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10,918 Norwegian (NCL) Family Cruise Reviews

We bid on and upgrade suite and got it.. it looked the same as a regular suite with double the size balcony and bathroom.. 3 of us in the room so it was comfortable. Mark took care of our room.. he was great and brought us anything we ... Read More
We bid on and upgrade suite and got it.. it looked the same as a regular suite with double the size balcony and bathroom.. 3 of us in the room so it was comfortable. Mark took care of our room.. he was great and brought us anything we needed right away.. we tipped Mark everyday, which we always do on a cruise, and Mark made sure we were in need of nothing! Great experience.. We were traveling with 6 family members... all of us enjoyed something different.. My teen girl loved encore.. a place she could meet 13-17 year olds.. and spent lots of time with these kids as the days went by... The cigar lounge was our favorite place to go after dinner with my husband and adult sons.. we thoroughly enjoyed all the men and women we met there.. Learned how to play craps with my oldest son! Great late night entertainment...Met the same dynamic group of people every night..So fun! My husband enjoyed the hot tubs in the quieter part of the boat.. he also loved the water slide that drops the trap door under your feet and away you go fast through a tube over the side of the boat and back again.. We all wanted sun... it was spring break, super small pool,, lots of drunk obnoxious 21 + year olds crammed around a large bath tub.. 2 days of this until we found H2O at the front of the boat with water falls to walk through when you get hot and perfect place to talk and read... Honduras was our first stop.. We all did a snorkel and kayak tour.. Our guides were awesome.. the fruit and food were delicious Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Negatives: Spring break cruise, my MISTAKE. Screaming, drinking, banging on doors in the middle of the night, singing " coronavirus in the hallways" at 3am. Watched a couple of spring breakers who coughed without covering ... Read More
Negatives: Spring break cruise, my MISTAKE. Screaming, drinking, banging on doors in the middle of the night, singing " coronavirus in the hallways" at 3am. Watched a couple of spring breakers who coughed without covering mouth and/or putting head into sleeve or anything more than one time, tried to avoid them as much as possible. Lesson learned! The balcony staterooms have been changed to have 1 glass door and a port hole design which was unexpected as we have always experienced 2 glass doors which helps you not feel confined in such a small area. Do NOT like the new design. Will never book SKY again. 1)Cruise rep: Purchased cruise credits from previous cruise, after booking new cruise called back to inquire if they could be used as discount, NO. I had to mention it at time of booking, she suggested to save for next cruise. It's on our account why didn't our cruise rep inquire if any certificates /discounts to be used when booking? Had questions from other persons traveling with us to be clear on what the "free amenities" were was asked not to send emails but to call her. She was a little condescending at times. 2)Itinerary @sea, Day 1: Was advised our trip had to be changed due to weather so we went opposite direction only to find that weather prevented us from our PRIMARY excursion and port. We did not even stop (all day at sea) but found out later that another cruise line simply waited an hour and was given permission to dock. This was first time was feeling the movement of ship as many people were crying and complained of nausea. It was horrible. Since we lost our excursion villa ($350) we tried in vain to get another one at next port, service desk rep says he could try, we began that request at 9:10 am, checked back in 4 times at the desk to hear that NCL had not received a response from folks @ Pearl Island. No courtesy feedback from NCL service desk to say, cannot confirm suggest you try something else. Day 2: docked then ran to service desk to pay $99 each ($600 for our party) to board a 15 minute boat ride (raining & overcast) to a new area "Pearl Island" that it was first come first serve to get a cabana but no one knew the "additional" cost. Literally people jumped off the boat and hurried to get that premiere spot. Society shows itself in times such as this. Talked to Pearl Island Manager to find the cost of the cabana for 6 was a mere $500 additional which included pillows, no food, drinks or private access to beach. There were other cabanas for rent maximum party of 2 adults , 1 child for $450 each no guarantee of getting 2 together so ended up on beach loungers for free. FYI: ALL of the cabanas were EMPTY the whole time, we offered half the price for the big one but were turned down. Be AWARE, NO easy access to the beach on certain areas where there are chairs, a stone wall 3-4', no steps, had to step down a good 12-15 inches into the sand with sharp shells this is OK if you are young and strong legs , horrible if older in age. On the return boat ride in the HOT sun we were given an informative lesson on who the rich and famous are in the area and a look at their homes only to see on the opposite side of the area appeared to be the working mans area which was totally depressing.. I filled out the excursion card with positive reviews for the crew but that's all. Day 3: docked @ last port, burnt from sun so stayed onboard only to find due to port laws all fun things to do are closed as not to take business away from port. Bummer. It may appear that if we kept original routing everything would have worked out as weather was better on return. My opinions are strong because my expectations were high as we never experienced disappointment with NCL and to top it off we were dealing with the corona virus pandemic...We could NOT cancel because NCL would not give refunds/credits until March 10th which was a day after we embarked. What a joke! Positives: Mar 09:Embarkation was wonderful, thank you. The Palace for lunch, server "Remian" PERFECT. Cagneys for dinner as expected- 10/10 food & service. Mar 10: Food gallery very impressive as so many choices and delicious. Lunch @ Palace recommended. Dinner @ Crossings which was a pleasant surprise. Mar 11: At port all day. Dinner @Le Bistro is undeniably our favorite worth the money. Food outstanding, server Leila was top notch. To our surprise after having the best experience ever..while walking out of LeBistro was the TOP CHEF herself as seen on NCL TV as part of the crew. She was as nice in person as she appeared on TV so we thanked her for a delicious dinner, a wonderful memory and complimented her on her dance routine on TV. Mar 12: Our favorite bar tender worked primarily in The Local bar located AFT on the ship from 6pm- closing, gave us his name as Tom Cruise... OK. Dinner @the Local was very good, pub/ bar food but a great way to end the cruise. Most often during this cruise, spring breakers were polite, but there are always a few that break the mold. It was obvious this was a success to them so good for them! Favorites: Leila. Le Bistro Tom cruise The Local Andresthia. Cabin attendant. (Adorable woman). Ramein. Crossings& The Palace Disembarking was much easier than expected, breezed through it once we were "released" by Miami. Glad to be home. Found an Uber and to the airport which is another story to be told. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We chose this cruise based on their itinerary and length totally forgetting this is the beginning of Spring break, more later.... We left Cape Canaveral on March 3 and returned March 8th. Our destinations were Key West Fl. and Cozumel ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on their itinerary and length totally forgetting this is the beginning of Spring break, more later.... We left Cape Canaveral on March 3 and returned March 8th. Our destinations were Key West Fl. and Cozumel MX. The ship was the Norwegian Sun. This ship is one of the smaller ships in service in the Florida Caribbean circuit, the Norwegian Sun was renovated last year and it still has a clean ambiance to it and the cabin was still very fresh, actually, the cabin was the best part of the cruise in my opinion. The trip as a whole rates a 3 out of 5 in our opinion, there was some good and some not so good issues with this cruise, nothing horrible but nothing great either. Being Spring break, The young adults aboard for this cruise were definitely out for a good time BUT ship security were very good at keeping control of the situation at all times. Evening was quite busy to be expected and the young adults were out in full attire to attract their mates, it was rather nice watching, yes a lot of drinking BUT again they all seemed to be well under control, I've seen much worse at local bars in our city. The food on this cruise was simply put okay, the specialty restaurants we ate at were nothing special, we ate at the Italian and Steakhouse, both were in many ways disappointments, especially the steakhouse as I was expecting something much better. The beef was not very flavourful nor the texture very appealing, we feel, we may have done just as good having dinners at the buffet. We did spent a lot of time in the casino after dinner, oh how I wish they would ban smoking in those places, the smell is just so overpowering. So as a final note, like all cruises, this one had it's issues, nothing great but nothing horrible, would we cruise Norwegian again? I doubt it, we prefer the other lines we have travelled much more and next cruise will be with Celebrity we expect... Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We chose this cruise on 2/6/20 based on the itinerary and low price that went even lower after we booked. We flew into Puerto Rico on Friday, 3/6 and satyed3at the Caribe Hilton (amazing) while enjoying the forts, Old San Juan, some great ... Read More
We chose this cruise on 2/6/20 based on the itinerary and low price that went even lower after we booked. We flew into Puerto Rico on Friday, 3/6 and satyed3at the Caribe Hilton (amazing) while enjoying the forts, Old San Juan, some great restaurants and an excursion to El Yunque rainforest. EMBARKATION Arrived around 1:00, got tested for temperature, checked in on priority (Platinum), filled out some paperwork, got our key cards and were on the ship within 15 minutes of our temp check. DISEMBARKATION Not as smooth, but once we figured out what line to get in, we waited about 45 minutes and then were about the first 100 or so people let off. Going through customs was easy (no paperwork or questions) just held our passport by our face and walked right through. DINING Ate a 5 of the specialty restaurants and enjoyed each except for La Cucina where it took us 1.5 hours just to get served 2 courses. We ate mainly in Taste for breakfast but for a couple of early morning meals at the Garden Cafe. BARBADOS Did NCL Excursion with bus transport to Carlisle Bay Beach (beautiful) that included a welcome drink, lounge chairs and an umbrella. ST. LUCIA Did NCL Excursion for Soufriere by Land/Sea that was phenomenal. Our tour guide, Cindy, was fantastic and knowledgeable about the island and its history during our journey via small bus along the numerous twists/turns and elevated changes with a few stops to see the Pitons and amazing water views below, with our final journey via catamaran to view the Pitons and scenic coastline. ANTIGUA We booked our own excursion to Blue Waters Resort for $65 pp that included use of resort facilities (pools, beaches, water sports) but no food or drink. If you want the all inclusive the cost is $150 pp. NCL charges $349 pp (includes transportation) but we only spent $18 total for the 15-minute ride via cab from the port. You need to book this via phone directly with this beautiful and luxurious resort. TORTOLA/BVI We booked an excursion on our own via Kuralu Too for a small group (we were 2 of 20) that included 