8 Norwegian Jewel Cruise Reviews for Cruises for the Disabled Cruises to Caribbean - Western

The terminal in Houston is beautiful. The embarkation procedure was terrible, but NCL has no control over this process because it is land based and union rules need to be followed. I have mobility problems and need to use a walker at ... Read More
The terminal in Houston is beautiful. The embarkation procedure was terrible, but NCL has no control over this process because it is land based and union rules need to be followed. I have mobility problems and need to use a walker at times. Also, I was in a suite. I could not use the suite or handicap line because we arrived just at the time a lot of new workers on the ship were boarding and they were using the handicap and suite security line. Snaking through the long line was difficult. As suite guests, the ckeck-in process took longer than usual, because Florentina, the concierge, spent a lot of time chatting with other guests. Eventually, it was our turn. The young assistant escorted the passengers who were staying on deck 11 to their rooms. She led us to the escalator including me with my walker. I asked for an elevator. She said it would be okay for me to ride the escalator. The situation was frightening as I tried to get on the escalator. A young man came to my rescue and led me to the elevator. After that incident was resolved, we made it to our lovely two bedroom/two bath family suite. This is not a Haven suite. I think I'm spoiled. When I cruise NCL again, how will I ever be able to book anything else? I have a dilemma. Should I bore you with the details or have you go to youtube and search NCL Family Penthouse Suite.? Youtube won, but the shower jets that come from all directions with great pressure is fantastic. I want suite 11518 again and again! I ate lunch in Modenaro each day. On port days our butler, Lazaro, brought our hot breakfast right on time. The other days I had breakfast in Modenaro. Same menu each day which I liked. I only ate in O Sheehan's once. The chicken pot pie was good. DH and I shared the artichoke dip which we both like a lot.. The escargot in Le Bistro is the best I have ever eaten and the fillet is excellent. The steak in Cagneys was good, but I liked Le Bistro better. In the three ports we used NCL shore excursions. Highly recommend River Safari and Mayan Ruins in Belize. Enjoyed Playa Maya Lunch and Open Bar shore ex in Cozumel. There are plenty of loungers in sun and shade, pool, water park, inflatable raft which has a trampoline, ropes course, climbing wall, slide, and rope swing. In Trujillo, the Campo Del Mar beach has coarse sand and the slope is too steep for young children to enjoy. The small raft's ladder is hard is hard to climb. The entertainment is fantastic!!!!!!!! The Le Cirque show currently on Jewel is the best at sea. I have been on 7 cruise lines and have seen several Le Cirque style shows. When I was on Jewel in 2011, I liked the show very much. This was even better. The officers on this ship are very friendly. The captain leads by example. One night, I was invited to an officer's dinner. I had chest pain that afternoon and an abnormal EKG. I had to stay in the medical center and missed the dinner. After dinner, Jon, the officer in charge of something about the environment, came to see me in the medical center. I was very impressed with his kindness. There are so many excellent things about this cruise. I wish I had written the review sooner or taken notes. I wrote lots of note cards and put them in the box by the Guest Relations desk. I have a favorite officer and I wrote his name and position on the recommendation card and noted, "He is my Favorite." Be sure to fill these cards out throughout the cruise.   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Embarkation was fairly easy, as embarkation goes. We were told we couldn't get into our cabin yet, but could drop our luggage down the corrider. Before we got to that location, an anouncement came over the PA that cabins were ready. ... Read More
Embarkation was fairly easy, as embarkation goes. We were told we couldn't get into our cabin yet, but could drop our luggage down the corrider. Before we got to that location, an anouncement came over the PA that cabins were ready. Our cabin, category IE, was huge, but then we did require wheelchair accessibility! We got unpacked and went after some lunch. Just after the muster drill, we met with several others from the Cruise Critic chat for sail away. That was the beginning of some wonderful new friendships. Our cabin was on a dead end hallway, right by the deck four exits. Even though it is categorized as an inside cabin, we were on the hull of the ship, no window or port hole. At the first port of call we had to wend our way to the elevators for breakfast, but it was quick when we debarked and embarked at ports. We were