10 Norwegian Jewel Cruise to Nowhere Cruise Reviews

My husband and myself are seasoned cruisers - having cruised both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, Europe, Mexico, Hawaii, the Mediterranean and Caribbean. We've cruised on some of the most beautiful, largest, newest and much of ... Read More
My husband and myself are seasoned cruisers - having cruised both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, Europe, Mexico, Hawaii, the Mediterranean and Caribbean. We've cruised on some of the most beautiful, largest, newest and much of everything in between as far as ships go. Having read the cruise critic reviews concerning the older ship, the Norwegian Jewel - at first we were hesitant to book, but decided to move forward on this last minute choice or a week long cruise. The entire experience has endeared us to Norwegian, and in the future it will definitely be on our list as a future choice for a cruise line. Yes, the ship is older, it's not the biggest, nor is it the smallest cruise vessel we've sailed. It was given a face lift in the last five years which brightened it up, laying new carpets in the staterooms, new facades, etc. However, Our primary message is Norwegian's Superior Service and Restaurants! We had the best food, in the biggest array of choices - from a Japanese wok restaurant to everything [French, Italian, Brazilian,etc.] in between with one of our favorites being Cagneys Steak House. The prices were great, array of food choices and great taste were above our expectations. Our penthouse suite was superb - and the service was beyond our expectations and incorporated our absolute and complete satisfaction....at a fraction of the cost to what we've previous encountered on some of our favorite cruise lines. We highly recommend this cruise for those who wish privacy, a great room & value, and service above and beyond one's expectations! Our Butler was amazing. We left the ship rested with truly having experienced a true vacation from "life." Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
Just a little background first,my DW and I have been cruising for 10 years and have been on 8 cruises. We have only been on Carnival and Norwegian. We were on the Norwegian Jewel 2 years ago and are scheduled for the Gem in April. Being we ... Read More
Just a little background first,my DW and I have been cruising for 10 years and have been on 8 cruises. We have only been on Carnival and Norwegian. We were on the Norwegian Jewel 2 years ago and are scheduled for the Gem in April. Being we were on the Jewel a short time ago we didn't need to do to much exploring. The ship is designed well. It's easy to find your way around. We arrived at the terminal at 10:15am and were seated in the waiting area by 10:45. A record in my opinion. We were actually the first ones to go through the metal detectors. We got number 5 for boarding, we thought we would be on sooner than we did. There was some glitch in the boarding but we did get on by 12:15. It really isn't bad waiting. Once on the ship we headed for the buffet area and found all the food there to be very good, many choices for all tastes. DW is a vegetarian and she found enough to eat. After lunch we left the area to give others a place to sit, being it was cold we knew the area would fill up so we went to the Spinnaker lounge to wait for our room to be ready. The rooms were ready earlier than expected and we proceeded to it. We always get a balcony but figured it was a short trip and why not try an obstructed ocean view. The room and the hallway had a strange odor that we noticed throughout the entire cruise. It actually smelled like sewage. We were in room 8590 just in case you wanted to know. We did sail away in the spinnaker lounge as did mostly everyone. We met a fellow firefighter and his wife, it was their first cruise, so we had a lot to talk about. It was great to see the city skyline from there, since all of our cruises are from New York we will probably go there from now on, even on nice days. We decided to check out the main dining room Azur's for dinner, big mistake. My wife ordered the Salmon, there were so many bones in it she couldn't eat it. We sent it back and received an apology from the Maitre D who took our room number, but we never heard about it after that. I'm sure others Salmon wasn't going to be good either. The entertainment on this cruise was top notch. We went to the show that night and loved the show, I won't give it away but only to say you must attend the shows. I know people call this cruise the booze cruise, but after a long day of travel we turned in for the night and slept better than we have in months. The first sea day was filled with many things to do. Most of the big things to do like bingo were held in the spinnaker lounge and it got very crowded. We sat at a four top and met two great people. They were doing a Father-Daughter weekend, she was from Pennsylvania and he was from Massachusetts. Since my birthday was this day my DW treated me to a spa treatment of my choice, she wanted one also so we spent some time there. It was great! We later went to the buffet for lunch and met two other fantastic people who needed to sit down due it being so busy. We hit it off immediately and we were all laughing like we had known each other for years. It turned out it was his birthday that day also. That after noon they had a drawing for a free cruise but it wasn't run so well, it was in the spinnaker lounge and it was mobbed, and ran over the time it was supposed to start, we had to leave due to dinner reservations. My DW wanted the dinner that night to be special and she knew how much I love a good cut of meat. So we went to Moderno, it's a new Brazilian restaurant where they come around with meat on swords and you have a green tag for more