4 Norwegian Pearl Mexican Riviera Cruise Reviews

Cons -old cruise ship; framework inside hasn't changed -resulting from old design, passengers cannot navigate as easily as on modern ships - traveling portside corridors will not land you at the same places starboard. -soda ... Read More
Cons -old cruise ship; framework inside hasn't changed -resulting from old design, passengers cannot navigate as easily as on modern ships - traveling portside corridors will not land you at the same places starboard. -soda package is a rip off. Soda will come from the bar fountain and at stations without a fountain, cans are used. However, you often get an old can (flat soda) because only slightly half a can pours into one of their cups. So, if the person in front of you orders a Pepsi and then, you're the next guest 15 minutes later to order a Pepsi, you get whatever was leftover in the can from the prior guest. Pathetic policy. -Stardust Auditorium (theatre on the ship) is extremely outdated. The seats are fold down and low to the ground. Very uncomfortable. -Thermal Spa chairs are positioned inside the center of the spa; they should be ideally facing out to the front forward the ships windows. Pros -This is a classic cruise ship; which makes it easily convertible to what an affinity group customizes it to be. This ship is one of the most chartered ships in the US today. -the Filipino staff will cater to your every ask -food is slightly above average; good spread Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My friends and I won't sail with Norwegian again, for the following reasons: 1. Food. The "Freestyle" cruising concept is a rip off. Especially in the dining department. If you aren't interested in the ... Read More
My friends and I won't sail with Norwegian again, for the following reasons: 1. Food. The "Freestyle" cruising concept is a rip off. Especially in the dining department. If you aren't interested in the "specialty" restaurants, get ready to complain - A LOT - about the food in the regular dining rooms, the buffets, and the "Late Night" spot. If, however, you wish to actually enjoy a meal aboard ship, be prepared to plop down $30 per person, PER NIGHT, to have a decent quality meal. "Good" is about as far as I will allow my compliments to wander regarding Norwegian's specialty restaurants. For me, I would have rather paid $100 less per person for the Carnival cruise, where the food is always "Good" and I don't have to pay a cover to get it. 2. Service. If you are a big drinker, get ready to be a big spender. Those drink waiters are selling SHARKS! You want some water? Forget about it. Water is free and therefore there is no tip to be earned in bringing it to you. You're only halfway done with that fruity cocktail? Well order another one. NOW! No, RIGHT NOW! And don't even think about ordering from that other waiter. I won't come back when you really do want something. They're not much better in the dining rooms. No extra touches. No special treatment. You're on a "Freestyle" cruise, remember? So that means you don't get the same waiter every night who remembers what you like and brings it without asking. No one to sneak you a double portion of lobster or an extra steak. Nope. Nada. Nothin. Oh, and did I mention the food was bad? 3. Peeping Toms. We were pleased that our room was well kept during our stay, except for the fact that we never met our room steward. That is until the fateful day when we heard a knock on the door while we were....um...indisposed, and even after we yelled loudly "NO THANK YOU! GO AWAY!", the room steward and his cleaning companion went ahead and OPENED THE DOOR ANYWAY! Yep. That's right. We were exposed to the entire 10th floor hallway. I screamed "GET OUT!" and the look on their faces was pure mortification. He slammed closed the door before he could even stammer an apology. We were so embarrased that we really just wanted to forget about the incident, so we didn't report it. (Can you imagine that conversation with the Concierge desk?!?) Still, we were sort of hoping for a personal apology from the room steward. Alas, he never came to our room again. Our cabin #10607 was a standard interior cabin. I really hate being in a small room with no natural light for a week, but it's the only affordable way for us to cruise. The room was very clean, though I always keep sandals on my feet while I walk around on the carpet. You never know what has been on those carpets. For two people the room was just adequate, with enough closet space for our clothes and shoes, a little vanity area to put on makeup, generous shelves in the bathroom for toiletries, and nightstands with drawers. We always had fresh towels and we got our bedding changed upon request. The ports were awesome and the weather aboard ship was grand. Beyond that, NCL didn't give me any reason to be happy with their cruise line or my vacation. Read Less
Sail Date January 2010
