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Pens fan

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Everything posted by Pens fan

  1. We were in 9276 in 2017. Unless they have completely renovated that room I would not consider it accessible. As your father can walk it might work, but I wouldn’t count on the scooter fitting anywhere except the living room. Also the toilet room is tiny - one of the smallest I’ve seen. There was also an awkward interference between the toilet room door and the bathroom door. None of this is insurmountable but just so you’re aware. Others have mentioned YouTube videos and I agree you should check out any you can find for those rooms or the similar ones on deck 8 and 10. Other than that it’s a great room and the balcony is amazing!!
  2. Thanks for the balanced review. We are looking forward to our cruise on the Encore in 2021. I'm curious about something, though. Were you able to book Choir of Man online prior to boarding? When looking at the Explore and Plan section online for our reservation, it lists that show as being one that is has to be to booked onboard, while Kinky Boots just says it's too early to book. As they are listed differently it appears you can't book Choir of Man prior to boarding. Yet, I've seen others mention booking Choir of Man ahead of time, so I'm curious what your experience was on the Encore. Thanks!
  3. The pizza shop was called Forno. The meat and cheese shop was Norcineria Viola. I did not take a photo of the pastry shop or restaurant where we had lunch, and don’t recall their names. As for contacting Dennis, I’d just go to Rome in Limo’s website and send an email to Jany using their contact info. Then inquire about this tour and ask for Dennis if you’d like. He really was terrific and it was a fun tour.
  4. Food and beverages were included. It was a walking tour, so no transportation was required. Dennis met us at our hotel which was an easy 5-10 minute walk to our first stop. I'm sure if you were staying further away, they could make arrangements for you, though - possibly at an added cost.
  5. Are the wine prices ridiculous? Of course, they are. But at the end of the day we aren't going to let it spoil our fun. Our strategy is pretty simple: 1. Bring on a couple bottles of wine and pay the corkage fee. 2. Try some new cocktails. We rarely drink anything but wine at home, so it's nice to have the freedom to try new things and know the drink package covers it. 3. Occasionally pay the small upcharge for a better glass of wine, though we've usually managed to find at least one or two decent wines that fall under the drink package limit. That's the beauty of the package. If we don't like the wine, we order a different one until we find one we do enjoy. At the end of the day we are probably out less than $50 for upcharges / corkage fees at the end of the cruise. I'm not going to sweat about that on vacation, but that's just me.
  6. Great reiview, as always! I can't wait to try out the Encore ourselves in a little over a year.
  7. Dennis met us at our hotel near the Pantheon and we spent several hours walking through Campo De’ Fiori and the various markets and restaurants in that area. We began at a pastry shop for cappuccino and cannoli. We moved on to a pizza shop, a store selling meats and cheeses and toured the Campo De’ Fiori market as well, sampling olive oils and balsamic vinegars and such. We ended at a lovely restaurant for a pasta lunch prepared by the most delightful lady in her 80’s. Dennis was engaging and so informative about what we were seeing and experiencing. The amount of food provided was surprising (in a good way!). We couldn’t begin to eat it all, so Dennis made sure any left overs were boxed up at each stop and we took it back to the hotel. All in all it was a terrific tour - maybe 3-4 hours in length.
  8. We booked several transfers and tours through Rome in Limo for our recent trip to Italy and couldn’t be happier with their service. The booking process was simple and I greatly appreciated being able to pay for most of the tours in advance. They even offered a discount for doing so. Our walking food tour with Dennis was so much fun and a great value as well. I highly recommend it if you visit Rome. Our day long tour of Rome with Stefano was a delight. We then were happily surprised to find he was also going to be our driver for our transfers to and from Tuscany. He made the ride so much more interesting and fun. Our shorter transfers were handled professionally and courteously as well. They were always on time (early actually), handled all of our luggage and got us to our destination safely and quickly. Overall, we have nothing but wonderful things to say about this company.
  9. This exact same thing happened to me. I contacted them, and they insisted that I did not choose the print at home option. This is not true. I was very careful to select that option, so I know they are incorrect. After several back and forth emails, I've given up. We will have to pick them up onsite as they absolutely refuse to email us the pdf of the tickets. The whole thing is very strange. I really hope the OP's guide is correct and it's actually faster to pick them up onsite, though that seems counterintuitive. Time will tell ....
  10. Thanks for the fabulous review! Your recap has been a refreshing change of pace from the all too prevalent complaining and whining about trivial things on this board. Yes, you were presented with a number of significant challenges on your cruise, but you guys made the best of it and told your story objectively and fairly. I'll just repeat what others have said - we'd love to cruise with your family - what a great attitude you guys have!
  11. After two cruises in an aft cabin (on the Sun and the Gem), it's very hard for us to book anything else. So much so, that we haven't! 😎 Our next two cruises are also in aft cabins. You simply can't beat the 180 degree views and that mesmerizing wake.
  12. Best: Freestyle cruising just fits us. We love not being told when and where to eat, not having to eat with strangers and not having to dress up for formal nights. We love all the options for dining as well, and think the food is really pretty good for cruise line food. We also greatly appreciate the friendly crew. Worst: We have sailed Disney several times in the past and particularly enjoyed the dedicated movie theater and the enrichment lectures about ports of call (NOT the shopping briefing, but actual interesting information about the port's history, wildlife, etc.). We've missed this on the two NCL cruises we have taken. Though, as we tend to gravitate toward port heavy cruises anyway, it's not that big of a deal.
  13. We loved the Sun. Our Alaskan cruise on the Sun was our first introduction to NCL and we had such a great time that we've booked three more cruises with them since then. It's a small ship, but we found plenty of options to keep us entertained and fed. One thing I really appreciated about the small size is that most of the public spaces still have a great view of the sea. I loved that. I would not hesitate to book the Sun again for the right itinerary.
