staying in Miami pre and post has always been a little tough in the past,We found a very nice hotel a little out of the area it was in Miami Dadeland the Hampton Inn very nice for a pre cruise they will pick you up at the airport for free and will take you to the cruise port for $15.00 per couple,They have a real nice breakfast every day for free,very nice pool area and jacuzzi,Walking distance to a major mall with lots of food choices and right around the corner from the hotel is the art deco district with stores and resturants very safe and very clean area Not so good dollar wise to stay post costs $45.00 to catch a cab to hotel and if you have a early flight before 8am the don't offer a shuttle costs 42.00 to airport.
We got to the cruise port at 10am we were on the ship at 11am with the first cocktail in hand very easy to get on we waited in a room for about 45 min before we could get on the ship they said our rooms would be ready at 2pm and they were The rooms are alot smaller the any other cruise we have been on and we cruise every year but the bathroom was nice and big.
The ship was very clean and every one on board was great the food in the summer palace was the worst we have ever had in any of our cruises not just 1 night but the 3 nights we ate there the buffet was great and the quality of the food any place else was good and plenty of it with lots of choices. The ship was alot of fun plenty to do alot going on very clean and you could not go into the buffet without getting sanitized at the door Nice!!!
The ports well Samana we booked the beach island tour for $49 it was nice if you just want to hang out at the beach didnt go anyplace else Tortelo Book something or stay on the ship the town was awful very run down nothing open till like 11am we were back on the ship bye 12 stay up top when you pull out very nice veiw don't miss this St Thomas Always a favorite of my wife we just shop for gold all day have some drinks and people watch Gray stirrup NICE!!!! get there early if you want a seat if you think you want a round raft to float on get there first they only had 6 rafts for 3,000 people and if you have kids save some money and bring some snorkle stuff with you and this place sells shirts for $5 at the 20 plus store run by the locals
All in all it was a great cruise ncl has stepped up and offers a good time for a good value I would rate the cruise a 9 out of ten they need to step up and correct the food issue in the free dinning rooms and work on a little more detail in the employees last of all getting of the ship was real easy you pick the time you want to get off the night before and it was a breeze. This was our 2nd time on NCL. we most of time go carnival if they continue to improve as time goes on WATCH OUT CARNIVAL