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Royal Princess Cruise Review by itsme_jj: Great time of year to visit the Eastern Caribbean


itsme_jj
6 Reviews
Member Since 2005
245 Posts

Member Rating

Cabin 4.0
Dining 4.0
Embarkation 5.5
Enrichment Activities 4.0
Entertainment 3.0
Family & Children Not Rated
Fitness & Recreation 4.0
Public Rooms 5.5
Rates Not Rated
Service 3.0
Shore Excursions 5.0
Value for Money 5.0

Compare Prices on Royal Princess Eastern Caribbean Cruises

Great time of year to visit the Eastern Caribbean

Sail Date: April 2014
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)

BACKGROUND: I am a seasoned cruiser, sailing on Carnival, Princess, NCL, Celebrity, Disney, Royal Caribbean, and a few other lines. I’ve been to the Caribbean, Mexico, Hawaii and Alaska. This was my first trip to visit St. Maarten and St. Thomas.

This trip was just my husband and I, flying from Phoenix, AZ to Fort Lauderdale.

PRE-CRUISE HOTEL:

Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort and Spa:

This is a brand new hotel about 15 minutes north of Fort Lauderdale airport right on the beach. Basically they took over the old property and renovated the existing tower, lobby and grounds and built a brand new second tower to match. We were given a standard partial ocean view room for 3 nights. Check in was efficient, you have to valet your car for a $25 a day fee, the bellman took our bags to our room and we were unpacking in less than 10 minutes. It was Thursday, prior to the weekend crush that started happening about 10pm.

The room was More gorgeous with new furnishings, a nice very comfortable king bed, wonderful rain shower, extra large bath, mini fridge with nothing in it. Coffee maker, flat screen tv, desk, couch and table. Our balcony was an interior with a view of the courtyard and pool, and beyond that the ocean.

The hotel was very clean, but it appeared they were still doing some touch ups or maintenance on painting and trim.

The two pools and spa were wonderful. They had an outdoor beach bar and café with many attendants and servers eager to help. There was PLENTY OF LOUNGERS… in fact when I talked to the manager Andrew he said they prided themselves on having a lounger for every room in the hotel, and if at any time a guest could not find one, they would personally bring another. Wow! There were shaded areas and sunny areas.

The beach area was clean and well maintained, with a vendor selling rentals of beach chairs, cabanas, kayaks, seadoo’s and more.

Right in front of the hotel there was a children’s play area with a small play boat and tons of sand toys laid out to attract them… however, no children. I felt sad for all the beautifully displayed sand toys without children to play with them. Next to this was a full sized volleyball court. While the beach area itself is not private, it seemed to only have hotel guests and not very many of them on the beach too. You could walk down to the lighthouse or to the pier and then there was a lot more traffic.

The Spa was delightful but small. It had treatment and relaxation rooms, steam and sauna and a men’s and ladies side. They had a very well equipped gym with windows facing the ocean with stair masters and weights, etc.

This Marriott did not have the executive or Club lounge as others did. However it did not have a daily resort fee. They also had a children’s club program with activities and childcare.

Hotel had large amount of conference and event space. While we were staying there were a couple events including a Wedding and reception.

The hotel had what they called three restaurants. It was really one restaurant with three seating areas. Inside more formal and extensive menu. Bar inside and Bar/Pool Patio outside. You could order off of any of the menus in any venue. For breakfast they offered a very extensive buffet for $25 or off the menu. Lunch varied from pool snacks and burgers at the bars to full lunch inside. Dinner was delicious and offered upscale entrees. Everything we ate from omelets, crab benidict, fish and chips, little neck clams and more was very delicious.

However there is a problem this new restaurant needs to fix. Almost every meal we ate, the staff was eagerly greeting and checking on you, however they seemed to not know what each other was doing. For example, one server would greet us and ask us for drinks and then another would do the same in two minutes. Who has which tables? Then you would tell one person you needed something only to have to tell yet another, and then end up with two orange juices. I wouldn’t even comment on this if it didn’t happen almost every time. Our dinner was by far the worst and most disorganized. We were greeted, waited on and put in our drink order and appetizer, then when the appetizer arrived gave our entrée orders. We finished our appetizers and waited and waited. Finally not seeing our server for so long flagged down another waiter. 30 minutes went by and then they tried to bring us someone else’s food. The manager came by and asked how it was going and we explained. She immediately apologized and asked if she could buy us drinks. Finally our food came. We then tried to pay and apparently the computer was down or something, they asked us what we had. We waited another 30 minutes and finally said to them just send the bill to the room and left. We were there for two and half hours when we left. The food was amazing, but apparently the waitress went on break between our appetizer and entrée and our order wasn’t put in.

