593 Norwegian Jewel Family Cruise Reviews

This was our 7th cruise with NCL and third time to Alaska. Overall it was a wonderful vacation, but I really noticed the cutbacks on this trip. The crew was very good and the ship was lovely but the first missing perk was noticed the first ... Read More
This was our 7th cruise with NCL and third time to Alaska. Overall it was a wonderful vacation, but I really noticed the cutbacks on this trip. The crew was very good and the ship was lovely but the first missing perk was noticed the first night when we got to our cabin after dinner. No more Andes chocolate mints on the pillow before bed. (Not a huge deal, but yeah, I always loved that!) The first sea day was nice, but the second budget cut was noticed here. Arts and Crafts used to be much better. Now it's pretty much just 3 days of origami, and the other crafts were prepackaged journal, memory box and cards. Really nothing crafty to learn. In fact most craft classes they gave out the package and said "The instructions are inside and it's just stickers, have fun" and left. Years past I learned how to make earrings, wine glass markers, flowered hair clips, you know.... actual crafts. This was kind of sad. The ports were great and the kids adored the Splash Academy. The shows were good too. (although I missed the comedian's show) I really enjoyed the Bijou Circus and the magician. Another missing perk was the lack of lobster night. I don't care for it, but my husband was bummed about this. I thought the food was really good and we ate at the specialty restaurant twice (Cagney's and La Cucina ) Both of those were nice, but I liked the food in the main dining just as much so couldn't justify paying extra. The other difference I noticed was the latitudes party. They used to give us a letter that you'd turn in and they'd do drawings for prizes. Not anymore, now it was pretty much just a chance to get a drink and listen to them try to convince you to put down a new cruise deposit. Even the hors d'oeuvrs were pitiful. It was just cubes of cheese and water crackers!! It was the most boring Lat party I have ever seen!! Anyway, our group had a great time, and I know we will cruise again, but just wish it was more like the past. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
A friend told us that we could buy the cheap tickets when the last minute. So, we did it. We loved the buffet very much. The food was good. Especially the buffet was my wife's first option. We enjoyed the many kinds of food and fresh ... Read More
A friend told us that we could buy the cheap tickets when the last minute. So, we did it. We loved the buffet very much. The food was good. Especially the buffet was my wife's first option. We enjoyed the many kinds of food and fresh fruit almost every day. We still tried other restaurant which had good meal and free of charge. The ashore excursions were not worthwhile and a little expensive. If we could chose again, we would chose the Mendenhall glacier only. Generally speaking, it was a very nice trip. The only uncomfortable thing was that a male supervisor in O'Sheehan's Bar told me I could not watch NBA game in the ship. I told him I had watched the game in the past two days already in my room. I begged him tried to change the TV channel for me. But he resolutely replied that he could not as there was a special reason happened on that day 5/23/2017. Then I ran back to my stateroom and turned on the TV. I saw the NBA game had begun for 10 minutes already. I felt angry immediately. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Always wanted to see Alaska. Decided on the Norwegian cruise because of the great extras. Had the beverage package, which was really great. Check in lines unbelievable. We were in 3 different lines for 2 hours. Really bad ... Read More
Always wanted to see Alaska. Decided on the Norwegian cruise because of the great extras. Had the beverage package, which was really great. Check in lines unbelievable. We were in 3 different lines for 2 hours. Really bad experience for the beginning of a vacation. I requested a porter for the luggage line and was told no. However the ship, staff, food and entertainment were good. Norwegian needs to get the check in problems fixed. Our cabin was a mini suite which worked out good, plenty of room and storage. Coffee in the morning looking out at beautiful scenery. Bathroom a good size. Our room steward was excellent. The ship was clean. Staff very friendly. The food was excellent at the buffet and in the Azura dining room. However, the buffet gets really crowded on the excursion mornings. No place to sit. The entertain was good and we could always find a seat in the theater. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Our dining experiences were all good and satisfactory from breakfast to dinner. We tried different restaurants and they were all excellent in food and services. All the waiters and attendants gave excellent services including our ... Read More
Our dining experiences were all good and satisfactory from breakfast to dinner. We tried different restaurants and they were all excellent in food and services. All the waiters and attendants gave excellent services including our stateroom person. The shows and entertainment were great. The gym has modern equipment that I was able to use and enjoyed. We enjoyed playing in the casino although I lost quite a bit of money. Would be nice if I got some back but did not happen. We took 2 excursion tours and we both enjoyed it. The tour guides was very good and knowledgeable and the price was great too. Overall we had a great time. This is our first rime to cruise with NCL but would take NCL again for our future cruises if given special deals and offers. My husband is a retired Military and be nice if we get some good Military offer too. Thank you Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Having sailed on Royal Caribbean for 32 cruises it was time to try something new. Truth be said my girlfriend & I had a great experience on the Norwegian Jewel. The staff, food, entertainment, stateroom were quite nice. Liked everyone ... Read More
Having sailed on Royal Caribbean for 32 cruises it was time to try something new. Truth be said my girlfriend & I had a great experience on the Norwegian Jewel. The staff, food, entertainment, stateroom were quite nice. Liked everyone being inside side for Muster drill instead of out side on the deck. First night Dinner at Cagney's Steakhouse The filet mignon was as good as you can get. Second night Moderno Brazilian BBQ believe this is where the phrase( Where's the Beef) came from they keep bringing different cuts till you tell them to stop. Next O' Sheehan's Irish Pub Chicken pot pie - fish Chips yum. Next couple nights Buffet and dinning room (Good). Finial night Teppanyaki Chefs put on a fun show. And don't miss the pool deck BBQ for lunch. Also tried some new cocktails Pomegranate Margarita and Mango Meltdown very tasty. We have already booked our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
My husband, two teen boys (ages 16 and 13), and my mother booked two rooms (connecting mid-ship mini suites) on the Norwegian Jewel during the kids' spring break. We wanted to drive to the port, so we chose a ship leaving from Los ... Read More
My husband, two teen boys (ages 16 and 13), and my mother booked two rooms (connecting mid-ship mini suites) on the Norwegian Jewel during the kids' spring break. We wanted to drive to the port, so we chose a ship leaving from Los Angeles. We also knew we wanted some beach time so we chose the Mexican Riviera itinerary. What attracted us to Norwegian was its casual cruising policy - we liked the idea of eating whenever we wanted to, and avoiding stuffy dress code policies. Embarkation was a decent experience. We had one of the first embarkation times, and got there early, so we did have to wait in line. However, everyone is pretty excited to go on the cruise, so we spent time chatting with others in line. Inside, everything was easy to navigate, and they have a well planned system to get you onboard. Completing the eDocs made this process very simple. It is nice to hand over your luggage and get ready to go on board. Bring a swimsuit and anything you need for the afternoon in a carry on!! That way you can relax and enjoy the rest of the day onboard, without worrying about when your luggage will show up in your room (which won't happen till late in the afternoon). The room was cozy. Our king bed was very comfy, but my son was not super happy on the rather hard sofa bed. The TV was not high quality (newer ships have the flat screen TV's) but since we didn't spend a ton of time in the room, it was fine. I will never cruise without a balcony! It was great to eat breakfast or just sit and stare at the ocean. We saw lots of marine animals. The food was fabulous! We loved going to the buffet (where they sang the washy