507 Boston Family Cruise Reviews

Start to finish this cruise was AMAZING!! The cabin, restaurants, ports, entertainment and especially the staff. We cannot thank Benny our butler and Giann our concierge enough for making this cruise so special.The ship was spotless any ... Read More
Start to finish this cruise was AMAZING!! The cabin, restaurants, ports, entertainment and especially the staff. We cannot thank Benny our butler and Giann our concierge enough for making this cruise so special.The ship was spotless any hour of the day. The bar staff went out of their way to accommodate us. We traveled with a person using a scooter and he had no issues navigating his way through the hallways or in and out of the elevators. All of the ports we docked and very easy to get on or off especially with the scooter. We did three beach excursions booked through NCL and all we fantastic. We really loved the itinerary and are disappointed that NCL has decided to stop this trip for next year and replacing it with 5 day Bermuda trips. Hopefully enough people will speak up and bring the southern Caribbean trips back to Boston. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
The people working on the ship really made our experience a positive one! They were all so kind and cheerful and everyone knew our names (especially Patrick, Altheena, Rechelle, lady from St. Lucia, lady from South Africa, Chinese ladies, ... Read More
The people working on the ship really made our experience a positive one! They were all so kind and cheerful and everyone knew our names (especially Patrick, Altheena, Rechelle, lady from St. Lucia, lady from South Africa, Chinese ladies, etc). They were the best part of the cruise! The girls in the Spa were so friendly (Sumi, Thiang, Pauline, Katazyna, etc!) and the ladies working in the Splash Academy were amazing with the children especially Rainbow and Brazilian girl). The fresh crapes with Nutella every night made by Patrick were our favorite part of the food on board! I would suggest an upgrade in food including more fresh fish options. By the end of the cruise we felt like we couldn't bear another meal onboard so we definitely would have enjoyed the food more if there were fresh fish. Maybe less options but more freshness. Lastly painting maintenance shouldn't be done when passengers are aboard the ship. I got a horrible headache because of the paint fumes and my children were complaining too of the smell. When we complained of the smell they came and changed the HVAC filter in our room and it was like black soot. I heard another lady on board say that she had been coughing the whole time she was onboard and it stopped when she was off the boat. Maybe that was why... Overall a positive experience thanks to the crew! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Our family of 4 loved making memories together on this 15 day cruise out of Boston. The ship is the perfect size, in my opinion. The ship could use a few cosmetic updates, most notably some signs that had paint chipping off, etc. - but was ... Read More
Our family of 4 loved making memories together on this 15 day cruise out of Boston. The ship is the perfect size, in my opinion. The ship could use a few cosmetic updates, most notably some signs that had paint chipping off, etc. - but was in great condition overall. Our stateroom was kept very clean, and although we encountered a few issues (clogged drain with some leaking, broken light fixture, etc.) they were resolved pretty quickly. I would say about 75% of the crew was outstanding on this cruise - friendly, personable, and at least from outward appearances seem to enjoy their job. We did have a handful of crew members who were not the friendliest or who kind of came off rough around the edges, including a few at the guest service desk. That said, we found the overall crew and service to be great. Activities staff was enthusiastic and funny, and all activities we participated in were fun. My kids (aged 13 and 12) enjoyed themselves but were a bit bored by the end of the cruise. Not many other kids on this sailing since it was a long one during the school year, and many of the activities were geared toward older cruisers for obvious reasons. We had good experiences in all the ports, and made lots of memories. Dining was pretty good overall, especial the specialty dining. Buffet lacked some variety but otherwise we were pleased with everything. Drinks were made stronger than I ever remember from previous cruises, but tasty nonetheless. Entertainment was pretty good overall, with the guitarist/singer LM Cancio being the best in our opinion. Very talented young man. Would definitely take this trip again, although my kids would prefer a larger ship with more bells and whistles. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Had a wonderful time this was my first cruise and it was so much fun. Amazing trip I already want to go on another one. Food and drinks on board was great, loved the staff, fun on board activities, we had so much fun while at sea, ... Read More
Had a wonderful time this was my first cruise and it was so much fun. Amazing trip I already want to go on another one. Food and drinks on board was great, loved the staff, fun on board activities, we had so much fun while at sea, exploring the boats shops and resturants. I super enjoyed my drink package. Bermuda was beautiful. We went parasailing and saw the dolphins and we also explored Hamilton and St. George's. The Crystal and Fantasy caves were amazing. Horse shoe & Tobacco bay beach were beyond words. We did a lot with only 3 days docked, first day being a Sunday.. theres so much beauty and fun in Bermuda I will have to go back to see more. We used our bus and ferries pass which was soo worth it. We had a great time andI can't wait to travel on another NCL cruise Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We got to embarkation on the early side and waited in a line at the port for a little bit, but once it got moving, the process went quickly. The first thing we noticed was there were a lot of retirees. Always the best part...we see them ... Read More
We got to embarkation on the early side and waited in a line at the port for a little bit, but once it got moving, the process went quickly. The first thing we noticed was there were a lot of retirees. Always the best part...we see them and smile, they see our kids and become skittish. (They always realize we have great kids. It just takes them a bit to come around!) Our room was 3076 and it was a quad with 2 beds coming from the ceiling. Our cabin steward was great, always had a smile, very thorough. We even got towel animals. The cabin was bigger than some of the Princess ones we've been or (or configured better). The location was perfect...low and mid. We didn't have any issues with seasickness. We were originally slated to dine at a table for 12 (hoping to meet new people), but the head waiter called on the first day and asked if we wouldn't mind moving to a table for 4. No problem! Well, I guess we were in the "overflow" area at that point because we were suddenly in the "card room" for dinner. Haha. It was actually very private but the poor waiters were nowhere near the kitchen, so I know it was harder for them. They also had tables in the main area, but they did amazing. They were both very friendly and we enjoyed talking to them. There were 3 or 4 other tables in the same room and at one point, I heard a woman say she should "complain more often" because they liked the arrangement. From the bottom of my heart, please don't complain MORE. As far as the food goes, I have celiac disease so my opinion is very different