pleasantly surprised how quiet it was, most of the time. The morning we anchored in Belize, there was a lot of racket from the tender docks being lowered. We did enjoy hearing the ocean waves while we were underway. We've had cabins all over ships: forward, high, low, inside, balcony, and really have no favorites. When we have an inside cabin we turn the TV to the bridge cam, turn the volume off, and there's our window to the world. That sunrise wakes us up every time! The Cruise Critic group met with officers on day 2. That afternoon many of us participated in a cabin crawl/poker run. We had cabins from inside to The Haven to crawl to! The entertainment was great, thanks to cruise director Jaime! Group Coordinator/Access Officer Cherry was right on target with my special needs, even anticipating what was needed next. Our cabin steward, Newman, surprised us with a wonderful zoo, even leaving each towel animal when making new ones. We were able to take a picture of our whole zoo at once! The excursion desk was quite helpful in assessing what excursions we could take with my wheelchair. Food opportunities all week were beyond wonderful! We ate in Cagney's, Teppanyaki, and Le Bistro as well as Tsar's Palace. We will brave the buffet to get ice cream, but prefer not to eat there. All too soon we returned to New Orleans, but we have two Cruise Rewards for future cruises!   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Having cruised on Carnival and Royal Caribbean in the past, we thought we would give Norwegian a try. We booked a seven night cruise out of New Orleans in a "mini suite". They should put the word "mini" in capital ... Read More
Having cruised on Carnival and Royal Caribbean in the past, we thought we would give Norwegian a try. We booked a seven night cruise out of New Orleans in a "mini suite". They should put the word "mini" in capital letters. It was nothing more than a balcony room. The only difference was in the bathroom, you had a sliding door that closed the toilet area off from the rest of the bathroom. We paid extra for that?? When we spoke with the guest services they were less than helpful and were not concerned in the least about us. The buffet was as expected ... normal buffet food, but decent. We went to the main dining room one night and were so disappointed in both the service and the food. We both ordered steaks that had no taste and were very fatty. The service which we have come to expect on other cruise lines was not at all evident on Norwegian. We decided to try the other main dining room, and found the same issues. The menu was basically the same as it had been in the other dining room and unfortunately, the food and service were also the same. We decided to pay the extra surcharge and try the Brazilian steak house and Cagney's Steakhouse also. We found both to be very good food and exceptional service. It is sad that with the cost of the cruise, you must pay extra to get a good meal. The venues on the ship were activities were held were small and crowded. Overall we were very disappointed with Norwegian and will never cruise with them again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
We headed out in February for a beautiful cruise on the Jewel for 7 relaxing days. Beyond a shadow of a doubt we were treated with some of the BEST service from the staff on this cruise. The food was outstanding! KUDOS to the dining staff ... Read More
We headed out in February for a beautiful cruise on the Jewel for 7 relaxing days. Beyond a shadow of a doubt we were treated with some of the BEST service from the staff on this cruise. The food was outstanding! KUDOS to the dining staff and their Executive Sous Chef and Double KUDOS to Mr. Messiah for having such a fantastic staff in the Food division. Our cabin Stewart was top notch with a smile and willingness to take care of anything you might need! Everywhere we went on this ship we encountered smiling friendly workers. The down side of this cruise........ Lack of entertainment for adults over 30 and under 80. Come 10 Pm the ship shut down. There were no interesting shows or entertainment for the guests after 10 pm.When we say the ship shuts down at 10 PM we mean it shuts down. They close the adult Jacuzzi, the pools and most all Bars at 10 Pm Even the ONE bar open was a dud.With mainly workers present. The shows provided were good but there was no variety of choice each day. We are not bingo players and found that at times after dinner that there was nothing for us to do, If the show of the day was not to our liking. It appeared to us that the line catered more to the elderly and the super young and forgot about us in the middle. All in all this was a great cruise and will cruise this line again if for nothing else than the great service! Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
