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newcruiser99

Just back from 8-14 STAR...

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i will write more later, but here is the quick overview.

 

the ship is nice, same layout as the dawn for those of you who have been on that ship. i thought the dawn was in a bit better shape, and seemed to have a better staff.

 

that being said, the star staff were fine. they work hard, smile and say hello all the time and make try their best to make you feel comfortable on board.

 

ports and weather. we lucked out and had nice weather in juneau and skagway. cloudy in the morning and clear and warm around mid day. we did the river float in juneau (fun!), walked around the town, had a beer and back to the ship.

 

skagway. weather worked out well. we went on an all day tour to the yukon and then took the white pass railroad back to skagway. the bus tour was ok, not great. scenery was nice, carcross was ok except for the desert which was very cool. we rented atv's and drove through the desert for a half hour or so. it was a lot of fun. the white pass railroad was great!. very scenic TIP when heading out of skagway, try to get the seats on the left hand side of the train. do the opposite when taking the return train back to skagway. the right side offers better scenery.

 

the town of skagway was nice. we walked around and went back to the ship.

 

Glacier Bay. the weather was foggy and drizzling when we entered the park. it cleared up as we got closer to the glaciers and got an awesome view of marjorie glacier from our room (aft balcony). i thought glacier bay was a great day despite mixed weather and was clearly one of the highlights of the trip.

 

ketchikan. got into the port 1 1/2 hours late (7:30 AM) due to bad weather and sea conditions the night before. we had a reservation for a 7AM misty fjords flight through southeasy aviation. unfortunately our flight was cancelled due to weather conditions, but the staff of southeast were great. they could have taken us up if they wanted to, but told us we wouldn't have gotten our monies worth due to weather and fog. this was a disappointment as we were really looking forward to this excursion. we went to the great alaskan lumberjack show and had a blast. thought this was very well done and entertaining. ketchikan was in my view the nicest town we visited. creek street was interesting and the downtown area was nice as well.

 

not enough time spent in this port (especially when you arrive 1 1/2 hours late.

 

victoria. went to buchart gardens. fireworks show was tremendous and the gardens are amazing as well. the city tour was at night and rushed as we had to be back on board by 11:30 pm. would have liked to have spent more time exploring the city, but such is life.

 

food. we ate at all the specialty restuarants and found them all to be good. le bistro was very good as was cagney's. we thought salsa on the dawn was better than endless summer on the star. ate breajfast in the main dining room and though this was very good. we also ate an early dinner there on saturday night as we got into victoria around 6pm and our excursion was at 6:30. the food was good. didn't realy eat in the buffet much. looked ok to me when i passed by.

 

spa/gym. the spa is very nice and very relaxing place to go. the gym was ok. the equipment could be updated a bit, but it certainly was good enough to get some exercise in. we didn't use the main pool, but went into the hot tubs there several times including the glacier bay day.

 

entertainment. good. i thought the female singer on wednesday night ( i think her name is jane powell) was outstanding. perhaps one of the best acts we have ever seen on a ship. great voice, very entertaining. the comedian was average, but he tried very hard. the magician was excellant and did a second show on saturday afternoon before getting into victoria. they also had an elton john tribute on saturday afternoon as well. i wish NCL: would offer more of this kind of entertainment during the day on sea days.

 

casino. nice, smokey. made a donation dring the week. TIP. the casino closes at 2pm saturday for good. it doesn't re-open the last night at sea after returning from victoria. so get all your gambling fix in by then.

 

rooms. we had a balcony aft cabin deck 9. it was great. my sons were in an inside cabin accross the hall. seemed nice as well. we had stayed in an inside cabin on the daawn and found it to be good. we thought for alaska the balcony would be nice, so we went for it. it sure made a difference, especially in glacier bay.

 

hope that helps.

 

-andy

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Thanks for the great review. We will be on the Star in July 2006.

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Andy, thanks for the review. Less than 2 weeks now for me. I 've also booked Misty Fjord thru Southeast Aviation

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Jane L. Powell was one of the most refreshing entertainers on the cruise. What a voice! And, her sense of humor and upbeat personality really brightened up the theater.

 

Shawn Farquhar was not only an amazing magician, but he was able to weave some humor and sentiment in amongst his tricks. I loved the way he included his family and talked about the generations of magicians he grew up with. A delightful and talented person!

 

I have to agree about the comedian, Carl Wolfsen (if this is the same one you saw). But, he was such a nice guy, I can excuse him! ;)

 

Jeffery Allen really put on a superb show with his tribute to Sir Elton John on Saturday afternoon. What a wonderful way to wind down a week of cruising! And, I agree more entertainment like this should be offered on sea days, especially on a cooler itinerary like Alaska.

 

I have to say that NCL got it with this great entertainment. And, let's not forget the Cruise Director, Kieron Buffery.

 

 

 

ientertainment. good. i thought the female singer on wednesday night ( i think her name is jane powell) was outstanding. perhaps one of the best acts we have ever seen on a ship. great voice, very entertaining. the comedian was average, but he tried very hard. the magician was excellant and did a second show on saturday afternoon before getting into victoria. they also had an elton john tribute on saturday afternoon as well. i wish NCL: would offer more of this kind of entertainment during the day on sea days.

 

-andy

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