JEWEL b2b (Greece/W Med) semi-live Aug24 - Sept14 REVIEW w/lots of photos

#1
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Ciao a tutti!

I was contemplating not losing my crown jewels by decapitation from my gf while risking too much iphone attention and posting live here on CC, but what the heck... call me a risk taker . As usual, I'll be posting a full review once I'm home after this bucket-list trip, for now I'll post the odd photo or two as this adventure unfolds, hopefully each day if I can. I have not ordered Voom and I don't plan on it, I have a decent phone package (with data) that I need to keep in contact with work for emergencies, and my mother who is not doing well at this time. So cell data won't be an issue (knock on wood) except when I'm at sea. I really don't know if/when/how much I'll post but will do the best I can as I see fit. As mentioned, full review will have a ton of details once I'm back like my previous reviews.

But first, flashback to last year... I had a Venice to Rome land tour combined with a 9 night Jewel sailing to Greece all booked, when my father was diagnosed with a brain tumor after 5 years of fighting cancer... this was prior to final payment. I had non-refundable hotels and so forth booked, however decided right then and there to cancel everything and beg for some kind of leniency from the suppliers regarding refunds. The airlines cancellation fee was not pretty, however my Venice hotel gave me a full refund and the Rome hotel extend to me a voucher to be used by 2017. This was Jan 13th... my father passed March 29. The Jewel sailing would've been May 9th.... who knew?

It was on that April/early May time frame that the new itineraries for 2017 had come out for Europe. I noted the two Jewel itineraries right away and decided to act,. The TA I use had group cabins for both sailings so I scored an excellent price point for both sailings, the first in hump cabin E2 8596 on the 1st leg,


and then E3 with a very interesting balcony 7546 on the second leg.


I also mentioned this sailing to a few cruise buddies to see whether they'd be interested... lo and behold Beachcruzer and her DH will be taking up the challenge sailing with us to celebrate their 25th anniversary on the 1st leg to Greece. I first met Beachcruzer on Quantum through Marion Mom, and then sailed with her again on Jewel Dec 2015 in the Southern Caribbean just before her refurb.

I have recently solidified my personal opinion that over the years my most favorite sailings have not been due to the ship whatsoever (other than Quantum), but primarily due to the itinerary and experiences. Serenade, Vision and Celebrirty Constellation are at the top of my list for my most amazing vacations by far, closely followed by Adventure and Voyager (notice Freedom & Oasis Class nowehere to be found).. 4 of those 5 in the Med. Those are the cruises I remember most vividly... I feel this b2b will also be one of them.

Aug 27 - Sept 3


at sea
Santorini1pm - 10pm: The afternoon in Oia, sunset dinner on the cliff in Fira
Mykonos 8am - 6pm: Morning beach time at Platis Gialos & Psarou beach, afternoon in Old Mykonos
Athens 6am - 6pm: Full day city site seeing
Katakolon 10am - 5pm: priavte excursion to Olympia and the countryside
at sea

Sept 3 - 10


Cannes 8am - 6pm: private French Riviera excursion (Antibes, Eze, Monaco)
Ajaccio 7am - 4pm: Hike La Parata(Iles de Sanguinares), Beach time at Marinella, Old town walking
Barcelona 10am - 8pm: Park de Guell 1/2 day city tour, Gothic Quarter on our own
Palma De Mallorca 7am - 4pm: Castel de Bellver, "free" city tour and DIY
Cagliari (Happy B-day to me!) 12-8pm: Segway tour and DIY around old town
at sea

Our 6 total days in Rome will include the Colossuem/Roman Forum, Borghese Gallery/Spanish Steps/Trevi, Full day siteseeing Trastavere, Vatican/Sistine incl. Bramantine staircase and the cupola climb, full day tour to Tivoli, and if we can survive the first 19 busy days, a bike ride along the Apian Way. Ah.... rest and relaxation!??!! Lol

This is a bucket list sailing and vacation... I hope my photos and memories are epic! I fly tomorrow Aug 24 for 2 pre-cruise days in Rome prior to the b2b, then 4 more days in Rome post cruise. I've been counting the days and hours for the last 3 weeks... can't wait to get this going!!! I hope many of you simply just enjoy the photos and following along where Jewel is on any given day, and I apologize in advance for not answering questions, joining in conversation and posting often... Bob, biker, little britain, and all the other great CC'ers here please feel free in taking some ownership in this thread and answering questions until I'm back to post the full review.

