March 2015 - 7 Night Western Caribbean (New Orleans Roundtrip) Cruise on Norwegian Dawn
Freestyle might be a little too casual for some
The ship was clean and in good repair. The cruise director and his staff were informative and outgoing. The featured entertainment was good. Some smaller activities (trivia challenge and another game) that we had planned to attend on board were found to be moved or cancelled because of lack of space or staff. There is only one dance floor on the boat, other dance activities were held on the deck by the pool. Our cabin steward was outstanding. He checked in with us regarding our preferences and made sure that there was nothing that we needed. The cabin was cleaned and always at the ready. One the other hand, dining tended to border on chaotic as people were coming and going constantly and the wait staff became dismissive after your order was taken, neglecting to refill beverages or check back to see if anything else was needed. The Garden Buffet was open pretty much all of the time on deck 12 and had very good food to offer with very good variety, and was particularly good for breakfast and lunch. There was generally a cookout going for a couple of hours in the late afternoon, by the pool every day. For dinner though, we wanted to have a relaxed dining experience to review the day's adventures and that never happened. Reservations for specialty dining must be made early or you will wait quite a while to dine. They have packages available to defray the cost of the specialty dining, but to make it cost effective you need to dine in one of those venues every night. They do offer a paging beeper if you decide that you want to wait. There were a few piano bar type places on the ship, but a couple of them seemed to be associated with the specialty dinner venues and we weren't always sure if we should access them if we were not dining in that area. The shore excursions offered some excellent choices and the embarkation / disembarkation / tendering process went smoothly.