Sail Date: September 2017
Did the Western Caribbean on 16th Sept 2017on NCL Escape This is one ship of six (I think) in NCL that has Studio Cabins.Just perfect for solo travelers. With a Studio Lounge you can meet up with other solo travelers in an evening and ... Read More
Did the Western Caribbean on 16th Sept 2017on NCL Escape This is one ship of six (I think) in NCL that has Studio Cabins.Just perfect for solo travelers. With a Studio Lounge you can meet up with other solo travelers in an evening and chat and make new friends and socialize.Great way to meet people, from all over the globe. Cabin was fine a bit small but hey you are only in it to sleep. Shore Excursions were good lots of choices, I like doing ATVs,Segways and Buggys excursions. Ended up doing some Zip Lining with people I met that was great fun. Dining was good too.Garden Cafe was a buffet ,good variety of food,had specialty restaurants they are great as well .Its nice to sit down and get pampered even if it cost you a bit. Entertainment was great as well I like the bands and the nighttime disco on the outdoor deck. Service was excellent,room always cleaned.Ask for something I got it delivered. Only downside ship was pretty full,so it was quite busy everywhere,but everything flowed well. All in all had a fantastic time on the ship met some great people, that I enjoyed their company with Bought a Next Cruise Voucher which is a pretty good deal,and guess what within 2 weeks of getting home I have booked the NCL Bliss on Nov 3rd 2018 14 day cruise ,I have never been on a 14 day cruse.So a new challenge. Who doesn't like a challenge in life? Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
One of the reasons that NCL caught our eye was the Humidor. We were a party of 8, with 4 cigar smokers. Each time we attempted to go into the humidor, it was filled with cigarette smokers and NO ventilation. 'Humidor - Where all the ... Read More
One of the reasons that NCL caught our eye was the Humidor. We were a party of 8, with 4 cigar smokers. Each time we attempted to go into the humidor, it was filled with cigarette smokers and NO ventilation. 'Humidor - Where all the cigars are stored'. The ship allows many more areas for cigarette smokers and very few areas for cigar smokers. Big disappointment that cigarette smokers were allowed in there. We never got a chance to enjoy the humidor. Although the ventilation was so very poor, I'm not sure we would've gone in any way; even with cigar only smokers. Look into 'Blend' the cigar bar in Indianapolis and Pittsburgh. They know how it's done! One of our spots that we like to gather was Spice H2O. This is on Deck 17, I believe. It is an 'adult only' deck for most of the day, I think from about 7:00am-6:00 pm. It has many lounge chairs, a bar, and a grotto. It is truly refreshing. The strange thing is that the adults are laying out and drinking all day long on this deck and at 6:00 pm they put a children's movie up on the big screen for two hours, followed by dancing. So, at 8:00 pm or 9:00 pm, (when the children are still welcomed on this deck), the dirty, drunk, dancing starts and the kids are ALL EYES... You may want to rethink this, NCL, I think it should be ADULTS ONLY ALL OF THE TIME. Last but not least, your 'purchased alcohol' policy. Everything that you do on a cruise, you can not do without the 'card'. Then why is your procedure for taking my alcohol that I purchased on an island so behind the times? You took my 4 bottles of alcohol and duct taped it and then wrote my cabin number on it. Nothing electronic, no record of it except a handwritten piece of paper. We never saw it again. It wasn't about the money; it was about the fact that you could not purchase this tequila in the states! Frustrating doesn't begin to describe how we felt. I can't leave this comment box until I give a shout out to Award. He was the best bartender/wait staff that we have ever had. He was in Spice H20 and each time we went to that bar, we didn't want for anything while he was working. He was the best! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
The embarkation at the port of Miami went smooth for how many passengers the Escape can hold. We got to the port at around 1130 AM and it took about 15 min from the time we got to the port until we where on board looking for a drink as we ... Read More
