Sail Date: September 2018
This was our very first cruise ever. We had a great time. The food, drinks, service, entertainment, and overall atmosphere was good all around. We were given a great room on the 8th deck. It was a few steps from O'Shehans which was ... Read More
This was our very first cruise ever. We had a great time. The food, drinks, service, entertainment, and overall atmosphere was good all around. We were given a great room on the 8th deck. It was a few steps from O'Shehans which was great. Everything was clean. The food at the Moderna Churrascaria was delicious. Make sure to get some of the roasted pineapple. I'd go back just for that. We stopped in Orlando; however, we didnt get off the boat. Nothing seemed appealing. We enjoyed our time at the Great Stirrup Cay. Water was clear and warm. The views were fantastic. Our last stop was in Nassau, Bahamas. We booked an excursion to go to Blue Lagoon. It was very relaxing. Tip: Make sure to get wet shoes if you plan on walking across the rocks/coral. We enjoyed the sun with a handfull of pina coladas by the water. We took a great nap on the hammocks under the shade. I would definitely recommend this trip to friends and family. I'll definitely book a different trip with NCL to another location to discover more. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
I choose this cruise after investigating different cruise lines and there options..value for money spent- i also liked that it was out of New York which was conveniant ..the cruise itself was excellent-the Staff were excellent -at all ... Read More
I choose this cruise after investigating different cruise lines and there options..value for money spent- i also liked that it was out of New York which was conveniant ..the cruise itself was excellent-the Staff were excellent -at all times we were treated very well-the cruise Director was exceptional -the food was also very good- at times the food in the buffet area wasnt as hot as it should have been but excellent none the less-the facitlities were also excellent I would not hesitate to book again -the shore excusion was not as good as expected-The time allotted was not enough to take in the full tour..the tour bus ride was confusing at times..didnt seem well organized..the evening shows were excellent--the stardust was very well laid out and comfortable-the air flow was also excellent -the comedy shows were also pretty good--I do believe more time should be spent explaining the options-the advertising says get this or get that free and none were made available -a little confusing..nothing was free..still not sure why ,,however it was a great cruise-safety seemed a priority ...comfort a priority ..all good Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
Great cruise as always. A couple of things, the "house band" is made up of great jazz musicians but have they ever heard of "smooth jazz?". They play great jazz music but almost every freakin' tune there is a saxophone ... Read More
Great cruise as always. A couple of things, the "house band" is made up of great jazz musicians but have they ever heard of "smooth jazz?". They play great jazz music but almost every freakin' tune there is a saxophone solo, trumpet solo, trombone solo, etc. It gets really boring after a while. Just play smooth jazz with a nice melody. Who cares about the "solos?". Oh, and we are always encourage to "clap"...please!!! One night they were supposed to play until almost midnight. By eleven, I was the only one there! That's why the jazz club on the "Breakaway" with Charlie Love is so much better. Another suggestion, I and many other guests, usually travel "solo". We "Platinum" and above guests have a choice of two premium restaurants for two people and a bottle of wine. Could you please allow the "solo" travelers to use four premium restaurants. Keep just the one free bottle of wine. I mean, how much more could it be? It would be great for "solo" travelers to do four restaurants instead of two by themselves.Come on, don't be so cheap. What's an extra freakin' steak to you? Besides I always leave an extra tip. What else? Ah, Lorena, the cruise director. Very distant, aloof. Seems always busy, running to some stupid game or to make announcements. And always "passing the buck". Any questions, "eh, go to the front desk and ask them about that"...really?...you are so badly trained. First of all, take down my stupid name, cabin number and do lie, yes, "I'll find out that information for you, Mr So and So". The comedian "bombed" but the juggler was a riot, very funny, great show! The employees are great, very open to questions even about their personal life. Great to hear about their hopes and dreams. It's a real pleasure to come back and find many familiar faces and many that even remember me, very nice. Well, nothing major to complain about, really. Had a great time and will definitely come back soon... Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We took this cruise because it sailed out of NY and it was around the dates we were looking for. I’m so glad we picked a balcony room and that it was mid ship. Sitting out on the balcony for down time was soooo relaxing looking out ... Read More