than my husband's. I thought the gluten free menu options (which were very well marked) were amazing. The fact that I didn't have to call out that I was on a "special" diet was so cool. I usually cringe when I have to order at other restaurants, so high maintenance! On RC, everything was labelled (most of the time) and I was able to ask for what I wanted if I couldn't find it. They were not without judgement at the buffet in the morning when I would ask them to toast my bread in the GF toaster (which I assume was in the bowels of the ship because very few volunteered to go do it! Ha), but generally, they were good about it. I got the impression that the cooks/staff weren't necessarily annoyed at the GF requests, just that they weren't convenient for them. I don't know the inner workings, so I cut them some slack and got other food while I waited. My husband, on the other hand, wasn't as much as a fan. It wasn't that the food didn't taste good, it was just that they didn't mark which meals would be available daily versus which were there for just that night. So he'd order something thinking, oh, I'd better get that tonight and then he'd see it again the next day. I think they should take a page from Princess on this one...daily offerings on the left, nightly offering on the right. A reasonable fix and I put that in my suggestions. I thought their desserts were amazing---because they were GF. Hubby thought they were so-so. The buffet had some great GF goodies (cakes, mousse, etc.) but NO cookies! What??? And they don't advertise it, but one night in the buffet, they had chicken wings that were GF and they were downright amazing! (There were 2 other ones I couldn't try but hubby did and he liked them). We basically had a 2nd dinner. LOL. The entertainment was a little off their schedule due to the weather. We saw a comedian on TV the first night (we were too tired to go to the show) and we still never found out if the show was from our sailing! Ha. He was funny. We went to the Elton John show, the stage production with the singers and dancers and the comedian on a unicycle. They were all awesome. The confusion came in when they had to reschedule a show due to the ship rocking too much, then we were in port, but they had already cancelled it. Then when they rescheduled it for the final night, I guess it was the comedian instead? Either way, it didn't bother us and we understood things happen. Our kids have always been wishy washy about the childcare. Some cruises they want to go (if they get unlimited video games), other times, they want to hang with us. This cruise was hands down, the best experience for them in childcare. They are 9 and 10 and they asked to go back everyday. (This was their 10th cruise, 5th cruise line, so they have a lot to compare it to), The staff at the climbing wall were great. We went to do the water slides with the kids and there wasn't nearly enough water pressure, so that made for some great laughs and memories. (Let me just say, it wasn't pretty trying to move down a water slide with no water.) We loved the mini golf and the shuffleboard. Yep, my kids love shuffleboard! As a reminder of just how much they loved it, my 10 year old son started line dancing after dinner last night and I was like, where did you learn that? In the child care. Awesome. I've already mentioned the service on the ship. I don't know if it's because they don't see a lot of kids during the fall and it makes them miss their own, but the staff was great with our kids and we really had a good time.Since it was a family trip, we didn't get to use the indoor pool (16+), so we froze our little tushies off in the outdoor pool and the kids made some friends. The weather turned, unfortunately, so a lot of what we enjoyed at the beginning of the cruise was closed by the end of it (mini golf, climbing wall, pool). Definitely a risk sailing the Atlantic in October! Ports: Portland, Maine: We did a tour on our own through Lucky Catch. They were fantastic! We really enjoying catching lobsters and I even got to pick one our fot lunch, walk it over to the local restaurant and they cooked it for me. (Not vegan friendly, folks!) A seagull pooped on me while we were on the boat and I even got a free t-shirt! I highly recommend this tour! (It was not through the cruise line). Bar Harbor, Maine: We walked around this port and had fun throwing rocks into the ocean. We were able to walk a nice path, walk around town and have some blueberry ice cream. YUM! Saint John, New Brunswick: We did the Hop On/Hop Off tour through the ship and stopped at the farmer's market (which had a mall), went for a beautiful walk at the pavilion and stopped at the bridge near the reversing rapids. Just a few stops (didn't want to overdo it with the kids). They had a great time, and so did we. Halifax, Nova Scotia: We went to Peggy's Cove on a tour through the ship. It was a little chilly so we made it pretty quick but we loved it. My kids finally tried lobster (lollipops). After a little time in the gift shop, we were happy to get back into the warm bus. I loved watching the scenery on the trip there and back. We finally found our fall colors! Boston, MA: We did a bus tour through the cruise line that included a transfer to the airport to see a bit of history and kill time before our VERY late flight. The guide was great, but a bus tour might not have been the best idea with so much history. I basically have a lot of blurry pictures of "?". Next time, we'll get out and do a walking tour! Haha. We got the airport around 11am and our flight wasn't until 5:40pm, then delayed. I've never been happier to see an indoor playground at an airport. The kids played for hours (and even found a baby from the ship that my daughter was enthralled with). Sure, my son had a cold a few days after, but it was worth it! LOL. Overall, an amazing experience with polite retirees. Even with late arrivals and delayed departures, it seemed like most passengers were well-traveled and took it all in stride, just like our family did. I would recommend this trip for all ages, as there was so much to see and do. People have the expectation that kids are going to be unruly and what could they possibly want to see in New England and Canada, but they had an amazing time and I got to take a trip off my husband's bucket list. Young families have the expectation that the older passengers are going to be curmudgens and complainers, and the ones we met were fabulous! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Received as a free cruise from Hard Rock in Biloxi. I was excited about receiving the free cruise off as it was the first time I was going to be going on NCL. I had heard a lot of good remarks from previous cruisers. My experience had ... Read More