The embarkation at the port of Miami went smooth for how many passengers the Escape can hold. We got to the port at around 1130 AM and it took about 15 min from the time we got to the port until we where on board looking for a drink as we had the Ultimate Beverage Package. This cruise was my 8th cruise overall and the second on NCL. Before this ship I was on the NCL Getaway Eastern route. The ship was very clean and stayed clean the entire journey. The pool area was very crowed and congested and really could not enjoy time by the pool. Lounge chairs where hard to come by. Spice H2O was me and my wife's sanctuary away from the crowed pool decks. I only wish that Spice H2O had a full pool and not a water feature. It only has two hot tubs and I believe they need about four in that area. I also wish that they had move covering or shade as it gets very hot up in the back of the shop on sea days. We also had the 3 Specialty dinning package as our free at sea perks. We went to Cagney's, Tepenaki and La Cucina. Cagney's was amazing and highly recommend this place as was tepenaki. La Cuscina was good but not a show stopper. You can really tell the difference between a specialty restraint and the main dinning room though. They definitely put a lot more effort in the specialty Dinning. The main dinning rooms where about average nothing really stood out. Getting a drink at the bars was not bad at all but the drink servers where horrible and could never seem to get one in the entertainment venues but up on the pool decks it was so so. The water slides on this ship where awesome and the best I have seen and done so far. The ropes course was great and a little scary but well worth it and I highly recommend and least trying it even if you come right back down as soon as you get up. The only problem that I had for service as when a bartender at District brew house told my wife that this is a beer bar and she did not have any cocktails to serve to her. They have cocktails on the menu. This made us both feel like they did not care and felt very unwelcome there. We saw the beverage manager out and about and felt he should know about this. He took this very seriously and rectified the situation right away. He went out of this way and gave us some stateroom gifts for the rest of the cruise. This made me fell like NCL cares and will do anything to keep the passengers happy. This is why I like sailing on NCL. They have always took great care of me and this ship is no exception. I would definitely go back on the Escape again in the future as long as they never loose sight of how they conduct business now. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
Due to Hurricane Irma, our cruise was interrupted and we had to stay out longer than we expected until the damage could be assessed in Florida. With that said, NCL went above and beyond sheltering passengers on the ship from both the NCL ... Read More
Due to Hurricane Irma, our cruise was interrupted and we had to stay out longer than we expected until the damage could be assessed in Florida. With that said, NCL went above and beyond sheltering passengers on the ship from both the NCL Escape and NCL Sky until all was safe and the Captain and crew worked extremely hard making passengers feel comfortable. This is more that could be said for Carnival who dropped all their passengers off before the storm hit. Ports: Honduras is okay to visit. I would suggest doing an excursion. The ship's excursions were ok but the cheaper deals can be had right outside the terminal and across the street with Island Marketing. People stand on the curb with signs advertising things to do. I had booked through Facebook "Daniel Johnson's Monkey Sanctuary" Just $20 to visit the animals and $20 more to do the animals and snorkeling. Harvest Caye is an island designed by the cruise line to make more money off the passengers and not Belize as they would have you believe. Nothing is free on the island as they try to sell passengers everything. They do have a nice pool and beach front area for a beach day that is included in the stop but I would eat and drink on the boat for free. Cozumel is an okay stop. Skip the main international port area first and take a taxi downtown to the old pier for $8 US each way. There are better deals at stores located at the old pier. For a good meal, eat at La Mission. Its great food priced very reasonable. Pros: Nice clean ship, somewhat friendly crew at times, lots to do and see. Cons: Weak drinks, poor wifi, poor guest service. Buffet food very predictable each day. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We have nothing but good things to say about the NCL Escape western Caribbean cruise. Our cruise ratings bear that out. What follows is a recount of our experiences from the very beginning, before we even booked passage, to the end when we ... Read More
