64 Norwegian Jewel Senior Cruise Reviews

I choose this cruise because I wanted to visit all of the islands that make up Hawaii without having to travel there numerous times due to the expense. By cruising I was able see each island as well as not having to worry about the cost of ... Read More
I choose this cruise because I wanted to visit all of the islands that make up Hawaii without having to travel there numerous times due to the expense. By cruising I was able see each island as well as not having to worry about the cost of hotel, transportation, food and entertainment. When participating on shore excursions there were numerous activities scheduled each day on board to keep one entertained for the individual as well as group activities if one wish to be involved a group function. As for myself the food provided was a large variety to satisfy the palette of the most selected person. i have only traveled on Norwegian since I started cruise after taking my first cruise of three days several years ago. Is the line perfect nope, but which one is! For me it's what I have been looking for and will continue to use the line to meet my goals of seeing the world one port at a time. My motto is from a shirt that I found on the Jewel earlier this year, "Cruising Is My Happy Place". Happy cruising...... Read Less
Sail Date October 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
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started ... Read More
This cruise was on my bucket list, with Panama canal, & a friend was interested enough to come with me. We arrived in Vancouver the evening before embarkation & overnighted in an airport hotel, as it was Canada Day we started off for the port quite early, utilising the train service to get there. The streets around the port were crowded, but there were lots of people giving directions & we quickly found where to drop off our luggage. We were pretty early for our check in slot, so we made the most of the carnival atmosphere, sporting flags & temporary (we hoped) maple leaf tattoos. Once it was time to check in we proceeded to the hall, which is where it all went a little awry. As UK passport holders we were directed to a separate queue, this was smaller than the main queue, but it appeared there was only 1 (or possible 2) counters serving us compared to a dozen or so for the main, it moved incredible slowly. Then suddenly they started sending people to all different desks & things sped up, when we got to a desk the woman asked us how long we'd been there & seemed shocked at our response, considering we were processed in less than 5 minutes, I really don't know why it all took so long & can't really understand the logic in the separation to begin with. Anyway, after that we were quite soon aboard. We decided to check if the luggage had been delivered, it had, put in the cabin, take a quick look around, then go for our 1st cocktail of the cruise & a bite to eat. Our steward was often about when we were in the corridor & was always polite & friendly, tho I'm not sure he always understood what my friend was going on about, the room was always tidy & supplies stocked up. I found nearly all the officers & crew very polite & friendly, (there was 1 guy in one of the bars who always looked a bit fed up, but maybe that was just his face), the staff in the MDRs often had a quick chat, as Europeans I think we tended to eat later than a lot of the Americans, so it wasn't as busy as earlier in the evening, & the staff in the bar we mostly frequented realised quite quickly we didn't want 1/2 an iceberg in our drinks. We only used the included restaurants, mostly Azura & Tsar, we tried O'Sheenehan for lunch one day & one evening Chin Chin, the only one to disappoint. We didn't feel the need to go to the specialist places, also my friend is a mostly vegetarian (adding fish for this holiday). We did 2 excursions via NCL & 2 with another company, plus some independently. The NCL were in Ketchican, we went to the Rainforest Sanctuary & Alaska Raptor centre, we didn't see any wildlife, a matter of luck as the group 5-10 mins behind us saw 3 bears, but it was a very informative walk thro the Tongass forest with a naturalist & at the Raptor centre we had a flight demonstration and got pretty close to a large female bald eagle, the centre cares for & rehabilitates injured, but keep some which would be unable to survive in the wild. We also did a duck tour, something I've always planned to do on the Thames, which was fun. In Juneau we did a whale watching tour on a small boat with marine biologist & another naturalist, we saw several whales including a mother & calf, plus a sealion fighting off several gulls who were trying to steal it's salmon. We also went out to Mendenhall glacier & walked the path to Nugget Falls. Our last excursion was in Skagway where we did a coach trip up thro the Canadian border to Yukon, stopping at various interesting spots, a quite relaxing trip. The only shows we didn't attend were the comedian, I find them in general very polarising, but thought all the others very good. The best was undoubtedly Le Circe Bijou, although I also really enjoyed the couple who did the dancing/acrobatic show, but I overheard a woman who thought it was rubbish, horses for courses I suppose. All in all we had a very enjoyable week on board NCL Jewel, I hadn't known what to expect, all my previous cruises having been on European lines, but I would certainly travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
This was a couples cruise to Asia covering Singapore (2 nights Pre-cruise) Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam & Hong Kong (2 nights post cruise) as part of celebrating my retirement Positives include quality of the ship (Refurbished in ... Read More
This was a couples cruise to Asia covering Singapore (2 nights Pre-cruise) Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam & Hong Kong (2 nights post cruise) as part of celebrating my retirement Positives include quality of the ship (Refurbished in 2018), quality of the food & choice of restaurants and shows performed by the ship’s cast were of a very high standard Negatives & where NCL really need to up their game are 1. Lack of organisational skills especially on-shore excursions. We booked 2 thru NCL & both times there was considerable delays in getting bus numbers allocated & getting all guests ashore. Worse was on Koh Samui where tenders were required & NCL only used 5 to transport around 2000 people over a journey that too 20 minutes each way. No surprise that we were 3 hours delayed on leaving port that night!! One other complaint about staff were those involved in teh excursions team. It is normal that they will have local knowledge & experience of the various local ports as well as fact sheets that help guests doing their ‘own thing’. NCL staff had neither & could only provide detail on the shore excursions that they offered 2. Costs - altho NCL came in around the same package cost as other cruise lines the fact they offered extras in the form of on-board credit & internet access anything that had to be paid for on the ship was way more expensive than experienced with other cruise lines. Average cost per excursion was €99 some of which we could have done ourselves at a fraction of the cost. We were also forced to purchase a Visa for Cambodia even if we were NOT going on-shore & staying on the ship. I enquired Pre-cruise & the embassy could provide this @ €35 per person it didn’t state that we would need a visa if we were not disembarking however, NCL billed us €99 per person. Considerable admin fee in my opinion 3 altho the ship’s cast provided excellent shows the acts brought on-board were less than impressive. In fact out of the 5 acts only one, Mary Jess, provided the standard of performance experienced on other ship’s 4. The locations visited were part of the reason we booked the cruise however, was surprised that the ship docked in what can only be described as container yards or working shipyards with the majority miles from the locations