Received as a free cruise from Hard Rock in Biloxi. I was excited about receiving the free cruise off as it was the first time I was going to be going on NCL. I had heard a lot of good remarks from previous cruisers. My experience had good and bad reviews. Not real sure I like the freestyle concept. If you do not want to wait for 30-45 mins for a table if you go anytime after 6pm, make sure you make previous dining reservations. Then after waiting for your pager to go off, you have to expect 1-1.5 hours for dinner. Service is EXTREMELY slow, wait staff is not in any rush whatsoever to clear your empty dishes nor refill your beverages. Our group (6j made reservations at La Corcina, what a DIASTER that was. This dinner took over 3 hours.....the excuse was they had just gotten a new chef and they did not know the kitchen and was having issues finding what he needed. Really are the kitchens on the ship all that different????? We were approached the next afternoon by the Guest Relations manager whom was fact finding on what we thought of ALL the service areas. I believe our concerns were given to the appropriate parties, as EVERY night after the first two nights of HORRIABLE dinner service the Restaurant manager appeared wherever it was our group was having dinner and service was impeccable. Why should it take going to measures of complaining to receive such service? Have the crew members gotten so complacent with the fact that they are guaranteed tips since you prepay your gratuities, that they feel it doesn’t matter what their attitude or service is like???? Other than the restaurant fiasco we really enjoyed our cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Food was mediocre, dining room service needs improvement, line to get off the ship was more than an hour, Announcement and staff were hard to understand, shows not so good. Did not use shore excursions from ship. I used vacations to ... Read More
Food was mediocre, dining room service needs improvement, line to get off the ship was more than an hour, Announcement and staff were hard to understand, shows not so good. Did not use shore excursions from ship. I used vacations to go. The room service was fine and very friendly. Furniture (love seat) had to be moved against balcony window so we could access the 2 twin beds. Still very tight to get between them and in and out. I am used to dining with many waiters at my table, more elegant decor, and far better food. Many items on the menu were the same every night. Had technical problems with my phone changing to weird times and sometimes not changing when new time zones. We missed one tour that we paid for due to this. Overall I would not sail on Norwegian again. I had planned on Hawaii Islands with them but will choose another line. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
The first issue was the fact that we got rerouted to Portland Maine for a day (which I could drive to from NH any day for an hour and a half). So we really only had two days in Bermuda. The first day we had a good time at horse show bay. ... Read More
The first issue was the fact that we got rerouted to Portland Maine for a day (which I could drive to from NH any day for an hour and a half). So we really only had two days in Bermuda. The first day we had a good time at horse show bay. The second day we went to a beach closer to the cruise ship since we had to revised by 4:30 to make it back before leaving. The beach was suppose to open at 9 and they told us we had to wait until 10:40 because the Disney cruise that just came in had to do their excursions before we could go in. Well they were late so finally at 11 after the two excursions came in and filled up the beach us low class royal carribean cruisers who also paid a lot of money for our cruise got about a 10x10 spot that was left on the beach. We bought the deluxe drink package but every time we tried to get s drink it took forever and we had to walk to other end of the ship since there was no waiter by the kids pool area. The drinks also tasted like they had no alcohol in them. The food in the windjammer was always gross , but the food and service at reflections was good. When I went to buy a shirt off the ship the price had gone up because I “ missed the time “ of our cutoff to buy them . Which also just happened to my wife when she tried to buy our pictures that people took of us all week the whole trip we were here. They just told her we had to order them yesterday . We’re still sitting on the ship! I would never recommend this cruise to anyone nor would I ever go on it again. Also anyone who doesn’t smoke probably won’t enjoy it because all you can smell through out the whole cruise ship is cigarette smoke since they let them smoke in the casino. It was nauseating. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Serenade of the Seas Cabin 1050 suite I was concerned about the food as many reviews indicated that the food was not good. We did not find that to be true at all. I travelled with 3 other family members (all adults) and the suite ... Read More
Serenade of the Seas Cabin 1050 suite I was concerned about the food as many reviews indicated that the food was not good. We did not find that to be true at all. I travelled with 3 other family members (all adults) and the suite was comfortable for 4. The tub is quite high for elderly travelers but, we knew that before we travelled and we were able to adjust. The juggler and comedians were very funny. The other ship entertainment was quite good as well. Unfortunately, the singers fell short of what I have come to expect. I feel bad as I know they train hard but, their voices were not as polished or professional as I expected or heard on other cruises.That is what brings down my entertainment rating. The other entertainment and games and shows were very good. The dining staff and food and chef and wait staff and head waiters and maitre d etc were unbelievably great and we felt like we were the only group in the room. They went way over and above for my 90 year old mother and showered her with attention and helped her with her wheelchair. They also spoiled my 24 year old daughter who is vegan. It was as if she had a private chef with the amount of attention she received and they went way over and above to accommodate her needs. We ate in Chops Grille for breakfast as that was a suite perk. It was very good and hardly any other travelers were there. We ate in the main dining room or Windjammer buffet for lunch. Both were great and plentiful with a good variety of options. We had appetizers and drinks in the concierge lounge and ate in the anytime main dining room for dinner. The excursion we did was the Devils Island Snorkel. The crew was great but, the kayaking was quite limited as to where you could go and you could only use it for 10 minutes at a time. People who snorkeled enjoyed it. We would just ask about how far and how long we could go in the kayaks next time. I would recommend this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I have been on 5 cruises previously with 4 different cruiselines (including Disney, Princess, and Royal Carribean). My experience on Norwegian Gem was by far the worst. 1. The stateroom is poorly designed, with no outlets near the ... Read More
I have been on 5 cruises previously with 4 different cruiselines (including Disney, Princess, and Royal Carribean). My experience on Norwegian Gem was by far the worst. 1. The stateroom is poorly designed, with no outlets near the head of the bed. Family members with CPAP machines had to run extension cords across the entire room to be able to use their medical device. 2. Stateroom did not seem fully stocked. I found out halfway through the cruise that hand/body lotion is readily available but was never stocked in my room for no clear reason. 3. The food was one of the biggest disappointments. Many dishes came out cold, and the portions for the appetizers are laughable. The food taste was mediocre at best. In particular, the quality of the food at Orchid Garden is not tasty at all. The buffet has poor variety. Despite having a large space, each food station is duplicated, so there is really only half the selection. And attempts at cost-saving were obvious... other cruises have smoked salmon, and this cruise had salmon spread. The tikka masala was always some vegetable rather than chicken. Just a few examples. 4. Having to tender to ports is terrible, and I left with the sense that my cruise experience was diminished due to cost-saving decisions by the cruiseline. 