Despite hurricanes, chilly weather, wind, waves and losing a day in Bermuda, we had a great time, reading and relaxing. The gentle rocking and rolling was most soothing at night.
5 out of 5
Embarkation in New York was the fastest we have ever experienced. We went through security and had to ask which way to go next. Our area seemed to be Haven only, but it was ours, too. After getting our health form, we moved so quickly there was no time to fill it out, so we did while we were getting out cabin key cards. We had a new trainee checking us in, and that slowed us down by about a minute but I think we went from Uber to onboard in about 15 minutes.
Food and Dining
5 out of 5
We only ate in the buffet so I have no experience with the specialty restaurants or main dining room. We ate in those last time we were on this ship and saw no need to again. The buffet was fine for our needs - always a great selection of foods. People weren't usually too pushy, which was nice. We never had trouble finding a table. One thing that was new this year was specialty nights in the buffet - Italian, Oriental, Country Western, Grill Extravaganza. Even with the specialty nights, it was possible to get non-specialty items. They always had a selection of Oriental food and Indian food, as well as grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, pizza and mac'n'cheese.
2 out of 5
I can't rate this because we didn't do any of them this time. I would think that most people had a bad time with these, though. We had some serious hurricane activity and the pools were usually closed as were the rock-climbing wall, ropes course and many of the decks. We did enjoy sitting in the comfy chairs on Deck 8 when the cushions were available, though.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Our steward was phenomenal. He knew our names from the very first day and he was always there to get anything we needed. I never had to bug him for ice - he saw that I used most of the bucket the first night and brought ice 3 times a day after that.
5 out of 5
We had an aft balcony on deck 14, which we loved. There were a couple nights when a band was playing somewhere (Spice H2O?) and we got a fairly steady drumbeat but when we closed the balcony doors, it wasn't a problem. Common areas were clean - the last day of the cruise, they'd even drained the bool and were cleaning it out. I don't think it was probably even used more than a day so may not have needed that. The window washing apparatus went by us in Bermuda, keeping everything shiny.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
The cabin was what we expected it to be. Not super-large, but on par with other cruises. The bed was very comfy and possibly king-size. We had hurricane conditions for most of the sea days and the closet doors would rock back and forth on their rollers and slam into the opposite wall. Very noisy at night until we used backpacks as stoppers. One thing that was new to me was the inclusion of used sharps containers in the cabin bathroom and around the ship. I'm on daily injections now and it would have been good to know this before investing in travel-sized sharps containers.
There's always somewhere on the Breakaway where you can have quiet time to read and relax. It's not necessarily in the pool area, though. If this is what you're looking for, try the Waterfront area.
We love Bermuda, which is why we chose this particular cruise. Unfortunately, due to the hurricanes (Jose and Maria), we left a day early. I particularly like the new NCL ferry to St. George. That was very convenient and saved us some money. We did an excursion, but not through NCL, although the same one was offered through them. We were supposed to go out on Friday, on the Rising Son but, when we learned that our ship was leaving port on Thursday afternoon, I contacted them to cancel. They offered us a Thursday morning snorkel trip, which I accepted. Had we been on the same excursion as offered by NCL, it would have cost us more money at the outset but it would have been automatically canceled, so we would have missed out.
5 out of 5
Disembarkation went as well as possible. We put our bags out by 11 on Saturday night, vacated our cabin by 9:00 am and went to the buffet with the carryon bags. The only problem was hearing them call the groups to disembark. Some of the areas he signs that said, but the buffet did not. We were one of the last groups to be called so it was quite a long line getting to the final checkout but we walked off the ship pretty quickly. Our baggage was altogether in the "Blue" area. We got that and customs was quite speedy. And, we were out on the street. Our son and fiancé met us and we were in an Uber within about 10 minutes.
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