Every meal… swarms of staff, but always some confusion. I am sure they will work this out.

We ate out the first night at a local establishment called Flanigans Seafood Bar and Grill, a typical bar and fish grill with greasy but good food and great happy hour specials. Located in Pompano Beach, 2500 E ATLANTIC BLVD, POMPANO BEACH, FL 33062, They have many, many locations but this was the original. I had the dolphin fish fingers appetizer and fries and my husband had their monster burger. We should have just got the one order of fries. Everything was huge. That and two drinks each, we left with a $35 bill. Nice. A plus for west coasters is that they are open late until midnight. So while the rest of the restaurants are closing up about 9pm, they are just starting their happy hour on drinks.

They also had an attached Liquor store whose prices were not the cheapest, but ok. Publix almost across the street has a liquor store attached. Note: Fort Lauderdale does not sell liquor on Sundays at most stores before 11 or 12am. So plan accordingly. Liquor sales is not allowed between 3am – 7am at all retail outlets.

EMBARKATION:

Arrived at the Cruise Terminal at 1:30p.m. Boarding was already well underway and we had missed the initial rush… perfect, just the way I like it. We dropped our luggage at the porters and walked right up to the X-ray station, only a few people ahead of us. Got in a line with a few people to check in and then were allowed to whisk right onboard. Our stateroom was ready and we were able to go right up.

STATEROOM:

Cabin A217 Category 1F Inside Stateroom located on Aloha (Deck 12) Forward. There were only two of us, and while the inside staterooms are very small, the new closet design we found adequate and storage was more than enough for all our 4 cases of luggage and garment bag. We liked the bed it was made into a queen and was firm and we didn’t feel any seam between the beds. The pillows were soft and not too hard. The bedding was new to me, a bottom sheet, a duvet covered in a pillow case like sheet without a top sheet. This seemed strange to me. I requested another bottom sheet as a top sheet and that worked out just fine, because sometimes I’m too hot, while my husband is too cold. The bathroom was incredibly small as most inside staterooms. I did like the square sink as opposed to the round ones as it was better for washing your face and my husband shaving without destroying the limited counter space. The vanity had 3 shelves in the corner and one big shelf below for storing items. The lighting was brighter than the last ship, but still too dim for makeup. The vanity in the main room was also too dim for makeup. The blow dryer in the drawer next to the vanity worked extremely well, but the cord was too short to see what you were really doing while at the vanity. The phone system was equipped with an automatic wakeup system and voicemail which worked fine.

The bath came with bar soap, scrubbie, scented air fleshing spray, two packages of three q-tips and cotton balls, and a shower cap. The shower was tiny with the “curtain” and had shampoo/conditioner combo dispenser and a body wash dispenser. We were provided 4 towels and 2 hand towels and 2 face cloths. We requested the number of hand and face towels be increased to 4 daily.

Our room was quiet except when a few times some children or small elephants “ran” down the hallway during the morning. Light crept in around the door, but other than this it was pitch black as to be expected. The big flat screen TV was great, but the remote only worked when pointed to the very corner. The in room entertainment had a great selection of first run movies on demand and TV shows, sports, CNN, etc. They also had a show called “Princess Live” where they shot a show for each day of the cruise and you could wake up and listen to what to see and do that day. They had music channels and also a live web cam on the front of the ship with music. We used the live web cam as our “window” to know where we were, would have been nice to have aft and other cams. The new energy feature to turn off all if the key card was removed was great, but I put another card there, as I locked myself out once and it took about 30 minutes to get let back in.

Our mini fridge was stocked with soda, beer and some alcoholic mini bottles. We exchanged the flavors we didn’t like with the ones we did no problem. We are elite status and get to empty it once complimentary. The ice for the ice buckets on this ship were larger than the others and lasted longer, and we requested it be filled at all times. We make our own drinks and I like to also make “ice” tea with my hot tea in the morning. We also use the ice to make ice water by letting it melt for something refreshing to drink at night.

Our closet was stocked with a good amount of wooden hangers, but we had brought more, as I like to hang a good deal of my clothes. The shelving and safe were adequate. The bath door obstructed part of the hanging closet and there was no way to prop it open if desired to let steam out.

