Pacific Dawn Cabins
In its former life as Regal Princess, the ship had a decent number of affordable balcony accommodations: 184 out of a total 795. By today's standards, though, that's not many, and that's unfortunate for a ship that chases summer weather with a major focus on the great outdoors. The last two makeovers have made major improvements to accommodations, including the addition of family-friendly interconnecting staterooms and upgrades to the suites and mini-suites.
Of the 795 accommodations, 171 are inside staterooms, 440 are standard outside staterooms, and 134 are outside staterooms with private balconies. There are also 36 mini-suites and 14 suites -- all with private balconies.
The 14 suites are 557.5 square feet (51.8 square meters) in size, each with a deep, long balcony and outdoor furniture. They are all located on the Aloha Deck (Deck 11) forward and sleep up to four people using a rollaway bed and a cot; the one exception is a cabin configured for physically challenged cruisers that sleeps just two. Suites each have a roomy living area, a bedroom with a spacious walk-in closet and a large bathroom with a tub and separate shower. A bonus is a separate toilet, which can also be accessed from a doorway at the entrance to the suite.
The 2012 upgrade saw the addition of new furniture and upholstery, new woodwork throughout and a new color scheme that features elegant dark-blue accents through the pinstriped carpeting and plush bed coverlets. Amenities include flat-screen televisions, iPods and docking stations, DVD players, Nespresso coffee machines and perks like a glass of wine on cocktail nights, complimentary laundry service, complimentary bottled water, personalized stationery and an invitation to the senior officers' private cocktail party.
The 36 mini-suites are just less than 366 square feet (34 square meters) in size, each with a decent balcony. They are all located on Aloha Deck (Deck 11) midship, with two configured for the physically challenged and sleeping two, and the rest sleeping up to three with a single rollaway bed. Featuring spacious sitting room areas, they were also refreshed in 2012 with new wood, furniture and upholstery, and they have features that include complimentary bathrobes and slippers, fresh flowers and fruit, a welcome glass of Champagne, and canapes on cocktail nights.
Outside staterooms with balconies are divided between two decks, Aloha Deck (Deck 11) and Baja Deck (Deck 10). Those on Aloha are slightly less than 210 square feet (19.5 square meters) in size and sleep two, although a lower berth in each can be removed to accommodate a cot. Two of these staterooms interconnect to two-berth outsides. The majority of outside staterooms with balconies are on Baja Deck, including the one we'd been assigned to, and have the same size and configuration as those above.
Although our stateroom was comfortable and nicely styled, by industry standards today it was a tad small. The bed and easy chair were new, and the warm red wood on the desk and behind the head of the bed had been polished, but traces of Dawn's true age remained in its retro fixed metal lamps and older style telephones.
The overall decor, however, was easy on the eye, with a blue-and-white spotted carpet, cream-colored drapes, and off-white walls adorned with a couple pieces of artwork. The only other freestanding furniture was a small easy chair with blue speckled upholstery, a butter-colored faux leather desk chair and a small high table. The balcony was also small and narrow, with a door opening outward and some aging furniture that included two upright chairs and a small table.
Closet space was decent, but there wasn't anywhere to store bags; under the bed was ruled out, as it was too low-slung. The bathroom was another giveaway of Dawn's heritage. It was tiny and old-fashioned, but it did have enough storage above the sink for toiletries. It also had a decent-sized shower cubicle with a low-level step, a curtain and a new shower head. The water pressure was reasonable, but the temperature fluctuated wildly between cold and hot water all the time and could not be fixed.
Balcony staterooms come with few perks. Bottled water was available at a cost of A$4.95, but the tap water was quite palatable compared with some ships I've cruised on. On arrival, there were two plastic sleeves on the bed containing a dressing gown and slippers for each of us. If you open them, you're charged. Oddly, there were no tissues in our room, something I also noted around the ship in public facilities. I asked if this was either because people threw them down the toilets and blocked them or if it was a cost-cutting exercise, but I couldn't get an answer. When I mentioned it to our stateroom attendant one morning, however, a box of tissues appeared on our bed that night.
The remaining accommodations, which were left out of the 2012 refurbishment, are standard outside and inside staterooms. Standard outsides are located across seven decks, and they're just larger than 189 square feet (17.6 square meters) in size with either picture windows or portholes; they sleep between two and four by way of a queen-sized bed that can be configured as twins and one or two pull-down upper berths. Depending on their locations, some standard rooms connect to other quad-share outside staterooms, ideal for larger families and groups of friends. Inside staterooms are also located across all passenger decks, except for Fiesta Deck (Deck 4). They have the same size and configuration as standard outsides, but they sleep up to four people.
Pacific Dawn Cabin Reviews
The balcony cabin was very nice. Due to the rough seas we didn't spend as much time as we planned on the balcony but it was great when we were able to use it. The room was of sufficient size not to cause any issues, we were able to store our clothes in the spaces...continue
Quiet and good view, close to aft and sufficient room to store everything....continue
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Our family of four shared an ocean view cabin on this trip, C179 on deck 9. The layout of two single beds with bunks above was a bit tight on occasions but had more room than an equivalent cabin we had on Sun Princess. Likewise, the bathroom was roomier and a better layout...continue