Norwegian Cruise Line saw demand for its largest ever Freestyle Cruising vessel Norwegian Epic skyrocket in the first week that the ship’s itineraries went on sale to the public, beginning Thursday, May 21, 2009. Norwegian Epic’s first week of bookings far exceeded opening week sales for the company’s last two new ships: Norwegian Pearl and Norwegian Gem. All categories of staterooms were in demand, from the groundbreaking new Studios for the value-conscious traveler to the ultra luxurious villas, penthouses and deluxe owner’s suites. Prices start from $699 per person; however, based on high demand, prices increases are taking effect on some of the more popular sailings.
“We are thrilled to see the keen interest in Norwegian Epic this early on. It’s a testament to the wide range of accommodations and innovative new features that will take Freestyle Cruising to the next level,” said Andy Stuart, Norwegian’s executive vice president, global sales and passenger services. “We want our guests and travel partners to know that we appreciate their excitement and support in helping to make Norwegian Epic’s launch the most successful ever. We encourage those who want to experience this extremely innovative ship to book a cruise on Norwegian Epic during her inaugural season.”
Members of Norwegian’s past guest program, Latitudes, can take advantage of a special Norwegian Epic promotional offer from now through August 31, 2009, that includes up to a three category stateroom upgrade; additional discounts on the cruise fare of up to $100 per stateroom; and up to $500 in on-board credit for suites and villas*.
Norwegian Epic is scheduled to enter service in late May 2010, and will take part in inaugural events before beginning her Eastern and Western Caribbean sailings from her year-round homeport in Miami. The first Eastern Caribbean sailing from Miami is scheduled for July 17, 2010 and the ship’s alternating Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries are available through April 2011.
Norwegian Epic’s Eastern Caribbean itinerary includes calls in Philipsburg, St. Maarten; St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands and Nassau, Bahamas. The ship’s Western Caribbean itinerary includes calls in Costa Maya, Mexico; Roatán, Bay Islands, Honduras; and Cozumel, Mexico. Guests can make a reservation by contacting their travel professional or Norwegian Cruise Line at 866-234-7350. More information about the ship, her itineraries and offerings can be found at epic.ncl.com.
Norwegian Epic’s Innovations & Features
Norwegian Epic is changing the face of cruise line entertainment. In another industry first, Blue Man Group will perform in the ship’s 685-seat Epic Theater. Blue Man Group is best known for their wildly popular theatrical shows and concerts which combine music, comedy and multimedia theatrics to produce a totally unique form of entertainment. The blissful party atmosphere created at their live events has become the trademark of a Blue Man Group experience and beginning in the summer of 2010 will be seen for the first time ever at sea only on Norwegian Epic.
Norwegian Epic will have multiple, specially-designed entertainment venues throughout the ship so that guests can choose from a wide variety of entertainment each evening of their cruise. No longer will entertainment be focused on two nightly shows in one large main theater. Norwegian Epic will offer a number of entertainment options in specially-designed venues, some offered for the first time ever at sea, with choices to appeal to a broad audience.
On this ship, guests will find the only “big top” at sea. In this intimate 265-seat theater-in-the-round, famed producer/director Neil Goldberg will present Cirque Dreams® and Dinner. This one of a kind interactive theatrical dining experience will be performed in the air, while juggling dinner courses, with music, mayhem and acrobatic imagination. During this two-hour show, guests will marvel in amazement and become part of a celebration of spectacle and fantasy. The entire experience will be unlike anything else at sea.
Norwegian Epic will offer the next generation of Freestyle Dining with 14 restaurant choices – the most at sea – and 18 bars and lounges. The ship also boasts unique nightlife options with the first Ice Bar at sea and Spice H20 with non-stop entertainment day and night; an expansive Aqua Park with the only tube slide and largest bowl slide at sea -- The Epic Plunge; seven decks of Freestyle Family Fun with highlights including a 33-foot high, 64-foot wide extreme rock climbing wall and the first ever rappelling wall at sea; the most bowling lanes at sea with six in two venues; a mixed-use sports deck with the ability for guests to engage in eight different athletic activities; as well as three separate kids’ and teen activity areas and the first squash court at sea.
The 4,200-passenger Norwegian Epic incorporates several new types of accommodations – the curved New Wave staterooms; the largest ship-within-a-ship suite complex at sea, comprising 60 suites and villas on two private decks at the top of the ship; a new category of inside staterooms for the value-conscious traveler – The Studios and Living Room; and spa and family-friendly accommodations.