178 Norwegian Jewel Romantic Cruise Reviews

The good: drinks, bar service, cabin service, food service (but not universally food quality) embarkation, disembarkation. Five for free. The mediocre: food everywhere except Cagney's and La Cucina (and the one lunch we had in the ... Read More
The good: drinks, bar service, cabin service, food service (but not universally food quality) embarkation, disembarkation. Five for free. The mediocre: food everywhere except Cagney's and La Cucina (and the one lunch we had in the main dining room). Especially the oily yellow lab that passes for low-rent velveeta, which is as close to cheese as you get in an omelette or on a burger. Also, the Irish bar has nachos comprised of stale yellow chips, smothered in oil cheese and bacon bits? Why don't you step that game up to potato skins or chips and some real cheese? Also, $35 a glass for Veuve Cliquot? Puh-leez. You can keep it at that price. Balcony cabin seemed a little small, but that's because it's almost 1/2 bed. They could stand to widen them by about 2 feet for ease of passage. The bad: excursion markup is pretty extreme. The ship seemed even more maze-like than my previous cruises, with 6th and 7th deck dead ends at the main dining rooms. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Beautiful ship, well appointed. All bars had awesome staff, especially Magnums and O’Shanahons . Specialty restaurants that we picked had wonderful food. We didn’t buy and shore excursions, (too $$$$) but, did do the port shopping ... Read More
Beautiful ship, well appointed. All bars had awesome staff, especially Magnums and O’Shanahons . Specialty restaurants that we picked had wonderful food. We didn’t buy and shore excursions, (too $$$$) but, did do the port shopping experience. Disappointed in daytime entertainment options when we returned to ship. Appreciated the hand sanitizer stations throughout the ship. Best entertainment by far was Fire and Ice (Michael Jackson/ Tina Turner) done by Rosie. . The entire staff on the Jewel had the best attitudes, always with a smile and asking if we needed help. Dan the Man was fun and helpful with announcements. Loved the drink package and the Specialty Dining. We are already planning on returning soon. Maybe the 16 days thru the Panama Cancel, Florida to LA where we live. We took advantage of the CruiseNow package. I personally have cruised on Cardinal Cruise Line.......I will never go back. I’m in love with NCL! Thank you for a very enjoyable cruise Gail Ropp Traveling with Lance Lomax Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Chose this cruise to celebrate our 35th Anniversary and my wife's retirement. Inside Passage itinerary was on wife's bucket list. I Chose NCL because we had our honeymoon cruise with them in the Caribbean. I chose the mini ... Read More
Chose this cruise to celebrate our 35th Anniversary and my wife's retirement. Inside Passage itinerary was on wife's bucket list. I Chose NCL because we had our honeymoon cruise with them in the Caribbean. I chose the mini balcony suite 11094 in the middle of the ship as an upgrade to our usual window room. Boarding was ok, not great. Line moved steadily, but no one was checking appointment times, it was just kind of a free for all. No issues getting on the ship. Our room was ready when we boarded. Cabin Steward was a sweetheart, kept things in great shape. Entertainment around ship was ok, not great. Production Cast in Stardust theater was excellent overall. The lounge acts were so- so. The comedian was hilarious. Casino Staff was totally excellent, I was addressed by name from day one, and they all were very pleasant to be around. Buffet was ok, only ate breakfast and 1 lunch there. Staff was nice, and washee washee crew had a blast Specialty Restaurants: Moderno was good, ate night one, plenty of food to choose from, and staff was friendly Le Bistro night 2, disappointing. Service had no sophistication at all, food was just ok, nothing special about it at all and extremely small portions. no name recognition, no celebration recognition... Teppanyaki- great company at the table, fun time. food had zero flavor, very typical of this type of restaurant. Our Chef was a novice....very friendly, but certainly needed to hone his show skills more before being turned loose. everything was rushed...deserts were terrible Cagneys- saved for last night, arrived half an hour early, got sat 40 minutes later. Waited 10 minutes and finally waitress came over and asked for dinner order before even seeing if we wanted a drink, when I said we wanted to get something to drink, she just left. 5 minutes later guy comes over to take order for decent bottle of wine (100$+) We wait 10 minutes and he comes back with wine....not a great presentation, and then wants to get paid for wine on the spot. Very weird. Waitress comes back and takes order..pretty much all she was was an order taker...never refilled wine glasses, or attempted to engage us in conversation. Ribeye Steak was of very poor quality, Filet was cooked correctly. cheesy grits were excellent. She brought us the wrong desert to start, correct desert was ok, again, not great. Spa- took the tour the first day and the hard sell was almost unbearable...we did get a couple massage the next day which was AWESOME! I did buy thermal spa passes before the cruise...an expensive mistake as we never found the time to use them at all used the fitness center once, it was more than adequate Shore Excursions: Most booked independently : Ketchikan:Misty Fjords Seaplane on Carlin Air thru Viator.com- Excellent! Crabfeast and Lumberjack Show thru AlaskaShoreexcursions.com- Excellent Juneau: Best of Juneau thru shoreexcursionsgroup.com- Excellent ( Whale watching, Mendenhall Glacier, and Salmon Feast) Skagway: Best of Skagway thru NCL ( Bus RIde, Train Ride Down White Pass, another Salmon Bake, Red Onion Tour) Excellent Cruise Director was good...The views were humbling, and with the exception of the specialty restaurants missing the service mark most of the time, and the food being probably no more special than what was served in the main dining rooms, we really enjoyed ourselves. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise because it fit our time line. We were going from Alaska to Oregon. We spent 10 days exploring Alaska before we boarded the ship in Seward. We are in our 70s and felt like we were on a seven day date. We loved the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it fit our time line. We were going from Alaska to Oregon. We spent 10 days exploring Alaska before we boarded the ship in Seward. We are in our 70s and felt like we were on a seven day date. We loved the shows and music. We danced every night. The ports and excursions were amazing. We wish everyone we met on the cruise had spent more time in Seward, the Alaska Sealife Center shouldn't be missed. Our cabin was beautiful and spotless. Everything from arrival to departure went smoothly. We were especially impressed with how smoothly getting on and off the ship in ports went. The ship had something for everyone. We did not participate in any of the daytime activities on the ship. We just explored and watched the beautiful scenery when we were at sea. We just ignored the sales pitches..art, jewelry, etc. We hope to do this again and highly recommend it to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose this cruise as the itinerary included both Glacier Bay and Hubbard Glacier and I could not recommend it more wholeheartedly, especially if you can fit the cabin we had in your budget. This was a couple's trip and belated 25th ... Read More
