First off let me say I am not an experienced cruiser. This was only my second cruise.
Ok now for the information. The ship was in very good shape. I read lots of reports of missing bags, unclean rooms, no towels, etc.. Our bags where in our rooms by 2pm, everything was clean in the room, no complaints at all. I had already filled out my entire excursion packet, so I skipped the line for that when boarding. That was the initial boarding of the ship, no problems.
Now for the food. The buffets were easy to get to and I never waited for more than 5 or 6 people in front of me to get food. There was usually a problem with seating however but there were always seats outside. I didn't mind the 20 step walk to the outside tables. The buffet food was not top quality, but not bad either. It sorta reminded me of wedding buffets. OK food but something you wouldnt go back for seconds. The sit down dinners were very good. Usually a wait at the start of the night for about 15 mins. Keep in mind I always ate early so I could catch the 8pm show. This turned out the best anyway because we got extremely tired and usually fell asleep early. I am 25 and my wife is 23 and doing an excursion everyday was hard but worth it. We are both also in shape and fit, so plan for that. So I would say the food was average. Another note the breakfast was the same every single day at the buffet. We never got a chance to try our the pay restaraunts so I can't commint on that. The bars where nice especially the piano bar on the 12th floor.
The excursions were very good. Thats why I choose to come to hawaii. NCL had a great book with descriptions, the head girl in charge of the excursions was very nice and helped us change a few that she said younger people would like. I was very very pleased with thier excursions, however, If you can plan everything book them yourself, as most tours are at least 40 bucks more through NCL. With NCL you do get transportation and the peace of mind that the boat won't leave you.
The Spa was another area that was very good on this boat. My wife loved her treatment, and so did I. I also got a haircut while on board I to my knowledge it was my best haircut ever. I was really happy about that since I usually hate haircuts. Thing to note about the Spa. They have a spa charge and a gratuity charge. The spa charge is the gratutity. But after talking to and getting to know a few of the staffers who are all my age. I learnt several things. The spa people work entirely on tips. And they don't make much at all. Everyone who we talked to who worked in the spa wanted to quit. No Money. My rating of the spa was very good.
That brings me to the Staff. They are way under staffed, and it shows. When you go to have a nice dinner, you wait becuase there are not enough waiters to take care of everyone, not becuase there are not enough tables. I will say that everyone on the ship works very very hard. I saw lots of workers doing way more than they were ever expected to do. I heard lots of people while on board say they were not pleased with the service and that many things went wrong. I experienced none of that. My trip was very good.
The entertainment for the boat was great. Much better than my last cruise. There was a broadway musical, a circ acrobat show, and a magician, who all performed very well. We had a great time at all the shows. I usually fall asleep at stuff like this but It was entertaining.
On a last note, the museum was very boring, and I did miss the casino very much, but since thsi cruise really didn't have long times on the water it really never bothered me to much. Oh I didn't mind the charge of 2.50 but they should tell you about it.
When leaving the boat we did the express walkoff at 7:30am and took our own bags. It was great. No line, no waiting, just off the boat and on to the rental car.
From my personal experince I would definatly go again. There are lots of things I wanted to do but time wouldnt allow it. From what I heard on board, I would be weary. Lots of people said they would never come back and were very upset. Maybe since this was my second cruise I really don't know what to expect, but I had no service issues at all. Have fun.