2 great snorkel spots and then almost 4 hours at Jost Van Dyke where we enjoyed the food & drinks at The Soggy Dollar Bar, the beautiful beach and warm water. ST. THOMAS We did the skyride that is but a short walk from the cruise pier that provides a quick, enclosed gondola ride to the top, while providing some amazing views at the top. Afterwards, we took an open air cab ($8 pp) to Magen'd Bay Beach to soak up some last minute beachtime at this Top 10 rated beach. ENTERTAINMENT Howl at the Moon - 5 stars! Burn the Floor - 5 stars! Epic Beatles - 4 stars SERVICE 5 Stars across the board but for a brief service glitch while eating at La Cucina. Our room steward, Irwin, was fantastic, pleasant and did a great job. We received greetings duiring our long walks in the room hallways from everyone each time we passed them. We secured POSH passes and got more than our $ worth ($59 pp) especially as our cruise was extended 2 extra days. INTERNET 1 star as I truly hope NCL addresses this really bad system they use. This was never more under the spotlight than when we were told at 6:30 AM on the day we were to leave Puerto Rico on Sunday, 3/15 through Tuesday, 3/17 where trying to make a call or change a flight via the internet were next to impossible. The extra 60 minutes were a nice gesture but were virtually useless when needed. PUERTO RICO A beautiful island that provides a rich Caribbean history, great restaurants, bars and our hotel (Caribe Hilton) was a resort we will go to again. We were upset that our ship was turned away on 3/15, and felt especially sad for the many PR People that were so close to being home, yet wre turned away like rest of us. NCL Thank you for a great cruise, wonderful service and getting us safely to Port Canaveral (no extra costs). We look forward to cruising again on NCL! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I had been watching cruise pricing for a Spring Break cruise out of Galveston or NOLA for sometime. When NCL added the 3rd and 4th free perk the price dropped a ton and I pulled the trigger on the Getaway cruise for my family of four. We ... Read More
I had been watching cruise pricing for a Spring Break cruise out of Galveston or NOLA for sometime. When NCL added the 3rd and 4th free perk the price dropped a ton and I pulled the trigger on the Getaway cruise for my family of four. We had done this itinerary before out of NOLA on the Dawn and loved it. We convinced another family to join us so it was a group of 8 on this trip. We all ended up having an amazing trip on the Getaway. Cabin: We had a Family Balcony on the 12th Floor. This room had a queen bed by the door and a couch and pullman for the kids. We normally sail inside but getting all the perks with the balcony made this cheap than an inside and still able to get the dining and drink package. Room was fine and it was nice having the balcony although the balcony is small on this ship. The only issue was that the sink water always started scolding hot and needed to run for a while to cool down. Our Steward was great and we received towel animals even though NCL does not do them anymore(our friends with a different steward also received them so it seems they still do it for rooms with kids). Complementary Dining: For dinner we ate at Savor once, Tropicana Room three times, and O'Sheenans once. Tropicana just feels more like a cruise ship dining room. Large and open with live music as opposed to more of a land based restaurant feel of Savor/Taste. Food ranged from good to excellent with no complaints from anyone in our group. Service was great with meals taking around 1:30 to 1:45 which is fine when you are eating a 4 course meal(we always ordered multiple apps). At O'Sheenans we ordered several apps. Wings were very good and Artichoke dip was ok. Burgers were very good also. We did the buffet for breakfast and lunch/post port meals everyday. We thought the buffet was good for a buffet. Most of the stations stay the same day to day with one or two having rotating items. The ship went to enhanced sanitary procedures on day three so their was no self service. That meant it was pretty much all hands on deck for the crew. We had engine room crew and spa crew serving our drinks and I even had the General Manager squirting ketchup on my plate. I felt bad for the crew but it was needed with the current climate/fear. Specialty Dining: We ate at Cagney's and Moderno's with our credits. Both were excellent. Our waiter at Cagney's pointed out that we could get multiple app and sides and one entree. I have read complaints that the crew was pushing only one of each but that was not our experience. On the last day we still had one credit so decided to try American Diner and it was a big mistake. There was only two other tables and everything took a long time to come out. We could see some of our items sitting under the heat lamp for a while. The nachos were one that was and although the taste was good, most of the chips were soggy. I had the Lobster Sliders and the pieces were small and probably cooked days ago. We came away very unimpressed. Entertainment: Almost all of the entertainment was excellent. Million Dollar Quartet was amazing and high energy. The dancers at Burn the Floor were really good and we couldn't believe that were going to have another show an hour later. At Syd's we saw the house band twice and Back in the Day another night. The house band was really fun. They announced at the 80s Prom on the last night that their contract was over and this was their last night. A lot of tears shed between the singers and their handler. Back in the Day is a 80s hair band tribute. They play all the great hair bands from the 80s. They also have a show in the main theater the last night but it conflicted with our Moderno reservation or else we would have been their. Howl at the Moon was fun. The setup is a little awkward since they are using the comedy club. I am use to tables and bar setups on land based HatMs but this was more of chairs setup facing the stage. Still was a lot of fun. The players were changing words around in songs to joke about the current situation, ie changing Sweet Caroline to say not touching you, don't touch me. We also saw a few of the bands playing in the atrium and thought they were good. We also went to the 70s/80s deck party and the Latin deck party. Our cruise director, Vincent, was fun. He is all about getting dressed up in different suits and outfits. He wore a gold disco outfit with a huge 70s fro and platform shoes for the deck party. Activities: This was the biggest ship were have been on with it coming in a little bigger than the Vista. We are bigger boat people. I like that there are so many more bells and whistles than the smaller boats. My wife can sit on a lounger all day but that is not me or the kids. We did the ropes course several times. The walk the plank that goes eight feet over the side of the ship is a little unnerving but we all did it. There are 5 different levels of waterslides including two slides that the floor drops out from under you. I paid for the Arcade Package and it was well worth it. There are plenty of green swipe games although some need to be re-calibrated. We did a few of the trivia games and karaoke and they were fun. All in all we had an amazing time. This was the last cruise before the shutdown. They ship was pretty full but I know there were cancellations. What ever the number of cruisers were they should make that the capacity. Nothing seems really overcrowded and we did not have to wait for anything. We were even able to find seats in the atrium/Syd's and HatM after the shows already started. There were people standing in the venues but that is the normal at land based venues. This is our third NCL cruise and while we are never tied down to one cruise line, we would cruise NCL again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
20 of us from the Houston area sailed on March 8th - our spring break. While we considered cancelling, we made the decision to go forward not knowing that this would be the last sailing for the Joy for a while. It was absolutely amazing ... Read More
20 of us from the Houston area sailed on March 8th - our spring break. While we considered cancelling, we made the decision to go forward not knowing that this would be the last sailing for the Joy for a while. It was absolutely amazing how the ship was sanitized. Everyday a new process was implemented. throw pillows were removed from cabins and common area, tables were not set until people sat down. Salt and Pepper plus sugars were now on plates to be thrown away after each meal. People were not allowed to touch any food - if you wanted a glass of water, the crew got that for you. If you wanted Ketchup - the crew poured that on your plate. No one could touch the merchandise for sale. Hand washing required to enter the buffet along with sanitizer. Cabins cleaned at least 2x a day. Decks powerwashed nightly. Balconies powerwashed. Constant wiping down of common areas including the baseboards in the halls. To my knowledge, no one was sick and in fact, we felt very safe on this ship with a crew dedicated to ensure that we were safe. Thanks NCL for a vacation we will all remember for a very long time. Thanks to the Joy crew for taking such good care of us! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I want to start off by saying that I recognize that this is a stressful time for everyone including and especially for the travel industry. We cruised from March 8 to March 15. On March 8 when we left, COVID19 was a concern but not to ... Read More
I want to start off by saying that I recognize that this is a stressful time for everyone including and especially for the travel industry. We cruised from March 8 to March 15. On March 8 when we left, COVID19 was a concern but not to the same extent it was by the end of our cruise. That being said, the service on this ship is terrible from day one.This as my first time with NCL, but I have cruised with Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Celebrity. ALL of them completely blow NCL out of the water.It seemed like they were really short staffed. At night in The Local (the only place to get food after 11:30 unless you want to pay $9.95 for room service) tables sat uncleared and totally filthy, the hot tubs in the evening constantly had empty plastic cups flying around them and squashed out cigarette butts in the filters. During the morning hours there was garbage floating around in the pool. There were never enough bar tenders, finding a server around the pool or in the theater, or really at any restaurant was a hard task. We waited about an average of half an hour for a drink. I asked Customer Service about this assuming COVID19 had them short staffed but I was told that they were full staffed and "its normal to wait a long time for things on big ships." I noticed that there were no drink servers in the main buffet area and asked about that and was told "It is self serve and we don't have servers but there is a walk up bar in the buffet if you want a drink." There are 4000 people on this ship, most of which have the "free drink package" (except for the  additional 20% added for gratuities and additional taxes you pay per drink  when docked in at certain ports) and one bar in the buffet,with one, maybe two bartenders. You do the math on this one. You get to choose between waiting in line for forty minutes for a drink or eating with your family. The staff on this ship didn't seem motivated at all and they were just down right miserable in some instances.At the bar by the kids pool my son was sitting on a stool at the bar while I was waiting for a drink and the bartender snapped "get down, no kids". the towel guys were very rude and abrupt as well. It definitely did not have the friendly feel you get used to on other cruise lines or even all inclusive land vacations  There are some things mentioned in a lot of other reviews that are definitely true. One being the crowding and the other being the nickle and diming.  