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January 08, 2005

NORWEGIAN DAWN - Review

diamondprincess.jpg

NORWEGIAN DAWN
Sister Ship: Norwegian Star

diamondprincess.jpg

Ship Facts:
The ship was completed December 4th, 2002 at Meyer Weft, Papenburg, Germany. It took two years to build at a cost of $420 million. She sailed her maiden voyage from Europe on December 7th, 2002. The ship’s Godmother actress Kim Cattral christened the ship in New York City on December 16th, 2002. Ms. Cattral is best known for her show “Sex in the City.”

The ship was an amazing construction project. She has the engines to cruise at a speed of 25 knots and has over 810 miles of electric cable and 65 miles of pipe within her hull. There are over 835 exterior windows, and 1,834 interior doors. It took over 1,000 gallons of paint to cover her exterior with another 3,000 gallons for interior surfaces.

She is 965 feet in length and weighs 91,740 Gross Registered Tons. 12 passenger elevators and 10 service elevators transport guest and crew. Over 25,000 light bulbs of various sizes and shapes light the way around the vessel. Over 6,800 Hi-fog sprinklers and 437 fire hydrants provide protections in all spaces.

diamondprincess.jpg

The ship has 1,112 staterooms on board including the incredible two Garden Villa suites. The multi-room villas offer panoramic views of the ocean. Each villa has a roof top terrace and private Italian garden, featuring open-air dining, Jacuzzi, and totally private sunning areas and relaxation areas. Each villa spans more than 5,350 square feet. These two suites are truly two of the most extravagant suites at sea!

diamondprincess.jpg

Although the ship is registered in Nassau, Bahamas, the officers, staff, and crew are made up of over 1,100 people from over 65 different countries.

Dining:
I was impressed with the number of dining choices available and the variety of choices.

Room Service is 24 hours. The room service menu was limited, but I felt there was many other dining choices to please my craving’s.

The Garden Café is the buffet on Deck 11, where the pool is located. It serves an Breakfast Buffet from 7:00am to 10:30am, Luncheon Buffet from 12:00pm to 2:30pm, and Afternoon Snack Service from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. In the evening half of the buffet is open for Theme Buffet from 5:30pm to 9:30pm and the other half becomes La Trattoria.

Blue Lagoon is a 24-hour dining restaurant. It feels like a buffet because of the open kitchen, but it is table service. Here you’ll find hot dogs, hamburgers, French fries, chicken wings, Fish & chips, etc. It serves an Early Risers Breakfast from 6:00am to 7:30am. On the wall there is a jut box where you select music and the videos are played. Each time I dined at this restaurant I noticed the staff punching in 10 or more songs in a row of what they wanted to hear, so if someone else wanted to hear something you’d have to wait a while.

diamondprincess.jpg

The Main Dining Rooms are Venetian, Aqua and Impressions. I was felt that Impressions was the best of all three. It offers beautiful décor with candle-light and comfortable booths with nice artwork on the walls. Breakfast is served in Venetian daily from 7:30am to 9:30am. Lunch is served in either Venetiani or Aqua daily from 12:00pm to 2:00pm. Dinner is served in all three restaurants from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. All three restaurants are open seating, however if you have a large group wanting to dine together or you specifically want a table for two I recommend making reservations earlier in the day.

diamondprincess.jpg

La Trattoria is an Italian restaurant. It serves dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. It offers many Italian favourites like Carpaccio, Caeser Salad and pastas fresh to order. All courses came quickly and the service was friendly.

Salsa is a Mexican/Spanish restaurant offering tapas. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm nightly. Of all the restaurants onboard this restaurant seemed to be the least busy. It offers a nice location in the atrium on Deck 8 with nightly live music overheard and seen from one story below.

Le Bistro is a French restaurant offered onboard all Norwegian Cruise Line ships. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm nightly. Reservations are required and can only be made the day before or the day of. There is a cover charge of $15 US per person. Here you dine along side original works of art by Van Gogh, Renior, Matisse and Monet.

