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Sail Date: August 2018
Everything about this vacation was relaxing! People were saying that cruises are boring.. They were wrong, I had the best time of my life and am looking forward to my next cruise with them! My only downside was the deserts were not the ... Read More
Everything about this vacation was relaxing! People were saying that cruises are boring.. They were wrong, I had the best time of my life and am looking forward to my next cruise with them! My only downside was the deserts were not the best, but the actual food was delicious and they had healthy food and plenty of junk food!!! The entertainment was amazing all the bands and the shows were top knotch. The staff were amazing always had a smile on there face which was wonderful and they were not afraid to talk to you which was even better. The gym was great and the staff there were amazing as well. I did two excursions with Norwegian and I had a wonderful time Mike from the crystal caves was wonderful he new Bermuda and made everyone laugh. Would just do a bus tour with him for hours!! Thank you Norwegian for a wonderful experience! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We had a fantastic time on the Bermuda cruise! A psuedo booze cruise but very fun. Food was great and entertainment was pretty good as well. Bermuda was beautiful, beaches excellent! Not used to salt water pool but was ok. Julie and the ... Read More
We had a fantastic time on the Bermuda cruise! A psuedo booze cruise but very fun. Food was great and entertainment was pretty good as well. Bermuda was beautiful, beaches excellent! Not used to salt water pool but was ok. Julie and the comedy show were great! Highly reccomend! Washy washy happy happy was very fun and good, you have to know what I mean lol. The weather was fantastic as well never really saw any rain at all which was great. Did a catamaran tour and that was great also, learned about the rum swizzle! Free boat to St Georges from the Dockyard. Shops at the Dockyard were also pretty good for souveniers. Had a total of 16 people from two families on the trip and Veniatien and Aqua both accomodated after a long wait but gave us free champaigne while we waited. Overall a great time, crew and other guests wer great, and O'Sheehans was simply the best for late night drinks and food. Can't wait to go again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Overall, a very stressful and disappointing cruise. Big crowds with no chairs at the pool, waiting in long lines to make dinner reservations, the crowed atrium with no where to sit and tons of rude and obnoxious drunk people. It is very ... Read More
Overall, a very stressful and disappointing cruise. Big crowds with no chairs at the pool, waiting in long lines to make dinner reservations, the crowed atrium with no where to sit and tons of rude and obnoxious drunk people. It is very stressful trying to make all your dinner and show reservations 60 days ahead and if you can't do that you are forced to wait in long lines in in the terminal or on the ship to make them. In the future will sail a different line that offers a set time, as I find that less stressful, easpcially when traveling with larger group. The unlimited drink package seems to have a negative effect on most cruisers as they are very loud, sloppy and looking for fights. Had a very bad experience (cruise critic will not publish) onboard. Let's just say watch your children very carefully as family parties mix drunk adults with children. We have video of drunks jumping off the deck above the pool after it closes and fights breaking out. If your looking for a booze cruise gone wild, then this is the ship for you!!!! I will stick with the cruise lines that offer smaller ships and offer a better experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Pros: The entertainers were very good (Jojo, Jeff, Deal or No Deal guy, etc.), The room staff was great (Harvey). Karaoke is fun. The kids club is good for the younger children. Cons: The waiters were OK, the buffet felt super ... Read More
Pros: The entertainers were very good (Jojo, Jeff, Deal or No Deal guy, etc.), The room staff was great (Harvey). Karaoke is fun. The kids club is good for the younger children. Cons: The waiters were OK, the buffet felt super repeated, the game prizes truly were awful for what you pay, the pool area was too small and just super crowded. There are too many people on the ship, it's very crowded. The restaurant meals were eh. I most likely would not go on the Escape again. Overall out of a 10 I would rate it a 4. Somethings were great but overall it wasn't very appealing to me. For what you pay, it seems as if they just keep charging for a bunch of little things and to me, that is very cheap, especially for such a large named cruise line. Also, the port getting in and out took very long and just was so crowded, busy and aggravating. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