This is a huge ship that has all the pool space of a small ship. The amount of people on a sea day is unbearable. We had the pleasure of being on this cruise with a bunch of 20 somethings during their march break. the "adult pool" was overtaken by drunk college students doing cannonballs and belly flops into the pool surrounded by about 2000 other annoyed and disgruntled guests while security chased them around the pool. This was a daily thing. This ship is so overcrowded. Other people have said it again and again. Its true. As for the nickle and diming, there is a program at kids club where you can leave your children later at night for a fee. If you have two children (siblings) in the club you get a discount. NCL tried to charge us separately for our boys and not give us the discount because they are step brother and not actual brothers. We were in the same room and they are on a family vacation. I thought that was shady. When the COVID19 situation got more serious on Thursday they closed down ping pong and mini golf to stop spread of germs. Those are both free things. They did however leave open the arcade, laser tag, and go carts. All payed things. I think if there is risk of someone getting the virus from the handle of a golf club, there is most certainly a risk of getting it an an arcade,or even a casino! This ship is beautiful and has some really cool restaurants and bars and some of the best food I've had on a cruise. Jersey Boys and Six were also really great shows.  It's just run by a company who seems to have no idea or doesn't care who their competition is in terms of customer service. When it comes to large ships, The Oasis class blows NCL away in every category. If I had never been a cruise before I might think this was good, but comparatively it's not. We sailed with Celebrity last spring during a promotion they had similar to NCL's where the drinks and wifi were included. We did not pay a dime more for anything that claimed to be free, we had unlimited wifi for both devices (I don't even want to say what we ultimately ended up paying for our "free" wifi) on Celebrity we didn't pay an extra 20% on our drink package, no additional extra taxes at certain ports either. Everything was just as it claimed. WIth NCL I felt like I was always looking for the fine print or the "catch" There are a few other small things that seemed off too. Bliss didn't  leave New York until about 2.5 hours after it was supposed to and no one addressed this at all. Standing outside at the "sail away party" was really cold lol, It would have been nice to know we were going to be waiting until after the sail away party ended! I still don't know why we were so late leaving. We missed the day at their private island because of high winds, which seems to be fairly common. Although whatever ship it was may have been smaller than ours, it was disheartening to see Royal Caribbean docked at their island so close to the one we should have been at.  We were at customer service so many times on account of key cards not working which was frustrating. All in all, I'm not sure this cruise was worth the 14 day quarantine my family and I are enduring from having been on it   (being Canadian citizens returning from a different country, just policy now) Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I wanted to experience a new mega ship and this one seemed right. I have sailed Norwegian several times and always enjoyed it. So getting right to it: Pros: beautiful decor and public areas. Food was very good overall and wonderful in ... Read More
I wanted to experience a new mega ship and this one seemed right. I have sailed Norwegian several times and always enjoyed it. So getting right to it: Pros: beautiful decor and public areas. Food was very good overall and wonderful in the Specialty restaurants. Bars were plentiful. The two main shows, Kinky Boots and Choir of Man, were the best I have seen at sea. Staterooms were well designed and spacious enough. The crew was cheerful and enthusiastic. I really enjoyed the day at beautiful Great Stirrup Cay with drinks and food included in the package, if you had it. Cons: Limited deck space due to the extensive areas taken up by teen activities: laser tag, VR games and race track. Smoking areas small, crowed and sad. Music on the decks seemed to be exclusively Cuban/Miami dance and very loud. Tiny, overly salty pool. Hot tubs always full of children. Daily activities basically trivia, bingo and spa/shopping seminars. No central elevators. There seemed to be extra charges for everything. Ports were lovely but only spending an evening in San Juan was a waste. BTW, we were on the last cruise before they were cancelled due to the Corona virus outbreak and the Encore crew were fantastic. They handled the extra precautions like champs. Washy-washy! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
This is my first review on Cruise Critic (pardon the length - I hope this is helpful for those who are interested). Encore was my 7th cruise - sixth with NCL. This was Encore’s last voyage before the major cruise industry shut down due ... Read More
This is my first review on Cruise Critic (pardon the length - I hope this is helpful for those who are interested). Encore was my 7th cruise - sixth with NCL. This was Encore’s last voyage before the major cruise industry shut down due to COVID-19. On that note, kudos and appreciation to the crew who worked tirelessly to keep passengers and crew safe and healthy. Each day, we noticed additional measures were put in place, including the cancellation of some events, crew serving passengers at the buffet instead of each grabbing the utensils themselves, tables in the dining room only being set once seated, paper menus, crew not handling keycards, and, of course, additional hand washing and sanitizing, to name just a few. Embarkation for this cruise took much longer than any previous cruise; partly because we couldn’t get to the port until the busiest time, but mostly because the additional screening (taking temperature and checking passports) to ensure ill people did not board. Once on board, my wife, 7 year old daughter and I marvelled at the “new-ness,” the size and the beauty of Encore. I quickly went to make reservations for dining and some of the activities. The lines for this were shorter than I expected and I was able to get most of my reservations quickly and easily. Do this on your first day on board. We ate at the Local (what is called O’Sheehan’s on most other NCL ships). There’s more space for The Local on this ship, and the food is just as good - though I missed the meat loaf this time. We looked to get our keycards hole-punched for our lanyards and were told these new keycards cannot be punched. The use a tap-system rather than a swipe-system and a hole-punch renders them useless. Conveniently - for NCL - they sell lanyards with a plastic pouch for your card for $10 - $12 on board. (And you can’t buy the plastic pouch separately.) Save the $ and just bring your own. Here is a bullet-point rundown of what’s on Encore that we really loved: - food; we only ever eat in the main dining rooms and the food on NCL is always delicious. We’ve heard great things about the specialty dining rooms but feel there’s no reason for us to try them yet as the food that’s included in the price is so good. - entertainment: Choir of Man and Kinky Boots were the best combo of main shows of any cruise I’ve been on to date. We watched Choir of Man twice, we loved it so much! Kinky Boots was so well done - a huge cast, 1:45 min show without intermission; it felt like Broadway. We took our 7 year old because she loves musicals and didn’t find the content all that inappropriate actually and the language was much better than other shows we’ve seen. Your call, if you sailing with kids. The two comedians were quite funny but we prefer improv and would love for NCL to renegotiate a contract with Second City and bring them back. - casino: we don’t ever gamble and appreciated the casino’s enclosed smoking area, keeping the smell of smoke in the public areas to a minimum. - kids aqua park: perfect size and amenities, my 7 year old loved it. - activities: lots to do for all ages; not enough time. I took my daughter with me in the go-carts for one session ($15 for about 5 or 6 laps). I did the VR experience in the Galaxy Pavilion - it wasn’t busy so I did the $29 for one hour deal. I tried 14 of the games and must admit I felt a bit woozy doing them in such rapid succession. I did the escape game BAMboozled - our team won! The Beatles show was over-crowded; great sound but a boring show actually (I expected better, given the other reviews here but perhaps didn’t give them a fair shake). - the Observation Lounge on Deck 15. A great place to relax, especially on rocky sea days. Not once did I feel like the ship was crowded or congested. - cabin: we usually book an interior room and this time we were assigned an accessible room with additional space. - wine package: I could never drink enough alcohol to make the all-inclusive drink package worthwhile, and my wife doesn’t drink at all. I usually take a few bottles of wine on board and pay the corkage fee, but this time I did the Viva Vino - 4 bottles for $110 + grat. This worked well, though still more expensive than paying corkage on my own bottles. What could have been better (certainly not make-or-break): - coffee; only good coffee on the ship is the Starbucks (extra $) - timing of the call in San Juan: arriving at 5:30 pm doesn’t leave chance to do much of anything - the ship is loud: the band on the pool deck, the blaring muster drill in the theatre, even the relentless creaking in staterooms and common areas during pitch and roll - just annoying more than anything - I’m no designer, but what is that strange chandelier hanging in 6-7-8? Not elegant. - I missed the live music in the Manhattan Room Excursions San Juan - as mentioned, arriving at 5:30 was not ideal. We walked around and bought a souvenir. St. Thomas - purchased an excursion through Godfrey Tours. I tried to give Godfrey a suggestion to give better directions as to where to find him - strangely he started arguing with me about it. Simply put: when you get off the ship, ask someone to direct you to the “pre-arranged tour” meeting area. 3rd party tours, not booked through your cruise line. That said, the tour was great! Very informative (did every hurricane hit St. Thomas?!?), and we loved our time at Megan’s Beach. Tortola - did nothing here except look at the shops within the cruise port. We did note how clean this port area was compared to St. Thomas. Will do something more elaborate here next time. Great Stirrup Cay - we made it! Tendering was possible this time. First time in three tries for my daughter; second time in four tries for my wife and I. Beautiful place, but NCL really has to build a pier here to ensure making this port of call. Shout out to a few crew members (we filled out our Vacation Hero cards but forgot to drop them off): - Henry - waiter in the Manhattan Room; friendly and quick service - John Milligan - pianist in the Observation Lounge who invited members of the Choir of Man and Kinky Boots to sing as he accompanied. I want to quickly address some of the major criticisms of Encore by other reviewers. ** Not enough space for sunning around the pool. I can see this being an issue, but we are not pool people or sun-worshippers so it didn’t bother us at all. We could always find a lounge chair in a shady part of the pool deck near the Kids Aqua Park. If this is a major priority for you, consider a different ship or purchase the Vibe Club. ** NCL “nickel and dimes” you. Yes. And thanks for doing so. By not including all the extras in the initial fare, passengers can pick and choose what they want to experience rather than pay up front for all of it. It keeps the price down, lets me pay for the activities I want to do, and minimizes long line-ups. We absolutely loved this cruise. A wonderful mix of active and relaxing vacation. Encore has a few kinks (no pun intended) but is a spectacular ship. We would love to sail on her again. NCL in general meets our family’s desires - great food, lots to do (or not to do), top rate kids programming and amenities, affordable. It’s remains our cruise line of choice. Thank you NCL for a great week - especially given what was going on in the world at the time! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Seven of us traveled aboard the Pride of America in March. Please note, we were the last cruise allowed before the 'Rona shut the world down, so keep that in mind, as for precautions were taken and new procedures were added hourly ... Read More
