54 Norwegian Star Asia Cruise Reviews

We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise on the Star. We are big fans of the freestyle dining and the options available to you. Food was always enjoyable either in the restaurants, buffet, Ginza or O'Sheehans. We enjoy being able to eat ... Read More
We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise on the Star. We are big fans of the freestyle dining and the options available to you. Food was always enjoyable either in the restaurants, buffet, Ginza or O'Sheehans. We enjoy being able to eat when and where we feel like it. The crew were amazing. Always so helpful, friendly and going out of their way to ensure you were happy. Embarkation for us was fine as we were Gold customers but I do believe that some people queued for 3.5 hours, I'm guessing it's an issue for Singapore to deal with. We chose to do the majority of excursions through NCL, bearing in mind four ports were in India and we didn't want to risk the traffic. We did our own think in Colombo and of course got ripped off by the Tuk Tuk driver. Couldn't fault any of the excursions we did, we enjoyed them all. The ports were amazing and I hope NCL repeat this cruise as I would do it again and do different shore excursions. We only went to a few of the shows and those that we did we thoroughly enjoyed usually the guests artists. The gym was usually quite busy and most of the time I chose do walk up in the fresh air. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Chose this cruise for the itinerary and we were not disappointed. Crew was friendly, hard working, and made us feel like valued guests. There were many included food venues which served delicious and varied menus. We especially liked ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the itinerary and we were not disappointed. Crew was friendly, hard working, and made us feel like valued guests. There were many included food venues which served delicious and varied menus. We especially liked O'Sheehans for lunch, although nothing could top the food we received as suite guests in Moderno! The meats and salads were particularly good with excellent flavors and seasonings. Entertainment was super, especially the crew talent show and the crew recognition night. We liked the ship layout and public areas. Elevators were never a problem for us. Didn't miss the lack of flowers or newspapers on board. Our concierge, Hanno, was very helpful and made the whole cruise enjoyable. We felt we got our moneys worth from being in a suite. We chose the special 3-day tour to the Taj Mahal and is was worth every penny. Well organized with a quality hotel. Got to spend many hours in Agra. Ship tours were as good as any we've taken on other cruises. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
I apologize for the long winded review!! It was a whirlwind trip. We booked this cruise at the last minute ... as the Star Princess FLOATED in the Indian Ocean without any propulsion. LOL For those of you that don't know this story, ... Read More
I apologize for the long winded review!! It was a whirlwind trip. We booked this cruise at the last minute ... as the Star Princess FLOATED in the Indian Ocean without any propulsion. LOL For those of you that don't know this story, BOTH Azipods on the Norwegian Star lost propulsion and the ship floated at sea for several days, before being pulled / tugged into Melbourne Australia where the Azipods were replaced. That apparently is a completely different story. ha Anyway - we had no intention of going on this cruise. It was one of life's little "gifts". I suspect they lost quite a few passengers during the engine trouble. I think a number of people cancelled and disembarked. Anyway - I got a last minute email with a great price. A deal I could not refuse. We had always wanted to go to India - but didn't know where to start - and this itinerary looked amazing. So we took a gamble! Hoping and praying that by the time we embarked in Singapore, the ship would be in tip top shape. It was a bit nerve wracking to say the least (from booking until boarding) but once we were on board the ship, this cruise was AMAZING. The ship had been very well tended to while in dry dock in Melbourne. Everything was spiffed up. Fresh paint everywhere. Everything was squeaky clean, and the engines were smooth as silk :) I do believe this was the smoothest sailing we have ever been on. Most days, you couldn't tell we were moving! The itinerary was unbelievable. We would do this cruise again 10 more times. We were both like 5 year old kids at Disneyland. Every port was exhilarating. 13 ports in 18 days. We were completely exhausted, but over the moon happy. My feet hurt from walking and my cheeks hurt from smiling. We have traveled to many Asian countries (just about all) but we had not been to India and Sri Lanka. I don't know what I was expecting. But those two countries were nothing like I expected, in the BEST WAY POSSIBLE. The people were FABULOUS. The food was amazing. Everyone was so kind and welcoming. Nothing at all like the notion I had preconceived in my mind. I was prepared for disgusting. It was not disgusting - at all. The food was great. We chose nice looking places to snack and ate with the locals. (not from street carts) We were not overwhelmed with poverty and begging. (but that doesn't bother me) I am so grateful to be where I am, I am happy to help this one and that one. Anyway!! We loved every stop. We had four ports of call in India, and every stop was unbelievable. Cochin (Kerala) Goa, Mangalore, and Mumbai. We did Cruise Critic tours in Kerala and Mumbai and hailed a cab in Goa and Mangalore. I was so sad to leave India. Yes, we will go back!! But the place that surprised us the most was Colombo, Sri Lanka. About a week before we left for Singapore, I found a tour guide online that responded to my email right away and gave me a VERY good price. He even called us again before we left the US to confirm. Very professional. There was very little information available about Colombo, so he was also another little "gift" on this trip. Since Colombo is not listed on the Cruise Critic drop down menu of ports, I am leaving his information in my review. I hope this helps some folks stopping in Colombo. The driver/guide's name is Dilhan. His company is Dilhan's Awesome Adventures. His site is http://www.DilhansAwesomeAdventures.com. Oh my gosh, we had the MOST amazing day in Sri Lanka with Dilhan. Way too much to tell. We had no Sri Lankan money with us, and he happily bought us lunch and ice cream. Back at the port, we paid for the tour and tipped him (a small amount) but he would not take the money for lunch. He was very gracious and kind. The ship offered 3 tours in Colombo (I think) and we went to every place that was on the ships tours, and a lot more for about 1/3 the price. LOL. If anyone's ship is stopping in Colombo, Sri Lanka, you need to contact this guy. He's amazing. I was sad to read the negative reviews about Oman and Fujairah, as that was not our experience AT ALL. We had a total blast in every single port. We took Cruise Critic tours again in Oman and got a cab in Fujairah. All three days were wonderful. In Oman, the Oman private guard at the Sultan's private restaurant (near the Opera house) opened up the restaurant for us to take a peek and photos! Unbelievable. I have such amazing memories. Abu Dhabi was difficult (thanks to Big Bus) lol. But Dubai was fabulous. This cruise was absolutely the most memorable cruise of our life and we are blessed to have done 54 cruises so far ~ YES!! ~100% ~ if I ever find this sailing again, I hope to be first in line. If you have the chance to do this itinerary, don't think twice, Pretend you're 25 and go!! You can rest when you get back home. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. we have cruised with ncl before but not on the star, this was a smaller ship for us. The whole experience was fantastic. The itinerary was one of the best we have had, we loved all the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. we have cruised with ncl before but not on the star, this was a smaller ship for us. The whole experience was fantastic. The itinerary was one of the best we have had, we loved all the places we went to especially Colombo, Malaysia and India. The ship was very nice, had plenty to do. The entertainment was really good especially in the theatre and the spinnaker in the evenings.The staff were all so friendly. The food was fantastic, there are so many places you can go and eat and they were all good. Special thank you to Michael who looked after us at the pool side bar and to our cabin boy. We meet so many lovely people especially those who were on our roll call on cruise critic. It was one of our best holidays. We would definitely cruise again with ncl and the star Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This is my second review, but this time focusing on the tours. NCL did a great job putting together tour options in an effort to satisfy a variety of interests. I heard only a few gripes (and I'm not sure these folks would have been ... Read More
