I certainly can not answer all your questions but I would arrive about 1pm; you should be able to board almost immediately. The chssee platter on the Sea last year was outstanding; the quality of Champagne will be a little better than bad; no, it will be probably similar to mayb Korbels. If you are a champagne lover you may want to upgrade. As for the butler, someone else will have to help you here, we have had concierge service many times but not the butler service.
As for what to do as soon as you board: this is different for everyone. We always go to our cabin, maybe unpack our carry on, but your butler will do that I am sure, if you want him to that is. Then we head for a quick bite to eat and start exploring the ship. As this is your first cruise you will want to be on deck when the ship starts to sail. Hope this helps some. NMNita
I have used the services of the butler on four of my NCL cruises. It is a wonder perk for paying for a penthouse suite. The butler is there to get to you whatever you need from the ship. He will deliver your room service orders to you, bring you nightly treats from the hotel staff, get you DVD's to watch on your television and work as your liason for any hotel services you will need onboard.
You should meet your butler on embarkation day at your suite. He will explain his services to you. He will bring you treats in the evenings from the hotel staff. Your suite should have a DVD player. There is a list of available DVD in a book on your coffee table. The butler will get the movies you wish to see.
The best of his services is in room service. In the room is a book that has a room service menu on it. Unlike the room service menu in other cabins, the penthouse suites have more hot food items, including a hot breakfast option. There will be a form that you use to order breakfast from. You can order hot items from the menu as well as write in some that you don't see on the menu. Every morning I ordered a half a grapefruit and it was not on the menu. I also ordered Eggs Benedict several mornings. You set the time you would like the breakfast delivered and the butler will bring it to you and set it up for you on your table. With the Butler's Menu you can order your lunch or dinner from the menu from the restaurants on the ship. The butler will bring it and set it up for you. Some people have said that they have had the butler actually serve the meal in courses, but I have never had that service.
After a long day ashore, it is nice to get into the "grubby" clothes and have the meal from the diningroom delivered to you.
Remember that the tips the NCL deducts daily from your onboard account does not cover tips to the Butler or the Concierge. I tip well because I use their services a lot on my cruises.
Just wondering marilyn ( or anyone else who has used the butler service)will the butler also bring meals to your room from the specialty resturants that require an extra fee?
I talked to my boyfriend and we will be using the butlers service...if you do not mind me asking since I have never been on a cruise before or used a butler for an 11 day cruise what do you consider a proper tip 20% of lets say our total cost of the cruise???
Just wondering how to gauge an extra tip for his services..I have ordered the cheese platter and bon voyage package to create the mood since this is our first cruise for the day we arrive in our room as well as I understand because we have a suite that we get champagne as well.
I also preordered for 3 days into the ship to have strawberries and their top champagne delivered to the room as a surprise has anyone had experience with thsi type of thing and did it go well ( arrive when you wanted it to and your order was complete).
Very excited and nervous at the same time because we have never been cruising before yet we are easy going people who once on vacation take things in stride!! THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO HAS REPLIED TO MY INQUIRIES AND I PROMISE TO POST ONCE WE RETURN FROM THE CRUISE TO LET EVERYONE KNOW HOW IT WENT.
There is also a good chance I may come up with a few more questions and I want to say everyone has been great and a pleasure to talk to THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST MESSAGE BOARDS i HAVE EVER BEEN ON ...THANKS AGAIN
I have not ordered from the Butler a meal from a Specialty restaurant. I understand that there are others who have. I believe that your onboard account will reflect the charge from the restaurant even if the Butler delivers it.
The extra tip depends entirely on what you feel the Butler has done for you. I have tipped anywhere from $9 a day per person up to $15 or $20 pp depending on how much service we require. If I were having a party and using the Butler service, I would tip more for that day.
This is not really any kind of guideline, it is just what I do.
I also tip extra to the Concierge for the services she/he gives. I base that also on the amount of services we require.