We have nothing but good things to say about the NCL Escape western Caribbean cruise. Our cruise ratings bear that out. What follows is a recount of our experiences from the very beginning, before we even booked passage, to the end when we said good-bye and headed home. 7 Days in September 2017 – Plus 4 Aaron Chin is the son of Kenneth and Janet Chin (hereafter referred to as K-J). He is a successful pharmacist, and wanting to do something nice for his parents, invited them on a cruise that he and his wife Kaly were planning. Janet’s older sister is Jewel Woo; my name is Ken, I'm Jewel's husband. They are close, talking by phone and texting frequently as Janet lives in Seattle while Jewel lives in Oklahoma City. So Janet thought it would be nice if the three couples could go on the cruise together. Before this topic came up, going on a cruise wasn't even a blip on our radar screen. It may have been maybe the one thousandth thing on our list of things to do. This cruise discussion took place from early to mid July, 2017. The cruise was to be on the Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) Escape from Sep 2-9, 2017 departing from Miami and sailing to four ports in the western Caribbean. Sisters must think alike because both Jewel and Janet have a phobic aversion to bad weather- hurricanes, the case in point here. So what to do? This was the prime cruise season. This was also the prime hurricane season. Those two things are incompatible and do not mix. Both Jewel and Janet had initial reservations about the whole idea, but these two sisters who are normally level headed and clear thinking just threw caution to the winds (literally) and said "What the hey, let's do it." Shortly after the decision was made to cruise, weather reports showed that tropical storm Harvey was building up in the Gulf of Mexico. Continued tracking of Harvey disclosed it had developed into a category 5 hurricane and was heading straight toward Houston and areas along the Texas gulf coast. People who knew we were planning on a cruise asked, “Are you still going?” Well, the rationalized answer was that Harvey was heading toward Houston but we were sailing out of Miami and were not due to sail for another two weeks or so. We would be fine. Does the expression “fat dumb and happy” come to mind here? In the midst of all of this, Kaly was in the early stages of a pregnancy for their first child. During an office visit to the doctor she told him she was going on a Caribbean cruise. Upon hearing this he strongly suggested that they not do it, explaining that there were still some concerns about the Zika virus in that area. So Aaron and Kaly pulled out of the Caribbean cruise. A side note -- Aaron had already scheduled and was locked into those vacation days, Sep 2-9, so he revised their plans and decided to fly to Oahu and cruise around the Hawaiian Islands. Janet explained this situation to us and said she and Kenneth were still going with the original plan and were we on board with it. K-J had scheduled a direct flight leaving Seattle with an arrival in Miami around 7a.m. on Sep 2. Jewel and I had a flight leaving Oklahoma city with a short layover in Dallas before continuing on to Miami with an arrival around 11a.m. The plan was for them to wait at the airport until we arrived and then we would all take an Uber to the dock. That was the plan. Here's what happened. On the evening of Sep 1 while Jewel and I were at home doing some last minute packing, we received a text from Janet saying their flight had been canceled.  The best they do for another flight was one that got them to Ft. Lauderdale at 2:30p.m. However, the ship was set to sail from Miami at 4:00p.m. How many of you have experienced this scenario -- the plane lands, spends a few minutes, but feels like forever, taxiing to the gate, and then half of the passengers in the plane jump up, crowding the aisles getting their luggage from the overhead compartment. By the time you get out of the terminal and find transportation to get you where you want to go, you are late for your appointment. Well, that's what happened to K-J. Jewel and I had no trouble with our flight and connections. Here's something ironic. The second flight that K-J took had a layover in Dallas. Both of us were at DFW at the same time! It would have been perfect if they could have gotten on our flight, but it was fully booked. And there were already 37 people on a standby list. During all of this hub-bub, we were in constant contact with our family. Knowing that K-J were not going to make it to the ship on time, they said to go ahead with the cruise, make the best of it and enjoy yourselves. Here we were, now down to one couple, and we had no intention of going on a cruise in the first place. That lemonade better taste good. Speaking of being by ourselves, i.e, not knowing anyone else prior to getting on board, reminds me of an earlier similar incident. It occurred in 2002 when Jewel and I took an Amtrak cross-country train trip. One day we decided to eat in the train dinning car. To get maximum occupancy of the dinning car, they will sit other people at the same table with you. This is how