63 Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades) to Caribbean - Western Princess Ruby Princess Cruise Reviews

Left Ft Lauderdale on the Ruby on January 10th. Embarkation a breeze. Went right up to the Sanctuary to reserve our spot for the week. Some of our luggage came quickly but one bag did not come till about 6:30pm and had a large sticker on ... Read More
Left Ft Lauderdale on the Ruby on January 10th. Embarkation a breeze. Went right up to the Sanctuary to reserve our spot for the week. Some of our luggage came quickly but one bag did not come till about 6:30pm and had a large sticker on it "Security inspected". Same thing happened to our friend's luggage. Cruise was a pleasure. Well run, clean ship, good meals, nice cabin (aft balcony). Never a long wait for our anytime dining. Sailed on the Royal last year and can say I really enjoyed this one better. Never saw anyone in the dining room in the evening in shorts and tee shirts (unlike the Royal). Saw the captain a few times walking around the ship and he was always friendly. Balcony was bigger than the Royal. Other guests seemed more seasoned. Just a nice group of a few thousand people with only a few exceptions! This is our 6th Princess cruise and have booked for next year. Thankfully we don't take the cruises for the ports any more. Nothing exciting about any of them... Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
"Oh, you are the Hammann's? You have been upgraded!" OK. I'm not an idiot. I realize that getting upgraded is fairly standard. However, don't we all love to hear that phrase? It put a smile on my wife's face ... Read More
"Oh, you are the Hammann's? You have been upgraded!" OK. I'm not an idiot. I realize that getting upgraded is fairly standard. However, don't we all love to hear that phrase? It put a smile on my wife's face as well as mine and set the tone for our 20th wedding anniversary cruise. We arrived at 2:00 as suggested by our boarding pass. It literally took about 5 minutes to get through the check-in process. We stood for about three minutes behind on family and then was instructed to move to a quicker line by an attendant. We were greeted, given our cruise cards and moved on to the ship. Quick and easy! We had reserved an obstructed view stateroom and were upgraded to a balcony stateroom. We were excited to see our room. Both of us had never cruised before so we were enjoyed each and every step of the process. From the name tag on the room to the greeting from Jeffrey, our steward, we were amazed at the service. The food and food service was top of the line. We loved our meal times. Not only were we served amazing food, we established some great relationships with the servers who come from all corners of the world. While I haven't been on other cruises so I cannot compare, I suspect that it would be hard to beat what Princess offers in this area. We dined using the anytime dining package which offered a great amount of flexibility. The balcony cabin we were booked into was amazing. It offered amazing views. The bed was comfortable. Our steward, Jeffrey, was efficient and stealthy! It took some getting used to the two a day service plan on our rooms but once we had the system down it was great. The 2015 New year celebration was great. We had a great time hanging out with people of all nations. This was a memory for a lifetime. I certainly would sail Princess again! Read Less
Sail Date December 2014
This ship is in excellent condition. We were on the Ruby a few years ago and I didn't notice any wear and tear since then. She is a beauty! We were on during a very crowded New Year's week and yet never felt too crowded. ... Read More
This ship is in excellent condition. We were on the Ruby a few years ago and I didn't notice any wear and tear since then. She is a beauty! We were on during a very crowded New Year's week and yet never felt too crowded. Embarkation took place at 11:30 am but disembarkation was delayed by about 30 minutes. Also the taxi line outside the terminal was horrendous. We waited about 45 minutes for a taxi to the airport. This is the reason I'd never book an early flight. The towel game was in full effect - if you were not out on deck on sea days by 9 am you'd have difficulty finding a chair, and there are hundreds and hundreds of chairs. We watched the Sugar Bowl under MUTS and despite the rain, had a great night! They come around with pizza slices. The gym was packed every morning. You usually had to wait for any piece of cardio to open up. We stayed at the Hyatt House on 17th street pre and post cruise - great location next to Embassy Suites and Publix and Total Wine. Very nice hotel! Read Less
Sail Date December 2014
The Ruby Princess is in great shape with a wonderful happy crew. Food is as good as always in all the different restaurants and the Crown Grill is exceptional and you must try it when onboard. In the Horizon Court on Deck 15 you get ... Read More
The Ruby Princess is in great shape with a wonderful happy crew. Food is as good as always in all the different restaurants and the Crown Grill is exceptional and you must try it when onboard. In the Horizon Court on Deck 15 you get amazing service and all staff are excellent and you will want for nothing in relation to service. We did the 14 day cruise - back-to-back Western and Eastern Caribbean and the ports were all fabulous. We made the Wheelhouse Bar our regular watering hole, which was very well run by Carlo and his team. And special mention has to be made for thr amazing bar skills of Petar from Croatia. His tricks and showmanship was only superseded by the quality and taste of r drinks he made. For ladies looking for a special surprise you must ask for his special - The Burrito. The only negative on the holiday was the EZ Air from Princess, which was anything but easy as the air bookings were a disaster from the start. Princess please note that this seems to be a common issue with your passengers and will lose you passengers.   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Ruby Princess November 2014 Western Caribbean Saturday – Embarkation and General ship comments We arrive after 1:30pm to check in at Pier 2 of Port Everglades. The ship looked very nice even though it was small in comparison to others ... Read More
Ruby Princess November 2014 Western Caribbean Saturday – Embarkation and General ship comments We arrive after 1:30pm to check in at Pier 2 of Port Everglades. The ship looked very nice even though it was small in comparison to others in port. He check in went very smooth and all of the staff were very friendly, upbeat and helpful. Before we could get the key in the door Ernesto, our steward, greeted us from down the hall; knowing our names! Unbelievable!! The mini-suite was just the right size. We’ve been aft in a balcony which was nice, but the extra living and seating area was so nice. Ernesto offered us flutes of Champagne for us to toast our cruise. Soon the Muster Station Drill was called. The drill was a little unorganized with lots of wasted time just waiting for announcements. Dinner in the Horizon Court was very good. Prime rib, fish, pasta, and shrimp cocktail, good soups were the highlights. Plenty of salads and fruit are always present. The vanilla moose was light and fluffy. Service at the table for drinks was very good – cleaning our plates and asking if we wanted coffee of tea. They even had decaf tea! The “crossing” always worries me. It’s at night with lots of ship traffic. Our stateroom is in the middle of the ship. With the big waves we just had a little shimmy. Ernesto comes to turn down the bed, freshen the towels and leaves us chocolate on the pillow and a blue Princess bag. (Love free stuff). The bathroom in our stateroom had a tub, which was nice. It did provide more room than the small showers. So, if you don’t bring your glasses, here is how the tub knobs work. The top one is easy. It controls the shower head. Up is a shower; down it drains out the faucet. Next two knobs down. The top one is the off – on knob. The right directly below is the temperature. They are hard to see but there are temperature numbers on the knob. Ernesto even folded my son’s clothes that were lying around his room. He also provided us with extra beach towels. He went well beyond what we expected his regular duties were. The location of your stateroom is the MOST important thing to consider when booking a cruise. Think about what activities you think you might participate in. How far from the dining room do you want to be? How from the pool? How far from the shore excursion deck? If you are just going to eat, book a stateroom AFT. Excursion every day – Front. Wherever your stateroom is there will be LOTS of walking. We are used to walking every day, but there was a lot of walking on the ship. The boat is long. From room, to breakfast, to pool, to lunch, to excursion, to room, to dinner, to shows, to