Cagney’s Steakhouse is offered nightly on Deck 12. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. Reservations are required and can only be made the day before or the day of. There is a per person cover charge of $20-25 US per person, depending on the main course you choose. Of all the dinners we had this was the best. The selection of meat is excellent, plus there is surf & turf, 24oz porterhouse and a full lobster offered on the menu. Some appetizers offered included Crab Cakes, Lobster Bisque, and Oster Rockefeller Caseroll.

Bamboo is an Asian Fusion restaurant. It offers table service, a Sushi Bar, and a private Teppanyaki room. There is a cover charge of $12.50 US per person to have table service Bamboo. It is open from 5:30pm to 10pm nightly. The Sushi Bar is open two days for lunch and nightly from 5:30pm to 10pm for a cover charge of $10 US per person (all-you-can-eat sushi). Teppanyaki is open nightly and has three seatings; 5:30pm, 7:30pm and 9:30pm. I would recommend booking a reservation for Teppanyaki as the cooks do a great job of entertaining you while you eat! The sushi was good and I found the selection much better than most other ships I’ve cruised on. Plus, they offered raw seafood which other lines do not.

diamondprincess.jpg

Pearly Kings Pub is located on Deck 7 just off the atrium. It has a pub feel to it and offers many different types of beer, along with other drinks. Daily trivia is offered in this area and Fish & Chips are served between 5:30pm and Midnight. When it’s crowded it can get quite smoky.
Bottles of wine or champagne brought into dining areas to be consumed at meal times are charged a corkage fee of $__ US per bottle. No open liquor bottles are permitted to be brought into the dining areas or public spaces, however I did notice passengers taking a drink from one lounge to another. ??

Bars & Entertainment:
There were two shows offered nightly in the main show lounge. Entertainment throughout the week included “Bollywood”, comedians, specialty dancers, Las Vegas style shows by The Jean Ann Ryan Company Singers and Dancers, as well as live entertainment at the following venues:

The Oasis Poolside on Deck 12 you’ll find Calypso Sounds by Rhythm Explosion (weather permitting).

The Star Bar on Deck 13 is open from 5:30pm to 12:00am nightly. Here you’ll find Piano & Vocals.

In the Grand Atrium on Deck 7 you’ll find Piano & Easy Listening Music daily.

Gatsby’s on Deck 6 is open from 12:00pm to Close. Here you’ll find a Piano Crooner nightly.

The Spinnaker Lounge on Deck 12 is open from 10:00am to Close. Here you’ll find Night Club Music by the Zanzee Band and a DJ.

Dazzles Lounge on Deck 7 is open from 4:00pm to Close. Here you’ll find Latin Flavour with Salsa Beat.

Pearl King’s Pub on Deck 7 is open from 11:00am to Close. Here you’ll find Piano Melodies.

There are a few other lounges/bars onboard without entertainment such as:
Juice Bar on Deck 11 open from 7:30am to Close
Java Café on Deck 7 open from 8:00am to Midnight
Bimini Bar on Deck 14 open from 9:00am to Close
Topsiders on Deck 12 open from 9:00am to Close
Casino Bar on Deck 6 open when the casino is open
Havana Club on Deck 6 open from 12:00pm to Close

Sports & Fitness:
The Fitness Center on board is located on Deck 12 aft. There are many machines to choose from and an area to stretch, which most ships don’t have. Plus, there is an aerobics area with one wall of floor-to-ceiling mirrors and one wall of glass to look outside. I found that distracting.

The gym area is very large with many machines. Most of the machines faced a mirror and there were only windows on either side of the gym so it wasn’t easy to look outside. The aerobics area seemed a little small and crowded when about 10 or more people were in a class.

diamondprincess.jpg

The Mandara Spa and Salon on Deck 12 is open from 8:00am to 8:00pm daily. I recommend taking the spa tour the first afternoon of the cruise (embarkation day) because you are shown the entire spa area and shown many of the treatments. If you are looking for a really good deal at the spa I recommend waiting for the first port day. The ship offers a few packages for guests that book an appointment while the ship is in port. This may mean taking an hour away from shore, but it’s worth it! One thing I liked about this spa is they don’t try to sell you anything during or after your treatment.

