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THE SECRETS OF THE NCL HAVEN LUXURY EXPERIENCE


Sthrngary
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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

I am not on facebook or any other social media other then cruisecritic.com.  I want to thank you so much for this great post.  That is exactly what I was hoping to hear and you made my day.  Thank you again.

And by the way, the Joy is currently in San Juan Puerto Rico, not only is it still docked there according  to my ship locator app (which is fun to have btw) my daughter and her husband were in San Juan on vacation last week and saw it at port there!

 

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Hang in there! I know it’ll go forward because I’m just too excited to see how the H2 treats you for your long-anticipated anniversary cruise! All the news people have posted seems to be very optimistic. It’ll be here before you know it!

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On 10/22/2021 at 6:56 PM, Sthrngary said:

I am usually very positive.  I try to be positive to others.  I NEED SOME HELP.  I have been so stressed out that my November 27, 2021 Joy Haven Cruise will be cancelled.  I simply can help it.  I have been in this position before, I accept it is going to happen, then SOMETHING happens.  

 

Can someone please pump me up.  Give my confidence. Tell me everything will be alright.  

I say take your own advice and write a letter to your butler saying you expect the cruise to go off as planned.   It might be controversial but maybe consider giving a tip to the Captain to ensure smooth sailing 😁

 

I've felt the same way about my cruise.   It's the first for it in the US, I've heard about a CDC rule of 2 weeks of quarantine before leaving from an American port, can't book dining reservations (I know why but it's still a red flag).  At the end of the day, its nothing we can control.   Don't let it stress you out.  Laugh and have fun with your friends here and prepare for the cruise.   If the worst happens and it's canceled,  we'll still have our health, families and everything that's important.   AND we'll get to start planning another cruise,  which is half the fun!  Chin up my friend.

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Have a great cruise! We love the Joy and sailed in the DOS (18700) 2 years ago. It had a dining table for 4 which was adequate for the 2 of us. You might want to ask the shoreside concierge for a dining table big enough for your party as there was plenty of room for another one.

 

F284C5CD-68FF-4D3D-81F5-A9ACE13C0CED.jpeg

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I haven't been in a top suite since 2008, and I think that's before it was called the Haven, but still, it was an excellent experience. We didn't have a dedicated dining room, but we could eat breakfast and lunch in the steakhouse - I forget the name - maybe something about stars.

 

Can anyone who has sailed in a suite, pre-Haven, comment if the experience is substantially different - I mean other than that the newer ships are designed for it.

 

I also remember that the bathroom of that suite was the nicest I've had, then and since. This was on Norwegian Jade, I should mention, and it had just been pulled out of Hawaii and renamed. I remember it fondly.

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we stayed in a "suite" on the spirit about 10 years ago,out of new orleans. the room was beautiful, and comparable to the living room on what is now a 2 bedroom suite. the bedroom and bath was separate from the main living area, it had a tub and separate stall shower with the windows you now find in the bathrooms of the haven 

 

came with the 24 hr butler and concierge, we ate breakfast in cagney's, 

 

i understand the spirit has been completely renovated. we were booked on it and i was looking forward to seeing the improvements. unfortunately, the cruise as well as many others was cancelled .

 

the experience, and the vibe you get from staying in a suite, is essentially  the same as staying now in a haven.

 

we took our 11 year old grandson, and he had a great time ordering pizza at his leisure from our butler. 10 years later, i still remember his name was randy, and our concierge was great. on our last night, i asked her if she could get us off the ship quickly. she asked what time and i told her about 9:30. at 9:30 on the dot she was knocking on our cabin door. 

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10 hours ago, aero777 said:

Have a great cruise! We love the Joy and sailed in the DOS (18700) 2 years ago. It had a dining table for 4 which was adequate for the 2 of us. You might want to ask the shoreside concierge for a dining table big enough for your party as there was plenty of room for another one.

 

F284C5CD-68FF-4D3D-81F5-A9ACE13C0CED.jpeg

You are making the assumption I want to eat with my adult children, lol.  I did notice on the Encore the table was much larger.  Your suggestion is a good one.  We may wait until we get on the ship.  I noticed the fire place.  That is not on the Encore, did it work?  Thanks for the post.

