Regal Princess Cruise Review by rwyeager: NOT SO REGAL
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NOT SO REGAL
We received an eMail brochure on the Maiden Voyage of Regal Princess and the camera shot of the Piazza prompted us to want to see just what made it Regal. Unfortunately, the Piazza was the beginning and the end of the Regal part. From then on the ship looked no different from other ships. However, some of the changes were definitely not to the standard we have come to expect from Princess.
While stunning, the Piazza made a lousy dance venue. Unfortunately, there was no other suitable venue except for the Vista Lounge which was used too frequently for other activities like bingo. The loss of the Wheelhouse bar and its traditional setting turned out to be virtually useless for anything other than a bar to support the Crown Grill. The proximity to the grill made a secluded dinner anything but special when a jazz quartet and a piano player were in residence.
The theater stage was so small that presentations looked crowded and awkward. Seating was decent but without drink More services and cup holders, clapping was a challenge. Too few aisles made for difficult maneuvering throughout the two levels.
The entertainment was less than normal with only one major production on the first seven day portion and the same show was repeated on the second portion of the trip. The “BRAVO” presentation was outstanding and the “Unexpected Boys” mirrored the “Jersey Boys” act. Other guest entertainment was good but not for our liking. Some nights had no entertainment at all.
The addition of some venues like Bellini’s was special and we enjoyed that part but Alfredo’s Pizza was just so – so. The pizza bar up by the pool was just as good. The gelato shop did not really have gelato, just ice cream. Swirls was sufficient for us.
The International Café was very good and made a nice alternative to the buffet for a quick breakfast and a decent cup of coffee and pastries/sandwiches/salads, etc.
Food at the buffet was adequate although they kept moving items around so you spent a lot of time wandering around looking for things. The food was barely warm and in some cases dead cold. Seating was more than adequate and we never had a problem finding a place to sit.
Formal dining was a nightmare. We had requested a table for 8 and were seated at a table for 6 with only one other couple - Brazilians who spoke minimal English. It was as though the Maitre’ D used a dartboard to select seating arrangements. Food was okay but too often we resorted to the “always available” portion of the menu.
POSITIVES: Embarkation; Debarkation; Itinerary
NEGATIVES: Safety drill at 9:45PM – right in the middle of second seating dinner. No one informed us that the first night was anytime dining because of the drill.
Lack of tenders at Katakolon – It took over two hours to disembark for the tenders after arriving at 12:30pm with a departure of 8pm.
No after dinner activities (Except Shows) for 2d seating. Almost all activities took place at 9 to 9:15Pm
Lack of information on Captain’s Circle activities. We did not receive notification of Capt Circle events until the third day of the initial cruise and then periodic announcements throughout the trip. Previous Princess Cruises had an outline of all Capt Circle events up front so you could schedule your time. Less
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Cabin review: Regal Princess B410
Seemed Smaller than previous ships and the layout was distracting. TV remotes operated both Tvs even if you only wanted one on. You had to stand close to operate just the TV where you were sitting. Balcony was no great shakes, with two lounges a table and small ottoman.