Norwegian Encore Cruise Ship: Overview and Things to Do

Everything you need to know about the Norwegian Encore cruise ship, with an overview and all the things guests can do onboard.

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A relatively new ship, Norwegian Encore offers lots to do for every member of your traveling crew. From kids to seniors, they’ll all discover loads to love, from the amazing, first-of-their-class activities to the myriad dining options to the live entertainment and sophisticated and luxurious staterooms.

Here’s everything you need to know about Norwegian Encore.

Norwegian Encore Stats

While on the larger side (Norwegian Encore easily creeps into the top 25 largest cruise ships to date, as of early 2023), Norwegian Encore still isn’t the largest ship in the biz.

It’s just large enough to give you and your family plenty of space to spread out and loads of entertainment and dining options. The ship measures in at:

  • Gross Tonnage: 169,116 GT
  • Guest Capacity: 3,998 people at double occupancy
  • Length: 333 meters
  • Crew: 1,735 members
  • Total Decks: 20
  • Passenger Decks: 16

Construction and History

If you’ve traveled any of the other ships that are a part of Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway Plus class, then you likely will have a good idea of what to expect aboard Norwegian Encore. The ship is extremely similar to sister ships Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Joy

Norwegian Encore Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Wayleebird / Shutterstock

Norwegian Encore was announced in 2014 and, for several years, it was entirely expected that the ship would primarily serve the Asian market. However, that would not end up being the case, and the ship would move to Western Hemisphere routes only, to date.

Construction began in 2018 and, after a year, the ship began its sea trials, before finally debuting in late 2019. Since its launch, Norwegian Encore has sailed Caribbean and Alaska routes.

Norwegian Encore Under Construction
Photo: Meyer Werft

Read Also: Norwegian Cruise Ships – Newest to Oldest

Since this ship is still on the new side, at just a few years old, and it didn’t see as much cruiser traffic as it might have normally, due to cruising suspensions over 2020, you can expect Norwegian Encore to be nearly just as beautiful, luxurious and in great condition now, as it was when it launched in 2019. 

Staterooms

So given that this ship is big, beautiful and new, you probably have pretty high hopes for the staterooms — and for good reason! Luckily, you won’t be disappointed. The ship offers a few different kinds of staterooms, including…

  • Studio staterooms
  • Interior staterooms
  • Oceanview staterooms
  • Balcony staterooms

Studio staterooms are a unique offering on the cruising market, specifically designed for solo travelers. If you’ve ever been sailing by yourself and you just want to save a little in your travel budget, these staterooms are for you.

Norwegian Encore Studio Cabin
Norwegian Encore Studio Cabin

The studio staterooms include full-size beds, a small bathroom and even access to a studio lounge that’s only open to similar studio stateroom cruisers.

Interior staterooms have sitting areas and multiple beds, for multiple cruisers. Unlike some interior staterooms that can feel outdated and cramped, these interior staterooms are modern and sleek, with a contemporary hotel feel.

The oceanview staterooms offer a large amount of floor space, with well-defined sitting and entertainment areas set apart from the bedroom and divided by a thick curtain, for privacy.

The ocean view isn’t as large as what you might find on some other ships (and you won’t be able to enjoy it from bed), but you still get a large, rectangular window in the sitting area.

Norwegian Encore Balcony Stateroom
Norwegian Encore Balcony Stateroom

If you do want to specifically be able to take in those ocean views from your bed each morning, book a balcony stateroom with floor-to-ceiling glass doors that sit right next to the bed, perfect for taking in the views with a cup of coffee.

The private balconies offer seating for two, while the larger stateroom offers a couch in the entertainment area. Separate spa staterooms provide complimentary access to spa amenities. 

Suites

However, if you’re on a ship this nice and new, you really should take full advantage of its most luxurious offerings — like what you’ll find among Norwegian Encore’s suite selections. 

For starters, there are spa suites and club balcony suites. The main appeal of both of these suites is the larger bathrooms. Spa suites even come with rain showers. 

 The Haven Deluxe Owner Suite
The Haven Deluxe Owner Suite

The pinnacle of Norwegian Encore suites, though, can be found within the special VIP section of the ship named The Haven

When you book a stay in a Haven suite, you’re guaranteed an amazingly large cabin that would be at home in any luxury hotel around the world. You get your own private balcony, luxury showers, unbeatable views and more.

The Haven also offers its guests a private courtyard with a lovely pool and hot tub, as well as a private fine dining restaurant and a bar that’s only open to Haven guests. 

The Haven houses various types of suites, including a two-bedroom family villa, penthouse suite and owner’s suite that can sleep six. 

Free Dining

Norwegian Encore has some pretty amazing dining options, with many different restaurants to choose from, even if you only go for the complimentary eats and you don’t splurge on any extra, for-a-fee dining experiences.

