Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
AtlantaAlly

LIVE: Bliss Alaska June 9- Haven & Expecting

Recommended Posts

We are departing this morning for Seattle to spend a week in the Haven aboard the NCL Bliss. To say our excitement level is 100 is an understatement. Our anticipation has been building for the past year thanks to so many outstanding reviews, videos, and live posts by other CC members- so a huge thank you to all who have contributed!
 
We are in our mid-30s and live in a small town in central PA. We are traveling with my parents, brother and girlfriend, and my uncle and one of his friends. We have 3 Haven Courtyard Penthouse Suites, and one Forward Facing Accessible Haven Suite. I’m expecting our third, and am about 17 weeks, which people tell me is the ideal time to cruise while pregnant, because first trimester exhaustion and nausea is over and I’m not as big as a house yet. I’ll be the judge of that. I’ll be sharing lots of food pictures. The others in my group will make sure to drink my share of the alcohol package! 
 
Our two children (6 and 2) will be having the time of their lives staying with grandparents for the week and being spoiled the entire time! I’ll be sure to post about internet quality/options as it will be important to us in terms of staying in touch with the kids back home.
 
My grandmother says that you get 3 chances to enjoy each vacation; planning it, being there, and looking through pictures. So I take planning as an opportunity and over plan because it builds the anticipation. Once I get on the cruise, I probably won’t stick with it. However- the options that I pre-planned are always there!  So I make a planning binder with a lot of sections: itinerary, scheduling, packing, budget, drinks to try, and all of the associated documents.
 
Hope you enjoy coming along with us! If you have any questions, we’ll do the best to answer them, but no promises; after all, we’re on vacation!

 

3C6151F8-FF82-45A1-9F7C-A9D06BAD5E6A.jpeg

8810C304-D02F-4744-AE9C-4E20DB0F4A45.jpeg

853143EC-3711-4C94-8491-997C041567D0.jpeg

91816A4F-E45D-4CE9-918D-8D16CB72EC57.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking forward to reading your live review as I think it will be a fun one to follow.  Have a great vacation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We’re flying out of JFK on Delta. We did not use the flight perk as it wasn’t available when we first booked, and we like to have control over these types of things. I mentioned my OCD planning- this wouldn’t have been good for my health. If it works for you, more power to you!
 
So for 6 of us in a car service we have 95 suitcases. Ok, not so many- but it is a lot! Between the two of us we have 2 large and 1 small roll suitcases. Thankfully with the Delta Amex and Silver Medallion, 4 checked bags between us!
 
Our flight was originally scheduled for 11am but was adjusted earlier to 9 when they downsized the plane. So a 5 am departure from the house this morning meant a 4:15 wake up call! I need coffee. It was a 30 minute Dunkin’ stop because they only had one person working. 
 
Flying out of JFK is always fun but not as bad as LaGuardia. Silver Medallion gets me nada, because it’s a hub and people here fly way more than my few transcontinental flight a year. We booked in Delta Comfort which is good because we’re number 13 & 14 of 19 for no first class seats available. 

DEF78BAB-A8AB-4010-80CD-7832841EE8FD.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, we’re all boarded at JFK but not without an interesting passenger-tsa altercation. It’s not recommended to leave the TSA screening area when they tell you not to move. Port Authority police were escorting the loud gentleman (with a tattoo below the belly button that points down) away from the gate. Don’t think he’s making this flight. From what we can tell, all because he wouldn’t take his ear pods out, or according to my dad’s version of the story, his hearing aids.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking forward to Sharing your trip with you.  We have booked a forward facing haven penthouse suite on the Bliss in October.  Want to hear about your Haven experiences.

Have a great cruise...

Ray 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a wonderful time. Look forwrard to lots of pictures. Leave some time on your schedule for relaxing, this is a vacation. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Nice fight in, ordered the “Asian Vegetarian“ which was a wrap. Easy ride and arrived 40 min early!

831FD189-0657-4A10-811E-4048146C9983.jpeg

07B64FF2-5295-49EA-8A01-DFEB5EC0FA44.png

231EA792-7FF2-471E-BA82-5E4C9341D25F.jpeg

9136F69F-DB61-4CC6-A5DF-670AD9620E16.jpeg

Edited by AtlantaAlly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We’re staying at the Marriott Waterfront. We arrived and saw the Joy parked across the street. Will be easy to walk over tomorrow! Checkin was a breeze, they asked to upgrade us to a king room with a balcony, no problem! Can’t see the ship from our room but we’ll probably walk out and see it dock tomorrow morning. Still going to be on east coast time- so will get to enjoy that rare opportunity!

 

Small snafu- my brother got to his room and it wasn’t cleaned yet. They got a new room and a few snacks from the gift shop as an apology!

 

Its a beautiful day here- we’re headed to the market for lunch? Dinner? We have no idea what meal we’re ready for!

