NCL Gem Review - With Pictures! 6/15 to 6/22

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#1
United States
116 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
Review Post #1
Introduction
This will be my first review I will have done on Cruise Critic. I very new in the community here and my experience has been great. My name is Jerry and I am 15 years old, so no review on the drinks on board . I was supposed to sail on the RCCL Grandeur of the Seas but due to the unfortunate fire I quickly found this cruise out of NYC instead. It was only one day later than the one I was supposed to sail on. This was my first cruise on Norwegian and I will do a comparison between the three lines and ships I have now sailed on at the end.(And I will tell you which was my favorite too ) Hopefully it will be informative and I'll try and choose the best photos from the 1000 photos from the trip. I wasn't planning on doing a review like this until I was inspired by Gambee to do this. While the Gem sure isn't as new or hyped as the Breakaway, I thought I would do it anyway. Enough of the chit-chat with my laptop lets get started.

So the cruise was booked on May 31st, and I had planned a Bermuda Itinerary and this cruise went to the Bahamas so I had little time to plan everything. We(My mother, my twin(named Tom), and I) had already done a Bahamas and Florida cruise on Carnival and gone to Disney World and the Atlantis so we decided to do some other things this time, and admittedly less costly things. I started planning(I'm not the most spontaneous one) what we would do and we choose some very enjoyable things. But for Florida I did not know what to do so we decided to take the Cocoa Beach Shuttle, which was extremely disappointing.


Embarkation: Day 1
So it was a beautiful early morning that we awoken to on June 15th. We dropped our 4 pups at the kennel and came home to get ready to leave. We were on the road by about 9:15 in the morning. This was our first driving into the City. We decided to go up to the George Washington Bridge and down the Hudson River Parkway to the ship instead of using the Lincoln Tunnel and 12th Ave. It went very smoothly. The coolest part of this was going down the ramp that connects the Parkway with 12th ave and seeing the ship. You can see that in the photo below.

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#2
United States
116 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
Day 1: Embarkation - Continued
Parking was expensive ($245) but it is NYC. We went down the elevator to the ground floor where we dropped our luggage off and went up to the second floor where the terminal is, you can easily see the ship from the huge windows that line the terminal. It seemed large enough(maybe not for Breakaway) and there was not a long line for security at around 11:30 when we arrived. We breezed through security and check-in within 1 hour and was on board the ship just before 12:30. The Crystal Atrium is the first thing you see and is beautiful even if it is not the grand 7 or 8 story atriums on other lines'. We went straight up to the buffet for lunch, unbelievably it was not a chaotic mess. It was immediately clear that the food area of Garden was laid out much better than other ships. There were some open tables inside and plenty at the Great Outdoors where we would go on to eat breakfast and lunch at everyday. After sailing out of Baltimore twice, sailing out of NYC gave us quite the view. I got so many photos of the skyline, it was about all I was doing as we sailed away. My photos are not currently uploaded to Flickr yet. I will upload some from sailaway asap. I will also upload my photos from my previous two cruises, incase you would like to see them. I'll link it in my signature as soon as it is finished.
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#3
brooklyn ny
2,607 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
Great review so far! I love the Gem!
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BREAKAWAY JULY 2, 2017

Plus 2 cruises on RCCL 2 CC and approx. 18 more on NCL-I cant remember which ships!
#6
brooklyn ny
2,607 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
Originally posted by luvtheships
15? Really?


Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app
I thought the same thing! Maybe a typo? Or a very mature teenager
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BREAKAWAY JULY 2, 2017

Plus 2 cruises on RCCL 2 CC and approx. 18 more on NCL-I cant remember which ships!
#7
Warren, Michigan
1,903 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
Great review so far...better than some reviews I've read!
I'm on the Gem in 46 days!!
Keep the information coming!!
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Renee’


NCL Star to Alaska 8/2006-inside - NCL Pearl to Southern Caribbean 4/2007-OV - NCL Sun to Alaska 7/2008-PH - NCL Sky to Bahamas 9/2009-OS - NCL Dawn to Canada/New England 10/2010-OS - NCL Sky to Bahamas 4/2012-OS - NCL Jewel Pacific Coastal 9/2012 - GV - NCL Gem to Bahamas 8/2013-2 BR Haven - NCL Sky Bahamas 8/2014 - OS - NCL Getaway Eastern Caribbean 9/2015 - Aft PH - NCL Sky to Bahamas 8/2016 - OS - NCL Getaway to Western Caribbean 11/2016 - Aft PH - NCL Escape to Western Caribbean 9/2017 - 2 BR Haven - NCL Sun to Florida/Bahamas 3/2018 - Aft PH







#8
Silver Spring, MD
981 Posts
Joined Feb 2005
I totally imagine this becoming a powerpoint that gets presented the first week back at school. "How I spent my summer vacation, the social media edition."

Also, gotta start 'em young.
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Kara

NCL GEM 6/29/13 Pride 7/11/10 Dream 3/27/10 NCL Gem 04/05/08 Freedom_12/22/07 Victory 6/25/07 Liberty 3/31/07 Coral Princess 12/22/06 Glory 6/17/06 Valor 1/1/06 Conquest 04/03/05_Chandris SS Galileo 03/23/86
#9
NYC
288 Posts
Joined May 2008
I'm impressed with your review! Can't wait to read more!
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Caribbean Princess (2008 and 2010);
HAL Vendam (2009);
NCL Gem, Jewel, Star (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013).
No one does the suite life like NCL!


#10
United States
116 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
@boopsahoy - thanks! its just getting started! I have some great photos for this review.

@luvtheships - yupp!

@BritChickBN1 - Thanks. I'm hoping to get it done this week, but it may take until next week.

@boopsahoy - definitely not a typo

@NayRN - Thanks! I definitely have some things to share in the review

@KJPG - I'd probably put all my peers to sleep. lol!

@dachengdao - Thanks! I'm glad your impressed!
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#13
Orange County, Calif
22,010 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Nice review so far. Loking forward to more of it.
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<I><IMG title="<img src=http://www.hollandamerica.com/images/5starMariner.gif border=0 alt= />" border=0 alt="<img src=http://www.hollandamerica.com/images/5starMariner.gif border=0 alt= />" src="http://boards.cruisecritic.com/image.php?u=32889&type=sigpic&dateline=1357436982" ></I>
Melodie

Admiral-1-cruise
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#14
United States
116 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
Day 1: Embarkation/lunch/muster drill
Sorry It took so long to get this started, been having some technical problems.
So once you park your car on the pier or in our case the viaduct you walk to pier 88 and talk the elevator with your luggage down to the ground floor to the porters, they take your luggage(note: they accept tips) and then you head up to the second floor where security and check-in takes place. There are floor-to-ceiling windows in the terminal that allow a great view of the ship. We arrived there just after 11:30 am. There was a line at security but it was moving very well. All you have to do is have your passport and ticket out after security. The personal in the terminal direct you to one of three desks where an port agent will check your passports and cruise ticket. Then you get in line for check-in. The line seemed extremely long, but it did not take very long to get through the line. I like the placement of the check-in desk because the ship was in the background of the desk. Previously sailing out of Baltimore this terminal seemed much newer and much nicer.(less of a converted warehouse) After she takes your photo and gives you the key card you walk past a snack stand to a green screen where the embarkation photo is taken. I have to say that the embarkation photo was one of the nicest photos taken throughout the cruise. This half of the terminal was empty, and just a short walk to the doors out side and then you were right at the midship gangway. Walking on-board(around 12:30) the first thing you see is the promenade on deck 7 and then you walk inside into the Crystal Atrium. It was a little crowded there. We went to the Bliss Lounge which is just aft of the reception desk in the atrium to drop off our carry-on bags. Then we went up to the Garden Cafe for lunch. It was not as chaotic as the Windjammer was on the Enchantment of the Seas.(which was a mess) We quickly grabbed something to eat and headed to the Great Outdoors where there was plenty of seating available. (Tip: If there are no seats inside Garden and you don't want to sit outside head to La Cucina which is open for seating during Breakfast and Lunch) The Garden Cafe had the best layout by far of any ship I've been on. Also the staff there were very quick to clean up the tables. It was open to sit there all day, even when food was not being served. Some passengers used it as a lounge. Food quality was very good. The pizza was much better than Carnival's. Selection was pretty good, though not much varied from day to day. Breakfast was also very good(try the french toast and the pastries) After looking around the ship a little it was almost time for the Muster Drill, we headed to our station, f2, around 2:15. The F muster stations are located by Magnums Bar, in bar central, a second atrium of sorts. The drill was so easy, no standing outside with life jackets, and you could actually hear the instructions from the crew. By the time it was over it was almost time for sail-away.


Pictures

View of the ship from viaduct:


View of the ship from inside the terminal:


Almost at the Gangway!



Great Outdoors:




More pictures coming soon.
You can see all the photos(as soon as they're uploaded) at goo(dot)gl/738W8
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#15
brooklyn ny
2,607 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
Thanks for continuing I've been looking forward to it!
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BREAKAWAY JULY 2, 2017

Plus 2 cruises on RCCL 2 CC and approx. 18 more on NCL-I cant remember which ships!
#17
United States
116 Posts
Joined Mar 2013
@donnabonna Thanks! I hope I'm finished by then, Enjoy your cruise! its a wonderful ship. My favorite of the 3 I've sailed on.

@lenquixote66 I will hopefully be to day 4 or 5 by then

@PathfinderEss Thanks!

@boopsahoy I think I've figured out most of the problems I was having yesterday and this morning, which should let me move forward a lot quicker.

@Nalagh More is coming soon. Keep your eyes peeled
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#18
Warren, Michigan
1,903 Posts
Joined Sep 2007
Keep the information coming, jS17!!! You're helping me keep my sanity.....I need my cruise fix NOW!!
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Renee’


NCL Star to Alaska 8/2006-inside - NCL Pearl to Southern Caribbean 4/2007-OV - NCL Sun to Alaska 7/2008-PH - NCL Sky to Bahamas 9/2009-OS - NCL Dawn to Canada/New England 10/2010-OS - NCL Sky to Bahamas 4/2012-OS - NCL Jewel Pacific Coastal 9/2012 - GV - NCL Gem to Bahamas 8/2013-2 BR Haven - NCL Sky Bahamas 8/2014 - OS - NCL Getaway Eastern Caribbean 9/2015 - Aft PH - NCL Sky to Bahamas 8/2016 - OS - NCL Getaway to Western Caribbean 11/2016 - Aft PH - NCL Escape to Western Caribbean 9/2017 - 2 BR Haven - NCL Sun to Florida/Bahamas 3/2018 - Aft PH







#19
Northeast U.S.
4,521 Posts
Joined Nov 2000
I am enjoying your review and pictures! Definitely looking forward to reading and viewing more!

coka
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#20
Telford, close to Phila. Pa
857 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Thank you do much for review I will be sailing gem September 21 New England Canada ....want to hear more


Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app
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Dona March

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