ENTERTAINMENT:

Princess Theatre seemed to undergone a severe haircut as it was lacking about the whole second balcony. It was so small it was difficult to find a seat for any of the shows. As a result we did not see many. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it, as many shows play multiple times, but as the sailing progress, we got to the end and could not get in to see almost ALL the shows. As a result, I cannot review what I could not see.

Movies Under the Stars: Wow this new screen was so big and so clear you could see it in the daylight with no problem. Find a location near a speaker as if it’s windy you will not be able to hear much. This could be improved. They played a lot of great movies, Captain Phillips, Gravity, Finding Nemo, and Concerts and much more day and night. You could also watch these movies and others in your stateroom on demand.

Vista Lounge: We really liked watching acts in this lounge, it was comfortable and most seats had a great view. We saw Kory Simon “I love a Piano” and felt he was very funny. He also played nightly at crooner for piano sing along games, which was always packed. This lounge is a great place to watch any of the acts except the large musical and dance performances.

In the Piazza: We absolutely loved seeing music and other entertainment here, alongside the International Café for Coffee/Tea and snacks, Vines, and the two bars. This tended to be the go to place to see a lively band at night and dance. During the day before dinner they play a more melodic piano music. They would have fashion shows, an Easter celebration, dance lessons, Martini Demos, and the Captain’s Champagne waterfall party. It was great because you could see it from decks 5, 6 and 7 and then if you wanted to go in close you could go down if they had something that interest you. It's definitely the heart of the ship.

Wheelhouse Lounge: I have mixed feelings about this redesign. I really loved to hold group functions and attend functions in this space. It is now an open space next to the crown grill without any “walls” or doors. They’ve shrunk it quite a bit. The band playing here seems to have no dedicated space, and no place to dance. On the other hand, since they expanded the Piazza, that now takes the dance space and dancing that used to happen here. Now it has a quiet before and after dinner jazz or contemporary relaxing vibe and it’s situated next to the Vista Lounge. So this works perfect to meet up and have a relaxing pre-drink for dinner at the Crown Grill, or pre/post show at the Vista Lounge.

Princess Live show and bar: I enjoyed this new venue to see shows being recorded for Princess Wake Show and for various other shows and contest like shows, jeopardy, etc. However, sometimes there was no break between them, and people would just not leave… so you could not get in. I did like having this to get my Coffee Card Latte and specialty teas. Deck 7 Aft was more convenient than going clear down to deck 5 and being with everyone when you’re not quite awake.

Club 6: I only went here for the Captain Circle reception and it seemed very small and not much room for dancing. I am not sure how it functions as a disco/dance club with such a small floor.

DINING:

We choose Anytime dining as there was just the two of us. This worked out very well, we never waited a minute or two and were usually seated right way. We choose to eat at 6:30pm, 7:30pm and even 8:15pm on our nights in the dining room. We did not eat in the dining room on formal nights. We did miss being able to bond with our wait staff, however the flexibility for this trip was great. The dining staff was great, and they always were attentive. We tried a steak one night, and usually I don’t as I like my steak rare to medium rare, and it is usually not very tender or hot in a cruise ship dining room. It was delicious, tender and hot! I like to try a variety of items and like things with lots of flavor. We were not disappointed. There were a few things I thought were not to my liking, but not due to preparation.

Horizon/Lido: We ate dinner two times in the newly designed Lido, which I loved. The old design was too contained and bottled up the whole process of being able to just go in and get one thing and get out. I felt this ship was extremely adept at keeping this tip top and offered a great variety of fresh and interesting offerings. The one thing I could not figure out on this ship was when they were offering “special” events on deck such as a “seafood” buffet, or the “crab shack” or the “fondue” or anything interesting or special. I inquired at the beginning, middle and end of the cruise of the various Lido staff members and got vague answer like Crab Shack is offered every other day, etc. You could not get any advance notice to plan your meals around it. You basically had to wait to see it in your “patters”. Most ships I’ve been on, you can find that out right away, it’s not a secret. The Pizza at the Lido, was great as usual, however I do wish they wouldn’t put anchovies on most of the offerings.

Alfredo’s: We loved the idea of this restaurant; pizza and pasta sit down service. When we tried it on the first sea day, they seemed busy but not packed. We were seated at a window after requesting it. Our menu seemed promising. I ordered a salad and pizza and my husband ordered an appetizer, soup and pizza. Our waiter seemed stressed. There was a long wait between our order and the food, then another long wait between the appetizer and the pizza. The pizzas were devoid of any cheese… just sauce and tough crust. Funny because the pizza on the Lido is delicious. Our waiter never asked us if we wanted to get any drinks, and we finally left without finishing. Good potential, bad execution.

