There are four restaurants: the Beachcomber, the Island Dining Room, the Oasis Restaurant and the smaller Black Rock Grill.
The Beachcomber on Deck 10 is a very casual, self-service buffet restaurant with a range of different options available at almost all times of day, including breakfast, lunch, dinner and late snacks. Drinks from the bar are available and tables are allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis. Regular choices include a salad bar and a hot carvery though, on selected theme nights like the curry night or the Italian night, passengers can choose from more adventurous options.
On Deck 6, passengers can visit another, slightly more formal, self-service restaurant, the Island. This is a popular choice with passengers and, if visiting in the evening, one can expect to queue up for a table. The food here is great, and the atmosphere is still relaxed enough to enjoy a quiet night.
The most formal of the onboard restaurants is the Oasis on Deck 5. Tables need to be booked for this restaurant and there is an additional cover charge for the meal. The Oasis is decorated with an Egyptian theme and diners can expect to be made a fuss of. The staff are very attentive and portion sizes are generous.
A roving group of waiters, armed with an acoustic guitar, spend the evening serenading tables with Mariachi-style versions of well-known pop and jazz standards. If you're celebrating a special occasion, you can arrange for them to visit you at your table.
There's also a coffee shop at the rear of the Bounty Lounge on Deck 8 called Cafe Brazil. Few of the things on offer here are included in the all-inclusive deals aboard the ship and passengers can expect to pay a small supplement for their morning espresso and croissant.
The views out of the rear windows of the ship's wake are, however, excellent, and it's a great place to relax with a book from the ship's library (conveniently situated in the Bounty Lounge) or a magazine.
The newest dining option on the Island Escape is the Black Rock Grill. Here, diners are presented with their own raw ingredients (steak, lobster tails or pork chops), which they can cook to their taste on a hot, volcanic rock.
This is a fun idea and, though a little gimmicky, seems popular with the ship's clientele. An additional cover charge is paid when diners book their tables but the restaurant is typically full every night.
Thomson Cruises Island Escape Ship Stats
- Crew: 540
- Launched: 1982 (refurbished 2010)
- Decks: 11
- Passengers: 1,544
- Registry: Bahamas