washy song and made sure no one got in without sanitizing their hands. The food was well covered, and I didn't get an "ewww" feeling from it being a buffet. The main dining rooms offered a good range of food, so you really could get away with not going to the specialty restaurants. However, the specialty restaurants were fun, and I would spend the money again. Next time I would get the specialty restaurants on the Free at Sea plan. Drinks flowed! We had the ultimate beverage package, because we do like to drink on our vacations! Plus, it just minimizes the stress - no worries about how much it is adding up. The drinks can be watered down, however, with the package you just need to ask for an extra shot and you can "customize" it to your liking. :) The only thing not covered on the package was good wine (I'm from California...we love our wine) and any spirits that were over $15 (you just pay the difference in that case). The entertainment was great. They had a cirque du soleil type of show, but I thought the main performers were the best part. They did a cabaret show near the end of the cruise that was a highlight for me. We of course did the fun "Not so Newlywed Game" and enjoyed a few rounds of Deal or No Deal. We even got the teenagers to play Bingo with us, so we ended up having a fun family time in places I never would have expected my teenagers to join us! Speaking of the teenagers, the Entourage club was a bust for them. That might be more my own teens' style than anything good or bad about the club. They did enjoy playing Dodgeball on the ship and the video arcade. Caution on the arcade - my 13 year old didn't pay attention to how much he was playing and ran up nearly a $200 tab on my mom's account. He primed and painted her entire garage to work off that bill. Puerto Vallarta - we went to Las Caletas. It was about a 45 minute boat ride to get there, and then about 4 hours on the island. The best part was the hammocks over the water! The worst part was the jellyfish that made the snorkeling have to change location and closed down the water slide and water park area. The kids were bummed. Mom and I enjoyed wonderful massages and facials though. My 13 year old enjoyed the sting ray and sea lion experience. If you do something like that WASH out their swimsuit afterward. Learned that the hard way from the smell the next day. Mazatlan - We did the Huana Coa zip lining. So scary! But it was fun. Not the most picturesque of scenery though. Very brown and a lot of agave plants (actually those were pretty cool). There is a tequila tasting afterward at Los Osuna that was boring for the boys but my husband and I enjoyed it! We got to bring some home. I wish I had bought the vanilla tequila, I haven't seen it since. Cabo San Lucas - It's kind of cool that you have to take the tender in to this port, but it adds a little disembark/embark time. However, once you get to the dock, you are right there in the middle of Cabo. My husband and boys went snorkeling with Cabo Adventures, while mom and I went shopping downtown. They loved this excursion the most. Mom and I got drinks at Cabo Wabo, then we ate lunch with the guys at Senor Frogs. Had to do the tourist stuff. Now my son wants to go there after graduation when he is 18. Hmm... Disembarkation at the end was easy as well. Pack up your bags and put them in the hallway the night before, then they grab them and have them in the terminal after you get off the ship. This did make me a little nervous about theft, so don't put anything out that you would be nervous about being stolen. The bags are all in one place in the terminal so it's easy to walk out with the wrong one. Just beware that anything valuable needs to be carried by you. Or you can do a walk off where you take your bags and just get off the ship - the drawback to this is carrying all your bags up or down the stairs to the disembarkation deck. We liked having our bags taken off for us so we could enjoy one last breakfast in the buffet. Overall, Mom, Husband, and I absolutely loved cruising, and we have the Jewel to thank for it! It forces you to relax, stop, and enjoy your time. The teenagers were not as enthusiastic, although we had so much fun family time, that I think they will come to appreciate it when they get older. They loved getting to eat whenever they wanted (and they are teenage boys so we definitely got our money's worth). They just didn't love the older game consoles in the teen club and the limited pool space (water slides were "lame" they said). They did enjoy the freedom to roam without parental supervision. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I wasn't sure what to expect, but the actual experience was better than I could have imagined. The ship, The Norwegen Jewel, is a beautiful vessel. It has 13 levels but passengers only have access to the fourth, thru the ... Read More
I wasn't sure what to expect, but the actual experience was better than I could have imagined. The ship, The Norwegen Jewel, is a beautiful vessel. It has 13 levels but passengers only have access to the fourth, thru the thirteenth levels. Our stateroom was located on the fourth level toward the front of the ship. a short walk to the elevator that carried us to the 13th level which you will find the Spinnaker lounge. Many of the entertainment venues are held there. It is also a comfortable place to sit and watch the sea go by. The pool and hot tubs are also located near the front of the ship, and is on the 12th level. There you will find a buffet line for breakfast, and lunch. Not too sure about dinner because we hit severa of the specialty dinners, as well as the Garden Cafe. There is a running track on the 13th level that is about a fifth of a mile long. I would use the track to get from one eating experence to another. The food was excellent, as was the service. The crew is what makes the cruise so special. Many countries are represented in the staff, and they are a delight to talk to. I am getting way to wordy, but I want to say the excursion we went on at Porta Viarta was terrific. a large pontoon hauled us to Yelapa whic is a fishing community that is only accessible by sea. The people are friendly, and are gifted salesmen. The crew on boat 3 were great. it is a must do excursion in my opinion. Fingers are tired, so I will finish by saying this, I have purchased another trip on Norwegian, and that should tell you how I feel about this cruis line. OUT. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Having sailed on 13 cruises on Carnival, Princess,Royal Caribbean,Celebrity and now our third on NCL; I can't tell you how disappointing this last cruise was. For the first time we splurged and went way over budget to garner an aft ... Read More
Having sailed on 13 cruises on Carnival, Princess,Royal Caribbean,Celebrity and now our third on NCL; I can't tell you how disappointing this last cruise was. For the first time we splurged and went way over budget to garner an aft Penthouse Suite on the Jewel and boy is it WWWWWAAAAYYYY overpriced. We previously sailed in mini suites on the Breakaway and the Pearl. The Breakaway was really great, but the BW and I said that of all our cruises the Pearl was right near the top. I could go on and on, but the food was not at all good in the MDR or at Cagney's which was our favorite restaurant at sea. For 21/2 times the price it was definately not worth it. The accomadations were meager and the only saving grace were the Steward and the Butler we had Dennis and Rodney, they were amazing. For a lot less money the best food and service ever was the Aqua Class cabin on Celebrity, it was worth every oenny and more. I think the BW and I will stay away from NCL for the forseeable future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this cruise line because it left from our local cruise port in San Pedro Ca. Very few cruise lines now leave from California in the Los Angeles area. The itinerary is one we have done before. It is nice but not exciting. Of the ... Read More
We chose this cruise line because it left from our local cruise port in San Pedro Ca. Very few cruise lines now leave from California in the Los Angeles area. The itinerary is one we have done before. It is nice but not exciting. Of the three ports visited Cabo San Lucas is the nicest, followed by Puerto Vallarta the Mazatlan. Mazatlan has the problem of having almost all things to see or shop at far from the port. The Ship is nice, but the Haven area is not equipped with its own restaurant or lounge with its on bar. Despite this the restaurants on board are good and the service is usually quite pleasant. The only difficulty came with the internet credit not being credited to my account. This was corrected but not without time and effort on my part and with being mislead by guest relations.The moral of the story is always check your itemized statement carefully. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This cruise was a family vacation with my wife and 2 children ages 7 and 8. We chose this cruise for two reasons. First, we had a cruise next certificate to use. Second it was the one week I had off (being a teacher). We had been ... Read More
