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We originally chose this ship for the itinerary and to try out a different line. The original itinerary included Melbourne, Geelong, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln, Hobart and Eden. This was changed after 6 months to Melbourne, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Burnie, Hobart, Eden and Sydney. Still an excellent itinerary with 18 hours in Melbourne allowing us a full day visiting family. The visits to Kangaroo Island and Eden were not full days and with both ports being tender operations made it difficult to get full value out of the offered tours. We opted to go it alone or book with private tour groups saving many dollars. Embarkation and Debark at Sydney was a breeze and a pleasant experience. The ship is very comfortable but certainly showing her age. We had some stormy seas but being fully stabilized, the ship handled the seas with ease. However, i would not want to be accommodated in one of the suites as these are way up high on deck 14. We understand she will be going into dry dock in Singapore early March after her repositioning cruise from Sydney. The demographics on board was mainly from the Americas with also many Europeans and Asians. There were fewer Australian's than expected with most having sailed with NCL previously. The Roll Call meet and greet was well supported and attended by all of the senior officers. Each attendee introduced themselves and each of the officers gave an outline of their roles. One oof the better meet and greets we have attended. There are 13 restaurants to choose from with 7 being complimentary. We did not opt for a speciality dining package but there certainly is something for everyone, from Tepenyaki to Steakhouses, Italian to French. We ate in either of the 2 main dining rooms or at the Garden buffet. Tzar's main dining is at the rear of the ship. The service was excellent however, the meals were average with, for example, Baked Salmon being served overcooked. The Azura dining room is located centrally and would suit people suffering from the motion of the ocean. We could not fault the food from the Garden Cafe with a different base menu each day. This buffet is situated on the starboard side from midhip and spills out into the Great Outdoors seating area on the aft deck. This location also serves late night snacks and drinks. O'Sheehans bar & grill is on deck 8 midship just above the Java Cafe in the Atrium on deck 7 and is open from 6am through to 4am! Great for light meals but also serves a massive mixed grill. On occasions we found the music wafting up from the Java cafe to be too loud to enjoy the meal. The Java Cafe serves as the only Espresso coffee bar on the ship and doubles as a normal bar. Long waiting times for coffee is the result with the barman come barista concentrating mainly on serving drinks. We understand that this situation is about to change with the next refurbishment. There are also 13 bars but not many Australian brands of drink to choose from. However, considering that there was no shortage of alcohol, we did not observe any unruly behaviour. Dress code is relaxed to compliment the free style dining theme. The main dining rooms require neat casual and above with no shorts, thongs etc and we were happy to observe these reguirements being strictly adhered to. A pleasant change from some of the sloppy standards on some of the ships operating out Australia. Smoking is restricted to designated areas but it was disappointing to see that smoking was allowed in the Casino which is not allowed under Australian law. We avoided this area as best we could but a couple of the popular bars were in close proximity. The ship also has a Cigar Room, Library room and Card playing room. The entertainment was outstanding including singers and dancers from Burn the Floor and death defying aerial acts. The Spinnaker lounge on deck 13 forward gives fantastic 180 degree views and much of the games are played out here. There is a fantastic kids club but on this cruise there were only 19 children and we never saw them. Port services were outstanding with each port providing huge community involvement. There was no shortage of volunteers at each port. Unfortunately our time at Kangaroo Island, Burnie and Eden were far too short and rushed. Tour operators had to cut short their standard tours with the longer tours returning late and passengers complaining. Cruise Pricing with NCL includes a number of perks (and you have no choice but to take up this option). We booked a balcony cabin giving you a selection of 2 out of 5 perks. We opted for the Ultimate drink package and prepaid gratuities (the latter no longer being available). Being our first cruise with this line, the drink package came in very handy and we did not have worry about this extra cost. NCL charges 20% gratuity on top of every drink but this is included if you have the package. However, we cannot justify the extra $1000 per person on a 10 day cruise included in the base fare. We have loyalty club benefits on other cruise lines which more than adequately covers these so called perks on NCL. Therefore we will not book another cruise with this line. Overall we had a very enjoyable cruise with a fabulouse itinerary but unfortunately the ship will not be visiting Kangaroo Island next season. This is a big mistake as Australians are looking for variety in the itineraries.

Top entertainment, great restaurants and bars

Norwegian Jewel Cruise Review by cassamanda

8 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We originally chose this ship for the itinerary and to try out a different line.

