3 Princess Crown Princess Cruise Reviews for Gay & Lesbian Cruises to Caribbean - Western

This cruise experience was nothing short of amazing. After having read many of the reviews I was a bit concerned that the experience would be akin to our Carnival experience...something no one should ever have to live through. But, we were ... Read More
This cruise experience was nothing short of amazing. After having read many of the reviews I was a bit concerned that the experience would be akin to our Carnival experience...something no one should ever have to live through. But, we were pleasantly surprised. Our room was perfect, clean and comfortable, and our staff and crew members were kind, curious and always willing to assist. Dissimilar to some of the reviews I have read here, I never encountered any staff member gunning down the hallway with the intent to run over passengers. The only encounter I had with a hallway issue was a sweet, little old lady with her walker and oxygen tank. There was no way I could get around her, so I walked behind her until I could move past. We had a nice conversation about the cruise and the mileage that she got out of the tennis balls that were fitted to the bottom of her walker. She was a delight. The food was good in the main dining rooms and the buffets, but it was AMAZING in Sabatini's and Crown Grill, as well as room service. We ate at Sabatini's 5 of the 7 nights and every day for breakfast, one night at Crown and the other evening was room service. Hands down--awesome. The boat was well equipped and we loved it. With that...here are just some things that you should know when booking this cruise. 1. The gym hours are really limited: (07h00 to 22h00). Given the ports of call, the capacity of the gym, and a number of other scheduling factors, it is not as convenient as some people would like. Extended hours would be nice especially on days when the boat is at port. Furthermore, given the location of the gym, only a small number of treadmills (5) are available before 9h00. Power to all other treadmills is disconnected until 9h00. While it was comical to see other passengers get on the disabled machines, read the signs, remove the signs and then proceed to figure out why the unit was not turning on, it did create frustration. While it's understood there are cabins below the gym and the restriction is due to ensure quiet enjoyment hours for passengers on the deck below, this creates a further bottleneck in the availability of equipment. 20 minute restrictions on cardio equipment (while understood) further detriment the gym experience. If you are an avid gym goer, you may have to sacrifice some port time to get your workout in during off-peak times. That's what I had to do to ward off the harmful effects of martinis and pina coladas. 2. If you are adults, over the age of 18, and you wish to book time at The Sanctuary spa (for the week), try to be on the boat as soon as possible. This is a very popular destination and it fills up fast. They only allow so many reservations for the week, and then it is first come, first serve on a 1/2 day basis. We wanted to reserve chairs at The Sanctuary for the week, but by the time we got there (which was just after 12h00 on the first day) all of the week reservations were filled and we were number 16 on the waiting list. The crew member advised us that next time we should get there earlier and do not go to the stateroom first. Go right up to The Sanctuary, get your reservation then go settle in. 3. While menu items are subject to change, many of dining items in the main dining rooms as well as the specialty restaurants were centred around seafood and beef as a second choice. Sabatini's was mainly seafood, with one beef, chicken, and veal option. The food was AMAZING, but limited in scoop. The Crown was the same. It was mostly beef with one...perhaps two non-beef choices. The buffets always had a vast assortment for any taste buds. 4. Unless you are and avid pop drinker, do not buy the unlimited pop/souvenir cup that they offer you at the beginning of the cruise. Firstly you get another plastic cup that will take up space in your cupboards, and secondly, the cost is 4.50 a day. I don't drink pop, but I do like club soda. In hindsight I was better off with just paying by the class. The only two things I think that Princess could do to make the experience a bit better is to: 1) Reduce the number of formal nights. On a seven day cruise, one formal night is sufficient. For the vast number of people who do not partake in this evenings, all they do is serve to clog up the ship's main areas while over-dressed people, have their pictures taken on the main stairs--again blocking egress for other passengers. On the formal evenings it as near impossible to navigate the Piazza between crowds and closed areas for pictures. 2) Cut out the picture taking bits all together, or make it such that passengers are not bombarded with cameras and folks in get-ups every time they get on or off the ship. It's brings down the classiness of the experience. If folks want their pictures taken, sure thing, just have a place for that away from egress areas and out of the way of folks who want to get on and off the ship without having to wait for photo ops. While the Princess Paparazzi were all very respectful of our space, it's tiresome having to ward off cameras.   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
