292 Royal Caribbean Jewel of the Seas Cruise Reviews

This was our sixth cruise and the first on Royal Caribbean. We got a very good price and as we have visited Dubai and Abu Dhabi previously we knew what to expect in terms of weather, general safety and cleanliness. Also the flight from ... Read More
This was our sixth cruise and the first on Royal Caribbean. We got a very good price and as we have visited Dubai and Abu Dhabi previously we knew what to expect in terms of weather, general safety and cleanliness. Also the flight from Finland to Dubai is not too long. Oman was a new and exciting destination for us. We arrived in Dubai early on Sunday morning, the weather was not on our side, windy and cold, with the odd rain shower. After visiting the Dubai Mall we just spent the rest of the day relaxing at our hotel. On Monday we proceeded by taxi to Dubai Cruise Terminal, where check-in was extremely efficient and we were onboard by 12:30. As we waited for our luggage to arrive we lunched at the Windjammer and went to sort out our dining time. Originally we had requested late seating but for some reason this had been changed to early. We managed to get the late seating back, but were allocated a far end table next to the kitcken entrance, a more central location would have been nice. First impression of the ship was a disappointment. The Jewel is a retro ship, her decor dates back to 2004 when she was built and that style has not aged well. She is clean and well maintained but the interiors are dark, dull and completely lacking any sensation of luxury. I very much got the feeling that Royal does not want to invest any dollars on this ship as she might be sold off in the near future. Standard of food in general was good. The selection and layout of the Windjammer buffet was good and we didn't have any problem finding a table, but again the decor was very retro. Plastic plates and drinking glasses were a letdown and we were surprised that there was no late night snack available, other than the room service and Cafe Lattetudes sandwich sortiment. The buffet staff was very quick in clearing tables and in general the cleanliness of the serving stations was very good. Now the fun part, a few words about the main dining room service which was always very friendly and polite, but at times surprisingly unprofessional. Our first clash with the Royal Caribbean service concept was with the food ordering, as we were expected to order all three courses at the same time. Usually in a restaurant the dessert is chosen after you have finished the main course, but not here. Afterdinner coffee was never offered and when we asked for an espresso it was served in a normal coffee cup, without a spoon or a saucer! It seems that Royal hasn't invested in espresso cups at all. And it seems that neither have they invested in employing sommeliers, as the wine order was handled by the assistant waiter. His pairing of wine with food was a game of chance. If we chose to have white wine with starter and main course he without asking brought a second glass of the - hopefully - same wine as main course was served. And he also poured what was left of the first glass into the new one! I've never, ever seen that being done in any restaurant. One evening I asked for a port wine, this was served in a champagne flute. It would have been nice to know what brand I was drinking but dessert wines were not mentioned in the wine list. We ordered room service breakfast a couple of times but as the free continental selection was so limited we took the rest of our breakfasts in the MDR. Drinks selection at the bars was a bit of a dissapointment. Most were all too sweet to our taste as they were mixed with ready-made syrups. And for the first few days they were out of lemons so every drink was garnished with a lime wedge. The Vintages wine bar would benefit of a larger selection of wines and champagnes served by the glass, as other bars on the ship have a wider sortiment. Smoking was allowed in the Casino, which meant that cigarette smoke flowed also to the Vintages. As an ex-smoker I would happily see indoor smoking banned and wouldn't mind a non-smoking ship. Entertainment was generally good to great, highlight being the staff, lowpoint the ship's own singers. The '80's and '70's parties at the Centrum were great fun. The poolside music was very loud but we spent our time on deck mostly at the front part of the ship where it did not disturb us. We had the Deluxe Drinks Package, which was a good investment as bottled water was included, the tap water in the cabin being too warm to drink. Service in general was polight but the ratio of service staff to passengers was noticeably poor, with no chance to have a friendly talk with bar or dining room staff as they were so very busy. Which left us with a feeling of hurried, impersonal, revenue generating oriented atmosphere. The first port visit was a day at Sir Baniyas Island, off the coast of Abu Dhabi. We anchored offshore and were tendered to the island, where a cruise ship beach had been constructed with sun beds, covered bbq buffet, several bars and toilet facilities. This was quite a nice place to visit, we enjoyed the sun and had lunch before heading back to the ship. Tendering was very efficient, no queues and frequent departures. Second stop was Khasab in Oman. They said it was the first time the Jewel OTS stopped there, so great hopes were with the company and passengers. From the very modern pier we were given a free shuttle to the town centre, if you can call it that. This is a very small village with absolutely nothing to do, so after half an hour walking up and down the dusty main street we were on our way back to the ship. At least this gave us a windless day to enjoy the weather on deck. In Muscat we took a hop on-hop off bus from the pier. After a comical walk through the immigration building we were back on the bus, for the next two hours, during which we saw mainly rocky hills and car dealerships along the motorway. I think we would have been much better off just walking from the port gates to the center of the town and exploring it ourselves. Sea day was a bit windy. On Saturday we arrived at Abu Dhabi and took a taxi to see the Grand Mosque, which is a spectacular and very well organised place to visit. As we had been to Abu Dhabi before were not intrested in spending any extra time there. On the last day in Dubai we took a taxi to the QE2 which was moored opposite our berth. It was a great experience wandering around the old ship, a bit sad to see how much of the original interiors have been altered and removed. There we sat down at the Chart Room bar and had the most expensive g&t of our lives. Always check the price list first! Disembarkation was as effortles as embarkation. We carried our own bags and took a taxi to the airport. As they say, any cruise is better than no cruise. We won't be coming back to Jewel of the Seas and most probably won't sail Royal Caribbean again, their concept is just not for us. But now we are one experience wiser and know what to look for in our future cruises. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We took this cruise mainly due to the fact that the package Royal Caribbean was offering two nights post cruise stay at the Atlantis the Palms in Dubai. It seemed like a nice way to end the cruise The ship is showing its age. Most days ... Read More
We took this cruise mainly due to the fact that the package Royal Caribbean was offering two nights post cruise stay at the Atlantis the Palms in Dubai. It seemed like a nice way to end the cruise The ship is showing its age. Most days it was not possible to walk around deck 5 as there was always parts of the deck sectioned off for maintenance. There's nothing quite like the sound of an industrial sander removing rust while you are trying to get a bit of fresh air. Once again, I believe Royal Caribbean do not examine their passenger list and tailor the cruise accordingly. It would appear that he same activities, entertainment etc get rolled out despite who is on board. A prime example is this cruise which had most people over 50 on board. My wife and I liked to head up to deck 13 at night to relax in the lounge with a coffee before bed. However in the lounge there, they have piped disco music blaring out, even when it was empty. We asked if the volume could please be turned down but nothing ever happened. Another thing which I can't understand is their choice of staff to host the trivia events. You wouldn't expect a person who couldn't play the piano to give a recital, or expect someone who can't sing to be up on stage in a musical. So why have some young lady from Mexico trying to ask trivia questions, continually asking for our pardon