Sail Date: September 2018
Took the Jewel for a 7 day Alaskan cruise. The ship and cabin were very clean. There were multiple activities to partake in, but many did require additional money, such as bingo. The entertainment was good. The ariel artists of Duo Nika ... Read More
Took the Jewel for a 7 day Alaskan cruise. The ship and cabin were very clean. There were multiple activities to partake in, but many did require additional money, such as bingo. The entertainment was good. The ariel artists of Duo Nika were the best. My only complaint is that several areas of the ship smelled of cigarette smoke. The library, the gym and sometimes the stairwell by the elevators. I was told there is a smoking area above the gym and I assume that might have been the cause of the other affected areas. The service from all staff was excellent. Everyone was friendly and responsive. The dining was average. We opted for the specialty dining package. We were underwhelmed (bland) with all of the specialty restaurants except for the steak house. The filet and rack of lamb was delicious! We took the White Pass train in Skagway and it was excellent. I was not in favor of going because I felt like I didn't want to sit on a train after getting off a ship, but my husband wanted to go and I am so glad I conceded. The scenery is beautiful. The highlight of the trip was the excursion in Juneau where we took a helicopter to a glacier and got to hike and climb the glacier. I cannot even put into words the magnitude of that experience. It was almost surreal. I would definitely recommend this trip. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise ship because it was casual and required not set seating times to dine.We did not want to dress up and wanted the flexibility to eat when and where we wanted to. The specialty restaurants were very good. We liked ... Read More
We chose this cruise ship because it was casual and required not set seating times to dine.We did not want to dress up and wanted the flexibility to eat when and where we wanted to. The specialty restaurants were very good. We liked Cagney's the best followed by Le Bistro and Moderno. We didn't care for Chin Chin. The chicken and pork dishes were not too tasty. We loved the breakfast at Tsar's Palace and enjoyed overlooking the water. The wait staff at the specialty restaurants were amazingly attentive. They made excellent recommendations. Azure was a nice restaurant. We went to work out at the Fitness Center four times during our cruise. The equipment was only fair. The treadmills were average. The cross trainers were not constructed to be able to use the arm bars and had a poor design. Several pieces of the equipment were out of order. There was no interaction with the staff in the fitness center. The view from the fitness center was wonderful and there were always plenty of clean towels. Loved shopping on board at the duty free shop. Staff was helpful and made us feel valued. We enjoyed nightly entertainment in Stardust Theater. Performances were excellent and wait staff was superb. Fun to enjoy the show and have a drink at the same time. Loved the variety of shows. Getting on the ship to embark was long and tiring after a full day of travel. There was a fair amount of disorganization about directions, lines and where to go. Needs to be more organized and much speedier. Shore excursions were good except for one which was cancelled the week before we left on the cruise. It was the Rain Forest Island Adventure and we were disappointed as that was the one we were looking forward to the most. Refund was prompt at least. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
My husband, 86 year old Dad and I embarked on the Jewel Sept. 3rd. My Dad hasn’t travelled for 17 years, other than short car trips. He desperately wanted to see Alaska, so invited us to go along with him! His mobility isn’t ... Read More
My husband, 86 year old Dad and I embarked on the Jewel Sept. 3rd. My Dad hasn’t travelled for 17 years, other than short car trips. He desperately wanted to see Alaska, so invited us to go along with him! His mobility isn’t great and sometimes he requires the use of his cane. Vancouver is a beautiful city, and if you have not visited before, allow yourself at least three days here. We lived there for a number of years, so we just arrived the night before and sister-in-law drove us right to the Port. This was easy peasy as she just drove right into the terminal, employees are there to direct you where to park, we backed up in a spot, unloaded, and an employee was right there to whisk our luggage away. Easiest port ever! Embarkation from the Port of Vancouver went effortlessly. We embarked at 12:00 noon and only waited about 15 minutes before we were processed. Very streamlined and efficient with welcoming NCL representatives. Getting on the ship was a piece of cake, and that’s where we headed as soon as we were aboard! The Garden Cafe buffet was very busy, and as it was my Dad’s first experience and being 86, he was completely overwhelmed. This is where the organization of the Jewel’s buffet is brilliant. Hot, cold, desserts, etc. all organized in neat little islands, with beverage stations around the edges. This was so much easier to navigate than other buffets we have experienced, and so great for my very confused Dad. Considering how busy it was, it didn’t take long to find a seat, in fact we didn’t have a problem any time we ate there. The food was delicious, and we all agreed on that, as we all ate something a bit different. The crew in the buffet was wonderful, very friendly and helpful. They were all appreciative of compliments we made regarding the food. Continuing with th dining, Tsar’s dining room is beautiful with lovely high ceilings and huge windows aft over the