This cruise was a family vacation with my wife and 2 children ages 7 and 8. We chose this cruise for two reasons. First, we had a cruise next certificate to use. Second it was the one week I had off (being a teacher). We had been underwhelmed by NCL before, which is why it had been 4 years since our last NCL cruise. We had recently cruised another cruise line twice and this, while far from perfect, was a very enjoyable experience. From our experience, you kind of get the response you project. If you are positive and easy going you will get that response from staff. First the negatives. The kids club check in process was highly inefficient and it never really got better. It was not a matter of how many kids but the process they have in place which is cumbersome and doesn't seem to help in things that matter. We often waited 10-20 minutes in line just to check kids in and it seemed to literally take a minute or more per kid at times. Chin Chin the chinese restaurant had very slow service with lack of attention and the food, even when the place was near empty, was often lukewarm or cool. The desserts overall both buffet and elsewhere were ok at best. Having a crepe station for dinner was nice. Positives: The food was good overall. Not every selection was good but there was significant variety and our experience in the dining rooms was good. The brazilian style steakhouse (extra fee) was tasty and had good service. Our cabin was always made up well. I will say though, we were surprised by our cabin. We had 4 people and our cabin had 1 upper bunk birth. When I first opened the door and looked, I was like,... there must be a mistake. But they made a U shape out of three lower beds (with one being a sort of hide away bed and it worked for us. The destinations were very nice this time of year disembarking was very easy at all ports as well as getting back on the ship. Cabo has changed over the years and has become rather expensive if you try to do things on your own. Mazatlan was a pure delight with expats volunteering and available all over the old town to answer questions and give directions. Overall, it was enjoyable for our family and relaxing which is what matters. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Had a really good time on the Jewel. My wife and I had the Ultimate Beverage Package and spent a lot of time at the bar in O'Sheehans. All drinks up to $15 were included and speciliaty martinis and premium brands had just a few ... Read More
Had a really good time on the Jewel. My wife and I had the Ultimate Beverage Package and spent a lot of time at the bar in O'Sheehans. All drinks up to $15 were included and speciliaty martinis and premium brands had just a few dollars upcharge (you just pay the amount above $15). The bartender Ida was great. He was very funny and friendly and made a great Mojito (better than the Mojito bar). Manish also worked this bar and was very friendly as well. I found the ship to be in good repair and very clean. Food was plentiful. The food at the buffet was good for buffet food. The variety was good, but the food tended to be overcooked. The food in Tsar and Azure dining room was also good, but not great. The prime rib was good as was the lamb and Salmon. However most of the soups were misses, especially the French Onion soup. The specialty restaurants were better. We had the 3 meal UDP and ate at Cagney's, Moderno and La Cucina. At Cagney's the 32 oz. Porterhouse is the call. My son ate the whole thing. I had the 29 oz Tamohawk steak. This was very good, but the Porterhouse was better. The Lasagna appetizer at La Cucina was huge and excellent. The pizza was much better than at the buffet and the ribeye was pretty good, but not as good as Cagney's. Moderno was just ok as the meat was too salty for my taste. Played poker in the casino, but the game was not well run and the $25 max rake is excessive. After the first 3 nights there was not any interest in the cash games. In Puerto Vallarta we hired a taxi for the day (over 6 hours) for $125. The driver took us all over. We greatly enjoyed the Tequila distillery El Baston del Rey. Great Extra Anejo and flavored tequila. In Mazallan we took a taxi to Las Flores hotel ($10). Free day pass to use the pool or beach. They gave us lounge chairs and we sat under the Palappa umbrella. Of course they want you to buy food and drink, but not to worry 2 quesadillas, chips with salsa and guacamole and 2 buckets of beer (12 total) was $38. Had a really nice day. Walked around Cabo and shopped and did some free Tequila tasting (well not really free since they were so good we had to buy). Overall had a great time eating and drinking and drinking (Mexican beer is really cheap) in all 3 Mexican ports. A very fun and relaxing cruise. The ship never felt crowded despite being sold out and the shows and comedians were all good, in fact the shows were the best I have seen on a ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We heard a lot of bad reviews, but we did not find any of these to be true. The staff was great. Our butler was Rodney. He was always snacks, if we wanted anything different he made sure to get it for us. Our steward was Jacob he was ... Read More
We heard a lot of bad reviews, but we did not find any of these to be true. The staff was great. Our butler was Rodney. He was always snacks, if we wanted anything different he made sure to get it for us. Our steward was Jacob he was really very good kept our room very clean and always left really cool animal towels. It was just my sister and me in the cabin, my son 1 floor down. Dining was great we ate at Cagney's Moderno. I would highly recomend these the food was the best. We did all the ports piarate ship. In Cabo we just the day to look around and do some shopping. We also had a late breakfast which was very good. Entertainment was pretty good. The cruises we have been on were with NCL and I'm pretty sure that's who we will stay with, We have been very happy with the service we have received. If you are booked into a suite the embarkation is great you go to another part of the room and snacks and drinks are set up while you wait. You also go up first. The same with disembarkation you get to go first. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Chose it because it sailed Sunday to Sunday. This ship is designed well with most of the cabins on one end and entertainment towards the front. Our cabin was on the 9th deck, balcony , enough closet and storage. Bed comfortable ... Read More
Chose it because it sailed Sunday to Sunday. This ship is designed well with most of the cabins on one end and entertainment towards the front. Our cabin was on the 9th deck, balcony , enough closet and storage. Bed comfortable furnishings were functional, a little small. Lots of fun entertainment, games, bands and shows.. Really appriciate that the fish on the carpet, all head to the front of the boat when finding your way to the cabin. Food? No lobster night, anymore. I can not say it was very good compared to Royal Caribbean , celebrity or carnival. The escargot was thrown on a bun covered with brown gravy, ugh Eggs benedict , the chef forgot to put on canadian bacon, etc Suggest they send their chef's on a RC cruise to see how food should be . Also the $7.00 charge for room service???!! not appreciated. . Service, even in the Tzar or Azura was not good either. The freestyle dinning means the waiters do not introduce themselves, don't engage, and appear to not like their jobs. I had 7 people in my family and often the orders were wrong. Getting on and off the boat for excursions was well handled. I probably would not go again because of the food and food service, although I really liked the ship overall. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was my first cruise and I was a little weary, thinking that it would be rammed with people and a bit chaotic...but it wasn't at all! Everything is so well organized! The crew was great and always so friendly & helpful. ... Read More
This was my first cruise and I was a little weary, thinking that it would be rammed with people and a bit chaotic...but it wasn't at all! Everything is so well organized! The crew was great and always so friendly & helpful. Getting on & off the ship was a breeze. There was a good variety of shore excursions to suit everyone. Good selection of restaurants and always something yummy to eat. Many differnt bars & lounges for whatever atomosphere you are looking for. Lot's of fun & exciting activities on the ship and when you wanted some space to have your own quiet moments & get away from the music and excitement, you really could always find it. The cabins were tight (of course) but well laid out! My boyfriend & I were quite pleased with the whole experience and will definitely book a cruise with Norwegian in the future! Thank you! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