Norwegian Encore Dining Room
Norwegian Encore Dining Room

On this ship, your free dining options will include…

  • The Manhattan Room, one of the ship’s large, luxurious main dining rooms
  • Taste, another main dining room, with a daily changing menu
  • Savour, the third of the main dining rooms, with modern flair
  • The Garden Cafe, an all-day buffet
  • The Local Bar & Grill, for casual, pub-style eats and drinks, available 24 hours
  • Room service, for another 24-hour option (though service fees may apply)
  • The Haven (available for complimentary fine dining for The Haven suite guests only)

Specialty Restaurants

If you do find yourself craving more than what the free dining options aboard Norwegian Encore provide (not likely, though), you can see what awaits at the ship’s more than 10 different specialty restaurants, including…

Cagney’s Steakhouse
Cagney’s Steakhouse
  • Ocean Blue, serving fresh seafood, wine and cocktails 
  • Onda by Scarpetta, an Italian eatery that’s received rave reviews
  • Cagney’s Steakhouse, for a classic steakhouse experience
  • Food Republic, for international fare that’s always changing
  • Teppanyaki, for your standard teppanyaki-style eats
  • Los Lobos, for all your Mexican cravings
  • American Diner, for classic American eats from around the country, from Maine lobster rolls to southern fried chicken
  • Coco’s, to satisfy your sweet tooth with chocolates and ice cream
  • Dolce Gelato, for even more sweet treat fun
  • Le Bistro, for fine French dining
  • The Bake Shop, for macarons, bonbons and more
  • Q Texas Smokehouse, for Texas-style barbecue and country music 
  • Starbucks, for all your favorite land-based coffee beverages, just during your cruise 

Bars and Lounges

While most of the restaurants above do offer some sort of alcoholic beverage, if you specifically want to enjoy a bar or lounge-like atmosphere, no need for dining, then you’ll have plenty of options aboard Norwegian Encore. The cruise ship’s watering holes include…

A-List Bar
A-List Bar
  • The District Brew House, for nearly 75 different types of beer
  • The A-List Bar, for people watching while you sip
  • Sugarcane Mojito Bar, for Caribbean-inspired drinks in the fresh air
  • The Cellars Wine Bar, for your favorite wines from around the world
  • Skyline Casino Bar, for a little liquid courage before you hit the slots
  • The Local Bar, a casual pub
  • Mixx Bar, for live piano music and cocktails
  • Maltings Whiskey Bar, for a large selection of whiskeys in an upscale setting
  • The Observation lounge, for 180-degree views
  • Atrium Bar, for drinks right in the ship’s atrium
  • Horizon Lounge, a Haven guest-only bar
  • Haven Lounge, another Haven guest-only option
  • Vibe Beach Club, a pool-side setting for the adults only 

Activities and Entertainment

You could spend nearly an entire cruise just making your way through Norwegian Encore’s various restaurants and bars, but make sure you leave plenty of time during your sea days to explore the ship’s many activities and entertainment options. You’ll want to…

Race Track

It’s no secret that Norwegian Encore serves up entertainment in big, hearty helpings, and it all starts with the ship’s race track. This impressive feature has more than 1,100 feet of track (and, in case you didn’t know, that makes it longer than three entire football fields).

Norwegian Encore Speedway Track
Norwegian Encore Speedway Track

The daring and death-defying track takes you out over the open water, with curves stretching 13 feet out over the ship’s side. The newer Prima-class cruise ships have an even more impressive Speedway, spanning three decks!

Play a Game of Laser Tag

The fun continues with an epic game of laser tag. Your laser battle is set within the fitting city of Atlantis for underwater exploration, with you running to hide behind city ruins while battling sea monsters.

Norwegian Encore Laser Tag
Norwegian Encore Laser Tag

And similarly to the race track, this laser tag course sets records, as it’s the largest open-air laser tag option at sea. 

Wind Your Way Through an RV Maze

This virtual reality maze is a total can’t-miss for cruisers of all ages on Norwegian Encore. The VR maze is set within the Galaxy Pavilion, the ship’s 10,000-square-foot AR complex.

And if you’ve tried VR games previously at home and didn’t care for them, you’ll want to give it another go here. The tech is truly outstanding and like nothing you’ve ever experienced before.

Chill at One of Two Waterparks

That’s right — Norwegian Encore boasts not one, but two water parks. The all-ages water park offers multiple pools, hot tubs, slides and kid-friendly water features that are sure to please every traveler in your family.

Waterpark

Definitely don’t miss the slides — these adrenaline-pumping experiences whip you along water courses that jet out over the side of the ship, take you around double loops and more. 

The kids-only water park is a bit tamer, with kid-friendly slides and water fun that will appeal to a range of ages. 

