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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My wife and I were looking for something special to celebrate our 30th Anniversary. Talking with family and friends about what and where to go everyone said they or someone they knew had been to Bermuda and nothing bad was ever said. So we ... Read More
My wife and I were looking for something special to celebrate our 30th Anniversary. Talking with family and friends about what and where to go everyone said they or someone they knew had been to Bermuda and nothing bad was ever said. So we had a place now how to get there. Our older daughter had been there last year flying in and staying a week but we were looking for something a little more relaxing. Since we have cruised before we decide to look at that and we found Norwegian fit our needs best. We booked a year in advance and had to change sailing dates due to work conflicts which was not an issue with the help of our Norwegian cruise advisor. Sailing day arrives and what excitement. Since we didn’t have to fly to NYC we used that savings to upgrade to a suite and it was worth it. Check in went smoothly and we were onboard being served lunch while the cabins were being completed. Finally got to our suite dropped off our carry on luggage then off to explore and grab a drink. The one thing that stuck with us was how polite and considerate the staff was and very helpful, you had a question you got an answer with a smile sometimes they would take us to where we wanted to go. Food need I say more, awesome! Shows were entertaining. We do want to give special props to Alvin our cruise director and his staff. They made every day and night exciting with their entertainment. We were able to have dinner with the senior officers one night which was very nice. The only down side to the cruise was getting a lounge chair at the pool. Only two days we were able to. And if you think you can get out early to put down a towel to save the chair for later we’ll the staff monitors use if unoccupied for an hour they remove the belongings. You’ ll understand when you’re trying to find a seat why they need to be vigilant about this. Bermuda itself was excellent. We booked our excursions thru the ship which is a wise move. If you have a problem you have someone to help but we didn’t have any problems just peace of mind. So if you want something special book the cruise to Bermuda on Norwegian. BTW next year 2020 they bring their newest ship to sail Bermuda. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
AMAZING CRUISE!! The Escape is a beautiful ship, there are plenty of activities if you choose. We prefer to relax at The VIBE a private area with comfortable lounge chairs and a bar. Additional cost but well worth it. The ... Read More
AMAZING CRUISE!! The Escape is a beautiful ship, there are plenty of activities if you choose. We prefer to relax at The VIBE a private area with comfortable lounge chairs and a bar. Additional cost but well worth it. The tube slide is great for both young and old! Be sure to give it a try. We ate at all of the specialty restaurants, food choices, and service were excellent. Our favorite was La Cucina, the Burrata and Veal Osso Bucca was our all time favorite we went back twice! Crap Cake at Cagney’s and Escargot at Le Bistro were exceptional. All a must try. The only restaurant to serve lobster was Bayamo, the service was great, appetizers very good, not sure if we would go again because of all the up charges added to the dining package. The shows were excellent Choir of Men exceptional. The Supper Club offers dinner and a show. Very enjoyable! Deepak the General Manager/Hotel Director of The Escape was always around and all of the staff was very well organized under his direction. All of the staff are helpful and friendly always ready to assist in any way. If you are in the New York area, this cruise is an easy one. I especially love going under The Verrazzano Bridge. The view from the top deck was awesome! Bermuda is beautiful, plenty of things to see and do. We went to St. George, NCL provided a complimentary ferry there. There are free historical tours in St. George, Royal Dockyard and Hamilton for history fans. Other recommendations for Bermuda The beaches, The Caves, the aquarium. Love to cruise Love NCL Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We went with 4 other adult family members for our 30th anniversary. We had a great time! Cabins were good, food was good and plentiful, we all gained about 5 pounds each! We liked Magenta so much, we ate there our last 4 nights! They ... Read More
We went with 4 other adult family members for our 30th anniversary. We had a great time! Cabins were good, food was good and plentiful, we all gained about 5 pounds each! We liked Magenta so much, we ate there our last 4 nights! They treated us very special for our anniversary. The maitre'd Deron and hostess Rhea were awesome. Cruise director Ferdie and his staff were great! We saw them everywhere. We were definitely entertained! Cruise Critic tips used: 2 cheap battery operated candles to light the room, used Downy wrinkle spray that we put on and smoothed out on our hanging clothes when we unpacked, big magnetic clips to hold hats/head scarves, different colored pens to choose what each of the "decision makers" used on one Daily Freestyle itinerary each day so we could see what things we wanted to do together, and what time to eat meals, where family might be. Each family can take a picture of it. But we did do some things on our own, including reading a book and crosstitch brought from home. Also, I brought sealed tea bags and water flavor powder packets, an empty reusable water bottle and a travel mug and every night we went to the buffet beverage station and filled up with what we wanted and brought back snacks. We also filled up the water bottles with water before going ashore. You have to finish the water before you get back on board. We brought 2 kitchen garbage bags for our dirty clothes. We did the laundry in a bag special, which was a pretty good deal but we didn't get it back until 2 and a half days later, our last night on board. If you go to the pool by yourself make sure you can put your key card in a waterproof pouch you can carry. I wanted to go down the slide but didn't have anyone to hold my card, I was willing to risk my towel and cheap shower shoes near a pool, but not my key card. It's always windy on sea days and at may be in Bermuda, if you have crazy hair, make sure you have a hat with a strap (you can buy good inexpensive hat straps on Amazon) or a head scarf. Hats, of course, were also great for the bright sunshine. Wear them while getting on board. You can call people on your room phone, you just need their room number, you can also leave messages. There are also many house phones in the public areas of the ship and at guest services. Much easier than running to their room and better to leave messages. The doors to the cabins have a louvered design, which was impossible to put a big magnetic message board onto, a smaller one could go on the side or the top but it could only be about 4"" wide or length if you put it at the top, the louvered design was in the middle. We ended up using ours to communicate with our room steward on the bathroom door. If you have asthma or breathing problems and can't take the seasick pills, buy the wrist bands before the cruise and bring a ginger product as the wrist bands sold out quickly on the sea day, which I guess, is often rocky. There were no ginger items for sale in the gift shops, but they did have green apples on the buffet. Bermuda was nice, on our second and full day at Bermuda, we took the free NCL ferry to St. George, a nice hour long ride, we got to see a lot of the Bermuda shoreline. At St. George, we watched a "public dunking" and ate at the White Horse Pub. We took a 2 hour public bus back to the Royal Naval Dockyard and got to see alot of Bermuda and its people for $4.50 each! The first and last day we spent near the ship on the Royal Naval Dockyard. There is quite a bit to do there and there's a free "trolley" that will take you around the dockyard. My goals for a future trip would be to have afternoon tea somewhere nice and to walk the Bermuda Railway Trail in the safe off-road trails and fancy walkways closer to (I believe a few miles from) St. George. We did get to see it from the public bus and probably could have gotten off, but we would have had to find out first how to get a ride back. We did have to wait in a line that looped around quite a bit for the 8-9am carry-off only luggage people at disembarkment. It wasn’t terrible but we did have to be extra patient. I think it took us about an hour. Maybe go at the end? Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed this midsized ship and would be happy to go again! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
This was a 7 night cruise from Boston to Bermuda. I booked this last minute and it was just me (30’s female) and my two children (8 and 10) We had a large window in the room, and had the room organized with two beds separated and one ... Read More
This was a 7 night cruise from Boston to Bermuda. I booked this last minute and it was just me (30’s female) and my two children (8 and 10) We had a large window in the room, and had the room organized with two beds separated and one bed ‘bunk’ style. The kids loved having what was basically bunk beds on a cruise ship. The room was perfectly sized with adequate storage. More than I thought there would be. Tons of random cubbies and drawers. Seas were rough on our way to Bermuda, the kids thought it was super fun being in the ‘wave’ pool, as the water in the pool created huge waves. They had to close the pool a few times because of this. Even though my kids are great swimmers, I only let them swim while using the life vests, they thought these were very comfortable as well. If you want a chair on the pool deck then you’ll need to wake up very early to ‘claim’ yours. I went up at 10am and all of the chairs had towels clipped to them or bags on them, but nobody sitting in them. The food was fantastic. I only went to the restaurants where the food didn’t cost any extra though. The kids wanted the buffet every night but we got to most of the places and the food and menu offerings were fantastic everywhere. The service was better than excellent. Ankit, our waiter at the o’sheehans restaurant, learned (and remembered!) the kids names and interests. After learning that my daughter is very interested in art he even drew her some pictures on his note pad. Very cool giraffe, ankit! The kids loved the kids club. They kept asking to go to it even when I was like ‘but don’t you want to come swimming with me? Hot tub? Anything?’ Nope... kids club is where it’s at. I am already looking into booking another cruise! (On day 6 all three of us got a nastyyyyyyy cold. I’m still fighting it over a week later. I don’t know how that happened considering how often our hands are sanitized, but it happened) Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
