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Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by NewCruiserMPC: New Cruiser goes on Second Cruise


NewCruiserMPC
1 Review
Member Since 2013
148 Posts

Member Rating

Cabin 3.0
Dining 5.0
Embarkation 4.0
Enrichment Activities 3.0
Entertainment 3.0
Family & Children Not Rated
Fitness & Recreation Not Rated
Public Rooms 5.0
Rates Not Rated
Service 5.0
Shore Excursions 2.0
Value for Money 4.0

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New Cruiser goes on Second Cruise

Sail Date: March 2014
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Houston

Hello Everyone and Happy Cruising!  We went on our 1st cruise June of last year to beautiful Alaska aboard a Holland America ship. Having experienced such an amazing trip, we decided to embark on our 2nd cruise aboard the Caribbean Princess.

As we drove to the airport Friday, DH and I agreed that we would not expect better, but only hope for an equally good trip. Boy were we in for a crazy ride!

We arrived in Houston at approximately 12:30am. Houston friends had offered to pick us up and provide a bed for us in their beautiful home. We woke up early the next morning, hung out and went to breakfast at the Cracker Barrel. We headed out to Bayport Terminal around noon, stopping by a CVS to purchase a case of water, some Dr. Pepper and 2 bottles of wine.

We arrived at the terminal at about 12pm, gave our bags to one of the bag guys (tipped him $5) and proceeded to check in. We went through security without a hitch, stood in line for about 10 minutes to More reach the front desk people (not sure what we call them?) and were quickly “checked in”. We were instructed to sit and wait for our number to be called. About 30 minutes later, our number was called and we proceeded to board the ship. We decided to skip the embarkation photo and proceeded to get on the ship. We headed straight for The Crown Grill and made a reservation for the following night (Formal Night). Headed back to our room, met our stewardess, freshened up a bit and headed back down for the Muster Drill in the Casino. Muster Drill went smoothly. Decided to sit at a bar and order a drink (well drinks only). I can’t remember the time exactly, but our trip was about to get very interesting.

We were informed by the Captain, Dino Sagani, that we weren’t able to leave yet. Apparently there was a collision in the channel and we were waiting for clearance to determine when we could start our cruise. Not sure if this was when we were told about the oil spill, but for the next 3 days we would experience a roller coaster of emotions. There were several updates made by the Captain throughout this time. All in all, I will say that his efforts in assuring us were appreciated. The first 24 hours were all positive and you could tell he was genuinely trying to keep us in the loop. I won’t go into too many details, as there’s other reviews that explains everything that happened, but I will say that the Captain and his crew were amazing! Many thanks to everyone on the ship that truly tried to make our, up to then: “cruise to nowhere”, somewhat less stressful.

We finally left Houston on Tuesday and arrived to Cozumel on Thursday. The day felt rushed and hurried from place to place trying to take it all in. We had booked the “Passion Island Beach Break with Scenic Cruise and Lunch” for this port. We would NOT do this excursion again. We met up with our group at 10:20am at the pier. We were then guided to the boat that would take us to the Island. Leo, our guide, was fantastic! Very funny and attentive. The ride was about 40 minutes long. We then had 3 hours to enjoy the island. We ate a bit, had a few drinks and then just lounged on the beach. The water was cloudy and the wind made the waves a bit rough. The water was NOT warm. I had heard Caribbean waters were warm so this was disappointing. Still, we spent about 10 minutes in the water and then went back to sit. We got bored pretty quickly. We decided to walk around a bit and visited some of the shops. Things were very overpriced! We did not buy anything. We walked over to the other side of the island and spent some time walking around. There were lots of tiny jellyfish. We saw some iguanas too. The other side seemed calmer (waters) but the water did not look safe to be in. It was a nice walk away from the crowd. At about 2:20, Leo started gathering us all up and getting us ready to leave. It really did feel like cattle being herded. LOL I thought it was funny. Wish we would have had more time. Then again, wish we would have gone to Palancar. We arrived back to the pier at about 3:30pm. We had about an hour left so we walked around the little shops and bought a few souvenirs to take home for family. It was time to go! Fast trip!

