6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Reading the blogs in regards to the Norwegian Jewel were spot on. Ranking: 1) Entertainment (the entertainment staff really does a great job on the Jewel) 2) Activities (there is something to do every hour of every day on the ... Read More
Reading the blogs in regards to the Norwegian Jewel were spot on. Ranking: 1) Entertainment (the entertainment staff really does a great job on the Jewel) 2) Activities (there is something to do every hour of every day on the Jewel. You will never get bored.) 3) Room (Penthouse room at the front of the boat had a huge deck with amazing views) 4) Service (everyone was very friendly and helpful. We had a Butler, Rex and a private Concierge, Bruno. Both were very helpful and attentive.) 5) Food (This was the biggest disappointment. The food was beyond horrible. We were looking forward to our ports of call just to get decent food. The Teppanyaki specialty restaurant had the best food.) NCL has a nice relaxed dress code. Which comes in handy when you are out on shore excursions all day and want to go to dinner when you get on the boat without having to change. Definitely check out the spa, its well worth it. Check out Lauron Randon in Magnums Champagne Bar. Great 70's singer. . Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
First cruise ever, last on NCL. The ship was nice, did not seem dated to me as some say BUT.... Staff - friendly but usually only if prompted for help - I think I saw my room steward twice, both times because I needed something - there ... Read More
First cruise ever, last on NCL. The ship was nice, did not seem dated to me as some say BUT.... Staff - friendly but usually only if prompted for help - I think I saw my room steward twice, both times because I needed something - there was no lifejacket I could find (someone had stowed under the bed) and no robe unless you ask and that is for a mini suite? Food was simply horrid, with very few exceptions. The best food of course was in the specialty restaurants Le Bistro was very good, Cagney's was average, and Teppenyaki could take it or leave it. The normal food, was at times disgusting. Corned beef sandwich in O'Sheehans was simply cold rye toast with fatty corned beef - no sauce, cheese, toppings of any kind. Gross. Fries that came with anything were always cold, in fact nothing I ate was ever hot as most meals should be, lukewarm food at best, even eggs and soup. Again, gross. One night I was tired so ordered room service. I tried a cheeseburger, who can make a bad burger? NCL. Cold bun, mayo, thin beef patty and a totally unmelted slice of cheese. No cold fries this time, stale potato chips in a bowl. Really really bad. That was just a couple of examples I could go on. So if you want a nice cruise, pretty scenery (weather was gorgeous and sunny) and are on a DIET, sail NCL cause I actually think I lost a few pounds on that food. The other disturbing observation was a sewer smell that permeated the stateroom corridors much of the time, especially as you approached mid ship, and not just on one floor. Someone has a sewer leak? I asked a steward in passing if he smelled that? He either did not understand me or did not want to talk about it and brushed me off. Sewer fumes, again gross. Too bad too, everyone is asking about how my cruise was, knowing it was my first. and NCL blew it,and yes I am telling everyone who asks just how....... next time based on the feedback from others in the ports will try Princess, everyone on the Coral and Crown I met loved it. Sigh. Good to be home. Read Less
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11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We embarked the Norwegian Jewel on June 4th from Seattle. We stayed in an inside room, no window or porthole. SHIP: PRO: The ship was overall very clean. CON: The ship was very outdated. CABIN: Overall our cabin was ... Read More
We embarked the Norwegian Jewel on June 4th from Seattle. We stayed in an inside room, no window or porthole. SHIP: PRO: The ship was overall very clean. CON: The ship was very outdated. CABIN: Overall our cabin was good. Our housekeeper was very polite and nice. They cleaned our cabin twice a day which was above and beyond. Although the room itself was clean, it was outdated. Favorite part of the room would be the spacious shower. DINING: OK, we as a family found the dining to be terrible. They offer a few different types of "free dining" all in which didn't serve good food. Luckily they had a salad bar which is what my family and I lived off of. There were a few things that we found to be ok. Waffles, salad bar, fruit, toast, and coffee. They had very little vegetarian options as everything had meat, even the chow-mien. Overall, they served the same things in the Garden Cafe, which is where we primarily ate. O'Sheehan's was by far the grossest food I've ever eaten in my life. Chin Chin's as well ... worst Chinese food ever. A young child actually went running out and threw up all over the floor. Tzars - "fancy restaurant" food was OK nothing to rave about about or complain about. Azura - my parents found there meal to be better there then Tzars and I was the opposite ... We both said the same things nothing the rave about. The menus pretty much stayed the same throughout the ship varying with one or two items a night. They provide speciality restaurants, we as a family did not attend any as they where about 30$ a person, there was four of us so do the math .. about 120$. Another upset would be the price of drinks, we are not heavy drinkers so buying the drink pass at 79$ a day would not benefit us. For example a Moscow Mule was $15.95 pus 18% gratuity. All mixed drinks