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This cruise made it possible to take the whole family to the Southern Caribbean for a Thanksgiving to remember without missing too many school days. Embarkation was a breeze in NYC; far better than other ports we have used. Late fall cruises always run the risk of encountering cold and inclement weather and this was the case as we pulled away from Pier 88 in a near-blinding snow storm, but the crew responded with shovels and brooms to clear the pool deck. After a day of rocky seas, and at times heavy rain from a 'Nor'easter' storm, we settled into a smooth Caribbean cruise that unfolded like clockwork with timely port calls under sunny skies and warm temperatures. As with most cruises, there remains room for improvement in some of the on-board experiences, principally in food quality and on-board entertainment, but NCL on-balance provides a pleasurable cruise experience with good value for the fare paid. • The greatest weakness in food service was in consistently overcooked meats. While stated that red meats in Moderno would be prepared "medium-rare" i.e., normal, all but one selection was well-done and chewy. This was also the case in the MDR's, but thankfully much better in Le Bistro. They also did not have all of our advance reservations and a very responsive maitre'd was needed to fix the schedule issues. • On-board music entertainment was very limited and unimpressive; bring on "Howl At The Moon" as on the BA. And how about some Caribbean steel-pan music to liven up the pool deck? • The Cruise Director was utterly forgettable; time to promote her assistant! The friendliest port was St. Kitts despite being docked at an industrial pier. The St. Lucian Pirate Fun Cruise did not disappoint. Shopping in the ports was pretty standard for the region, but Diamonds Intl. is taking up entirely too much store frontage. Time in port was far too limited in most cases thus limiting excursion options. Finally, disembarkation was quick, further boosting NYC's port experience. Time to book our next cruise!

The Gem of the Fleet

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review by HuliHuli

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: November 2018
  • Destination: Southern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Mid-Ship Mini-Suite with Balcony
This cruise made it possible to take the whole family to the Southern Caribbean for a Thanksgiving to remember without missing too many school days. Embarkation was a breeze in NYC; far better than other ports we have used. Late fall cruises always run the risk of encountering cold and inclement weather and this was the case as we pulled away from Pier 88 in a near-blinding snow storm, but the crew responded with shovels and brooms to clear the pool deck. After a day of rocky seas, and at times heavy rain from a 'Nor'easter' storm, we settled into a smooth Caribbean cruise that unfolded like clockwork with timely port calls under sunny skies and warm temperatures.

As with most cruises, there remains room for improvement in some of the on-board experiences, principally in food quality and on-board entertainment, but NCL on-balance provides a pleasurable cruise experience with good value for the fare paid.

• The greatest weakness in food service was in consistently overcooked meats. While stated that red meats in Moderno would be prepared "medium-rare" i.e., normal, all but one selection was well-done and chewy. This was also the case in the MDR's, but thankfully much better in Le Bistro. They also did not have all of our advance reservations and a very responsive maitre'd was needed to fix the schedule issues.

• On-board music entertainment was very limited and unimpressive; bring on "Howl At The Moon" as on the BA. And how about some Caribbean steel-pan music to liven up the pool deck?

• The Cruise Director was utterly forgettable; time to promote her assistant!

The friendliest port was St. Kitts despite being docked at an industrial pier. The St. Lucian Pirate Fun Cruise did not disappoint. Shopping in the ports was pretty standard for the region, but Diamonds Intl. is taking up entirely too much store frontage. Time in port was far too limited in most cases thus limiting excursion options. Finally, disembarkation was quick, further boosting NYC's port experience.

Time to book our next cruise!
HuliHuli’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mid-Ship Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MA 11568
Not all Mini-Suites are equal. While ours was a little smaller than neighboring cabins, with an entry door that was too narrow to fit a travel stroller, it was otherwise comfortable with a good size balcony. Our cabin steward, Lincey Mitchell, was top-drawer in her service - friendly, timely and thorough at every aspect of her work. She was accordingly rewarded.
Deck 11 Inside Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews