Sail Date: June 2018
Expensive, but worth the investment. Staff did an excellent job. Quite an amazing operation! The land portion was very enlightening, although the tour guide was a bit terse with the participants. Denali is not to be missed. As nice as ... Read More
Expensive, but worth the investment. Staff did an excellent job. Quite an amazing operation! The land portion was very enlightening, although the tour guide was a bit terse with the participants. Denali is not to be missed. As nice as the cruise was, seeing Denali was a critical part of the success of the trip. Transfer to ship was handled fairly well. The cabins are small and require some adjustment to get used to.Dining was very good. Entertainment was enjoyable. Pools were not their strong point when it came evaluating the trip.Need more tables in the library. Three isn't near enough for the entire ship. Lounges are starting to show their age. Suggest renovation. Cruise Director and his Team did an especially fine job. Sorry we missed the tour of the bridge and the session on what it takes to run a floating hotel.Would definately consider this cruise line for any future cruises. The really have it dialed in... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This 7-night northbound cruise to Alaska from Vancouver was a nice time. I had cruised the Dawn before (post refurbish) and this ship was very similar (Jewel has The Great Outdoors but no specialty Mexican restaurant). I read the reviews ... Read More
This 7-night northbound cruise to Alaska from Vancouver was a nice time. I had cruised the Dawn before (post refurbish) and this ship was very similar (Jewel has The Great Outdoors but no specialty Mexican restaurant). I read the reviews about the Jewel being next for refurbishing and rolled my eyes. Who cares if the decor is dated? Well, eventually small things take their toll. It's not a dump by any means, but there are lots of areas with worn carpet, torn vinyl, stained chairs, and overall gaudy decor. Again, this mostly doesn't matter, but newer is definitely nicer. Embarkation in Vancouver was somewhat complex and I found some of the workers there gruff. Vancouver is a great city, so take some time to explore it before you board or after your cruise. Our room steward did the minimum: one night he didn't leave the paperwork for the next day, when we boarded, the dirty ice bucket was still in the room, and he wasn't overly friendly. I saw other guests hugging their steward upon leaving but there was none of that with us. Perhaps he's overworked. The Great Outdoors is a huge plus and a perfect spot to eat and enjoy the views, or just get a beverage and hang out. This area and the Spinnicker Lounge are packed on glacier-viewing days, so watch out. We had great weather so were able to get great views of the glaciers. Make sure you're outside for disembarkation. We saw whales and orcas on more than one occasion. Eat in the dining rooms over the buffets whenever you can. Overall the food was good. The Garden Cafe gets packed during peak breakfast hours despite their openeing La Cucina and The Great Outdoors for overflow. One con is some of the staff seemed to be slightly disgruntled. One bartender said "yes?" like I was bothering him before I ordered $30 in drinks (no UBP here). He must have sensed that I was caught off guard by how abrupt he was because he gave me the drinks for free. O'Sheehan's was something I looked forward to. The service was very bad. The host and most of the servers were not concerned with providing good service. The menu seems to be an older, condensed one (only hot and mild chicken wings, for example) and the food was hit or miss. The portions are tiny, so order accordingly. All of the shows were good. We particularly enjoyed the last night when the staff singers did an informal singing show. The other productions were good too. Director JC Sanchez was nice and did a good job. He was friendly when we saw him on deck. Hopefully once the ship is refurbished, the staff with have more enthusiasm for their work. The pace and "feel" of an Alaska cruise is different from the warm-weather ones. It was almost 100% middle aged couples and lots of tourists from Asia. This was not a party boat. Our three stops (Juneau, Ketchikan, and Scagway) were nice, calm places to walk around and shop, unless you take an excursion. We did the scenic train to Anchorage when we disembarked in Anchorage. We had to get up very early, but it was a nice experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This was a family cruise with a total of 8 family members. NCL was chosen because other family members had previous experience with this Cruise Line. While we had a great time with family, and the excursions were fine, i found the food ... Read More
This was a family cruise with a total of 8 family members. NCL was chosen because other family members had previous experience with this Cruise Line. While we had a great time with family, and the excursions were fine, i found the food to be a great disappointment; unless you ate in a specialty restaurant. This being my first larger cruise ship, I was not sure what to expect. Choosing to go to one of the fitness workshops, I was extremely disappointed when the workshop ended with an attempt to sell me a detox program. I was taken aback by the sale techniques that seemed to be hidden throughout the ship. The food in the buffet and main dining rooms were so so. The main dining room food was better tasting than the buffet, but the food was not very hot. The buffet food was edible, but seemed to be the same items over and over again. The specialty restaurants that we went to were fantastic; The Brazilian Steakhouse, The Italian Restuarant and the Steakhouse. The food there was very tasty and was hot. I did not find the staff to be very hospitable with the exception of two persons; 1) Arnold our room steward and 2) Vladimir, the bar