We chose this cruise as the itinerary included both Glacier Bay and Hubbard Glacier and I could not recommend it more wholeheartedly, especially if you can fit the cabin we had in your budget. This was a couple's trip and belated 25th anniversary adventure. Our suite really made this cruise sensational, particularly as we were blessed with wonderful weather. We were in cabin 10500, right at the front, directly under the bridge. Taking breakfast in our suite on glacier days was absolutely wonderful. Embarkation in Vancouver was seamless and departing from this city was ideal for us. We flew in from Sydney a few days earlier and enjoyed many magical eating experiences traversing this very walkable city. Getting out into the fresh air, spending time in Stanley Park and a Gastronomic Gastown Tour on foot helped us adjust to the time difference. Once on board on embarkation day, we had lunch in Moderno which provides breakfast and lunch for suite guests for the duration of the cruise. We had breakfast here three times, and had the breakfast delivered from here to our suite on glacier days. Henry, our butler, brought the breakfast and set the table for us. He was wonderful, as was cabin attendant, Rene. We had a few lunches in Moderno as well and found the service and food selections really good. We had a three specialty dining package and chose Le Bistro, Cagney's and Teppanyaki. Teppenyaki was a lot of fun and highly recommended. Cagney's steak was perfectly cooked, and the meal generally was very good, although we waited far too long and our first waiter was quite disinterested. They use an iPad for wine selections and you can't narrow selections to the $15 limit of the beverage package, which was a bit dumb. Le Bistro didn't acquit the french onion soup as well as you'd expect. The crout was soggy to the point of dissolving and the cheese was overpoweringly plentiful and runny. It was difficult to eat. The rest of the meal was quite good though and the service, although patchy, was attentive. We also ate in Azura a couple of nights and found the service excellent and the meals very enjoyable - the rib eye was a standout. Most of our entertainment was our cabin balcony, although we attended Velvet (kitchy but fun) and Le Cirque Bijou (amazing, spectacular). We also happened upon one round of trivia and a married couple game, both had witty hosts and were good for a laugh. The bar staff were great and very accommodating. Special shout out to the Rum Cake cocktail in Magnums, tasted just like Christmas Pudding! All of our excursions were arranged through the ship - a little more expensive than private arrangements perhaps, but for simplicity, we were happy with our choices. Getting on and off the ship in each port was easy and uncomplicated. First stop was Ketchican, with the Aleutian Ballad our chosen tour. The guys on the boat were great and you didn't need to be a fan of World's Deadliest Catch to enjoy all the seadog stories and appreciate how tremendously dangerous crab fishing in the Bering Sea is. This was our first opportunity to see Bald Eagles and sea life of all kinds, including crabs, a variety of other crustacea and a very cranky octopus. Ketchican itself is quite interesting, but the highlight was the salmon struggling valiantly to climb waterfalls and ford fast flowing rapids to reach their spawning ground. In Juneau, we took the helicopter to Mendenhall Glacier and dog sledding. Spectacular!! The views from the helicopter were incredible, as the icefields came into view over the hills surrounding the port. The dogs were gorgeous (especially the puppies!) and just love running, with our musher (an Iditarod competitor) very interesting and sledding on the snow exhilarating. Well worth the money - but as previously mentioned, this was a special trip. Juneau day was rounded out with king crab legs at Tracy's Crab Shack (get the mixed plate but order the extra crab leg, you won't regret it) and a lost afternoon at the Red Dog Saloon with a hilarious old guy conducting singalongs and a superb barman. Our Skagway tour was Froschel Wildlife Centre, a ferry ride and bus trip away in Haines. This centre takes in injured and orphaned creatures, hosted by Steve who was a bit nuts but lots of fun. We saw a very well trained wolverine, fed a porcupine, kissed a moose, got charged by a bear and up close and personal with minks, reindeer and other beasties. The guide on the ferry and driver of the bus were very entertaining and educational. At the end of the cruise, we spent a further week in Alaska on a self directed trip. We were fortunate to see the northern lights at Chena Hot Springs near Fairbanks, enjoyed two fabulous journeys on Alaska Rail (Seward end port to Anchorage and Fairbanks to Anchorage), and a remarkable 12 hour bus trip in Denali with lots of bears, moose, caribou and Dall Sheep as well as an arctic squirrel and geyrfalcon and chick. Apparently only 30% of Alaskan visitors see Denali and we were fortunate to see this spectacular mountain on the train trip back to Anchorage. We were also very lucky with timing to see beautiful fall colours. This really was a trip of a lifetime and we enjoyed every minute. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This trip... our second to Alaska, we decided to expand our horizons & visit Denali National Park! All I can say is the entire experience was amazing... we learned more than we expected & Alex, the tour guide was awesome! The ... Read More
This trip... our second to Alaska, we decided to expand our horizons & visit Denali National Park! All I can say is the entire experience was amazing... we learned more than we expected & Alex, the tour guide was awesome! The train was comfy ... the bus was great & each and every step along the way - we were given expectations - what the rooms would be like (some had no ac), when to have luggage ready, where to be when & every little detail! The entire land portion was fun, exciting, a learning experience, fun and extremely well organized! We opted for the Denali portion first so we could unpack & stay put once we got on the Jewel --- worked perfectly! Now the Jewel ... the renovations are beautiful & very stately ... all of the somewhat gaudy decor has been replace and the entire ship is BEAUTIFUL! We love the new look and NCL has lots to be proud of... that for sure! We always book a suite & love the extra attention to our needs and this was no difference ... our concierge, Butler & steward were amazing ... we loved them all! They took care of our every single need ... even a blanket for sitting out on the deck when the glacier viewing was chilly! Weather was warm for many of the days and I'm delighted we had been watching the weather... who would think we would go to Alaska & get tan sitting on our forward deck? Amazing! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My husband picked this trip for our 25th Wedding Anniversary, so this was suppose to be a trip of a lifetime. Before I tell the negative let me give you the positive. This was a two week trip the first week on land was done thru NCL with ... Read More
My husband picked this trip for our 25th Wedding Anniversary, so this was suppose to be a trip of a lifetime. Before I tell the negative let me give you the positive. This was a two week trip the first week on land was done thru NCL with premiere travel we had a awesome guide and wonderful motor coach driver. The cruise on the other hand was still good but a let down after the first week. The Norwegian Jewel Staff was very rude but what do you expect when you pay your tips up front. The food was the same thing everyday and very bland. It was like eating in a hospital. I talked to several people that ate at the specialty restaurants and said it was horrible so we never wasted our money. Day 4 they started running out of beer. The ship was just okay nothing spectacular very hard to find things on board. the cabins where very worn. The activities on board for the most part where good. The comedian was awesome. Getting on and off the ship was very easy, but again the employees very rude. We chose a wifi package... don't because you'll never be able to get on, unless you would like to up grade for more money. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
My husband, my sister, her husband and I were on Norwegian Alaska Land/Sea Tour. We had an awesome time. Norwegian did a great job with the itinerary. The tour guide was very nice and knowledgeable. The Norwegian Jewel was a great ship. We ... Read More
