Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by finnboy: EPIC is not what NCL used to be
Overall Member Rating
EPIC is not what NCL used to be
We have earlier cruised with with several NCL ships. Gem maiden voyage form Dover to Barcelona 2007, Pearl from Miami to Sydney 2008, Jade Africa & Canaria cruise from Barcelona 2008 and Jewel Caribbean cruise from Miami to NY 2010. We have reached the Gold Latitudes level on NCL. All these earlier cruises make us feel worm about this great cruise line with nice ships and excellent service. We have allways cruised in mini-suite.
After 8 cruises with other cruise lines and 4 cruises with NCL we have come to the conclusion that NCL really gives the best owerall experience and best value for money. It was great to follow the NCLÂ's decission to leave german shipyard and o give a chance to french shipyard to built first NCL megaship. After seeing all nice photos of Epic it was a must to take a cruise with this ship.
The price diffrence between inside cabin (490eur) and mini-suite (1400eur) was too much and we decided to try inside cabin first time in our lives. More It was a good decission. It would have been a shame to waste 2800euros for such a disappointig cruise.
Because we have the gold member status in latitudes the embarkation was very smooth through latitudes encounter.
The public rooms looked worse in reality than in photos. The material used was cheap fake and the flooring was ugly. As an example the Manhattan room floor looked so PLASTIC that it totally destroyed the overall feeling of the restaurant. The overall lay out of the ship was not very good.we had really to look the maps to be abe to navigate through the ship. The pool deck is an catastroph! The ship had about 5000 guests and the pools were made for maximum 500 guests! Luckily we found the sun deck on 18th floor which was well hidden! They recently opened the Posh club in the front of the ship for all the guests without entrance fee. This place saved our holiday! It was nice lay the on padded sun chair, unfortunately Jamaican band and the pool were missing! The H2O was always owergrowded!
Inside cabin is and inside cabin. There was enough space and it was clean and nicely decorated. Cabin steward was doing good work. Towel animals did not bite us. I did not like the french toilet/shower lay-out. It is un-romantic and un-hygienic!
FABBA show and EPIC rocks were both low quality shows and H2O was again overgrowded. FAT CATS jazz club is a nice place, but there was no jazz available. Howl at the moon was not for us.
Pepsi was more expensive than earlier. They have europan taxes on shops - so i did not bought the citicen watch I was aiming to buy.
The dining was still guaranteed NCL quality.
First nigt in Manhattan roon the lobster was nice.
Le Bistro was good. Snails were better that ever!. The Maitre D remaind us form Jade 2008. We had nice memories.
Sushi was excellent and ala carte pricing is better that expected.
Teppanayaki was good, but we had some chinese peopple in the same table. They were not interested of the show and this abviously frustrated the chef.
Italian restaurant was as OK as Italian food can be.
Spiegel tent was good show and OK food. The space on second floor (balcony) was too tiny and I requested the lower level table and got it.
Churassaria was delicious experience with excellent service.
Gagneys is still the best restaurant of the ship. Good service and epic food.
Taste is a good place for breakfast, but it is only open 2 days out of 7 for lunch. Shame on you NCL!
O Sheenas is a nice pub, but Blue Lagoon had better menu and seaviews!
Buffet was a chaos! Too many peopple and not all desks open. Italians making a lot of noise and rushing around. We ate there lunch twice. Avoid!
Great outdoors is not anymore great. No seaviews! It is actually the pool grill. Jewell-class has a real Great outdoors.
We have cruised with RCCL and so far it has been the reference point for shows. Epic was better with Legends in Concert and Blue man group. Very Good! Somenthing maybe for the 5 other nights?
Service was good. May a littlebit more robotic than earlier. This is understandible when I was looking the habbits and attitude of other europeans. With american guests it easier to make excellent service. The crew/passenger ratio is probably worse than on the oter NCL ships.
In Palma I asked from shore stuff, if there is public transportation available. Answer was clear no! First thing we saw from shuttle bus (12$) was the public bus. We got our money back, but it took one hour.
Value was OK, but the feeling after the cruise was not. After speding 2000 euros for cruise, onboard costs, hotel and flights we were so tired, that it was nice to leave the ship and come home. This has happenned only once before, after really bad MSC cruis, whic I would not recommend even to my enemies.
EPIC is not an NCL ship. It is an NCL Mega ship. It is a money making machine. It can not deliver great experience. Ship itself is low quality made with too many passengers. Here I come Sun & Dawn!
On my opinion they should not sell tickets to EPIC if you are travelling without kids. The kids facilities are great and maybe cruising with kids on this ship is an EPIC experience. Without kinds it was an EPIC mistake. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
We did not went to Pisa, because we have been there 2007. It was a mistake Livorno is as dirty as any typical city in Italy.
We bought a day ticket for trams, metros and buses. By that we saw all the sights very easily. Marseille was beautiful city! From Notre Dam you can see wery nicely the hole area.
The old town was magnificient! Very cheap shopping! Clean and well kept!
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We had a great time.