room. There is lots of area to cover. Wear not only comfy shoes but walk to get prepared. Location is also important when the seas get rough. The crossings are in open water. WE had high seas with high winds. The winds were strong enough to cancel the Ultimate Deck Party one night. The water in one of the pools had 4 foot waves in it. It was crashing over the seating area that surrounds the pool. But mid-ship wasn’t that bad. Towards the front of the boat it rocks up and down, slowly heaving in and out of the waves. In the back of the boat there was a severe shimmy. Mid-ship you could hear the walls creaking and things shifting, but with just a little movement. Prone to sea-sickness? Get a room lower in the boat (and mid-ship). The winds were so strong that you couldn’t open the promenade deck’s doors. Sunday – Sea Day We had reservations for the Crown Grill. You easily make reservations by calling from your stateroom. Smart casual dress code – bonus! Glad it wasn’t formal. The room is beautiful with dark wood, luxurious seats and fine linen and china. Appetizers of prawns and scallops were yummy. Sasha, our server, was one of the best waiters we have EVER had! Soup and salads were just ok; beautifully served but not to our taste. The filet was huge and very tender. NY strip steak was terrific. Everyone liked the baked potato with choice of toppings. The lobster was shelled right at the table by Sasha and so tender. I didn’t like the spinach. It had too many flavors. Desserts were wonderful; chocolate, lemon, cheesecake, marshmallows (not all in one piece but multiple on one plate) all very good. Still can’t decide which one was the best! We probably would have gone again, on another night, but our schedule got too crazy as the cruise went on. Dave was the game show host for BINGO. He was funny and made it fun. The trivia game that followed was hard but fun too. We also played some casino games that evening and won a l Monday – Grand Cayman Two from our group went on the excursion of the 2 tank dive was with Don Foster’s. Meet in the Wheelhouse Lounge at 7:15am. Bring towels and sunscreen besides your C-card and dive log. All other equipment was supplied by the dive shop. The tender left at 7:30am. Got to the bus which drove a short distance to the dive operation. After filling out a liability form you choose your equipment. Tanks and weight belt were on the boat already. There were two groups of 6 divers and a dive master. They were extremely well organized. Before and after every dive they called BY NAME, roll call. Love that safety protocol! Dove P.A.D.I dive tables and in a group. The first dive was terrible. A wall dive into a sand shoot without much life. The second dive was wonderful Lots to see – turtles, assorted tropical fish, etc. Back on the boat, to the shop, to the bus, to the pier and to the Princess tender. We would dive with Don Foster’s again. The staff was pleasant and professional. I went independently to explore Georgetown, having visited the Caymans a few times before. You assemble in the Michelangelo Lounge to wait for a tender. Upon arrival on the pier you are bombarded by picture takers, tour operators and taxi drivers vying for your business. The streets and sidewalks are uneven and chipped severely. Beeping cars are right next to you and the smell of rotting fish permeates the air. Expensive jewelry stores and cheap t-shirt and souvenir places line the street. It was very much like any Bahamian port. I turned around and couldn’t get back on the ship fast enough. Your I.D is checked multiple times for security. Georgetown has changed so much since my last visit. I hope the rest of the island was still as beautiful and clean as it was before. There was free wi-fi in the pavilion. Back on ship I wanted to relax in the shade of the Calypso pool. The cruise director’s constant advertisement that ran on the screen ruined my calm. I heard it three times. It was so obnoxious. I got it, last tender 3:30, shows, music, buy another cruise – just went on and on, LOUDLY. And those two ladies… what were they talking about? I couldn’t understand them at all. Then a concert started. I didn’t buy a ticket to THIS concert. Did they look at the crowd? No one wanted to hear this music. We really do not need constant entertainment. I returned to my stateroom where it was quiet. Tuesday – Roatan, Honduras We originally had scheduled a tour of the island but decided against it after the state department warnings. Actually staying on the boat in Roatan was nice. We had the pool all to ourselves. We did visit the marketplace shops (a secure area) and found the people warm and some of the shops with unique wares. There were a lot of mahogany wood products, crafted right on the island, not from China. Some real artistic craftsmanship in the products. We had a quick lunch at the Trident Grill. Hot dogs, hamburger, chicken sandwich, fries. Friendly chef cooked them to order. Wednesday – Cozumel The boat got in late and tried to dock a couple of times. The winds were very strong, blowing over 45 knots. 90% of the shore excursions were cancelled. Anything in or on the water –cancelled. Any crossing to Cancun – cancelled. The cloudy and cool temperatures pool activities a bad idea. We were saddened because the ONE excursion we were looking forward to was the Coba Ruins – cancelled. We went ashore to the DUFRY, duty free market place. The duty free store products and prices were similar to Roatan, except for the Mexican products, like Mexican vanilla and some liqueur, the prices were lower. There were 30 stores ALL selling the SAME products. They were clean but the ALL had painted wood, NFL backpacks, ugly Mexican clothing, large Mexican hats, over-priced chocolates and cocoa, and some leather products and toys. A FEW unique shops were scattered around the mall. Those were a joy to visit. Those didn’t need a “barker” trying to sway you into their store. We walked down to Caraloha, a bamboo made products store. As soon as you carried a shopping bag you were an easy target for the “barkers” yelling at you to come into their store. I guess they figured out you bought something there, why not me? But that city street was much cleaner then Georgetown, Grand Cayman. For dinner we went to Bocelli’s dining room for our scheduled sit down dinner time. We didn’t know which table was ours, as everyone else at 6pm rushed to get seated. The maître d graciously showed us to our table. The waiter immediately came over to welcome us. The fettuccini was excellent. Service was terrific! (Table 109) Excellent medallions of beef. Just ok gnocci. Excellent desserts. The chocolate trio was fantastic! Great crème brulee, and a huge piece of cheesecake. We usually do not go to the shows, but the magician was FANTASTIC. Really felt he loved what he was doing and could not have been a better show. Thursday – At sea – Thanksgiving I don’t remember much about what we did on Thanksgiving. Ate, watched some football, the usual Thanksgiving for us. The turkey and trimmings were all good and I didn’t have to clean up. The entire crew would wish you a Happy Thanksgiving all day! It was nice. Friday – Princess Cays The first thing we did was a Dune Buggy excursion to see the island. It was a 2 hour trip to Lighthouse Beach. It was a bit too slow for us. We could have made it to the beach in half the time and still drove safely. The beach was beautiful and the surrounding limestone cliffs were amazing. We suggested they put the slow drivers in the back of the parade and let the rest have a little fun in the sand and puddles. Bernadette was terrific! She loved her little island and was very proud of it. The history of the island was interesting too. Just would have been more fun had the first driver in line not been such a slowpoke. We went from the dune buggies straight to lunch. There were lines but it is not Princess’ fault that the lines move so slow. The food is out and ready. We can’t understand what takes so long to put a patty on a bun and move along. The beach was larger than we anticipated. There were plenty of lounge chairs, but maybe not in the sun or shade you may prefer. We did notice that there were people at the Horizon Court around 4ish, snacking. The lunch just wasn’t that filling. The cay was very clean and it was a nice day. That evening you must have your luggage out by 10pm. We noticed most rooms had it out before dinner. The luggage was picked up almost as fast as it was placed in the hallway. On our last cruise it was there almost all night. This is just another example of how nicely this cruise was run. We don’t know who handles and hires the staff but they ALL were professional, friendly and helpful. From the cleaning lady in the bathroom to the servers and all the behind the scenes personnel, All were nice and friendly. Also that evening you get specific instructions on disembarkation. All well organized and handled nicely. Saturday – Disembarkation You must be out of your stateroom by 8am. Everyone has the same idea. Leave the stateroom and go to breakfast before you leave. The breakfast areas were packed. The wait staff was still very nice. If you followed your instructions on where and when to meet the crew handled it from there. There was always friendly staff around to direct you off the ship and through customs. They also made sure you knew where to pick up a bus or taxi. Throughout the cruise not one crew member passed us without a greeting or smile. Of course the “game show hosts” and your steward you have the most contact with; they were terrific. Even Gustavo in the boutique was extra nice. We really noticed the crew always working, but always happy. It was a pleasant feeling all week long. Thank you to the crew of Ruby Princess. You made our cruise special!   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
