Norwegian Cruise Line took the wraps off the names of their first Breakaway Plus-class cruise ships earlier this week. The results of the line’s “Norwegians Name Their Ships” Facebook contest, fans in five countries selected the names Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss out of a total of more than 100,000 votes.

Norwegian's new Breakaway Plus vessels will be larger, but still derived from, Norwegian Breakaway. Photo courtesy of Meyer-Werft.

Norwegian’s new Breakaway Plus vessels will be larger, but still derived from, Norwegian Breakaway. Photo courtesy of Meyer-Werft.

“The response to our ‘Norwegians Name Their Ships’ contest was overwhelming,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian’s chief executive officer. “It reaffirms that we have a very engaged and passionate community of Norwegians and we are thrilled with the names they have selected for our two new Breakaway Plus Class Ships. Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss are two names that truly characterize our brand, Freestyle Cruising®, and the experience guests will have on board these fantastic new vessels.”

Read our Live Report from the Norwegian Breakaway Christening Ceremonies in New York!

The new Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss will set sail in the fall of 2015 and the spring of 2017, respectively. They will be the largest ships in the Norwegian Cruise Line fleet at 163,000 gross tons and will be able to accommodate 4,200 passengers.

The Waterfront, by night: Norwegian Breakaway's new dining venue and promenade deck combination. Awesome! Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

The Waterfront, by night: Norwegian Breakaway’s new dining venue and promenade deck combination. Awesome! Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Both ships will be derived from the same basic plans as Norwegian’s recently-launched Norwegian Breakaway and her forthcoming sister, Norwegian Getaway, with the exception of an additional deck. While it’s too early to speculate on exactly what features will be present onboard the new Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss, it’s reasonable to assume that each will bear its own unique identity similar to how Norwegian Breakaway is styled after New York City whereas Norwegian Getaway reflects a hip Miami-style vibe.

When she set sail this past May, Norwegian Breakaway arguably began a new page in the history of Norwegian Cruise Line by introducing cool new features like The Waterfront – a re-imagined Promenade Deck – and by continuing to build on the line’s reputation for stellar onboard entertainment. Aboard Norwegian Breakaway, guests can take in performances by The Rockettes and enjoy the edgy Broadway musical Rock of Ages.

The fantastic Thermal Suite Spa aboard Norwegian Epic, located all the way forward on Deck 15

The fantastic Thermal Suite Spa aboard Norwegian Breakaway, located all the way forward on Deck 15. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Sheehan also expressed his desire to make Norwegian the first family-friendly “Upper Premium” cruise line – and I think he can actually pull it off. With their names finally announced, Norwegian Escape and Norwegian Bliss just might give some of Norwegian’s competitors pause for thought.

Because you don’t want to underestimate the founders of Freestyle Cruising.

The gorgeous atrium at 678 Ocean Place spans, as the name suggests, Decks 6, 7 and 8. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

The gorgeous atrium at 678 Ocean Place aboard Norwegian Breakaway spans, as the name suggests, Decks 6, 7 and 8. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

For a full look at what these exciting vessels might look like, have a peek at our full report from the Norwegian Breakaway christening ceremonies this past May in New York City!

 

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