For parents bringing their teens aged 13-17 on this boat, here's a review from the point of view of a teen. I'm a 15 year old girl writing this review because when we booked our Mexican Riviera cruise, I searched the internet ... Read More
For parents bringing their teens aged 13-17 on this boat, here's a review from the point of view of a teen. I'm a 15 year old girl writing this review because when we booked our Mexican Riviera cruise, I searched the internet for anything to do with what my experience as a teen would be like. So, for teens like me wondering what it's like, here you go. I do review all the other stuff about the boat too, so if you're here just for the teen experience, I talk specifically about that under the 7th section. -Embarking: For embarkation, I recommend getting there a little bit early so you can avoid the long lines. We got to the port at around 12:30 and only waited in line for around a half hour, while some of the people I met said it took them over an hour. The masses start arriving about an hour before the gates close, get there before. -Disembarking: At both the port of calls and the final port, disembarking went smoothy. For the port of calls, all you need to get off the boat is you key card, legal documents (like birth certificates and passports) are not needed. Disembarking at the final port, which was San Pedro, was easy as well. -Cabin: My family booked two mini suites right next to each other on deck 11 starboard side near the front staircase. One cabin was for my parents, the other was for me and my siblings, and my older sister's friend. The cabin was about the size of your average hotel room, but it may have been a little bit tight for four teens. When the couch was extended, there wasn't really anywhere to put your suitcases, and three girls trying to share one vanity didn't really work too well. Things I did enjoy about the cabin included the curtain you could pull between the pull out and the two twin beds, which was helpful when my older sister and her friend were taking a nap and they wanted the lights off. The bathroom was a good size too. The shower was the tub-shower combination, which means it was not cramped. There's little shelves to put your stuff on, which helped us stay organized. I really enjoyed when the steward (ours was named Sem, he was a nice guy) put little towel animals in the room when we were out. -Food: I didn't go to any specialty restaurants. I went to the Garden Cafe (the buffet), Tsar's palace, and O'Sheehan's. The Garden Cafe was great. They had practically anything you wanted, including ice cream 24/7. My friends were obsessed with the crepes they serve for desert, but I personally didn't have one. Tsar's palace for breakfast and lunch was the same food as the buffet, but they would serve you, and at dinner it would have it's own menu. My personal favorite thing on their menu was the magma cake, it was amazing. O'Sheehan's, which is the twenty-four hour restaurant, is good for eating with friends. It's complimentary, which means you can go there at two in the morning and eat all you want for free. -Pool: the situation for the pool is that there's one adult one and one kid one, which kinda sucks for teens cause we have to swim in the same pool as the four year olds when we would much rather swim in the adult pool. I only went in the pool once, and I only really sat on the edge and let my feet hang in. The water slide is super slow and not really worth going on. There's five hot tubs on the pool deck, two for kids, two for adults, and one for adult watching their toddlers in the really small kid pool. They keep the kid hot tubs kinda lukewarm, but the adult hot tubs are actually hot. -Staff: The staff on the Jewel is super chill. The first night, they enforce things like the 1AM curfew for minors, but after that, they don't. They don't really care what you're doing as long as it's not dangerous. The ladies that make the crepes are cool, they'll put anything in your crepe. (literally my friend got cake in one) -Entourage + the teen experience: The teen club. Sounds terrifying right? I thought so, but go, you won't regret it. Note that you have to register to get in, they should hand you a paper when you get on the boat. I used Entourage as a place to find people. The first night, everyone goes to meet friends. You might think the other teens will be catty, or rude to you for whatever reason, but that's not what goes down. Everyone on that boat is in the same situation as you, they wanna talk to people so they can find friends. Go up to people, talk to them. Once you meet these people, get their numbers so you guys can find each other. It's a medium sized boat, but it feels a lot bigger when you're trying to find someone. Entourage isn't always open, sometimes it's closed because the little kids are in it, or sometimes it's the youth people's lunch break, so keep that in mind. When Entourage is open, they run activities, but you don't have to participate in them. If you do want to do them, they're often scavenger hunts, so it's helpful to know your way around the boat. Teens form groups on the boats, but they're not like the groups you see at school where everyone's all judgy. On my cruise, there was a really big group (around 20 teens) of mostly guys and a few girls that were always playing some sort of party game, like truth or dare. The group I hung out with was smaller, 12-14 people, which is still pretty big. Sometimes the two groups would combine and we'd play one giant game of truth or dare. In the later days of the trip, we discovered that O'Sheehan's serves mozzarella sticks really late at night, and we ended up getting around 20 orders of mozzarella sticks in one night. We also spent a lot of time hanging out in the hot tub and in the Garden Cafe. I ended up finding a lot of good friends, and it's pretty sad when everyone had to leave. It's been about a month since the cruise, and we still talk on a group chat and sometimes we Skype. Trust me, you'll miss the kids you meet. -Things to Know: you can iMessage without paying. Want chocolate? Write a review to the Hotel Director (you can do this in the atrium on deck 7) you'll get chocolate delivered to your room. -Overall, I had a really good experience on the Norwegian Jewel. The staff was nice, the food was good, and being given the opportunity to meet other teens really upped how I feel about the trip. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was a family cruise and four adults went and got connecting Mini-Suites. The ship was easy to navigate and never felt crowded except in the casino. Food in the MDR was average to good, the buffet was great. Had a waiter who was not ... Read More
This was a family cruise and four adults went and got connecting Mini-Suites. The ship was easy to navigate and never felt crowded except in the casino. Food in the MDR was average to good, the buffet was great. Had a waiter who was not friendly at all in O'Sheehans but we loved the food anyway. Chin Chin we wouldn't recommend. Moderno was amazing, it is a unique dining experience we all loved. Cagney's was also excellent. Our cabin steward Sem was wonderful and was very attentive. Most of the staff were very nice and attentive. Entertainment was really good, especially the funny magician. Embarkation and Debarkation was very easy and pretty fast. Customs was also a breeze, though we thought it odd we went through customs before we got your luggage. We would have loved more time in Cabo but we had a wonderful time and we would do it again! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
My family and I really enjoyed this cruise. My triplets (11 years old) had their birthday while we were on the cruise. We pre-paid for the birthday room decorations. They were surprised by them and loved it! They put up decorations and ... Read More
My family and I really enjoyed this cruise. My triplets (11 years old) had their birthday while we were on the cruise. We pre-paid for the birthday room decorations. They were surprised by them and loved it! They put up decorations and left a cake. The ship delivered cupcakes to the room for them also. Then at dinner they brought out cake for them again! The kids enjoyed the kids area and went for at least a little bit each sea day. We were all happy with the food in every location we ate at except for O'Sheenhan's. I really wanted to like it. Both times we did not have great service and the second time (for breakfast) it seemed like they just got food from the buffet and put it on our plates. For how great the service was at all of the other restaurants, I was surprised by the lack of service there. We had inside cabins, but found that they were roomy enough for the small amount of time that we were in the room. Overall, everyone had a great time and would love to go on a cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This cruise was for a family reunion trip and was chosen by the whole group. We chose to sail out of California because this way the family could save on airline expenses. The ship at first glance was nice, but the customer service was ... Read More
