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Linda Rich

Age: 62

Occupation:retired school social worker

Number of Cruises: 19

Cruise Line: Norwegian

Ship: Jade

Sailing Date: 2008-11-6

Itinerary: western med

I have just finished reading a review of this ship and this itinerary and just had to add a review of my own. We did a back to back cruise on the Jade Nov. 2008. That means we sailed her for 24 days. The Jade is a beautiful ship. She was just sent to Europe from Hawaii where she was the Pride of Hawaii. The decor was Hawaiian with gorgous flowers and statues of Hawaiian royalty. The staff was top notch and couldn't do enough for us, especially our cabin stewards.

NCL is different than other lines in that you can eat when you want, where you want and with who you want. After a full day running around ports, we loved coming back to the ship and eating when we felt like it.

I came away from 24 days on the Jade ready for another NCL adventure and happy we had chosen that ship and line for this trip which was a celebration of my retirement.

The food on NCL is good to very good. This is not gourmet eating but we are not paying gourmet prices. There was always steak, chicken and salmon as alternate choices. We tend to eat in the free main dining rooms for every meal. The service was fine, food hot and dining enjoyable. If there was a wait, it was at most 15 minutes. I found lots of choices for my wine of choice which is Chardonnay. I am the lone wine drinker in my party so my bottle was brought out every night until I finished it without any problems. We did dine in the Italian restaurant one night for a fee. It was a lovely meal with great service.

Stateroom was what we expected as we sail NCL a lot. It is smaller than some other lines, but not by much. We usually get an inside cabin and have lots of storage. the bathroom was fine with no complaints. Our cabin was kept spotless by our stewards.

Activities on board were less than on some other cruises, but not by much. I can say same as HAL(we just sailed the Zuiderdam). I think cruises are what you make of them. We love sailing and nothing is better than a book while at sea. We went to the evening shows and they were fine or good. We are New Yorkers and go to the theater regulary so we know good shows. This is not Broadway, but entertaining enough.

I do want to note that Jade had a Latitudes Lounge for regulary NCL cruisers. We loved the quiet space, fresh coffee and danish.

Our excursions were all ships excursions. We loved Pompeii, Euphesus, Ortia, Bosphous cruise in Istanbul, Dubrovnik and Village Life-our favorite-Mijas out of Malaga, Casablanca Hightlights and in Lanzarote an excursion about the art of Cesar Manrique. The only problem we had was in Agadir Morocco. This was entirely due to the guide. The trip was to Taroudant. The people of Morocco-the Berbers-were wonderful. It is a trip not to be missed far into Morocco itself. We saw wild camels and the walls of Taroudant where so much history had occurred. Our guide rushed us, would not let us shop in the bazaar at Taroudant but brought us to his own store. This is not a complaint about shopping as we are not shoppers, but for the people in the bazaar who needed our money.

We complained to NCL and I said I was complaining not for a refund but because this guide had cheated his own people. NCL gave us a partial refund. That is why I like NCL.

As you can tell, we loved the trip and would do it again. In fact we are returning to Europe again for two more cruises with NCL. If you are looking for formality and set dinner times, go elsewhere. If you want a fun and easy cruise and great excrsions, sail NCL.
As a note, the excursions, while not cheap did not cost hundreds of dollars an excursion. Some, like Mijas were very reasonable, it just depended on the country.

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