As far as food goes, amazing! We ate at the Crown Grill and Sabatini’s as well. DH loved Crown Grill (we had Ribeye, Lobster, Onion Soup and Scallops). I liked Sabatini’s more, especially the pasta dish, appetizers, dessert. The pizza is superb! I couldn’t stop eating it. I tried the Love Boat dessert as it was highly recommended on these boards and it did not disappoint! I also tried the Fettuccini Alfredo, another highly recommended, and that was good as well. We tried the British Pub Lunch… a favorite of ours! Very good! Wish we would have had it more than once.

The one thing I’ll say that saved this trip for us was the entertainment. We were lucky to have the Entertainer of the Year competition on this trip. All nominees were amazing! My favorite, Zach Winningham, ended up winning. But all were good and we enjoyed them all. The one thing DH and I agreed on was the Cruise Director’s (Neil Roberts) lack of presence. We saw him usually on TV or introducing the big acts. On Holland America, the Cruise Director was everywhere! Sometimes we joked we had a double. On Princess, this was not the case. His Deputy Cruise Director was good. Forget his name. We also agreed that we enjoyed the day activities on Holland America more. There really wasn’t much variety on Princess. Kinda cheesy for our taste. DH spent some time in the Casino and did well. That was nice. The staff cast (regular entertainment) was also cheesy. Lots of show tunes and really, mostly geared towards the older cruise passengers. I’m only 30 and DH is 39, so the shows they provided were very Glee’ish in nature.

We also attended one art auction. It was fun to watch, but some of the female helpers with the art director were pushy. Did not appreciate that. They ran around, literally, trying to get you to bid. It was entertaining watching them make a big fuss and run around trying to hype up the auction, but it is not necessary or ok to try to push people into bidding on something they don’t want.

Oy vey… so much to write about! We had a great time. It did not live up to Alaska, but we whole heartedly believe it could have had it gone without a hitch and we would have made all 3 ports. We booked a Mediterranean for June 2015 with Princess and will give it another try. Less


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Read Cruise Critic's Caribbean Princess Review >>

Cabin review: Caribbean Princess C323

The room was ok. Balcony was nice and much larger than the others we could see. Half Covered Half Open but still ok as far as privacy. The beds were not confortable. My back was killing me. No sofa. Shower is small but ok. The water pressure is ok but I would have preferred better. Careful if you are out in the closet area and someone is in the bathroom. DH almost knocked me out opening the door as he could not see me stading there. The closet space is large and plenty. Suit cases fit under the bed. TV is ok except it sits high up so when changing the channel you have to point with your hand raised high.

Port and Shore Excursions


Beach Break

(2)

We finally left Houston on Tuesday and arrived to Cozumel on Thursday. The day felt rushed and hurried from place to place trying to take it all in. We had booked the “Passion Island Beach Break with Scenic Cruise and Lunch” for this port. We would NOT do this excursion again. We met up with our group at 10:20am at the pier. We were then guided to the boat that would take us to the Island. Leo, our guide, was fantastic! Very funny and attentive. The ride was about 40 minutes long. We then had 3 hours to enjoy the island. We ate a bit, had a few drinks and then just lounged on the beach. The water was cloudy and the wind made the waves a bit rough. The water was NOT warm. I had heard Caribbean waters were warm so this was disappointing. Still, we spent about 10 minutes in the water and then went back to sit. We got bored pretty quickly. We decided to walk around a bit and visited some of the shops. Things were very overpriced! We did not buy anything. We walked over to the other side of the island and spent some time walking around. There were lots of tiny jellyfish. We saw some iguanas too. The other side seemed calmer (waters) but the water did not look safe to be in. It was a nice walk away from the crowd. At about 2:20, Leo started gathering us all up and getting us ready to leave. It really did feel like cattle being herded. LOL I thought it was funny. Wish we would have had more time. Then again, wish we would have gone to Palancar. We arrived back to the pier at about 3:30pm. We had about an hour left so we walked around the little shops and bought a few souvenirs to take home for family. It was time to go! Fast trip!

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