We usually cruise in a suite but on this cruise we had a deluxe balcony room. The room was great(plenty of storage) and did not hinder us from having a great time. We chose a room on deck 11 close to the SPA since we always buy the hydrotherapy spa package when cruising ($200 value per couple). HIGHLY RECOMMEND this because it allows you find peace and quiet in a very relaxed atmosphere (saunas, hot tub, hydrotherapy pool, steam room, etc.).
I found the ship fairly easy to navigate which differs from some other critics. Red elevators = red carpet = starboard side. Blue elevators = blue carpet = port side. Main restaurants in the back, Garden Cafe in the front of the ship. Deck 14 is spa and exercise room (which is AMAZING). Deck 15 is where all the fun is (pool, slides, rock climbing). How complicated is that?
I enjoyed the food especially at Moderno (surcharge $20.00 but WORTH EVERY CENT). The meat is fantastic and they keep bringing you more until you say STOP!!! The Chef's special steak cut is better than the filet. If you don't like paying a little more for specialty foods, don't worry; the main restaurants are always available, serving a variety of items and are very good.
I did notice the service was a little slow in the main restaurants (especially the Manhattan Room). This may be due to a training issue and location of the kitchen. THIS IS MY ONLY COMPLAINT on this trip, everything else was FABULOUS.
Entertainment: Blue Man Group was great and all that I expected. Some older folks I talked to thought they were too loud but you should have expected that. The Murder Mystery Lunch was worth the $20 surcharge. It was very entertaining. Don't miss the Legends In Concert it is a great show. The comedian/magician(Dana) was OK and Paul Scally was funny.
It never seemed to me that there were 4,000+ people on the ship. I had NO trouble with restaurant reservations, eating at the Garden Cafe, or getting a machine in the exercise room. One exception for some occurred on sea days at the pool. If you expect a prime location with a chair, come early. Otherwise go to the adults only pool at H2O SPICE which has good food, drink, plenty of sun shine and a large movie screen.
Embarkation and debarkation on the EPIC was the best of any ship I have cruised on. We had carry ONLY luggage and walked right off the ship at 7:30 am and was through customs in less than 15 minutes.