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Sail Date: February 2019
I just finished my cruise trip embarked on Barcelona. I bought the Bella package with a balcony. That's my first time to travel in a cruise and I was quite satisfied with the amenities, services and entertainment on board. The ... Read More
I just finished my cruise trip embarked on Barcelona. I bought the Bella package with a balcony. That's my first time to travel in a cruise and I was quite satisfied with the amenities, services and entertainment on board. The cruise was beautiful and clean, and so the cabin. Thanks for the effort of the crew who made our beds every day and clean the balcony twice during the stau. Staff were generally polite, helpful and humorous. And the MC & PERFORMERS of the entertainment were energetic! I watched shows in the Broadway theater almost every day and they were all as excellent as the paid show by Cirque du Soleil. The aqua park and the rope facilities were fun. I spent my cruise day there without a moment of boredom. We were lucky that not much people were there as the weather was still quite chilly. Some setbacks were below: Similar to other comments, the cruise held 5000+ people, thus very often the public area esp. The indoor bamboo pools and jacuzzi were full of people. We managed to have "private" experience just because we went there at 930am. The buffet area ie market place was full of people from all ages at all time. But if u were early, u still manage to get seat at the window, which was definitely a better seating compared to the one assigned for you at the complimentary restaurant. (Unless you upgrade your package) The food at complimentary restaurants were so so. Not much variety n nothing luxurious. So i joined the dining package at 96 euro for 3 restaurants,namely Eataly, japanese restaurant kaito n Butcher cut. Eataly and Butcher cut were delicious yet the sushi from the package was overpriced and not worth it. (As an asian, i could tell the food was not fresh enough to be sashimi and no smoke salmon should be used for sushi roll lol) Quite a lot of things were charged items, e.g the drinks (even water!! at restaurants except marketplace , the virtual games, bowling, sauna, spa (tried the Bail massage, slightly more expensive than other spa experience outside but is their skills were up to standard.) Non alcoholic drink package costed 19euro per day per person which was really too ex to join == No external wine or beer were allowed so got to save the pocket money for that! Bingo was 10 euro per card which was again expensive compared to the casino games. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Having been on the Spirit last January 2018 and having had a great time we decided to cruise on the NCL Spirit once again. However our spirits sank as we waited in the very long queue at the Barcelona port, as we were informed the previous ... Read More
Having been on the Spirit last January 2018 and having had a great time we decided to cruise on the NCL Spirit once again. However our spirits sank as we waited in the very long queue at the Barcelona port, as we were informed the previous cruise had cases of novo virus and so we had to wait much longer to board her due to it being sanitised. Once on board we were not allowed to help ourselves to the buffet food in the raffles restaurant and for the first 5 days of the cruise this caused no end of issues e.g. Waiting in long queues to be served by staff, fellow passengers being told off by staff who were seen reaching out for knives and forks ect, because they were fed up ( if you'll pardon the pun ) of waiting to be handed their utensils We all knew it was for all our benefit, but it was frustrating having to wait continually to be served by the crew. Thankfully the ship was given the all clear and normal self service resumed on the 6 th day of the 11 night cruise. Felt sorry for the staff they worked really hard and it wasn't their fault that they were having to serve passengers,but it was an inconvienience to most passengers, who expected to serve themselves in the raffles restaurant. Having said all that the food on offer was in our opinion excellent lots of choices for everyone and an excellent Indian Fayre , each night for vegetarians like myself. The restaurant itself does needs updating. As for the rest of the ship it looked pretty much the same as it did previously. Another major dissapointment for us on this cruise was the fact that someone decided that it would be a good idea to take off the mosaic tiles around the outdoor jacuzzis 4 in all and retile them. Well we didn't think this was appropriate as passengers could not sit around the main pool area while they did the work......well you could if you could put up with the drilling hammering and dust and muck that it made. It was at times like being in the middle of a building site. There was no mention of an apology as the work continued during port days,when many of the passengers went off ship but many remained,and those that did had to find another area to relax away from the noise. I am writing to NCL to make a formal complaint and to ask if they thought it was acceptable to do