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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Fre port has a few cruise shops near the ship. Then you need to take a tour or taxi to see what is available. We chose a taxi. He was a native and very informative. BUT.... there is nothing to see. Much much poverty. Storm damage ... Read More
Fre port has a few cruise shops near the ship. Then you need to take a tour or taxi to see what is available. We chose a taxi. He was a native and very informative. BUT.... there is nothing to see. Much much poverty. Storm damage from hurricanes that were many years ago. Millionaire row that is mutely advertised is a gate community and no one drives thru there. They drive next to a canal that is across from the houses. You see a castle of a millionaire but you have to park at the end of the driveway and stare at a house which is in the extreme distance. Beaches are close or private. Once famous hotels vacant and in foreclosure. Due to weather problems this is a port that Carnival substituted. Sooooo disappointing. Beach excursions.... water is cold and wind takes away much of the sunshine. The cruise ship itself is so cold. I am not talking about the weather. Rooms for entertainment and such were so cold, people wore sweaters and sweatshirts to dinner and entertainment. Entertainment is almost lacking.... PG comedy is far better than late night. And comedy acts only last 30 minutes total. . Couple trivia but you are basically on your own to entertain yourself on days at sea and sometimes in the evenings. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2015
Cabins are very small with no storage but most importantly no air flow. It was stifling hot and thoroughly miserable. I hope you like to swelter especially during romance. To boot all beds are dressed with heavy comforters for warm ... Read More
Cabins are very small with no storage but most importantly no air flow. It was stifling hot and thoroughly miserable. I hope you like to swelter especially during romance. To boot all beds are dressed with heavy comforters for warm weather ONLY....meaning in the tropic heat and no AC you have NO SHEET just a heavy blanket. Pools are small and not comfortable as are jacuzzis which are unheated. Food service in the dining room was poorly understaffed and both nights we gave up on dessert as it took almost two hours to get our entrees. Caveat emptor! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
I can't say enough about how wonderful our trip was! Let me start with the ship. I found it to be the perfect size for us - not too big and not too small. I believe there was around 2,100 passengers with approximately 400 of them ... Read More
I can't say enough about how wonderful our trip was! Let me start with the ship. I found it to be the perfect size for us - not too big and not too small. I believe there was around 2,100 passengers with approximately 400 of them children. The ship was spotless and classy in an understated elegance kind of way. No big atrium to gawk at, just a nice 3-story version. I liked the common areas very much, from the lovely Exploration/Crow's Nest in the front of the ship to the lounges, dining rooms, and pools. I especially liked the multi-age pool on the Lido deck in that it had a retractable roof. The roof stayed open the whole trip, but when I felt I had enough sun, I could move my lounge chair under the roof and still enjoy the ocean breezes. Our room was a suite with a bathroom larger than my one at home! It was absolutely beautiful with a generous veranda and plenty of seating. I miss it already. The staff was so polite and friendly, I can't think of a single negative experience, they kept everything running so well. The CD, JT Watters, was just right - not too obtrusive, but was easy to spot throughout the ship as he was always involved. One event we especially enjoyed was "Talking with the stripes". This was an opportunity to have a Q&A with the captain and the hotel director while a slide show of the ship's inner workings played. My whole family asked questions and we learned so much. We also enjoyed the team trivia event.Fortunately we had a set seating time at dinner, because that was the only time I would see my 3 teen-aged daughters! They loved the "loft" at Club HAL and met up with other kids their ages on the first day. They enjoyed their staff leaders, Chris and Jamie, and had so much fun I finally had to set a curfew. The ports of call were great. The ship docked right at Old San Juan, so we were able to enjoy a self-guided walking tour all around the area. We really enjoyed Half Moon Cay too. The sand and water were perfect. I can't think of a better place to relax and feel like you're in paradise. One of our favorite parts of the trip was enjoying the band just about every night in the BB King Blue's Club - Memphis Sounds. What a terrific group of performers - so talented! We couldn't believe how lucky we were to see such a great act every night. This was such a great multi-generational trip. My parents enjoyed our time hanging out on the veranda and would retire after the early evening show. My husband & I would head to the Blue's Club for a date and our girls would straggle back to the room by 1 am. Everyone was happy. Thanks HAL! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2012
