River Walk, downtown San Antonio, Sunday, February 25, 2018

River Walk, downtown San Antonio, Sunday, February 25, 2018
River Walk, downtown San Antonio, Sunday, February 25, 2018

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Cruisin' On In - Saturday, Dec. 5, 2015

We've been on Internet and cell phone silence for the past week while we were on our international Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) vacation to Cozumel, Mexico; Belize City, Belize; and Roatan, Honduras. Today we sailed back to Houston and were home in San Antonio by 2:30 pm.
Our ship - NCL Jade
Starting last Saturday, November 28, we left San Antonio about 9:30 am and were at the port southeast of Houston by 1:00 pm. The ship sailed at 4:00 pm and from then until today we felt pampered.

What a cruise it was! Nothing like having all your meals cooked for you, eating whenever you wanted, having your cabin cleaned a couple of times per day, the Captain sailing us to our destinations, as much entertainment as we wanted, and very fun shore excursions. Fabulous!

On this our first evening, we mostly looked around the ship, ate, and figured out what we wanted to do. Here are our first impressions.

The Bridge
Awards in the Bridge Observation Room
A Mayan calendar
More awards and accolades
What we learned about our ship, NCL Jade, is that it was originally the "Pride of Hawaii," which had her maiden voyage in June 2006. At the time this was the biggest, most expensive cruise ship. The ship retains its Hawaiian decor even though she now sails to different ports of call (not to Hawaii).

Plaque honoring maiden voyage to Hawaii
Two pools and four hot tubs on the pool deck
Water slide
Looking back at the cruise ship port in Houston
Bob on deck at the Outdoor Cafe
Looking through the gates of Grand Pacific
Dining Room
Beautiful Chihuly-like flowers above elevators
Jade Club Casino

Our Coast Guard escort out of Galveston Bay
Upper sundeck (raining)
Tankards Beer and Whiskey Bar
Our first night dinner reservations were at Alizar restaurant. Alizar is one of the restaurants on board that is complimentary and not a buffet. The food was good, but we liked the ambiance of the Grand Pacific Dining Room (also complimentary).

Me at Alizar
Bob checking out the menu
Waiting for Welcome Show in the Stardust Theater
Stardust Theater
Garden Cafe (buffet) dining room
Carpet in Garden Cafe dining room
We were pretty impressed with the "Welcome Aboard" show in the evening. The Jade Production Cast sang and danced, we heard from the on-board comedian, David Naster, and heard 4Ever (a male quartet) sing. After the show we headed to the Garden Cafe for dessert, then turned in for the night.

Stay tuned for Day 2 - At Sea. [NOTE: I could get used to this!]


  1. We cruised on that ship and did the same itinerary except we cruised out of New Orleans. Like the free style dining better than being stuck with the same dinner people every night.

    1. Jan, We love Norwegian Cruise Lines and the Jade is a gorgeous ship, reminded us of when we lived in Hawaii.

      The freestyle dining is great!

      Heard after this season NCL won't be coming to Texas anymore. Bummer.

  2. I have cruised once (two one-week cruises back to back) and have fond memories of the wonderful food! It is way too easy to overindulge on a cruise!

    1. The food was excellent and we overindulged a few times. Tried to limit portion sizes, but I was known to eat two desserts if I couldn't make up my mind!

  3. Yes, it's easy to get used to cruising ;-) Jade is the ship that brought us from Europe back to Houston this fall. In fact, the primary reason we booked her was that she came all the way to Texas. We'll be doing the same itinerary as you mid-January ... glad we booked it as this will be the last Caribbean season NCL will have a ship sailing out of Texas,

    1. Sad to hear this is the last Caribbean season NCL will have a ship sailing out of Texas. We like the convenience of leaving from Houston! Good thing we didn't put a deposit on future cruises (which they were pushing heavily while we were on board).


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