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Looking for decent hotel in Miami - not fancy - just for the night to sleep


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We are cruising out of Miami in October (hopefully) and trying to find a hotel for the pre-cruise night.  Honestly, all of us are retired with not a lot of spare money on top of the cruise, so we don't want to spend a fortune on the hotel just to basically sleep one night.  But we also don't want it to be dirty or disgusting.     Some of us are driving, some are flying in - but we have no problem with parking at one of the "port parking sites".  Previously, we stayed downtown across from the Bayside - but the prices have more than doubled since the last time we were there.  Too much to basically sleep for a few hours.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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2 hours ago, Gma&Gpa said:

We are cruising out of Miami in October (hopefully) and trying to find a hotel for the pre-cruise night.  Honestly, all of us are retired with not a lot of spare money on top of the cruise, so we don't want to spend a fortune on the hotel just to basically sleep one night.  But we also don't want it to be dirty or disgusting.     Some of us are driving, some are flying in - but we have no problem with parking at one of the "port parking sites".  Previously, we stayed downtown across from the Bayside - but the prices have more than doubled since the last time we were there.  Too much to basically sleep for a few hours.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

If just a place to sleep for the night is what your looking for at a decent price look  into the hotels by MIA. The Blue Lagoon area is mentioned regularly here.

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Prior to our 2017 cruise to Cuba, we stayed in the Hampton Inn & Suites Miami-Airport South-Blue Lagoon.  It was clean, inexpensive and convenient.  This from my blog:

 

I returned the car to Hertz at the airport.  The Hampton Inn near the airport had a deal where they would pick you up at the airport and take you to the cruiseport when you checked out.  I called the hotel and they picked us up in about 15 minutes.  Boarding time for the cruise the next day had been delayed until 3:00 pm.  When I checked into the hotel they told me that the last cruise shuttle left at noon.  There was a 3:00 shuttle but it was a special one and it was fully booked.  When I complained they told me that we had not booked the right package that included the shuttle.  After checking to see how little Uber would cost I decided to drop it.  

 

Our plan had been to have dinner that night at the iconic Versailles Restaurant, but the 3 hour delay to embarkation left us with nothing until 3 the next day.  We decided to move the Versailles to Sunday lunch.  Across the street from the hotel was a shopping center that included a Publix supermarket and a liquor store.  Many trips have a not-in-Kansas-anymore moment.  This was it.  Nobody in these stores were speaking English.  We managed to obtain dinner and drinks however and took them back to our hotel room.  The adventure would begin the next day.

 

The next morning I went across the street and bought a Miami Herald, historically a great newspaper but, like many others, shrinking and somewhat disappointing.  We had the hotel breakfast and checked out, leaving our bags with the desk.  I had told the Uber app I wanted Domino Park in Little Havana.  The driver spoke no English.  My Spanish classes were suddenly useful.  We saw Marlins Park in the distance and, baseball freak that I am, started talking about it excitedly.  Next thing I knew the guy had exited the freeway and taken us there.  I had to explain that we just were looking at it.  He finally got us onto Calle Ocho and I told him to stop when I saw Domino Perk.

 

Little Havana is worth a stop.  There are several Cuban businesses, markets, restaurants, etc.  We walked through Cuban Monuments Memorial Park and saw some monuments and even encountered some sort of rally of aging anti-Castro Cubans.  We stopped in Domino Park and watched the old men playing dominoes.  

 

The Versailles Restaurant is a famous Cuban restaurant that is popular with locals and tourists alike.  I first became aware of it in the movie Chef.  It was about a 40 minute walk down Calle Ocho from where we were but we had time and it was a nice day.  The walk took us outside of the tourist area, the only point of interest was a large cemetery where the guidebook said Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Samoza was buried.

 

It was Sunday after church and lot of folks thought it would be a good time to go to the Versailles.  We waited about 12 minutes outside for a table.  There was an anti-Castro demonstration going on across the street, apparently hosted by an auto upholstery business.

 

It was worth the walk and the wait.  We both had the Cuban sandwich, unquestionably the best we had ever had, goes well with Presidente.  More than half of the clientele was speaking Spanish.  

I had a first time discount coming from Lyft and their app allowed me to input a two stop (hotel, cruiseport)  trip.  Sent the request from the table after paying the bill, it was there as we walked outside.  Again, no English.  He took us to the hotel where we got the luggage, and off to the Port of Miami.  

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Howdy neighbor! 🤠

 

Flying into MIA or FLL? 🤔  Budget? Your "reasonable" might be my splurge.

 

Assuming MIA there are several hotels near the airport that may fit your needs for budget accommodations and cruise parking.  Hampton Inn Blue Lagoon was popular with cruisers pre-virus, offered cruise parking packages, and there was a strip mall across the street with dining, fast food, CVS, Publix grocery and a liquor store.  Cheaper, but more isolated, is the La Quinta East.

 

Neither of these includes a ride back to the car post cruise so budget about $30+ for a taxi.  Good luck! 😎

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