This is my second review, but this time focusing on the tours. NCL did a great job putting together tour options in an effort to satisfy a variety of interests. I heard only a few gripes (and I'm not sure these folks would have been happy with anything anyway.) This cruise started in Auckland, NZ and visited Bay of Islands. We stopped in Australia (Sidney, Port Kembla, Airlie Beach, Darwin, and Cairns), Indonesia (Komodo Island, Bali), Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur), and ended in Singapore. I selected NCL highlights tours in each port. Port Kembla was a wonderful surprise. The Star was the 4th ship to use this evolving tourist spot. The city came out in full force to help cruisers get around, including giving rides to see the area. We went there as part of an itinerary change that substituted Port Kembla for Brisbane. (See multiple reports of earlier Star engine problems the prior couple of months.) Feedback from cruisers was very positive. Rough seas made the Great Barrier Reef tours a bit dicey for some with some disappointment depending on the location. Just seeing the Australian locations was a reward all by itself. Some folks visited the inside of the Sidney Opera House and heard a little bit of the orchestra rehearsal! Great timing! I opted for the Sidney Harbor Cruise Tour and it was worth every penny! Besides anything in Australia, the visit to Komodo Island was memorable for the hot, sweaty walk and the huge Komodo Dragons we saw. The Bali Arts & Crafts tour included woodworking, bamboo carving, painting, and a visit to a batik manufacturer. The guide was very informative and offered great advice. I totally enjoyed the ride around Kuala Lumpur. Of all of the stops, I believe that this one was the richest in culture. NCL offered several Singapore tours that dropped folks leaving the ship hotel drop-off. They saw the entire island and feedback was great. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We joined the ship in Hong Kong for a 21 night cruise. The itinerary was NOT what we had hoped for due to the azipod problems which was very disappointing. I am basing this review on the ship itself as that was very positive and we had ... Read More
We joined the ship in Hong Kong for a 21 night cruise. The itinerary was NOT what we had hoped for due to the azipod problems which was very disappointing. I am basing this review on the ship itself as that was very positive and we had a wonderful time onboard which given all the sea days was just as well ! The entertainment was great we went to just about all the shows and I have to say the Production Cast was the best I have seen. The visiting entertainers were varied and VERY good. Dining in the free and specialty restaurants was excellent food and service. The bars and public areas all good The crew were excellent great friendly service and they smiled and carried on which wasn't always easy among some disappointed passengers . I would happily travel with NCL again that was our 3rd cruise with them and I am hoping that Australia will love them as much as we do so we can see the Jewel and any other NCL ships visit us annually. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Despite a rocky start with the changed itinerary, this turned out to be one of my favorite cruises. The ship was a very comfortable size, and some of the newer bars and restaurants made it more fun than other NCL ships I've been on. ... Read More
Despite a rocky start with the changed itinerary, this turned out to be one of my favorite cruises. The ship was a very comfortable size, and some of the newer bars and restaurants made it more fun than other NCL ships I've been on. (Five o'clock somewhere and the mojito bar in particular) Food was typical for NCL, not outstanding but tasty and safe. We missed out on Thailand, but the added port in Vietnam helped make the cruise more interesting. The offered excursions were mixed. As a whole, the tour guides were friendly and spoke good English. We had a couple hiccups. The street food one in Saigon let us look at street food, we just didn't get to try any. The crew was friendly and helped turn the initial disappointment to a great time. The shows weren't the best, but still really entertaining. There was a violinist who played every night that was by far the most talented performer I have encountered on a cruise ship before. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
It was not the staffs problem that the ship had propeller down - but they all remained happy and very helpful. I noticed people having a go at some of the waiters and bar staff about how slow the boat was and thought how ignorant of them - ... Read More
It was not the staffs problem that the ship had propeller down - but they all remained happy and very helpful. I noticed people having a go at some of the waiters and bar staff about how slow the boat was and thought how ignorant of them - it was not there fault. The food was good, the ship was beautifully clean at all times and the entertainment was good too. We loved the 5 o'clock somewhere bar where the singer was superb. I loved the fact that the Captain of the boat spoke to us every day and gave us an update - on a previous cruise that I had been on (not NCL) I would not even have known the captain was on board! My only complaint was that the internet which I paid for was extremely slow and I spent more time waiting to get on to a site then actually using the site! but saying that I can't wait for another cruise with NCL Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was our first experience of what we consider to be a long cruise. We booked because of the intended itinerary which was supposed to be Hong Kong, Tiwain, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Singapore. However because of Propeller ... Read More
This was our first experience of what we consider to be a long cruise. We booked because of the intended itinerary which was supposed to be Hong Kong, Tiwain, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Singapore. However because of Propeller problems we unable to do Tiwain or Cambodia which was a massive disappointment as I really wanted to see Hal long Bay and Co Suomi. Our one complaint is that the company were slow to let us the passengers aware of the situation. We flew into Hong Kong where we spent a couple of days exploring prior to embarking the Norwegian Star. This process was really smooth and well handled. Our balcony cabin was all we expected, spacious, clean and comfortable, Floria our Housekeeper was wonderful, always happy and willing to help. The food on this cruise ship is really excellent, we had a (6) Food Package so we were able to experience all the Specialist Restaurants, our favourite being La Bistro and Ginza . We didn't eat at the Buffet as its just not our thing but it certainly looked "good enough to eat". We used both Dining Rooms with Versailles being the one we liked best. But no matter where we ate it was all excellent, whether breakfast, lunch or dinner. We also had the full Drinks Package so having a drink when and where we wanted was no problem. The range of drinks stocked is exceptional with an excellent selection of good wines. Our favourite bars were the Bier Garten which was on deck, large, sunny and welcoming, and Gatsby's Champagne Bar, relaxing, calm with decent piano music. I should mention that although this was Not Adult only there were never any problems, there are lots of "quiet" areas, and loads of places to sit and sunbathe away from the pool and the general noise of families having a good time. We did go to a couple of Shows and both were very good, we also did several port excursions and these could not be faulted. We disembarked in Singapore, another effortless procedure. So overall although disappointed with the itinerary change we thought this cruise amazing. The staff everywhere are there to please and please they most certainly do. I would recommend it very highly and am already planning our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Went on a land tour of China before embarking on the cruise from Hong Kong and found out about the propulsion problem while in China. Upset at first but decided to make the best of it. Yes some ports had to be deleted and itinerary ... Read More