where in the $16-20 range plus 18% gratuity. Beers were 7$ plus 18% gratuity. They make you pay a gratuity every swipe rather it be one coffee, or 2 drinks at the bar... & no you cannot keep a tab open. ENTERTAINMENT: WORST ENTERTAINMENT EVER: OK, sailing to Alaska you spend quite a bit of time on the boat as a total amount of time spent in the ports were a combine maybe 30 hours. The boat had little to do, and we often just walked laps due to being so bored. We wanted to play deal or no deal ... cost 19.95 to play a game ... Couldn't enjoy the pool as it was too cold outside and windy. The things we did included the 3 game shows spread throughout the week, the comedy show (ehhh), and the Circus show - this show was actually really neat to watch and we enjoyed it very much. There was a "white hot party" it was ok ... the staff made it enjoyable but it died out quickly. Overall, you where often left not knowing what to do so we caught up on all new release movies in our room. SERVICE: OK, the overall service was great. The staff was very attentive, and it was cool seeing all kinds of different cultures. There was one hiccup with service which included the shore excursion desk. In Juneau we were supposed to dog-sled but due to weather it was cancelled - which I understand safety first. However, there was about 25-30 of us who had planned that excursion - we met in the stardust theater at 7:15 AM and where told at about 7:40 that they were not flying helicopters. So everyone ran the the excursion desk to plan another adventure for the day. Arriving to the desk there was one person working - anyone who has planned or done an excursion you understand that you leave in early AM by around 8:30 depending on what you are doing. We waited in line for about 90 minutes until we were finally able to pick an excursion ... Here's the hiccup as she was helping guests in the line she was also answering phone calls from individuals in their rooms. Two of us wanted to plan dog-sledding for the following day in Skagway .. We finally got up to the counter and she told us to wait as she answered the phone and put three people down for dog-sledding in Skagway ... We proceeded to say that we wanted to dog-sled in Skagway since it was cancelled in Juneau ... she states " we are all booked for that trip I just gave away the last 3 spots" ... hmmm I've been waiting 90 minutes .. Anyways - all of the buses had left besides a whale watching tour and we picked that ... We had 6 minutes to get off of the ship and head to the bus ... We were very upset as where the people all around us. I went up to the service desk and asked if any of them could help or if the cruise director could assist the one lady .. the response was that only shore excursion people have access to the computers. Although the women said dog-sledding was sold out in Skagway we walked to the building and asked if they had spots ... They were AWESOME people and gave us 3 different times to choose from and it was 60$ cheaper. PORTS/EXCURSIONS: 1. Ketchikan: We did Jeep and Canoe Adventure : It was amazing and the people were wonderful ... we canoed across a lake, they served amazing clam chowder and I don't prefer clam chowder .. We then jeeped to a mountain side and the views were spectacular. Would recommend this tour. 2. Juneau: Whale watching - Overpriced and I could of lived without .. We did see whales but none breeching and hardly any tails. They people were very nice and served hot coco and snacks. 3, Skagway - Dogsledding - AMAZING if you can do it I would recommend doing it. Once in a lifetime experience 4: British Columbia: Zip-lining - It was a blast and they guides where very nice with a great sense of humor. Would recommend this tour. Overall, I would recommend bringing your own snacks on board .. As we entered the first town a lot of people went to the stores and bought sodas and snacks as a lot of people agreed to the food being bland and ehh. I would recommend if you can to buy your excursions on land, they were cheaper. I didn't like the fact that they nickel and dimed you for EVERYTHING!!! I wish we as people were able to tip who we wanted and how much we wanted because some did not deserve a tip and others deserved more. I wouldn't recommend this cruise for younger people as the entertainment lacked. Overall, I am happy we were able to see Alaska and enjoy a family vacation. We as a family decided that we would never cruise with NCL again as we have enjoyed other cruise lines better. The quality what not worth the overall price of the vacation. Thanks for reading .. I am not trying to be a negative nancy, I just wanted to write what our experience was like on the cruise and how we felt. I wish I could be more positive. Read Less
25 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
I wanted to write a review because as a first time cruiser there was a lot I did not know or fully grasp until I took this trip. So I wanted to do as in depth a review as possible because I feel sometimes reviews don't say enough. ... Read More
I wanted to write a review because as a first time cruiser there was a lot I did not know or fully grasp until I took this trip. So I wanted to do as in depth a review as possible because I feel sometimes reviews don't say enough. So you know I am a single male, I traveled with a friend, and had no kids in tow. We opted for a inside room and had the pick 2 of 4 amenities options and chose to go with the Unlimited Beverage and Ultimate Dining Package. Start of the day we went to the World Cruise Center in Los Angeles, went in took a right past the Battleship to the terminal. When you go in especially early, people are leaving so there is a lot of commotion, we checked in our bags, I carried on a bag pack with some spare clothes and my toiletries as was suggested by many. So we had stand in line answer some health questions and since we were no Latitudes members (being first timers) we were given a number and had to wait until our number was called for us to be able to go on the ship. So as we finally got on the ship, we headed over the O'Shenohans or whatever the Irish pub was on the 8th floor and decided to try out lunch. You should know the menu at this restaurant stays the same for breakfast and lunch. We did not have an opportunity to eat here for dinner as we wanted to try the other many options on the ship. So each bar has drinks they specialize in and can vary from amazing to yuck, and depending on the bartender that all can change. Standard pub food was served wings, strips, mozzarella sticks for appetizers and corn beef sandwiches, meatloaf, chicken pot pie for lunch just to name a few. Strawberry shortcake and cheesecake 1 or 2 other items for dessert. It was good I quiet enjoyed it, its true you can order multiple of anything in this restaurants, Chin Chins, and the main dining rooms Azura and Tsars. The grill upstairs and the Garden Cafe were buffet style. To continue on the discussion of food we did have the Dinner package to four restaurants and decided to try Le Bistro, Tepanyaki, La Cucina, and Cagneys. We also ate dinner in bother Azura and Tsars and Chin Chins one night each. Le Bistro As this is an Ala carte restaurant the dinner package works differently, each person gets one appetizer, one soup or salad, one entree, and one dessert. The food to me was just so so, they are located on the 6th floor and we believe they share a kitchen with Tsars and Azura so some food may cross over for convenience making the cuisine feel nice but not wow. My friend did get to try escargot and the lobster which was included, I decided to opt for the lamb and some cones. The Hazelnut dessert was my favorite overall. Tepanyaki Its dinner and a show, we were crammed into a small room accessible through Chin Chins on the 7th floor. There was four cooking tables in a fairly tight space, so it gets pretty tight and noisy. Food was good, they watch out for allergies, I had the chicken udon which was you know Asian food on a ship, getting it to be average is my highest expectation. You got to choose your entree, you were given miso soup and salad and a dessert to top it off between fresh fruit or a green tea cake, The garlic butter fried rice was good. La Cucina So again different rules here for dinner package, as many appetizers, desserts, pizzas, and soups or salads but only 1 entree. I ordered all the pizza three were good but the fourth the meat sauce pizza was weird. The food was overall enjoyable about the same level as well just a hair under Oliver Garden. The restaurant on the 12th floor gave us a nice view of setting sun as we left Puerto Vallarta. Cagneys On the 13th floor towards the back is Cagneys right next door to the Brazilian BBQ which we did not eat. Cagneys is like a traditional steakhouse. You order your meat and sides separately. You can order two sides at this restaurant and 1 appetizer and 1 soup or salad and 1 of the cuts of meat. I went for the Porterhouse which was huge and hard to finish, but cooked a bit under but I expected that for the size of meat. It was good overall. The restaurant was low key, we had a later dinner, and the cheesecake I had was good. Chin Chins If average is what I expect as a high point for Asian food on a ship, I would say it did not meet this expectation. Chin Chins was just a waste of a meal, but if you come from outside of a major urban center with lots of Asians and Asian food, Chin Chins might be an okay place to eat. Located on the busy 7th floor next the Fyzz lounge and Atrium was easy to find and right above the lounge in front of Le Bistro and the Martini bar where live music played every night. Tsars and Azura The main dining, the decor could not be any more different from each other, Azura was like a psychedelic eatery with fancyish food. The dress code was more relaxed than Tsars but felt more cramped. Tsara was opening dining area, towards the back of the ship, it had pictures of nobles in portraits on the walls and felt a little more open then Azuras. The menu was the same for both, a set of items that were similar every night and the rest changed daily. I had to say the food was just as good here as it was in the Specialties, if I had to only eat in Tsars or Azuras, I would be content because food was at time exceptional. Garden Cafe Its a big buffet and outside was Topsiders Grill, its a buffet, massive amount of decent food, available most of the day. Room Service Is not free, its 7.50 and up depending on how crazy you order. Breakfast in the morning is included if you put out your order before 4AM, it is delivered between 5-10. It includes pastries a maximum of 2 each, cereal, coffee, and juice. Things like eggs, and other stuff come with the 7.50 charge. Finally the coffee bar, they were missing items, because well I guess they weren't loaded or baked or something but it was unfortunate to advertise a cupcake and dessert bar but be very limited on selection. They had two of the four or five cupcake choices, and the coffee was good but it wasn't as good as say a Starbucks, it left you hanging a little bit. My friend tried almost every drink on the boat in nearly every bar, she had an enjoyable time at Spinnakers, the Sake Bar, and O'Shays. Highlights for her included Pisco Punch, Mango Meltdown, and Chilada. She said the Negroni was gross and a couple of the martinis were just meh. She loved the drink at the Sake bar, Wasabi something. Entertainment