We flew out of Buffalo and stayed in Miami the night before the cruise. We stayed at the Sonesta Bayfront Hotel in Coconut Grove....what a fantastic hotel! We got a very good deal on the room ($60 CDN) and it was amazing. Even for the full price of $224 USD per night, it would have been worth it. The hotel is in a great location...lively and safe, with lots of shops and restaurants. Very short walk to the marina and offered a great buffet breakfast. Would definitely stay there again. It was an approx. $25 cab ride from Miami International Airport. Not too sure how much to the Port of Miami (we rented a car) but it was only about a 15 minute drive.
Embarkation was the best and fastest that we have ever had on any cruise line. We arrived at the port around noon and were on the ship with champagne in hand by about 12:15pm. Our cabins were not ready until 2pm, so we enjoyed a drink and some lunch. we received our luggage by 4:45pm.
We shared 3 rooms....inside cabins on Deck 10 midship....2 per room. The cabins were a fair size for just 2 people for 3 days....lots of room for our clothes and very clean when we arrived. For a longer cruise or with 3 or 4 people per room, maybe a bit cramped. We didn't spend a lot of time in our rooms anyways. Our cabin stewards were great...everything was clean and tidy whenever we returned to our cabins and we always had fresh ice. The only "complaint" we would have is that each morning we could hear the lounge chairs being set up on the Deck above us around 7am....so if you are late sleepers you may want to be on a lower deck. It was a minor inconvenience at worst.
We enjoyed the sun and conversation most of the time and didn't go to many of the ships activities, so I can't really comment on those. We enjoyed the Yellow Bird Party Boat shore excursion in Nassau....unlimited run punch....lots of sun....private beach for swimming. A couple shops on the island and $5 beers. It is what you make it. We had a great time and met lots of fun people. For 3 1/2 hours and $39 it was worth it. We all relaxed and enjoyed Great Stirrup Cay. Sun, sand, swimming and a BBQ....great day.
We did not use the children's club, but since most of us had children at home we checked it out. The facilities looked fun and clean and they have brochures for each age group to give you an idea of what to expect. All of the kids who were participating in the activities looked like they were having a great time.
Our dining experience on board was the only thing we found disappointing. The buffet was fine, lots of food, hot and lots of variety. We only had lunch and breakfast there. The waffle and omelette stations in the morning were great. There were locations in Il Adagio and the sports Bar not too many people knew about this. Dinner in the Main dining rooms was a different story. Our expectations were not that high, after reading some other reviews, but we still left being disappointed. The food was alright, but the service was absolutely terrible. The staff were miserable (with the exception of one wine steward) on all three occasions ( one breakfast and 2 dinners )that we ate there. We tried both main dining rooms, just to see if it made a difference. It didn't. One night, we tried Il Adagio and it was amazing. Definitely worth the $10 cover charge. Everything was fantastic. The food was far superior to the Main Dining room and our server was so friendly and very attentive. Two of the ladies also tried the steakhouse and said it too, was worth the money.
We used the Express check out and disembarkation...very easy, not problems. From the time we left our cabins until we were waiting for a taxi it was 30 minutes.
Overall, we had a great time and think for the price the Norwegian Sky is a great long weekend getaway. If you want high end service and the staff to kiss your rear end, then choose another cruise line, but if want affordable fun and sun, then Norwegian is for you!!