It was for our Son & Daughter-In-Laws 30th Anniversary. We went with them and our Daughter and Son-In-Law, so there were 6 of us to celebrate. Our cruise started out with our Daughter-In-Law volunteering us for the married over 50 ... Read More
It was for our Son & Daughter-In-Laws 30th Anniversary. We went with them and our Daughter and Son-In-Law, so there were 6 of us to celebrate. Our cruise started out with our Daughter-In-Law volunteering us for the married over 50 year couple at the Not So Newlywed Game. It was fun to do it with the love and support from our married children. From that moment on we were referred to The Campers by anyone who was at the show, we could not get on or off an elevator without a funny comment. It made the whole week fun. The food was delicious and there were plenty of choices, I was disappointed that escargot, filet mignon, and lobster tails were not offered. We had the creme brulee after one dinner but it was not offered again, it is one of our favorites and it was delicious. We enjoyed the selection at the Garden Cafe, it was always stocked with fresh food, clean and neat. The personnel were friendly, helpful and nice. We also went to the Grand Pacific on embarkation day but did not go back as our stateroom was forward and it was a long walk. We enjoyed our dinner at the Orchid Garden, the food was also very good. Our favorite's were mid ship at O'Sheehan's and Magenta. Less crowded, always friendly and the service was wonderful. O"Sheehan's was a relaxing place to hang out for the shows in the atrium or just sit by a window to watch the ocean go by. Or just sit on our balcony and relax. We had a really good time with our family on this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We wanted to take our grandchildren, ages 5 and 9, to Bermuda as we can take the train to New York City. We had a family suite booked, but were offered the chance to bid on a Haven suite and I bid on the Aft Penthouse Suite and got it. ... Read More
We wanted to take our grandchildren, ages 5 and 9, to Bermuda as we can take the train to New York City. We had a family suite booked, but were offered the chance to bid on a Haven suite and I bid on the Aft Penthouse Suite and got it. From the moment we stepped into the terminal, everything went so smoothly. The check-in process was a breeze, very fast and efficient. Our suite was ready when we got on board so after a light snack in the Haven lounge, we settled in. We were in Suite 11912--living room, dining area, two baths, bedroom, and huge balcony. It was great for the four of us. The largest bathroom was particularly luxurious. We had a butler who brought snacks every day and served us dinner in the stateroom one evening and breakfast another day. Musa was excellent. We don't normally take in the shows and entertainment, but we enjoyed the lounge in The Haven and the kids loved the pool there. They also used the Splash Zone area, but enjoyed the more private pool more. We enjoy Bermuda and we have been there four times now. We had a glass-bottom boat tour scheduled, but it was canceled due to the weather. We took a cab to Horseshoe Bay Beach on our own ($32) and took a mini bus back ($7/person). It's a lovely beach and was not overly crowded the day we were there as the weather was a little iffy with rain off and on. We were very happy with The Haven. The wait staff in the dining room quickly got to know the kids and their preferences. The food was excellent and the service was also excellent.We ate most of our meals in The Haven dining room. The kids were always able to get into the pool. Our suite was not directly in The Haven, so we walked the length of the ship whenever we wanted to use their facilities, which we did often, but for us that was fine. Our grandkids were thrilled with the ship, particularly The Haven. My granddaughter has been on a cruise to Bermuda once before with us in a regular cabin, so she really understood the differences being in The Haven. We have probably spoiled our grandson forever with The Haven! Embarkation was very easy, but we really appreciated the private escort off the ship for disembarkation. We had a terrible experience leaving the ship on our last Bermuda cruise, so this was wonderful. We absolutely loved being in The Haven and will be looking at other destinations in this category suite. And that;s saying a lot for us as we don;t like ships this big (we usually cruise on Viking). Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
We had an amazing time on the Escape. My first time on Breakaway Plus. I absolutely love the Getaway. I have to admit I do think the Getaway was the nicer ship. I noticed the Escape did feel a bit more crowded than the Getaway even though ... Read More
We had an amazing time on the Escape. My first time on Breakaway Plus. I absolutely love the Getaway. I have to admit I do think the Getaway was the nicer ship. I noticed the Escape did feel a bit more crowded than the Getaway even though the Getaway was at max capacity and the Escape was not. We had a great time. Really good food and the Art Auctions are always a highlight for me. We really enjoyed the Manhattan Room. We did not go to the Buffet really at all. We loved that Taste and Savor were open every day for Breakfast and Lunch since we tried to avoid the crazy buffet. We got a nice inside cabin on deck 14. We were right next to the Elevators so it did get noisy at times. Overall we really had a great experience on the Escape and would certainly go again. In terms of Bermuda it was my second time there and it was once again really amazing. Horseshoe Bay Beach is definitely not to be missed. Tobacco Bay also is amazing. The Crystal Caves were really great as well. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We selected this cruise for a newer ship and all the perks received. We had the unlimited beverage package, 3 free nights in specialty restaurant, and OBC. The ship was spotless, great friendly service and crew in all areas. After ... Read More
We selected this cruise for a newer ship and all the perks received. We had the unlimited beverage package, 3 free nights in specialty restaurant, and OBC. The ship was spotless, great friendly service and crew in all areas. After Midnight and Choir of Men were exceptional, make sure to make reservations for both. We were pleased with food in all areas. The only complaint - we were billed for 4 people in Margaritaville, when it was only for 2 - my wife and myself. I saw this on TV - went to guest services, and the correction was made. We are Royal Caribbean and Celebrity fans, but cruise NCL also since out of NYC and no flying - and additional perks. We are booked on Dawn for October - hope service and food is just as good. Also, one really nice feature that is not offered on all cruise lines - we had a relaxing lunch in MDR - great service and avoided the craziness of buffet on embarkation day - wish more lines would adopt this policy. Till we were done with lunch cabins were just about ready. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
First, we are Platinum Latitudes members which means NCL is a favorite of ours. Our friends wanted to cruise to Bermuda on this exact cruise (they were a Bronze and Virgin NCL cruisers). We convinced them to share a Haven 2 BR suite with ... Read More
First, we are Platinum Latitudes members which means NCL is a favorite of ours. Our friends wanted to cruise to Bermuda on this exact cruise (they were a Bronze and Virgin NCL cruisers). We convinced them to share a Haven 2 BR suite with us (we took the children's BR). Best choice we ever made for similar to the cost of 2 individual balcony staterooms. We have been in the Haven (on the Jade) once before and it was great then, even better now. In the Haven Courtyard there is a small pool, a hot tub with jets, a steam room, a rest room, a dining area (breakfast/lunch), climb the stairs to a private sun deck with those round lounge chairs you can never find empty on the other decks; it is a quiet and luxurious area that wasn't crowded. The room is just like any other 2 BR family suite. We had good weather sailing down to Bermuda and while in Bermuda. On the last day the fog rolled in (apparently a common occurrence in the upper Atlantic). I liked the fog but it did cut down on some peoples pool time as the air was cooler and it rained off and on. You can't fault NCL for the weather. We did not eat in the cafe, but did eat in both main dining rooms, O'Sheehan's, Teppanyaki, Cagney's, Moderno and on the pool deck where they cooked in big kettle BBQ's. I did not have a bad meal, the Virgin NCL cruiser ordered steak in the main DR and complained about the quality (tough with gristle) however that was the only complaint all week and IMHO the best steak on the ship is in Teppanyaki followed by Cagney's then Moderno, so if you want good steak go to one of those venues (we take the meal package perk over the beverage perk and pay for drinks along the way which is about what the tax/tips on the drink package works out to). Bermuda is beautiful. Take the free ferry to St. Georges. Explore and go to the nearby beaches, I was told they were beautiful (we paid $5 to go to snorkel beach in the Fun Park near the ship which was a good deal, you paid extra for chairs/umbrellas but it goes to the locals and is about the cost of the ferry/bus to other beaches [except St. George]). We took the bus from St. George to Hamilton which was easy, bought our bus ticket right next to the bus stop. It was a holiday (Hero Days) so shops were closed in Hamilton but we got to see the Parade which was fun. Took the ferry back to the ship which was also fun. We liked the overnights in Bermuda, even though we stayed on the ship. We ate one meal (lunch) off ship in St. George on the water, I think the name of the restaurant was The Wharf. Good food, near a boat fuel refilling area so we got to watch boats come in and out. Some diesel smell if a larger boat stayed close. Everyone was friendly, both on shore and off. Well, except for the lady during the show who was texting in front of us and got offended when told she was being rude. DON'T BE RUDE! The entertainment was plentiful, variety abounded onboard. We did not attend everything but enjoyed what we went to, both in the theater and around the ship. If you don't like something, take a walk and find something you do like. Enjoy your cruise! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I will start by saying i must have read 200 reviews of this cruise before booking so i want to give a thorough review for anyone contemplating this cruise and also choosing to upgrade to the Haven. We are a family of 4, my husband and i ... Read More