2 ports were cancelled due to weather preventing safe use of tender boats, but other cruise boats were able to dock at those ports on the same day as their cruiselines booked the pier rather than resorting to using tender boats. At one of the ports we actually made it to, delays in the tendering process led to our group having to wait 3.5 hours after our arrival time to actually make it onto a tender boat, so the time available to actually enjoy the port was lessened. 5. When ports were canceled due to weather, the cruise staff revised the activity options. But all I could see were more sales and charged activities (wine/whisky tastings). It's bad enough to miss out on a port, but then to have the cruiseline only open up activities that you have to pay more for is ridiculous. 6. My cruise benefit was to save $50 per port on shore excursions, and I was unable to use that benefit as half the ports were canceled. I had unused "non-refundable" credit that I asked be applied to the service charge since I was unable to use it on a shore excursion, and I was told that wasn't allowed. If a port is canceled, I would hope the cruiseline would go out of their way to try and improve the experience rather than make it more frustrating. 7. The cruise staff was overall friendly but one staff member (female cruise staff member from USA) was rude. She was managing elevator use while it was restricted for 4 hours due to tender boats. 8. The layout of the boat is poorly planned. With disabled members in our party, it was frustrating to have to take elevators up to a certain floor to walk across the boat and then take another elevator down to get to the main dining hall (which is a location we needed to get to 1-2x every day). Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise because frankly, we live by Cruise Port Boston, love Bermuda and spent our honeymoon on the Norwegian Gem on its transatlantic portion of its maiden voyage back in 2007 and wanted to see whether the cruise ship really ... Read More
We chose this cruise because frankly, we live by Cruise Port Boston, love Bermuda and spent our honeymoon on the Norwegian Gem on its transatlantic portion of its maiden voyage back in 2007 and wanted to see whether the cruise ship really was as awesome as we remembered. It was, and then some. The embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. Sure, twelve years has taken its toll on the ship, but it wasn't that visible. The Dale Chihuly Glass Sculpture in the Atrium of the Gem still wows. The service was great. Our balcony stateroom was consistently kept immaculately clean. The food in the buffet was so delicious it kept us coming back for more. The variety in the buffet, with its different themes each night, was terrific. Even the free coffee was delicious. The staff showed pride in their work, and the attention to detail showed. We attended four major shows in the Stardust Theater, Swing, Blazing Boots, the Chernov Brothers - Circus Dance Show and Get Down Tonight which we very much enjoyed. We were able to walk to Snorkel Park Beach in Bermuda three days in a row and took the free ferry to St. George. We traveled with our nine year old son who is on the autism spectrum, and he had a great time. We went last year on the Norwegian Dawn (August 2018) and will go again on August 21, 2020. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The Restaurants, Shore excursions, entertainment were excellent. This was my 16th time going on Norwegian to Bermuda. This was my friend's 5th time The service up on the deck was very poor it was very Hard to get a drink ... Read More
The Restaurants, Shore excursions, entertainment were excellent. This was my 16th time going on Norwegian to Bermuda. This was my friend's 5th time The service up on the deck was very poor it was very Hard to get a drink from any of the service staff as they were very sparse We had a balcony room With people on both sides of us smoking on the a balcony and we had to file a Complaint. The Norwegian gem was definitely not our best experience. The smoking continued for 2 nights before the people beside a stopped and they denied smoking but it was billowing in our room. The specialty restaurants , Cagnes and Le Bistro were terrific but we had an experience at La Cucinas the food came out cold. The Magnum restaurant was great. Very leary to travel on the Gem again. Having traveled on Norwegian 16 cruises to Bermuda this is the 1st negative review I've ever written. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We took the Boston to Bermuda cruise on August 23-30, 2019. This was my 11th cruise with NCL, my husband’s 10th, and our son, daughter-in-law, and grandson’s first. We drove to Boston on the 22nd and stayed at the Embassy Suites. We ... Read More
We took the Boston to Bermuda cruise on August 23-30, 2019. This was my 11th cruise with NCL, my husband’s 10th, and our son, daughter-in-law, and grandson’s first. We drove to Boston on the 22nd and stayed at the Embassy Suites. We were not terribly impressed with the hotel, it was costly for what we got, and the parking for one night was an additional $51.00. We parked at the World Trade Center parking garage for the week for $147.00; we got a spot right near the exit, and they shuttled us to and from the port. We arrived at the port at around 10:00 AM. We waited about 20 minutes for the doors to open to get to the check-in lines. Because we are platinum, we got right through and were able to take our son and his family with us. At the counter I found out that my husband and I were given VIP status, so we all went to the lounge to wait to board. It was a very nice perk! We were on the ship by 11:15. We could have gone to Cagney’s for lunch, but because the kids couldn’t join us there, we opted for the buffet. It was very good, and we had no trouble finding seats because we got onboard so early. We ate our meals at Cagney’s, Moderno, Magenta, Grand Pacific, Garden Buffet, O’Sheehan’s, and Orchid. They were all very good. Our favorite was Cagney’s followed by Grand Pacific. The one we liked the least was Orchid. Our grandson would have eaten every single meal at O’Sheehan’s if he could have! We had inside cabins on deck 11. I always try to choose cabins near the elevator to make them easy to find! This time we had cabin 11521 and our son and his family were right next door in 11519. The cabins had plenty of closet and drawer/shelf space, but were probably the smallest cabins we have ever stayed in. The next time we go on the Gem, we will definitely choose a balcony! Our cabin steward, Lalis, was phenomenal. He always had our cabin in tip-top shape, was super friendly, kept ice in our ice bucket, and made towel animals for our grandson every night! We really enjoyed the waitstaff and bartenders, especially Lin Ling at Bali Hai, Nate at Spinnaker’s, and Sandrick at Cagney’s. Those three remembered our names right from the beginning as well as what we liked to eat and drink. The one thing that I was disappointed about was that 40 people signed up for the Meet and Greet, and only about 20 showed up. The ship’s staff went out of their way to provide snacks and coffee for the count I provided and then people failed to go. We did have a nice Meet and Greet anyway; the officers were very nice. We didn't take any ship excursions, but we did take the bus to Horseshoe Bay Beach which was gorgeous. By the end of the day, however, the bathrooms were filthy and the water didn't work! We also took the ferry to Hamilton and went to the aquarium. What an awesome place! There's a zoo and a museum there as well, all included in the same price, which I think was $10/person. In closing, the Gem was a wonderful cruise. The crew was among the friendliest we have ever met on any cruise we have ever taken. They couldn’t do enough to make sure that we were happy and having a great time! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We did not explore Boston since we live in nearby Rhode Island and have visited many times before . We love Boston! The embarkation went well although there was a period of time where we waited in line to check in due to high volume of ... Read More