Sabatini’s: Usually when I eat at Sabatini’s on Princess it has been for the excellent food and the more intimate dinner service and to get thru dinner in less than 2 hours, instead of the main dining room. This time my reservation was at 6pm on the first formal night and my reason was the same. We booked a table for two and arrived and were seated and given a menu right away. The server took our order and we sipped our existing cocktails brought from the bar next door. About 20 minutes later our appetizer and salad arrived with apologies. Ok no big deal. A couple large groups were seated in the dining room and we noticed others had arrived after us and had already gotten their main courses. We hailed our waiter down and order a glass of wine and more water, and then waited 45 minutes before the final course and the wine came. In the meantime, we had enough time to speak with another couple dining next to us, who had waited 45 minutes from the time they ordered their bottle of wine until it arrived.

Not once did the Matre’D check to see how we were. Our waiter was hurried and finally when the main course came, we quickly ate and left to try to salvage something of our evening. Two and Half Hours!

Now don’t get me wrong I’ve gone to dinners with 7 courses and it took that long. But we only had 3 things. Appetizer, Salad, Main Entrée and 1 glass of wine. I did of course attempt to flag down the head waiter or someone, but to no avail. I asked for a refund and was offered another dinner instead, but by the time they got back to me, I already on our last night of the cruise and was not going to risk a long dinner as I had to pack. I was given the refund.

Crown Grill: We made a reservation for two for the second formal night at 6pm. We did mention to the waiter that we didn’t want to linger as we wanted to go to the 9pm show. Everything at the Crown Grill went amazingly well. The salads were to die for; the appetizer was interesting and tasty. I ordered a Veal Chop and my husband the filet mignon. We also asked to sample some lobster on the side, but not too much. The Veal Chop must have been about 12 -16 ounces and was 4 inches thick. My husband steak was not only the filet, but the rest of the prime. The waiter surprised us by bringing over not one or two lobster tails but eight! We took the extra left over lobster for a snack late night, as we couldn’t bear to see them go to waste. The service was excellent through the whole meal.

POOLS/SPA:

Main Lido Pools and Fountain was a very popular place all day. Many folks on our cruise were east coast and were really enjoying getting their sun in. As a result most of the lounges close to the pools were in use with friends and family camped out, playing cards, games, swimming, eating and just having a great time. There were also chase lounges in shady areas as well as seats in the shade with soft cushions to lounge and read on. There were a lot of towel chaise savers…. The crew rarely removed the chaise hoarders, but they can after they are not in use for 30 minutes. So feel free to take chairs or lounges if someone does this, or ask the crew to do so.

Adult Only Pool and Spas were very nice and great place to hang out. The pool and Jacuzzis seemed to be open 24/7, except when the pool had to be closed one day for treatment. Some days it was really windy up there, depending on the weather. I usually enjoyed going up here for afternoon and having a drink at sail away from the islands. The kids were not present as in some other lines adult only areas.

I did miss having an AFT pool by the AFT Bar and being able to watch the wake of the ship there. This bar also had issues sometimes with the soot and smell of the smoke stacks.

The Serenity Retreat: I did go and check this out. Having this separate from the adult only area and not having any pools/Jacuzzi it didn’t seem that inviting to me, so I skipped this. Many people did pay to have this private space, but I didn’t feel it was necessarily with all the adult only pool amenities.

The Spa: The spa on this ship was absolutely beautiful and wonderful. However, I was very disappointed that you could no longer book a treatment and get to use the thermal suite or the “enclave”. Now you must pay the pass fee to use it of $199 for the voyage, or a pro-rated amount depending on which day you sign up. As a result before my massage I could only shower and change into my robe, instead of my normal routine of doing hot and dry sauna first to loosen up my muscles. My therapist did a wonderful massage and facial and didn’t try to sell me any products at the end. Of course they have specials every day, book online ahead of time, and then always double check if there is a sale that is better. That way you’ve reserved your preferred time, but can still switch your treatment if it is a like minded one, so from therapeutic to stone massage. I did like having the spa at deck 5 instead of at the top of the ship, except for the issue with the no steam/sauna use anymore it would have been nice to hop in the adult only Jacuzzi and then get my treatment.

GYM/SPORTS: The new gym was packed with lots of modern machines, equipment and weights and most of it with a sea view. The Sports deck had the typical basketball, miniature golf, etc., but there was absolutely no water up there. It was also a bit windy to play up there many days. They had the jogging track and exercise stations that you could do reps on. I do miss the promenade deck where you could do walking in the covered shade and also sit and watch the ocean and read in a shaded area. This ship features a partial promenade deck with little to no shade covering.

