Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by Jakaranda: Christmas Cruise
Overall Member Rating
Destination: Western Caribbean
Exceptional customer service. Nice cabin. Good food. Sold-out cruise which never felt crowded. A great ship sponsored excursion. Friendly fellow passengers.
These descriptions are the experiences of a middle aged couple with three grown sons who traveled on the Caribbean Princess staying in two Aloha deck (12) , balcony cabins over the holiday sailing.
With Houston being a new port for Princess, there was bound to be snags. Our captain managed to keep three ports on our itinerary after we were delayed a day due to fog. We had to give up Roatan, Honduras but gained Costa Maya , Mexico. The ATV ride and beach excursion we booked through the ship there was definitely a highlight of the week. ( Remember to be fearless and unafraid of the power of your machine as you can go very fast, over sand, narrow paths, open roads and bumps!)
Cozumel was relaxing and warm. We went to Paradise beach by cab, and the boys went snorkeling.
Belize was good. The historic More Mayan, Lamanai excursion involved two hours on a bus and two hours on a speed boat curving through a jungle river. I wish Princess would have better communicated this. We would have taken a ship excursion to a nearby island for scuba/ snorkeling on the impressive reef. In hindsight , it was too long to travel for only a few hours on site. We ate local food, climbed the 125 step temple , heard wild howler monkeys ( they make sounds before you see them like the Jurassic Park movie), and had a close and personal experience with a wild tarantula. Our guide was not a student of archeology, so the history we received about this incredible site was somewhat limited.
On the ship, we enjoyed Seth Gibson at the piano bar. He was charming and talented with his broad talent and "musicianship" :). The dancers and singers in the Holiday show were excellent. They included kids from the cruise in the final medley. There were few announcements over the loud speakers , which we appreciated. The Princess Patter newsletter was adequate in keeping us posted about the ship activities. There weren't any educational talks or seminars.
We ate every night ( late seating) in the Palm Dining room. The food varied each night and offered everything from lobster and filet mignon to vegetarian curry dishes. Our waiter learned our preferences and made appropriate suggestions nightly. The pizza was amazing on the pool deck. They have a chef from Italy rolling the dough and cooking it just right.
The spa was very good, but expensive compared to what is available in the US. The therapist was not pushy trying to sell her products after I told her I would not be buying any of the treatment products. The gym was often crowded, but there was never a long wait for a machine.
Overall, It was a wonderful cruise.
Princess is all about service. They exceeded our expectations by doing everything they could to try and make a delayed cruise, fun and worth the expense. Less
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Cabin review: 401A
The aloha deck balcony cabin just slightly forward of midship was excellent for my husband and I. We had easy access to the piazza, spa, fitness gym, casino and art gallery. An added bonus was the outdoor deck on the 14th deck all the way forward . Not many passengers knew about it. The walk to the aft , Palm Dining room was the longest trek of the day. ( We needed to burn off all those delicious desserts!)
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