that we wanted to visit. For example, in Da Nang it was a 30 minute shuttle bus transfer (@$15pp) to the town/beach & that was the best/closest. Worse was Bangkok (2.5hr drive) & Hanoi (3hr drive) Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I chose this cruise because of the private watercolor class which was offered to me on full cruising days through Art in the Mountains. Because of that class, I was busy on all of the cruising days. We came early to Sydney and stayed a ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the private watercolor class which was offered to me on full cruising days through Art in the Mountains. Because of that class, I was busy on all of the cruising days. We came early to Sydney and stayed a couple more days after leaving the ship. This were great days of exploring the city and learning about Australia's history. I felt like the excursions were expensive for what we got. And that the descriptions of the excursions were not always accurate or maybe a little misleading. This was disappointing. Additionally, the descriptions of next day locations did not always appear accurate, ie. distances to a specific site which needed a car, when people could walk without difficulty; car needed when public buses were available; cycling along path, when actually frequently along traffic. Big problem between what we found on line and what excursion staff told us, who did clearly not have any personal experience or knowledge of the excursion. Quite frustrating. We also did not get any of our boarding paper work before leaving home. It was a mess!!! Were it not for a well versed hotel desk clerk, we would have not had any of the things we needed including suitcase tags, etc. Your communication was not good. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
To see the glaciers and Alaska it was more than I expected The shows were all great except the magician was so bad he should be doing children's birthdays no cruise shows The cabin had no room to move around and was really ... Read More
To see the glaciers and Alaska it was more than I expected The shows were all great except the magician was so bad he should be doing children's birthdays no cruise shows The cabin had no room to move around and was really dusty The menu in sit down dining could improve to increase choices and variety The hotel in Anchorage was a bad experience my room was not available and they booked us in a hotel next to the airport. It was so dirty.carpet teared tile cracked, mold in Bathroom, it was a half star dump not the 4 star hotel I booked.to be downtown not by the airport The second day they called and informed me that my room was ready and we had to wait one hour for the van to pick us up. The crew on board was ferry friendly and helpful with there information, including all it was a great cruise 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
We chose Norwegian cruise ship Jewel for the Freestyle Cruising. We have taken many Caribbean cruises and liked the idea of not having to pack all the extra evening wear. Packing of warmer clothing for layering in cooler climates can be ... Read More
We chose Norwegian cruise ship Jewel for the Freestyle Cruising. We have taken many Caribbean cruises and liked the idea of not having to pack all the extra evening wear. Packing of warmer clothing for layering in cooler climates can be difficult when trying to stay within TSA luggage weight requirements. We found the more relaxed way of dressing & dining made for a very relaxing and enjoyable experience. We could choose when and where to dine and dress up or down by our own choice. We had read many complaints about "unfriendly" staff on the Norwegian Jewel prior to our cruise. We did not experience this at all. Any staff members that we encountered were always very pleasant and more than willing to serve our needs. The only complaint that we have concerning this cruise was the embarkation process in Vancouver. We took our hotel shuttle to the port. When we arrived we had to board an elevator with our luggage and wait in line on the second level to have our check-in luggage taken from us. As, we are an older couple, this was a very tedious process. More notable was the fact that anyone dropped by shuttle who was boarding the Disney Cruise ship had their luggage taken immediately from them upon arrival - they did not have to drag their luggage for any distance. We felt that the Disney cruise people were being catered to. We have never before experienced this process of dragging our luggage around before boarding on any other cruise (company) before. We don't know if this was the port's or Norwegian's policy - but we feel that much improvement is needed in this process. In summary, we had a very wonderful, relaxing and enjoyable cruise on the Norwegian Jewel. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
This was our 6th cruise on NCL, but our first transpacific. We chose it because of its itinerary, its length, and that it ended as an Alaska cruise, which we have always talked about doing. This combination of Asia, Pacific, and Alaska ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise on NCL, but our first transpacific. We chose it because of its itinerary, its length, and that it ended as an Alaska cruise, which we have always talked about doing. This combination of Asia, Pacific, and Alaska was perfect for us. All the port stops in Japan were wonderful - Yokohama, Aomori, Hakodate and Otaru. The ship docked very close to town, and there was plenty to do in each place. Our most treasured experience was finding an onsen (hot springs bath, all nude, segregated by gender) in Hakodate. We were not impressed with Petropavlovsk though. Access was by tender, which wastes a lot of time especially with old folks with bad knees struggling to get on and off. Prior to the cruise, we were told quite specifically that we needed visas just to roam around town, so the best thing to do was sign up for an NCL shore excursion. Turns out that the Russians will let cruisers with no visas into town, just can't go beyond the city limits. The many days at sea crossing the Pacific was a real treat. Even better was getting an extra Wednesday because we crossed the International Date Line. Conversation with the cabin steward was fun - "what is today?" "Wednesday" "what is tomorrow?" "Wednesday." We did not go to any of the specialty restaurants. Of the free ones, we went to the Azura only once, and ate breakfast, lunch and dinner at the Garden Café buffet the whole trip. Food was good, not great. The first top round roast in the carving station was so tough, however, it defied mastication. Our cabin steward, Aris, was the best. He was never intrusive, did a great job with the room, and answered all our questions. His towel art creations were ones I had never seen before. If it were not for the the ship being even more worn out, we would take her back to Japan in September. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Chance to see northern Japan, Russian port- which I never could see while in the Navy because of clearances for almost 30 years. Alaska was exceptional, as always- fourth visit. Never stop being overwhelmed with the beauty of the ... Read More
Chance to see northern Japan, Russian port- which I never could see while in the Navy because of clearances for almost 30 years. Alaska was exceptional, as always- fourth visit. Never stop being overwhelmed with the beauty of the country. It truly was a whale bonanza this year- think we can rest easy about the future of the humpback for a while. They are real showmen I'm convinced. Saw some of the lack of crew prep for disembark evolutions that others have noticed. Whatever the reasons, they are non-excusable. Continue to be amazed that people can stare at their phones; difficult to call their phones smart, while viewing some of the most incredible glaciers, wildlife, and natural beauty literally 360 degrees around them. Enough of the negative. Shore excursions were enjoyable, but overpriced through the ship. In Alaska especially, there are many other more reasonable providers of whale watching and White Mountain trips just to name a couple. This really was a unique cruise for me anyway, in that involved northern Japan and Russia. It also was long enough to really make some friends and settle down to a routine of your own choosing- difficult things to accomplish in a week or less cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We opted for this one as the price was a little bit down, it hit some new ports for us, and we were able to link up with our son at the Kobe port. While the ship is not new and shows its age here and there, we had a good cabin (standard ... Read More
