1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Princess Cruises
  4. Emerald Princess Review
  5. Emerald Princess Cruise Reviews

57 Princess Emerald Princess Family Cruise Reviews

The staff was friendly- mini suite was good. The adventures offered through Princess were disappointing. The orca watching we booked through Princess was supposed to be a 3 hour trip. We sailed out to the lighthouse and then circled back ... Read More
The staff was friendly- mini suite was good. The adventures offered through Princess were disappointing. The orca watching we booked through Princess was supposed to be a 3 hour trip. We sailed out to the lighthouse and then circled back to the harbor, took about an hour. Then we spent an hour puttering around the harbor. Should have been sold as a lighthouse and harbor tour....but then again they wouldn't get the high price they charge by calling it an orca excursion. We had better luck with excursions we booked on our own. Too many gimmic sales offered by the staff-they like their add on sales. Also Medical advice on a cruise ship is probably not the most reliable source especially when the "expert" is selling the remedy to all that ails you. No I don't want an upgraded coffee or orthotics for my shoe or wine tasting or .....at least at home I don't have to open the door. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
"Whilst the Emerald Princess is a beautiful ship, the ladies and myself in our party preferred the Voyager of the Sea we experienced last year.This year I had booked twin beds in our Stateroom but there was a double bed. Our cruise ... Read More
"Whilst the Emerald Princess is a beautiful ship, the ladies and myself in our party preferred the Voyager of the Sea we experienced last year.This year I had booked twin beds in our Stateroom but there was a double bed. Our cruise document stipulated twin beds. The crew were friendly and pleasant at all times. We also found that there were only hand disinfecting dispensers in the dinning area. On the Voyager they were present at almost every corner, especially outside the public toilets. Our toilet in our stateroom was blocked several times and the sink also blocked up once, in saying that it was fixed almost immediately. I found the entertainment a little dated. We ladies were very disappointed that the Spa was so expensive, we were all hoping for a facial, as we had on the Voyager at a very reasonable price, on a par with land prices. The food was very repetitious every day for all three main meals. Also all four couples in our party had our room card deactivated several times, which meant waiting in line at the Customer Service desk. The other issue we had was that the best bar on the ship, the one with ocean view and floor to ceiling windows did not open until after 5pm and then it seemed to be restricted to 18 - 25 year olds and the gay crowd. Last year we would meet at a similar bar on the Voyager at midday for a cocktail before lunch. Despite the above we all enjoyed the cruise immensely. The destinations were magnificent although we did our own thing as the ship's prices were over the top. We paid $50 per head for the same trip others who had booked on the cruise paid $90 for." We also found that there were very few hands on activities during the day eg cake decorating. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
I had a good cruise but it was not as relaxing as other Princess cruises I have done due to it being in the school holidays and the fact that they had unruly feral children aboard that were allowed to disrupt and spoil other peoples cruise ... Read More
I had a good cruise but it was not as relaxing as other Princess cruises I have done due to it being in the school holidays and the fact that they had unruly feral children aboard that were allowed to disrupt and spoil other peoples cruise experience by running, jumping, somersaulting and bombing into the swimming pools. As an adult the only time you could swim without children hassling you was in the early hours until 10:00am when the little terrors were still fast asleep. Even worst the aft stairwell was littered with empty plates, empty glasses, food scraps and garbage. The worst part about this cruise was that Princess did not attempt to control the behaviour of the children and as a result it tipped the balance from what could have been relaxing when they neglected to care about the cruise experience of guests not travelling with children. Other bad examples were wet seats in the atrium and in particular Crooners Bar where some absolute pig of a passenger(s) had come with wet swimmers from the pools and sat in the lounge chairs. Absolutely disgusting! Further more at time when I was on my balcony many bottles appear to have been thrown from the side of the ship which I began to suspect that children had placed notes in hoping that they will one day wash ashore. My word of warning is in Australia avoid cruising with Princess in the school holidays. Entertainment: This was exactly the same standard as every other Princess cruise I have done. I was very satisfied with the entertainment and shows and could not fault them in anyway. The structure was however frustrating that most shows were at 7pm and 9pm instead of 8pm and 9:45pm like every other Princess cruise I have been on. This was annoying because anytime dining did not start until 7:30pm and meant that if dining service was slow then you would miss out on the 9pm show if you like to see entertainment after dinner. I can only fathom that the change was done do appease little children and their bed time during the school holidays despite the fact that the vast majority of passengers were grown adults. Scheduling was very bad for this ship. Food: Excellent quality of food on the upper decks, buffet and Crown Grill. I absolutely loved the hamburgers and pizzas from near the Neptune Reef and Pool. Main Dining Rooms had good food but when the ship is based in Australia all the Princess favourites are removed and replaced with "crappy Australianised" menus of food that Australians do not eat. One example is that delicious "Baked New York Cheesecake" that is an all time favourite dessert is not available ever if the ship is based in Australia. It is replaced by a rather crappy and underwhelming pavlova that Australians despise. Deck Access: Very poor connection to outdoors and flow with the aft decks from 15 to 19. On the port side of deck 17 from the MUTs it was impossible to walk aft due to barricades however on the starboard side it was possible. Unlike the Diamond and Sapphire Princess, the rear of Skywalker’s nightclub had a rear veranda and open deck access with stairs to the levels below. On Emerald Princess, this area existed but was barricaded off and labelled as an emergency exit. One cannot fathom the difference in rules given the ships share the exact design feature. Open deck access is important for scenic cruising and being on deck during port entrance and departure. Internet: Extremely poor bandwidth and access issues. Continual intranet dropouts during peak times as the wireless connection for the local network was not powerful enough to maintain demand. At quiet times, like during the early hours of the morning the internet worked brilliantly so this proves that when excess passengers were awake that the internet had a problem. This issue does not exist on the Diamond Princess or Golden Princess. Lastly in comparison to the Golden Princess, Sapphire Princess, Diamond Princess I found the Emerald Princess to be overcrowded and had insufficient staff to cater to all passengers. The other ships I have been on are much more relaxing and have less passengers than the Emerald Princess and in my opinion are much better ships. The Diamond Princess which is my current favourite appears to be in much better condition. My next cruise with Princess will be Diamond Princess based in Japan. I have always been happy with these cruises and unfortunately Emerald Princess in Australia has disappointed me. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
my first and last cruise had to battle through crowds everytime I left my room, had to line up for elevators and stop at every deck, unusually did not have to line up at restaurants, food selection was not as good as I had expected after ... Read More
my first and last cruise had to battle through crowds everytime I left my room, had to line up for elevators and stop at every deck, unusually did not have to line up at restaurants, food selection was not as good as I had expected after watching on you tube, cabin was missed getting refreshed 2 days out of 8, overall not my idea of restful holiday, a lot of the entertainment I was looking at doubled up or was on too late, they probably could of put more on during the day, The room size was adequate with ample storage good size wardrobe, however the bathroom was tiny, would hate to be a larger person trying to shower, the piaza area is too small without enough seating to accomodate the people wanting to participate in activities and unfortunately that is where I had the problem accesssing the lifts with the large number of guests. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was a family holiday on the Emerald Princess, which suited our required holiday dates. We thought the ship was in good order, clean and tidy - very similar to P&O's Ventura and Azura. Embarkation was first class, as was ... Read More