This was my 9th cruise, my husband's 4th and both my kids (ages 17 &14) first cruise. My sister and mother also traveled with us. We drove 13 hours straight through the night from NC to Fort Lauderdale. The port parking was very ... Read More
This was my 9th cruise, my husband's 4th and both my kids (ages 17 &14) first cruise. My sister and mother also traveled with us. We drove 13 hours straight through the night from NC to Fort Lauderdale. The port parking was very convenient. Because we got to the port so early, we were able to board the ship around 12 noon. Minimal lines and next to no waiting. As soon as we boarded we were greeted by Princess staff who offered the $250 all you can drink alcohol card. This covered any drink or beer less than $10 each and gave 40% off of wine bottles at dinner. This was a great deal if you planned to drink 7 or more drinks per day. Keep in mind if you choose this, you may not drink as much on port days. It definitely saved us money. We got both kids soda/smoothie cards for $35 each. They each got a water cup souvenir with the card. The boat was beautiful. It had been 10 years since we had sailed with Princess but I quickly remembered how beautiful and classy the ships were and Ruby Princess was no different. It was amazing how clean the ship was. Every staff member you passed greeted you with a smile/ good morning/ afternoon etc. Our room steward Joequin was very efficient and kind. The cabin was very large to be an ocean view. The shower was small and I could see any larger person having some trouble. There was a huge closet area for luggage and clothing. Beds were a little hard but I still slept well. Our air conditioner on embarkation seemed a little warm and they sent a repairman by the next day and it was fixed. I do recall a foul smell when we initially got onto the boat but this quickly went away. I think it was the sewage that they were pumping off the boat. This sounds gross but the smell was not noticeable once we left the port. The food was amazing. Presentation was as good as the taste as well. The only complaint was that they did not serve lobster as it was only a 5 night cruise. We did anytime dining but requested and got the same waiter each night. Our waiter Jeffery was phenomenal. As well as our Jr waiter Ketut. They were knowledgeable about the food and very personable. Loved the tiramisu on the 2nd night and the crème brulee (which you could get every night if you wanted to). Also, the prime rib was the best I had ever tasted and you could cut it with your fork. Buffets were good. I did not like the sushi bar which was offered one lunch. I am a huge fan of sushi and I felt that it was mediocre at best. This was my only food complaint though. I only saw one dance/singers show and it was great. The comedian and the illusionist were amazing as well. My husband enjoyed the casino too much and he played bingo every opportunity. He actually won once $300. I did not go to the art auction but I did go to the cooking demonstration and kitchen tour. This was entertaining but the tour was fair as no one was in the kitchen cooking. The sky lounge night club was somewhat boring but it may be our age (early 40's) or the crowd. The pool on sea days was crowded as expected but we always found a chair. I also had a hot stone massage that I thought was good but over priced. It's hard to pay $225 (including tip) for a massage no matter how good it was. My sister and mom got the same massage the same day but their's was only $175. Not sure why the price difference except my husband booked mine the day before for my 40th birthday present. It was great though. The teen center was great for the kids. Most nights they were out later than we were. My kids made a lot of friends. I do think that $25 per photo is too much. They take so many pictures that you want several. We bought 3 pics at $75 dollars and it breaks my heart to think of all the photos that were shredded after the cruise. It would be nice if they were more affordable. I think that they would sell more pics if they had better packages too. Tendering to the Caymans was easy and no wait. We did not book any tours through the boat. We took a local bus for $2.50 each to 7 mile beach and then did a little shopping. The highlight of the Caymans was that we got to meet Guy Harvey at his shop. Cozumel was much more fun. We took a taxi for $28(6 people) to Ocean Beach resort for parasailing. This place was great because it had the ocean, a pool, bar, grill, beach chairs, umbrellas, and a water trampoline and slide out in the ocean. The staff there were so friendly and they let us use the chairs for free since 4 of our party were parasailing. The food was phenomenal. Then we returned to the port for some souvenir shopping. Disembarkation was amazingly organized. We requested an early release and were granted 7:45am. We took our own luggage and were off the boat in about 10 minutes. The last cruise I was on was much more caotic with disembarkation. We were blessed with beautiful weather, no illness and calm seas. What more could you ask for I will definitely cruise with Princess again and again. To me the passengers seem more laid back and mature. I never saw anyone get out of hand and it did not have a party boat atmosphere but everyone had a great time. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Point of View: I'm a 42 year old woman and took this cruise with my 24 year old niece. Good points: This was my first time with Princess. I booked through Expedia and let the cruise line choose our room. I paid for an interior, basic ... Read More
Point of View: I'm a 42 year old woman and took this cruise with my 24 year old niece. Good points: This was my first time with Princess. I booked through Expedia and let the cruise line choose our room. I paid for an interior, basic cabin (no windows). To our surprise, they upgraded us for free to the midsize balcony room which would have costed us about $400-500 more. Comedian and magician were great. Movies under the Stars was great. You do need to get there about 30-45 minutes before it starts to get a good seat. Most are taken about 15 minutes before it starts. The movies were recent ones unlike Carnival where they can be 5-8 years old. RB showed Captain Phillips, Gravity, Walter Mitty and a few other movies that were released in the last 6 months. I attended a Palm Sunday nondenominational church service led by the cruise director. There were only 20 in attendance but we sang a few songs, did a reading and had a small sermon. The service only lasted 40 minutes but it was really good. The food in the Horizon Court was surprisingly good. Much better than the one offered on Carnival lines. We only ate in the formal dining room twice because the food in the Horizon Court was just as good. ON the Carnival Ship we always ate in the dining room because the food wasn't that good in other places. Ice cream is excellent. Tastes more like gelato than soft serve ice cream. I found that all of the staff were very friendly. The goofy photos with staff dressed up like natives, etc was offered but the pushy feel you get with Carnival wasn't there. Coffee bar was great and their prices are cheaper than Carnivals and Starbucks. Embarkation and disembarkation was a breeze. They really have their act together. We went to Grand Cayman and Cozumel. They used the first come, first served number system for Grand Cayman to board the tender boats. It went very smoothly. Carnival should do theirs this way. I booked excursions on my own which I will now do in the future. I saved money and had plenty of time to make it back on the ship. I booked through Captain Marvin's in Grand Cayman and Nachi CoCom in Cozumel. Based on the photos and video of the ship, I was nervous that this would cater to a much older clientel and there wouldn't be any activities that I enjoy. But, the comedians were great, movies were great and we had a great time. I sailed with Carnival Magic last year and thought it was great. But, it was the little touches on this cruise that will keep me coming back - the fact that they offered a church and Passover Seder service (morning BIble studies were also offered), non pushiness of sales, good food options ( I found no powdered eggs on this cruise) and up to date movie offerings. I will sail with Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Please note this is my first cruise and thanks to all of the previous ruby princess reviews which lead me to select this ship. My fiancé and I traveled on the April 17 Western Caribbean cruise from the frozen tundra of Washington DC. Took ... Read More
