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tigerlilly

Miami Stay

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has anyone stayed in miami before? where is a good area? we are looking at 3 nights after a celebrity cruise and not really sure what area to search for hotels in. has anyone been please?

Hi Tigerlily we have stayed in the Biscayne Bay Area of Miami both pre & post cruise. We stayed at the Intercontinental Hotel which is right by the bay and close to the Celebrity cruise terminal .It is a few years ago since we stayed there but it was a really nice ,safe area.The taxi driver who picked us up at the airport told us it was safe for us to walk at night there. It had a nice boardwalk area with lots of nice cafés and restaurants it had a real buz at night. You could do boat trips from the marina there but if you are staying 3 nights you might want to stay in a more commercialised area .

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thank you both. im looking at the marriott marquis? do either of you know that one?

Sorry Tigerlilly don't have any experience of that one but I believe it is in the Biscayne area . Is it one of Celebrity's pre / post cruise package hotels.? If so it should be a good standard hotel .

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yes it is a package with them. ive been told it's safest to do that so im covered if anything was to go wrong!

Our stay there was a package with them also.I think they like to put you into very good hotels close to the cruise port. In the Biscayne Bay Area you can watch the cruise ships sail in and out in the distance ,quite entertaining ! Hope you manage to get sorted soon.

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Our stay there was a package with them also.I think they like to put you into very good hotels close to the cruise port. In the Biscayne Bay Area you can watch the cruise ships sail in and out in the distance ,quite entertaining ! Hope you manage to get sorted soon.

 

thank you :)

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I stayed at the Holiday Inn Port of Miami before my cruise - you can see the port from the hotel. No problems with the hotel, although there wasn't really much to do in the local area. Annoyingly, due to the road layout, we had to get a taxi to the port, which seemed like a waste of money as it was so close.

 

Afterwards, I stayed in South Beach for a few days. Highly recommended - lots to see and do, great art deco buildings and spectacular scenery.

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20 minutes from Miami port is Hollywood Beach - a lovely beach with pedestrianised promenade alongside. Lots of hotels at most price points - the new Margaritaville resort has amazing swimming pools and private beach area.

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@All At Sea It would appear from 2 posts today that you have recent experience of Miami Airport.

We are scheduled to pick up an MSC Cruise from Miami in March 2019 and the obvious airport to fly into is Miami, Orlando is a fair drive away and you then need to rent a car, while Fort L has limited flights.

I went through Miami many years ago and it involved quite a lot of walking, we plan to stay a couple of nights before the cruise and then return to the airport to hire a car and possibly head for the Keys, though various reviews speak of the pretty poor experience of the Rental Car Centre where all the car hire companies are based and Miami does look a nightmare to drive through!

Is it just a case of grinning and bearing it at Miami, as it is so close to the Cruise Terminal and other travel options just add additional cost, or time?

Any other advice, or thoughts would be appreciated.

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19 hours ago, thecartoonman said:

@All At Sea It would appear from 2 posts today that you have recent experience of Miami Airport.

We are scheduled to pick up an MSC Cruise from Miami in March 2019 and the obvious airport to fly into is Miami, Orlando is a fair drive away and you then need to rent a car, while Fort L has limited flights.

I went through Miami many years ago and it involved quite a lot of walking, we plan to stay a couple of nights before the cruise and then return to the airport to hire a car and possibly head for the Keys, though various reviews speak of the pretty poor experience of the Rental Car Centre where all the car hire companies are based and Miami does look a nightmare to drive through!

Is it just a case of grinning and bearing it at Miami, as it is so close to the Cruise Terminal and other travel options just add additional cost, or time?

Any other advice, or thoughts would be appreciated.

Miami airport is pretty bad - and it's worse for us living in the North west of the UK as we have to connect flights. We have found it is better to connect at Chicago or Philadelphia instead of Heathrow, because we do the customs and immigration at the hub airport, arriving at Miami on a domestic flight, which is MUCH easier. 