We did not explore Boston since we live in nearby Rhode Island and have visited many times before . We love Boston! The embarkation went well although there was a period of time where we waited in line to check in due to high volume of arrivals at the same time. The ship was in decent shape. Not the best shape or cleanliness that we have experienced on 4 previous cruises on other ships. The cabin was as expected. Inside cabin and no different than the usual on any cruise line. The dining experience was below average at best. We have come to expect great quality of food and presentation. We had neither. The buffets were always loaded with the same foods each day with very little change. Food temperature was often warm and not hot. The dining rooms were varying. We ate on the first night and the last night. The first night we had an average quality of food (dry steak,small portions and lack of offering of beverages.) We did eat at the Asian restaurant which was of very good quality but the cleanliness of the dining area was very lacking. O'Sheehans (an Irish bar) also had good food. The entertainment on the ship was not (must-see). We enjoyed the comedian Andrew Kennedy but all the other acts were okay. Activities were very weak. Bingo was very expensive, the casino was not a winning scene for many and the trivia days were not very well thought out. Service was the least personable than I have ever received on a cruise ship. Not a single crew member got to know my name. There was absolutely zero push to provide patrons with drinks since most of us had a drink package. The port was excellent since it was one of my favorites (Bermuda). Will go back but with another cruise line. The excursions were also excellent but there is zero need to book on the ship. You can go to the tour booking office off the dock and book all your excursions at a reduced price than the on ship excursion office. We travelled with a large group of 25 and had a great time. We will look for alternatives for cruising with other lines if making a return to Bermuda due to the low value for our money paid for this ship. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My husband & I took this cruise with our 3 grown children & our son's fiancee. 4 of us had taken the same cruise in 2016 on the Norwegian Dawn. We all had a great time in Bermuda - we went to Elbow Beach & Horseshoe Bay ... Read More
My husband & I took this cruise with our 3 grown children & our son's fiancee. 4 of us had taken the same cruise in 2016 on the Norwegian Dawn. We all had a great time in Bermuda - we went to Elbow Beach & Horseshoe Bay and we went Helmet Diving with Hartley's and snorkling with Rising Son. (It's much cheaper to book the excursions yourself than to do it through the cruise line. The food on the ship was excellent - we ate at Le Bistro, Cagney's, Moderno, both main dining rooms, Orchid Garden (the only restaurant we didn't really like, but we're from the Boston area where there are many excellent Asian restaurants) & the buffet. We especially liked the food from the grills that were set up near the pool at lunch time. The only thing that was a disappointment was that they would not take down the doors between our balconies. Our travel agent didn't know about this, so when we booked 3 rooms with adjoining balconies we had thought that we could all be on the balconies together. The rooms were too small for 6 people, and there were no small lounges on the floors with the staterooms (they do have those on the Dawn). We tried to go to the card room but it was often busy & there were tables reserved for bridge (and once there was a painting class in there). We went to the bigger lounges, but there were often activities going on there. Because of this we may choose a different cruise line next time. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was my second time on board the Gem, and just like my first trip on the Gem on New Year's Day 2011 from NYC to the Caribbean, it did not disappoint. My family and I departed from Boston for Bermuda and had a great time. This ... Read More
This was my second time on board the Gem, and just like my first trip on the Gem on New Year's Day 2011 from NYC to the Caribbean, it did not disappoint. My family and I departed from Boston for Bermuda and had a great time. This is my fifth Norwegian Cruise, and the Gem is my favorite ship. My first cruise with Norwegian was on the S.S. Norway in July 1993. I was also on the Gem in 2011 as I mentioned, and the Breakaway to Bermuda in 2014 and 2016. There is a reason why I come back to Norwegian. I also have done three Royal Caribbean Cruises and really enjoyed them too. However, I'm more of a fan of the Freestyle aspect of cruising with NCL. Here are some highlights of our trip to Bermuda, and what my family and I enjoyed about the cruise, in no particular order: Food: The food overall was great as usual. My only gripe was the buffet, which I usually enjoy. We ate breakfast on our first full day onboard, and it was fine. We did a dinner there a night or two later for "American Night" and it was lackluster. I didn't go back to the buffet after that for any meal. The food that I ordered was cold, and so was my wife's, and we couldn't even finish our meal there. We ended up eating instead in the Grand Pacific Dining Room. My parents, sister, brother in law, and nephew didn't complain about their meal that night, but said on several occasions how the food was cold at times during later buffet visits throughout the trip. Buffet aside, the food in the main dining rooms was great too. On the first night, my brother in law had a steak that was overcooked in the Grand Pacific Dining Room, which he wasn't pleased about. He also ran into another passenger on the ship who also had an overcooked steak in the Grand Pacific Dining room during our first night onboard. My brother in law is very picky with food, and with that being said, he didn't have any complaints about any other meals onboard after that evening. My wife ordered the same steak a few days later in Grand Pacific and it wasn't overcooked. The food in O'Sheehans Bar and Grill was great too, and it was a great place to go to to grab a quiet breakfast, an afternoon snack or lunch, or even a dinner. We didn't try the food in the specialty restaurants, Orchid Garden, the poolside barbecues and poolside buffet, or Great Outdoors, so I am not able to comment on the food over in those areas. Service and staff: The bartenders were attentive and quick despite small lines that formed for drinks from time to time, particularly at the poolside bar. The cruise staff was friendly and attentive at all times. Our room stewardess Mici was awesome. Interestingly enough, we ran into the assistant Maitre'D DeRon, who was in the Manhattan Dining room on the Breakaway back during our 2016 trip, on the Norwegian Gem. He was at O'Sheehans during the late morning, and then staffed later in the evening at the Magenta Dining room. It was great running into him again. He remembered my family and I from our trip, despite seeing hundreds of thousands of passengers during the past three years. He's a great guy! The service was slow though sometimes at O'Sheehans, and