Some specials offered during the cruise included:
Spa Taster – 25 minute massage & 25 minutes rehydrating booster facial for $89
La Therapie Facial for $99
Relax Package – Rehydrating booster facial, foot & ankle massage and hand massage for $79

diamondprincess.jpg

NCL Kid’s:
Norwegian offers an excellent kid’s program on board the Norwegian Dawn. You’ll find more infants on this ship because NCL offers infants for port charges only. One thing mentioned though is baby-sitting is not offered for those passengers under 2 years of age.

Personal Comments:

Pools & Hot Tubs:
The pool area wasn’t really large, but I liked the layout of the pool deck. They built the ship with tiered decks on one side of the pool, that way sun and deck chairs can be found almost everywhere. Shade was hard to find.

diamondprincess.jpg

Stateroom:
We were in Category AE Mini-Suite #11532 on the port side of the ship. When you walk into the Mini-Suite there is a narrow hallway with a small table with a mirror, a vase with some flowers, a door to the bathroom and a make-up area with mirrored light. The bathroom I very well layed-out. It has a sink with vanity in the middle of the bathroom with a bathtub/shower combination and a sliding glass door to the right and a toilet area with its own sliding glass door to the left. So you could have more than one person in the bathroom at the same time (not possible on other ships). The rest of the room has twin beds that push together to make a queen, a large sofabed, there is a table with two chairs, a small TV, phone, and bar area with a fridge and safe. The closet is spacious, but located right beside the bed so the doors don’t completely open all the way and once items are hung up its hard to get to the shelves on the side. The table and chair set is small and not easy to use because of the lack of space available for the chairs to be moved out and sat on. The balcony is large and offered two armchairs and a side table. The phone was in the worst location possible. It was underneath the TV cupboard area so each time I used the phone I nearly hit my head. The TV in the room was the smallest I’ve seen on any ship. It was between 10 and 12 inches and was to the left of the bed so it wasn’t easy to view while in bed.

I barely noticed our stateroom attendant which was nice. Everytime we left the room it was made up and each night were was a new animal made up from our towels which was cute.

Boarding Tip:
I wasn’t sure when embarkation was to begin, but part of our group arrived directly from the airport at approximately 11am and boarded right away. We arrived at approximately at 2:30pm and were some of the last people to board. I suggest filling out all paperwork prior to arrival, as many people were stuck filling in their Bahamas immigration form before they could check-in.

Announcements:
Announcements on board were made in English and German (because there was a large group of them onboard). I felt the days the ship was at sea there were a few too many announcements.

Ports of Call:
On this particular cruise we stopped in Nassau, Miami and Port Canaveral. In Nassau I enjoyed going to the Atlantis Hotel on Paradise Island. It has a huge casino, beautiful aquarium and outdoor pools. There is also shopping available here, although I wouldn’t recommend shopping too far from the ship. In Miami there are lots of things to do. I recommend spending the day in South Beach strolling along the beach and shopping. In Port Canaveral the Kennedy Space Center was very popular. It’s not far from where the ship is docked and I was told having lunch under one of the Apollo space ships is a highlight.