This was our 6th cruise with Princess and our first as Platinum members. Arrival: We arrived in Houston Friday night around 8pm and met the Princess representative at baggage claim, and were put in our own van for the hour ride to ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise with Princess and our first as Platinum members. Arrival: We arrived in Houston Friday night around 8pm and met the Princess representative at baggage claim, and were put in our own van for the hour ride to Galveston. Hotel: Princess booked us into the Hotel Galvez. It is a lovely old hotel, and very clean. The lobby is being renovated so you couldn't see the entire lobby past the construction wall. Ate a late dinner at the restaurant, and it was fine if pricey. Also had the breakfast buffet the next morning and it was good quality for the money. Next time I would arrive earlier to see more of what Galveston has to offer. Embarkation: Princess offers several shuttles to the terminal starting around 9:30. We booked for 1:30 but there was room on the 12:30 shuttle so we went then. Embarkation was very quick and easy, we were in our cabin by 1:15. Ship: The Crown Princess is our new favorite ship! The piazza is really beautiful, a notch above the atrium conversions on Grand class ships. The purpose-built piazza layout on this class provides more seating and better traffic management than the older atriums. Seeing the built-to-order layout of this ship is a nice change from the retrofitted designs on Princess' older ships. It's grander, and much more impressive on the Crown. The ship itself is in great condition, except for a few maintenance items in the spa I'll mention later. We noted very little wear in public areas or cabins. I liked the overall layout of the venues on this ship, with the exception of the spa thermal suite, which is actually downstairs from the rest of the spa. Cabin: We had a mini-suite on Dolphin deck 9, and it was ready upon check-in. I liked the newer color scheme; gone are the salmon/pinks. Our steward, Mario, kept the cabin very clean and neat. My one complaint about the cabin would be the air conditioning, it seemed to be inconsistent in temperature, ranging from comfortable to too warm. Food: We had anytime dining and usually chose the DaVinci dining room. Our first night our server was Denis from Ukraine. We liked him so much we requested him the rest of the week. We didn't pack any formal wear on this trip so we ate in Cafe Caribe on formal nights. By the third night the ma'tre d' had our reservation penciled in, which was nice. The food was good to very good, but we weren't wowed by anything, except the daily soups and ice creams, which were excellent. The pizza on Lido deck was very good as well. We didn't actually have anything from the grill on this trip (how unusual). The International Cafe was very good as usual. We tried the gelato ($1.50 for 3 scoops) and found it to be of good quality. We made friends during the week and added them to our dinner table, finally expanding to 8 people. The staff handled the extra diners well, and was very responsive to our requests. Spa: The thermal suite pass was $108 each for the week (up $10 from last year but now includes a fun salt scrub). We had the pass in Alaska and loved it so got it again. The thermal suite needs a little TLC. One of the fog showers was broken, which was not fixed during the week. All the fountains in the steam rooms were off the entire week. Several of the hand showers in the steam rooms were inoperative. And finally the large steam room was turned off the entire last day. This was strange considering how well the rest of the ship was maintained. Roatan: It was too windy to dock the ship, so we skipped it and had an extra sea day. It was fun watching the cruise director rearrange the day and get a revised Patter distributed within a couple of hours (though they couldn't make up their minds which movies would be showing and when). Belize: This is a tender port. We took the ruins and river tour and met in the theater at 7:20am. Our group was herded to the tender so we would all be together. We enjoyed the Altun Ha ruins. Our bus broke down on the way to the river portion of the tour, and the tour company had a 'rescue' bus to us within 20 minutes. The river portion was a lot of fun -- and very wet at the end. Highly recommended. Cozumel: Another long day, we met on shore at 7:10 and went en masse to the Ultramar ferry to Playa Del Carmen. The ferry is very comfortable and air conditioned. The bus tours all stop at a 'rest stop' (gift shop) then head out. The Cob' Maya ruins were amazing and truly the highlight of the trip. The site is still deep in the jungle and has one of the few temples you can still climb. Highly recommended. Toilets: On Thursday someone flushed something that clogged the system to a block of cabins for the day. We chatted with several people who were affected and it wasn't a big deal for them (though they didn't speak for everyone, of course). They also got $50pp credits for their troubles. Disembarkation: The worst part of any cruise! Left our cabin at 8am and headed to the MDR for breakfast. Afterwards we waited in Club Fusion (Platinum/Elite lounge) for our group to be called. Customs was very fast and we were on the shuttle to the airport within 20 minutes of being called. Overall another fine cruise on Princess. We've booked another cruise already. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
This my 86th lifetime cruise, my 5th with Princess. Had pre-cruise stay at Days Inn in North Ft Lauderdale for 2 nights , no problems. Used United Airport Parking ( parked at Marriott Renaissance suites) for only $49.86 vs $105 at port ... Read More
This my 86th lifetime cruise, my 5th with Princess. Had pre-cruise stay at Days Inn in North Ft Lauderdale for 2 nights , no problems. Used United Airport Parking ( parked at Marriott Renaissance suites) for only $49.86 vs $105 at port garage with free courtesy car to/from ship . Check-in was easy and organized by groups. no problems. On board less than 30 minutes after arrival at pier and cabins were ready for occupancy. unpacked carry-ons and went up to Horizon Court for buffet lunch. Usual crowds and no self-serve carry trays but managed just fine. all baggage delivered before sailing so unpacked totally and missed most of sail-out except what we could see from our mini-suite balcony. met other group members at private function. Mini-suite D722 was 8ft 8 inches wide by 30 feet long plus balcony of 7 by 9. plenty of room, closet space, large bathroom with huge tub. only 4 small night stand drawers but plenty of shelves for storage of clothing. 2 flat screen tv's but only one remote. good fridge. good a/c. we also brought 2 power strips, 3 fans, 2 c-pap machines, our own 4 cup coffee maker, etc etc. we drove down so had total of 12 suitcases. Ive cruised so many times now that i bring everything i could possibly want as everything on board and in most ports is so expensive these days. Had all dinners in Boticelli dining room with group at 2015 hours. Princess food is good quality hotel banquet stuff. some "iffy" soups and they insist on serving this green hockey puck that is supposed to be creamed spinach. otherwise , no major disappointments. had one breakfast in dining room and 2 lunches, all decent. rest of meals in Horizon court or international cafe at base of atrium. my sign and sail was only 52 dollars for tips (11 per day) after 25 dollar credit applied. didnt buy anything on board or take any shore excursions. Im a self-starter and didnt need a cruise director to tell me what to do, just checked the daily program and went my own way. didnt go to any shows or nightclubs on board as have seen too many "B" lounge acts and broadway medleys on my other trips. weather was good but on the cool side for a caribbean trip. some passengers brought a head cold on board with them and by the end of the voyage 50 percent of the passengers were coughing and wheezing as it spread like wildfire despite excellent shipboard sanitation procedures (lots of hand sanitizer) Since i cant add Princess Cay (Eleuthera island) as a port suffice to say typical private island experience for those in my party who went over by tender. Im not a beach,, sun, water person as live in Florida year round so holds no allure for me. Dis-embarkation was smooth ( no announcements) and we had an early number and were off the ship with luggage and in our car driving back to Orlando by 935am. would definitely recommend Princess and travel with them again. one small complaint...no free aspirin, tylenol, alka seltzer, band-aids at pursers office. only free bonine. Carnival corp really is cost cutting these days! Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
Crown Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.5 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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