Number of Cruises: 4
Cruise Line: Norwegian
Ship: Norwegian Crown
Sailing Date: August 8th, 2004
Sorry to inform that this ship is the "summer rental” of the seas. Having been in service since the 80s, even a recent facelift from NCL could not mask the fact that the ship is in need of repairs to its physical plants and amenities.
My room (9062) offered complementary champagne and fruit bowl. It also offered torn and malfunctioning window treatments, broken fixtures, exposed electrical wiring, malfunctioning plumbing, filthy windows (inside), cracked window glass, dated decor, recycled furniture, poor housekeeping.
I never met my concierge. She was always available by voicemail though (I heard her voice on the phone). The cabin steward gave us lip service when we decided to stay in the room when he wanted to clean it. I could never get any bottled water in my room. The dining rooms refused to sell me any and told me to ask my cabin steward (oh yeah, and get more lip service).
Outside I saw more warped wood and rust than I think I've ever seen on any ship. Maintenance was occurring daily; limiting access to precious public deck space, but the efforts weren't helping. There was always one broken elevator when I went to use them, and after day 2 resumed a fitness regimen on the stairs. I rarely found a dining room open when I wanted to eat, and there were 4 separate spaces to get a meal.
The ship offered little of the NCL "freestyle" experience that I have previously enjoyed on their other ships. Having added bars and dining facilities to attempt at improving choice, the public decks space was reduced to the point that a stroll onto it during the day was like a walk on the Jersey Shore in summer. There was little space for the amount of passengers booked and never anywhere to sit outside during the day.
Food on the Crown was better than on other NCL ships, but service was poor.
The casino was serviceable.
Bingo was fun.
I did not go to any shows.
The shopping on the ship is anticlimactic; there is little space for shops on this ship.
I recommend drinking heartily on this ship, the bars pour a proud cocktail and inebriation affords one the aura of luxury
On other ships you get ice sculptures and floral arrangements in the public spaces. On the Crown you get carved painted foam art pieces that were kind of scary looking, especially those in the buffet area. Some of them were even cracked and mended back together. A funny fiber optic peacock in a cage graced one of the entrances to the theater. (It's all about tacky on the Crown!)
Day 6; the ship's main power plant just stopped, leaving the boat adrift in the Atlantic for what felt like an eternity. We were lied to, by the ship's cruise director, who announced over public address that we had minimal propulsion. (I looked, the screws were dead, and the boat was drifting in lazy circles in the ocean). I enjoyed talking to people who were stuck in the shower full of soap and shampoo because the ship had no electricity, water or waste management at that time. The bars remained open during the ship’s malfunction and the ship bought everyone a glass of champagne afterwards. We were reminded over and over again to go drink it but I never saw a glass come my way.
During the time the ship lay dead in the water, a Seder service was occurring in the library, next to where I was sitting. A couple walked in the room to learn it was a brief and concluded service, to which the male passenger remarked "don't you think now is a good time for one"?
Had Bermuda not been so beautiful the trip would have been a wash. I took no excursions; Bermuda is best experienced on your timetable. Rent a scooter, but use "Oleander Cycles" if possible, their machines are in best repair.
Cruises are about being pampered and feeling special; you won't get that on the Crown. By all means, do consider another choice for spending your hard-earned cash. I was disappointed with mine.