This was a family holiday on the Emerald Princess, which suited our required holiday dates. We thought the ship was in good order, clean and tidy - very similar to P&O's Ventura and Azura. Embarkation was first class, as was disembarkation. The staff were very good and professional throughout the ship. Some of the minus points were no tea/coffee making facilities in the stateroom and dining in the dining rooms was not as good as P&O or Royal Caribbean, in that the choice of meals was average and quality not as we have previously experienced, to the point that, we chose to eat in the buffet on a number of occasions. Furthermore, we found that there was a hidden cost for the shuttle buses, some, for example, Barcelona, were expensive for the short distance from the ship, although we had been advised that it was a 10-15 minutes journey, but it only took 4 minutes at a cost of $10 each. Marseilles was $12, although this was a longer journey. Livorno cost $5, although this was an industrious port and was unsafe to walk. The shuttle bus in Civitavecchia was free. We feel these should be advertised when booking your holiday. Entertainment was poor to average, with some shows only lasting 35 minutes. Some of the comedians would be better entertaining the local pub on a Friday night as most of their jokes were years old. The singers were ok (these provided the majority of the provision of entertainment), as was the on-board band. Overall, we enjoyed the ports, and were blessed with good weather, but would we book with Princess again? Not so sure. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We chose this 14 day cruise for its itinerary as we had only every visited Bruges before. Never started a cruise from Southampton due to the difficulties of getting down from the North driving with a stopover was our best option to ensure ... Read More
We chose this 14 day cruise for its itinerary as we had only every visited Bruges before. Never started a cruise from Southampton due to the difficulties of getting down from the North driving with a stopover was our best option to ensure we got to the ship on time. This proved to be a good choice as it took 7 hours to get within 2 hours away the next morning due to traffic. The check in at the Mayflower terminal was very well organised with our car collected when we arrived to be waiting on our return. The ship was familiar to several other cruises that we have been on so finding our balcony cabin was easy, which we found it to be as expected with good size double bed, shower /toilet room, good storage space, TV and fridge which had three bottles of water (chargeable). TV had several English channels plus films should you wish to stay in you cabin. We brought the permitted two bottles of wine on board for the cruise any extra wine or spirits would be confiscated and given back at the end of the cruise. We later found out from fellow passengers that this rule was not being applied and they were bringing wine etc at each port of call. As the average cost for a bottle of wine at dinner was around $35 including the 15% service charge we would have saved a lot of money over the 14days even paying the $15 corkage. The overall cost of drinks on the ship were the most expensive that we have every experienced on any cruise ship or 5 star hotel around the world. When you consider that they do not pay any duty or vat the pricing is off the scale with only two draught beers available in some bars one being Newcastle brown, your only option was to have a can or bottle with a standard can of Boddingtons costing $5.95 plus 15% service charge. A good way to get better value is t buy a bottle of wine which has 5 glasses at a cost $25 as opposed to 5 glasses at $8 each both plus 15% s/c. They do have a happy hours in the wheelhouse every day from 3 – 4 and at the Skywalker at 10.30 if you are still awake. The deals is buy one drink at full price and get one for $1, speaking to the staff they said the previous cruise the extra drink was free. As moat people were on shore most days I suspect the opening times were not very well attended it would have been better to have a later time before dinner. We found at some bars practically around the pool areas there was an absence of waiters which meant you had to go to the bar to be served and at no time did the bar staff offer to have the drinks sent over to your table and for your convenience they charge your 15% etc. Overall we found lot of the staff did not seem to be interested in going out of there way as they believed they would not receive any tips. Staffs in the wheelhouse bar and the two evening restaurants were the exception very professional and gave good service. We were offered the drinks packaged when we booked at just under $40 each per day and when we boarded the ship this had gone up by $10 even at their very high prices you would have to be a drink a lot to get value for your money. Food in the De Vinci & Michelangelo restaurants was expellant with the flexible dinning we meet some lovely people from all around the world this coupled with great service made each evening memorable. The breakfast in the Horizon and Cafe Caribe was a little frenetic trying to find a table. With plastic plates we found by the time you got to your table the food was going cold. If you used the restaurants for lunch the same problems would arise and over the cruise not once were we asked would we like a glass of wine /beer with our meal. We did not try the three themed restaurants Share supplement $39, Crown Grill supplement $29 and the Salty dog $19. When you purchased any drinks you were not required to sign and on several occasions you did not receive receipt. You could check and print your account at terminal by customer relations or log onto your ID of phone FOC. Gratuities for the cruise other than the 15% service charge were not compulsory and opted out preferring to tip the staff who gave us the best service such as the cabin steward ad dining room staff. We tried room service once in the morning for tea/coffee sadly it arrived cold so we gave up and walked up two floors up each morning and brought hot drinks to the cabin. That same day when we got back in the afternoon from trip the tray was still there and the cabin was not cleaned. Phoning the number for the steward got no response when I phone customer services I was told to hang on before I could explain why I was calling. I was left hanging on for 35 minutes, I left the phone off the hook and when down to customer service only to be told they had no way of knowing if a gusts was holding on. The room was cleaned an hour later and as a way of apology we were left a large dinner serving tray with a four chocolates and a note of apology. Entertainment overall was good in the main theatre with the exception of a poor guitar playing comedian and a very dodgy hypnotists. The remainder of the entertainment was very good with some very talented performers and the resident ships staff headed by Kevin Joy the cruise director putting on some great shows. A range of quizzes/trivia games in the bars plus dancing and bingo which again was expensive at $25 for two cards. There was a great emphasise every day on promoting fine art with several auctions taking place mostly I suspect at the prices they were being sold for our American friends this together with the daily jewellery news letter and demonstrations made a lot of us Brits feel very poor. We do not go on a cruise to buy fine art and jewellery and found that the effort that was being made could have been better use entertaining the guests particularly at sea days they could have put on an afternoon show in the theatre. Other services such as internet were again very expansive with tea or coffee with your cake $3/5. Duty free was a joke up to 60% off was stated not sure what they were basing their pricing on it certainly was not UK shop prices which were a lot less. It was noticeable that there were no price tickets on the shelves these could be found on an A4 sheet by the till, I suspect that they alter pricing depending on the cruise. When you left the ship at each port we found the staff to be totally uninterested and never once did any staff say good morning or have a nice trip this was repeated when you arrived back on board with only the last shore visit one member of the crew welcomed us back. The crew mix were from all corners of the world and not sure if this worked as we found some gave the appearance that they did not want to be on the ship. Ports of Call: We did not purchase any trips from the ship due to the high cost and at a lot of the ports you can walk into the town. We did buy from our cruise travel agent Cruise,co.uk a two day trip to St Petersburg and Tallinn. Zeebrugge/ Bruges we paid €10 for a coach from the ship to Blankenberge which had the local Sunday market and fair from their we were able to get a train for €5 each return to Bruges station with the centre of town 20 minutes walk or you can hope on one of the local tourist busses for €2 Copenhagen: You can walk from the ship to the Little Mermaid in 10minutes the centre of the town would take you a further 30minutes if you are fit. We used the combined hop on hop off Red bus visit all of the main sites. Stockholm: The port is a little way to the centre so we used the combined hop on hop off Red bus and river ferry which we were able to the main site including the Royal Palace and the not to be missed Vasa museum. Cost for the combined ticket €35 each Helsinki: The only bad day of weather with rain all of the day. The centre of the city is well within walking distance but due to the poor weather we paid the €10 for the ship bus to the town, you could get a walk on bus but did not believe that with the weather you would see much. St Petersburg: The organised tour company “Tour De Force” ensured you had a tourist visa, we did not have to queue at passport control and were meet by our young very knowledgeable guide for the two days. Lunch