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In Southampton’s cool climate, I was not able to see ‘the waterfront’ fully utilised. However I do have a couple of concerns about it. Firstly, the number of external seats is quite limited, and as the ship can carry 4,000 passengers, your odds of actually dining in the fresh air, will not be very good.
The Breakaway Theatre has 800 raked seats, but no balcony. It is not as big as you might expect for such a large ship (traditionally theatres on-board ships could often accommodate half the passengers at one performance).
I was also surprised how small the balcony was.
Even the top grades of stateroom generally had quite small balconies, compared to the fare paid. Welcome to mass-market cruising!
Breakaway is going to be a big hit; she is one of the most exciting ships afloat. The only direct completion comes from Royal Caribbean’s newer ships]
It’s important to note that these big ships are designed on the premise that not everybody on-board (some 4,000 in Breakaway’s case) will want to do the same thing, in the same place, all at once. This premise largely works, but when it doesn’t, expect queues and congestion. Breakaway was ‘busy’ when I experienced her and she only had 3,000 guests at that time. I do wonder how the Waterfront might cope on a warm sunny evening in the Caribbean or Bermuda. The promenade deck and its seating will only be able to accommodate a relatively small percentage of the passengers at once.Nicely written review. Addressed positives and negatives.
Great balanced review, thanks!The Waterfront is generally wider than many ships proms to accommodate the seating and tables. However the walkway space between the rail and the seating/tables is probably only wide enough for two people at certain points.
Only additional thought/concern I had was the narrow walkway out on the waterfront... any insight on that? From your pictures it looked extremely narrow.
The Waterfront is generally wider than many ships proms to accommodate the seating and tables. However the walkway space between the rail and the seating/tables is probably only wide enough for two people at certain points.Thanks for the reply, that's exactly what I was afraid of. When I saw the renderings and imagined the space I think I expected a space more like the Lanai on the Carnival Dream class ships where the walkway is quite wide (too wide IMHO as it causes other issues for balconies above), and was surprised to see how narrow the walkway actually is. I guess we'll have to wait and see how it plays on her first real sailing from NYC to get a sense.
In Southampton the afternoon was quite warm and a bunch of people were drinking at one of the bars on The Waterfront. I can confirm that it was very difficult to pass down the Prom thorough them!
Hopefully on a warm evening, some people will be at H2O, some dining (internally) some in the Spiegel Tent, Headliners, and Fat Cats, some in Bliss and NOT all on the Waterfront.
Personally I still think it will regularly get over-crowded:
Actual Video on the Waterfront (Not NCL promo): http://youtu.be/_kRN2i9mS2M