Please keep in mind this review is rather dated and some events, destinations etc. may no longer be offered. We decided to take this cruise as a number of our friends were going on it to help celebrate a mile-stone birthday.
We love going out of Miami and each time have stayed at the Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay Hotel. We get a bay view so we can see all the cruise ships lined up at the pier. We also always go to one of our favorite restaurants Primo’s Italian Kitchen, which is nearby in a shopping mall.
We ate in all the complimentary restaurants and tried La Cucina, Cagneys, and Le Bistro. All were good but Cagneys and Le Bistro were excellent. We usually do both of these on each cruise we are on. Although our entire group of 13 didn’t eat together each night, we found that when we did eat as a group we had service problems. On several occasions we had food that was never delivered was delivered after everyone else in the group ate, or the order was incorrect. This happened in several different venues so it is obvious, at least in our case, they were not good with large groups. Most of the complimentary venues we found to be better than we were expecting. The Garden Café was the only exception as it was always overcrowded and the food was sub-par.
We found the music and entertainment venues on this ship to be very good. We saw Burn the Floor, which is a very high energy dance musical and I highly recommend it. We saw Illusionarium Magic Show and it was also excellent. We paid a small fee to see Wine Lovers Tasting and Musical and it was also very good.
Venues and Excursions
We had 3 ports of call for this cruise; St. Thomas, Tortola, and Nassau. At St. Thomas we signed up for a Champagne Catamaran Sail and Snorkel trip to St. Johns. Admittedly, we thought that champagne was going to be served on the ship but we found out that is the name of the company. This was a very good excursion and we all had a great time. I highly recommend this company as they made sure we had a great time. Unfortunately, a member of our party had money stolen while they were out snorkeling, which marred an otherwise great outing. The theft was reported but we knew there was nothing that could be done to recover the money. This just serves to warn everyone you can never be too protective of your personal belongings, especially if they are left on the vessel while you are out snorkeling. Not everyone left the boat to go swim so it is anyone’s guess who took it. At Tortola, we signed up for the Jost Van Dyke Catamaran outing. We took a lengthy boat ride to a private beach and stayed there most of the day. We had drinks at their little Soggy Dollar Beach Bar. This was a very relaxing day and we had a lot of fun just sitting on the beach. While sitting on the beach talking a man behind us came up and asked where we were from. It turns out he is from a suburb near us where one of our relatives lives. It is a small world indeed. The surf was a little too rough for everyday swimming, although some people tried it. I went out once but the undertow but pretty significant. At Nassau, we signed up for the Blue Lagoon Dolphin Encounter and thoroughly enjoyed this.
We thoroughly enjoyed the ship. The embarkation process was very orderly, although we came at a peak time and had a lengthy wait until we could board. The disembarkation process was just as orderly, although customs was a bit of a wait. If there was one down side to the trip and we have experienced it on every large ship we have been on it is the elevators. At some peak times trying to get an elevator was a major pain. Sometimes it was easier to get on the elevator going the wrong direction as it was quicker than trying to go the direction you wanted. However, this didn’t take away from an otherwise great trip. Highly recommend these ports, excursions, restaurants, and this ship.
We chose a mid-ship mini suite due to the stability of the location for motion and because of the oversize restrooms. The room was very nice and quiet. If I had any criticism of the room at all it would be the balcony size I found it hard to navigate around the furniture due to its small size but again, this is fairly common.
We actually brought a few extra hangers and I am glad we did as there weren't many hangers. All in all, this was a good room with a very nice bathroom.
We took a Champagne Catamaran Sail and Snorkel trip to St. John. The trip over was very nice and when we arrived in a quiet lagoon you could either snorkel or take a dingy to the beach to sun and swim. Some in our group snorkeled and came ashore and we took the dingy. Very nice day and highly recommend this tour.View All 177 Catamaran Tour Reviews
We took a long Catamaran ride over to Jost Van Dyke to a quiet secluded beach area in front of Soggy Dollar Bar. Very leisurely day and the company took very good care of us as did Soggy Dollar. Highly Recommend this tour.View All 109 Jost Van Dyke Reviews
This was an awesome experience. We took a boat ride over to the Blue Lagoon facility where we had an educational session on Dolphins and then we got to get in a tank and interact with the Dolphins with one of the employees who works there. We all had a great time and I highly recommend this tour.View All 127 Blue Lagoon Dolphin Swim Reviews
Since we had a late flight out of Miami we needed to kill some time so we booked this city tour which picked us up right after disembarkation and they loaded our luggage on board for the ride. The tour was on an air conditioned bus and was informative and relaxing and at the conclusion of the tour we were taken back to the airport. The tour was good but not exceptional. Again, the only reason we took it was to fill time until our flight.View All 169 City Tour Reviews