Cigarette Smoke and Feces Odor

Norwegian Escape Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western

Cruises: 2-3 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 15

Overall rating:

3.8 out of 5
Verified Review
Norwegian Escape

14 Night Western Caribbean (New York Roundtrip)

Sail date: February 03, 2019

Ship: Norwegian Escape

Cabin type: Inside

Cabin number: 13669

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Review summary

Overall we had a great time. You really make your own fun. I was a bit upset about getting sick and missing two ports of call but I got over it and made the best of it. The food was good, our friends were great, our experiences with most of the entertainment venues were top notch. (Comedians, Howl at the Moon, Vox Fortis, After Midnight, and The Choir of Man were top notch.)


3 out of 5
We were made to wait on our bus for an hour. The upside of waiting that long was there were no line ups o wait in. Downside we were so thirsty but could not get a drink of water because the bars shut down for the safety briefing.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
Taste, Savor - good food but super loud. It was hard to have a conversation with people dining with you because of how loud it was. The Manhattan Room - we only had a group supper at this restaurant. The food was delicious and it wasn't as loud but we were in the back corner. The Garden Cafe - most of the time the food was cold by the time we sat down. However there was a good selection of entrees to choose from. Note: I'm not sure how often the line cooks washed their hands or if they replaced the tongs during the meal time. I had to ask for clean tongs at least five times and I probably should have asked more often with the amount of people who refused to wash their hands on their way into the cafe. Staff at the entrances were persistent in telling everyone to "washy, washy".

District Brew House

4 out of 5

Great spot! Off the beaten path as they say. JR was way too loud for this venue. Other performers were better. When there were no performers it was a nice quiet place to sit, relax, try different beers and have conversations.

Garden Cafe

4 out of 5

Overall the layout was good.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
The pool was nice. There were plenty of hot tubs. Not sure if the hot tube were cleaned daily... our son used the water slides and enjoyed them however a friend was hurt pretty badly using an overinflated tube that was given to her by a staff member.

Escape Casino

1 out of 5

Way to smokey! It stinks! I feel bad for the staff having to work 8 hours + in a cigarette smoke filled room. As a non smoker I did not even consider stopping in.


4 out of 5
After Midnight, The Choir of Man and Vox Futura were excellent. Howl at the moon and the comedians were excellent as well. The singers/bands were just "ok". In The District Brew House was too loud most of the time. The musicians did not have the "party" energy that we experienced on the Breakaway.

Headliners Comedy Club

4 out of 5

It was good. Could use more space as most nights it was a full house. The large pillars/posts get in the way of viewing the stage.

Escape Theater

3 out of 5

The seats were not spaced correctly. Normal theaters space seats so that the row behind can see through the gap of heads in front of them. Lighting and sound were good.

Children's Programs

4 out of 5
Entourage was a lot of fun according to our son but not as fun as it was on the Breakaway. "No Adults Allowed."

Entourage Teen Lounge

5 out of 5

My son said he had a great time overall.

Service and Staff

4 out of 5
Room steward - ours was a very young man and I think he did the best that he could. Our cabin was cleaned daily but it still felt dirty. The top shelf in the closet was dusty. I wiped it down myself. There was a garbage can in the desk cabinet that hadn't been emptied from the guest before us. The carpet did not feel or look like it had been shampooed ever. And when we were quarantined to our room for 24 hours due to flu like symptoms we discovered that he did not know how to sanitize our cabin. He had to ask his supervisor. Then when he did "sanitize" he sprayed the bleach mixture sparingly. (I'm a preschool teacher and I know how to sanitize.) When we asked him if we needed to remove our items from the bathroom and desk he said, "no". He made a couple wipes on the wall and the edge of the bunk over our bed. Later when I was feeling better I wiped down everything. I found items from other guests under the beds. Plus, our son had been using the stool to get up to the bunk, he never told us there was a ladder under the bed. We found it the day we were quarantined. The waiters were very nice and efficient. Bartenders were great, most of the time! (They did their best even when some patrons were being nasty) Customer service - Some were not very good at understanding "English". When we were allowed to leave our room after being quarantined we were given new key cards. We went to customer service and asked the staff member who was manning the Restaurant desk (he had no one in line) if he could grab us the hole punch and he said "No, you have wait in the customer service line for that". We walked away! Medical staff - the nurse and doctor that tended to us were wonderful, they were patient and kind and they were in the middle of a complete meltdown from a man threatening to sue. He went up one side and down the other over and over to the point where additional security had to be called in. Through all that and another medical emergency and the phone that never stopped ringing, they still remained calm, patient and kind. Thank you nurse Heidi! Shore excursion personnel were great too. Store employees were very knowledgeable of their products and helpful. "Washy, washy" staff put up with a lot of people refusing to wash their hands and being verbally abusive to them and they still kept smiling and singing and joking with those of us who understood it was in our best interest to wash our hands. Security staff for entering and exiting the ship including ports of call were polite, professional and efficient.