We are experienced cruisers -- My wife and I have cruised over a dozen times, almost always on RCL or Carnival. We have been cruising an average of twice a year for the past five years. During that time we have come to expect certain ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers -- My wife and I have cruised over a dozen times, almost always on RCL or Carnival. We have been cruising an average of twice a year for the past five years. During that time we have come to expect certain things on a cruise ship. With that in mind, we will try to be fair even though we are a bit disappointed in NCL's performance. The boarding process in Miami was good; lines were not too long and the time at counter was brief -- we had pre-registered on NCL's web site (which is very poorly designed and should have given us some clues) and that may have helped. Once on the ship we went to our mini-suite (category AF) cabins on deck 11. They didn't seem much bigger than the standard balcony we have seen on Carnival or RCL except that the bathroom was twice as large and had a tub. The flat screen TV seemed small but you get used to it. Decorations were nice but we noticed that the closet and drawer space for clothes storage was much smaller than we have had on other ships in the past five years. I ended up keeping some of my clothes in a suitcase under the bed. The ship is clean and new. As we walked around there were several things that surprised us. The gymnasium was neglected compared to other ships (in size). There was one medium sized room for all of the treadmills and weight equipment and it was cramped. We cruised on the Carnival Miracle last Fall and that gym was twice as big. The first huge disappointment was to learn that you must pay $20 a day to use parts of the spa (i.e. a hot tub steam room area). The gym dressing room has one shower and about a dozen lockers; it has no dry sauna. The dressing area was surprisingly small. We really liked the selection of food in the restaurant style dining on deck 12 but were again very let down by the menu and service in the main dining rooms (Summer Garden and another). You never have the same wait staff two nights in a row so they don't bother to get to know you. The menu is simply boring. No escargot, no lobster (one dish contained lobster), no baked alaskan or cherries jubilee, etc. It seemed like there was pork loin every night and the steak I had was thin thin thin. No tiramisu for dessert and every night we ate there I had to try hard to find something to select for dinner. It was several steps beneath Carnival and RCL. We felt tricked. One night we tried a 'pay extra' restaurant -- Asian cuisine. They charged $10 per person and you get a meal similar to the main dining room but with an Asian menu. At the start of the meal, as I was away from the table, someone approached my wife and asked if she wanted this or that brand of bottled water. When we got the check they had charged us $24 for bottled water. Right before we got the check the waitress came up to me and explained that she had been having a hard time that day because a lady didn't want to pay for the water. I tried to comfort her then I got my check and realized what had happened to that lady. We did not realize that we could have asked for regular water and saved $24 -- for water! We felt tricked and NCL may have made $24 off of us that night, but they won't do so again. In fact, the next night the waitress at the main dining room tried the same stunt. She approached me and asked if I wanted Evian or some other bottled water. The questions was phrased as if those were my only two choices. When I said, "neither" she replied that she would get us regular water. The shows were what we like but many would not. There is no large effort at production shows (i.e. dance and song) but we don't go in for that anyway. They had some great variety type entertainment with juggling, magic, and comedy. The cruise director seemed cocky to me (his name is Ray Ray) and he was a little less pleasant than those I've seen in the past. Now to end on a positive note, we really had a good cruise. Our whole family attended and we spent a lot of time together and enjoyed Cozumel and Grand Cayman (as ordinary as they really are as ports of call). Our kids ran room service ragged, and as we were paying $60 a day in "service fees" (NCL's tip allotment for staff) we let them do it. The rooms were cleaned but late most days and evenings and the adjoining balconies let us spend lots of time together. The Friday before our departure the travel agent had called us to say the cruise line needed our rooms. We had booked obstructed view cabins and they offered to upgrade us to mini suites for $50 per person -- $300 total. We took the offer assuming that the cruise was not full and that the line wanted to make a bit more money off of us -- no problem. I am now left thinking that NCL is having trouble filling some of their ships and I can see that their Freestyle cruising may be the cause. I'm sure the competition is fierce, but the way to get people to return to your ships is by giving them your best and charging a fair price. Sadly, we did not feel that either of these things happened to us. If the economy turns down and people don't have money in their pocket to cruise, I fear that NCL may be in for some really hard times. Read Less
Sail Date January 2008
Norwegian Pearl Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 3.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

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