February 2014 - Norwegian Jewel to Caribbean - Western
We chose the Jewel after learning about the itinerary. We are interested in Scuba Diving, so Roatan was a huge plus! I was happy there were 4 stops on a 7 day cruise. We love the Yucatan region. Costa Maya was a real treat, we also went diving here. The beach, water clarity and reef system down there are amazing. Cozumel offered a day trip to xcaret that we took advantage of. We also toured Mayan ruins in Belize! It was very adventurous, with a focus on Eco-tourism and our children learned as well.
The second reason we chose the Norwegian Jewel was the port and its price/proximity to Oakland, CA. The only closer, less expensive option was Houston/Galveston. We were definitely swayed by the kids club program and Nickalodian adventures! Freestyle cruising and doing things on our own schedule sounded relaxing.
The ship was not as spectacular as others I had been on, but with lots of nooks and crannies, it never felt crowded.
there was a definite stinky region walking down the hall on deck 8 near our room. The carpet needs replacing in that whole area. It was funky.
the entire ship could have been cleaner. Our stateroom was rushed with fingerprints and smudges on walls and windows/mirrors. Most of the tables I sat down at had crumbs and/or something sticky on it, even if it was set as a fresh
table. This even happened two out of 4 times at specialty restaraunts...
The staff was great at spraying your hands with anti-bacterial gel before you ate at buffets, bbq, etc.
we did not get sick at all.
The food was alright on the ship. Some of the free food was just ok. the buffet could have had a better selection. Cagneys and Le Bistro were fantastic. Cagneys was family friendly and quite a bit more casual than I expected. my shrimp cocktail was nice sized and tasty shrimp. The iceburg wedge was cold and fresh, yum! steaks were delish, but my lobster/seafood linguini was mushy lobster and overcooked pasta. the sauce was good though.
Le bistro was "date night". Very quiet, dim lights, very romantic with french classics done WELL and impeccable service. Chin Chin was terrible, however the head waiter brought me free ginger ale to settle my stomach, and again, the service was impeccable! Truly professional. The teppanyaki was a fun show, but all the meat was overcooked and too much sauce added to everything made it salty. This restaurant is VERY LOUD!!
The nightlife was ok. The comedyshow/majic show was fun. The cirque type show was fine, but could be a lot better. Since when did bingo get so darn expensive? We did not think that for the money and amount of people playing bingo, there was not enough payout. The live music around the ship was great, I really enjoyed all of the acts. THis is where the talent is! What a great group of entertainers. Very enjoyable!
The kids activities and themed nightly parties were great. Our kids had an awesome time, so that makes it a lot better for us and we have a great time too!
We enjoyed watching the first rate movies on tv for free in the comfort of our stateroom.
Our steward was great, never missed a beat tidying up our stateroom. With an inside cabin and a pull out to get ready each night and FRESH towels everyday for 4, he had his hands full. Level of service around the ship was great too. Never had to wait for a drink or cocktail. The drinks were expensive and watered down. I stuck to wine. at 9.00 for a 4 oz pour in the glass, it was difficult to purchase a lot. THe selection of wine was fine, just overpriced. There were all sorts of beverage options to purchase at the start of the cruise. You could even get bottles of wine at a discount before embarkation. I believe 4 bottles were around 80.00. Worth it for me next time...Beer was expensive too, they wanted to sell us a bucket of 5 beers in it all the time when we just wanted to drink 1. My hubby would buy the bucket and we ended up with more than needed. but there is a fridge in the room to keep them cold!