62A2A0FC-C779-496D-8569-0DE3C1F95587.jpeg

9A731969-65B4-498C-AF80-63D9906A1439.jpeg

BA633631-7FAD-4011-BFA7-BC22DD28FE5A.jpeg

6C79BFF8-6388-4071-9E77-111C468418B5.jpeg

93238A0A-D999-4846-886D-8B2F2F677A6D.jpeg

468E896F-BA4E-4605-BAAF-1E9FDD438432.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We enjoyed a trip up to Pikes Market. An 8 minute walk from the hotel, elevator outside on the side of the hotel. It’s a beautiful view up there, and some good lunch at Jacks Fish Stop. 

 

Also, oh Hi Joy!!

0769E1ED-DCC0-44E8-9DA7-18BC682F93E7.jpeg

1FE2F6B1-37BC-43F8-AE28-226F7B112778.jpeg

5C116FBB-3C7C-4188-82DA-711E1C029ED8.jpeg

444DF999-0169-40D6-B254-081EA4D0340B.jpeg

002C40E6-899B-49C3-B213-6FEF1986EF1E.jpeg

CC4087F2-052F-429C-902E-29178193BB73.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dinner was delicious! Cinque Terra Ristorante, downtown. We had prosciutto, beets with Gorgonzola, rabbit fettuccine, veal gnocchi, a 32oz tomahawk, tiramisu and profiteroles. All to die for!

F8CB4AD7-1C3D-4520-8BFD-1FE41620373E.jpeg

346966FF-EC06-4DA4-A149-788E75E9B521.jpeg

A8C801AF-E98F-45F3-80C3-4A22B76D43F1.jpeg

DD16E5B8-C1B8-4078-9BF1-4FFE59D886C3.jpeg

AA04EF01-DFA5-45D5-A339-799320B47F6B.jpeg

C1429E94-A151-4FCA-B462-14D6FC0034B9.jpeg

F5EFDFA0-67E3-4A29-A0C6-6FCE2B0FF6EE.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stalking her this morning on her way back into port! Planning to hear out to meet her 🙂 

 

8CCAECD1-E516-4465-A1A2-783F76CC55B1.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doing this cruise next July - so its wonderful to be able to follow along.

 

Cinque Terra looked really good - have added that to my list

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Little tidbit: while Starbucks is open early, there isn’t food and all the places in Pikes Market don’t open until 7. We asked the baristas where to go for breakfast and they said that Le Panier “is bomb” so we went there. It opened and everything smelled so delicious. We really enjoyed it all- the ham and cheese croissant, bacon and potato, raspberry croissant and pan au chocolat. Was so so yummy!

6C0D61BC-9B0A-4961-848D-CB0C512132CD.jpeg

38EDAE02-8278-425F-A644-AA3579C4C147.jpeg

BED9FB6A-8FCE-4C9D-A69F-5F0A7EA3A490.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
48 minutes ago, AtlantaAlly said:

She’s here! 

 

629EE3E1-ECEF-4755-8A1F-72AC785D6BE4.jpeg

1547F29E-A2B0-4FCB-84AC-2A96E203851A.jpeg

795242CC-690D-499D-8537-CCD4D5ED8BA2.jpeg

We LOVE it when "the mountain is out".  Phrase locals use when you can see Mt. Rainier. Most of the year, it is shrouded in clouds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, phissy said:

We LOVE it when "the mountain is out".  Phrase locals use when you can see Mt. Rainier. Most of the year, it is shrouded in clouds.

It was beautiful when the sun was just rising and the top was lit up and almost glowing white in a pink backdrop. Just stunning!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We are taking this cruise thanks to the extreme generosity of my parents. They have fallen in love with the NCL Haven product and have done quite a few cruises in the Haven over the past few years as they’re both retired. My dad hates the sun and beaches, so they’ve done a few in Europe and they’re excited to do Haven for Alaska- they did one to Alaska previously, but it was before Haven was even a product offered.
 
We booked last summer and watched rates like a hawk. They came down over 50% from when we first booked through a series of maybe 4 large price drops? We maintained the same perks and OBC. Our TA helped get the adjustments immediately. 
 
With Haven’s early access to booking, I booked Jersey Boys, but other than that- I felt confident the concierge will be able to get us dinner reservations as desired, so that was the extent of our pre-booking, outside of excursions. I’m sure we probably didn’t even need the Jersey Boys reservation.
 
One item of note: we did not receive a letter or email from the pre-cruise concierge- it went to our travel agent, and she forwarded it on later with our luggage tags. Wish they sent it to us directly, I had intentions of making a few minor requests (mini bar cleared, pitcher of unsweetened tea, milk for coffee, etc) and realize I can email them, but we decided to wait until we are on board to make the requests. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Quick Checkin this morning. Got to the pier (5 min walk across the street from hotel) at 9:45. By 9:55 we were through security and completely checked into the Haven Waiting area, waiting on the concierge to escort us on board, they estimate around 10:20.

 

We were happy with our room and had no intention of bidding. Additionally, besides inside cabins, all of the rooms are listed as sold out. But wanted to share the ranges for those who are tracking these types of things.
 
We had the option of bidding on the 2 bedroom family suite or the Deluxe Owners Suite (looks like an amazing room!!) but we had no need for all the extra space! I thought the bidding slider told you if it was a weak or strong bid. It did not on my phone, maybe if I went on my computer to do it.