Buona serra, Bonsoir and Buenas noches
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AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#2
2,148 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Oh my gosh, it sounds simply amazing!!!! It definitely sounds like a bucket list adventure! We will be so happy to see a few pictures and have your full review when you return!

Prayers for your mother and so sorry to hear about your father's passing last year.

Phil and I are watching a dream cruise episode right now on the Med. Here's hoping you all have a dream cruise! Keep the Jewel in good shape for us in 62 days!


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Jewel of the Seas - 10/25/2017 - Eastern Mediterranean / Europe
Harmony of the Seas - 11/12/16 - Eastern Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas - 09/11/15 - Hawaii!! ( Trip Report - Magical Hawaii)
Quantum of the Seas - 12/01/14 - Southern Caribbean
Allure of the Seas - 11/17/13 - Western Caribbean (Trip Report - AllureCLS)
Enchantment of the Seas - 11/10/12 - Bahamas
Mariner of the Seas - 11/11/11 - Western Caribbean
Explorer of the Seas - 09/25/10 - Bermuda
Radiance of the Seas - 05/11/09 - Alaska
Carnival Pride - 10/15/06 - Mexican Riviera
Carnival Legend - 01/06/05 - Southern Caribbean - Wedding Cruise!!!
Carnival Legend - 04/23/04 - Bermuda
Regal Empress - 07/14/03 - Bahamas
Ecstasy - 01/05/01 - Bahamas
#3
Annapolis, USA
858 Posts
Joined Apr 2016
Ugh, these itineraries are dreams of mine. If these itienraries will still be around in Summer 2019, I would love to book either one with some friends. Thank you in advance for the time you'll have to take out of your vacation in order to write this review, I really appreciate it. I am SO optimistic, have a great time!
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Previous

2010: Carnival Pride (Florida & Bahamas)
2011: Carnival Pride (Florida & Bahamas)
2012: Enchantment of the Seas (Florida & Bahamas)
2013: Carnival Glory (Canada), Carnival Glory (W Caribbean)
2014: Carnival Freedom (W Caribbean), Carnival Glory (E Caribbean)
2015: Carnival Liberty (S Caribbean), Carnival Splendor (Canada), Carnival Splendor (E Caribbean)
2016: Empress of the Seas (Florida & Bahamas), Carnival Conquest (E Caribbean)
2017: MSC Divina (W Caribbean)

#4
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Originally posted by PhilNDebbieAtSea
Keep the Jewel in good shape for us in 62 days!
Hey hey Debbie!!! Pls say hi to Phil & Stan
You bet... I'll keep Jewel on her toes while I'm on board. She'll be ready and waiting for ya

(Thank you for well wishes re father/mother, very nice of you.)
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NEXT UP:
Brilliance - British Isles June 21/18


AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#5
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Originally posted by OceansOfTravels
Ugh, these itineraries are dreams of mine. If these itienraries will still be around in Summer 2019, I would love to book either one with some friends. Thank you in advance for the time you'll have to take out of your vacation in order to write this review, I really appreciate it. I am SO optimistic, have a great time!
"Just Do It!" In all sincerity.... stop dreaming, book it and go!

There's been great Med itineraries by both Royal & Celebrity (Barcelona/Rome/Venice home ports) for years, I'm sure there'll be awesome itineraries in 2019 when released. If you want some time to kill and you haven't seen it before, my personal favorite review and cruise vacation ever was my Serenade review in the Med 3 years ago: Rome, Malta, Naples, Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor... simply an epic itinerary that will give you some great ideas for 2019.
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2108833
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NEXT UP:
Brilliance - British Isles June 21/18


AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#7
Texas
169 Posts
Joined Nov 2016
Oh my goodness, so sorry for your loss

Thank you for taking the time (even if it is just a little bit each day) to do this for all of us following along. What an amazing itinerary!

Happy sailing!
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RC Majesty OTS * RC Voyager OTS * RC Liberty OTS * Disney Magic * Carnival Breeze * Carnival Magic * Carnival Freedom * Carnival Dream
#8
CT
549 Posts
Joined May 2014
If you wouldn't mind, could you take pictures of the balcony and dividers. I will be in 8594 on Jewel for her EB TA next year, and have not been able to find good pictures of the balcony. This will be my first hump cabin, and I am way too excited to wait until im on the ship to see my accomodations for 14 nights!!
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#9
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Originally posted by MiniChunks
If you wouldn't mind, could you take pictures of the balcony and dividers. I will be in 8594 on Jewel for her EB TA next year, and have not been able to find good pictures of the balcony. This will be my first hump cabin, and I am way too excited to wait until im on the ship to see my accomodations for 14 nights!!


Done! I've never had a hump cabin either


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NEXT UP:
Brilliance - British Isles June 21/18


AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#10
Bournemouth UK
34 Posts
Joined Oct 2012
Cool!
My DH and I (drummerdave) have been eagerly awaiting your review of this b2b since your last review of Harmony. I had my eye on the Greek itinerary but we couldn't afford it this year but have booked for the 9 night Greece and Turkey on Jewel in September next year! Knowing how much you enjoyed Serenade (which we shared with you) we really can't wait for your opinion of Jewel and the intinary. Looking forward to following along to this one and the 'official' review on your return and picking up some tips.
Have a wonderful time x
#11
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
Originally posted by Jennywren113
Cool!
My DH and I (drummerdave) have been eagerly awaiting your review of this b2b since your last review of Harmony. I had my eye on the Greek itinerary but we couldn't afford it this year but have booked for the 9 night Greece and Turkey on Jewel in September next year! Knowing how much you enjoyed Serenade (which we shared with you) we really can't wait for your opinion of Jewel and the intinary. Looking forward to following along to this one and the 'official' review on your return and picking up some tips.
Have a wonderful time x


Ah Jen! How are you and Dave?! Loved the last review you posted. One of these days we'll cross paths again. You have a great itinerary for next year as well. Thx for following along and say hi to Dave for me


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NEXT UP:
Brilliance - British Isles June 21/18


AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#12
Maple Ridge, BC
4,549 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
And now it truly begins. Airplane mode, signing off!




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NEXT UP:
Brilliance - British Isles June 21/18


AFTER BRILLIANCE:
Land - Happy New Year! in gorgeous Zihuatanejo Dec 29/18
Land - Whistler, Beautiful British Columbia Sept 10/18
Ovation of the Seas - Alaska May 13/19

GREAT MEMORIES:
OCEANIA - Marina review (18-03 French Polynesia)
RCCL - Explorer, Mariner*2, Voyager*2, Adventure, Independence, Freedom, Liberty, Majesty*2, Rhapsody*2, Enchantment, Radiance, Oasis, Vision*3 refurb review (13-11), Navigator review (14-05 Western Caribbean), Serenade review (14-09 Med/Adriatic), Quantum review (14-12 Southern Caribbean), Legend review (15-03 Southern Caribbean), Radiance review (15-09 Vancouver to Hawaii), Jewel (15-12 Southern Carib), Explorer review (16-05 4day Best of BC ), Adventure review (16-08 ABC's), Harmony review(17-01 Western), Explorer review(17-05 4day Best of BC), Jewel b2b review (17-08/09 Greece & Western Med), Brilliance review(18-06 British Isles)
Celebrity - Constellation, NCL - Pearl & Sky, Princess - Golden, HAL - Volendam
#13
80923
1,484 Posts
Joined Aug 2014
have a wonderful time! excited to follow along
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Reviews:
Carnival Vista (Caribbean) 1/21/18 with 2 new cruisers and 1 that was with us on the Allure
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2591633

RCCL Allure of the Seas 9/3/17 http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2543853
Crown Princess 9/25/16 Mexican Riviera
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2410139

Carnival Glory 9/12/15 Western Caribbean...brought along 2 new cruisers!http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...7#post47825577
Carnival Breeze Southern Caribbbean 9/27/14 My first Cruise! http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2150432

Future:
RCCL Jewel of the Seas (Greek Isles) 9/18/18 just BF and me! FINALLY!
NCL Bliss Alaska 9/22/19

Blog: https://crafts-a-lot.blogspot.com/
#14
Britain
84 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
Wow, that's sounds a great B2B.
When you get to the Borghese gallery say “hi” to Paulina Borghese (Bonaparte) for me (https://italyxp.com/en/blog/rome/borghese-gallery-art-rome) - we love her… And, if you haven't seen them, the Bernini sculptures are breathtaking!


If art is your “thing” this little known palazzo:
http://www.doriapamphilj.it/roma/en/ in Rome (including another Bernini) is worth more than a passing glance.
Have a lovely time!

WT
#16
Grimsby, ON
568 Posts
Joined Sep 2013
On Jewel in Italy/Greece next may!! So happy to see you doing these review! We'll be across the hall from you in 8088. Have a wonderful cruise!!


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Janine


Jewel of the Seas - Mediterranean - May 30, 2018
Celebrity Summit - Southern Caribbean - Nov. 11, 2017
Independence of the Seas - Western Caribbean - Feb. 20, 2017
Celebrity Summit - Southern Caribbean - Nov. 26,2016
Celebrity Solstice - Hawaii - Apr. 26,2016
Celebrity Reflection - Eastern Caribbean - Jan. 3, 2015

Carnival Freedom - Eastern Caribbean - Oct. 13, 2014
Carnival Liberty - Exotic Western Caribbean - Dec/Jan 2013/14
Caribbean Princess - New York/Bermuda - June 2008
Majesty of the Seas - Bahamas - February 2008
#17
Jacksonville, FL
514 Posts
Joined Sep 2003
Have a fantastic trip. We are in 8592 in six weeks. I cant wait to read your review and see your pictures!

Paul

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#18
Annapolis, USA
858 Posts
Joined Apr 2016
Originally posted by Hoopster95
"Just Do It!" In all sincerity.... stop dreaming, book it and go!

There's been great Med itineraries by both Royal & Celebrity (Barcelona/Rome/Venice home ports) for years, I'm sure there'll be awesome itineraries in 2019 when released. If you want some time to kill and you haven't seen it before, my personal favorite review and cruise vacation ever was my Serenade review in the Med 3 years ago: Rome, Malta, Naples, Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor... simply an epic itinerary that will give you some great ideas for 2019.
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2108833
I forgot to mention earlier that I am super sorry for your loss.

Thank you for your advice! I will certainly read your review sometime,and get back to you, I depart for my cruise tomorrow! But I have a big backpacking trip already planned to Europe in 2019, so it would have to be A) cheap and B) fit into the schedule. I will be staying with friends in Varese (Milan Metro Area), Italy for most of the time, so cruises that leave from Genoa or Savona would be perfect. That's why I am excited to see how my MSC cruise goes on Saturday, because if I like them, I may be set for a European cruise adventure.

Enough about me, go eat some gelato and drink some wine!
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Previous

2010: Carnival Pride (Florida & Bahamas)
2011: Carnival Pride (Florida & Bahamas)
2012: Enchantment of the Seas (Florida & Bahamas)
2013: Carnival Glory (Canada), Carnival Glory (W Caribbean)
2014: Carnival Freedom (W Caribbean), Carnival Glory (E Caribbean)
2015: Carnival Liberty (S Caribbean), Carnival Splendor (Canada), Carnival Splendor (E Caribbean)
2016: Empress of the Seas (Florida & Bahamas), Carnival Conquest (E Caribbean)
2017: MSC Divina (W Caribbean)

#19
United States
268 Posts
Joined Nov 2013
Omg! What a neat trip!!! I will be following this one for sure! Cant wait to see updates!
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Enchantment Review (2-24-14 Bahamas)
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2000289
http://youtu.be/Agmp2f_Mvys?list=UUv...KeBYyFDWSZhxLQ

California Coastal Cruise (9-26-15)
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...1#post50505532

Liberty of the seas (Sept 2017)

Royal Princess (October 2019)
#20
Florida
1,803 Posts
Joined Sep 2012
I'm excited to find another Hoopster95 review! I can't wait to hear about your trip!

I hope your Mom stays healthy, and there are no problems at your work. Sorry to hear about the loss of your Dad.
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Nancy