Let me first start by stating that my wife and myself are long time Princess cruisers and have sailed on the Grand Princess three times in the past and have enjoyed ourselves each time. But for Princess Cruises times have changed and the ... Read More
Let me first start by stating that my wife and myself are long time Princess cruisers and have sailed on the Grand Princess three times in the past and have enjoyed ourselves each time. But for Princess Cruises times have changed and the "Grand" is not as grand as it used to be. The ship. The ship was recently overhauled and while the public areas have changed it was not really and improvement, just a change. The Skywalker lounge was removed. This lounge which was on the seventeenth floor used to be a great quite place to read during the day, have a drink during the afternoon and dance at night. It was also nice for shade during the day and protection fron the rain. While there are still many places to dance and drink, the quite of Skywalker's was missed during the day when you wanted quite. With music blaring at you from every direction sometime a little quite is appreciated. Three new eating places were added on the fifth deck. In my opinion each can be removed with no loss. The International Cafe sells expensive coffee and tea drinks and has free pastry and four salads and five sandwiches. The salads and the sandwiches never changed during the entire seven day trip. The new pizza place is no better than the one on deck ten was had very little attendance during our trip. The Vines Wine bar was completely empty every time I passed by and with the prices they charges for a glass of what would be inexpensive wine in any stateside liquor store you can understand why it was empty. The new Club One on the fourteenth floor and the smokers lounge was very well done but it was not large enough for the Captains club members to find seating during the afternoon cocktail hour. The rest of the ship remains as it was and I find it one of the more comfortable ships afloat. The Mattresses need to be changed out and the carpets are looking a little old, but the ship itself is still a kindly ship to sail on. The Cabin. Our cabin number was C722. This is the tenth deck in the rear of the ship. The room was quite, a little on the small side, but quite nice overall. A problem experienced by all I spoke to was the lack of cold water. The water from the tap while tasting fine was warm when it came out. This necessitated our poor steward to constantly bring fresh ice into the room. This particular cabin had a motion problem when going into the wind that produced a felling that you were being shaken awake. The motion disappeared when sailing in any other direction. Having sailed on the Grand a number of times before, but only a midships I can only attribute it to being in the back of the ship. We never felt it before and for the first two nights did cause us to lose some sleep. The Food. Princess has greatly downgraded the food served on the ship. For three night on a seven day cruise I found nothing that I wanted to eat on the menu. I was told the reason for the change was that Princess was having trouble finding adequate amounts or Rack of Lamb and other foods for their fleet. I find this hard to believe since the dish is still available in the pay for restaurants. My feeling is that they have dumb downed the menu to try and force you into the more expensive restaurants. On Italian night the best thing on the menu was Veal Marsala. The veal was tough and the marsala sauce was the worst I have ever eaten. If you are from any major city with good and cheap Italian food expect to cry in despair when you eat it. It looks like they roasted the Veal and then poured some type of dark sauce over it. The same could be said for the lamb shanks served one other night. The best comment our table was able to say was, "Well it was tender" The lamb shanks was served over a bed of lentils. YUCK! On the Good side the Standing Rib Roast was excellent,the seafood dishes generally good, and on Lobester night, plentyfull. The Lido deck buffet is now closed after 11:00 pm so except for the five sandwiches and four salads at the international Cafe or the Pizza place no after show snack was available on the ship. Even if you got one of the sandwiches it was to be eaten indoors instead of the outside area on the lido deck in the warn Caribbean night. Iced tea at night is gone. I can not comment on the pay for restaurants since I consider the very idea of them an abomination, and refuse to try them even when offerd a free upgrade. Entertainment: Excellent every night. While I am not a production show type of person. the ones I did watch were excellent. The staff should not be allowed to put