Went on a land tour of China before embarking on the cruise from Hong Kong and found out about the propulsion problem while in China. Upset at first but decided to make the best of it. Yes some ports had to be deleted and itinerary changed, but the crew (I mean everybody) made us feel at home and kept us informed of the progress of the ship's problem. NCL gave us a nice incentive to make the trip; we even booked our next with the Star on the Adriatic. Food was delicious everywhere, and we simply had a great time. I should say we always choose to have a great time. When you choose to you usually have others around you wanting to feel the same and staff wanting to go the extra mile. I would recommend NCL to everybody, and the Star was terrific. Embarkation took a couple of minutes, the outside balcony (level 9) was comfortable, entertainment was really entertaining, and my wife is enjoying Tai Chi now. Thank you NCL for making this compromised trip enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
I had expected this cruise to have a few surprises, with it being as far as I know the first Asia cruise for NCL. But I also expected the norm as far as great service, food, shows, etc. We got both of those. Boarding in Singapore ... Read More
I had expected this cruise to have a few surprises, with it being as far as I know the first Asia cruise for NCL. But I also expected the norm as far as great service, food, shows, etc. We got both of those. Boarding in Singapore was a breeze, less than half hour from arrival to a nice lunch in Moderno's. Although I did hear some folks had problems, I can only speak for our group of eight. Then it was to our rooms. So far it had been like our other cruises, perfect. Then a surprise, a Azipod had malfunction and having to move the ship from the pier to allow another ship scheduled to take our place we remained overnight in Singapore harbor. The following day we returned to the pier, we(my family) had just spent three nights in Singapore so our group stayed aboard during this. I'm sure quite a few people enjoyed the extra time in Singapore. Mean while the ship's engineering department was not enjoying there stay in Singapore. I'm guessing at that, but I will also add I'm a retired sailor. So the decision was made for us to go but we could only go at a reduced rate of speed. So between the reduced speed and the extra time spent in Singapore and the necessity of getting to Hong Kong on schedule the schedule had to change. So the two port visits to Thailand got cut. And to jump ahead due to rough weather a port in Viet Nam was cut eventually as well. Which was a disappointment, to be sure. But to us Norwegian made up for it. With a one hundred percent refund. This money was in my checking account by time we reached Hong Kong. And a fifty percent of this cruise per person base fare credit towards a new cruise booked within the next twelve months. So for us the first and second person in each of our berths was 4k and then the kids were $700 each. So each of the number 1's and 2's each received a 2k credit towards a new booking (if booked within 12 months) each of the kids number 3 and 4 received $350. All eight (all family) have booked for next year. And we are also bringing more of the family next time as well. As I sit here writing this I realized what a great company Norwegian is. After having a "eventful" cruise with them we are booking away and bringing more of my family. Everybody (maybe not kids) knows things happen so I'm not surprised but for then to smooth it over to the point where I'm bringing more of my family. I'm impressed with that. Of coarse it's not just that "smoothing" over that got us to book again it's the sum of all parts. For the entire NCL Star crew thank you for a great trip. For Hannon and Chris thank you two. Can't wait to do it again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
I'm struck by how many things cruisecritic reviewers find to complain about, not just on cruises in general but in particular, on the Norwegian Star's new itinerary from Dubai to Singapore and on to Hong Kong. My wife and I ... Read More
I'm struck by how many things cruisecritic reviewers find to complain about, not just on cruises in general but in particular, on the Norwegian Star's new itinerary from Dubai to Singapore and on to Hong Kong. My wife and I signed up for the eleven days from Singapore to Hong Kong, and were on the whole more than satisfied. Sure, there were problems, but the captain and crew did their best to solve them. The ship didn't sink, nor even run aground. Thanks to washy-washy, no epidemic laid the passengers low. This was our fourth cruise on NCL, and we'll happily sail with this company again. We were upgraded, supposedly, from a starboard balcony to an aft-facing one on Deck 8. Disaster! Cabin 8176 is directly over the night club. As we prepared to retire around 23:00, it was as if the band was playing, loudly, at the foot of the bed. I went down to the reception desk in the atrium and angrily complained. Cindy from China promptly and efficiently got us moved to a starboard balcony cabin on Deck 9. In my view, no one should ever be assigned to Cabin 8176 unless they're 20-something party people or stone-deaf senior citizens. We were supposed to sail on a Sunday evening, but were in fact delayed about 50 hours. Engine trouble. The Captain announced that specialists needed to be flown in from Europe and America. The engine never did get fixed, so that the ship's speed was reduced by about half, causing us to miss the two ports of call in Thailand, as well as Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. Most regrettable, though severe monsoon flooding might have botched the Thai shore excursions anyway. But then came a letter from the Captain saying that on account of these troubles, the basic fare for the cruise would be refunded for every passenger. To me, that seemed more than fair. Mildly boring days at sea became a lot more tolerable, once we knew they were free, Improvising the itinerary, the ship docked at Chan May in Vietnam, where shore excursions were available to Da Nang to the south or Hue to the north. It rained heavily all day, but hey, what an opportunity! We had an excellent guide on our trip to Hue, saw mile after mile of rice paddies, a royal burial garden, and the imperial palace. A tasty, more than adequate pho lunch had been hastily arranged at a first-rate hotel. Then came the port of Sanya, China, as originally scheduled. The shore excursions were something of a rip-off, but even so, gave a chance to see something of the city and the magnificent mountain park overlooking it. We arrived in Hong Kong on schedule -- disappointed that the cruise did not turn out as promised, but satisfied with NCL's generous attempts to make the best of it. Meanwhile, there was excellent food in the main dining room, Versailles. One has to admire how the chefs shift day by day from one cuisine to another, so that every day's menu is new and fresh. We tried Aqua, the other main dining room, and Ginza, the Asian one. Ginza was superb, Aqua not so much. We went to the buffet only for breakfast, finding it crowded and noisy. We were satisfied enough with the regular eateries that we never felt the need to pay extra at the specialty restaurants. The nightly entertainment we found consistently watchable and listenable, and occasionally really excellent. A Russian husband and wife performed sensual acrobatics that took my breath away. A group of American guys from Hong Kong sang a capella in English and Cantonese -- awesome!. Meanwhile a Filipino trio crooned nightly in the atrium, and a couple of talented women, violin and cello, played classics in a bar (I was wishing for still more classical music). Our steward, a chap named Kiran who hailed from Goa, was friendly and efficient. Like the other stewards, he shaped a towel into a different animal every night: kind of silly, but you can't help but smile. Alas for the best laid plans of mice and men. There are always surprises on planet earth. I was impressed with how the captain and crew of the NCL Star adapted to the surprises of this cruise. Thanks to all of them. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
The ship visited some great ports. This was the second leg of a 57 day cruise on the Norwegian Star. Embarkation off the ship as a transit passengdr was very badly managed. We had the Internet package and as we expected from reviews, it ... Read More
