Cruise to Bermuda. Bermuda is by far the best island in the Caribbean. The Gem is one of the best ways to visit the island. The Gem is perfect hotel. I have to say even I was amazed at the $9 plus per gallon of gasoline in Bermuda. I guess that's why they ride motor cycles.
Embarkation was a breeze. As constant cruisers we were ushered to one of the better lines and skipped the drama of getting on board. Hey, if you've been on 10 cruises with one line that's the way you should be treated. Thank you, Norwegian.
The weather in Bermuda was absolutely perfect. My wife and I are not sit on the beach type people. While back in New Jersey it was raining every day. We enjoyed visiting the Gibb's lighthouse, commissioner's house, museum and watched the dolphin quest. The public transportation in Bermuda works fantastically. On time and often, you can't ask for me.
We had a room with a window. It's always nice to see the sun and ocean as you travel. If you want constant darkness so you can sleep in the middle of the day, inside stateroom is for you. Like most cruise ships the rooms are smalls but efficiently designed.
The food was excellent. The alternative menu was a huge delight for us nonseafood eaters. One suggestion, my fellow cruisers were confused. They see the alternate menu and think only the same food is available. The nightly menu is on the second page. A reversal of the pages would remove the confusion. But I LOVE the alternate menu as do most cruisers. The buffet would work much better if it was designed the like the Jewel to spread out the crowd. We went to the buffet mostly for breakfast. It had every type of breakfast food imaginable. Most days we went to the main restaurant to for lunch. The service was fantastic at the main restaurants and the food great.
One point. I know everyone is on vacation and wants to relax. But it would be nice if one restaurant catered for a better dress crowd on the formal night. My wife likes to dress up on those nights.
The entertainment was top notch. The comedian Dave Heenan was hysterical. He was my favorite entertainer of the cruise. Most of the other shows were very entertaining as well. But Dave Heenan was the standout. His late night show was outstanding but geared for adults.
I know you don't go on a cruise to watch TV but everyone needs some down time out of the sun. The TV on the Gem was the worst I have ever seen on a cruise ship. News channels and not much else. Norwegian this needs an upgrade desperately.
My wife bought a couple of bottles of liquor that my daughter likes that can only be purchased in Bermuda. As always Norwegian took the bottles and stored them until the final night of the cruise. Picking up the bottles was a disaster. It was like the first time Norwegian ever did this process. Horribly run by the ship. We arrived at the assigned location and wait was hours long. Ridiculous. We gave the attendants are receipt. Then we had to go next door to pick up the bottles. By the time we made it next door, the bottle was lost even though we saw the staff carry our bottles next door. So after hours wait we waited even longer for them to finally find our bottles.
Awful job by Norwegian. Why can they deliver your luggage to your room and bill but not a couple of bottles. This process needs to be upgraded.
We arrived smoothly into New York. We got into a long line to carry our bags off the ship. WE moved slowly due to the fact the elevator was broken. After dealing with some obnoxious workers, we carried our bags down the escalators. We arrived in customs which was empty as result of everyone upstairs waiting for a broken elevator. I know things break but terrible run. The people with big suitcases couldn't go down the elevator. They might still be stuck in line for elevator.
The front of the building caters to taxis. Obnoxious workers harass family members picking up cruisers so the taxis have the run of the place. Horrible run by port. Taxis running around every where while there is no room for a person to pick up their family. Terrible way to end the cruise experience.