My Courtyard Villa Experience

By The Cruise Web, Inc.

Courtyard VillaIn December of 2008, I went to the Bahamas on the Norwegian Gem and got to stay in one of their Courtyard Villas. We were picked up by limousine early that morning in DC and started heading to New York. When we arrived at the port, we announced that we had a Courtyard Villa. Upon hearing that, the special treatment began. They quickly checked us in and asked us to wait in a private lounge with refreshments, which was nice since we had been driving all morning.

Upon boarding, we were greeted with champagne and mimosas. We kept moving as we were so excited to explore the ship and see our villa, which was located on the 14th deck. The elevator even had a special slot that wouldn’t let you push the button to your floor unless you inserted the platinum (VIP) room key.

The Courtyard was absolutely gorgeous. There was a warm natural water pool (no chlorine to irritate the skin!) in the center and a Turkish steam bath and traditional sauna at the far end. It resembled a greenhouse with plants and an earthy décor. Besides the courtyard, there was a private sun deck where you could lounge on oversized cushioned deck furniture. On top of that, the deck and courtyard attendant brought us anything we needed.

The suite itself was amazing: Balcony, spacious living room with a couch, kitchenette, two bedrooms, spa bathroom, and all the closet space you could want. You really have to see it to believe it.

Villa PianoOur personal butler introduced himself and told us about the amenities in the room. These included a DVD library and DVD player, an espresso machine, complimentary bottles of champagne, wine or liquor, and a portable phone we could take anywhere on ship. He also gave us his card with a direct phone number for him in case we needed any room service. He even offered to have our suitcases unpacked!

Our concierge catered to just about any request. Have you ever wanted to get into a specialty dining restaurant even though it’s booked up? Well the concierge will get you in, doing the legwork you’d normally do yourself. She told us that Cagney’s was reserved exclusively for VIP passengers every morning for breakfast — and their menu was to die for! We ate breakfast and had our coffee brewed fresh in a French press right at our table every morning.

Villa Hot TubThe level of service you get for being in a suite is like night and day compared to being in a regular class cabin. Once you tell an NCL representative that you have a villa, everything changes. Doors open for you and special requests are granted. You receive priority embarkation and disembarkation, priority tickets for the tenders that take you to shore, VIP entrances to different parts of the ship, and VIP seating at the shows. The treatment you get from your concierge, butler, and other staff members is simply above and beyond.

Last December we went to Hawaii on board Norwegian’s Pride of America in the Owner’s Suite. It had a spacious living room area, a kitchenette, a desk with a laptop, a giant bathroom with a bubble bath and shower stall, a walk-in closet, and a bedroom with sliding doors and a king sized bed. The balcony was huge and even had a jacuzzi so we could watch the sunset while soaking in hot water.

Suite TreatsOnce again, the service was phenomenal. One day I ripped the sleeve of one of my favorite dresses and our room attendant went through the trouble of sewing it back up herself. It’s those little details that are so important.

Some of our fondest memories on the Gem and the Pride of America were having our butler deliver the specialty dining menus to us and ordering directly from the restaurants. They would lay a white tablecloth and set our own private table. It was such a simple joy to eat by candlelight in each others’ company without any distractions, right from the comfort of our own room.

There is something really great about having your own villa area and private deck — being on a large contemporary ship, yet still being able to experience luxury cruising.

The Cruise Web, Inc.
The Cruise Web, Inc.


1 Leonard Buckner { 06.23.10 at 1:02 pm }

Why didn’t you include the price so that we can judge whether all of the luxuries were worth the cost.

2 Mary Cook { 06.23.10 at 1:04 pm }

Interesting reading Tina and nice to see what you look like after so many telephone conversations! Maybe we will book a suite one of these days after reading your glowing report. Kind regards, Mary and Walter

3 Mary Cook { 06.23.10 at 1:06 pm }

What can I say? Tina gave us good service. Thank you

4 Raquel - The Cruise Web { 06.24.10 at 2:37 pm }

Hi, Mr. Buckner! Thanks so much for responding to our blog… When it comes to cruise pricing, whether it is for an interior cabin or the fanciest suite, the rates change greatly according to which ship, the time of year it sails (holidays are always the most sought-after and therefore more pricey), when you reserve, etc. The best way to find out about the current prices and deals available is to call your Cruise Web Consultant. I’m ready to give you the pricing and details about the CourtyardVilla whenever you’d like!

5 walter Turner { 09.17.10 at 5:25 pm }

Could you give me the details and the pricing of the Courtyard Villa.

Its looks great and my wife loved it.

6 Tina Colicchio - The Cruise Web { 09.20.10 at 4:33 pm }

Hi Mr.Turner,
I am more than happy to provide you with a quote for the Courtyard Villa. I will contact you directly shortly.

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