as she doesn't speak english very well. Away from trivia, entertainment was poor. Only one headliner act for the whole week. A foursome singing soul music which although I personally like, was not to everyones taste. The singers and dancers tried their best was their shows were something more akin to a holiday camp. As for the cruise director Andrea, if I hadn't gone to a couple of the evening shows during the cruise I would never have seen him. Certainly not in the same league as Joff Eaton, Hello Clo or Luke Arrowsmith. Remember when cruise directors used to be seen mingling with the guests each day ? - I guess those days are gone. For dining, from what I can see most people now prefer not to visit the Main Dining Room and it's easy to understand why. Service is way too slow & the food always arrives cold. We tried it a couple of times with the same results so opted for the buffet for the remainder of the cruise. Also, this is the first Royal Caribbean cruise I have been on that didn't serve lobster any evening. RC should remember that for some people, a lobster night is a traditional part of the holiday.and will probably try another cruise line if this is done away with to save a few bucks Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This cruise sailed over Christmas and this was the reason we booked a cruise only and arranged our own flights, we were then spending New Year at a hotel we go to regularly in Dubai. We've done this cruise many times with RCI and ... Read More
This cruise sailed over Christmas and this was the reason we booked a cruise only and arranged our own flights, we were then spending New Year at a hotel we go to regularly in Dubai. We've done this cruise many times with RCI and Azamara so we knew what to expect from the ports however we hadn't sailed on Jewel before. Emarkation: We stayed 1 night pre-cruise at the Fairmont Dubai which was close to the airport and Port Rashid as its never a good idea travelling overnight and going straight to the ship. Our transport picked us up at 11:00am and we were at the port by 11:15, dropped off our luggage and headed for immigration and check-in, this was very efficient and we were on board by 11:45. The Windjammer was open for lunch and was reasonably busy when we go there but we managed to get a seat outside. The cabins were available by 13:30 so headed down to unpack. Cabin: The spacious balcony cabin on deck 9 was a decent size with plenty of storage space and a good size balcony, there was tea and coffee which was great and the bed was very comfortable. The bathroom was small but there was a shower with a proper shower screen but no added extras like shower cap or fancy amenities, very basic, a bar of soap and some cheapo shower gel, the towels were a decent quality and thick. The cabin steward was efficient and made sure everything was kept clean. Overall the cabin badly needed upgraded. Dinning: We had opted for My Time Dinning and had booked our times in advance, we had also reserved Giovanni's and Chops. The food was excellent in every venue including The Windjammer, there were plenty of choices for everyone and we were never disappointed at breakfast or lunch times. The service in all venues was first class, sometimes a bit slower in the main restaurant in the evening depending on which table you were at and who the waiters were. The only disappointing thing in the main restaurant was that turkey was served on Christmas Eve and not Christmas day. Entertainment: Some shows we enjoyed however we have seen better singers and dancers purely personal choice, we also don't like circus acts however the best show we watched was Bruce Parker an amazing singer and very charismatic gentleman. There was also the Matisse Trio, Magic Duo and Sagitario Duo who played in various areas around the ship all good. Bars: A lot of activities seemed to stem around the atrium during the day and in the evening which can be a bit annoying if you are walking through so we tended to avoid this deck whenever we could. The Schooner Bar was always busy as there was musical entertainment every night. In the Safari Lounge there was a great Gin Bar a recent addition to the ship and a Vodka Bar which very few people knew about as it wasn't advertised anywhere, we only found out about it after speaking to Anthony who was working in the Solarium Bar. We enjoy Gin and we were very pleased to see such a great variety of Whitely Neil Gins along with many others and a good Gin menu for cocktails, Anthony (the same Bar Man from the Solarium) was very friendly and was excellent in offering ideas. Dress Code: All I can say is some people obviously didn't get the memo!!! even though you are on holiday you should dress appropriately for the restaurant in the evening and make a bit of an effort on Formal nights. There was only 1 sea day on this cruise and as expected the pool deck and surrounding areas were very busy, all the sun beds were occupied and too close together. The weather was fabulous during the cruise mid to high 20s every day which isn't always the case at this time of year. The crew were constantly cleaning and sanitising and everyday in the Cruise Compass there was a section about Wash Up and the Captain also reiterated this regularly however near the end of the cruise there was an outbreak of Norovirus and additional cleaning was introduced, when will people not recognise basic hygiene by washing their hand after using the toilets!!!! Disembarkation was straight forward as we were overnight in Dubai anyway and everyone was off the ship for 09:00am Overall we enjoyed the cruise however in my opinion the ship is in need of a refurbishment and we were told by an Officer that this not scheduled until sometime in 2021 however it wouldn't put us off sailing on Jewel again Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise for its combination of cities plus the opportunity to have a beach day, so the fact that the captain deemed the seas too rough for tendering (debatable) on the day we were to visit Sir Bani Yas for our beach day was a ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its combination of cities plus the opportunity to have a beach day, so the fact that the captain deemed the seas too rough for tendering (debatable) on the day we were to visit Sir Bani Yas for our beach day was a huge disappointment. The itineraries for future cruises also include Khasab and it's a pity this port could not have been substituted when we abandoned Sir Bani Yas, as the itinerary ended up being too light on ports, with only 2 in addition to our departure port of Dubai, where we spent a disproportionate amount of time, 3 of the 7 nights. Embarkation was fine, as was disembarkation at the end, although when we got back to Dubai there was a lot of confusion around the system for collecting passports and incorrect info was given around the need to get our passports twice in one day, which was not the case. Disembarking in Muscat where we arrived early due to the cancelled port was total chaos and it ended up being too late in the day to get off to do anything useful so we stayed on board, making the extra time there redundant. Our cabin was satisfactory other than the damage along the base of the mirror which gave it the appearance of a cheap motel mirror. It was otherwise kept clean and the beds were comfortable. I enjoyed the shows in the theatre when there actually were shows. It is a cop out to show movies on some nights. I also enjoyed the regular quizzes, but overall there was less entertainment than my previous cruise, which was with Princess, and one duo which performed regularly in the centrum and by the main pool really were not very good. We got very tired of the constant Christmas music being played throughout much of the ship and used to search for sunbathing areas it didn't reach. The food was good in the mytime dining in Tides on deck 5, providing faster service than the main seatings on deck 4. Our waiters were great and got extra veggies for us and/or extra starters, as we were surprised how small the portions were. The Windjammer cafe food was quite good- nothing special, and near the end of the cruise I spoke to the manager about the grubbiness of the outdoor section, with stains from spilled drinks, etc, and dirty balcony glass. I felt overall the cleanliness of the public areas left something to be desired, from the dustballs under the seats outside the Tides dining room to the state of the toilet floors, which were messy even on embarkation day. The only ship's shore excursion we did was the Abu Dhabi city tour which included the mosque, and we enjoyed it other than the rather pointless stop at the closed Louvre museum. The stunning mosque was a highlight of our entire holiday. There was then a mix up regarding the itinerary but to their credit, the tour providers included the Heritage village once they realised we had been told by the ship that it was part of the tour. For our sea day my daughter paid an eye-watering $22 for 24 hours of the slower wifi, so anyone considering ship's wifi should definitely get one of the pre-sailing offers. Despite the above criticisms, overall we enjoyed our cruise. Muscat was really beautiful and an interesting contrast to the modern cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi. We liked the food and the overall service. We had fun in the pools and on the water slide. We also enjoyed the stargazing with the informative cruise director. However, in the end we felt we had overpaid for what we got, i.e., £1002 for the two of us in an oceanview cabin, when many had paid £400 per couple for balcony cabins in a later sale. If we'd paid £400 I would have been happy with the value for money but at over £1000, having only had 2 ports of call (in addition to our starting port) I ended up wishing we had booked one of the upcoming cruises which make better use of the time by include Khasab, so there would be a minimum of 3 ports on occasions when Sir Bani Yas tendering gets cancelled. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
After 7 days sailing around the GCC I would like to share my honest experience with you all.. Embarkation was fairly painless and the whole process took 30 minutes maximum, the huge let down was the disembarkation at Oman port & ... Read More
After 7 days sailing around the GCC I would like to share my honest experience with you all.. Embarkation was fairly painless and the whole process took 30 minutes maximum, the huge let down was the disembarkation at Oman port & Dubai! Took 90 minutes to get off ship and was absolute chaos amongst the passengers, RC need to do something here or change ports as it is a huge negative and you lose too much time hanging around. Ship - Its old but still in fair condition and still a lovely ship, my only criticism is the sofas in schooner bar is like sitting on a park bench and the art work is from the 70's Cabin - Cabin is what you expect on a 10-15 year old ship, little worn and dated but found the bed to be comfortable and decent TV with English channels. Note - take adapters as it only has US / European plugs & hairdryer is terrible. Dining - AMAZING! Much better than Anthem of the Seas. The main dining room was one of our better meals and cant praise waiter - Karandeo & Marie enough! Fantastic work and 10/10 for service. Entertainment - Overall 5/10!! Motown singers however where fantastic and deserve a 10/10, for the rest of the shows it was average if I'm honest. Entertainment leader (Talita?) was very good and put on a fantastic show (Battle of the Sexes & another)! She had us all in stitches. Service - Service around ship was extremely good, with the exception of main customer service desk on level 4!! The manager had a stinking attitude when we complained about our room and requested to move. This did put a huge negative spin on our vacation, and did question my next booking with RC in 2020. Excursions - N/A we did our own so cant comment. Gym - Very good and on par with the larger ships. Overall I liked the ship but I prefer the larger / newer ships if I'm been honest. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise mainly due to the itinerary. The itinerary was great. The food was very good in the buffet and in the dining room. The boat itself is old and needs updating. ie; The frame on the mirror was falling off when my ... Read More
We chose this cruise mainly due to the itinerary. The itinerary was great. The food was very good in the buffet and in the dining room. The boat itself is old and needs updating. ie; The frame on the mirror was falling off when my husband tried to open it the first time. The table on the balcony was old, had stains and was unsteady. The housekeeping was BAD! The first day we found a broken toenail on the carpet. The base of the table in our stateroom was never dusted and the dust was quite thick, same goes for the TV set. The toilet was never really cleaned properly as you could see the obvious. The housekeeper didn't converse much except toward the last couple of days near 'tipping time' All other services were good and entertainment was okay. The shore excursions were good except for the one on the Amalfi coast. The tour guide there 'M'; did not give us much information or instruction when getting off of the bus for Sorrento. She just dumped us at a site and said to meet her back in 30 minutes. There was a store there where they sold Limoncello products and we learned later that was the factory, so did not buy anything. When I asked her at the end of the tour why we didn't go to the factory she said that was the shop in Sorrento. She did not make many stops to take pictures along he way, so we feel we will need to do this again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Review: Royal Caribbean Jewel of the Seas 9 day Greek islands Sailed: Oct 2019 Here’s my thoughts. Just got off the boat ! Note: I’ve cruised many times on most lines. Both as a couple and as a family. This was a mid ... Read More
Review: Royal Caribbean Jewel of the Seas 9 day Greek islands Sailed: Oct 2019 Here’s my thoughts. Just got off the boat ! Note: I’ve cruised many times on most lines. Both as a couple and as a family. This was a mid aged couples honeymoon trip for us THE GOOD - itinerary ! Couldn’t beat the stops for the 9 night Greek islands. Trip was worth it for the ports and the ports are the #1 thing I booked based off of. ***So overall this boat is worth it because of its itinerary and I don’t know many other boats that had as good of an itinerary!! *** - schooner bar area is really nice. Classy. Where lots of people gather to mingle. Also where chopps is. Safari club. This was the nicest area of the ship IMO - chopps grill : was the nicest one I’ve been to on any RC ships. Intimate enough and very nicely decorated and the service was top-notch. Worth checking out even for one night. Recommend an earlier dinner time so that you can see the sunset because the view and windows are beautiful in chops Grill see if you can get a seat near them. - windjammer - some seating areas are really nicely decorated. - staff: no complaints Re any staff. Our waiter. Assistsnt waiter and steward were all amazing. Mohammed Arteum and Sugi - hot tubs: Although generally pretty full; was still able to get in one and they had several hot tubs which is better than most ships I’ve been on! - “the key”. Before boarding the ship I heard a lot of controversial information on if the key was worth it and my opinion is if you were going to fork out the money for the internet package anyhow then for the few extra dollars per day it’s worth it to get the key! Priority getting off the boat for Santorini was definitely worth it. Santorini was the only port where you really needed it and where they offered The key service. The key embarkation lunch by chops Grill (but not actually hosted in chops Grill) as well as the disembarkation breakfast was really nice. this was the first time I didn’t feel rushed off the boat. - steady boat: I felt the jewel was the most steady of a boat that I have been on not very much movement at all ! He stayed on deck 7 middle/ forward to ship. Inside state room. - weather: whoever said that October is the cold / low season for Greece is totally wrong! This was *the best* time of year to go!!! it was actually very comfortable in the mid to high 20s for touring and beaching. I would not want to do Greece in high season July or August with the hot weather and the double size crowds!! it was busy enough in October!!! - main dining room menu: no complaints here there was always lots of variety as well as some popular nightly favourites !! the spaghetti Bolognese. steak. Beef Short rib. cream of mushroom soup and the apple pie with ice cream where some of our favourites on-board. Once again the waiters were fantastic and always had what they knew we wanted in terms of drinks ready to go THE NOT SO GREAT - the entertainment was overall lame for my personal taste. Probably the most boring ship I’ve been on in terms of entertainment. (but that could be because it’s a European cruise with an older crowd?). Didn’t have the quality broadway style shows I personally prefer. I walked out of 3 shows after a few numbers Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
With high hopes we boarded another Royal Caribbean cruise (this time from Rome), and as with other RC cruises, we were left wanting for more and better - although there were a few bright spots that deserve mention. We knew this ship was ... Read More
