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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2017
This was a "guys cruise" with our party consisting of me (35), my son (6) and my dad (63). We live in Vienna, Austria. It was my 6th cruise with NCL, 3rd in the Haven. My son has cruised several times and it was a first for my ... Read More
This was a "guys cruise" with our party consisting of me (35), my son (6) and my dad (63). We live in Vienna, Austria. It was my 6th cruise with NCL, 3rd in the Haven. My son has cruised several times and it was a first for my dad. Pre-cruise: We flew in 3 days early and spent those sightseeing in NYC. My dad and me have been multiple times, but it was a first for my son who loved every minute. We stayed at The Blakely which I would definitely recommend. Good, central location to explore the city, nice rooms, breakfast included, short cab ride to port. Embarkation: Arriving at the port around 10:30 am we were ushered into the Haven waiting area, which was already pretty full. We were told they would let us board around 11. We were escorted to the Haven lounge and met our concierge Anoop. Drinks and sliders were served and aorund noon we sat down in the Haven restaurant for Lunch. Cabin: The steward greeted us and confirmed the cabin was ready. Upon entering we quickly noticed, that our steward and we had very different ideas of what a clean and ready cabin should look like... There were smudges on almost any surface and even the walls, the clothes hooks were lying on the floor of the wardrobe, the balcony was dirty,... As the steward was now nowhere to be found, I dialed housekeeping to send someone to properly clean the cabin. This was taken care of immediately and for the remainder of the cruise, the cabin was always spotless. Unfortunately, soot did collect on the balcony sometimes and we asked for covers for the loungers, which the steward promptly delivered. Kids club: My son went every day and loved it. He speaks German and very limited English, but never had any problems. There were not many kids on this cruise and most of the time the 6-9 and 10-12 groups were combined without any issues. All the staff were wonderful and one could see that they enjoy working with kids! Haven: Truly a wonderful experience! The Haven was the only way to convince my dad to give cruising a try and he was not disappointed. The small pool was hardly used by anyone except my son and me, always space in the hot-tubs which we also had to ourselves most of the time. I did not know before, that there would be no loungers on the Haven pool deck, but only the deck above... I like the setup on Escape and Epic better, as they have loungers next to the pool. Did feel weird to swim while almost next to us people were eating or lounging at the courtyard restaurant tables... The sun deck was very nice and you could always find empty loungers. Drink service was always quick and friendly. The servers knew your drink choices after the first 1-2 days. Haven restaurant: Without a doubt the best restaurant on the ship! The breakfast choices are great and dinner was always delicious. The beef tartar is hands down the best I have had anywhere! Butler and Concierge: Butler was great. Came by every day to deliver afternoon snacks, always M&Ms, gummibears and cookies in the cabin for my son (and me). He also delivered several breakfasts and two dinners. Concierge we did not use except to change one reservation. Main pool and slides: Never crowded and hardly any wait for the slides. My son just learned to swim and the kids pool was great for him as he could stand on one side. We are not a big fan of the loud music by the main pool, so did not really spent time there. Speciality restaurants: We had SPD credits for 6 nights and went to Cagney's (three times), Le Bistro, Teppanyaki and Cirque. All were good to very good. Entertainment: Did not go to any shows. Howl at the moon was good as always and there were several live musicians throughout the ship. Most were really good. Casino: As guest of Casinos at Sea I did spend 2-3 hours a day at the tables. Drink service was always quick, dealers friendly and professional. I like that you can still smoke at the tables, although I understand that this bothers many and I have to say that the smell did get into areas outside the casino. Ports: We had booked a five port package through an independent provider (shore excursion group) and enjoyed them all. I especially liked that this cruise visited many islands that are not usually on the itinerary! Disembarkation: One menber of the concierge team did escort us of the ship through a service elevator, but did not provide escort to baggage claim and CBP. As Haven guests you are allowed to skip the lines to the terminal and go through priority customs line. This did get many stares and unfriendly remarks from other passengers and could be handled much better by NCL. Not a nice way to end a great cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2016
The wife and I have been on 16 cruises with 4 different cruise lines but we are now sold on the value and price of the NCL Breakaway sailing out of Manhattan. I'm sure the other NCL offerings are just as good (we did take the Epic out ... Read More
The wife and I have been on 16 cruises with 4 different cruise lines but we are now sold on the value and price of the NCL Breakaway sailing out of Manhattan. I'm sure the other NCL offerings are just as good (we did take the Epic out of Miami once) but being that I live within a few hours drive to Pier 88 makes the air-fare and bus expense lines on my cost spreadsheet blank. Aside from the $600 we save we also skip the anxiety generated by all the additional travel complications of getting to a far-away port just for the embarkation. For this cruise the drive was just under 2 hours, dock-side workers handled our luggage and we were directed to a short line for handicapped travelers to check-in, the wife uses a cane you see. The waiting area was clean and comfortable a did not get too crowded until just before the boarding started. Boarding is still just a short walk but you should be aware that it is up-hill all the way and it seems that there is always a wheelchair or scooter having a problem with the climb. We decided to start the cruise