The "rental car village" at MIA is accessed via a train connection from the airport, and we struggled to find our way out of Miami - but we picked up the car straight after getting off the 'plane, so we were tired and it was dark. Next time, we will stay overnight at an airport hotel and go back the next day for the rental car.

The Keys are beautiful. We stayed at "Gilberts Resort" on Key Largo, which has a massive outdoor bar and a beautiful private beach, and at "Azul" in Key West - a small guest house in a historic building. Once you are out of Miami, driving is fine. We had a "one way" hire - picking the car up at the airport, dropping it off at Fort Lauderdale cruise port a few days later.

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@All At Sea Thank you for your quick response.

Our daughter works for BA, so we are using some of her 'family' flight passes which may prevent a non-direct route when they do fly to Miami direct from LHR, we shall see, but what you say would make a good alternative, particularly if you can route through somewhere other than JFK, clear immigration and then arrive in Miami as a domestic passenger.

We are hiring the car after the cruise, so collection will be mid-morning and in daylight, with our body clocks on US time, so this should be easier than your experience and your comments about a shuttle train connection are helpful since we will know what to look for and once on the right highway/interstate it should be relatively easy, in daylight everything looks better.

Thank you for your advice on Key Largo, we have been to Key West so this might make a good base at the start of the Keys to do a bit of travelling down them, while also enjoying a bit of beach time.

Once again, thank you for your insight.

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@@Hi 

On 10/2/2018 at 11:25 AM, Ikea Logistics said:

thecartoonman we are flying in to Miami end of may to also pick up a cruise on MSC Seaside so any info from your journey would be great we are flying in the day before the cruise with Virgin

Will try and remember to leave a report after our experience of Miami, the intention is to have a couple of days before the cruise in Miami for a look round and to assist in getting onto US time for the cruise itself, though going to the US is easier than coming back fore the body clock.

As we are staying on for 3/4 days after the cruise we will be hiring a car, the thought at the moment is to head to Fort Lauderdale Airport which is much smaller than Miami and from reviews is a much simpler place to collect and return a rental car, then join a shuttle bus to get back to Miami airport for the flight home - we shall see.

Will let you know whether we survived it all!

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On 10/2/2018 at 11:25 AM, Ikea Logistics said:

thecartoonman we are flying in to Miami end of may to also pick up a cruise on MSC Seaside so any info from your journey would be great we are flying in the day before the cruise with Virgin

Well back from a very enjoyable 7 night cruise with MSC that took in Cuba.

We did travel direct to Miami on the BA A380, which was superb and arrived into Miami at about 19.45pm. 

We then cleared US Immigration within just 5 minutes of joining the line and our luggage appeared within another 10 minutes and we were out and in the terminal. Now, I had not expected this and it is very possible that our evening arrival time meant that not too many other international arrivals were taking place at this time which may well have helped?

Once out in the terminal look for the floor mounted Ground Transportation signs and follow the directions for Hotel Shuttles if you are staying close to the airport. This will mean getting a lift up to the Departures level and then exiting onto the inner curbside through one of the many doors, which are numbered. All of the shuttles, or Uber's cruise around here and we moved down to door number 7 as there is a natural wide bend in the road here and you can see the drivers looking for passengers, you basically wait for your hotel bus, or Uber and when it appears wave, for an Uber it is useful to give the driver your door number so he can locate you and the same for the hotel shuttle if you have to phone the hotel and request a pick up.

We stayed at a nearby Marriott Residence Inn, there are 3 Marriott hotels within the complex and you can use the facilities of all of them. It appealed as it had a nice pool area and a sports bar with good food all within the gated area, useful when you have just arrived and don't want to wander around in an area you don't know and the free shuttle bus took 5 minutes.

The hotel arranged for a shuttle to the cruise port for $12 each, you just book it with the reception desk on arrival, or you can take an Uber/Lyft. We had never used either before but set up the apps on our phones and following instructions from our son who uses them all the time took one to Miami Beach and then back, as we had 2 days before the cruise, they were very easy to use and the 2 drivers excellent.