The ship visited some great ports. This was the second leg of a 57 day cruise on the Norwegian Star. Embarkation off the ship as a transit passengdr was very badly managed. We had the Internet package and as we expected from reviews, it was very slow and many minutes wasting logging on. We missed quiet spaces like the lovely observation lounge we had on the Sun. People were often taking up seats in the food areas to play cards. Norwegian still allow ppl to save seats/loungers at the poolside by leaving their towels and books despite their rule that seats cannot be reserved for more than an hour which in itself is a ridiculouslyrics long time. The meals were generally very good but I would not recommend O'sheehans except for a couple of their specials and a late night drink. Our cabin steward Emil was awesome. He had an eye for detail and had everything in our cabin topped up before we ever had to ask. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We chose this cruise as it went to some interesting places which we would not otherwise have traveled to such as Taiwan and Cambodia and also because my husband had been to Vietnam but I had not. Unfortunately due to Azipod problems on ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it went to some interesting places which we would not otherwise have traveled to such as Taiwan and Cambodia and also because my husband had been to Vietnam but I had not. Unfortunately due to Azipod problems on the ship our itinerary was modified and we only got to visit Chan May and Phy My in Vietnam and Laem Chabang in Thailand but received a generous discount in lieu of this. Overall the cruise was good. Embarkation was a bit of a shambles. We had arrived early in the morning so had to wait for check-in at 11am which was fine as we had expected this. Check-in went smoothly however once checked in we could not board the ship as it was not ready. This resulted in a significant amount of people all waiting to board and although we had been given numbered sections to board by many people disregarded this and the ground staff did not enforce it well. I would have been happier to wait a bit longer for check-in to open if we could have walked straight from there to boarding thus eliminating the long queues at security. Once on board the staff looked after us well. The service in the restaurants was great and cabin service was also excellent. Food in the complimentary restaurants was a little bland for us but that is to be expected with so many tastes to accommodate. We didn't try any of the specialist restaurants as the variety in the main dining rooms suited us. The layout of the ship is different to others we have been on and one disappointment was that there was no lounge at the front of the ship where you could relax and have a view outside but the lounges and bars were good and well placed around the ship. The entertainment on the ship was excellent and we attended most of the shows. Good variety of acts and also good variety of entertainment in the bars. Of note were the two ladies playing the violin and cello in lounges around the ship who were exceptional. Pools were nice with our favourite being the spa pool situated up the front of the ship giving you a view of where you were going. Main pool was a bit cold for us but we did venture in on one day which was particularly hot. As mentioned earlier we only got to three ports. Something to note with this itinerary (in particular our three ports) is that the boat docks a long way from the city at industrial ports so there is nothing at or close to the port to look at. Ho Chi Minh and Bangkok are both 2 hours drive from the port. We booked a tour of Hoi An which gave us some time to ourselves and we enjoyed looking around the old town and markets. We also booked 'on your own' tours of Ho Chi Minh and Bangkok which gave us 5-6 hours in each city to look around. Shore excursions were easy to book and you were off and onto the buses reasonably efficiently. Overall we really enjoyed it despite the missed ports and extra days at sea. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This was the third cruise we have taken aboard the Norwegian Star. We like its relatively smaller size compared to newer ships. Engine problems that occurred during the cruise prior to ours forced the cancellation of stops in Taiwan, ... Read More
This was the third cruise we have taken aboard the Norwegian Star. We like its relatively smaller size compared to newer ships. Engine problems that occurred during the cruise prior to ours forced the cancellation of stops in Taiwan, Hanoi, Cambodia, and one of two ports in Thailand, because the ship had to sail more slowly than normal. Norwegian offered a 50% refund of the base price and a 50% credit on a future cruise (if taken in the next twelve months). The extra days at sea were relaxing and the weather was great throughout the cruise. Service was excellent as always and the crew very pleasant. Although disappointing that we didn't see everything that was originally scheduled, we enjoyed spending a few days prior to embarkation in Hong Kong and a few days after the cruise in Singapore. We like cruising on Norwegian and look forward to our next cruise with them. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We chose this cruise because of the great ports it was to visit. There was to be 4 ports we had not been to and this was a winner for us. So excited NCL coming to Australia on a more regular basis.Unfortunately the ship had Azipod ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the great ports it was to visit. There was to be 4 ports we had not been to and this was a winner for us. So excited NCL coming to Australia on a more regular basis.Unfortunately the ship had Azipod problems and the 4 ports that we were looking forward to were all cancelled which was disappointing but NCL more then fairly compensated passengers and we still had a great holiday. The mood amongst some of the other passengers was a bit negative which was painful. The staff overall were fantastic, very friendly and always obliging.The food at all venues was as good as any other cruise we have been on (24) Enjoyed the entertainment and thought the production group was excellent. Our cabin steward was amazing...He looked after like us royalty and made our holiday that much more special. A special mention to the Cruise Next Specialist Sherry.She was inundated with passengers trying to sort out their next cruise to use the 50% credit and made her self available more then would be expected. She was very helpful with our questions and gave us the correct information when the chinese whispers were running wild through the ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
First time wth NCL, but done many cruises before. Not a good start with the azipod issue and went from 7 ports to only 3. Extremely disappointing especially as we did not go to the ports we all really wanted to go to. However, we decided ... Read More
First time wth NCL, but done many cruises before. Not a good start with the azipod issue and went from 7 ports to only 3. Extremely disappointing especially as we did not go to the ports we all really wanted to go to. However, we decided to go ahead with the cruise and glad we did. The ship itself is old and creaky especially at night when trying to sleep, but it is still beautiful and has many lovely areas. Cabins. Had a balcony cabin and it had everything we needed. Quite small compared to some cabins we have had but it was fine and very clean. Entertainment. Fantastic shows by the entertainment team, some of the best we have ever seen on a ship. Plenty of different bands and singers to suit most tastes. Great NYE party on deck. Only thing missing was some comedy and perhaps a piano entertainer. Staff. Very friendly staff. However did not find guest services helpful nor the shore excursion staff who told me different things about the refunds for our excursions that were cancelled. Still have not got my money back now !! Ports. Did Hue which was fine, Bangkok and Ho Chi Minh, the latter two were excellent. Food. Brillant food in the dining room, the Brazilian restaurant and the buffet. Osheehans was ok. Good things about NCL. There are a few things that NCL do really well and we really liked compared to other cruise lines. E.g.-loved 'washy washy' -made you want to wash your hands ! Like the layout out of the market cafe, easy to navigate, plenty of tables and liked that there was cutlery and sauce on the tables ready for you. Also liked the BBQs on sea days and the paella and seafood on offer then too. Not so good things about NCL. - should stop guests entering the theatre when the shows have started. Having a constant stream of people arriving late and interrupting your viewing is annoying and rude and should not happen. The safety drill was shocking. I have never seen anything like it. Half the boat did not bother doing it and they allowed movement on and off the ship whilst it happened. We were on the deck and everyone was talking and we could not hear or see the demonstration. Very very poor. Shore excursions - first ship I have been on where they do excursions by putting everyone in the theatre and then you have to get your sticker on the way out. We had a delay on one exursion as we all had to wait for all the buses, if they did it the normal way by numbering you with your bus as you went in, it would be more effective and quicker. Just a suggestion! The salon, had my hair cut and not only was it the most expensive haircut of my life at $90 but was the worst. Looks like it has been hacked to pieces. Never again. Overall a good cruise although I'm still awaiting for my shore excursion refund and my refund for half the cruise back as promised. I hope the delay in this and the poor communication I have received so far from NCL, will not damper too much my thoughts on what was, a good cruise despite the itinary changes. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