This cruise was for a family reunion trip and was chosen by the whole group. We chose to sail out of California because this way the family could save on airline expenses. The ship at first glance was nice, but the customer service was horrible. On other cruise lines, I'm used to being greeted or at least acknowledged by various crew members, but on this cruise many staff would walk by and just keep their heads down as to not be bothered by you. I was also shocked when I took my son and niece to the childrens center and were turned away because they had to close the doors. Mind you, we were one of the last 3 kids in line to enter, but they shut the door in our faces. My son and niece were extremely upset and disappointed because they had been looking forward to going on the treasure hunt for that evening. Another disappointment was the picture area. Our family had taken many pictures and could not wait to purchase some of the shots. When we went down to see them, we took our time choosing the best shots and made our order, only to come back later and find out that all the printers were down and would not be fixed the remainder of the trip. Therefore the only way to get pictures was to purchase a flash drive with no less than 20 shots. What if we didn't want 20 shots?!? It didn't matter, there was no other choice. These are just a couple of frustrations on this boat, but the icing on the cake was when I returned from my trip and contacted Norwegian's corporate office. I sent two certified letters (one to each of the company's CEOs) and have yet to hear back from anyone. Not an email, nor a reply to my letter, not even a phone call. This is unacceptable customer service!!! I cannot believe that no one could take the time to help me or at least hear me out. It seems as if this company is only interested in the money and do not care at all about their customers. If I was unsure of traveling again with this cruise line, I am 100% positive now that I will not be traveling with them again! I did forget to mention one highlight of my trip and that was a spectacular show that was put on by a couple of gymnasts. Their performances were jaw dropping and I really enjoyed watching it from beginning to end. There was also bingo (which is a family favorite) and they had deal or no deal which was fun too. In regards to dining, we ate at all of the options and the best were Cagneys (steak house) and Teppanyaki. The food was plentiful and the taste was on point! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We typically cruise in anything from inside to balconies, and this was our first full suite (Penthouse with large balcony). I thought it would be interesting for the readers to read a compare and contrast in the summary. This cruise was a ... Read More
We typically cruise in anything from inside to balconies, and this was our first full suite (Penthouse with large balcony). I thought it would be interesting for the readers to read a compare and contrast in the summary. This cruise was a seven day Mexican Riviera trip on the Norwegian Jewel, but we had sailed on the Jewel in 2015 on a 19 night Panama Canal Cruise in a balcony cabin. Our last cruise in January 2017 was an inexpensive last minute 4 day Bahamas RCL cruise in a SMALL inside cabin. We traveled with my daughter and SIL and their two children, ages 7 and 10. This was our first time traveling with family and it was wonderful! First, I want to state that I feel privileged just being able to cruise and see many parts of the world while someone else does the cooking and cleaning. Second, the suite life hasn’t spoiled me, and I’m happy to return to an inside if I cruise again. Did I appreciate the suite life? You bet! Embarkation We chose PrimeTime Shuttle for our transportation from LAX to SanPedro. Their private van ($73) costs less than the shared option. I can’t say they were totally efficient, but I would still recommend them. San Pedro doesn’t have a wide assortment of good options for hotels, so we chose the Marriott Doubletree. Their restaurant was just fine for a simple dinner, and they offered some nice early dining options such as a hamburger, fries and a beer for $10. There are not many restaurants in the area. The Doubletree provided a free shuttle to the pier the next morning, and we arrived about 10:30. The USS Iowa was docked right in front of our ship. The Iowa opened at 10:00 and we were anxious to get onboard, so passed on this opportunity. After dropping off our bags with the porter, we went through security and then onto the area for suite guests. The check-in process was very efficient, but there wouldn’t be much waiting for the general check-in if you arrived after 11:00. There were a variety of sandwiches, fruits, cookies, etc. to enjoy while we waited in the special suites area. The concierge came at about 11:30 to walk us to Moderno for lunch. Access to our cabin was available at the same time everyone else had. Summary: Suite passengers receive complimentary food and quicker check-in. My experience with the non-suite waiting area is that the people tend to be more social with strangers. The regular passengers can access the ship at about the same time and can enjoy lunch at either the buffet or the MDR- Tsars. Most ships funnel the regular passengers to the buffet which is often VERY crowded. We always choose the dining room for embarkation lunch. Cabins: We were in a forward Penthouse Suite with Large balcony on the ninth deck. It was decorated very tastefully. We had a very large king size bed with very comfortable pillows. There was a table for two for in-cabin dining and a large desk area with a DVD player. A small couch (could sleep one person) was near the window. There was a very nice makeup area for my use, and the shower/tub was large with nice amenities (lotions, poof, cotton balls, q-tips, etc.) The hair dryer was a nice high power one that stayed on rather than the type in the inside cabins where you have to hold the button continuously. The butler, Ronald, introduced himself and instructed us on how to use the Lavazza coffee/tea machine. There was a pantry filled with glasses, cups, cloth napkins, etc. He brought in a nice flower arrangement and two plates of chocolate covered strawberries (one for us as suite guests and one for Platinum Latitudes) and fresh fruit. Our family was in the adjoining Owner’s Suite which was larger and had Haven privileges. They had two balconies: one forward and one on the side. Their dining table was a bit more formal, and they had a few extra benefits: a pillow menu, cookies, gummy bears and M&M’s on demand. The butler unlocked the access doors between the cabins. We had been cautioned that the forward cabins were on the breezy side, but greatly enjoyed them while at port and while sailing between the ports in Mexico where the weather is warmer. The temps in LA were in the 60’s and even the first day out, the winds and chilly breezes made the regular pool areas not pleasant. Also, the fog horn, if necessary, is obviously located very close to the front near the bridge, and it blasted every five minutes from about 5 AM one morning in Mazatlan. The anchor makes a loud racket in the forward area when the ship has to tender, so that was another morning of a surprise at about 5-6 AM. Summary: The cabin experience was of course significantly different in a Suite. I enjoyed being pampered with all sorts of extras and upgrades. Keep in mind that your gratuities are not only higher in suites, but there are more people to tip: the Butler and Concierge are amongst those not included in the gratuities. Our last cruise was a last minute one on RCL to the Bahamas where the inside cabin was so tiny that if you kept the beds together, one person against the wall had to crawl over the other to get out. There was also a bunk bed above, and it was easy to hit your head on it (yes I did). Fitting more than two people in a tiny inside cabin is only for the super budget conscious and patient and flexible temperaments. The cabin was on deck 2, and strange clunking noises could be heard at various times, and the pillows were worn and flat. The TV was above the head of the bed, which made viewing it in bed ridiculous. That said, the cruise was about $50 per night pp, so it was a great bargain if you could handle the tiny room and inconveniences. The steward also did a great job keeping it cleaned. Our balcony cabin on a previous NCL Jewel cruise was very nice and