EPIC Secrets ;)

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#1
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Just returned from our EPIC cruise (11/6-eastern). Like most, I read TONS of tips/advise/reviews/posts/etc. prior to sailing and was equipped with lots of info prior to sail date.

Sooooo, hoping to not repeat info you've already read...here is a "Cliff's Notes" list of EPIC suggestions/secrets/tips/opinions that I hope might help others sailing soon...

1. Dress - seems q's about formal nights & how dressy etc, keep popping up. There are VERY few passengers that dressed up at night...and we were all over the ship every night til at least 1am. Most everyone we saw in the dining rooms had on dress slacks and nice shirts/blouses. For the FEW that we saw dressed up...they were doing so to take formal pictures. So, if your not planning on eating in the bars or at the buffets at night...trust me...dressy casual is perfect and will get you comfortably through dinner, any shows and any clubs!

2. Smoke - For non-smokers...here is the low-down. There is NO SMOKING in any of the inside bars/clubs (very nice)! However, everything you read about the casino is TRUE! *TIP*...plan ahead and use the deck above or below when you need to get from the front of the ship to the back or vice-versa. The casino is very big and holding your breath from beginning to end gets old fast

3. Getting around - The tip on the red vs. blue carpet color has also been mentioned. *SECRET* If the carpet in the hall of your cabin is blue...use the elevators with the blue lights and you will be on "your" side of the ship to get to your cabin quicker and without toooo much trouble There are lots of elevators ...red lights on one side...blue on the other, and they are roomy unlike older ships. There were waits at obvious rush times, but we had no problem waiting a couple of minutes when needing to go UP several decks. The stairs were great, roomy, and convenient, and we used them most times.

4. Food - You already know what to expect at the buffet and in the main dining rooms, so here are some *Suggestions* of the yummiest things to eat before you get off the ship!
---Lobster was excellent at Cagney's compared to main dining, and the creme' brulee' was delish!
---Cirque Dinner Show now serves steak... with shrimp instead of chicken for the entree'. And, you don't choose a salad/appetizers or deserts, you get all 3 listed on the menu on your plate. (just thought I'd mention that...as we were deciding who would get what so we would not duplicate and were surprized when they brought us each item for our 1st & 3rd course
---Fried potstickers at the Noodles Bar...oh me oh my...$2 and you get 4!
---Chicken Pot Pie and Warm Apple Crumble at O'Sheehan's...sooooo delish we did lunch there twice and ordered the same thing!
:::rumroll:::: please...and THE best kept secret on the ship is....
---Sweet Potato Fries at the Spice H2O bar (not at the outdoor buffet side...at the actual bar side). Can't get them until 6pm, but they are worth the trip to the back of the ship. You can also get them to go and they are served with a lime cream sauce YUM!!!! <mouth is watering for them now!>

5. Potty Breaks - You are allowed to leave and return to go to the bathroom during the Blue Man Group and Cirque. Maybe this is a change, but we read that you couldn't and just wanted to let the ladies know

6. Night Life - Second City actors are GREAT with their late night improv shows....the "Overboard" show was our favorite. Bliss and Spice H2O are fun dance club nights with live DJ's and Cruise Director Paul is always there to stir things up. Dance floor at Bliss is very small though. *IMO* Howl at the Moon was a blast! Love the singer/musicians too...(Dru, Richard & Colleen). If you remember...tell Dru that the "Joy to the World" interpretive dancer said HI! I LOVE him!!!!

Hope this helps and if anyone has a specific question, please ask! We had no children in our small group so we were able to do just about EVERYTHING the ship had to offer...well except the art auctions...not our thing!
#2
BUFFALO, NY
2,795 Posts
Joined Sep 2006
AWESOME tips!

Thanks for sharing!
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#3
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
oops forgot 2 things...

Go to the Martini Bar on the "Martini Tasting" evening (usually listed on an "at sea" day)...just walk up and sit...no booking required. $20 and you get 5 different martini's. We had, lemontini, chocolatini, sunburstini, coconutini, and a bluetini. Very good history/information/joking at first....then you don't care

Book the Ice Bar as well...$20 and you get 2 drinks. We thought they were shots of svedka vodka (since svedka sponsors it)...but you have your choice of 4 YUMMY vodka drinks (there are also 2 non-alcoholic selections available). I got the Blue Lagoon and the Sunrise something. Laughed so much we sounded like a bunch of school girls. You get 45 minutes...and we lasted 35 minutes...some had to leave after only 5 minutes, they just took their drinks out with them
#4
Delray Beach, FL
660 Posts
Joined Sep 2008
Originally posted by AHI
oops forgot 2 things...