My hubby & I sailed aboard the Norwegian Star from Dubai with my mother in November. This was our 3rd cruise with the Star and we love her older decor and layout: wide decks that allow resting or walking and there is a jogging track on ... Read More
My hubby & I sailed aboard the Norwegian Star from Dubai with my mother in November. This was our 3rd cruise with the Star and we love her older decor and layout: wide decks that allow resting or walking and there is a jogging track on deck 12 too. For this cruise we booked a Family Suite on deck 11 which had two sleeping quarters, enough for 6 people, however it was just my husband and I in the main sleeping area and my mother in the smaller area with her own bathroom and loo! The cabin also had a table and 4 chairs, a 3 person sofa and TV and a balcony. The main bathroom has a separate shower, spa bath and loo. Each section has enough closet & drawer space. The Main bedroom has space under the bed for the suit cases and there were enough power sockets to charge cameras etc in the cabin. A coffee/tea machine was included(uses pods) and was well used by us all. Dining aboard the Star offers several complimentary dining choices: Market Cafe, Aqua and Versailes Dining Rooms, Poolside Buffets, Ginza and O'Sheehans Pub. There are also several specialty restaurants too, Moderno, Cagney's Steak House, Teppinyaki etc. I have yet to have a meal that I did not like - the menu choices are very good. The Stardust Theatre is where the entertainment happens - there is a show of some sort every night and all are well worth the time to see. The Shows with the Norwegian Dancers and Show Band are absolutely fantastic - great music, singing and dancing! We all found the service by the Norwegian staff to be of a very high standard especially Hanno our Conscierge, Joseph our Butler and Ferdinand our cabin steward. The cruise from Dubai stopped at ports in UAE, Oman, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Malaysia. The Shore Excursions we were able to complete were 'Level One' due to Mum's mobility issues however it would have been more pleasant if we stayed aboard except for the Highlights of Bombay Tour which was interesting and gave time to do a little sighseeing. I went to the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage(Sri Lanka) by myself and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Unfortunately none of the other excursions we did would encourage us to re-visit the countries we saw. The Ports we docked at were mostly 'industrial' and in poor repair and many Port authorities refused passengers permission to walk on the pier. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
We chose this cruise for the destinations, particularly India, as my husband had refused to go there, I was desperate to visit, so this was a good compromise, The Star is an older ship, with some of the advantages of it being smaller, ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the destinations, particularly India, as my husband had refused to go there, I was desperate to visit, so this was a good compromise, The Star is an older ship, with some of the advantages of it being smaller, some of the disadvantages of it being smaller. Hey ho, its for 21 nights, not for the rest of my life. We were in Cabin 11500. Right at the "pointy end" of the ship. I was a little worried about the possibility of anchor noise but heard none during the voyage. The cabin was a balcony (we booked a guarantee balcony so this was a little upgrade as they are on deck 8). It was perfectly adequate, although some of the storage is a little strange and because it was 21 days we could have done with a little more hanging space and some more drawers. However we managed and for a normal length cruise it was more than adequate. The suitcases went under the bed no problem, even though they are hard bodied ones, and our hand luggage trolley cases fit above the wardrobe space, still giving us room to put a few things like our winter coats etc on top of them. The room was beautifully taken care of by Ferdinand, who was a very pleasant young man, hard working and probably deserving of more salary than he gets, which was true of all of the crew. All members of staff, apart from one person on reception who needs to lighten up a little, were excellent. All cheerful, helpful and hard working. Some passengers could have done with remembering they were on holiday, however. What a group of moaning minnies. Every where we sat there were people complaining about something. If you want Cunard standards in the dining rooms and bars, then pay Cunard prices and off you go. I was more than happy with the freestyle dining options. I dressed up when I wanted to, and didn't when I was tired from a great day out. The entertainment in the show lounge was generally of high quality, although not always to my taste. The other entertainment ranged from excellent quality to "a bit Butlins". No one forces you to go and listen, you just move on to somewhere else if its isn't your thing. The main dining rooms were both well looked after by the staff. We were generally seated within 30 mins and were happy to wait at busier times. Love the pager system; it gives you a chance to go and have a cocktail while your table is prepared. The food is mass catering, mostly fairly dull but safe, and could do with some more seasoning and general flair, but there is little to complain about. It is what is to be expected and found like this on all cruise lines. The Asian restaurant was a welcome addition and we ate there a couple of times. The food and service was great but the menu is limited, which is a shame. Maybe on a 21 day cruise they could rotate a couple of menus. However, again nothing to complain about. Some people enjoy the predictability of this and so it is again, a choice to go or not to go. The Buffet was always busy and that was because the standard of the food was high on most occasions, although I don't understand the obsession with American Diner food, and didn't attend on those nights. Again my preference. I was impressed with the variety of food on the Asian nights, lots of different styles of Indian and Malaysian food. They also had a standard food station which offered Chinese and Indian style food every night, away from the main stations. Great idea. The food was generally well seasoned, not at all salty - in fact some of the food could have done with salt added at the cooking stage, such as pasta, rice and potatoes, which were verging on tasteless at times - however I suppose you have to cater for those who don't or cant have salt, and at least it could be added at the table, despite this not being the best way of doing things. All restaurants and bars ran out of different types of wine at times, which was disappointing. However, once they had called in at ports they were able to re-supply the bars. Being a smaller ship, maybe they don't have the storage space. Embarkation was interesting. We were picked up early from our hotel in Dubai and so were some of the first on the ship. The staff at the port were clearly inexperienced and so some information we could have done with at the start was not available. I had bought a bottle of gin to use when we got to Singapore. When I tried to hand it in to the staff at the port, I was treated like a criminal. Dear me. As it happens they didn't spot it in my bag and I had to point it out to them. I began to wish I hadn't bothered as it caused all sorts of issues. It was sorted in the end but really! Other than that issue, most times we disembarked, there was little problem, except for Phuket which was tender to shore. I have yet to find a cruise company which is able to cater for this in a timely fashion. The shore information provided by the cruise company was completely inadequate. This is true of all American Cruise Companies and they obviously play on the insecurities of a lot of their customers, who are fed on a daily diet of Fox News hysteria. Most cruises call into industrial ports unless they are in the Caribbean. This should be made more clear to those who normally dont cruise out of the USA. You are usually lucky if you dont have to dock miles away from the desired destination. I booked two excursions with the ship because of the currency situation in India, which was sprung on everyone at the last minute. As it happens, it was possible to get currency; at a poor exchange rate, but at least it was something. However, that