on the two days was arranged at an extra small cost. A very tiring first day with lots of walking but little queuing at each stop as our bus only had 28 people we were able to get some priority at each stop, we did notice the ship trips were large coaches and speaking to fellow passenger that night they had some queuing. The trip cost was less than £200 each plus the cost of the meals. Tallinn: The old town is in easy walking distance from the port we did however use a pre arrange walk on Red bus to see the main site before getting off at the top f the old town. One word of warning sadly at the old town battements were there many of passengers from the three ships that were in port a lot of Romanian pick pockets were operating, I myself had my mobile taken out of my from shoulder bag but luckily I felt the movement and the woman dropped it on a ledge in front of her and I was able to retrieve it back. The cheeky person just smiled and waked a little way in the crowed we were able to warn a lady that she was in her bag again she just blow a kiss and walked on. Sadly we did see several other pick pockets operating in the area but no police presents. Gdynia/Gdansk: The town is within easy distance to walk. We did take a taxi to the station to catch a train to Gdansk cost 22 Zolty return. Good service took 40 minutes. Nice old town but not a great deal to see. Money: We get some local currency for Copenhagen, Stockholm, Poland and Russia just enough to buy some food or drinks. All counties took the euro including Russia but not sterling so do not both changing into rubles. As your ship account is in US dollars your credit card will be charge at the ships special rate unless you opt for your card to be charge in $ and let you bank covert the rate. When we left the ship there rate was $1.21 to £ our Nationwide credit card was converted at £1.308 yet one more money making scheme from Princess. They should change their statement “Come Back New” to Come Back Poorer. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Hi went on Emerald Princess 26/04/2016 from Southampton getting onboard brilliant cabin excellent new beds are fantastic entertainment acceptable condition of ship even after refit average then lets break down the actual living on ship ... Read More
Hi went on Emerald Princess 26/04/2016 from Southampton getting onboard brilliant cabin excellent new beds are fantastic entertainment acceptable condition of ship even after refit average then lets break down the actual living on ship buffet restaurant is the best place to eat although food could have been hotter choice and standard good the sit down dining is terrible we ate twice in the di vinci restaurant waiters want to take your order the exit you as quick as possible not allowing both diners to finish their meal then straight away next course then when completed start to clear table while you sit there absolutely disgusting Drinks the prices are terrible I had a single whiskey with 15% tip worked out to £6.82 a good cruise to cure you if you are an alcoholic we brought the soda package all right for first drink when they see pre paid tend to give you a wide berth maybe they get commission on sales There are lots of staff from different countries some very difficult to communicate with due to their lack of English onboard were 99% English Always trying to sell you something upmarket prices average service the best way you can sum up Princess Cruises 3 star hotel in Benidorm As stated we brought soda package you could have pump soda but not itns of coke you had to pay for these Cinema on deck very good good choice of films Embarkation is a joke shut several lifts down causing chaos took my luggage down the stairs otherwise would have missed embarkation slot Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This cruise was selected because 1we enjoy the canaries 2 we had travelled on princess previously and had be very satisfied. the transport (eavesway) were two hours plus late in picking us up. not a good start. wehad to be rushed ... Read More
This cruise was selected because 1we enjoy the canaries 2 we had travelled on princess previously and had be very satisfied. the transport (eavesway) were two hours plus late in picking us up. not a good start. wehad to be rushed through embarkation(not princess line fault). once on board as usual we found that the cabin was excellent, clean and comfortable. the staff were attentive and friendly. diningroom staff that I was served by were excellent and help to make dining a pleasure. Entertainment I felt was mediocre.princess own troupe, on the night I went to see them on stage for only 35 mins. the first 3 days were spent at sea,and as another passenger said to me"it was like being at butlins". it was noisey. obviously the ports of call suited me and hopefully they did others. it is taken that these liners are a commercial organisations, but it was a little upsetting that whilst having a drink you touted for one of the franchise restaurants. THE CREW COULD NOT HAVE BETTERED AND PRINCESS LINES SHOULD BE PROUD OF THEM. disembarkation was well organised and went smoothly in my case. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We were the 3rd cruise after Dry dock and the AC in the entire Sector of Deck 10 Caribe Starboard side midsection was barely working! When walking in the hallway of the entire area mentioned above you could feel the stuffiness and hotter ... Read More
We were the 3rd cruise after Dry dock and the AC in the entire Sector of Deck 10 Caribe Starboard side midsection was barely working! When walking in the hallway of the entire area mentioned above you could feel the stuffiness and hotter air temperature due to the AC not working efficiently. We had been on the Emerald Princess just 3 months prior but on a different deck so we had a good reference as to what a "properly working AC" should feel like. We paid a premium to have a Balcony, but could not enjoy the view etc. due to having to keep the Curtains and Drapes fully closed to curtail the heat and sunlight to make the barely working AC temperature tolerable. We reported the AC problem twice to Customer Service, and after two days someone made and appearance to our Cabin but the AC problem was not fixed. Even though they left a card next to the thermostat claiming that the problem was fixed. We also had a leak in the back of the toilet which caused a constant puddle issue. Once again, we had to call twice before Customer Service finally sent someone to fix the leak..two days later! re: Entertainment: The Productions shows were all very good. The Single acts on the other nights in the main showroom were both very talented but not seasoned enough for a major show room on a 3,000 passenger ship. Both of the Singers would be better suited for the Lounges. The ambiance in Piazza [atrium] would have been better if they utilized the Piano player more. The Steel Drum & Violin act was a nice novelty but it was not soothing enough to endure for long periods of time. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was my 3rd cruise on Princess, and the first on Emerald. I understand that the ship just came out of dry dock, but I couldn't really figure out what had been updated other than the Effy jewelry boutique that took up a large ... Read More
This was my 3rd cruise on Princess, and the first on Emerald. I understand that the ship just came out of dry dock, but I couldn't really figure out what had been updated other than the Effy jewelry boutique that took up a large amount of the shopping area. I'm not sure why Princess cruises made the decision to give so much real estate to such an expensive jewelry store. The pieces are terribly overpriced for mass produced jewelry in my opinion and they were pushing it hard. I'm not sure if this jewelry line meets the demographics of the Princess customer base, but time will tell. Embarkation was a breeze- and my daughter and I were on the ship in less than 10 minutes. The Muster drill was rather disorganized and took much longer than previous cruises. When I embarked on the ship I immediately called for reservations and was informed that Sabatini's Italian restaurant no longer existed. It has been replaced with the restaurant called "share" which comes with a $39 per person cover charge. Needless to say my husband and I did not eat at "share" but we did dine at the Crowne grill and were not disappointed. We did not have hot water for the first two days, and learned from other passengers that this was a problem for them as well. Air-conditioning did not run cold but this was ok with us as we tend not to like air-conditioning anyway. But for some people it was a real problem. I didn't let this ruin my cruise so I just took cool showers quickly and spent most of my time outside. We were upgraded from an ocean view to a premium balcony room which was nice but honestly I wouldn't of paid the extra money for it. The balcony was almost as big as the room and we didn't use it as much as I had expected. The ride down was very rocky and there were gale force winds according to the captain. At one point the pools had to be drained and closed because they became unsafe due to the movement of the water in the pools. I was up in the sanctuary area for most of the sea days and the noise from the wind was extremely loud but again I didn't mind- it's a cruise after all and you can expect wind and other kinds of noise. One issue with the sanctuary area is that you can hear some of the loud talkers down at the Lotus spa pool. They really should have a better way to soundproof this since you're paying $40 a day for the sanctuary area. In the main pools there were quite a few kids that were rough housing