We opted for this one as the price was a little bit down, it hit some new ports for us, and we were able to link up with our son at the Kobe port. While the ship is not new and shows its age here and there, we had a good cabin (standard outside, deck 4) and were happy with the general experience. We took the perks at sea package and had 4 dinners for two at the specialty restaurants plus $50 off each person's tour at all of the ports. Also we got 250 internet minutes and 2 hours of ship to USA calls. We used all of these perks, even made some doctor appointments back home. The food at the upgrade restaurants was very good, especially at Cagneys where the filet was great. We also used the French restaurant, but liked Cagneys better. As to the dining rooms and the Lido, we found them to be good, but not great. Like most cruises, some items were very good and others just so-so. Service was OK, and the buffet was clean and appetizing. I recall that there were 12 port days on the 15 day cruise. We naturally used the ship tours for about 9 ports, but at Kobe we made independent tours that included the castle at Hemiji and the Kobe city zoo or animal preserve. We rate both of these as top notch. Overall, we really enjoyed the trip. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This cruise was a lot of B2B trips. I did the 29 days from Sydney to Hong Kong. I was a single traveler, so got inside cabin on 10th deck. Menguel was my expert Steward. A lot of the ports were tendering ports. That means a lot of me-me, ... Read More
This cruise was a lot of B2B trips. I did the 29 days from Sydney to Hong Kong. I was a single traveler, so got inside cabin on 10th deck. Menguel was my expert Steward. A lot of the ports were tendering ports. That means a lot of me-me, pushing & shoving. Ships staff can’t comment or interfere with this type of behavior. They just smile & say, they’re sorry & doing best they can. Just plan ahead & get out early. Don’t ruin your fabulous vacation by getting upset over things you have no control over. It’ll work out fine. Ports were AMAZING. I guess new cruises will have overnight in Hong Kong as well. I did 4 days early in Sydney & 4 days post in Hong Kong. I was the most surprised in Vietnam ports. Loved Singapore. I had excellent guides. They really went into details for us. We used shoreexcursionsasia.com. Best tours, best prices. No need to convert currency in all countries. Only Australia, Singapore, & Hong Kong. All others wanted US dollars. Don’t need to overpack. Ship offered $19.99 bag laundry service. Duct tape your bag for strength & cram it full. You’ll cross the equator, so get ready for a fabulous Toga party. Food was what you’d expect on a cruise. This ships passengers average age was 63. Only 17 kids. Very laid back. Loved it. Take underwater camera. The beaches are amazing. I snorkeled GBR 2Xs, & snorkeled the beautiful pink beach on Komodo, Indonesia. AMAZING!!! Take poncho & sun screen. Definitely a hat. I love my new backbush Australian hat. Shows were so so. I’m not into the loud type of shows. So, only went to ones that interested me. Shore excursions main man, Marcus, was a delight. He tried to get people to understand the tendering rules, but they didn’t listen. I’d do it again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
My wife and I like to try different ships/different destinations hence Norwegian Jewel for the first time and Kangaroo Island and Eden as places we had not visited. First impressions are very important and when we boarded the ship and ... Read More
My wife and I like to try different ships/different destinations hence Norwegian Jewel for the first time and Kangaroo Island and Eden as places we had not visited. First impressions are very important and when we boarded the ship and entered the Atrium it was very bright and spacious and gave a good feeling. We had booked through an American Travel Company 12 months ago at a very reasonable price which included the Ultimate Drink Package and 4 Specialty Dinners which made the price even more appealing. We are not big drinkers but it was nice to know that you did not have to keep tabs on what you had. We could not fault the food although the Garden Cafe was much the same as buffets on other cruise lines. We certainly can recommend Cagney's, Teppanyaki, Moderno and La Cucina Specialty Restaurants. I read on Cruise Critic that "Jewel" is in the TOP 10 Ships for entertainment and we have to agree with over 200 cruise days to our credit we have just experienced the best two shows we have ever seen on water, BURN THE FLOOR, seeing is believing and these 2 shows were closely followed by LE CIRQUE BIJOU and THE BARRICADE BOYS. You would think this would be enough to bring us back to NCL but what did it for us was when the Captain, Officers and various members of the crew were on stage thanking us (passengers) or cruising with them and then they lined the corridor out of the theatre shaking our hand. Thankyou Captain Kenneth for a wonderful 10 days. Oh well back to reality 'til next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Chose this ship as usually cruise with Princess and wanted a change. As Australians who had been to most of the ports it was more for rest and relaxation than for new experiences. I had read many reviews of this ship and was concerned that ... Read More
Chose this ship as usually cruise with Princess and wanted a change. As Australians who had been to most of the ports it was more for rest and relaxation than for new experiences. I had read many reviews of this ship and was concerned that we may be disappointed with the food and the decor. Not at all. Overall the food was very good but occasionally we had dishes in the buffet that could have been hotter. Menus in the dining rooms were varied and service was efficient. Staff were excellent and so friendly and helpful. Our cabins were smaller than some I've had on other ships, as was the balcony, but spotlessly clean with comfy beds. Entertainment was varied and most performances were excellent, particularly String Fever and the balancing duo. Theatre was large and always managed to get a good seat. Bars were on the small side and when music was played seats were hard to get. Outdoor areas were under utilised by our group due to the rough seas but would have liked a game of tennis on the full sized court. Embarkation and debarkation were efficient and speedy. Did not take any of the ship's excursions as prefer to do our own thing. The tender operations were good, so long as we waited until the rush was over. When the ship has completed its refurbishing it will look more modern but our group of 4 were happy with the bright colours and the fish patterned carpet which showed us the way to our cabin. Only one place to buy coffee and the staff were rushed off their feet. Coffee not up to Australian standards. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We have just returned from a 10 day cruise on Norwegian Jewel around the southern ports of Australia, and thoroughly enjoyed our trip. Contrary to what I have read on some reviews, the food on board was very nice, with about 10 ... Read More