The ship has three main areas for night life Spinnakers, the lounge in front of Le Bistro, and Fyzz. Spinnakers on the 13th floor had all the parties, dancing, it was the night club on the ship. The music grew tiresome after the first few nights and for people wanting to relax more and be social well Spinnakers is a club. In the day activities like Bingo, and movies occurred here it was great for big group stuff and had wonderful views. Fyzz at night had dance lessons,trivia and karaoke. We usually had family from 10-11, and from 11-12 was adult time. Karaoke was limited on selections and the same few people always sang. Each night they taught the basics of a lot of dances like salsa, triple swing and hop hop. We also had trivia done here and presentations for like jewelry and stuff. The lounge in front of Le Bistro next to the champagne/ martini bar, had live music every night. It was nice to hear, but I never really sat down to listen for very long. They had theme nights, and so if you had a particular music you liked, it was a nice place to relax and be social with friends. During the day as well as night there was of course the pool, the super expensive video arcade, the casino trap, basketball court, shuffel board, a game room and a little library. All these activities were good and added to bring the monotony of doing the same things over and over. I went to three shows in the Stardust, the shows are at 7:15 and 9:15, I saw Rod Long a comedian, JP a magician comedian,and Bijou the Cirque style acrobat and dance show. Bijou is the most popular on the ship and clearly for the all the pizzazz its justified. Rod Long was funny but there was something enjoyable about JPs show that I did enjoy very much. So I did a massage and got a pretty nice deal on Embarkation day. I did the Elemis Aroma Therapy massage. In essence you strip down to almost nothing they lather you up in a seaweed cream, stick you in a plastic streamer, have you shower it off, and then they steam you again. After that they give you a massage, it was unique and slightly uncomfortable because well I am a big guy and they gave me a paper underwear that was clearly to small, at some point we just gave up and there I was just butt naked to the world. The massage was nice though and I felt good for the rest of the trip. I did not venture into the gym, I should have but I passed on that. I did however enjoy the Therapy Suites, it was a nice place to find quiet, and to relax. I highly recommend paying the extra for the serenity. I can imagine on the newer ships they upped this feature and it must be even more so delightful. Shore excursions were expensive, I ventured away from that and decided to book elsewhere. I am glad I did because I was not about to spend that much money on something that was 1/3 the cost. For us Cabo was okay, we ventured to San Jose and it was more real Mexico to us, Mazatlan was my favorite city, and Puerto Vallarta we did a taco tour was very enjoyable. Going away from the cruise ship excursions was a little uneasy because if you're late back well, see ya later. As the last part of this review, I participated in the art Auction. It was enjoyable. Everything was really expensive and at time it felt like we were dealing with an oil salesman. We did purchase a Winnie the Pooh etching "third level of collecting" for 75 which made my friend really happy. Disembarkation was a little less fun, my friend lost an item, and something in my bag shattered. We opted to check stuff in but the line for customs is long, next time I'm walking my bag off. The cool thing was, the form was easy, you do one for all the people in your household (same last name), you itemize all the items and even though we brough more then 1 liter of alcohol they let us slide right through. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Have just returned to Australia after cruising to the Mexican Riviera on the Norwegan Jewel. Being "foreigners'' we had not known where to stay precruise but are glad we decided on the Doubletree Hilton at San Pedro beside ... Read More
Have just returned to Australia after cruising to the Mexican Riviera on the Norwegan Jewel. Being "foreigners'' we had not known where to stay precruise but are glad we decided on the Doubletree Hilton at San Pedro beside the boat harbour. This wonderful hotel provided a sanctuary for weary travellers before and after our cruise. Great room - yummy biscuits - a free shuttle to town anytime (and to the boat on cruise departure day) + free carparking if you need it - free baggage storage and pickup after the cruise. Highly recommended by me and my fellow travellers. Now to the cruise. WOW - loved this. When we arrived at the pier there she was the Norwegian Jewel which I had only ever seen in pictures before. I have to say she was a beautiful lady and I was impressed by her clean sleek appearance. Embarkation was quite orderly and within acceptable time limits - got on the ship and of course what do you do straightaway! EAT and DRINK of course. The cabins were not available until 1pmish which was not outrageously long considering that they feed you and also have to set up for this new intake of passengers and get everyones luggage delivered. We had only got on at 11.30ish. Have not been on a cruise for many years but it seems to me that these cruises are so abundant in food and alcohol and soft drinks that it is hard to comprehend. Disembarkation was just as orderly as embarkation and if you wish to wheel off your own luggage is much quicker than having it collected. Just remember though that the staff cannot help or assist you in any way as they are bound by union rules. All in all myself and my family loved this cruise and had