December 22-29,. 2013 We arrived in New Orleans one day early and stayed at the Riverside Hilton right on the Mississippi. We had a lovely river front room. Loved this hotel and it's location.. By the way the taxi fare from the ... Read More
December 22-29,. 2013 We arrived in New Orleans one day early and stayed at the Riverside Hilton right on the Mississippi. We had a lovely river front room. Loved this hotel and it's location.. By the way the taxi fare from the airport to New Orleans is $30. I was surprised by the number of people that walked from their hotels to the ship, bags and all. We did this also. I was glad to save the taxi fare to the cruise port. We didn't get to the pier until 1pm. It was the usual mad house of people but it didn't take long to get on the ship. By the time we got on board the staterooms were ready. We found our cabin, dropped our carry ons and went to lunch in the buffet. We really liked the buffet and ate all our meals here except two. The service and food in the dining room was the poorest of any ship I have been on and I have been on lots of cruises and cruise lines. We went to the dining room on the first night thinking that was lobster night, however, they changed the menus around because of Christmas. The service was awful. We were virtually ignored. I could not get my water refilled so I had to drink my husbands water. I don't know what the problem was because the dining room was deserted. I had the Mahimahi which was tasteless and dry. My husband had prime rib which he really enjoyed. We didn't stay for desert as we couldn't get desert menus. We finally got up and walked out. We also went to the dining room on Christmas eve as that was lobster night. The lobster was small but tasty. The steak on the other hand was terrible. It was ¼ thick and I am sure it must have been pork as it was so greasy. Being from Kansas I know my beef. Service was better this night but again we left early as the food was so bad. We went straight from the dining room to the buffet where the food was better. We never went back to the dining room and are glad we didn't. We had a lovely balcony cabin on deck 10. We had an excellent room steward. When we didn't get service because we had our do not disturb sign out he was so upset. As if it was his fault. I think this had to be the best room steward we ever had. Friendly but not intrusive. Our trouble was our balcony neighbors ahead of us. They smoked. It made our balcony unusable as they smoked non stop. Not only did they smoke cigarettes but cigars also and if that isn't bad enough they also smoked weed. Not only did they smoke but when they were out on their balcony they talked loudly. Whenever me and my husband were on our balcony we whispered as to not disturb anyone. Unfortunate to pay all that money for a balcony and not be able to use it, however, we had no recourse. I was sure I was not going to like the cruise director Jamie. At first she really got on my nerves but I must admit she grew on me. Now the assistant cruise director (Sin) was the annoying one. He continually acted like a ADHD 6 year old that needed medication. If he thinks this is funny, he needs to grow up. The shows on this ship were quite good. I am usually really tough on the singers being a singer myself, however, the male lead singer on this ship was exceptional. The other two lady singers were also quite good. The production show I really liked as I like watching all the dancing. We had a magician one night. I personally don't like magicians as I can't figure out how they do the things they do. However, he was quite entertaining as he integrated comedy into his show. We did have one comedian who was funny. At least he made us laugh. The singers and dancers put on a show especially for Christmas. It was lovely. Some Christmas carols and also secular Christmas songs. They did a great job. The ship had caroling in the atrium. It was very crowded. Perhaps they should have had it in the theater where more people could have come. Only problem was the piano player. He played all the carols so fast we could hardly spit the words out. It was like he couldn't wait to be done so he did all the carols in triple time. I went to all the game shows like newly wed game, quest and dancing with the stars. They were fun as usual with a lot of laughs to be had. I am sorry to say my fellow passengers on this ship were not into following rules of any kind. The no kids in the front row of the show room rule was a joke as every night the front row had kids in it. One night two parents had their child sitting with them in the front row when the announcer stated no children in the front row. The child heard this and said to her mother. “Mom we have to move” To which her mother replied. “They don't mean you, dear”. Unbelievable!!! Why have the rule if you are not going to enforce it. Also the no seat saving fell on mute ears. There was