Ship Quality

2 out of 5
Overall - not good. They have the casino and the Skyline Bar that allow smoking inside the ship. The ship wreaked of cigarette smoke on decks 6, 7 and 8 plus "5 O'clock Somewhere" bar outside and one side of deck 17 was smoking too. There was no avoiding it through deck 6, 7 and 8. The elevators even smelt like cigarette smoke sometimes. I felt bad for the staff who had to work in the bars with that allowed smoking. Secondhand smoke kills! One staff member told us he submitted his resignation because of having to work in a smoke filled environment. Cleanliness was just ok. The Atrium seemed to be well-maintained. The bathrooms were not maintained. It was well into the second week before I saw staff cleaning the bathrooms and after the Norwalk virus was confirmed) They started sanitization and fogging in staff areas and conference rooms. (When we were on the Breakaway there were cleaners posted outside the bathrooms on deck 16 poolside. The bathrooms were impeccable.) On the Escape they were not maintained. The garbage cans were full and sometimes the bathrooms ran out of toilet paper. There were times when there was garbage on the floor and even fecal matter on the toilet seats. (Which I reported to the bartender as there weren't any cleaners present.) One other item to note: While eating our breakfast we noticed a bun on the floor a few tables from us. We quickly ate and then left for a shore excursion. When we got back at supper time we noticed that it was still under the table. The elevators were always covered in fingerprints and again it was the middle of the second week before we saw anyone cleaning them or smelled bleach. The Garden Cafe had hand sanitize stations at each entrance but again it was halfway into the second week before we saw extra sanitizing stations at the openings into the dining tables.

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5
The cabin was pretty small. We probably should have booked a room with a port hole window considering we had our 14 year old with us but we figured we really only spent time sleeping and showering in it. (Until we were all quarantined to it!) Note: We are not complaining about being quarantined. We know it was neccessary as to not infect other passengers. However both my son and I ate the New England seafood bun and my husband did not. My son and I were very ill within hours of eating it and my husband was not. The beds were comfortable but I had to ask our room steward for top sheets and to put the duvet cove opening at the bottom of the bed instead of the head of the bed. I turned it every day for a week but he either didn't notice, didn't care or was taught to put it on that way.

Ship tip

Bring lysol wipes, and hand sanitizer and pack gravol and anti-diarrhea medication. Use your knuckle to press buttons on the elevators. When having to use handrails wash really good. And remember that even though you have great hygiene others do not. As a matter of fact I was lathering my hands and about to put them under the faucet when another lady came out of the bathroom. I said to her, "let's trade spaces so you can get some soap." Her response was - "No thank you" she rinsed her hands with just water and went on her way

Ports of call

New York, New York

5 out of 5
We traveled from New Brunswick, Canada with Collins Tours (Fabulous company) and spent the night at the Sheraton Times Square. We went as a group to "The View" (a revolving restaurant) for supper and in the morning we were taken on a tour of the city. Judy was so knowledgeable and funny. There were only two people in our group that hadn't been to New York so Carl Collins asked her to take us to different locations and to include Ground Zero. We were taken to both memorial pools, the survivor tree and the subway entrance building. It was extremely emotional seeing all the names of the victims and the massive pools. I remember that day as if it was just yesterday that it happened. It was a tour I will never forget.

Port Canaveral, Florida

4 out of 5
Our excursion was through NCL. It took close to an hour waiting in line to get on the bus to go to the Kennedy Space Center. We only had 3 hours at the Space Center. We knew from researching that we would not have enough time to see everything so we had the bus tour out to the launch area (Cape Canaveral Air Force Station) and then the Shuttle Launch experience (We ran out of time before we could actually do the simulator. There is so much to see I would like to go back to see the rest! It truly was a great excursion. Although very expensive through NCL.

Great Stirrup Cay (Cruise Line Private Island), Bahamas Did not visit port

The captain informed us that it was too windy to tender to shore. While we watched another ship tender to the Island next to it.

Ocho Rios, Jamaica

5 out of 5
We did an NCL excursion for this as well to Dunn's River Falls. What a terrific day! Our guide took his time to show us many little things that we would have missed if we were to do it on our own. Our guide was fun and funny too! Great day!

George Town, Grand Cayman

5 out of 5
We took an excursion through Collin's Tours (Captain Brian's) to Stingray city, snorkeling at the coral gardens and then to starfish point. It was scary and exciting all at the same time. While snorkeling lots of stingrays swam around us under us and toward us. It was super amazing looking into the eyes of a stingray and wondering if they see us as a threat or just another large sea animal! At Stingray City our guide let us feed one - we each had a small piece of fish and were told how to hold it and to ease our grip when we felt the suction. I may have been a tiny bit late on the release because it felt like it bit me but it didn't no marks left at all. Then he let us one by one hold the stingray, touch it, kiss it and get a hug (at least that's what it felt like) from it. When we were done there we went to starfish point. The starfish were larger than my hand and many different colors. We were allowed to pick them up but not take them out of the water. Overall it was the "BEST DAY EVER" of our trip. Would do it again kind of day!

Harvest Caye, Belize Did not visit port

This was the day we were quarantined to our room. We were very sad to have missed our excursion to Placencia.

Costa Maya (Mahahual), Mexico

3 out of 5
We took a Shuttle from the port to a beach. It looked really run down but we made the best of it - swimming and relaxing at the beach.

Cozumel, Mexico

4 out of 5
We went to Jade Cavern and Cenote. The pictures on line looked cleaner than it actually was. Our guide was great. He took us to El Cedral where that guide took us around. He was very knowledgeable and seriously funny! We had a few minutes to shop then we went to taste test tequila. After that we went through the jungle to the cavern, lots of bats. Then to the cenote for a swim but only three of got in the water. After we headed to where we were supposed to go snorkeling but the water was too rough. We had lunch at a private restaurant- best guacamole I've ever tasted. It was a pretty neat experience!


3 out of 5
We waited for over an hour for a porter and then ended up taking our luggage through customs with us.
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