Had a good time, but could have been better: Sapphire Princess Cruise Review by pdxbabyboomer
Overall Member Rating
Had a good time, but could have been better
Destination: Mexican Riviera
Embarkation: Los Angeles
Cabin: Deck 11 aft balcony cabin was very nice. Plenty of room, clean, bed comfortable. All in all very pleasant. Our cabin steward seemed stretched to get everything done, but he kept our room in good order.
Food: Some hits and some misses. We had the anytime dining plan. Music in the Vivaldi dining room was loud and over-done. We did not return there. Music in the Savoy was also loud. Santa Fe and Pacific moon atmosphere led to a more relaxed dinner, but they were more crowded. Our last night in the Santa Fe dining room, we waited a long time for just about everything and left without having the coffee we ordered. Wait staff frequently confused who ordered what in all of the dining rooms. Best meal was the lobster and shrimp. Worst was a peppercorn steak; it was nearly impossible to cut, even with a steak knife. Tables are very close More together, so an intimate dinner is just about impossible in the anytime dining venues. Our most relaxed meal was at the pizza restaurant on deck 5 - it can be crowded but we went early and the pizza was delicious. Breakfast was best in the international dining room. The english muffin paninis at the International Cafe were surprisingly good, but they charge for coffee there. We ordered a burger at both the pool deck and the international restaurant. Terrible - avoid burgers (meat seems like a soy or pink slime mix?)
Pool Deck: Go early to find a lounger out of the wind. Liked the Move Under the Stars feature.
Drinks: We tried three or four cocktails during the cruise. They were OK. What's missing is a decent beer. They have nothing that approaches a craft beer on board.
Entertainment: We watched the opening number of one of the song/dance shows & did not stay. Pretty bad. Comedy act was hilarious. Magic/illusion show was OK. Musical performers in the Piazza were often very good.
Spa: AWFUL. I booked a top to toe facial & massage the first day on board. Ship noise was very loud in the massage room, so that was not relaxing. Therapist spent 15 of the 75 minutes trying to upsell me to a more expensive massage and then wanted me to sign up for consultations to services for removing wrinkles and fat. I have been through timeshare presentations that were more relaxing. During the massage, another employee came into the room (?????). At the end of all this, I went to the changing room to take a shower, and there were maintenance workers trying to fix a sink (NO signage up to warn of maintenance workers in changing room). When I asked if there was someplace else to take a shower (because the sink area was open to the shower area), the female attendant insisted that I should just use the showers even with the maintenance workers in there. No thank you. This is the only time I've ever been less relaxed after a massage than I was before it started.
Excursions booked throughout the cruise were good. Ensenada is not much of a town, but we had an excellent tour guide, Roger, for wine tasting tour. Cabo beach excursion was good. Puerto Yelapa tour was also good.
Good: Room, excursions, pool deck.
Bad: restaurant service, burgers, spa.
Overall, I would cruise Pincess again if it was a bargain. I'd know to avoid the spa, and I might try regular dining plan rather than anytime. Ideally, though, I'd look for a cruise line with peppier passengers. Less