My husband and I flew into LAX the morning of our cruise arriving at 9:30 am and even though we were early Princess was there to meet us. We were told that the early arrivals were being taken to a hotel until we could start boarding the ship. To our surprise we were the 1st bus to go straight to the terminal. Getting on board was very well organized and we were on board my 11:30 am!! Being able to board so soon (actually 2 hours after the last of the passengers from the previous cruise left) speaks very highly of the Princess crew to quickly turn the ship over for newly arriving guests.
As with our last cruise on Caribbean Princess, we were impressed with the lack of crowding. The only crowding we saw were 1st the muster drill and 2nd a very popular show in the Princess Theater, we actually sat on a stair to watch the show and that was fine with us. The show was good and so were the cast.
The food on Sapphire was as good as we remembered. My husband actually gained a few pounds which he needed. I refuse to get on the scales but think I did fairly well. A fellow Cruise Critic member told me a "secret" about the Santa Fe---items NOT on the menu, Fajitas. The best ever and beats out my favorite restaurant here at home. Each dining room has a speciality that is not on the menu, so ask your waiter what the dining room has to offer. Sabatini's was very good and takes 2 hours. Since we had not dined there before they asked us to choose an entree and they bring samples of everything else. We were definitely very full by the end of that meal. The wait staff make sure you understand the cost is $20 pp so there are no surprises. We also dined at Sterling Steakhouse also very good. The steaks are very big, and cooked to perfection.
The crew was amazing! We did not encounter any problems with crew and our room steward Ruel was very kind and most appreciated by us. We were on the Dolphin deck in a mini-suite and never had an issue with our cabin. Room service in the morning for coffee was great and amazingly quick considering the number of requests.
Passanges aboard seemed for the most part a happy group. I only saw a few grumps one of which had a point. There are hand sanitizers everywhere that there is food. In the buffet one morning a passenger saw quite a few people ignore the sanitizers when entering. Princess does have crew members reminding passengers to clean their hands and some just ignored them. It is up to the passengers to keep the germs at a mininum as the crew is unable to force those not into hand cleaning to follow the suggestions.
The weather was not very cooperative and consequently a little cool but Princess carried on and there was fun for all.
All in all, a great cruise with wonderful Cruise Critic memebers.