D2172219-28A0-4007-925A-9CF8AA8D4749.jpeg

94838278-B84D-4605-8E36-66513E72B109.jpeg

0262F1E4-5BA5-403E-A252-1BE17F5FAB81.jpeg

9BFE2493-3EFD-44BA-81C5-8C5F980B1B4B.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Boarding was smooth. We were escorted on by 10:50. Got the quick tour and we were handed a virgin mojito which was very refreshing!

 

The not so positive part was booking of spa, entertainment, and restaurants. There were 3 different people, and they couldn’t see your reservations for the other things, so we wrote things down on a random sheet of paper from the shows/entertainment, then we went and tried to make dinner reservations and they only had 5:00 or 5:15 times available for a table of 4. And we still ended up double booked for some things- so now we have to go back to make changes, annoying to say the least-and hopefully there are reasonable alternatives!

 

The room is gorgeous, and we have 3 bouquets of flowers, one for it being a haven room, one from Pikes market and a dozen roses from the romance package Which was a generous Christmas present from my brother. Our room steward, Michael, has been most gracious in helping us locate vases, and get a few other affairs in order.

 

Our Butler is Babalwa and we just missed her earlier as we were face timing the kids to say goodbye. So I’m sure she will catch us later!

58BCF984-16F8-4D9C-BEB8-7949CAE0AE9A.jpeg

FA8F3A64-6B59-4B92-961A-568DEF11A9BE.jpeg

ABC42208-C121-4DFD-A369-B995CF2C6281.jpeg

48F7A842-CF10-4BDB-9E10-D50FC8C36C57.jpeg

EED5E886-5866-446F-A55F-BD8730356C0C.jpeg

0F4FDB90-69D8-4D72-93A3-BA5E38F2622A.jpeg

7BEF23F7-F9C1-47B9-B9E1-A7D70B1AF3E3.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just got off the Bliss in a 2 bedroom Haven....it was a wonderful trip.  We had excellent weather.  Hope your trip is as enjoyable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks so much for sharing. Off topic- what did you use to create your daily schedule? Thanks. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎6‎/‎9‎/‎2019 at 6:23 PM, AtlantaAlly said:

 

The not so positive part was booking of spa, entertainment, and restaurants. There were 3 different people, and they couldn’t see your reservations for the other things, so we wrote things down on a random sheet of paper from the shows/entertainment, then we went and tried to make dinner reservations and they only had 5:00 or 5:15 times available for a table of 4. And we still ended up double booked for some things- so now we have to go back to make changes, annoying to say the least-and hopefully there are reasonable alternatives!

 

I don't know if you are planning on dining at Ocean Blue, but if so, would you be able to post pics of the menu?  There are 2 different menus depending on which ship you are on and one is MUCH better than the other.:classic_rolleyes:.  We will be onboard for the PC cruise and I'm trying to decide how many extra dining plans to purchase.:classic_biggrin:

Have a wonderful time.

Linda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 6/9/2019 at 6:23 PM, AtlantaAlly said:

Boarding was smooth. We were escorted on by 10:50. Got the quick tour and we were handed a virgin mojito which was very refreshing!

 

The not so positive part was booking of spa, entertainment, and restaurants. There were 3 different people, and they couldn’t see your reservations for the other things, so we wrote things down on a random sheet of paper from the shows/entertainment, then we went and tried to make dinner reservations and they only had 5:00 or 5:15 times available for a table of 4. And we still ended up double booked for some things- so now we have to go back to make changes, annoying to say the least-and hopefully there are reasonable alternatives!

 

The room is gorgeous, and we have 3 bouquets of flowers, one for it being a haven room, one from Pikes market and a dozen roses from the romance package Which was a generous Christmas present from my brother. Our room steward, Michael, has been most gracious in helping us locate vases, and get a few other affairs in order.

 

Our Butler is Babalwa and we just missed her earlier as we were face timing the kids to say goodbye. So I’m sure she will catch us later!

58BCF984-16F8-4D9C-BEB8-7949CAE0AE9A.jpeg

FA8F3A64-6B59-4B92-961A-568DEF11A9BE.jpeg

ABC42208-C121-4DFD-A369-B995CF2C6281.jpeg

48F7A842-CF10-4BDB-9E10-D50FC8C36C57.jpeg

EED5E886-5866-446F-A55F-BD8730356C0C.jpeg

0F4FDB90-69D8-4D72-93A3-BA5E38F2622A.jpeg

7BEF23F7-F9C1-47B9-B9E1-A7D70B1AF3E3.jpeg

Did you ask your Concierge to help you with your dinner reservations? They can almost always make it happen. They will also cancel your old reservations. 

Edited by Greenpea2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Greenpea2 said:

Did you ask your Concierge to help you with your dinner reservations? They can almost always make it happen. They will also cancel your old reservations. 

Yes- they had very limited availability (5:15 or 8 pm, only one available in the 6-7:30 range. Haven’t tried to go back and change things because we made other reservations around it. But I wouldn’t wait to book onboard if I wanted to get normal dining times. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A with the Coral Expeditions Team
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...