Seven of us traveled aboard the Pride of America in March. Please note, we were the last cruise allowed before the 'Rona shut the world down, so keep that in mind, as for precautions were taken and new procedures were added hourly throughout the week. We were lucky enough to book an obstructed view suite (Cabin 7094). Staying in a suite has some added benefits, like express check in at the port. When we arrived, we were met with Lei's and asked to fill out a questionnaire about our health, along with getting our temperature taken via infrared thermometer. Once in the building, the lines were long, but we were taken to another area with refreshments and some finger foods. We met our concierge (I believe his name was Steve) and I have to say, he seemed annoyed...and remained that way the entire week. 15 minutes of some computer work, and we were escorted aboard and to our room. Cabin 7094 has 2 rooms. One room has a queen bed, and a couch that opens up to fit 1-2 people. The other room is smaller, and has 2 single beds (that can be altered to be a queen) and 2 fold down beds. It's tight, but you are really never in this room except to shower and sleep. Each room has its own bathroom with shower. Once inside, our Butler, Georgia arrived to introduce herself. She was amazing! She asked if we needed any help with reservations or excursions. We asked for a few things to be altered and she said she would take care of it. 20 minutes later, our concierge called the room and asked the same thing, we explained that we talked to Georgia about it and he replied "Well, thats not her job, it's mine, you need to talk to me, not her". Yeah, I was done with this guy. We ate a fast dinner at the Cadilllac Diner, food wasn't the best, and service was very slow. Never offered any refills. The place is small, but they only had 2 waitress' working, so I can say they weren't working hard. By this time, it was 8pm local ( but we have been awake for nearly 21 hours, so we got to bed. Let me say this, If you have been on a big, new ship in the Caribbean that sways a little....this is NOT those ships. This bad boy dips, sways, drops, and rolls. Since you really only sail at night, and have 2 nights you stay in port, its not too bad, and you do get use to it, but that first night was a bit crazy. Day 2 Maui: Rent a car! Budget has great rates, and has a shuttle that picks you up at the port. We did a lot that first day. We drove down to One'Lui beach, it's a small black sand beach. There was. a sign saying you needed to pay for parking, but the locals all said we didn't have to, no one actually ever checks. Then we headed to our excursion through "Four Winds Maui Snorkel". We booked this directly through them, and it was great. Took the afternoon "Coral Gardens" trip in hopes of seeing sea turtles. We saw one when we arrived, but none during our snorkel. The crew was great, lunch and drinks were provided and also great. Once back, we stopped at "Beach Street Shave Ice" for a little snack, then headed to the summit of Mt Haleakala'. We went at night and the stars you see are amazing. Google it. Day 3 Maui: We went on the "Maui Waterfall and Hiking" excursion. Book this through "Hike Maui"! This is the SAME excursion and company they offer via NCL for a lot less. They will pick you up right outside the Port (5 minute walk). Our guide was Steve, he was awesome..we had a blast. Jumped off 5 waterfalls, has some lunch, and walked through some beautiful tropical areas. That evening, we ate at La Cucina (The 1st of 4 specially restaurants we ate at). This is where the saying "you get what you pay for" really has value. The food and service was superb. The Filet was mouthwatering. Day 4: Hilo This is the day the virus started showing its affect on the ship. We were no longer allowed to get our own food at the breakfast buffet, everything has to be placed on your plate, and all drinks had to be poured for you. Not a big deal, but added some time to lines. Once off the ship, we rented a car and headed to Volcano National Park. We had booked an excursion with "Epic Lava". This tour is not offered via NCL, and the times they list on their website do not coincide with the NCL port times, but these guys are so good, that a few emails and they offered to alter their day and set up a special tour for us. These guys are a small, but very respected outfit on the island. Almost living legends. Learned more in 5 hours about the history of the island and volcanos than anyone could imagine. Look them up. That evening, we ate at Cagney's Steakhouse. Wow...Worth every penny. Service was top notch...Food was delicious. Day 5: Kona You need to take a tender boat to the port. The Ship docks about a mile out in the bay. If you are a Suite guest, you will meet down in Cagny's Steakhouse. You will then be taken to the front of the line to get on the tender boat. That was worth every cent, we heard horror stories about the wait to get off the ship (more on this later). We walked around town and in the shops for a while, grabbed some lunch. It's a really nice town. We then went on the "Captian Zodiac Snorkel Tour". We booked this through NCL, as for it was the same price as booking directly. This was the absolute best snorkeling we have ever done. The boat is a small zodiac. It's fast, and a bit bumpy, and lots of fun. They bring you to Kealakekua Bay. During the ride, we saw humpback whales, but couldn't get too close do to their safety. Once at the site, we saw numerous fish, octopus, and about 20 spinner dolphins. It was insane. On the ride back, the Capitan shows you amazing formations in the rocks and gets you up close and personal with them while telling you about the history of each. Definitely a gem! That night, we ate at Tempinyaki, the sake was good, as were the drinks. The chefs put on a great show, and made some spectacular food. Waitress was once again, top notch. Day 6: Kauai This is the day things really started getting strange. We were to be in Port at 8:00am. At 7:50am, we couldn't see land. The Capitan made an announcement around 8:00am saying that in the middle of the night, we had to stop in Honolulu due to a medical emergency. We arrived in port close to 10:30am, and the lines to get off the ship were crazy, unorganized, and slow. There were people on every floor level crowding the stairwells, people cutting infant of people, and the crew didn't seem to even attempt to try to organize it. Once off the ship, picked up the car we rented and headed to Wiamea Canyon National Park. NCL offers an excursion, but all you get to do it so to the scenic outlook for 20 minutes, along with stops at little shops to buy coffee. If you are into hiking and seeing some amazing scenery, google Wiamea hiking trails. Beautiful! That evening we went to the Luau offered through NCL. You cannot book this directly, they have it blacked out the nights NCL is in port. We paid for preferred seating, and sat near the stage. They say there is an open bar, this is not true. You get 2 free drinks per person, additional drinks are at cost. Seems like a fair deal, but you are there for 4 hours, and its humid and muggy. Food was ok, its buffet style. The Luau show was more of a play then a Luau. It was interesting and entertaining. Once its over, everyone is going back to the ship on 2 huge charter busses. If you rented a car, bring it! We had time to take pictures with the cast, drove back, parked, walked to the ship, and were past security when the first bus arrived. We watched as port security boarded the bus and checked everyones key card and ID before they allowed anyone to get off the bus. If you do rent a car, you can safely park your car overnight. (I know this doesn't make any sense now) Once you leave the port, walk to the end of the access road. You will come to the main road. To your right, there is a small park. You can park in the street in front of that park. Day 7: Kauai Got in the car and drove down to Spouting Horn, fun to look at for 15 minutes. Then headed down the road to Poipu Beach. We were able to see huge sea turtles resting on the beach, and well as sea loins. Dropped off the car and headed back for 2:00pm Get your cameras ready, grab a drink, and head up to the top deck to witness the Na Pali Coast. Pictures do not do it justice, you have to witness it for yourself. That evening, we ate at Moderno Churrascaria....If you are a meat lover, you need to eat here. They have a huge salad bar (Corona made this a nightmare) but I say skip it, save your appetite for the meat. You will have a waiter, and he was great. He introduces you to your "server". Your server comes to your table with about 10 different meats on a rotisserie and slices you fresh meats. We are talking bacon wrapped filet, slow fired porks, chicken, and the very delicious brown sugar roasted pineapple. If anyone in your party is a vegetarian, they will get you something from any other restaurant on board. Spectacular service. Some things to know: Not much for kids to do on the ship. They have an arcade, and the usual activities (ping pong, shuffleboard) but, everything, including the pools, shut down at 6pm. Makes no sense when 99% of the passengers don't get back on the ship till 6pm. If you get the "Free Hawaiian Beverage Package", this covers all drinks up to $15. You are allowed 2 drinks per person, per transaction. So if you are traveling with 4 people, you are covered. Even with 6 of us that were of age to drink, we were able to get drinks for us all, just tip them well and they keep making drinks. The drinks are free, but you are charged the tax per drink. Water on the ship is expensive. We brought 2 Britta water bottles with filters build in with us. Filled them at night and they were ready for the next day. If you dont was to do that, you can buy water at the ABC convenient stores. They are everywhere you look on every island, but you cannot bring water back on to the ship. We didn't do any nightlife on the ship, we were ready for sleep after dinner. Cell service: The only time we didn't have service was on the nights that we were sailing. Otherwise, it was just like being in the mainland US. Our Butler, Georgia, was great, aside from changing our reservations, we really never utilized her, but she made sure to check on us every morning and evening. She left us little gifts every day like chocolate covered strawberries, cookies, champagne, wine, or bottles of water. Our housekeeper was also amazing, busted every day with a smile on his face. In closing, it's a great way to sample the best islands Hawaii has to offer. Some staff seem annoyed and lazy, but the majority we encountered were pleasant and helpful. Do your research, rent a car and maximize your time. The week goes fast, take lots of pictures and enjoy the beauty Hawaii has to offer. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Due to having to use tenders, one port was canceled. At the other two, it took hours to re-board. The cruise director did a TERRIBLE job of communicating in Cozumel. Yes, there were a lot of ships which I understand makes it more ... Read More