My husband, my sister, her husband and I were on Norwegian Alaska Land/Sea Tour. We had an awesome time. Norwegian did a great job with the itinerary. The tour guide was very nice and knowledgeable. The Norwegian Jewel was a great ship. We had an inside cabin 9569 and it was perfect for us since there is 21 hours of daylight in June. There was plenty of room for the two of us to get around the side of the bed and to use the desk at the bottom of the bed. There is plenty of storage for luggage once we unpacked. The lighting was easy to find and the temperature in the room worked great. The bathroom shower was a nice size. But the way the toilet is placed it is hard to have enough leg room if you are very tall. Our room steward was very friendly and kept the room cleaned. We received towel animals each night which was a nice gesture. We saw the comedian twice on the cruise. He was better the first time. The second time he did an adult version which wasn't as good as his family show. We also saw the show where they sang 70-80 songs. That was a little corny and the singers were not that good. We didn't get to any of the other shows. The food in the buffet was always good and plenty to choose from. We did eat often at O'Sheeans and always enjoyed what we got. The service was always fast and friendly. The only specialty restaurant we ate at was Moderno. The service there was very good and the food was very good. I tried their specialty drink and did not like that at all. We had the land portion of our trip first then got the ship in Seward and finished in Vancouver. Embankment and Disembarkation went very smoothly with no issues. We loved everything about this cruise. We did a Whale Watching and Mendenhall Glacier tour in Juneau. We did see some whales, seals and Eagles. In Seward we did the Ghosts & Good Time Girls Walking Tour and it was very informative and lots of fun. In Ketchican we did the All you can eat Crab Feast and Lumberjack show. This was a great meal and the Lumberjack show was very entertaining. We would definitely cruise with Norwegian again. Since this was our second time on the Jewel we would probably pick another ship next time. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Alaska was on our "bucket list" so we started out with a 6 day NCL Land Tour from Fairbanks, ending in Seward. That trip alone was well worth it...but on to the cruise! Embarkation from Seward was a piece of cake. The first ... Read More
Alaska was on our "bucket list" so we started out with a 6 day NCL Land Tour from Fairbanks, ending in Seward. That trip alone was well worth it...but on to the cruise! Embarkation from Seward was a piece of cake. The first meal in Azura was bit slow and clunky but the food was good and we weren't in any big hurry! Overall the meals were fine, particularly the specialty restaurants. The food in the main dining rooms was "good", and the service was more than adequate. Specialty restaurants were SUPERB, especially Le Bistro and La Cucina! Our mini-suite was perfect and our Room Steward, Rolando did an excellent job keeping it clean and tending to any of our requests...kudos to Rolando! The extra USB ports were a nice add. Overall the refurbished ship was clean and redecorated nicely. I was a bit disappointed that the seats in the Stardust Theater were not replaced during the refurb. They were low and uncomfortable two years ago and they are the same now. We were so busy, we managed only one show..."Rock You Tonight". It was GREAT...wonderful singers, dancers and band. An awesome production! I do like the smaller ships like the Jewel where you do not need to make reservations to get into every event. The ship entertainment was good...some very talented folks. Lots of pop music & jazz. I do wish there was some "Classical" music on board, maybe in the main lobby. It might give the ship kind of a "high class" feel. (There is a grand piano there which I have never seen used.) The gym was clean and all the machines seem to be working. The bar service was spot on. I will say the wine in the wine tasting event was a step lower that those I've been to in the past...and believe me I am not a wine snob. But I did pay extra for some GREAT wine in the specialty restaurants. Of course you go to Alaska for the spectacular views and scenery. The glacier viewing was excellent. I did spot humpbacks on three occasions from our balcony. Lots of good "Kodak Moments". Just staring out the balcony at the snow capped peaks was awe inspiring (especially for a couple from "flat" Florida!) The best part of the cruise were the ports and excursions. We did the Zip Rider/Wale watching tour...WOO HOO, what an adrenaline rush! We did the Helicopter Ride to the Glacier and Dog Sled Mushing, which was probably the best shore excursion we've ever been on! We also did the Wilderness Glacier trip where we canoed up to a glacier...also an outstanding trip! Between my camera and my Go-Pro I took over 2100 pics...many great memories. Overall the ship, crew and cruise met all of our expectations. Kudos to General Manager Steve for running a tight ship. Kudos to Jenny, Group services Coordinator for coordinating the Meet & Mingle and kudos to Dilip our Concierge who was always ready to assist us! Now that Alaska is crossed off the bucket list, it's time for French Polynesia/Hawaii in 2020. THANKS NCL! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We went on this first cruise for our 30th anniversary. I chose this Norwegian cruise after reviewing choices from our travel agent. I based my choice on the itinerary of the trip, online reviews (including Cruise Critic), YouTube videos ... Read More
We went on this first cruise for our 30th anniversary. I chose this Norwegian cruise after reviewing choices from our travel agent. I based my choice on the itinerary of the trip, online reviews (including Cruise Critic), YouTube videos from previous passengers, the smaller size of the ship and the price for a balcony stateroom. Everything about this first cruise was fabulous! Every staff and crew member was polite, courteous and professional. They called us by name, looked us in the eyes, smiled all the time and all asked if we needed anything. The ship was very clean, attractive and had a great variety of events. We could also get away to the quiet of our stateroom and not hear our neighbors or people in the hallways. We made our hotel stay before the trip thru NCL. There was a representative from NCL at the hotel the morning of departure to explain to us what to expect in getting on the ship and there were 2 large buses to get us to the port. We did arrive in Vancouver Canada the day before the cruise and intended to explore the city but travel weariness had us staying in. In hindsight I'd book an extra night so that we would be able to spend a day in Vancouver, it looked beautiful from the bus. Our excursions were arranged through the ship ahead of time and were very easy to get on and off in time for the leaving from port. I appreciated the variety of excursions and the range of costs which allowed for anyone to meet budget constraints. We took the inflateable boat to Betten Island and hiked through a rain forest for our Ketchikan stop. We did see eagles and a whale on this trip. We did the Mendenhall Glacier/Nugget Falls and Mt Roberts Tram excursion in Juneau. I would recommend this as the glacier and falls were absolutely beautiful. The view from the top of Mt Roberts is incredible! I don't recommend eating in the restaurant at the top of the tram... very slow service and little choice on the menu. Our excusion in Skagway had to be cancelled due to circumstances beyond NCL control and we were reimbursed for the missed trip. However, we still saw the town and got a good appreciation for the settlers that opened the town and the gold rush seekers' experiences. Glacier Bay is so amazing and this cruise also went to Hubbard Glacier. We saw more whales in this fjord. Tip: don't try to take pictures or videos of whales! They are too quick and you'll miss them. Just watch these graceful creatures and buy souvenir photos. LOL! If you can, take a trip that goes to Hubbard!! So massive and beautiful! Not all itineraries include this stop, so be aware. We made a hotel booking independently of the cruise at the end of the trip so that we could rest before the return flight. Once the ship found out we had this reservation, they made arrangement to get our luggage from the ship to the hotel for us. We did shuttle from the ship to the city center in Anchorage with other passengers and then had to make our own arrangement to get from there to the hotel. Fortunately it was only a few blocks walk. Side note: we booked at the Sheraton Spa Hotel in Anchorage. It has no shuttle service to anything and the rooms had little sound dampening between rooms. We listened to our neighbors argue for 3-4 hours before bed. The food was very good. We did get a meal deal for 3 meals in the restaurants that are not complimentary. Cagney Steakhouse is the best!! We ate there twice. We also ate in the Italian venue La Cocina and it was ok.... not spectacular and not bad. The Garden Café and Great Outdoors had a large variety of food and each day there was a theme for one of the meals, as in Italian or German. This is a complimentary buffet and the food was fresh, never had any hint of being massed produced or under heat lamps. I am a nurse and was impressed with the ship's focus on hand hygiene as we boarded/re-boarded the ship and when entering food service areas. Now when I use the hand gel at work I smile and think "washy washy" as the crew would say :) We had a great time on this trip and have come away with great memories of Alaska. Thank You Norwegian! Thank you Zac Wilson at Daydream Vacations for being our travel agent! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose this cruise based on its itinerary and it was very enjoyable. It was a first cruise for us (well, I had been on a cruise 28 years ago with a girlfriend but that was a long time ago) so we were not sure how we would enjoy this type ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on its itinerary and it was very enjoyable. It was a first cruise for us (well, I had been on a cruise 28 years ago with a girlfriend but that was a long time ago) so we were not sure how we would enjoy this type of travel. We did a lot of research and it paid off (mostly). FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO SEEMED SURPRISED BY ADDITIONAL COSTS, TENDERS AND OTHER MATTERS, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE SPEND SOME TIME ON RESEARCH! For example, by reading other reviews of cruisers, we knew that getting to Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) and back in time would be difficult because of traffic and the timing of the ship's arrival and departure, so we took the NCL excursion. We were Haven Guests and were very grateful for the extra service (such as embarkation and disembarkation priority along with a reserved area for meals at breakfast and lunch) making our trip experience much better than many others, I am sure. What we didn't fully understand, though, was that being on deck 9 instead of 14 meant that we sometimes missed the true benefits of the Haven experience (such as having a butler and concierge ready to make things easier for us). Our butler and concierge were generally MIA unless we called and they both seem surprised that we hadn't asked to have something when we thought it would just be done (they only discovered that we were first time cruisers at the end of the trip and things might have been easier if we had volunteered that up front). There were a few other blips but we figured out what we needed to do in the first few days (and I did express my concerns to them) and we did get in tune with them after that. However, if you want to experience the full benefits of the Haven, I would recommend that you find a cabin/suite on Deck 14. Our cabin was right up front and the benefits of two balconies was wonderful, allowing us to have the best of both views and, while the noise of the anchor going up and down was clearly evident, it really didn't disturb us. Also, I am very prone to motion sickness and didn't feel the least bit queasy for the entire trip. We took mostly independent tours and they were, overall, excellent. There was one dud excursion which had more to do with the lack of English by the tour guide but we did hit all the sights. The tour into Bangkok using NCL was excellent, given that the guide was herding 32 people around but I cannot recommend the tour at the end of our trip into Singapore. We took the 4 hour tour ending at the airport and it was very expensive and certainly unimpressive. Dining was very hit and miss; Chin Chin was dreadful and La Cucina wasn't far behind. I would certainly not waste my money on La Cucina! Both service and the food was way below average. The first week seemed generally off for most of the entire dining areas - it was as if the waiters did not know what they were doing or where they should be at any one time. We were left waiting for several minutes without so much as a glass of water on a number of occasions and sometimes the food was not very warm when it arrived. A couple of very nice meals were had at Cagney's and Teppanyaki (go for the show, although the food was very good) but none of the meals made me feel that I had to go back. I admit I had expected better prepared food and the quality of the raw ingredients seemed lacking sometimes. The meal at Azura was very good and I would highly recommend going to the free sit down venues over the buffet (where a couple of times when we ventured in, we were horrified by the noise and people eating right beside the food - presumably so they could go back for more immediately. The fitness facility was good although I'm sure that it would have benefitted from some extra space. The free classes were generally well attended (or, on sea days, over attended) but the paid classes were almost empty. Internet was very poor but the guy at the Internet cafe was very helpful to get the most out of it. I must admit that I didn't pay enough attention to the small print and it was annoying that the service we had only applied to one device at a time! We had one unlimited service and two 250 minute services (that came as part of our package) so it was okay but I saved any big work on my computer for our days on shore when we could get 4G wifi service. Overall, we were very happy with our first cruise with Norwegian. They do seem to have worked out most of the problems with embarkation and disembarkation and tendering (at Koh Samui, for example, the ship was using commercial tender operations along with its own lifeboats) on this particular routing. This allowed for at least triple the numbers to get on the tender and the lineups were greatly reduced. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We've sailed with NCL a number of times, and this one was rough around the edges, as if the crew had never done it before. Only four tenders running from the ship, causing huge backups in departure A total nightmare on the ... Read More
We've sailed with NCL a number of times, and this one was rough around the edges, as if the crew had never done it before. Only four tenders running from the ship, causing huge backups in departure A total nightmare on the return dock, where they moved the line from one dock to another and all hell broke loose Only two people handing out departure cards for 1000 people. You can imagine how long that took. Service in specialty dining and regular dining was spotty...at least four occasions in which we had to ask for something (bread, butter, water) four times Running out of things mid cruise (yes, a Caesar salad needs anchovies) Service folks in Garden Cafe never gave passengers right of way...plowing past guests I think NCL is better than this. On the positive side, cabin steward was excellent and the variety of offerings in Garden Cafe was nice. All in all, it felt like this was a practice run for the crew. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our second NCL cruise and found the experience excellent. Embankment was fine although in Sydney it takes a little while to clear customs. The ship had been recently refurbished and was like new. However some of the updates ... Read More
This was our second NCL cruise and found the experience excellent. Embankment was fine although in Sydney it takes a little while to clear customs. The ship had been recently refurbished and was like new. However some of the updates looked like it had been a rush job but it was still very good. We found the ship very easy to navigate and explore. This was stark contrast to our previous cruise with MSC in Northern Europe. The food on board was probably the best we have experienced on a cruise particularly the buffet and the french restaurant. Simple but good. Cruise staff were friendly but not overly friendly and our cabin was well maintained, As per usual NCL Ports of call were excellent and getting off and on the ship was seamless.Did not use onboard excursions as it was much cheaper to organise our own. Disembarkment in Sydney was excellent and the quickest we have experienced. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
The 1st cruise sailed from Sydney on Dec 1, 2018 to Dec 13, 2018. The 2nd cruise sailed from Sydney on Dec 13, 2018 to December 20, 2018. We chose these cruises because we liked the itineraries. We purchased a specialty dining ... Read More