this type of work while paying passengers had to endure the inconvienience of the noise and the lack of use of some facilities during this work. I have videoed this as evidence so will wait and see what response I get. Fortunately we managed to find a quite spot. Overall we enjoyed the cruise the shows were fantastic some great guest artists,the ships dancers were the best we've seen and worked really hard. Wasn't too keen on the main singers,they all seem to want to out sing each other thus most of the time sang out of tune. The spirit live band was excellent and the production shows were good however we saw the Elements show last year. They also had Ian West resident piano/ singer who kept passengers entertained in the Champagne lounge,as he did on the last cruise. Didn't use any of the speciality restaurants spa services tours and photographic services in our opinion all were far too expensive. Talking of expense, we found that on this cruise as we did not have the drinks package the prices of the beverages were too expensive even sodas were 3.45$ plus 20% service charge as are all drinks you have an additional 20% added. Even if you do sign up for the drinks package it's not that cheap, you would have to be constantly ordering drinks that you don't want just to justify what you've paid. The drinks packages start at $99 a day that's over a $1000 dollars on an average 10/11 night cruise. To round up overall we enjoyed the cruise we do like the smaller ships and the spirit does have a nice friendly feel to it and the itinerary in Jan/ Feb is good and suits ourselves as we don't want a long hall flight. This particular cruise stared and finished in Barcelona,and the weather this year was very hot and sunny the whole cruise apart from Malaga,which was disappointingly cool and overcast.Would we go on the Spirit again ?perhaps not ,but we would look at another NCL freestyle cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Just got back from cruise in Rome beautiful ship cabins good size restaurant waiters cabin staff excellent I don’t know how they put up with so many rude customers. Food in Buffett lukewarm was told to ask for freshly made if I wanted it ... Read More
Just got back from cruise in Rome beautiful ship cabins good size restaurant waiters cabin staff excellent I don’t know how they put up with so many rude customers. Food in Buffett lukewarm was told to ask for freshly made if I wanted it hot . Ridiculous this is how health issues start also no regard for health standard where was the hand sanitizer that all other cruise ships insist you use when attending Buffett. I saw many customers not using tongs supplied filing water bottles when clearly states not to no one stopped so I wouldn’t drink free water purchased bottled . This cruise company would be my last pick of all other cruise lines I have used. Shuttles not supplied like many other companies do profit put first used taxi instead same price. Security staff some rude butted in on conversation need more scanners for this amount of customers. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We choose this cruise for the Itinerary to get away from the nasty snow and freezing temp in Ontario Canada. We had not been on NCL for a number of years (usually Celebrity)but were pleasantly surprised. While the ship had some older age ... Read More
We choose this cruise for the Itinerary to get away from the nasty snow and freezing temp in Ontario Canada. We had not been on NCL for a number of years (usually Celebrity)but were pleasantly surprised. While the ship had some older age issues the staff, food etc were excellent. during the GI outbreak there were nothing but smiles all around as many of them worked extended hours to get the virus under control. Did we mind the washy washy or being served in the Buffet... not at all as they had things under control in a matter of days. We commend the ship for keeping us up to date at all times. There were always options to dine elsewhere other than the Buffet so not a problem at all. The food and service in the Specialty dining far exceeded our expectations as we normally do not attend but we had 4 nights free Specialty dining included. The bartenders were amazing as they prepared mojito with less sugar and we went every day to the same spot and the drinks were always prepared exactly to our taste. well done NCL you have earned our loyalty on another cruise. Last year we were on Celebrity and the cabins were badly in need of repair and several drapery hooks were missing/broken so Read the other reviews from the reviewer before you make up your mind.... Ports of call were very interesting. remember to enjoy Cassablanca as a traveller Not as a tourist and you will enjoy the experience. Our favorite was Funchal Medeira. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
First of all we boarded a ship that we believe had the Noro virus on it and had over 100 cases on the ship. It made the cruise a total disaster from overall terrible food, poor menus that did not change. The service in Windows was terrible ... Read More
