Sail Date: December 01, 2008 Cabin Type: Oceanview Traveled As: Couple Reviewed: 7 years ago
Ship was nicely decorated. A fellow passenger who is a professional interior designer agreed with us.
We went with the ship chartered sight-seeing tours. We compared notes with some fellow passengers who make arrangements with some locals just off the boat. You can probably get a better price, but a) if some unforseen circumstances happen, like car-breakdowns, you are left at the patience of the cruise operators whom you may not be able to contact. b) If you are unsatisfied with a tour, I doubt you will have much recourse, c) Some tours, like the Sting-ray city tour (which I recommend if you haven't done it), is more fun with a big group of fellow passengers. I'm not sure if they will do it if you only have 2-3 people.
Food and Dining
5 out of 5
Food was of a high quality in general. The food was always at the right temperature to me (soup is hot when it should, cooked food is hot). Mama's Italian was the only speciality restaurant we went to, and it was very very good. I like the free-style dining on board, you can always find "free" food somewhere if you are not picky. Tsar's and Azura had fairly good ambiance.
3 out of 5
We were impressed with the NCL chocolate festival. We liked the "Second city" commedy, improvision with a touch of class. The "New couples/not-so-new couple's show" was very funny, but some of it was due to the participant's responses, so not sure if this is repeatable. We enjoyed the string quartet. The Magician show was decent. As mentioned, we didn't particularly enjoy the stand-up comedy show by JY.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Staff is friendly, helpful and accomodating in general. Some score extra points for their bubbly smiling attitude. It was good to see the crew spending time to put up their own international show. (Its worth watching).
5 out of 5
The exterior walls of the ship are very brightly and artfully painted. The publicly accessible areas, including the bathrooms, were kept very clean. One thing I wished they had was a DIY laundry facility. Bring enough clothing for the whole cruise, more if you plan on putting up a formal attire, or going to the gym etc. They do have a laundry service, but it was going for $25 a bag on a special deal. The swimming pool on board is not very big, and it is salty (as opposed to chlorine treated pools). Bring your goggles if you plan to swim on board, I didn't and had to get out in 10 mins because my eyes were hurting. I liked their well-stocked library and decently equipped gym. They also have glasses on how to flatten your tummy, yoga, pilates etc.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
We stayed in an Oceanview room. It was worth the little extra money to get a window view. We carried 2 full luggages, and it felt roomy enough for us. Room was clean and kept tidy by the staff. Sound proofing was interesting, we can't hear our neighbors, but we can hear people walking/chatting along the hallways. You can smell a tinge of smoke smell in the hallways, but it wasn't terrible. Note, like most hotels, food offered in the rooms (peanuts, drinks etc...) aren't "free".
Pros: Food quality was high, even the "free" buffet was quite good.
Cons: Stand up commedian (JY) was sarcastic. Openly comparing his work hours with other performers. And was openly embarressing guests who are leaving his show. Maybe he thought it was funny, I didn't.
*Cruiseline.com is not a booking agent or travel agency, and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners (travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our users' convenience. Cruiseline.com does not guarantee any specific rates or prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site for the exact amount. Cruiseline.com is not responsible for content on external web sites.
Every Wednesday you'll receive the latest articles, deals, and news from the Cruiseline.com team, plus tips and photos submitted by our vibrant community of diehard cruisers. You'll also get a free gift — a downloadable, printable PDF of our guide to cruising!
Sign up for weekly cruise deals.
Join other subscribers and get the best cruise deals of the week in your inbox every Thursday.