The crew worked hard & the 2 shows we saw (After Midnight & Wine Lovers Musical) were very good, but the ship itself was awful. NCL has made the cabins and all the public spaces smaller so they could cram more people on board. ... Read More
The crew worked hard & the 2 shows we saw (After Midnight & Wine Lovers Musical) were very good, but the ship itself was awful. NCL has made the cabins and all the public spaces smaller so they could cram more people on board. Forget about getting anywhere near the pool or even H2O. Jammed and uncomfortable; chairs were pushed together without 2" of space between and not an attendant for drinks in sight. Cabins were smaller than usual with very small balconies, although bathrooms not bad. Food was ok and our cabin attendant was excellent. We had very good service in the specialty restaurants and the main dining rooms. We actually felt bad for the crew as they had to put up with so many people with barely room to move. Nothing about this ship was made for the comfort of its passengers or crew, but for profit only. We had to spend $220/person to join the spa for the week so we would have somewhere to go during the day since we couldn't even find a place to sit besides our tiny balcony. I would NOT RECOMMEND this ship or even NCL every again because they've become adept as nickle and dimeing their customers. We had taken a different NCL cruise 5 years ago that was very good, but unfortunately NCL has changed. Oh, and the embarkation and disembarkation was brutal! Take another cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
I had researched many of the cruise lines before picking NCL, and thought it would be a great fit for us. I read about all the things the ship had to offer and the positive reviews posted. I had cruised before with Princess and was looking ... Read More
I had researched many of the cruise lines before picking NCL, and thought it would be a great fit for us. I read about all the things the ship had to offer and the positive reviews posted. I had cruised before with Princess and was looking forward to comparing the differences. For me it was kind of like it looked/seemed better in the pictures than in reality. Very crowded in many of the popular things to do so couldn't even try things out. I thought the passengers on the cruise were very friendly and seemed to be behaved even with all the drinking. The kids didn't seem to be out of control either. Embarkation: Getting on the ship was okay we live local so just called an Uber. Long lines once we got there. It took us about 2 hour from puling up to the pier to sitting down to get something to eat once on board. They lost one of our bags and I had to hunt it down myself as the staff didn't seem to be too concerned. Food/Drinks: We ate at 3 specialty restaurants, LeBistro, Teppanaki, Cagney's. LeBistro was our least favorite. The entrees at Teppanaki were very good, dessert and soup not so much. At Cagney's my husband got the filet mingion, which was good. I got the rib eye which was very fatty. I was glad I didn't pay for any of the restaurants as I didn't feel they were worth the extra fee. We ate at Taste and Savor and felt their food was about he same as the specialty ones. The service was the best at Cagney's. We ate breakfast and some lunches at the Garden Cafe. The food there was average to poor. They had mostly all the same food everyday on repeat with a few new ones thrown in. The buffets were often crowded and you felt like you had to be aggressive to get in line or get a table. Hand washing before getting in line at the buffet was non-existent. I saw very few people use the machine, yuck. People were often refilling their bottles from the drink station. The seats were stained and often wet from people's wet bathing suits. The drinks at the bars were very hit or miss, either too weak/strong or wrong. Some were so bad I had to just discard them and try getting a drink from a different bar. By the end of the cruise I was just getting seltzer not to deal with the inconsistencies. Thankfully we had the UBP so we weren't paying out of pocket for poor drinks. On-board activities: Many were very crowded or had long lines so we didn't want to deal with the hassle. The pool was very crowded wall to wall people. Too small of a pool for all those people. We bought the spa package to void the pools and on certain days it was hard to find loungers there also because people were saving them or sleeping on the thermal ones (only supposed to be used for 30 min). The steam room was either not working or not working well on 3 days out of the 7. The staff seemed to care less when it was brought to there attention. We attempted to go to Bingo but the cheapest bundle/package was $39+ so we skipped that. Entertainment: We saw Brat Pack, After Midnight, comedians, Howl at the Moon, juggler, and guitarist. All of them were great. Better than on other cruises. Really was looking forward to going to the Glow party but it was so packed we left after a few minutes as you couldn't even move. Service and Staff: Most not very friendly. They would say hello once we initiated it. We had only staff member ask us about our trip and that was so she could get our room number as she was looking for ratings. We never meet her nor did she ever serve us before so not really sure what I would comment on. She was going from table to table in the buffet. No one walking around with coffee refills as on other cruises. I had one person ask if we wanted drinks while at the casino. Mostly we had to hunt them down. The bartenders seemed stressed and short as they were very busy with all the people. Cabin: The Cabin was fine. We requested extension cords in advance (an email form and 2 phone calls to make sure) for CPAP machines and they still weren't there. They scrambled around to find one, only to bring back a 25 foot thick orange contractors/construction wheel type one we had to leave on our counter. Next time I'll bring my own. Ship: Kind of a pain that floors don't go straight through from aft to forward, so you have to walk through the deck to get the elevators. The public bathrooms were not well cleaned, toilet paper and "water" in many of the stalls. The elevator floors were very sticky from people spilling drinks and not being mopped. The only day I saw staff cleaning hand rails etc was one day when we got into port. There was a lot of smoke from the casino that could be smelt on all floors in the Atrium. Even in the non-smoking section people were smoking so you couldn't get away from it. Port: Loved Bermuda! We had a great time in port. The water and the beaches were beautiful. We went to Hamilton on the ferry, Horseshoe bay, Jobson Cove and snorkeling. We did the helmet dive with Hartley great fun! I would definitely go to Bermuda again just probably not with NCL. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
This was our third time on Norwegian.. and by far the worst. First 2 were great on the Breakaway. Issue number 1... the first night the steward decided to not pull down the bed from the ceiling... and failed to make up another bed.. so ... Read More
This was our third time on Norwegian.. and by far the worst. First 2 were great on the Breakaway. Issue number 1... the first night the steward decided to not pull down the bed from the ceiling... and failed to make up another bed.. so we get back to the room at 10 pm and we have to call house keeping. They send someone who had a huge attitude. Issue number 2..This ship is way too crowded.. do not count on getting a chair at the pool unless you get there by 8am. The pool was way too salty and small for the ship size. 4300 people and one pool= ridiculous. Issue number 3... the food is garbage... you pay 6000.00 for a cruise.. there should be more complimentary options. There is Taste,Savor, The Manhattan Room, O sheehans and the Garden Cafe. Then there are upgrade restaurants where you have to pay.. which if you don’t book when you get on.. you won’t get in or you ll eat at 10pm. The Garden Buffet...was ok.. but always crowded. Overall the quality of food was bad. Issue number 3.. while you expect to pay for everything.. they really nickel and dime you on everything.. 6.00 for a little bowling game in O sheehans. Lot more to speak of but too long to list. Norwegian cruise line seems to have forgotten about their customers. They need to stop building these huge ships and care more about the passengers.. not just packing them on. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Excellent service, great staff, amazing food quality, right size cabin (for 3 of us). Loved freestyle cruising and loved Specialty dinning experience. We loved Moderno and Le Bistro restaurants. However, I have to say the pools smaller and ... Read More
Excellent service, great staff, amazing food quality, right size cabin (for 3 of us). Loved freestyle cruising and loved Specialty dinning experience. We loved Moderno and Le Bistro restaurants. However, I have to say the pools smaller and very crowded and that was little disappointing. Despite the fact that pools are small and crowded, there are lot of other activities to do onboard including Rope course, mini golf, tubing, bocce, ping pong and lot more. Well managed, great leadership team, very polite, courteous service team and very clean . I have mixed feelings on Shore Excursions. Beaches in Bermuda are awesome and they are only 20-30 minutes by local transport for a fixed price. Comedy shows with Tom Simmons and "Choir of men" is the best show. Promenade is very small compared to other cruise ships I have seen. Overall, we loved the ship and our experience was great. Loved it! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We have sailed Disney, Carnival and Royal Caribbean....one might say we are seasoned cruisers. We chose NCL Escape partly to try the line but mostly for the itinerary. We love Bermuda. We were traveling with four kids, 6, 9, 12 and ... Read More
We have sailed Disney, Carnival and Royal Caribbean....one might say we are seasoned cruisers. We chose NCL Escape partly to try the line but mostly for the itinerary. We love Bermuda. We were traveling with four kids, 6, 9, 12 and 13. Stayed on Deck 13, Balcony Cabin's 13768 and 13766. I WOULD NOT recommend these. The crew door was right across the hall and made it very noisy. Access to the elevators was convenient but since this ship doesn't have Aft, mid ship and Forward elevators like most.....everyone Forward had to us these mid ship elevators.....Many noisy people walking by. I will say at about 1am the noise stopped. Food. Best food we have had on a cruise line. EXCEPT Bayamo....that was horrible for us. I really wish they would have stopped people from refilling their water bottles at the Buffet. We got the norovirus once and it grosses me out. I travel with hand sanitizer on my lanyard. Service. Lacking.....I think it is due to the anytime dining. We had to ask for bread several times. Drinks were forgotten.....You do not get a personal relationship with your servers so they don't "care" as much. We liked the Manhattan room the best because of the live music. I did like the Anytime Dining...it was nice to not have to rush to dinner.....This wasn't a deal breaker for me...but it was sort of disappointing. Drinks. Strong. A nice amount of alcohol and whatnot. Well made....take some one's and the bar tenders will remember you.... Pool Deck. Way too small. We hung at the kids pool most of the time. They were not "patrolling" the chairs and if you didn't have one at 8:00 am...you wouldn't get one at all. It wasn't really a huge issue for me because I was playing with my kids in the water and on the slides. Sport Court. It was hard for my kids to play on it because adults were on it playing basketball ALL THE TIME...ALL DAY LONG. Maybe they need to have a age schedule on it. The mini-golf and ropes course were both a hit. I would have like to see something like a Foosball table or other free table games. Ping Pong was also available. Port of Origin. I would probably NOT sail from NYC again. I just found the NYC/Jersey attitude a little abrasive....and I lived on the East Coast for 10 years. Now we live in Michigan and I just found....in general more rude people then nice and polite ones. But the polite ones were awesome! LOL. It didn't ruin it for me....just may change future sailing plans. Bermuda was great. Don't go to the snorkel park near the port. It was dangerous. Not from coral or rocks...BUT GLASS....not sea glass.....Smashed bottles....It wasn't worth the money. We did a Fishing Charter called Reel Addiction...Captain Curly has been fishing for 30 years and was great!!! We caught Wahoo, Black Fin Tuna, Trigger Fish, Orange Grouper.....he and his first mate were very helpful but not obsessive about their poles and gear. They let my kids reel everything in. The first mate cleaned the fish and then we took it over to the Bone Fish Inn at the dockyard where they cooked it all up for us. BTW Wahoo is delicious. We avoided Horseshoe beach and went to Elbow Beach. It was so nice... Entertainment. Fantastic. I can't tell you how impressed I was with the talent they have on the ship! Top Notch. Kids Club. I am not sure if it was the staff or the fact that the club was HUGE...but this was this only cruise we went on that my kids WANTED to go to the kids club. Yup. Wanted to. So...that was great for us! LOL Debarkation was chaotic and frustrating. But we got off. Even if we almost witnessed a fight. All in all we would sail NCL and the Escape again. Perhaps not at the NYC Port. Oh the jogging track is poorly placed on this ship. I usually like to take a walk in the evening to help...ahem....work all the days food off...but it was in a narrow area and then chairs and people were hanging out on it. Oh well. Ask me if you have any questions. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Auburndale Cruisers Review Our Great Family Cruise to Bermuda on NCL’s “Escape” One of Norwegian Cruise Line’s (NCL) newest cruise ships, the Escape, is an ideal choice for family cruises offering plenty to ... Read More