or red one for enough. She being a vegetarian,I knew it would be hard to go there, but they had a salad bar and she did have a little meat(don't tell anyone). We got there at 5:30 and weren't served till 6:30, the sides were served after we finished eating. At 7pm we decided to forget dessert and got the check to leave. Other guests were a little more vocal and demanded their money back. In a word the service "stunk", but in all fairness it was the kitchen not the wait staff. We went to the buffet and had dessert there. The show that night was amazing. "Le Cirque Bijou". It is a must see and you should sit higher up in the theater. We did and had a great view. Since we don't drink alcohol, we weren't in the mood to go to many of the bars, but we did go to the Casino which on both nights was packed. Everyone looked like they were having a great time winning and loosing. We lost on the roulette table but had fun doing it. The ship has a cigar room and I sat and smoked a good cigar while my DW read a book. On the last day we decided not to rush off the ship like we usually do. The ship got into New York at 7am, we had an early breakfast and decided to walk off at 7:30. We caught a cab to Penn station and made the 8:10 home. We were home by 9:45am. Overall this was a fantastic 2 days away from it all. We have been thru so much in our lives this past year with Hurricane Sandy and a death in the family, that we needed to do this for our sanity. I highly recommend a cruise to nowhere, we are booked on one in January 2015 on the Breakaway. Read Less
Sail Date February 2013
What a blast, rocking on the Norwegian Jewel's cruise to nowhere. Embarkation was a breeze, we got to the terminal about 11, paid $70 for 2-night parking, had priority check-in, got group #5, and we boarded and were eating lunch at ... Read More
What a blast, rocking on the Norwegian Jewel's cruise to nowhere. Embarkation was a breeze, we got to the terminal about 11, paid $70 for 2-night parking, had priority check-in, got group #5, and we boarded and were eating lunch at the buffet by 12:15! Dining: Speaking of buffets, I read all the previous negative reviews, and I just don't get it. You must be a really picky eater if you cannot find something you like. Ok, the Jewel did not have all the fancy Chef named stations as other lines have, but you could easily choose from very good pizza, hamburger, hot dog stations, to pressed sandwiches, pasta to order, chinese, indian, and american fare food. Since we boarded early, the food was hot, plentiful, and the choices were endless, our 2 buffet lunches and 2 buffet breakfast's were excellent. We booked dinner online in advance a month before the cruise, and on night #1 we ate at the excellent Braziian BBQ called Moderno's and were were not disappointed for the $20 upcharge per person. The salad bar was fresh with cold seafood, salads, soups, olives, cheeses, breads etc. The main meal came with delicious sides of garlic mashed potatoes, fluffy rice and black beans, and fried bananas which were tasteless. The highlight of course were the skewers of piping hot flavorful meats, including garlic beef, lamb chops, sirloin, filet mignon, chicken, chorizo, etc. The place was fun, it was buzzing with energy, and the desserts of flan and papaya ice cream were delicious also. Word got out the food was so good there, that it was fully booked on night #2. Dinner night #2 we ate at the French Bistro, and surprisingly, we were a little disappointed. Appetizers of escargot swimming in garlic, mussels in a cream sauce, and scallops were good. Main course of roasted duck and pork with apples, were boring, not hot, and had very little flavor. Only my filet of beef was excellent, but it had a weird tasteless potato gratin as a side. This place was not worth the $20 upcharge, and it appears it gets served out of the main kitchen so why all the fuss? Cabin: We had a mini-suite on deck 11, right below the outdoor deck, the pool, the spa the gym and Garden Cafe buffet, a perfect location. The suite was wonderful, it had a queen size bed and sofa that became a full size bed that could be separated by a curtain, gave the feeling of 2 rooms in one! We had plenty of room for the 3 of us, and we drank coffee brewed from our in suite coffee maker, and also had beer and wine on the balcony. Plenty of storage room, and a bathroom with a shower and bathtub combo, very serviceable. Pool/Spa/Gym: What a good time we had lounging in the outdoor hot tubs during a snowstorm, people were having a grand time, and the outdoors pools were heated and full of happy people, even though the temps were in the 40's and 30's. Excellent gym, which was full on day 2 sea, and the spa was worth the up charge of $45 for the 2-days. Entertainment/Activities: Ok, there were a lack of day time activities, too much bingo, the boring Deal or no Deal game, but the casino was full and fun, the comedian on night #1 was excellent, and the sail away parties or any parties led by the DJ were crowded and rocking. While there was no official disco, the Spinnaker Lounge was where the DJ had us all dancing way past midnight. We saw the Band on the Run show on night 2 which was good. The piano player who did Elton John was very entertaining, and most of the live music at the different venues were very good. Would have been nicer for few more activities during the day 2 at sea like wine tasting, ship and kitchen tours, etc. Getting off the ship: Best system of any cruise line, its hotel style, just walk off anytime after 7:30 with your carryon bags. We walked off after breakfast at 9, and were home in our driveway by 10:30. Overall: This was our 2nd cruise to nowhere, a two-nighter this time on the NCL Jewel, last year we were on the Gem. Quick comparison between the 2, the Jewel is a little dated compared to the Gem, there was no Bliss Lounge, in its place was the largest at sea store I have ever seen. In some respects I thought it was a waste of space. The Jewel like the Gem has a pay for fee Spa, but while nice, the Jewel's hydrotherapy pool was much smaller than the Gem's. Another gripe, why doesn't NCL have an indoor atrium and walkthrough decks? You can't walk across deck 6 from one end to the other, you have to go up a deck to deck 7 and back down to get to the casino? But overall, what a rocking good time for the 2 days at sea, we were never bored, the NY crowd was all into partying, we saw plenty of fun bachelor and bachelorette parties. We will take another 2 night cruise to nowhere on NCL again! Read Less