We took this cruise because it sailed out of NY and it was around the dates we were looking for. I’m so glad we picked a balcony room and that it was mid ship. Sitting out on the balcony for down time was soooo relaxing looking out on the beautiful blue water, hearing the sound of the ocean along with the breeze was so delightful! This was my first cruise and I think if we had other than a balcony I wouldn’t say it was a nice experience. We went poolside everyday, having drinks served to us which was very nice. We did three off ship excursions along with going to the nightclub Bliss on the ship. We ate at all the restaurants and buffets and the food was fantastic. I was very skeptical about going on a cruise but I would definitely do it again. We want to try the BLISS ship next time when it’s ready to sail. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We won the cruise at Foxwoods. So we decided to give it a try. It was the best thing we ever did. It was our first cruise ever. The boat was so big I was kind of scare at the beginning,but a few days on the boat we were great. The food ... Read More
We won the cruise at Foxwoods. So we decided to give it a try. It was the best thing we ever did. It was our first cruise ever. The boat was so big I was kind of scare at the beginning,but a few days on the boat we were great. The food was unbelievable.if you couldn’t find something to eat it was your own fault. Everywhere you turn food,food,food.our stateroom was soooo nice. I miss it. We had a balcony to watch the sea at night with a glass of wine every night before we go to bed. The shows on the boat were something I’ve never seen in my life before. The casino,well that was a little tight. They could of let people win a little more. We really in joy the pools they had. The life guard was very informative on were to eat by the pool. The best was the guy that clean our room everyday.he was there to help us as needed. He did the best he could for sure.give that guy a rise.i just wish I seen him before I left in the morin. Thanks for making my first trip beautiful. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
For our 40th wedding anniversary we chose to cruise out of New York harbor for it's ease of access from home. That requirement narrowed choices to a few and NCL's Gem was the pick. After that, a decision was made to spare no expense in an ... Read More
For our 40th wedding anniversary we chose to cruise out of New York harbor for it's ease of access from home. That requirement narrowed choices to a few and NCL's Gem was the pick. After that, a decision was made to spare no expense in an attempt to make our cruise week convenient, hassle free, and to allow ourselves to be pampered. That pampering began right from curbside where as penthouse guests our luggage was taken, we were directed to a private waiting room with coffee, cold drinks and small snacks. And after a wait of 15-20 mins were were escorted around the crowds and up the gang plank to a specialty dining room where we relaxed with drinks while we waited for our room. With the forward penthouse stateroom 10502 the perks continued. The choice although expensive, entitled us to an outstanding view over the bow of the ship from our 284 sq. ft. balcony that came with two lounge chairs two sitting chairs and two round tables all while still providing space to move around and to stand and lean on the railing to take in a 180 degree view of the sea. Cabin 10502 is approx. 500+ sq. ft. with a king size bed, small sofa ( pull out bed ) which was perpendicular to a large floor to ceiling window where we would look out to the balcony and the sea beyond. Inside a table and 4 chairs allowed for dining on snacks and drinks while providing a platform for towel creatures. The closets and drawers provided enough room for 3 and there was a make-up/hair drying station separate from the bathroom. The bathroom was fitted with a shower and tub, sink and mirror and a sliding glass door to personal privacy even as showers were being taken. Of course a mini bar, coffee machine with tea and espresso were also available in the cabin. The mattress was very comfortable and the bedding was plush. Furnishings and equipment were clean, worked as expected and modern. The factor which I believe allowed NCL to exceed expectations for this cabin was the additional perks and services associated with this cabin class. Those extras included NCL staff members which were dedicated to and at our service. One employee was responsible for delivering food or any beverage we requested. We enjoyed coffee, juice, fruit and cheeses all delivered when requested and on a daily basis. We enjoyed early morning 6:30 am deliveries of coffee and had cheese crackers and fruit delivered about 4-5 pm. In addition, the butler was always there to give us tips and ideas with respect to the cruise. Another employee was responsible for every want or need we had other than food and beverages ( although she would have helped with that too ). Our Concierge arranged show seating, shore excursions, smoothed out any cruise wrinkles and provided advise to make sure our cruise week was pleasant and ensured satisfaction. The penthouse cabin also allowed for us to have breakfast and lunch in the specialty dining rooms of Modernos and Cagney's. Sit down table service with waitstaff for these two meals made lines and buffet waiting disappear. French press coffee and fresh squeezed juices were the best. Continuing to treat ourselves we opted for those specialty dining packages covering all evening meals except one which was