Please note this is my first cruise and thanks to all of the previous ruby princess reviews which lead me to select this ship. My fiancé and I traveled on the April 17 Western Caribbean cruise from the frozen tundra of Washington DC. Took the princess bus from Miami (cheaper than supershuttle/taxi from Miami). Embarkation was a breeze and we were in the room in no time at all. I was worried from reading the review about the rooms/bathrooms since I am a big guy (6'6 270+). The shower was tight but I was able to maneuver just fine and thought the bathrooms are designed well for such a small space. I also was concerned about the bed size but it is bigger than a Queen and smaller than a king...similar width to a California king bed but not as long (good sized). The room was nice and the balcony was plenty of space for two people. We are in our late 30's and I thought there was a good mix of people from 20-70. Most people looked in there 40-60 range. We hung out at the main pools for fun and swam at the adults only terrace pool at the back. We didn't see the need to hang out at the sanctuary as I never felt it was that crowded. The Casino was fun and we ended up getting the drink package ($49 each per day) which was reasonable and also included unlimited bottle water. We were situated on deck 12 which made it easy to go two flights to the lido deck/pool and easy to walk down to the piazza. The reviews are correct on the Princess Pizza which is thin and similar to NYC style pizza; Delicious. We tried the Crab Shack pop up on the day it was offered and loved the king crab and popcorn shrimp. Crown grill was really nice and we enjoyed the MDR as well. All the meals I had were great. The design is really nice and made for a very relaxing time. My fiance enjoyed her spa day but it is pricey (even by downtown DC standards). I enjoyed the in room tv movie options which ran very recent movies (Saving Mr. Banks, The Hobbit 2, Man of Steel, etc). It was relaxing to chill in the room and stare out the balcony door to the ocean. Movies under the stars were fun and we did that two evenings. The dance parties were also fun at night time. My knock: I could only work out on the bike's in the fitness center since I would hit my head on the treadmill or elliptical machine (if your under 6'3 your probably fine). However I am a runner so I noticed many runners using deck 7/8 (front of the ship you go upstairs to 8 then back down to 7) to run around the ship during off hours (5 laps to a mile). I was able to run for 30 mins when the ship was docked in Cozumel. They probably discourage you from running on deck 7 during sea days and prime hours. Ports: Grand Cayman; We skipped the excursions and took an 8 buck cab to the Royal Palm beach club and had a wonderful time chilling out on the beach. Cozumel; we checked out the port but stayed on the ship and relaxed. All in all a wonderful time and I wouldn't hesitate to book a cruise on Princess again.   Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Our 5 day W. Caribbean (Cozumel, G. Cayman) cruise was terrific. We met wonderful people, with whom we hope to cruise again. The upgrade/upsell fairy did not come prior to our departure, but she greeted us at Embarkation with a wonderful ... Read More
Our 5 day W. Caribbean (Cozumel, G. Cayman) cruise was terrific. We met wonderful people, with whom we hope to cruise again. The upgrade/upsell fairy did not come prior to our departure, but she greeted us at Embarkation with a wonderful Port side balcony suite. A few other huge perks included Sabatini’s for breakfast, fresh fruit basket, canapés at night, internet time and coveted laundry service… totally amazing! Room steward: Shiv was the best we’ve had in 13 cruises. What a great guy- hugely informative, helpful without hovering, anticipatory and so pleasant-always a smile to greet you. Food: Late seating was well run, served delicious food prepared perfectly. The Head Waiter allowed us the privilege of escargot every night. DR census was lower than normal; the British pub fish and chips this time were excellent! We taught the bartender to pour Black and Tans. The DR was so good we never visited Sabatini’s or the Crown Grill once this trip. Embarkation, Debarkation: Smooth as silk. While we embarked from Pier 19, we returned to another pier, which was quite a distance from our starting point. Princess shuttled us back to the originating pier. (Thank you, Princess!) They dropped us at the right parking ramp, but locating our car was harder than necessary. We'd like USA Parking to improve the signage within their parking ramps. Ship itself: We love the Ruby, but she is starting to look a bit worn in spots (especially the handrails). While riding in the tenders we noticed that she needed an exterior paint job, too. MUTS also has some burned out pixels. I have every faith Princess will be attentive to her needs, which history has proven. Excursions: We are sooo done with Princess shore excursions. They need to make the groups smaller to improve the traveler’s experience. They are more costly when compared to their competition (especially local/ashore providers), and their groups need to be segregated by levels of experience (first timers vs. newbies). They do a good job of describing their excursions, but they are often too crowded to be enjoyable. I suspect the decreased time in port is not directly correlated, but that fact doesn't encourage booking solo excursions. Most of us cruise for the destinations, as well as the onboard experience. We don't want Princess to continually Increase ship time at the expense of shore time. CC: We enjoyed meeting everyone on our “role call” who attended. Our CC Hostess ScrappyJ did a fabulous job. She invited the Commodore and is staff to our “Meet and Greet” –they came and it was quite a treat! A true highlight of our trip. Entertainment: Dancers, jugglers, comedians, and musicians were great! The Art show, selection, and pricing truly stunk- Princess made a big mistake with this change. Bingo cards- the sheet colors were confusing in the low light conditions of the lounge. How about printing the color name on the sheets for those of us who are red/green color blind?! We’d appreciate more non-smoking time in casino. Either that, or improve the air exchangers! Shopping: Great deals, low pressure, and less hallway hawking this time. Thank you Princess! I missed the lower cost jewelry spot where I traditionally bought charms (jewelry) for employees, family, and friends. They only offered Pandora this time.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
This was our 15th cruise (RCCL, Disney, Celebrity, and Princess combined) and although nothing exotic by definition of length or ports visited, it was one of our most enjoyable. I won't bore you with a lengthy minute by minute ... Read More
This was our 15th cruise (RCCL, Disney, Celebrity, and Princess combined) and although nothing exotic by definition of length or ports visited, it was one of our most enjoyable. I won't bore you with a lengthy minute by minute description but rather comment on some of those things that contributed to making it so enjoyable. #1) embarkation - we virtually walked on. Two years ago, we waited in line 2+ hours to board the Crown Princess (same terminal, approx. same time of arrival). Go figure! #2) cabin service - perhaps the best we have ever had. Not 2X/day; more like 4. And we never saw him! Previous requests for wine glasses have gone unheeded or we've been told to contact dining or room service. Not this time! Glasses were delivered quickly and brought daily same as other glassware. #3) cruise director (Lee) - unbelievably energetic. Have never experienced a CD that actually participated/performed in shows. #4) entertainment - great and varied - bands, comedian, magician, stage shows, trivia, games -- all very good. Believe this is a reflection of the cruise director as well. #5) good selection of Movies Under the Stars (we caught Capt. Phillips and Gravity). #6) pool attendants actually monitored lounge chairs and helped control those who "reserve" chairs and never are really there. #7) buffet did not seem as hectic as on previous cruises. #8) although I believe cruise was technically a "sell out," it never seemed overly crowded anywhere -- no problem finding a seat for shows, table/chair in pool area, elevator, spot in the casino. My only downside comment would be that some evenings, dinner selections in the MDR were not quite as good as what we have experienced in the past (on Princess). I would never-the-less rate the 5 evenings together as "good." Desserts were very good! Bottom line: the Ruby Princess was a very pretty ship with admirable service and entertainment. We had a great time and would not hesitate to repeat this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Having sailed Celebrity for the past few years but longing to return to try Princess again we chose the Ruby out of Ft Lauderdale. We were NOT disappointed. A little wear and tear and some refinishing on the railings was all we could see. ... Read More