I will start by saying i must have read 200 reviews of this cruise before booking so i want to give a thorough review for anyone contemplating this cruise and also choosing to upgrade to the Haven. We are a family of 4, my husband and i both in our early 40's and our kids are 11 and 14. We have a boy and girl. We were traveling with my sister n law, her husband and thier 3 kids ages 15, 12, and 10. I tried to read every review i could get my hands on regarding the Haven because it was considerabley more and i wanted to make sure it was worth it. I will tell you it is worth EVERY single penny!!! We chose the 2 bedroom haven family villa and wow the room was amazing! Large living area, seperate king size bedroom with a huge bathroom and giant windows over the tub and in the shower to look out to sea and a seperate bedroom and bathroom for our kids. Flat screen TV's in every room. From the moment we walked through the glass doors of the Manhatten Cruise Terminal till the moment we departed and got into a taxi back to the airport it was VIP service at its finest. I read a few reviews that mentioned people never wanting to leave the Haven and be in other parts of the ship and i totally get it now. We were in room 18112. To clarify not all Haven rooms are actually inside the Haven. Some have access to the Haven but their room is not inside. Our room was inside the Haven and that definitley added to the wow factor of our experience. The customer service we experienced was top notch. Our concierge Adrian is just amazing. Seriously he should be running the whole ship. Our Butler Samir was the same and cabin attendant Joceyln was just as awesome. So let me go back to the beginning. We walked into the cruise terminal and there is a very long line to check in but then i look to the right and there is a seperate line for Haven guest with about 4 people in it. We walk over and are immediatley escorted through and into a private lounge with chairs food, and refreshments and our own team to check us in and give us our key cards. It took about 15 min and then we were privatley escorted on the boat and into the Haven lounge. There were waiters ready with drinks, hambuger sliders and fries. We were told our room was ready right away and went to check it out. As i mentioned it was beyond impressive and my husband who truly does not like to cruise was very impressed. We chose to eat at Margaritaville because it was free for Haven guestst the first day. We are from South Florida so we have eaten there quite a few times before. Unfortunatley the service there was terrible and food not that great but the manager immediatly recognized what was happening and swooped in and gave us a card to come back for free another day. We never did because there were so many other options but it was a nice gesture and we werent paying for it anyways so we really didnt mind much. The Haven itself is truly amazing. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and the food is great. I am having withdrawls from the amazing avocado toast i had for breakfast every morning. We never made reservations and there was always a table when we needed one. The pool deck on 17, loungng deck on 19 and sun deck on 19 are worth the money for the upgrade alone. Cushioned loungers, waiters bringing you whatever you needed to drink, eat (there is a menu for the pool and lounging decks so you dont have to get up and go to the restaurant they just bring the food right to your chair) Never had to fight for a chair. The sun deck on 19 was my favorite and i spent a good portion of my time up there sunning, reading in a shady spot or loungng in the jacuzzi up there overlooking the ocean. The servers also come around sporatically with fresh fruit skewers and cheese. It really is first class service. Going back to our private conceirge and butler meant NEVER having to visit the internet cafe, general concierge, and all those long lines on deck 6. My internet was set up immediatley in the haven lounge by our concierge.( FYI the ncl app is cool because for $10 per phone you can also talk and text all you want with your loved ones through the app. We also chose the unlimited internet package for my husband and i to share and the unlimited social media package for my kids to share.) Our private concierge Adrian booked all of our dining reservations, shows, really anything we wanted was done immediatley and never a problem. It was truly crazy how attentive and awesome he was. And there is a private seating section for Haven guests at all shows. Our butler Samir was equally impressive getting us anything we needed whenever we needed it. Chocolate chip cookies at 1am for my kids, pizzas for us at odd hours etc.. whatever we wanted it was done. There are also little platters of snacks, sandwhiches and chocolates they leave in your room everyday. We ate at the following restaurants - Moderno, Tepanyaki, La Cucina, Manhattan room, Haven, Osheehans, Margaritaville Moderno was amazing - tons of food and great quality meats Tepanyaki was also amazing - a ton of food and just tasted great La Cucina - not very good. The pizza was good and that was about it. And this was our second time eating there because we went on the inaugrual sailing of the Bliss last year to Alaska (wich i will get to later) and the food was not good then either so they really need to consider what they are making in there Manhattan Room - amazing food, and dinner entertainment. Wish we ate there more than once. We ate there on our last night Haven - amazing all around Osheehans, - great pub food for lunch and dinner. They have a light night menu that i cant say the same about. Not sure if the food goes downhill that time of night or what but they should be embarrased to serve the nachos they do Margaritaville - i already discussed Garden buffet - i had a snack there once. our family traveling with us at there a lot and said it was not as good as the Bliss and i am sure they are right because the buffett food on the Bliss was suprisingly amazing Pool Snack Menu in the Haven - great they had everything from swordfish burgers, chicken ceasar wraps, burgers etc... they also have pound cake and banana bread by the pool everyday also with tea and infused water The casino- I read a hundred reviews complaining about the smoke. I will start off by saying i have asthma and not lightly either my lung actually collapsed when i was 18 so i dont like smoke. It WAS NOT as bad as some of the reviews i read. yes you can smell it terribly if you walk through a certain part of the slots section but i love black jack and there is a non smoking section (the smoke does wreak through into the non smoking because there is not a barrier to seperate) but it was managable. i played black jack every night and didnt feel like i was dying. They def could have designed it better as there was not a problem at all on the bliss games - the kids took advantage of karaoke every night and it was a blast to watch some people. they did the ropes course and said it was a lot of fun. Hardly any of them went to the kids clubs. they did their own things and we let them. they all stayed in a group and had phones so i was comfortable lettting them roam free. we played bingo and took part in some of the family fun games. they also spent a ton of money in the arcade and bowling so watch your kids spending on their cards if they have charging privleges escape the big top - absolutley terrible - dont waste your time. I'm the one that booked it and i dont think I will every hear the end of wasting an hour of everyones time. It was truly aweful. Excursion - we didnt book any through the ship. I booked a private catamaran through Sail Bermuda called the Wyauna and it was the highlight of the trip. We went paddle boarding, snorkeling, kayaking, and cliff jumping. The boat was well equipped immaculant and everyone had the best time FYI Bermuda is absolutley beautiful. We travel a ton and its the prettiest well maintianed Island i have ever been to. For the second day we rented electric cars from Oleander Bermuda Rentals and toured the entire Island and hit some beaches. Just make sure they give you a fully charged car. My brother n law had an issue with his. So last year we went on the Bliss all 9 of us also. It was amazing the ship was brand new and we did not have the haven. I didnt feel like i missed out because everything was so gorgeous on that ship and the staff was so friendly. We also did not have a lot of sea days. I will say i dont think we would have enjoyed this cruise as much if we werent in the haven. My sister n law and her family were not in the haven and although they had a nice time they have come complaints and there experience was not the same as ours. The staff outside of the Haven did not seem to be as nice as they were on the Bliss. The cleanliness of the ship was not as nice as the Bliss either. So i guess the bottom line is if you want a hassle free, VIP, total escape from problems crusie book the Haven. If you dont mind waiting in long lines and being incovenienced a bit then your fine without the Haven. But the pool deck and chair situation outside of the haven looked like a madhouse just FYI. Oh and getting off the ship there was about an hour and a half wait and i was freaking because i thought we would miss our flight but nope there was a special exit and special line to clear customs - took us 15 minutes! I hope this review was helpful:) Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We had an excellent time on this cruise. I cruised with my husband and three daughters and my parents. The best part about this itinerary is that they spend 3 days in Bermuda, which allows you to do more on the island. Cruise ... Read More
We had an excellent time on this cruise. I cruised with my husband and three daughters and my parents. The best part about this itinerary is that they spend 3 days in Bermuda, which allows you to do more on the island. Cruise Terminal: This ship left out of the Manhatten Cruise Terminal and I would suggest that if you are planning on cruising out of this terminal that you research where you are going to park ahead of time. there is parking at the terminal but it is expensive. $40 a day. We researched ahead of time and found a parking garage within only a few blocks from the terminal for half that price. Embarkation: Boarding the ship was relatively smooth. There was a long line but it moved quickly and the staff checking people in was efficient. Ship: The ship is huge. This was our fifth cruise with Norwegian and the layout was identical to their other large ships in the fleet such as the Breakaway, Bliss and Getaway. The ship was very nice and clean. Certain areas tended to get congested such as the Garden Café, and the theaters during show time. The Escape has waterslides, a ropes coarse, plank and mini golf, in front of Spice H2O there is the grotto with a waterfall area you can walk through. The pool area fills up quickly, two of the days we were not able to find a lounge chair that was empty. Get there early if you want a chair especially on sea days. For the shows we watched Choir of Man, which was outstanding, if you do nothing else, you must see this show, and we watched After Midnight which was also very well done. The only specialty restaurant we did was Teppanaki which was amazing. As soon as you set foot on the ship book your shows and restaurants right away, if you wait then everything will be booked out on the first day. Cabin: We had 2 adjoining rooms that were interior rooms on the 13th deck. It's nice and quiet up there. My kids were in one room and my husband and I were in the other one. Before this cruise we had always done a balcony but I was impressed with the interior room. Still enough space and it was cozy. The only thing I was unhappy with was the cabin steward. He took our pool towels and never replaced them and he lost our laundry, it ended up being found later that day. Aside from that, the rest of the service was off the chart. Bermuda: Bermuda is a great destination. It's such a beautiful island with the most stunning beaches I have ever seen. The one thing I will say is that it is extremely expensive. I forgot to pack sunscreen and when I bought it there it was $18.You will save a ton of money if you go back to the ship to eat all your meals. the first day we did an island tour that lasted 3 hours. This was a great way to get oriented with where everything was on the island. We also did snorkel park beach which is s short walk from the ship. No waves so it is great for children and you can rent kayak's and snorkel gear, and they have a beach bar. On day 2 we did a catamaran swim and snorkel. This was the highlight of the trip. They take you out to a reef a few miles away and you have 3 hours to snorkel in no more than 15ft of water. Snorkel gear is provided, along with kayak's and paddleboards. There is a bar on the boat and you get a free rum swizzle. It was great. For beaches we went to Horseshoe Bay which is a must see, it is beautiful and Tobacco Bay in the town of St. George, another beautiful beach with no waves and good snorkeling. Dining: We only ate at one speciality restaurant and it was Teppanyaki. All the food in the complimentary dining rooms was excellent. Overall we had a great time and would go again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Initially very tentative about moving up to such a large ship with over 4000 passengers. Some reviews wailed about long lines before, during and after. But my wife convinced me it would be great... she was right. Stayed in Manhattan ... Read More
Initially very tentative about moving up to such a large ship with over 4000 passengers. Some reviews wailed about long lines before, during and after. But my wife convinced me it would be great... she was right. Stayed in Manhattan the night before and decided not to go to the terminal until after embarkation had begun. So much better than standing for an hour waiting for security to open. We were able to go right to security and into the registration area lines which just kept moving. Total time including forms, pics, and up the gangway just 45 minutes to the first beverage. Spent some time wandering and discovered the 5 O’clock Somewhere outside bar. Great view of Manhattan. This bar and comfy seating areas surrounding the outside on Deck 8. Moved onto our room that was nicely appointed with a balcony that was great for morning coffees, afternoon sunning and champagne evenings. Our only disappointment was the cleaning staff who did not keep the standards we expected. The entertainment was great. Two pianos “Howl at the Moon” were so much fun we went 3 times! Steve and Rhonda we incredible talents, perfect performers for this type of music singalong. They even let a 87 year passenger play the drums a few times. Joe played great and it was a joy to see him play. There was also a 3rd player who had just joined “Howl”. He had an amazing voice. Two other shows we saw in the Theatre were After Midnight at the Cotton Club featuring a look back at the great songs of a vibrant era in Harlem. Great dance and voices that raised the roof. Next was The Choir of Man where a full slate of typical “anthem” songs with great choreography, solos and harmonies pulled you along with the boys night at their pub. The restaurants were exactly as billed with variety that should have pleased anyone. As with any ship you need to do some research. Check menus so you get what you like. Italian, Brazilian, Steakhouse, Japanese, Asian, French, Tapas. Some of those with up charges or as part of a dining package. The food hub is the Garden Cafe (Buffet). Every station is different so take a trip around the room that has everything from Hotdogs to Pad Thai, Fast or slow, deserts fancy and simple. Breakfast options, again, take a look around, self serve and never leave hungry. Oh yes, it also has two service bars. Short moving lines, plenty of seating that might be a bit tight if you are trying to sit a large group together. Leisure areas with pools, hot tubs, pool bars, deck chairs everywhere. My wives tip, go up, up higher for a cool experience sunning at H2O 17th deck that had a cooling waterfall grotto. Water slide, Ropes course with walk the plank off the edge of the ship. Basketball, Miniputt all up high. Once in beautiful Bermuda, we decided to pass on the excursions instead taking the Ferry across for a short trip to Hamilton for the day as we bar hopped from terrace to terrace. On Wednesday’s they hold a street festival in the evening. The next day we stay on the Wharf, while my wife hits the shopping, I tour the Old Fort built by the British. A great look into history, great exhibits and views. Next time beaches and snorkeling are on the agenda. Oh yes, there will be a next time for Bermuda! The elevators are fore and Aft. Occasionally busy and again possibly difficult for large groups or large families with strollers. But overall pretty smooth. Tip: remember that each set of buttons only calls 4 of the 8 elevators around it. If you press both sets on the same side, then all 8 are called. (PS that’s why the doors open and no one gets on occasionally). But you’re already on, so don’t get steamed, just get good at the close door button inside after you wait a beat for slow walkers. On The last day if you can’t get down the stairs the elevators will be quite full. Tip: Go up to go down. The sea days were great and the ship took the sea with very little sway thanks in part due to the weather awesome. Life is good! We’ll be back on NCL. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
This was our first time on the Escape. Embarkation was quicker than our previous cruises from Manhattan. Our dining experience was the best of the four NCL cruises we’ve been on. We dined in Chaney’s and Le Bistro and were extremely ... Read More
This was our first time on the Escape. Embarkation was quicker than our previous cruises from Manhattan. Our dining experience was the best of the four NCL cruises we’ve been on. We dined in Chaney’s and Le Bistro and were extremely pleased with the selections and the quality of our meals. We also fined in Taste and Savor and enjoyed our meals and the ambiance. The entertainment was first rate. We especially enjoyed the Choir of Man so much that we saw it twice. Howl st the Moon and Carole’s King were also very entertaining. Our only criticism was regarding the Atrium. There were a number of shows, games, demonstrations there but the area was too small to accommodate all the passengers watching the events. In addition, the venue was too close to the passenger services desks such as excursions, cruise next, and guest services which meant that the noise from the atrium made it extremely difficult to communicate at those desks. All in all this cruise was first class. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
Bermuda has always been a bucket list item for us and what better way to travel than a cruise! I thought the port time was long enough and was able to get to the major sites I wanted to see. I have been on a few cruises before and here is ... Read More
Bermuda has always been a bucket list item for us and what better way to travel than a cruise! I thought the port time was long enough and was able to get to the major sites I wanted to see. I have been on a few cruises before and here is what I loved about Norwegian. The Free Style dining is great! My husband and I did not keep any kind of regular schedule and it was nice to breakfast at 7:30am or 11am and dinner at 5pm or 9pm. Definitely would recommend late night reservations at the Manhattan Room for their late night live music starting at 8pm. On the flip side, the optional "formal night" was kind of lame and not well promoted. We actually missed it and just decided to wear our formal clothes to dinner the next day. The Open Bar Package as your Free at Sea offer is definitely the way to go. I loved the huge option of Bars and Cocktail Lounges. We barely had time for all of them but the interior designed and menus are terrific. And the bartenders are fast and professional. make sure you check out the water front in the mornings and afternoons, it is always quiet there! We only went to one specialty dining restaurant, Le Bistro, and the additional prices were extremely reasonable. We had a great waiter and the food presentation was beautiful. My husband and I loved the Thermal Spa and Suite. We got the whole week pass and it was totally worth it. We spent about 2 hours a day there just enjoying the quiet and hot stone lounge chairs. I especially appreciated the Hydro-therapy Pool and Steam/Salt rooms. I had a bit of a cold while we were traveling. I am glad we had the passes because there was never a hot tub open anywhere on the main Pool deck. We only spent the first day there and avoided it because it was too crowded the rest of the trip. The Choir of Man show was AMAZING! We had planned to go the first night but I got seasick so we went to a later show in the week and it was totally worth it! The songs and talent were great. After Midnight had a strong cast however, I thought the content of the show was a little dated (problematic). Especially since it was a fully black cast of performers bopping around the "Cotton Club". Could probably use a bit more diversity on the production team. The Cruise Director was very energetic and hilarious we had a ton of fun at the 80's night and the White Night. Also the ropes course is legit! It is not physically strenuous but definitely thrilling! I was kind of relieved the upper level course was out of service due to high winds. Make sure you bring sneakers for this otherwise they will not let you participate! Overall we would definitely consider Norwegian again for their wide variety of activities, bars, and nightlife on the Escape. The Ship was definitely packed but having a few quiet places to retreat to made it feel like we were on an Ocean Oasis. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My balcony was upgraded by my husband to Haven as a surprise for our 10th anniversary and gift for my Birthday. It was an amazingly and unforgetable experience. I really loved it. We were treated as Royalty with our Butler, Steward and ... Read More
