Breakaway Bermuda 12 May

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#1
130 Posts
Joined May 2004
I'm just back from the first Breakaway Bermuda. A few thoughts on the ship rather than a full review which others would do in more detail and better. These are all only my personal opinions for this, my 5th NCL cruise and roughly my 70th cruise overall.

Waterfront. A big plus. Restores the connections to the sea which many modern ships miss. Having dinner out of doors in Bermuda, having a drink on the promenade on a sea day, they are all bonuses.

Ocean Blue restaurant - superb food, sold out all trip.

Main dining - disappointing lunch menu on sea days, seemed the same every day. Did not have dinner, but wished O had in Manhattan. Manhattan seems better used than on Epic during her first year, with a big band and a version of burn the floor during dinners.

Spice H2O far too small for the parties, especially the 80s firework party when half the space gets roped off for the pyrotechnics.

Ice Bar - less ambitious than the pictures and that on Epic.

Top decks - great for sports enthusiasts, less so for sun bathers and those who like the traditional activities around the pool. The presence of so much sports stuff makes the 'main pool' area tiny for a ship this size.

Spiegel tent - Standard seats are at the outside now, there is no upstairs.

Main theatre - Rock of Ages was much better than expected - better than the London version in my view. The location is problematic when the Spiegel tent is in use because seats at the back can hear and feel the Spiegel show - this is because the Spiegel tent and theatre locations are one on top of the other.

Casino - the smoking prevalent in the huge casino makes the whole ship stink - I would not want to eat in the 'outdoor' Bistro seats, or any of the Ocean Blue/ Wasabi/ Raw Bar seats near the atrium. I also couldn't eat in Shanghai because it was only open when the Casino was and is basically right in the venue. NCL and Meyer Werft's suggestion that ventilation would scrub the air just didn't work on this sailing.

Overall experience - the ship most like a land based vacation in my view. But book restaurants in advance, there isn't the capacity in some to decide on the spot. Some improvements over Epic but the huge, dominant, smoky casino spoils a fair bit of the main ship for me.

Itinerary - love it. My first trip to Bermuda which is a lovely place.
#2
8,507 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
Originally posted by Mattsudds
Casino - the smoking prevalent in the huge casino makes the whole ship stink - I would not want to eat in the 'outdoor' Bistro seats, or any of the Ocean Blue/ Wasabi/ Raw Bar seats near the atrium. I also couldn't eat in Shanghai because it was only open when the Casino was and is basically right in the venue. NCL and Meyer Werft's suggestion that ventilation would scrub the air just didn't work on this sailing.

Overall experience - the ship most like a land based vacation in my view. But book restaurants in advance, there isn't the capacity in some to decide on the spot. Some improvements over Epic but the huge, dominant, smoky casino spoils a fair bit of the main ship for me.
That was my first inkling when I saw the "bistro" seating right by the casino. I didn't think that would fly. Surely someone constructing the ship had to have known or surmised that this would be a problem. I can't imagine anyone being that .... well .... clueless!
#3
DCA
1,160 Posts
Joined Oct 2009
Thanks for the report.
Any cabin thoughts and opinions. Which cat did you sail in? Would you book same cat again? Balcony? Thoughts, noise, view, overhang? TIA
#4
Miami
4,510 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Thanks for the quick and detailed report. I was surprised when they were correcting the few issues with Epic that they kept the open Casino since probably the biggest complaint (next to the bathroom set up) is the open casino and smoke and noise that floats into other areas. The smoke does not bother me so much but I know that smoke does bother many people.
With so many options in entertainment and eating, it seems it requires lots of booking. That sort of defeats the freestyle concept NCL is famous for. Im sorry but I refuse to book dinners from a computer screen before I even board
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#5
Southwest Connecticut
3,417 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
Thank you!
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#6
PA
2,721 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by david_sobe
Im sorry but I refuse to book dinners from a computer screen before I even board
I couldn't agree with you more! How could you possibly know what you are going to feel like eating on a certain day weeks prior? This makes no sense to me. However, many passengers plan every detail of their vacation.
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Norwegian Star to Bermuda 9/30/2012
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#7
New Haven, CT
226 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
Originally posted by camz
I couldn't agree with you more! How could you possibly know what you are going to feel like eating on a certain day weeks prior? This makes no sense to me. However, many passengers plan every detail of their vacation.
Add me to the list! It is worse going to a Disney resort. According to a friend of mine, she was told she should book her dining 6 months out.

