We knew we were crusing during hurricane season, but the price was great, so we thought we'd take a chance and fortunately weather was absolutely no problem. (we cruised Sept. 29-Oct.6, 2002). This is our 3rd cruise on the Norway so we knew that it was not the Las Vegas style ship. We went on the Norway April 2001 and was glad to see that outside deck carpeting had been replaced and the windows on the international deck were not so foggy that you couldn't see. it looked like the whole outside had been scraped and repianted since last we sailed. Service was excellent by the waiters, Bistro group and room steward. The price we paid was for a bunk bed small room (done that twice before), but we were upgraded to the Olympic deck, window, 3 times the space and the A/C could get as cold as we wanted. Very pleased. The shows are high-energy and the dancers perform at peak. The lesser events like the Newlywed game, vegetable carving, tea time, etc. are also a fun way to spend some time. The new shop that offers only items for $10 was a fun change from just browsing through things I couldn't afford. Snorkeling on the private island is one of the best places we've been to; parasailing on the private island was fun - a first for me. We rented a car on St. Martin as we had done before - a little hassle picking up the car, but worth the fun we had being on our own - went snorkeling, sight-seeing, some shopping, went to St. Louis fort for a great views. At St. Thomas we were on a new tour (best of the eastern with Michael Alexander) - this was the first time for the tour and since it was not advertised well, we were the only ones on it - but that didn't bother us! Great views of Magen's Bay, Coki Beach, etc. My mate likes to enjoy the sun on the days at sea, but I don't so I took in a movie in the Saga Theatre - the sound was not the best and with all the movies in the world, I think they could have chosen more action type shows - but I realize movies are not number one choices on a cruise ship! We love, love the Bistro - filet mignon, escargot, onion soup --- couldn't be better. I didn't mind the extra $20 considering the price we paid for the cruise (about $400 ea. incl port charges). The staff is constantly cleaning - even in corners no one would look - except maybe their supervisors. The cruise director was energetic and I wondered if he ever slept. The tender service was no problem for us since we took tours and were first to leave. If you're looking for loud-mouth drunks, singles prowling the decks, and little kids taking over the ship, this ship is not for you - thank goodness. There are two formal nights dining and although it takes some time to get into civilized clothes, I'm glad we do. Who likes to be around tank-topped, BO-smelling people who look like they just got off a fishing trip? It amazes me how many people rebel against guidelines like "no children in the front row of the Saga Theatre - wash the sand off your feet when reboarding the tenders - no shorts in the dining room in the evening...."Selfishness replaces respect for others. I've been in one of the smallest rooms on the ship and now I've been on a larger one, but I don't go for the room - I got for the activities outside the room - the experiences and sights & sounds of the islands. I've been on cruises that had ports every day but one, and it was my choice to take one with 3 days at sea so I could have a restful vacation because I needed it. As I see by reviews, you either love the Norway or you don't. My husband went on this ship (SS France) in 1962 when it had 1st & 2nd class - he loved seeing it again years later - one of the few remaining ocean liners - a bygone era which will soon be only in history books. Don't get me wrong, I also love the other cruise ships (resorts) - maybe I have a more optismistic attitude on life and take the plus and minuses of any day - or cruise.
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