I have been on the larger ships several times. This was the first time to sail on a small ship and I will sail small from now on! The American Cruise Lines Independence carries only 100 passengers. We were able to meet and make friends with ALL of the passengers, something you can't do on the larger ones. A lot of us exchanged emails, phones numbers and became friends on Facebook.
The crew was professional yet personable. Everyone was VERY helpful and always asked if they could assist even if it wasn't their "job". The crew takes very good care of the Independence and you can see the pride in their work. The ship was always spotless!
The food was impeccable! Not only was it great tasting, it was beautiful!
Loved our cabin! We had twin beds which was perfect for our Mother / Daughter trip! We were also close to the lounge which had the cappuccino machine and coffee maker. We also had a private balcony. It was so nice to sit on the balcony while sailing and while in port. Our housekeeper Emilia did an amazing job keeping our room neat and tidy.
We boarded on a Saturday morning so there wasn't time to tour Portland. However, we did go out to dinner when we arrived Friday night. The bayside area is filled with restaurants and stores. We saw a lot of people with their dogs, it seemed very pet friendly!
We ate dinner at DiMillo's Marina and it was fantastic!