unsupervised which was a nuisance. Also, pools were pretty deep starting at about 5'3" which made it difficult for the young ones to swim around. There was no dedicated kids pool which would have been a good idea given the amount of children on board. This could've also mitigated the problem with some of the kids jumping and creating mayhem at the same time that adults and other kids wanted to swim. This resulted in most folks hanging onto the edges or trying to swing while avoiding the constant jumping in and pushing of the unsupervised kids. I actually saw some concerning behavior from the kids on the pool deck and became worried about safety and the deck attendance would not do anything. There was a group of kids that was really loud and splashing during the movie at night and one passenger got angry and yelled at them to be quiet. I'm a parent myself, and I really like kids but this just got really out of hand and affected other peoples enjoyment. My seven-year-old enjoyed the pelicans kids club. In her words- I really enjoyed the kids club. Because we got to go inside and ride bikes and do all these fun stuff. Had a pajama party which is really fun and we we got to do all these fun crafts and play with the Wii, which was where we we have a remote and we dance with that. We also got to do these fun crafts like making Masks and making bracelets and there was also a jungle gym which is pretty fun and you have to take your shoes off to go in , and before you go in the kids club you have to wash Your hands. The buffet food was unremarkable. There is decent salad at every meal. I agree with some other recent posters that the service in the dining room was excruciatingly slow. One night it took us three hours to have dinner. Staff were not particularly attentive and did not refill drinks in a timely manner. Most of the food arrived cold or lukewarm at best. This was one of the main reasons that my husband and I went to the crown grill for three of the nights. Since this is a Christmas cruise we had expected a special meal on Christmas evening. In fact this was touted as one of the features of the Christmas cruise. We were disappointed that there was really nothing special although there was some bland turkey and cranberry sauce but not the extravagant buffet or dining room event that we had expected. Santa made an appearance and gave our presents to the kids which was a bonus, and my daughter seem to have a great time with that. I still have the coffee shop at the international café, the pastries were outstanding. Entertainment was lackluster, but pretty standard in mainstream for this cruise line. We were in bed most nights by 10:30 PM so I can't speak for the late-night entertainment or the clubs. With all that said, I still like Princess and have two more cruises booked with them. A cruise is a cruise and it's what you make of it and I like cruising princess. I do think they need to make some improvements as I mentioned. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We had never sailed on Princess before and when this cruise came up with a terrific price we decided to try them. Embarkation was well organized and we quickly were on board and ready for lunch. Our stateroom room was clean and standard ... Read More
We had never sailed on Princess before and when this cruise came up with a terrific price we decided to try them. Embarkation was well organized and we quickly were on board and ready for lunch. Our stateroom room was clean and standard for a balcony room. The bathroom had a very strong smell of mildew and the toilet was always dirty with a black ring around the water line. There was a refrigerator but it was never stocked with anything but water and we were told by our attendant that they never stock the fridges and we would have to call room service or leave our room and go to a bar to get drinks. Very inconvenient if you want a drink late at night. Our attendant kept our room clean and stocked with ice. Information on making reservations for our evening dining was confusing. We were told one thing on the phone and another in person. Eventually we got it straightened out and our dining experiences were okay but not memorable. Our waiters were very good and kept things moving along. Due to an allergic reaction to something in our first night dinner I had to buy some Benedryl in the convenience store and was shocked to see prices double what we would pay in a regular pharmacy. I understand making a profit but selling a $5.99 item for $12.99 was outrageous. The shows were entertaining but nothing wowed us. We selected Express Walk Off for disembarkation and were pleased that everything went very smoothly and we were off the boat and on our way before 8:30 AM. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
The Emerald Princess is a very nice cruise ship. Our stateroom (B-319) was clean and cozy and the balcony provided us with time to relax and watch the sun rise and set as we entered and left port. The TV programing was above average and ... Read More
The Emerald Princess is a very nice cruise ship. Our stateroom (B-319) was clean and cozy and the balcony provided us with time to relax and watch the sun rise and set as we entered and left port. The TV programing was above average and offers something for everyone. The staff left a lot to be desired. It was as if the staff had been given pink-slips the day of departure. The staff seemed indifferent and lazy ship-wide. Good luck getting a glass refilled in the dining room. Overtime I walked by the customer service desk I heard some employee essentially telling another cruise goer, "We've already got your money, I'm not going to do anything for you, move along already." While this cruise was not a disaster and nothing went "wrong", I still paid nearly $7,000 for my vacation and I had better times with Carnival and NCL cruise lines. There is too much competition out there to have to settle for Princess' half measures at customer service. The food was bland. This the first cruise that I've been on that I can't tell you my "favorite" dish. I cannot recommend Princess Cruises. They are the very definition of average. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Like many cruisers before me, I must report that the Emerald Princess Cruise Ship is the poster child of mediocrity and the definition of average. The food is bland and this is the first cruise that I have walked away from unable to talk ... Read More
Like many cruisers before me, I must report that the Emerald Princess Cruise Ship is the poster child of mediocrity and the definition of average. The food is bland and this is the first cruise that I have walked away from unable to talk about my favorite "dish". The dining room service is terrible....I hope you like drinking a very small glass of water with your meal, as the wait staff is not coming back. The ship is nice enough and our balcony cabin (Baja 319) was clean and comfortable, with the exception of the nasty looking throw pillows and foot of the bed decretive throw. I had these items removed from our cabin on the first night. The just looked funky and unkept. The onboard entertainment was not. The comic was terrible. It was as if he had never written a joke and merely recited every joke he has ever heard since grade school. The worst part of the cruise was the staff. It was as if pink-slips had been passed out the day of departure because it seemed as if every staff member was angry and they certainly did not do anything remotely close to proper customer service. It seemed that overtime I walked by the customer service staff I saw some crew member telling a fellow cruiser something like, "We've already got your money, why are you wasting your time talking to me." I cannot and will not recommend Princess Cruises. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
My wife and I went on the Baltic Cruise with Princess in July 2015. I had mixed feelings about it. We had previously gone on the Alaska cruise with Princess and it was wonderful. The Baltic Cruise was a good way to get a sampling of ... Read More
My wife and I went on the Baltic Cruise with Princess in July 2015. I had mixed feelings about it. We had previously gone on the Alaska cruise with Princess and it was wonderful. The Baltic Cruise was a good way to get a sampling of Scandinavian countries. The stateroom was comfortable, the staff was very helpful and the food, although a bit institutional, was good. Princess also added some live shows with audience participation which were fun. That said, I do have some constructive comments for Princess (which I sent to Princess and never received a response) and advice for possible passengers. First, unlike the Alaska cruise, there was no one in the food courts ensuring that passengers washed or used antiseptic on their hands before eating. On the Alaska cruise that was really reassuring. On the Baltic cruise, no one was there to remind people and I noticed about half of the passengers did not clean their hands. I think this is a real health risk. Second, we had an unfortunate experience in Stockholm. Because the ship was so large, passengers had to take buses hired by Princess to get in. We were assured that the leaders on the buses would make sure we got back in time before sailing. We were expressly told on our bus that the last bus back to the ship would leave at 5:15. When we arrived at the pick-up spot, there were eight other passengers from different buses who also understood that. I had actually checked with our bus leader and she showed me that the last bus was at 5:15 on her list. When no bus arrived by 5:30, I called the local Princess agent and was told that the last bus had been at 4:30. When I