we met an elderly couple from New Jersey. We hit it right off, exchanging emails and telephone numbers. We even went to visit them in New Jersey one time while we were in New York, and continued to maintain regular contact with them until they each passed away four and two years ago. To bring that incident up to date, on the second evening of the cruise, Jewel and I went to a dinner theater where a mens quartet was performing. We were seated with another couple from Wichita Falls, TX, Jack and Carolyn. Again we hit it off and exchanged business cards. During our conversations we mentioned K-Js situation to them. Carolyn committed that it was God's way of arranging for us to meet, which would have never happened had K-J been on board. It seemed that practicality every day we ran into them someplace on the ship. We would stop and chat for a minute or two and then each of us went about doing our own thing. Alright Jack and Carolyn . . .  no pressure. It was a pleasure meeting you. So for the first two days we just tried to scope out the lay of the land while being surrounded by 1.06 million square miles of water. There were 18 decks, 12 restaurants, 3 venues for shows and concerts, a well-equipped gym and everything else you can think of for entertainment. There was one area on the ship, deck 6, called the Atrium, which was the hub of most of the activities going on. A few examples of these include: cooking and baking demonstrations, towel folding demonstrations (don’t those animals look cute on the bed) dancing instructions and competitions, trivia games and games based on TV shows, a huge screen showing full-length movies. Also in the Atrium is where you can book shore excursion tours, and a guest service area where you can inquire about anything related to the cruise. Yes, I'm preaching to the choir. I know many of have been on cruises, even some with frequent cruiser miles, and know exactly what I'm saying. I hope this can stir up fond memories of good times you've had in the past. Do I even need to mention all the food and eating that go on during this divorce from reality? There, I mentioned it. Enough said. As we boarded the ship in Miami, K-J were just landing in Ft Lauderdale. They had a decision to make. Should they try to catch up to the ship at the next port or give up and go home. I gave the chance that they would continue on the cruise more than a 50 percent probability. Follow this routing if you can: starting off they took a flight from Miami to Guatemala, then another flight to El Salvador, then another flight to San Pedro Sula, Honduras, then another flight to Roatan Island, Honduras, then a taxi to where the cruise ship was docked. When they completed this circuitous route, there was a dent in their already thinning wallet. When we saw them for the first time aboard the ship on Monday afternoon Sep 4, Janet said to Jewel, “You're the only reason we came.” As a point of reference, this was the sailing schedule: Sat 02- Sep 4:00pm SHIP DEPARTS MIAMI, FLORIDA, US Sun 03-Sep AT SEA Mon 04-Sep 10:00am Mon 04-Sep 6:00 pm ROATAN, BAY ISLANDS, HONDURAS Tue 05- Sep 8:00am Tue 05-Sep 5:00 pm HARVEST CAYE, BELIZE Wed 06-Sep 8:00am Wed 06-Sep 5:00 pm COSTA MAYA, MEXICO Thu 07- Sep 8:00am Thu 07-Sep 5:00 pm COZUMEL, MEXICO Fri 08- Sep AT SEA Sat 09- Sep 8:00am SHIP ARRIVES AT MIAMI, FLORIDA K-J arrived in Roatan too late to really do anything there, such as shopping the shops, taking pictures, etc. Well, there were three more ports to be explored. Next stop - Belize. Just my opinion but I thought the tourist area in Belize was laid out very nicely - location of shops, landscape of area, and the beach was the best of all the ports we visited. Alright, on to Costa Maya. But first, breaking news. Hurricane Harvey had just about run his course along the Texas and Louisiana gulf coast, but just like a wrestling tag team he was now bringing his evil sister, Irma, into the ring. If Harvey hadn't caused enough damage already, hurricane Irma was to administer the knockout punch, or pin in this case, wrecking havoc slamming Florida's eastern and western coasts and then continuing northward. Departing Belize, instead of following the original routing, the captain turned the ship and set a coarse back to Miami. The purpose of this was to resupply the Escape with food and then return back to sea since it wasn’t known when Irma would actually hit Miami, and the extent of damage she would cause and when the Escape could finally return safely back to Miami. This same action was seen during Harvey’s reign when a ship that had sailed out of Galveston went to New Orleans to get food before returning to sea. At that time the port at Galveston was under water. In the Escape’s case, there was a side benefit in returning to Miami. It allowed passengers