Due to having to use tenders, one port was canceled. At the other two, it took hours to re-board. The cruise director did a TERRIBLE job of communicating in Cozumel. Yes, there were a lot of ships which I understand makes it more congested. However, they refused to communicate over the loudspeakers as to how we were to disembark on the tenders, leading to mass confusion. It took us 4 hours to get off the ship. We were told they were going to make sure we got there for the excursion, but that time came and went. Then they said the excursions would wait, but when we finally got ashore we were told they left without us. We had a grand total of 2 hours at the port before we stood in line another 2 hours to get back on the boat. I completely blame the cruise director and the crew for their terrible communication and organization. They made an already difficult situation 10 times worse and ruined our vacation. I used to love Norwegian but I will never sail with them again after this. Learn how to make proper announcements so people can plan accordingly and disembark in an organized manner. The dining was actually good, especially Ocean Blue. Many of the cruise staff were amazing through everything, but several were really obnoxious. We missed our first port because of choppy waters, but Jamaica and Grand Cayman were awesome. I highly recommend the ATV excursion in Jamaica and checking out Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman. The parties on the ship were lackluster at best, and we really missed the white party which they normally have on Norwegian but didn't this time. Syd Norman Pour House was cool for music but usually too crowded to enjoy. Same thing for the pool. The shows were great as well. We loved Six! All in all, I would not go on another huge ship like the Breakaway again. Q Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Very disappointed with this cruise. The people that worked on the ship were the rudest people ever. With that being said our cabin steward Jason was AWESOME!! The room was ok the. They did an excellent job keeping our hands washed and ... Read More
Very disappointed with this cruise. The people that worked on the ship were the rudest people ever. With that being said our cabin steward Jason was AWESOME!! The room was ok the. They did an excellent job keeping our hands washed and ship clean. We are over the age of 18 and we visited deck 16 H2O Spice bar everyday. The bar was not opened until 2:00 everyday and they closed at 5:00 everyday due to private parties. Very rude the way they made everyone leave...…..the beverage selection was awesome. Guest Services were a JOKE!!!! Getting off the boat In Grand Caymen and Cozmuel was the most disorganized thing I have ever been a part of. The food was fair.....nothing to brag about. I would not recommend this Cruise to anyone. We will think long and hard about future cruise travel. My advice to them get employees that like their job. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
My parents took us on this cruise as a way to introduce us to one of their favorite past times. While it wasn’t flawless, it was incredible and we cannot wait to cruise again! HIGHLIGHTS: staff, beautiful ship, fun atmosphere, cabin ... Read More
My parents took us on this cruise as a way to introduce us to one of their favorite past times. While it wasn’t flawless, it was incredible and we cannot wait to cruise again! HIGHLIGHTS: staff, beautiful ship, fun atmosphere, cabin LOWLIGHTS: leaving :( The first two days of the trip were rough seas. The ship’s staff did everything they could to help make us comfortable. 4/5 of us did just fine while one person spent one day a little green, but recouped with Dramamine and Sea Bands. On/Off: Embarkation was easier than I anticipated. Disembarkation was as well despite some guests immediately reverting to rudeness once we returned to port. Ship: The ship itself is beautiful! She had everything we needed and even in 7 nights we didn’t see or do everything. I have heard many complaints about the layout of the ship, but there wasn’t a smoky smell throughout-just in certain areas of the casino. Cabin: Our cabin had a balcony and was more than enough space and storage. We were comfortable for our entire voyage. Our room connected to my parents on deck 13. It was a great location especially to Splash Academy dropoff/pickup on deck 12. Dining: The Garden Cafe on deck 15 was my son’s favorite and had varied, tasty options. Occasionally something wasn’t up to par, but it is what it is but you can go pick something else and find your favorites. The hash brown circles in the morning were a must! During our trip, they went from self serve to staff serve due to Coronavirus and the staff handled this gracefully. I honestly wish it would stay this way. Teppenyaki was good for our first night, but not as incredible as I expected based off reviews. The Manhattan Room was hands down one of our favorites. Chrisologo was one of the best servers I have ever had anywhere! The food was delicious and the menu changes slightly each day. La Cucina was good per my parents report. Moderno Churrascaria was okay- seemed rushed, but the food was good- especially the fried yucca, Brazilian cheese bread, and white rice. The American Diner was slow and stumbly for service, but the food was phenomenal and it was a nice little escape. Entertainment: Wonderful! Highly recommend the Howl at Sea experience. My son loved Splash Academy and the kids pool. Decks 17 and 18 were closed due to high winds for almost all of our cruise so no bungee jump, mini golf, or ropes course, but we had plenty to do and this didn’t alter our experience. Service: I cannot day enough about this! These crew members were out of this world and went out of their way to ensure a good time was had and Coronavirus changes were implemented smoothly. This was all despite the fact that the cruise industry was shutting down and they would be out of jobs for the foreseeable future. I applaud them for being away from their families for so long and bringing so much joy despite some pushy, elitist people on board. Ports: Great Stirrup Cay cancelled due to weather. I was fine with this as I wouldn’t have wanted to tender in the waves we were riding. Ochos Rios Jamaica offered great excursions and was enjoyable. Do the chair lift and bobsled even if wary of heights it was a highlight and not as scary as I thought! Grand Cayman was fun, but the tendering process back to the ship was long and hot. We waited in line for an hour due to difficulties, but staff brought drinks and cool towels out. Cozumel another tendering mess, but I think this was less due to NCL and more due to world events. The port itself was fun and I wish we had been there longer! Other: My son had to visit the hospital for bronchitis and the nurse, Diogo, and doctor were fantastic, caring, and thorough! No trip will be perfect, but you gettin out of it if you can go with the flow. I am already researching other cruises and contacting NCL about the staff members I have mentioned here. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We book a cruise with our adult children and our grandchildren during spring break each year. We choose Norwegian because of the kids sail free offers and the number of activities available for the little ones. This year the cruise was not ... Read More
We book a cruise with our adult children and our grandchildren during spring break each year. We choose Norwegian because of the kids sail free offers and the number of activities available for the little ones. This year the cruise was not as worry free as usual because of the virus scares throughout the world. We did not cancel because our cruise was before the Norwegian offers to give passengers credit for a future cruise, and our children did not have CFA insurance and would have taken a significant economic hit. Overall, we had a good cruise. There were many good things but also some "misses." Embarkation was terrible for us. We arrived at the port at 12:30, went quickly through the temperature screen, security, etc, but then my husband and I were in line to board the ship for over an hour. We did not make in on board until after 2:00. This delay was in no way related to the virus because we had already completed the extra screening prior to getting into the line. We went straight to Taste for a bite of lunch. We finished a quick lunch, went to our mini suite, met our steward, and unpacked our carry-ons before the muster drill. Our room steward kept our cabin clean and we were pleased with him. I wouldn't say that he went above and beyond, but he did a nice job and responded to my request for additional coffee packets promptly. Personally, I do miss the towel animals a little and think not having them removes a bit of the fun. I know I could have requested them, but I did not. My children requested them for their cabins because they have little ones. They asked for the children so I hated to also ask for adults. I felt it was important for the little ones to have that experience. We gave him a nice extra tip for doing the animals. Perhaps Norwegian could do towels for all guests just one night during the cruise so guests could have that experience at some point during their voyage. Our first port was Roatan, and we did a private excursion there, which turned out to be our favorite day. We visited the sloth sanctuary before splitting our group into 2 parties. Half went snorkeling while the others went to Las Palmas Beach. Both groups had a wonderful time, and we returned to the ship with time to spare before our scheduled departure from the port. We had to tender at the private island, but that tender went fairly quickly and efficiently. We rented clamshells, let the kids splay in the splash pad area, spent time on the beach, and really enjoyed the time there. The tender back to the ship was also not excessive. We chose to stay on the ship at Costa Maya but planned to go ashore at Cozumel. That is one decision I would change now if I were making new plans. Cozumel was a disaster so I wish we had gone ashore at Costa Maya. I will address that in more detail later. We ate at Cagney's, Teppanyaki, and LaCucina and enjoyed all three. We had amazing waiters at Cagney's and LaCucina. Suma at Cagney's went above and beyond trying to please one of our picky diners. The chef at Teppanyaki was quick to make the show as special as possible for our three year olds, and I would not hesitate to rebook at any of those specialty restaurants. One real positive that I saw was the effort that the crew was making in sanitizing the ship. Cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning was observed all day in the common areas and hallways. You did not enter a restaurant without using the hand sanitizers. No salt shakers or condiments were on tables without request so contact between other passengers were avoided that way. Tables and chairs were disinfected between use. I think Norwegian was doing their best in that area. We are not big buffet lovers, but the one morning we needed to eat at the buffet because of an early port time. Turns out that was at Cozumel so it was a mistake too, but the buffet was not self serve. Everything was done to keep people safe from germs and the virus. The one big negative on our trip was the stop at Cozumel. Norwegian could not dock on the day we were there so the plan was to tender. That was a disaster. When we discovered we were tendering, we immediately reacted and secured Tender Tickets for Tender # 1 never dreaming how bad it would be. We thought we were in good shape with an early tender until we reached the theater to wait and saw what was happening. One whole side was filled with people waiting who had priority tender, and they had not boarded yet. No one was boarding because there weren't enough tenders, and of course, they had to sanitize them after every trip over and back. I understand that the sanitizing slowed the process down, but what we experienced was ridiculous, and it was not all because of sanitizing. There were not enough tenders, and even without the sanitizing, there would have been long delays. They called Tender Groups 1-3 at 8:30, and we were still waiting at 10:00! When we asked if they had