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Old May 25th, 2005, 08:59 AM
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Default Pride of Aloha vs. America

I looked at orbitz and both ships have roundtrip Honolulu 7-night departures and visit the same ports in a different order. Orbitz claims that the Pride of America is a new ship, yet I thought both were new? What’s the difference between these two cruises? Thanks!

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Old May 25th, 2005, 09:01 AM
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Oh I just scrolled down and read that America is coming out this July. How do we know it won't have the same problems Aloha had when it first debuted?
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Old May 25th, 2005, 04:18 PM
Bruce MurrayOnHawaii.com
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Aloha Jamie,
The Pride Of America is a brand new ship. The Pride Of Aloha is a renovated ship with a new name. I myself have been confused by the promotion of the Pride Of Aloha, many ads may leave the reader thinking it is a new ship. But wouldn't let the age of the ship be of concern, most of the issues/problems have been with staffing.

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Old May 26th, 2005, 01:21 PM
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Default Re: Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

The Pride of Aloha was not a new "ship" - it was an older NCL ship, however it was completely redecorated and most importantly re-crewed when it was re-flagged as a U.S. registered vessel. So, essentially it was almost just like a new ship.

The Pride of America is a brand new ship, getting delivered by the shipyard in Germany next month. It will be the second ship in NCL-America's fleet, and also the second ship to be completely staffed with an all U.S. crew.

I seriously doubt that Pride of America will have the same staffing issues Pride of Aloha had when it first came out, but that is mostly because the original Aloha staffing issues were pretty bad. Now that Aloha has been in service for 9 months, most of those issues have been sorted out.

I would expect the staffing in Pride of America to be decently good within a couple of months (by the time it gets to Hawaii). NCLA has had a learning experience with Pride of Aloha - a lesson in how to manage an American crew, and I am sure they won't make the same mistakes twice.

For one thing, they now have the Piney Point Maryland training center that all crew goes through before they get onboard (this was not true for the original Aloha staff). Plus, they sent a good skeleton crew of officers and some staff over to the Pride of America to get people started on the right foot.

As I said in a previous post, it takes about 2 months for a new staff member to get up to speed on his/her job.

Plus, in deference to Bruce, I think the newer ship will have some advantages. The cabins will have more 120 v outlets, as will the rest of the ship (good for wireless Internet access), the ship is designed for free-style cruising, so the food service should be more efficient. There will be fewer plumbing and other mechanical problems.

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Old May 26th, 2005, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Thanks Bruce and Paul!

Paul you said: "the ship is designed for free-style cruising, so the food service should be more efficient." as opposed to the what on the Aloha ship? Is there not free-style cruising and why is that worse?

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Old May 28th, 2005, 08:51 AM
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Default Re: Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Pride of Aloha has Free-style service, but that ship was not originally designed for it in terms of layout and traffic-flow as Pride of America is - the difference being the number of available food service stations and alternative dining venues.

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Old June 3rd, 2005, 11:17 PM
JohnInSeattle
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Default Re: Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

I have sailed on the Pride of Aloha. It is the old Norwegian Dawn tackily revamped in somebody's cartoonish idea of Hawaii. Garrish pink and blue prevail in decor. Fake monkeys in the atrium - there are no monkeys in Hawaii. I love NCL but this ship is just tacky.
Go for the Pride of America, at least it will be brand new and not some cheap makeover.
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Old June 4th, 2005, 12:01 AM
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Actually, the Pride of Aloha was the Norwegian Sky. It was built in 1999 and redone in 2004 to become Pride of Aloha. I sailed the Norwegian Sky twice and enjoyed it both times. The ship handled the Freestyle concept quite well with its two main dining rooms, Le Bistro, Chow Ciao, and Horizons dining rooms plus the buffet and other smaller venues, such as on-deck barbecue.

The biggest problems were the smaller cabins that, from what I've read, are still a disappointment to cruisers of the Pride of Aloha. The balcony cabins were/are fair sized at 160 sq. ft. but the inside 145 sq ft. cabins were very small. We had aft balcony cabins that were larger and quite nice.

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Mike

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Old June 4th, 2005, 03:37 AM
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Actually, before the Norwegian Sky had that name, she was about to become a Costa Cruises Ship. She was actually built in 1997, but Costa couldn't afford to take her at the time. She rusted away at the shipyard in Bremerhaven for a few years until NCL decided to buy her. It was too late in the building process to make the tiny cabins any larger. That's why Pride of Aloha has smaller cabins than all the other NCL ships.
NCL shoe-horned their new Freestyle Concept into this "new" ship. Later, they realized that Freestyle doesn't really work very well with only a few restaurants to handle the overflow crowds. That's why subsequesnt NCL freestyle vessels have so many more places to eat.
NCL is quickly disposing of all their old ships. Pride of Aloha is the oldest vessel they want to keep. But it doesn't really represent the Freestyle Concept that NCL is building their reputation on. So what to do with this ship? Why not transfer it to their "second label"?
The hope was that Hawaii would be so distracting that the public wouldn't notice that their "new ship" there was not really all that new.
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Old June 4th, 2005, 04:53 AM
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Default Re: Pride of Aloha vs. America

Bruce:
You are right that the hull they bought and finished became the Norwegian Sky. It would have been the sister ship to the Costa Victoria.

This is basically the same thing they have done with the Pride of America. They purchased the partially completed hull from the bankrupt American Classic Voyages and towed it to LLoyd Werft in Germany to be completed. A nice way to save the ships from the scrap yard and recoup the American tax dollars spent on the building of the ships.

Take care,
Mike

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