Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Impressions of the Norwegian Spirit

The Norwegian Cruise experience was better than we expected, and very new since we have not been on any cruise in 15 years, and never with NCL.

The cruise map is roughly this:

From At Sea Oink

The cabins are small, but not really a problem compared with the space available in Morty. The cabin staff was efficient and unobtrusive -- everything you ever hoped for. Each cabin has only one 110 volt outlet with another on the hairdryer in the bathroom. Some form of power splitter would be very useful.

The waiters are trained to move with military precision through every activity in the dining room. Take for example how the table is cleared, and a new white table cloth positioned and the places reset. No matter who is doing it, every action is a precisely choreographed dance step. The table cloth itself is always perfectly centered on the table.

The female wait staff are far better than their male counterparts. If your waiter is male the chance for poor service is about 30%. If female it drops to about 10%. There is a great advantage in identifying a good waiter, and then asking to be seated in his or her station at subsequent meals [e.g. Kimberly in the Garden].

The food is very good. If you prefer fish, there is a robust selection over the week, and no disappointments. Beef and lamb lovers also do extremely well.

The fitness center is better than on any cruise ship I have experienced. The aerobic and weight machines are all Precor, and in excellent condition. The AquaSwim pools are too great a challenge for most fitness enthusiasts, but I found them a lot better than I expected.

Hand sanitizing stations are placed every 50 or 100 feet in the ships public areas. Plus there are dedicated Washee-Washee attendants at each entry to the ship from the dock as well at each entry to the dining rooms. Probably a smart tactic to keeping down the threat of contact-born diseases.
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