We have just returned from a 10 day cruise on Norwegian Jewel around the southern ports of Australia, and thoroughly enjoyed our trip. Contrary to what I have read on some reviews, the food on board was very nice, with about 10 different places where you could eat. We found the Teppanyaki and Brazilian BBQ our favourite, but had no complaints with the other restaurants. We had the Specialty Dining Package, and never lined up to get into any of the restaurants. The anytime-dining means you don’t have to make a booking, so just turn up when you’re ready and meet new people every time you dine. You would be hard to please if you faulted the food on the ship. People please remember this is a Cruise ship and not a Michelin Star restaurant. One thing we were very impressed with was the facilities for people with disabilities. In the Garden Cafe and in the Stardust Theatre there were seats and areas reserved for people mobility aides. The shows were as good as any we had seen on other cruise lines and varied and entertaining. Burn The Floor put on some excellent shows. As well, there is entertainment in other bars and the Spinnaker lounge. Our favourite was Hotwire. There are digital noticeboards around the ship to keep you up to date with what’s going on during the day and also the booking availability of the various restaurants. Getting on and off at most ports was reasonable good. We didn’t do any Ship excursions because we had been to most of the ports before so just did our own thing. Two people we would particularly like to thank are Anton Oborovich (Asst. Executive Housekeeper) and our Cabin Stewart Alberto, who went out of their way to make this a very enjoyable holiday. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We originally chose this ship for the itinerary and to try out a different line. The original itinerary included Melbourne, Geelong, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln, Hobart and Eden. This was changed after 6 months to Melbourne, Adelaide, ... Read More
We originally chose this ship for the itinerary and to try out a different line. The original itinerary included Melbourne, Geelong, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln, Hobart and Eden. This was changed after 6 months to Melbourne, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Burnie, Hobart, Eden and Sydney. Still an excellent itinerary with 18 hours in Melbourne allowing us a full day visiting family. The visits to Kangaroo Island and Eden were not full days and with both ports being tender operations made it difficult to get full value out of the offered tours. We opted to go it alone or book with private tour groups saving many dollars. Embarkation and Debark at Sydney was a breeze and a pleasant experience. The ship is very comfortable but certainly showing her age. We had some stormy seas but being fully stabilized, the ship handled the seas with ease. However, i would not want to be accommodated in one of the suites as these are way up high on deck 14. We understand she will be going into dry dock in Singapore early March after her repositioning cruise from Sydney. The demographics on board was mainly from the Americas with also many Europeans and Asians. There were fewer Australian's than expected with most having sailed with NCL previously. The Roll Call meet and greet was well supported and attended by all of the senior officers. Each attendee introduced themselves and each of the officers gave an outline of their roles. One oof the better meet and greets we have attended. There are 13 restaurants to choose from with 7 being complimentary. We did not opt for a speciality dining package but there certainly is something for everyone, from Tepenyaki to Steakhouses, Italian to French. We ate in either of the 2 main dining rooms or at the Garden buffet. Tzar's main dining is at the rear of the ship. The service was excellent however, the meals were average with, for example, Baked Salmon being served overcooked. The Azura dining room is located centrally and would suit people suffering from the motion of the ocean. We could not fault the food from the Garden Cafe with a different base menu each day. This buffet is situated on the starboard side from midhip and spills out into the Great Outdoors seating area on the aft deck. This location also serves late night snacks and drinks. O'Sheehans bar & grill is on deck 8 midship just above the Java Cafe in the Atrium on deck 7 and is open from 6am through to 4am! Great for light meals but also serves a massive mixed grill. On occasions we found the music wafting up from the Java cafe to be too loud to enjoy the meal. The Java Cafe serves as the only Espresso coffee bar on the ship and doubles as a normal bar. Long waiting times for coffee is the result with the barman come barista concentrating mainly on serving drinks. We understand that this situation is about to change with the next refurbishment. There are also 13 bars but not many Australian brands of drink to choose from. However, considering that there was no shortage of alcohol, we did not observe any unruly behaviour. Dress code is relaxed to compliment the free style dining theme. The main dining rooms require neat casual and above with no shorts, thongs etc and we were happy to observe these reguirements being strictly adhered to. A pleasant change from some of the sloppy standards on some of the ships operating out Australia. Smoking is restricted to designated areas but it was disappointing to see that smoking was allowed in the Casino which is not allowed under Australian law. We avoided this area as best we could but a couple of the popular bars were in close proximity. The ship also has a Cigar Room, Library room and Card playing room. The entertainment was outstanding including singers and dancers from Burn the Floor and death defying aerial acts. The Spinnaker lounge on deck 13 forward gives fantastic 180 degree views and much of the games are played out here. There is a fantastic kids club but on this cruise there were only 19 children and we never saw them. Port services were outstanding with each port providing huge community involvement. There was no shortage of volunteers at each port. Unfortunately our time at Kangaroo Island, Burnie and Eden were far too short and rushed. Tour operators had to cut short their standard tours with the longer tours returning late and passengers complaining. Cruise Pricing with NCL includes a number of perks (and you have no choice but to take up this option). We booked a balcony cabin giving you a selection of 2 out of 5 perks. We opted for the Ultimate drink package and prepaid gratuities (the latter no longer being available). Being our first cruise with this line, the drink package came in very handy and we did not have worry about this extra cost. NCL charges 20% gratuity on top of every drink but this is included if you have the package. However, we cannot justify the extra $1000 per person on a 10 day cruise included in the base fare. We have loyalty club benefits on other cruise lines which more than adequately covers these so called perks on NCL. Therefore we will not book another cruise with this line. Overall we had a very enjoyable cruise with a fabulouse itinerary but unfortunately the ship will not be visiting Kangaroo Island next season. This is a big mistake as Australians are looking for variety in the itineraries. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We chose this cruise as it was longer than the seven night cruise that we had done before and included three extra ports. We flew into Seattle the night before from Australia. As platinum latitudes members embarking was a breeze as we ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was longer than the seven night cruise that we had done before and included three extra ports. We flew into Seattle the night before from Australia. As platinum latitudes members embarking was a breeze as we went when we wanted. had priority check in and were on the ship 20 minutes after getting out of the cab, Our deck 9 Balcony cabin although a bit small, was quite comfortable the only con was the bathroom as the toilet was a bit of a tight squeeze as I am not a small person. The crew of the jewel were great. Dave the Cruise Director a fellow Aussie was fantastic and very approachable. The Captain was a real character and due to his skill showed us several glaciers so close up you felt you could touch them. All of the Ports were nice even though the weather in a couple of them was ordinary. Ketchikan -Took local tour. Very Good Juneau - Walked around town. End of season sales in all the shops. Skagway. Weather was not great, Did short local tour OnlyFair. Icy Straight A beautiful place, not too much to do .Plenty of wildlife to see. Sitka Highlight of the cruise did local tour Top Class very reasonable price. Prince Rupert Just walked around town. Very beautiful place. Entertainment on the ship was quite good, the shows top class. The production shows as good as any you would see in the world. The food was quite good, We used the specialty restaurants a lot as well as the main complementary restaurants. The buffet left a bit to be desired for dinner. Breakfast and lunch was OK. Back to Vancouver Took the easy walk off option. Best way to go off the ship in 15 minutes from Cabin to out of terminal. Would recommend this cruise over the seven day option. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
I thought the cruise was almost perfect. Was disappointed that the Good Feet arch supports were not actually discounted $100. Checked on-line and the price was the same after the "discount". Attended 2 art auctions. Bid ... Read More
I thought the cruise was almost perfect. Was disappointed that the Good Feet arch supports were not actually discounted $100. Checked on-line and the price was the same after the "discount". Attended 2 art auctions. Bid on an item and thought it was reserved until I paid for it. 2nd auction, I requested prices on 2 items and an appointment was made later that day and I was under the impression that the meeting was to discuss the price. 20 minutes late, I was informed that there was no longer the auction price but full. Really. I did not even get the initial item I bid on. Never been to an art auction before and these problems were unexpected. Extremely disappointed. First cruise I have ever been on that a fee is charged for the steam room. Another disappointment. Ate dinner in the buffet once and was the last time. Good variety but very bland. Room steward was great! Did truly enjoy every port!!!!!!!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We are frequent cruisers (more than 50), so many of our cruises are last minute and just getaway vacations. This was the case on the Jewel. That said, it was our first cruise on this ship and we were pleasantly surprised. Many reviews ... Read More
We are frequent cruisers (more than 50), so many of our cruises are last minute and just getaway vacations. This was the case on the Jewel. That said, it was our first cruise on this ship and we were pleasantly surprised. Many reviews question the food and/or service, but we found both to be more than satisfying. We had most of our meals in Tsar's Palace (one of the main complimentary dining rooms). With only one exception (the first night), we found the food to be very nice. Certainly not gourmet, but well prepared. We found comfort food and interesting new choices. We also took a galley tour and head chef, Patrick, was very gracious and explained the entire food prep process. He was kind enough to come to our table the last night to give me a recipe for napoleons, that I had inquired about. We also dined in two specialty dining rooms, Le Bistro, which is a favorite of ours, and La Cucina, their Italian restaurant. Le Bistro continues to shine; their four mushroom soup is exquisite. Salmon in that restaurant is exceptional. We have dined in this restaurant on many ships and have never been disappointed. La Cucina was also very good, but I find Italian food more comfort than gourmet. I still love it, but it's generally not awe inspiring. The buffet was actually very nice on this ship. Lots of different stations, always a bar-b-que and outdoor grill and an aft outside area. The selections were very good and soft serve ice cream machines were available in several spots - important for those with kids. Service was very good in all the dining venues. The staff on board seemed to be very friendly and accommodating, something that is hit or miss on most cruises. It may be because the Captain was the most friendly and communicative captain we have ever sailed with. Captain Pelle seemed to be everywhere and willing to engage with passengers at every opportunity. As most do, he was at the welcome show, the farewell show and at some "meet and greets". But, he was also at the dance party and danced with several passengers. He appeared on the dock at Victoria to provide pictures; he was friendly, funny and available. We had a medical emergency on our sail from Skagway to Victoria that required a detour to Prince Rupert to evacuate a passenger. The captain and staff communicated with us through the entire ordeal. The detour changed our arrival in Victoria from 2:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The original schedule provided the Victoria stop was 2:30 - 9:30 p.m. Obviously most shore excursions were cancelled and we wondered if we would have ANY time in Victoria (a favorite stop). The Captain arranged an extension for our time there and we left at 12:30 a.m. That allowed those who had not been to Victoria to see the city at night and experience the beautiful sights in town. Some small shops remained open and, of course, the pubs were available. The production company aboard this cruise was exceptionally talented. The shows were heavily infused with "Cirque" type performances. You expect good singers and dancers, but many did double duty as flyers, acrobats and bungee artists. Jocko and Marie were special performers who did strength moves, gymnastic balance and flyer acts that truly amazed. Some of the production singers and dancers did separate shows and they were all fantastic. The Cruise Director, Richard Matic was very good! We have sailed with him before and he has grown into his role very well. He also seemed to be everywhere. There were not many children on board, but those that were seemed to be having a great time. They have a children's program and several areas just for them. We did not do any shore excursions this trip, but on previous cruises we have taken the tram to Mt Roberts in Juneau, zip-lined in Ketchikan, rode the White Horse Pass train in Skagway and can recommend all of them. Generally you can buy them cheaper off ship, but you must do what makes you comfortable. Both embarkation and debarkation went swiftly, but we are platinum members, so we get priority in both areas. However, there did not seem to be an issues and people were able to board or debark fairly smoothly. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Norwegian was recommended to me by a friend who had sailed with them over 6 years ago. This was my first cruise ever. Alaska is incredible. Highly recommend getting a cabin with a balcony. The cruise ship was very good and I had the ... Read More
Norwegian was recommended to me by a friend who had sailed with them over 6 years ago. This was my first cruise ever. Alaska is incredible. Highly recommend getting a cabin with a balcony. The cruise ship was very good and I had the best sleep I have had in ages. The critics are correct however, the food is not up to standard. Wish the cruise line would have less variety on the menus and concentrate on quality. As an example, NEVER put Eggs Benedict as a choice in a buffet, it becomes disgusting cold glop stuff. Buffet area is crowded and busy. We did meet some nice fellow travelers there, as we had to share tables quite often. Specialty dining, we only went to two and I recommend Moderno if you love well prepared meat. Drinks were expensive, beer is $6.95 a bottle. The staff were very good and I loved how informal and friendly the captain was(Captain P. Erickson). Went to a few of the main events in the theatre and they were good, not 'oh, my lord,wow that was amazing!', but good. The cabin was wonderful, comfortable and clean. The balcony was well worth the extra cost and is probably the reason why my husband and I did not participate in the many activities offered onboard. We spent a lot of time on the balcony watching distant whales, orcas and the most amazing scenery. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We just returned from our Alaskan cruise aboard the Norwegian Jewel. We had a group of 10 in 3 rooms. One room was a suite, one a mini suite and one a balcony room. We were very pleased with our cruise. The shore excursions were all ... Read More
