2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
About 5 years since last RC cruise, been on Princess in the interim. Last RC cruise was also on Jewel (prior to latest refurb). Ship in nice condition, good itinerary, great weather, fun to watch Super Bowl. RC has changed and not ... Read More
About 5 years since last RC cruise, been on Princess in the interim. Last RC cruise was also on Jewel (prior to latest refurb). Ship in nice condition, good itinerary, great weather, fun to watch Super Bowl. RC has changed and not for the better. Staff numbers reduced, they work hard and have good attitudes but you can see they are stretched. Menus (buffet and dining room) are reduced and repetitive with mediocre food. In dining they are pushing you toward their upsell menu items (at 30 bucks it's like they are not giving you any credit for the base meal) or heading to a specialty restaurant. Daily activities are also cut back compared to the "good old days". Even the Filipino cover band had a head count reduction (no drummer). In summary, a good cruise experience but not up to what we've had with Princess recently, IMHO RC comes up short in the value department currently. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
My wife and I mainly decided to cruise the Jewel because of the wonderful itinerary which included Aruba, Bonaire, nd Curacao or as many will say the ABC islands. This was a 9 day cruise. This was our 10th cruise and our 4th cruise with ... Read More
My wife and I mainly decided to cruise the Jewel because of the wonderful itinerary which included Aruba, Bonaire, nd Curacao or as many will say the ABC islands. This was a 9 day cruise. This was our 10th cruise and our 4th cruise with Royal Caribbean. We have sailed on Carnival, Royal, Princess and our last two cruises with Celebrity. We had such a wonderful cruise on the Jewel that we booked another cruise with Royal while on the ship. As our kids are now grown , it was just my wife and I on this cruise. Embarkation was very easy in Miami and boarding went very smoothly. We were on the ship in less than 30 minutes after parking the car, it doesn't get better than that. We went up to the Windjammer for our first meal. My wife and I both thought that the Windjammer Buffet had improved over prior Royal cruises. The food selections were good and the Jewel has wonderful seating inside and out for the Windjammer Buffet. We had a balcony cabin on deck 9, We felt the cabin was a little small and dated but it worked out fine for us. The cabin had plenty of storage places. The seating area was very small and some of the hinges on the doors were damaged but the doors still worked. Overall it was a very clean room and we really enjoyed the location of the cabin. The first two nights we ate at the specialty dining restaurants taking advantage of a buy one get one free deal that Royal Caribbean offers. The first night we ate at Giovanni's and it was very average. The food and the service were both just okay. The second night we ate at Chops Grille and this was our best meal on the trip. The food was excellent and was outdone by the fantastic service we received. The third night was Super Bowl Sunday and they showed the game on the big screen on the pool deck. The drinks and fun were flowing and my wife took some food from the Windjammer which was very good. The next night we were in Aruba until 11pm so our first night in the Main Dining room was not before the 5th night. They sat us at a table where others were just finishing their meal. We enjoyed our time but with them finishing and us just starting, we wondered why they sat us at the table. The food was average and not much of a selection. Service was spotty, my wife would ask for a hot tea with her desert and sometimes it would come and sometimes it would not. On the second formal night, the waiter asked if we would like another lobster tail, we said yes but they never came. The poor waiters get caught up on dancing around, I wish they would just let them do their real job. The entertainment was very good, we enjoyed most of the shows. The comedy shows were excellent. The pool games were fun and we enjoyed playing billiards and ping pong with other couples. We took advantage of the gym and found the equipment to be good and everything in working order. The casino on the Jewel is made for a smoker. It is small so it is almost impossible to avoid the smoke. We still had fun and we honestly won money. We were also given a $500 cruise certificate for a future cruise and we booked another cruise that same day. The ports of call were the main attraction to us for this cruise. Labadee-spent the morning exploring and the afternoon in Amaiga Island, we really enjoyed the island Aruba-we did our own tours-we went 4 wheeling in the morning and a sunset cruise in the afternoon, what a wonderful day and evening we had Bonaire-we rented a golf cart in the morning and snorkeled in the afternoon. Bonaire is the best place I have ever snorkeled, I highly recommend snorkeling in Bonaire with Woodwind. Curacao-we did a day tour, we did snorkel with turtles but this day was very average at best. We did not use any of the children activities. Would we go again on the Jewel-in a split second! The Jewel is a smaller ship so please keep that in mind. It does not have as many toys as the larger ships but because the Jewel is smaller it goes to some really nice places that the bigger ships do not go. Overall we had a wonderful time! Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