My balcony was upgraded by my husband to Haven as a surprise for our 10th anniversary and gift for my Birthday. It was an amazingly and unforgetable experience. I really loved it. We were treated as Royalty with our Butler, Steward and Concierge. Embarking was great as I was surprised with going to Haven for the first time and disembark was smoth. The weather helped a lot. Sunny every day and ocean was smoth, I didnt feel I was in a ship. Food was fantastic. In the exclusive Restaurant at the Haven, the cheffs were exceptional. Congrats for them. Also we loved the private area with pool, jacuzzis, comfortable lounges and sundeck at the top of the ship with fantastic views, without mention our Balcony Penthouse that was really fabulous with cards with Congrats from Captain. Treats, cards, champagne, flowers, and Nespresso and teas and animal folding towel on the bed every day. All Entertainment was really enjoyable. Staffs 5 stars. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because it is within driving distance. Also, we did the same exact one last year, and we had a GREAT time. Embarkation went VERY well. I think that we were in Savor eating by 11:30. We parked at the port, which was ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it is within driving distance. Also, we did the same exact one last year, and we had a GREAT time. Embarkation went VERY well. I think that we were in Savor eating by 11:30. We parked at the port, which was expensive ($280). The ship is beautiful and very clean! Every staff member who I interacted with was AWESOME! They always did their best to make us happy! I LOVED Spice H2O! (Adults only area.) This is where I spent my afternoons. I also enjoyed the ropes course on this ship! So much fun! We ate 6 of our dinners in the Manhattan Room, and the staff was excellent! One night we ate at Moderno's! Wow! My first specialty dining experience and it was amazing! I will have to try that again! Breakfast in Taste/Savor is super good! I highly recommend it! Lunch in the Garden Cafe was great because they have so many choices! I love that they have actual hard ice cream along with the soft serve! I also loved their "salad action" stations each day for lunch, where they would mix up a different salad of the day for you. We were in angled balcony cabin 9900(aft, starboard). The view of the water isn't that great because the Waterfront roof is right outside of the balcony connected to it, so a cabin on a higher deck would def be a better view. Our room attendant, Gilbert, was EXCELLENT! He was the BEST EVER from all of my cruises! Wow! We loved Choir of Man! I wish that I had seen it earlier in the week, instead of on the last night. Carol's Kings (Male Vocal Group in the Supper Club) was very good! It was nice to get food during the Supper Club show. I didn't get to see After Midnight on this cruise. I love being at one port for 3 days because it seems very relaxing. No rushing on and off of the ship each day. We went to Horseshoe Bay Beach, St. George's, and we spent the 3rd day exploring the Dockyard. We LOVED the complimentary ferry to St. George's; it was a lovely and very comfortable boat. We loved this cruise so much that we will be doing it again next year! The brand new Encore will be replacing the Escape on this itinerary next year. I look forward to see the new ship! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This has been my 7th NCL Cruise. Everything was perfect. Food was wonderful, service was impressive and we loved all the entertainment also. Ship is kept spotless and the crew is tirelessly working for us. We also enjoyed beautiful ... Read More
This has been my 7th NCL Cruise. Everything was perfect. Food was wonderful, service was impressive and we loved all the entertainment also. Ship is kept spotless and the crew is tirelessly working for us. We also enjoyed beautiful weather and very smooth seas! Eating at Cagneys is always a treat! Lobster bisque is amazing and rib eyes and filets were delicious. We also had a fabulous meal at LaCucina. The one negative about the Escape is the fact that the ship does not have a large public, windowed room at the top, for that panoramic view. The Spinnaker lounge on the Pearl or the Gem has it. Ship seemed crowded at times. People hog chairs by the pool all day. This happens on all ships, but we couldn’t find two chairs together on sea days. We bid on an upgrade from an ocean view to an aft balcony and received it. We were very happy. Room was comfortable with a nice size shower. Shower has an adjustable shower head for short people. I love it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We found cruising NCL to be super relaxing and a lot of fun! The Escape is a beautiful ship with a fun and helpful crew. We definitely plan to sail on The Escape again! Embarkation was a smooth process, very organized. Our overall ... Read More
We found cruising NCL to be super relaxing and a lot of fun! The Escape is a beautiful ship with a fun and helpful crew. We definitely plan to sail on The Escape again! Embarkation was a smooth process, very organized. Our overall food and beverage experience was excellent. We chose to eat at Cagney's Steakhouse, LeBistro French Restaurant, Moderno Churrascaria, the buffet, O'Sheehan's, Savor, Taste, and The Manhattan Dining Room. Cagney's, LeBistro, and Moderno (all premium restaurants) were all wonderful - delicious food, great service, and excellent options. We were also pleasantly surprised by the buffet - delicious food, lots of options for all meals. Savor, Taste, and the Manhattan room were very good as well. Our experience at O'Sheehan's was hit or miss, but overall not bad. I wasn't thrilled with the cupcake I purchased at the bake shop (white chocolate strawberry); in my opinion the icing was way too stiff and the cake part was sticky. But the complimentary desserts were all hits with our family. Everyone on the NCL staff was professional and helpful. Our room steward checked with us every day and kept our room spotless. He even left me an extra box of tissues and an extra pillow when I came down with a cold during the cruise. The food staff was perfectly attentive without being overbearing and were VERY helpful with food allergies again without being overbearing. They were knowledgeable about how the food was prepared and double checked anything we ordered. We had plenty of allergy-safe options from which to choose. (For reference, our allergy concerns were Tree-nut, Peanut, and Shellfish.) There are plenty of onboard activities for all ages. Our family enjoyed the rope course, water slides, dance parties, pool, H2O, and the Grotto. The Grotto in H2O is a beautiful, peaceful retreat! There's plenty of entertainment on board. Here's our overall rating of the shows we attended: 18+ Comedy Show: Just meh. Not all that funny. After Midnight: High energy show, great dancing, beautiful costumes. Very enjoyable. Dueling Pianos: Very talented musicians, funnier than the comedian, but same kinds of jokes at each performance - once is enough. Don't ask them to play any Billy Joel or Elton John - they obviously hate it and will either not play your request while insulting you for asking or totally destroy the song with their own lyrics. Choir of Man: Fantastic show! We even purchased the CD afterward. This is the show to see! 5 stars. As for excursions, we did the Sunset Bermuda Triangle Glass Bottom Boat excursion through NCL and the Restless Native Catamaran Snorkel excursion through our excellent travel agents (Rick & Marian at Dream Vacations). Both were excellent! -The Sunset cruise was funny and very interesting. -The Restless Native crew were a lot of fun and the the snorkeling took place in water that we could stand in, making it accessible for everyone, and the more adventurous passengers could swim out into deeper water to see the reef. -On our own, we took a cab ($45 for six adult passengers) to Warwick Long Bay. The cab driver was friendly and helpful, the beach was beautiful and uncrowded, and we even found a little cove with lots of fish! Everyone in Bermuda was friendly and helpful. -I also recommend trying the Afternoon Tea at The Princess Hotel in Hamilton - delicious! A reservation is helpful, but not needed. If you do not have a reservation, just allow about 30 minutes for them to prepare your food - everything is made fresh! Disembarkation was a smooth process. Lines were long, but that's to be expected on a cruise carrying 5000 passengers. My disembarkation tip: Get a NYC porter for your luggage! No charge - just a tip (which they definitely deserve!), and they will get you through to your car or taxi super fast! Overall, a great trip I would love to do again! I'm hoping the Escape will get some improvements to it's professional entertainment, but at the very least Choir of Man is now included and is amazing! Yes, there are a variety of offerings onboard for an upcharge, but there's plenty to enjoy for no additional cost. Great cruise on a beautiful ship! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
My husband and I were on NCL Escape, leaving NYC on the Memorial Day Weekend. The 3-day stopover in Bermuda gave us plenty of time to explore and enjoy the beautiful islands of Bermuda! EMBARKATION: It was quick and easy. Each of ... Read More
