3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
I love the Norwegian way of cruising! You can decicde if you want to dress up for dinner or not, lots of options either way! Also love the unlimited beverage package and the upgraded dining options. We tried every restaurant excepy ... Read More
I love the Norwegian way of cruising! You can decicde if you want to dress up for dinner or not, lots of options either way! Also love the unlimited beverage package and the upgraded dining options. We tried every restaurant excepy O'Sheehans. Favorite upgraded dining experience was La Cucina. Favorite entertainment shows were After Midnight and Escape the Big Top. Our stateroom (balcony on deck 11) was roomy, clean and comfortable. Our cabin steward was friendly and helpful. Jamiaca and Dunn's Falls was by far my favorite port/excursion. Germaine, our tour guide, was knowledgable and entertaining! Dunn's Falls was a little more challenging than I expected but our guide did his best to keep us all safe so that we could have a positive experience. Only negative... the casino is centrally located so the smoke smell permeates everything around it. I wish they could make it non smoking or greatly improve the ventilation. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
I received a 'free' cruise (still need to pay approx. $300pp + gratuities) from a local casino as part of NCL's Casino at Sea program. I have done several through this program and they treat you well and I absolutely love ... Read More
I received a 'free' cruise (still need to pay approx. $300pp + gratuities) from a local casino as part of NCL's Casino at Sea program. I have done several through this program and they treat you well and I absolutely love this perk. We also love NCL in general. The Escape still feels like a new ship and we enjoyed the overall quality of the ship, entertainment options, freestyle dining, the profiteroles at Le Bistro... This is our 18th cruise and have been on 5 breakaway/plus class cruises recently including the Escape previously back in 2016. The ship still is in great condition. In our humble opinion it is still a great cruising experience, so much so that we brought our neice with us and weeks later she still can't stop smiling about how much fun we had on the trip. So know that we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, but for the sake of feedback I will touch on some points. We found the the 'middle-management' workers to be the most pleasant and customer service oriented. We mentioned in passing to a restaurant staff member that my wife loved the lava cake dessert and asked which future nights they might be offering it. Quickly they put in a special order for us all to get lava cakes for the next night's dinner (must order day in advance). We found many staff going out of their way (more than usual) to make sure we had a great experience on the ship. Conversely, as compared to other NCL cruises, we continued to be less impressed with the cruise director (Dan-Dan) and his immediate entertainment staff. The entertainment has changed some over 2 years. The Brat Pack show was previously in the small dinner theater and now it is full blown show on the main stage (best show of the cruise). The After Midnight show as well as most of the Supper Club shows are definitely geared towards the 65+ crowd. We walked out of After Midnight and cancelled a couple reservations for the Supper Club after getting a sense of the shows. We were not overly impressed with the headliner singer that was in After Midnight. There comedians were well above par as far as cruise comedians go. We typically absolutely love spending our late evenings in the dueling piano bar but the piano entertainers on this trip fell well short of the quality we have experienced the last 4 times. So sad and disappointing to us. The female piano singer in particular seemed to be trying to force a connection with the crowd that she couldn't deliver on. The food in the free dining rooms was good but not as good as it has been on other recent cruises. On the contrary, our filets in Le Bistro were all spot on and cooked to perfection. To the point that I believe 4 out of my best 5 filet mignon dinners I can recall in recent history have been on NCL cruises, and I'm a man that loves his steak dinners. I'm a big fellow and wanted to share that the aquapark and the ropes course both have a 300lb weight limit (I was thankfully below it). The ropes course tends to close often when sailing due to wind conditions so plan accordingly. We are platinum tier latitude members and they have tighten down on some of the perks recently. You can't exchange the free champagne for wine any more, you can't bring a guest along on the ship tour any more, and can only get 1 set of complimentary dinners per cabin. There were 2 ports which involved tendering and it was probably the quickest we have ever experienced. Similarly, we seemed to arrive and get cleared in most of the ports very quickly and well ahead of schedule. Disembarkation is almost always a guaranteed miserable slow experience but it went very fast on this cruise (yeah!). NCL does need to figure out where guests, that elect to carry on their bags, can store their luggage. Or perhaps some sort of pre-registration that you will be carrying on your own bags so the cabin stewards can prepare those cabins first. Will all this said, thanks again NCL for a wonderful vacation. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
The ship is beautiful, but like someone else already said, way to crowded. Most days you couldn't get near the pools. The crew seem tired and overworked. We traveled on the Sky before and had much more interaction with the crew. ... Read More
The ship is beautiful, but like someone else already said, way to crowded. Most days you couldn't get near the pools. The crew seem tired and overworked. We traveled on the Sky before and had much more interaction with the crew. This time not so much. Our cabin was very nice and spacious, the ports were beautiful and had plenty of places to shop and eat. Dining on the ship was great, we didn't get to try every restaurant. The entertainment was wonderful, however, if you don't book on the first day, there's no chance of getting in to most of the shows. The specialty restaurants either, we had booked ahead of time for the one we really wanted to go to, but then wanted to try others and there were no available reservations at a decent time, only 9:00. It is nice to get away no matter where you go or how you go. Thank you! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Was a wonderful experience! Food was excellent, service was excellent, room was wonderful, entertainment was excellent as well! The dining experience of being able to choose many options was fabulous! Did the dining package but not ... Read More
