We just got back from a 1 week cruise on the Spirit on Sunday, 5/7/06. We had a great time and were really pleased with the ship and the crew.
Here are our notes:
1.) Embarkation: The ship was late coming in the day that we were to board. We arrived at the pier at 11 am but the ship did not arrive until later due to high seas off shore. We went into the city and did a walking tour. When we returned at 2pm the ship was there and in the process of dembarkation. NCL had us sit in the waiting room and we boarded quickly through the Lattitudes line. Our bags got to the room about an hour later
2.) The ship: It is beautiful. Well laid out and very comfortable. Most public rooms were larger than other ships that we have been on.
3.) Food: Excellent, we did not have a bad meal. We used all of the specialty restaurants and found them to be a great value. We were surprised to find that if you book specialty restaurants between 6-7pm you can get them for 1/2 price on designated evenings BUT you have to do this as soon as you get on board since they book fast!
4.) Room: we had a basic room but it was large and comfortable. No problems here. Stewards were excellent. We had many towel animals during the week which seems to be a criterion for excellence from what we read on the boards.
5.) Excursions: Seemed a bit pricey so we did our own thing. Please note that there is a limited amount of time available in Nassau. Not enough time to do much
6.) Bars and public rooms. We found that these rooms were larger and more abundant than other ships we have sailed. The GAlaxy of the Stars/Observatory was very popular and the Maharini's night club was very glamorous. Both have nice dancefloors. The only bad part was that many young parents brought their 4-7 year olds out to dance by themselves on the dancefloors while the adults were trying to dance at up to 12:30 am! I am not sure what they were thinking but it made it hard to dance while we were worrying about stepping on a small child.
7.) Speaking of children, we were very impressed by the water play area on the back of the ship. There are slides and fountains and a nice play room. We would like to take our grandson the next time.
8.) Exercise room and running track: They have great equipment and I especially like the two Aqua-Swim pools. Most people were using these as whirlpools however. The running track on deck 13 is nice but too many walkers use this without yeilding to joggers as noted on the track.
9.) Entertainment: Top notch jugglers and comedians from The Second
City Troupe. Great Singers too.
OVERALL: We had a great time. The crew was great
Yes, You can bring your own hair dryer and you will not need an adapter as long as you use the one outlet designed for U.S. style plugs located under the mirror in the stateroom (directly over the desk area).
There is the standard hair dryer located in the bathroom which is identical to the ones we have seen on every other NCL ship that we have cruised (beige colored box with a flexible hose that is about 2 feet long) I used this one each day and my wife used her personal dryer plugged in at the mirror location noted above.
Please let me know if you have any other questions.
Just remembered I do have a question for you. Do they do the barbevuse on deck in afternoon like they do on te Dawn? They used to barbecue some great ribs on giant charcola grills when we sailed Dawn a couple fo years ago.
Yes they do the barbeque on the forward deck next to the Trivoli Pool. This seems to be a "trademark" meal on NCL as we have seen the same type of food served on every ship that we have been on. They serve barbeque ribs, chicken, sausage, hot dogs, hamburgers and assorted salads, etc.
While we are on the subject of food, don't forget to try the "Blue Lagoon". This specialty restaurant is free and open 24 hours/day, although one of the waitresses told us that they do close for a few hours each night to clean. This restaurant serves all kinds of "snack/fast food" from Buffalo-styled chicken wings to Chinese food. I have to admit, coming from Buffalo, the wings were not really the original style but they were tasty none the less. One tip however, a single order of wings equals three pieces with some celery and blue cheese dressing. If you want more, tell the waitress to make it a double or triple order. We saw some people ordering a dozen at a time.
The other things on the menu at this location are: fried potato skins, hamburgers and fries, won ton soup (excellent), Singapore fried rice, shepherds pie, chef salad and assorted desserts. This is a small place with only about 8 tables located on deck 7. There are more tables located outside on the promenade deck, weather permitting. You do sit at the tables and give your order to the servers. The menus are on each table. It is very informal and very popular. Especially for late-night snacks and breakfasts.