wake. Our only complaint here was breakfast one morning. We were seated right away at 8:15 a.m. and given menus ... and we waited and waited. They brought coffee and still didn’t take our order. I asked for tea twice with no response. Finally caught the attention of a crew member who clearly was not responsible for the section we were in, but he acted quickly to ensure our orders were taken - this was 20 minutes after we were seated. I believe they were short staffed at that time of the morning, even though they had opened 15 minutes earlier. About halfway through our breakfast, there were suddenly twice as many crew working around us. Fortunately this was the only negative comment about Tsar’s, the service and food were excellent otherwise (shout out to Manu!). Same can be said for Azura’s. Not as pleasant as far as ambience goes, but the service was exceptional (thank you Alejandro and Gerald!). Always had a good experience in O’Sheehan’s as well, but their menu is quite limited. Had one meal at Chin Chin, and it was just average - the shrimp and chicken noodle dish we shared was almost void of shrimp and chicken! Won’t eat there again on any future cruise. As a common complaint, the cost of alcoholic beverages. They are expensive enough without adding 20% gratuity. We have always found this a bit ridiculous - 20%? Too steep. The ship itself is lovely. Clean everywhere we were, except one bathroom one night where a group of women had decided it was a great place to leave all their dirty drink glasses. Come on people! Think! How difficult is it to carry them out and leave them on a bar counter? Crew always touching up paint or vacuuming stairs and corridors, cleaning treads on stairs, polishing railings, etc. Always friendly and would greet us with a smile. Spinnaker lounge was nice with huge windows all around and comfy seating. Nice crew working there (Stefan was very friendly and attentive!). Funny game shows - really enjoyed Newlywed Game, yes or no, perfect couple, etc. The Stardust theatre was set up very well. Good views of the stage wherever we sat. The entertainment was very good, the ship shows are usually so well done and suitable for everyone. Well, except for the adult comedian! He was hilarious! The crew appreciation was great! Love to see everyone on stage and they seemed to be having a really good time too. The only negative for us were the two women in front of us. As the crew was entering the theatre and making their way to the front, they stood up in front of us. NO ONE ELSE WAS STANDING! Save that for when they are all on stage and certainly we always give them a standing ovation at that time. The problem was we couldn’t see - my 86 year old Dad has a difficult time getting to a standing position at the best of times. He asked them to sit down, and their response was “why don’t you stand up?” They did not sit down but giggled to one another. How ignorant can people be? It is only these situations that can ruin the good time we were having. Maybe when they are in their 80’s with mobility issues they will understand. We didn’t take part in bingo, casino, Deal or No Deal - but did trivia a few times. Those are always fun! Hubby and I both used the gym facilities - he used all the equipment offered and I took part in several classes. The first day, they offered a $49 deal to take in a variety of classes. Yoga, Pilates, spin class, TRX training. There are also free classes like fab abs and stretch. The yoga was quite good, Pilates too much for my one shoulder, fab abs was great one day and not so great the other time (not a safe class by the male instructor - it could be harmful to people with lower back issues - full crunches). Our starboard balcony cabin was on Deck 10 close to one of the elevator banks for my Dad. Great location! A tip for cruisers, if you are on a northbound Alaskan cruise choose a starboard cabin as you will be facing the coast all the way up. If you are southbound, choose a port side cabin. The cabin was in good condition and always super clean (thank you Lorenzo!). The only thing was the loveseat/sofa bed was a bit tattered. I think NCL should consider replacing all of these - my Dad’s was the same. We only did one shore excursion in Skagway, and it was with a private company in a small tour bus with 21 people aboard for 3.5 hours. It was great and very worthwhile. The guide was funny, engaging and knowledgeable. The tour went just to the Yukon border, and made a few stops along the way for photos and a bathroom break. Such gorgeous scenery. In Ketchikan we just walked off the ship and toured the town, went up the Married Man’s trail to the spawning area of the creek and continued our walk to the Totem Heritage Centre ((very interesting), and back through a park and a different route back to the town. Past an extremely shallow part of the creek and watched the salmon for quite a long time, right on the shore only feet away from us. We had gone back on the ship for lunch and just hubby and I headed back off the ship afterwards. The mornings are all Dad had energy for, so after lunch every day he would have a rest or nap! In Juneau, same thing, just walked off and headed for the Mt. Roberts Tramway. It was a clear blue sky day, and going to the top of the mountain seemed like a not-to-miss attraction. We were not disappointed. The views from the top are spectacular, there was a totem carving demonstration, a bald eagle kept there as she was injured and would not have survived if she hadn’t been rescued, a gift shop, restaurant, lots of photo ops. There are also hiking trails, but we didn’t do any of these as the tram and short little walks were enough for Dad. Took a stroll along the boardwalk - beautiful metal sculptures line the boardwalk, stopped and had a beer at the Red