Norwegian Escape, the fifth-largest cruise ship in the world, was christened in early November. // © 2015 Norwegian Cruise Line
Feature image (above): Escape's Mandara Spa has 50 treatments for passengers to choose from. // © 2015 Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL)’s 4,248-passenger Norwegian Escape, the fifth-largest cruise ship in the world, was christened in early November. Hit U.S. performer and Miami native Pitbull (aka Armando Perez) was named the ship’s godfather and was also the featured performer at the christening.
An expanded version of NCL’s recent Getaway ship, Escape has features including one of the largest deck-top fun zones at sea, with four major waterslides, a three-deck ropes course, 12 pools and hot tubs, 21 bars and lounges and 28 dining options — 11 of them complimentary.
Escape currently claims the largest waterpark at sea, with multistory waterslides, a dedicated Kids' Aqua Park, two pools and four hot tubs. The Aqua Racer slide, where competitors can race side-by-side on tubes, is a new feature. Free Fall, which debuted on Breakaway and features a floor that drops, is also onboard Escape. Children six months to 3 years old can play in the line’s first Guppies Nursery, which has an Active Room with sensory-based activities, games and toys, as well as a Quiet Room in which babies can rest. A variety of family accommodations can house up to five guests, and dining for kids — which has always been a strength of NCL — continues, with popular fare such as macaroni and cheese and chicken tenders.
As befits the largest ship in the NCL fleet, Escape has 82 of the successful 100-square-foot solo staterooms, compared to Getaway’s 59. Escape also features an expanded three-level The Haven — the upscale “ship within a ship” accommodations — with 14 spa suites at 309 square feet. Escape’s Mandara Spa offers 50 specialty treatments, a thermal suite and a Salt Room grotto, in addition to a snow room with 4 inches of snow.
Dining on Escape runs the gamut, from Pincho Tapas Bar by Jose Garces, a James Beard Award-winner and an Iron Chef, to Food Republic, curated by the owners of Miami’s popular Pubbelly gastropub, to Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville at Sea.
Escape sails to Caribbean Bahamas and Florida.