Beyond expectations

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review to Europe - Western Mediterranean

Contributor Level: Deck Hand
Experience: 1 cruise (first)
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 11

Overall Rating:

5 out of 5
Sail Date: November 01, 2009
Ship: Norwegian Gem
Cabin Type: Balcony
Traveled As: Couple
Reviewed: 8 years ago
Upon entering the ship on deck 7 into the Crystal Atrium our first impression was "Wow". The beautiful modern elegance is consistent throughout the entire ship. The Freestyle Dining concept suited us very well, as we did find ourselves hungry at very different times of day, depending on the activities on shore and the timing thereof. The quality of food was exceptional, even at the cafeteria buffet "Garden Caf", which became our favorite.

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
Very impressive selection of food of excellent quality. Clearly cooked by very skilled chefs. The menus offered varying daily selections and a number of "always available" meals. Only water, milk, iced tea and coffee were inclusive with the cruise fare - and a selection of juices at breakfast.


5 out of 5
There was a wide variety of activities tailored to guest of all ages and interests, from parties in one of the lounges to bingo games, to art auctions, to classical and contemporary concerts, to Nintendo games on the two-deck tall megascreen and much more. Not to forget the many interesting places to visit on shore.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Stewards, waiters, greeters and all other staff we encountered were always friendly and helpful. This was true also for the NCL-contracted tour guides on shore excursions.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
Beautifully modern elegant decoration throughout the ship. Comfortable lounges in various areas. The areas of activity were also conveniently concentrated around decks 6/7 and 12/13. Plenty of elevators to get around; although a little crowded during the morning and evening rush hours in port.

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5
The balcony stateroom was sufficiently spaced for two, and the modern elegance of the ship is also seen in the cabins. The king size bed was very comfortable, however made up of two twin beds held together by the fitted sheet - so it could happen that you would find yourself lying between the mattresses. The television system is interactive and allows reviewing the on-board account and booking of shore excursion or signing up for the cruise rewards program. The Balcony was spacious and beautiful on day 1, but after a few days the salt water spray made the glass wall dirty, which hadn't been washed until the cruise was over.

Pros: Variety and quality of food

Cons: Cost of shore excursions

Recommends Norwegian Gem? Yes!

Was this review helpful? 11

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