was excruciatingly slow during our second night when we ate at the Magenta Dining Room. Besides that though, the service was actually fast, and I found that service during dinner was quicker on the Gem than on the Breakaway in 2016. The Ship: The Gem is a beautiful ship. I love how they renovated the Bliss Lounge. When I went in 2011 they had curtains, and sofas that looked more like day beds. They also had a couple of bowling lanes which was interesting. The new look is great though and it has a cool quiet vibe to it , with clear lights. It wasn't terrible before or anything like that, but the changes that they made the club were great. The ship though has some minor visible signs of wear such as in the carpet, the bottom of the closet door in our stateroom, the vent in our bathroom ceiling of the stateroom, and scratches on the elevator. That's to be expected though, as this ship has been around for a while. Bermuda: Bermuda is beautiful and clean. I love how whenever I go there, I'm not hounded by a group of people screaming and hollering for me to ride in their taxi. I also love it how whenever I go into a store, I'm not being pestered to buy their souvenirs. There isn't any visible poverty or sketchy areas. It's safe and beautiful, and is my favorite cruise stop. I've been all over the Caribbean, and in my opinion, you just can't beat being in Bermuda for three days. My wife and I are already looking forward to going again. This was our third trip to Bermuda but there is so much of the island that we have yet to see. Embarkation/Disembarkation: Were smooth as usual Getting off the ship was the quickest and easiest disembarkation that I ever experienced. Even my brother in law who had never cruised on Norwegian was impressed. The lifejacket drill: Kudos to Norwegian for not having passengers have to grab their lifejacket, stand shoulder to shoulder on the overcrowded deck outside, do the lifeboat drill, then fight the crowds to return back to your stateroom. Norwegian has the right idea by having people meet in their respective muster stations without their lifejacket, have the crew demonstrate how to put on the lifejacket and work the various features, and then send the passengers off to enjoy the ship. Their lifejacket drills are always quick and easy. Activities: There was always something to do around the ship. The cruise director Luz and her staff were engaging and great. There was always an activity to participate in for anyone who was looking for something to do. The weather and sailing conditions: There were rough seas on the way down, and on the way back. There was even a waterspout that I spotted on the horizon during day two, but it was very far from the ship and not in the direction we were heading. It was pretty cool actually. On the second to the last day, we hit an Atlantic Ocean Storm, which was also neat to experience. I'm somewhat of a weather nut, being an Earth Science Major, so events such as this are exciting to me. Besides that though, the weather was great especially for embarkation from Boston. Bermuda was mostly cloudy with showers during the first two days, but the third and final day was sunny and beautiful, perfect for hitting the beach. Overall, this was a great vacation and there weren't any disappointments. Out of our group, I was the only one who sailed on the Gem before. Some of my family members are picky , but they had a great time too and enjoyed the cruise. It was great being able to take a cruise on my favorite ship to my favorite vacation destination. It was my first time sailing out of Boston and I enjoyed it. I have to say that I'm a big fan of sailing out of Boston on a Friday, and returning to Boston on a Friday, giving me Saturday and Sunday to relax and recover, and of course catch up on laundry! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our first time on the Gem out of Boston to Bermuda. We had been on the Dawn a few times and the Gen is very similar to the Dawn in the layout with a few improvements (the bar area on Deck 6 works much better) and a few odd ... Read More
This was our first time on the Gem out of Boston to Bermuda. We had been on the Dawn a few times and the Gen is very similar to the Dawn in the layout with a few improvements (the bar area on Deck 6 works much better) and a few odd features (you can only enter the Atrium from one side of the mid-ship elevators) Overall, we loved the ship. We had an ocean-view cabin on Deck 5 that was standard for NCL but a cabin steward was not the best we ever had. We found the food to be good and the service excellent for the most part. What really won us over was the great entertainment onboard. This was the first cruise that we have been on that every aspect of the ship entertainment was top notch. The Production Cast was great.. Andrew Kennedy is the best comedian I have ever seen at sea. Jose & Patti are always excellent - but what was really surprising was how great the other entertainers on board were. The Prism Band was fantastic and the female singer, Maricel, had the best voice I have ever heard - land or sea. One the the production shows was cancelled for technical reasons and they moved the Cruise Director's Tina Turner Tribute show to the theater with Maricel doing a tribute to Whitney Houston. We had seen Luz (the CD) do her Tina Turner show on the Dawn and it is great - but Maricel was beyond awesome singing the Whitney songs. Justin Golan was a comedy piano player in the lounges who was fantastic and Sean Paul was a guitar player/singer who was also great. The showband and the other pop band (JamRoc) were also very, very good. On shore we did a private Taxi Tour with Jonathan Purcell, our driver. He was super helpful, informative, friendly and fun and we saw the entire island in 4 hours and saw many sights and stops that were not on the standard tours that you book at the excursion desk. The price was reasonable as well ($50 per hour for the group) We had the specialty dinig package and we at at Cagneys twice because the food was so good. We also at La Cucina. The food was also good there - but our waiter, Dante, was the best server we've ever had on an NCL ship. Over all, it was a great vacation. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Heard nothing but Great reviews about Norwegian as the one to go to for a more relaxing yet fun filled cruise. Open choices for dining ,activities ,as well as off shore excursions. Entire staff was welcoming ,attentive and friendly not to ... Read More
Heard nothing but Great reviews about Norwegian as the one to go to for a more relaxing yet fun filled cruise. Open choices for dining ,activities ,as well as off shore excursions. Entire staff was welcoming ,attentive and friendly not to mention helpful and had great sense of humor... Major Shout out to Cruise director Luz and Asst.Cruise director Jeffrey... Already In the process of planning our next cruise... Daily food menu changes with multiple options so there's something for everyone as well as dietary and allergy sensitive foods too... Pools were great after a long workout or a stroll around the ship, basketball, rock climbing or just laying back relaxing on the sundeck,there's many activities for various age groups and also for just adults which adds to the ability for everyone to be together yet also have their own time with individuals around their age as well ,playing games making crafts or just meeting and making new friends.... Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Nirwegian offered $50 towards shore excursions daily. We found that Norwegian upped the prices so high on these excursions if you booked through them that the $50 wasn't even a factor and pretty worthless.I took my whole family of 5 ... Read More