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Since this is all about the Haven, allow me to provide some recent experiences.  First, a personal thanks to everyone that has pumped me up.  It has been a long hard road.  I don't have to tell all of you, we all have had to do the book and rebook shuffle. So thank everyone for the kind words of encouragement. 

 

130 Days Prior to the Cruise:  I sent an email to the Haven desk specifically to one of the finest customer service folks I have meet, Maria.  I book all my specialty restaurants on that day.  Non-Haven Guests can book (usually) at 120 days out.  Everything showed up on my online summery except "Food Republic".  I had a hard copy verification but it did not show up online.  I sent and email today and got a response in less then two hours.  It was re-confirmed and just does not show online.

 

Spa Massage Bookings: You can book these online.  So I included in my email above to book a couples massage on the Friday Sea day for my wife and daughter.  It was added to my reservation and will be take care of the day the cruise departs by the Haven Concierge. I was asked to just check in with the Concierge to double check when I get on board.

 

Embarkment Time: I wanted to get on the ship first thing.  The information provided is at 21 days out, you need to do some online safety items.  You will be given the opportunity to book your Covid-19 test then.  Once it is completed, you go through the normal process. 

 

So as the story goes, my family and I are in a (H2) Haven Deluxe Owners Suite on the NCL Joy.  This is a once in a lifetime experience and my family has no idea how lucky they are.  I have made many special requests including Pillow's, the three bottles of spirits that come with an (H2), mixers which are also complementary on an (H2), extra lounge chairs on the veranda and egg shell mattress toppers for the second bedroom and the pull out couch. We also asked for a Haven Robe and slippers for all 4 guest in the suite.  All requests were noted or confirmed.  

 

Folks, I don't know where my cruise experiences will go in the future.  To many unknowns in our current world.  However, I make the very most of my upcoming Haven Experience and enjoy every minute.

 

Cruise well everyone.

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1 hour ago, Sthrngary said:

Since this is all about the Haven, allow me to provide some recent experiences.  First, a personal thanks to everyone that has pumped me up.  It has been a long hard road.  I don't have to tell all of you, we all have had to do the book and rebook shuffle. So thank everyone for the kind words of encouragement. 

 

130 Days Prior to the Cruise:  I sent an email to the Haven desk specifically to one of the finest customer service folks I have meet, Maria.  I book all my specialty restaurants on that day.  Non-Haven Guests can book (usually) at 120 days out.  Everything showed up on my online summery except "Food Republic".  I had a hard copy verification but it did not show up online.  I sent and email today and got a response in less then two hours.  It was re-confirmed and just does not show online.

 

Spa Massage Bookings: You can book these online.  So I included in my email above to book a couples massage on the Friday Sea day for my wife and daughter.  It was added to my reservation and will be take care of the day the cruise departs by the Haven Concierge. I was asked to just check in with the Concierge to double check when I get on board.

 

Embarkment Time: I wanted to get on the ship first thing.  The information provided is at 21 days out, you need to do some online safety items.  You will be given the opportunity to book your Covid-19 test then.  Once it is completed, you go through the normal process. 

 

So as the story goes, my family and I are in a (H2) Haven Deluxe Owners Suite on the NCL Joy.  This is a once in a lifetime experience and my family has no idea how lucky they are.  I have made many special requests including Pillow's, the three bottles of spirits that come with an (H2), mixers which are also complementary on an (H2), extra lounge chairs on the veranda and egg shell mattress toppers for the second bedroom and the pull out couch. We also asked for a Haven Robe and slippers for all 4 guest in the suite.  All requests were noted or confirmed.  

 

Folks, I don't know where my cruise experiences will go in the future.  To many unknowns in our current world.  However, I make the very most of my upcoming Haven Experience and enjoy every minute.

 

Cruise well everyone.

Thanks for the update. I will be looking come 21 days prior to my cruise. I like to get on the ship asap. Dare I hope that by the end of January testing will be a thing of the past. (I can dream)

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13 hours ago, debnjoe1438 said:

Thanks for the update. I will be looking come 21 days prior to my cruise. I like to get on the ship asap. Dare I hope that by the end of January testing will be a thing of the past. (I can dream)

@debnjoe1438, the issue is thinking you will test positive. I was on a recent cruise in August and Yes, that was on our minds big time.  However the process was very quick and painless.  Add to it the staggered boarding and once you got the OK, you were on the ship in a flash.  15 minute process.