PROS: -Our kids (4 and 6) loved the kids clubs as well as the kids pool area/waterslide -The staff throughout the ship were, as has come to be expected on RC, friendly and helpful -Overall the ship was very clean -Windjammer ... Read More
PROS: -Our kids (4 and 6) loved the kids clubs as well as the kids pool area/waterslide -The staff throughout the ship were, as has come to be expected on RC, friendly and helpful -Overall the ship was very clean -Windjammer was good and on point with other Windjammers -The (basic) Wifi was not overly fast, but I found the coverage throughout the ship to be good -Labadee Wavejet (Seadoo) tour was fun. Staff were great -Embarkation was surprisingly very fast and smooth CONS: -Casino cigarette smoke permeates all floors of the centrum -Painfully slow elevator wait times -This may sound silly, but the primary elevators are spaced just far enough apart that when one finally arrives, it can be tough to run to the door before it closes. Combine that with the fact it can be hard to hear the "ding" over the noise of the centrum, and it's really easy to miss elevators. It gets pretty annoying after a few days. -Music from centrum may make sleeping in certain staterooms difficult. I did NOT stay in any of these rooms (they may in fact be soundproofed) and the staff closes the big hallway doors at night to try to baffle some of the noise, but the sound still traveled quite far down the hall. I'd suggest checking other reviews before booking any of the rooms nearest to the centrum, on any floor. Unless you like to party late, in which case, I would recommend you DO book one of these rooms. -Abysmal late-evening and after hours food selection: As far as I could tell there's only one kiosk that's open after hours, and their selection is very limited. You'd better really like pizza. -Sub-par main dining room food. Not horrible, but not at the level we've come to expect with RC. I realize this is contrary to some other reviews, so maybe we just got a bad week -Friendly, but slow bartenders throughout ship. I'm not expecting Tom Cruise from Cocktail, but these guys had zero hustle. I now this isn't the end of the world (i'm on vacation and should relax, right?), but they were noticably slow in my opinion. -Aggressive Labadee vendors. I assumed since they were given ID's and let on RC property that they'd be a little less pushy. I assumed wrong. All in all, for the price, this really was a decent cruise. It's a well maintained ship with a good staff. There isn't a lot to do compared to some of the bigger ships, but just enough that I think it would keep most people content, while appeasing those who DON'T like the huge ships happy. While I don't think I would sail on it again, I would still probably recommend it to someone if they get a good deal. It's hard to beat the price. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Wanted a short cruise to breakup winter in South Florida. Older ship , balcony room ok, but dated. Comfortable bed with good steward Iputu. Noisy neighbors. Staff was very friendly. Buffet was good, better than dining room. Food over ... Read More
Wanted a short cruise to breakup winter in South Florida. Older ship , balcony room ok, but dated. Comfortable bed with good steward Iputu. Noisy neighbors. Staff was very friendly. Buffet was good, better than dining room. Food over all was good. We had 3 specialty restaurants that we enjoyed. Steak, Italian and Japanese. Very good wait staff in all venues. Weather did not permit watching outdoor movies and sound system was poor. They also have good indoor Cinema which showed good movies. Alcohol was expensive and bartender gave poor pour. Plenty of space for sunning old multiple decks over ship. We enjoyed Labadee and thought it was the best private beach of any cruise line. It had multiple beaches and restaurants. Very Clean beaches and Water. The entertainment was very good including production shows. We are going on another RC cruise to Canada this summer. Hope Adventure of the Seas balcony rooms are renovated. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Meeting with a group on this ship. Very ornate public spaces but not a very convenient layout. Elevators have some kind of foreign logic. We were passed by many times in the Atrium area by empty elevator cars going the way we wanted. ... Read More