steward in the Stardust theater. Speaking of the Stardust Theater, most of the shows were very good with the exception of the comedian and variety show. I was very disappointed with NCL's customer service staff. Several times I called asking questions and did not feel that we received clear answers. The most disappointing part of this was not knowing any thing about the specifics of the land tour before getting to the land tour part. It would have been nice to know that optional excursions were offered on this part of the trip as well as at the cruise ports. I called customer service, asking if there was any information available and was told that there was not. I asked if NCL contracted with a tour group for the land part and was told that you did not, that NCL did the land tour. Had I known that the Land Tour contract was with Alaskan Premier Tours, I may have been able to look at their website or talk with them in advance. All in all vacation was great, but it is because I chose to not let this disappointing cruise experience ruin my time in Alaska. In the past, I have done small ship cruising and believe that in the future will choose to continue with the small ship experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We departed on a NB cruise thru the inside passage on the NCL Jewel. Alaska and the land excursions were incredible. The cruise ship itself had good and bad points summarized below: Good -Excellent service from the room attendants. ... Read More
We departed on a NB cruise thru the inside passage on the NCL Jewel. Alaska and the land excursions were incredible. The cruise ship itself had good and bad points summarized below: Good -Excellent service from the room attendants. Called us by name and very prompt in making up our cabin. -Cabin was roomy (mini-suite balcony) and clean -Awesome bartenders, that remember your name and provide quick service. "Z" a bartender from Serbia on the upper deck outside bar proved to be one of the highlights of the trip. -Good food in a couple of the specialty reastaurants -Duo Elagia - Elena and Rinat russian aerialist show was awesome Bad -Buffet food was terrible....hot dishes were generally cold -Much of the buffet food had a slight scent of curry to it. -Most entertainment (Bingo dance lessons, etc) felt like they were for old ladies...boring -Embarkation in Vancuever to a long time ...aprox 2 hours -Staff was very gnorant about the unlimited drink policies and how they charge for drinks more than $15. We got different costs for the same drinks at multiple bars. -Room service often did not answer phone Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
This is our second Alaska cruise on the Jewel. The first was great even with lots of rain and very cool temperatures. This cruise was fantastic as we had the same good cruise experience coupled with mild weather with lots of sun and only a ... Read More
This is our second Alaska cruise on the Jewel. The first was great even with lots of rain and very cool temperatures. This cruise was fantastic as we had the same good cruise experience coupled with mild weather with lots of sun and only a few sprinkles. The service and food were very good. We had a favorite bartender and waiter who served us very well. The perks were wonderful. We particularly enjoyed the glacial views from the Haven deck. We were able to expand our knowledge of the ports and take excursions we had not taken previously. Our conseige was excellent and provided us with great service. He was always available to assist us. We enjoyed the entertainment and experienced several new performers and new routines. We explored Vancouver before the cruise and were very impressed by this beautiful city with flowers everywhere and great weather. Disembarkation was perfect and very easy. Embarkation did not go very well. Suite guest received no preferential service, not ever Haven guest. In other ports when we were suite guest we were guided through special fast moving lines. Great trip with great value, we hope there will be a third trip! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
I will start with a summary: DON'T CRUISE WITH NORWEGIAN. This cruise fit our schedule and ports of interest, in addition to being affordable, so we booked it. It turns out that the reason it was affordable is because they skimped on ... Read More
I will start with a summary: DON'T CRUISE WITH NORWEGIAN. This cruise fit our schedule and ports of interest, in addition to being affordable, so we booked it. It turns out that the reason it was affordable is because they skimped on food taste and variety. Even the specialty restaurants were deficient; we got mystery meat in the Italian and overcooked, tasteless meat in the Brazilian. The French restaurant was the best, and even they served rubbery scallops which I sent back. The dessert at the French restaurant was first class, though. There was never any real whipped cream, just artificial stuff almost everywhere. Chocolate milk was a bit of standard syrup in a glass of milk. I could go on, but you get the idea. The company nickel and dimes you for anything they can; the constant selling is in-your-face. The on-board products are terribly overpriced by at least a third again compared to shore prices. Activities were repetitious. The shows were amateurish. There were minimal opportunities for toddlers despite being told before booking that there were and that baby sitters were readily available. And the line charged full price for a not yet two year old despite a bed being already available in his parents' room. Money grubbing to the core. Shore excursions were fine, but weren't run by Staff was pleasant. Our steward was very capable. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
The Jewel is an average size ship, Not a really large one. We had a really Long wait and lone lines during embarkation process. It took longer than expected. The Alaska cruise is colder than other cruises, even in June /July. There ... Read More