The 1st cruise sailed from Sydney on Dec 1, 2018 to Dec 13, 2018. The 2nd cruise sailed from Sydney on Dec 13, 2018 to December 20, 2018. We chose these cruises because we liked the itineraries. We purchased a specialty dining package. We were infected by a norovirus along with other passengers. On the second day in the main dining room, I was given a drinking glass that was obviously used by a previous guess (fruit juice at the bottom/covered finger prints). I was disgusted. I brought it to the attention of the waiter. At that point it was obvious why there was a norovirus infecting passengers. We had prime rib in O'Sheehan's. That was well below anything we had been served on other cruise lines. On one occasion, in the main dining room, I ordered a veal dish but was served 2 link sausages. Whether they were veal, I could not tell. The cabin stewardess (stateroom no. 9594) did not introduce herself to us. From a card in a cabin, we found out her name but her direct line was 00 which did not link to her directly. We could not contact her when we were missing tissue paper, towels, coffee cups or coffee. We met the cabin stewardess outside the cabin and asked for 2 robes and a coffee maker. The bath robes arrived wrinkled. One was missing a belt, the other one had stains. The coffee maker came with an unfitted top which made it impossible to pour. We did not feel welcomed by the stewardess. This was our 7th cruise, but it is the first one that never offered filet mignon or lobster tail in the complimentary dining. Lobster was not offered even in specialty restaurants. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We had always wanted to visit Australia and New Zealand and we are glad Norwegian had this cruise. It’s a memorable trip. We enjoyed exploring the port cities although four sea-days to and from are a bit long. This was our fifth ... Read More
We had always wanted to visit Australia and New Zealand and we are glad Norwegian had this cruise. It’s a memorable trip. We enjoyed exploring the port cities although four sea-days to and from are a bit long. This was our fifth cruise with Norwegian and first feedback in reply per your request. We had many good experiences on the ship and some were not so nice. The Good We enjoyed the entertainment…the movie, the comedy, including the hypnotist’s comedy shows, some of the music, such as the Showband performance (although a bit loud for the small area at the Bliss), the “Behind Scene” talk by cruise director Dave (who is very funny), the various daily trivia, etc. In addition, my husband enjoyed the ping pong tournaments. We liked Capitan Kenneth’s humorous morning briefings on the PA system when we were in the quieter spots and could hear him. The house keeping was nice as always. From our guy, Jun, to the Hotel Director Steven Jacobson, everyone was courteous, pleasant, and helpful. We met Mr. Jacobson about six years ago on our Baltic Capital cruise. He had always been very friendly, efficient, and solved our problems in a timely manner. We appreciated his no-matter-large-or-small problem-solving ethic. The Bad This was the first cruise we were on that had a public health issue. A few days into the trip a lots of people got sick with gastro intestinal issues and the CDC had to be contacted. As a result the Garden Café became a jungle because we couldn’t self-serve and the staff was not prepared. Trying to get the staff’s attention when we needed something at their serving area was a challenge. Many times a few of them standing behind the counter chit chatting without noticing people patiently standing there, waiting for them to spoon food onto our plates. One server behind the counter was rather rude to me when he could not understand what chicken “dark meat” was. We gave up on the Café eventually and went to the Tsar’s Palace restaurants to eat. Because of the health issues they had removed the salt, pepper, etc. from the tables. The serving staff never asked if anyone needed anything else beside taking our orders and delivering our food. If we didn’t ask for salt and pepper when we ordered food, it became hard to catch the attention of the servers for the condiments, especially sometimes it seemed the cook forgot to add salt in the food. So after our food was served and the servers disappeared we had a warm meal we could not season. When they did reappear and came back with salt and pepper our food was cold. Even empty water glasses were often neglected. We understand the staff was put to extra task. My husband brought this to the attention of the head of the wait staff but nothing changed. We took all that in strides thinking if it kept us healthy so be it until one evening during dinner, my husband and three of the four of our table mates ran out of drinking water. They tried in vain to catch the attention of the servers. Many of them, not all, weaved around the tables back and forth without making eye-contact with diners. My husband went through (Agent Orange caused) throat cancer treatment some years ago so he always needed liquid to help swallowing. Due to lack of water, he choked on a bite and the food backed up and ran out of his mouth and nose onto his plate. He had to give up the contaminated food on the plate and left after eating only half of his dinner. It was very embracing for him as well as our table mates. So we gave up on sharing a table with fellow guests for the rest of the trip. The Ugly My luck didn’t improve much in the Tsar’s than that in the Garden Café. On Dec. 5 (I think that was the date) I ordered the arugula and candied pecan salad. In the middle of it, I found a dead fly on the green leaves. I did my best to suppress a gag and showed the disgusting salad to our server. She took my plate and said she’d show it to her supervisor. Toward the end of the dinner, supervisor, a young Indian guy, came to speak to us. All he mentioned was: this kind of thing happens. He was right but an apology at the time would have been nice. The next morning, we received some chocolate covered strawberries and a note of apology from his department. The next day, after we returned from our excursion, we saw many big flies flying around inside the windows of the Garden Cafe. I was not confident about the cleanness of the food from the kitchen after finding the fly in my salad, and doubted more about the cleanliness after seeing all the flies in the Garden Café and no one did anything about them. The flies could be one of the factors that caused people to get sick. We also feel short changed with the number of reward points given (one per day). When I booked the trip I'm sure I saw two points per day, I'm also pretty sure I saw an offer of 5 free at sea, but I didn't receive them, neither. I should receive 12 additional points for my days on the floating Petri dish. As a whole, this cruise to New Zealand was delightful with lots of room for improvement. We hope Norwegian’s food as well as the staff training will be improved. (Sorry, Princess cruise has better food.) Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
From the time we lined up to get on the ship for over 2 hours we knew we were in trouble. Then they took our passports everyone was freaking out not to be returned till end of cruise. We splurged and got a mini suite aft what a waste of ... Read More
From the time we lined up to get on the ship for over 2 hours we knew we were in trouble. Then they took our passports everyone was freaking out not to be returned till end of cruise. We splurged and got a mini suite aft what a waste of money. The bathroom has a bath but its very high and narrow i have bad knees and it was a struggle my husband is 6'6 and he had to bend over to wash his hair. Bed was big very firm no extras at all . Food was fantastic we ate in Cagneys, Teppanyaki and La Bistro all amazing food and staff. Buffet was excellent great selection, lovely out door area at the back to have breakfast. Drinks good get a food and drink package we did. Water very expensive, coffee ok and cheap. We were on 7 days and only had 2 shows they were spectacular but you need that every night. Bingo big rip off costs double the other companies. Nothing ever runs on time and there was very little to do during the day. Staff had there moments and some didn't understand or didnt want to. Will never go near Norwegian again . No gluten free desserts or food only bread in dining room. Specialty restaurants offered g/f options. On this cruise everything was a fair distance no assistance offered from jewel. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We have cruises in this area twice already now with an alternative line, and have also been on NCL Jade twice over the years Post dry dock the new look and feel of the ship is excellent. It feels fresh and really like the “toned ... Read More
