Very Nice itinerary!

Norwegian Star Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western


Contributor Level: Purser
Experience: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 11

Overall Rating:

4.0 out of 5
Verified Review
7 Night Western Caribbean (Tampa Roundtrip)
Sail Date: December 20, 2015
Ship: Norwegian Star
Cabin Type: Oceanview
Cabin Number: 5518
Traveled As: Family (older children)
Reviewed: 1 year ago

Let’s start with the positive. The ship is beautiful and well maintained. The cabins are small but very nice with comfortable bedding. No problems boarding or disembarking. The itinerary was fabulous. The people of Roatan and Belize could not have been nicer and both places are beautiful. Costa Maya was nice and Cozumel is one of my favorite ports, it may have something to do with the $1.50 Dos Equis. For excursions my young adult children highly recommend SNUBA diving (cross between SCUBA and Snorkeling) and Swimming with the Dolphins. We had an incredible Cabin Steward and we also enjoyed the 24 hour pub O’Sheehan’s. Overall the food and entertainment were good.

 

Unfortunately, I cannot say the same thing for the service. If you wanted to eat in the main dining rooms, particularly Versailles, there was a 20-30 minute wait unless you went before 6pm. Once you got in; the service moved very slowly taking around 30 minutes to get appetizers on multiple occasions. We ate in main dining rooms 5 nights and had a less than positive experience on 3 of them. I believe the wait, less than stellar service and slow food problems are created by the “Free Style” dining concept. I like having a fixed table at a fixed time with the same waiter. I believe this increases the efficiency of the kitchen and definitely gives your waiter an incentive to provide excellent service. The other issue was the almost nonexistence of bar waiters and wine stewards. Most drinkers appeared to have bought a prepaid (with 18% tip already included) beverage package which gives the waiters no incentive to serve drinks. On every cruise I have been on prior to this one a waiter would come by your chair on the deck every 5-10 minutes and offer a beverage. I would guess that 90% of the time I got a drink it required standing in line at a bar.

 

 Overall we had a great time, but I am definitely not a “Free Style” dining fan.

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
Food was fine, service not as good. Would like to see chocolate buffet come back!

Onboard Activities

5 out of 5
Usual cruise ship variety.

Entertainment

5 out of 5
Nice variety.

Service and Staff

3 out of 5
Cabin Steward I katut Antara was FABULOUS! Otherwise this would have been a frowny face! Dining room servers were fine but service was slow. Bartenders were fine but bar waiters and wine stewards were non existant.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
Beautiful ship recently refurbished. No issues with anything onboard.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Cabins are small compared to other Cruise Lines but nobody spends much time there so it was fine. Window was nice and bedding was very nice.

Ship Tip

We really enjoyed O'Sheehan's Irish Pub. Had breakfast, lunch and late nite snacks there multiple times. Not reall what I would call an Irish pub though.

5 out of 5
Use a Porter.... he knows where to go and what to do... $10 well spent. If you don't mind spending a little more extra money using the Port Valet Parking is the way to go. Once We cleared customs we were on the road in about 3 minutes. I know there are cheaper options but man that was nice!
5 out of 5
Beautiful place and the people were fantastic. Nice little water side bar right off ship. Kids loved SNUBA diving.
5 out of 5
Beautiful place and the people were fantastic.
5 out of 5
Make sure your negotiate with the vendors and don't believe the story about him not selling anything today or that his dad carved the chess set :)
5 out of 5
Cheapest place to enjoy adult beverages and has by far the most shopping. Go into the downtown area not just the little mall at dock!
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