Catch a Broadway-Style Show

Broadway entertainment abounds aboard Norwegian Encore, and if the ship’s first show (the Tony Award-winning musical “Kinky Boots”) is any indicator, there will be plenty of amazing performances in its future, no matter when you decide to take your cruise.

…Or See a More Relaxed Number

Beyond the big Broadway hits, Norwegian Encore also offers a musical review in the form of “Choir of Man.” The best part? This show is set in a bar, so you can sip a drink while you kick back and enjoy the music. 

Late-Night Music

Like sister ship Norwegian Joy, onboard the Encore’s Social Comedy and Night Club, the evening starts with comedy sets, and then things move on to DJ sets later in the evening. 

Take a Stroll Along the Promenade

The Waterfront space on this ship acts as a quarter-mile-long promenade with fantastic views of the ocean. However, just like an on-land promenade, this space gives you direct access to restaurants, bars, and more for a truly unique experience.

Norwegian Encore Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Solarisys / Shutterstock

Pamper Yourself at the Spa

The spacious Norwegian Encore spa serves travelers with an abundant array of treatment options. But, if you’re not in the mood for a treatment, you’ll still enjoy relaxing in this serene space, which includes loungers with ocean views, a salt room for detoxifying your body and a snow room for a chilling sensation that will leave you revitalized. 

Break a Sweat at the Fitness Center

You don’t have to leave your workout routine at home while on vacation. Stay healthy with a trip to Norwegian Encore’s fitness center, where state-of-the-art workout equipment is available alongside guided classes for those who want to try out pilates, yoga or even guided meditation. You can also take a look at what sister ship Norwegian Escape offers.

Try Your Luck at the Casino

Norwegian Cruise Line’s award-winning casino continues to deliver aboard Norwegian Encore. You’ll find every game imaginable, from slots to poker, and if you want to join the big dogs at the high-stakes tables, you’re more than welcome. (But don’t worry, beginner tables are available too, to help you learn the ropes.)

Escape to the Adults-Only Beach Club

While there might not be a beach onboard, you won’t notice, thanks to Vibe Beach Club’s impeccable design. The adults-only, private retreat covers a whopping two stories of space.

Beach Club
Beach Club

The Beach Club includes a spacious bar with all your favorite drinks, plenty of loungers in the sun, refreshing snacks, and a hot tub. It’s a great place for adults to relax in the sunshine without braving any screaming kids or harried families. 

Kids Venues

Norwegian Encore is incredibly family-friendly, with so many activities for families to enjoy together. However, just like there are adults-only spaces on the ship, where adults can get away from the kiddos, there are also kid-friendly and kid-specific spaces where the younger set can escape mom or dad.

Norwegian Encore Splash Academy Seals
Norwegian Encore Splash Academy Seals

For the younger kids in the crew, there’s Splash Academy, where programming engages children with activities designed for their ages. Children are divided into groups from 3 to 5 years old, 6 to 9 years old and 10 to 12 years old.

For even younger children, parents can visit a nursery designed for those ages 6 months to 3 years. Parents do have to stay in the nursery with their kids.

Entourage
Entourage

Younger and older teens are all grouped together, 13 to 17 years old, in the Entourage Teen Club, with its gaming setups, televisions, and activities. There’s also an arcade on the ship that, as you could expect, primarily attracts an under-18 set.

Norwegian Encore Cruises

Think a Norwegian Encore cruise, with its wealth of things to do and endless options for entertainment, is exactly what your family needs this year? Check out the cruise line’s upcoming offerings and pick the best itinerary for you!

Norwegian Encore FAQ

How many pools does Norwegian Encore have?

Norwegian Encore offers guests three different swimming pools. Across these swimming pools, you’ll find five waterslides. In addition, guests enjoy access to nine Jacuzzies, though not all of these water options are open to every single cruiser, as some are in adults-only or VIP areas.

How big is the Norwegian Encore?

The Norwegian Encore ship is just over 1,000 feet in length, with 16 passenger decks and 20 total decks. This gives the ship a guest capacity of just under 4,000, and a crew capacity of 2,100.

What class cruise ship is the Norwegian Encore?

Norwegian Encore is in Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway Plus Class, where it joins sister ships Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Joy. The Breakaway Plus Class was launched in 2015 and has received rave reviews worldwide since.

Holly Riddle
Holly Riddle
Holly Riddle is a travel and food freelance writer whose work can be found in print and digital publications all around the world. She is additionally an entrepreneur specializing in content and marketing services. Beyond frequent travel, Riddle enjoys cooking, reading, camping and spending time with her husband and two dogs. Her favorite travel destinations include Chicago, Amsterdam, Edinburgh and just about anywhere in the Caribbean. Find out more about us here.

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