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We chose this cruise because it has been many years since we have taken a ‘smaller’ big ship. The Florida overnight was a big draw for us so we could take our time in Orlando. We also were able to see a satellite launch, one of the best cruise experiences ever. We like NCL with the freestyle experience. The embarkation was chaotic because 2 NCL ships were in port. As suite guests we could avoid some of the lines. We arrived late enough that we were able to board immediately. The ride down was fairly rocky, the ride back smooth. Typical for NY trips that you never know what’s in store. The captain did a great job. The entertainment was simpler but we had fun at the dance classes and with the live music. The captain gave a fun fact during the announcements which was a nice touch. We have sailed NCL a lot and the food this time was the worst by far. We always find something in the buffet, this time it was like a school cafeteria. The highlight was the very enthusiastic hand sanitizer staff member who made sure everyone had clean hands. We ate at the Grand Pacific twice, both times the cut of meat was fatty and overcooked. Luckily you can order as many vegetables that you would like and this made it much better. Being Platinum was had two specialty meals. The one in La Cucina was good, the service was attentive as well. Cagneys was a huge disappointment. The meat was way overcooked to order and the service was poor. As suite guests the lunch service was also poor there. The suite breakfast was ok. One person working there was beyond rude, but the rest of the staff was wonderful. I do not know if it is a decline in quality, the ship etc. but it was a drastic change from previous NCL cruises. The ship itself is great. Having events at Spinnaker with lots of seating was fantastic. This type of area I miss on the bigger ships. The ships bridge viewing room is fun to see. Disembarkation was very easy. We walked off at about 9 and it was busy but the lines moved. I am hoping that the decline in food was just an off week because the rest of the cruise was good.

Florida overnight A+

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review by trumpetfish55

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2019
  • Destination: Bahamas
  • Cabin Type: Penthouse with Large Balcony
We chose this cruise because it has been many years since we have taken a ‘smaller’ big ship. The Florida overnight was a big draw for us so we could take our time in Orlando. We also were able to see a satellite launch, one of the best cruise experiences ever. We like NCL with the freestyle experience.

The embarkation was chaotic because 2 NCL ships were in port. As suite guests we could avoid some of the lines. We arrived late enough that we were able to board immediately.

The ride down was fairly rocky, the ride back smooth. Typical for NY trips that you never know what’s in store. The captain did a great job.

The entertainment was simpler but we had fun at the dance classes and with the live music.

The captain gave a fun fact during the announcements which was a nice touch.

We have sailed NCL a lot and the food this time was the worst by far. We always find something in the buffet, this time it was like a school cafeteria. The highlight was the very enthusiastic hand sanitizer staff member who made sure everyone had clean hands. We ate at the Grand Pacific twice, both times the cut of meat was fatty and overcooked. Luckily you can order as many vegetables that you would like and this made it much better. Being Platinum was had two specialty meals. The one in La Cucina was good, the service was attentive as well. Cagneys was a huge disappointment. The meat was way overcooked to order and the service was poor. As suite guests the lunch service was also poor there. The suite breakfast was ok. One person working there was beyond rude, but the rest of the staff was wonderful. I do not know if it is a decline in quality, the ship etc. but it was a drastic change from previous NCL cruises.

The ship itself is great. Having events at Spinnaker with lots of seating was fantastic. This type of area I miss on the bigger ships. The ships bridge viewing room is fun to see.

Disembarkation was very easy. We walked off at about 9 and it was busy but the lines moved.

I am hoping that the decline in food was just an off week because the rest of the cruise was good.
trumpetfish55’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Penthouse with Large Balcony
Cabin SE
This cabin was big with a huge balcony. We used it during the day in warmer weather and at night for looking at the stars. For the satellite launch we were lucky to see it could not have been better. Some drawbacks are a crew smoking section right below, there is only a window so natural light is limited and the furniture is tied up when you are underway. I never heard the neighbors but heard the shows in the theater very well.
Deck 10 Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins