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Island Princess Review

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85% of cruisers loved it
  • Mid-sized ship, so it's fairly intimate
  • Golf opportunities onboard and ashore
  • Swim-against-the-current pool

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Island Princess Overview

(4.5) 4.5 out of 5+ star rating
After an intense three-day pre-cruise land tour in Alaska that included a plane, a train and a handful of motorcoaches, Island Princess looked like eye candy when we first spied her at the cruise terminal in Whittier.

Here was our refuge, our refueling station. We had cruised with Princess once before -- on Coral Princess, Island Princess's sister ship (her twin sister, as it turns out). The two ships are identical -- right down to the restaurants, the entertainment venues, the layout and decor. Immediately, we felt at home.

That's not to say Island Princess doesn't deliver some pleasant surprises. The public space is sleek, and even though she launched in 2003, there's no hint of wear and tear. Service was very good, particularly in the dining room. And the entertainment was top rate. But the thing that really stood out during our seven-night cruise through Alaska's Inside Passage was the quality of life onboard. Island Princess does a remarkable job of creating a quintessential Alaska experience that's highlighted by a lecture series featuring a state naturalist, National Park Service "ranger talks" and a presentation by the first woman to win the Iditarod. There's even a Princess travel guide and map that allow passengers to detect their navigational positions while referencing tales, points of interest and photos of the route.

Editor's note: During Island Princess' Central America season, the educational focus shifts to the Panama Canal.

And what's not to love about the private Alaskan Balcony Brunch, which includes Alaskan king crab quiche, smoked Copper River salmon, fresh fruit, homemade pastries and chilled champagne? Or waiters distributing hot toddies on deck? Or, of all things, a reindeer chili and rockfish chowder cook-off? And where better to enjoy Baked Alaska than in Alaska?
Island Princess Fellow Passengers
Island Princess' Alaska cruises, because they tend to be shorter and occur during summer, draw a younger crowd than the Panama Canal itinerary, which trends toward 60-plus. Passengers are largely American, though during our cruise, which was fully booked, 10 countries were represented.
Island Princess Dress Code
Cruises of seven nights or more usually have two formal nights -- and folks do get decked out. Men typically wear a dinner jacket or dark business suit, while women tend to favor evening gowns, cocktail dresses or trouser suits. Otherwise, the recommended evening dress is smart casual -- an open-neck shirt and slacks for men and a dress, skirt ensemble or trouser suit for women. Shorts and T-shirts are not permitted in the dining rooms. Daytime, it's pretty much anything goes.
Island Princess Gratuity
Gratuities, which are automatically charged to onboard accounts, are $11.50 per person (including children), per day, for passengers staying in standard accommodations and $12 for passengers staying in mini-suite and suites. A 15 percent gratuity is added to beverage purchases onboard, including wine at dinner. Spa and casino staff members do not share in the gratuity charges -- if you use these services, tips are advised.

Room service gratuity is not included, and we recommend that -- especially for prompt service -- you have a couple of singles handy.
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Island Princess Member Reviews 430 Reviews
   Love Princess!
November 2014

Have taken a total of 15 cruises on various lines, and Princess is by far the most outstanding. This cruise through the Panama Canal is a "must do" for anyone who enjoys cruising. The Island Princess may be a little out-of-date, but it's going in ...continue


   Comfortable but worn
November 2014

Island Princess. Nov 2014. LAX Panama Canal

Times are changing!, Cattle pen boarding procedure. You are corralled and penned in for airline type preferred boarding. It takes longer than the old open system!

Cabins ok. A little ...continue


   Overall Great Cruise
November 2014

Overall great cruise. entertainment out of this world.... service as good as it gets..... food only average..... ports were average as usual compared to other cruises.... Panama canal was very interesting.... Aruba was a waste of time... only saw ...continue


1 - 3 of 430 Reviews


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Island Princess Ratings
Member Rating
Dining
3.0
4.2
Public Rooms
5.0
4.7
Cabins
5.0
4.5
Entertainment
5.0
4.0
Spa & Fitness
5.0
4.2
Family & Children
4.0
3.8
Shore Excursions
5.0
4.7
Enrichment
5.0
NA
Service
4.0
4.6
Value-for-Money
5.0
4.3
Rates
4.0
4.2

Sailing From

Cruises To
Alaska
Europe - Mediterranean All
Transatlantic

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