Meeting with a group on this ship. Very ornate public spaces but not a very convenient layout. Elevators have some kind of foreign logic. We were passed by many times in the Atrium area by empty elevator cars going the way we wanted. After a few of these episodes I switched to stairs. The climb from my cabin on deck 4 to the gym made a good warm up for work outs. The people who served in the dining room for dinner we very competent. Breakfast in the same location was the opposite. Seemed very disorganized from the top down. Kitchen was slow, ended using the dining room buffet mostly. I found it amazing the ship ran out of bagels in two day. No bakers on board? Also why list V8 juice when only tomato juice was available. The ship is short on small quiet places where guests can just relax and hold a quiet conversation. The next refurbish should concentrate on the cabins and not the ornate lounges. Does Royal Caribbean really suffer a lot of theft of towels? First time on any cruise line I found a deposit was required. The causal music in the atrium was appreciated during the day. This was my first experience with this cruise line and I am not likely to use them again. I will probably use Celebrity in the future or other company's lines. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this sailing as a short and inexpensive trip that my whole family would have time for. While there was little exceptional about this sailing, it was very nice that nothing went wrong. Twice on Carnival the ships had stabilizers ... Read More
We chose this sailing as a short and inexpensive trip that my whole family would have time for. While there was little exceptional about this sailing, it was very nice that nothing went wrong. Twice on Carnival the ships had stabilizers fail. Once on Holland America the ship lost an engine and we had terrible diesel fumes. So, no problems to report is noteworthy. The ship struck me as a good size - not monstrous and overcrowded nor small and claustrophobic. Elevators were slow and a couple may have been out of service. The ship's public areas were noisy, even the solarium. The deck chairs on deck 5 provided peace and quiet though. This particular sailing seemed like an excellent choice for new cruisers or cruisers worried about motion sickness. The ship never had to speed to get anywhere, and the Caribbean in January tends to be smooth to begin with Our ports were not special, or at least, Royal Caribbean did not help make them special. We couldn't find a shore excursion in Nassau from RCCL that was suitable for someone in less than great health, so we took one on our own. Then Labadee had nothing available either. Worse, Labadee is supposed to include a buffet lunch with basics like, you know, drinking water. They "ran out" and the only water available had to be bought. Hmm. Food on board was average but adequate. It's sad that Royal Caribbean charges for room service as that may be a deal breaker for my parents when it comes to booking future cruises when other lines don't charge. This is especially a problem at night when the only things available are the awful offerings at the Solarium - some of the worst pizza, cookies, and sandwiches I've had on a ship. The flip side of that was the Chef's Table. That was remarkable. The waiter, Kasim, and the chef, Calesia, served a six course meal with wine pairings that my family will talk about for years. Definitely a five-star experience. I also thought their photographer, Jarenne, was one of the most skilled I've met after almost fifteen cruises, our steward Krishna was friendly and efficient, and entertainment staffers like Felix and Silvia helped make the trip more fun. The internet on Royal Caribbean was an improvement over my experience with other lines. If staying connected is important, RCCL appears to have a leg up. Other good things: Embarkation went smoothly. Our cabin had enough storage space for two people. It was comfortable (beds were a little firm) and well-lit. Ship seemed clean and well-maintained. We liked the sailing enough to book a second cruise on Royal Caribbean, one that would also be on the Jewel. That may have been a mistake. First, the advertised itinerary did not match the actual itinerary. More of an issue, we were told that booking through Next Cruises would give credit back to our travel agency so we could get their advertised perks. Not necessarily so, as the agency is telling us that free gratuities aren't combinable which means we might come out behind, and booking with Next Cruises doesn't appear to be cancel-able. I feel misled, which is marring my feelings about a pretty good trip. Hopefully things will be resolved, but for now I'd hesitate to recommend using Next Cruises. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
As one of the smaller Royal Caribbean ships, this was perfect for a 4 night cruise. There was enough to do but not too much. All the staff I encountered seemed friendly and committed to helping us have a good time. As a smaller ship, ... Read More
As one of the smaller Royal Caribbean ships, this was perfect for a 4 night cruise. There was enough to do but not too much. All the staff I encountered seemed friendly and committed to helping us have a good time. As a smaller ship, the pool areas were not as crowded as other ships which was nice. However, the hot tubs tended to be a little more crowded. I spent half a day at sea sitting out working on my tan. The water in the pool was chilly so I only stuck my feet in. I was in a junior suite which was large and had a balcony that I enjoyed sipping wine on before heading out for dinner in the main dining room. The food and service was very good in the dining areas. I wished for more food availability in the common areas after 9:30 pm but service at the adult pool was decent. Overall, it was a fun and relaxing trip. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We have lots of happy memories of previous cruises with Royal Carribean from a few years ago, so we decided to treat ourselves and travel for New Years Eve to the islands. Well...we were so disappointed, RC are nothing like they used to ... Read More