Written By Denise Blackmore, ACC

Norwegian Cruise Line Alaska Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Europe Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Mexican Riviera Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Hawaii Cruise Sale
Norwegian Cruise Line Holiday Cruises

Posted by Denise at January 8, 2005 08:57 AM

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Cruise Opinions.org: NORWEGIAN DAWN - Review
Opinions, Tips on Cruises by the Industry leader! Find out which cruise lines and which destinations are appropriate for you through reading the insight of the industry leaders!
Home Beginners Guide Cruise Destination Guides Cruise Ship Reviews General Tips on Cruises Hotel Reviews Press Releases

January 08, 2005

NORWEGIAN DAWN - Review

diamondprincess.jpg

NORWEGIAN DAWN
Sister Ship: Norwegian Star

diamondprincess.jpg

Ship Facts:
The ship was completed December 4th, 2002 at Meyer Weft, Papenburg, Germany. It took two years to build at a cost of $420 million. She sailed her maiden voyage from Europe on December 7th, 2002. The ship’s Godmother actress Kim Cattral christened the ship in New York City on December 16th, 2002. Ms. Cattral is best known for her show “Sex in the City.”

The ship was an amazing construction project. She has the engines to cruise at a speed of 25 knots and has over 810 miles of electric cable and 65 miles of pipe within her hull. There are over 835 exterior windows, and 1,834 interior doors. It took over 1,000 gallons of paint to cover her exterior with another 3,000 gallons for interior surfaces.

She is 965 feet in length and weighs 91,740 Gross Registered Tons. 12 passenger elevators and 10 service elevators transport guest and crew. Over 25,000 light bulbs of various sizes and shapes light the way around the vessel. Over 6,800 Hi-fog sprinklers and 437 fire hydrants provide protections in all spaces.

diamondprincess.jpg

The ship has 1,112 staterooms on board including the incredible two Garden Villa suites. The multi-room villas offer panoramic views of the ocean. Each villa has a roof top terrace and private Italian garden, featuring open-air dining, Jacuzzi, and totally private sunning areas and relaxation areas. Each villa spans more than 5,350 square feet. These two suites are truly two of the most extravagant suites at sea!

diamondprincess.jpg

Although the ship is registered in Nassau, Bahamas, the officers, staff, and crew are made up of over 1,100 people from over 65 different countries.

Dining:
I was impressed with the number of dining choices available and the variety of choices.

Room Service is 24 hours. The room service menu was limited, but I felt there was many other dining choices to please my craving’s.

The Garden Café is the buffet on Deck 11, where the pool is located. It serves an Breakfast Buffet from 7:00am to 10:30am, Luncheon Buffet from 12:00pm to 2:30pm, and Afternoon Snack Service from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. In the evening half of the buffet is open for Theme Buffet from 5:30pm to 9:30pm and the other half becomes La Trattoria.

Blue Lagoon is a 24-hour dining restaurant. It feels like a buffet because of the open kitchen, but it is table service. Here you’ll find hot dogs, hamburgers, French fries, chicken wings, Fish & chips, etc. It serves an Early Risers Breakfast from 6:00am to 7:30am. On the wall there is a jut box where you select music and the videos are played. Each time I dined at this restaurant I noticed the staff punching in 10 or more songs in a row of what they wanted to hear, so if someone else wanted to hear something you’d have to wait a while.

diamondprincess.jpg

The Main Dining Rooms are Venetian, Aqua and Impressions. I was felt that Impressions was the best of all three. It offers beautiful décor with candle-light and comfortable booths with nice artwork on the walls. Breakfast is served in Venetian daily from 7:30am to 9:30am. Lunch is served in either Venetiani or Aqua daily from 12:00pm to 2:00pm. Dinner is served in all three restaurants from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. All three restaurants are open seating, however if you have a large group wanting to dine together or you specifically want a table for two I recommend making reservations earlier in the day.

diamondprincess.jpg

La Trattoria is an Italian restaurant. It serves dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. It offers many Italian favourites like Carpaccio, Caeser Salad and pastas fresh to order. All courses came quickly and the service was friendly.

Salsa is a Mexican/Spanish restaurant offering tapas. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm nightly. Of all the restaurants onboard this restaurant seemed to be the least busy. It offers a nice location in the atrium on Deck 8 with nightly live music overheard and seen from one story below.