I guess that is why there are so many requests for the dailies. So you can plan every aspect of the trip. Though I really don't know why NCL does not post the basic information. I am sure the schedule of events does not chance that much week to week.
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#8
Philadelphia, Pa
400 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Hi...can you please clarify what an open Casino is? Also, I know it's closed the whole time the ship is in Bermuda...I guess the smoke lingers? Thanks Suzanne
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#9
New York
828 Posts
Joined May 2010
Thanks for the feedback.

We love Bermuda!
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#10
130 Posts
Joined May 2004
Originally posted by suzw
Hi...can you please clarify what an open Casino is? Also, I know it's closed the whole time the ship is in Bermuda...I guess the smoke lingers? Thanks Suzanne
Sorry - I should have been clearer. I meant open plan. The Casino is basically not in a separate room and you have to walk through it to get from one end of deck 7 to the other. And you are right that it is not available for donations whilst alongside in Bermuda but then it still smells of smoke.

The venue's open for lunch in Bermuda are also more limited - basically buffet and O'Sheehan's, and the Uptown Grill.

I don't really understand why NCL don't open the Italian place for lunch on Sea Days with a limited menu, like RCI do.

I had a studio cabin. I've had one before and I like them. I was travelling with friends but for the studios we each get our own cabin for a semi-sensible price. The studio lounge is a bit small though, but that reflects the reduced number of studios compared to Epic.
#11
NJ
914 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
Originally posted by SciFiCruiser
Add me to the list! It is worse going to a Disney resort. According to a friend of mine, she was told she should book her dining 6 months out.
Your friend was told the correct information - it's 180 days and if you want the popular restaurants, you better follow that advice! I'm so used to doing this with my Disney vacations I don't mind doing it for NCL!
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#12
3,313 Posts
Joined Feb 2001
Originally posted by david_sobe
Thanks for the quick and detailed report. I was surprised when they were correcting the few issues with Epic that they kept the open Casino since probably the biggest complaint (next to the bathroom set up) is the open casino and smoke and noise that floats into other areas. The smoke does not bother me so much but I know that smoke does bother many people.
With so many options in entertainment and eating, it seems it requires lots of booking. That sort of defeats the freestyle concept NCL is famous for. Im sorry but I refuse to book dinners from a computer screen before I even board

Agree and disagree with the dinners from a computer screen idea..agree that I HATE to do this like you...BUT, if you have 4500+ passengers looking to dine in venues that seat 40-80 people, and you REALLY want to dine there, then you better be safe and book ahead- you can always change or cancel if need be..on the other hand, one thing I like about planning ahead is it gives you something to look forward to definitely, rather than " maybe we'll eat one night in XX" , then be dissappointed it is all sold out because you weren't pro-active...what takes more work, is coordinating the shows with dinner....I start with the entertainment, then work the dinners around them. My wife loves to dine in good restaurants and then we love seeing the shows...she works very hard, and to me , she's worth spending 30 minutes 2 months before we cruise to make her happy...just MHO...
#13
308 Posts
Joined Nov 2001
I was on the May 12 sailing as well. Loved the Waterfront. The restaurants are so far from the bars that allow smoking that it was never a problem. Yes, you could smell smoke if you walked thru the casino but NCL has made the walkway non-smoking and it is a quick hike thru the casino. I did not notice any problem when we ate at the Bistro or any in other places near the atrium. If you are looking for smoke you can find it but if you want to avoid it, I found no problem in doing so!
#14
486 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
Originally posted by Mattsudds
The venue's open for lunch in Bermuda are also more limited - basically buffet and O'Sheehan's, and the Uptown Grill.