 

The upside and there is not to many upsides.  It is one more emphasis that the cruise you are on, is as covid-19 free as possible. Let think about that for a second, I know I have.  My stress was thinking I would test positive.  My wife and I are super careful.  What about those that were vaccinated and not super careful.  Are we not all happy everyone is being tested.  So we take the good with the bad.

 

All I want to emphasis is it is quick.  Also, it is fluid.  Also, it can change based on where the world is with this virus.  Let's all stay flexible.  

 

Cruise well everyone.

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Hi Gary!  I'm taking my Mom on the cruise right after yours.  My first time in the Haven!  🙂  She uses a walker and I usually have wheelchair assist for her to get on the ship.  Did you (or anyone else) notice if there was wheelchair assist at the testing site?  Or is there a special (shorter) line for Haven guests?  I'm not worried about me...just my Mom!  (I'll bring a folding chair for her, if necessary and leave it in the terminal!!)

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40 minutes ago, cmecruise1962 said:

Hi Gary!  I'm taking my Mom on the cruise right after yours.  My first time in the Haven!  🙂  She uses a walker and I usually have wheelchair assist for her to get on the ship.  Did you (or anyone else) notice if there was wheelchair assist at the testing site?  Or is there a special (shorter) line for Haven guests?  I'm not worried about me...just my Mom!  (I'll bring a folding chair for her, if necessary and leave it in the terminal!!)

I can not address your question directly because I am not sure which Port you are going through.  However here would be my strategy if I were in your situation.  I would reach out to the Haven Pre-Cruise Desk either by phone or email.  That information is sent to you about 30 days prior to your cruise in the US Mail with luggage tags.  I would as them to accommodate you.  

 

Most terminals especially the new one just built by NCL in Miami are designed in every way to accommodate wheelchair assist situation like your mom's. In my humble opinion, once you make them aware of it, it will be handled. 

 

Hope that helps in some way.

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7 hours ago, cmecruise1962 said:

Hi Gary!  I'm taking my Mom on the cruise right after yours.  My first time in the Haven!  🙂  She uses a walker and I usually have wheelchair assist for her to get on the ship.  Did you (or anyone else) notice if there was wheelchair assist at the testing site?  Or is there a special (shorter) line for Haven guests?  I'm not worried about me...just my Mom!  (I'll bring a folding chair for her, if necessary and leave it in the terminal!!)

You could check the NCL web site for the special needs email address and send them an email. They should take care of things for you.

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5 minutes ago, debnjoe1438 said:

You could check the NCL web site for the special needs email address and send them an email. They should take care of things for you.

Norwegian is fully committed to providing you and your travel companions with the best cruise experience. Guests requiring special accommodations must fill out the Guest Special Needs Request Form. This form helps us understand your disability and/or special needs requirements to adapt your cruise with personalized accommodations. Once you have submitted the form, Norwegian Cruise Line Access Desk will respond within 72 hours. Feel free to contact our dedicated team of Accessibility Coordinators if you have any question or concerns.

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I have some questions that pertain to kids in the Haven *gasp*. I am bringing 3 with me in a 2 Bdrm Family suite, 2 teens and 1 child.

 

1. Are there gaming systems and games available to use? I saw a video that mentions the 2nd bedroom was perfect for kids being able to game but I wasn’t clear if NCL provided or you could bring your own.

 

2. I am purchasing the soda package for the teens but I’m wondering if the Haven bar will make special drinks (shirley temple, virgin daiquiri, etc) for my 8 year old daughter if she doesn’t have any type of drink package.

 

3. Is there a Haven skip the line perk for dropping off at the kids club? We have sailed a few times during March Break (Canadian equivalent to Spring Break) and the check in lines are insane. It’s always hectic getting the kids ready and fed in time to join the line at least 15 mins ahead of the 7pm drop off so we guarantee a spot and are able to enjoy a kid free evening.

 

4. Do they have kid sized robes? I showed my daughter a video of the room and amenities  and she asked if she would get a robe and slippers.

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1 hour ago, kenzie said:

Hello, 

currently on the Getaway in Haven for the first time, I understand we have gratuity added and tip Butler, is it standard to book others such as concierge? 