the usual seat saving. Then not all the people in their group would come and there would be empty seats in a full theater. I can understand saving a seat for your spouse but this saving 6 seats for family and just sending the kids early is ridiculous. I must say they did have lots of reserved disabled seating in the buffet and in the show room. As this was a Christmas cruise there were a lot families. There were 800 kids on this cruise, however, we really didn't have a problem with them. I think the Children's program must of taken care of them. There were quite a few times kids would run full speed down our hallway like a heard of wild elephants but we endured it. There is really nothing you can do. We never went to the pool or hot tubs. They were just too crowded. The entire pool area was too crowded. The ports of call on this itinerary were exceptional. Cozumel, Belize city, Roatan and Costa Maya. In Cozumel we took at taxi to the Money bar for $10 each way. The beach is wonderful here and the snorkeling is very good. In Belize we went cave tubing with Island marketing. This was a poor excursion. The tubing was very good but I would go with a different company for sure. In Roatan we purchased a beach/transfer package thru Bananarama resort to Tabyana Beach. This was also very poor. The beach was so crowded you could hardly move. You couldn't snorkel because of all the dive boats parked in shore. It was too dangerous to snorkel in among those boats as they can't see you. We had been to this beach previously last year and thought it was beautiful, however, it has now been ruined by overcrowding of people and boats. In Costa Maya we went to Maya Chan beach. This was an fully inclusive beach day and it was fantastic. Food, drinks, beach, kayaking, snorkeling and personalized service. I can't recommend them high enough. We had a good cruise despite the bad dining room food, bad dining room service and horrible balcony neighbors. We paid quite a bit for this cruise and for the money I think I will book Celebrity next time or just do an all inclusive resort. I think we are getting to the age where we prefer being with adults with mature adult behavior.   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
I enjoyed the cruise and am very glad I went. However, my biggest disappointment in the cruise was the activities and entertainment. Except for the shore excursions, the on board offerings were somewhat simple and mindless. ... Read More
I enjoyed the cruise and am very glad I went. However, my biggest disappointment in the cruise was the activities and entertainment. Except for the shore excursions, the on board offerings were somewhat simple and mindless. 70's-80's Pop culture, mindless TV game shows etc. and low-level (though well executed) Las Vegas stage shows are fine, even fun, but when they are the only options, it seems like they are being aimed at the lowest common denominator of the population. I did not hear one note of classical music during the entire cruise. (Couldn't there be an audio channel on the TV?) There were no lectures and really no activities that required any thought or intellect--and this is a shame because, for example, people (especially children and teens!) came back from seeing wonderful Mayan ruins, indigenous populations and local economy and history and had no clue what they had seen. So much more could have been done to enrich the experience of the cruisers with a little education and preparation. And how about a couple of rudimentary Spanish lessons--or conversation groups to revive people's knowledge of Spanish? Instead we had big prep sessions and relentless print ads in our daily bulletins to alert people to shopping opportunities! All of this tended to lower the level of conversation on the boat to the catatonic level of a week long visit to a mall. Of course most people come aboard with friends and family, with whom they tend to stick to the exclusion of other passengers, so I don't expect too much in the way of scintillating company. But the most interesting conversation I had during the entire cruise was with a 13 year old boy whose family went off to a specialty restaurant. He was a musician and also interested in child psychology. My other conversations, though pleasant, were mostly stories about casino gambling, how drunk people got the night before, how much they paid for jewelry and how they missed seeing football during the week. The ship is using the internet for its operations. Why does it have to be so expensive for the passengers? Also, even if external internet access is not provided, the "intRAnet" (on-board internet) could be used so much more effectively. There is a "community" section on the internet that is free. This could be used to post restaurant menus, event schedules, television schedules (movies) and many other bits of information that passengers would