But before I start my review I first like to say we had the most wonderful cruise on the EPIC. Now like with anything in life there is the good and the bad. I'll start of with bad first to get it out of the way, then the good;
As everyone has mentioned ad nauseam the bathroom concept was to say the least "different" but in my opinion all the negative comments are overblown. Now for me the sink was the major issue as the faucet prevented me from washing my face in the basin. Luckily, the second day of the cruise they changed the faucet in our room and this problem was no longer. Other than that we loved the size of the shower. Granted you had to step out in front of the cabin door to dry off. But that wasn't really that much of a big deal. We simply put the towel down and there was no big flooding in front of the cabin door like some people mentioned. The frosting on the toilet area I would probably change if possible. It's a little off putting watching someone as the go potty. Yes, you could move the curtain but there are something's that should remain really private. As for the public bathrooms is there way to keep the light on a little longer while you in the john.
ROOMS: We had a balcony on the 11th floor. I loved the room design. Now I had the balcony stateroom with the bed near the balcony. So that's why I probably liked it. The room had a lot of space to put your clothes and the luggage fits under the bed. The issue with putting your keycard in the slot by the door to activate your lights was a little confusing at first. But once I figured out the there are switches underneath the bath cabinet and by the bed it was pretty easy to use after that. You just leave your card in the slot and you can individually turn off the lights using the applicable light switches.
DINING: We ate at three specialty restaurants-Teppanyaki, Cagney and Le Bistro. We also ate at the main dining restaurants (non-specialty) Taste and The Manhattan Room (we ate here twice). We also had dinner at Cirque Diner and Dreams. Le Bistro was the best of the six that we went to but they were all superb. We lucked out one night at The Manhattans Room as the featured entree that night was lobster and grouper. One minor complaint with the Manhattan Room, was in regards to the band. The band was never playing when we were having dinner. I believe that if you go to a supper club to hear the band while you dine at the very least they should play at least once while you dine. Just to let you know Taste and Manhattan Room share the same menu. We enjoyed the ambience of Manhattan Room which is why we ate there twice. We had lunch at O'Sheehans. By far the biggest bar we've seen on a ship and great finger food. The Garden Cafe is where we ate breakfast each morning. The breakfast buffet was nice. Omelets made to order, Eggs Benedict and a host of other breakfast options that did not keep you wanting.
ENTERTAINMENT: Blue Man Group. THE BEST!! Cirque Dinner and Dreams. Man, what a cool show granted the story was hard to follow but the individual acts were really cool!!! It's non- stop, you are so entranced with what' s going on around you and above you actually don't notice the food but that is excellent. We had premium seating for Cirque Dinner and Dreams right at the stage so where we sat made the show even better. (Word of advice: If you have premium seating get in line 1 hour before the show starts if you want good seats). The comedian/magician Jeff Hobson was hilarious. He was unexpected fun surprise. We went to the Howl at the Moon show on two consecutive nights. The first night was a blast. The pianists/singers had performers from other shows jam with them to the wee hours. We left at 2:00 am and they were still jamming. That made for a rocking fun night. Second City Improv and Legends were worth attending. The Michael Jackson impersonator was very good. Britney Spears and Rod Stewart were entertaining.
ACTIVITIES: Two words-WATER SLIDES. Thankfully there were not a lot of kids on board because we went on the slides over and over and over and it never got boring. The Green tube was the best, the Epic Plunge was fun to, the Purple tube was nice but we only tried it once. The ICE BAR. It's a $20 cover charge but worth to try at least once (you get two drinks included with the cover charge and the drinks were not watered down at all). We went three times. That was a blast. The drinks are served in an ice glass and there are six different alcoholic version and two non-alcoholic versions. Word of warning -It's cold! Although the ponchos and gloves do keep you warm (at least up until a point) I advise to wear socks. The first two times we actually stayed for 30 minutes, the third time we could only make it 15 minutes. But it was definitely worth the experience and shivering.
The two nightclubs Spice H2O and Bliss were cool. It was cool to dance out under the stars at Spice H2O. Bliss was cool too. But I think they should steer to Top 40 dance music at Bliss. We are from South Florida so it didn't matter much but theme nights like Hip Hop night would only appeal to a small segment of the ships passengers. I think that may have contributed to only a small number of people inside Bliss on those nights. Sadly, we didn't have the chance to go bowling, rock climbing or rappelling. That attests to the fact that there's so much to do and experience on this ship.
POOL AREA: Except for one day when we were at sea we lounged at the adult pool at Spice H2O. Except for one episode (which was quickly corrected by the staff) there were no kids around. My only suggestion is to play something else on the big screen then the same shots over and over.
PORTS: St. Maarten was gorgeous. We did an ATV tour which was so much fun then headed on our own to the French side of Orient Beach (wink, wink). We heard St. Thomas was nice but we went to St. John which was absolutely gorgeous. It is without a doubt one of the Top 5 most beautiful beaches in the world. If you do decide to do St. John DO NOT do the cruise excursion and instead do it yourself by heading to the Red Hook ferry instead when you arrive in St. Thomas . Then head straight to Trunk Bay for an absolute gorgeous day at the beach. If you do it yourself you will get to spend more time there then the 1 1/2 hour if you went with the cruise excursion. We stayed at Trunk Bay for about three hours. Nassau is Nassau.
SERVICE: We had no problem with service. The staff and stewards always greeted us warmly when they saw us. Our cabin steward Reynaldo was great. He knew my name on the second day of the voyage. Each night that Reynaldo turned down the bed there was some animal made from towels. I thought that was cool.
SUMMARY: Overall this was a great cruise. I would not hesitate telling anyone to sail on the NCL EPIC! It for us was one Epic fabulous week.