comfortable with a couch and all the basics we needed for a very nice Panama Canal cruise. The steward was excellent. So, one’s budget and personality type guide the decision to go inside, OV, balcony or suite. As a person with a grateful and non-demanding spirit, I can enjoy any cabin. Main Areas: The Jewel is a very nice and well-maintained ship with great features. The atrium isn’t a stunner like some other ships but is tasteful and more functional. There are many areas to relax in all around the ship. The Great Outdoors is a wonderful place to eat from the buffet and still enjoy the outdoors. Many of NCL’s smaller or newer ships have few places to eat outside, but the great outdoors (aft) and the topsider’s grille on the pool deck offer plenty of nice eating areas. You won’t find these on some of the larger ships. The Spinnaker on the 13th deck is a lovely place to sit and watch for whales/dolphins and the ocean. Entertainment (dancing) and game shows are featured here during the afternoon and evening. The Fizz Lounge is another nice dance floor and features many of the performers. The pools are a good size, and one is adult only. The Haven pool is quite small but a very nice option on days when the weather isn’t cooperating as the roof is retractable. Of course, you need to be in an Owner’s Suite or one of the adjoining Haven area suites to use it. On warm days, the pools look like people soup. The chair hogs come out early like they do on all cruise ships and nothing is done. We removed towels from chairs that were unoccupied for over an hour. Then, you also have the supercharged chair hogs who rotate between their chairs in the sun and the shade. Yikes. Drink Package: All the adults had the drink package. In general, it was observed that the mixed drinks were watered down. The beer, wine, and hard liquors were just fine. Note that you can order a drink up to $15 if you use the UBP. Dining: Complimentary Tsar’s Dining Palace is one of our favorite NCL restaurants. We love the décor, and the service was always good. It pays tribute to the grand Russian palaces. We love to sit in the aft area to watch the wake. My absolute favorite food was the Vietnamese Pho Soup (I’m a soup lover.) Go to Tsars for lunch on the first day to avoid the crowds in the Café. Azura is the other complimentary dining area with a modern décor that has the same menu as Tsars. O’Sheehans is the Irish pub that is available 24 hours. The soup and the corned beef sandwich are great. They offer a special each evening that is posted around the ship. The Jewel has nice seating near the window at this pub. Garden Café is well laid out in stations and has a very nice assortment of foods. Their desserts are often better than the main restaurants, and you can see what you are getting. If it is crowded, remember that you can take your food into LaCucina where you will find seating. Chin-Chin was busy, and we ate there only once on our PC cruise. We were not impressed. The food is similar to any Chinese takeout in the US. Our opinion tends to match many others on CC. The Topsider Grill and luncheon cookouts are available in the afternoon and for an early breakfast. A nice option in good weather. Cover Charge Dining: Teppanyaki is their Japanese Steakhouse. Make your reservations early as the times are more limited. We enjoyed all the foods, and the meat was tender and flavorful. A children’s menu is NOT available here, and kids often don’t eat many of the selections (except our ten-year-old grandson who consumed huge quantities of filet mignon.) This is a very worthwhile experience. Cagneys is their traditional steakhouse and was our favorite. The beef was excellent, and the desserts were amazing. I had the Oreo cheesecake. The service was impeccable. Moderno is their Brazilian steakhouse. The salad bar has some excellent selections, and most of the meat was tender and flavorful. Excellent service. LaCucina was better than many have reported. We both had the Chicken Parmigiana. Not as high quality as Cagney’s, but it was a pleasant option. My grandson reported that my lasagna was much better than at LaCucina although he liked theirs too. LeBistro has been a disappointment on two different cruises. The service was SLOW and a bit confused. My salmon was to be cooked MW but was raw, and my dessert was a glorified applesauce. Now I know that a tatin must mean “sweet applesauce” in French. The manager noticed I wasn’t eating my food and wanted to make things right, but the slow service discouraged me from allowing him to replace the foods. I was pleasant with the servers but disappointed. If I had to do it over again, I would have gone to Cagney’s twice! Suite Breakfasts and Lunches in Moderno, which is only for suites’ passengers were very quiet, and the service was excellent. There are some very nice options (smoked salmon), and we ate in Moderno several times for both meals. Modernos is a great option on disembarkation morning. Summary: The type of dining experience on the Jewel (except at Moderno for breakfast and lunch) isn’t affected by cabin selection. All of the food was very good to excellent (except LeBistro). I can’t understand reviewers who describe the food as “inedible.” The food on RCL’s Majesty of the Seas was definitely a step below the food on the Jewel. I think this is because the standards are overall lower on the 3-4 day Bahama cruises. The food on our other RCL cruises has been of very good quality. I have cruised with four different cruise lines and think the dining experience is more similar than different. Cruises below seven days probably (IMHO) provide a more inferior product. Also, cruises geared to an older and more demanding population have better quality foods (Transatlantics, European and Panama Canal cruises.) NCL does not offer traditional seating which we have come not to prefer. We almost always agree to share a table (which we did one night in Tsars), and it was a very nice experience. The possibility of having tedious tablemates for 14 night+ cruises makes us choose freestyle or MyTimeDining options. Entertainment: Stardust Theatre Entertainment- The singers, dancers, and other entertainers were all very good. I’ve seen some of the shows before, so therefore performances like Band on the Run were repeats for us. We enjoy dancing (swing, waltz, foxtrot, cha-cha, merengue, etc.) and the bands and performers tried to get people on the dance floor, but it just wasn’t happening on this sailing. I think it has to do with so many families and children on the ship. Much to our amusement, we became “the dancers.” People would stop us during the day on the ship and compliment us on our dancing. That was more of a statement on the lack of quality dancers on the ship if anyone considered us as “the dancers.” The show band, led by Larry was our favorite source for entertainment. The other groups (Souled Out, Tropical Four) were very good. Rockaway Duo…not so much. A Mariachi Band came onboard while we were in Puerto Vallarta and that was great entertainment for about three hours at the pool area. The singers and dancers and the acrobatic performers were excellent. The parties were pretty pathetic and lacked energy, and The White Hot Party was a dud. The cruise director’s staff was dancing but didn’t spark much energy from the passengers. Pedro, the cruise director, was probably my least favorite cruise director with whom we have sailed. Ian Bagswell had just left, and he is fantastic, so I was already disappointed. Pedro was pleasant but not very noticeable and rarely introduced a show in the Stardust. We reserved the Karaoke room (three available) in the Fizz lounge, and that was fun, but my daughter thought the list was outdated. You need to make reservations, and they are only open at night. Summary: The entertainment and activities were often geared to families, which is appropriate since there were many children onboard. The ship at “full capacity” is about 2,400, but this sailing had over 2,900 passengers, making it busier and slightly more crowded. The spring break kids were all well behaved, though. There were few college age people onboard. Crew and Officers The captain, Pelle Fredricksson was very pleasant, as was Steve Jacobsen, the head of the hotel dept. We met the officers at the Suites party in the Haven. Most of the staff around the ship were very nice and hard working. I encountered only one grumpy cabin steward (not ours) that we passed quite often on deck 9 and it was obvious that he didn’t like to say hello to anyone. All the waiters and servers were efficient and very friendly. Summary: We have been on about 13 cruises and only had one ship experience (Holland Westerdam) were the crew wasn’t up to par. We must choose happy, well-run ships. Cabin status doesn’t seem to matter when it comes to the efficiency and happiness of the crew. Platinum Latitudes We just achieved platinum status, and so enjoyed a few