like to have available. It is already up and running but has only ship embarcation schedules. Regarding food, generally it was OK, but by no means did it ever rise to the level of fine dining and the two extra-charge specialty restaurants were just not that much better than the complementary dining options. I did not try Cagney's steak house, but to my surprise The Brazilian churrascaria, Moderno, had nearly flavorless grilled meats, some of which were actually too tough to eat. La Cucina, the Italian restaurant, was better, but only one cut above the Olive Garden. The outdoor grill barbecue offerings were also dry, tough and flavorless. The Tsar's palace and Azura had dishes that looked good, but were only occasionally really well prepared. I had to do something I never do--namely send food back because it simply was not worth eating. I found the Garden Grill buffet had the best chance to provide edible food, some of which was quite good--the small Indian offerings being reliably tasty. And why should we have to pay extra for espresso? The Garden Grill already has coffee machines that grind and fresh-brew quite decent Americano coffee. Machines that do this and also provide espresso are everywhere. It would be so easy to install them, and it would add a lot to the experience of the cruise. Small matters: The chairs in the library are extremely uncomfortable and narrow. The library was rather heavily used, and more space with comfortable chairs for reading would be welcome. I had plug adapters for European electric plugs, so I could use the library or card room with my own computer for a more pleasant place to do some writing, but others who only had US plugs were frustrated. For folks like me who like to spend recreational time not only reading but writing, a room with tables and universal electric outlets for our own computers would be most welcome. It would be good to have adapters available, or dual wall plugs. Although a service charge of 12% was added to the bill, I felt continually pressured to offer additional tips--even for coffee. I would so much prefer a service charge of 15-18% and a no-tipping policy throughout the ship. This is exacerbated by the fact that the ship is full of concessionaires who work on commission. These are likeable folks, but their income depends on hard selling (and up-selling) and this became obsessive and egregious at times. The shore excursions were the high point of the trip for me. There was a large variety of excursions for different tastes, and the guides and activities were informative and fun. All this said, I want to commend the ship on the superb quality of the crew who were consistently helpful, happy and competent. They made the cruise a pleasure at all times. I also want to commend the ship on its excellent environmental policies. I would cruise with NCL again if only to support this effort. It made me feel that I was not harming the earth quite so much when indulging in a cruise experience.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
And here we are...back from yet another fantastic cruise on NCL!! This time it was the December 13th 2009 sailing of the Jewel out of Miami. There is sooo much to say, but I'll try to keep it short and sweet and hit the main points. ... Read More
And here we are...back from yet another fantastic cruise on NCL!! This time it was the December 13th 2009 sailing of the Jewel out of Miami. There is sooo much to say, but I'll try to keep it short and sweet and hit the main points. (As for other information...I reserve the right to remain silent!!!) Embarkation was a unique experience for us this time. Normally we process thru the balcony or mini suites window for Latitudes members and it usually goes without a hitch. But this year, one of our group was in a wheelchair, so upon ascending the stairs from the street to the entrance, we found a coral of wheelchairs ready and waiting right there. I hadn't even put my hand on the handle, when I was immediately met by a NCL crew member there to help. He stayed with us the whole time as we cleared security, and then whisks us around alllll the other lines to a special line so that we could process quickly and use the elevator to ascend to the embarkation area. One quick stop for the photo op and we were on the ship with a glass of champagne in hand!!! From arrival at the street to sipping champagne was maybe 20 minutes. Even those in our group that didn't arrive via the "handicap express", said that checking in was fairly easy. The key here is PREREGISTER online and bring a copy of that with you. If you are a Latitudes member, you can use that express line. Suite holders also have their own special lines for those special guests. Disembarkation was handled with equal ease and simplicity. After we finished yet another wonderful breakfast, we made way to the Fizz Lounge where wheelchairs