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Hrhbob

Bliss 1/19-1/26 Thoughts/Comments On Bliss

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This will not be a review per se, but rather my post-cruise thoughts which may help others. Three couples (young at heart mid-50's - mid-70's) cruised together. I'll try to organize my thoughts/opinions in some kind of order.

 

Embarkation - we stayed in a hotel near MIA and took the free hotel shuttle to POM around 10 AM. Luggage check-in with porters very easy and the terminal was almost empty so check-in and receiving cruise cards was very quick. Waited upstairs until boarding commenced around 11:15 AM. Easy peasy all the way.

 

Dining - at various times we ate in the Local, Taste, Manhatten Room, Cagney's, LaCucina, Teppanyaki, the Garden Café and basic morning room service at no charge (continental style breakfast). Without question we were all very, very pleased with the service, the food and ambiance. Though we only used the buffet a couple of times, we never had a problem finding seating right away. The only single problem we had was it took more than 2 1/2 hours for dinner in LaCucina which was frustrating. Cagney's and Teppanyaki were outstanding.

 

Bars - we all had and made good use out of the UBP. At certain times when most folks were out and about (pre-dinner, etc,) the wait for a drink might have been a couple of minutes, no more. All the bartenders were very efficient and pleasant to deal with as were the few drink waiters we dealt with. I generally tipped $1 each time and the bar staff were most appreciative. As a note, we did not see many drunk people wandering about (but yes, a few.)

 

Rooms - two of us had aft-balcony (12910 1nd 12308) and the third a mid-ship mini-suite. The aft balconies on deck 12 are very large holding two loungers, 2 chairs and a table...fantastic. Again, the only minor problem we had was one night the noise from above at Spice H20 was a bit loud and bothersome. Otherwise, I would highly recommend aft-balcony. Our friends also loved the multi-headed shower in their mini-suite. There was plenty of storage space considering we had no formal clothing to hang up. Our steward, Juan, ws really good and kept our cabin spotless. 

 

Casino - I made good use of the casino and enjoyed it a lot, especially since it is non-smoking (separate smoking section that did a great job of isolating the smoke!) Dealer were all friendly and professional and I suppose it helps that I came out up about $1200 for the week!

 

Outside decks/pool - everything previously written about the pool is true. Crowded beyond belief and I swear there was a chair-hog convention going on! Since we are not pool people or sun worshippers, it didn't bother us much. We had no trouble finding nice places to relax and enjoy the weather, especially the Waterfront. What a terrific place to sit, people watch and chill. Brilliant. Our friends did the go-kart track and said it was much more fun than they expected, but you MUST reserve your time as soon as you board at one of the kiosks (which, by the way, are very handy and easy to use.) We did not do the water slides but it looked fun for the much younger set. We watched the AFC playoff game on the big screen at the pool - Go Patriots!!

 

Entertainment - Jersey Boys was just fantastic and very, very entertaining. Be advised as it's been said on this forum, there is some language to contend with (a bunch of F-bombs and one MF-bomb) but nothing too bad. Def not for kiddos. Britain's Finest, the Beatles cover band, was the best we'd ever seen, and being huge Beatles fans, we've seen a few. They looked and sounded so much like the Fab Four it was scary. If you plan on seeing them in the Cavern you MUST get there at least 35-40 minutes early as it is a small venue and fills up quickly. They also did a Friday evening show in the main theater and it was a complete sell out (no reservations accepted so go early.) The show was a good 45-50 minutes and it was simply brilliant.

The lounge act in the District Brewhouse, Jim Badger, is super-talented and really quite funny. Do make it to see one or more of his shows. We did not see Havana or Prohibition.

 

Ports - For us, Tortola was a blast. We recruited one other couple and the 8 of us (prearranged online) hired a power boat and captain to take us snorkeling and to lunch/drinks at one of the off-islands. A really fun day wrapped up by a visit for a Pain Killer at Willy-T's (google it). The ride back to the ship was awesome as the boat had three 350 HP motors and it flew across the waves like a rocket! Great fun....   St. Thomas and Nassau was much quieter as we did not do excursions but rather walked around, shopped and had a couple of drinks and used the free WiFi.  

 

The Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle was held in the District Brewhouse and was well attended. Several officers wandered about meeting the attendees and all in all it was quite successful. Thanks to the organizers. 

 

Disembarkation - we did self walk off which was really simple. Though the lines snaked around all over the place, it went very quickly and was quite painless. Recommended if you have a pre-noontime flight out of MIA. 

 

As you can probably tell, we loved our cruise and the Bliss and cannot wait to sail her again. I'd really like to thank all of you expert CC people who helped us in the planning of this cruise for you made it so much easier for us. I hope to be able to lend assistance or my knowledge to future cruisers who are planning on sailing this fantastic ship.

 

I'd be happy to reply to any questions you might have about your impending cruise on the Bliss.

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Thank you!  This was a helpful overview.  We travel on the Bliss on 2/16 and cannot wait.  Separate from the long wait which was unfortunate, how was the food at la Cuccina?  Any clear reason for the long wait?

 

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Cannot figure why it took so long since it didn't seem overly crowded. Opinions of our group was the food was OK but not memorable. The good part was our waiter kep our wine glasses full the entire evening. Out of the three specialties we did we would rank this third but all in all OK.  Enjoy your trip....you will love Bliss!

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We will be on the Bliss next month.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.

We are big Beatles fan too so very happy to hear your review of the cover band! 

Can you tell us which hotel you were at in the airport area?

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Red Roof Inn Plus.  Not bad and moderately priced. Free shuttle to port was good. Google Britain's Finest to read about cover band. They were awesome! Enjoy your cruise.

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Regarding Britian's Finest......looking for clarification about the Cavern Club shows.  I had seen a Tues @ 700 Abbey Road and also two different Thursday shows on two different sailings.  One was Sgt. Pepper @ 700 and the other was the Early Years @ 830.  What was the schedule on your sailing?  We'll be on there next week for the Super Bowl cruise.

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Hello, great review.  My family and i will be on the Bliss in March, and have a few questions:

1) Is the temperature on the ship cold? I've been on some cruises and it stayed super chilly, and had to wear a sweater everywhere.  

2) Did you play the slots in the casino? Did you see many people winning? 

3) For a family of 5, with 3 teenage boys (15,16, and 17), which Wifi package do you suggest, without spending alot?

4) Does the Bliss have the free picture station that you can send pictures via email or facebook? 

5) How about Deal or No Deal? Do they have that on this ship? 

6) If you knew then, what you know now, what would you do or do different on the Bliss?

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Thank you for your review!  Glad to hear you all enjoyed the Bliss. We are going on the Bliss in a aft balcony next month and can’t wait!

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SNJCruisers…  from the dailies:  Cavern - Day 2 (Sunday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM  The Early Years.  Day 4 (Tuesday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM Abbey Road,  Main Theater Day 7 (Friday) 7:30 PM Full Show and it is awesome!  Enjoy...

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lattegirl10 - I can answer some of your questions

1)  It is pretty chilly on the ship and a light sweater is necessary, especially in the evenings

2)  Slots were tight. My wife played them a bit and won zip. Did not see any significant wins. Sorry.

3)  Did not use wifi so cannot answer the cost question.

4)  Did not see any of those free photo stations though I know what you mean. We had them on the Pearl though they may have some on the Bliss, I did not see any.

5)  They do have Deal or No Deal. It is played in the Atrium which is much too small. Get there early if you want a seat.

6)  Tough one. I don't think I'd do anything different as it was such a good, fun time. You will really enjoy it!

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1 hour ago, Hrhbob said:

SNJCruisers…  from the dailies:  Cavern - Day 2 (Sunday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM  The Early Years.  Day 4 (Tuesday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM Abbey Road,  Main Theater Day 7 (Friday) 7:30 PM Full Show and it is awesome!  Enjoy...

 

Do you need reservations for these shows...or just show up and fight for a seat?

 

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2 hours ago, lattegirl10 said:

Hello, great review.  My family and i will be on the Bliss in March, and have a few questions:

1) Is the temperature on the ship cold? I've been on some cruises and it stayed super chilly, and had to wear a sweater everywhere.  

2) Did you play the slots in the casino? Did you see many people winning? 

3) For a family of 5, with 3 teenage boys (15,16, and 17), which Wifi package do you suggest, without spending alot?

4) Does the Bliss have the free picture station that you can send pictures via email or facebook? 

5) How about Deal or No Deal? Do they have that on this ship? 

6) If you knew then, what you know now, what would you do or do different on the Bliss?

 

2 hours ago, lattegirl10 said:

Hello, great review.  My family and i will be on the Bliss in March, and have a few questions:

1) Is the temperature on the ship cold? I've been on some cruises and it stayed super chilly, and had to wear a sweater everywhere.  

2) Did you play the slots in the casino? Did you see many people winning? 

3) For a family of 5, with 3 teenage boys (15,16, and 17), which Wifi package do you suggest, without spending alot?

4) Does the Bliss have the free picture station that you can send pictures via email or facebook? 

5) How about Deal or No Deal? Do they have that on this ship? 

6) If you knew then, what you know now, what would you do or do different on the Bliss?

The free picture stations are on deck 8 in the Waterfront , and deck 15 in the Observation Lounge. 

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Unfortunately you cannot make reservations for the Beatles shows. In the Cavern you'd better be there at least 30-40 minutes in advance to get seats as it fills up quickly. Obviously the theater is 8-900 seats and much easier to show up maybe 10-15 minutes early to get decent seats. It was a sell out on our cruise!

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3 hours ago, Hrhbob said:

Unfortunately you cannot make reservations for the Beatles shows. In the Cavern you'd better be there at least 30-40 minutes in advance to get seats as it fills up quickly. Obviously the theater is 8-900 seats and much easier to show up maybe 10-15 minutes early to get decent seats. It was a sell out on our cruise!

I totally agree with this. The first show in Cavern - we did get seats and was there half hour before. We did the same for 2nd show at Cavern and there were no seats.

We were on Bliss week before this reviewer - the Friday night show in  main theatre that week was not totally filled up.

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Thank you Hrhbob and CRUELLA1114 for the reply.  Oh, one more question.  Can anyone tell me about the Happy Hour Prohibition? Is it worth the money?  I absolutely loved the Illusionarium on the Getaway.  I felt like it was something different and magical, but it was a dinner show.   I think this is just drinks.  Any thoughts? I don't mind adult themed shows.

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Great review thank you!

 

How was the wait to get seated in the main dining rooms for dinner?  My experience with NCL is that there's always a 30-45 minute wait to get seated if you go say between 6pm and 8pm.  What was your experience?

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We did not seeProhibition but heard it was great. Only ate in MDR twice but were seated immediately as a party of 6 at around 6 pm. I really don't think there will be much of a wait, especially there are 3 MDRs. 

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Thanks so much for your great review! Glad you enjoyed your cruise.

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On 1/29/2019 at 10:06 AM, Hrhbob said:

SNJCruisers…  from the dailies:  Cavern - Day 2 (Sunday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM  The Early Years.  Day 4 (Tuesday) at 7:00 and 10:00 PM Abbey Road,  Main Theater Day 7 (Friday) 7:30 PM Full Show and it is awesome!  Enjoy...

Thanks for the update.  I assume that there will not be a Sunday show next week because of the Super Bowl.  On previous dailies I had seen it was Tues/Thurs.  Glad to see though that it's two shows each night, because of the popularity of it.

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Seems for what ever unknown reason La Cucina is very slow with service and waiting for food. I have been there all of our 4 cruises on 4 different ships and found it all the same. I think the best thing to do is be prepared to spend a long time that night at dinner. Of all the places to eat this seems to be the one that is the longest.

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SNJ...I would not assume that at all. Though I can't swear they performed on Sunday the 20th since I was watching the AFC Championship game, the dailies show they did play. Not everyone is a football fan so I'd guess they will perform on Super Sunday. BTW - a great place to watch the game in on the massive TV at the pool. Handy to bar which stays open for the game, and the buffet for snacks, pizza, etc. That's where we watched my Might New England Patriots beat KC.  GO Pats!

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 Did you find the staff removing towels from the chairs being saved , Like NCL said they would be doing ?

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Since we did not even try to get chairs near the pool, I can't definitively say one way or the other. It was soooo crowded that my guess would be chair hogs ruled and I suspect NCL did nothing to enforce their rules.

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