Sail Date February 2013
We just salied out of NYC on the NCL Jewel for a 2 day Cruise to Nowhere January 18 thru 20. The Manhattan Pier was a mess because the NCL Jewel, NCL Gem and the Queen Victoria which is doing a world cruise made her 1st stop in NYC. We ... Read More
We just salied out of NYC on the NCL Jewel for a 2 day Cruise to Nowhere January 18 thru 20. The Manhattan Pier was a mess because the NCL Jewel, NCL Gem and the Queen Victoria which is doing a world cruise made her 1st stop in NYC. We didn't feel the pain most felt checking in because we were staying in the Haven so we were wisked thru security to the VIP counter, checked in and walked over to the VIP waiting room. Our Butler came to get us around noon and told us he would be taking us to our 2 bedroom family suite to drop our bags and then to Cagneys for our 1st lunch. When we were boarding there was still a long line of people outside that just got back from the 12 day cruise on the Jewel still waiting to get thru customs and it was COLD outside. This was our 1st time in the Haven and it didn't dissappoint us. We normally get a suite on NCL for the perks but the Haven could run a couple thousand more on the 7 day cruises so we don't bother but for a couple hundred more we decided to try it. My daughter and her friend really enjoyed the pool and Jacuzzi it was a very relaxing area and Sherwin the Haven Butler did a good job of making sure everyone had what they needed. There's a concierge lounge on the Jewel if you walk up the stairs by the elevator bank that overlooks decks 12 & 13 and makes an awesome spot for the sail off when it's cold...we were the only one's there. Speaking of the Concierge he was no where to be found. There was a letter in the room with his name and extension but never saw him until we were leaving on Sunday. I did call him Friday to see if he could change our dinner reservation at Cagney's from 7:30 to 6:30 because we wanted to see the 8PM show but he said they were booked full until 9:30 so we decided to go down at 7PM and to our surprise they weren't even 1/2 full?? They seated us and service was so fast we were done just before the show was about to start. We were on the Gem 7 day cruise in May to Florida/Bahamas and Ryan the concierge was always visible but it seemed like everyone on the Jewel was resting for their upcoming 12 day cruise. The cruise director was no where to be found and his staff didn't seem very motivated...they need to duplicate Sinan on the Gem and get some motivation in that staff. Sinan was everywhere on the Gem but this guy on the Jewel lacked any enthusiasm to the point that I don't even know what his name is...he's in the wrong line of work. More dissapointments..they don't offer the soda program on the 2 day, there's no room service (nothing), no towel animals even on the 2nd night, no champagne in the suites for sail off. The biggest dissapointment is this is a huge money maker for NCL...all the pay extra restaurants were packed to the point they added extra hours, tons of drinks being sold and Casino packed but I didn't feel they take it serious enough. Friday night after the 2nd show we went to the Blue Lagoon for a few wings and before I got to open my mouth the girl at the podium said it's quicker to get the food to go?? The place was 1/2 empty and I said we would prefer to sit here so she said suit yourself, walked to a table threw the menus down and walked away?? so much for those Platinum Haven card keys:-) Long story short this 2 day cruise didn't cost us any less per night then if we were on a longer cruise but the lack of motivation and all the extra corner cutting will keep us from ever booking a CTN in the future. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
I just returned from a 2-Night Cruise To Nowhere from New York onboard Norwegian Jewel with the family. The cruise was good just to getaway for a weekend with the family. EMBARKATION DAY: Took the NY Waterway Ferry to New York, ... Read More
I just returned from a 2-Night Cruise To Nowhere from New York onboard Norwegian Jewel with the family. The cruise was good just to getaway for a weekend with the family. EMBARKATION DAY: Took the NY Waterway Ferry to New York, then a yellow cab to the terminal, cleared security, then checked in and were given a number to wait for boarding number seven waited about an hour to forty minutes, arrived 11:00am, then waited to be called then boarded ship around shortly after 12 noon, then lunch Garden Cafe, on arrival the person standing entrance sprayed your hands with sanitizer although there was a sanitizer dispenser on the wall, but not everyone notices it and I usually keep my own in pocket with me. THE FOOD: Garden Cafe is the ships buffet restaurant and on first day it was busy since we got on kind of later than normal, still found a place to sit. Offerings on first day were American meatloaf, ham at carving station, vegetables, burgers, hot dogs and chicken breast. These were the foods I enjoyed the most. They also had salad, soup, Asian station, and pizza station. The food was good but not