with crew members waited to escort us off the ship, thru immigration, to the luggage area where we collected our bags. I traveled with my group of 9 that became 11, that sometimes swelled to 12, 14 and 20 at times...and a great time was had by all. We had been on the Jewel before, and she is a lovely ship! The ship was very clean and well kept, as is typical of the NCL line as a whole. We all had balcony rooms this time, complete with safe, mini fridge and bathrobes. Our cabin was a handicap cabin, and it was roomy and spacious with plenty of room for the scooter. Our room stewards were kind and efficient. Richard and Joselito are two very sweet guys that were always there when we needed something. The towel animals are always a treat, especially when my constantly being lost sunglasses would miraculously reappear on the towel animals head!! The first thing we did was haul our bags to our cabins. Generally the cabins aren't quite ready, but the room stewards were more than accommodating to let us drop off our bags and roam the ship a bit til the cabin was ready. Second stop was a cocktail at the martini bar by Magnum's Champagne Bar. The VERY BEST BARTENDER on the ship is Edgardo and he's in charge of the martini tastings. Not only does he make the BEST martinis on the ship, he's a hell of a dancer too! Next stop was making dinner reservations. You can always access the dinner reservations attendant on the far right of the registration desk (as you face it). They are very helpful and bend over backwards to accommodate your party and requested meal times. You can book the day you are in and the next night without any trouble. If you have a balcony or mini-suite, you can book the following day as well. The larger suites can book any days ahead that they want. Maracar was working the desk most days, when she wasn't hostessing at Chin Chin's and she is by far simply the most accommodating hostess you'll ever meet. She would go so far as to hunt me down to make sure I had my next reservations made, and then call my cabin to confirm the reservations she'd made for me. We were a large group and had no trouble getting in anywhere we wanted. Sometimes we had to juggle our times here and there, but the crew bends over backwards to accommodate you. I just can not say enough about the food. We did the Garden Cafe and Blue Lagoon for simple breakfasts before our excursions. Lunches would be there too, along with grazing at the poolside buffet for quick mid day bites. This year the Jewel tried out two specialty lunches. I didn't make the Jazz Brunch, but we did try the Indian Buffet lunch held in Le Bistro. This was a $15 surcharge and worth the price for generous selections of well prepared authentic Indian dishes. Every dinner we dined at the specialty restaurants. WELL worth the surcharge!!! Don't let those fees scare you off, it's TOTALLY worth it. Things you MUST eat: BBQ Pork Ribs, Dirty Noodles, Lamb Medallions - Chin Chin Restaurant Escargot, Chicken Coq Au Vin, and anything on the menu - Le Bistro Lobster, yes lobster! - Teppanyaki Combination Pizza - Mama's Italian More lobster, Rib Eye - Cagney's The spa prices are pricey as always. But watch your Freestyle Daily for specials. Also physically GO to the spa and talk to the spa crew. They will work special combo deals for you that are listed on the menu of services. You can make an appointment for a treatment and usually negotiate a little extra freebie such as a free Eye Treatment while at the desk. Best Spa Deals: the 10/20/30 plan - 10% off first treatment, 20% of 2nd, 30% off third...combine those with bartering at the counter for a freebie. The other thing I would HIGHLY recommend is the Spa Pass. You pay a flat rate (was $99 for single of $125 per couple for the 7 day cruise or $20 per day individually) and you have access to the mineral baths, hydrotherapy pools, sauna, steam room, stone therapy lounges, cold plunge and the private locker area for the entire cruise. You also have access to the very restful lounge area that sits at the very FRONT of the ship with full glass panoramic views out the bow. The entertainment is always a great value as it's FREE!! I've been to many many Jean Ann Ryan Company productions and had the pleasure of meeting many of the performers, but this particular group was really something special. Not only are they talented and gifted they were so personable, unlike any other cruise I've been on. We would see the performers out and about on the ship and they were always friendly and welcoming, often times actually hanging out with us!! Make sure you see ALL their performances. By the way, if you get a chance to meet Richard (one of the male athletic performers for the JARC), please do so. His smile will light up your day, and his genuine zest for life is contagious. (Not to mention those 12 pack abs!!!) Don't miss the Crew Show. I don't