With high hopes we boarded another Royal Caribbean cruise (this time from Rome), and as with other RC cruises, we were left wanting for more and better - although there were a few bright spots that deserve mention. We knew this ship was aging and had some low level reports around sanitary food handling and conditions, but we were still hopeful. However, the food quality was among our biggest complaints. Although the buffet for breakfast and lunch had a few bright spots, most of the hot food was lukewarm at best with little taste, and the cold food was not really cold. In the Tides main dining room service was spotty at best and food was mostly mediocre or not very good. Typically when ordering a glass of wine it took 5-8 minutes to get someone to take your order, and then you were lucky if you got the right order within another 5-10 minutes. There was one time the steward brought me a glass of chardonnay three times (within one hour) when I did not order a chardonnay. On a positive note, the meal in the Chops Grill (specialty dining spot) was pretty good. I say pretty good because my rib eye steak was thin and tough, while my wife's filet was very good. Even there the service was slow. One of the other specialty restaurants Giovanni's was pretty good, but again service was at a snail's crawl. The osso buco meal was very good though and all other food was pretty good. But it is a sad day when you have to pay extra to get a good meal on a ship, and this was a perfect example of that kind of situation. Around the pools there are signs posted about not leaving a chair for extended period, but almost every chair there was empty except for towels that reserved them. And there were a few kids in the 16 and older pool area for adults. Most of the service crew, including bartenders, maids, etc. were friendly and provided good service and were pleasant to be around. However, the people at Guest Services desk were obviously stressed and sometimes provided short, terse information that might or might not answer your question or concern. regarding shore excursions, we visited three locations (a forth was not completed due to high wind). The two we did through the ship were Very, VERY crowded, making for a less than stellar experience. For example, the day this ship chose to visit Santorini there were five other large cruise ships in the harbor. So an island with a total population of 15,000 had to deal with 12,000 - 15,000 cruisers on this day - something it is not set up to do - and not sure why RC chose that date to visit. At disembarkation the people that left the ship early were treated to blaring music in the main lounge area where they were waiting. When asking the attendants to lower the volume they just smiled. So overall, an average cruise on an average ship, with slightly below average food, good accommodations and average value for the money. We will go with newer ships with better food and value in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise as it was going to the islands we wanted to see. The embankment was a breeze. We were on the ship within 15 minutes of arriving. The ship was in very good shape and very clean. We had a balcony cabin and was very nice. ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was going to the islands we wanted to see. The embankment was a breeze. We were on the ship within 15 minutes of arriving. The ship was in very good shape and very clean. We had a balcony cabin and was very nice. Comfortable bed and plenty of storage. The bathroom had a shower door which was nice and a medicine cabinet to store toiletries. I do not understand the complaints I read about the ship before we sailed. The food was very good in the Winjammer cafe. We had my time dining and the food and service were both good. Probably some of the best food we’ve had on a cruise and we have been on many. The one thing serverly lacking was the entertainment. The pool pretty much had nothing not even any music. The only day was the last day a sea day they had band and a few things going on. At night they have the shows which we don’t enjoy and that was it. No comedian. We went to the Skooner bar and listened to the singer, Michael and he was very good. The ports were good but very crowded. We loved Santorini and Athens. We were not able to tender to Mykonos so we missed that port which was a big disappointment. All in all we had a good time except not much to do at night and the pool activities were lacking. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Went on a family vacation August 2019 on jewel of the seas with Royal Caribbean. Spent 3 days in Rome, Italy before the cruise and to be honest that was my favourite part of our holiday. I would rate overall experience on the ship 3/5. ... Read More
Went on a family vacation August 2019 on jewel of the seas with Royal Caribbean. Spent 3 days in Rome, Italy before the cruise and to be honest that was my favourite part of our holiday. I would rate overall experience on the ship 3/5. Here are some of the pros and cons: Pros: •exceptionally friendly staff (especially during dining experiences, they always knew our names and usual orders) •food was delicious and plentiful •cabins were spacious and had a good layout •there were always activities going on throughout the day/evening (I highly recommend going the safari club for nightly karaoke) •staff was very welcoming and accommodating (especially our stateroom attendant) •there are lots of bars so it’s never a long wait for a drink •there are many seating areas throughout the ship so there’s always a place to sit •it was smooth and easy getting on/off the boat at the ports •beds/sheets were very comfortable •lots of elevators that are quick and efficient •the fitness center was exceptional. they have everything you need and there is lots of space. •tons of activities for kids as they have a “kids club” Cons •lots of wear and tear throughout the boat (very disappointing) •the solarium (adults only pool) closed very early at 845pm every night •the rooms and shared areas could have been cleaner as I did not find them overly clean •the main pool was closed in the day several times due to children contaminating it with bodily fluids •lots of games in the arcade were out of order or broken •windjammer cafe (the buffet) had limited seating lots of the days •some of the hallways had a old/unpleasant smell •rock climbing wall was only open for a few hours a day which was disappointing Overall I had a nice time on Jewel of the Seas, but would I choose this cruise again? No. Definitely needs some refurbishing and maintenance in the near future. I was very impressed with the staff and service aboard though. Great for families and children as there are many activities targeted towards a younger age. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this ship because we sailed on it in 2013 and were very happy with it except for the food but that was fine. When we saw the condition the ship was in and our cabin, we just couldn't believe it. It was tired, run down, ... Read More
We chose this ship because we sailed on it in 2013 and were very happy with it except for the food but that was fine. When we saw the condition the ship was in and our cabin, we just couldn't believe it. It was tired, run down, dirty and very unattractive. RC removed some of the public areas and added cabins; therefore, the ship was overcrowded and understaffed. We met people who were showering with their shoes on because they were afraid of contracting some disease. Unbelievable. We don't understand what RC is trying to achieve by offering this type of cruising experience but we will never be cruising on these ships again. They do however a great job on their Oasis class ships. we liked the itinerary in the Greek islands and some of their excursions. Guest Relations was always very busy because hundreds of guests were complaining about something because practically nothing was right. Our Stateroom Attendant was amazing but most of the staff didn't really care. I guess the example comes from the top. The one responsible for the Excursions was extremely rude and didn't care about the passenger's satisfaction with a particular excursion. Some of the staff did the best they could with the resources they had. Royal Caribbean's senior management is lacking leadership and consideration for their passengers and personnel. We will never cruise on their small ships again and never suggest it to any of our friends or acquaintances. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
After our first cruise on Symphony of the Seas we were worried a smaller ship would disappoint us. It didnt. We really didn't miss anything and thought the Jewel was lovely. The staff however is horrible in comparison. We only saw our ... Read More