We have cruises in this area twice already now with an alternative line, and have also been on NCL Jade twice over the years Post dry dock the new look and feel of the ship is excellent. It feels fresh and really like the “toned down” decor. The introduction of the Irish bar in particular is a great thing, and was a good central hub of activity right above the atrium We found the food to be excellent in Main Dining Room, such that we didn’t use specialty restaurants at all (we usually would do several times in a week). Generally service from the staff was excellent Smooth weeks sailing too.... so all very positive HOWEVER, there were some issues 1. Boarding at Singapore was a fiasco. We got off lightly with 2 hours of waiting and queuing, but some fared worse than we did. I’d have expected some niggles maybe as it was first run since dry dock, but the embarkation staff clearly didn’t have a clue how to process passengers and this created a huge backlog. 2. I suspect there were some “niggles” post dry dock. Our Air Condifioning wasn’t really working on arrival, it took 4 contacts including a late night (1am) rant at Guest Services to get any improvement. It did improve eventually but given the climate in that region I’d hardly call the cabin a sanctuary to rest and cool down as it usually is on board 3. MASSIVE failure in Kuala Lumpur. I’ve no idea what or why but literally just before getting off on day 1 we were told due to “operational issues with immigration in Singapore” our departure on day 2 had to be brought forward from 14:00 to 09:00. We had booked a hotel to stay off board that night, that plan was totally ruined given the distance from city to port made it to pressured in the morning. When we did depart on day 2 the ship limped along at barely any speed, so I am not sure why we couldn’t have stayed longer - I really suspect something undisclosed was the issue that forced us to leave early on the highlight stop of the trip Overall we had a good time (British couple, mid 30s). The demographic on board was older and far more British than we are used to with NCL, and this affected the atmosphere on board. The “white hot party” was rubbish basically compared to others we have done, and the Cruise Director and his staff were rarely seen in the week (we didn’t do any shows, guess he was hiding there) So overall NCL severly let themselves down with this one. Great refreshed ship, food and service - but cruising is a huge experience holiday where logistics matter, and NCL failed completely throughout the week with this Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We chose this trip for the itinerary. We recently retired and we were hopeing for a trip of a lifetime. Overall the itinerary was a good one with stops in very interesting ports. However, we have sailed with Norwegian 6 times now and ... Read More
We chose this trip for the itinerary. We recently retired and we were hopeing for a trip of a lifetime. Overall the itinerary was a good one with stops in very interesting ports. However, we have sailed with Norwegian 6 times now and this was probably the least organized in terms of shore excursions that we have ever been on. We found the shore excursions to be rated incorrectly in terms of difficulty. The weather in South East Asia is oppressively hot, and even though the ship recommends staying hydrated on the side trips, we were not allow to take water on or off the ship in most ports of call. In most circumstances the tours lasted 4-6 hours and many without water or even a small boxed lunch. Would it be too much to ask for NCL to throw us a some water and a banana? One poor gentleman actually passed out in Bangkok due to the heat and dehydration. The days that we had to be tendered in to the shore were nightmares! Neither the shore excursion crew were organized nor the buses etc. at the port. The tenders are HOT and uncomfortable and NCL consistently feels the need to PACK the tender full of people before leaving the ship. In Cambodia we chose to take the Level1 shore excursion through Ream Naitonal Park. It was "billed" as a boat ride and tour of the countryside. In our group we had a woman with broken ribs and another walking with a cane. The boats were slippery and difficult to get in and out of. But that wasn't the worse of it. When we got out of the boats we were literally in the middle of nowhere, with a guide that spoke very little english, who led the group on a one+ mile hike through rice fields, across duck boards, through marshes and through mud and muck. I truly have no idea how the woman with the cane made the trip. We stopped at little hut that was a school where cute Cambodian children sang to us and showed us how they write their language. Then we hiked another 1+ mile or so through some very tretuous and muddy paths to find the bus. We were not provided ANY water or any food this entire trip. The native people did provide us a sample of fruit if you dared to eat it. Many people were bitten by ants and scraped up with nettles. One person slipped on the mud upon leaving. It was NO LEVEL 1 - that's for sure. And we found this to be true with several other shore excursions as well. Overall the trip was lovely, but the ship was also headed into dry dock at Singapore and we got the sense that in the last few days of the trip those working on the shiip really started not to care so much about customer service. Everything was removed from our cabin mini-bars two days in advance of the cruise being over. Workman started to repair the ship and you would find them in your room fixing things all the time. For a ship that advertises NO LITTER on the seas, they started to scrap paint off the outside railiings about 3 days into the curise and my husband and I watched (disgusted) as thousands of led based paint chips flew into the ocean. There is a lot to improve on this trip. And the Jewel itself is in need of some serious renovation. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This is part 2 of a 5 cruises on the Jewel. We traveled all the way from Vancouver to Sydney via Alaska, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. There was a ... Read More
This is part 2 of a 5 cruises on the Jewel. We traveled all the way from Vancouver to Sydney via Alaska, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. There was a 2 week gap while the Jewel was in dry dock in Singapore, so there were some changes in decor. Of course, there were also crew and entertainment changes along the way. The itinerary of the cruise was amazing. We particularly chose it because of the many ports. Some of the ports are a long way from cities and some use tenders, but if you are prepared for that and have appropriate expectations, this could be the best itinerary of all. The crew was by far the best feature of the Jewel. We have been on many cruises with different cruise lines on different ships. The friendliness and cooperative attitude of the Jewel crew is the best we have experienced. When you are on a ship for as long as we were, there are bound to be issues that crop up. The attitude of the crew can make or break the experience. We were on-board with a number of Cruise Critic members and the ship's group services coordinator always made efforts to facilitate our gatherings and excursions. The Hotel Director (Steven) and his senior staff always made the effort to meet and welcome us. We know that the relationship is complicated as we do publicly review their cruises, but often organize excursions outside of the NCL offerings. We were never made to feel anything but welcome and supported. The cabin (inside) was well laid out and comfortable. The bathroom with a real sliding shower door was better than most. Unfortunately, the partial refurbishment in dry dock left them with a less attractive mix of decors. However, the added USB chargers and improved TV's were good. The dining was good. We mostly ate in Tsar's Palace and the Garden Cafe. Unfortunately, the food taste was not up to the excellent quality of the service in either location. Certainly, we were able to find meals that we liked, but there is just some missing richness to the flavour. There is an overabundance of Indian dishes in the Garden Cafe relative to the demographics of the passengers. Cagney's and Le Bistro are a step up in food quality, but at a premium cost. La Cuchina also demands an up-charge, but without the added quality. O'Sheehan's is convenient, but not very tasty pub grub. Since we were B2B, the embarkation was easy. Unfortunately, NCL didn't provide much in the way of excursions to Tokyo for passengers continuing on. Therefore, I arranged an excursion and had 6 others join us through Cruise Critic. There were the usual variety of enrichment activities (demonstrations, discussions and presentations), but it would have been nice to have more in the way of cultural descriptions in anticipation of the ports we called at. The entertainment on NCL is always good and the Jewel was no exception. The singers and dancers in the production crew are a step up and the singers are capable dancers for the most part. The other entertainers were on a par with what you get in-between the production shows on any cruise line. There was a bounty of other musical performers in many other venues, such that there was