Go to the Martini Bar on the "Martini Tasting" evening (usually listed on an "at sea" day)...just walk up and sit...no booking required. $20 and you get 5 different martini's. We had, lemontini, chocolatini, sunburstini, coconutini, and a bluetini. Very good history/information/joking at first....then you don't care

Book the Ice Bar as well...$20 and you get 2 drinks. We thought they were shots of svedka vodka (since svedka sponsors it)...but you have your choice of 4 YUMMY vodka drinks (there are also 2 non-alcoholic selections available). I got the Blue Lagoon and the Sunrise something. Laughed so much we sounded like a bunch of school girls. You get 45 minutes...and we lasted 35 minutes...some had to leave after only 5 minutes, they just took their drinks out with them
I also highly recommend the martini tasting, it was awesome and so worth the money!
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#5
Bronx, NY
1,339 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
Thanks AHI for your posting!! Very helpful!! Can you tell me if they had a deck party during the week?
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#6
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Hi David,

Everynight is a deck party at Spice H2O. It's really nice up there. I'm sure you've seen the pics...The pool area is lit up (pool is covered) and the bar is on the deck above overlooking Spice H2O. Lots of good dancing music and the cruise director is GREAT fun...really good at getting everyone to participate. Two of the nights were themed nights...one was Fabba night where they played music of Abba...the other was a White Hot Party where everyone (crew included) dressed in white and danced to DJ music on the covered pool Warning...you are on video the entire time on the HUGE wide screen above the pool...and snippets from these videos are played all week long on a certain TV channel in every cabin

If you meant during the day...on sea days most of the fun games/party stuff happened around the Aqua Park. Some really funny stuff too, I don't want to spoil it though. During sea days, the upper decks are mainly for adults who want to be away from the kiddos and noise.

Hope that helps!
#7
Peotone, IL. (South of Chicago)
2,913 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
I love secrets!
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#8
Wynnewood, PA
2,014 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Was the martini tasting full size drinks or small ones? If small, about how small, like one or two sips or half drink or ?? thanks
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#9
New Jersey
469 Posts
Joined Dec 2003
There was a huge list of secrets/tips/tricks to the Epic a while ago, you might consider searching for it and adding yours to the list! The creator was 2010_cruisers.
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#10
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Hi erdoran,

We think alike...I asked the bartender before we sat down

Each martini was 8 ounces....(shaken with ice, but no ice in glass of course). So, if you get 2 reg large size (16 oz) $10 drinks on the ship that would be a total of 32 oz @ $20. This was 40 oz for the same price. All premium liquor used...he shows each bottle and explains the different liquors in each one while they are being made.

Oh and when you sit down, they will say it's for 4 martini's...but at the end they say... "What could be better than 4 martini's?" "5 martini's!" Everybody claps and yells. Then, you get the 5th "free" one. It's a fun time...no matter how they do it! And now that you know...you can yell "5 martini's" before he does...and everyone will be clapping and yelling for YOU!
#11
Wynnewood, PA
2,014 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by AHI
Hi erdoran,

We think alike...I asked the bartender before we sat down

Each martini was 8 ounces....(shaken with ice, but no ice in glass of course). So, if you get 2 reg large size (16 oz) $10 drinks on the ship that would be a total of 32 oz @ $20. This was 40 oz for the same price. All premium liquor used...he shows each bottle and explains the different liquors in each one while they are being made.

Oh and when you sit down, they will say it's for 4 martini's...but at the end they say... "What could be better than 4 martini's?" "5 martini's!" Everybody claps and yells. Then, you get the 5th "free" one. It's a fun time...no matter how they do it! And now that you know...you can yell "5 martini's" before he does...and everyone will be clapping and yelling for YOU!
Hmmm....I hadn't realized a $10 martini was 16 oz, it seems so much smaller :>

Thanks for that GREAT info!! Does this include tip, or is it expected to tip afterwards? Or do they just add the 15% autograt onto the $20 so you actually pay $23?
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1988: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1990: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1997: Club Med cruise, Tahiti & Islands
2002: Tradewinds Cruise Club, British Virgin Islands
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Tobago circumnavigation
2009: Carnival Liberty, Nassau, Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas
6/24/2010: Epic transatlantic
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Discover the Caribbean, Antigua to Bequia repositioning--Antigua, Guadeloupe, The Saints, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, Bequia
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines: Bequia, Canouan, Chatham Bay, Saltwhistle Bay, Tobago Cays, Petit St. Vincent
12/25/2010: NCL Epic, Western Caribbean
8/20/2011: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Guadeloupe & area
10/23/2011: Epic TA, Barcelona to Miami

Christmas 2011 Epic Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1330253
Jade Holyland October 20, 2012 Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1347943
#12
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Tips are autograt just like you stated.

Looking at my Epic account final bill now...

Shakers Martini Bar...$17.25

So, it was actually $15 for 5 (8 oz) martinis...with an autograt of $2.25 (or 15%)!!

OOPS!!!! Gonna edit the post now!....

Please don't kick me off...
#13
Wynnewood, PA
2,014 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by AHI
Tips are autograt just like you stated.

Looking at my Epic account final bill now...

Shakers Martini Bar...$17.25

So, it was actually $15 for 5 (8 oz) martinis...with an autograt of $2.25 (or 15%)!!