The Jewel is an average size ship, Not a really large one. We had a really Long wait and lone lines during embarkation process. It took longer than expected. The Alaska cruise is colder than other cruises, even in June /July. There are no chairs set out on the deck and not a lot of outside deck activities. The entertainment in the ship was moderately good. After several days, the same performers, singers, musicians, began to be repetitive. We enjoyed our time on shore. We had some very enjoyable excursions. The food on the Jewel was moderate. There were some good meals in the specialty restaurants, we enjoyed Cagney's. The complimentary restaurants were moderately good. They tried to change up the menus and offer different things throughout the week. They included a lot of ethic foods. The quality of the food was moderately good. The staff was always helpful and very friendly. The ship was clean and well kept. We liked the itinerary of this cruise and that was probably the main reason we chose this one. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
Chosen as a family cruise destination. Especially enjoyed the variety of food venues, and some of the entertainment in the theater and lounge areas. The option of selecting specialty dining, drink, excursion or wi-fi packages was ... Read More
Chosen as a family cruise destination. Especially enjoyed the variety of food venues, and some of the entertainment in the theater and lounge areas. The option of selecting specialty dining, drink, excursion or wi-fi packages was appreciated. Embarkation in Vancouver and disembarkation in Seward went smoothly, as well as from the all ports we stopped at. Convenient to be able to step off right at dockside, as opposed to being tendered. Also liked the size of the Norwegian Jewel. Because the size of it wasn't overwhelming, you were able to find your way around easily and quickly, with locations being well-marked. Time spent in the glacial bays was long enough to give passengers time to take photos/videos of the glaciers. Only disappointment (although slight) was not enough dessert options in the Garden Cafe. More variety including cookies and bars would have been great. Otherwise, most everything we tried was well-prepared and delicious. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
The cruise was much more than expected. My cabin had more storage than what I had on other cruise lines. The nightly entertainment in the theater was just that - entertaining. And the bartenders at the Shakers Martini Bar were the ... Read More
The cruise was much more than expected. My cabin had more storage than what I had on other cruise lines. The nightly entertainment in the theater was just that - entertaining. And the bartenders at the Shakers Martini Bar were the absolute BEST! I would go on a cruise just to spend more time with them. So entertaining and interesting! These bartenders actually made the cruise. So many fond memories of our time in the evenings learning about them and their personal lives! The guitar player/singer in the lounge was great, but the piano player/singer was a snooze fest. Dining was adequate. O'Sheehans was good for breakfast, although service was very slow the times we ate there. Buffet was ok Loved Teppanyaki and Cagneys. Moderno was good - except for the coffee - it tasted like bad instant. Didn't care for the Azura dining room but it could be because we were seated waaaaaayyyy in the back of the restaurant. This was our first meal on the ship and we weren't impressed. The Tsar dining room was much better. The Wilderness Family Adventure (?) was definitely a bummer - but all the other shore excursions were excellent. Loved the crab feast! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
My wife had received a casino at sea entitlement and we were looking forward to an Alaskan Cruise. The ship was excellent but showed a need for yard work on the hull and balcony stanchions. The cabin was in exceptional shape and was kept ... Read More
My wife had received a casino at sea entitlement and we were looking forward to an Alaskan Cruise. The ship was excellent but showed a need for yard work on the hull and balcony stanchions. The cabin was in exceptional shape and was kept that way by the effort of the cabin steward. He took great pride in keeping the cabin spotless and was very personable to us and other guest. He was also quite creative in his "towel sculptures". The dining experience fell short of expectations. We only ate at the "free" dining areas but expected the food to have been much better than it was. The food on several occasions (breakfast and dinner) was just warm when served. Ample amounts of rolls were served for the evening meals but only two pads of butter were served requiring the server to bring out additional butter. On two occasions I ordered apple pie and pecan pie for desert and could not eat it. They were dry and lacking flavor. On three occasions meat was ordered and the same "Au Jus" was served for each meal (and it was more like gravy). The service by the waiters in all the dinning areas was great. Entertainment was good but some of the scheduling was conflicting with shore excursions/dinning/other events. Service was very good in the casino and lounges but we did encounter some animosity when at first we didn't tip. We were pre-charged for the service fees but the servers and bartenders said they get very little of that money. As for the shore excursions all were great with the exception of the Totem Pole excursion (we went on it not expecting very much). Wish we had more time in the last three ports to see the towns after the excursions. We would sail again on NCL but would look at "Princess Cruise" first. Read Less
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 3.0 4.1

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