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Norwegian Encore Review

4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating
275 reviews
1 Award

Great experience overall!

Review for Norwegian Encore to Alaska
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determined112
6-10 Cruises • Age 50s

Rating by category

Cabin
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Fitness & Recreation

Additional details

Sail Date: May 2022
Cabin: Spa Balcony Stateroom

We decided to go to Alaska for our 25th anniversary. After our first cruise to Italy got canceled, we figured staying stateside was a safer bet. We've never been on Norwegian before, nor a ship this humongous! Embarkation was not so smooth. We planned to bring a couple of bottles of wine having previously read that there is only a corkage fee if you plan to imbibe it in the dining room. This was not the case. It applies to those who plan to drink in their room as well. We arrived at our specified time but they were backlogged and made us wait. The gal who made up our Sign and Sail cards made an error and put my husband's photos on both our cards. This caused an issue with security, who sent us back to the line but unbeknownst to us, it still was not corrected. Ultimately security let us on but we had to immediately go to guest services to finally get it taken care of properly. Room service now has a $10 service charge, except for continental breakfast which is still free. The specialty restaurants we ate were Cagneys, and Tepenyaki. The servings were enormous and I hated that there was so much waste. The chef at the Japanese steakhouse was extremely entertaining but the taste was average. No fire volcanos per Maritime law, but he made up for it with tons of 80's tunes. The Garden Cafe had good food and short lines; we were always easily able to find a seat. We were we were at about 60% sailing capacity. The only dining disappointment for me is that I am gluten free and I did not see nearly as many GF options in the buffet or in the main dining room, like I have seen on other cruise lines. I had the option of pre-ordering in the main dining room but this wasn't explained to me till 5 days in. The entertainment was great! TIP: Book seats right away for the comedy club. It fills quickly, and if you don't get a reservation you can wait in the stand by line in case reservations don't show. The early show is G rated and the 9pm is more adult oriented. There are no reservations for shows in the theater. It was Never full and easy to find a seat. Choir of Men was not what I expected but it was entertaining. Kinky Boots was bizarre and a lot of fun. Be sure to experience the 2 story Go-karts if that's something you might like; they had tons of reservations available, but there were not a whole lot of younger people on this cruise and it was still cold weather, so maybe that's why. I loved the Virtual Reality games; some were better than others, and there were a couple that were broken. The 7D one has about 6 different experiences on it, but it is not obvious. One hour was perfect for going thorough the whole room since it was not busy at all. TIP: Earlier in the day is less busy. We saw The Beatles Invasion; they were good but sort of mechanical; and Guns and Rojas (Love the name!) which I preferred because it was 80's music. There was a lot of entertainment to choose from; we never ran out of something to do. The ship itself was Beautifully decorated- not flashy or loud, lots of neutral tones. The observation deck is wonderful, very serene.There were always seats available if you keep walking. It has a bar too. You may order 2 drinks at a time with the basic drink package. TIP: You will get charged port taxes when you are in the waters of Seattle and Canada (for drinks and portraits for example) TIP Look down at the carpet in the cabin hallways, the fish always swim forward towards the fore of the ship, to help you get your bearings. We booked our excursions outside the cruise line which saved us a lot. For example, we paid about $270 for the the Helicopter Glacier tour, which is nearly double onboard. This was a once in a lifetime experience, just surreal! The 250 minute basic internet is very minimal, and they make it a little difficult to log out. It can also take up to a couple of minutes to get out. Be sure to log out every time, and whatever you do, do not delete the Norwegian app. It would take 30 minutes to reload. Overall it was a terrific cruise. We really enjoyed ourselves and see cruising Norwegian in the future.

Cabin Review

Spa Balcony Stateroom

We chose to bid for a cabin upgrade to a Spa stateroom with a balcony, from an inside cabin, and are very glad we did. It was a small balcony but it was fine. Keep in mind the balconies on the 15th floor are partially obstructed but it was minimal. This category includes the Thermal suite, which is something like $79/ day. otherwise It made the upgrade totally worth it since we used it several times, and it was never crowded

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