My husband and I were on NCL Escape, leaving NYC on the Memorial Day Weekend. The 3-day stopover in Bermuda gave us plenty of time to explore and enjoy the beautiful islands of Bermuda! EMBARKATION: It was quick and easy. Each of us carried a duffle bag and carry-on, so we bypassed all the people checking their luggage with the porters. We are also NCL Platinum members, which allow us priority embarkation. After we went through the security, we were ushered to a dedicated counter and processed quickly. We were onboard the beautiful NCL Escape in no time! SHIP: Escape is the largest cruise ship we have ever been on. We were on Getaway and Breakaway before, but this ship beats both of them! Since it was Memorial Day Week, the ship was pretty full. While we had no problem getting into the elevator the entire week, we did take the stairs as much as we could. Our booking included free drinking and specialty restaurant packages. If you choose these two promotions, you are required to prepay gratuities. In our case, it came out to $309. For 7-day cruise, the specialty dining package consists of three dinners. But as Platinum members, we also received two extra specialty dining coupons, as well as a bottle of wine at Cagney’s or Le Bistro. We need to book all our specialty restaurants and the main entertainments as soon as we got onboard. Since we were unable to book anything online (not sure why), we were running around making reservations on the Embarkation Day! Any Maitre D stationed in front of the specialty restaurant can help you book all your dinner reservations (but not for specialty dining with coupons, which required different line). Shows like “Choir of Man” and “After Midnight” required reservation at the Box Office. We booked most of the things we wanted and were eating lunch at Savor Restaurant by 1:15 PM. After the mandatory lifeboat drill at 3:30 PM, the ship left the pier at 4 PM. It was smooth sailing through the Hudson River. Our room was on the starboard side,, so we watched the Statue of Liberty as we sailed by the Liberty Island. No matter how many times we see this magnificent statue, it never gets old! STATEROOM: Our stateroom was a Spa Mini Suite on the 15th deck. After I booked our room, NCL offered us an opportunity to bid for the Haven staterooms. Since we were happy with our room selection, we bid the lowest price – and were not disappointed when we didn’t get it. Upon entering the room, we found a bottle of Champagne, a plateful of chocolate covered strawberries, and two bottles of water on the desk -- part of the Platinum perks. Our stateroom has everything we needed – including two robes and his/hers slippers. The bed was very comfortable as were the pillows. There were plenty of storage spaces, including cavernous space underneath the bed where we stored all our luggage and bags. Although I brought along a power strip, we didn’t need it. The room had sufficient outlets for our needs (except for the bathroom). Bathroom has two sinks and large shower. It had Bvlgari amenities, including a shower pouf. You need to bring an adapter if you want to use the outlet in the bathroom. It was for shavers only. Since we use Waterpik flosser, we called the front desk and asked for an adapter, and it was delivered quickly. We used the adapter for the entire week and left it on the counter on the last day. While our room was very quiet (we didn’t hear any noise from our neighbors), we heard loud noises coming from ABOVE! On top of us is the pool area, and every morning around 4:30 AM, we could hear workers cleaning the deck and moving chairs. After the 2nd early morning wakeup, we went to the customer service and asked if the crew could delay cleaning until more reasonable hour, but the rep couldn’t answer. He called us later to offer us another room, but we didn’t’ feel like packing again, so we declined. Luckily, we brought our earplugs. The customer rep sent us a plateful of chocolate-covered strawberries (our second plate!) for our inconvenience. One of our favorite perks is the complimentary laundry for each of us, so we filled two laundry bags few days before we disembarked and they were delivered nicely folded. Nothing beats packing clean clothes on the last day of our trip! Our room steward was Blasé. He was a quiet fellow, but he kept our room clean and our ice bucket filled. On the first day, we asked him to remove all the contents from the mini fridge (it’s not covered in the drinking package) so we can put our own drinks in there. Any time we need to contact him, we just left a sticky note on the mirror and he always obliged. Before we disembarked, we gave him extra tip, aside from the automatic $15 pp daily tip, which is shared by the crew. He made our trip very comfortable. FOODS & DRINKS: The specialty restaurants were outstanding on Escape! We went to Cagney’s for filet mignon, Le Bistro (twice!) for lamb chops, and La Cucina for Osso Buco! We had prime ribs at O’Sheehan on the Embarkation night. (Prime ribs were also offered at the Garden Café on the same day.) Our biggest disappointment was dining at Bayamo. We saw Bayamo’s menu from our stateroom TV and it showed Alaska King Crab Legs and Stone Crab Claws, so we made two reservations. (There is upcharge for dining at Bayamo if you have the Specialty Package.) But when we sat down at the restaurant and looked at the menu, there were no crab legs! We asked our waitress about it and she said: “Oh, we changed the menu.” Really? Shouldn’t you update your menu on TV? This restaurant was our least favorite because the seafood was rather plain. My dessert was a chocolate cake covered in sauce, but the sauce had so much gelatin in it that it tasted rubbery. I told my husband if I dropped the cake, it will probably bounce right back! We cancelled our second reservation. Our biggest surprise was the tapas at Pincho’s! This small specialty restaurant is fee-based, but the dishes run between $2 - $8 only. Every dish the waitress recommended was perfect! We especially enjoyed Iberico Jamon ($3), Duck Montadito ($5) and Gambas Al Ajillo ($6). We were thinking that tapas were just snack foods, but after a couple of dishes, we were pretty full! Although they were not quite the same as the tapas we had in Barcelona, we enjoyed dining here. We were very happy with our meals onboard Escape, including breakfast at the Garden Café. Some mornings, you’ll find two ladies going around the tables with the day’s special pastry, singing: “yummy, yummy, good for your tummy!” Take whatever pastry they are offering because you won't see it again. For ship of this size, we didn’t have any problem finding seats – even on sea days. For lunch, sometimes we ate at the café, other times at the Taste or Savor Restaurant. Both restaurants have the same menu. If you have the drinking package, there were plenty of places to order your drinks. I don’t drink, but there are non-alcoholic drinks available. My favorite is the virgin Raspberry-Guava Mojito – really refreshing and delicious with real mint leaves! Be aware that you are not allowed to bring any bottle water (or any drinks for that matter) onboard and bottle water is not part of the drinking package. You have to buy it separately. (Tip: bring your empty water bottles from home and fill them from the filtered water in the Garden Café.) SPA & GYM: NCL’s thermal spa has many facilities and the thermal pool has powerful jets. Wear swimming suit that’s sturdy; otherwise, you’ll have wardrobe malfunction right in front of everybody! Also, if you are absent for a period of time and you left your personal belongings on the lounge chairs, the staff will move them to the floor to free up the chairs. Spa can get very crowded, especially on sea days. Gym has many types of equipment, including many treadmills. We never had to wait to use it. There is a separate room for weight lifting and another room for yoga and stretching with ballet bar on the wall. This room also has a heavy-duty punching bag. ENTERTAINMENT: We both enjoyed the “Choir of Man” and “After Midnight”. If you made reservation for “Choir of Man”, go to the theater early. The casts will pour you draft beer and you can take pictures with them on stage. The talented nine-member singers may offend some people with their antics, but it’s all in good fun. Go and enjoy the show and have a beer with the guys! We were bit ambivalent about booking “After Midnight”, after reading some negative reviews. We were absolutely BLOWN AWAY! This show is Broadway quality with dancing (so much tap dancing!) and singing (led by Melinda Doolittle, the American Idol finalist). This show is what entertainment is all about. While you can make reservation from your stateroom’s TV, it’s not always reliable. We booked a Supper Club show successfully from our stateroom, but when we showed up, we were denied entrance because our reservation didn’t show up. One curious observation – my husband and I are regular cruisers. This is the first time where we did not see the captain come on stage during the Welcome Aboard show to greet the passengers. We felt slighted. A simple “hello and welcome” would’ve sufficed. BERMUDA: We had beautiful weather while we docked in Bermuda! Celebrity Summit docked right after us. So, what did we do for three days here? Day 1 – we took a mini van ($7 PP) from the port to Horseshoe Bay. This beach is beautiful, with clear blue water and limestone cliffs. We went there in the morning and found the water to be bit chilly for swimming. When we left at noon, the water temperature got warmer. After we set up our beach tent that we brought from home, we walked around a bit. For lunch, we took taxi ($22.75 metered) to Art Mels Spicy Dicy for their famous fish sandwich. This place is for takeout only, so we took our sandwich and walked to Hamilton (took about 30 minutes) and ate at one of the benches alongside the Front Street. We did some shopping before taking the Hamilton ferry ($4.50 PP) back to the Navy Yard. (You buy the token inside the terminal.) Day 2 – we took NCL’s complimentary ferry to St. George’s. This boat is very modern and can accommodate a lot of passengers. It took about 50 minutes to arrive at St. George’s. It was a very comfortable ride and there’s bathroom on each deck. The ferry will keep to their schedule and will leave on time. (Tip: Bring sun umbrella with you, especially if you have small children, as waiting for the ferry will be in the glaring sun. It was pretty uncomfortable standing in line at the end of May. I can’t imagine what it’ll be like in June, July or August!) The ferry docked right next to the World Heritage Center. St. George’s is a quaint little town. We were here last December but didn’t have the chance to visit Tobacco Bay, so we took our beach tent again and headed to that direction. It’s an easy walk from the dock. You basically follow the crowd, as everybody will be going the same direction. On the way, we saw the Unfinished Church -- so called because the church ran out of funds and there was split in congregation. There are only skeletal walls remaining, but the structure has Gothic charm to it. The ground