  14. We've also sailed in 9076 and absolutely loved it. We were on an Alaskan sailing and pretty much lived out on that huge, wonderful balcony. Our adult son was with us on that cruise and having the separate living room was especially nice. The fold out couch was very uncomfortable, though. Our steward ended up bringing us two egg crate toppers (one didn't do the trick) and after that he slept fine on it. We found the cabin to be extremely quiet. The only exception was, like the previous poster mentioned about cabin 8077, there were lots of vibrations and banging when coming into port. Though that would not deter me from booking that cabin again. We just looked at it as a good way to make sure we never overslept on a port day 😎.
  15. I agree. At the end of the day, being fortunate enough to sail in a suite, I'm pretty sure the concierge will be able to book on board whatever we aren't able to book on our own ahead of time. I'll still keep trying to book before hand, but I'm not going to stress about it.
  16. OP here - I was concerned about the FAQ verbiage on NCL's website stating a 120 day window for Suites and Haven guests which was why I created this thread to begin with. However, when I contacted the Concierge desk they assured me that Suites and Haven still had the 130 day booking window. She assured me that the only reason that I could not book anything 130 days out was because of their ongoing IT issues, not a change in policy. I explained to her that the website said that we had a 120 day window and she reiterated that Suites / Haven still have a 130 day window - no change. Could she be uninformed? Could NCL's website be wrong? Take your pick! I'll say this. While she was extremely vague on when the website issues would be resolved regarding booking dining for cruises embarking after 10/06, she was adamant that the 130 day window had not changed. Considering the widespread things I'm reading about right now regarding NCL's IT issues, I'm inclined to believe the Concierge desk rather than NCL's website. I could be wrong, though. Wouldn't be the first time!!
  17. Thanks! I called the concierge this AM as I wanted to double check and was told the exact same thing. What a mess. She did mention that they had been told everything might be fixed by the end of the month, but she sure didn't sound very confident. I still find it odd that the FAQ section of NCL's website has the timeframe listed as 120 days for Suite and Haven guests. However, the person I spoke to assured me the policy was still 130 days for Suites and Haven, and that the reason I can't book is all tied to their ongoing IT struggles - not a policy change. I guess we will just have to keep logging in and checking.
  18. I called the pre-concierge today to try to book our specialty dining reservations (our window should have opened yesterday). I was told that no dining could be booked for any cruise after 10/06 - not online or by calling. That had previously been reported on here by other posters , but I wanted to double check. What was frustrating was that they couldn't even give me an estimate for when the problem would be fixed. She did mention that they had been told possibly by the end of the month. 🙄
  19. We are 130 days away from our cruise and are booked in an SF Aft Penthouse Suite. Being in a suite, I thought we could make dining reservations today. When I tried to do so however, it said that it was too early to book. A note said I could book on 6/26, which would be 120 days prior to the cruise. At first I chalked it up to the website issues I've been reading about, but then decided to go check the FAQ section of NCL's website. It appears that NCL has changed the policy of allowing Haven and Suite guests a 10 day head start when booking dining and entertainment - at least on cruises of over 6 days. Is this something relatively new, or did I just miss it being discussed? Here is what the FAQ said: When can I book dining and entertainment? Reserving dining and entertainment before your cruise can help you plan ahead and make sure that you do not miss out on our most popular shows and restaurants. You can pre-book these onboard activities myncl.comfollowing the schedule below Suites and Haven 120 days prior to sailing All other staterooms • For sailings that are 6 days or less and are not a holiday sailing, 90 days prior to sailing • For sailings that are 6 days or less and are a holiday sailing, 120 days prior to sailing • For sailings that are 7 days or more, 120 days prior to sailing
  20. We used Dave's back in 2016 and had a wonderful day. We took the Hybrid Top Sites of Saint John's and St. Martin tour and arrived back at the ship in plenty of time. We saw so much more than the folks taking the big bus tours. Our driver was fantastic at avoiding the bus crowds. We even had time for a wonderful lunch stop in St. Martin. All in all, it was a great day.
  21. So true. NCL is not giving away free airfare. They just build the cost into the cruise fare and make it look as if it's free. I really dislike this promotion as we prefer to book our own air and choose the airline, connection points and times, etc. We usually drive to NYC, so I don't even need airfare on those cruises. If they are going to continue with this promotion I really wish they would offer at least some OBC or something if you decline the "free" airfare.
  22. Question about bringing on wine and paying the corkage - I know you can do this at the initial embarkation point, but can you also bring on wine at ports of call? We will be sailing on the Jade in Italy and Greece this Fall and would love to pick up some nice wines in the cities we visit to enjoy on board.
  23. I really just wish NCL would forgo this promotion. We all know nothing is actually free. They have built the cost into the cruise fare, as they do with all of their promotions. I'd never let a cruise line book our air for me. We prefer to be in control of that ourselves. I wish they would just skip the air promos and go back to offering OBC instead, as it's something we would actually use.
  24. I think the the non Haven suites on the Jewel class ships are the best suite deals in the NCL fleet. We were in an SF on the Gem last October. Just like the previous poster, we saved about $2K by forgoing the Haven (and no, we did not have access). It was a 12 night cruise with only 2 sea days, so missing out on the the Haven was no big deal. We wouldn't have had time to use it anyway. We still received all of the other suite perks that the Haven guests enjoyed, and got to enjoy our fabulous aft balcony. I do remember seeing a thread on here awhile ago stating that NCL was changing up some of the Jewel class suite configurations and not all of the SF's and SE's were going to receive the same amenities in the future. But that wasn't supposed to take effect until a year or so in the future. We are in an SF this Fall on the Jade and can't wait to enjoy all it offers.
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