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M/S Norwegian Gem
Where Time Does not Matter
Part II
Click for Part I

Dover to Amsterdam
NCL LogoInaugural CelebrationsNCL Logo
6 - 8 October 2007

Norwegian Gem Promenade at Night

Norwegian Gem's Funnel at night

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Norwegian Gem, Crystal Arium
Emilio Robba Floral Sculptures
& Dale Chihuly Chandelier

*The* meeting place for all A-listers & "It" Girls is the centrepiece of Norwegian Gem, the Crystal Atrium [Deck 7, mid] surrounded by Tequila Latin/Tapas Restaurant & Blue Lagoon on Deck 8 above. Dale Chihuly glass chandelier with 4 Emilio Robba floral sculptures, two-storey LED high-definition screen [for Wii], fun and funky colourful furniture [which is actually comfortable to sit on]. Around the Crystal Atrium is the Reception Desk [aft], Shore Excursions [port], Internet Café [port] with various Time Plans available, Port 'O Call Gift Shop [stb] and the Java Café [stb].

Norwegian Gem, Crystal Atrium with 4 Emilio Robba floral sculptures
4 Emilio Robba Floral Sculptures
& Dale Chihuly Chandelier

Java Café - Speciality coffees as you like, teas and full bar, delicious pastries. 105 guests.

Trade Routes Boutiques [stb past Orchid Garden]. Brand names & speciality goods, logo stuff, sundry items, fragrances & jewellery, china & more. I am sure NCL could earn some extra $ by selling some of the more unusual carpets from their fleet,

Norwegian Gem, Crystal Arium
Dale Chihuly Chandelier

Norwegian Gem, Crystal Atrium with 4 Emilio Robba floral sculptures
Crystal Atrium

Norwegian Gem Reception
Reception Desk

Norwegian Gem, Trade Routes Boutiques
Trade Routes Boutiques

Norwegian Gem, Java Café
Java Café

Norwegian Gem Art Gallery
Art Gallery

Aft of the Crystal Atrium is the Photo Gallery to stb, which does not cause a blockage when open and Art Gallery to port, full of paintings for purchase, but not on this trip due to VAT regulations. Both nice areas, but used as passageways from midships to.... Ahhh... 'Bliss'... read on ..

Norwegian Gem Photo Gallery
Photo Gallery

Norwegian Gem, Bliss Ultra Lounge
Bliss Sculptures

Aft on Deck 7 is Bliss Ultra Lounge & Night Club where one goes to "See & be seen in this ultra chic, velvety atmosphere!". Fantasy & mythological themed with 2 x 2 lane bowling alleys and another section of slot machines; "The happening nightclub with wicked DJs; VIP private areas; Perfect for 176 guests". Oh My! This has to be seen to be believed. One has to be 6yrs old to bowl, but no children are allowed in here in the evenings. The Adult Disco from 9pm with DJ Rommel and Shadow Dancers later on. Voulez-vous coucher avec moi (ce soir), playing in the back ground sets the scene for our walk through. A vibrant lounge in the evenings, but dead during the day with no windows. I would not want to look too closely at what may go on in the VIP areas or on the double beds placed around either.

Norwegian Gem, Bliss VIP Area
Bliss Ultra Lounge - VIP Boudoir

Norwegian Gem Bliss Hareem?
Bliss in a Harem?

Norwegian Gem Bliss, bowling alley
Bliss Ultra Lounge - Bowling Alley

Norwegian Gem Bliss Double Bed
Bliss on a Double Bed?


We now go up to Deck 12 and back to reality. An "It" Girl must look good & to assist, here we find to port fwd the Body Waves Fitness Center complete with "State-of-the-art machines & a spectacular ocean view that will leave you breathless!" An aerobic room, free weights, cardio machines with flat screen TVs. High/low impact aerobics, yoga, body sculpting & spinning classes. Open 24/7. A nice area, but seemingly little used on our trip; perhaps people are not worried over 2 nights of indulgence.

Norwegian Gem weights
Body Waves Fitness Center

Norwegian Gem,Body Waves
Body Waves Fitness Center

Norwegian Gem, Yin & Yang Spa Reception
Yin & Yang Spa Reception

Deck 12 fwd is the huge Yin & Yang Spa & Beauty Salon. Hair, Nails, Thermal Suite - Steam Rooms & Saunas, Thalassotherapy Pool, Relaxation Areas with a great forward view plus many types of treatments including Acupuncture. [Mandara Spa]. I lost count of the number of treatment rooms, but this really is a lovely area; shame everything has a price tag. You can be rejuvenated after that evening spent in Bliss, have your teeth whitened after all the red wine and don't forget to ask about the fennel colon cleanse.. [that spoils it a bit!].

Norwegian Gem Thalassotherapy pool
Thalassotherapy Pool

Norwegian Gem Hair Salon
Hair Salon

Norwegian Gem Treatment Room
Treatment Room

Also on Deck 12, mid to port, are the Teens Leopard Lounge, Video Arcade & Tree Tops Kid's Club - Norwegian Gem. The Leopard Lounge - "Chic, modern and way too cool for parents." 13 - 17yr olds, movies, parties, sports, activities & get-togethers. Dance floor, non-alcoholic bar, video juke box, table football & air hockey. 3 x 42" plasma & 2 x 23" LCD flat screen TVs. Supervised by NCL Youth Councillors & transforms into a teen disco

Norwegian Gem Teens Leopard Lounge
Teens Leopard Lounge

Tree Tops Kid's Club - "Kids rule. It's all about their wants and needs. After all they're on vacation too." Kid's crew programme for kids 2 - 12. Computer & movie room - Nintendo Wii. Wading pool, soft play area & jungle gym. Children's activities supervised by fun and qualified councillors. This is a bright fun area, with lovely sea views. All the youngsters seemed to be having a whale of a time. Each child needs to be registered and signed in and out by a parent/guardian.

Norwegian Gem Leopard Lounge
Teens Leopard Lounge

The long hallway leading to the Leopard Lounge is lined with framed posters of singers more akin to my era than the current generation I felt [unless some have made a come-back of course].

The Video Arcade is small but seemed to be well utilised with a number of machines.

Norwegian Gem Tree Tops Kid's Club
Tree Tops Kid's Club

Finally up Deck 13 fwd, is the Spinnaker Lounge, my favourite lounge. Off the port entrance is a small Chapel where one can renew wedding vows. The Chapel also doubles as a meeting room for 24. The Spinnaker Lounge is the home of Norwegian Gem's funky chairs. Spoon shaped, sunflowers, double bright yellow sofas and more line the sides; certainly interesting and surprisingly comfortable. This is an observation lounge with wonderful views especially from a bright blue sunflower in the area forward over a bridge wing. The centre of the lounge is more conservative with seating arranged around tables to watch the bands, ballroom dancing, 50s & 60s Sock Hop, Karaoke, Disco or whatever else may be going on. A lively venue during the day with various indoor games being played, Foosball, darts, pinball, shuffleboard etc, as well as at night.

Norwegian Gem Spinnaker Lounge
Spinnaker Lounge

Norwegian Gem Spinnaker Lounge
Funky Chairs

Norwegian Gem Spinnaker Lounge
My Blue Sunflower - otherwise occupied

Norwegian Gem Star Bar
Star Bar through to Cagney's

The Star Bar, perfect for the pre-dinner cocktail when dining at Cagney's, or at any other time from noon onwards. A lovely lounge with wonderful views to stb and over the Tahitian Pools areas forward. "Think of the gangsters-of-the-roaring-twenties décor", guns as door handles and bullet holes in the name plaque. Cagney's Steakhouse encompasses two areas, the smaller area being through the Star Bar with the larger area and open kitchen across a hallway. La Cucina Italian Restaurant [Deck 12, aft] also has a small outdoor eating area, part of The Great Outdoors, and is really very much akin to an open air country kitchen with 'Mama's Cooking'.. curiously the tiles on the floor are carpet.

Norwegian Gem Cagney's Steakhouse
Cagney's Steakhouse

Each of the 3 Stairwells aboard Norwegian Gem is decorated with large murals of different themes. The cabin hallways are bright in colours, with the cabins having 'slatted' doors and dials to let the cabin steward know when to make up or turn down one's cabin, if you remember to turn it that is!

All over Norwegian Gem are various pieces of interesting artwork to look at, the lights too are worth a mention. Much thought has gone into the detail of the fixtures and fittings, which I hope not too many passengers just pass by.

Norwegian Gem Forward Stairwell
Forward Stairwell, Decks 5/6

Norwegian Gem Fwd stairwell
Forward Stairwell, Decks 11/12

Norwegian Gem deckplans

Norwegian Gem deck 7
Deck 7 Directions

Norwegian Gem deck 9 hallway
Deck 9 Hallways

Norwegian Gem Builder's Plaque
Meyer Werft Plaque

There is a Bridge viewing area to port on Deck 11, but the curtains are only open when not in port and during the daytime. Unfortunately although I visited twice, on both occasions they were closed. There are also a couple of radar and information screens to peer at following the ship's route.

The uppermost interior areas of Norwegian Gem are the Courtyard [41 & 53sq m] and Garden Villas [311sq m], midships on deck 14, with two Owner's Suites [77sq m] above on Deck 15. What wonderful views! All have a separate living room, private balcony, dining room, butler & concierge service with access to a private courtyard with pool, hot tub and private sun deck. The Garden Villas have a Grand Piano, 3 separate bedrooms, each with a private bathroom and one with whirlpool tub, along with a private garden containing a hot tub, terrace, dining area and sun deck. All very comfortable and luxurious with many other incidentals included depending on the type of Villa chosen.

Much of my time aboard Norwegian Gem was spent looking at the ground. No, not at my feet, but the carpets;) They are all fun, bright and often depict the lounge or bar one is in at the time. Not carpets one would have in one's own home, but still, I am sure if small rugs were available in the boutiques aboard any of NCL's newer ships, many would be purchased.

Norwegian Gem Carpets - Tequila

Norwegian Gem Carpets - Photo Gallery
Photo Gallery

Norwegian Gem Carpets - Gem Club Casino
Gem Club Casino

Norwegian Gem Carpets - Blue Lagoon
Blue Lagoon

Norwegian Gem Carpets - Shakera Martinin & Cocktail Bar
Shakers Martini & Cock'l Bar

Norwegian Gem is indeed lovely ship and there is so much more one could show in detail. This is only a fairly brief overview to outline the various lounges, restaurants and entertainment facilities aboard. Many more photos, including some menus, prices and scanned Freestyle Dailies can be found here.

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