PORTS:

Princess Cay was beautiful, but a bit overcast in the morning, but hot by the afternoon. The rental staff was very nice and laid back. We had reserved a hobie cat sailboat for 1030 but didn’t get thru tendering until almost eleven. They had plenty of available sailboats, kayaks, sail boards, and other toys, it was hey no problem mon. Once out on the water we jumped in to get wet, that apparently was a red flag for a jet boat monitoring the guest to come over and see if we were ok. It was nice to know they were actually watching you. Also one time, I attempted to cross thru the tender lane to get to the other side and apparently that was off limits as well. We ending up staying out almost 2 hours before they asked us to come in. It was great fun. Then we went to the BBQ that was quite extensive, hotdogs, hamburgers, chicken burgers, sausage, fish, chicken, sides, salads, fruit, ice tea, lemonade and waters. We found a couple of loungers after grabbing a refreshing cocktail and laid around a bit, then went for a refreshing dip in the ocean. We walked over to the exit by the tender docks to go to the local straw market vendors outside of the princess complex, but I forgot to bring my photo id, so I had to skip it. The sun is very very hot hear, and while waiting for tenders it was a bit unbearable, so we found a place in the shade and waited until the line died down about 30 minutes before all aboard.

St Thomas we had reserved a catamaran boat tour with lunch and snorkeling with Day Dreamer at the Sugar Bay Resort and Spa. We needed to be there at 830 and they departed at 9am. We got off the ship a bit later than I had planned and we were on the dock at 8am. The taxi’s were all lined up but empty, and how it works in St. Thomas they wait until the taxi fills and then depart. There were very few people leaving the ship, so I panicked and took a private taxi for $60, boy did I get ripped off. I should have followed my own advice and just held my ground with the shared taxi and if there wasn’t anyone ready to go in 20 minutes insist they leave anyway. But the roads in St. Thomas are always crowded and you never know. Turns out we got there at 8:15 and then didn’t depart until 9:30am.

They switched us to the boat called the Coconuts, which was their sister catamaran who was beautiful with plenty of seating, and cushions. The boat was clean and our Captain Denby and Nathan did a great job. They took us to 3 snorkel stops and sailed in between (yes actual sailing) St. Thomas to St. John marine preserve and two other beaches. At Honeymoon Beach, I got to swim with sea turtle, and a lot of beautiful fish. The fish weren’t as plentiful as other places like Hawaii, but then again, there were a lot of tourist snorkeling. If you found a spot with no one else and just waited, they would have seen more. They supplied the snorkel gear all the drinks you wanted and a nice continental breakfast of muffins and fruit and lunch was cold cuts, salads, pasta was very good. Then after the last stop they slowly sailed back while everyone relaxed. The weather varied from sunny to partly cloudy. The first stop was beautiful and sunny, and then the next stop was overcast but still beautiful.

Nathan always made sure everyone had a drink, and the two worked together like clockwork, Nathan circled the boat getting everyone a pain killer or their beverage of choice, circled again for snorkel gear sizes, circled again passing out muffins, fruit, always circling… checking, ensuring everyone was very taken care of. Denby and Nathan pointed out where to snorkel and what the best spots were at each stop. We never felt rushed or pressured, and had a great relaxing day. We saw plenty of other ships with 25-50 people on them, and on ours only 10! FYI Sugar Bay Resort was gorgeous all-inclusive and the pool and beach area was really beautiful. Others on our sailing were staying there and loved it, so if we had known we had more time, it would have been nice to hang out and have a nice swim there before returning to the ship.

Bad Cabbie in St. Thomas took us for a ride and then some. We took a cab back to the ship, only to discover my husband forgot his shoes (He ignored the instruction to put them in bucket! And put them under a seat). Our cabbie haggled with us, and we got an inflated price because we thought the ship was leaving at 5:30, when in fact our ship departure had been delayed until 9:30pm. Our cabbie literally took us for a ride, seeming to be going very slowly and said he needed to stop and pick someone up at the Bolongo bay resort. At this point we got really peeved and demanded he just go straight back to the pier or we’d get out and get another cab. Suddenly he found the gas! So lesson learned and do what I always say to do, pre-negotiate your round trip cab fare in a shared cab before you leave the dock, and pay for all when you are returned to the ship. Should have been $13 each person / each way for shared ride. I hate being taken when you are under pressure. Upon being back at the ship, just went aboard even though we had plenty of time. Too much sun… I wore sunscreen, cover-ups and a snorkel shirt and I still got burnt at whatever little skin was exposed.