great. There was dessert station which consisted of mousse cakes which was one my favorites, also had gelatiin, lemon-lime and cherry very good. The only beverages buffet restaurant were tea, coffee and water, I only drank water since I don't drink tea or coffee those are not my favorite beverages. The other ships I have cruised there was lemonade or fruit punch there, not this cruise. After finishing first lunch, went down to our staterooms on deck 8 and were ready which consisted of two balconies with connecting door but didn't use either since it was just 2-night cruise. Staterooms 8538 and 8540 were not that spacious, balcony not large but did not use it sinc it was kind of cold. The restroom was not large, but had stand up shower, toilet in the corner and sink in there. MUSTER DRILL: Then around 3:15pm went to Muster Drill which was in Stardust Theater deck 7 was finished within ten minutes. Muster station was A3 which said to go to the balcony level of theater but directed to main level to sit in front all in all it went smoothly. Then still plenty of time to watch the ship sail. The sail away was held in Spinnaker Lounge, did not attend, but went into the cold on deck bundled up and waved towards the city. FIRST DINNER: I went to Garden Cafe, family went to Cagney's Steakhouse, I enjoyed the buffet which was roast sirloin of beef, which I liked, chicken breast, similar to what was offered for lunch buffets. Desserts were mousse cakes and gelatin, they were good. Then after buffet walked around deck, windy and cold but was bundled up and went to sleep no towel animals on this cruise and also no mints when you returned to your stateroom. SEA DAY: Slept in until 10am, then went to Galleria Shops deck 7 just few thing postcards, keychains and pens there. Then late breakfast Great Outdoors deck 12 then lunch Great Outdoors consisted same stuff as buffets following them carving station offered roasted chicken but with bones, had that and chicken breast few burgers, enjoyed the strawberry short cake which was offered. Then walked around little bit then returned to nap. After nap went to buffet which offere pork boneless not thrilled with that, pork scallopini, veal cubes, and same items as usual and dessert. Then walked around and packed for the return trip then sleep until Sunday which was disemarbaktion day. DISEMBARKATION DAY: The ship entered New York 7:00am, family went for breakfast I stayed in finished packing up and around 8:00am left stateroom for deck 7 one deck down and off the ship and in yellow cab all within five miuntes to ferry then on ferry back in at 9:00am great disemarkation did not cleared customs since we didn not have calls, but there was customs paper in our stateroom. Not the best trip but it was good to get away for the weekend on a ship we never sailed before. I prefer Carnival, Celebrity and also Royal Caribbean inside of NCL better ships, the food and everything else is much better, family says same there. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
Just returned from a "Cruise to Nowhere" on the Jewel. I went with my sister and my twenty something daughter. I have traveled on two other cruise lines. Since I have taken nine cruises I think I have enough previous experience ... Read More
Just returned from a "Cruise to Nowhere" on the Jewel. I went with my sister and my twenty something daughter. I have traveled on two other cruise lines. Since I have taken nine cruises I think I have enough previous experience to judge the quality of a cruise. This was my first time on NCL. We wanted to just try it before booking a cruise to somewhere. There are both positive and negative things to mention. Positives - 1. Embarking - We carried our small luggage directly to lunch. So we did not have to wait around for lunch service. Both sit down and buffet lunch were available. We chose the buffet. 2. We arrived at the port at noon and check in had already started. 3. We pre-registered online so check-in was quick and we waited to board the ship about 15 minutes. 3. Since this was a very brief trip we took a very basic room with a window. The cabin was very, very clean. 4. Staff was diligent in making sure to spray everyone's hands as they entered dining areas. 5. Exiting ship upon our Sunday morning return was a delight. We simply walked off and did not have to wait for numbers or letters to be called. So we were off the ship about five minutes after we left our cabin. 6. Shows were good. The 70's show was fun. The comedy act was just okay. But the Cirque show was great. I could easily see that again. 7. Bar service in the casino while sitting at the bar. 8. Elevators - Usually a very brief wait time, except immediately after a show. Also elevators were plentiful. 9. Cute gym. Nice equipment. Everything worked. 10. Common areas very clean. I did not see any worn carpet or worn chairs. 11. Bathrooms in common areas well attended to as they all were very clean. Negatives - 1. Greeting upon entering ship was strange. No one really greeted us except the washy washy person. It was difficult to allow her to spray my hands as I still had my luggage , my purse and my key card in my hands. There was no one to tell us if we should sit down, check our luggage, go to lunch or go directly to our rooms. There was no one to ask. Many passengers were milling about looking just as confused as we were. So we finally went to the desk to ask. This was a bit annoying. 