Having sailed Celebrity for the past few years but longing to return to try Princess again we chose the Ruby out of Ft Lauderdale. We were NOT disappointed. A little wear and tear and some refinishing on the railings was all we could see. The food and service more than made up for it. We did not eat in any prime restaurants but we did anytime dining in Michaelangelo and made that our dining room every night. Service was above the norm and food arrived hot and great every night! The choices were plentiful. Same goes for the buffet upstairs. Average mid ship room. Love Princess closets!!! Bed was comfortable but the pillows were not great. Did not like that there is not a sheet between the comforter and passenger. Shower is too small but manageable. Need hooks on wall between door and bedroom (we bring our own). Cabin clean. And we did see people smoking below us although they say NO SMOKING. Aloha deck was perfect. Our cabin steward was very nice but we did not see him but once the whole cruise and while disembarking. He kept the room clean and we did not have to ask for anything. The robes were VERY worn and not worth even asking for (who could they fit, a small child?). The bar staff was great and the entertainment was good. What more could we ask for? Thank you Ruby for a great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
It was great to be back aboard Ruby, having cruised over Christmas, however I will start at the beginning. Booked an obstructed view cabin on Emerald this time and sure do miss that Mini-Suite (I LIKE the open balcony) I had at Christmas, ... Read More
It was great to be back aboard Ruby, having cruised over Christmas, however I will start at the beginning. Booked an obstructed view cabin on Emerald this time and sure do miss that Mini-Suite (I LIKE the open balcony) I had at Christmas, but any cabin is better than staying home! Cruised with a friend this time instead of DM, and at the last minute 2 more friends grabbed a cabin 2 doors down. I awoke at 4:30 am with excitement! We are a 2 hour drive from Port Everglades and we left home about 9:30 and parked at the port. We breezed through check-in and even with stops at the wine table, we were in our cabins at 12:30 and un-packed. Our view was barely obstructed. (E-612). (No, we were not funneled through the casino). I understand from the boards that there was a Coast Guard drill and a jam just before our arrival, but we timed it perfectly. My ONLY complaint is that for 4 out of 5 times, the bed was made as a Queen, when I had requested twins. Come ON Princess!!! You configure the beds correctly only 20% of the time? We left a note for our steward "Won" and I explained to my friend that it might not get changed until turn down. I have never had a problem with any mattresses on Princess and laughed when I passed someone in the hall telling his wife he was going to request an egg crate. To each his own! Since I was the only one who knows Ruby, we voted to grab a quick lunch at Café Caribe sitting outside and then I gave a tour of the ship. When we got to Crooners, Franky was not there and I found out he is now working in Sky Walkers. I had brought gifts……Girl Scout cookies called "Thank You Berry Munch" and magazines including SI's 50th Anniversary Swimsuit Edition. I thought that would be good barter material! We returned to our cabin to ready for muster and the bed was already changed and we met Won who turned out to be one of my favorite Stewards yet! (Just after Michael from December). We decided ahead of time that we would do Anytime Dining and after our tour and sail away done from the aft deck, we changed and were seated straight away, sharing a table with 2 other couples...no waiting. We each had different meals and everyone at our table was very happy with the food. For activities that evening, some wanted to see movies (Gravity, in the theatre that all agreed was an awful movie), Last Vegas at MUTS and I went to Sky Walkers where Franky was surprised to see me and welcomed me back to Ruby. As we had an early morning, I called it a night. Sea Day: We all agreed that the adult only aft Terrace pool was preferable over the adult only Spa pool and we grabbed chairs first thing the next morning. I don't like the fact that the Spa pool sits down in a hole whereas the aft pool has the best views on the ship! Some people do not realize that you do NOT have to walk through the buffet area to get there. I take the elevator to Riviera deck and walk aft and there is a small staircase. Easy Peasy! 3 of the 4 of us wanted to attend the meet & mingle so we abided by the 30 minute rule and popped up to Sky Walkers. Captain Fabrizio Maresca was in attendance and it was nice to meet some of the other CC members! I confirmed with the Captain that there would be no champagne fountain, just a balloon drop. :( Also that Commodore Romano aka The Sea Wolf, would be returning the first week of March. I may have to book another cruise in April before Ruby heads across the pond. I was disappointed that there was no champagne fountain. I think it adds a bit of elegance and class, especially over balloons! Two of us went back to Sky Walkers later for the steel drum lesson, however it was full. We received tickets for the next sea day and I'll tell you now that Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star isn't as easy as it looks!!!! Very fun event, but do get there early! The instructor told us the idea on the longer cruises is to get the same group to have 2-3 lessons and then PLAY in the Piazza one evening. For once I was happy I was on a short cruise! After a day of too much sun by the pool, we again dressed to impress and had a seat at Vinz for the balloon drop. Not nearly as impressive as the fountain, but still fun. We then walked straight in to dinner....no pager...no waiting, to share a table with 6 + the 4 of us. The only trouble with the tables this size is it is a long dinner but we had no pressing agenda. Shore Day: I had reserved with Moby Dick a tour for snorkeling and to swim with the stingrays. We grabbed something at the IC and then we were the first tender off the ship. We walked into Michaelangelo and were given number 2 tickets and a whole group (1) had just gone through the door and we were held. Then with just us sitting there and no one else coming in, they told us we could go and we ended up on a tender that wasn’t even half full. We were the first 4 people onshore and still had 1 ½ hrs. before meeting the Moby Dick rep. We shopped in the little kiosks and strolled around the waterfront a bit and decided we would come back to Margaritaville because it WAS National Margarita Day! As we waited we watch a RCL ship come in that was chartered by an Ohio alumni group, who we would see more of (too much) later in M-ville! I will write a separate review of Moby Dick but I can tell you they get FIVE STARS!!! This excursion turned out to be more than we ever expected, especially since 2 of our party had swum with stingrays before in the Bahamas. They said this was the BEST Stingray experience ever. The 3 guides from Moby Dick have VERY personal relationships with certain stingrays they’ve been associating with for 20 years. All I can say is “how many stingrays have you ever kissed that kiss you back?” Definitely worth $45 and no deposit necessary, just reserve spots ahead of time via their web-site. There were only 18 in our group and 4 of those were from hotels we picked up along the way to the boat. Afterwards Moby Dick dropped us wherever we wanted along the way. Some got off at seven mile beach, some at another restaurant, etc. We went all the way back and went to Margaritaville. As we sat there waiting the restaurant began to fill up with those Ohio alumni and let’s just say I am glad there were no small kids in the restaurant as some of the revelers decided to remove their tops in order to win a drinking game. Go Ohio! We were back onboard about an hour before the last tender. Since we wanted to watch Captain Phillips at MUTS which was a 6:00 movie, we planned to eat at Café Caribe afterwards. Not being a “foodie”, I am always happy with what I eat onboard and