Dog Saloon (a must do, such an eclectic place!) and headed back to the ship for lunch. After lunch, hubby and I headed off again, this time walking to the bridge at the far end of town as we had heard about a humpback whale sculpture/fountain at the bridge. It was about a 15 minute walk, but we walk fast and it was so worth it. What a stunning piece of art. Then we did a more extensive walk around the town, where we had missed earlier. The Glacier Bay day was AMAZING! The wildlife, the glaciers, mountains, waterfalls, etc. Just loved it! Also the next day to Hubbard - same gorgeous scenery and the sheer size of this Glacier is phenomenal. Won’t ramble on, but if you can, choose an itinerary that includes Glacier Bay. A park ranger was onboard most of the day with a running commentary and then another ranger gave a presentation in the theatre in the afternoon. Disembarkation in Seward was as easy as it gets. We always just take our own luggage off whenever we want and that works for us. Took a bus to the Anchorage airport, no problems. The whole Alaska experience was wonderful and exceeded our expectations. Couple that with a beautiful, just-the-right-size ship and the amazing crew and having my Dad state “this is the best time I’ve had in my life” it really was a trip to remember. I would definitely cruise to Alaska again. And it really is the perfect itinerary for family members with mobility issues. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
An Alaskan cruise has always been on my bucket list. I had never cruised with NCL before but was very glad we made this choice. Very nice ship albeit a little dated in its décor :) Embarkation was a little chaotic but before we ... Read More
An Alaskan cruise has always been on my bucket list. I had never cruised with NCL before but was very glad we made this choice. Very nice ship albeit a little dated in its décor :) Embarkation was a little chaotic but before we knew it we were on the ship and able to grab some lunch before our stateroom opened up. The rooms are large enough - loved the balcony. We took advantage of some perks to attend dinners in specialty restaurants - La Bistro was the best. Our room steward, Fili, was amazing. Always cheerful and accommodating. We particularly enjoyed the towel creatures she left for us every night! The ports of call were great. Only experienced rain one day - in Ketchikan - but we didn't have an excursion booked for that day so all good. Loved the Mendenhall Glacier & Salmon Bake tour in Juneau. Really enjoyed the Musher Camp in Skagway. So wonderful to visit with dog teams that are bound for the 2019 Iditarod and to hold 7 week old Alaskan Husky puppies! Service in the bars and restaurants was always super. Want to do a shout out to Ida and Noah (I believe those were their names lol) in the Wine & Cocktail Bar on the 6th Floor. We spent a lot of time there enjoying the talents of Leo. If I had to say anything negative about the cruise I would have to comment on the long lines at Guest Services no matter the time of day. The good thing was that once you made it to the counter, the service was helpful! All in all a great cruise - the weather cooperated and the glaciers did not disappoint. I'm very glad NCL was a good experience as I have another cruise - to the Hawaiian Islands - booked for January 2019. Thank you NCL - keep up the good work!! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
My family and I have done a Disney cruise before. I was told not to expect the same luxury from NCL by friends. Well I do not know what they were talking about I loved ever second and everything about the NCL Jewel and its itinerary to ... Read More
My family and I have done a Disney cruise before. I was told not to expect the same luxury from NCL by friends. Well I do not know what they were talking about I loved ever second and everything about the NCL Jewel and its itinerary to Alaska! The food was superb, entertainment plentiful, cruise director Dan really is the man!! The band Sonata rules the land! I seriously never wanted to get off the boat, it was magical. There were breathtaking views. Superb service in every area. I spent a lot of time in the casino, and if you do that they will give you comp well drinks!! Super bonus, I even won a little on the slots. The towel findings on the bed were an extra special touch. Our room always loved amazing. I am happy they put such an emphasis on sanitation, especially at ports and eateries on board. Kept everyone healthy! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We sailed on NCL for the first time but had used Holland for our last cruise, so we were comparing most everything with how Holland did it. FOOD: Diner menu's in the 2 main dining rooms were the same so it was only the ... Read More
We sailed on NCL for the first time but had used Holland for our last cruise, so we were comparing most everything with how Holland did it. FOOD: Diner menu's in the 2 main dining rooms were the same so it was only the decorations that were different. Food presentation was very plain. The fish or filet was served on a 12" plate with no side dishes. Menu's had a few variations each night but the chicken, salmon and haddock were over cooked and not very good. Desserts were nothing to get excited about. Soft serve ice cream in the Garden Cafe was the best choice. Buffet choices were standard fare. Salad bar or hot foods. Breakfast choices were wide ranging and hot. SHOWS: Shows in the theater were good and bad. Comic was very funny, and acrobats were very good. Dance group couldn't dance well and their singing was just loud. CABIN: Cabin was small but clean and neat. Cabin service was good every day. PORTS: Very touristy. T-shirts and jewelry were the big items in each of the cities. Not much in native art except carvings. ACTIVITIES: Nothing very creative, but usual cheesy things - like napkin folding, wine tasting, art for sale, karaoke lounges and lots of alcohol. EXCURSIONS: Icy Straits - Whale watching was good, Juneau - helicopter ride was cancelled due to fog, dog sledding in Skagway was very good and would recommend it for anyone going. Ketchikan is a tourist trap - lots of jewelry shops and t-shirt stores. To see the totem poles requires transportation. WILDLIFE: Very good viewing for lots of animals and sitka spruce trees. Beautiful scenery, glaciers, fjords, and mountains. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
