We sailed out of Miam on November 9th. It was our first cruise experience and may very well be our last.
First of all, I would like to commend the cruise ship personnel. They are, on the whole, very skilled and accommodating. The service in the restaurants and from our stateroom houskeeping staff was excellent, except for one issue, which really ruined our first impression of the cruise line.
We left our bags, properly tagged for our room Aft 9337 at the dock with the porter. We were assured that our bags would be delivered to our stateroom safe and sound. Once on board and settled in, we found 2 of our 3 bags outside our stateroom in the hall, which we noted was the method of delivery. I wondered why my 3rd suitcase was not with the other two. I then noticed a suitcase further down the hall on the floor on its side and realized that it was my suitcase. It was sitting on its side (like it had fallen off of a cart) near stateroom 9350. My suitcase is very distinctive in color (bright pink and white plaid) so it stood out.
I went down to the hall and checked the tag. I confirmed it was indeed my suitcase which had been dropped off or fallen off a cart at the wrong location.
I tried to find staff in the hallway but could not find anyone, so my husband and I went to the main desk on 5th floor, where I made a complaint. I was responded to by a female staff member, who demanded to know if I had the right tag on the bag, which I confirmed I had (why would I not as the tags had been provided to us by the cruise line in our cruise tickets). I mentioned that the color of the suitcase is very distinctive and that I had confirmed that the bag was mine but left at another stateroom door. The staff member told me I was in the "wrong place" to complain but that she would deal with it (but didn't advise where we should have gone to). She did not look up from her computer nor seem to write down our stateroom number. This spoiled our first evening onboard as we were both upset - first by the bag being misplaced and secondly, being treated as if it were our fault that the bag was misplaced and that we had somehow done something wrong.
As well, the food on board the cruise was another disappointment. We were hoping for "spectacular" but only got "standard" food. Based on the quality of the food in the Palace and Crossings restaurants, we did not book in the specialty restaurants as we were not assured of the quality of the food. We found the buffet to be the best restaurant on board - food was hot and tasty. Service again was spectacular in all restaurants - we were in fact amazed that the food quality did not match the excellent service.
We stopped at Freeport and enjoyed our shopping and beach excursion - the bus driver who gave our tour was very informative and friendly. We also stopped at Nassau and took a water taxi across to Atlantis Paradise Island. There we walked around and toured the free areas of the location (aquarium, public rooms, shopping venues, etc.)
On the 3rd day of the cruise, we were supposed to stop at NCL's private island but could not due to the weather. We slowly returned to Miami. Lots of folks were seasick that day because the winds were so strong and waves appeared to be very large. That day, the ships' crew tried very hard to accommodate everyone's tastes and put up a new schedule of activities. We watched a couple of movies in Dazzles that day - UP and GI Joe were shown. Then we laid by the pool and relaxed the day away.
The entertainment was very good on the ship - comparable to all inclusive entertainments in the Caribbean.
We have been told that you either love cruising or hate it. We stood firmly in the middle, however, the seasickness aspect of it led me to realize that I much prefer solid land! I just found that I am not a sea traveller. It was a good experience and the 4 day cruise was a good sampler for both of us.