We just returned from our Alaskan cruise aboard the Norwegian Jewel. We had a group of 10 in 3 rooms. One room was a suite, one a mini suite and one a balcony room. We were very pleased with our cruise. The shore excursions were all incredible. The scenery and itinerary were fantastic. The only things that could use a bit improvement, in our opinions, were the quality of the food and the amount of time spent at the actual ports. The food in the specialty restaurants was (as expected) significantly better than the buffet. The buffet was not up to our expectations. The other (complimentary) restaurants were good. We were disappointed in the quality of the meats in the Brazilian steakhouse, but the sushi restaurant was excellent! The pool areas and bars were easily accessible and not overly crowded. We were able to find areas on the ship easily that were more private as well. Overall, we were all very pleased. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We have kids and grandkids in LA area, so we were looking for a cruise that left out of LA. We've been on 5 NCL cruises - 3 being Pride of America to Hawaii. We chose it for the departure port and 7 day itinerary. Flew in from east ... Read More
We have kids and grandkids in LA area, so we were looking for a cruise that left out of LA. We've been on 5 NCL cruises - 3 being Pride of America to Hawaii. We chose it for the departure port and 7 day itinerary. Flew in from east coast the day before arriving at the Hyatt Regency Los Angeles airport well after 11:00 p.m. Good choice, we had points, so a freebie, but the location was great and the shuttle to airport in the morning to meet NCL shuttle was best way for us. We paid $25 each to have NCL shuttle us from LAX to San Pedro port. About half hour bus ride, but with all NCL folk. Could have gotten Super Shuttle for $18 or so, but they would have stopped at hotels along the way. Plus I felt more comfortable having NCL be in charge. Check in was fairly easy, we are Latitude and got through the line quick, but lines weren't bad for others not Latitude at about 11:30. We traveled light, carry on and backpack for the 7 days, so no experience with the luggage drop this time, although it looked pretty crowded and confusing for first timers. Our room was on the 11 deck and a mini suite. Always book balcony, so this was a first and OMG to have a big bathroom, with a full size tub and separate toilet area made all the difference. It will be hard to go back. We had more storage than we've ever had although the balcony was a bit smaller, but adequate. Grabbed lunch in Tsar's for a nice sit down lunch and avoided the buffet crowds. Met some nice folk in the line checking in and ended up having quite a few meals together. Couple sea days were much needed for us and we didn't mind. Lots of activities on board if you wanted to participate. First port was Puerta Vallarta, we usually don't book excursions, but a $50 credit enticed us. Glad for our choice of John Huston's property, Las Caletas. for $139 each. Nice 1/2 hour double decker boat ride to island, music on board. I would do this excursion again. We had a great time partaking in the cooking class with the chef. No crowds. Made seafood paella, guacamole, salsa and sea bass ceviche. Wandered around the property which wasn't crowded at all. Many little areas with hammocks overlooking and overhanging the water, nice walking paths, kayaks, paddleboards, snorkle, swimming etc, all included in the price. Lots of life guards everywhere watching. There are some huge rocks in the water, so be aware and wear water shoes. Also had about 4-5 little "islands" that you could swim out to, really a large float that had a palm tree, hammock, umbrella and deck chairs to sit on. Very tropical. Food was awesome at many little areas and open air restaurants, also included was food and mucho drinks. Please tip the guys tho, they worked so very hard the whole time we were there. Walked to the top where they had zip line, giant slide that spit you out in the water - was going to do it until I climbed to the top and asked a couple guys who had just finished. They were pretty macho, and said it was fun, but the force of hitting the water was pretty intense. That's all I needed to hear as I didn't want to end up in a Mexican hospital. Loved this excursion and loved that once we got there, we didn't have to pull out our wallets for anything! Mazatlan- winged it and probably should have planned better or stayed on board. Planned on going to Stone Island as I had read reviews on how to get there and planned on going to Lety's restaurant, but ended up wandering around like a tourist near port - not much there. Cabo San Lucas - was windy and cool. Excursions cancelled. Had planned on renting a catamaran, but it was a no go. Lots of long sleeve and sweatshirts sold there. Took a pedal bike for $8 to Old Town, which we thought would be a town, maybe church, historical stuff. Ended up being vendor market, with anything from meat, poultry to clothing. Stunk to high heaven. Grabbed a cab back and wandered around the Marina and shops near the port. You really need to get out of the port area or have a plan. Weather didn't cooperate for many. Another sea day and back to San Pedro. Entertainment - Ended up being picked for the Newly Wed game and that was fun as it always is. Husband always shy, but agreed this time - go figure. Good memories and a DVD to show at holidays with our kids! We love NCL's entertainment. The "kids" in the song/dance troupe were very good and we enjoyed each night something new and different. The comedian Sam's early shows were hysterical and his late night adult show even better. Don't come late unless you want to be made fun of. JP was a magic/comedian and was also very entertaining - no we couldn't figure out his tricks. Will be on Penn & Teller coming up. I think NCL had it's act together and the staff was spectacular. We met the Cruise Critic people and the Officers the second day, they arranged a private tour of the galley for us on the last sea day. I have NEVER seen such a clean "restaurant" their last score was 100% and I can see why. Latitude cocktail party always a nice touch as they try to make you feel special.Captain was very nice and seemed to take much time with each guest we saw him interacting with. He was hoping to dock and be there for the birth of his first grandchild, so I hope he made it. Good staff, all seemed happy and under control. We enjoyed the complimentary restaurants and ate mostly at Tsars and Chin Chin. Usually got breakfast at the back of the ship and ate it there. Very nice bartenders there and quieter. Went to every show available and enjoyed them all. Bought a couple "future cruise" deals they were promoting. Can use within 4 years, so that keeps us coming back. Probably do Pride of America again (#4) to Hawaii as we love that one and our special balcony room which I won't mention the number here! Or Greek Islands, depending on how the world situation is. The NCL staff was super friendly, accommodating. Pedro the cruise director was really good, restaurant staff, bartenders (First time for beverage package, and I will say it was worth it, but not in the calories). Can't really say we had any issues, but then again, we go on a cruise not trying to be picky and complaining. You're on a cruise people, things happen, roll with it or make yourself miserable. It's a floating hotel, you're not unpacking, or driving. Relax. P.S. Getting off the boat was another matter I almost forgot - if you have a flight - leave early because we were backed up quite a bit. When you leave gangway, don't wait for an elevator - find the escalators - I think to the far left as you leave gangway. We got shuttled into a line that was for elevators and we didn't know there was an option until too late. Every wheelchair, handicapped, elderly person got to the front of the line we were in and only so many could fit in 1 elevator. Also you will be in a long que to go through customs once you get off the elevator/escalator. Don't cut your flight close by staying on the boat too long. Good half hour plus in custom line, plus the elevator line, made for an hour plus after we left the ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Chose this cruise because San Pedro is within easy driving distance so don't have a needless flight. Also, the UBP (beverage package) was a perk, probably what sealed the deal. Otherwise we could have taken another line or Holland ... Read More