was no excuse for the frankly awful tours that the company provided. Thank goodness I hadn't booked and paid for more than two. Go independently always, try Viator via Trip Advisor, but stop these cruise companies from providing some seriously over priced, under researched and inadequately guided tours. The ports on this trip were intended to be challenging. Some were fun, exciting and awe inspiring. Some were a bit dull, badly equipped to deal with so many people at once, or just too expensive to get from the port into somewhere worth visiting. Some were downright awful and should not be on any itinerary anywhere. Particularly Khasab and Fuijuirah, which were a complete waste of everyone's time and money. They should have had extra time elsewhere, such as Muscat and Mumbai. The shore teams need to up their game a lot as they provide little or no information on board. In particular, the currency situation in India was a nightmare for some. They provided no information at all regarding this. I was disappointed to discover that, despite us paying a considerable sum of money to obtain our Indian and Sri Lankan visas, there were people on board who, as long as they booked with the ship tours, had not had to have the visas at all. The cruise line needs to make up its mind about this and then treat everyone the same, or at least give everyone the option of having a visa or not, in a similar way to the trips to Russian ports do. Get a grip NCL. It appears that I have moaned a lot but really I have just provided a bit of constructive criticism so that the company can improve this itinerary. We had a great time. I would sail on Star again, although from what I can gather it might not be around for that long due to mechanical issues. I would recommend this itinerary to anyone, but would certainly advise that you make sure you have a drinks package as the individual prices of drinks were stunningly high and don't forget that as well as the price, there is an additional service charge added to each item you buy, whether it is alcohol, spa treatments or anything else. Make sure you do your research and prebook in most ports if you want to make the most of the destinations, particularly in India. Never get the first taxi you see at any port. We saved fortunes by walking or getting the shuttle bus away from the port and then haggling with drivers until you get a price you are prepared to pay - eg Langkawi - we wanted to go to the Sky Cab which is about 40 minutes away from the port by car. It cost us 40 Ringits (about £10) but the highest price we were quoted was $100 dollars. I would definitely sail with NCL again but would make sure I took my own advice. Thanks for a great holiday. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Ports of call were interesting. However I felt there was not much information provided on the ports of call. There should be an information booth set up for every port of call. Info on taxis, car rentals, port tours (other than ship ... Read More
Ports of call were interesting. However I felt there was not much information provided on the ports of call. There should be an information booth set up for every port of call. Info on taxis, car rentals, port tours (other than ship tours) should be readily available. Front desk staff did their best to answer questions but they were really not knowledgeable of the ports of call. Indian Visa - should have been hi - lighted. Many people did not know they had to have a visa and were upset that they could not go into port. There were phone calls made from Norwegian the week before sailing but that was too late at that time to acquire a visa. We were fortunate enough to know that we had to have an Indian Visa but only because we made a phone call to Norwegian on another matter. Meals became repetitive after 2 weeks , however, our waiters (Leandrew and Fajar) compensated for that and went over and beyond our expectation with suggesting our meal selections. Their attention to our dining needs added to a great dining experience in the aqua restaurant - they catered to our every need!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We chose it purely for Itinerary not for the Norwegian Line itself.We have cruise 3 times with Norwegian and each time very disappointed .This for us was a very costly Cruise on a low budget Ship would not advice anyone to book other than ... Read More
We chose it purely for Itinerary not for the Norwegian Line itself.We have cruise 3 times with Norwegian and each time very disappointed .This for us was a very costly Cruise on a low budget Ship would not advice anyone to book other than great Itinerary. Norwegian need to look at no water policy and not allowing the 2 bottles of wine that all other Cruise Lines allow.They really nickel and dime you.Ships tours were crappy and very expensive people demanded money back and quite rightly so.Private Taxis are the way to go and quicker.In Mombai we took a coach tour and covered about 20 miles in four and half hours,friends took Taxi and covered everything in less time and money.The Buffet area called the market place was like a factory canteen and should be the next thing updated.The food was very repetitive and even in the Dining room no Lobster or Prawn cocktail and the Fish mainly served was Telapia a very cheap fish not good at all and always very dry unless they smothered a sauce on it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
A fantastic itinerary and a good deal via Imagine Cruising was why we chose NCL. After an excellent flight with Emirates and a pleasant stay in a Singapore hotel we went to the port to join the ship. Embarkation was a shambles as there ... Read More
A fantastic itinerary and a good deal via Imagine Cruising was why we chose NCL. After an excellent flight with Emirates and a pleasant stay in a Singapore hotel we went to the port to join the ship. Embarkation was a shambles as there were not enough check in staff on duty. It seemed that Suite passengers jumped the queue, fair enough, and regular customers did so only after reaching the end of line number one. A disappointing start to our first NCL cruise. We had a balcony stateroom on Deck 9 which was fine but the balcony area was very tired. The room was kept in an excellent state by the attendant. Breakfast in Versailles Restaurant was good but service was slow. The Market Cafe had a good selection on offer. Barbecue lunch by the pool was very good and again food in the Market Cafe was of good quality and there was a big choice. We ate in Aqua Restaurant at night but the standard fell as the cruise progressed and the menu was repetitive. For the final few nights we used O'Sheehans which is themed on a pub and this was fine although the only change in the menu was the special dish of the day. The staff on ship were good apart from the Customer Service Desk personnel who were arrogant, unhelpful and a waste of space. The bars were good and the only show we attended was Soul Sensation, a Motown tribute act who were brilliant. The tours were generally good but expensive. Joining a tour was chaotic as NCL staff did not enforce the exhortations of the excursion coordinator of to keep exits and gangways clear before leaving the ship to join the tour. NCL's water bottle policy was very unpopular with passengers. Disembarking the ship at the end of the cruise was awful. There was a crush on the stairways as 4 colour codes were told to leave the ship at the same time along with a shore exusions. Tempers became frayed and it was a bad end to the holiday. Summing up, NCL will not be our first choice in the future after this experience. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Reason for choosing this cruise:The cruise was March 9(Singapore)-March 27(Dubai). We choose this cruise because of the itinerary which was port intensive with only 5 sea days. This is a part of the world that we had not traveled and this ... Read More
