7 Things Families Love About Norwegian Escape
By Nancy Schretter, Editor
Families are looking for vacations that give them the freedom to choose from a wide variety of restaurants, activities and entertainment. Now, this high energy mega–resort at sea experience can be found on the new Norwegian Escape. This memorable ship has an upscale feel and it’s packed with a wide variety of family–friendly venues. The Norwegian Escape is a perfect vacation choice for multigenerational groups and families with kids of all ages.
It’s hard to find a vacation that will please everyone, but Norwegian Escape delivers. There’s no way any member of your family will be bored on this ship. Parents and kids relish the freedom to choose from a wide variety of activities, amenities and dining options. There’s something for every interest and age group on the Norwegian Escape – even a nursery for the littlest ones.
Here are seven things families love about Norwegian Escape:
1. Plenty of Family Room. It’s easy for families and multigenerational groups to find their perfect home–away–from–home on Norwegian Escape. There are so many stateroom choices, many of which provide unprecedented amounts of space for family members. Options are available at all budget levels, from connecting inside rooms to multi–bedroom Family Villas in The Haven, an exclusive upscale boutique hotel section of the ship. This gives parents, grandparents and kids plenty of opportunities to enjoy their vacation – both together and apart. For example, grandparents could relax in their own quiet villa retreat in The Haven while the kids and grandchildren are situated in mini–suites and balcony cabins conveniently located near Splash Academy, the children’s program area.
2. Massive Family–Friendly Aqua Parks. Kids and families love water parks. Norwegian Escape’s multi–story Aqua Park features four main water slides, two pools, four hot tubs and a cool aqua play area for young children. Two of the water slides are side–by–side, multi–story rides where guests step into an enclosed capsule and wait until the bottom drops out. Instantaneously, they’re plunged almost straight down in a heart–stopping free fall. Ride if you dare! The large Kids’ Aqua Park is sure to be a favorite with little ones who are too small to get soaked in the large pools and water slides. Tots will love the park’s colorful play features including water cannons, soaking buckets, a rope bridge and more.
3. Thrilling Three–Story Ropes Course. Norwegian Escape features the largest ropes course at sea and it’s free of charge for all guests. This ship has not one, but two overwater planks – not to mention high–flying zip tracks and much more. This huge multi–level ropes course, part of Norwegian Escapes’ massive Sports Complex, consists of well over ninety different components. There’s also pint–sized ropes course for younger kids who aren’t yet 48–inches tall. The Escape’s Sports Complex also features a nine–hole miniature golf course located right beneath the ropes course, a basketball court, Ping–Pong, a bocce court and more.
4. Great Family Programs For All Ages. Norwegian Escape is a superb choice for families. Norwegian Escape has the largest Splash Academy space in the fleet according to Janet Kim, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Supervisor of Youth Programs. Kim says the ship also has “super involved and super engaging staff with the creativity and passion to be working with kids.” As any parent knows, that’s the secret to youth program success. Norwegian Escape's Splash Academy features free programs designed for specific age groups: Turtles for ages 3–5; Seals for ages 6–9; and Dolphins for ages 10–12. Norwegian’s FreeStyle Free Play programming is unique, allowing friends and siblings of different ages to play together. Kids will love the Circus School and the wide range of innovative programs and activities expertly designed by The King’s Foundation, well known for developing family programs at U.S. military bases around the globe.
Splash Academy also offers activities for Guppies, tiny cruisers between the ages of 6 months and 3 years. The Norwegian Escape is the first ship in Norwegian Cruise Line’s fleet to offer a Guppies fee–based nursery area with age–appropriate for these littlest cruisers. In addition to the full childcare nursery, Splash Academy offers separate free Guppies activity programs for parents and tots to play together.
Norwegian Escape knows how to cater to older kids as well. Located in the aft of the ship on Deck 17, Entourage is a high energy zone exclusively for teens ages 13–17. This area is designed to be more like a lounge on the Norwegian Escape, says Norwegian’s Janet Kim. The
Entourage space is very open and comfortable – the perfect place for teens to hang out together.
5. Vast Array of Dining Options. Dining is a big part of the cruise experience for families and multigenerational groups. Norwegian Escape is a foodie paradise with 17 different restaurants for families to sample, both with the kids and on a romantic parents’ night out. The Waterfront is a large boardwalk–type promenade lined with a variety of seaside venues offering stunning ocean views. Families can sample cuisines from around the world including French, Italian, Brazilian, Latin American and Cuban fare, plus Far East delights at Teppanyaki. Some Norwegian Escape restaurants carry an additional fee, but others including the popular 24–hour O’Sheehan’s Neighborhood Bar & Grill, Savor, Taste and the Manhattan Room are free of charge. Make sure to take the kids to sample treats from Dolce Gelato while onboard.
6. Tons Of Adults–Only Spaces for Parents. Let’s face it – sometimes family vacations turn into lots of fun for kids and not so much for parents. That’s not true on Norwegian Escape. Norwegian Cruise Line has designed Norwegian Escape with multiple adults–only venues, perfect to enjoy while the kids are having fun at Splash Academy. Located on Deck 17, Norwegian Escape’s awesome Spice H2O sun deck area is the place to go both day and night. It features a cool cave filled with shallow water, like you might find in the Caribbean, with water trickling down along the sides of the grotto. Limited to adults who purchase access passes, the exclusive Vibe Beach Club offers upscale lounge chairs, a huge hot tub, a full–service bar and great ocean views. The thermal suite in Norwegian Escape’s world–class Mandara Spa is a fantastic place for to relax and chill out as well. Adults can also choose from an array of 11 bars and lounges ranging from The District Brew House, featuring craft beers and gastropub–style small plates, to The Cellars – A Michael Mondavi Family Wine Bar. Another popular hangout is the 5 O’Clock Somewhere Bar with live musical performances on The Waterfront.
7. Awesome Broadway Shows and Entertainment. There’s outstanding entertainment for every age group onboard Norwegian Escape. Families are sure to love the Family Circus event and the ship’s massive arcade packed with wide variety of cool fee–based games. Norwegian Escape’s shows are legendary. The ship features "After Midnight," the hit Broadway big–band jazz musical, as well as incredible bring–the–house–down performances of "Million Dollar Quartet" featuring musical headliners Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins. One of the ship’s most popular venues is "For the Record: The Brat Pack, Live at the Supper Club." This cabaret–style dinner show features a montage of performances from John Hughes’ film classics including "Sixteen Candles," "The Breakfast Club" and "Pretty in Pink." Guests can also enjoy live comedy at the Headliners Comedy Club, dueling pianos at Howl At The Moon, and much more.
For more information on Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Cruise Line’s many options for family vacations, visit www.ncl.com.
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