Great cruise. The NCL Joy is truly a joyful experience.
4 out of 5
Only their 2nd cruise on this ship so a few kinks, but overall easy peasey.
Food and Dining
4 out of 5
We were in The Haven and their restaurant is amazing! Can't beat the food anywhere else on the ship and the staff is unbelievably good. We wanted to take them all home with us! Cagney's twice - first time awesome - second time service was horrible. Two and a half hours to eat. Le Bistro was the same - horrible service and another 2 and a half hour meal. LeBistro's portions on the entree's appear to be different for those using the Dining Package and those paying a la carte'. Hubby and I had barely 2 oz. of protein on our duck and rack of lamb entree and couple sitting next to us paying for their meal had a much different plate!
Q was really good. Their BBQ is excellent and the house band is the best on the ship.
Lacucina was disappointing. Was my favorite meal on the Epic. Very different menu. Not worth the money.
Again, the Haven bar service staff was top notch.
2 out of 5
Hot tubs in Haven top deck have no jets so it's a hot bath not a jacuzzi. Hot tub inside was broken the entire trip. Disappointing for an Alaskan cruise. Lots of activities that try to sell you something. We attended a Chinese medicine talk with a doctor on board only to learn it was just a pitch for him to sell his services on board. Didn't learn a thing. Lots of very LOUD games in Atrium area. Don't think the woman (english accent) realized she had a microphone! Lots of activities that you had to pay for also like wine tasting, beer tasting, etc. Good thing the scenery is the star in Alaska!
4 out of 5
Footloose is ambitious. Too long. Leads do not have the voices to carry a 90 min show. Supporting case has much better voices but don't have the "look" I guess to be the leads. Shame. Elements is visually beautiful. Chinese "magician" and his assistant are very dramatic and take up too much time. Acrobats are amazing!!!
The comedian on the ship was very good. We enjoyed his show in the Social. The Beatles were ok. The band in the Cavern was ok. The female singer has a decent voice but whispers and they have alot of conversation together on the stage in between songs that the audience can't hear and is not a part of so it's just this long lull between songs. Boring.
The band in Q is the best on board. Their singer is awesome and the music is excellent. We are not country music fans per se, but these people are talented. Go see 'em!
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Again, the Haven Restaurant staff is the absolute best we've had in our 5 NCL cruises. Truly top notch. Our butler was non-existent. Not being "in" the Haven area this time seemed to make a difference as we were on deck 11 not 17 or 18. When we sailed on 17 twice before, we saw our butler every day and sometimes twice daily. Not this cruise. Wouldn't know him if I fell over him. Room steward was great. NCL has a wonderful crew and we never really had anything less then very kind, very helpful people on the entire ship.
4 out of 5
Haven area had very few restrooms for guests in the Haven area who are not staying on floors 17-19. Ship is almost identical to The Getaway which we previously sailed. Elevators are a real issue at times. If you are staying in a Forward cabin, it's quite a hike to the elevator bank. Although it seems they have more elevators in the 2 banks, it still doesn't seem to make getting from place to place any faster. Elevators are extremely slow and always packed.
The ship is impeccably clean. Sparkling and looks brand new.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
This was the perfect cabin for us. Traveling with our adult daughter, she slept on the sofa bed in the living room which was made up every night for her by our cabin steward. There is a small, but very adequate balcony outside of that living room which was perfect for Alaska. There is a slight covering over the most forward part of the balcony which is great for protecting you from the elements of Alaska when glacier/wildlife/whale watching. A lovely bedroom with a king sized bed. ToNS of storage in both living and bedroom areas. Best part of the cabin for us: The large port hole/window in the bedroom that overlooks the front of the ship. It has a window seat where you can sit in the comfort of your cabin and see everything that they see from the bridge. Amazing. The bathroom is lovely with a beautiful soaking tub, shower with a rainfall head, body sprayers and a hand held sprayer, two sinks and make up/vanity area. Really lovely. It is quite a walk to and from the elevators so if you have mobility issues, this may not be the cabin for you.
When you first get off the ship, the area right next to the dock is lovely. Just stay there and then get back on the ship when you're done. We took the shuttle into "town" for $15 each round trip. We didn't get off the bus. There is no town! Save your money.
Excellent port of call. We did the Hop On Hop Off bus so we could see the city and we were happy with that choice. It is a wonderful blend of coastal town and european city with a touch of canadian (it is in Canada!) thrown in for fun. We ate lunch in China Town and it was one of the best meals we've had. Toured the city for an hour and a half and walked from the last/first stop at the Empress Hotel to a pub up the street where they had a live band playing and we enjoyed the best seafood chowder and a couple of pints.
5 out of 5
Fast and easy. Again, 2nd cruise for this ship so a couple of kinks but nothing major to speak of and I'm sure by the time you cruise it'll be perfect!
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