any idea of how much longer it would be, they had no guess except maybe 45 more minutes. We'd booked a private excursion, but we were going to miss it so we finally gave up, forfeited our excursion deposit, and left to let the kids enjoy amenities on the ship instead of waiting for a tender. Lots of other people left too. They were still calling tender numbers at noon and were only half way through the list. I think Norwegian needs to re-evaluate the itinerary during this cruise shutdown. If the ship can't dock at the pier in Cozumel, perhaps they need to change their order of the ports, and if they know you will be tendering there, they should let you know in advance so you can plan accordingly. They knew about the tendering before we sailed because someone told me they were doing a bi-weekly share of the dock. One week tender; next week dock. We tried to salvage the rest of our day, but this is a problem that they need to solve. We also experienced shutdowns of mini golf, ropes course, etc. due to sanitation, which made the few days hard on our little ones. Some of that I understand, but golf clubs, golf balls and bocci balls could have been checked out with equipment sanitized between uses. They could have checked them out at the same spot that was signing out pool towels. Interestingly enough, bowling was open. That is a "for fee" activity so I guess those balls were safe for guests to handle but not golf balls and clubs. We returned to Miami under a cloud because of the virus, but disembarkation was super simple for us. We never see a reason to try to get off the ship early so we get luggage tags for 8:30 or 9:00, depending on what is available. This time it was 8:30. We vacated our cabin at 7:45, went to Savor, had a nice breakfast, and went to the line at 8:40. It moved quickly, and we were off the ship, in our cars, and on the way home by 9:30. I want to close by once again saying how hard the crew on this cruise worked at trying to keep the ship free of the virus. I truly feel sorry for them during this time because they will suffer income loss and are probably worried above loved ones just like the rest of us. Even if Norwegian pays them, they will be missing out on tips. We stopped for lunch on our drive home, which is about 6 hours. What we saw at the restaurant was far more concerning than ANYTHING we experienced on the cruise. Of course, now we are on a 14-day quarantine just because we were on the cruise. My kids can't work, kids can't go to day care, etc. Good news is that we are now 8 days post cruise with no symptoms. I'm thankful we were able to go on this cruise, even if it wasn't perfect. I look forward to a future cruise when all the craziness is over, but I will reevaluate whether or not I wish to port in Cozumel. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
NCL Gem Review 3/6/2020 through 3/16/2020 Sorry, this is a long one. I almost did not write it. I mean with so many more serious things on our minds lately. But then I thought, this cruise was exceptional and maybe people need to ... Read More
NCL Gem Review 3/6/2020 through 3/16/2020 Sorry, this is a long one. I almost did not write it. I mean with so many more serious things on our minds lately. But then I thought, this cruise was exceptional and maybe people need to hear that. 4 Adults in the Garden Villa Suite 14000. Both my husband and I are platinum plus latitude members. We had booked an H3 months prior but once our travel agent told me the H1 was all of a sudden open, I bid on it and my bid was accepted 4 days prior to sailing. So at the last minute we invited my sister and her husband who had sailed on the Gem with us in 2013 and they said YES! We also invited my brother and his wife but he had strep throat so no way… bummer. We had an extra bedroom which we joked about if someone drank too much we would not let them drive home ;) We left New Hampshire at 5:30 on the morning of our cruise and arrived at the Port of NY by 11:30. An easy Friday drive. We dropped off the bags, tipped the porter and parked above for $400.00, for 10 days, very easy. Except that we parked in the first parking area and it was way too far away. My husband had his knee replaced about 5 weeks ago so it was a long walk back to the ship. Once they took our temperature we were escorted to the Haven area and had to fill out a medical questionnaire. We were processed very quickly and then we saw RAVI! Ravi is an amazing butler we had for 2 sailings, many, many years ago. He greeted us and told us he already had Mr. M’s Guinness on ice and he asked about our kids … Ravi is one of those special people you meet in life that you just do not forget. And we were so happy he would be our butler once again. I will say here that this is what NCL does best. They have incredible staff that they are able to retain. Ravi has been with NCL 19 years. We went directly to Cagney’s for lunch while they finished preparing our suite. The Garden Villa is wonderful. In the past the colors were vibrant either blue, green and gold, or Orange Red and gold which might be a bit loud for everyday, but absolutely perfect for a Caribbean cruise vacation. Plus there used to be a very cool circular leather sofa. They refurbished the Villa a few years ago and the new colors are tasteful and neutral. A bit more upscale but rather subdued, IMO. And circular sofa is now just a solid oversized sectional. Comfy but dull. The Garden Villa is huge. 3 bedrooms all with their own bathroom. One is definitely the master suite with an enormous soaking tub. I will not bore you with all the details of Garden Villa, it is just as awesome as you have heard. We were kept well hydrated with 6 bottles of alcohol, and all the boxed water, soda (Pepsi products only) juices and mixers we could want. We had a few parties and they allowed us to purchase extra beer, wine and more bottles of liquor. Service: In a word, Outstanding. Ravi kept brining us food and did not mind us planning parties and our room stewards Patrick and Teddy were wonderful. They kept the Villa and Sundeck pristine. One thing that changed in the space was the courtyard area. When we sailed last we had a very private top deck. Now the Top deck is half the size and the people in the 15000 can actually look over and see us from the steps of their hot tub. It was very odd and invasive. And the Sauna never really got hot. And the master bedroom was always very cold. Our concierge was Alex from Croatia and he was excellent. Alex made our spa reservations, dining (often at the last minute) and showed us to the special seating at the Stardust and much more. He also ordered local flowers for me on behalf of my husband, with the instructions "something local and funky" he did not disappoint. It was fabulous. Ravi our amazing butler went above all expectations. We always had fresh fruit, cookies, midnight blt’s, chips and pastry platters. Ravi also brought us hot breakfast every morning from Cagneys. steak and eggs, omelets, waffles with cream and berries, OMG Ravi spoiled us. He gave us suggestions for dinner and shows, reminded us of parties and many little things that made this particular cruise so very special. The first 3 nights this ship was rocking. It was white water all day. The cruise home was just the opposite, slow and calm and very nice. Friends of ours were getting married on this cruise, which was the primary reason for this trip to begin with. So once we got the Villa we had about 72 hours to re-plan a wedding / reception. We got signs created by ETSY and had a local printer make 2 so all the guests could sign one. Then we ordered everything “peacock” theme we could get our hands on. Plus a shiny gold cake topper and balloon letters, lots of peacock feathers and favor boxes. Ravi got us extra vases for peacock bouquets and table cloths. The grooms and friends had already planned to have the wedding and reception in the Bliss and had the menu already planned, they also had gorgeous gift bags with custom printed candies and fancy glass peacocks. After speaking with Alex and Ravi the wedding / reception was relocated from the Bliss to the Villa with 54 guests PLUS the ship photographer Jillian was just wonderful. She took loads of pics and guests could go to the photo gallery and ask to view the Baker wedding to purchase their own pics. We were docked in San Juan and the ship was finally still. The wedding was perfect. NCL provided drink servers and someone serving horderves (sp) and Ravi had help at the Bar. The wedding cake was chocolate mousse and the best I ever tasted and I am kind of a cake snob  During the cruise we had 2 more slightly smaller parties in the Villa and Alex and Ravi provided plenty of great finger foods and desserts, it was awesome. Dining: I loved all the food Moderno, LeBistro were excellent and Teppanyaki was fresh and fun. I did not eat the buffet but really enjoyed Sheehans and the MDR’s. The only disappointment was La Cucina. The pizza was OK but it should not be a “specialty” restaurant, IMO. Ports: Sorry, I do not know. We had been to all of them before, so we did not get off the ship. We took the time to enjoy the hot tub and I got some work done. Work: I had pre-purchased the fastest internet package for $249.00 but when I went to log in the package was not there and I needed it so I agreed to pay $349.00 for the same package. Alex was able to fix this so I was not charged extra. I brought my desktop with 4 travel monitors (all fit in one rolling carryon) and I set them up on the desk overlooking the pool area and the sea … it was perfect. I was able to work a couple hours a day and check my emails and it made my vacation so much better, knowing I was not facing 10 days of work upon returning home. And with the Covid-19 scare taking over the world while we were away it was doubly important for me to be able to communicate with our clients and online followers. Our business is event management and we had scheduled a huge Spring Arts and Craft Festival in MA for the following weekend. Then the Governor of Massachusetts prohibited gatherings of over 50 people so we had to act quickly to suspend ad campaigns and notify our artisans and update our website, etc, etc. If I did not have this package I do not know how I would have dealt with it. One thing to note … I could not get my new fancy wifi portable printer to work. If your device does not have a screen it will not work with the NCL wifi system. But luckily Alex allowed me to email any docs to him and he printed them for me. Awesome. Another cool thing was loads of first run movies on demand at no additional cost. I played a little Texas Hold em in the Casino and this was the first NCL ship where sometimes there were not enough players to have a game. We saw 3 shows: Blazing Boots, Get Down Tonight and some kind of amazing acrobat show with a comedy clown who only whistled and he brought the house down. The shows were the best I have ever seen at sea. The cruise director was terrific, seemingly everywhere. Sorry I do not recall his name. We danced a little with the excellent house band at a couple of the 10pm poolside parties. We got VIP treatment all the way but there are less free parties, no more chocolate buffet or towel animals or bowling … and that was fine by me. The staff on the Gem is the friendliest on any ship. Everyone knew my husband … they greeted him by name, Good Day Mr, M., Good Evening Mr. M, etc. I mean everybody from the guys with suits and gold bars on the shoulders to the waiters and maintenance men … And if there was a bar that did not serve Guinness they would get it for Mr. M. Disembarkation: We were escorted off by Ravi our butler who handed us off to some port women who thought they could bypass the line and they did, sort of. It was a little odd. Then they walked us into the Customs office who had no idea why we were there … but just asked if we did a lot of shopping (NO) and said ok we are good to go. We found a young man with a cart and he took all our luggage up to the parking area. It was eerily quiet … I walked all the way to the first parking area where mine was the only vehicle there. If you have ever cruised out of NYC you know the chaos of trying to get off the ship while 2500 people are trying to get on the ship. Well we were the final cruise on the Gem until Mid-April or when Covid 19 is over, so it was quiet and odd. It was strange on the ship, knowing that most of the people working were uncertain if they would have a job the next week or where they were going and if they were sent home chances were very high that their home country would put them in quarantine in a hospital for 2 weeks. I felt so bad for these hard working professionals who, through absolutely no fault of their own, may lose their career and way of life. And I dearly hope this pandemic does not end such a magnificent industry. It was such a remarkable cruise that I will treasure these memories and hope to return to make more. Hope all stay well and stay home … for a while anyway  Till next time. Juried (Terry) PS On the final sea day here was a medical emergency that called for a med-flight. All of the outdoor furniture was secured from our courtyard to prepare but the Helicopter instead went to the front of the ship and safely picked up a passenger. We were less than 200 miles from NYC so this person must have been very ill. I hope he or she is alright, we never heard. It was incredible to witness this operation in the open water. I will attached a photo and if you look closely you can see the helicopter hovering. Stay well. