Norwegian Dawn Cruise Review to Bermuda

Contributor Level: Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

3 out of 5

Great time, but very expensive!

Sail Date: June 29, 2012

Reviewed: 4 years ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Balcony

Our room (balcony) was a great size. I got a glimpse of the non-balcony rooms and don't think we would have been happy staying in a smaller room. With that being said, the balcony room was very expensive. I was very worried about seasickness. You could definitely feel the ship moving, especially at night when the captain picked up speed. I recommend buying SeaBands (wristbands that apply pressure at a certain point on your wrist - they worked very well).
If you do not like to sunbathe, then a cruise might not be for you. There is not much to do on your days at sea besides sit on the deck (bring twice as much sunscreen than you think you need, and bring a higher SPF than you think you'll need as well!) The ship had a few daytime activities and had a few small stores, but we expected there to be more non-sun activities.
The freestyle dining concept is great. We liked the freedom of eating when we were ready. We frequently had to wait for a table in the main dining rooms, but once we figured out that we'd have to wait, we'd plan accordingly and head down a bit earlier. The food was fantastic. We never had a bad meal on the ship. The service in the main dining room (Venetian) was always outstanding. We ate at the other main dining room (Aqua) on the first night and the service was very slow. We didn't return. We dined at one of the specialty restaurants (Cagney's Steakhouse - $25/pp) and it was worth every dime - the food and service were absolutely amazing. The prices for alcohol were comparable to most restaurants. You also have to pay for soda. We were quite surprised at how casual this cruise was. We brought formal clothing because all of the pre-cruise notes stated that jeans and shorts weren't allowed in the restaurants after 6pm. However, there were people in shorts and jeans every night - even in the specialty restaurants.
The ship's entertainment staff is quite talented. We found an AMAZING pianist (Ariel) who plays in Gatsby's Lounge most nights. He sounds EXACTLY like Frank Sinatra. We sat and listened to him play every single night of the cruise. If you book this cruise, do NOT miss Ariel. The shows in the Stardust Theater also looked wonderful - we would only pop our heads in to listen for a few minutes, but if I were to go back, I would definitely see the shows.

Pros: The days at port - we loved the freedom of exploring Bermuda but having a familiar place to return to to eat and sleep.

Cons: The pool area is very small and was very crowded. If you didn't save a chair by 8am, you wouldn't get one!

Recommends Norwegian Dawn? Yes!

Ship Quality
The ship was IMPECCABLY clean. You must sanitize your hands before taking a plate at the buffet or heading into a restaurant. I gave this a "good" rating because I expected the ship's pool area to be twice as large. You had to save a beach chair by 8am or you wouldn't get one.
There was a lot to do in the evenings, however, there were not many daytime activities.
Food and Dining
The food was outstanding. Be prepared to wait for a table if you head to the dining room after 6:00pm. If you plan accordingly, this isn't a bother. The menus at the main restaurants are pretty much the same, with different specials each night. We only ate at one specialty restaurant (Cagney's) and it was worth every dime.
Cabin / Stateroom
Our stateroom was quite large. We got a balcony because I was worried about seasickness and wanted to have the option of going outside if needed. There was enough room for 2 people - we were very comfortable. We were assigned a housekeeper (Paul) who was fantastic. He cleaned our cabin in the morning and turned it down at night (with a towel animal!) He addressed us by name and always asked how our day was. He made us feel very welcome.
Service and Staff
The staff is amazing. Everyone always greeted us with a smile.

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