This was my 4th cruise on the Gem (love it!), 8th Norwegian cruise, 15th cruise overall. I originally booked an inside cabin, but with the price drop one week prior to sailing, I was able to upgrade to a balcony cabin for $36.
Embarkation/Disembarkation - Friendly and quick. I always arrive early to avoid the crowds.
Cabin - Clean and comfortable as always.
Entertainment - Have been on so many cruises that I rarely attend the main shows in the evening. I do enjoy Liar's club and Quest which are hysterically funny. I also really enjoy martini and wine tasting, trivia, and the pub crawl. The band Prism was awesome! The two main singers were great entertainers.
Spa - My indulgence here is the Thermal Suite which I find is worth the $149 cost for the week. The pool, hot tub, saunas and heated loungers are relaxing.
Food - The buffet has great variety for this vegetarian and my favorite spot to eat is the Great Outdoors on the back of the ship. The main dining rooms always have a vegetarian option. I know that the kitchen staff will accommodate special requests when they are able. I was treated as a VIP this trip and was fortunate to have breakfast/lunch in Cagney's daily. Loved the French press coffee and Muesli with fresh fruit in the morning.
Itinerary - Not crazy about Nassau (my 4th time here on a cruise) but hired a private driver to give us a tour for $25/each and had a nice time. The private island was beautiful and the complimentary lunch was good. There is a lagoon at the far end of the island if you want to get away from the crowds. You can reach it by a tram. I arranged a private airboat tour with Midway/limo ride for my traveling companions in Florida. Highly recommend doing this - saw a lot of alligators/wildlife and the airboat ride is thrilling!
Staff - Everyone is friendly and the service was great. I arranged a Cruise Critic Meet and Greet and the captain and some of the officers came and chatted with us. The hotel director Jenny Lim was very nice and remembered my name - I appreciated that because I am not so good at remembering names!
Overall value was outstanding! I would happily cruise on the Norwegian Gem for the 5th time!