Friday, October 15, 2010

Greetings from Port of Miami

View from our hotel balcony - Carnival & NCL ship about to leave
It is a beautiful day here in Miami, Florida where we have just arrived for our 2010 National Conference which begins tomorrow.    We flew in a day early to avoid the cruise day mad rush to the pier.  Arriving in Miami we collected our bags from baggage claim and headed outside to arrange a ride to our hotel.  We shared a ride with another couple that were staying at the Holiday Inn Port of Miami.

Our hotel is the Courtyard Marriott Downtown Miami.    Both of these hotels are great pre-cruise hotels since they are just minutes away from the port.

After checking in at the hotel, we met fellow agents who were also staying there and headed out for some lunch.  We found Polo Tropical, a Caribbean chicken and pork  restaurant, just a few blocks away.   This was the perfect spot to kick off our Caribbean cruise vacation.

Following lunch, some of our group went shopping in nearby stores while we decided to return to our room to relax.   When we got back to the hotel, we spent some time watching the tropical fish in the gigantic fish tank in the hotel lobby.

The rest of our group returned after a hour or so of shopping and we met at the 7th floor pool.   Lounging by the pool was a great way to continue transforming into the cruise lifestyle we would be enjoying for the next 7 days.    The sun was starting to set as we lounged by the pool.    Shadows and various colors were cast on the tall buildings surrounding us.   Three or four hawks were circling overhead as we laid by the pool.

Following our relaxation by the pool, it was time for dinner.  We decided to stay in and try the newly remodeled Bistro at the Courtyard.    It was actually very good.   The service was friendly and the food was very good.   We hung out in the Bistro after dinner until more of our group arrived.  We finally parted company around 10:30 PM and headed up to our room.

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