Ruby Princes - Nice, relaxing cruise - good ports: Ruby Princess Cruise Review by coldweather
Overall Member Rating
Ruby Princes - Nice, relaxing cruise - good ports
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Overall the cruise was great. I would describe it as a relaxing, classy experience. (Not a wild, party cruise.) The demographic was 60s, 70s and 80s. This is by far the oldest demographic of any cruise ship I have been on. As this was my first Princess cruise I thought this might be the Princess demographic. I have been told that was typical for late January.
I was stuck by the number of people I met that were very loyal Princess cruisers. We met many people who only cruise with Princess and have been on 10+ Princess Cruises. They have a very strong, loyal following.
We booked an inside cabin. It was the largest and nicest cabin we have had in all our cruises (we always book an inside cabin.) They provide shampoo, conditioner and lotion in bottles throughout the cruise. There was a large, open closet with lots of hanger. The bed was comfortable and there More is a choice of pillow sizes. The room comes with a refrigerator.
The variety of food was the least impressive part of the cruise. The quality of what was provided was good but multiple times I was struggling with selecting something I was excited to order or select from the buffet. The pizza parlor was always good and fast. I liked the pizza slices.
Having been on NCL cruises recently where they have hand sanitizers EVERYWHERE and they spray your hands each time you enter the ship, it was noticeable that Princess was not as focused on hand sanitizing. Otherwise, the ships and staterooms were very clean.
The Casino was a nice, large size with lots of room. They offered 2 smoke free nights and that was much appreciated.
One observation was the short time actually in the ports. We selected this sailing because of the fewest days at sea (2 of 7). The time in port was short or awkward timing. For example, the time in Grand Turk was 1pm -- 7pm. Let's face it. This is a beach stop. Most people got back on the ship around 4 or 5 pm. The beach time felt rushed.
The same thing occurred for the Princess Cay stop: it was short. The back on ship time was 4pm. Because this was a tender stop, most people started to head back to the ship at 3 and formed a long line. It felt a bit rushed. A departure of 5pm would have made a big difference.
The same thing happened in St. Martin. We docked at 10am. By the time you got off of the ship and at your beach destination it was already noon.
In the 7 day sailing there were 2 formal nights. If men did not have a jacket they were banned from the 2 main dining rooms. This left the buffet or room service as the only dining option. On other cruises I have been on there has been a dedicated dining room for people who choose to dress formal but there has always been a dining room option for those who choose to dress resort casual.
The focus of the musical options seemed to trend toward cruisers that are 60+. The comedian shows were in small venues and were overflowing. The musical/Broadway type shows were in the large theater and not packed. The movies under the stars turned out to be great. Before sailing I thought this was an option I would not use. We watched 2 movies under the stars. There is something fun about watching movies outside in the warm Caribbean air. They provide comfy lounge chairs, popcorn and cookies and milk.
Overall, this was a great cruise and I would cruise Princess again.
I didn't see where I could log a review for Princess Cay so I am including it here:
Port Princess Cay:
This was a great beach stop with lots and lots of beach chairs. Some are in the shade. The lunch buffet is standard hamburger, hotdog, brat type choices. They have an extensive fruit bar that was outstanding. The snorkeling was good. If you can, bring your own equipment. The snorkel rental charge was pricy. Less