We have lots of happy memories of previous cruises with Royal Carribean from a few years ago, so we decided to treat ourselves and travel for New Years Eve to the islands. Well...we were so disappointed, RC are nothing like they used to be! If you go on this ship, get ready to pay extra for EVERYTHING, use of the gym, room service, some yoga classes, movies on the TV, you even have to sign up for a 1 day internet package so you can print the boarding passes for your flight...yep, now that's unacceptable! The passengers who purchased wi-fi for the week only managed to use it 60% of the time, so don't waste your money. Food was great in the dining room, the windjammer could use a thorough cleaning though, tables were always sticky and the choice of food never varied very much each day, although there was plenty of it. Staff don't seem particularly happy, you get the occasional happy person, but not like they used to be. Overall the ship needs a makeover, damaged furniture needs attention, torn carpets in the hallway, etc....and the ever constant smell of sewage, the staff said "oh you won't notice it when we are sailing" not my idea of a vacation! The a la carte restuarants have waiters constantly harassing passengers around the ship to make reservations, another extra fee....we did sign up the murder mystery dinner in the Italian restuarant.. the plot was so cheesy & lame but more surprisingly, italian food was'nt served, steak was offered! Lastly...do not go on the St Martin Beach rendevous excursion, they take you to a small beach in the center of town, a packed, tiny area in the flight path of the airport so the noise is unbelievable, nothing relaxing about that! A couple of good things though...the evening game shows were hysterical and the weather was perfect...so that made up for it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
Just got back from the December 22 Southern Caribbean cruise aboard the Jewel of the Seas. The cruise was awesome with a perfect itinerary. This was our second recent cruise on RCI. Our last one was on the Serenade of the Seas which ... Read More
Just got back from the December 22 Southern Caribbean cruise aboard the Jewel of the Seas. The cruise was awesome with a perfect itinerary. This was our second recent cruise on RCI. Our last one was on the Serenade of the Seas which is the same class as the Jewel of the Seas. While basically the same ship, the Jewel lacked the Pub which we loved on the Serenade. Other than that the ships were identical. This cruise was over Christmas and the RCI did a great job decorating the ship for the holidays. They also had holiday themed events (singing Christmas carols in the Centrum). This trip we ended up in the specialty restaurants as we couldn’t get seating in the main dining room. That was annoying but we loved Chops and Giovanni’s. We had a terrible experience in Izumi with very poor service. The food was great though. It just took an hour to get it. I highly recommend doing room service for breakfast. It’s about $10 and is a good value for not having to rush to the buffet prior to your excursions. Also note that breakfasts seems to be very busy in the buffet. Beer selection was very lacking on the Jewel with no IPA type beer offered. While the drinks of the day were good, I like a good pale ale to drink. Cleanliness on the cruise was excellent and Dadi did a great job on helping in our cabin. We really liked a cabin on the “hump” and it’s hard to choose now between an aft cabin and a “hump” cabin. Aft gives you more privacy but I like watching docking, departures as well as the pilot boats. The pools were great and service in the pool area was superb. Solarium pool was our favorite. Overall the cruise was amazing. The issues mentioned were far outweighed by the positive experiences on our cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
I chose this particular cruise for the itinerary and the great price. My first experience with RCCL was AWFUL and I vowed to never cruise with them again. However, I'm so glad that I gave it another try, I was pleasantly surprised. ... Read More
I chose this particular cruise for the itinerary and the great price. My first experience with RCCL was AWFUL and I vowed to never cruise with them again. However, I'm so glad that I gave it another try, I was pleasantly surprised. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. The ship is smaller and older but very well kept, I would even say exceptionally clean. Cabin was spacious, lots of storage, bathroom was small but I loved the shower stall with the circular design and doors. The shows were very entertaining, comedians were okay. Didn't find the activities interesting, luckily we were off the ship every day so we were too pooped to think about activities when we reboarded, just wanted to relax, get ready for dinner, take in a show and hit the casino!! Service overall and all around the ship was excellent! I enjoy every port we went to. I would definitely travel with RCCL again. Read Less
Jewel of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.3
Dining 3.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 3.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.2

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