who were residents of Florida to disembark to get to their homes to take whatever actions they could to protect their homes and to get their families away from harm before Irma’s arrival. Also, for passengers who had driven to Miami from other states, this gave them the opportunity to cut short their cruise and return home safely in drivable cars. They saw what happened to many of the cars in Houston and Galveston. Ques: What color are the wind and water during a hurricane? Ans: The winds blue and the waters rose. Now that we were back at sea what was the next step? Were we going to just sail aimlessly here and there, reminiscent of Samuel T. Coleridge’s poem, Rime of the Ancient Mariner? Patience, my dear boy. The captain soon announced that we were heading to Cozumel. This seemingly indicated we may be covering the remainder of the cruise in reverse order. Cozumel is considered the crown jewel of the Mexican-Caribbean area, however, we seldom get pass the tourist area (shops) located just a short walk from where the ship is docked. We’re just rednecks who have no culture. Because Cozumel was not the regularly schedule stop at this time, the Escape had to coordinate and get approval from town officials to dock there. Other cruise ships were doing the same thing. You don’t just park in someone’s driveway without getting permission. This permission is not indefinite. Ships could stay there for a day or so and then have to return to sea. For a period of five days, we were in and out (hamburger anyone?) of Cozumel three different times. The cruise director said it seemed like Ground Hog Day. Each time, the same coordination and approval needed to be obtained. The second time we were in Cozumel, we learned something that I will pass on for future reference. There is a place in the tourist area called Tiki Hut 2 where you can get free wifi. It is available aboard ship, but you have to pay for it. So on Mon evening, Sep 11, the captain announce that we were heading to Miami, hoping that by the time we got there, the port would be open. Ultimately, we never got to Costa Maya. Alas, que lastima. We hardly knew you. With the additional days on board, what else could we do to sustain ourselves but to eat. Sorry, couldn’t resist. The buffet dining seemed to be the most popular. The main course being served was Gorging 101. We did try three of the specialty restaurants which you have to pay for. They were all delicious. Arriving in Miami, Wed morning, Sep 13, the harbor port was open as well as the airport. People began scrambling around to make new flight reservations. We didn’t have to. We made our original return flight to Oklahoma for Wed afternoon, Sep 13 due to plans for a side trip after disembarking the Escape on Sat Sep 9. We have friends in Oklahoma who have a time share in Ft. Lauderdale. We planned to meet and spend a few days with them at their condo. That never happened. While driving there, they learned that the condo was closed and people were evacuating the area. So they turned around and drove back to Oklahoma. Although we didn’t meet them, the timing for us worked out perfectly. Hey Jack and Carolyn, God is excellent in arranging things (Jer 29:11). He is good . . . all the time. All in all, Jewel and I had a wonderful and memorable few days, maybe with a blip here and there, but you take it all in stride. Due to delays, inconveniences, and what have you, NCL is offering all passengers a 25% discount on our next cruise with them. Anyone care to join us? Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We love NCL and we wanted to try the beautiful new ship Escape! we had a wonderful time and enjoyed many family adventures on board such as water slides and pools and late night snacks... From a pleasant and speedy Embarkation through ... Read More
We love NCL and we wanted to try the beautiful new ship Escape! we had a wonderful time and enjoyed many family adventures on board such as water slides and pools and late night snacks... From a pleasant and speedy Embarkation through the final night celebration our trip was amazing! Our 8 year old enjoyed splash academy but our 17 year old was a bit "mature" for the teen club. He went to activities and there were plenty, but the crowd tended to be between the ages of 14 - 15 ;) our cabin was great for us, we had a forward balcony and loved it. We enjoyed the Supper Club and the Company Men as a dinner show, dined at the Manhattan room (this was O.K., we thought there was going to be dancing and a band, we went at 6 and there wasn't any entertainment. we booked 3 excursions through the ship and they were fantastic! We were pleasantly surprised that the food was actually "more flavorful" than we've experienced on past cruises! My husband and I ate at Taste one evening and the Lava Cake... WOW! I I me and my family loved it thank you. U (our 8 year old wrote this :) We LOVE NCL and we put $ down for 2 upcoming cruises within the next 4 years... I will be taking our 8 year old along with a girlfriend and her 2 kids on a western Caribbean cruise in February on the Getaway and we are all very excited! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
