Freestyle Hassles

Norwegian Gem Cruise Review to Caribbean - Bahamas

Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 12

Overall Rating:

1 out of 5
Sail Date: December 01, 2009
Ship: Norwegian Gem
Cabin Type: Suite
Traveled As: Family (young children)
Reviewed: 8 years ago

I have Been On Numerouse cruises with many cruise lines inlcuding NCL in the past. NCL's overall quality has significantly dropped and is now at the bottom of my list.
We travelled with NCL once prior to "Freestyle" cruising and once when it just began. When Freestyle began there were two main dining rooms, two FREE Specialty dining rooms and a few "ADDITIONAL" cost specialty dinging room. NOW there are Two OVERCROWDED free dining rooms and all the other Specialty dining rooms cost from 10 - 25 dollars per person extra. All Except Cagney's steak House have AVERAGE food. If you didn't make reservations early you were out of luck. The term Freestyle should be replaced with "ADDED CHARGE" because that definitely was the theme of the cruise.
The BUFFET for the first few days was a Disaster....I don't know if it was to UPSCALE the buffet or an attempt to prevent germs transmission but the guests were not allowed to touch anything. ALL was handed to you by the staff and I mean everything. This at first thought may sound nice but the process soon showed to be VERY flawed. With the staffs limited English try to explain how much Ketchup you want on you burger was a disaster. Ask for carrots get brocolli. Don't even get me started on the salad bar. You couldn't even get a glass of water by yourself. It took me about 25 minutes and three or four tries to get my food, usually COLD by them. By day four, guest rebellion forced NCL to revert to there original and better ways.
This was a FULL ship from NYC to the Bahamas. Three of the four days at sea where in COLD weather (DECEMBER). The Ship did Not provide enough to do these days. The private island was ill-equiped to handle 2,500 guests.
The staff seemed stressed and overburdeoned throughout the cuise. Friendliness was definitely victim of all this added responsibility
I think my days of Freestyle cruising are over!!!

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
Specialty "Freestyle" dining is not what is was and is now Average food for ADDED COST. The theme is more NICKEL and DIME than Freestyle


3 out of 5

Children's Programs

3 out of 5

Service and Staff

3 out of 5

Ship Quality

5 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5

Pros: Cagney's Restaurant

Cons: Mostly all else

Recommends Norwegian Gem? No.

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