not much to grumble about - value for money. TIPS FROM A FIRST TIME CRUISER If you like a drink on a hot day DO buy the UBP . We had 2 free ones and purchased the 3rd one onboard and dont regret it. If you dont drink alcohol consider one of the non alcoholic ones. If you want peace of mind about the cost of drinks - even though the drink packages seem expensive and if you like beers wines or cocktails regularly then I highly recommend that the UBP is for you. They soon add up! Dont be like us and try to dodge the free photo opportunities that they provide everywhere. Get as many done as you want as when you go to view them you only need to buy what you want. You dont have to eat in the specialty restaurants to get a good meal. Tsars offers a great sit down breakfast right on the back of the boat next to the window and its included. Azura has another good enough meal which is part of the deal but most of all the meal options in the Garden Cafe are not to be sneezed at - more often than not they have a great big turkey - a huge leg of pork or piece of beef - no one goes hungry on this boat and each night has a different theme. You can also dress up if you want or go casual if you choose - nobody cares - be warned though that Tsars requires men to wear long trousers for evening dining. Chin Chin and Osheehans were also good charge free options. Remember FOOD is the word on this boat. If you miss breakfast there is always another option like a spread at the Great Outdoors - a fabulous outdoors barbecue on the pool deck daily (weather permitting) and even in the Casino they lay out food for the peckish and no doubt other places that my bloated and overfed body couldnt get to!!! Disembarking at ports is orderly and well organised - passenger safety is paramount - and I was highly impressed with the polite attitude of the staff on this ship. Should you wish to book an excursion from onboard or when booking there plenty of options and also you can get a driver when you go onshore who will show you all the sights and luckily we never got ripped off. Mazatlan has umpteen dozen english speaking volunteers at strategic points all around the port (expats I think) who are pleasant and helpful about all aspects of their chosen place of retirement. Take advantage of their knowledge. The Norwegian Jewel has a great attitude towards cleanliness on board - there are the washi washi guys who offer antiseptic spray and also free standing dispensers everywhere on the ship - the womens restrooms display signs asking you to washup and open the doors using paper towels. There were no signs of illness on this ship. All you need to do is heed the signs. Activities aplenty on this ship. From Bingo Deal or No deal deck games reading walking shows ping pong deck quoits heaps of kids activities recipe demonstrations music and bands round the pool - you name it - not to mention the nightly shows in their wonderful theatre. There are many that I cant remember but the list goes on. If you are tempted to take some bottles of wine onboard - dont bother - unless you are a real lover of particular wines. We never once were challenged for taking our alcoholic drinks to our cabin. Look for the free icecream dispensers - they are VERY popular. On Deck 11 if you walk all the way down the passageway on the right hand side of the ship from back to front - you will find a viewing window which allows you to see whats going on on the Bridge. Found this by mistake and it was interesting. I suggest you check your onboard account the day prior to disembarking to make sure there are no stuff ups - ours was fine - but some peoples wasnt and the queues are long on the last day. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
We booked a suite and an adjoining room, as we had six people. So four of us slept in the suite and two in the adjoining room. The agent who recommended this didn't fully explain all the benefits of a suite. If you can do it, do ... Read More
We booked a suite and an adjoining room, as we had six people. So four of us slept in the suite and two in the adjoining room. The agent who recommended this didn't fully explain all the benefits of a suite. If you can do it, do it. The room was so much better than two regular rooms. And the benefits were outstanding -- private breakfast and lunch area, a butler and concierge, early boarding etc. It was so nice to have a meeting area where everyone could meet, and our butler always had appetizers in our room before dinner so our entire party could enjoy a nice cocktail hour before dinner. Both sets of grandparents were also on the cruise, so overall there were 10 of us. The ship offered something for everyone -- the teenagers, the twenty-somethings, the grandparents, and my wife and I. We were very impressed with the specialty dinning restaurants and the nightlife on the ship. What impressed me most is that everyone had a great time -- no matter the age. The one downside is that the shore excursions were only ok. We had a problem with one, and NCL refunded us 20%. But it was not at all what was advertised. The ship's pools and hot-tubs are small, but the weather wasn't really conducive to enjoying the pool/ laying out. I thought the drinks included in the beverage package were of a really good quality -- much better than I expected. Overall, my family had a wonderful vacation. I thought the NCL employees were very responsive when we had various issues that arisen. And if you take a cruise with NCL, make sure you organize a Cruise Critic reception. Senior management came to it and gave us their direct dial numbers. We used these several times, and it made a big difference. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2015
