New Fans of The Epic: Norwegian Epic Cruise Review by Daisy's Dad

Norwegian Epic 5
Daisy's Dad
Member Since 2012
5 Forum Posts

Overall Member Rating

New Fans of The Epic

Sail Date: December 2012
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Miami
We were on the 12/8 sailing of the Epic and had a great time. This is our 3rd NCL cruise (previously on Dawn and Star). We have also sailed on Regent (twice), Costa, RCCL, and Holland America. We are in our early 50's and live in South Florida. I am often amused at how nit-picky these reviews can be. I can honestly say I have never been on a bad cruise as I believe a vacation is what you make of it. Having said that, this cruise was as much fun as we have ever had on a vacation!

Embarkation was the best we have ever experienced. Our cruises begin with a limo ride from home to the port. Cost is not much more than the cost of parking. Plus we don't have to schlep luggage, hop on a shuttle from the garage, and we can enjoy a glass (or two) of champagne on the way to the port. We arrived at the port at 10:30 am, waited in a short line and checked in at 11am. After check-in we were seated in the boarding lounge and allowed to board shortly after 11:30. Once on board we More purchased our Posh passes and drink packages and were allowed to drop off our carryons in our cabin at noon - the earliest I have ever experienced!

Our cabin was a large balcony (B6). Cabin itself was a bit cramped. Next time we will likely book a larger cabin. Balcony however was awesome. Our steward brought us 2 loungers, where we spent a lot of time. I had read all the reviews (pro and con) on the bathroom set-up. It didn't really bother us as we have been married for 24 yrs. Bed was comfortable and we slept well. I am 6'2" and I was perfectly comfortable.

Food was, without exception, outstanding! The first night we dined in Le Bistro. The lamb I ordered was the best I have ever had. Cagney's was memorable, despite being seated next to a table with 6 of the 75 children on board - more on that later. La Cucina was outstanding and Teppanyaki was tasty, and a lot of fun. Best dining experience however were the meals in The Manhattan Room. What a beautiful and well laid out room with live music, great food and outstanding service. All in all, this was the best cruise, dining wise, we have ever experienced - including 2 cruises on Regent Seven Seas!

Shows were varied. Despite all of the glowing reviews of Blue Man, I guess I just don't get it. Legends was so-so. I hardly consider Whopi Goldberg and Jimmy Buffet "legends"' deserving to be mentioned in the same breath as Donna Summer or Michael Jackson. While not a big fan (I'm an 80's rock guy), I thought Michael was outstanding. We attended the dueling pianos show and had a great time. Note- they take requests but won't play Tupac :). The best show, by far, was the Cirque dinner show. Outstanding, skilled, top notch acrobats and musicians. We sat on the floor (recommended). Don't miss this show.

Ship itself is huge! Lots of walking. One of the major benefits to this size are the roomy layouts of the dining areas. Cagney's was especially roomy as compared to Cagney's on other NCL ships. The only time we ever experienced crowds was during the muster drill. Always lots of pool loungers - the ship never felt crowded - although we were told the ship was far from full.

Given the fact that we sailed between Thanksgiving and Christmas, there were very few children on board (note to self). The children that were on board however were in control, well behaved, and well entertained. A fellow passenger told us that there were only 75 children on board versus 750 and 1100 on the following weeks' sailings. In fact, all passengers seemed mellow and well behaved. We never encountered any rudeness, excessive drunkeness, or compulsive complainers. A fun group!

We spent a lot of time in Posh and highly recommend this. For approx. $60 each we had padded lounges, lots of room, shade for my wife and great bar service!

Prior to boarding I booked a massage and facial for my wife and an acupuncture treatment for myself. When we checked in to the spa I was told that my acupuncture had to be rescheduled, followed by a barrage of hardcore up selling. I was so turned off, I cancelled the acupuncture. My wife however kept her massage/facial appointment and really enjoyed it.

We took the NCL excursion to Trunk Bay while docked in St. Thomas, and had a great time Went to Orient Beach on our own in St. Martin and spent the day on the ship in Nassau.

