September 2015 - 7 Night Alaska Sawyer Glacier (Seattle Roundtrip) Cruise on Norwegian Jewel
The ship was clean and well maintained. The inside cabin we had was small, but efficiently laid out, with bright colored carpeting and decor. Shampoo, shower gel, hand soap came in dispensers, no lotion, no bath robes. The beds and pillows were very comfortable. The views going up and down Tracy Arm fjord were spectacular. Dining was a different experience: the food was so-so, no temptation to overeat. The dining room was over crowded during peek times and seating was hard to come by. During off hours the food selection at the buffet was limited and closed early - no late night desserts ( which were rather bland) after the main show!! Freestyle dining is promoted as an improvement, but at peak times there were long wait times. After eating in both main dining rooms once, we just went to the buffet. Surprisingly the food at the buffet was better than in the dining rooms: Steak Diane had been tenderized and was fibery. My sons steak (medium well) was way well done. The waiters in the dining room were rushed and inattentive. It took 30 minutes to get menu, another 30 to get the food, and we skipped the dessert to make it to the 7:15 show. It should not take over 90 minutes to finish dinner from the time you are seated. (We had been spoiled by attentive dining experiences on previous Princess cruises). There was constant pressure to upsell: bingo, lottery and raffle tickets (while waiting for main show to start), drinks, specialty restaurants, pictures, spa services and on and on. Not much to do on sea days - no movie theatre. The casino and bingo were heavily promoted, at you guessed it additional cost. We went to spin class ($20 plus $3.60 service charge per person) Wesley was great, as well as his free morning stretch. The other trainer Dan seemed bored and disinterested. during an hour TRX class (another $23.50) that lasted 40 minutes he gave instructions, then walked to the back of the room and busied himself, until it was time for the next movement. There was a "Sailing Solo" singles meeting announced on the program, but when we went nobody showed up and staff knew nothing about it.