Norwegian Star Aft Facing Penthouse

#1
We just finished a delightful Panama Canal Cruise on the Norwegian Star. In spite of a few concerns discussed below NCL is our favorite cruise line. We love the aft facing cabins because the balcony is so pleasant in almost all weather conditions. I've read about soot and diesel smell but we had none of that and my wife is very sensitive about such matters.

One of the things most lacking on the NCL website is a proper floor plan for the suites that vary so much in size and layout. Here is the floor plan and pictures for Stateroom 8172 on the Norwegian Star. They should be very similar to the plans for 8170, 8670, 8672, 9732, 9736, 9232, 9236, 10726, 10728, 10226, 10228.



Now the problems... We love the aft facing cabins, however, Deck 8 is a problem with much low frequency (bass) noise from the Spinnaker Lounge on Deck 7. I can sleep through it, my wife can't. If you are not planning to stay up for all the activities until Midnight you should avoid aft cabins on Deck 8. After our cruise last year on the Norwegian Jade I was expecting two things that turn out not to be available on the Star. 110 volt power is only available at the vanity (not the desk) and in the bathroom. I was able to borrow an adapter from reception for use with my laptop but it would have been a lot easier if I had just brought my little (1/2 oz) adapter from home. The balcony door is manual not electric. Why is that a problem? Because the only position that you can easily maintain while underway is 'closed'. Not a big deal but somewhat annoying.
 

bob

Community Manager
Staff member
#2
Not much of a balcony for a Penthouse class cabin...............
actually not much of a cabin for a Penthouse, looks more like a basic suite
or even a mini suite on a Princess grand class, on the upside, the cabin
itself does look comfortable.
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#3
Not much of a balcony for a Penthouse class cabin...............
actually not much of a cabin for a Penthouse, looks more like a basic suite
or even a mini suite on a Princess grand class, on the upside, the cabin
itself does look comfortable.
The rear facing balconies are standard size - meaning the same size as a standard balcony size. If you want a big cabin, you have to upgrade one level to a forward facing Penthouse suite ...





 

bob

Community Manager
Staff member
#4
Then you can't use it when the ship is moving because of the wind and if like other forward cabins you have to keep the drapes closed at night because the light interferes with the bridge. Was this ship designed by Joe Farcus...................:duh:
 
#5
Not much of a balcony for a Penthouse class cabin...............
actually not much of a cabin for a Penthouse, looks more like a basic suite
or even a mini suite on a Princess grand class, on the upside, the cabin
itself does look comfortable.
Mini-suite on the Sapphire Princess
Avg sq ft cabin: 277 Balcony: 46
Balcony size ranges from 46 to 89 square feet.
The balcony is generally smaller than for the Penthouse Suite on the Norwegian Star and the 364 sq-ft cabin on the Star is is larger than even the suite on the Princess

Suite on the Sapphire Princess
Avg sq ft cabin: 329 Balcony: 166
Nice balcony size but the Norwegian Star was fine for the two of us. Forward suites have much bigger balconies but are a bit windy while underway.

The Butler service and concierge on the NCL ships are wonderful and the Freestyle cruising .... priceless.
 

bob

Community Manager
Staff member
#6
LOL.......

based on your pictures, all I know is that my wife would be claustrophobic on a balcony that size, come to think of it, she was on our last Alaska cruise on the Sea Princess, then again Sun Class are not known for their balconies (she lives for the balcony:whistle: ).
But, the most important part of cruising is what you are comfortable and happy with, but I assure you, the Princess Sapphire mini suite balconies are a whole lot more functional that the one in that picture, maybe a little narrower but twice as deep. Again that is not the point nor the issue, what is important is what a person is happy and comfortable with, just made the comment that if that is a "penthouse balcony" then it depends on what you consider a balcony should be when it is associated with a penthouse vs.a suite or mini suite. As cruizer pointed out, the forward facing suites have a decent size balcony for their cabin category but mostly unusable due to logistics so where does the line get drawn, whatever makes someone happy is my guess.:boogie:
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#7
Then you can't use it when the ship is moving because of the wind and if like other forward cabins you have to keep the drapes closed at night because the light interferes with the bridge. Was this ship designed by Joe Farcus...................:duh:
I used the balcony a lot while the ship was moving. In fact, one day I did not need a paper weight to keep the papers from flying away. Another days I did. The point is it is not as windy as you might think.

I never had to keep the drapes closed, I just kept the light low. I never got a call from the bridge. The easy way to check is to open the door and see if you are casting a shadow. If not, then there will be no problems. I never received a call from the bridge and I was on a thirteen night cruise.
 

Calgon1

Awaiting results of mental evaluation
#8
I still don't see how that can be called a Penthouse, or even a suite ... just going by the thread's title ...
 
#9
I expect that NCL can name their staterooms as they see fit :)

In any case it has lots of room for relaxing. As pointed out the balcony isn't large but we enjoyed it both in port and underway.

As for being a "Penthouse", the butler and concierge service are wonderful and pretty much exclusive to NCL at this price range.

We are completely hooked on Freestyle cruising. It matches our lifestyle.
 

manxman

Active Member
#10
The rear facing balconies are standard size - meaning the same size as a standard balcony size. If you want a big cabin, you have to upgrade one level to a forward facing Penthouse suite ...





Hi Cruizer, Do you have any photos of the inside of this cabin. We are getting a forward facing Penthouse on the Jewel and maybe this will be similar
 
#14
Hi Cruizer, Im new to this site! But not new at cruising. But we have always been wary of the foward facing cabins. Our next cruise is Feb, 2011 thinking about going with a deck 9 forward penthouse ...i want to tan in the privacy of my own balcony :)...

Could you tell me if you felt/noticed more movement being all the way forward. Be honest!!!!!!
Thanks!
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#15
Did I feel more movement? No. On the way to Cartagena, after leaving the Panama Canal the wind had really picked up. Here is what I wrote in my review ...

Down to deck seven which just happens to be the upper level of the Stardust Theater. I don't care what the entertainment is. Unless they are having a BBQ cooking demonstration, I'm too tired to attend. Since it is so nice outside, I decide to go outside to walk back to mid ship. Wow, what happened? Did a hurricane suddenly form while I was walking down two flights of stairs? I'm not sure what the sea conditions are, but it is something worse than "moderate." And the wind has picked up too.



No new photos. But either there is something magical about deck nine, or it moves side to side less than deck seven (and that should not be the case). There are no new pictures, so I go up to deck twelve where the buffet is. I manage to eat dinner without falling asleep in the dinner plate. Back down to deck seven for some Panama Canal t-shirts. Gee, this is what an earthquake feels like (and being from California I know what an earthquake feels like). All the wind chimes are going, and the AC is not on that strong. I get my shirts and head back outside for the walk forward. I may not be able to see much, but I can hear (and feel) that things are getting worse.



I decide to check out the travel channel. The seas are rough (no kidding). The waves are 7 ½ to 12 feet. It never occurred to me to tell the family from Canada that I have ginger tablets (helpful for seasickness). Even though I know their cabin number, it is late and I don't want to chance waking them. I hope they make it through the night. Meanwhile every time one of those twelve footers hit's the side of the ship there is a loud thud and the entire ship shakes. I get sea sick easily but I have been typing this for three hours since I ate and it is not bothering me. But I pity the people in the lower ocean view cabins, I don't think they will get much sleep tonight (those thuds must be much louder in the lower cabins).
It has been my experience (I've been all the way forward twice and all the way in the rear three times) that when the ship is rocking, the entire ship is rocking. When the seas are calm, all the cabins, including the forward facing cabins are great.
 

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