January 2016 - Norwegian Epic to Europe - Western Europe
The NCL Epic ship is attractive after its recent facelift. However, unfortunately, the overwhelming memory of the ship is a very negative one. The bathroom situation is utterly unacceptable. The toilet and shower are individually enclosed with a glass wall and door. You step out of both into the small room foyer entrance. There is no bathroom per se. Each component is separate. The sink is "in" the room itself. Even though there is a cloth curtain, essentially there is zero privacy to use the toilet and shower. This is uncomfortable and awkward if one is traveling with a friend as I was. But I was also traveling with a couple who has been together for years and they, too, were very upset about the bathroom (or lack thereof) in their room. The room also was tight due to the presence of a large curved couch which I assume would have served as a third bed had one been needed. It was in the way and proved to make the room much too tight for 2 adult women to share, especially when one was blow drying hair or applying makeup at the small vanity area. The shows were good, especially the Priscilla Queen of the Desert and Beatles shows. The food in the specialty restaurants was very good, especially Cagnys Steakhouse. The rest of the food options were all good, standard cruise ship fare. The onboard entertainment offerings were barely satisfactory. With so much time at sea, including 3 straight days, there should have been more fun (free) options which would not have required payment. Thw lack of options drove me to spend about $500 in spa services. I understand the passenger language barrier challenges, but would have appreciated more games or entertainment options than pay-in bingo, blackjack and poker tournaments, moreover when bingo cards were pricy at $39-59. We were unable to make our stop at Tangier due to weather, which was not NCL's fault, but many passengers were inconvenienced and no extra onboard perk was offered in exchange. The demographic was older folks, few children and virtually no 30-somethings. The passengers were mostly Russian and Asians. In short, the ship was nice, the shows and food was good, the at sea entertainment was lacking, the cabins too small even though we had a balcony, but the bathroom situation was horrible and cast a pall on the trip. I would not recommend the NCL Epic for this reason.