A Princess trademark has been to offer plenty of affordable balcony cabins, and Ruby Princess is no exception.
Staterooms are outfitted with cream-colored furniture and light maple wood trim. Soft jade greens, robin's egg blues, light golds and muted corals appear in the pillows, chairs and window treatments for a splash of color. Crisp white linens dress the beds, and pillows are plentiful -- our bed had four, plus the two accent pillows.
Standard cabins are laid out in a way that separates the bathroom area from the sleeping area with a nice-sized closet that runs perpendicular to the stateroom walls. This creates a small nook to change in if a bit of privacy is desired. In most cases, two twin beds can be pushed together to create a queen-size bed, and all of Ruby Princess' cabins come with flat-screen televisions. The bathrooms have stand-up shower stalls with curtains (sorry, no glass doors here) and adequate space to store belongings, both inside the bathroom and out. Plus, you'll find a mini-refrigerator to store beverages.
Inside cabins are 163 square ft., and outside cabins range from 158 to 182 square ft. With the addition of a balcony, the square footage of a cabin jumps up to between 233 and 285 square ft., including the verandah.
Our mini-suite (324 square ft.), of which there are 178 onboard, was located on Dolphin Deck and was very roomy for just two people, sporting an extra living area with a sofa, a coffee table and an extra television. Televised quite frequently were episodes of "The Love Boat," along with CNN, the Discovery Channel, ESPN, movies and more. The balcony comfortably fit four white-framed chairs with blue plastic meshing and a small table. Since the balconies on our deck were the lowest on the ship, they jut out farther than all the rest, and folks higher up could see right onto them. This is not so conducive for privacy, but it does work out well for stargazing on clear nights.
For tall people booked in mini-suites, be prepared to bend at the knees to get under the shower head, as it's positioned a bit low (but once you're under there, the water pressure is actually quite good). Be sure to try out the fresh, eucalyptus-scented products, which are Lotus Spa branded. All cabins are stocked with shampoo, conditioner, body wash and bar soap.
There are 31 wheelchair-accessible cabins on Ruby Princess -- 21 balcony, four oceanview and six inside cabins.
Suites onboard range from 461 to 687 square ft. -- the one I was able to peek into was a spacious 533 square ft. These staterooms are set up in a roundabout way, where you can pass through the bathroom one of two ways -- toward the sleeping areas or toward the living areas. A teak table, four chairs and two loungers furnish each balcony. A whirlpool tub and glass-enclosed shower stall make up one area of each of the bathrooms, while a sink with marble counter tops and a toilet are found in the other. Walk-in closets, DVD players, deluxe canapes (delivered daily) and fresh flowers are some of the amenities.
Passengers who book suites also enjoy free access to the Thermal Suite at the Lotus Spa, laundry and dry cleaning services, complimentary Internet usage and the new-to-Ruby Princess Sabatini's breakfast. Greeted with a "Good Morning Mimosa," suite passengers can enjoy an exclusive breakfast in the ship's specialty restaurant, featuring brioche French toast and poached eggs dressed with potatoes and vegetables. Seating for suite passengers is from approximately 7:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Two family suites, which are, in essence, two staterooms joined together and accessible by a common living room, sleep up to eight people.