Le Bistro is a French restaurant offered onboard all Norwegian Cruise Line ships. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm nightly. Reservations are required and can only be made the day before or the day of. There is a cover charge of $15 US per person. Here you dine along side original works of art by Van Gogh, Renior, Matisse and Monet.

Cagney’s Steakhouse is offered nightly on Deck 12. It is open for Dinner from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. Reservations are required and can only be made the day before or the day of. There is a per person cover charge of $20-25 US per person, depending on the main course you choose. Of all the dinners we had this was the best. The selection of meat is excellent, plus there is surf & turf, 24oz porterhouse and a full lobster offered on the menu. Some appetizers offered included Crab Cakes, Lobster Bisque, and Oster Rockefeller Caseroll.

Bamboo is an Asian Fusion restaurant. It offers table service, a Sushi Bar, and a private Teppanyaki room. There is a cover charge of $12.50 US per person to have table service Bamboo. It is open from 5:30pm to 10pm nightly. The Sushi Bar is open two days for lunch and nightly from 5:30pm to 10pm for a cover charge of $10 US per person (all-you-can-eat sushi). Teppanyaki is open nightly and has three seatings; 5:30pm, 7:30pm and 9:30pm. I would recommend booking a reservation for Teppanyaki as the cooks do a great job of entertaining you while you eat! The sushi was good and I found the selection much better than most other ships I’ve cruised on. Plus, they offered raw seafood which other lines do not.

diamondprincess.jpg

Pearly Kings Pub is located on Deck 7 just off the atrium. It has a pub feel to it and offers many different types of beer, along with other drinks. Daily trivia is offered in this area and Fish & Chips are served between 5:30pm and Midnight. When it’s crowded it can get quite smoky.
Bottles of wine or champagne brought into dining areas to be consumed at meal times are charged a corkage fee of $__ US per bottle. No open liquor bottles are permitted to be brought into the dining areas or public spaces, however I did notice passengers taking a drink from one lounge to another. ??

Bars & Entertainment:
There were two shows offered nightly in the main show lounge. Entertainment throughout the week included “Bollywood”, comedians, specialty dancers, Las Vegas style shows by The Jean Ann Ryan Company Singers and Dancers, as well as live entertainment at the following venues:

The Oasis Poolside on Deck 12 you’ll find Calypso Sounds by Rhythm Explosion (weather permitting).

The Star Bar on Deck 13 is open from 5:30pm to 12:00am nightly. Here you’ll find Piano & Vocals.

In the Grand Atrium on Deck 7 you’ll find Piano & Easy Listening Music daily.

Gatsby’s on Deck 6 is open from 12:00pm to Close. Here you’ll find a Piano Crooner nightly.

The Spinnaker Lounge on Deck 12 is open from 10:00am to Close. Here you’ll find Night Club Music by the Zanzee Band and a DJ.

Dazzles Lounge on Deck 7 is open from 4:00pm to Close. Here you’ll find Latin Flavour with Salsa Beat.

Pearl King’s Pub on Deck 7 is open from 11:00am to Close. Here you’ll find Piano Melodies.

There are a few other lounges/bars onboard without entertainment such as:
Juice Bar on Deck 11 open from 7:30am to Close
Java Café on Deck 7 open from 8:00am to Midnight
Bimini Bar on Deck 14 open from 9:00am to Close
Topsiders on Deck 12 open from 9:00am to Close
Casino Bar on Deck 6 open when the casino is open
Havana Club on Deck 6 open from 12:00pm to Close

Sports & Fitness:
The Fitness Center on board is located on Deck 12 aft. There are many machines to choose from and an area to stretch, which most ships don’t have. Plus, there is an aerobics area with one wall of floor-to-ceiling mirrors and one wall of glass to look outside. I found that distracting.