2. Lunch - There was a lot less to select from than on other cruises that I have been on. I walked around a bit so I could carefully select what I wanted to eat. Food was not attractively displayed as I have seen on all of my other cruises. So I ended up having a lot of salad and a small bit of tilapia. Most other foods just looked like cafeteria slop that I could get at any school cafeteria. My daughter just had some pasta and my sister had a small burger. None of us were satisfied with lunch. Dinner - We dined at Tsar's. That was a nice experience. We had surf and turf. Yes, the portions we small. But I was happy about that as that allowed me to room to have salad, a delightful mushroom soup, and ice cream for dessert. All three of us had the same. Surf and turf were what I expected, tasty . Breakfast - This was a horrible experience. Orange juice was watery. It tasted just like flavored water. So all of us chose to just have water. Coffee, just ok. Service, not good, had to ask for everything from salt, to cream to jelly for our toast. Scrambled eggs we barely cooked. They looked awful. Corned beef hash did not look nor taste like corned beef hash. Home fries were cold. It also took about 30 minutes for our breakfast to appear. My sister asked for a different breakfast consisting of an omelet and some toast. They were just ok. My daughter was so disgusted with her meal that she elected not to order anything else. The best part of this breakfast was the water. I had several glasses of this. Dinner - The second night we again ate at Tsar's. Since our previous dining experience was nice we expected the same. The menu was mediocre, poached cod, shrimp with coconut, and some other horrible items I cannot remember. So my daughter and I selected a steak. We thought that would be safe. Wrong idea, tough , steak, hard baked potato. The best part of the meal was the salad and the green beans. The hard ice cream was pretty good. Don't have the soft ice cream at the buffet. The strawberry taste just like medicine. We all normal sized people who enjoy dining ( our sizes are size zero, size five and size nine). We did not get what we expected. I was so happy to get home and have some home made soup. Meanwhile, my daughter was happy to get home and have some eggs and toast. Entertainment - There was not enough to do in the daytime. There were several activities that required a payment. So we did not do any of those. There was not enough to do in the evening. My experience on my other cruises has been just to much to do , not to little. But on this ship it seemed that you were expected to drink yourself silly or go to the casino after the shows. Spa Area - The spa area looked very nice. We were taken on a tour. However, it cost 49 dollars for the two days. This was disappointing as my experience on other ships was that this was gratis. I usually sign up for other spa services that require a fee. But I did not as paying for use of the spa was a real turn off. Motion sickness- I know this must be just a coincidence. But all three of us got motion sickness. This has never happened to any of us before. We had great weather, so who knows. Crew - All were very pleasant. But there seem to be to few staff members around the ship. Our room steward was extremely nice. He even inquired about my sister's condition as she was experiencing motion sickness and offered to get whatever she needed. We were on the 5th level. Will I ever travel NCL again? No, I will not. I would have appreciated more entertainment, edible food, less activities that require a fee and more staff members available to answer any questions or assist with dining services and services in the gym. (There was no one around to offer towels or water, or assistance with the equipment.) The desk was unattended in the gym. Neither I nor my sister or daughter are picky people. We made the best of our cruise because we enjoy each other's company. We will continue to cruise on other cruise lines. I will not recommend NCL to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
Cruise to Nowehere: 2 night. Pools open and heated. Shower gel and shampoo in dispensers in shower. All rooms have hairdryer. Generous with towels. No disposable cups, bring your own if you want them. Beds were comfortable, have flat and ... Read More
Cruise to Nowehere: 2 night. Pools open and heated. Shower gel and shampoo in dispensers in shower. All rooms have hairdryer. Generous with towels. No disposable cups, bring your own if you want them. Beds were comfortable, have flat and thick pillows, 2 of each. Nice duvet. $12pp/day gratuities. Ice dispensers in buffet have filtered water. Lipton teas, include lemon, orange green and black. We cruised the Norwegian Jewel for a 2 night cruise to nowhere Jan 18-20th. Arrived at the terminal approximately 10:30am. Received group 5 boarding. Not bad since last time we were in the 29th group! Waited comfortably until boarding began. It was delayed today, due to the late arrival of the Jewel from her returning Carribean cruise. Upon embarkation, which went smoothly, we went to the Garden Cafe ( the buffet) for lunch. Some of the hot food was offered on the kind of warmers that looked like flat plates, while others were on steamer trays. I noticed that food was changed regularly; nothing ever looked old/dried out. For lunch I had grilled tilapia, smothered in spinach and a delicious soup- can't remember what kind. We then toured the ship, and decided to take a nap, before the mandatory 3:15 life boat drill. For Friday dinner we ate at the Tsar Palace dining room. Food was OK, but the service was pretty bad. One member of our group asked for steamed vegetables and potatoes, all of which were on the menu. Her meal came after everyone else was finished. Our meals were surf and turf ( skip this); 2 had a nice steak ( recommended) and the last salmon. Salmon was had both nights and was done perfectly. For Saturday's dinner we ate at the Azur dining room. Totally opposite of the Tsar! Staff was so pleasant and helpful, food presented beautifully on the plate. They were obviously proud of their craft, and we enjoyed ourselves and our meal. We should have gone there both