choice and quality throughout most afternoons and evenings. There were a range of styles, so you had a choice based on location and most performers had different themes on occasion. The fitness center has replaced all the treadmills and ellipticals in dry dock, so they are all new now. For the most part, there are enough to meet the demands, but it did get busy at times. The staff/crew is/are the best thing about the cruise. Always smiling and friendly (except the security staff for reasons I don't understand), they make what could otherwise be an average experience great. The public rooms are certainly adequate for the size of the ship. Many were partially refurbished in dry dock. I think that they would have been better off completely refurbishing some of the areas rather than partially refurbishing many of the areas. It left some areas with a mismatch of the old and new decor. Both the cabin stewards and dining area staff tried to provide excellent service and were mostly successful. The flexible dining approach can leave you being passed between waiters in the main dining room if you arrive early, but they handle it well with good communication between the wait staff. The excursions were good, but always expensive relative to other cruise lines or independent arrangements. I think that this is because many NCL promotions provide excursion discounts, but even with the discounts they are more expensive than non-discounted fares from their competitors. Overall, we were satisfied with the value for the money, but that is because we know what we are looking for and know that our priorities are a good match for NCL. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This is part 1 of a 5 cruises on the Jewel. We traveled all the way from Vancouver to Sydney via Alaska, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. There was a ... Read More
This is part 1 of a 5 cruises on the Jewel. We traveled all the way from Vancouver to Sydney via Alaska, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. There was a 2 week gap while the Jewel was in dry dock in Singapore, so there were some changes in decor. Of course, there were also crew and entertainment changes along the way. The itinerary of the cruise was okay, but not the best. We enjoyed the slow Pacific crossing, but having been on 2 previous Alaska cruises, that part wasn't a highlight. Petropavlovsk was a great stop because of the great weather and the stops in Japan were interesting and surprisingly different from each other, making it a good introduction to Japan. The crew was by far the best feature of the Jewel. We have been on many cruises with different cruise lines on different ships. The friendliness and cooperative attitude of the Jewel crew is the best we have experienced. When you are on a ship for as long as we were, there are bound to be issues that crop up. The attitude of the crew can make or break the experience. We were on-board with a number of Cruise Critic members and the ship's group services coordinator always made efforts to facilitate our gatherings and excursions. The Hotel Director (Steven) and his senior staff always made the effort to meet and welcome us. We know that the relationship is complicated as we do publicly review their cruises, but often organize excursions outside of the NCL offerings. We were never made to feel anything but welcome and supported. The cabin (inside) was well laid out and comfortable. The bathroom with a real sliding shower door was better than most. Unfortunately, the partial refurbishment in dry dock left them with a less attractive mix of decors. However, the added USB chargers and improved TV's were good. The dining was good. We mostly ate in Tsar's Palace and the Garden Cafe. Unfortunately, the food taste was not up to the excellent quality of the service in either location. Certainly, we were able to find meals that we liked, but there is just some missing richness to the flavour. There is an overabundance of Indian dishes in the Garden Cafe relative to the demographics of the passengers. Cagney's and Le Bistro are a step up in food quality, but at a premium cost. La Cuchina also demands an up-charge, but without the added quality. O'Sheehan's is convenient, but not very tasty pub grub. Sadly, our embarkation in Vancouver was a disaster due to slow processing blamed on inadequate numbers of staff. As a Vancouverite, I was embarrassed by both the slow service and the obnoxious cruise terminal staff directing traffic. Vancouver really needs to do better. There were the usual variety of enrichment activities (demonstrations, discussions and presentations), but the quality of the presentations was only average. The entertainment on NCL is always good and the Jewel was no exception. The singers and dancers in the production crew are a step up and the singers are capable dancers for the most part. The other entertainers were on a par with what you get in-between the production shows on any cruise line. There was a bounty of other musical performers in many other venues, such that there was choice and quality throughout most afternoons and evenings. There were a range of styles, so you had a choice based on location and most performers had different themes on occasion. The fitness center was replaced all the treadmills and ellipticals in dry dock, so they are all new now. For the most part, there are enough to meet the demands, but it did get busy at times. The staff/crew is/are the best thing about the cruise. Always smiling and friendly (except the security staff for reasons I don't understand), they make what could otherwise be an average experience great. The public rooms are certainly adequate for the size of the ship. Many were partially refurbished in dry dock. I think that they would have been better off completely refurbishing some of the areas rather than partially refurbishing many of the areas. It left some areas with a mismatch of the old and new decor. Both the cabin stewards and dining area staff tried to provide excellent service and were mostly successful. The flexible dining approach can leave you being passed between waiters if you arrive early, but they handle it well with good communication between the wait staff. The excursions were good, but always expensive relative to other cruise lines or independent arrangements. I think that this is because many NCL promotions provide excursion discounts, but even with the discounts they are more expensive than non-discounted fares from their competitors. Overall, we were satisfied with the value for the money, but that is because we know what we are looking for and know that our priorities are a good match for NCL. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
The itinerary was great! This was a repositioning cruise, and we thought was a great cruise for a great price. 19 nights sailing through Alaska, Russia, and ending in Japan. We stopped at 4 different stops in Alaska, one stop in Russia, ... Read More
The itinerary was great! This was a repositioning cruise, and we thought was a great cruise for a great price. 19 nights sailing through Alaska, Russia, and ending in Japan. We stopped at 4 different stops in Alaska, one stop in Russia, and 4 stops in Japan. This was everything we hoped it be. Great stops with fantastic tours. And the days at sea were just as enjoyable. The ships entertainment was top notch. We saw a show every night, and the shows were fantastic. There was a Cerque show that we saw that was as good as any major show you’d see in Vegas. The whole 19 nights seemed to just fly by. The staff was incredible, and the service was excellent. So friendly, and everyone worked so hard to make sure our journey was the best. The food was great, and all the different restaurants were fun to visit, and served delicious food. We will be doing another cruise with Norwegian very soon! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise ship because it was casual and required not set seating times to dine.We did not want to dress up and wanted the flexibility to eat when and where we wanted to. The specialty restaurants were very good. We liked ... Read More