We just finished our trip on the NCL Jewel. I learned one thing I can state with absolute certainty. When a person on the staff uses the phrase, "I will look into it.", they are really telling you to go away because they ... Read More
We just finished our trip on the NCL Jewel. I learned one thing I can state with absolute certainty. When a person on the staff uses the phrase, "I will look into it.", they are really telling you to go away because they don't care enough to help! This canned phrase, used by most of the upper staff, is simply a polite way they use to say I will do the bare minimum to make you go away! The primary reason for my lack of satisfaction in from three events. One involving my 15 month old son getting sick, one involving people smoking on the balcony two rooms toward the bow of the ship in front of ours and the third being terrible service in the Tsar's Palace restaurant. The biggest problem was the horrible, rude incomprehensibly poor behavior and judgement of the staff when my son threw up in his stroller directly next to the registration desk. Let me paint the picture. We were headed to dinner at Azura with me, my wife our 4 year old and the baby. The baby erupted and threw up all over himself and his stroller. Nightmare! It was terrible and we didn't know what to do. We wanted to clean up our son, but to move him without a towel would have spread the puke everywhere. Had we pushed him back to the room in the stroller we would have spread vomit through the whole of the ship. We didn't want to do that. We used all the wipes we had and were begging for something to help clean up our son and stroller. We were literally next to the desk and we asked for help three times! The lady who we talked to treated us horribly and did not communicate the situation properly to housekeeping. We literally were stranded next to the desk for 20 minutes before help arrived. We asked three times for help during this time! All we wanted was a towel to pick up our son and clean the vomit from his whole body and stop the pooling vomit from spilling. She responded with a curt, I have called housekeeping twice when we pleaded for help. She then went back to helping other guests in line despite our mini crisis. No less than three members of the staff walked by us and did nothing! After 15 minutes and having asked twice for help and being treated rudely, we got help from the desk supervisor who called housekeeping again to let them know it was an urgent matter after I stepped into the front of the line and loudly demanded help for the third time. After that they were there in 5 minutes. No parent should ever have to sit in a high traffic area of the ship, next to the registration desk and be treated in a similar fashion. Shame on the front desk for being so poorly trained and so incredibly rude. This was gross negligence on the part of the staff. It was embarrassing as a parent to have to sit there and wait so ling for help with people walking by us the whole time, not to mention the helpless feeling of not being able to pick up and comfort our crying son as we didn't want to spread the vomit everywhere. I complained about the treatment at the front desk and I got the standard, "Let me look into it"! The first person I spoke to said, this does not meet the criteria for compensation, what do you want me to do. At that [point in time I had asked for nothing and was simply registering a complaint about the behavior and the indifference of the front desk as a whole. The assistant hotel director, a nice man but his response was "I'll look into it" We also got the same from Hotel Director after leaving a note in his box... Ill look into it! They sent an empty gesture of a bottle of wine and some chocolate covered strawberries. They should have been more attentive to the baby and us as parents. They should have offered some compensation for the incompetence! The second problem was they were essentially non responsive to the passengers smoking on the balcony. The lady in the room in front of ours took pictures of the people in both of the next two rooms smoking cigarettes and also, what smelled like pot on the balcony. Again, we were traveling with a 4 year old and a baby and could not open our door because of the smell of the two different kinds of smoke wafting into our cabin at all hours of the day and night for most of the cruise. I spent over $500 to upgrade to a balcony room we could not use. It was terrible. They should have fined the people in the other rooms and credited the upgrade in full back to my account! The third problem was that the service staff in Tsars Palace was rude and did some really gross things. The biggest problem outside of the disinterested service and lackluster meal was when the server put her entire hand into my older son's ice cream, wiped it on her leg and then served it to my son hoping we didn't see her stumble and put her hand in the ice cream. After she dropped it at the table and asked if we needed anything else we asked her for a different ice cream as we saw what she had done. She lied to us and said she was already going to get a different one, but her actions of putting it on the table and starting to walk away was not what had actually happened. Other than these problems, the ship was nice, but dated. The elevator third to the right in the aft of the ship was broken and made several people get stuck. Besides that, the staff was cordial and nice for the most part. The service was generally lacking, but it was a full ship. Our room steward, Hilary, was awesome! He made the trip for us and was a real pro at his job! He was wonderful! Chin Chin was really good, with the appetizers being better then the main courses. Azura was fantastic with great service and really attentive waitstaff. The buffet was really great and we enjoyed our times when we ate there. The Great Outdoors on the back of deck 12 was an amazing place to have breakfast and we did so everyday! Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