The original itinerary included Melbourne, Geelong, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln, Hobart and Eden. This was changed after 6 months to Melbourne, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Burnie, Hobart, Eden and Sydney. Still an excellent itinerary with 18 hours in Melbourne allowing us a full day visiting family. The visits to Kangaroo Island and Eden were not full days and with both ports being tender operations made it difficult to get full value out of the offered tours. We opted to go it alone or book with private tour groups saving many dollars.

Embarkation and Debark at Sydney was a breeze and a pleasant experience.

The ship is very comfortable but certainly showing her age. We had some stormy seas but being fully stabilized, the ship handled the seas with ease. However, i would not want to be accommodated in one of the suites as these are way up high on deck 14.

We understand she will be going into dry dock in Singapore early March after her repositioning cruise from Sydney.

The demographics on board was mainly from the Americas with also many Europeans and Asians. There were fewer Australian's than expected with most having sailed with NCL previously.

The Roll Call meet and greet was well supported and attended by all of the senior officers. Each attendee introduced themselves and each of the officers gave an outline of their roles. One oof the better meet and greets we have attended.

There are 13 restaurants to choose from with 7 being complimentary. We did not opt for a speciality dining package but there certainly is something for everyone, from Tepenyaki to Steakhouses, Italian to French.

We ate in either of the 2 main dining rooms or at the Garden buffet. Tzar's main dining is at the rear of the ship. The service was excellent however, the meals were average with, for example, Baked Salmon being served overcooked. The Azura dining room is located centrally and would suit people suffering from the motion of the ocean.

We could not fault the food from the Garden Cafe with a different base menu each day. This buffet is situated on the starboard side from midhip and spills out into the Great Outdoors seating area on the aft deck. This location also serves late night snacks and drinks.

O'Sheehans bar & grill is on deck 8 midship just above the Java Cafe in the Atrium on deck 7 and is open from 6am through to 4am! Great for light meals but also serves a massive mixed grill. On occasions we found the music wafting up from the Java cafe to be too loud to enjoy the meal.

The Java Cafe serves as the only Espresso coffee bar on the ship and doubles as a normal bar. Long waiting times for coffee is the result with the barman come barista concentrating mainly on serving drinks. We understand that this situation is about to change with the next refurbishment.

There are also 13 bars but not many Australian brands of drink to choose from. However, considering that there was no shortage of alcohol, we did not observe any unruly behaviour.

Dress code is relaxed to compliment the free style dining theme. The main dining rooms require neat casual and above with no shorts, thongs etc and we were happy to observe these reguirements being strictly adhered to. A pleasant change from some of the sloppy standards on some of the ships operating out Australia.

Smoking is restricted to designated areas but it was disappointing to see that smoking was allowed in the Casino which is not allowed under Australian law. We avoided this area as best we could but a couple of the popular bars were in close proximity. The ship also has a Cigar Room, Library room and Card playing room.

The entertainment was outstanding including singers and dancers from Burn the Floor and death defying aerial acts. The Spinnaker lounge on deck 13 forward gives fantastic 180 degree views and much of the games are played out here.

There is a fantastic kids club but on this cruise there were only 19 children and we never saw them.

Port services were outstanding with each port providing huge community involvement. There was no shortage of volunteers at each port. Unfortunately our time at Kangaroo Island, Burnie and Eden were far too short and rushed. Tour operators had to cut short their standard tours with the longer tours returning late and passengers complaining.

Cruise Pricing with NCL includes a number of perks (and you have no choice but to take up this option). We booked a balcony cabin giving you a selection of 2 out of 5 perks. We opted for the Ultimate drink package and prepaid gratuities (the latter no longer being available). Being our first cruise with this line, the drink package came in very handy and we did not have worry about this extra cost. NCL charges 20% gratuity on top of every drink but this is included if you have the package.

However, we cannot justify the extra $1000 per person on a 10 day cruise included in the base fare. We have loyalty club benefits on other cruise lines which more than adequately covers these so called perks on NCL. Therefore we will not book another cruise with this line.

Overall we had a very enjoyable cruise with a fabulouse itinerary but unfortunately the ship will not be visiting Kangaroo Island next season. This is a big mistake as Australians are looking for variety in the itineraries.
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Balcony
Cabin BA 10598
Huge King bed (2 large singles joined) with pillowtop mattress always provided a restful sleep. Bathroom a little small but sliding doors on both shower and toilet were a godsend - not clinging plastic shower curtains.
Cabin size is average at 205sq feet but with a small 38sq ft balcony. The size of the bed makes it a bit hard to navigate the room which also has 2 small tables and a 2 person sofa.
Otherwise, plenty of storage space.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews