Is there anything better than a cruise vacation? Not only do you get to visit beautiful locales, but the trip is just as enjoyable as the destination. And no other cruise line does it quite like Norwegian. So, it’s a noteworthy statement when the company has a new ship it claims to be its “most incredible.” But that is precisely what the Encore is.
Part cruise ship, part floating resort, this 1,094-foot Encore can accommodate nearly 4,000 guests. It was built in 2019 and has already earned praise, being named the Cruise Critic’s 2019 Editors’ Pick for Best New Ship. Even better, it will start servicing the Northeast in April, with cruises to Bermuda sailing out of New York.
Let’s take a look around the Encore to see all that the stunning cruise ship has to offer.
Food and Drink
Encore houses a host of eateries including three main dining rooms: Savor Restaurant, Taste Restaurant and The Manhattan Room. Each serves modern and classic dishes in a stylish and contemporary atmosphere. The Garden Café is an indoor buffet restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. And for some late-night eats, the Local Bar & Grill offers classic pub fare 24 hours a day.
Encore also has a dozen specialty dining options to satisfy any and all cravings. This includes Cagney’s Steakhouse for some premium cuts, Onda by Scarpetta for indulgent pasta and seafood, Los Lobos serving premium Mexican cuisine and Q, which delivers authentic Texas BBQ. And for dessert, don’t forget The Bake Shop, Coco’s and Dolce Gelato for sweets, ice cream and milkshakes.
When it’s time to unwind and imbibe, the Encore has options for every taste. Need a cold one after a long day in the sun? The District Brew House has more than 50 different bottled and 22 draft beers. More of a wine drinker? The Cellars Wine Bar offers a taste of Napa Valley. How about a nightcap? The Maltings Whiskey Bar serves a wide variety of international spirits. These are just a few of the numerous bars and lounges on board.
If you thought you’d be leaving the best of New York behind once you depart, think again. Encore puts on performances of the six-time Tony Award winning Broadway musical “Kinky Boots” for all its guests. You won’t find this show on any other cruise line. Other performances include “Happy Hour Prohibition: The Musical” and “Choir of Men.”
If you’re looking for something a little different, catch the comedy show featuring two stand-up comedians. After the show, the space turns into a dance club with a live DJ. For a blast from the past, head to the Cavern Club. Named after the legendary club in Liverpool that regularly hosted the Beatles, this venue on the Encore is where you can catch performances from a Fab Four cover band.
After seeing all the activities the ship has to offer, you might be convinced that the Encore is part cruise ship, part amusement park. The Aqua Park features two multi-story water slides – including one that goes over the side of the ship – as well as a pool to lounge. The Encore Speedway is a 1,100-foot racetrack on the ship deck – the largest track at sea. Guests can whip around curves suspended 13 feet off the side of the ship.
Encore’s laser tag park is unlike any other you’ve been to before. Themed around the lost city of Atlantis, players can interact with long lost treasures that virtually come to life through cutting-edge technology. Speaking of virtual reality, the Galaxy Pavilion offers immersive VR experiences, thrilling simulator rides and even an escape room featuring holograms.
For the youngest members of your traveling group, there’s a kids’ Aqua Park and Splash Academy, where children can enjoy creative play and engaging activities. Those a little bit older can hang out at the Entourage Teen Club, where movies, art, music, video games and dance parties are always on the agenda. And finally, if you’re an adult looking for a different kind of fun, try the Encore Casino. Whether it’s at the slot machines or a table game, there’s plenty of luck to go around.
The Encore boasts staterooms for all budgets and travelling party sizes. The Haven, located at the top of the ship, is the most luxurious accommodations available. Each room comes with a private sundeck as well as concierge service and 24-hour butler service.
Below the Haven are mini-suites as well as balcony staterooms with floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open to your very own private balcony. Other options include Oceanview rooms with large picture windows, and inside rooms. Travelling alone? Encore studios are specifically designed and priced for the solo traveler.
For those who know they want the full pampering experience while onboard the Haven spa suite, spa mini-suite and spa balcony are for you. Not only do they feature tranquil spa décor, they are all located adjacent to the Mandara Spa and fitness center and come with complimentary access to the Thermal Spa Suites.
Maybe you want to buy a gift for your loved ones that couldn’t make the trip. Or maybe you just want to splurge. Whatever the reason, the Encore has all your shopping needs covered. Deck 8 is home to several shops selling luxurious gifts.
Sandbar is your go-to for brand names like Gucci, Ray-Ban, Tom Ford, Coach and Swarovski. At the Time Zone, shop timepieces from Cartier, Hublot, Panerai and others. The Beauty Shop has all your cosmetic and fragrance needs, while Treasures is home to dazzling fine jewelry designs. All shopping aboard the Encore is tax and duty free.
What are you looking forward to most about the Norwegian Encore? Tell us in the comments.