is well kept and the place is peaceful. Further up is the Tobacco Bay. This is a small beach and not as pretty as the Horseshoe Bay. The main part of the beach was already crowded when we arrived, so we went to another side of the beach behind large boulders. This area has trash scattered about and there were a lot of seaweeds and small rocks and shells on the beach. But it was quiet, the water was clear, and we had the small beach to ourselves. My husband snorkeled while I was content to just sit under our beach tent and enjoyed the view. We didn’t’ stay too long before heading back to town. We had delicious lunch at Wahoo’s Bistro on Water Street. It’s bit pricey (they take credit cards), but we ate grilled Wahoo fish and taco while overlooking the St. George’s Harbor. You can’t beat the view! This restaurant is conveniently located near the ferry terminal. Shopping in St. George is cheaper than shopping in Hamilton. Day 3 – we spent our last day at the Snorkel Bay Beach right by the Naval Dockyard. It required entrance fee of $5 pp, because this is a private beach facility. The beach is small and covered in small rocks and sharp shells, like the Tobacco Bay. We didn’t bring our water shoes, so it was uncomfortable walking to the water to snorkel. There were a lot of fish in the water! You don’t need to go far to see them. We were not allowed to use our beach tent here. In fact, you can’t bring your cooler, or your own food or drink, from outside. A small sign for rules and regulation is posted near the cashier’s window. Other than the Snorkel Beach, there are shops, bars, restaurants and other attractions near the cruise ship to keep us busy in the morning. The ship left Bermuda at 3 PM. After one more sea day, we were back in NYC. DISEMBARKATION: Ignore the color tags for the time to leave the ship. They mean nothing. Just get on line on Deck 7 and you’ll be let out of the ship as the line moved along. We got on line at 7 AM with all our belongings and waited 30 minutes by the casino before the line started moving. We went through the immigration with no wait time and were out in the street by 7:45 AM. There were plenty of taxis outside vying for customers. In conclusion, while it wasn't perfect, we did enjoy our time on NCL Escape, and Bermuda is AMAZING destination! We would cruise with NCL again! 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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We traveled to Bermuda on the NCL Escape over Memorial Day 2019 for one week leaving from NYC. We had a Mid-ship Mini Suite which is really a balcony room (no suite perks) with a slightly larger and very nicely equipped bathroom. ROOM ... Read More
We traveled to Bermuda on the NCL Escape over Memorial Day 2019 for one week leaving from NYC. We had a Mid-ship Mini Suite which is really a balcony room (no suite perks) with a slightly larger and very nicely equipped bathroom. ROOM - we all know cruise rooms are very small but this room had a comfy bed (requested a pillow top mattress cover that really helped). The bed seemed larger than a queen, closer to king size which we appreciate since both my husband and I are tall. Balcony was small but nice. The bathroom was really nice with a great shower. Great room attendant that always had the room freshen up when we returned and of course had all those cute towel animals every night. We booked the trip last minute (2 weeks before leaving) and was not given offer to upgrade since ship was nearly sold out and did sell out shortly after. FOOD - we enjoyed several different restaurants, including speciality since we had the package that gave us 3 meals at speciality restaurants. All had really nice atmosphere and food was very good to excellent. My favorite was the French restaurant - truly outstanding food and service. We also enjoyed sitting outside on balcony at the Italian restaurant where it was quiet and enjoyed sunset. We are FOODIES from NJ/NY area and accustomed to excellent food options so this is probably the most difficult area to satisfy us and was surprised with the good quality all around at main dining, buffet, and the speciality restaurants. DRINK - our cruise came with the drink package, a really nice perk and value. When we boarded the ship we noticed you could upgrade the drink package so you can have 1) Starbucks coffee (unlimited) and frappachinos/cold brew; 2) Bottles of wine at dinner: 3) Champagne that included Vue Cliquot 4) nice quality wines and drinks and 5) Bottled water. Although we are not big drinkers, I am a coffee addict and very happy to have my StarBucks every morning over the buffet coffee and I enjoyed a glass or two of Vue Cliquot Champagne nearly every evening with dinner. We are also huge water drinkers so having access to a bottle of water anytime was exactly what we wanted and worth to us the extra fee to upgrade. If you really enjoy higher quality wines and speciality liquors this is a really good value add-on. SHOWS - great shows and so many different types of entertainment to enjoy. We loved every one. SPA - we paid the extra fee to have access to the Spa area with the heated loungers and special therapy pool. It was a nice quiet place to visit in the afternoons when the rest of the ship is busy. My husband also enjoyed several massages of which he really enjoyed and thought were high quality. BERMUDA - we were in port for 3 days and we really enjoyed the island. We bought the two day bus/ferry pass that was convenient for getting around and used that to visit the caves. We also took a taxi from port to the beach which was probably same price as some of the shuttles if you have more than one person. Don't do the beach tour with the ship, it's much cheaper to take a taxi and rent the chairs on your own and very each to manage. We did do a very nice snorkeling tour and the catamaran was truly a luxurious ship and we had a fantastic time. We did witness a couple crash on their scooter; they were riding double and for some reason lost control and hit the curb and crashed. The man had banged up his leg pretty good and probably needed stitches; the woman seemed to be ok. Our Taxi driver told us that there were many Scooter accidents so just be very careful if you decide to rent these - we did not. SHIP - nicely maintained and clean. Was worried about the number of passengers this huge ship will book with over 4000+. The ship was busy and crowded at time but found plenty of quiet places to enjoy. If you like to sit at the pool, that was the busiest area but still plenty of sun decks and could find a lounge chair. We didn't sit by pool too much, I preferred reading on the balcony. We didn't do many of the athletics available, except some basketball but lots to do, especially for the active or younger passengers. There is really more things to do then time allowed on a one week trip! Overall we really loved the trip, NCL Escape and the convenience of leaving from NYC. We parked at the terminal, easy to exit the ship upon our return, got a porter that pushed us through customs faster and well worth a generous tip as the porter who also brought our bags up to the car. Will definitely do NCL again! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We like the convenience of cruising out of the NY area ports. Love Freestyle Cruising on NCL. We found the Breakaway + Class ESCAPE easy to get around and full of fun activities and great entertainment. All of the places we ate at ... Read More
We like the convenience of cruising out of the NY area ports. Love Freestyle Cruising on NCL. We found the Breakaway + Class ESCAPE easy to get around and full of fun activities and great entertainment. All of the places we ate at were very good except for a disastrous experience at the La Cuchina. (overcooked Veal, undercooked Tortellini, everything served cold and they dropped one Entre on the way to the table and we had to wait an additional 20 minutes for our meal. And nobody ever came to our table to ask if everything was alright! My wife could not even eat her cold, overcooked meal and we got up and left!) For a pleasant change, we were able to find ample lounges on several decks any time we wanted to get some sun. The "lounge police" were finally doing their jobs marking and clearing lounge hog's belongings! Thank You NCL for listening to our complaints! For VIBE fans, they had shockingly doubled the rate which caused a lot of discussion on the first day. We found out that there was only one elevator on the ship that would go up to deck 19 and after waiting 40 minutes to get up there, we cancelled the Vibe and got our money back ($418 dollars for two). Thankfully, we found out we did not need it since we always found lounges on the "free side" of Decks 18 & 19! Entertainment was generally very good with our favorite being "Carol's Kings". All the lounge acts were great! Getting on and off the ship was a breeze this time with no big waiting lines. When we got back to NY, we left the boat, got off the elevator and found our luggage immediately (thanks to my wife's eagle eyes!) and time from rolling off the boat to being loaded in our car was about 20 minutes! I know everyone is looking for their own thing regarding excursions and we found the Glass Bottom Boat to be a fun, educational experience. Our Bus Tour of Bermuda was great and our driver, Preston, was fantastic! He was articulate, funny and very informative. Also, the boat tour of Millionaires Row was a winner! Best way to see some of the biggest and most beautiful homes along the island coast! We had visited Bermuda 25 years ago and really enjoyed going back again on this cruise. Everyone on the Escape worked hard to make sure our experience was a good one! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
I’m careful with my reviews because I read them carefully prior to booking and my hope is always the same, people that write point out the good as well as the bad. We have been in 17 cruises, with 5 different cruise lines. Nine of these ... Read More
