CruiseMates' Readers Cruise Reviews


Norwegian Cruise Line Norwegian Sun by MARK.SHAFER@chase.com November 3, 2001

I was on the 11/3 cruise. The ship was beautiful. We had an outside balcony and the cabin had enough space for the clothing we brought (14 days worth - 4 very large suitcases and a carry on).. all fit under the bed so that helped with the space. The bathroom was a bit small (smaller than the comparable cabin we had on the Carnival Triumph).. BTW We've sailed on the Triumph and a few of the RCCL ships so this review will compare the Sun to those. This was my first sail with NCL so we werent Lattitudes members. The checkin was painless in Boston, In fact the line for non lattitudes members was shorter. The cruise was fine and we did have a great time however.....(Now dont anyone get offened, these are my opinions only) The age of the passengers on the ship averaged 60 and many in walkers.. This made for a slower pace throughout the ship. like waiting on the buffet lines.. ( I swear some of them fell asleep while on line in front of me..).I prefer a ship with "eye candy' if you know what I mean.

This may have had to do with the fact that the fare from Boston to Miami allowed those "snowbirds" a nice way to get home but I dont know that.. Cabin Stewardess.. was wonderful. extra towels, discrete, and generally available when needed. Although the couple I was travelling with never saw theirs and at one point needed toilet paper and had to call for a roll.. so I guess I lucked out.

Food and Service.. We found the food to be a few steps below the Carnival Triumph. In the 2 main dining rooms the food was sub standard to my tastes. There were times that they actually ran out of smoked salmon at breakfast. The service was spotty and generally not up to the other ships we've been on.

( I believe this is due to the fact that their gonna get their tips anyway.) and dont belive the crap that you can remove the tip charges because the pursers desk is very crowded on the last day so unless you want to stay onboard to take care of it, it's a hassle.

Another problem was the some of the service staff did not understand english..(an example-- for lunch one day, they had pastrami on rye with sourkraut, russian dressing and cole slaw and potato chips. I asked for a plain pastrami on rye specifying no sourkraut, no russian dressing and no cole slaw. I got pastrami on rye with everything on it except the potato chips. This was our first experience with freestyle and I believe that with non freestyle dining and tipping at you discreting, you are able to establish a rapport with your wait staff and and they treat you much better.

I know on Carnival, after the first night, the waiter new what we liked and anticipated (and sometimes brought multiple) appetizers, entrees and desserts.

You lose that dining freestyle. The only benefit that you get from freestyle dining is the ablility to dine at you own time.

Other Restaurants:

The Garden Cafe - this was the buffet and was terrible. Hambergers, hotdogs sat in a steam tray. The burgers were like hockey pucks. They had minute steaks that came out raw sitting in the steam trays. They had someone making fresh pasta daily and that was the only good stuff on the buffet.

Twice they barbequed ribs and they were good. Most of the time the food in the steam trays were so-so and the carving station was ok.. Roast beef, Pork roast, leg of lamb, ham and some steak. They have an ice cream station that opened at 2:00PM and the line was so long (at least 20 people waiting) I only got some twice.

Other restaurants-- Firstly you must make a reservation one day in advance for any of the following restauants. Pacific Hights - This is the cooking lite restaurant and no extra charge. I had meatballs and speghetti, wife had meatloaf. Nowhere on the menu did it say that the meat was actually turkey.. The taste was ok, just unexpected.

Il Adigio - Ten bucks per person cover charge and the food was just ok. I had a veal t-bone with pasta, wife had a shrimp scampi (4 shrimp) I dont believe that the extra charge was worth it. Le Bistro - Ten bucks per person cover charge and the food was a little better. We went there twice primarily because the food in the main dining rooms was not to our liking.

Pacific Rim- we only went to the Teppanyaki restaurant so I cant comment on the other two places (Ginza and East Meets West). This was an ala carte restaurant and was the best of them all. We had the special with lobster at 32 bucks. Same thing we shouldnt have to pay extra for quality food. All the food should be quality. In the casino, I spoke to a few fellow BJ players and they had basically the same impressions as I do.

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