Nirwegian offered $50 towards shore excursions daily. We found that Norwegian upped the prices so high on these excursions if you booked through them that the $50 wasn't even a factor and pretty worthless.I took my whole family of 5 on shore excursions using buses and taxis in Bermuda which was very easy and saved 100's of dollars ! Very disappointed in this aspect of the cruise being it was way too much of a money grab by the company . Otherwise the cruise was fantastic. The service we received was 2nd to none ! The food is of high quality . The crew is very friendly and professional. On board activities are constant with something for everyone in the family to do .Reservations to certain restaurants are hard to come by if you don't book the first day ahead of time which I found a bit unnerving . The ship is very clean and taken care of constantly . The pools are rather small . The variety of foods available is exceptional . Bathrooms in cabin r a wee bit small but manageable .All in all.... myself and my family had a wonderful vacation and will certainly use Norwegian again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Everything on this cruise was oustanding, from the staffs, food, activities, shows. No complaints. The mini-suit with balcony is quite spacious for 3 or 4 (we were 3). For the restaurant, great choices in food, timings, waiters being very ... Read More
Everything on this cruise was oustanding, from the staffs, food, activities, shows. No complaints. The mini-suit with balcony is quite spacious for 3 or 4 (we were 3). For the restaurant, great choices in food, timings, waiters being very pleasant, paying attention to details. I strongly recommend to try the Specialty restaurant. They are well worth the money and the entertainment (like the Tepaniaki). The stay in Bermuda was quite pleasant. Good weather, swimming with the dolphins was quite a blast. Beautiful beaches. I enjoyed the fact that we were not rushed everyday to visit a new port. It was like having your hotel in Bermuda for 2 and a half days. On the way back, a little bit of rough seas and thanks to the Captain, we made a little detour to avoid rougher seas. Disembarkation, well organised but it does take time to empty a cruise ship of 2000 plus passengers. Well done Norwegian. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I recently cruised on The Norwegian Gem form Boston to Bermuda. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. The ship is old and in dire need of renovation. The restaurants and the food is ok however if you are looking for ... Read More
I recently cruised on The Norwegian Gem form Boston to Bermuda. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. The ship is old and in dire need of renovation. The restaurants and the food is ok however if you are looking for luxury try another ship! The entertainment was mediocre ,the cabin service was good but not stellar and the speciality dining experiences although good were costly ($39.00 per person). I felt like I was nickled and dimed for everything because every bill had a 20 percent gratuity added on to it ( even the bar ) and if you didn't opt for the expensive drink pkg you had quite a bill at cruise end. The deck was extremely overcrowded and the hot tubs were small and always full, Bostonians deserve better ...Norwegian Cruise Line needs to refurbish this ship !!! This was my 10th cruise and by far the worst. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Went to Bermuda on our Honeymoon so it seem a good idea to return with the whole family to mark our 50 years of marriage . Had a great time and all got to enjoy their interests - from fishing - sightseeing - shopping - swimming - ... Read More
Went to Bermuda on our Honeymoon so it seem a good idea to return with the whole family to mark our 50 years of marriage . Had a great time and all got to enjoy their interests - from fishing - sightseeing - shopping - swimming - snorkeling . The all included my 3 children their spouses and our 6 grandchildren. Everyone loved the on board entertainment and the grandchildren loved eating dinner at the buffet while the adults enjoyed the main dinning rooms. We all enjoyed lunch around the pool almost every day - the grilled food was very good and music made it more fun .The one problem was the stateroom bathrooms - which for some of us were close to unusable due to the incredible small size - and lack of hot water . Still all in all a great time !! Maybe we will come back for our 60th but on another ship ! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I did this cruise on the Dawn a couple years ago and had a great time. However, Norwegian seems to be cutting service on the Gem. The boarding process seems to have improved. We spent less time standing in line and our baggage was ... Read More
I did this cruise on the Dawn a couple years ago and had a great time. However, Norwegian seems to be cutting service on the Gem. The boarding process seems to have improved. We spent less time standing in line and our baggage was delivered much faster than in 2017. That is where the improvements end. The ship itself has seen better days. Aside from the gaudy decor, upholstery, fixtures, carpeting were all worn and a bit dirty. Our bedspread had a few small stains on it. The pool towels were so old and worn that once you dry yourself off with them, you have a thick layer of lint stuck to your skin and clothing. It seemed like they were starting to disintegrate. Our balcony furniture looked like it was splattered with white paint. Regarding the service, every employee on the ship was quite busy. They seemed to be working hard to do what they could but still all service was pretty slow. My partner and I walked away from one of the bars because we had been standing there for quite some time without being served. Despite having reservations at the restaurants, it often took over a half hour to be seated. Once seated, it often took an hour to an hour and a half to receive our entrees. We could expect most meals to drag on for 3-4 hours from the time we arrived at our reserved time until the end of the meal. In the Italian restaurant, we waited close to 2 hours to receive our entrees. By the time it came, my salmon was hot, but very dry and tasted like it had been reheated. I only ate 2 bites. Luckily, the gnocchi (which we had been served an hour before the entree) was delicious, so I wasn't too hungry when the fish finally came out. The excursions were a mixed bag. It seemed like any excursion run by the Fantasea company was quite well done. The tour guides were attentive, organized, and had a good sense of humor. We did the Gosling Rum Cruise and the Wild West Kayak with them and were happy with both of those excursions. The Caves and Waves excursion though wasn't as good. Instead of traveling by boat, you take a small bus across the island. This is a long drive and they stop at Horseshoe beach, not so that you can visit, but to find out if anyone is getting motion sick. The cave visit ran smoothly, but the beach was atrocious. They drop you off at lunchtime at what they called a secluded beach. In fact, the only reason why it is secluded is because nobody else wants to be there. It's called Clearwater Beach. If you take a look at it on Google street view, you'll get a good idea of what this place is (note the sign that says no weapons allowed). It is very close to the airport, so the air traffic is constantly overhead, and being so close to a transportation center, I can't imagine that it could be a very pristine area. The restaurant and