Was a wonderful experience! Food was excellent, service was excellent, room was wonderful, entertainment was excellent as well! The dining experience of being able to choose many options was fabulous! Did the dining package but not sure if it won't have been more economical just to pay for the dinners at the time we were dinning? Also did the liquor package and that was more convenient but not sure if we got our monies worth on that either but I think both of those would be very individual to every situation!! We had a balcony room and found that to be wonderful as well. Very clean, well designed and the staff was wonderful. Many greeted you throughout the trip. Overall the staff treated us very well and were very respectful and kind. They were very good about engaging you and were very hard working individuals. We did find the pool area too small on the days you were at sea. Was tough to get seats and found the pool itself to be very small to service 4,200 guests. Would not stop us from coming back though!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
First of all the ship was way to big. I didn't find it a friendly ship at all. The restaurants seemed to have the same menus. The staff wasn't as friendly as on other cruise ships I've been on. On the first day we tried to ... Read More
First of all the ship was way to big. I didn't find it a friendly ship at all. The restaurants seemed to have the same menus. The staff wasn't as friendly as on other cruise ships I've been on. On the first day we tried to book shows and everything was unavailable. The adult pool was so small we thought it was the kiddie pool. The buffet was over crowed. You had a hard time finding somewhere to sit. Casino was so smokey you couldn't breathe. Had to leave the ship after 2 days do to an emergency by ambulance to the hospital in Cayman Islands. My husband had a heart attack. I wrote a letter to the Norwegian Headquarters to see if they would refund the 5 days that we already paid for but they just didn't seem to care. I will never go on a Norwegian ship again. So very disappointed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
We had heard this ship had high ratings and was new so decided to see what it offered. The cruise itself was no different then many others we have taken except there were close to 5000 people on the ship. If you didn't make ... Read More
We had heard this ship had high ratings and was new so decided to see what it offered. The cruise itself was no different then many others we have taken except there were close to 5000 people on the ship. If you didn't make reservations for the shows on the first day you had to wait and see if someone that did, didn't show up. There was a lot of variety in the food served but nothing was outstanding in that department other then the SMOKED SALMON and the size of the portions on that, plus the MUSLI, which was the best I have ever eaten. The casino was the biggest I have see on a ship so far and there were always open machines and tables in both the smoking AND NON SMOKING sections. They had the usual slot and blackjack tournaments where they take in 6000+ and give out 1000 total in prizes and there were several poker table that were full most times. The 2 cabins mentioned above were ours and were a nightmare of noise as mentioned below.. AVOID THEM AT ALL COSTS. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
This cruise was chosen by my sister in law in celebration of her 60th birthday. We have cruised before - Princess, Celebrity, NCL, RC, Princess and now NCL again. There were 8 of us from Canada, meeting 2 more in Miami for the cruise. ... Read More
This cruise was chosen by my sister in law in celebration of her 60th birthday. We have cruised before - Princess, Celebrity, NCL, RC, Princess and now NCL again. There were 8 of us from Canada, meeting 2 more in Miami for the cruise. Our transfer from Ft. Lauderdale airport to Miami cruise port was not a good start for us. We waited over an hour for the bus to pick us up and take us to Miami. Unacceptable. Strike One. Then the week of feeling like cattle - lining up for everything - started. We were processed pretty quickly, and were on board. As this was about 3:00-3:30 at this point, we went to our rooms. Dinners: As we are a group of 10 now, we tried to make some reservations for dinner. None of us were interested in the extra pay restaurants as we find the included restaurants usually have great food. (and for us Canadians, paying another 30%+ for extras didn't entice us). We were successful in getting 2 nights reserved for the times we wanted - supposedly full for the other nights. We found we had better luck going to The Haven or Taste and Savor, putting our name & # in and getting in right away or with a 10-15 minute wait. Food was good - not the selections you might normally have though and no Lobster night. Buffet was like all buffets. Good selection - but also same selection. The main event for dinner was what was served at the sit down restaurants. As usual, the busiest place at the breakfast buffet was the egg man. (omelets, fried eggs etc) They really should put in two stations per side. Staff was quick to remove dishes from tables (sometimes too quick - picking up food that you hadn't finished yet!) We did go to O'Sheehan's Bar & Grill one day for lunch - fish and chips were good - although a small portion. Wait staff was not very attentive. Tenders: You meet in the Theater to get in your group to get off the ship. You exit the elevators at the front of the ship, instead of going to the quick left or right to get into the Theater, you go around the atrium, through a bar area, past the bowling alley, past the hall that leads to the elevators, and then into the theater. If you miss your time, you might be waiting until 2pm to get on the island. NCL has got to have the slowest, on and off, for tenders we have ever been on . They have boats that will hold 300-400 people and will wait until it is completely full before they leave. The day we were on Stirrup Cay, going back to the ship, we were on the boat for 1 hour - it's a 10-15 minute trip back to the ship. There were so many people on the boat, they were standing. (where it was clearly marked - no standing permitted.) Other people were on for a total of 2 hours before they got back to the ship. People up top were getting sunstroke. These tenders should be going back and forth every 15 minutes. UNACCEPTABLE - Strike Two. PORTS: Jamaica, Grand Cayman, Great Stirrup Cay, Nassau, Bahamas. We didn't do any shore excursions as we have been to all these islands before. Jamaica, walked around the secured shopping area. Grand Cayman took a taxi (that held the 10 of us 2.00 each, each way) to Seven Mile Beach for swimming and snorkeling (we brought our own masks). Nassau, walked around the shopping area. IMPORTANT NOTE: We have always been told to have copies of passport, drivers lic etc to bring on island for photo ID. This does not work in Nassau anymore. You need to bring a real photo ID with you - Drivers Lic will do for this. If you don't have real photo ID - you are sent to the security office and have to wait for them to take you back to the ship. NCL should let people know about this, so you can avoid this lengthy trouble. On the plus side - we told everyone " We had our own personal security personnel take us safely back to the ship after visiting Nassau, Bahamas." Now, for Stirrup Cay. This is NCL's private island. You would think it would be nice and relaxing right? Not when there are