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  1. Mind telling me why? Interested
  2. The gondolas were shut down due to construction on the new gondola line they are building. They were transporting materials via helicopter back on the 13th when we were there on the encore.
  3. Yes and I even asked for it to be cooked to a medium instead of well done. I saw them take the notes on the tablet as writing out instructions even to the kitchen. It was solid white through and when cutting had the "fraying" or whatever you call it where you can tell its overdone not cutting smoothly like a medium done cut of pork/beef. (Slightly juicy but tougher since it was well done) I wasn't extremely hungry so while I ate a little of it I just made a comment also saying I didn't care to have another made. If you do it possibly make sure to call out that you want some pink in the meat possibly even stating a temp like 145 you want it done to instead. We didn't eat in NCL MDR so I can't be for certain but commented more on the other food around the ship. I have heard good things about Celebrity as far as food quality plus they also have the private dining room (typically seemed to win over NCL in ranking sheets I found). With RCI the benefit is they have the unlimited dining option for speciality food and with more expensive suites also have the private dining room. I will just outline I am not a picky eater but do hold food to different standards based on where I am getting it and what price is being paid. Example with The Local the wings while crispy (because likely fried) were that of frozen bag quality and the buffalo sauce was the weirdest adaptation of buffalo sauce I have tasted so much so we thought we got the asian wings the first time. So while okay for a dive bar charging $0.25 it was out of place in what I felt was a central eatery of the ship. With Ocean Blue the Tuna was flat out not fresh like it was in the Haven which I had 3 or 4 times for the week (also we ate in Ocean Blue earlier in the week so not like I ate there 6 nights in). So while you can say its "subjective" thats fine but there are actual discrepancies with the food in the general ship from what an outside person would expect coming in to a NCL cruise the first time. Also its not like NCL is incapable of producing good food since The Haven showed it to be possible. Instead as we reflect I think its a choice of ingredient quality being diminished possibly or the quality control lacking. I did write NCL directly today after submitting my survey because hopefully they can improve the non-haven food in the future.
  4. Walk up and for the two of us we basically always sat right next to the window. Also the Haven was "sold out" so its not like reduced capacity had much to do with it. Although if you travel during a school break possibly with more kids it might change but doubt it the room was never more than like 1/3rd full. Oh and absolutely feel free to mix and match dishes. Example I added lobster one night to another steak dish instead of getting the filet again.
  5. I made a reservation but they would also help you out if you didn't. Its dead easy when you board to just open up the app and book the shows though. If not they say just stop by the concierge. We did sit in the Haven area even though we booked separately as well. Got there probably 5 mins early and had a seat. We didn't go down with everyone who I think met up.
  6. $249 / person if you pre-book its $269 / person once on the ship.
  7. We just returned from the Encore. It was a great and relaxing trip even though we planned last second. I was very happy with the choice to switch to NCL and an Alaska Cruise. I was even happier that upfront I decided if I was going to cruise on NCL it would be in Haven. The whole experience was very nice. The Haven food was great all around except for a slightly over cooked piece of pork. As for the rest of the ship everything we tried or looked at just seemed to be lacking. Ocean Blue, Food Republic, American Diner, Buffet, The Local are all the places we actually ate at with limited experience in the buffet because just walking through you could see the food was meh buffet food and not something we would pass on the Haven for although we purposely went out of our way to try a few things just to try it. Also I will say others may disagree but I am grading this based on traveling extensively in my past on land both for business and vacation purposes. I only have cruise experience with Disney which overall I find a better experience but Haven specifically is better than what Disney has to offer (although Haven does lack in a couple areas for us personally). The only way I see myself on a NCL in the future is in the Haven on a ship with a nice dedicated Haven area/restaurant. That being said I could easily see myself on NCL against if the price is right. We like Disney but might look to try Celebrity or Royal next time around as well. I will say just another mark against NCL was that even with a tiny little mist of rain they would shutdown the slides, race tracks were really never running, and I am not sure if the laser tag was open the whole week. It was Alaska with a limited capacity cruise but it seemed like large swaths of the ship were rendered useless which just reinforced how great it was to be in Haven with dedicated areas.
  8. You already have the more limited access experience that the SPA has to offer. We even made a comment at times that we could have just as easily when to the Haven pool, hot tub, or top deck hot tubs. I just did it last week (simply because when I moved to the Haven I saved over $1000 vs my original planned cruise with Disney). I will say that the big benefit of having the Spa Pass was to make us slow down more, not be in search of something to do, and just relax more. I will say most days after the SPA we then went to the Hot Tubs on the top deck afterwards. I don't think we would do it again but it was nice to have on this specific cruise to reinforce relaxation and calm as opposed to being in the hustle of the ship.
  9. What ships? Encore I know but what else? Also what itineraries? What made NCL better?
  10. If we were not in the haven zero chance to get a seat for the game but it's on the stateroom TV. We came in around end of the 3rd quarter of the first game and zero space anywhere including the skyline bar which was showing it. Great thing was the Haven bar had it on and really no one there. If you plan on getting a spot to sit get there early is my suggestion. Oh and it was Alaska so top deck didn't have it on that I saw.
  11. NFL is on Steelers Bills, Packers Saints, Bear SNF Assume MNF as well tomorrow night just not published yet.
  12. Yes I was simply pointing out there are masks being worn and encouraged unlike zero masks comment. Also fairly sure the trip reports have commented many people had started wearing masks as well.
  13. I got my streaming package so I can just throw it on my phone and be done. Spoof my GPS and get what I want. Wonder if the encore wifi will be good enough or not.
  14. They are highly encouraging people to wear masks and observe social distancing. So there is masking on board it's just mandated like other lines. Directly from the email today: Furthermore, we strongly encourage you to wear a mask, especially while indoors, and ask you to maintain social distancing where feasible.
  15. Do we have an idea of current guest counts on the most recent sailings on the Encore?
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