We chose this cruise ship because it was casual and required not set seating times to dine.We did not want to dress up and wanted the flexibility to eat when and where we wanted to. The specialty restaurants were very good. We liked Cagney's the best followed by Le Bistro and Moderno. We didn't care for Chin Chin. The chicken and pork dishes were not too tasty. We loved the breakfast at Tsar's Palace and enjoyed overlooking the water. The wait staff at the specialty restaurants were amazingly attentive. They made excellent recommendations. Azure was a nice restaurant. We went to work out at the Fitness Center four times during our cruise. The equipment was only fair. The treadmills were average. The cross trainers were not constructed to be able to use the arm bars and had a poor design. Several pieces of the equipment were out of order. There was no interaction with the staff in the fitness center. The view from the fitness center was wonderful and there were always plenty of clean towels. Loved shopping on board at the duty free shop. Staff was helpful and made us feel valued. We enjoyed nightly entertainment in Stardust Theater. Performances were excellent and wait staff was superb. Fun to enjoy the show and have a drink at the same time. Loved the variety of shows. Getting on the ship to embark was long and tiring after a full day of travel. There was a fair amount of disorganization about directions, lines and where to go. Needs to be more organized and much speedier. Shore excursions were good except for one which was cancelled the week before we left on the cruise. It was the Rain Forest Island Adventure and we were disappointed as that was the one we were looking forward to the most. Refund was prompt at least. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
An Alaskan cruise has always been on my bucket list. I had never cruised with NCL before but was very glad we made this choice. Very nice ship albeit a little dated in its décor :) Embarkation was a little chaotic but before we knew ... Read More
An Alaskan cruise has always been on my bucket list. I had never cruised with NCL before but was very glad we made this choice. Very nice ship albeit a little dated in its décor :) Embarkation was a little chaotic but before we knew it we were on the ship and able to grab some lunch before our stateroom opened up. The rooms are large enough - loved the balcony. We took advantage of some perks to attend dinners in specialty restaurants - La Bistro was the best. Our room steward, Fili, was amazing. Always cheerful and accommodating. We particularly enjoyed the towel creatures she left for us every night! The ports of call were great. Only experienced rain one day - in Ketchikan - but we didn't have an excursion booked for that day so all good. Loved the Mendenhall Glacier & Salmon Bake tour in Juneau. Really enjoyed the Musher Camp in Skagway. So wonderful to visit with dog teams that are bound for the 2019 Iditarod and to hold 7 week old Alaskan Husky puppies! Service in the bars and restaurants was always super. Want to do a shout out to Ida and Noah (I believe those were their names lol) in the Wine & Cocktail Bar on the 6th Floor. We spent a lot of time there enjoying the talents of Leo. If I had to say anything negative about the cruise I would have to comment on the long lines at Guest Services no matter the time of day. The good thing was that once you made it to the counter, the service was helpful! All in all a great cruise - the weather cooperated and the glaciers did not disappoint. I'm very glad NCL was a good experience as I have another cruise - to the Hawaiian Islands - booked for January 2019. Thank you NCL - keep up the good work!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose the 7 day cruise and 5 day land (Alyeaka/Denali) cruise to experience different ports and to see Denali. The weather was magnificent as it only rained 1 day on the cruise and it was clear and sunny while in Denali. The NCL ... Read More
We chose the 7 day cruise and 5 day land (Alyeaka/Denali) cruise to experience different ports and to see Denali. The weather was magnificent as it only rained 1 day on the cruise and it was clear and sunny while in Denali. The NCL Jewel is showing her wear, thus the reason for her update in September 2018. We had great service in the MDR, along with specialty restaurants, Le Bistro, Cagney's and Teppanyaki. The multiple bars are great as we enjoyed plenty of cocktails with our UBP. We especially like the Martini Bar (Shakers) with Lorelie, Anna & Ida keeping us hydrated with their drink mixing skills. As for restaurant service, April Joy was our favorite along with Sebastian. Our cabin steward, Fernando, kept our room/bathroom clean and comfortable while giving us some unique and cute towel arrangements during turn down. We enjoyed Band on the Run (our favorite of 5 cruises), the comedy show cirque type show with the husband/wife team, but were not overly impressed with the magic show. Yes, the ship is due for a refurb and I look forward to cruising on her again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I choose this cruise because it worked best for the time frame we had. I also selected it because I believe cruising in one direction in Alasaka is a better way to go. The Jewel is old and needs updates. The food is more than plentiful, ... Read More
I choose this cruise because it worked best for the time frame we had. I also selected it because I believe cruising in one direction in Alasaka is a better way to go. The Jewel is old and needs updates. The food is more than plentiful, but lacking in quality. I know many go to eat themselves silly, but even the dinning rooms with extra fees or paid meals were less than gourmet. Often the protein was fine but side dishes were awful. Multiple restaurants served side dishes in small aluminum pots that didn't hold heat and were just awful in appearance in addition to contents being terrible. At Moderna restaurant we were given a 9:30 seating which was fine with us but it was a Brazilian BBQ so as soon as we started they said it was last call for the foods being offered. Not the waiters fault, but frustrating. Another speciality dinner, we were seated then before we even got our drinks we ordered, four officers from on board came in, they ordered wine and their meals and had everything before we even got our drinks. Seeing as they downed two bottles of wine I hope they were not going back to work, but it was frustrating we couldn't even get our drinks in that time. The excursions were fine, but if you really want to see Alaska extend out before and do it properly. I suggest the guided Exit Glacier ice hike or climb out of Seward if you really want to be on a Glacier and see all of its terrain. What I did enjoy was the staff in the regular dinning rooms, housekeeping and those in the lesser positions. They were polite, friendly, helpful and happy. Ask them for recommendations on local establishments to eat, drink and shop. Or if you need anything above and beyond they were right there to help. The upper level staff at some the better restaurants and those at the various speciality locations were always slow, angry, annoyed and just plain rude. They seemed to be older and possibly burnt out? I don't know, but asking for lemon for my water almost put one waitress over the top. The exception was the guys at the Sushi bar, and the waiters at Moderno. They were fun, attentive, and professional. The pluses were getting a balcony room facing shore, we simply could sit out and watch the glaciers calving as we passed by. Though it rains a lot, on the southern end of the trip when it was warm and dry, we could sit out and enjoy the scenic views and simply relax. The gym staff was motivating and fun, I enjoyed the classes they offered very much, and tried many new formats. The art talks were interesting and informative though they did get a bit redundant at times. the auctions were a bit too long, and there was some behind the scenes maneuvering to try and get bidders to buy more. The shows and comedians were as expected, and there was certainly things going on to choose from. A naturalist speaking would have been a nice perk. Excursions were fun, but a bit too pricey for what they offered. We did helicopter to Glacier hike, dogsledding, ATVing, train ride, and were supposed to do zodiac boats but that got screwed up and ended up on boat ride to Fjords. We were disappointed the woman at the excursions desk was unfriendly and unhelpful. She tried to pacify us with a $50 credit towards the ride we ended up on, but made no effort to help us resolve the error in the first place. All in all, if you are looking for a bargain cruise this is fine, especially if you don't care about eating so much. Especially fresh fish and crab, not a lot of options for those which is disappointing considering the location you are in. If you truly want to experience Alaska I would say spend the money elsewhere, Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
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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