I don’t ever overeat. Ok, maybe I have TWO desserts! We spent some time at Crooners later and I really wish Ruby would get a GOOD piano man. They had a different one at Christmas and I was not impressed with either, and Crooners is usually one of my favorite hang places. We ended up in the front row of the theatre for the comedy show which was very good! (Rollin Jay Moore). Then back to our comfortable beds. Last Sea Day: Onboard Outlet Sale which I find as a hit or miss. In December, I found some things, this time no. I sent 2 of our party to the culinary demonstration and galley tour which I had done before and they enjoyed it. Then 2 of us went to the Pub Lunch in the Wheelhouse for fish n chips, always a not miss for me. In the afternoon, we finally got to do our steel drum lesson which is very chaotic with 15 newbies all trying to play at the same time but a lot of fun! We had reserved the Stammtisch Old World wine tasting at Vines 2 days prior at 4:30. ($15pp). THAT was well worth it and “Allen” was superb. This is an extra I would pay for and do every cruise! The venue, the table, the information was all fabulous. They had also promoted a couple of wine tastings in the dining rooms. The first night it was $35 for the next day. The 2nd night it was $9.00 for the next day??? I’m not sure if they were trying to get rid of wine they no longer wanted to carry or what. But you can’t beat the Vines location for a wine tasting and I am very happy we had reserved that one and not be stuck back in the dining room. Later we decided to eat (again!) at the buffett. I wanted to say good-bye to Frankie and also our cabin steward Michael from our December cruise and the others ended up seeing just a bit of the yes/no game (Explorers Lounge). I was tired and the other 3 wanted to see the “adult” version comedy show being held in Club Fusion that from what I understand was completely packed and should have been held in the Princess theatre but wasn’t. I went to bed and watched the Great Gatsby (one of my favorites) on tv. I missed ALL of the Love Boat reruns this cruise, but saw them every day on the December cruise. Guess I was just in my cabin less this time as it was not a Mini Suite! Lol Disembarkation: We grabbed something agin at the IC and then easily walked off with all of our luggage and from the time we left the cabins until we were in our car was 45 minutes. We planned to walk off AFTER we would miss most of the Ft. Ld. Traffic as we headed North on 95 and our plan worked very well. Summary: As I have said, I was just on Ruby at Christmas and I swear this crew is the very BEST. One of my friends has cruised recently with RCL and the other 2 had not cruised in over 15 years. Everyone raved about this cruise and there truly was no real disappointment at all. I hope everyone’s cruise goes as swimmingly!!!! Happy to try to answer any specific questions. Bon Voyage!   Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
Just came back from a birthday cruise with my husband...WHERE to begin....First of all, I am probably one of Princess cruises' biggest fans and "PR" people (cruising not only with Princess but also SITMAR way before cruising ... Read More
Just came back from a birthday cruise with my husband...WHERE to begin....First of all, I am probably one of Princess cruises' biggest fans and "PR" people (cruising not only with Princess but also SITMAR way before cruising was a popular way to vacation) and in all of my travels with this line I have never really felt the need to complain about any ship/service/port, etc. Having said that, here are my thoughts on the Ruby Princess 5 day cruise (I would hope that these complaints would only apply to these shorter cruises and things would be "Princess normal" on the regular sailings). LIKES: 1. Great embarkation procedures -- as an elite passenger we waited to (priority) board in a separate area. The cruise rep made passengers sit in the order in which they came into the room (as opposed to "the mad rush to the door" we recently experienced on the Royal Princess) and we were permitted to board in the order in which we had arrived. Kudos to Princess for finally "getting it right" on this aspect -- hopefully it will trickle down to all the ships' embarkation procedures. Our Princess hostess was fantastic -- friendly, cheerful, entertaining and very professional. Nice way to start a cruise! 2. Delicious food -- the food on every other Princess ship has been very good, but the food on the Ruby was excellent! No matter where/what we ate....it was all delicious! We had anytime dining and were lucky enough to catch the same waiter both nights we ate in the dining room (Mandol and his assistant Victoria) and they made our dining experience pleasurable. We also dined in both Sabatini's and the Crown Grill and enjoyed both meals. 3. Wait staff/bar staff/cabin steward -- The staff on this cruise was outstanding -- some of the friendliest men and women I have ever met on any cruise I've been on! I sailed many times with the Commodore of the Ruby way back when he was a staff captain on Sitmar's Fair Sky (later Sky Princess) and his warm, gentle, friendly personality seems to have had an effect on the staff on his ship. Kudos to all working on board -- they were the best crew I have sailed with in many years! CONS: 1. The Sanctuary -- The Sanctuary is now $30 per day per person. REALLY? (No one told us about the increased cost and while we would have still booked at whatever price, it would have been nice to know in advance what I was paying, especially since we didn't pay that much on the Royal in December.) Also, they charge you on embarkation day (Royal, as well as the other ships on which we booked the Sanctuary for the entire week didn't open until first day out). In my opinion this was a wasted day since most people don't carry their swim gear with them and have to wait for their luggage to be delivered to their cabin (or are out "exploring the ship"). On this particular cruise there were only 20 people who reserved for the entire week; on day 2 when my husband went to the Sanctuary ahead of me he sat down "one seat over" from our seats and the original "owner" of the seat made a huge scene and the crew member chided my husband for not remembering his seat. Again...REALLY??? For what we are being charged and for the small amount of "guests," it would seem to me that SHE (the person who escorted my husband to our seats) should have known exactly where to seat him. Also, we didn't see the Sanctuary manager the entire cruise and the staff was not attentive in the least (no towel to take to the pool; had to chase them down for iced tea/water; no cool towels or mists, no one standing at the reception desk greeting passengers as they came into the Sanctuary). This was really an annoyance to me -- Princess is known for its attentiveness to its passengers, especially in specialty areas such as the Sanctuary, and in my opinion both the "missing in action" manager and his staff need extensive training if they are to stay in this location. The Sanctuary is located on deck up from the Spa and on other cruises the pool near the spa was reserved for Spa and Sanctuary guests only so that the environment was one of relaxation - not so on this cruise; the entire pool area was loud (which carried into the Sanctuary), crowded and, on certain days, filled with older teenagers. Again, I am not a complainer, but I have experienced and expect a certain environment (which I paid for) and was disappointed by what was actually experienced. As I stated earlier, it is my hope that these problems would all be rectified once the Ruby was back on a "normal" sailing schedule. 2. Passengers -- there was a wide variety of passengers on this cruise (still spring break in some parts of the US) and it was extremely obvious that many people were having "one too many" cocktails. I have never seen so many drunken people staggering around the public areas nor have I ever seen the maître d' permit passengers wearing flip flops/shorts/wrinkled tee shirts into the dining room at dinner time, let alone seating in the middle of the dining room clearly intoxicated women. Where has happened to the Princess standards? The same concerns hold for the one "formal" night - and I use that term loosely. I have NEVER seen such a casual formal night -- especially in a specialty restaurant. We dined in Sabatini's on formal night (excellent food, wonderful waiter) but we were quite surprised to see so many people dining in shorts, jeans, etc. (Again, I am hoping that everything reverts to normal after the short sailings have concluded.) 