Tipping the Concierge ? ! #

If he is available at all - performs any service to your needs - why of course tip

 

The Stateroom Steward is a salaried employee - but that salary ? tip according to

the level of service performed to your needs - a least a token something creating 

an attitude for the next guest to occupy to your quarters ?

 

The Butler takes care of all the food snacks beverages and in most cases assists

the Concierge in booking dining and show reservations - maybe provides escorts in

embarking and disembarking the ship at ports ?

With that in mind definitely tip the Butler more than the Concierge

 

The Concierge has a lot of horse-power to get those difficult reservations - but if 

the show or dining time is booked solid - he can only try and work a deal - there are limits !

 

Oh the pondering of tipping -

To Tip or Not to Tip - what is more nobler 

Unless someone in the tipping chain has been a terrible louse and not provided expected

or requested service (and reported it to the Hotel Manager) tipping should be considered

 

What to tip most everyone here has something to say about it -

Tip based on that level of service you expected not someone else's recommendation

Bear in mind the higher the class of stateroom comes with extraordinary tipping 

 

More in likely at some point of the cruise you were introduced to the Concierge and

something was done to your favor - weigh the facts and merits

 

If you are only going to tip a small token - IMHO - skip it - it would be like an insult

 

Our member readers may have something to add to my wisdom of tipping - - - - - - - - - -

 

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10 hours ago, Cilosgirl said:

2. I am purchasing the soda package for the teens but I’m wondering if the Haven bar will make special drinks (shirley temple, virgin daiquiri, etc) for my 8 year old daughter if she doesn’t have any type of drink package.

Check with NCL.  It would seem logical that the soda package would be provided since the "Premium Drink Package" is provided for 21 and up (you still have to pay a fee for tips).  The Haven Bartender will by all mines make your daughter a special non-alcoholic drink.  They aim to please.

 

10 hours ago, Cilosgirl said:

4. Do they have kid sized robes? I showed my daughter a video of the room and amenities  and she asked if she would get a robe and slippers.

The robes are one size fits all.  I know because I am NOT ALL, lol.  

10 hours ago, Cilosgirl said:

3. Is there a Haven skip the line perk for dropping off at the kids club? We have sailed a few times during March Break (Canadian equivalent to Spring Break) and the check in lines are insane. It’s always hectic getting the kids ready and fed in time to join the line at least 15 mins ahead of the 7pm drop off so we guarantee a spot and are able to enjoy a kid free evening.

No there are not special lines or access for Haven Guest for the kids club.  Still ask the Haven  for assistance and see what they will do.  Special lines are for on/off ship, go cart track, shows.

 

10 hours ago, Cilosgirl said:

1. Are there gaming systems and games available to use? I saw a video that mentions the 2nd bedroom was perfect for kids being able to game but I wasn’t clear if NCL provided or you could bring your own.

This depends on the ship.  Call NCL and ask.  I brought a Sony Play Station and games with me.  It would be easy to set up in the second bedroom with the LCD TV.  

 

Conclusion, depending on when you are cruising the ships may not be as crowded as normal giving you better access to the kids programs. The bigger the ship, the bigger the size of the kids area.  Please call or write your question to NCL for verification.  Hope that helped.

 

Cruise well.

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4 hours ago, kenzie said:

Hello, 

currently on the Getaway in Haven for the first time, I understand we have gratuity added and tip Butler, is it standard to book others such as concierge? 

This is a controversial question.  With tipping, everyone has an opinion. I will give you mine if we can make a deal.  I do what is right for me only.  I never expect anyone to follow this advice.  

 

I tip my butler between $150 and $200 for the week.  It depends on how much I will use them or how many folks are in my room.  I write a letter to the butler that I began developing years ago that tells them about my family and I.  Thinks we like, food allergies, ect. Also some thing we want them to do immediately like take all the for sale stuff out of the room.  In that letter on day one is the tip.  Since doing this my butlers and my experience has been GREAT.

 

I do tip the Haven Concierge but give they that tip on the last day.  It is usually $50.00.  They pool the tips. 

 

With others, I tip sometimes even though the gratuities are pre-paid.  I do this because of the financial hardship these folks have taken during the very long Covid-19 situation with no work. 

 

My approach and amounts are mine.  Some do none, some do more and some do less.  This is completely up to you.  I also cruised in the Haven on the Getaway.  I hope I was helpful.

 

Cruise well.

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