The gym area is very large with many machines. Most of the machines faced a mirror and there were only windows on either side of the gym so it wasn’t easy to look outside. The aerobics area seemed a little small and crowded when about 10 or more people were in a class.

diamondprincess.jpg

The Mandara Spa and Salon on Deck 12 is open from 8:00am to 8:00pm daily. I recommend taking the spa tour the first afternoon of the cruise (embarkation day) because you are shown the entire spa area and shown many of the treatments. If you are looking for a really good deal at the spa I recommend waiting for the first port day. The ship offers a few packages for guests that book an appointment while the ship is in port. This may mean taking an hour away from shore, but it’s worth it! One thing I liked about this spa is they don’t try to sell you anything during or after your treatment.

Some specials offered during the cruise included:
Spa Taster – 25 minute massage & 25 minutes rehydrating booster facial for $89
La Therapie Facial for $99
Relax Package – Rehydrating booster facial, foot & ankle massage and hand massage for $79

diamondprincess.jpg

NCL Kid’s:
Norwegian offers an excellent kid’s program on board the Norwegian Dawn. You’ll find more infants on this ship because NCL offers infants for port charges only. One thing mentioned though is baby-sitting is not offered for those passengers under 2 years of age.

Personal Comments:

Pools & Hot Tubs:
The pool area wasn’t really large, but I liked the layout of the pool deck. They built the ship with tiered decks on one side of the pool, that way sun and deck chairs can be found almost everywhere. Shade was hard to find.

diamondprincess.jpg

Stateroom:
We were in Category AE Mini-Suite #11532 on the port side of the ship. When you walk into the Mini-Suite there is a narrow hallway with a small table with a mirror, a vase with some flowers, a door to the bathroom and a make-up area with mirrored light. The bathroom I very well layed-out. It has a sink with vanity in the middle of the bathroom with a bathtub/shower combination and a sliding glass door to the right and a toilet area with its own sliding glass door to the left. So you could have more than one person in the bathroom at the same time (not possible on other ships). The rest of the room has twin beds that push together to make a queen, a large sofabed, there is a table with two chairs, a small TV, phone, and bar area with a fridge and safe. The closet is spacious, but located right beside the bed so the doors don’t completely open all the way and once items are hung up its hard to get to the shelves on the side. The table and chair set is small and not easy to use because of the lack of space available for the chairs to be moved out and sat on. The balcony is large and offered two armchairs and a side table. The phone was in the worst location possible. It was underneath the TV cupboard area so each time I used the phone I nearly hit my head. The TV in the room was the smallest I’ve seen on any ship. It was between 10 and 12 inches and was to the left of the bed so it wasn’t easy to view while in bed.

I barely noticed our stateroom attendant which was nice. Everytime we left the room it was made up and each night were was a new animal made up from our towels which was cute.

Boarding Tip:
I wasn’t sure when embarkation was to begin, but part of our group arrived directly from the airport at approximately 11am and boarded right away. We arrived at approximately at 2:30pm and were some of the last people to board. I suggest filling out all paperwork prior to arrival, as many people were stuck filling in their Bahamas immigration form before they could check-in.

Announcements:
Announcements on board were made in English and German (because there was a large group of them onboard). I felt the days the ship was at sea there were a few too many announcements.

Ports of Call:
On this particular cruise we stopped in Nassau, Miami and Port Canaveral. In Nassau I enjoyed going to the Atlantis Hotel on Paradise Island. It has a huge casino, beautiful aquarium and outdoor pools. There is also shopping available here, although I wouldn’t recommend shopping too far from the ship. In Miami there are lots of things to do. I recommend spending the day in South Beach strolling along the beach and shopping. In Port Canaveral the Kennedy Space Center was very popular. It’s not far from where the ship is docked and I was told having lunch under one of the Apollo space ships is a highlight.

Written By Denise Blackmore, ACC

Norwegian Cruise Line Alaska Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Europe Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Mexican Riviera Cruise Information
Norwegian Cruise Line Hawaii Cruise Sale
Norwegian Cruise Line Holiday Cruises

Posted by Denise at January 8, 2005 08:57 AM

Web Design, Online Marketing and SEO by Agnada Consulting Inc. Vancouver