising orange juice for sale, arghh. We also noticed the room service menu had been drastically reduced. That's because they charge you for some foods delivered to your door now. This was also the first time we went on a cruise with no “lobster night”. They did have a lobster pasta on the buffet but it was very difficult to spot any lobster among the penne. Now I understand that decisions are made in the board room and those guys rarely consider the customer loyalty it destroys in the guest room. I see some "all inclusives" capitalizing on the bean counter's mistakes and I appalud them. I have cruised with them and found it to be a welcome relief from the constant nikel and diming. But I would think that at least one standard cruise line could stand out from the rest by returning to the good old fashioned customer-first policies that made crusing so much fun even 10 to15 years ago. Until then I will probably lean toward the all inclusives. Sure it costs more but who wants to pay more to get off the ship than it cost to get on. And who wants to spend their vacation dodging the attack of the bean counters. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2014
My wife and I went on the May 30th cruise from Boston to Bermuda. This was our 7th cruise. 5th with Norwegian, 3rd on the Dawn. We arrived a little before noon. We had pre-printed our luggage tags and were told to bypass the long luggage ... Read More
My wife and I went on the May 30th cruise from Boston to Bermuda. This was our 7th cruise. 5th with Norwegian, 3rd on the Dawn. We arrived a little before noon. We had pre-printed our luggage tags and were told to bypass the long luggage line by the person who took our luggage who was waiting as soon as we were dropped off. I can see how some were confused, but it worked out for us. Getting on was not much of an issue. We had lunch in the Garden Buffet and just relaxed until the required drill at 3:15 which was very quick and went well. We had a mini suite on Deck 11 Fwd. It was a nice room. We had a balcony on 8 and 9 the last two years. Although the mini suite was nice, I don't think it was worth the extra $400 dollars over a balcony. Maybe if you had more than two people, the little bit of extra room would be worth it, but for the two of us, it wasn't that much of an upgrade. We did have a bathtub as opposed to just the shower stall. If/when we go again, we will probably just get a balcony room or try a big suite if we have the money. Although I hear that some have balconies and some don't. Not sure why you would have a suite without a balcony as that is essential to us. We are both easy going so you are not going to here us complain too much about the food. It was great. There were plenty of options. We have done the specialty restaurants in the past but just stuck to the non charge places this time. If you are big on dining, then it would be worth it to try a few places, but you can get good food just about anywhere, I love the Blue Lagoon, especially after hours, You can order take out and bring it to your room, or just sit down like a normal restaurant. We had breakfast a few times in Venetian which was very good. Between the two main restaurants, the buffet and the Blue Lagoon, there is always something to hit the spot. The entertainment was great. As always there is some type of main show every night although we only went to a few. The comedian Tim Kaminski is a must see. He got me on stage last year, which is something I dread, but it went okay. This year we saw him on the first day before most people knew who he was. We talked to him for a bit, and then several more time throughout the week. He assured me I would not be pulled up again which was a relief. I hope he is on future cruises for us but since he is scheduled to have a part in a Mark Walburgh movie later this year, who knows if he will be back if he makes it big time. I do sincerely wish him the best. He is a genuine nice guy. Jose and Patti were great. They are a married couple who sing mostly in the Atrium just about each night. They were on our cruise two years ago and we looked forward to relaxing with a drink late in the evening and hearing them sing, as well as their stories. It seems that it didn't take too long for everyone to notice as most of their Atrium shows were packed. There were people sitting on the stairs as well as on 8 and the internet cafe on 9. We saw Patti on the first day and told her we remember them from a few years ago. She talked with us for a bit. She is also a genuinely nice person. I would recommend seeing them at least once. Bermuda was fantastic as usual. We have been there four previous times so we didn't feel the need to see everything. We just want to relax and go to the beach. Horseshoe Bay is the most popular beach as it has facilities, a place to rent chairs and umbrellas as well as a place to eat. We went there on the first day shortly after we got to Bermuda. We were lucky as we got a few hours of nice sunny weather. It started to rain, but at that point we were ready to head out. We took the mini bus back to the ship. This is something we weren't aware of before. For $7 per person, they will take you to Horseshoe Bay. And they also make the trip back. It is well worth it. Just ask them at the cab stand area for the mini bus to Horseshoe Bay. On our way back we witnessed a couple on a scooter crash right in front of us. The road must have been wet or something as they failed to turn and crashed right into the wall. Luckily they appeared to be okay, but had a few cuts and seemed shook up. They were from the Dawn as well as we could tell from their towels. We have heard warnings from our many times to Bermuda about the scooters. Unless you are very experienced, don't even try it, and then, still don't. Too many stories of vacations and honeymoons turning tragic. Overall it was a great trip. I am very laid back and not the type to complain. However I feel like I need to mention one unpleasant situation. Our fridge in the room did not work. At first I thought no big deal. I mentioned it to our steward Raynehard (spelling). He was great by the way, always cheerful and quick to say hi whenever he saw you. He did a great job all week. He said that he would report it. We were giving extra ice all week so we thought there were no issues. However we had pre-ordered some shrimp for Saturday and a cake on Wednesday that needed to be kept in the fridge. We realized that we couldn't keep the leftovers and had to throw them out. My wife said we should mention it and see if they would maybe give us a credit or something. I thought, maybe half of the price of the shrimp and cake, or something similar would be fair. Well, the lady at the main desk in the Atrium was less than friendly. I calmly explained the situation and she said "what would you like me to do, we cannot just give you a credit." She said that they received the report that the fridge was broken and that it had been fixed...which it wasn't. She then said that the fridge was meant to keep the mini bar items slightly chilled and not a real fridge. This was inaccurate as I have had water and soda in there in previous years and it has been very cold. She then said, we should have called room service and they would have taken our leftovers and kept them cold, and them bring them back when we wanted. Oh really, like I would have known that. Anyway, I figured since we have been loyal customers to NCL and we spent alot of money over the years, and that since we were without a fridge all week, maybe they would give a little something for the inconvenience. If I was a major complainer, I would have got her name and would be writing a letter to NCL right now, but I am not. Did this tick me off...yes, would this stop me from cruising NCL again..no, as this has really been my only big complaint over the years. Overall we enjoyed our trip. We have taken this trip so many times because we don't have to travel far. The cruise terminal is less than five minutes away from us. We were home unpacking before some people who have to travel all day were even off the ship. We love cruising and we love Bermuda. I hope to cruise again, if not next year, soon thereafter.   Read Less
Norwegian Dawn Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.5 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.5 0.0
Enrichment 2.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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