think that the Cat's Pajama's will still be performing, but if they are make sure you see EVERY performance. They are spectacular young men whose acapela talents will mesmerize you. The Fizz Lounge is a great place to hang out and for karaoke, and the Spinnaker lounge seems to always have great tunes spinning. Now I've never been one to generally attend the usual games and things that the cruise director staff puts on, but this trip was an exception. The cruise director Que Hundermark has taken these "game shows" to a whole new level. He single handedly (well not single handed he has a GREAT staff) as taken simple games like "The Newlywed Game", "Dancing With the Stars", and "Qwest" and made them into extremely well attended events on the ship. We attended many, if not all, of them and had the most fantastic time. We laughed til we couldn't breathe in some cases, and won a trophy in other cases. (Details will NOT be disclosed, so don't ask!! LOL ) We've met many cruise directors on our many cruises, several with NCL, and Que is the best yet!! He was always available, always friendly and made each and everyone of us feel like we were the most important person to him on the ship. Speaking of being made to feel like you are important...I'd like to make a point to comment on John the Hotel Director and Mustafa the Food & Beverage Manager. These two men simply never sleep. Especially John O'Hara the Hotel Director. This man was up before I had breakfast and when I would leave the Spinnaker Lounge after dancing all night...he was still there, standing in the back, watching everything that was going on. John and Mustafa were out and about every evening greeting guests at the restaurants. We saw them literally every night, and every night they would stop at our table and visit. And not just stop by...they would chat with us leisurely as if there wasn't anywhere else they had to be. Now believe me, my group isn't all sunshine and smiles, there were a few of us that had comments to make about service from time to time. And each and every time these two gentlemen would listen attentively, take notes, make calls and voila...things happened. Watch your Freestyle Daily for specials in the Duty Free Shop. Great deals on liquor on certain days, plus free tastings! Always, always, ALWAYS mention you are a Latitudes member and get an additional 10-20% off anything you purchase in the shopping area. Just cuz it says Latitudes on your card, doesn't mean you'll get the discount. So ASK for it. NCL University offered all kinds of classes and tastings. Though usually we partake in many, this trips focus seemed to be on the martini tastings. What fun!! Edgardo, the head bartender, served each martini with complete recipes, fun facts about the history of that martini, while running a trivia contest amongst the tasters! One of the guests in our group presented him with a special holiday martini recipe, which he incorporated into the 2nd tasting and gave a complimentary sample to everyone. Do take part in these tastings. They are only $15 and with the 4 samples you'll get...an alcohol bargain on board! Best Hostess - Maracar in Chin Chins Best Head Bartender - Edgardo in the Martini Bar and Spinnaker Best Room Stewards - Richard and Joselito on Deck 10 Best Officers - John Ohara, Hotel Director - Mustafa, F&B Manager - Que, Cruise Director Be sure to tell them the BEADBABE says hello Though I did not really use the casino, some in my group did. They had a few issues which I'm sure they'll be taking up directly with NCL. Since I don't know much about gambling, I'll leave that segment for them to review. The consensus amongst the gamblers in the group was...that standard "casino" rules don't always apply on board. So make sure you know the "house" rules on the games before you start. Despite that due to rough seas and winds, we missed our stop at Great Stirrup Cay, our Captain took us out to sea for an added a sea day....the entire crew bent over backwards to keep us fed, entertained and happy. Additionally, our beloved Captain invited the entire Cruise Critic group to a special tour of the bridge!! This was a very special treat. He allowed us to wander around and ask questions. He was infinitely patient and seemed genuinely interested in our questions. We weren't hurried at all and thoroughly enjoyed this little perk! I can't say enough about this ship...the whole experience was awesome. If you want to know anything specific, I'm happy to answer questions! Read Less
Sail Date December 2009
I would absolutely go on a cruise with NCL again. It was an amazing experience and I loved it. We were aboard the Norwegian Jewel, which was spectacular. Here are my observationa: Public Rooms - None of them are subtle - think Las Vegas ... Read More