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I have sailed with many other cruise lines and even NCL prior to this multiple times. The experience back then was a great experience. It appears to me that NCL has made some changes not for the good over time. The service was horrible, ... Read More
I have sailed with many other cruise lines and even NCL prior to this multiple times. The experience back then was a great experience. It appears to me that NCL has made some changes not for the good over time. The service was horrible, people unfriendly, no servers on the pool deck, hour waits to get a drink, embarkation was more than painful, etc. This was a complete waste of hard earned money for our honeymoon and I truly wish I would have spent my money elsewhere. I never write reviews and have never in my 42 years written a review about a cruise experience until this moment. The poor review is warranted. I would not recommend this ship to anybody. I will say one exception to the horrible service was the Assistant Cruise Director and an amazing life guard who was quite friendly. As for the server staff, the breakfast crew was a bit more helpful but as the day went on, good luck! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Me my wife and 20yo son decided on doing a family cruise. Our son is on spring break from UF and he wanted to do a cruise for his break, and it's been 5 years since our last cruise.We chose this cruise because we live 30 minutes from ... Read More
Me my wife and 20yo son decided on doing a family cruise. Our son is on spring break from UF and he wanted to do a cruise for his break, and it's been 5 years since our last cruise.We chose this cruise because we live 30 minutes from the port of Tampa. Embarkation: We arrived at the port around 10:30am. We parked the car in the parking garage across the street and carried our bags over.We went through security, filled out the health questionnaire. We were then directed to the counter to have our documents checked and take our picture. They gave us our key cards then went to sit down. Check in was a breeze. Took a total of about 15 minutes from security till we sat down waiting to board. At 11:00am they started the boarding process. They now board by status, and being gold with NCL we were one of the first groups to board. After boarding we went to O'Sheehans for lunch. They were good not great but good. Cabin: They were ready just after 1:00pm. Our cabin was a mini-suite on deck 11. Number 11070 starboard side. The cabin was roomy and clean. Our steward was awesome. His name was Gede and took great care of us. The only problem was the seas were a bit rough and the cabin would squeak like and old wooden ship would. I kinda liked it but the wife is more of a light sleeper than me so it bothered her a bit. The cabin was only making the noise on the sea days cause like I said the seas were a bit rough. Food: This is always subject to peoples different tastes. I thought the food was good, not great. I had some kind of meat every night. They were hot, cooked to my desired tastes and served with good sides. My wife is a vegetarian and didn't have a lot of choices. Now they have certain items on the menu that are on the menu everyday plus the days new choices. They had 3 cheese ziti and fettuccine alfredo on the menu everyday that she ate a couple of times because the choices on the menu for that day she didn't like. Our son found items to eat from the menu like I did. The desserts were also good but not great. They included lava cake(the best dessert they had in my opinion), cherries jubilee, crème brulee among others. We ate at the Venetian, Aqua and the Garden café and O'sheehans. Breakfast was usually at the Garden café and was good , but the same food every morning. We did not partake in any paid venues. Entertainment: We enjoyed a lot of the shows we attended. The comedian was very good his name was Clay Strong. The Element show was good also. There was music pretty much everywhere we walked on the ship. We did bingo(we lost). My son was called on stage for Deal or no Deal and won 80 bucks. He had a blast doing that, pricey games. The casino was fun also. First night of cruise the slots seemed to be hot, after that, not so much.hmmm... There were smokers but I didn't find it overwhelming. Our son had a knack for the coin game where you drop coins to push money over the edge. I think he made almost a hundred bucks doing that. Gym: We only went to the gym once and it was well equipped and well maintained. Ports: We went to Costa Maya, Harvest caye, Roatan and Cozumel. Get away from the port area when you get to costa maya., take a shuttle or taxi to the fishermans village about 10 minutes away. We reserved some chairs at Malecon 21 at the fishermans village.(they have a website, and are recommended). Highly recommend this place, as it is at the end of the malecon(strip), its so nice and is not crowded(take a taxi directly there, because its at the end, or you'll be walking a distance to get there). All the other places close to drop off are more crowded .Malecon 21 was very good and I would go back in a instant. Harvest caye we had to tender as the pier had been damaged a few weeks before, so we decided not to get off and enjoy the ship. It seemed a lot of people had the same idea cause the ship was still full. Roatan we also had to tender, we were moored at Coxen hole. I asked why we had to tender and the other 2 ships there were docked because we were the smaller ship, thought that sucked but alas what can I do. Cozumel was our final stop and we docked a Punta Langosta which is the downtown port. We just walked off the ship around 11:00am and just shopped and walked to the square where we had some lunch at a place called Frida's. Food was good and HOT(habanero). The beer was cold and we enjoyed it. Then as we were walking back the sky opened up and it poured for about 30 to 45 minutes. The weathered finally cleared and we went back to the ship. All in all we enjoyed the ports we went to. We have been to all of them a few times each except for Harvest caye. Disembarkation: Being gold members we got yellow tags and were off the ship around 8:00am. We got our bags and got in line for customs, Get a porter so you avoid long custom lines. If you have porter you get thru customs much faster. We parked our car in the garage across the street. So we got in the car and drove home, being Sunday there was no traffic YAY. Summary: We had a great time. Was everything perfect. No, but what in life is. Life is what you make out of it and we made a great time of it. Heck we are on a cruise. The ship was very full even with the coronavirus in the news. We were not nervous about it at all. Already looking to book another cruise for later this year. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We selected this cruise based on the length and ports of call. We did not encounter any of the complaints that others had posted about this ship. The staff were all very attentive and appeared to enjoy their jobs. The entertainment was ... Read More
We selected this cruise based on the length and ports of call. We did not encounter any of the complaints that others had posted about this ship. The staff were all very attentive and appeared to enjoy their jobs. The entertainment was great. The food was all very good. This was our 1st time cruising on Norwegian and we would definitely cruise with them again! The only downside that we can report on is the stop in Belize. We would have preferred being on the mainland, vs the private Island to have the ability to really experience Belize. We like exposing our children to other cultures and did not find that on Harvest Caye. We especially enjoyed Costa Maya and Roatan Bay where we ventured out on our own. We appreciated the attention put towards decreasing risk of illness. The staff were always wiping down hand rails and other high touch areas. Being in the Family Suite, we appreciated the ability to experience priority boarding and disembarkation. That was awesome! We would definitely recommend this cruise to others. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Ok so we (group of 12) choose this ship and cruise line for the ports it was going to. I usually cruise with Royal Caribbean and after this cruise with NCL I will he going back. I had read several reviews about this ship after I booked ... Read More
Ok so we (group of 12) choose this ship and cruise line for the ports it was going to. I usually cruise with Royal Caribbean and after this cruise with NCL I will he going back. I had read several reviews about this ship after I booked and pretty much except a few who had really bad experiences everyone was spot on. Getting on and off the ship was a pretty smooth process when your trying to get 2500 people on. If you like music the entertainment was excellent. Howl at the moon is a must! It's from 9pm to 1am 4 nights on ship. Singing dancing and drinking it's a really fun time. After 11pm it does tend to get a little R rated. Beatles show is really good and lots of other lounge type singers who were very good also. Food and wait staff was top notch, being a party of 12 they accommodated us great. Cagney's and Le Bistro are a must. Cruise director and staff left a lot to be desired as far as making your time on board fun. We booked all but 1 shore excursion with AAA and were very glad we did. Smaller group size for less money. Aruba we grabbed a taxi 16.00 for 6 people to go to the beach and shopping. Note beach chairs and umbrellas are very costly on the beach. We paid 50.00 for 1 umbrella and 2 chairs. On Curacao we paid 5.00 for 2 chairs and a umbrella. Curacao had the best beaches and clearest water by far. We booked with a company called Compass on Bonaire for a sail and snorkeling trip. Well worth the money. Super professional people who new a lot about the history of the island. Also took us too a remote place to snorkel. On the way back it was beer, water or rum punch and lite snacks. Did the Diamond falls botanical gardens excursion on Saint Lucia and it was just ok Way too long of a trip about 90 minute drive to arrive at falls. The worst thing about this ship is the cabins. It's the main reason I would never book again on the Epic. When you open the door your shower is on the left and your toilet is on the right. There is a small curtain to pull to block view from rest of the room. The sink is at the foot of bed. The bed is a curved shape so if your over 5'7 your feet will hang off the foot of the bed. You can only have one person moving around the cabin at a time or you will be constantly getting into each other's way.( very narrow) I like to sleep in or nap before we eat dinner and with setup its impossible for my wife to get ready without making a ton of noise. Most ships have a small bathroom to shower and get ready in away from main part of the cabin. Not the Epic. Also if you have to get up to use the toilet at note since it's right by the bed you hear that loud flushing sound everytime. What we all said was they made these way to small so the could get a few more people $$$$ on board. Lastly since they are now offering the drink package almost free on every cruise, be prepared to see your share of drinks after 10pm. Also are balcony cabin was on deck 9 towards the back of the ship. We heard the ships engines loud on and off when we were pulling into a port. Mostly between 6-8. No sleeping when this was taking place. If you book than ask for a cabin towards the front of the ship. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I chose NCL and the Epic for their southern Caribbean itenerary. This was my first cruise and I was worried about the size of the ship and the reviews of the bathroom layout. First of all, for a 4000+ person cruise there were only a few ... Read More