spent in the main dining room " Grand Pacific ". The specialty dining staff, food quality and venues exceeded our expectations. The service and the food quality in the main dining room was fine, However, the specialty dining was better as expected. The entertainment in the Stardust was very good. Music, dancing, specialty acts and bands there and at the bars were all professional and enjoyable. The activities were standard cruise stuff but ok and fun too. The ports of call were not important to us for this cruise and we were more looking forward to relaxing on the ship for our 3 days at sea. In fact, we had considered not getting off the ship while in port. Another service we opted for and paid extra for was the thermal spa. This area was private, had lounge chairs... heated ones as well. In the spa common area iced water flavored with fruit was available, and coffees and teas were set as well out for us. Additional locker rooms for men and women provided for steam rooms and dry saunas. Again the benefit of exclusivity was that we never felt crowded. Upon arrival at Cape Canaveral we opted to stay on board and relax. At Stirrup Cay we opted for the small cabana. The cabana was great came with a mini bar, a waiter for drinks and personal lounge chairs. Again the intention was to have a private, quite, pampered stay. and for the most part that was true of our stay on the Cay. However, with construction and expansion taking place on their island we had a unacceptable level of continuous noise from a piece of equipment. We had to discuss this with several NCL reps before some accommodation for the noise was made. This required complaining which we were averse to on vacation, required precious time and was never completely eliminated. NCL did credit 25% of the cost back to us, but for us it was not about the money. I have to dig deep now for any negatives. As mentioned the construction noise on the Cay was unacceptable and disappointing. Also, the activities like the martini tasting and whiskey tasting had an additional charge and was unexpected because we had the UBP or unlimited beverage package. Our disappointments were few, they were minor and were not allowed to ruin any part of our week. Finally, one complaint which we had and heard others complain about was the hoarding of lounge chairs on pool decks. From 7am people reserved with towels their chairs. Not sure how NCL could help with this. But no matter what we had a great time and would strongly encourage cruisers to opt for the extras. You're worth it !! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
I am a first time cruiser and I am so thankful that I was able to experience my first cruise on the Norwegian Gem. The staff on the ship is top notch. The Cruise director, Lorena, and her staff made everyone on board feel like part of ... Read More
I am a first time cruiser and I am so thankful that I was able to experience my first cruise on the Norwegian Gem. The staff on the ship is top notch. The Cruise director, Lorena, and her staff made everyone on board feel like part of the family. My boyfriend and I had such a great time participating in the daily activities on board and experiencing the nightly entertainment. There was never a dull moment when we were at sea! The food on board was delicious. We ate a few times at the Grand Pacific and Magenta and were never disappointed. My favorite entrees were the Three-Cheese Baked Ziti and the Grilled Salmon. Also, you must must must get the Chocolate Lava Cake for desert! You won't regret it. We also ate at the specialty restaurants Cagney's Steakhouse and La Cucina. The food was great and the service at all of the restaurants were first-class. The first stop on the cruise was Port Canaveral and we chose to do the NASA Kennedy Space Center excursion. It was an amazing experience and we had a great time. The launch simulator was so much fun and the Atlantis exhibit was so good, it gave us goosebumps! Only downside was that we couldn't stay there longer! The second port was Norwegian's beautiful Great Stirrup Cay island where we did the Wave Runner Tour. It was so much fun and was one of the most thrilling experiences I ever had. The island is picture perfect and the water is so clear. I love how we had the whole island to ourselves, it was one big party! The last port was Nassau, Bahamas where we took a boat to Blue Lagoon Island. We did the Dolphin Encounter where we got to hug, kiss, and dance with a dolphin. This was one of my favorite excursions and something I got to cross off my bucket list. One thing I need to mention about this cruise that I found to be very impressive is that our Captain, Lars Bengtsson, went out of his way to save two people who were stranded on a boat in the middle of the Altantic. He saved lives and still got us to the port on time! Overall, my experience was incredible. Thanks to the wonderful staff on-board the Norwegian Gem, I will never forget this vacation and I look forward to cruising with Norwegian again! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
It's been about 3 years since I've been on an NCL cruise. Since then NCL has changed leadership and in my opinion, is going down hill. In addition to NCL I've sailed with RCCL, Carnival, and Disney. I've never felt nickeled and dimed ... Read More