I would absolutely go on a cruise with NCL again. It was an amazing experience and I loved it. We were aboard the Norwegian Jewel, which was spectacular. Here are my observationa: Public Rooms - None of them are subtle - think Las Vegas glitz. The Tzar's Palace dining room is a perfect example - lots of gilt, highly patterned, bright carpets and a grand staircase. Cabins - All are furnished with cherry wood finishing, televisions, a safe,refrigerators, duvets, and bathrooms with showers and hair dryers. They are stylish and comfortable. Dress Code - Casual dress is a very popular aspect of freestyle cruising. Formal wear(black tie or dark suit for men and cocktail dress for women) is optional during the one formal evening. On our trip, about 5% of passengers dressed up in evening wear and tuxedos. The Food (free venues) - There is 24 hour room service aboard ship but we never bothered with it because of all the great dining options. "The Garden Cafe" (indoor) and "The Great Outdoors" (seating area to the rear of the Garden Cafe) are both buffets and are good for breakfast and lunch but are not as good for dinner, sometimes the food was cold. During the day, seats were hard to find but we always found one eventually. They have soft-serve ice cream dispensers and self-serve beverage machines. Excellent choices here were little roast potatoes, sausages and roast tomatoes at breakfast, the pizza, and all the juices. The eggs Benedict were great if you got them while they were hot. On the last night of the trip, the chocolate buffet and ice sculptures were amazing. "The Blue Lagoon" which overlooks the atrium is another option for breakfast or lunch. I liked the Full House breakfast of eggs, bacon, grilled tomatoes, sauteed mushrooms, hash browns and toast. Lunch choices included fish and chips, potato skins, soups, nachos, excellent hamburgers and wings and salads. "The Poolside Grill" is great for morning juices/pastries or burgers/hot dogs for lunch and is quick and convenient. You will be able to listen to live music while you eat. The reggae band "Uprysn" was noteworthy. "Tsar's Palace" had excellent food. It is served by waitstaff who were quick and efficient. We tried "Asura" for dinner only once. It is noisy, because it doesn't have the spaciousness of Tsar's, and generally feels cramped. Deck 7 is the home of reception and shore excursion desks, art/photo galleries, Internet cafe and shops with duty-free items, clothing and jewelry. The Crystal Atrium features the "Java Cafe", awesome light fixtures and an elegant, white, baby grand piano. It also offers outdoor seating when the pool deck is too busy. The pool deck has two pools, four spas, and a big yellow water slide for kids. The pool and spas are almost empty by dinner time, and you can enjoy the sunset from the hot tubs or on a chaise lounge. I found an empty lounge chair poolside most days; there was no deck chair hogging around the pool. "The Spinnaker Lounge" wass sunny and quiet during the day and home to some great entertainment at night - be prepared to laugh your socks off. The Stardust Theatre is the main entertainment venue for nightly Broadway/Vegas-style productions, comedy, music and ventriloquist acts and a Cirque du Soleil-type aerial show called Cirque Bijou. The talented group of gymnasts, acrobats and bungee jumpers played to packed houses. Other entertainment on board included live guitar and piano music available at various locations. My favourite was a group of mariachi musicians. There are also late night parties with themes such as White Nights (where those who attend dress in all white), Caribbean and disco. Other recreational options include a jogging and walking track and a sports deck (with bleacher seating) for basketball, volleyball and tennis. There are also golf driving nets, a shuffleboard court, ping pong tables and a life-size chess set. Shore Excursions - Do not book them on board. They are very expensive and you can pay way less for the same thing by booking privately. Check out Trip Advisor.com for ideas and don't be afraid to book locally. Drinks on Board are expensive. We brought our own decanted liquor and had cocktail hour in our cabin each night before dinner. Also, for security reasons, all bags go through a metal detector and X-ray equipment on returning to the ship on excursion days. Any duty-free liquor is confiscated until the end of the cruise. Karaoke is available at the FYZZ Lounge and in the private red, green or blue karaoke rooms at no extra charge. Gratuity - Each passenger is automatically billed $12 per day. Guests who prefer to tip individually can fill out a form at reception. The Casino offers one penny to $100 slot machines, blackjack, baccarat, roulette and poker. My compliments to all the staff for making this the perfect holiday Read Less
Sail Date December 2009
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.1

Find a Norwegian Jewel Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click