First of all we boarded a ship that we believe had the Noro virus on it and had over 100 cases on the ship. It made the cruise a total disaster from overall terrible food, poor menus that did not change. The service in Windows was terrible food was not hot nor served in a timely manner. The hallway to our room always had a horrible odor. The speciality restaurants were fair at best and out of item on the menu. Cagneys served old baked potatoes and very small portion of vegetables. The lettuce was not crisp and had a lot of brown leaves. The tables were so close you could not have any intimate conversations. Because we had our hands sprayed with a bleach or alcohol solution all day long our hands got so dry that they were cracking. The still demanded to spray the solution as it burned. I will continue to suggest that anyone who is thinking about Norwegian not to consider this line. The employees on this ship has no personality and not a lot of fun. The spirit is a horrible ship and the shows were cancelled multiple days. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We had not been on Norwegian Cruise Line before and chose this cruise because of the port calls and itinerary which were fine. Prior to the trip, we felt the information was lacking - for example, we never received a travel package with ... Read More
We had not been on Norwegian Cruise Line before and chose this cruise because of the port calls and itinerary which were fine. Prior to the trip, we felt the information was lacking - for example, we never received a travel package with tickets and luggage tags (which I was expecting from experience with other cruise lines) and it took a bit of navigating to figure out I needed to print everything from the web page before travel. We also had booked with NCL a transfer from the airport to the hotel pre-cruise; the transfer never showed up and our attempts at the airport to call wasn't successful. We also hit a taxi strike on arrival which meant transportation was difficult and costly. Although we were a bit flustered, we are fairly savvy travelers and were able to get to the hotel; I can't imagine how other or older travelers would have dealt with the situation. When we got on board and reported the transfer issue, there was very little sympathy and nothing was done about it. Although there was a long line at embarkation, it was fairly smooth as was debarkation - no complaints. The Spirit ship itself is dated and worn, it also felt very crowded with few places that were quiet and secluded, especially inside. Thank goodness the weather was decent and we could spend time on the deck or we would have felt claustrophobic with the inside spaces. Although we liked the variety of dining options for dinner (we bought the 4 meal package) and the option of eating when you like, lunch and breakfast were limited to Raffles (buffet) and the main dining room for breakfast, and only Raffles for lunch - neither was that good. Breakfast service in Windows was very slow, we waited 2 hours to be served one morning, for example. Because of the slow service and lack of options, a few days that we had an early excursion we chose room service - which had limited options and charged an additional service fee. Raffles food quality was poor and it was over crowded. On day 2 they reported an increase number of GI cases which caused the ship to take additional sanitary measures - certainly this was necessary (and we're glad we didn't get ill), but it added a bit of concern and frustration with the cramped dining in Raffles and being in the common areas. We had an excellent cabin steward and I believe the employees were trying, but it just felt like the ship didn't have enough employees. It was rare that there was more than 2 waiters in the large Galaxy bar area, hardly any waiters on deck or in the show area and they just didn't seem excited to be there (maybe I wouldn't be either). Pretty much you had to go to the bar to get service in most cases. I also thought that dinner service in general just didn't hit the mark - lots of little things missing at every service. Perhaps this is just the standard of this cruise line - it was ok, but we've experienced better. We thought the costs on board were high for things like drinks and services; we had the drinks package but that didn't even include the coffee at the cafe or juices. They add a 20% service charge on everything so you're sometimes surprised at the adds; they also charge a per day service charge at the end. I'm ok with paying service charges and tips, but when the service isn't great, I have a problem with being forced to pay a flat rate. I had one spa service on the cruise; I didn't pay attention to the cost when I signed up and when I got there learned it was $230 for the massage (with the added service cost, and then a line for additional tip). I know spa service on cruises are expensive but $230 - wow! On top of it, we felt the crew was routinely trying to sell you additional things, whether its products at the spa or a decanter at dinner or another cruise, it seemed a bit over the top. Regarding the excursions, we went on several and found them to be interesting and of good value. We also had excellent weather which was a real plus. We wished there had been more activities