Last week, my husband and I went on our first cruise on the Valor. We left from Miami and cruised to Nassau, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten. We had 3 fun days at sea.
We stayed in an oceanview room which was nice, cozy, and quiet. Next time, I would like to get a balcony stateroom. The one downer about our stateroom was the temperature. It was not cool enough for me especially after getting a sunburn. The minimum temp is 73 degrees. I am comfy at 70 degrees but they wouldn't adjust it. They said 73 degrees was the minimum for a low powered AC which I doubted.
In Miami, we stayed at the Radisson in downtown. They had a special for pre or post cruise that included a shuttle to the ship. The Radisson had better rates than any other nearby hotel including the Holiday Inn. The people at the Radisson took very good care of us in getting our luggage up to our room and calling us to see if we were pleased with our room. We tried out the sleep number bed which was awesome! I now want one at home. I highly recommend staying at the Radisson. The view of the port is pretty good from this hotel.
In Nassau, we did the stingray encounter which was neat! Then we attempted window shopping. One thing we found out is that people in Nassau are pushy when it comes to selling their stuff. If you so even glance at there stuff, they shout out to buy because it's only 3 for $10. It's good prices but too aggressive for me to be ok buying the stuff. Other than the shore excursion, I didn't enjoy Nassau.
In St. Thomas, I thought it looked similar to pictures of Greece that I have seen in magazines or on posters. We bobbed underwater and went on the sunset sail. I highly recommend both activities. Seeing the fish underwater swim all around you is gorgeous! The sunset was breathtaking! I did some shopping here which was much more laid back than Nassau. I enjoyed St. Thomas the most.
In St. Maarten, we toured the French and Dutch side. We visited Phillipsburg for shopping. We visited Mullet Beach (top optional for the brave) which was beautiful and crystal clear! The bar off the beach grilled out ribs that were delicious! Other than the beach and shopping, St. Maarten wasn't that interesting to me. Marigot has a lot of shops and a delicious French pastry outdoor restaurant. According to the tour guide Slim, you have to be careful where you go to the bathroom in Marigot because most places charge $1 to use it.
As far as the activities on Valor, the dancers were very cool. Any shows with dancers, I strongly recommend attending. They are very talented. The comedians were iffy. Only one out of three were somewhat funny yet that one was crude and not entirely family oriented in his humor.
The hypnotist was ineffective and boring. Some of the stuff he asked the 'hypnotized' people to do was hilarious and they did it well.......but not in a hypnotized state. It was all a 'show.'
I did not like the cruise director Brett A. He was like a public television fundraiser. He would ramble on and on needlessly about every single detail that most could have and probably already had figured out. His humor was very perverted. He was annoying.
The food was great! Mr. V the maitre d' was cool! Our team servers were sweet and prompt. The photographers for the most part did a great job. The cabin steward was great in keeping our room clean and well kept. He was very prompt when we needed room service.
The spa was spectacular! The hot stones massage was unlike any other massage I have had done. It was very relaxing! It was on the pricey side, but relaxing.
Everyone on the ship was from all over the world. They were all kind and helpful!