Reason for choosing this cruise:The cruise was March 9(Singapore)-March 27(Dubai). We choose this cruise because of the itinerary which was port intensive with only 5 sea days. This is a part of the world that we had not traveled and this itinerary seemed an ideal way to sample a number of countries without a long term time and financial commitment. In this respect the cruise totally lived up to expectations as we visited 14 ports-including embarkation and disembarkation- that we had never visited before allowing us a small sample of what each place had to offer. Pre-embarkation: We engaged a private guide from Indie Singapore to give us a tour of Singapore pre-embarkation. The guide-Iris- was fabulous and through discussion the tour was tailored to our interests. She provided a fabulous walking tour featuring Little India, Kampong Glam and Chinatown as well as some historic colonial areas and the Marina Bay Sands area. Lunch at Hawkers with expert guidance on the best stalls was also a highlight. Embarkation:This took forever, this issue had been identified by previous reviewers and it appeared that little had improved, however NCL did provide chairs for the 2 hour plus wait that some people endured. In defense of NCL, after seeing their superb organization in getting passengers on/off the ship and dealing with boarding cards/visas I am led to conclude that the issues with Singapore embarkation are likely the responsibility of the Singapore government staff. Ports and Shore Excursions: NCL handling of immigration details at all of the ports was excellent and they proved adept at quickly adjusting when the 'rules' changed unexpectedly. While I heard considerable whining from some fellow cruisers I cannot fault NCL - we were not in Kansas! The shore excursions offered were standard cruise ship variety and priced similar to other cruise lines we have been on. We used ship provided excursions in 10 of 12 ports. Most of the excursions were excellent-possibly because we always seemed to 'win' the luck of the draw on guides- most in the excellent category. The detail provided by the shore excursion company was limited, they provided little in terms of estimated lengths of bus rides, actual distances to be walked, steps to be climbed, comments on 'terrain' etc. I suspect we are spoiled by the level of detail provided by Princess shore excursions. Also noticeably different from our experiences with Princess Shore Excursion desk was that there was NO information provided for independent travelers, NO maps, and clearly NO interest in providing any assistance. The message seemed to be - spend money with us or get lost! Ship: The Star has been refurbished recently and it shows. Lovely midsized ship that is very well maintained. There is an absence of quiet public areas to relax, it seems an inordinate amount of public space has been used for the 'specialty' restaurants. Liked the Atrium with band playing and seating in O'Sheehan's, at the coffee bar, and even in the internet cafe where you could sit and listen. Room and room steward: We we in a mini-suite which featured a reasonable sized balcony, the largest bathroom we had had on a cruise ship when staying in anything below suite level. The room steward was exceptional, one of the best if not the best, in 25 cruises on 6 different lines over the last 30+ years. Entertainment: pretty standard cruise line entertainment with a decent variety in guest performers, the 3 bands on board were all reasonably good and you could actually tell what songs they were playing/singing which is not always the case with cruise ship bands! Productions shows were below par compared to Princess, Celebrity and Celestyal. Dining: NCL's slogan is "No one does dining like Norwegian" - My comment is THANK GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The food in the main dining rooms Versailles and Aqua, O'Sheehans, and Ginza ranged from awful to barely adequate with a handful of well prepared dishes. Food was of Inconsistent quality, often served at inappropriate temperature, NO attempt at 'presentation', lack of creativity in the menus, and all too frequent repetition of menu offerings. Service was rushed, courses came in seemingly random order. It appeared that they brought appetizers, soups and salads from the kitchen at the same time. If you had 2 'hot' dishes at least one was guaranteed to be served lukewarm. The tables were so crammed in that it was almost impossible for the waiter to serve and remove dishes appropriately- not sure that they had even been trained in appropriate serving etiquette. The pace can best be described as frenetic, it most certainly did not resemble a reasonable DINING pace. We have experienced various cruise lines version of 'open seating' in their main dining rooms and none had the issues of pacing experienced with NCL's Anytime Eating. Anytime Eating because it assuredly was NOT DINING! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We choose this cruise with Norwegian because we had wanted for some time to see Thailand , India and Dubai. 5 of the days we had arranged private tours for just the 4 of us ( 2 adult couples)and we are glad we did. Other excursions we ... Read More
We choose this cruise with Norwegian because we had wanted for some time to see Thailand , India and Dubai. 5 of the days we had arranged private tours for just the 4 of us ( 2 adult couples)and we are glad we did. Other excursions we did trough Norwegian. Phuket in Thailand, it was fine the first part , but then they took the whole bus a 40 minute ride out of the way to some jewelry store. No one was pleased. We would have rather been taken back and had some free time to roam in Phuket. What a waste of time. 2 Oman stops that were forgettable as was the stop in Fujairah , UAE. Entertainment on board we had expected to be better considering it was an 18 day cruise. Food at the buffet is not as good as it used to be, nor in the specialty restaurants that you pay extra for. They took the lobster off all menus. Service was excellent though as was our cabin. We had a large suite and the butler and room steward were always around and attentive. The other couple had a balcony room that was also good size and clean. We have another cruise paid for in July with Norwegian, so we will go, but another in February that we will cancel. We will not book again with them until they improve their food and ports of call. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
The Norwegian Star cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore 22th of December suffered from itinerary changes because of a broken Azipod. The communication from NCL was totally insufficient when it was already known from the forums that the ship ... Read More
The Norwegian Star cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore 22th of December suffered from itinerary changes because of a broken Azipod. The communication from NCL was totally insufficient when it was already known from the forums that the ship will never make the original itinerary. The email came through the TA first couple of days before the cruise. The next changes were waiting when embarking the ship. The itinerary was changed once again during the cruise. Kaohsiung in Taiwan, Halong Bay in Vietnam, Sihanoukville in Campodia and Koh Samui in Thailand were left out but the ship instead stayed extra overnight in Phu My and made stops in Chan May and overnight in Laem Chabang. We would have never chosen the new itinerary while it was boring with too many sea days. The 50 % payback and 50 % future cruise credit made it still tolerable. The embarkation in Hong Kong went super smoothly as we were practically the only passengers in the cruise terminal around 4 pm. In the ship our luggages were already waiting outside the cabin. From the cruise program we noticed surprisingly that the evacuation drill was in half an hour. Just made it. The ship was still to sail first in the next day. The balcony cabins are rather small and outdated. The table by the balcony is outmost terrible. The bed was though very comfortable and the bath functional enough. Our cabin steward Jennifer was really good as we like the stewards that are not too pushy and social. She made us an unbelievable collection of towel animals and always remember the nightly latitudes guests chocolates. Market Cafe, the buffet on board, must be the ugliest on the seven seas. The beverage stations in the middle really doesn´t help. We would wait to see something like this place as a eatery for the workers in a factory, no offense for the industrial workers. The variety of the dishes was minimal and the quality seldom met our expectations. The lunch was always the same. The dinner buffet tried to have some theme nights. The service was though efficient and the used plates were cleaned up quickly. The cruise was not full and it was always quite easy to find a table. The two main dining rooms serve the same menu. It was always easy to get a table anytime, probably while the cruise was not full. The waiters were efficient and professional but why the hurry? We are not going anywhere. We usually have two appetizers and a main course, sometimes even a main course as the second course. This seems to be impossible to understand. Maybe it is the American way to get all the food at the same time but as we are used to more European style dining we find it rather strange. Why the waiter is standing by my table with the next plate in hand while I have not finished the previous one? I am sorry to say but we find this rather rude. This is though not only a problem in NCL. The quality of the food is mediocre but the portion certainly are big. The food was too often served lukewarm. The menu is a bit confusing while there are some dishes there every day, just in the other order. The