It was just my husband and I on this trip. I have never cruised before, so I can't compare it to anything, but it didn't have as much glamour as I was expecting. Still, the ship was very clean and service was very good. We ... Read More
It was just my husband and I on this trip. I have never cruised before, so I can't compare it to anything, but it didn't have as much glamour as I was expecting. Still, the ship was very clean and service was very good. We arrived in San Pedro the night before the cruise and stayed at the Doubletree Hotel. Most of the rooms have just been renovated, so everything was very nice and new. Our room looked out on to the Marina, which was a nice touch. The next morning we took the hotel shuttle to the port. It was very organized and quick. We left right on time. (you sign up for a time when you check in) The port was a bit of a mad house when we arrived at around noon. The porters didn't have enough luggage carts, so people were crowding around the luggage drop off area. There was no kind of line or signage about where to go. Luckily we spotted a porter and since we had priority tags he agreed to take our bags. Check-in was smooth but a little confusing. The staff directed us to the line for Haven guests, but we weren't in the Haven...we only had a penthouse suite. Anyway, the Haven line is apparently for both Haven and Suites. We waited in a separate lounge area until the concierge took us on board. While this is a nice touch, it's a little unnecessary for just 2 people. Lots of awkward small talk. We were escorted to Moderno for lunch and to wait until our rooms were ready. Surprisingly, they were ready around 12:30! Lunch in Moderno was very good. Cabin Our cabin was an aft penthouse suite on deck 10. There was more than enough room for 2 people, lots of closet/drawer space and an excellent shower in the bathroom. The bed was so comfortable. We always got a good night's sleep and woke up refreshed. The balcony was huge with 2 loungers, a small table and a chair. Our butler (Jennifer) pampered us beyond belief bringing snacks every afternoon and even setting the table with a white tablecloth when we ordered room service breakfast. Our cabin steward (Marrgie) was also awesome! Our room was always made up by the time we got back from breakfast and turned down by the afternoon. I was surprised by the in-house movie channels. There were a lot of new releases. The only annoying thing was that there wasn't any kind of guide so you never knew when a movie was going to play. Food -Ate in the MDR (Tsar's) the first night. Food was great. Service a little slow, but not bad considering it was a holiday sailing so it was a completely full ship. -Teppanyaki - food was fine, but the experience marred by an obnoxious family at our table. I probably won't go back on my next cruise. -La Cucina: very good. A bit Olive Garden-ish, but the food was very good. Great wine list and service. -Cagney's: awesome. How can you go wrong with steak. -Moderno: didn't eat dinner here but we had breakfast here almost every day (it was included for suite and Haven guests) and breakfast was very good. They do French press coffee which I'm not usually a fan of...but this coffee was very good. Buffet: ate here one time and it was gross! I don't know if it was the time of day or what, but the selection was bad and the food even worse. Plus, it smelled really bad from some kind of fish chowder they were serving. We joked that it was trash stew. Thermal Spa: got a weeklong pass but only managed to get here 3 days. Still, it was worth it. The sauna had a window with a great view of the ocean. Art auction: a lot of fun...at first. Then the auctioneer turned into a condescending jerk when nobody bid on the overpriced art. The art staff told us to tell them about any artwork we were interested in and it would be included in the auction. We waited and waited, but it never made it on to the block. They said they ran out of time and couldn't include every piece, but they put up stuff that no one had marked or was interested in. Well, on the bright side we probably saved ourselves $1500. We left empty handed and annoyed that we wasted 3 hours of our time. We didn't get to any shows. Tried one time, but it was packed so we left. Casino was fun, but don't expect to win on the slots. We hung out at the martini bar a lot and always had good service. Overall, it was a great cruise but the ship was a little more basic than I expected. For example, There wasn't a grand atrium. The atrium looked like a hotel lobby. We still had a great first cruise experience and plan to do it again next year. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2015
So good things first: A.) This was our first cruise and the embarkation / disembarkation at all the ports (including LA) was fast. We were particularly worried about the disembarkation at LA because we had a flight to catch, but there ... Read More
