After taking a Princess cruisetour to Alaska last August, we decided to go back this summer. This time we booked the 10 night trip out of San Francisco. After reading other reviews we were worried about boarding in SF. But the drop off was simple, directly in front of Pier 35, then my husband went and parked the car in parking garage a few blocks away. There were dozens and dozens of ready and able porters to quickly take your luggage to the ship, then we walked right in and checked in and walked onto ship. Took 10 - 15 minutes. Couldn't of been easier or more organized. Just as easy getting off the ship.
The Grand Princess was very similar to the Sapphire ship from last year. The biggest difference was the size of our closet in room A743. It was tiny and too small for all our clothes. Never had that issue on any other ship. Was it because it was the very back cabin on Aloha deck?? Loved the location !!!! Just a few steps and your to the back door and can step onto the back deck of the ship which features an adult only pool, a bar, and steps away to the the back entrance to the buffet seating area. So convenient and never crowded. We didn't really eat in the buffet, but was great to get coffee for my husband. The back fantail of the ship is pretty quiet if you like that. We played games using the dining tables next to the bar (in the shade). Perfect view. Great place for photos or taking video as you pass under the Golden Gate Bridge heading out to sea or returning if your up early.
We had a fantastic cruise director named Martin, kept us laughing. The entertainment was great every night. Comedians, dancers, singers kept us very busy each evening after dinner. Lots and lots to do on a ship.
The food was pretty good, never had a bad meal, good service by all. Didn't like having to wait for dinner each night. They gave us a pager and we usually had a 30 minute wait, one night it was an hour. Too many passengers have preferred dining at scheduled time and place. The rest of us had to wait each night, unfortunately. Wish they would make all the dining rooms the same so everone has the same opportunity to dine at a time convenient to their own group.
Booked a private Charter with Moore Charters in Juneau and went Halibut fishing with my husband. Everyone caught their limit, fabulous.
The 4x4 tour to Haines out of Skagway was AWFUL! Too boring to even bore you with the details. Princess needs to delete them from their shore excursions.
The shore excursion to Butchart Gardens on Victoria Island was fantastic. Only wish Princess could have arranged us a full day on Victoria island, a half day is not long enough.
I would definately recommend Princess and this cruise to Alaska to my friends and family.