OOPS!!!! Gonna edit the post now!....

Please don't kick me off...
So where did $20 come from?? I had actually thought the martini tasting was $15 and was surprised to see $20!
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1988: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1990: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1997: Club Med cruise, Tahiti & Islands
2002: Tradewinds Cruise Club, British Virgin Islands
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Tobago circumnavigation
2009: Carnival Liberty, Nassau, Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas
6/24/2010: Epic transatlantic
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Discover the Caribbean, Antigua to Bequia repositioning--Antigua, Guadeloupe, The Saints, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, Bequia
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines: Bequia, Canouan, Chatham Bay, Saltwhistle Bay, Tobago Cays, Petit St. Vincent
12/25/2010: NCL Epic, Western Caribbean
8/20/2011: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Guadeloupe & area
10/23/2011: Epic TA, Barcelona to Miami

Christmas 2011 Epic Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1330253
Jade Holyland October 20, 2012 Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1347943
#14
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
I guess I confused the Ice Bar which was $20 with the Martini Tasting (which I see now was $15).
#15
4,173 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Thanks so much for all the tips!!

I just have a couple of questions... Was that 'Joy to the World' the holiday version or Three Dog Night?

Also, what time was the martini tasting? I'm always disappointed when they have activities like that in the middle of the afternoon, because I can't participate (well, I could, but then I'd eat supper and be done for the night...). You used the word 'evening' in your description... does that mean it's actually at a time when I could actually start on a full stomach and finish just in time to head to a club?
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#16
7 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
LOL...def 3 Dog Night!

Martini Tasting (looking at the Freestyle Daily Activity Sheets I see it's called "NCL U Martini Clinic") was at 4pm on both days offered...day 2 and 6 (Eastern). Stop at the buffet for a snack 1st. You will be fine for dinner afterwards...(unless you stay there and order more martini's

Now the Pub Crawl IS later...9pm and is on the 1st and 6th night.
#17
4,173 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Originally posted by AHI
LOL...def 3 Dog Night!

Martini Tasting (looking at the Freestyle Daily Activity Sheets I see it's called "NCL U Martini Clinic") was at 4pm on both days offered...day 2 and 6 (Eastern). Stop at the buffet for a snack 1st. You will be fine for dinner afterwards...(unless you stay there and order more martini's

Now the Pub Crawl IS later...9pm and is on the 1st and 6th night.
Awww, that's too bad. If I weren't travelling with my mom and my daughter, whom I enjoy dining with... sober. ha ha ha

The pub crawls, on the other hand, I will be taking full advantage of!!

So tell me... where do I go to hear the Three Dog Night? Is there a band that plays classic rock?
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#18
Wynnewood, PA
2,014 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Howl at the Moon does! If you like Meatloaf, they do a GREAT Paradise by the Dashboard Light, as well as a lot of other 60's and 70's stuff, lots of Beatles, for instance. Bet they do, or would do, 3 Dog Night
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1988: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1990: Big Red Boat, Bahamas
1997: Club Med cruise, Tahiti & Islands
2002: Tradewinds Cruise Club, British Virgin Islands
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines
2009: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Tobago circumnavigation
2009: Carnival Liberty, Nassau, Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas
6/24/2010: Epic transatlantic
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Discover the Caribbean, Antigua to Bequia repositioning--Antigua, Guadeloupe, The Saints, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, Bequia
8/2010: Tradewinds Cruise Club, St. Vincent & the Grenadines: Bequia, Canouan, Chatham Bay, Saltwhistle Bay, Tobago Cays, Petit St. Vincent
12/25/2010: NCL Epic, Western Caribbean
8/20/2011: Tradewinds Cruise Club, Guadeloupe & area
10/23/2011: Epic TA, Barcelona to Miami

Christmas 2011 Epic Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1330253
Jade Holyland October 20, 2012 Roll Call http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1347943
#19
4,173 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Originally posted by erdoran
Howl at the Moon does! If you like Meatloaf, they do a GREAT Paradise by the Dashboard Light, as well as a lot of other 60's and 70's stuff, lots of Beatles, for instance. Bet they do, or would do, 3 Dog Night
Thanks!! Now I'm looking forward to Howl at the Moon even more than I was before!
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#20
55 Posts
Joined Aug 2010
Originally posted by CanadianTwosome
Thanks so much for all the tips!!

I just have a couple of questions... Was that 'Joy to the World' the holiday version or Three Dog Night?

Also, what time was the martini tasting? I'm always disappointed when they have activities like that in the middle of the afternoon, because I can't participate (well, I could, but then I'd eat supper and be done for the night...). You used the word 'evening' in your description... does that mean it's actually at a time when I could actually start on a full stomach and finish just in time to head to a club?

CT,

I was hanging out at a Mac's milk, several years ago, chatting with a few friends at about 1a.m. Big tour bus pulls up, and Three Dog Night get out to go get snacks. Chatted with their tour manager and got autographed photo. At the time, I didn't even know who they were...

EZ

EZ