After our first cruise on Symphony of the Seas we were worried a smaller ship would disappoint us. It didnt. We really didn't miss anything and thought the Jewel was lovely. The staff however is horrible in comparison. We only saw our cabin steward a couple of times. He was not interested nor did he remember our names. When we fist arrived the toilet seat was not clean, lipstick on towels and hairs in the bathroom sink. Not a great start of our Cruise. Overall we thought the staff was not very enthusiastic or happy. Didn't seem to care if food items in Windjammer were out and needed replacing. Dirty plates could stack up and be there for the duration of the meals. There were or course exceptions but overall staff seemed tired and not interested. Entertainment in the theater was low quality one of the guys couldn't sing at all. If this had been our first cruise we would have never gone again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
About us- cruise is our choice when traveling. Love to be on the sea and visit different destinations daily! We have been on 20+cruises. We like aft balconies, good food and wine. We do not really frequent shows. First and foremost ... Read More
About us- cruise is our choice when traveling. Love to be on the sea and visit different destinations daily! We have been on 20+cruises. We like aft balconies, good food and wine. We do not really frequent shows. First and foremost we had a wonderful trip- these are some details pros and cons. I read alot of reviews when i am planning a trip and i hope my details help you. We chose this trip because of the itinerary- how can you beat Rome and the Greek Islands. This was also our 35th wedding anniversary. We are platinum status on RCL. We flew TAP airline- love them used them 2 years ago to Barcelona as well !!! Car service to and from airport to hotel- Italy Private Excusions- prompt, polite- great job- they were recommend from Rome in Limo as they were already booked Pre and post hotel- Hotel Barocco -love this boutique hotel. Great service, lovely room, the best breakfast and sweet cappuccino. I could not wait to get back there post cruise for coffee. Upgraded our room and left beautiful wine and fruit. We were leaving at 3:30 am to come home and they offered a box breakfast to go- so sweet and great location. Ship- Ship is small, which is fine if you are not looking for all the bells and whistles of the larger ships. We had no issue with the size. Pool area- solarium pool had children in it. Staff- all super friendly working hard- great job Food- No please do not misunderstand- we did not go hungry. But the food in the dining room has declined. I requested a garden salad in the dining room and was told that Cesar salad was the only choice. Fish was over cooked and dry. Meats were over salted and tough. The hours of the dining room would change depending on port leaving long lines even for folks who had reservations- just not customer friendly. Bread and croutons were stale. Specialty dining was a step better- but not much. Scallop potatoes dry and over cooked- nothing seemed fresh. We went to both Chops and Giovanni's- Giovanni is lovely- i really wanted to like it but the food was so salty. The pasta was gummy. Deserts were mushy and tasteless. Windjammer was decent- liked the grab and go egg sandwiches on port days and the choices were plentiful. Sushi Class- What a great event! i had read a review of this before we left and decided to do it. 35.00 per person - but you get huge amounts of delicious sushi. This was not a demo you actually make the sushi and feel like you can do at home for family and friends. If you like sushi this is really fun. Bar service- we did have drink package- purchased on a special and found we probably lost money on it but enjoyed the freedom of not thinking about it. Bar service was good, drinks were good and the bartenders friendly and made suggestions to try new drinks. We particularly enjoyed the bartenders at Schooner bar after dinner. Vintages the wine bar was my favorite where Angeline the sommelier there was a delight to talk to about wine and travel. Ports- Santorini- Book the shore excursion Oia on your own!!!! I never book ship excursions but this gets you off the ship and to Santorini efficiently. Santorini is not easy to get in and out of. We used our SBC to buy it. We went to Oia and i got my photos (bucket list). We then went to Santos winery and did huge wine tasting with incredible views. left around 7:30 pm short line to the tram. I didn't even see donkeys. It is hot bring a hat! Mykonos- St James Beach Club-until 1:00 pm then back to town and walked around saw the windmills and had a late lunch right there overlooking the water. - Kazarma had wine and sandwiches and just relaxed. Very nice day. Athens- we hired Georges Taxi for the day- did this ahead of time and well worth 220 E for both for the day - we saw EVERYTHING. Ask for Kostas as your driver he is the best! He gave us so much information in the air conditioned car that we knew what we were looking at while out in hot sun. We saw Acropolis, changing of the guard, ancient agora, Olympic stadium, wonderful authentic lunch at a taverna, In the afternoon we visited the national museum- I asked Kostas for sweets and he brought us to a bakery with amazing baklava. Just a fantastic day- he wa the best. Katakolon- charming fishing village- walked around and shopped a little. Pre cruise- did a food tour with Rome Food Tours- wonderful guide, lots of walking and a nice selection of food. Post cruise- back to hotel Barocco and then toured the forum and coliseum. Feel free to ask me questions. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The itinerary was something we wanted to do, we did an B2B2B, starting on juli 2019. Our pick for cabin was an aft balcony, nr. 9658. We enjoyed that having an aft balcony was so quiet, we send several hours there if things got too loud ... Read More
The itinerary was something we wanted to do, we did an B2B2B, starting on juli 2019. Our pick for cabin was an aft balcony, nr. 9658. We enjoyed that having an aft balcony was so quiet, we send several hours there if things got too loud at the main pool area's. After booking 1,5 year in advance this was a vacation we where looking forward too. The 2 weeks where as what can be expected on an Mediterranean cruise. Ship is fine but, after this vacation and after cruising on the bigger ships of the fleet we decided that this type of class is not for us, especially when you are cruising for 3 weeks on the same ship. We did Izumi and Chops the 2nd week and as always didn't disappoint. The rest of the dining we headed of to the MDR. We had a lovely lady from Ukraine, Tetiana, who got us the same table for 2 the whole 3 weeks! She was brilliant, sweet en so skilled, passioned en helpful in her job. We loved her! Our waitstaff, Ralph and Mondher where so great, we had a great time every night we went to diner. Now let's talk entertainment, remember, this is my opinion. We found the entertainment not good. The singer in the Schooner Bar, ieks, he didn't sing but shouted, couldn't keep a tone and had no interaction with the audience at the bar. We didn't go to any of the shows because we are not show people. The other venues with music (except 1 night in the centre with the JotS orchestra playing bigband! That was excellent) the music and shows wasn't't all that. Maybe we have to keep in mind that cruising in the caribbean is a whole other experience with the entertainment then in the mediterranean, but hey, we where cruising so al in al we did had a good time but where mostly in the Diamond Lounge before dinner. After diner we hung out at the bar in the casino. And then we have the too much Italiano part. Aargh, those people and their kids are annoying. Don't speak English, demanding that every crew member speak Italian and if they didn't they get furious. I walked on my toes that last week every time i encounter an Italian with their demands. The cruise director wasn't any better. She is a native italian and she forgot she works on an American Cruise line. If i wanted to hear Italian the whole day i might as well booked a cruise with MSC or Costa. This is the first time that RCL let us down in the last week and we will never ever cruise on the mediterranean, especially in summer. So done with that. We cruised on Harmony out of Barcelona in august 2016 and never had the this feeling like we do now. Overall we enjoyed our vacation but now we know that we never: cruise in the Mediterranean and never ever cruise the smaller ships for a B2B2B. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The Jewel of the Seas, although old was impressively maintained. Our cabin, 1102 had original fittings with the added new style flat screen TV. Slightly concerned being at the back of the ship we may experience soot on the balcony but we ... Read More