explained that was not what the 10 passengers were told, we were told we would have to pay for a taxi. Luckily, Princess then called us back and said it had ordered and would pay for the taxis, which it did. When the taxis finally arrived and took us to the ship, we were told that the captain was mad at us because we had delayed sailing. I explained to the excursion director that we were angry because we had been misinformed about the last bus. While all of this worked out and I appreciated Princess paying for the taxis, we never got an apology from Princess. Good customer relations would have at least led to an email or a note in our cabin that Princess was sorry for the confusion. Third, and while this is a personal preference, I thought the stops in Estonia and Germany were really unnecessary. I understand the stop in Germany was to let people take trains to Berlin, but that meant we were stuck in Kiel for almost 15 hours because we did not want to go to Berlin. In addition, Estonia was a bit disappointing as it seemed very touristy. In contrast, Helsinki and Stockholm were really interesting but we only had about half a day in each city. I would suggest letting people get to Berlin before the cruise, deleting the Germany and Estonia stops and staying two days in Stockholm and Helsinki. Finally, I want to thank the fitness staff. The equipment was really state of the art and the yoga classes were excellent. I would have liked to have more yoga classes - there were only two classes for the whole cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Four of us traveled from the U.S to Barcelona to celebrate a graduation. We were on the Emerald and had 3 cabins, two adjoining on Riviera with balconies and one inside cabin. Embarkation was a breeze, absolutely fantastic. Make note of ... Read More
Four of us traveled from the U.S to Barcelona to celebrate a graduation. We were on the Emerald and had 3 cabins, two adjoining on Riviera with balconies and one inside cabin. Embarkation was a breeze, absolutely fantastic. Make note of the time you can board. We enjoyed the location of our cabins and were able to unpack and still have room to move around. We only booked one shore excursion through Princess and that was transport only to Florence which was fine. Others had terrible excursions to the area as they involved more than just transfers. Our food was good all week. Some days better than others. Service was very good two nights, average at best the rest of the week. We were disappointed with other cruisers attire in the dining rooms and that they were seated even with the signs saying no tank tops, shorts, etc. We dined in both special restaurants, the Crown Grill twice. We had a difficult time getting reservations on board as you have to call a number (you cannot make reservations at guest services) and there was only one person taking calls. Once through, we had no problems getting a table and obviously we called back and made a third reservation. Sabatini's was good, but the waiter had too many tables and no assistant. At each restaurant we were there approximately 2 1/2 hours. The entertainment was horrible. We tried to support and went each night, but wow, really bad. The best were the cruise dancers vs. Entertainers brought in. Disembarkation was easier than embarkation! I had called to find out when we could get off the ship prior to leaving the U.S. as we had a private transfer arranged. I did not get a good answer (was never impressed with any conversations with 800 number), but know that in Rome you can request walk off. Meaning you take everything without help. We could get off at 7:15 a.m., or earlier, and arranged a car service fo 8:00. A few things to note: Shampoo/ Conditioner is provided and is awful. If planning your own excursions and the ship docks at 7:00 a.m., it will dock then and you can get off within a few minutes of docking. The ship will leave you unless you are on their excursion, or unless you leave your underage children onboard (really happened). You can take wine onboard. Watch for happy hour specials. Room service errors on the early side, be ready! Anytime dining works well, but you will wait 10-15 minutes during prime time. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
I booked this cruise based on the port stops. I read most of the reviews on cruise critic before boarding so I knew what to expect. The ship was clean & very nice. I'm not picking on misc-- won't be checking out whether ... Read More
I booked this cruise based on the port stops. I read most of the reviews on cruise critic before boarding so I knew what to expect. The ship was clean & very nice. I'm not picking on misc-- won't be checking out whether they need a new carpet, etc. The layout of the ship was good. I did not join any of the ships excursions. I booked in advance small private tours (found off the internet). My room was a nice size & placement of furniture/size was fine. This was a port intensive cruise so we were not in the room so much (just 1 day at sea). Cabin was always kept clean & when we left for port, the room was clean & while we went to dinner, our beds turn down. We had early dinner seating. Wait staff was great. Service was good. I didn't care for the food much. There was a variety of choices but I find that it seems that I cannot find a medium rare steak throught the week. I even asked them to find a piece that can moo back. Every plate of steak I requested or my party did was well done... not even a little pink. I gave up on that. The buffet was good. Small selection but everyday is different. In the mornings, very hard to find a place to sit. Crowds come in intervals. Some mornings it's very easy to get a table & some morns, none. If you don't mind sitting outside, there's more seats. Every night there's a show or 2. My party will always try to catch the first show. I tend to wander out either in the middle or towards the end. I did not find the show well done as other ships I'd been on. I actually stayed for the whole thing of "Sound of Music" movie in the theatre than staying for one of their shows. Basic broadway type/singing/dancing/comedy shows. It was just not done well. Live music was great. There was a few places that had live music every night. After 10/10:30, I think everyone on the ship is asleep. I would wander place to place looking for find something to do-- even the casino is semi-empty. I'm w/ my mother & her friends & Majority of the ship is of the same age -- so if you're looking for late night entertainment.. none. I ended up chatting up the barstaff every night (not a drinker either). Good trip -- port stop but ship was a little lacking if you are looking for both. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We left Barcelona in early May destined for many ports around Mediterranean, including France, Italy, Greece, Malta, Turkey and back to Spain. Our main complaint would be that the cruise was actually 4 x7day cruises, which meant ... Read More
We left Barcelona in early May destined for many ports around Mediterranean, including France, Italy, Greece, Malta, Turkey and back to Spain. Our main complaint would be that the cruise was actually 4 x7day cruises, which meant everything was repeated x 4, including the menus (boring), activities especially the same films (Sound of Music!!!) and films in our stateroom mainly showed Loveboat x 20 episodes! The were very little activities, mainly during the afternoon in the atrium the ship was quiet as a ghost ship after 10pm. The shows were only 30mins and pretty poor quality, juggler, comedian (probably ex workers club in UK) even the main shows produced by crew were amateurish. The ports were good and made up for the boring activities on the ship. We did some tours but many were overpriced. Loved meeting new people, enjoyed anytime dining so we could sit with different people each evening. We became elite passengers with Princess whilst on this cruise, so experienced some extras, loved naving laundry done, so well ironed! Our fridge was stocked with soft drinks and a variety of little bottles of spirits. The daily special cocktail up in the Skywalker l,ounge for elite and platinum passengers was great too, Marguaritas especially good! One thing which bugs me about Princess cruises is the formal nights, we had two per week on this cruise, only seems to be for the photographers benefit, no point otherwise. The Captains welcome aboard cocktail party x 4 was a waste of time, watered down drinks. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Our suite was lovely as well as the amenities. Our room Steward, Chadwick Sanchez, was one of the best we have had. Sabatini's for breakfast was awesome (the real reason for booking a suite); Crown Grill was very nice; Dining Room ... Read More
Our suite was lovely as well as the amenities. Our room Steward, Chadwick Sanchez, was one of the best we have had. Sabatini's for breakfast was awesome (the real reason for booking a suite); Crown Grill was very nice; Dining Room service was extremely slow and food average; Horizon Court very, very disappointing. We have seen it go down the last few Princess cruises, which is very disappointing. Food not good at all in Horizon. The staff at Reception is lovely and accommodating as well as throughout the ship. Shows are average, however, I must say that I am not there for the shows but for the wonderful ocean air and island visits. Shops are fairly good for fun stuff. Boarding in Houston was outstanding. Arrived, registered, and boarded. Couldn't have been better. Disembarkation was a nightmare. Delays, longs lines, and appearance of lack of coordination of process. The purpose of this trip was taking a grandson on his "Spring Break Cruise." He had a wonderful time (as well as his Mother). We had connecting suites, and this was great. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Our 9th cruise (4 NCL, 2 Carnival, 1 Celebrity, 1 Holland prior to this one). Arrival and embarkation were no problem, very fast. We prepaid parking since we were local to save the 5 bucks. Disembarkation was well organized and pretty ... Read More
