Recommend December 2015 - (Page 16)
N O V E M B E R 2 0 15
" This is not
paloma villaverde de rico
-Frank Del Rio, President
and Chief Executive Officer,
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
Spice H2O area.
"It's So Miami" is the slogan for the Greater Miami Convention &
Visitors Bureau, but it can easily describe the 4,200-passenger
Norwegian Escape, which sailed out of PortMiami on its
inaugural voyage in early November. The choice for godfather says
it all-Miami's own Pitbull, who got the audience on their feet,
hips swaying, during the ship's christening ceremony on Nov. 9.
But it's the Miami-based offerings on board that are even more
enticing. There's the intimate Tobacco Road bar, a 100-year-old
Miami landmark that shut its doors in 2014, but now has a home
on Escape; The District Brew House, a truly hip, urban craft beer
hall featuring an exclusive partnership with Miami's own Wynwood
Brewing Company, complete with a keg room, 24 draft beers on
tap and more than 50 different bottled beers; and Food Republic,
an upscale food emporium from The Pubbelly Restaurant Group,
known for its handful of trendy dining concepts in Miami.
With its homeport in South Florida, "we wanted to bring a taste
of Miami on board," pointed out Andy Stuart, Norwegian Cruise
Line's president and chief operating officer, during a roundtable
discussion on the inaugural sailing. Sprinkled on top of that
Miami energy is a Key West laid-back vibe with Jimmy Buffett's
Margaritaville at Sea, and the 5 O'Clock Somewhere Bar, featuring
nightly musical performances. The amount of culinary offerings
is, in fact, extensive, but this is also a slightly bigger ship than
Getaway-it's the first of Norwegian's Breakaway Plus class ships,
in fact, and the largest in the cruise line's 14-vessel fleet. And
because of its size, noted Stuart, "we were able to add venues that
we didn't have before."
Stuart also mentioned he's excited about the range of
entertainment on board. "We are pushing the envelope, with
something for everyone," pointing to the shows that showcase
music from different eras-for those who reminisce about the '80s,
teenagers included, there's the "For the Record: The Brat Pack,
Live at the Supper Club," which puts the spotlight on the classic
soundtracks of John Hughes' motion pictures in a cabaret-style
dining venue; for a Cotton Club-style treat, there's "After Midnight,"
featuring the big-band songs of Duke Ellington, alongside tappers
and dancers; and for true rock 'n roll enthusiasts, "Million Dollar
Quartet" is inspired by the famed recording session that brought
together Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl
Perkins for the first and only time back in 1956.
16 december 2015
so what else is new?
The Haven on decks 17 and 18-featuring private key access,
24-hour butler service, concierge service, a private courtyard, and
a private restaurant and bar-is the most luxurious of any Haven
in the fleet and offers more suites, 95 in total.
The Ropes Course now has an extra level and spans the entire
width of the ship with features on both the port and starboard
sides-recommend clients try the Sky Rails, which takes them over
the side of the ship and offer a bird's-eye view of the Escape.
The Aqua Park, the largest of its kind at sea, features the
all-new Aqua Racer, a tandem waterslide where passengers can
race side-by-side on tubes while sliding down one of the coolest
designed slides I've ever laid eyes on-at sea or on land. Full
disclosure: I could've spent the entire cruise on this one waterslide!
Norwegian Escape is now offering childcare services for children
ages six months to 3 years. The nursery includes an active area
for play time and age-appropriate activities and a separate space
for napping. Stuart said this option was added because "we were
missing out on a growing customer segment." He also noted that
the kids programming is all about "edutainment," not just plunking
the kid in front of a computer game. During one of the press
conferences, I left my 10-year-old at Splash Academy for a couple
of hours, and when I picked her up, there was a huge smile on her
face and she wasn't too keen on leaving-that speaks volumes for
what your clients' school age children can expect.
I could go on and on about the long list of onboard activities and
must-sees-new or otherwise-but Stuart summed it up nicely
when he summed up an e-mail he received from Frank Del Rio,
president and CEO, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., after
Del Rio had toured the new ship: "There's no venue on Norwegian
Escape that I wouldn't feel comfortable with having on Oceania.
This ship really has a premium feel."
Norwegian Escape offers Eastern Caribbean sailings starting at
$599; Western Caribbean sailings starting at $949 and Eastern and
Western Caribbean sailings starting at $1,349. ●
Norwegian Cruise Line: norwegiancentral.ncl.com
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend December 2015
19th Annual Recommend Readers’ Choice Awards Winners
Cruising Into the Future
Anthem of the Seas
Saint Lucia 36-Page Pull-Out Travel Agent Specialist Program
Trending Now in the Caribbean
Eyes on 2016
Dive Into the New Year
Wild Encounters in the Coming Year
New Year, More Choices
Latin America in 2016 & Beyond
Recommend December 2015