nights. Now we know why the Tsar Palace didn't seem crowded, everyone went to Azur. We didn't try any of the specialty restaurants. People that ate at the steakhouse- Cagney's- said their steaks were superb. The Tapenyaki restaurant was busy, and we didn't look at any of the others. For lunches we ate at the main buffet, as well as breakfasts. Made to order omelets were done well, and the scrambled eggs were moist and delicious. Be sure to have the baked tomatoes and the ratatouille, which was excellent. We also liked the pretzel breadsticks, mmm! The food stations at the buffet are attractive. There's the hot food, the fruit, the cereals, the pastas, the breads, the asian stir fry, omelets and eggs to order- and desserts. Plenty of coffee/ tea areas. I usually don't like cruise buffet coffee, but I have to say the Jewel's coffee was excellent. Entertainment: Very good on the getaway. We went to the Spinnaker lounge for sailaway for some music and dancing. The Jewel dance crew was there, and people were enjoying themselves. "Jersey Boy Dan" was the emcee/dancer and fun was had by all. The first evening at 8pm show we saw "Band on the Run". A nice show; story line presented as a new nightclub that was opening up. The music and dancing was fun, costumes were bright and tastefully done. Afterward, we walked around, we enjoyed some guitar by Jim Capik. Stop by to see him, he is an excellent guitarist. Saturday we checked out JammRoc for afternoon music. Listed as soul, reggae and jazz, it was very different. The woman had an excellent voice, and we stayed for the whole set. That evening, we say the Circ Bijou show. DO NOT MISS THIS! It was excellent. Get a seat high up, because this show is full of aerialist entertainment. We went early and got a seat in the last row, best seats in the house!! Afterward, we sat The Next Stage band, a Beatles tribute. They were so good, the crowd wanted more after the scheduled hour. They were convinced to play for another 20 minutes. Took a video clip, but when I got home, there was no sound!! The cruise was great. Saturday we put our coats on and sat by the pool on the loungers. There were people in the heated pool, having a ball. The hot tubs were crowded, but I didn't venture in. The weather was nice and sunny. Late Saturday afternoon and all night found us in a rolling type of sea, 2 of our group went to the medical center for some meclizine, which helped them a lot. It is provided free. We will go next year, if they offer the 2 night getaway. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
I did this cruise with my 22 year old daughter. (it was her B day gift) She had never been on a cruise and it seemed like a fun intro and a good thing to do together. We live 1 hr away from NYC so getting there by train was easy. I read on ... Read More
I did this cruise with my 22 year old daughter. (it was her B day gift) She had never been on a cruise and it seemed like a fun intro and a good thing to do together. We live 1 hr away from NYC so getting there by train was easy. I read on previous reviews that some people had long lines at embarkation so we were prepared for that. Yes they were long when we arrived at 12;40 but they moved very fast. The whole process took us about 40 minutes. Then we went straight to the spa to book a treatment. Even that early on they didn't have a lot of spaces left so if you want to do this ....book that first and then go to lunch. We went to the main dining room for lunch and even though they close at 2:00 when we arrived at 1:45 they seated us and we had a very nice relaxed lunch. After that the cabin was ready. Beds were comfy and sheets looked new. No pilling at all as I read in an earlier review. We got familiar with the ship and had a drink and watched NYC's sky line and Statue of Liberty go by before heading to the spa. We had dinner at Azura which was as good as most cruise food is. Nothing special nothing bad. I never go to specialty restaurants. All staff was super nice.. Then we went to the "adult Quest" game. We sat next to some very nice people and although I never do those games this time I did and we had lots of silly fun. After that we stayed to watch the comedian who was ok. Then me and my daughter danced until we were tired! We had a great night together. This cruise to nowhere is really what you make of it. Pools and hot tubs were heated and there was a good amount of people using them even though it was 30 degrees out. There were no kids and mostly the crowd was under the age of 55 and lots of couples for Valentines and people celebrating b days etc. I would never do it if I would live far away from NYC. (not worth the hassle) but it was certainly fun for us. Also I would NEVER book anything else but an inside cabin for this. I mean why would you? It's too cold to be outside. The seas were calm and in the morning I didn;t feel that we were rushed of the ship. The first announcement was at 8:15....We skipped breakfast and took our time and left the ship at 10:00. Read Less
Sail Date February 2011
A little bit about me: I am 45 years old. This is probably my 7th cruise. I previously have sailed on the following cruise lines: NCL, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and Carnival. Just got back from a "one-nighter" ... Read More