We stayed on after the cruise hiring a car from Fort Lauderdale Airport rather than face the Miami area and this was a good move, as the airport is much smaller and easier to leave and get back to, we then got a Go Shuttle bus from FLL back to Miami Airport to catch the flight back. Miami International departures after security is a dive and fully lived up to it's poor reputation but by that time you were at least on US time and not jet lagged.

For info, we took a shuttle bus from Port of Miami to Fort Lauderdale Airport with Jiffy Jeff Transportation ($15) which we arranged pre-cruise from the UK. They lived up to their 5 star reviews and were in constant contact on our arrival at POM, they do not go to Miami Airport but for anybody perhaps taking a cruise from Fort Lauderdale and needing transport they are well worth a look.

If you are flying straight back after your cruise, MSC have a couple of excursions that take you and all your luggage and then drop you back at Miami Airport in the afternoon to catch your flight which is useful as you are off the ship pretty early 8.00/8.30, though immigration at POM was slow.

If you want any other info please feel free to ask, more than happy to help if I can with info as at March 2019.

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16 hours ago, thecartoonman said:

Well back from a very enjoyable 7 night cruise with MSC that took in Cuba.

We did travel direct to Miami on the BA A380, which was superb and arrived into Miami at about 19.45pm. 

We then cleared US Immigration within just 5 minutes of joining the line and our luggage appeared within another 10 minutes and we were out and in the terminal. Now, I had not expected this and it is very possible that our evening arrival time meant that not too many other international arrivals were taking place at this time which may well have helped?

Once out in the terminal look for the floor mounted Ground Transportation signs and follow the directions for Hotel Shuttles if you are staying close to the airport. This will mean getting a lift up to the Departures level and then exiting onto the inner curbside through one of the many doors, which are numbered. All of the shuttles, or Uber's cruise around here and we moved down to door number 7 as there is a natural wide bend in the road here and you can see the drivers looking for passengers, you basically wait for your hotel bus, or Uber and when it appears wave, for an Uber it is useful to give the driver your door number so he can locate you and the same for the hotel shuttle if you have to phone the hotel and request a pick up.

We stayed at a nearby Marriott Residence Inn, there are 3 Marriott hotels within the complex and you can use the facilities of all of them. It appealed as it had a nice pool area and a sports bar with good food all within the gated area, useful when you have just arrived and don't want to wander around in an area you don't know and the free shuttle bus took 5 minutes.

The hotel arranged for a shuttle to the cruise port for $12 each, you just book it with the reception desk on arrival, or you can take an Uber/Lyft. We had never used either before but set up the apps on our phones and following instructions from our son who uses them all the time took one to Miami Beach and then back, as we had 2 days before the cruise, they were very easy to use and the 2 drivers excellent.

We stayed on after the cruise hiring a car from Fort Lauderdale Airport rather than face the Miami area and this was a good move, as the airport is much smaller and easier to leave and get back to, we then got a Go Shuttle bus from FLL back to Miami Airport to catch the flight back. Miami International departures after security is a dive and fully lived up to it's poor reputation but by that time you were at least on US time and not jet lagged.

For info, we took a shuttle bus from Port of Miami to Fort Lauderdale Airport with Jiffy Jeff Transportation ($15) which we arranged pre-cruise from the UK. They lived up to their 5 star reviews and were in constant contact on our arrival at POM, they do not go to Miami Airport but for anybody perhaps taking a cruise from Fort Lauderdale and needing transport they are well worth a look.

If you are flying straight back after your cruise, MSC have a couple of excursions that take you and all your luggage and then drop you back at Miami Airport in the afternoon to catch your flight which is useful as you are off the ship pretty early 8.00/8.30, though immigration at POM was slow.

If you want any other info please feel free to ask, more than happy to help if I can with info as at March 2019.

Many Thanks we land at 15.30 and are staying at the staybridge suites miami airport for one night then on to the seaside for a 7 day we are then flying up to see my niece in harpers Ferry west virginia she is due her first child around the time we get back from the cruise

 

 

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