Island Princess -- Two Day Vancouver to San Francisco
Embarkation in Vancouver is somewhat different in that we had to clear United States Immigration prior to boarding. This went quickly, but our hope of a quick embarkation was dashed due to a deep cleaning of the ship due to Norovirus. We waited for about an hour and a half and then we were on.
Once we were on we ran into a head waiter we know from other cruises. We found out that the Noro scare was not really a scare, but more of a precaution. Only a few cases were noted coming into Vancouver but they were not taking it lightly. The ship was under Code Red on arrival, Orange the next morning, and by the second afternoon everything was back to normal.
Cabin - we were in a BA Caribe Deck balcony room.
Our cabin steward was great and as with most cabin stewards on Princess, she was friendly and professional. The deck furniture hasn't yet been updated on the upper decks (Caribe and above) but it has been on the Dolphin. You now get two chairs, two footstools and a table instead of four chairs and a table.
Muster was late so we missed the sail away which is really a shame since the Vancouver skyline, Stanley Park and the Lions Gate Bridge were all missed. By the time the Sailaway Party got going, we were out on the open water and most people left. Worst sail away ever.
Public areas of the ship are very well maintained and the various venues are laid out so that there is a maximum use of space, yet traffic flow is not restrictive.
You can now check your room charges at kiosks near the purser's desk.
We chose Anytime Dining and went for dinner at around 8:00 pm. We waited in
line for about 10 minutes and were then provided a beeper. We were beeped within another 5-10 minutes. We were shown to a great table and our waiters were typically hardworking and attentive. Don't forget to show your appreciation to these hardworking individuals.
Overall the Island staff did a great job of making the cruise an experience for each person. The staff is friendly and the food is great.
Disembarkation with Princess is always a breeze -- very well organized. We landed at Pier 35 next to Fisherman's Wharf and were off the ship quickly.