Age: 36 - 45
Number of Cruises: 10
Cruise Line: Norwegian
Ship: Norwegian Sky
Sailing Date: January 29th, 2000
Itinerary: Nassau, Puerto Rico, St. Thomas
PRICE: At $1,200 per person, inside cabin was perfectly acceptable; however, don't bring a steamer trunk because storage is sparse.
AESTHETICS: Ship was beautiful, but I would expect this given the fact that it is a brand new ship.
PUBLIC SPACES: The norm for cruise fare. Nicely decorated. Sometimes a little uncoordinated, but I guess it's that Caribbean feel...
SERVICE: Poor, Not what I've experienced on other cruise lines. Waite staff in restaurant tended to be disinterested. Don't dare ask for seconds on the "pricier" food items or a manual count must be done in the galley per our waiter. Forget wine with dinner. Wine stewards unmotivated and it is "verboten" to ask for a glass of wine as opposed to a bottle else you get a dirty glance.
Quality of food relatively tasteless, but not as bad as the patio buffet morsels which daily consisted of hamburger discs, hot dogs and 100 ways to disguise pasta. I found it particularly amusing that coffee was free 24 hrs a day at the patio buffet (self serve), but you were charged for a good old cup of "joe" if went to the coffee bar (go figure). Cabin steward was excellent. Bar service was abhorrent. One night in the checkers lounge I was inadvertently charged (to my onboard acct) $158.00 for 1 beer.
Thankfully I had the sense to scan my receipt (which was difficult in this darkened cave) and question the bartender. Apparently he had hit the wrong keys on the register and had charged me for 51 bottles. The error was remedied, but be forewarned check your receipts instead of signing in the dark. Perhaps the potentially worse bar experience was the night I tried to access my cabin with my "onboard card" and was denied entrance. Why? It was someone else’s card.
Apparently the bar staff in their "effort to please" or "effort to charge" had inadvertently given me someone else's card after a transaction. I guess they were somewhat confused. Yet another situation I had to take care of at the purser's desk the next morning. Forget the pizza as well, unless you like corrugated cardboard with cheese. In conclusion, I felt the ship was not equipped with the appropriate support personnel to deal with the volume of passengers.
ENTERTAIMENT: Average cruise fare. Not bad but been there, done that.
POINTS TO NOTE: Let's face it this was a vacation. Any vacation to me is as good as you make it and is punctuated by the other passengers you’re with. My fellow shipmates as well as the friends that came along made this cruise an enjoyable experience for me. The other passengers were fun and decidedly ready for a good time. So overall I enjoyed myself albeit the sometimes-fragmented problems of the cruise line itself. Would I go again?? Sure. Would I have high expectations? No, but that's okay.. A vacation to me is to forget about the ordinary and create a good time and on this cruise I did!
Passengers: Fun crowd
Ride: Smooth as glass
Special note: If I had to listen to the calypso band for yet another day of pool side music I would have gone ballistic
PS thank you Gary and Chris you made this cruise all the more special!!!