Auburndale Cruisers Review Our Great Family Cruise to Bermuda on NCL’s “Escape” One of Norwegian Cruise Line’s (NCL) newest cruise ships, the Escape, is an ideal choice for family cruises offering plenty to do for children as well as adults. The New York City to Bermuda cruise is presently in its inaugural season. Background: We were a party of ten; my wife and I, both senior citizens, our two sons and daughters-in-law and four grandchildren ages nine through fourteen. This was our thirtieth cruise since 2001, the twentieth with NCL. Our children and grandchildren have sailed with us on nine of the cruises so we all consider ourselves seasoned and savvy cruisers. We previously had sailed on NCL’s Crown, Dawn, Gem, Jewel, Star, and Breakaway, all very pleasurable experiences. We also had sailed with Celebrity, Holland America, Princess and Royal Caribbean also very pleasurable experiences. NCL’s loyalty club is called “Latitudes”. My wife and I are platinum-plus level (the highest) members and received on this cruise amenities including; priority check-in and boarding, priority disembarkation, free limited beverage package, a three specialty restaurant package, and an on-board spending credit. Arrival, Check-In and Boarding: We arrived at the Manhattan Passenger Ship Terminal by private limo Sunday August 5th at approximately 10:00, were whisked through priority check-in, a group photo, and boarded at 11:30. Once aboard, lunch was being served in the Garden Cafe and Savor dining rooms. Champagne, awaited us in our five staterooms. Following the mandatory safety drill, we departed for Bermuda at 4:00 pm as scheduled. The Escape: The Escape, (NCL Breakaway Class) is one of NCL’s newest ships, entering commercial service in October of 2015. It is in a word, huge, at 164,300 tons, 1,069 feet in length and 130 feet at the beam. Passenger capacity is listed at 4,266 (double occupancy). Based upon the amount of families on-board with more than two in a room, I imagine the passenger capacity was significantly increased. The ship was spotless and showed no evidence of wear and tear. If you wanted a deck chair pool-side you might well have waited for the shore days. On sea days, rain or shine, most of the pool-side deck chairs are reserved by sunrise with towels and other personal objects and then left unused until after 10:00 or later. In an attempt to curb the reservation of deck chairs, NCL initiated a system of tagging unoccupied reserved chairs, and if still unoccupied after an hour, a ship attendant would remove any articles which then had to be retrieved at the ship’s desk. We don’t know if the process worked. Staterooms: We had booked five mini-suites on Deck 14. The mini-suites are quite small. The balcony was almost non-existent, only about three feet deep, with just enough room for two small straight-back chairs and a tiny table and not conducive for an outdoor breakfast. There was however sufficient closet and storage space. The bathroom size was adequate. A flat screen TV, coffee maker, robes, mini bar, wall safe and hair dryer were furnished. In order to turn room lights or the TV on, or to use wall outlets, a stateroom key card (or any card with a magnetic strip) had to be inserted into a receptacle and left there as long as power was required. This is NCL’s attempt to reduce power usage, a good idea and not an inconvenience. The stateroom attendant was very friendly, efficient and timely, quickly adjusting his duties to our schedule. Towel animals were there nightly. Dining: In NCL’s Free Style Dining system, venues consist of “complimentary” and “specialty, cover charge applies”. The Manhattan Room, Savor and Taste are complimentary main dining rooms with table service. The Savor and Taste are also available for breakfast, lunch and dinner (limited during shore days). The complimentary Garden Cafe provides self-service buffet style fare for breakfast, lunch, dinner and in-between. Other complimentary dining is provided by O’Sheehans Irish Pub (24 hour service). Margaritaville was available for limited breakfast service. The complimentary dining rooms provided a varied daily menu with certain standard fare repeated daily. “Specialty, cover charge applies” dinner venues consist of Cagneys Steakhouse, La Cucina (Italian), Le Bistro (French), Moderno (Churrascaria) and Teppanyaki (Japanese) . We dined at our comp’d Cagney’s, La Cucina, Le Bistro and Teppanyaki. We did not try Moderno. We