he last time we had gone on a cruise was so long ago, I can't even remember. It was one of those weekend trips to Nassau. It felt crowded and we could not wait to get back home. We thought we would never go on a cruise again. However, we decided not to give up so easily.
Being a bit of a nerd; I quickly went into research mode and opted for NCL.
The Norwegian Escape ship is the newest of the ships and seemed to be the best contender. It is a state-of-the-art vessel. Watching on Youtube, I also liked the cool way the doors open, sort of like a Star Trek Starfleet. We used a travel agency because it is always best to book with a pro.
The ship lives up to its hype. It's gorgeous. We had a balcony suite and it was spacious and very clean. It was cleaned twice a day and the staff was very gracious.
The first place we went once we got settled in was the pool area. I have to say we were not impressed. There are two pools side by side. The kid's and the adult, which is small for such a large ship. The kid's pool does have huge cool slides.
The music was not our favorite. It felt like the repetitive thump - thump did not reflect my romantic notion of a Caribbean cruise. We were looking for more of an island, reggae-type vibe I guess. But there were plenty of benches and the bar was very lively. However, we were not giving up. We ventured to the rest of the ship, which is about 17 floors..excuse me, decks.( I am still learning the lingo).
One of the places was the Margaritaville restaurant just above. The vibe was more our style and the music was great.
One of our worries about going on a cruise was cleanliness. But I just don't know how NCL can do more. There are places all over to wash your hands and the staff stands by in the buffet area always reminding the guests. The wishy-washy boys were hilarious.
Since we were not going near the pool we decided to try the spa.
Once we paid, no one walked us in, or explained a thing. We had to ask a staff that was cleaning were to get our robes. The good part is that the thermal suite spa has tile lounges that are heated and the view is to die for!
My thrifty husband had needed some convincing for this splurge... However, as he melted into the warm tile he muttered, "I could get used to this.."
The rooms were cleaned twice a day and the staff was very gracious.
We only chose one excursion which was the Teppanyaki snorkeling beach trip in Roatan, Honduras. The water was beautiful, and simple food for lunch was available, ( burgers, etc.,) and belongings were secure. We even had a Caribbean band while soaking the sun!
There were small touches all over the ship that made it special. For example, each seat in the Escape theater has a little air conditioning vent. The shows were first class and After Midnight Show is a must see. The cruise director, Tyler Gray was fantastic. His enthusiasm was contagious.