March 2015 - Norwegian Sun to Caribbean - Western
Generally speaking this particular cruise and it's destinations were very good. I especially liked Roatan and Belize. This was our first visit to Roatan and my first visit to Belize since 1994. Belize has changed somewhat but is still a great location. Costa Maya is pretty much a lost cause, but Cozumel was a pleasure.
The ship: The Norwegian Sun is the smallest cruise ship in my experience and this is a good thing. Boarding was painless and leaving the ship on the last day was a joy. Our experiences on board were mixed. The destinations, the entertainment and the cleanliness were excellent. The "steerage" food was palatable and plentiful. The stateroom for the most part was very comfortable.
Most of the crew were very nice and helpful. (The only exception being a young lady who put her hands on me and pushed me backwards for no apparent reason while I was exiting a tender; causing me to fall and jar my spine. The medics came and checked me out and with the help of ibuprofen I was better in three days time.) I recommend being on high alert when boarding and exiting tenders on this cruise.
The Sun is showing a little age, but is still going. Ship's maintenance though was lacking. During the week no fewer than 4 staterooms in our vicinity - Deck 8, Starboard - had toilet overflows. On the last evening I flushed the toilet in our room and the supply valve stuck open. Within 5 minutes we had at least 10 gallons of "toilet water" in our stateroom. We immediately called and reported the problem and were promised a response. Water continued to run out of the bathroom and onto the floor. At this point water was flowing into the hallway. Eventually - about 15 minutes later a steward with a wet vacuum showed up and started talking about not flushing napkins. I told him this wasn't a stopped toilet but a stuck supply valve and he began vacuuming and vacuuming and vacuuming. When it finally hit him that he wasn't dealing with a flushed "napkin" he made a panic call and was told to flush the toilet several times to see if the "napkin" would go down the drain. He did so and of course the water just continued to pour. By this time the entire cabin was flooded and water was a good 20 feet down the hallway. I decided that I had "had enough" and took the elevator to guest services and demanded that a pipefitter be summoned. I again had to endure the "you shouldn't flush napkins" speech and I went ballistic. Returning to the stateroom I found that a pipefitter was finally (after 30 minutes) in the room and trying to turn off the water. I returned to guest services and My Hero, a man named George Levy, took charge and made immediate arrangements for us to move to another stateroom. He personnaly accompanied me back to the stateroom, moved our luggage and got us set up in another room. George's handling of the stuation was the epitome of ship board guest services. He - without any assistance - restored my faith in NCL. He also gave us some ship board credit and that was nice!! The next morning our new room steward was surprised by our being in the room and we had to endure one more "If you don't flush the "napkin" you won't have this problem." Apparently she saw the look in my eye and shut up before I went ballistic again!
Anyway, all's well that ends well. I will definitely sail with NCL again when they are headed my way.l