It's been about 3 years since I've been on an NCL cruise. Since then NCL has changed leadership and in my opinion, is going down hill. In addition to NCL I've sailed with RCCL, Carnival, and Disney. I've never felt nickeled and dimed but those cruise lines as much as I did by NCL. Drinks are pricey - it was rare something was under $15, gratuity included. NCL now charges a $7.95 service fee for room service with the exception of the continental breakfast menu. They've done away with a flat rate for some of their specialty restaurants. We dined at Cagney's and La Cucina and that was just like going out to a regular restaurant - everything was priced ala carte. On our visit to GSC we were charged $21 for an umbrella. Seriously? On top of that they managed crowds very poorly. It took longer than usual to get off the ship in both Port Canaveral and GSC. (They began the day with one tender, ONE!) I've been on ships that hold close to 4,000 people and never had the issues we had on this ship. Embarkation also began with very long lines for security. And for some reason this ship smelled like farts or rotting eggs LOL. I expect it in the bathrooms but we're talking in public areas and in stairwells. Strange! Also there didn't seem to be much to do on this ship. I found sea days to be kind of boring. Nighttime entertainment was better - the shows were great! Overall we made the best of it but I don't think I'll be sailing with NCL again anytime soon unless it's on one of the newer ships. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
My review is based on past NCL experiences as we are Gold members on NCL, have sailed on Royal Carib, Princess & Celebrity, most of our cruising has been on NCL, as we liked the food, freestyle and restaurants. The cabin, room steward ... Read More
My review is based on past NCL experiences as we are Gold members on NCL, have sailed on Royal Carib, Princess & Celebrity, most of our cruising has been on NCL, as we liked the food, freestyle and restaurants. The cabin, room steward and some of the food/bar servers were exceptional and I feel sorry that they are subjected to management policies that have impacted NCL experience. The food has gone terribly downhill, I had to return my meal in the French restaurant as I could not even cut the veal with a knife it was that tough. Always loved Cagneys, but that has also suffered from management trying to cut expenses. The potatoes au gratin were like tasteless cardboard, could not eat those. Sauces served with meat were tasteless. The buffet is SO unappealing to even look at no less eat there, dried out burgers sitting out for hours, what used to be lox and capers is now a dollop of pink cream cheese with one caper on top of it. In the main dining room, again rationing capers 4 at most. French onion soup in main dining room has no cheese on it at all, instead they told us the cheese is baked into the crouton floating in the soup, just terrible did not even eat that. Top it off with how can you make a dessert look and taste unappealing, NCL can do it. Tender wait to private island was too long and crew staff loudly arguing among themselves in the main dining room and the tender to private island, very uncomfortable. NCL pool area has always been tacky looking and I did not go into their pool. Some cruisers at the pool very downright rude and absent any manners. Cruise director was just okay.. everything was extremely ear blasting loud from pool activities, bands to shows, the book I was reading was vibrating it was that loud....Gym is nice. Hoping NCL gets their act together, will give it one more chance before going back to Princess / Royal. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
Gem is a beautiful ship which is kept clean and well maintained by an excellent crew. Getting on ship was very easy with suite had priority embarkation after going though security was on ship in about 20 minutes. Staff is extremely ... Read More
Gem is a beautiful ship which is kept clean and well maintained by an excellent crew. Getting on ship was very easy with suite had priority embarkation after going though security was on ship in about 20 minutes. Staff is extremely attentive and friendly, always greeting you with a smile. Cabin 10504 was big and spacious with amazing service from Teresa (Butler) and Room Steward Andy. Dining was always great with many delicious options always available. Meganta Dinging Wine steward Julien was great very friendly and helpful. Recommend trying specialty restaurant Moderno excellent service and food. Entertainment was good, enjoyed the Juggler Randy Cabral and Get Down Tonight show. Bliss lounge at night had music with live band then a DJ, great place to get a drink and hang out, waiter Sam was excellent. Ports were great rented a Cabana on Great Stirrup Cay (Private island), only issue is was not informed that in order to use the $50 credit that comes with the Cabana had to order food the day before so we lost the credit so beware. Nassau visited Junknoo Beach, Queens staircase and shop the straw market. Tried the restaurant Sharkee had great conch fritter. Overall an excellent vacation would definitely sail the Gem again. Read Less
Norwegian Gem Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 5.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.6
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.1
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.8

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