I chose NCL and the Epic for their southern Caribbean itenerary. This was my first cruise and I was worried about the size of the ship and the reviews of the bathroom layout. First of all, for a 4000+ person cruise there were only a few times where I felt that crowds were an issue. That was normally at the buffet when we weren't in port. I scheduled dinners away from the buffet each night which was never an issue. I actually really liked the room. It was super clean. There was a lot of storage and the bathrooms we're not at all an issue. It was actually nice that you didn't have to wait for someone to finish showering to use the sink or toilet. Between the curtain and frosted glass, privacy was not a concern. The shows (Burn the Floor, Cirque, and Pricilla) were all good. Not at all at the same level as what you would see in Vegas, but still a really fun way to spend an evening. I absolutely loved Pricilla. The ports were all nice and different. We did excisions at 3 of the 5 stops. I wish I would have scheduled more. All and all it was an awesome trip and I'm ready for my next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Embarkation in NOLA was fast. I estimate that we were onboard within 15 minutes from the time we got in line. They said our room would be ready around 1:30 pm and it was. The Free Dining rooms food was not as good as it was 3 years ago ... Read More
Embarkation in NOLA was fast. I estimate that we were onboard within 15 minutes from the time we got in line. They said our room would be ready around 1:30 pm and it was. The Free Dining rooms food was not as good as it was 3 years ago on NCL Jewel or last year on the Dawn. Twice we looked at the MDR menu and decided to just eat at the buffet. Great shows in the Getaway Theater, especially Million Dollar Quartet. I did not see the comedians since it was always in one of there smaller venues and we would arrive too late for a seat and did not want to stand for 45 minutes. Some game shows were in the Atrium which you could be heard while talking to a Guest Service person and on the next deck above. Ports were ok. Staff was ok. I heard some people were left behind at Costa Maya because they did not make the 1:30 pm onboard return time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I chose this cruise because I wanted to experience the Mexican Riviera and my first cruise. Norwegian offered an excellent package of incentives, good value for cost, very helpful personal consultant to help me put together a trip ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I wanted to experience the Mexican Riviera and my first cruise. Norwegian offered an excellent package of incentives, good value for cost, very helpful personal consultant to help me put together a trip package that fit my needs. I just returned and am very , very happy. Our party was three, my two adult daughters and me . We chose a Mini Suite with balcony, mid ship on the 11th deck near the elevators. This made everything easy to get to. The food and service were outstanding everywhere we ate, both complimentary and speciality. The activities offered were diverse and fun and varied. Da nce lessons on pool deck or salsa lessons at Mojito Bar. Excursions were fun, varied for taste, The virtual reality offerings were a lot of fun and new to me. My daughters enjoyed the raceway and the giant water slide. The Winelovers Musical, Elements , and the Beatles Tribute Band in the Cavern were our favorites for shows. I am looking forward to planning my second trip with Norwegian! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
I really love the luxury of not having to fly to go on a cruise, New York is an hour and a half away and I am grateful that NCL has ships sailing from NYC port. The Bliss is a beautiful ship, very very up-to-date in every respect. I feel ... Read More
I really love the luxury of not having to fly to go on a cruise, New York is an hour and a half away and I am grateful that NCL has ships sailing from NYC port. The Bliss is a beautiful ship, very very up-to-date in every respect. I feel there is something for everyone onboard, from dining, entertainment, activities etc. Embarkation was crowded BUT organized considering there were 4900 people onboard this week. There was a huge Canadian presence because it was spring break and the announcements were made in English and French which was very thoughtful, it did however, make the Muster Drill longer, but hey I get it, fair is fair. We had some things included with our fare - the drink package, 3 specialty dining, 250 minutes of internet. We went to Cagney's, La Cucina and Le Bistro all excellent restaurants. My sister and her family went to Q The Texas Smokehouse and they were wowed with the portion sizes and said everything was delicious. The buffet dining was good too with plenty of choices and lots of stations, so when you go in don't go to the first station you see, walk forward a bit and you will find the same foods being prepared and it's less congested. The main dining rooms were good as well, plenty of choices there. The Local is open 24 hours and serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and late night bites, pretty good service and the food was yummy. Try the pretzel bites, great little snack. Service was the same as all other NCL cruises I have been on. These people work really hard 10 to 12 hours a day and they deserve a huge round of applause. A special shoutout to Burton and Jocelyn bartenders in the Skyline Bar in the casino and Mickey our room steward. Speaking of casino, guess what, SMOKE-FREE, they do have a separate casino for the smokers that is completely glass enclosed. Our cabin was an aft balcony that had a little larger balcony. The bathroom and storage was perfect for us. We had 3 ports - Port Canaveral, we stayed on the ship, Great Stirrup Cay which is beautifully done from that last time I was there 10 years ago and it looks like they are doing a lot more there and last stop Nassau we only got off the ship to "stretch our legs" and get a t-shirt for my nephew then we returned to the ship which was fairly empty, so we had lots of seat choices at the pool that day. We saw Jersey Boys twice and the performers were exceptional and did a fabulous job. DON'T MISS SEEING IT!! I saw half of Six which I really didn't care for, but again the performers voices were awesome, it's just the storyline that wasn't that great. Disembarkation was good too. My brother-in-law needed a wheelchair and it was well organized getting him off the ship. They do face recognition now because the scan your passport photo when you embark so when you leave you look at a minipad type screen and thats that you're done, easy peasy. This was my 17th cruise (my 8th with NCL) and I can't wait to go again on any ship. NCL does it right by having freestyle everything, you do what you want when you want. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We just got off ship on 3/8/2020.We had terrific food all week, some terrific servers including Mariano. The show Jersey boys and Beatles show were both amazing. We Plenty to do if you want and plenty of places to escape or to have a ... Read More
We just got off ship on 3/8/2020.We had terrific food all week, some terrific servers including Mariano. The show Jersey boys and Beatles show were both amazing. We Plenty to do if you want and plenty of places to escape or to have a drink. 10 minutes to get off the ship at the end of the cruise in NY Really love this ship! This is my first time, in a very long time and not sailing In The Haven or the Yacht Club (MSC).I was very worried about taking a cruise without the special perks that I've grown used to. There was nothing to worry about it was terrific cruise. Everybody made you feel like you were special. There was hardly any waiting to get on the ship or off the ship. There was plenty of places to go and hang out plenty of seats outside and the food was fabulous! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
This was our 5th cruise. 4th one with Norwegian. a quick trip to get away from the Candian winter. The ship is big. VERY big... almost too big. I found the ship easy to move around in... easy to find things.. but the pool deck was ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise. 4th one with Norwegian. a quick trip to get away from the Candian winter. The ship is big. VERY big... almost too big. I found the ship easy to move around in... easy to find things.. but the pool deck was insane. I had read reviews so knew what to expect... had decided not to buy the package for the VIBE package - thought I could endure it... I could not. each chair is side by side along with the others... they had attendants coming to ask for a drink (great) but you could not MOVE - let alone save a seat if you could find one for the hubby or kids. I spent my time on the pool deck sitting way to close to strangers alone - with my headphones on to drown out the conversations of strangers beside me. we saw choir man - GREAT. Kinky boots very good (had seen it on broadway before-held it's own). Ate at the Mexican place and twice at Q as we could not get a reservation anywhere else. Kids really enjoyed the Buffet and we went to Savoir 3 times. all very good. Never used any of the shore excursions - did those on our own. The room was a good size for the 4 of us. (two parents and two teenagers.) complaints about the room.... it was above the cavern night club... for an 'upgraded' room and the noise that came out of that club just didn't compute with me. we survived - but they really shouldn't sell that room at an upgrade due to the noise... The next thing that really made me upset was out 'neighbor had a marijuana habit. every afternoon and evening they would smoke up. the smell was disgusting and foul. we could not sit out on our balcony due to the smell. (now - we are from Canada where it is legal... but seriously??) smell wafted into our room as well so venting is obviously not tight. Again - we survived. But I would have really rather not had to deal with that every day - all day. we did the race track and laser tag. did not do the virtual reality (kids just used the video arcade) my husband used the gym - said it was huge and nice... but crowded in the am - I told him because everyone else has the same idea as him. I would NOT go on this ship again. too big - not enough space in the sun. Kids said they enjoy the rope course more as they can go on it for free (thanks for saving money kids!) and do rock climbing. they did the race track twice. and a few video games. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
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