The Jewel of the Seas, although old was impressively maintained. Our cabin, 1102 had original fittings with the added new style flat screen TV. Slightly concerned being at the back of the ship we may experience soot on the balcony but we didn't. Noise from Windjammers above was apparent but not loud enough to bother us really. Sun unfortunately didn't hit the balcony much so the additional sunbeds included in the bigger balcony were not of much use to us. Entertainment was poor, and this I think is where the penny pinching is starting to show with RCI. We only had 3 bought in acts, the rest were staged by the singers and dancers on the ship. On the White Party night there wasn't even a show at all in the theatre! The Il Divo tribute type group were amazing but the magician and BMX rider (Yes I said BMX rider) were nothing impressive considering we were on a 4 star cruise ship! The Diamond Club, exclusively for Diamond and above members is nothing more than a corner of the sky bar sectioned off with partitioning. I have been in a number of Diamond Lounges on RCI and NEVER seen such a sad and unloved area - Diamond members not even worthy of a room, just a partitioned area shoved in the corner! We went once and didn't return for the rest of the cruise. I stupidly forgot shampoo and conditioner, also stupidly expected the shop to sell such things - No they didn't as the shop is so tiny it couldn't possibly stock essentials like that! There were no prices on anything in the shop, you are just expected to go to the till and pay up! I went to the Spa in search of shampoo and was faced with the Spa Manager who set upon giving me a 'Consultation' I told her I didn't want one just some shampoo thanks but she was determined and eventually decided I had dry hair with split ends and need to pay $90 for shampoo, conditioner and hair mask! The woman was vile and I politely told her I wasn't paying that and did she have any cheaper or I wasn't bothering, she miraculously produced shampoo and conditioner at the bargain price of $25. I didn't bother arguing the fact that my hair wasn't dry or split and in fact she should perhaps look in the mirror because hers wasn't anything Vidal Sassoon would claim to have touched either!! She was lucky I was tired from travelling and really needed the goods! Shortage of staff was apparent. We can remember times of waiters walking up and down in the theatre but not any more, get your own at the bar. Windjammers was similar, tables left uncleaned for the duration we were in and get your own drinks from the bar as no one will ask you. We regularly saw management mopping floors and cleaning tables as there is just not enough staff to cover the ship. Teenage children running around I gangs while presumably parents stay well away from them. Having done more than 15 RCI cruises on big ships and small, we would not return to them again. So many corners are being cut yet the prices continue to rise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I have cruised with RCCL before and convinced my boyfriend to try out cruising after my fantastic experience on Adventure of the seas last may. We were more keen on picking a good itinerary than ship, so we went with this cruise on the ... Read More
I have cruised with RCCL before and convinced my boyfriend to try out cruising after my fantastic experience on Adventure of the seas last may. We were more keen on picking a good itinerary than ship, so we went with this cruise on the Jewel of the Seas. The embarkation in Civitavecchia went smooth and we went from taxi to the pool in under 30 minutes. Jewel of the seas itself is a very nice ship - the amount of bars, restaurants and entertainment is more than sufficient. We managed to always find spots where we felt very private. The ship was not as clean as I’ve experienced other ships - we kept seeing glasses, plates etc. in stairs and hallways from the night before way up after midday almost everyday. We eat at the main restaurant almost every night (expect 2). The restaurant was always very busy and even though you had reservations you could stand in line for up to 30 minutes. The food was great. We had my-time dining and shuffled between sections and waiters every night - which we didn’t mind. The issue though was that every waiter we came in contact with seemed tired, very unengaged and unmotivated - a smile was a rare thing and we couldn’t really find a consistency in the service that was provided. Every night in the dining room was very different from each other - and not in a good way - one night we even sat at our table for 20 minutes without even being greeted. Everything seemed to be in a rush and therefore the waiters probably didn’t have the time to provide the service RCCL normally do - which was a huge shame and ruin our dining experience. The last night of our cruise we had made reservations at chops grill - which was the best decision we have made on this cruise. Our waiter was lovely and the food was great! I would totally recommend to book some of the speciality restaurants onboard. The coral theatre is a Greta venue, the shows we saw were entertaining. About the service onboard I must say I was very disappointed. Most days we went around the ship and felt like an excuse for ourself (especially my boyfriend as it was his first cruise). The people in the lattetudes, most bars and in guest services were very nice and accommodating - while we, on the pool deck, very met with rude pool attendants. All in all most of the crew seemed very tired and unengaged (maybe it was the end of the contract for most of them, I don’t know) The itinerary for this crew was very nice - and we found some hidden gems in the Mediterranean we definitely want to go back to. We went into shore everyday - and really enjoyed this itinerary very much. I spend most of my cruise trying to explain to my boyfriend that what we experienced onboard Jewel of the seas was very different from what I’ve experienced before, and I know that I will have a very hard time convincing him of going on another RCCL cruise with me. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Port calls to Santorini, Mykonos, Athens, and Katakolon await you! Travelers will discover each island differs in its beauty, shopping, food, and activities. Recommend to reserve on board excursions especially in the area of ... Read More
Port calls to Santorini, Mykonos, Athens, and Katakolon await you! Travelers will discover each island differs in its beauty, shopping, food, and activities. Recommend to reserve on board excursions especially in the area of transportation in order to fully enjoy each island. Port call for Rome requires the traveler to consider arriving a couple days prior to embarkation or staying after disembarkation in order to visit some of the amazing historical sites of Rome. Metro is your cheapest means of transportation in Rome. While the port calls for this sailing are truly amazing, the cruise itself is lame. The ship and cabins are clean and comfortable, but lacks its shine in décor. The ship offers a couple specialty restaurants coupled with cafes, the Windjammer, and the main dinning as it is with other ships from Royal Caribbean. While passengers will find the dinning service satisfactory, they will quickly discover that the entertainment and activities are unsatisfactory. The performance shows were average as they lacked vitality. The night clubs and other like events were short lived as they lacked participants and closed early. There are two cruising days that provided passengers with some day time activities, but most preferred to stay by the poolside and hot tubs. While each of the three pools offered space, the entertainment for the two adult pools were few and far between. Pre-arranged transportation from and to the airport is a must! While our family and friends experienced a smooth embarkation with pre-arranged transportation, the disembarkation and transportation to the airport were disorganized as Royal Caribbean staff redirected passengers incorrectly and elevators on the ship were jammed packed with anxious travelers needing to catch early flights. Overall, this sailing while on board was a disappointment compared to other ships and sailings of Royal Caribbean. The most amazing experiences took place at each port of call. Santorini, my favorite, one must dine while overlooking the Aegean Sea! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Diamond Member creature of habit. It seems that Royal Caribbean management is just going through the motion. The exceptional service that I have received through the years seems to be a thing of the past. I do not know if this is ... Read More
