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Cortney 03-09-2011 05:23 PM

NCL minisuites - worth it?
My husband and I are considering a fall cruise this year, and we want to sail out of the East Coast (I don't fly), so our options are limited. We're toying with the idea of NCL Gem to Bermuda in September. We've been on the Gem already and went to Bermuda last fall on Dawn. Honestly, I liked Bermuda OK, but I prefer the island hopping. I loved the Gem, though, and I absolutely adore NCL (this would be our fifth NCL cruise in a row).

So blah question is, to make the experience a little different, we were considering the deal going on right now where you can get a minisuite for the price of a balcony. Except for on our honeymoon, when we got a balcony, we've always gone with oceanview obstructed or oceanview because we didn't really see the point of spending extra money for a room you're rarely in. But with the deal going on, and the fact we've already been on this ship, it's something we're pondering.

Interested in hearing other people's reactions to the minisuites. What are they like? What do you get? Is it worth it?


LisaP 03-09-2011 06:40 PM

A mini-suite on this class of ship is essentially a larger version of a balcony cabin. We had one booked on Norwegian Jade, yet accepted an upsell later on, so we didn't actually sail in one. I looked at it out of curiosity, and it seemed nice. Note that you don't receive suite benefits for this category.

If you do decide to book, check the deck plans so that you're under a quiet area rather than the Lido or other areas from which noise might be bothersome.

If it were me.... I'd do it, for a different experience.

Cortney 03-10-2011 06:38 PM

Thanks, Lisa! I'm wondering, if it's basically a slightly larger version of a balcony and you don't get any of the suite benefits, if maybe it makes more sense to just go with a balcony?

Sonny V 03-10-2011 06:59 PM

But you said that you can get a mini-suite for the price of a balcony. I don't know why you wouldn't take the special--I must be missing something here. I agree with Lisa...I'd do it too.


Cortney 03-11-2011 05:32 AM

Oh, sorry - should have mentioned, the deal extends downwards to other categories as well. So you can get a balcony for an oceanview price and a mini-suite for the balcony price. But you have to buy the top classification for that category...

penny3333 03-14-2011 10:26 AM

Now, please don't get me wrong as I enjoy NCL. But, have you checked into Princess? They do have some Caribbean cruises out of the north. I think they had an itinerary that went to Bermuda, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten. I believe it was a 9 day out of New York?

Cortney 03-19-2011 01:30 PM

Grr, the notification went to spam for whatever reason, so sorry for the delay...

I'm willing to consider Princess but it seems like most of the ones I want to go on are out of Florida. My first-ever cruise was on Princess, and I'd like to do it again, but I'd rather go on a different ship than Caribbean Princess, which I think is the main one going out of NYC right now. Plus, I don't think I'll be able to take that much time off work for a 9-day cruise in Sept since I just did a 10-day and we're driving to Fort Lauderdale for a Carnival cruise next Feb. :(

But we ended up booking a balcony on Gem...decided that the extra room probably wasn't going to be worth it for just two people, rather spend the money on excursions and wine. ;) I think I'd rather save and splurge later on a suite that has suite privileges, you know? I'm DYING to do that. ;)

Cortney 03-19-2011 01:32 PM

Penny, which Princess ships have you been on? Which do you recommend? Just for future knowledge. ;)

penny3333 03-21-2011 12:38 PM

Cortney, my favorite Princess ship is the Sea Princess, probably because she was my first Princess cruise. However, I love the layout. She's large, but not huge, easy to get around and a fantastic crew. I've sailed on the Sea, Sun, Dawn, Caribbean, Royal and Emerald. The Emerald was amazing, huge, but a little hard to get around. Some decks didn't go all the way through forward to aft and I'd forget and couldn't get to where I wanted to go. However, she was a beautiful ship. The Sea, Sun and Dawn are sister ships. I've sailed the Sea twice, the Sun twice and the Dawn once. The Royal was the smallest, but very easy to get around. Since it was a 14 day, you got to know practically the entire ship. I think it was around 850-900 passengers.

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