all agreed that Teppanyaki was the best of the specialty dining rooms. Cagney’s, La Cucina and le Bistro prices were a la carte, Teppanyaki a fixed price of $29.95. In my opinion, aside from the possible benefit of a smaller, quieter sitting, I do not consider the extra cost of the specialty venues worth it. Had we not been comp’d to Teppanyaki, it would have cost our group $300. The Garden Cafe offered a large variety of hot and cold food all day (except for maintenance periods) which was well prepared and tasty. The Garden Cafe was a favorite of our children and grandchildren for breakfast and lunch. My wife and I preferred either Savor or O’Sheehans. If you don’t mind serving yourself and crowds, the Café is a good choice for a varied (ethnic, cutting board, dessert etc.) meal. The Free Style system seems to work ok, but we’d still prefer fixed dinner seating at fixed times. I believe that NCL should consider two assigned or reserved fixed seating’s yet maintain the Free Style for those who wish to eat elsewhere at times. This works well on other cruise lines. The long waiting lines observed at the Manhattan Room are unacceptable. It does seem that NCL would like to force more diners into the specialty venues. We had made reservations in advance for the Manhattan room so no waiting was required. We considered the food in the main dining rooms to be good to very good in selection, preparation and portion size. The food in the specialty restaurants was also good to very good. The dining rooms service was very good to excellent with an attentive and competent wait staff. Entertainment: Several musicals were presented in the main Theater and were well received. We attended “Brat Pack” a musical medley of John Hughes movies. We thought it was quite good. Also well done were “After Midnight” and “Dueling Pianos – Howl at the Moon” Over the years my wife and I had come to really like the lounge and atrium music entertainment presented throughout the day. NCL performers including Leo, Fire & Ice, Arvin & Emily, drew SRO crowds in the atrium. This was gone on this cruise and the atrium presented mainly cruise games which were well attended, but not by us. So much for adult only entertainment. Where the Escape really shines is entertainment for children of all ages. Besides the three pools, a complete water park is provided with several water slides and a heart stopping free fall water slide which my brave grandson tried four times. A ropes course, high above Deck 18, provided daring children and adults with a hooked-up traverse suspended from ropes over wooden plank bridges, steel beams, cables and even a walk-the- plank out high above the ocean. A daughter-in law, a granddaughter and grandson completed the course safely, and then we adults were able to breathe again. For the young children there is the Splash Academy, a morning, afternoon and evening complimentary fun camp. After attending Splash for several previous cruises, our grandchildren have now outgrown it. Also on the ship were a casino, spa and salon, bowling alleys, three pools a basketball court, bocce court and a mini golf course. Shore Excursions: We did not take any shore excursions. Our children and grandchildren instead bussed it to Elbow Beach and Horse Shoe Bay. For the three shore days, NCL provided a complimentary tender service to St. George and Tobacco Bay beach, a nice touch. Disembarkation: Our priority disembarkation was scheduled for 9:15 and we actually got off at that time, no delays. It was one of our smoothest disembarkations ever. What We Liked and Loved: We liked the amenities provided to us by NCL. We liked the amicability, courtesy and attentiveness of the ships staff. We liked the dining and loved the action venues action venues. We loved the fact that our children and grandchildren had such a wonderful time. What We Didn’t Like: A cell phone app purchased on board by most of us to allow connection on the ship did not work well. Aside from that, there was nothing else that we really didn’t like. Summary and Recommendations: It was truly a great and memorable cruise. You could especially tell that by the dour looks on our grandchildren’s faces as we disembarked. We especially recommend the Escape for family summer cruising. You have to be aware of the crowds that occur at times. We would not recommend it for only-adult sailing. In my opinion, the Celebrity Summit, a similar cruise from nearby Bayonne, NJ, would be a better choice. I hope that this review will be helpful to someone thinking of sailing on the Escape in making an informed decision. For more information, please go to: http://www.escape.ncl.com/ Read Less
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