This was a very good cruise into the Alaska region. We are platinum level with NCL, so they made everything easy. Our cabin was the perfect location, near enough to elevators and almost midship. All the public rooms on the Jewel are well ... Read More
This was a very good cruise into the Alaska region. We are platinum level with NCL, so they made everything easy. Our cabin was the perfect location, near enough to elevators and almost midship. All the public rooms on the Jewel are well laid out and very accomodating for the number of passengers. Jewel is a smaller ship and doesn't have all the features like Escape etc., but there was enough for us to enjoy the voyage completely. There were over 100 excursion options and the ones we choose were done extremely well and had a good value. The entertainment options were excellent - a very good Comedian, and the entertainment staff/dancers/band are SO talented and we enjoyed the shows. As a Platinum level we took "behind the scenes tour" offered and managed by the Cruise Next staff. Is always wonderful to see how the crew manages the workings and accomodate over 2000 people! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this Alaskan Cruise because it was on our bucket list. We stayed in a balcony room on the 9th floor, room 9086. Our room was cared for my Marilyn, a very courteous and caring person who is from the Philippines. Our room was ... Read More
We chose this Alaskan Cruise because it was on our bucket list. We stayed in a balcony room on the 9th floor, room 9086. Our room was cared for my Marilyn, a very courteous and caring person who is from the Philippines. Our room was immaculate everyday and we had enough coffee, cream, and sugar daily. Our animal towels were very cool. We left the ship every chance we got but always came back to a clean room to relax before each meal. The activities on the ship were pretty good, especially the nighttime entertainment! The singers were spectacular and Katya and Nikolay were outstanding! Bingo was fun albeit we did not win anything. The casino staff was top notch and the food staff and table helpers were always pleasant. My wife and I were very content with everything. We also did a 75 minute couples massage. The upsell of products after the massage was not necessary. Overall, we had a great time and would do it again! Lastly my romance package for $299 blew up because there weren't any fresh red Roses in Seward the day we departed. NCL made it up to me by giving us the sparkling wine, chocolate dipped strawberries, and snacks for free along with a $100 credit. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
The embarkation and disembarkation was great. Went smoothly. The Room Steward was fabulous. As for the rest of the cruise I would never do NCL again. The Dining was poor, food quality was not good, barely warm, the waiters had the ... Read More
The embarkation and disembarkation was great. Went smoothly. The Room Steward was fabulous. As for the rest of the cruise I would never do NCL again. The Dining was poor, food quality was not good, barely warm, the waiters had the don't care attitude in all restaurants. We did do the LeBistro and had a nice meal. I feel the ship makes the other dining sub par so you will go to the paid dining. Bar service was not the best, I went to a bar and the bartender was admiring three other women so asked me to go to another bar. Really???? Well I did and got my drink. None to happy. Entertainment was fair. The duo dance team was good. This was the first time I have ever had so much staff give me the feeling like they didn't care if I was there or not. NCL is not on my travel list again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose the 7 day cruise and 5 day land (Alyeaka/Denali) cruise to experience different ports and to see Denali. The weather was magnificent as it only rained 1 day on the cruise and it was clear and sunny while in Denali. The NCL ... Read More
We chose the 7 day cruise and 5 day land (Alyeaka/Denali) cruise to experience different ports and to see Denali. The weather was magnificent as it only rained 1 day on the cruise and it was clear and sunny while in Denali. The NCL Jewel is showing her wear, thus the reason for her update in September 2018. We had great service in the MDR, along with specialty restaurants, Le Bistro, Cagney's and Teppanyaki. The multiple bars are great as we enjoyed plenty of cocktails with our UBP. We especially like the Martini Bar (Shakers) with Lorelie, Anna & Ida keeping us hydrated with their drink mixing skills. As for restaurant service, April Joy was our favorite along with Sebastian. Our cabin steward, Fernando, kept our room/bathroom clean and comfortable while giving us some unique and cute towel arrangements during turn down. We enjoyed Band on the Run (our favorite of 5 cruises), the comedy show cirque type show with the husband/wife team, but were not overly impressed with the magic show. Yes, the ship is due for a refurb and I look forward to cruising on her again. 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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