Diamond Member creature of habit. It seems that Royal Caribbean management is just going through the motion. The exceptional service that I have received through the years seems to be a thing of the past. I do not know if this is indicative of the cruise industry as a whole. However, after this cruise, I am switching cruise lines and will find out. The food on the cruise was limited in selection in the dining room. The food in the Wind Jammer was fine. The food in the Diamond Lounge was poor at best. Service in the Diamond Lounge was very good. Most extras that make the cruise special (sail away party, Ice carvings, variety of entertainment, etc ) no longer exist. Coupon books for Diamond members are a thing of the past. The most serious incident that happened on the ship was the Portofino tender service. The waves were extremely rough and the tender was violently being bounced around. People were screaming and throwing up. Water was pouring in the front window of the tender. A passenger (where was the crew member?) closed the window to stop the water filling the life boat. We put our life jackets on in the event of a sinking. Later on the ship, I asked the front desk management why the tenders service was not discontinued due to poor sea conditions. I was told it was the harbor master's decision. The front desk management seemed annoyed by my question. Just leave me alone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The islands we visited were beautiful and the weather was fantastic even in April. We booked a Royal Caribbean Excursion for each port of call and everyone of them was well organised and very ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The islands we visited were beautiful and the weather was fantastic even in April. We booked a Royal Caribbean Excursion for each port of call and everyone of them was well organised and very interesting. Embarkation was a breeze. We checked in online a few weeks before and from the time we arrived at the port we were given all the details of our drinks and internet packages and were on the ship within five minutes. Excellent organisation on Royal Caribbean's part. Sadly, our first impression of the ship is that it's looking very tired. The carpets are in very poor condition and the fixtures, fittings, bars, seating (pretty much everything) throughout the ship are very worn and in desperate need of replacing and refurbishment. All the public areas in the ship were pretty clean though and we always saw housekeeping staff working hard. The food was excellent everywhere we ate. We ate in the main dining room for most of our evening meals and the food was always hot, tasty and fresh. The buffet was extremely good and had excellent variety, even at breakfast. We ate in all three specialty dining venues and all were excellent except for Giovanni's which was just average. The entertainment was hit and miss. Most of the headliner shows were very average and, frankly, a bit old-fashioned compared to most other ships I've been on. The live bands who played in the bars/venues around the ship were rotated nightly so there was good variety. We didn't partake in many of the activities onboard but they looked just like your average cruise bingo/art auctions/trivia etc. Nothing much to write home about. The service is where this ship shines. All the bar staff and waiters are excellent. We had a good laugh with a few of the buffet servers and the bar staff were extremely attentive. They always did their best to fulfill any special requests and were friendly, funny and obviously enjoyed their jobs. I would not sail on this ship again unless it underwent a huge refurbishment. I will, however, sail with Royal Caribbean again due to the positive experience we had with the service on this ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose the itinerary - not the ship. The 11 night Greece and Croatia cruise leaving from Rome had all the places we wanted to visit, and this itinerary was only happening once! This was our fourth cruise, and 2nd time on Royal ... Read More
We chose the itinerary - not the ship. The 11 night Greece and Croatia cruise leaving from Rome had all the places we wanted to visit, and this itinerary was only happening once! This was our fourth cruise, and 2nd time on Royal Carribean. We didn't get the WOW! experience we were expecting... Firstly, the staff was very good and very attentive to details! Excellent staff everywhere. We had booked My Time Dining, but not always at the same time. The first night, they gave us the table right in the entrance of the dining room. We thought that we'd get another table the next evening so we didn't ask for a change, but we got the same table the next evening. We asked to be moved to another table, and that seemed to have created a lot of problems. They kept wanting to take us back to the first table. I'm not sure why this is important - I didn't mind getting different waiting staff every evening. Anyway, as stated earlier, the staff was excellent regardless of the table we had, but I'm not sure I understand the value of pre-booking My Time Dining. The food for dinner at the dining room was good to excellent, with a good selection every evening. In general, the waiter's recommendations were great choices. Breakfast in the dining room was not the best experience. After waiting in line to get seated, they hoarded us to a large table where we sat with other guests. Service was extremely slow (15-20 minutes before ordering, 30 minutes before getting our eggs benedict ). Room service breakfast was excellent on the first morning we tried it. The 2nd morning, the omelettes were chewy and rubbery. On the 3rd morning, some items were missing (eg: cereal without milk). Breakfast in the Windjammer was the same every morning, not many variations. Good in general, but the fried eggs and omelette station was not being replenished fast enough. Lunch at the Windjammer was generally good, with more variety, and fresh items. The salad bar had a good selection. One comment on the salad bar: when the bottle of olive oil was empty, they removed it but did not replace it - why? We had paid for the premium beverage package. Around the 3rd or 4th night, they started missing out on some of the brands our group was ordering (Botannist gin, Chivas, Stoli vodka, etc...) in Schooner's and the Safari Club. One evening, our waiter in Schooner's had to go get our drink at the Casino. After 3 evenings like this, I complained - why were only some of the bars stocked with only some of the brands? They eventually fixed the issue at Schooner's but they were still out of stock on some of the brands at the Casino and the Pit Stop. If I hadn't paid for the Premium beverage package, I would not have minded. But I expected RCCL to stock up on the brands advertized as being part of the package. To me, this is unacceptable. The entertainment was appropriate and varied. Over the course of our 11 night cruise, we didn't see/hear the same band play the same thing twice, which is good! The formal nights were just that - nights where people would dress up. Aside from a small speech from the Captain at the Captain's Welcome reception, I didn't really feel that the evenings were special. For example, on our prior cruise (not with RCCL), the central atrium was decorated with hundreds of balloons for the farewell evening ceremonies. After our last cruise, we were eager to book the next one. After this cruise on the Jewel, I'm not in a hurry to book the next one - I just didn't get the experience I was expecting. And if I book another cruise, it probably won't be with Royal Carribean. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We picked this ship for the ports and because it was available in early April, before most European cruise ships have started. The ports were a great variety, but the ship itself is old and there is not much to do onboard. The shows were ... Read More
We picked this ship for the ports and because it was available in early April, before most European cruise ships have started. The ports were a great variety, but the ship itself is old and there is not much to do onboard. The shows were mediocre and the meals were okay but nothing special. In a lot of the ports, we had to dock a long way from the town and take taxis or tenders, while we saw other cruise ships pulled right up to the town docks. I'm not sure if this is a cost issue for Royal Caribbean or just the luck of the draw, but it was inconvient in a lot of the ports. We had a junior suite, which we thought was worth the price. It gave us a lot more room and a large closet and bathroom; nice since we were on the ship 11 nights. We did several RCCL excursions, but most were way too crowded and not worth the price. One excursion had 48 people with 1 tour guide and no headphones, so it was impossible to hear her. It would have been better to book through a private tour company like Viator with smaller groups. Also, there was only one indoor pool and because the weather was cool, everyone wanted to sit at this pool. So of course people left their towels early and rarely came back so there was no where to sit. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