Our 9th cruise (4 NCL, 2 Carnival, 1 Celebrity, 1 Holland prior to this one). Arrival and embarkation were no problem, very fast. We prepaid parking since we were local to save the 5 bucks. Disembarkation was well organized and pretty quick as well. Cabins available very early. Cabin - See cabin review, would have liked it better except C248 has a worn out mattress, hopefully not a common theme on this ship. We did get locked out of our room one morning. If you see other than green lights when unlocking your room, the battery that unlocks the door may be weak. We waited about 5 minutes for someone to come and unlock it and replace the AA's. Dining - Dinners were generally good. Just one or two times when service was slow, but usually service was much faster than other ships we have been on but did not feel rushed. We were anytime diners and rarely had to wait and then not for long. Dress code in main dining rooms is a suggestion only, we saw one woman in shorts and tank top on formal night! Breakfast was our least favorite in the buffet. I joke not when I say the hottest thing at breakfast might be the plate if it is fresh from the dishwasher, food was consistently lukewarm at best. Some improvement for sit down breakfast. Variety at breakfast not as good as other cruise lines. We did find going to the international cafe for the (free) breakfast items a good option and my daughter liked the gelato there for $1.50 for 3 scoops. The buffet also uses plastic coffee cups, not ceramic like most ships. Probably not an issue for most, but the plastic retains the coffee odor and I'm a tea drinker and my tea smelled and tasted like coffee sometimes. I'd bring my own cup next time. Afternoon tea uses ceramic cups and is generally a pleasant experience, though they just serve Lipton. They actually have the same tea deserts at the buffet at the same time and you can pick your tea if you prefer it that way. Lunches were just ok, pizza and burgers were ok, expect lines but they moved pretty fast for us. The buffet area is not big, fewer choices than newer ships out there. Activities - Our favorite was actually the movies in the theater. Pretty recent movies shown in the theater during the day when there are no shows going on. They might want to serve popcorn but we often brought our lunch/snacks in with us (trays in the armrests). Trivia was the typical with pretty competitive groups, yes or no show was mostly fun. Golf is a putting green, they have croquet but you have to use golf putters to hit the balls (no mallets), and shuffleboard is not workable in the corner arrangement they have (plus broken parts). Fitness facility was not very crowded. Few channels on the treadmill TVs and quite a few with fuzzy reception (bring your own earbuds). Service - One of the best parts of the ship. Other than the mattress issue with customer service, everyone was top notch. Entertainment - Mostly good. We're not into the Vegas style shows though other reviews will give you an idea, but we liked the comedian (mostly family friendly), the illusionist was typical for a cruise ship - ok, and the comedy singer was good - including his second performance. Excursions - We did one excursion through Princess, Amazing Secret River, Caverns and Playa Del Carmen (Rio Secreto) (ferry to Playa del Carmen, van ride to facility, don wet suit, hike/swim thru cave/river with stalactites (uneven walking surface, think twice before bringing kids under about 12), reverse the process with shopping time at Playa). We liked this one (16 yo daughter said it was her favorite of the trip) and given the timing, doing it thru the ship is the only way to go. In Roatan, we did a zip line thru South Shore Canopy Tours/Zip Line Adventures, trying to avoid the companies the cruise lines use to avoid the crowds, we prepaid with no problem, walked to meet them per their instructions, somewhat hot van ride to get there (people in the front row took all the ac vents) but overall a good time, a nice zip line and good value, felt safe. In Belize, we did the cave tubing thru Belize X-Stream Cave Tubing (part of Island Marketing). There are many companies offering the cave tubing. One big difference in my opinion, this one offers a 2-cave tour, you carry your tube about 10 minutes longer but get to do 2 caves. This matters because we were basically the only group in the first cave about 11 people and 2 guides, when we got to the second cave we joined everyone else from all different companies about a hundred people or more, not shoulder to shoulder but much more crowded. They tie your tubes together in a chain of 5 or 6, try to be in the front to hear the guide better. This is in a national park, multiple companies come here and x-tream brings people on several tours that start and finish in the same place - 2 cave tubing, 1 cave tubing & zip line, zip line only. Take earliest tender you can, they load vans as they get enough people and earlier departure means earlier return. Ship - The ship itself seems nice and did not seem crowded. Plenty of venues and always a place to sit and relax if you want. Pools didn't seem too crowded and this was spring break. Too bad there are no slides at the pool, but we knew that going in, Princess doesn't do slides (I'd say they cater to an older crowd). Hot tubs in the sanctuary were better, in the main pool area the jets were minimal. The nights where the casino was non-smoking made it easier to walk thru it. Scored enrichment low because there wasn't any. Other passengers - Did overhear a couple drunks at dinner one night (last formal night), a woman at the table next to us who just wouldn't keep her voice down and repeated the same curse words at regular intervals and a middle-aged man who was trying to dance in the dining room with a 21 yo girl from another table. Get a good mattress and temper your expectations about breakfast and a few other things and this is a fine cruise and a good value. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
This was my first time on a Princess cruise. I have been on 4 Carnival ships, 1 Disney ship and a Noregian ship. The lack of the little things that Priness offers is somewhat frustrating. Let me start when I first was brought on the ship. ... Read More
This was my first time on a Princess cruise. I have been on 4 Carnival ships, 1 Disney ship and a Noregian ship. The lack of the little things that Priness offers is somewhat frustrating. Let me start when I first was brought on the ship. I was lead through the bowls of the ship and not through the atrium like every other cruise I have been on. This took away the excitement as I see the atrium for the first time and hear the island music. There was no music playing when I entered the ship. The few was hard working and friendly however the cabin staff does not make towel animals when you enter your room for bedtime. If you have kids this is a disappointment. Heck I'm 40 years old and I was disappointed. The wait staff was friendly however there was only one show that the staff put one in the dinning room on the last night. While at Cozimel my family and I swam with the Dolphins which was a tour that the cruise line recommends. The staff would not let any photos taken while swimming with the Dolphins. They did have a staff photographer who took several photos. The end result was me and my family being dropped off, before the tour was done, in the photo store. Nice photos, however I was told the cost was $1,100 for all the photos and $70 per person if you just wanted one or two photos. What a rip off! Needless to say I didn't buy and pictures. I felt like Princess should do something about the price of photos. The worst part was once we said we weren't going to buy any pictures, my family and I were ignored and not taken to the next portion of the tour. I never heard any island music on the decks. I'm not saying there was none, just never heard any. On Carnival ships music is all around. A Carnival cruise is much more exciting and fun. I also think Carnival's ships are more for family's with kids. I thought Princess cruise line catered towards older people. If I was a first time cruiser I would have been happy with the cruise on The Emerald cruise ship, however I like the little things that other cruise lines offer. I'm not saying I would never cruise with Princess again, I'm just saying I would look at other cruise lines first.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
I’m from East Texas and drove to the port. On Saturday night before sailing on Sunday, we spent the night in Baytown, TX at the LaQuinta Inn & Suites on I-10 East. Great location, very convenient , close to Denny’s for breakfast, ... Read More