with lunch in Moderno which was setup as a buffet just for embarkation day. Several friends we made in the waiting area joined us and a good time was had by all. Immediately after the mandatory safety muster, we met up with some others we found on Cruise Critic for a "pub crawl". We started at Shakers Martini Bar, then went on to the Malting's Beer and Whiskey Bar, down to O'Sheenans Bar & Grill, then down to the Attrium Bar, aft to the Mixx Bar, up to Prime Meridian, we had a stop in the Garden Café (which does have a bar in the rear of the buffet) and then the last stop was at H20 Spice in the "Fire Island Bar". It was a bit chilly in the night air off the coast of NJ in Feb but it was to be expected. Unfortunately, I was the only one still crawling by then, 11PM. The next day was a "Meet & Greet" with the officers setup with the assistance of Cruise Critic and one of the members, and later that evening the "Captain's VIP Cocktail Party" and I got a chance to wear my Tux again. Oh Boy! The time spent with the officers, and whenever we are dealing with the crew is always an enjoyment. They welcomed us into their 'family' and never failed to smile and find a way to handle any requests we made. After enjoying a week with them it is a rude awakening when you a thrust back into the real world as you disembark. Our cabin (#12260), a family balcony stateroom, had plenty of space for the 2 of us, even the balcony itself was a good size for the few times we actually used it. The furnishings and the bathroom were adequate and well cleaned. The A/C, TV and lighting worked fine. I recommend the 12th floor aft location we had, near the elevators and away from the expected noise sources. Based on my experiences the cruise was smooth, the weather was a bit chilly and somewhat windy some days. The wife had a good time in the casino (winning is always fun isn't it). I enjoyed the pool and hot-tubs. 'Freddy' and 'Mike' at the pool bar were very helpful with my desire to try some new beverages, we even made up a few of our own. And I cannot give enough praise for 'Irma' and 'Jim' at the Shakers Martini Bar, again they handled our request for a 'Cotton Candy Martini' without delay, good thing I remembered to bring some cotton candy. The only excursion we took was at Canaveral, we went to the Kennedy Space Center for the second time, you really can't do it all in just one day, the tour and free time was vey good. Two of the entertainments that we had scheduled when we booked the trip were cancelled and we were forced to rework some dinner reservations for later in the week to accommodate other scheduled performances. Apparently, there wasn't enough demand for all the shows so they were combined. But the shows did go on, and were excellent, the "Wine Lovers Musical" was a very good new offering, thanks NCL. Dining did have some problems, but remember that in seven days we had 21 meals so 1 or 2 issues are expected. I chose the wrong cut of steak at Cagney's. My wife had a wonderful prime rib and I had a miserable bone-in rib eye steak. My steak should have been a nice hamburger in the Uptown Bar & Grill. I have always found Cagney's to be excellent in the past and will just have to put this in my past. On the other hand, I won't be dining in the Manhattan Room on my next cruise on the Breakaway. I had a problem there on our last cruise in December and this time was just too much. I asked for a table near the dance floor and explained that our reservations for 'Burn the Floor' had been cancelled. We were seated at Table #57, Do Not Sit There. There is a large column to block one person's view and the other person gets to watch the waiters entering orders on 5-6 computer terminals all evening, is this Mac Donald's. There is no isle, waiters passing around those standing at the terminals often bump your chair and people squeezing between tables are almost sitting on your table. The table was not set properly and we were not offered a drink from the bar. It was so congested in that area I was worried that something would go wrong. It did, a waiter was bumped and almost lost an entire tray of a dozen meals right on us. One meal did spend the rest of the night on the floor just beside my wife's seat, some kind of shrimp in a white sauce. The last issue was when the wife got her chicken kiev there was no filling of swiss-cheese and ham. She was so upset that the waiter, head waiter, and maître`de were all dressed down over this. I can get the exact same food in both Taste and Savor so I will be enjoying their facilities in the future instead of the Manhattan Room - it is too much like the real Manhattan experience. This week the with and I are dieting and trying to figure out when to book our next Breakaway cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2016
This was our second time on the Breakaway. The first was Sept. 2015, we had such a great time we went again for our anniversary. We were minus the kids so we were able to go with a Haven suite (H7). It was well worth it. The suite was ... Read More
This was our second time on the Breakaway. The first was Sept. 2015, we had such a great time we went again for our anniversary. We were minus the kids so we were able to go with a Haven suite (H7). It was well worth it. The suite was incredible and our Concierge Anoop was the best. He saw to our every need. The Haven itself is a beautiful area and the restaurant w as great. We had an amazing time at the shows and in port at Nassau. The private island was absolutely amazing. From the barbecue to the beach, total relaxation. No problems boarding or disembarkin. I highly recommend the Haven if one has the opportunity. On a side note we also were part of the cruise critic meet and greet. I encourage everyone to join for there cruise. We met the most incredible people and had a great time all along the trip with them. Finally thanks to the crew, they could not have been any better, not one bad interaction and the service was spot on. Read Less
Norwegian Breakaway Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 5.0 3.7
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.7
Family 5.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 2.0 3.3
Service 4.0 3.8
Value For Money 4.0 3.4
Rates 3.0 3.3

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