ShipsNorwegianNorwegian Jewel Review and Tips

Norwegian Jewel Review and Tips

Norwegian Jewel
Norwegian Jewel

The Norwegian Jewel was the first of 4 “Jewel-class” ships when the ship entered service in 2005.  The Jewel offers some of the largest suites and villas at sea including a nearly 5,000 sq foot 3 bedroom garden villa.  The Jewel offers something for everyone.  There are 16 dining options, 13 bars and nightclubs, several pools, 6 hot tubs, kids clubs, and the Stardust Theatre for shows for the 2,376 passengers.

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The Jewel is currently departing out of Port New York City for destinations in the Bahamas, Canada & New England, and the Caribbean.  The Jewel also makes trips to Alaska when it is based in the Pacific.

The Jewel was featured in an episode of The Apprentice. Donald Trump required the contestants to create a 30 second commercial of the cruise ship, featuring the inside and outside of the ship.


The Jewel offers amazing suites and a 4,891 sq ft Garden Villa.  One benefit of staying in one of the suites is that it gives you access to a private courtyard area with private pool.  Balcony rooms are also offered on the Jewel and average 205 sq ft, with the aft facing balconies the most popular.  Ocean view rooms are also available, some have a large picture windows and others a smaller port hole window.  A few of the ocean view rooms are “obstructed view” and will likely have a lifeboat blocking or partially blocking your view.  These rooms are cheaper than the standard ocean view rooms.  The most affordable way to cruise is the inside rooms.  While they are only 143 sq ft, they offer passengers the chance to cruise while spending the least amount of money.


There are many dining options to choose from on the Norwegian Jewel.  NCL offers “Freestyle Cruising”.  There are no set times for dinner and the dress code is very relaxed.  Jeans are welcome at all restaurants and shorts are even allowed at some of them.  Some dining options do have a surcharge if you wish to dine at them.  Reservations are also recommended as they tend to be very popular.

Complimentary Dining

  • Azura Main Dining Room – 5 course award winning menu.
  • Blue Lagoon – Open round the clock in honor of the late night snack.
  • Garden Cafe/Kids Cafe – Buffet style dining that offers omelets, pasta, soups, salads etc.
  • The Great Outdoors – Buffet featuring omelets, waffles, fruit, soups, ethnic specialties.
  • Room Service – Available 24/7, delivery charge from midnight – 5 am.
  • Sky High Bar/Grill – Grilled favorites like hot dogs, hamburgers, bratwurst etc.
  • Tsar’s Palace Main Dining Room – 5 course award winning menu.
  • Topsiders Bar – Pool side bar and grill

Specialty Dining

  • Cagney’s Steakhouse $25/person – Upscale 1930’s steakhouse (Filet Mignon, prime rib, lamb, fresh seafood)
  • Chin Chin Asian Restaurant $15/person – Pan Asian fare
  • Le Bistro French Restaurant $20/person – Contemporary French gourmet fare
  • Mama’s Italian Kitchen $10/person – Traditional, tasty molto Italiano
  • 24/7 Pizza $5/person – Pizza delivery to anywhere on the ship
  • Sushi & Sake Bar  $15/person – Chin Chin Asian restaurant
  • Tango’s Tapas Latin Restaurant $10/person
  • Teppanyaki Room $25/person – Tables of 10 where your food is prepared before you

 Fun and Play

  • Basketball/Volleyball/Tennis Court
  • Body Waves Fitness Center open 6 am- 11 pm
  • Art Gallery
  • Bora Bora Health Spa and Beauty Salon
  • Card Room
  • Club Underground – a New York Subway themed hangout for teens
  • 6 hot tubs
  • Internet Cafe
  • Casino
  • Walking/Jogging Track
  • Lifestyles Room – a quite place to read or write
  • 3 meeting rooms
  • Sapphire Kid’s Pool featuring slides and a paddling pool
  • Sapphire Pool – The main pool on the Jewel that has 144 sunbeds, 314 chairs located by the hot tubs and kids pool.
  • Splashdown Kid’s Club – Indoor jungle gym/obstacle course with computer and artist craft area
  • Stardust Theatre – Nightly Broadway style shows, comedy shows, and game shows.
  • Chapel
  • Galleria Shops – Sells just about anything you might have left at home
  • Library
  • Video Arcade

Recent reports have stated that the buffets can seem like a zoo at times, but this seems like the norm for just about every cruise ship.  Tsar’s Palace Dining Room is open for lunch on embarkation day and the best place to have a nice quiet lunch.

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Ben Souza
Ben Souza
Ben is a world traveler who has visited 40+ countries, taken over 70 cruises. He is one of USA TODAY's experts for their 10Best Readers' Choice Awards. His writings have appeared and been cited in various media outlets such as Yahoo News, MSN, NPR, CNN, Fox, and ABC News. Ben currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio. Follow Ben on Instagram. Visit Ben Souza on Linkedin. You may email Ben at [email protected].
ShipsNorwegianNorwegian Jewel Review and Tips


  1. NEVER AGAIN WILL I CRUISE ON THIS SHIP!!! I felt like there was some kinda of virus aboard this ship they were more interested in running the vacuum into you feet then helping you, they would insist everywhere you went to “washie-washie” your hands then have food ready when you were hungry. The ship is short-sam sorry all you early risers taffed and no one anywhere understand the english language they barely no how to speak it never mind understand what your talking about. You were lucky if you need nothing the cruise is perfect for you but ask for someone to get your salt and pepper and see what happens…besides feeling like you ask them to do something for you the staff was rude and arogant. The beds were like someone took an ice cream scooper and scooped out the middle section of your bed…the pillows were hard as a rock…the food never changed and i dont appreciate waitng on a line for 30 mins for an omelet….they opened the main food hall at 7 sorry all you early risers no food …opppps yea there is cold cereal and some fruit but forget it …it was the same thing yesterday and everyday they had the same food out anyway so no surprises there. The dance floor at 1am was fully with teenages (12 years old) too and they took up the dance floor….no music on the deck while sitting in the jucuzzi i could have been in my gym if i closed my eyes… the food in the 2 main dining rooms where you have to wait to be seated was horrible and the steak was good for my dog…forget about anyone who like seafood not happening. You could forever buy drinks and never recieve 1 buyback and when asked they said “what’s a buyback…” They have a photo person running around taking horrific photos and was as arogant to tell someone that there face was “greasy” that is why the photo is bad…can make this stuff up…SO MANY PEOPLE WERE COMPLAINING ABOUT THIS CRUISE THAT IF I COULD I WOULD HAVE JUMPED SHIP IF THERE WAS ONE TO GET ON TO….I believe in tipping but forcing me to tip on everything was just stealing from me cause alot of the services rated a 2 (thats gernerous). I could go on and on and on…MOST IMPORTANT IS DO YOUR BEST NOT TO GO ON THIS SHIP!!! PS…. THE BATHROOM IS LIKE AN AIRPLANES BATHROOM!!! PSS WOMEN THERE IS NO ROOM FOR ANYTHING LIKE YOUR STUFF!!! AND BE PREPARED TO LIVE OUT OF YOUR SUITCASE!!!!

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