on the staff show since it was very amertuerish, and karaoke is not a form of entertainment for those forced to listen. In general the comedians and singers were all good. Staff & Crew: Excellent as ever and when compared to every other cruise line I have traveled on, the best. The one weird thing about this cruise is that the Captain refused to shake hands with anyone at the Captain's party. It was like we had leprosy and he was afraid to catch it. You put out your hand and he never took it. He never said hello or welcome back. Almost everyone I spoke to about it felt very insulted. Embarkation and debarkation. Smooth as silk. Less than 5 minutes to get on the ship and less than ten to get off. As A final note My wife and I had a great time on this cruise and we will return again to Princess. As I heard about playing golf, "The worst day on a Golf course is better than the best day at work". The same can be said about our cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2011
Personal Background Information- Travel addict Travel To Port of Embarkation- embark palm beach travel to grand Bahama island Embarkation- quick and easy Stateroom- outside cabin with four beds Ship Info- Bahamas celebration. ... Read More
Personal Background Information- Travel addict Travel To Port of Embarkation- embark palm beach travel to grand Bahama island Embarkation- quick and easy Stateroom- outside cabin with four beds Ship Info- Bahamas celebration. Looked like it was recently renovated and had nice pool deck with jacuzzis and big kids slide Dining- three restaurants plus late night Italian buffet Activities- huge casino and two story nightclub and karaoke competition for cash prizes Children's Clubs- several kids rooms for different ages Staff & Service- best I've ever seen on a ship Entertainment- comedy act and singers mostly. Very good Shore Excursions- swam with dolphins which was amazing Disembarkation - quick and easy Everyday we ate in a different dining room on the ship and every single meal was absolutely delicious. The rooms are a really good size, so we didn't feel crammed at all. The casino is spectacular and has just about every game imaginable. It also has really high ceilings, which is nice because it doesn't get smokey. The entertainment was great, especially the comedian. They had an American Idol Karaoke contest on the ship. We didn't win, but had a blast participating in it. The spa was so relaxing. I got an hour massage and a pedicure. Some of the other girls got a hair up-do. We went to Freeport and had a really good time. We did the dolphin excursion and took pics as we swam with the dolphins. The resort, Our Lacaya, is huge and accommodates every age and lifestyle. Whether you want to relax by the pool, have some frozen drinks, buy a handmade wind chime, gamble, or eat some Bahamian conch chowder, this is the place. We did all of the above! I definitely will cruise again and I highly recommend this cruise ship for anyone. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2010
This was our third cruise, but first on Princess. We have booked an Alaskan cruise this summer on Coral Princess, so we were anxious to see how Princess does things. Embarkation was so easy! We breezed thru in no time and were on the ship ... Read More
This was our third cruise, but first on Princess. We have booked an Alaskan cruise this summer on Coral Princess, so we were anxious to see how Princess does things. Embarkation was so easy! We breezed thru in no time and were on the ship within a few minutes of being dropped off at the dock. (Fortunately, we live within an hour of FLL, and were lucky to have a friend drive us to the port. We were traveling with another couple and we have been looking forward to this week for months! We headed to the Horizon Buffet where we encountered the Crowd! The food was adequate, and we ate a quick lunch before taking off to explore the ship. Our first stop was the purser's desk. We had been wait listed for Early Dining and the purser suggested that we go to the dining room after 2 pm to speak to someone. Evidently there were a lot of requests that were similar. We were given a standing 6 pm reservation in the Da Vinci Dining Room, where we had excellent service by our waiter Randy, and his assistant, Maria (from Chile). One evening we had a reservation for Sabatini's and the food was delicious. Jose (from Mexico) was a fabulous waiter for the 3+ hr. dinner! Most mornings we would have room service and enjoy our continental breakfast on our balcony. We also chose to eat in the dining rooms during the day, as opposed to going to the buffet. We thought that the singers and dancers were only mediocre on this cruise. Not on a par with Celebrity or Royal Caribbean. But the comedians were better, especially Phil Tag, who was hilarious. We played Bingo, went to art auctions, and enjoyed time in the casino. The street entertainment was enjoyable and there was always something to do. The week flew by and before we knew it, it was time to leave. Disembarkation was delayed by about an hour and was not was smooth as previous cruises, but it was uneventful. We had a great trip and it was especially fun to share it with good friends. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2003