bar at the beach are a bit grimy. It looks as if they were built inside of an old skating oval, so everything is surrounded by concrete topped with barbed wire. The one good thing I will say is that even though the restaurant was a dive, the burgers were excellent. The beach itself is man made, not natural. So they have basically just dumped sand on top of rock. To get in the water, you have to walk over large pebbles and stones. My mother was with us and couldn't go in the water because the rocks hurt her feet, even with flip flops on. The water is nice and calm, so it may be ok for kids, but it is very shallow. Once you are out far enough for the water to reach waist height, you are contending with the seaweed and the wildlife living in it. On the upside, it does give you a chance to see a turtle. Again, check Google and look at the satellite images - the dark spots are the seaweed. But it's okay if you aren't having a good time there, because you only get a couple of hours before the bus comes back to take you to St. Georges which you only have a couple of hours to explore before the last ferry leaves to take you back to the Royal Navy Dockyard. Honestly, I expected Norwegian to do a better job vetting this excursion. The only reason why we do the cruise's excursions instead of finding things ourselves is the comfort of knowing the event has been vetted. Back to the ship issues though, there were a lot of thugs traveling on this vacation. There were theft issues and harassment issues. We were using white boards to communicate with our group and one morning we woke up to find someone had written threats and vulgar insults on them. The ship security didn't seem to be doing anything. We had an item stolen and heard others complaining about thefts too. We missed most of the evening entertainment because the meals took so long. However, the one act we couldn't seem to get away from was the piano player. This man had a voice like a high school kid trying out for the school play. He was also crude and vulgar. One example, his act included a song all about crude slang for women's bodies. He was in the champagne bar and the atrium. It was loud and obnoxious. At the end of it all, we did have a good time. After all, we were on a cruise to a beautiful location. However, I think next time we'll fly to Bermuda and skip this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My fiance and myself decided to sail with the Gem because a huge chunk of my family wanted to go on vacation together. We ended up with a group of 28 (though we all booked separately) and overall had a blast. The buffet food was ... Read More
My fiance and myself decided to sail with the Gem because a huge chunk of my family wanted to go on vacation together. We ended up with a group of 28 (though we all booked separately) and overall had a blast. The buffet food was delicious, and they had a different theme every night (American, Caribbean, BBQ, Mexican, etc). There were burgers, pizza, and a few other staples each night for my one who didn't want the themed food. The Pacific dining room was mixed. We ate there one night and although my fiancee and I were happy with our meals, about half of my family members were not. The meals looked fine, so I believe it was more a matter of taste/not being overly impressed rather than any mistakes. Thwere was plenty of entertainment after 4pm, but before that we couldn't find much tp do besides music at the pool or drinking. There was a different live music/dancing show twice each evening, as well as a few comedy shows. All were fairly well done, but nothing most people would regret missing. There are also a few live musicians/bands that play every day for hours. We particularly enjoyed the piano player/comedian, Justin Golan. The glow party was marketed as a family friendly event, but was more it less a rage sans drugs. A lot of electronic, incredibly loud music in a fairly small space. I heard multiple guests complaining about being disappointed/misled. Embarking was smooth and painless, and disembarking was fine as well. It does take an hour or so, but the process is simple and the staff is very kind and efficient. Any issues were caused by confused guests and were handled as efficiently as possible. However, my room was right next to a crew space, and maintenance woke us up on three different nights letting their door close loudly and banging (maybe hammering something). The first time this went on for an hour around 1 am, stopped, and then continued again around 3 am. We called the desk and they told us they would make it stop, and then got a call the next day around noon to ask if the noise was still happening. When we told them no it stopped early morning they responded "thank you for the positive feedback!". The second instance it only happened for about 20 minutes so we didn't call. The third time it happened again around 2 am and after my fiancee called it stopped for a while and then continued. He called back and they told him "we checked and the crew wasn't making noise". He told them they were right now and to please tell them to stop, which finally worked. If it hadn't been for the noise issues we would definitely consider booking again. However the noise wasn't something we can overlook, as we lost quite a bit of sleep and the cruise line never compensated us or even gave us a proper apology. **Something to consider is that, while water is available at the buffet, dining area, and bars, the glasses are small. The only place we found to fill bottles (besides the bathroom sink, where there is a sign that says it is not drinking water) is the buffet, where they have a sign stating the statiom should not he used to fill bottles. Many people do not listen to this request, which isn't a big deal when it's not busy-though I believe part of the reason is hygiene. Some guests would fill multiple glasses of water to dump into their bottle. Other than that, you can buy fairly expensive bottles water. Not a huge issue, but definitely something to consider! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Well my daughter and son booked the cruise months ago. My husband booked it for us a week before he passed away! My children & doctor thought it would be good for me to go and he would want me too! well everyone was right it was good ... Read More
Well my daughter and son booked the cruise months ago. My husband booked it for us a week before he passed away! My children & doctor thought it would be good for me to go and he would want me too! well everyone was right it was good for me. I felt he was there with us! I asked my sister to go with me, so she was my new roommate! I enjoyed watching my grandchildren at the pool going down the slide, the shows were awesome, the newly wed game, deal of no deal, the restaurants very good! So many choices, the food excellent! I took my two granddaughters to the spa and had there hair braided! And we tried out the casino too! I can't say enough about the staff! our steward manuel was wonderful, taking care of our room, making cute towel animals and if you needed anything he would get it. Diana in the buffet very helpful, always offering to carry are food to the table. And you have the best cruise director in luz and assistant joey! I could go on and on! We also saw one of my granddaughters swim with the dolphins. Then my sister and i did a bus tour of the island of bermuda! I had flown there with my husband in the past. So all and all a great vacation i was relaxed. A much needed one. I would recommend a cruise to anyone! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019

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