St. Maarten. We booked a sailing ¾ day trip on Celine, another beautiful catamaran. This time my transportation was included with the sailing. We followed the instructions and we on the ship dock at the time instructed were directed to our driver and a few minutes we were off. Boy what a difference.

We drove to the Yacht Club in Simpson Bay and the driver was excellent, they use Bernard who also does tours. Again traffic is hectic on St. Maarten and we went up and over and thru the hills. I was glad this was all taken care of. We happened to be riding with another couple that was doing the same trip from the Allure of the Seas. We were taken right away by dingy to the boat by Captain Neil. It was cloudy and overcast and started to sprinkle. Captain Neil’s first mate was Tamara and she immediately introduced us to the rest of our sailing companions. There were only 12 of us! Then she immediately began mixing drinks and a gorgeous and beautiful breakfast buffet with fruit, jams, cream cheese, yogurt, juice, coffee and fresh fruit was set beautifully on the table. This catamaran had an inside seating area, and outside seating in the back on benches, and on the front, but no padding on the front or shade offered on the front or the back. The ship was clean and in great shape. The inside area was hot and stuffy. So out it was I go, sunburn and all. I loaded up on sunscreen and kept on my cover-up and hat. They immediately motored to a small cove where they gave us all our instructions and details for the day. We were allowed a 30 minute get wet time and then took off again. The sun had come out and it was a gorgeous day, as we sailed along the coast. Just beautiful and slow and peaceful. We arrived at Long Beach, and the resort there had a lot of toys and rentals. Here again snorkeling was ok, it wasn’t great, but the view and the water were beautiful.

Tamara and Neil immediately set to cooking up a feast while we all swam and snorkeled. In the meantime, everyone was welcome to help themselves to the bar, beer and if you needed anything just ask. I got very hungry smelling everything cooking and once it was served it was gourmet delicious. Fall off the bone BBQ ribs, Blackened fresh fish, Seafood Paella, Potato salad, Pasta salad, Greek green salad with Fresh fruit and nuts. Snorkeling was fair, but the food was worth the trip alone. I prefer the coconut boat for shade and snorkel spots, but the food on Celine was definitely worth it.

After lunch we sailed around to Mullet bay, and did some more snorkeling, the weather was good but cloudier. Tamara again working like a fiend serving up drinks that was some sort of dessert concoction BBC. We mostly motored back and they dropped us off at a different location and had our driver meet us, because the Allure sailing away earlier than ours. Our driver took us back to port and offered to drop us off in town or take us back to the ship. I had enough sun, and opted for the ship. We did a little shopping at the port stores for liquor, wine and a few gifts. The port store had a great deal on the Tortuga Coconut rum, but we forgot to check the ship price and paid more in port. We picked up more wine to bring back. Put both in our carryon bags, and no one mentioned this when we went back on the ship thru x-ray. So we took them to our cabin.

DISEMBARKATION:

Excellent. We choose to do EZ Check and send our luggage ahead for $20 per person and it was great. We just rolled our carryon off the ship anytime after our allotted time without any waiting. We got up and had breakfast in the Horizon court, went down and finished packing up, went up to the International Café for our last latte and tea. We left approximately at 9am. Were rolled off and in less than 10 minutes. We decided to just roll our bag and self walk over the Hilton Marina just across the street from the cruise port. Checked in our bags until the rooms are ready, and headed off to the water taxi tour and had lunch at the Bahia Cabana.

SUMMARY:

The Royal Princess is a beautiful ship and with a few exceptions of the new design, overall I did enjoy here new features and would sail her again. I think the pro’s outweighed the cons. Having said that, I do think it seemed they just crammed more staterooms onto her, and shrunk some of the key facilities such as the Princess Theatre, Wheelhouse Bar, and removed my beloved promenade deck with covered area to walk or just sit and watch the sea roll by. I would recommend no one book a mid-ship cabin on decks 8-14, due to removal of public stairwells. I would not book any passengers with accessibility issues on her due to this issue. She is too much of a hassle to navigate as these forces everyone to use the elevators mid-ship. So for those passengers that love mid-ship, love theatre performances and have accessibility issues, I would not recommend her. I would recommend one of Princess other smaller ships. For those that adore a larger balcony, again this is not the ship… they shrunk the balcony of most staterooms. Less


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Cabin review: Royal Princess A217

1F on the Aloha Deck was a great location.

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