This was my second cruise on this fine old ship. my previous cruise was five years ago. the amazing grace has been well maintained and actually looked better this trip than it did years ago. i could describe the boarding process in detail ... Read More
This was my second cruise on this fine old ship. my previous cruise was five years ago. the amazing grace has been well maintained and actually looked better this trip than it did years ago. i could describe the boarding process in detail if it did not happened so fast. as the taxis arrived at the dock in freeport the crew instantly grabbed the luggage and took it to the proper cabins. we walked aboard without further ado. forget about lines there were none. even though it was after dark food was waiting, a welcome sight after hours of air travel. i was traveling alone this trip and had signed up to share a cabin. apprehension about who my room mate might be quickly dissipated. harvey, a large man with an even larger sense of humor, was great fun and we never had a problem sharing the space. it was off-season and the ship was at about half capacity, 47 passengers and 39 crew. captain pete was the same skipper from my other cruise. pete is accessible, efficient and cautious about the welfare of his passengers and crew. all of the crew was very friendly. the bridge is open to passengers except when entering and leaving port. the officers were always willing to show us where we were on the charts, what our speed was and what was on the radar. the assistant chief engineer, a young man from romania, delighted in sharing how mechanical things aboard worked. lana, the bubbly energetic social director, was never without a smile and added much to the enjoyment of the cruise. it amazed me how hard the crew worked and still maintained their good humor. mic, a cadet officer, also did an excellent job as bartender giving conrad the regular barkeep times off for meals and breaks. osborn, our very good waiter, took two teenagers to town for games on his time off. rusty, the purser, did a great service for us by filling out most of the forms we needed for visas and customs. she also put out for sale a great selection of t-shirts, jackets and souvenirs. forgive me for singing the praises of this crew but they deserve it and far more. well on to the passengers! they were as much fun as the crew. all were fine traveling companions. ages varied but tended to be an average of 60 or so. most acted much younger. some were married couples and were the more reserved of the passengers. others of us were enjoying our drinks and wild banter. enough about that. conversation flowed easily and several passengers could land good jobs in the humor business. one couple was from liverpool and had made many trips with windjammer. everyone enjoyed their company even if they did speak a foreign language, english. the ports are a good reason to take a cruise on the grace. many are smaller places where the big cruise ships seldom go. although the ports vary this trip we stopped in grand turk, tortola, st. maarten, dominica, nevis, bequia, and mayreau. a snorkel trip took many of us to norman island and a sailing trip took others to mustique. we arrived a day early in trinidad so we had time for an island tour and shopping in the capital city port of spain. the ship itself is older than most but has a style that none of the big newer ships can match. the beautiful woodwork is very well maintained. the exterior decks are washed down early every morning. good thing! this ship is totally informal and bare feet go everywhere including the captains dinner. the a/c was giving us some problems but the crew worked long hours to keep it going. there is only one bar but it serves well and the drinks are reasonably priced, i think the most expensive drink was $4.00, beer about $2.50. rooms vary and some do not have facilities but there are advantages to each and having to share showers and toilets should not put one off because there are plenty for all and convenient to the rooms. the ship is small but built for the rough north atlantic. it will let you know you are on a ship and not a floating landmass. captain pete tried his best to take our fun away by staying away from bad weather and keeping us on the leeward side of things. the ship does a nice job of gently rocking one to sleep. the food was very good this trip, praise the cook. rum swizzles and snacks were served from 5 to 6, wine of questionable vintage was served with dinner (red the pick.) all the windjammer ships have many repeaters. if dressing up in a tux, casinos and formal foolishness is your thing forget this ship. if you love a real sea experience, good conversation, humor, meeting new friends, interesting ports and snorkeling look no further. Read Less

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