Sailed with my wife for her 40th birthday and was very pleased with the Ruby and staff. We cruised RCL in the Mediterranean this summer and were delighted to be back on Princess for our 2nd cruise with them.
Departure was easy. We arrived at the port at at 11 am and waited. Boarding started promptly at 12pm as advertised and we were on the ship by 12:15 in group 5. Room was ready and we carried our luggage on.
Room was clean. Room steward was pretty good, but generally a male steward lacks a little finesse to find every random hair that might have escaped the cleaning. One in the sink and some dust bunnies under the sofa of our mini suite. (I do a lot of stretching on the floor). We requested robes and it took 24 hours and a reminder, but it wasn't anything to sweat. We paged our steward a few times and he was always prompt. His towel animal creations need drastic help. Room was spacious and quiet despite being in. A stateroom within sight of the elevator banks.
Dining overall was very nice. Any time dining was a snap, and we were always seated when we wanted. Our first waiter in the Michelangelo didn't introduce himself and was very Inattentive. We switched dining to davinci on night two and found a waiter that was more pleasing to be around. On the third night we tried again and got a great waiter and stuck with him on nights we dined in the dining rooms. We ate at crown grill for my wife's birthday. Great waiter and service. We left and returned for dessert to not miss a show and they were pleased to accommodate. We had e ultimate balcony dinner which was awesome, surprised to find out there were only 6 of them ordered on a 7 day cruise. It was special to have them come and go with courses and the photo session to boot. A great experience and the lobster/filet was wonderful.
We booked the sanctuary for the whole week on day one. Go early to get it on day one if you love the quiet and the most comfortable lounge chairs on the ship. Too bad they didn't lie flat. Service at sanctuary was great and the light menu was a treat. Or server was nice enough to get whatever we desired, even if it meant he had to go get something on the ship elsewhere (not all attendants went above and beyond like him).
Entertainment was very nice. We loved all the game shows and other diversions like the art auction and trivia. Chris from the art auction was pushy and rude and a bit snobby but sure knew how to talk the talk. We loved Sam, the cruise director. She was always present and available. In past cruises we found the cruise directors to be lacking presence and always behind closed doors. Her whole crew doing entertainment were wonderful and talented.
Excursions were fine. We loved the America's cup yacht race in st Maarten. Turtle cove in st Thomas was a waste of money as the coral seems dead and you have to protect against being kicked in the head by the other 200 people cramming to see one of e three turtles too lazy to leave the cove when 8 boats pour in simultaneously.
We got off the boat at 7:09 and were in the plane seats at 7:36. Lucky to breeze to cab, clear TSA and standby for a 745 flight home.