I’m from East Texas and drove to the port. On Saturday night before sailing on Sunday, we spent the night in Baytown, TX at the LaQuinta Inn & Suites on I-10 East. Great location, very convenient , close to Denny’s for breakfast, Target, Walmart. Easy 20-25 minute drive to cruise terminal, depending on road construction. Muddy & messy after a rain near cruise terminal area. Once you get onto port/terminal property they have things very organized and well-staffed. Parking was a breeze and embarkation very smooth. Long lines but moved fast. We arrived inside the terminal building at 10:45 and walked on the ship at 11:55. Went straight to our cabin and dumped our carry-ons then went for lunch & exploring. Our luggage arrived before 2:00. Dining: We had late dining (8:00). On Sunday night we walked out of the dining room at 9:55…very slow service that night and most nights. I wasn’t impressed with the breads, and I tried many varieties of rolls. I ordered beef filet medallions (on the menu every night) and didn’t think they had a very good flavor; also had a lot of gristle; very disappointed starting off the first night. However, Crème Brulee was awesome as was the cheesecake and heart-shaped chocolate love boat dessert, and these were offered every night also. They had two shows in the Princess Theater the first night, at 8:00 & 9:30, but were in the dining room during both shows. Lobster was on the menu the second formal night and it was awesome, prepared perfectly. I found the staff/crew on this ship to be the least friendly & cheerful of any ship I’ve sailed on and the food not the quality as on some other cruise lines. I found even higher quality meats tough and prepared with not a lot of taste. Ricardo, the Head Waiter in my dining room (Botticelli) was very arrogant and it appeared to be beneath him to spend more than 15 seconds saying hello from a distance. We were a table of 6, mostly women, and he never actually came to our table and carried on a conversation with us. He just rubbed me wrong from the beginning! The butter pats on the table for bread were chilled so hard they wouldn’t spread, and one night ours were even frozen. Grilled salmon was on the menu every night and it was awesome; prepared just perfect every time. Pizzaria & ice cream bar located mid-ship deck 15. They had hand-dipped ice cream as well as soft-serve. They served it to you, not self-serve. I didn’t think either were very good, and I tried several flavors on several days; just not the flavor/quality like I’m used to. International Café (deck 5 mid) in the Piazza is a great place to pick up a complimentary light (mostly continental) breakfast, a light deli lunch, a dessert, a snack. Really good food there. Gelato available for a nominal charge. Also in the International Café is a coffee bar with specialty coffees that you have to pay for. The Best thing going is to purchase a coffee card for $29 + gratuity, for 15 cups of any specialty coffee and unlimited regular coffee. You can choose to have your coffee in a glass cup or in a take-out cup, and you can have a 12 oz. or 16 oz. cup. And the great thing about this is that if you have any punches left on your coffee card at the end of the cruise, they carry over to your next Princess Cruise; just the specialty coffees, not unlimited regular coffee. There aren’t many real bargains on a cruise ship, but to me this is one. Vines wine bar is in this same area in the Piazza, as well as the 24-hour Internet Café & Future Cruise Sales desk. The cabin: In the shower they provide shampoo/conditioner combo in a pump container as well as shower gel (no soap). If you want an antibacterial or deodorant soap you have to bring your own. Wall mounted hair dryer by the dressing table/desk is plenty hot and plenty powerful. Small refrigerator in cabin but doesn’t get very cold at all. Had to ask cabin attendant to remove their drinks so we cold use it for our own stuff. TV in the corner on a shelf but not interactive, so you can’t check your account, menus, make reservations, etc. I’m used to this and was very disappointed. Can be a real hassle because you have to actually go somewhere to check on anything. Kiosks are around the Passenger Service desk where you can swipe your card and check account balance/activity. Love the closet set-up in cabins on Princess ships. Smart design, easily accessible and no door to get in the way. Traditional electrical outlet (two plugs) at desk/dressing table, but if you need another, the one where the TV is plugged in has one plug available and is very convenient. Our cabin was on deck 10 and had an extra large balcony, even though it was the same BE category as cabins on other decks with much smaller balconies. Ours overlooked the balcony below us…something to seriously think about if considering deck 9; NO privacy there at all. We felt so guilty for “intruding” on our neighbors below, but made the most of our nice balcony and used it often. Cabin doors are recessed in the hall, which makes it nice when entering your door with other people walking in the hall; however, the halls are incredibly narrow and you can barely get thru when a cabin attendant’s cart is in the hall or you pass someone walking the opposite direction. In my opinion that is a definite design flaw. It is very nice that Princess’s cabin attendants still put a piece of chocolate on your bed when they turn it down at night. Many cruise lines no longer do this and I appreciated this special little touch. Around the ship: They have a sorry excuse for a shuffleboard court; half-court only and right in the middle of a walkway; very badly placed. Mini golf (deck 19 aft) is just a little putting green with a few holes, not actual miniature golf at all; very disappointing. Beautiful show theater; offered 3 shows Mon., Tues. & Fri. nights, 7:00, 8:30 & 10:15 and 2 shows the other nights, 7:00 & 8:30. Club Fusion (deck 7 aft) is a real neat & comfortable place with some fun activities there, including sometimes Trivia. Trivia is offered twice daily and sometimes has themes. Gatsby’s casino (deck 6 mid) is very spacious and comfortable. They offered 2 non-smoking nights and it was extremely pleasant in there those 2 nights; other times the smoke was almost unbearable. They had lots of penny slots and a nice variety of games. The Piazza is the central hub and was the venue for various entertainment throughout the week. They had a pop choir who performed the last day and they were really good; on Valentine’s Day the captain did a vow renewal ceremony for couples who wished to participate; the last night they had fun & lively Mardi Gras celebration with singing & dancing, as well as some other things. It’s a really nice area and can be seen from above on decks 6 and 7. The Sanctuary is a large space fixed up nice and offers great pampering, but is very under-used. We never saw many people there and it seems such a waste of good space for so few people. The cost is $20 for half-day and $40 for full day per person. I’m sure the cost is what keeps many from using The Sanctuary. Entertainment: Comedian duo Alfred & Seymore were very good. Theirs was a unique comedy show, not like anything I’ve ever seen. They were funny, clean and quite entertaining. I was very disappointed in the production shows by the singers & dancers. They didn’t seem as polished as most production entertainers usually are. Tom Franek was another entertainer who was awesome. He plays the piano (not like anyone you’ve ever seen before) and sings and has a really great show. Another entertainer was Andrew Phipps; he was a good entertainer but not a good singer. Not one of my favorites for the week. Ports: Docked at the Puerta Maya pier in Cozumel. Lots of ships in port that day and we shared a pier with another ship. In Roatan we docked along-side also and in Belize we tendered; very nice shopping in all port areas. In Roatan we took an excursion to Gumbalimba Park. It’s at the extreme west end of the island and is a great excursion for wildlife up close & personal. NOTE: can’t take bags, backpacks or large purses into park; can take small across-the-chest purses. Best not to wear jewelry either as the monkeys love to grab it. Can rent a locker for $3 to store things not allowed in the park. Can have your picture taken with a macaw on your arm or monkey on hour shoulder…very neat and lots of fun. Will also see iguanas & other lizards, hummingbirds, “rabbit rats”, butterflies & parrots. 40 minute (+/-) bus ride to park; bathrooms there & small snack bar. Entire excursion takes less that 4 hours. Disembarkation was the most amazing yet. I’ve never seen a smoother, more organized or streamlined plan. From the time we walked out of our cabin pulling our bags for self-assist disembarkation till the time we got in our car in the parking lot, it was probably 15 minutes, and that includes a stop at customs on the way out...a truly exceptional process. Other cruise lines should take some notes on Princesses procedures here!! All in all, sailing on the Emerald Princess was not my favorite cruising experience, but it was still a very enjoyable cruise with a very dear friend and we had a really nice time. Will I sail on this ship again…only if I find a truly exceptional deal that just can’t be passed up.   Read Less
Sail Date February 2015
This was our 14th cruise and 2nd on Princess. We had a good time on the cruise but know that the entertainment is better on Carnival and the ships are more up to date on Royal Caribbean. I firmly believe that food is better on Princess and ... Read More