I’m careful with my reviews because I read them carefully prior to booking and my hope is always the same, people that write point out the good as well as the bad. We have been in 17 cruises, with 5 different cruise lines. Nine of these cruises have been in a Norwegian ship. The various cruises were on Norwegian, carnival, Princess, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean ships. The truth be told although most would think the same quality from ship to ship, and my guess possibly what the cruise line strives for, it’s just not the case. This review is regarding Norwegian cruises, specifically the Escape. As you will see I rated it excellent and do so with sincerity. We have taken cruises on the following Norwegian cruise ships, Escape, Breakaway, Dawn, Gem, Epic, and Pearl. There are and will always be a few hiccups so to speak on any vacation regardless of how taken. It’s not so much that a problem develops, what’s of more importance is how any issues are handled. The staff, Chiefs and management aboard the Escape far exceed that of all the other Norwegian ships we have been on. My wife as well as I have a variety of medical issues, all of which have the potential of ruined vacation if care is not taken by staff to assure cleanliness in the room of dust, sanitation throughout the ship to assure colds and illness isn’t spread but my wife having a major Gluten allergy Chiefs and waiter staff assuring foods are prepared and handled avoiding any chance of cross contamination. Entering the Escape a food service manager is assigned to any and all vacationers to assure food is handed in strick compliance. Regardless of so many areas of a ship to eat, anytime a key card is swiped in a food area, that supervisor somehow responds to the area to assure no mistakes are made. Although I’m sure many that cruise are aware this is done on other ships as well as other Norwegian lines... None are as careful as those on the Escape. In fairness, any ship can be just lucky or have a bad day. But with 5 cruises now on the Escape, each cruise on this ship has actually improved and a few supervisors as well as managers have kinda got to recognize us. Chiefs and food service staff routinely add to our experience by sending gluten free items/treats to the room for my wife to enjoy. Only drawback we have found on Norwegian is entertainment. Because we cruise so often on this cruise line, there is a bit of redundancy on shows. For example, although a great show, the magician dinner show has been running for over s year on this same ship. This being said for those similar to us that cruise often and enjoy a particular ship, we lose out on entertainment because after seeing several times it gets old. So my suggestion to Norwegian staff is IF they are going to keep a show or act for any extended period of time, that show should be updated with new material. For a magician I would think this would be easy to do, why it’s not done beats me. I would think after a year doing exactly the same thing would get old on the magician as well. Same goes with the Newly or not so newly wed show. How hard would it be to change up the questions asking guests called up to participate? I realize this is being a little critical of a ship I’m rating 5 stars, but Hope is someone in management looks over this review as well and possibly consider what I’m saying as a easy way to make trips even more enjoyable for others like us that cruise 3-5 times a year and are regulars on their ships. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
The trip was great. Everyone was very friendly. The staff at the kids club was exceptional. My daughter was not looking forward to the kids club (splash academy) because of her experience on a carnival cruise, but after her first visit ... Read More
The trip was great. Everyone was very friendly. The staff at the kids club was exceptional. My daughter was not looking forward to the kids club (splash academy) because of her experience on a carnival cruise, but after her first visit she was sold. We met some really great people and the entertainers were very good. The comedy show was good not great. Getting on and off the ship was very smooth and easy. We were a little disappointed about the rope course, one of the zip lines was closed but we understand it was for safety. The ship was clean. This was my second trip on the escape and I would consider this ship again in the future. I found everyone at guest services to be attentive and helpful. The show choir of man was funny and entertaining. We are so glad we chose that show. Thank you NCL. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
This was our first Norwegian Cruise, and I don't believe it will be the last! I will give my review in categories. Embarkation We arrived at the pier at around 10:45. Didn't have to wait too long in line before we were ... Read More
This was our first Norwegian Cruise, and I don't believe it will be the last! I will give my review in categories. Embarkation We arrived at the pier at around 10:45. Didn't have to wait too long in line before we were called. It was then that we learned that our cabin had been changed. We were no longer on deck 14. Now we were on deck 15, on the opposite side of the ship. I wanted to check out the new cabin before I complained. As it turned out the new cabin was quite acceptable. Cabin Our cabin steward was Jefferson. If we saw him 3 times during the cruise it was a lot. However, the room was always clean, and the towel animals that everyone was afraid were being done away with were always present. Bars Our first drink was in the Atrium Bar. There is nothing that tastes better than your first drink of the cruise! Every bar we went to always made us a good drink. The best bar was the Prime Meridian. They made the best martini there! Restaurants I can't say we had a bad meal on board. Everywhere we ate, from the Buffet to Cagney's, was really good! I'm a real prime rib fanatic and I can honestly say that the prime rib in the main dining room was just as good, if not better, than in Cagney's! Entertainment We only went to 3 shows, The Choir of Man, The Carole Kings (a Carole King Tribute), and Wine Lovers, The Musical. All were surprisingly excellent! We also saw a comedian, I can remember his name, that was also good. Spa As we weren't traveling with anyone, this trip was all about us! We treated ourselves to massages, daily acupuncture, and an algae cleansing bath. I also went for a full service shave! The spa staff was excellent! Shore Excursions Having been in Bermuda twice before we opted to take a mini-bus tour of the island to see if we missed anything. We hadn't! The tour was a nice way to spend a day. The Crew Those that I had interaction with were always very nice. My main complaint is I never saw the cruise director and I never saw the Captain. On my previous cruises I always ran into one or the other several times. Is this a normal occurrence on an NCL Cruise? The only real complaint I had was the lack of ventilation in the Casino and especially the cigar lounge. I love to smoke cigars! It was hard to enjoy a good stogie in there! There was no ventilation except for an overworked air-purifier. Whoever designed that place should be shot! If I ever cruise on Escape again I'll do my smoking on deck. Disembarkation Getting off the ship was as easy as getting on. We didn't have to wait long and our luggage was right there and customs was a breeze. Before you knew it we were home being licked to death by our dog! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
The cruise was great! We didn’t have great weather on the sea days going down to Bermuda, but the rest of the time the weather was awesome . And we loved Bermuda! So clean, safe, and the people were so nice. We would definitely be ... Read More
The cruise was great! We didn’t have great weather on the sea days going down to Bermuda, but the rest of the time the weather was awesome . And we loved Bermuda! So clean, safe, and the people were so nice. We would definitely be interested in vacationing there again. Here’s what we thought about everything: Ship: Really loved the ship overall. We never had to search for chairs on the deck, and loved the large selection of bars and lounges. Fitness Center was awesome as well. The cons were that the pool was teeny tiny (we never went in it), and the ropes course and slides were closed for most of the cruise. We did get to do the ropes course which was super fun, but there was only one staff member on the course, so it was hard to determine which way you were supposed to go. Another not so awesome thing was the smoke in the casino. It was right in the middle of the ship, so it was hard to avoid, and you could smell the smoke on the 6th and 8th decks as well. Staff: By far the best part of the cruise!! Every member of the staff was amazing and consistently went above an beyond for us. Our cabin attendant was fabulous, and many of the staff members we saw on a regular basis remembered our names. We had an issue with our next door neighbors smoking on their balcony, but the guest services staff addressed the issue and even followed up with us to make sure it didn’t continue. Food: We had high expectations for food since we live in NYC, so I would give the food a B+. There was plenty of food and tons of options, but it wasn’t amazing quality. The buffet was inconsistent and sub par at best. The main dining room Savor was alright, but the Manhattan Room was like bad wedding food. We did enjoy the specialty restaurants, though. We went to Moderno, Cagney’s, and Teppanyaki. Moderno was great, but we overdid it on the appetizer buffet, so were too full to try all the meats! The grilled pineapple, though, was to die for. Cagney’s was decent, but the service was super slow. The steaks were pretty good, and it was cool to be able to order huge porterhouse steaks that would cost us an arm and a leg in NYC. The appetizers were not very good, though. Teppanyaki was awesome, probably the best Teppanyaki I’ve had! Excursions: We did Scuba Diving, Hidden Gems, and the Segway Tour. Scuba Diving was fun, but we only went out for a half hour, and Joel and I had done shallow scuba diving before, so it wasn’t too exciting. Not sure if it was the time of year, but there wasn’t much marine life. Hidden Gems was awesome, and we lucked out with only 8 people in our group! I will say that the water was still pretty cold, so I’d definitely suggest doing the Bermuda cruise in June. Our tour guide was awesome and it was a great way to see pretty much the entire country in one day. Segways were also really fun, and we had a great guide for that, too. Cabin: It was perfect! No complaints at all. Entertainment: Joel and I used to be performers, so we had pretty high expectations for the entertainment. Unfortunately, it was pretty horrible; I’d give it a C- at best. We went to the variety show the first night and quickly realized that we would not be partaking in any of the entertainment options for the week. Talent was lacking and the production quality was very low. However, we did enjoy the dueling pianos and we LOVED Joanne Rochell (I think that was her name) who played at the District Tap House. She was by far the best performer on the ship, and I wish we had known that she had a show at the Supper Club, because we would have made reservations! Overall, we had an amazing time, and can’t wait for our next cruise!! Read Less
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