After reading the reviews for the Sky I was scared to death to sail on her. The reviews were either amazing or horrific. I feel the Sky needs an honest review so people do not have the same reaction I do. With that being said, I went on with zero expectations because of the inconsistency in the reviews.
Just a little background, I have cruised once before on Carnival aboard the Valor. She is an older ship as well so I cannot say I have any large ship experience to compare it to, however I am always honest in my opinions, whether good or bad. We flew into FLL very early the morning of the cruise so we just rented a car, had some breakfast and headed to port.
Embarkation: Embarkation was a BREEZE! We arrived at about 11 AM and to our surprise there were already quite a bit of people in the waiting area. We checked our bags outside at the sidewalk and proceeded through security. We were handed a boarding card with a group number on it and had a seat until our number was called. As always, your cabins aren't ready until later in the afternoon so we brought along a change of clothes to enjoy the Miami sun while we waited. Upon boarding we headed to one of the main dining rooms to have some sit down lunch instead of fighting the crowds at the buffet.
Ship: Although the Sky is an older ship, it holds up for its age. Of course there is the expected rust in a few places or creaky something or other, but all in all it was in pretty good shape.
Cabin: Our cabins were ready fairly early, at about 1 PM. We headed to our room to check it out. We had booked an inside cabin which worried me slightly. Our last cruise was in an aft wrap balcony and I am claustrophobic so this was going to be an experience. We were in cabin 8302 which was almost all the way Forward and Starboard. I was told the room was 147 square feet. Much to my amazement, the cabin was not bad AT ALL. We had a full size bed, 2 nightstands, a sofa and a small desk. There wasn't a ton of room to walk around but it wasn't cramped in my opinion. We stored one suitcase on the sofa so I could "live" out of it (there wasn't enough room in the closet for both of us) and we stored the others under the bed. The bathroom was small but that is to be expected. The room was very quiet. I don't believe we heard noise more than once the entire time and that was someone entering a room across the hall.
Dining: Because my boyfriend and I are very health conscious and picky, we opted to purchase the Ultimate Dining Package. With this package you can eat in any of the specialty restaurants every night of the cruise. We pushed our limits with this because of what we had read in the forums and because we are "those people" who like to time our meals and eat every so often. The first 2 nights we had appetizers and shared one entree very early in the evening at one restaurant and then we ate a very late dinner at another restaurant. The 1st day we made the reservations with the restaurant reservations desk so we assumed this was allowed. On the 2nd night at dinner (our "second" dinner) the hostess informed us that we could only eat at one restaurant per day/night. They allowed us to keep our reservation that night but the next 2 days we only ate once per night. No big deal but we thoroughly enjoyed being able to have appetizers in one of the specialty restaurants instead of snacking at the buffet. All in all the food was much better than expected. The breakfast at the MDRs was average and the buffet was average too, but not horrific as I had read before. It is a buffet for 1000s of people, what do you expect. We did try the sushi in Plantation Club early one evening. The prices are pretty decent and the sushi isn't half bad. It was a nice breakup to the same meat/pasta/chicken we were used to.
Crew: This was another area I was iffy about (again based on reviews). The crew was nothing more than polite and friendly from the moment we walked onto the ship. Once in a while we encountered someone who wasn't as outgoing and friendly but very rarely. I think it has a lot to do with the many cultures all mixed together on the ship. We did not come across anyone who was "rude", so to speak.
Entertainment: We actually didn't go to one show or presentation on the ship. But when we walked through the pool deck after dinner a few nights, there was a lot going on. A lot of energy. There were also game shows and entertainment in the theater that looked intriguing but we never got around to fitting it all in.
All in all we had a great time aboard the Norwegian Sky. I would suggest you don't shy away from the reviews that are horrific because it is less than horrific. I would imagine these reviewers are expecting something super luxurious and are used to 5 star quality and service. This isn't the biggest or best ship, but for a 4 night cruise it was pretty close to perfect.