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10/29/06


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"Overall, we really enjoyed the ship and crew. The food was bad, in my opinion....but it wouldn't prevent me from cruising with NCL again if a great deal came along."

TRIP INFO

Sail Date:10/29/2006
Destination:
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RATINGS

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COMPLETE REVIEW

Some background...I'm 53, DH is 60. We've been on Carnival Legend twice, Celebrity Constellation once and Celebrity Zenith twice.

We'd just gotten home from an 8 day cruise on the Carnival Legend when my husband found a great deal on an 11 night exotic southern Carribean cruise for only $549 pp for a BA balcony cabin on the 11th deck (military discount). It took very little convincing for me to book this cruise! Besides, I hadn't even finished unpacking from the last cruise so packing was easy :-)

Although there were 3 NCL ships in port the day we left we had no problem finding parking at the port. It seemed like embarking was alot slower than either Carnival or Celebrity had been but we were on the ship soon after 12:30.

The crew was great! Always smiling and helpful...a really nice crew.

The cabin and balcony were nice. My DH especially enjoyed having the little coffee-maker in the room. No refrigerators in the cabins. The only thing I noticed was that there wasn't alot of storage space for folded clothes and it might be cramped with more than 2 people to a cabin.

Food: Since there's alot of discussion about the poor quality of NCL food, I might as well put my 2 cents in....

Main dining room food was good but not alot of selection and on several nights I didn't see anything I wanted so we didn't even go to the dining room.

We went to Le Bistro one night. It was half price from 5-6 pm ($7.50 pp). One of the beef dishes was extremely good, the other one was tough.

The buffet....I don't have much good to say about the buffet. The foods that were supposed to be hot weren't even warm and all the meats were overcooked and tough. The omellette and pasta stations were the only place where the food was actually hot. Salad area was good, rolls and danish were very good, desserts were bland.

Room service.... usually quick, basically the same cold selections that most cruise lines have. They did have pizza but it really wasn't very good.

Blue Lagoon....great for a late night snack of hamburgers, fries, etc

Beir Garten....good hamburgers, hot dogs and fries

I thought drink prices were high.....$9 for the "drink of the day"

I thoroughly enjoyed the casino. I should have stuck with Blackjack as I nearly always won but then I'd go blow my winnings on the slots. Be sure to sign up for the casino players card. It costs nothing and earns you money off your sign and sail card (I "earned" $38 off at the end of the cruise). I didn't see any really big winners at the slots but there were alot of $200-$500 payouts. A friend hit the machine for $1000 on the last night.

Entertainment...I'm sorry to say that we didn't make it to any of the shows. They had a really fun Halloween party and hundreds of passengers dressed up.......I was surprised ny the number. Also the bands onboard were some of the best I'd heard on any ship.

We didn't take any organized excursions but went off on our own.

In Tortola we went to Cane Garden Bay Beach. We'd been there twice before and the water was always calm and clear. On this day there were high waves and a dangerous undertow. We still had a blast there.

St. Thomas....the ship docks quite a ways from where Carnival and Celebrity docks. We didn't realize how far until we walked it...took us about an hour to get to town. We just strolled through some of the shops and then took a cab back to the ship.

Grenada...we took the water taxi to Grand Anse Beach ($4 pp each way). This is a gorgeous beach and they have a really nice craft area but be prepared for the venders on the beach to pester you nonstop! Great place to get spices!

Dominca and Anigua.....just walked around and shopped

Barbadoes had a large mall type area

Disembarkation was quick as we did self-assist and were off the ship by 8:30

Overall, we really enjoyed the ship and crew. The food was bad, in my opinion....but it wouldn't prevent me from cruising with NCL again if a great deal came along.

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