Chose this cruise because San Pedro is within easy driving distance so don't have a needless flight. Also, the UBP (beverage package) was a perk, probably what sealed the deal. Otherwise we could have taken another line or Holland American out of San Diego like we did last year. Loved the Jewel. Not too big or crowded. Easy on and easy off. User friendly. Not the best food in history but plenty of choices (Hey, this is NCL, not Oceana). We ate at O'Sheehan's twice,Chin Chin(Chinatown it's not),the Garden Cafe, and Azura. Everything was satisfactory. The waiters were all terrific. This was part of Spring Break week so there were a lot of children and teenagers aboard.All very well behaved. Didn't notice any drunken college kids. They must have taken the Carnival. Had an inside cabin. Not paying extra for a room I don't use. We go for the Ports, not the ship or cabin. Everything went smooth as silk. We'll be back. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
My wife and I have taken 14 cruises together in the last 6 years. We have cruised on Carnival, Princess, Celebrity, RCCL and HAL. This was our first cruise on any NCL ship. We are senior citizens and do not have a lot of extra money but ... Read More
My wife and I have taken 14 cruises together in the last 6 years. We have cruised on Carnival, Princess, Celebrity, RCCL and HAL. This was our first cruise on any NCL ship. We are senior citizens and do not have a lot of extra money but love cruising. We are able to take as many cruises as we do because we budget carefully and shop heavily for the best cruise deals we can possibly find. We will never cruise Regent or Oceania as we would have to make a cruise on one of those lines our one cruise in 3-5 years because of price. I say this because in reviewing our cruises, I always try and compare apples to apples. The cruise lines we have cruised on are what I call mass market cruise lines. I do not expect from them gourmet food or spacious standard staterooms. I expect good to very good food in the complimentary food venues and adequately sized staterooms with adequate storage. The other thing you should know before I proceed with my review of this ship is that when we cruise, the ship itself is our destination. We do not care about ports and do not do excursions. If we could go on a 12-15 day cruise where all the days were sea days, that would be ideal for us. Given these parameters and our biases, I will proceed with my review of the Norwegian Jewel. The Jewel is the smallest ship we have been on to date. No big atrium with glass elevators. A small atrium with no elevators. We had an obstructed oceanview cabin, #8556. Despite the fact that we had more problems on this ship than any other ship we have been on, we enjoyed this cruise as much as any cruise we have been on. We entered the ship on deck 7. Since our cabin was on deck 8, we needed only to go up one floor. We were immediately impressed with the color scheme and decor of the Jewel. Wood paneling and bright but not overwhelming colors throughout. Our cabin was the smallest cabin we have had on any of our cruises with some tight spaces in various parts of the cabin but because of the way it was laid out and decorated, it seemed a little larger than it was. In any case, we made do and got used to it pretty quickly. It proved to be adequate for our needs. Problem #1 occurred when my suitcase arrived. I am very sensitive to heat and overheat easily. If this happens for a prolonged period of time, I get sick. I always have the thermostat turned down to the lowest setting but this has seldom proved adequate. I carry with me a small portable electric fan to aid in keeping me cool. My suitcase arrived with my fan missing and a love note from security telling me it was a prohibited item and would be returned to me at the end of the trip. I had read the list of prohibited items from NCL's website (as I always do before I book with any cruise line) and there was nothing in there even hinting that the fan might be a problem. It listed dangerous or potentially dangerous items and no hair dryers or irons, the standard prohibitions that all cruise lines have. So I went down to guest relations with the letter and explained that I have taken my little $7 fan on every cruise that I have been on so far and no other cruise line has prohibited it. He asked me if I had cruised NCL before. I told him no. he said "well, each cruise line has their own policies". I said that is fine but I checked NCL's prohibited item list and it wasn't on there. He pulled it up on the computer and quickly read through it and could not find any indication that the fan would be banned. I told him I wanted to talk to a ship's officer, the captain if necessary, as this was a medical issue that would endanger my health. If I had any indication ahead of time that I couldn’t have a fan, I would never have booked with NCL, ever! Also, I would have gotten a note from my MD if necessary, but again, there was no indication that this would be a problem. I asked him to tell me how my fan would be considered dangerous by any stretch of the imagination. He asked me to wait while he went in back and talked to someone. When he returned, he now said the fan was confiscated because it had do be checked to make sure it would not damage their electrical system by drawing too much current. They were going to have their electrician check it and if he approved it, it would be returned to me. He added, “we generate our own electricity so we have to be careful”. What? Other cruise ships DON’T generate their own electricity? Do they use the world’s largest extension cord? Whatever. I told him that would be fine. Just have the electrician give the fan the once over (after he is done checking the electric toothbrushes) and return it to me once he okays it, which I had no doubt he would. I pointed out that I have a CPAP machine which they let go through which I was confident drew a heck of a lot more current than the fan. I got the fan back late that night. But this was an unnecessary hassle that could have been avoided and a bad way to start the cruise. Problem #2 – When I went to put valuables in the room safe, to which you enter a 4-digit code, after I entered 3 digits, I encountered an error message. I obviously could not lock the safe as I needed to enter 4 digits. I advised the room steward who notified his supervisor. They sent someone up who repaired it but it continued to have problems locking. It would take anywhere from 4-6 attempts before it would lock. It opened fine. Problem #3 – About 2 hours after we arrived in the room, the toilet stopped working. It would not flush. I reported it to both my room steward and guest services. They had a plumber come up and after about an hour and a half it started working again. The next day it again stopped working at about the same time. Another call to guest services. Plumber again. Fixed after two hours. Third day, no problems. Fourth day, toilet stopped working in the early evening. Told the room steward