rkpianos

rkpianos
Third Mate

Joined: 10/11/2014
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rkpianos's Past Cruises

Norwegian Epic

January 2017 - Norwegian Epic to Caribbean - Eastern

Pretty Disappointing

The specialty restaurants were exceptional, and the Garden Cafe was one of the best we've seen on any ship.  Other restaurants were acceptable, but nothing to rave about....and the service was about the same.  The ship was beautiful, as was the weather, so the time was enjoyable and relaxing.....except for the huge lines and crowds at popular places.  Freestyle dining is indeed flexible and sometimes convenient if you don't mind spending an inordinate amount of time making reservations and figuring how to fit everything in you want to do.

 

Our biggest objection was the questionable and smutty comedy & entertainment....even in early time periods which should be family friendly.  The talent level was great, and the music wonderful, but content, gestures, themes, and costumes were depraved and offensive to much of mainstream society.  Cirque was awesome, with surprisingly good food and service.  Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is the only major production show on a cruise ship we have ever walked out of, and were thoroughly disgusted for even reserving time for the event.  Many of the lounges had excellent entertainment, especially the guitarists, and pianists.

 

I suppose that the ship did a pretty good job of handling a large passenger level, but 4000 people is a lot on one boat, and the layout of the ship creates some serious bottlenecks at busy times.  And while the cruise price seemed attractive, they have a way of nickel and diming you to death.  The drink package offered extremely poor selections of wine, in hopes that you would upgrade and buy more expensive bottles, but the staff always did their best to accommodate us within their ship guidelines....except when they tried to slip in different types of wine than we had ordered.

 

Would definitely not cruise on this ship again, and perhaps not on Norwegian, as well.

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Freedom of the Seas

September 2014 - Freedom of the Seas to Caribbean - Western

Great overall cruise experience!

This was one of our best cruises ever, even though we were distressed that our traveling companions were not able to come and there were some cruise schedule adjustments because of medical emergencies.  We were very impressed with the pristine condition of the Freedom, especially since we knew it was headed for dry dock.  It was as beautiful and clean as ever, and the staff was top rate in every area of the ship.

 

Our Junior Suite was the nicest rooms we ever had, and the special amenities we had ordered were provided perfectly.  We ordered room service breakfast most days and it was great, and our cabin steward was one of the best we have ever had in 15 years of cruising.  Our balcony view was awesome, and we were able to take in the gorgeous sunrises and sunsets the perfect weather provided us.  I think this was the first cruise when we scarcely felt any ship movement for the entire 7 day trip!

 

As always, the shows were spectacular, and the talent very impressive in every venue.  Best ice show ever, by far!  The entertainment before midnight was very tasteful and classy, except for Quest, which was touted as "adult".... We wished we hadn't gone, 

 

The dining experience was awesome both in the main dining room, cafés, and specialty restaurants.  The food was some of the most consistently excellent we have had cruising, the service was wonderful, and the people at tables around us were lots of fun.  Our only disappointment was that evidently some whiners had complained about the parade of dining staff where they sang and performed near the final night, and management canceled it.  Definitely a poor decision, as everyone we talked to looked forward to that fun part of the evening, as did the wait staff.

 

Our excursions were also perfect for us in Cozumel, the Caymans, and Jamaica.  Our only negative experience was that our bank slammed down our credit card on a fraud alert because we used it twice in Mexico.  We should've notified the bank in advance or taken more cash on the excursion.  Mexico is not the place to use credit cards.

 

I suppose the biggest negatives were the radical increase in parking expense at the pier, the exorbitant cost for slow wireless internet on board the ship, and the automatic charge on our account of the tips.   Our only real gripes were missing Labadee and the waiter non-parade.

 

Overall, we couldn't have been more satisfied, and would definitely recommend RC, the Freedom of the Seas, and for doing a great job at providing an amazing vacation for the money!

 

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rkpianos's Tips

Norwegian Epic Norwegian Epic - Reserve shows and dining as soon as possible. Burn the Floor is great, as is Cirque.....Priscilla is trashy....so if you don't like depravity, don't waste the time. Lounges are comfortable and fun, and there is lots of dancing opportunity.
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas - Get away from the ship and see the island, unless you like the effect of 6 cruise ships dumping their passengers in a small shopping area. Beautiful island.

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received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Epic cruise review - Pretty Disappointing

checked in for the roll call for Sep 24, 2017 cruise on Oasis of the Seas!

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Epic cruise review - Pretty Disappointing

received a helpful vote on their Norwegian Epic cruise review - Pretty Disappointing

added Jan 21, 2017 cruise on Norwegian Epic to their profile.

shared a quick tip for Norwegian Epic"Reserve shows and dining as soon as possible. Burn the Floor is great, as is Cirque.....Priscilla is trashy....so if you don't like depravity, don't waste the time. Lounges are comfortable and fun, and there is lots of dancing opportunity.

"

reviewed their Caribbean - Eastern cruise on Norwegian Epic and gave it 2 stars!

received a helpful vote on their Freedom of the Seas cruise review - Great overall cruise experience!

reviewed their Caribbean - Western cruise on Freedom of the Seas and gave it 5 stars!

added Sep 28, 2014 cruise on Freedom of the Seas to their profile.