on the ship besides dance lessons, bingo and quizes; we've been on other cruises that offer lectures, food demos, tours of the ship,etc. which have been a nice variety. We only went to one show as a few got cancelled and the auditorium was a bit clumsy with seating and access. The singers and musicians in the public areas and bars were generally very good. I think I comment in the next section about the cabin but I'll include info here as well. Our cabin was smaller than we expected and very dated. The bed was comfortable and we slept well however. There was adequate storage,but again, the decor, carpet, etc was worn. The bathroom was our biggest complaint; size wise pretty standard for a cruise ship, but the tiles on the floor in the shower and bathroom area were cracked and looking very unhygienic - actually kind of gross. While standing on the broken tile while showering rust or some dirt would come up from under the tiles which didn't make us very confident. I think our room steward did a good job keeping things clean, but I'm not sure you can ever really clean the problem areas like that. We enjoyed being away from work, the ports and the weather and the flexible dining options. We would not go on this ship again as we've experienced better options on other cruise lines. Not sure if we would go on another ship with NCL; some things we liked, but the service issues and costs, etc. put us off. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We choose this cruise because it was our first cruise in 20 years and the ship was sailing out of Barcelona where we were going on holiday. The Spirit will always hold a fond memory for us. Our dining experience was excellant at ... Read More
We choose this cruise because it was our first cruise in 20 years and the ship was sailing out of Barcelona where we were going on holiday. The Spirit will always hold a fond memory for us. Our dining experience was excellant at every restaurant and the food was out of this world. We were treated like a queen and king the entire trip. Read 3 books from the Spirit library and my husband attended AA meetings every night. A fitness instructor was available for us and we thoroughly enjoyed the land excursions we took. An excellent trip!!!!’ We have another cruise planned for March 2019 . The cruise will be on the Bliss to the islands. We have not booked our shore excursaions as of yet but we are looking into taking care of.everything in the next couple of weeks. Our cruise planner has done a wonderful job in keeping us up to date on everything we should know about the cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
I chose this cruise as a winter sun break on a ship I enjoy. Things didn't go well from before I left. My printer blew up as I was printing my documents, it snowed hard a few hours before my taxi was due and I had a message from the ... Read More
I chose this cruise as a winter sun break on a ship I enjoy. Things didn't go well from before I left. My printer blew up as I was printing my documents, it snowed hard a few hours before my taxi was due and I had a message from the taxi company in Barcelona that because of a strike they would not pick me up from the airport, all this before I had left home. Fortunately I got to Barcelona and was able to get to the hotel and then to the port. Embarkation was it's normal boring self but we got on fairly quickly. The ship looked it's old self and I was pleased to see some crew members were still on from my last cruise. I went down to my cabin and though small it was clean and tidy with enough room for my clothes and another if I had been with someone. My cabin was 9692 which is a balcony aft cabin. The bathroom was clean but small. I was a bit perturbed on the third day when the water came out a browny/yellow colour but was told this was due to them cleaning the pipes and that after running for five minutes it should be alright, which it was but it did make me question the potability of the water after that. I ate mostly at the speciality restaurants and they were as usual fantastic other than they had stopped the free gift from the chef which I thought was a bit mean especially if it was due to cost cutting. Service around the ship was excellent until the outbreak of the GI infection (possibly Novro virus) then things went down hill. Obviously I know it was for the benefit of the passengers but once the crew went on sanitization duties the services dipped to the detriment of my holiday. The ports we visited I was looking forward to especially Casablanca but I don't know if this is due to the amount of port fees you pay but at each port we seemed to be as far from the port entrance as we could be and because of my low mobility I did not get off at most ports. Still I enjoyed being back on the Spirit and met a number of very nice people so overall it was a good vacation. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We as a couple and as a group have cruised the Carribian many times and we were looking to travel somewhere different. This cruise certainly filled that requirement! Arriving at Barcelona Airport we found out there was a Taxi strike. ... Read More