So good things first: A.) This was our first cruise and the embarkation / disembarkation at all the ports (including LA) was fast. We were particularly worried about the disembarkation at LA because we had a flight to catch, but there were no problems there (ship arrived at 8am, we were at LAX with our luggage by 10:30am). B.) Food, entertainment (especially the acrobatics and the magic show) and on-board activities were great. C.) Ports were gorgeous and felt very safe. Temperature at the ports were perfect for swimming but not too hot. D.) And last but certainly not least, our steward was very friendly and helpful. The folded towel animals were adorable! Now the bad (from least to worst): A.) Ship is gorgeous but noticeably aged. The toilet needed to be serviced our second day because it lost suction. The cabin door stopped locking after our third day. The toilet was fixed in 30 minutes. The non-lockable door took 2.5 hours to get a carpenter on-site (during which time we were stuck in the cabin to make sure our belongings were safe). B.) Don't expect lost keycards to be deactivated by guest services. We lost a keycard by the pool and went to guest services to get it deactivated and a new one issued. New card never worked (didn't open the door at all, after 3 trips to the service desk for a rep there to check). Old card was eventually returned to us by another guest. We were astonished to realize that it still opened out cabin door and scanned into the ship and the dining areas - guest services assured us it was deactivated immediately. And below you can read about our continuing saga with guest services: C.) Service on the ship was great everywhere except at guest services. General questions were fine (how do we disembark / tender, etc) but be prepared for an extremely unapologetic and accusatory attitude if you actually have a complaint. My sister and I were up on the 14th deck taking pictures of the sunset after we came back from Mazatlan and were unaware that the deck was booked for a private function. A man from the party that booked the deck told us to get off the deck less than politely. We are two petite sized females and didn't want to argue with other guests so we left. However, we felt uncomfortable that this happened and it certainly dampened our mood. Moreover, we were confused as to why a crew member wasn't there to inform us that this was the case and that another passenger essentially shooed us off the deck. Thus began our story. 1.) We went to the service desk to figure out what happened. The rep there told us the deck was indeed booked and gave us a freestyle daily to figure out which areas were closed at certain times. We thought maybe we were in the wrong and didn't read freestyle daily correctly. 2.) Freestyle daily had no mention that the deck was closed to the public. Now it seemed like the service rep didn't give us correct information. So we returned. And the second rep told us there would be no more of these private functions that would book out public areas. Still no mention of any apology that there was no crew to close off the area / explain. (There were private functions booked in at least 2 dining areas, one of which became closed to the public, after he told us this.) 3.) Guest service assistant manager came out. We explained the situation to him. He told us he was there around that time and didn't see us. Which sounded like he was calling us liars. We told him we have pictures during the sunset showing the time and place. At that point, he asked us if we wanted the guests from the function to apologize. No! We didn't have a problem with the other guests - they probably paid for the deck and felt equally confused as to why we were there. We just wanted an apology from NCL that this happened and more importantly, that there would be more clear information in the future so we wouldn't be put in this uncomfortable situation again. No apology given. He repeated that he was there and didn't see us. The entire experience with guest services changed what was originally curiousity and a hope for a just an apology (not monetary, just acknowledgement and reassurance) into what felt like accusation. It left a fun cruising experience with a bitter aftertaste and makes us seriously consider another cruise line even though we love the idea of freestyle cruising. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
Norwegian Jewel was our first cruise. From the very start the staff was very friendly and courteous. Our porter for the 7 day cruise was Emerson. He was Awesome! He was always smiling and willing to help us in any which way if needed. ... Read More
Norwegian Jewel was our first cruise. From the very start the staff was very friendly and courteous. Our porter for the 7 day cruise was Emerson. He was Awesome! He was always smiling and willing to help us in any which way if needed. Rooms were cleaned twice a day and smelled good with clean towels. The ship itself, pool area, food areas, was in great shape, neat and very clean. The shows were entertaining and funny. The comedian Nassar was ok. But the other entertainers were A-plus. We liked the Dj at Spinnaker Lounge better than the poolside Dj. The Reggae band played really well, and covered some good old hits that had us grooving and dancing. Norwegian hired a great staff! The food in the dining areas were good and plentiful. We didn't try the specialty restaurants, so I won't comment on them. But next cruise I will definitely try them out. We booked our shore excursions through Norwegian so that way it'll be no issue with the boat leaving without us. It was a little pricey, but worth it. You can book an excursion excluding Norwegian for much cheaper when you leave the boat. But you must make sure you're back in time before the boat set sail. Getting off the boat was a breeze with Norwegian. But to expedite your departure off the ship if you have to catch a flight. You will have to carry off your own bags, and get your transfers to whatever airport you're leaving from. Read Less
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 1.0 0.0
Service 3.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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