who said yes, all of our section had stopped working. There was apparently a woman in one of the floors above us who was putting tampons down the toilet in violation of the small sign over the toilet that said not to flush anything but toilet paper. Fifth day, toilet again went out in the early afternoon. Another call to guest services. By this time, I was feeling pretty miffed about the inconvenience. I went down to guest services and remarked that I felt I should be provided some compensation given the frequency of the inconvenience. The guest services representative looked it up in his computer and told me that I had only reported one incident which had occurred that day. I told him, no, I had reported 4 incidents over a 5 day period. He said they had a record of only one reported incident, which was caused by another guest and they could do nothing about what another guest does, so I was not entitled to any compensation. I again said I had called guest services every time. He said it wasn’t in the computer so that was that. The 6th day was OK. The 7th day, night before disembarkation, the toilet went out again in the middle of the night. I called guest services. It was fixed by 3 am. Somebody in guest services must have discovered that I was telling the truth because earlier in the evening I received a call indicating that we would receive an onboard credit for the inconvenience. Problem #4 – Room noise. The noise from the entertainment in the Fyzz lounge on floor 7, below us, was very clear in our room. It sounded like it was coming from next door. We could not only hear all the instruments, but it was so loud we were able to make out the words of the songs they were singing. Additionally, on one morning, we were awakened but a very loud tapping, like someone hammering. This went on for half an hour. On another morning we were awakened by the sound of lifeboats being lowered. Since this was a matter of room location and there were no other rooms available, nothing could be done. Those were the problems. Now for the good stuff. Food – Here is where the Jewel shines. The Norwegian Jewel had one of the largest varieties of food and absolutely the most food accessibility of any ship we have been on, bar none. The food, in my opinion, ranged from good to very good. Cagney’s steakhouse, which we ate at one night, was excellent! If you are a steak person, this is worth the upcharge, although we had 3 specialty restaurants included as a promotion in booking this cruise, so it cost us nothing. We also ate at Le Bistro (very good despite them cooking my filet medium-well when I ordered it medium-rare. I sent it back and they cooked me a new one) and Moderno, also very good. Although there is a $7.95 charge for room service, there is a complimentary 24 hour pub restaurant, O’ Sheehan’s, which quickly became my go to place (loved the fried mozzarella sticks with marinara sauce). It had a limited (although not severely limited) but tasty menu, which frankly, obliterated the need for room service. In addition, there were late snacks, which were really late night meals, available at various venues on the ship depending upon the hour, through midnight. You would never go hungry, despite the hour or your tastes and it was all complimentary – no upcharge. Kudos to NCL for that. RCCL could take a hint. Our last cruise on Anthem, there was nothing decent to eat, except pizza, after 9 pm unless you wanted to pay an upcharge. Complimentary room service on Anthem consisted of two pathetic wraps. The buffet had a wide variety of food, much of it very tasty, but too little available seating for the number of passengers. This was particularly evident on embarkation day for lunch and sea days, particularly at breakfast time. It was impossible to find seats, even at a shared table. People stood like vultures waiting to grab the first available seat of someone leaving. One of NCL’s policies which I do not like is that they prohibit you bringing factory sealed cans of soda pop on board. You must buy from them on board at exorbitant prices or go without soda pop altogether. Their stupid explanation for this is that they are preventing sneaking alcohol on board. Yeah? When was the last time they found somebody sneaking alcohol on board in a factory sealed soda pop can? Maybe, like never. The real explanation is that they want to get more money out of you. In any case, their complimentary food available policy makes up for a lot of ills, soda pop policy among them. Environment – We found the ship’s use of space and décor to our liking. The rich wood paneling, the use of fun colors and the use of available space was well done. We loved eating in Tsar’s dining room, which was gorgeous. The fitness room was well fitted. There are only two small pools and three small hot tubs. The pools were too cold to be of use all but one of the days we were there. The library was one of the best we have seen on a ship. The game room was nicely designed with good game tables. Both had very nice views. Activities - There seemed to be a wide variety of activities in the daily ship paper. I did not go to most of them as my wife and I are readers. We become “cruise potatoes” on cruises. We take cruises for R&R. We like to kick back, relax and read. We find a comfortable place to lounge, read for a while and then change locales and continue reading. We break for eating, napping and shows. Entertainment – In all the cruises we have been on, there were never performers who were not talented. Some had more talent than others, but all had sufficient talent to perform professionally. That being said, there has been entertainment I enjoyed greatly as well as entertainment I did not care for. That is a matter of personal taste. The Jewel had a production show, a comedian, a magician/comedian and a cirque style acrobatic music show in the main theater. There was also a very talented guitarist vocalist in one of the lounges. I enjoyed all of it to one degree or another. I thought that they had a well balanced variety of entertainment. Crew - I found the crew of the Jewel to be unfailingly polite and 99% of them of them to be bend over backwards friendly, even the ones who had to defend policies not of their making and sound like a moron doing it, because they had no choice. Almost every single crew member I came into contact with always had a smile on their face and attitude of they wanted to do anything and everything they could to make this the best vacation I ever had. Hail to the staff!!! They deserve my gratitude for doing their best to correct or help me cope with problems and make my cruise enjoyable. My room steward, Danlito (call me Donny) was outstanding. I couldn’t have asked for better. The problem with the Jewel is not a problem with the Jewel. It is a problem with NCL’s executive and administrative staff who make stupid and aggravating policies that irritate their customers and then put their line staff in the position of having to carry out and defend those policies over which they have no control or authority. If the customer is unhappy, of course it is the poor line staff that gets blamed as the corporate execs in their ivy tower don’t ever have to take the heat or hear the complaints. They just make the rules and collect fat paychecks and benefits. The line staff are just working their butts off and trying to keep their jobs. Despite all the problems, I would cruise the Jewel again in a New York minute but pick a different cabin. We had one of the best times we have had on a cruise and given the difficulties we encountered, that is saying a lot. I gave the Jewel 4 stars instead of 5 because of the problems we encountered, the lack of decent swimming pools, the soda pop policy and the crowded buffet seating. But….there is a lot to like about the Norwegian Jewel. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Norwegian Jewel Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 1.0 3.4
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 3.0 4.1

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