We embarked from Venice. Arrived at the port terminal at 11:30AM, and were on board by noon. No Problem.
Our suite was beautiful, everything we expected and more. We particularly enjoyed the perk of being able to have breakfast and lunch in Cagney's. The breakfast and lunches were wonderful. We had dinner in five specialty restaurants and enjoyed each of them. We really enjoyed the French Bistro, and went there twice. Cagneys was good, and the Italian restaurant was OK, but the menu was lacking creativity. We had a dinner in our room one night from the Asian restaurant. Our butler service was outstanding that night and for the entire cruise.
We ate in the main dining room the rest of the nights, and experienced no problems. The food was good, well presented, service was good, and deserts were outstanding.
The ports we visited were good, we had done them before, and didn't use any NCL tours. We took the Hop on Hop Off bus in each port. Enjoyable.
Attended two shows on the ship and enjoyed them. We visited the casino each night and enjoyed ourselves there. The casino people, dealers, etc. were really very nice.
We experienced one stormy day at sea, rough seas, etc, but it wasn't that bad.
That night, we at in our room from the Asian restaurant. No sense having to get your balance every 10 steps. The captain kept everyone well informed and and I believe he handled the ship and the situation well.
I heard and read a lot of negatives about the cruise, mainly from the die hard Cruise Critic members. They seemed to have a lot to say about everything. Maybe we're easy to please, but we've been on Crystal cruises, Holland American, Costa, Seabourn, Celebrity and this cruise was just as good as any of them. The ship was immaculate and the workers were very amiable. Like any other cruise, they try to sell you, but I didn't think there was any pressure.
We got off the ship as easily as we boarded, there was a slight delay that had something to do with the luggage, but it was worked out and didn't upset anything.
On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate this cruise at a 9.
We thoroughly enjoyed it, and would go again. We are unhappy that the Gem is no longer doing Transatlantic cruises. Hopefully it will return.
Our cabin was excellent. One thing, however. The treadmills were directly above our cabin, and we heard the pounding when someone ran or trotted on a treadmill. I would suggest moving the treadmills back to where the bicyles are, and then the noises would be gone, as treadmills would be back about 20 feet.