I don't really understand why NCL don't open the Italian place for lunch on Sea Days with a limited menu, like RCI do.
That's too bad. I was hoping that that things like the noodle place and the waterfront part of Ocean Blu would be open and uncrowded.
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Past Cruises --
Eastern Caribbean on Norwegian Getaway 1/3/2015
Southern Caribbean on Norwegian Sun 1/1/2014
Bermuda on Norwegian Breakaway Jun 23, 2013
S/W Caribbean on Norwegian Dawn Feb 20, 2011
Bahamas on RCL Enchantment OTS Jan 08,2011
Caribbean B2B on RCL Oasis OTS Jan 16, 2010
Canada/NE on Norwegian Spirit Sep 25,2009
Bermuda on Norwegian Dawn May 10,2009
TA Westbound on QM2 Aug 01, 2008
Baltics on Norwegian Jewel Jul 04, 2008
Br Isles/Nor fjord on RCL Jewel OTS Jun 16, 2008
TA Eastbound on QM2 June 08, 2008
Mexican Riviera on Norwegian Star Feb 20, 2008
Canada/NE on Norwegian Dawn Sep 23, 2007
Alaska on Norwegian Sun Jul 08, 2007
PacNW on Celebrity Mercury Oct 2, 2006
Alaska on Norwegian Star Jun 11, 2006
#15
NJ/NYC
1,326 Posts
Joined Aug 2003
May 12th returning cruisers - do you have dailies? we're sailing in 4 days, I'm desperate!
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#16
Staten Island NY
1,192 Posts
Joined Jan 2011
Originally posted by RareBird
May 12th returning cruisers - do you have dailies? we're sailing in 4 days, I'm desperate!
There's really no need. I think if you want Ocean Blue it might already be too late as the place was booked solid for my whole voyage, but all the other restaurants can be booked on the day you want to go there by my experience, as long as you do it in the morning. Just use the TV in your room. It works very well. I do want to add however that I sailed solo, so maybe it was just easier for a single to get a seat. I'm not really sure about that one.
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#17
NJ/NYC
1,326 Posts
Joined Aug 2003
Originally posted by bobg529
There's really no need. I think if you want Ocean Blue it might already be too late as the place was booked solid for my whole voyage, but all the other restaurants can be booked on the day you want to go there by my experience, as long as you do it in the morning. Just use the TV in your room. It works very well. I do want to add however that I sailed solo, so maybe it was just easier for a single to get a seat. I'm not really sure about that one.
Not looking for restaurants in dailies, looking for show schedules and see nightly activities, parties, music.

Not going to ocean blue @$50pp.
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NCL Prior Cruises, Latitudes: Platinum
........2016 December in Bahamas on NCL Breakaway for 7 days and first time in Haven H6........2015 Dec Caribbean 10 Day on GEM in penthouse suite.......2014 December in Caribbean on NCL Gem for 9 days - mini suite Deck 11........2013 May in Bermuda on BRAND NEW NCL Breakaway 7 days - Aft B1 Balcony Deck 14. Moved mid-cruise to deck 10 mini-suite - lots of noise from Spice H2O at night, impossible to sleep.........2012 December in Bahamas and Florida on NCL Jewel for 7 days in 2 bedroom Family SC Ruby Suite on Deck 11........2012 May in Bermuda on NCL Star for 7 days in Penthouse SE Suite Deck 10 on bow.......2011 Sept in Bahamas/Florida [Hurricane Katia in Bermuda] on NCL Gem for 7 days in Aft Deck 8 BA Balcony........2010 April in Bermuda NCL Dawn 7 Days Balcony.......2009 Sept in Canada on NCL Dawn 7 Days in Aft Deck 10 BA Balcony........2008 April in Bermuda on NCL Dawn 7 days Deck 9 Balcony
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........2016 May in Bermuda and Boston on Anthem deck 13 balcony.......6 year pause.......2010 Dec in Caribbean on Royal's Explorer of the Seas 9 Days in Deck 10 Grand Suite........2009 May in Bermuda on Royal's Explorer for 5 Days in Hump Deck 8 Balcony.......2007 May in Bermuda on Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas for 5 Days in deck 8 balcony.......2006 May in Bermuda on Royal Caribbean Empress of the Seas for 7 days in Junior Suite........2003 May in Bermuda on Royal Caribbean Nordic Empress for 7 days in Junior Suite
#18
New Jersey
800 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
Originally posted by RareBird
Not looking for restaurants in dailies, looking for show schedules and see nightly activities, parties, music.

Not going to ocean blue @$50pp.
Here ya go! I like to see what activities are available and get an idea what I do and don't want to do...

Sure I'm just under 500 days before my trip but I was interested in the bermuda dailies for my MOL sailing tomorrow.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1849833
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#19
Fort Worth, TX
791 Posts
Joined May 2004
Originally posted by jenny105
Your friend was told the correct information - it's 180 days and if you want the popular restaurants, you better follow that advice! I'm so used to doing this with my Disney vacations I don't mind doing it for NCL!
I know this isn't possible for all..... But I don't have kids and go to Disney in the off season. Nothing like walking into a restaurant and just eating or going on Test Track or Space Mountain 5 times in a row with no wait.
#20
Ontario, Canada
2,278 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Originally posted by jenny105
Your friend was told the correct information - it's 180 days and if you want the popular restaurants, you better follow that advice! I'm so used to doing this with my Disney vacations I don't mind doing it for NCL!
Absolutely right, and if you want into the really popular venues (like Be Our Guest), get on the computer the moment bookings open
This is why I cruise like a Norwegian . I'm just hoping the concierge can get us into restaurants on short notice, since I really don't want to be planning our evening meals. I *hated* DCL's set dining times because it seemed like we were always leaving some sort of fun experience to go get ready for supper. That's not a vacation imnsho...
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