Third Mate

Hometown: NY
Joined: 11/02/2013
Helpful Votes


Cruised for 10 years



Cruiseline: Norwegian Cruise Line

Cruiseline: Princess Cruises

Cruiseline: Royal Caribbean

NYJIM's Past Cruises

Norwegian Gem

February 2015 - Norwegian Gem to Caribbean - Eastern

Great Trip, Great Service

Do know, there is always a gamble on the Atlantic Ocean being a bit rough compared to sailing from Florida.  But we always figure the "fly to FL and stay in hotel for a day" plus the airport crap back and forth is worse than relaxing with food and drinks on the ship from NY, regardless of the ocean issues.  This was a high seas trip, and yet we still did not need Bonine (though I am sure new cruisers would want some). That said, the itinerary is fine (though not much time in Tortola) with great beaches and shopping in St. Thomas and St Maarten.  Puerto Rico has a lot of history and options.  The ship isgreat shape for its age.  The crew is very friendly and helpful.  I like the crew better than Breakaway.  Breakaway has a few more entertainment options, though the main theater options on the Gem are better.  So, explore both ships options when deciding!  Easy boarding for both out of NYC once you get to the port.  Do know you can review the menus each morning in the main dining venues before deciding if you wish to pay for specialty dining.  Also know, if you wait too long to get a reservation to popular specialties (Cagney's Steak House, for instance) your choice of when to eat diminishes.  Specialty restaurants are worth the price if you want every bit of service and food available.  Main restaurants generally have pretty good choices so skip the specialties unless you want the royal treatment!  Final note about casinos, they allow smoking.  The Breakaway is big enough to have a "no smoking" section, whereas the Gem does not.  The Gem has added or improved ventilation (or less smokers than last trip on her) so it was not overwhelming but you will smell smoke, though not as bad as in years past.  It is tolerable to this ex-smoker, and only noting in case it is important to you.  Also know the "no smoking section" of the Breakaway is not smoke free, just no smokers present but since it is adjacent to the smoking casino area, it is not entirely smoke free.  I'd say it is barely better than the Gem that is less populated and well ventilated.  I hope that helps those wondering.  :-) Happy 

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Norwegian Breakaway

October 2013 - Norwegian Breakaway to Caribbean - Bahamas

A step lower than expected

Ship is only six months old, expected no loss of shine.  Shine is gone.  First, in fairness the service was pretty good for such a big ship.  Next, there were plenty of things to do during daytimes.  However, three things were not as expected.  One; the evening entertainment in the theater was not atpar.  They had ONE comedian/magician.  For a ship with 4,000 paid guests, ONE show other than broadway shows is not acceptable.  Not everyone wants to see singing and dnacing every night.  The comedian had two shows.  He had a regular show as usual, then another night an 11:00 pm adult show. The Director of Entertainment ought to fire the guy.  He told almost all the same jokes each time.  Then we left as the "magic" show was the same, too.  Two; they dumped the "chocolate buffet."  Nothing seems to have replaced that?  Three, they dumped the "lobster night."  Now, I suppose there comes a time when costs are cut, but if that is not enough, the nightly menu has also been cut by at least one dinner choice a night, as well as at least two appies.  No more shrimp cocktail, and no more second soup, or chilled soup.  The food is okay, but there's no more going home bragging or embarassment in overeating.  Nothng to overeat....  If you get past all that, and try hard, (or have never cruised) the staff were generally hard working, and bar choices plentiful.   

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NYJIM's Tips

New York, New York - Fair walk, grab a porter and tip them to lug yor stuff on way out through customs on way home. NCL will take your luggage outside upon arrival unless you arrive too early or too late before they are available. Otherwise, hop on freight elevator to floor two, and drop off their.
Norwegian Breakaway Norwegian Breakaway - Plenty of lounge sun spots. If you want to be by pool, like all ship get there early. But, plenty of acceptable places. Unique was fireworks one night (though only 10 minutes, tops).

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commented on a Norwegian Gem cruise review. - "I always wonder if some people even read the information packets and online information about cruises before they go?  How can you NOT know the so..." read more

commented on a Norwegian Gem cruise review. - "seems like someone might have embellished.....lol
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received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Gem cruise review - Great Trip, Great Service

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Gem cruise review - Great Trip, Great Service

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Gem cruise review - Great Trip, Great Service

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Gem cruise review - Great Trip, Great Service

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Gem cruise review - Great Trip, Great Service

added Feb 9, 2015 cruise on Norwegian Gem to their profile.

reviewed their Caribbean - Eastern cruise on Norwegian Gem and gave it 5 stars!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Breakaway cruise review - A step lower than expected