lava cake and the chocolate volcano by the are the same dessert. The special restaurant onboard there lacking the "special" what they usually have on the other cruise lines or even NCL before. We noticed no difference in the service and mostly the food was nothing special. It would be ridiculous to pay the "a la carte" prices and the only way to enjoy the dinner is to have the dining package. Le bistro was nothing special. The soups were normal. I don´t eat any meat but fish is alright. The main course salmon was totally the same as served almost every day in the main dining with the same strange liquid potato smash or soupy beans made for the people with no teeth. La Cucina has lost the last bit of its charm when they change the menu. The service was bad and the atmosphere nonchalant. Cagney´s was a disappointment. The shrimp cocktail is the same you get in the main dining room in the other cruise lines. The salad with parmesan (wow?) and oversweet dressing was strange. My friend needed even to send the steak back while it was inedible, my fish was a bit better than other where. All the special restaurants have the same couple of wines by the glass as every other bar in the ship. Not even one "special" wine. The only way to get some other wine in NCL is to buy the whole bottle. The pool area is rather small and some parts were always under maintenance. The two yellow waterslides are really too much and they ruin the area. The Topsiders bar has practically no comfortable seating. The beer garden on the other end is a bit strange. They had some extra beer selection but was mostly doing frozen drinks as every other pool bar in the ships. No pretzels or anything resemblance to a German beer garten. The solarium part in the front misses the stairs. If you want to go from lower level to the only whirlpool you will need to walk quite a round. In the back of the outside deck is "a quiet zone" that here means a helipad and is located just by the kids corner which takes the best place from the outside deck where there would be a perfect place for a sunset bar. Do they really need to have to zones for the children as the main pool with the slides practically is a children pool as well? Because of the slides, the main pool falls also in the category of the most ugliest on the seven seas. The grand atrium is surprisingly impressive but why there is no bar or at least bar service? The best place and practically the whole seating area is Java Cafe which serves only costly special coffees. If somebody wanted a aperative, they were asked to get their drinks elsewhere. When the worker was alone there, he of course showed no interest in getting other drinks for the guest. The other guy sometimes working there probably had nothing else to do so he sometimes even got the drinks. Most of the evenings people were just sitting there with no coffees or drinks. This area appealed mostly the elderly public probably because of the peculiar Philippine trio playing old American country classics or something in that style. The O´Sheenans pub share the view to the Atrium and to the Philippine Trio. The bar staff was stressed out. The eatery side was tops 1/6 full on any night. We had there a lunch one day but unfortunately we don´t get the idea of this "comfort food" or pub food however you call it as it means hot dogs and hamburgers. Really? Are they not the same as are in the pool grill. The new 5 o´clock somewhere bar goes also in the category the most ugliest bar on the seven seas. Why the uncomfortable chairs made for outside seating? Why the sport screen on the other end and the "stage" with a bad guitarist or even the string duo playing classical or, what was the most shocking, karaoke? Some special drinks were served in a plastic cup as in the pool area. Spinnaker lounge would be a great place if it was meant to be retro chic but I am afraid it is the original "night club" from the seventies. Although the ship is built in the 2000´s. The ultimate white party and other ultimate things NCL likes to praise were organized in this sad vague venue. The results were no more that ultimate. Even the normal guest/crew dancing contest that usually is a bit entertainment lost a lot in this venue, although the losers lounge video inserts were genuinely funny. Gatsbys seemed to be the only decent bar to sit at the evenings. The program was always the same. First the string duo followed by Lisa playing Piano. She was though quite amusing in her own style. The martinis were good although you need to be friend with the bartenders and the waiters while the Norwegian ultimate beverage package is quite far from ultimate. You can still get in this bar the Cosmopolitan with normal vodka and a appletini with normal vodka instead of the "special " cosmopolitan and "special" apple martini that are in the menu but not included in the package. The espresso martini was though not to replace by any so we even paid the difference couple of times. Back to the "ultimate" beverage package. We understand the package often given as a free perk may not be able to include everything but please don´t call it ultimate. It is almost a crime to charge extra 6 USD for a bottle of distilled water. We rather like the Celebrity Cruise style there they have two packages the other one including also all martinis, bottled water and special coffees. If you want to have those in your package you can buy an upgrade. Everybody can choose what they prefer. The production shows were rather good and certainly the singers and the dancers the most professional we have ever seen on the cruise ships. It was nice for a change to see adult dancers instead of the young girls and boys trying to manage the choreography or trying to be sexy. We are not a big fans of acrobats but on this ship they were also very high standard. It was nice to watch a show when you needed not to think how they can evacuate this poor thing from the ship when he/she is going to fall any second. The show with lady changing clothes and "dancing" with the guy "dancing" in funny costumes and doing acrobatics were like the ones from the country side high school shows. Chan May, Phu My and Laem Chabang are industrial ports and there is totally nothing to do in there. We realized first onboard that the ship is not going to Danang although it has a port but to a tiny forgotten place called Chan May. The passport officer (really, no corruption?) sold us a taxi to Hue. The place was really not worth visiting. In Phu My we have bought a country side excursion from the ship while there was nothing else to do in the first day. The ship arrived at 3 pm but was cleared first after 4.30 pm with strange explanations from the captain who certainly was not a born talent to make the PAs. We cancelled the excursion while the sun set already in 5.30 and we thought there is no use to sit in the bus looking at a dark countryside. Next day we have booked a private car to take us to Saigon. Of course we needed to change the date while the itinerary kept on changing. We could never find the driver although he probably were outside the gate. We figured this out later from the emails from the company. He just knew no English nor could held a paper with our name. We took instead a taxi which turned out to be cheaper. Ho Minh City was nice to see but nothing special. By the way, why the excursions from the ships always start at 7.30 or 8 am? We had a nice quiet breakfast and took the taxi at 10 pm and could perfectly do everything. Laem Chabang is two hours bus ride from Bangkok. We would actually not call this port Bangkok anymore but who are we to say. We have visited Bangkok several times so we took the shuttle bus to Pattaya and a taxi back while there was nothing to do in Pattaya for 8 hours. The beach is rather small and otherwise it is a place for older gentlemen coming without female companion but searching for one or English party people. Obviously we were neither. The NCL resembles the new cheap airlines there you need to pay extra for everything, to have a luggage or to get even a glass of water. The crew in Star was though especially professional and relaxed compared to other Norwegian ships we have sailed. Once in the Pearl most of them did not even recognize the difference between red and white wine. Don´t wait any ultimate or luxury in Star, it is just Norwegian. It is alright as long as you know what can wait for. We were prepared to this and although it felt sometimes strange had a good time. And believe it or not, have booked a future NCL cruise with our credits. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Norwegian Star Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.0
Dining 3.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.2
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 4.0 4.0

Find a Norwegian Star Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click