nice upgrades. There was a bottle of sparkling wine and two large bottles of water. We also received a small brochure that had the coupons for the free bag of laundry and the two complimentary dinners. Since we also had the UDP, we selected LeBistro (where we received another bottle of wine) and LaCucina. Another very nice experience was the ship tour offered to Platinum Latitudes. We were taken to the laundry area (huge enterprise!), the kitchens (the soup area was most impressive) and the dressing room area for the dancers. Really an interesting experience. Internet: We had the internet package included as a benefit with Free At Sea, and it worked well most of the time. Early morning and late day provide the fastest connections. Most of the adults we traveled with had purchased the I-Concierge app (install it at home), and it was a little tricky to get used to. It didn’t work at times and totally failed for about 48 hours. The internet manager told me the internet was down, and he even used my phone to check the status- not working. Summary: The internet was complimentary with our package, but I also realize many folks can’t do without, so it was a bonus. We didn’t use the IConcierge app as much as we thought we would. Excursions: Our family of six experienced three different excursions. Las Calitas private island (Puerto Vallarta)- The family was impressed with the well-run experience. Even the travel time by boat was informative and entertaining. The highlight was swimming with sea lions, but there is so much to do and only three hours on the island. The experience received an A+. Near the dock, we also stopped at the Market. There is a mall, Walmart and Sam’s Club, Hospital, etc. right across from the ship. Mazatlan Historic Walking Tour (ship tour) We took vans to the first stop at the Cathedral and visited other interesting sites including the opera house, cliff divers, “Aztec dancers,” etc. Of course, we had to “visit” the tour guide’s favorite shops. Lots of people to tip on this experience… Lots of walking. Cabo San Lucas- Our favorite port stop. Clean and relatively safe. The family did the dolphin swim which we were allowed to watch and photograph (not up close, though). They “rode” the dolphin easy- on its belly, more adventurous- holding the fin and then for the brave- going underwater with the dolphin and getting projected out of the water. Wow! They also gave this an A+. Cabo is a great port to walk around, buy souvenirs, etc. We visited our first “Farmacia” which would require you to do a little research online to know what you are doing. Summary: Excursion experiences are not affected by room category. We usually do private excursions not associated with the ship, but the LasCalitas day was sold out privately and only available through the ship. Note: it was sold out once we were on board, so book this early! We also had a $50 excursion credit for each port, so that motivated everyone to use the ship’s tours. Debarkation was a bit of a disappointment. We had read that the Owner’s Suite (which is H3) had concierge assistance and we even received special instructions to go to Chin Chin’s for help off the ship. This was NO help at all. The concierge had left the ship as she had finished her contract and was going home, so her assistant just showed us off the ship (easy to do on your own.) We were given the option of standing in a long line to take the elevator or the escalator. We were on our own with the hordes of people in line going through customs. After we had made it through customs, I saw a staff member who had just helped another person skip the line and asked her what the policy was. She said you had to be a cabin physically in the Haven, not one of the Haven cabins on other parts of the ship. I also asked about the policy on cruise critic, and learned the concierge “walk off” appears to vary with the ship and port. We found PrimeTime Shuttle to the right of the dock and waited maybe ten mins for our private van. We witnessed the manager trying to rip off a walk up customer with an outrageous price ($50 pp). Fortunately, this man had done his homework, and the driver then offered him a very appealing rate. If you are going to a hotel, it costs $20 more. Part of our group was going to a hotel on Century Blvd. We continued to the airport and picked up the Thrifty shuttle to go to their off-airport facility. The rental facility was right across the street from where our daughter and her family were left off. If I had known that, we could have saved 30 minutes. Thrifty was very efficient. We would be very happy to sail on the Jewel again. Like some of its sister ships, the Jewel offers most features that you would expect or desire. The Jewel class ships are our favorite class in the NCL fleet. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We chose this cruise because it fit our scheduled Spring Break. Since I am a teacher and we have a school aged child, that is the week we needed to go. We were also excited to try a Norwegian cruise because we had never cruised on ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it fit our scheduled Spring Break. Since I am a teacher and we have a school aged child, that is the week we needed to go. We were also excited to try a Norwegian cruise because we had never cruised on Norwegian before. The boarding process was smooth and easy. We were able to board our ship in very little time. We were directed to the Garden Cafe where we could enjoy lunch and some down time before setting sail. In the Garden Cafe we were able to meet the restaurant manager of the Jewel, Noel Chaves. From that moment, Noel took very good care of us. He was always interested in how our cruise was going, or if there was anything he could do to make things more enjoyable. He visited with us every day and made us feel extremely valued. Honestly, he is amazing! The impact this kind man had on our family is a lasting one. The food on the Jewel was very good. We all agree that it is much better than food on other cruises we have taken. The ports were charming and enjoyable. There are many options of activities and adventures at each stop. The atmosphere was very family friendly and relaxing. The entertainment and activities were quality and very enjoyable. The comedian and magician were extremely entertaining! We also enjoyed other activities such as balloon twisting, trivia games, dance parties and much more. The ship has many places to spread out as well. Our family found ourselves in a quiet, secluded game room where we completed a puzzle together on our first night at sea. Our room stewardess was such a sweetheart and helped keep our little home away from home nice and tidy. She was happy and willing to help us with the needs we had. My husband is a big basketball fan, so he was delighted to learn that the ship was working to broadcast the first round of March Madness for the passengers to enjoy. We were able to enjoy many games on a giant screen in the atrium. We also enjoyed the friendly banter between other passengers as we cheered for our favorite teams. The crew was dedicated to keeping everyone healthy. There were hand sanitization stations everywhere as well as crew members personally sanitizing hands of passengers before going into any dining area. I was also happy to see that hand sanitization was provided before boarding the ship after being out and about at the ports. Our overall experience was amazing, and we would recommend this cruise and the Jewel to anyone! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We had a mini suite and the cabin was fine. Good space for two, nice veranda. Ship staff was awful, especially guest services. The individuals working this desk were rude, abrupt, unknowledgeable and not willing to help customers. ... Read More
We had a mini suite and the cabin was fine. Good space for two, nice veranda. Ship staff was awful, especially guest services. The individuals working this desk were rude, abrupt, unknowledgeable and not willing to help customers. This ruined our cruise as well as two others that were sailing with us. They will never sail on NCL again. HIGHLIGHTS: The specialty restaurants were very good especially Cagney"s and Le Bistro. O'Sheehan's is great for a quick lunch. NOT GOOD: The main dining room Tsar"s has a very limited menu for lunch and the food overall here left quite a bit to be desired. Overall, except as noted above, the food was below average. Bars around the pool area open and close as they please. They do not follow the daily schedule. Most of the crew were very unfriendly and seemed to go out of their way to avoid customers. Restrooms were frequently quite dirty. Embarkation at Los Angeles took almost two hours to get through the line. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This is my 3rd cruise on Norwegian, twice on the Jewel and once on the Escape. My previous cruise on the Jewel in 2015 (Alaska) was overall a far better experience. My 2016 cruise on the Escape (Caribbean) was amazing. To be fair my ... Read More
