NCL Jewel Cruising Review

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NCL Jewel - Western Caribbean

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Miami, USA

Embarkation Sunday, March 23, 2008
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Departure
Miami
At Sea
Cozumel
Grand Cayman Island
At Sea
Miami

Embarkation Day

The day you board the ship is always very exciting. You're anticipating a voyage and adventure. I checked out of the Hilton at 11:30 a.m. and took a cab to the port, a short 10 minute drive.

Embarkation

VIP Welcome Room

Arrive at Pier C at the Port of Miami, there is a huge line for the NCL terminal. If you have any of the suites, or Villa's, you can avoid all the lines and go directly to the VIP Welcome Room. Here you will get personalized service for your pre-boarding activities. It is here that you establish your on-board account, receive your swip/ID/charge/room card. There's not much sense in getting to the ship too early, since the rooms do not become available until 1:00 p.m. You're forced to sit with your carry-on luggage in the public areas.

(click to enlarge)

VIP Welcome room offers refreshments and hosted pre-boarding assistance.

Room card front.

Room card back.

Suite welcome letter.

Owner's Suite

Owner's Suite 9004 FWD

I was on the ship by 12:15 p.m. but the room was not ready until 1:00 p.m. Had a brief lunch in the crowded upper deck dining area. The Villa's are located amidships, while some of the Owner's Suites are located all the way forward at the bow of the ship. Upon arriving at 9004, I was just amazed. The place was palatial ! It had no less than two bathrooms - a master and guest room. Huge living room and full bar area. Two balconies - forward and to the side.

(click to enlarge)
2008 NCL Jewel - Daily Newsletter

Daily Newsletter Cover

2008 NCL Jewel - Daily Newsletter

Daily Newsletter

Daily Newsletter

Daily Newsletter

Cagney's Steakhouse - Menu.

2008 NCL Jewel - Restaurant Menus

Menu. For VIP suites, just request your concierge to book into the restaurants. Otherwise, you need to make reservations early.

2008 NCL Jewel - Wine List

Restaurant descriptions and charges. There are a few public (no-added charge) restaurants, but if you want great food, try one of the specialty ones.

2008 NCL Jewel - Ship Data - Notices

VIP breakfast and lunch options.

2008 NCL Jewel - Ship Room Inserts and Notices

Entrance to suite - guest bathroom to the left.

Guest bathroom.

Guest bathroom sink.

Guest bathroom.

Living room area.

Restaurant menu corner.

Bar area with coffee and expresso machine.

View of mini-fridge.

View of expresso machine. I never used it but it looked pretty cool.

Contents of mini-fridge.

Below bar storage area.

Welcome bottle of champagne.

Dining room table.

Looking towards one of three flat panel monitors, outside is side balcony.

Welcome flower bouquet.

Side outdoor balcony with chairs and table.

Balcony lounge chairs.

Balcony table.

Looking out from balcony to Port of Miami dock.

Bedroom section of suite.

Bedside chair.

Side table and communications center in bedroom portion of suite. Here is your ship-wide cordless phone. Also you may request to use a labtop computer.

Forward balcony with watertight door.

Curtain separates bedroom and living room.

Clothes closet and dressing room. Has a make-up mirror, table and chair for the ladies.

Shower of master bath.

Bathroom.

Huge bathroom with dual sinks.

Huge bathroom with dual sinks.

Dual sinks.

Bath with overhead flat panel monitor and window to balcony.

Side view of bath.

Shower.

Shower.

Hallway outside of suite.

Group dinner at Cagney's. Service was deplorably slow, but food was good when you got it. Clearly the place was understaffed the first day of the cruise.

End of Day One

Even with the rain and clouds, departing on this beautiful ship was great. The Owner's Suite was amazing and very spacious. You have at your disposal a concierge and a butler. I imagine if you are more than a single traveler, you'd probably use them more. I made reservations for our group through the concierge, and we got most of the times we wanted. For the first night, we had a group dinner at Cagney's Steakhouse. We really liked this restaurant on the NCL Dawn, but found the service very slow. That's deplorable for a meal that you have a $20 surcharge for. The staff was overworked - it was apparent very soon after we sat down that there were not enough waitstaff. The restaurant manager needs to do a better job at providing enough staff to assist the paying customers. Oddly enough, we found service at the no-charge restaurants was great. I requested a HP laptop for my suite and the usage charge is $.40 a minute in 200 min increment package.

Related Information

General Info
NCL Jewel Information
NCL Jewel - Western Caribbean
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