four ships on the island. Think of 4000-5000 people per ship, times 4 ships, all trying to get a good spot on the beach, or in the shade. Not to mention cooling off in the water. Snorkeling wasn't that great here as there are so many people trying to swim in the same area - all you see is coral. And they have a lot of coral. This is a beach area where water shoes are a necessity. (at least the area we swam in). There are definitely not enough life guards for the swimming area either. We stayed on island for a few hours, then went back on ship for some quiet. Personnel: Budi our room steward was very nice, did a great job, and didn't suck up to you for extra tips. (which we did give him) Buffet people were friendly. Servers in the evening were okay - some more attentive than others. Believe it or not - Photographers were hard to find. Saw them a few times during the week - but were not in your face all the time. Didn't have a lot of bar staff around the pool areas, in fact not one asked if we wanted a drink the whole time we were there. Customer Service was okay. Room was booked and paid for in my name. Letter was sent to husband stating they had frozen our on board account (I said yay - we wouldn't be charged for any more tips etc). We told them we would pay cash for on board charges, wasn't good enough - wanted a charge card number on file. Gave them a credit card to use - said they couldn't use the card as was in husbands name. Really? I pointed out to her that every daily charge (tips) were put on my husbands account and the letter was addressed to him. Ya, they took his card. But, discovered when we got home they had charged us almost double on our credit card for charges we might have made the last evening. This took 5 business days to clear off our credit card. Beware.. Drink Packages: None of us purchased any of these. The prices are ridiculous for one week. The pop package is $7.50 pp per day, plus 18% tip, plus our exchange of 30%. No thanks. Even the wine drinkers in our group didn't buy. Cannot possibly drink enough of anything to make this pay per day. Some of the girls thought it might be cheaper to buy a bottle of wine -went to the bar outside O'Sheehans - told to go to the bakery right beside it and could buy bottles of wine. Believe they paid $88.00 for 4 bottles of wine (or coupons) Could get wine as you needed/wanted it, and would bring it to you at the table for dinner. This worked out really well for them, and was much cheaper. We tried to get cans of pop this way, but it would cost us $24.00 for 6 cans of pop. (really?) We did have pop/soda for dinner at Savor and Haven with no charge. Pools/activities etc. Not nearly enough pools for a ship this size. You're lucky to get into the adult pool to swim, and don't even think of going for a swim in the evening as it's emptied. The water tubes etc are a lot of fun, but can be hard to get on as line ups can be long. If you think the rope climb would be fun to do - don't get your hopes up. It is closed (due to high winds) more than open. The week that we were there - it was open twice - and those were days we were in port. A useless waste of space. Take it down and put in something more practical. Mini putt is closed too early in the evening. Entertainment: Howl at the Moon (dueling pianos) was probably our favorite entertainment of the week - great show - watched/listened multiple times. Steven Scott (comedian) was hilarious. Overall, NCL never again for us, just not worth the money charged. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
We previously went on sister ship “ getaway “ were very impressed we enjoyed our cruise however I have to say the getaway was a better experience. Food was great on this ship , however at buffet there was a few times my food was only ... Read More
We previously went on sister ship “ getaway “ were very impressed we enjoyed our cruise however I have to say the getaway was a better experience. Food was great on this ship , however at buffet there was a few times my food was only lukewarm. as was room ( balcony ) comfy bed . Ship was beautiful but I did notice a clump of dirt and hair on floor by the stairs at spice h20. It took 2 days before it was gone. Entertainment was great but the ncl app wouldn’t let you book and I guess people went straight to box office once on ship. All the comedy 18+ shows were booked solid before we set sail. We did manage to get to see one of the two comedians other shows. A couple other shows we wanted to see we couldn’t as they were also booked solid. I spoke to a few people who said they couldn’t see anything as for the few remaining tickets left were gone at second day of cruise. The ship has only 2 smoking areas on ship outside and one inside ( cigar lounge ). Was disappointed in this especially one night the spice h20 area was closed for private function. This is one of two areas you can smoke . Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
I wish I had done a little more research. First when you look at the advertising for this cruise it indicates passenger capacity 4266. I wonder why there was 4800 people that went off the ship in Cayman Islands and when asking a crew ... Read More
I wish I had done a little more research. First when you look at the advertising for this cruise it indicates passenger capacity 4266. I wonder why there was 4800 people that went off the ship in Cayman Islands and when asking a crew member of how many are on board the response was around 5100 and when we said "including crew" he bowed his head and decided maybe he'd already said to much. That makes a huge difference. Over crowding, over crowding!!!! The layout of the ship is very poor. It is meant obviously to maximize cabins and minimize the common space. Days at sea are brutal. You didn't dare give up your chair, it's gone. The red sticker system doesn't work either when you see people slipping the person marking the chairs a green bill of some denomination! If you want no privacy when in common areas such as pools, bar or entertainment areas, then this is definitely the ship for you. I don't smoke for a reason but while in areas where smoking was allowed I'm sure I inhaled more than my share. Men please don't smoke cigars!!! Just not enough space, pool very small for the number of people on the ship. Every area over crowded!!! I know a cruise line cannot necessarily limit the number of children but this is not the cruise ship you wish to take if you are looking for an adult relaxing vacation. I was seriously wishing I had hearing loss just to tune out some of the noise. Repeatedly spoke to people who were saying the exact same thing we were saying. Food was o.k. nothing wowing, staff was so much different than a cruise I had taken on the Norwegian Pearl two years ago. Bars and entertainment areas over crowded. The overall layout of the ship needs some improvements. Who puts the walking track in the area where people are also trying to lounge. Pool too small for number of people. Hot tubs always full since again not enough space for the number of persons on board. Adult only pool really doesn't man anything if kids just jump in anyway! The last day as we were departing was definitely the most interaction and the biggest smiles I saw on most officers. Persons taking care of our rooms were very friendly. Today's cruise ships are just getting too big. I have cruised several times over a period of 25 years and sadly I think the cruise industry is making a big mistake. While in any port you have to keep in mind there are now about 15,000 visitors. Time in ports sound great when you are booking, but then take 1-1 1/2 hours to get off the ship and at least an hour before sailing and you've lost the best parts of a given day. Crowed and not very enjoyable!! If you are considering a cruise, take the cost and add a flight, possibly an overnight stay the night prior to sailing, add a unlimited drink package of $750.00/ or Internet (250 mins. $125.00) and shore excursions and now surcharge on certain restaurants, tip, and want to participate in bingo or Deal or No Deal add another $30 and suddenly you may find you could have definitely went to an all inclusive holiday for much cheaper and spending a relaxing day from sunrise to sunset on a beach instead of having a number of restrictions imposed on you. Sorry Norwegian, you didn't wow me and in fact left me very disappointed with the experience overall. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
I’ve been cruising with NCL for 16 years. I love NCL. I’m more a fan of the smaller ships Dawn, Jewel and Gem. The Escape is a beautiful ship, but too big for me. The crew is the best out there. Had a great time. But improvements ... Read More
I’ve been cruising with NCL for 16 years. I love NCL. I’m more a fan of the smaller ships Dawn, Jewel and Gem. The Escape is a beautiful ship, but too big for me. The crew is the best out there. Had a great time. But improvements could be made. The pool deck was always crowded. There’s so many water tubes, there’s not enough real estate for chairs. 4000+ passengers all trying to get a chair, not good. My other complaint is the elevators. Only two elevator spots as opposed to the three you get on the smaller ships. Way too crowded. And lastly, when they would have passenger participation events, like Dancing with the Crew, Newlywed game...they would have it the atrium. The atrium can’t handle a thousand people trying to sit down. It’s a bizarre place to do events like that. Too crowded. Overall my cruise was great. Clean cabins, great itinerary, awesome food, stupendous crew. Just a few minor things. I may just stick with the smaller ships. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
I really enjoyed my week aboard the ESCAPE. I stayed in a Spa Suite and use of the Thermal Pool was my highlight, The weather was not accommodating, but the staff aboard the ship were very friendly and well trained. I enjoyed freestyle ... Read More
I really enjoyed my week aboard the ESCAPE. I stayed in a Spa Suite and use of the Thermal Pool was my highlight, The weather was not accommodating, but the staff aboard the ship were very friendly and well trained. I enjoyed freestyle dining as we could eat at different times. NCL was very good at moving us on and off the ship whether embarking, disembarking or at the ports. A great guitar player played a tribute to Carlos Santana. He was amazing. The food was good and I enjoyed my two massages in the spa. I did not utilize specialty dining, but I ate a Veal Oscar the last evening that was as good as any restaurant. I enjoyed the fact that the ship was only 4,000 passengers as I recently sailed on the RCL Harmony of the Seas and with 6200 passengers, it was too crowded. I will be traveling on the NCL Bliss next February as I am excited to visit Tortola as I have never been there. The only negatives were that the WIFI works poorly that NCL sells and even if you purchase the drink package, it does not include bottled water Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
This was my first cruise................I am now hooked. Sitting on the balcony with my honey watching the water kiss the ship was as soothing as anyone can imagine. The food was fantastic (Best Lamb Chops that I have had in decades) and ... Read More
This was my first cruise................I am now hooked. Sitting on the balcony with my honey watching the water kiss the ship was as soothing as anyone can imagine. The food was fantastic (Best Lamb Chops that I have had in decades) and the drinks matched my mood perfectly. I wanted to take the Spa home with me. I'll be back soon. The show entertainment was surprisingly top drawer and well worth the cost. The talent was top rate, the setting was unexpectedly professional. The music by the pools and through out the ship was performed by really talented musicians and singers and was a nice touch to a great experience. The service staff was consistently caring and attentive and I was made to feel as if everyone cared about us. The photographs taken by the ship's photographers were consistently well done and will be a forever reminder of a special week in our lives. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
Fun , Fun , Fun . Great Food , Service , Good Entertainment . Plenty to do. Ports 1 ) Costa Maya not much to do except shop 1 to 10 , I give it a 5.. All Other Ports meet my expectations . Atrium shows were great , ... Read More
Fun , Fun , Fun . Great Food , Service , Good Entertainment . Plenty to do. Ports 1 ) Costa Maya not much to do except shop 1 to 10 , I give it a 5.. All Other Ports meet my expectations . Atrium shows were great , 1 to 10 I give them a 9 . Shows at pool side were great, 1 to 10 I give them 9 . Cabin was always clean , supplied with plenty of towels, soap etc. Excellent Idea having staff members greet returning passengers in ports with refreshing drinks , towels and ices . Red carpet welcoming back ceremony in Nassau was a nice touch. This cruise was a wonderful experience for my wife and myself and one will never forget. LOOKING FORWARD TO ANOTHER FUN FILLED AND WONDERFUL CRUISE ON THE BLISS 2019 . Thank You All On The Escape, Jim & Liz Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
First, Let me start by saying my wife and I have formerly sailed on Carnival Breeze, Triumph, Liberty as well as RC's Monarch, Majesty, Independence (x2 and was married on it) and a few others that I don't recall right off. This ... Read More
First, Let me start by saying my wife and I have formerly sailed on Carnival Breeze, Triumph, Liberty as well as RC's Monarch, Majesty, Independence (x2 and was married on it) and a few others that I don't recall right off. This was our first time with Norwegian though, and to say the least I would have a very hard time booking again with the other two lines after the excellent time we had on Norwegian Escape. SHIP- Beautiful ship. It is like a city on the water. Impeccable cleanliness, plenty of bars and beautiful restaurants. You don't really ever feel like you are on a ship, but rather a top notch resort CABIN- We were in a Spa Mini-Suite which was well decorated, clean, and decent in size. I have been in larger rooms on older ships, but this one offered plenty of storage and never seemed cramped. Shower was excellent- full size with body jets. Room attendant never missed a beat. DINING- Excellent food. We ate at Moderno which was awesome, Cagney's which had a delicious assortment of steaks, and La Cucina (Italian). I would recommend them all for taste, portions, and service. But you MUST make a reservation prior to sailing or you will miss out. Manhattan Room was a bit loud and just so-so with the food. Buffet was always fresh with new items every day, and some re-occurring favorites. There was never a time that I saw a table not cleared off in a timely fashion. ACTIVITIES and Entertainment- The Thermal Spa is a must thing to have. Tranquil, gets you away from the many kids that will be on this ship. The Shows were top notch. I recommend Brat Pack but don't take the kids. It can be kind of risque and a bit foul-mouthed.....after all it is based on every John Hughes movie ever made! Company Men showcases some excellent vocal talent. Fifty songs in Forty-Five minutes. I thought After Midnight was so-so but I am not a big jazz fan. The slides are way cool but lines get long unless you stay on during a port day (strongly recommend this). Cruise Director Dan Dan is a riot! Fitness room and spa are excellent. Do take advantage of both. SERVICE- This is a well organized crew. They seem to anticipate your needs before you ask. They are always attentive and seem to take great pride in the ship. I never waited longer than a minute at any bar for a drink, and dinner service was impeccable. This was also by far the easiest embarkation and disembarkation I have ever had. The All-inclusive drink package makes things so much easier. Be sure to ask for exactly the kind of alcohol you want though. If you do not specify the rail liquor is what you will get and it is cheap. PORTS- So-So. Falmouth is very Disney-like as is Costa Maya. Both are very clean, and have plenty of things to do but in no way express the rich culture of either country. Prices are high in Costa Maya by comparison at about $5 for a beer and $10.00 for a taco plate. Better to eat and drink on the ship. Nassau is, well, Nassau- We have been there plenty of times and it seems kind of like a sunny stop over. I would book this ship again, and look forward to sailing on an Eastern Caribbean itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
We chose this ship because it looked like a lot of things for kids, since we had a 3 year old, 2, six year old, and a nine year old. It was a "cyber Monday special", only to find out it was $100 less later on in the month. We ... Read More
We chose this ship because it looked like a lot of things for kids, since we had a 3 year old, 2, six year old, and a nine year old. It was a "cyber Monday special", only to find out it was $100 less later on in the month. We called and they would only credit $50 on our room bill, and could not be used toward gratuities. So we were forced to find something at the gift shop. We also got the unlimited drink package, because it was "free"; well not really, because you have to pay for the tipping on the original price of $800 plus. So my husband and I ended up paying $125 each and my husband doesn't even drink alcohol. They said they had to charge each adult in cabin. I think they had jammers on at Miami port. You couldn't text or post anything. Then we bought the package just for texting people on board at sea. $9.99, not bad if it was reliable. Smoking in casino traveled to floors 6 and 8 because of the open Atrium. Stupid layout! You had to shout at the Guest Service line because they had entertainment in the open Atrium. Not enough garbage cans. Bring ear plugs, EVERYTHING was loud, not enjoyable to listen to any of the music anywhere because it was SO LOUD ALL THE TIME, no matter who was singing or playing. Walked out of 3 shows because you couldn't understand what they were singing. Jogging track was a JOKE! Its in the middle of walkway and chairs. Couldn't reserve shows but two on line, so had to standby for many. Not a bad cruise if you didn't have anything else to compare to, but NCL should take some tips from RC. I will say the food was great in the Garden Cafe, dining room needed more staff, poor service and just an OK variety. Also it looked like everybody had the free drink package, therefore, getting a drink was super frustrating because they sometimes only had one bartender and no order of service, unless you spoke up and said "IM NEXT" Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We are regular cruisers who have done most of the major cruise lines. In our opinion this ship is right up there with the best of them. With a little attention by management, this could be the king, or queen, of the sea! PROS: - ... Read More
We are regular cruisers who have done most of the major cruise lines. In our opinion this ship is right up there with the best of them. With a little attention by management, this could be the king, or queen, of the sea! PROS: - Excellent entertainment. Comedians and theatre presentations were extremely well done. Don't miss the dueling pianos. Rhonda was incredible and really got the crowd involved. - Multiple music and dance options every night. All first rate. However most end at mid-night. - Best drink offering. Multiple speciality bars from wine to mojito to bourbon. Jennylyn at the wine bar made our trip! - Good control of smoke. Even the casino is better then most. No worries with cigar smoke. - Top notch speciality restaurants. Our favorite was Cagney's, followed by La Cucina - Lots of activities, not just the endless trivia and bingo games on other ships. Simple things like origami were a big hit. -The gym has everything you could need to keep in shape, all clean and in good working order. - Staff that genuinely works to make connections. Many knew our names after one meeting. - Beautiful mid-ship area with outdoor dining options, seating and bars. Deck 8. - Extremely clean ship. Constantly worked by the crew. - Well engineered cabins with impressive bathroom and storage space.. Our room steward was excellent! Thanks Joe! - Huge ship that still feels small and personal due to the multiple smaller restaurants and bars. Most areas did not feel crowded (other than the atrium and pool deck) CONS: - Classic nickel and diming by Norwegian. Many drinks fall just above the $15 drink package maximum (and after paying nearly a $1,000!!). Come on! That being said, there are some pretty awesome bartenders/mixologists on board! - Wait staff is among the poorest trained that we have ever seen. Attention to detail is low, and caring is subpar....this is a management issue. Especially noticeable at the supper club. - No true adult only area. Very hard to get a spot in a hot tub. Teens can, and do, run wild around the ship. Royal Caribbean does this better then anyone else in setting aside an area for adults. - "The Haven" for high rollers sucks up a lot of the top deck space, so deck chairs are at huge premium. Kudo's to Norwegian for trying to control chair holding, but more needs to be done as at any given time 70% of chairs are vacant, but occupied with towels. -The atrium area used for the games and events got extremely crowded, we often had to skip them because there was no where to sit or stand and see the show. DOs: - Arrive early and bring your swim-suit. - Book everything you can (dining, excursions & entertainment) well before arrival as many venues fill-up early. For those that can only be booked on the ship, do it right away at the box office or on the electronic screens around the ship. These slots will be gone before the end of day #1. But go ahead and do standby for shows and activities, most of the time you will get in. - Try to carry your own bags off the ship. Getting off the ship and through customs this way takes 10 minutes max. - Try the painting class and the escape room. Hard to leave either without a huge smile. - Relax when things don't go perfectly...you are on vacation!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
Third Feb break cruise we have gone on, second time on the Escape. We had wanted to go to the Eastern Car., but we were fine with the western ports. We had been to all four ports previously so we only did two excursions, Best of Grand ... Read More
Third Feb break cruise we have gone on, second time on the Escape. We had wanted to go to the Eastern Car., but we were fine with the western ports. We had been to all four ports previously so we only did two excursions, Best of Grand Cayman and Best of Atlantis. We had a spa balcony and the thermal spa was OUTSTANDING! Never crowded and a wonderful escape from the crowds. Food: Food in the main dining room was fair to good, and the service was poor one night, good the other 3. We has aq 3 night restaurant perk, did Cagney's twice and Bayamo. Bayamo now has the Ocean Blue menu. Food and service in the alternative restaurants was outstanding, in particular the filet mignon at Cagney's. Food Republic was also outstanding. menu is now primarily asian, lots of sushi! Entertainment: This is where we believe Norwegian shines, both the options and the talent. The trio at Howl at the Moon were really outstanding, easily our favorite venue. The stage show, Brat pack, which was previously in the Supper Club was very good, with one of the female singers being truly outstanding. After Midnight was very good but not everyone's cup of tea, jazz music and dancing from the Harlem Renaissance popular during the 20's and 30's. Beau Tahana was a blast at the District Brew House. For beer fans, this place is nirvana! Ship: Here is where there are a few problems, though not for us. Pool, as has been well documented, is too small for a ship this big. Also loungers were always crowded near the pool. There is an area on 19 with a jacuzzi, bar, and a cooling station with plenty of loungers. It is near the entrance to Vibe but open to everyone! Not enough elevators, there should have been three banks, not just two. We liked to use the stairs, so this was not a problem. Overall we had a great time. The few problems did not bother us, food and entertainment were great and we found the staff to be efficient and for the most part friendly. Spend the extra on either a spa balcony or the thermal spa pass, it was outstanding and really relaxing! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
Chose this cruise for the Southern Carribean itinerary but unfortunately the itinerary changed. Escape was a fabulous ship, similar to the Getaway. We had a spa balcony 15140 which was great. Our cabin had the bed by the balcony. The ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the Southern Carribean itinerary but unfortunately the itinerary changed. Escape was a fabulous ship, similar to the Getaway. We had a spa balcony 15140 which was great. Our cabin had the bed by the balcony. The spa was great, large therapy pool, heated stone beds, saunas, steam room, salt bath, snow room was great. Only issue is when people reserved heated stone beds by placing towels on them. The staff was supposed to remove these and did during the early part of the cruise but not late in the cruise week. We had dinner at two of the specialty restaurants, Cagney's (Mortons) and Teppanyaki. Both were nice, service was great at Cagney's. Main dinning rooms were very nice with probably the best non-upcharge dinning on a cruise we had. The main pool needed to bigger with another bar and Spice H2O was a good idea but needed more lounge chairs. A couple of times they had regular chairs in place of lounge chairs. The bars for the most part each had a theme, and bartenders were nice and friendly. Dress code, you saw everything from shorts/t shirt to nice dresses/suites for guys including one kilt. It would be nice if the specialty "fine" dinning adhered to a better dress code. At least no shorts and a collard shirt. Valentine's night was great to see the couples dressed up, even more than the dress up or not night. All in all, we had a great time, nice and relaxing but plenty of stuff to do. Thanks Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We ( husband and sisterinlaw) departed Wisconsin a day early and arrived in Miami by 11 am. We had made hotel reservations at Courtyard Marriott in downtown Miami and were pleasantly surprised to see that our suite was ready so early. We ... Read More
We ( husband and sisterinlaw) departed Wisconsin a day early and arrived in Miami by 11 am. We had made hotel reservations at Courtyard Marriott in downtown Miami and were pleasantly surprised to see that our suite was ready so early. We dropped off our luggage and asked the front desk staff for a lunch recommendation. They recommended Union Restaurant and Cafe on SE 3rd Ave which was an easy walk from the hotel. The food here was very fresh and so yummy. They had a great selection of burgers, salads and chicken all served quickly with excellent customer service. After lunch we walked down to Bayside and enjoyed a bit of shopping and some mojitos. The next day we arrived via taxi to the cruise terminal around 1030 and quickly got through security and the cruise check in. We were in boarding group 4 and were on the ship by 1130 heading straight to the Sugarcane Mojito bar. This bar became our hangout for the week and a meeting place for all our new found friends. Bartenders Christian and Erwen are the BEST and took good care of us all week long. All three of us had the unlimited drink package. My husband and I were in cabin 8718 which is a mini suite with large balcony. It was one of the 'secret' cabins that have an extra large balcony with 2 loungers and 2 smaller chairs. I had been in this cabin last year and was so excited to get it again this year. The bathroom was adequate with a full sized shower and double sink. We had lotion, liquid body wash, soft soap and a shampoo/conditioner in the shower. The cabin had a nice sized closet with plenty of hangers and storage. A small couch and foot rest, hairdryer and tiny fridge were also in the cabin. We had our cabin steward Finn remove the items from the fridge so we could put water in there. We ate at the cafe for most breakfasts and lunches. Loved the fresh fruit and salads...... great selections to please any appetite. Self serve ice tea, lemonade, water and juices we also available. Most of the adults and kids found the soft serve icecream station by the end of day 2. For specialty restaurant choices we chose Bayamo, La Cucina and Cagneys. All three were delicious but Bayamo came out a clear winner. We didn't do any shows but did stop in at Headliners one night for dueling pianos. I personally liked the performers better last year. The 80's party and GLOW parties where a blast! We spent most of our days relaxing out at Spice H2O and never had a problem getting a lounger because we are early risers. The bar staff was very busy here and gave more hustle to those who were tipping a few dollars. The pool area was loud and crowded so we didn't hang out here. We had 4 port stops, Jamaica, Grand Cayman ,Costa Maya Mexico and Nassau. In Jamaica we had arranged to go zip lining through the ship excursions. This was a fantastic experience at Chukka park. There were 9-10 zips each was fast and long. The guides helped all along the course and safety was always taken. In the Caymans we took a local taxi bus to a random drop off on 7 Mile beach. We got off at Royal Palms and paid the $4 entrance fee. They were supposed to collect $12 per chair and umbrella but no one ever stopped to collect from us. The beach was crowded and the water was clear with white sand. Loved it here! In Costa Maya we had made private arrangements at 40 Canons and for $60 each we got lounger, unlimited drinks and lunch on the beach. Getting out of the port area was very difficult. We felt trapped and had to weave around to find the exit to the taxis. In Nassau we walked around the city and ended up eating lunch at a wonderful little Tapas bar called Dali. I highly recommend it! The most standout thing about the Escape was the staff. Everyone we met from the housekeepers, bartenders, cabin stewards and restaurant servers were in top shape. Friendly and outgoing, willing to help and always smiling. We never heard a whisper of complaining or grumpiness the entire week. Bravo NCL for having happy staff! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
We've sailed other cruise lines but never Norwegian when our friend recommended the line. We love to cruise so we decided to try it. We sailed the Norwegian Escape 2/17/18 to 2/24/18 and I am so happy we did. The service is top ... Read More
We've sailed other cruise lines but never Norwegian when our friend recommended the line. We love to cruise so we decided to try it. We sailed the Norwegian Escape 2/17/18 to 2/24/18 and I am so happy we did. The service is top notch. Please treat the crew nicely, I see too many people be dismissive or outright rude. If you want Vibe go to Buest Services as soon as you get on the ship...we made that mistake. The spa is high pressure sales. Period. Throughout a massage they tried to sell products...therefore it wasn't relaxing. Personally, I will now avoid spas at all cost in the future. The gym, although somewhat small, was ample. I took their spin classes and loved them (for an extra fee). My husband used the gym eqipment. The food was superior. We loved the buffet and eating in the main dining room was smooth. Little to no wait and again, the service and food was impeccable. Also, the specialty dining selections are truly awesome. There is so much to do on onboard. There are so many bar and pub selections, the entertainment is awesome, and we loved meeting in the Atrium are, sitting at O' Sheehan's and watching the bands and shows. The atrium is a great place and I think and is unique to Norwegian. We loved it there. The Waterfront on deck 8 is great! Check it out and then stop for a cocktail at 5o'clock somewhere. We stopped at Falmouth, George Town, Costa Maya and Nassau. The best port I have ever been to is Costa Maya. We zip lined at The Lost Mayan Kingdom and then relaxed in the lazy river. The people working at this park are so extremely accommodating and nice. If you don't want to do an excursion the port is somewhere you could shop and hang all day...and feel super safe. When we returned from our excursion we had a couple of Dos Equis with a lime and relaxed in the port. Simply put, we love Norwegian. The Escape is a great ship. We are going to try another Norwegian cruise within the year. Highly recommend Norwegian! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
This is my second cruise with NCL. Overall the service is good, we like it. We've tried all free restaurants, all are good, good services, good food, all restaurant staff. waiter, waitress are very nice. We had two inside ... Read More
This is my second cruise with NCL. Overall the service is good, we like it. We've tried all free restaurants, all are good, good services, good food, all restaurant staff. waiter, waitress are very nice. We had two inside cabin room, both room are clean, housekeeping is good. But there are room to improve about the guest services. 1. Tendering: I had issue when making reservation for tendering. Called guest services, was told that because my kids accounts were dis-activated (I didn't allow them to charge through their ship card). I can't make any reservation for them. Although they manually updated this for us, I still don't understand why I can not book the tendering for the kids, it's free and everyone needs it to get off. 2. Guest service: We played 1 round of pool table, but were charged 5 times. The lady at guest service was very rude, her first action was it's not possible for them to make mistake. I insisted that they investigate my cases. Although eventually I got refund back, I really think the guest service attitude could be better. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
My wife and I are not anti-child, but one of the things that we've appreciated after switching from Carnival to Norwegian a couple of years ago is the lack of children onboard. Well, that was certainly not the case for this trip -- we ... Read More
My wife and I are not anti-child, but one of the things that we've appreciated after switching from Carnival to Norwegian a couple of years ago is the lack of children onboard. Well, that was certainly not the case for this trip -- we had, without knowing it, booked during the winter holidays in the Northeast, so the ship was packed with kids. Blame it on the parents, but there were kids in places they weren't supposed to be -- in Spice H2O, at Howl at the Moon after 11pm, sitting at the bar in O'Sheehans, etc. More than once, we wished that we had sailed a week earlier or later, though we'd have missed meeting some wonderful people that became fast friends. Kids aside, we had a great time, and would never hesitate to sail on the Escape again. Very friendly and helpful staff, bartenders and servers, we've never had a complaint with NCL crew members, and the Escape was no different. We had the Ultimate Beverage and Dining Package as perks and enjoyed both. Phenomenal meals in the Italian, Brazilian and Cagney's restaurants, and very good dinners in the Manhattan Room (main dining room.) I was a little disappointed to see that they no longer have a dress code for the Manhattan Room, there were men in there wearing t-shirts and shorts. The entertainment was, as normal for NCL, excellent. We saw For the Record - the Brat Pack, Company Men and After Midnight and loved them all. After Midnight was particularly impressive. We took in Howl At The Moon every night it was offered -- Rhonda was amazing, Tommy was very funny and Michael was a great piano player. We only did one shore excursion, the "Bike Tour," in Grand Cayman and, as I wrote in my review on the NCL website, I do NOT recommend this excursion, it is extremely unsafe and it is only a matter of time before someone gets killed on it. Riding bicycles on the side of busy roads, with reckless drivers and older people on the bikes that don't really know what they're doing is a recipe for disaster. It didn't help that the "guide" paid little to no attention to the people riding behind him. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2018
Haven is a great concept, except for allowing young children unsupervised access to the pool and jacuzzis. We will be switching to Viking Ocean. The onshore activities were very good. The Haven staff were fantastic, especially Shah ... Read More
Haven is a great concept, except for allowing young children unsupervised access to the pool and jacuzzis. We will be switching to Viking Ocean. The onshore activities were very good. The Haven staff were fantastic, especially Shah the bartender. The Italian restaurant was not worth it. Why, when we have purchased the liquor package, can we order 3 glasses of wine for free, but, get charges $60, less a whopping 20% discount if we order a bottle of the same wine. Also, why do we get charges for bottles of scotch from our refrigerator, when it is free if we order from the bar.. I believe President Trumpo was correct in his opinion of Jamaica. Definitely recommend the Segway Tour in Costa Maya. The Grand Cayman Glassbottom Boat was very good. We had been to the straw market in Bahamas before, and, it is just as bad two years later. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We enjoyed every bit of this ship and this trip. I'll say right up front that we did stay in the Haven as suggested by our travel agent. But we also made sure to get around the whole ship as we will probably try not-Haven next time. ... Read More
We enjoyed every bit of this ship and this trip. I'll say right up front that we did stay in the Haven as suggested by our travel agent. But we also made sure to get around the whole ship as we will probably try not-Haven next time. And, yes, we already put down a deposit. For me this trip was all about relaxing. I'm in my 50's and told everyone I hadn't felt that relaxed since I was 12, and I meant it. I thought the ship was very clean. I think the only area we didn't spend time on was the regular Skydeck as we had the Haven skydeck. We ate at Churrascaria and Teppanyaki and both were great. La Cucina was good. Manhattan Room was good, excellent waiter: I Gusti. Gelato place was ok. We also ate at the Garden cafe twice for breakfast, twice for lunch and once for dinner. Garden Cafe had a great selection and food was decent. The only thing we missed there was the Crepe place because the line was always so long. If we didn't have the Haven as a backup we probably would have made sure to hit the crepe line. We did eat at the Haven restaurant all other times. It was 5 star. Service throughout the ship was always great. We never had any problem and it wasn't like anyone knew we were in the Haven unless they had to swipe your key. Entertainment was great. We enjoyed watching Casablanca one night in the giant screen in the atrium (it was sad only a few others were watching but it was pretty late on the first night and many were probably tired). The cake boss type contest was great. Dan Dan the cruise director was ALWAYS entertaining, even if he was over the top once in a while. We also watched the men vs. women thing the last night. And the animal towel folding seminar was good, too! We didn't see Brat pack or the Escape the Circus but wish we had tried the escape room as i heard it was great. The comedians and the magician were excellent. The singing group was excellent. I forget the name now. The cotton club was excellent. The dueling pianos were good, but we were so tired by the time we got there we usually didn't stay long. We were pretty much always doing something and getting to our cabin after midnight. No shortage of things to do or see. Though my wife was on a NCL Mediterranean cruise and she liked the Beatles group they had on that cruise. We also purchased the thermal spa pass. I'm not sure if you need both this and the Haven. We didn't use it as much as we would have liked, too much to do, not enough time. Better than the alternative! Falmouth, Jamaica - We did the bamboo river raft trip and liked it. We had a little waiting once we got to the rafting place but it was worth it. Very relaxing and romantic. We then went into town outside of the port. I don't know why people are afraid of that. No one approached us except for a guide. They have blue polo shirts and are trained by the tourism bureau but work for tips. Ours was named Pleazant. He was great. We told him we wanted patties and ting. He took us to Tastees where we got chicken patties, with coco bread and Ting. Ting is the grapefruit juice they make on the island. A great local comfort food meal. He made sure we didn't over pay, then took us to the courthouse lawn where we ate. Had a great conversation with him about Jamaica and its culture. I highly recommend doing this. The only thing I'd add is to try to a historical tour. At no point did we ever feel unsafe. At Grand Cayman we went to the turtle place. It was okay. I would have preferred to snorkel but my wife won't put her head under water. This is a good tour for people like that and small children. Otherwise I'd recommend a boat trip/snorkel trip. At Costa Maya we took a taxi/wagon ride to the first stop which put us at Maya Bar. We got free table, listened to great live music, got free wifi and my wife got an hour massage for $25. She said it was best ever. Then we walked along the beach and bought gifts. Maybe the best day. I felt like i was in one of those Corona commercials where you're on the beach. Find your beach I think it is. In Nassau we tried the SUB experience. My wife ended up not putting her head in the sub bubble and she wasn't the only one. It was ok but since I used to scuba dive it wasn't that exciting. But the people that had never dove before loved it. I would recommend to anyone that hasn't done any diving. It is absolutely beautiful there in Stuart's Cove. It was worth it just sitting on the boat in that beautiful blue water. One thing about excursions, dining, etc. Book as much as you can plan for way ahead of time. Also, there are excursions that show up on the ship that are on the list when you pre plan. So we had pre-booked 2 dinners, 2 excursions and 2 shows. Worked out fine but I'd try pre-booking all dinners and all shows. Room was excellent, Haven was excellent. Have already put down a deposit for a future cruise. I'd go on 3 or 4 per year if i could. Embarkation was easy because of the Haven. Disembarkation was with the big bus hop on hop off excursion. I wouldn't recommend. I have another review on that separately. Read Less
Norwegian Escape Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Service 3.0 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.7

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