This is my 3rd cruise on Norwegian, twice on the Jewel and once on the Escape. My previous cruise on the Jewel in 2015 (Alaska) was overall a far better experience. My 2016 cruise on the Escape (Caribbean) was amazing. To be fair my experience on this 2017 cruise on the Jewel (Mexican Riviera) was amazing when compared to say any cruise offered by a line like Carnival, but when compared to past cruises with Norwegian it was below average. DINING Dining in the main rooms was great, always plenty of seating, quality service, and hot good tasting food. Specialty restaurants - Moderno - Service was fantastic, the quality of the meats was off slightly. Still highly recommend this specialty restaurant on the Jewel. Teppanyaki - Service and food was good, our chef did not do some of the fun tricks that you expect during this kind of meal but was still good. Cagneys - Oh boy, the chef in this restaurant (March 2017) needs to be replaced. Sent my tomahawk rib eye back twice, and actually had an argument with the chef over how to cook it. They committed the biggest mistake one can make in a steakhouse, they tried to continue cooking a steak I had cut into. Everyone was rude in that restaurant, tried to make it better by giving me a free drink but still charged us for the meal. It was a customer service disaster in every way. Until they get a new, properly trained chef avoid this place and just go to Moderno. At Moderno they will cook the meat to order (if requested) and it is unlimited. Food comes from the same kitchen but they have different chefs. SERVICE: Part of me felt like this cruise had a lot of new employees who were not trained properly. Bad customer service at the main CS desk, rude people at the restaurant reservation desk, literally everyone in the photo gallery had no idea what was going on expect the manager (a nice South African guy) and housekeeping was horrible. There was soap in my coffee maker and instead of just fixing it the room stewardess (Marggie) tried to blame the previous guest. It didn't really matter to me how it happened, it just needed to be fixed but she felt compelled to take the time to blame someone else which immediately told me that it was her fault. Had to fight to get an extra bath towel, she consistently missed cleaning / replacing one to two things every time she cleaned the room. Like everyday for 7 days, one or two times I would understand but this was every day. It was exhausting dealing with her. PORTS / SHORE EXCURSIONS The one thing I really love about the Mexican Rivera cruises is the whale watching in Cabo this time of the year (Jan, Feb, Mar). The 2 hour whale watching excursion in Cabo (on a catamaran) was great! The boat was clean and comfortable, they had free drinks and snacks, and the guide was knowledgeable. Went out of their way to make sure you saw whales while still being respectful of the whales (didn't get too close, and shut the motor down). CASINO This casino needs a manager who has been to Las Vegas and understands that casinos are suppose to be fun. They need more Wheel of Fortune machines (only had 2), more poker tables, and better trained staff. My boyfriend was literally teaching them how craps works... it was shocking, they didn't understand all of the bets and had no idea how to pay on all bets. A lot of customers who not extremely familiar with the game were getting shorted, big time. Play at your own risk. WIFI Norwegian has upgraded their WiFi and it is worth paying for now! I was able to download an episode of the Walking Dead on my iPad overnight and watch it the next day. It so much faster than before, it is literally the only improvement I noticed on this cruise. PORT OF LOS ANGELES This cruise I just took on the Jewel left out of San Pedro, and that place is just a dump. That is not NCL's fault, but if you have never been there just know its a dump. Parking is $18 per day, and your car is out in the open. It will get insanely dirty. The cruise terminal has no A/C and seems to have been built during like WWII and has never been updated. There are escalators and and elevator, but over it is old and dingy. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We came from Las Vegas and chose this cruise because we didn't have to travel far. We arrived at the pier early (about 10:00) and were sent into checkin right away. I was a little apprehensive about having only a porthole but the ... Read More
We came from Las Vegas and chose this cruise because we didn't have to travel far. We arrived at the pier early (about 10:00) and were sent into checkin right away. I was a little apprehensive about having only a porthole but the cabin was light and very comfortable. We had the all inclusive drink package and free gratuities. I bought the 100 minute internet and although it was a little slow, I didn't use it all. Thanks to the Roll call, we met a number of fellow cruise critic cruisers on our first day at sea. We did a "funny hat" pub crawl and had friends for the rest of the cruise. We thought all the entertainment was very good. Iain is the best cruise director! We loved the game shows and karaoke. We also enjoyed the outdoor BBQ by the pool. We did not like O'Sheehans. We tried it twice, once for dinner and another time just for snacks. We felt the wait staff in there were rude or uncaring and the food was bland or inedible. We were told by a friend not to try chin chin. We went on the Stone Beach getaway at Mazatlan and thoroughly enjoyed it. It included horse back riding or a horse drawn cart, lunch and a free bar. We did the two bay snorkelling tour in Cabo and enjoyed it except the water was very cold. In PV we booked a private zip line tour which was very good. We opted to walk off with our luggage as we had an early flight from LGB (10:55). The line up moved quickly and we were through customs, into our Uber and to the airport in good time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
when searching for a cruise I did see some negative comments regarding the Jewel, all I can say is those people must be on crack! There was NOTHING negative about this cruise! The ship was in great condition and VERY clean. The workers ... Read More
when searching for a cruise I did see some negative comments regarding the Jewel, all I can say is those people must be on crack! There was NOTHING negative about this cruise! The ship was in great condition and VERY clean. The workers are always cleaning something! The Whole crew was amazingly friendly! Didn't matter what their job title was they said good morning, afternoon or evening when you passed them even at 4 am. The food- my oh my where can I find the words to describe the assortment of it! There were so many options to choose from and ALL of it was so good! Didn't see or eat one thing that was unpleasant. Cabin steward was awesome, did a great job cleaning up every morning. The shows were good also. We booked our own excursions while in ports ( puerto Vallarta, mazatlan & Cabo). At least half of what the cruise offers. Don't be afraid to book your own. If you decide to do so,egging in mazatlan, I would use mazatlan tours! They offer a lot of excursions and a top notch business to deal with! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Even if you know the history, have seen the documentaries and understand the engineering, a full passage of the Panama Canal is a MUST for any lover of history, science or travel. The senior crew members were very assessable and were ... Read More
Even if you know the history, have seen the documentaries and understand the engineering, a full passage of the Panama Canal is a MUST for any lover of history, science or travel. The senior crew members were very assessable and were quite willing to answer questions from the very basic to the very technical. The food set up at the buffet provided a good flow with multiple food islands. Lines were minimal, even during peak hours due to this setup. The ship was exceptionally clean and the staff, with few exceptions was very attentive to the passengers needs. Our cabin on the 8th deck was quiet and well laid out. The showers were better than other ships I have cruised on. My only complaint with the Jewel was the fitness center. None of the upright exercise bikes worked properly. The seated bikes were Technogym brand, which, in my opinion are not nearly as good as Life-Fitness products. The gym was also to hot during most of the cruise. On the bright side, the weight equipment included dumbells up to 75 lbs., incline benches and older life fitness machines (better than the newer designs in my opinion), all of which was well maintained. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
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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