My husband and I traveled with our family celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. Sadly specialty restaurants are the way to go anymore as Tides food was less than average for dinner, and the service was hit & miss depending on the ... Read More
My husband and I traveled with our family celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. Sadly specialty restaurants are the way to go anymore as Tides food was less than average for dinner, and the service was hit & miss depending on the table assignment. Thankfully we weren't at the originally assigned table throughout the cruise. Toward the end of our journey, we chose Giovannis (excellent) and Chops for superior filet mignon and service. Why is it necessary to pay extra for what's already paid for!? If onboard, lunch was best at the buffet. The non alcoholic package was worth it...although again paying extra for what should be included: fresh squeezed OJ and Lattetudes for cappuccinos, frappuccinos and lattes. The staff there was stellar. Our cabin, 9212, was a great location mid-ship and larger than average. Both staterooms were rundown, drapes torn/ dirty, & the refrigerators were never cold. The bed was comfortable and the stewards worked hard cleaning every minute they were on duty. All the ships window were filthy. Entertainment, beyond the midshop lobby, was zero in our opinion. The casino smoke carried over throughout that deck. Watch your folio for added charges you may want to challenge. Both our families did. Embarkation and debarkation was easy. Upon return to airport, we didn't pay more than €100 for two (taxis are waiting to add you to passenger vans). We pre-booked three exceptional tour guides online by reading reviews on Cruise Critic. PKTravel and Santoriniexperts is another. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
I have been on two other transatlantic crossings, both of them on the Brilliance. I expected a similar experience on the Jewel, as it is also a Radiance class ship, like the Brilliance. However there was no comparison. On the ... Read More
I have been on two other transatlantic crossings, both of them on the Brilliance. I expected a similar experience on the Jewel, as it is also a Radiance class ship, like the Brilliance. However there was no comparison. On the Brilliance you knew you were in for a special cruise right from the time you boarded and were greeted and served champagne. Not so on this ship. On the Brilliance each evening at the special reception for Diamond and up guests the crew dressed in themed costumes and the lounge was decorated in a similar theme. Not so on this ship. On the Brilliance the Centrum was decorated for departure and upon reaching the final destination it was re-decorated to reflect the place of arrival. Not so on this ship. Cabin service was exceptional. Food in the Windjammer buffet and the main dining room was good also, but the buffet deserts were only good sometimes, other times poor. Entertainment was generally good. The volume level for the pool deck movies was ear splitting and there were only a few people watching each night as a result. The rest of the deck was deserted. There was constant work going on with much noise and noxious odors. Sea conditions were mostly very smooth except around the Azores and the last sea day from Valencia to Rome. Temperatures were much warmer than expected and only in Valencia was there any appreciable rain, so the weather was far better than expected for a crossing this early in the spring. The airport transfer in Florida was terrible, but the one in Rome was very good, although very expensive at $75 if booked with your cruise. Inexplicably it was only $71.99 if booked on board! Never experienced that one before! Guest services staff were generally excellent. Overall the lack of the ship having that special atmosphere of an Atlantic crossing was a disappointment. The ship staff obviously approached this has just another cruise, ho-hum. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We liked the ports of call and finish in Rome. The food was not great. Windjammer had very small selection for lunch but dining room at lunch was the best better than dining room at night.Theater entertainment was great very good ... Read More
We liked the ports of call and finish in Rome. The food was not great. Windjammer had very small selection for lunch but dining room at lunch was the best better than dining room at night.Theater entertainment was great very good choices specialty the classic series and Forever group.Embarkation was slow and disorganized same at ports .One thing they did not pay much attention to washing hands at the venues sometimes machines was empty. Dining room waiter and assisted we had were excellent in general everyplace waiters were absolutely helpful. and good. We're nice set up for Crown Royalty members. We never met all the officer just few and on Capitan reception only cruise director and hotel manager excursion stuff. In many areas different than our other cruises on Royal. Food was good some days others not fish was or overcooked or not cooked enough. Desserts small choices specially at dinner time. Always pushing sales but merchandise is same all the time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our 5th repositioning cruise with RC and did not compare very well with the others.We have noticed a gradual decline in quality over the last decade. Embarkation was much slower than usual and seemed very disorganized.Signage ... Read More
This was our 5th repositioning cruise with RC and did not compare very well with the others.We have noticed a gradual decline in quality over the last decade. Embarkation was much slower than usual and seemed very disorganized.Signage at the terminal was poor and we had a hard time finding the right assembly point.The security man who checked our bags was rude. All the crew members were excellent as usual - helpful and friendly. Our cabin attendant, Mr. Igusti was great, as was Mr. Iputu, who looked after us very well at the Windjammer. The Windjammer greeters were always smiling and friendly and made us welcome. We had some breakfasts at Tides, which were pretty good, and the waiters there were courteous and helpful. But most of our meals were at the Windjammer. I am vegetarian and find the buffet has far more choices for me than the main dining room. Food quality at the Windjammer was variable. I found the salad bar quite good most of the time but sometimes items that ran out were not replaced very quickly. Blue cheese dressing, my favorite, often ran out. The vegetable curries were good. The veggies were OK, but variety was not great. Mashed potato was fine but baked or roasted were poor. The cold drinks were pathetic - flavored water instead of real juice. Coffee was usually appalling and we opted for tea most of the time. Cheese selection was poor, blue cheese was rarely available. Desserts were sometimes good, but some of the cakes looked nice but were extremely dry. I never saw the executive chef at the Windjammer, unlike on previous cruises. We enjoyed the evening entertainment, especially David Naster, who was hilarious. The orchestra was good but some of the female singers higher notes seemed rather distorted by the sound system.The four tenors group was great. We always go our own way at the ports as we find the organized tours grossly overpriced. Ponta Delgada was nice. Gibraltar was very enjoyable and we liked the gondola trip and the monkeys a lot. Alicante was pleasant. Valencia was a big disappointment, with a long and expensive bus ride and very little to see. On balance we found this ship lacking, and will probably try a different company for our next cruise, I'm sorry to say. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Jewel of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 3.0 N/A
Dining 3.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness & Recreation 5.0 N/A
Family 4.0 4.0
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 3.0 N/A
Service 5.0 4.4
Value for Money 3.0 N/A

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