Golden Princess Cruise Review by NRG: Golden to Alaska July 2012
Overall Member Rating
Golden to Alaska July 2012
Pre-cruise: We flew into SEATAC the afternoon before and had a town car from Prime Limo drive us downtown. We stayed at the Seattle Sheraton and were very happy with our room and the hotel location. We walked to Pike Place Market and took the monorail to the Space Needle.
Embarkation: We took a taxi from the hotel and arrived at pier 91 before 11am. We had priority embarkation and were among the first on board at 11:45. No lines for anything. We had lunch in the Donatello dining room.
Our cabin: I took a chance and booked a window suite, the first time we have sailed without a balcony. It was priced so well and includes all the perks of a full suite. We loved it and have nothing negative to report. There are 2 large windows and we spent a lot of time outside so did not miss the balcony. The bathroom is the best, double sink and jacuzzi tub. We would book another WS anytime.
Food: Overall we enjoyed the food very much although we saw some cutbacks More from Princess. We ate at Crown Grill the first night (suite perk) and 5 nights in the traditional dining room, late seating table for 2. We had excellent service, the late seating had some empty tables and our waiter had time to give us lots of attention. The last night we had pizza on the pool deck since we would be in Victoria at dinner time. We had 5 breakfasts in Sabatini's (another suite perk)and loved the food and service. We had room service breakfast in Skagway (early excursion) and the last morning. We often walked through the buffet in Horizon Court and never saw anything we wanted to eat there...lunches were either International Cafe, dining room or pool grill.
Entertainment: We don't always like the ship entertainment but did try more shows than usual. We enjoyed the production show British Invasion and the comedian. I have read some negatives about the cruise director Frank Castiglione but we thought he was just fine.
Ports: Juneau - We rented a car from National/Alamo. In season they have a little office at AJ Dock. I called when we got off the ship and they came and picked us up for the short ride to the office...no charge. We had a Toyota Camry for $62 including tax and fees. We drove to Mendenhall Glacier and walked to Nugget Falls, then went to an off the tourist path bar for fresh fish and chips. We drove to Auke Bay and around downtown before returning the car and they drove us back to the ship.
Skagway - We took a mini bus tour with Dyea Dave to the Yukon. Shelby was our driver and we made lots of stops for pictures, Carcross, Emerald Bay, etc. We enjoyed the tour very much.
Glacier Bay - Absolutely beautiful day, started out cold and windy and ended up sunny in the mid 60's. We spent the whole time either up on the top deck or on Promenade deck. The weather was so nice we had hamburgers for lunch out on the pool deck while the ship was stopped. Amazing views.
Ketchikan - Only had a few hours in the morning at this port. We walked to Creek Street, then to the totem pole area and the salmon ladder. We did our souvenier shopping at this port. The weather was unusually sunny and we had a great morning here.
Victoria BC - We arrived at 6:45pm. I knew I wanted to do a Classic Car Tour but had not booked in advance. We found Dale and his 1954 Cadillac in the parking lot and went with him for a 2 hour tour. I highly recommend this, Victoria is a beautiful city and this was a great way to see it with such a short port time.
Disembarkation: We had an 11:40 flight and did the self disembark. We got off the ship at about 7:45, into a taxi and were through airline security and at the plane gate before 9am. We could have easily made an earlier flight.
All in all one of our favorite cruises. Less
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