A little bit about me: I am 45 years old. This is probably my 7th cruise. I previously have sailed on the following cruise lines: NCL, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and Carnival. Just got back from a "one-nighter" on the NCL Jewel. Ship departed from NYC Pier 88 on Saturday January 22, 2011 . When I arrived at the pier at 12:00PM it was a total cluster: there were massive crowds. At first it seemed a little disorganized. However the lines moved rather quickly once inside the terminal. I was able to board the ship at about 1:00. Since the cabin was not ready, I went to Tsar's Restaurant. I was seated rather quickly. It took a while for the waiter to come by and take my order....probably because there were a lot of people in the restaurant. I ordered a club sandwich and a diet pepsi. Food arrived in about 15 minutes. Food was OK. Once I was done it took a long time for somebody to clear the table... I was able to go to my balcony cabin on the 11th floor at 2:00 PM. Room was nice. It was spacious and it was definitely enough for me...Not sure how two people would do in the room. My only two room criticisms are that the queen size bed is comprised of two twin beds pushed together. While sleeping, I could feel the gap between the two beds. I also wish that the bathroom had mini individual bottles of shampoo and body wash. There was a dispenser for these products. Bathroom was a good size, there was even a full-sized bathtub... Prior to departure, I spent time in the ship's champagne bar, Magnum's. It was nice. They had a nice selection of champagnes. Prices were reasonable. For dinner I made a reservation for the Teppanyaki restaurant. Hint: make your specialty restaurant dinner reservations as soon as possible. Food was really good and the chefs did a wonderful presentation. I did not spend much time in the casino because it was very smoky. I was able to pick up two bottles in the Duty Free shop. Hint: there is no limit as to how much stuff you can bring back, you do not go through Customs. So shop til you drop! Overall I had a nice time. I did notice that people were VERY casually attired. Some guest were just plain sloppy! I guess freestyle not only applies to dining options, but to attire as well. On a scale of 1 to 10 I would give it a 7. Next month I am going on the NCL Gem for another one -nighter! Departing the ship was a breeze. I was off the ship in about 5 minutes. Read Less
Sail Date January 2011
Embarkation: This was our 6th cruise (1 with Princess, 4 with Carnival and 1st with NCL). We had read all the reviews and we selected a Penthouse suite to make comparisons with the other cruise lines. We read all about the NCL ... Read More
Embarkation: This was our 6th cruise (1 with Princess, 4 with Carnival and 1st with NCL). We had read all the reviews and we selected a Penthouse suite to make comparisons with the other cruise lines. We read all about the NCL "Suite Life" and were so excited about experiencing it. We landed at the Miami airport around 12:45 PM and joined our friends in the baggage claim area. The four of us stood in the taxi line for 1 minute and were on our way to the pier. The taxi was $24 total for all 4 people. This was a HUGE savings from the $40 per person transfer fee we would have paid NCL thru our travel agent. Besides, the NCL documents indicated that purchasing their transfers did not guarantee we would arrive on the ship timely. Once we left the airport we arrived at the Pier within 20 minutes. Quick - Fast - and PERFECT!!! The "check in" security area was clearly marked with individuals validating our documents. Being a 2 day cruise and with check-in time being 5:00 PM, we walked straight through the lines with minimal wait time. This was a great way to start a cruise. Once passed the security check in point, we found the "Suites and Villa" check in area. We met our Concierge and sat down until they called us to pick up our room keys. The Suites and Villa area was very nice and included a beautifully prepared spread of cookies, water, orange juice, pond cake, etc. This was exactly what we needed since we had not eaten since breakfast. The food was very pretty but lacked flavor or taste. So, we didn't eat much of it. We were escorted on the ship with a couple on the 9th Floor Suite and our friends who were also in a suite. We were sooo impressed with the champagne and welcome photos offered by the ship. It was AMAZING!! When we walked into the Atrium and saw all the beautiful wood grains we were totally impressed!! Room / Cabin: Our Penthouse suite was beautifully arranged and my fears of gaudy furnishings were quickly dismayed. There was a "Freestyle Daily" and a welcoming note from the Concierge and Butler. The curtains were open and the light reflected in just beautifully. The cabin had been decorated with "Bon Voyage" themed streamers, a beautiful white cake, fruit plate, champagne, a bottle of sparkling water and chocolate covered strawberries. (Yes, we had pre-ordered the streamers, cake and strawberries). We felt very special and we though the tone of the cruise was set. Unfortunately, once we began moving around the room the problems soon surfaced. We began opening the drawers and found trash hidden in drawers, 2 inch thick dust and personal items from the previous cruisers within the drawers. We were totally shocked. We then noticed only two towels in the bathroom. So, we called the butler who assured us we could get an extra set of towels. The problem was as soon as we left the cabin, the extra towels were taken. This occurred multiple times each day since it appears the Butler and the Cabin Steward didn't communicate. The most alarming thing that happened on the cruise was the night I got sick. I went to the bathroom and found the box of tissues which only had five tissues. So, I had to use toilet paper until the next morning. I accidentally threw up on the sheets and ASSUMED the cabin steward would automatically change them. After breakfast, we returned to our cabin and I immediately turned the sheets back. To my shock and amazement, the dirty sheets were still on the bed. I immediately went out into the hall to find the cabin steward. He stated that he did see where I had the accident but he didn't have sheets on his cart to change them. According to the cabin steward, the sheets are ONLY changed every