3. Passenger services -- I guess the staff here has never heard of the phrase "the customer/passenger" is always right... We had a problem with the safe in our room. We boarded at 11:15 a.m. and, once I could get someone to answer the phone (3 separate calls, wait times of 2 or 3 minutes before hanging up) I was told that someone would be sent up in "10 minutes" -- we waited 45 minutes and decided to leave for a quick lunch at the buffet (excellent food selections and everything was delicious!). Got back to the room a little after 2:30 and the safe had not been fixed. Called again; no answer. Went to muster drill, came back and called one more time only to be told that they were "busy" and would get to us shortly. Finally an extremely personable officer showed up, made a call to have the prior combination removed, and we were back in business! It took all of five minutes. Not sure what was happening at the front desk but they need to be instructed to answer the phone when it rings. Please do not think I am a "snob" or a "cranky old lady" because of my complaints. I am 57 years old, have sailed on many ships over the course of the past 30 years and I just think that cruising (and the passengers who enjoy the cruise experience) should be awarded the respect it is deserving of. Princess has always had high standards which were well known in the industry and to its loyal passengers. I hope that this is not a precursor of things to come with this line. I personally have always held it "above the rest" in terms of passenger service and it's "classiness" -- I will be highly disappointed if it falls into the same category as Carnival but that is what I felt on this past cruise. Will I cruise on Princess again -- ABSOLUTELY! Will I do a five day (or less) sailing again on Princess -- absolutely NOT. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
We wanted to go on a 14 day cruise but could only find one. This was an older Holland America from Tampa. We passed on that one. That left back to back 7 day cruises that would come back up to Fort Lauderdale. We wind up on Ruby on 3 ... Read More
We wanted to go on a 14 day cruise but could only find one. This was an older Holland America from Tampa. We passed on that one. That left back to back 7 day cruises that would come back up to Fort Lauderdale. We wind up on Ruby on 3 consecutive back to back's of 5, 5, and 4 days. We had the same balcony cabin. The price was excellent. We paid less than $200 per day after on board credits. The 3 cruises each went to Grand Cayman and 2 also went to Cozumel. We were there for the weather and the ship so we did not mind. We were blessed with excellent weather. The turn around days in Ft Lauderdale were bright and sunny. This is not always the case in Feb. Every day on the cruise was beautiful. We did a lot of sunbathing. Port days were spent mostly on the ship although we did go to the beach in Grand Cayman. We would get choice spots next to the rear terrace pool. This is an excellent place. The Ruby is in excellent shape. Very clean. The staff is excellent, very friendly. Food in MDR is very good. The ship was on a 5 day menu so it got a little repetitive. Buffet is so-so, although some things were good. Bad: Sauna broken the entire 14 days. They did away with shuffle board. Canned music for the dance shows. Jugglers very bad. Two of the bands were bad. Sun decks were crowded on sea days. Passengers would have to try and unlock extra chairs from tied down stacks. Often passengers had to carry the chairs from one deck to another to try and get a spot. The Ruby, Emerald, and Crown carry an extra 500 to 800 passengers and it shows up on the sun decks which remained the same size. The soda cards have become way to expensive. I did without out. The model of the ship went from $20 to $40. I collect the models but I wont pay $40. They need more Zuma classes or more room and Zumba gold classes. My wife loves these. Self serve laundry was good but they doubled the price. More good: They had a atm like machine where you ran your cruise card and got your statement right away. Never a line. The computer room was never crowded. Slow but always available right away. Ask your room stewart for a princess robe. They are nice. The weather made this cruise and the ship was very good. We watched many sunsets and saw a few sunrises off of our balcony Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
This was our first Princess Cruise, the Ruby did not disappoint. Although the ship showed her age in the common area, overall I was surprised how well she has been maintained. The carpet in our stateroom and the rest of the ship was quite ... Read More
This was our first Princess Cruise, the Ruby did not disappoint. Although the ship showed her age in the common area, overall I was surprised how well she has been maintained. The carpet in our stateroom and the rest of the ship was quite worn and faded but the woodwork and the marble has been maintained well. Our stateroom was average with no real wow factor. So happy we choose a Balcony. The Stateroom was just okay. We did not like the fact that the comforter was your top sheet and blanket. When we went back to our cabin to nap this made for a very hot and sweaty down time. The shower was very small however, being 6' tall I did appreciate not having to get on my knees to shampoo my hair. The carpet although probably clean but the pattern was wearing. Nothing special from the cabin Stewart. Yes he did his job and when we did see him he was friendly but not as energetic as soon of the Stewarts we seen in the hallways.The wall mounted TV vibrated consistently during the first day so I immediately placed a paper towel between the TV and the wall and this helped the rest of the cruise. The food was a strong 4 stars, the service the same. We did eat at the Crown Grill and it was every bit a 6 Star experience. The quality of food and the service was second to none. For someone who has dined at Ruth Chris, Morton's, and Shula's this rated at least as good as any of these steak houses. The entertainment was very good. I dislike musicals but was mesmerized by the wardrobes and talent of the dancers. The magician was non impressive, the comedian was so good we did 2 shows in one night. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
BACKGROUND: My wife and I are Platinum with Princess and took this cruise as a mid winter break. Our TA got us an upgrade to mini-suite on deck 8 (Emerald) just over the Club Fusion and extra $$ for OBC (kudos to Carol)! The itinerary ... Read More
BACKGROUND: My wife and I are Platinum with Princess and took this cruise as a mid winter break. Our TA got us an upgrade to mini-suite on deck 8 (Emerald) just over the Club Fusion and extra $$ for OBC (kudos to Carol)! The itinerary included Grand Cayman and Cozumel. Since I am a former teacher (5 years was enough) I decided to give letter grades for each component I reviewed. ARRIVAL + FORT LAUDERDALE: We arrived a day early and stayed at the Oakland Park Best Western. The shuttle was $5 p/p from airport to the hotel. The hotel might seem a bit dated but the rooms are clean, the location is excellent being close to Coral Ridge Mall, restaurants and a Publix grocery/wine/liquor store. The continental breakfast was very good with a variety of items. B+ SHUTTLE AND EMBARKATION: We took the hotel shuttle to the pier ($5 p/p) at 2:00 PM and arrived to no lines whatsoever so we didn’t need our Platinum priority status. As a result, it was all so painless and cabins were ready – WOW that was easy! Embarkation = A THE CABIN: We were on Emerald Deck (#8) aft cabin 720 – one deck above Club Fusion. The mini – suite was GREAT with no noise from the club below us. Elevator service to all decks was quick. There is plenty of storage space on the closet shelves and in the closet itself. The bathroom had a TUB – (imagine that!) and the tub/shower had great water pressure. Our room steward Jojo was very pleasant, helpful (we gave him extra $$ @ cruise end). He also spoke English well so there were no communication issues and we even spoke several times. Cabin = A, attendant = A+ THE FOOD: We had anytime dining but only went to our MDR (Michelangelo) twice. The wait time was not long at all, service was very good, the food was of good quality and the choices were many. One side of the menu had “always available” and that’s a good thing since you could enjoy the daily special one night and then order from the “always available” the next. The only downside to MDR was that the Surf & Turf was steak and shrimp with no lobster. Other than that, we were satisfied. A- Horizon Court: There is probably something bad I could write about but I’m on vacation to enjoy myself and not find fault with the small stuff. Once we became accustomed to the layout and the best times to eat, things were fine. Breakfast, lunches and dinners were all enjoyable and since salads & finger foods are my mainstay anyway, I never walked away hungry. B+ Bar service: Used multiple bars but mostly Skywalker’s for the Platinum/Elite Happy Hour – our favorite bartender was Louis at Skywalker’s. The other servers and bartenders were friendly & made good drinks - I tipped them extra. A