This was our 14th cruise and 2nd on Princess. We had a good time on the cruise but know that the entertainment is better on Carnival and the ships are more up to date on Royal Caribbean. I firmly believe that food is better on Princess and at dinner, the staff went out of their way to please of couple of our table mates (they should have left a bigger tip but I know that they didn't). The other positive about Princess is that they do not push alcohol as compared to other cruise lines. Our cruise also had a giant group of people (650 I think they said) from a dog food company in Utah. I was concerned about this at first but it was a benefit because it reduced the average age of the passengers by a ton. Sailed out of the Houston Terminal on 1/11/15, actually 10:00 am on 1/12/15 since the channel to and from the port was closed due to fog. Don't know if the ships leaving from Galveston had this problem or not. The result of the delay was that we did not go to Roatan, Honduras as scheduled but went to Costa Maya instead. Some of the crew said this was the second week in a row that they went to Costa Maya and that is was a better port than Roatan. Princess refunded the excursion we booked at Roatan but had to select something for Costa Maya. My first issue with Princess is technology or lack there of. On most ships I have been on lately, excursions can be booked from the cabin on the tv. Not so on Emerald and I can't say if this is true about other Princess ships. You also could not check you bill as on other ships. However, the excursion desk had no line in the morning and the staff was very pleasant. Some other photo galleries use facial recognition software to create and electronic folio for your cabin. Princess is the old time scan the walls for your photos. Excursions were okay. In Belize we went to the Mayan ruins at Altun Ha. The ruins are nice but take bug spray. There are these little bugs that you can't see or feel when they bite. It might not be until the next day or day after but you will be scratching for 2 to 3 weeks. Seriously! My other issue was the entertainment. The singing and dancing shows in the main room were okay. The feature entertainers were awful. The comedian told jokes about the small size of the showers and how hard the toilets flush. The guitar player could play but Dueling Banjos from Deliverance and Classical Gas? Both of these guys were in serious need of new material. The magician seemed bored. Secondary venues were too small. Many people were turned away from the Wheelhouse Bar or Explorers Lounge. I have avoided Holland America because I thought they catered to an older clientele. Now I have to add Princess to this list. However, there were many people on the boat that had sailed a dozen times or more with Princess (some admitted that it was to get the free laundry service). The food is better but it isn't good enough for me to put up with the negatives.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
This was our 13th Cruise and our 3rd with Princess; we liked our first two Princess cruises very much but would not sail on Emerald Princess again even if we won a cruise holiday. We boarded after shuffling along in the long boarding ... Read More
This was our 13th Cruise and our 3rd with Princess; we liked our first two Princess cruises very much but would not sail on Emerald Princess again even if we won a cruise holiday. We boarded after shuffling along in the long boarding process, when we got on board our cabin was ready; it may not have been cleaned too well, as there was still the previous occupant’s left over food in the minibar and spillage stains on one of the bedside units. The ship felt over crowded; there were too many people everywhere. At peak times trying to find somewhere to sit down and have breakfast in the Lido was nearly impossible; one day we took our breakfast back to our cabin to eat it. The bars were also over crowded. We had a dinner in the Crown Grill at an extra 25 dollars a head, the food and the staff were excellent. But on a nearby table there a family with a baby in arms bawling it head off, one of the adults in the partly lifted the baby above his head to see if it’s nappy was leaking and thus causing the distress. This did not make what we would call a fine dining experience, and were somewhat surprised that Princess allowed young children in the Crown Grill, so be warned.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
As others have said, we took this cruise for the itinerary. Since it was our first cruise, we did not know what to expect. I booked our extra nights before & after the cruise in Copenhagen through the Radisson's website. This cost ... Read More
As others have said, we took this cruise for the itinerary. Since it was our first cruise, we did not know what to expect. I booked our extra nights before & after the cruise in Copenhagen through the Radisson's website. This cost half of what Princess would have charged so I don't know why anyone would book through them. We took a taxi from the airport to the hotel. Princess was going to charge us $120 to get to the hotel and we paid $40 on our own. There was a Princess table set up in the lobby & the woman told us to wait until 3 or 4 in the afternoon to board the ship after all the groups had checked in. it was great advice & we breezed through. The ship itself was grand. It was everything I expected. it was huge, well organized & super clean. Our mini suite with balcony worked great for the 4 of us. It was well thought out. I never felt cramped. There was plenty of storage so we were able to unpack everything. The bathroom was a good size - bigger than expected. We saw maintenance people working all the time. I had always heard people rave about cruise ship food so I was coming in with high expectations. I know cooking for thousands cannot be easy but really - can't they cut the rind off the pineapple before serving it? It took a lot of sawing to get it off with that butter knife. We ate mainly in the Horizon Court because it was convenient. We spent the extra $25 per person for dinner at Sabatini's & really should have saved our money. It was heavy on atmosphere & short on food. The menu was very limited with the pasta course being "chef's choice" which means zero passenger choice. I felt nickeled & dimed with the food. I wanted a Diet Coke one day & was asked for my room number so they could charge me so I skipped it. I had hot tea at no charge in the Horizon Court, dining rooms and through room service. I was surprised when I ordered tea at the European style cafe in the Atrium & they wanted to charge me! Ice cream was available at no charge near the pizza counter but if you wanted the "special" ice cream at the cafe, there was a charge. That said, the food was adequate & nobody starved. We loved the $3 flat fee for room service. The staff are very friendly & well trained. I found getting on & off the ship surprisingly easy. The only port I did not like was Aarhus. I cannot figure out why the ship stops there. I would rather have had another day in Stockholm. the ship docks in an industrial area with lots of commercial traffic so passengers are not allowed to walk off the ship into town. We had to wait for a bus to take us a mile into town. Plus it was pouring rain & we went back to the ship. St Petersburg was the highlight of the trip. We booked a private tour through SPb tours & it was fabulous. Because we were a small group, the tour guide was able to get us to the front of every line. it was expensive & worth every penny. It was hot when we went to Peterhof & my kids loved running through the fountains. I had read that we might have to wait to get off the ship because we were not on a Princess shore excursion but that was not the case at all. My 9 year old went to the kids club one afternoon when we were at sea. My 14 year old did not go at all. I know Princess is not really geared towards kids but Disney Pictionary for 13-17 year olds?? They were so tired from sightseeing that we watched movies or swam in our free time. Princess really pushes on-board shopping & art auctions. I think having shops on board with nice souvenirs is great but please don't clutter up the hallways with tables of stuff. And don't tell me not to buy souvenirs in Russia, that I should buy them on board. I wanted to buy a book or magazine but the selection was almost non-existent. The onboard travel guru was great until they started broadcasting his lectures over the PA system. The entertainment was pretty hokey although we enjoyed the crew talent show - they were very genuine. Overall, the trip went smoothly & we have great memories. Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
This was our 7th cruise with Princess and our third on this class of ship. We started our journey with our pre-cruise night at the Hampton Inn airport north with no complaints whatsoever. They are one of the few hotels left that supply ... Read More
This was our 7th cruise with Princess and our third on this class of ship. We started our journey with our pre-cruise night at the Hampton Inn airport north with no complaints whatsoever. They are one of the few hotels left that supply shuttles both from the airport and to the cruise port with no charge. We arrived around noon at Port Everglades with one of the speediest check-ins that I can remember. Everything on the ship was right on par from our previous Princess cruises with the exception of the staff. In our previous cruises the staff has always been very customer oriented, after all this is a big part of the experience that keeps us coming back. Countless times when we passed a crew member we were greeted with a blank face, not the usual smile or greeting. My 80 year old aunt whom is handicapped traveled with us. Not one time on our 10 day cruise was I ever offered assistance in carrying her food. On the second to the last day we needed to print our boarding passes of in the internet cafe. There were many others doing the same so it was a little hectic. The manager at the time was visibly very agitated and chose to ignore questions the were being asked. Had this been our first cruise and we had not experienced different, I'm not sure that we would be anxious to repeat. I think that we will be focusing on smaller ships from now on. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
Emerald Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

Find an Emerald Princess Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click