three days and there was nothing he could do. I got angry and stated, "You are going to change these sheets or I'm heading straight down to the Purser's Office!" At that point he said that we would find some sheets and try to accommodate my "Special Request". UNEBLIEVEABLE - SPECIAL REQUEST TO CHANGE DIRTY SHEETS?? PLEASE. I chatted with the other couple traveling with us in the next door suite. They admitted they had the same experience within their room. Also, another cruise critic member had a similar issue and had another person contact the Purser's Office concerning the cleanliness of her room. To me, this it TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE!! Lifeboat Drill: The lifeboat drill began at 3:30 which I thought was a bit early since passengers were not required to be on the ship until 5:00 PM. We were stationed in the Tsars Place Restaurant. I thought this was early since guests were not required to be on the ship until 5:00. The lifeboat drill was very nice and comfortable since we sat at a table instead of being outside near the lifeboats in the heat. Kudos to NCL!! After the drill we went back to our rooms to rest until the Cruise Critic Sail Away Party. Food: During the cruise, I ate at the following restaurants: • Blue Lagoon (Deck 8) - the Blue Lagoon restaurant. It was so nasty that I threw up within two minutes of consuming part of the Sugar flavored Macaroni and Cheese. I tried the Wonton Soup but hot water would have been tastier. So, I ordered the Spinach and Artichokes dip and it was undistinguishable. I couldn't find the Spinach, Artichokes or cheese within the dip. However, the chips were excellent. The food was soo bad that I would have preferred to bring my own. I found out that several other people had the same experience concerning the food. Saying the food was "bad" was a compliment considering. • Cagney's Steakhouse (Deck 13) - Excellent breakfasts and lunches. These were free for the Suite guests and we took advantage of this daily. My favorite item was the Crab Cakes Benedict. Unfortunately, the portions were so small that I had to make a double order just to get one regular portion. (The crab cakes were the size of a One Dollar coin). I have yet to figure out how they found English muffins in the same size. I must admit the staff was very gracious and did not mind providing the additional portions. • Garden Cafe (Deck 12) - This was a free restaurant and was terrible at best. The only positive thing was the employee who asked everyone to sanitize their hands before proceeding into the buffet. We soon found out that if you stated you were not going to eat, the employee did not require you to sanitize your hands. I selected rotisserie chicken, two types of soup, crapes, pizza and various mouse deserts. The chicken was beautifully prepared but was bleeding once you got closer to the bone. The pizza had no color on the bottom which was weird since it had been brought directly out of the oven. The chicken broth soup was so bad that a bouillon cube would have been much preferred. I tried the Broccoli Cheddar soup but it was like water with broccoli pieces. So, I passed. The Caesar salad had no taste while the Mouse tasted and looked like Flan. (I don't like Flan). The only decent desert was the Crapes which used an extra sweet cherry pie filling. • Mama's Italian Kitchen (Deck 12) - There was a $10 per person charge for this restaurant. The atmosphere was quite and very casual and the service was excellent. My Caesar salad was prepared table side and was excellent. However, the pasta could have used additional seasonings. I would have preferred Rago or some other bottled variety to what was served. Entertainment: What entertainment? I couldn't find any. I guess we had to either select a movie, go to the art auction or Gamble. There wasn't any entertainment. I guess there's not much effort put into a two day cruise. Shore Excursions: We were scheduled to stop at the private island, so I didn't expect too much. What we got was less that I even expected or imagined. The ship did dock at Freeport, Bahamas for several hours. We didn't mind since we just wanted the opportunity to step off the ship. However, when we went to Deck 11 and looked over the side of the boat, there were only four local vendor shops open. Also, the island didn't look real interesting so we decided to stay on board. However, another cruise critic member did go to a local beach and had wonderful pictures of the day. Debarkation: This was very easy and I couldn't wait to leave. We did VIP self assist and walked right off the ship. We were in a LONG line and waited about 30 minutes to go thru homeland security. We were greeted by very nice NCL representatives who asked how our cruise went. Needless to say, they got an earful. The representative didn't really appear to be surprised by our comments. The representative indicated that we should write a letter to NCL and tell them about our experience so that changes could be made in the future. We did exactly that. We found a taxi outside the Port and couldn't wait to get back to the Miami airport for real food. Overall impression: My overall impression was that NCL is, "All flash but no substance". The food is bad, the cabins aren't clean and there are no activities. We took this weekend cruise to determine if NCL would be an option for next year's Mediterranean or Alaska cruises. After our experience, the answer is NO. We wouldn't try NCL again if they gave us a free cruise. We would rather spend money where we can get decent food and a clean room. Therefore, our future cruise dollars will go to Carnival, Princess or Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date November 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

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