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New in 2015 — Norwegian Escape

Last in a series about new ships

Ambitious to a fault, Norwegian launches a new class of ship with this — Breakaway Plus. Fortunately, the ships won’t be named for the class (a ship called Breakaway Plus?), and the Escape came from passengers who participated in a naming contest. After a three-year building sabbatical, Norwegian launched a building boom that will result in six new ships from 2013 to 2019.

Launch date: October 29

Capacity: 4,200

Sister ships: 1st in Breakaway Plus Class

Maiden voyage: A 10-day inaugural Atlantic crossing from Southampton

Home port: Miami

Ships then in Norwegian fleet: 14

Interesting: With 4,200 passengers the Escape becomes Norwegian’s largest ship, carrying 100 more passengers and 8,000 more pounds than the Epic — it’s also longer by 17 feet. It features one more deck than the Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway, which make up the popular Breakaway Class, and like them includes an outdoor dining and drinking space that’s part of the promenade and called The Waterfront. New is a namesake of the famous Miami bar, Tobacco Road, along with the hull painting, this one by artist Guy Harvey.

Today at portsandbows.com: All the latest cruise news

Royal Caribbean Enchantment of the Seas
3 nights
January 30, 2015
Port Canaveral (return): NassauCocoCay  
Inside: $169
Cost per day: $56
www.royalcaribbean.com

 

 

Busy Times For Norwegian Newsmakers

On the heels of news that Norwegian is climbing in the world of ocean cruising (No. 3) comes a handful of newsy items from this aggressive cruise line…

One…

Guy Harvey, widely respected as a marine wildlife artist and champion of ocean conservation, will design the new artwork on the Norwegian Escape. That's the Norwegian Pearllatest Norwegian ship scheduled to be launched in October 2015.

The scene?

Marine wildlife…underwater of course.

Brilliantly painted hulls is, if you haven't seen them, the signature of Norwegian ships…the ships that are easiest to identify before actually seeing the name on the side or the bow.

Two…

Always a trend-setter, Norwegian now has a phone app that will allow passengers to access all a ship's features (dining reservations, shore excursions) on their smart phones. More importantly, however, it is allegedly making it cheaper for passengers to make or receive calls from shore by using a dedicated 1-800 number.

The app was floated out on the Breakaway and now has been added to the Getaway.

How long before it goes fleet-wide?

Three…

Tunisia is now persona non grata with Norwegian. After refusing to allow Israelis to disembark from the Norwegian Jade last Sunday at Tunisia's Port of La Goulette, cruise-line CEO Kevin Sheehan canceled all stops for all ships scheduled to visit the country.

Like everything else, if you want to make an impact, stopping the money flow is the best way.

Part of having non-discriminatory practices, for all cruise lines, is employing crew members from just about all nationalities.

Four…

The Escape is going to be Miami's second full-time Norwegian ship. The Getaway Norwegian Getawayarrived there this year, and the chain reaction sent the Epic to Europe. For good, perhaps?

Norwegian's mushrooming itineraries also include a return to the Mexican Riviera, a return to South America and a ship (yet unknown) being based in Port Canaveral.

Busy times at Norwegian.

Today at portsandbows.com: Cruise news round-up

Carnival Liberty
7 nights
April 12, 2014
Miami (return): NassauSt. ThomasSan JuanGrand Turk
Inside: $349
Cost per day: $49
www.carnival.com

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