This is my "personal" review of our recent cruise. I sailed on the Norwegian Escape with a party of 8 on August 19-26th. It was an amazing and enjoyable cruise. I'm relieved and thankful that NCL decided to divert our cruise ... Read More
This is my "personal" review of our recent cruise. I sailed on the Norwegian Escape with a party of 8 on August 19-26th. It was an amazing and enjoyable cruise. I'm relieved and thankful that NCL decided to divert our cruise to Eastern Caribbean to avoid bad weather due to Hurricane Harvey. Sure, I admit I was disappointed initially, but that was the risk we took during the peak of hurricane season. This was our 1st time on NCL. Ship: Overall, the ship was very clean, well maintained, however there were not enough pools and jacuzzis. Cabin: We were in mini suite balcony stateroom # 11232, balcony 11248, and inside room stateroom # 11609. The difference between the mini-suite and the balcony is in the bathrooms and a slightly bigger room and balcony for the mini suite. The minisuite bathroom has a full size shower and double sink. The rooms were kept clean by our steward. Activities/Amenities: The Escape's activities are fantastic, from the saunas/jacuzzis, the water slides, the pools (I think they need more pools and saunas/jacuzzis), the grotto, mini golf and golf course. The cup cake decorating, origami flower making activity, fruit cutting demo at the atrium were entertaining. Free at Sea Options/Dining: We enjoyed the Escape's amenities. From the UBP to the UDP. Choosing the UBP was a great choice. Thanks to those who recommended it. I loved the Miami Vice, Havanas and bananas, Mango meltdown, pina coladas, strawberry daquiries, mudslides, anything frozen, lol. We chose Teppanyaki, Moderno and Le Bistro. I especially enjoyed Teppanyaki and Moderno. Whatever you do, go on an empty stomach, lol. We went to 2 out of 3 MDR's (Taste and Manhattan) and chose to go to the Supper Club for a free dinner show featuring The Company Men which we enjoyed. O'sheehan's is a 24 hour restaurants with hot dogs, burgers, wings, soups, salads, shepherd's pie, fajitas, etc. Entertainment: As far as entertainment, Tyler and his party are awesome at the 80's party and glow party. He had the crowd going. I enjoyed the Brat Pack (my fave since I love 80's music), the Company Men, Headliner's Comedy Club, and After Midnight. Staff and customer service:The staff were very friendly, courteous, and professional. I loved Owen the "washy washy" and his sidekick, Richelle, as well as, our steward who were all very attentive. We mentioned ahead of time that we were celebrating our 26th wedding anniversary. They had a mini fruit plate waiting for us in our stateroom. They gave us 2 bottles of wine and a "Happy Anniversary" cake, accompanied by the staff singing to us. Internet: The internet packages are expensive. I have sailed on RC's Oasis and Allure. NCL should follow suit with RC's internet's buy one, get half off special. I purchased the iConcierge app for my daughter and I. However, it only worked for the 1st day as far as texting and calling each other. It didn't work for 3 straight days, until I got it removed and got full reimbursement. You can still use the app for viewing the entertainment, activities, tours, dining, your account, etc and make purchases and reservations. My daughter chose the 125 mins of free internet package and she said it was kind of slow and it was ok. I also got her the app to app chat called Social chat package for $5/day= $35 which includes FB Messenger, Skype Msgr, WhatsApp. Keep in mind you can only chat. You cannot post pictures or videos on the Social Chat package. Ports and shore excursions: As far as the ports we picked a level 1 excursion since we had our 80 yr old mother in law with us. I loved St Maarten and St Thomas. Nassau was my least fave. We did the open top double decker bus tour in St Maarten. Sit on the lower deck or you will get burned. I finally got to go to Maho Beach to see the planes fly low into the airport. We also did the The best of St Thomas excursion which was another open air mini bus tour. We took multiple picturesque views of the Escape from many locations, including the pic below. We went off on our own in Nassau and took a taxi boat road to Atlantis. The boats were rickety and in poor condition which was of concern and scary. The downside of the cruise... It was disheartening to see 2 unsupervised teenage kids on the top deck at 1230am throwing yellow wet sign cones overboard. One noticed me walking towards them and she stopped dragging the cone and put it back. Then, both kids jumped on top of highy stacked beach chairs. I alerted one of the staff members to keep an eye on them. We also saw at least 8 under age kids hanging out at the buffet area playing with the water and coffee dispensers. This was our 3rd cruise, 1st on NCL. Going through withdawals, lol. I took over 70gb of pics and videos, the most I've taken on a cruise, haha. Yes, I love photography. I plan on making a YouTube video for this cruise which will include the ship, cabin, dining, entertaiment, ports, excursions, etc. :) I've done videos on Royal Caribbean's Oasis and Allure. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Superb entertainment - shows West End/ Broadway standard (though you have to get in quick to book them and some incur a fee). Some involve being served a dinner first/ during show, such as at 'The Supper Club', which was a ... Read More
Superb entertainment - shows West End/ Broadway standard (though you have to get in quick to book them and some incur a fee). Some involve being served a dinner first/ during show, such as at 'The Supper Club', which was a brilliant idea. Venues, costumes, choreography, singing etc amazing. Food excellent - great choice and standard, though many restaurants cost extra unless you have a 'Dining Package'. We only had a (very expensive) Ultimate Beverage Package, allowing us to have pretty much any cocktail, beer, 'soda' etc throughout the holiday, though we only found out in the last few days of a 14 day back to back cruise that our cards were valid in any bar, so missed out on the lovely Wine Cellar and micro brewery pub thinking they were only for certain passengers. Cabins very good, though having a balcony as well as an inside (we needed two as there were five of us) a god-send for drying swimming trunks, towels etc as well as for sipping drinks whilst looking out on the truly stunning views of St Thomas, Miami etc. Cabin steward absolutely lovely chap - couldn't do enough for our younger boys (we tipped him separately rather than going for the one fee for all service charge - see blow) Ship, cruise director (who was actually very good and incredibly hard working) and mainly-American clientele often very loud and sometimes quite raucous around pool and 'Garden cafe' so not perhaps a cruise holiday for those expecting a formal feel. There were, though (shhh - don't tell) lovely quiet spots to chill at such as 'The Waterfront' deck and we dressed up on a few nights when eating in the main restaurants (Taste, Savor, Manhattan) as did many other families. Feel cruise only 4 stars due to complexity of charges on board and having to go to Guest Services to query these. Service charges exorbitant (though can be lowered/ removed on penultimate day - ours would have been nearly £1000 if we hadn't sorted it with the sometimes rather surly Guest Services people). Also had to queue here for an hour plus just to ask if my camera had been handed in, to have cards reset etc which became quite frustrating). Shore excursions also hugely expensive - found local (badged) taxi drivers who did same tours for a third of the price. Unfortunately, due to Hurricane Harvey, itinerary was changed in our second week so we ended up going back to most of the same places in our second week. Understand decision, but wonder whether ship could have gone to other islands near to St Thomas rather than merely repeating week one - perhaps not logistically possible. Overall - a wonderful cruise ship, with great food, brilliant shows and stunning locations en route. Not subtle, but fun! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Last year was the first time ever that we cruised with Norwegian. We were so impressed with Norwegian and the ship that we booked the identical cruise this year. However, this year it fell short. Embarkation was a mess. What is the ... Read More
Last year was the first time ever that we cruised with Norwegian. We were so impressed with Norwegian and the ship that we booked the identical cruise this year. However, this year it fell short. Embarkation was a mess. What is the point of offering times to come and check in, if the whole ship is checking in with you. Freestyle dinner I guess means sitting next to someone in shorts and a t-shirt that says "whoop ass". Why is there a dress code for only one restaurant, not all. And I am not talking about suits and dresses, just appropriate dress would be fine. Our cabin steward was either new, overwhelmed or just not cut out for the hustle and bustle that the first few days of the cruise brings. We asked for bathrobes, took 2 days. One morning went to take a shower, only 1 towel. None were replaced from cleaning previous day and left the wet pool towel still on the floor in the bathroom. Finally took but never replaced that day or the next. We were down to 1 pool towel. The Escape Room game was WAY TOO complicated. A waste of time. In addition, it was scheduled for 10:15 am, we got there at 9:55 and the gentleman proceeded to tell us that our reservation had been cancelled and that we would have to wait in the "stand-by" line. That our group of 4 would be split up. I asked why and he said we were to have checked in 15 minutes before. Well we were. After much "discussion" the crew member in charge told me he would work it out. Which they did. That was ridiculous since we were there 20 minutes prior, not the mandatory 15. The Manhattan dining room, while very lovely, OMG the entertainment is soooo LOUD! There is no way to have a conversation with your table mates when the entertainment is live. That was my only complaint last year and remains this year. One night in Savor, it took forever to get our main course after our appetizer. It was a good 15-20 minutes which caused us to miss the show we were planning on going to that night. We were participating in a game show in the Atrium and here comes a ship announcement from the Cruise Director. Don't you know that one of your staff is conducting a game and how are we supposed to finish? It was so loud that we could not finish the game. The girl just had to put the answers up on the screen and scroll through them one at a time to which people got up and left. Stupid! Last year we had no issues with the iConcierge. It was a great way for those of us traveling together to communicate. This year did not work at all. 3 of us had the app on our phones. I was actually sitting next to my husband and we were trying it out and it said it couldn't locate me. All 3 of us went to the the IT person and we were doing everything right, just didn't work, ever! Disembarking. The last day at sea, we went to the front desk to purchase travel from the port to Ft. Lauderdale airport. We were told that it had to be purchased by 6pm the night before. WHAT? You've got to be kidding!!!! He shows us where it states that in the program from the night before. After the days activities are listed, miscellaneous items are then printed. NOT on the first page where you would see it. Something that important you would think would be a little more visible on the daily program. We wound up purchasing the transportation as we got off the boat on the gangway. They had a podium set aside as you walked off. If you're doing it then, why couldn't you do it the night before? There has to be a way to monitor guests smoking on their balconies. They were everywhere. I smelled cigarette smoke all the time when I went outside. I reported one, not sure what the outcome was but not only dangerous but a disgusting smell to have to endure when you are out on your expensive balcony relaxing. Overall the ship is a beautiful, the food is great, the activities are fun, just very disappointed this time this time in the service. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2017
I chose this cruise for its solo cabin (discussed below) and its itinerary. Overall, it was an enjoyable experience. The specialty restaurants were excellent and worth the extra money. The steakhouse was probably the best I've had on ... Read More
I chose this cruise for its solo cabin (discussed below) and its itinerary. Overall, it was an enjoyable experience. The specialty restaurants were excellent and worth the extra money. The steakhouse was probably the best I've had on a cruise, and I was addicted to Food Repbulic. The shows were the best I've ever seen on a ship. It was probably the "youngest" cruise I've been on--a lot of teenagers--and I won't say that wasn't annoying. The nightlife is off the chain, though, with wild deck parties. The '80s party was fantastic. The slides were great, as was the Grotto in the adult area. Downsides: The MDR was very "hurry up and wait," and the food didn't impress me at all. I didn't even eat in the buffet--it was usually pretty chaotic, and the food didn't look like it was worth the chaos. There were waits for elevators. The placement of guest services by the atrium was awful on the last day, when people were trying to make last-minute arrangements and correct problems while a loud event was blaring right next to them. It was often hard to find a quiet spot on the ship, and the pools were always crowded. Read Less
Norwegian Escape Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 5.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Service 3.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

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