We as a couple and as a group have cruised the Carribian many times and we were looking to travel somewhere different. This cruise certainly filled that requirement! Arriving at Barcelona Airport we found out there was a Taxi strike. Taxis parked all over the main roads, we spent two additional days prior to the Cruise Touring this beautiful City, upon boarding we found the ship to To meet our every desire, Morocco with the exception of the Mosque and “ Ricks Cafe” was a bit of a disappointment. The Canery Islands were spectacular! The Volcano Trek is incorrectly listed it should be a class 3-4 out of 5 Between the elevation and steep terrain not to mention the pace of the tour it certainly should be upgraded for Safety reasons.and if you have any Heart, weight or mobility issues to take a different Tour! Portugal is wonderful and scenic, the Rock of Gibraltar tour Driven by a retired Local Police Officer “Tony” was among the highlights of our trip Along with Sagarita Familia in Barcelona led by David, among other excursions we took a Tapas Walking tour, our guide Ana did a great job bringing local heritage and food together and “Wine always Wine” I recommend since debarking from the ship and a late afternoon Flight to better utilize your time by taking another tour or Senic bus ride until your flight requires your presence, Asfar as the Ship goes getting on or off was easy, our Cabin Steward Mohammad was a pleasure to speak with and did his job well, dining,Casinos,and especially the Blue Moon was excellent. I found the upper decks wonderful for reading.this trip was a wonderful,relaxing, adventure and worth the time and investment Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We have been on 5 NCL cruises, The Star, The Epic, and The Spirit. The Star, Epic, and the first of 3 on The Spirit were all great, but the last 2 on The Spirit have not been a good experience for us. Last year 3 major ports were ... Read More
We have been on 5 NCL cruises, The Star, The Epic, and The Spirit. The Star, Epic, and the first of 3 on The Spirit were all great, but the last 2 on The Spirit have not been a good experience for us. Last year 3 major ports were cancelled because of the weather, and I appreciate that this was just one of those things that could not have been avoided. Our main problem was that we had loud hammering and drilling noise in our stateroom from maintenance work on the deck above. This was every day of the cruise, and apparently there was no other stateroom to move us to. Then we had the problem with Spanish VAT. We had prepaid for a beverage package, as we had done the previous year, with no problems. This second cruise on Spirit was different, we were told that we had to pay VAT while in Spanish waters, even though we had prepaid. On returning home, we found out that we should not have been charged, and it was refunded. Now onto this years cruise on The Spirit. First of all, we had a gastrointestinal virus on the ship, which was discovered during the first port of call. Obviously measures had to be put in place to avoid it spreading, but we feel that more could have been done to make passengers enjoyment of the cruise better. A lot of meals had to be taken in the buffet, and because of cross infection, we were not allowed to serve ourselves. All of the food areas were cordoned off to allow staff to serve us. This meant that there was a lot of congestion, and long queues because there didn’t appear to be enough staff to serve. On top of this,I was informed that a lot of staff had to be taken from non public areas, which resulted in communication issues. Plus, if you wanted food from another area of the buffet, it was necessary to join another queue, by which time the food already on your plate was cold. The dining rooms were not open for lunch on port days, but we feel that they could have opened one of them to alleviate the problem. Apart from what I have already mentioned, we found the food in general to be not as good as before. On our first cruise on The Spirit we had a particular brand of gin before dinner. On the second cruise, we were told that this gin was not on the drinks package as it had been increased to $16.95, and you could only have drinks up to $15 on the package without paying more. Imagine our surprise, when this year, that particular gin had been increased to a staggering $19.95. Now onto the Lattitudes party for returning passengers. We used to receive a personalised invitation card in an envelope, now just a non personalised piece of paper under your stateroom door. No prize draw, and on this occasion no canapés. We were told that this was because of the virus on board, but to be honest, a waiter using tongs to put a canapé on your plate, would have been no different to food being served in the buffet or dining rooms. Some dishes that were on the menu, both in the dining room and the speciality restaurants were unavailable when we visited.. Also, the lunch menu in the dining room while at sea, seemed to be basically the same every day, but on previous cruises the menu alternated. Summing up, we feel it unlikely that we would book another cruise. Read Less

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