The Good, The Bad, The Indifferent: Norwegian Jade Cruise Review by Jack_Tar

Norwegian Jade 4
Member Since 2008
318 Forum Posts

Overall Member Rating

The Good, The Bad, The Indifferent

Sail Date: December 2011
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
Embarkation: Barcelona
Flew to Barcelona, Taxi driver noticed that it had been repainted. 14:30 embarkation was very smooth with small queues to nonexistent queues. When boarding ship hands sanitised, Staff dressed as elves and Christmasy feel.

Balcony cabin on deck 10 as expected and the toilet is as people have noted a little small and set at an angle so if your over 5'11" it will be cramped. In the cabin there was coffee filter machine, safe, stocked fridge, robes, hair dryer etc. Did not see our room steward only a note with two names on. On speaking to other people our turn down would appear to be hit and miss. As we only had one animal made, compared to others having it every night and even on Christmas having a sign saying Merry Christmas (no we did not cancel our service charge prior or at the end) this is just an observation.

We went to the Garden Cafe for our lunch due to embarkation it was a little bit chaotic and disorganised. The tables were very close to each other, that's More if you could find one with spare seats. Food was of a cafeteria standard, I had roast beef, pots and veg and was fine, fruit was nice and fresh but the strange thing I found on a few occasions, was the plates were cold at the hot food station and hot at the cold.
Lunchtime the food was varied with roasts, meatball etc there was an Asian station with reasonable curries and stir fry. A pizza, burger and hotdog station I did not try these so cannot comment. Like anywhere you go around normal eating times, it is going to be very busy, but if you go a little earlier the tables are less chocker. Also found a station that did crepes and deli type sandwiches, and a couple of ice cream machines. I noticed quite a few people, they ranged from the elderly down to children using their hands to pick at the food instead of the tongs provided. Thankfully 'washey'washey ' hands before you enter the eatery.

We dined in the Aliza for most of our Evening meals. Service was fair to good, as for the food that was fair, and unfortunately there was one occasion when Lamb was on the menu, and it had no flavour even though it was pink in the middle. I was not the only one who thought so. This was exchanged for pork tenderloin which was OK. Also what made it worse the service took over 1 ½ hours that sitting.

Speciality Restaurant Le Bistro four of us paid the cover charge of $20pp one night, I ordered escargot, my friend ordered duck salad. Well the escargot had been kept under the hot lamps so each came out as one glob and nothing to write home about, but the duck salad...... well this had lovely green salad leave but where was the duck, two and a half slivers like shaved carrot were found hiding and they did a good job at that. All round the meal was pretty poor. The maitre d' was notified and agreed there should have been more duck and would have a word with the chef. He asked if he could get us a drink, we said a spirit would be nice, to which he blanked us, in the mean time a waiter had taken our order for coffee, and he again asked if we would like a drink, once more we again said a brandy would be nice, he said he couldn't do that but we could have an espresso coffee, we declined his generous offer.

Drinks were on average $13.00 per couple. We used the Tankards beer and whiskey bar, Spinnaker bar, Jades Casino, Mixers Martin & cocktail bar and wine in the Aliza restaurant. Now there is downside they ran out of white zinfandel (Rose) wine after 3 days and did not replenish at any of the ports they stopped at. When asked why they had run out of Rose the stock answer was that at the start everyone drank it, so it ran out.

We went to the Stardust theatre and saw 4Ever (II Divo type) singers they were very good, they did another appearance later on in the cruise and were still very good. Now for the shows put on by I believe the Entertainment staff was a bit mishmash. One night a singing contest and the audience were the judges, not good left towards the end. Another night female staff doing a 60/70's pop thing relating to a magazine. Now I'm broad minded, but I found it strange they were highlighting drug taking and acting as 'stoned' in a couple of songs, people did start to leave as we did later. Now on Christmas night at the Stardust you thought they would have put on 4Everm but no they used the general staff from the kitchens, laundry, bars etc and unfortunately it was bit like karaoke, I must say they did try to entertain us though. Went to two show in the Spinnaker where there was a resident band, the first show was 50/50's music and the staff dressed up in clothes of that era and got people up dancing. On the second time we went they were doing Beatles songs and unfortunately they murdered them hardly any one was dancing so we left.

0500 docked in Barcelona did our own carry off with the cases no problems, taxi waiting and straight to the airport Less

Published 02/06/12

Cabin review: BA Mid-Ship Balcony

Read All Mid-Ship Balcony (BA) Reviews >>

Port and Shore Excursions

It was really Malaga, but its not in the drop down menue. A bus service from the ship to the end of the entrance of the port (fee) can be walked and at the entrance there are shops. Again a DIY tour by foot, Really nice place good Architecture, nice shops quaint building even a C&A for the Brits. Found a backstreet bar which served fantastic crepes and coffee. Also a amrket near the port entrance mainly selling christmasy stuff. Also you could have a horse and cart ride tour.
Read 531 Grenada Reviews

Arrecief , Breakfast room service. Off ship at 09.30 free bus/coach shuttle to town as a sign states it is 2.5km (59mins) walk. The dock is a working dock with containers etc, and does not have a picturesque outlook as some people thought it should have had. Again DIY tour of town by foot, Interesting and pretty place. Market stalls along the sea front selling usual stuff. Rolex, Omega watches €20 then barter. Leather and lace toys

Private tour arranged. When the driver said the tour we had booked there would be parts that would be cloudy and miserable, he suggested that he would show us the best parts around Funchal for the same price. Well he did not disappoint, he had a good sense of humour. Also he said if we wanted to stay longer in one place it was no problem. We visited various place , to name a couple , the fisherman's port and he directed us to a real grubby bar (it was actually nice as it was used by the local fisherman) We ordered Madeira Poncha which features sugar cane "aguardente" (firewater similar to white rum), lemon and bee's honey, even though nowadays there are several variants made from fruits such as passion fruit, orange or Tangerine that substitute the lemon. The secret is to mix all the ingredients with a "mexilote", a typical stick with a phallic form. We actually watched the barman mixing and pounding the ingredients in the bar it is a bit time consuming, but well worth it and it is very potent. We also went to Monte where the start of the Toboggan run is also Nossa Senhora do Monte' a church situated at the top of an impressive flight of steps. At the end we asked if he could take us to a nice restaurant, not a touristy one. He said there was one but it wasn't cheap neither too expensive. Again he was spot on and we invited him to dine with us it was O Barqueiro.

Free shuttle to entrance to docking pier. This was a DIY tour of Santa Cruz by foot, mainly window shopping. Big shopping centre over 7 floors
Read 392 Tenerife Reviews

Compare Prices on Norwegian Jade Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruises

Read more Norwegian Jade cruise reviews >>
Read Cruise Critic’s Norwegian Jade Review >>

Compare Prices on Norwegian Jade Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruises

Member Since 2008
318 Forum Posts
Enrichment Activities
Family & Children
Fitness & Recreation
Onboard Experience
Public Rooms
Shore Excursions
Value for Money
Skip X

See Norwegian Jade deals up to 82% off:

October Deals
Norwegian Jade 72% Loved It

10-day Canada & New England From New York
See all Norwegian Jade Deals >>