Disembarkation was, once again, best ever. We did check our luggage the night before. After a great breakfast in Taste, we disembarked at 9am and were outside waiting for our limo at 9:15 - WOW!

NCL has really figured out this crowd control thing. Never a line to get off the boat in port. Plenty of room for all (except our cabin), outstanding dining experience, courteous crew who really appeared to love their job - the list of superlatives goes on and on. Although we love the all inclusive and intimate cruise experience of Regent Seven Seas, we now have a hard time justifying the extra cost of Regent given the outstanding dining, service and fun we experienced on The Epic. Hopefully the itineraries in the Caribbean are altered in the future. We will be back! Less

Published 01/07/13

Cabin review: B610251 Large Balcony

Cramped cabin versus standard balcony cabins on other ships. Much-debated bathroom layout was not a big deal to us (married 24 yrs, not too modest). Balcony was huge. We asked steward for 2 loungers. He delivered them before sail away. We spent a lot of time here. Closet space and storage was excellent, specially considering the size of the room. Although we loved the big balcony, in the future we'd likely opt for a larger cabin, even at the expense of a smaller balcony.

Read All Large Balcony (B6) Reviews >>

Port and Shore Excursions

Not my favorite port. My wife remained on board. I walked into town looking for more rare liquor (sensing a theme here?). Only brands available were common brands at home at prices higher than I find at Costco or Total Wine. I purchased a t-shirt at Senior Frogs for my sister-in-law and re-boarded w/i an hour after getting off the ship. My wife and I ate lunch and spent the afternoon at Posh. Hopefully NCL replaces this port in the future.
Read 5044 Nassau Reviews

One of our favorite ports! Having been here many times in the past, we always take a cab to Orient Beach and spend the day at Coco Beach at The Esmeralda Resort. The chairs are farther apart and the food is authentic French and delicious. The masseuse is my wife's favorite, anywhere! Unfortunately she was fully booked on this cruise Our beach boy "Yo" kept our drinks refreshed all day. Although technically at the opposite end of the beach from the nude side, there are always a few topless ladies and a smattering of men who missed the "this is not the nude side of the beach" memo. Prices are higher than we experience at home as expected. What they heck - this is a French island, high prices and beach nudity make the experience all the more authentic - get over it and enjoy your day, as we always do, at this beautiful corner of the Caribbean! On the way back to the ship we took a quick cruise thru town to buy liquor (3 ltr Jack,Daniel's -$80 and not available in the 3 ltr size in US)and tea towels, then took the water taxi back to the ship. One of the advantages of living within driving distance of the port is the fact that we don't have to check liquor on a plane, thus I am always on the lookout for rare bottles when cruising. Despite 4 ships in port, including our mega ship, the port handled the crowds surprisingly well. No taxi line, room to walk downtown, etc. The island also was much cleaner than on our previous trips. There was a lot of construction underway in the port area and all-in-all a greater appearance of prosperity versus prior years.

Beach Break

Originally we booked the Champagne Catamaran cruise to St. John's. We took this excursion in another cruise line in march and had a blast! Unfortunately I pulled a muscle in my leg and decided to cancel and book the trip to Trunk Bay instead. Ferry picked us up at the pier for an uneventful trip to St. John. Trunk Bay, as in past experiences, was post card perfect! Bright sun, warm, clear water and sugary fine sand. After 2 1/2 hrs, we returned to the ferry and St. Thomas. We only had time to shop at the port upon our return. IMHO, the shops at Havensight are just as good as the ones downtown (selection and price wise) and a heck of a lot more convenient. I found a rare bottle of bourbon (Blanton's Green Label Single Barrel Private Reserve - $70). We then re-boarded and enjoyed lunch on the ship. If you've never visited Trunk Bay, I highly recommend it. Always take the ship sponsored tour to ensure the ship won't sail without you, plus you are picked up and dropped off at the pier. Likewise, the catamaran trip to St. John is a blast ( leg injury not withstanding).

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Daisy's Dad
Member Since 2012
5 Forum Posts
Enrichment Activities
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