Room service: Used it once for breakfast (on Valentines Day) and were very satisfied. A Specialty restaurants: Never ate there. No grade Soda/drink packages: Never used them. No grade SHORE EXCURSIONS: More info for each is in the Shore Excursion Reviews Grand Cayman: We opted for the Seven Mile Beach Break. B+/A- Cozumel: We didn’t book an excursion but shopped for souvenirs and see the city. No grade but a good time. OTHER SERVICES/MISC: The Internet Cafe is on Deck 5 and has about 12 terminals and several Internet plans. Since we are Platinum, we had 300 “free” minutes. As usual the service is painfully S-L-O-W. C+ We didn’t use the Spa although I used the gym in the early afternoons so I had no issues with finding an open T-mill, elliptical or life cycle. The treadmills, elliptical and pedal machines were in great shape and the weight machines were primo. Gym = A- We didn’t buy any photo packages and ignored most photographers who tried to snap our pix. No grade We didn’t go to the casino. No grade Cruise Director and staff. Nice people without being annoying. A We used Passengers’ Service desk to get printout of our charges and they were courteous and professional. A The boutiques/stores had their usual “sales” which were mostly for old stock and watches. We only bought a couple of small souvenirs and some booze. C We didn’t go to any of the clubs at night – not enough time it seems. No grade We watched Movies Under The Stars on three nights (Gravity, Last Vegas, Captain Phillips) even though it was chilly due to the wind created by the ship moving at ~20 knots. You gotta love those blankets they hand out. Overall a grade of A DEBARKATION: We ate our breakfast in our cabin using food we brought down the day before and then waited inside Club Fusion until they called our tag number. Since we were the last group to be called, it was pretty easy to get off the ship and go through customs. We called the hotel and they picked us up after about 20 minutes. B+ OVERALL: Great time, great value and we’d probably do it if given the same situation. A   Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
We just returned from a very relaxing 5 night cruise aboard the beautiful Ruby Princess. This was our 13th cruise on Princess and 42nd overall. We are a retired couple (68 and 78), currently living in Palm City FL. It was a last minute ... Read More
We just returned from a very relaxing 5 night cruise aboard the beautiful Ruby Princess. This was our 13th cruise on Princess and 42nd overall. We are a retired couple (68 and 78), currently living in Palm City FL. It was a last minute decision to go and we are so glad we did. We had never gone for just 5 nights and it worked out very well. We are about 90 minutes away from the port and left home about 10:30am on Saturday, the 18th of Jan. We park at the ParkNFly lot and they shuttle us to the port. It is an excellent place to park and much less than parking at Port Everglades. Board was very quick and we were on the ship and in our cabin by noon. We had booked an inside guarantee and I was a bit leery of the location we were given. It was perhaps the quietest cabin we have ever had. We were assigned cabin A748 - completely aft on Aloha deck. It was close to the aft elevators and very quiet. There is more than adequate storage in an inside cabin for a 5 night stay. We tried to pack lighter than normal and it worked well. The itinerary was Cozumel and Grand Cayman - the remainder being sea days. When we left Port Everglades, it was a bit chilly, however we had really nice warm weather on the cruise. On the five night cruises, there is one formal night and they do have Captains Club parties. Since we have been to the ports of call many times, we did not get off the ship. We enjoy the days in port when everyone else gets off and we have the ship almost to ourselves. Grand Cayman is a port with tendering - so be aware of that. We ate all our meals in the main dining room (we chose the DaVinci) whenever possible. On port days, there is no lunch in the dining rooms. The food was excellent. We also enjoyed numerous treats in the International Cafe in the Piazza. Salads, sandwiches, soups, quiche, and lovely sweets as well as specialty coffees. I had a coffee card left over from our last Ruby cruise so we used that for our lattes. The food is gratis, the coffees and gelato are a small fee. We did enjoy one lunch from the grill and pizzaria on a port day. Also very good. The time went quickly, we met lots of great people and had wonderful service everywhere on the ship. Disembarkation was easy and fast as always - we were off the ship by 8:30am and home by 11:30am. I would recommend the four and five day cruises to anyone wanting a lovely, relaxing time. The passenger mix on this cruise was decidedly older, very few children on board. If you have any questions, please e-mail me at melkaz1758@gmail.com. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Left on a 5 day Princess cruise onboard Ruby from Ft Lauderdale. Reason I went was because of the promotion they are having for a free cruise since I am booked with them on a 7day cruise to Alaska in May of this year. We had sailed on ... Read More
Left on a 5 day Princess cruise onboard Ruby from Ft Lauderdale. Reason I went was because of the promotion they are having for a free cruise since I am booked with them on a 7day cruise to Alaska in May of this year. We had sailed on princess once before and had loved it. We especially like their movies under the stars venue. Embarkation was pretty fast, we arrived at terminal at 2:30 pm so most of the crowds had gotten on ship already. Pros: Nice ship, had 5 pools which I liked, and also the ports of call. Room steward was good, room very clean except for the carpet, showed wear but clean. Rooms nice in size and so was balcony. Cons: very small showers, smallest Ive ever seen and we have been on alot of cruises with all the diff cruise lines. A large person def would not fit in there. Food was average in the Lido Deck but very good at their 2 restaurants. Never went to the pay restaurants. I noticed on this cruise that we had a hard time/language barrier with most of the crew. Most of them did not understand us. Also some of the crew not very friendly/serviceable like in other cruises we have taken. One major con: The itinarry was changed and we were not informed. When I asked the front desk about it, they said they could chg itinarry if need be but did not give us reason why. If I had booked a private tour on cozumel like I wanted to it would have royally messed me up since we were suppose to be there on tuesday and arrived there monday. I usually book all my tours through independent and not the cruise lines, thank heavens they were all sold out for the tour I wanted to take. We originally were suppose to have been in cayman on monday and cozumel on tuesday. We were in cozumel on monday and in cayman on tuesday; also the hours on the islands was cut short. I have been on alot of cruises and never has the itinarry change. Weather was great(not a factor) and seas were smooth. If you visit Cayman you must do the stingray/beach tour which is awesome and the highlight. Book thru independent and save money. In cozumel we booked the Salsa and Salsa tour which was great. I was surprised to find out that this tour is only offered thru the cruise line (nobody had mention this). I love Princess' under the Stars theatre. We got to watch the Playoffs all day sunday while in the pool and got to see many movies/concerts under the stars. They give you blankets, popcorn, cookies, love it. Didnt get to see most of the shows because we hung out mainly in the casino, but the comedian was good. All in all it was a great cruise and I would def recommend Princess and the Ruby.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Jan. 23-27, 2014  by Mary & Vincent Finelli Five years ago we celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary on the beautiful Ruby Princess. We remembered well the wonderful time we had then and we decided to book a cruise for our 45th ... Read More
Jan. 23-27, 2014  by Mary & Vincent Finelli Five years ago we celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary on the beautiful Ruby Princess. We remembered well the wonderful time we had then and we decided to book a cruise for our 45th anniversary on this ship. However, this was a four day cruise, not a seven day like the other one. We would have booked a back-to-back cruise, but a wheelchair accessible cabin similar to the one we had on the first leg was not available at booking time. We had a short cruise, but still a memorable one, thanks to several old friends we found aboard. EMBARKATION This ship still departs from Port Everglades in Ft. Lauderdale, where we often find slow moving lines at the security gates. This time was one of the slowest moving traffic, at least for our lane, it took about 30 minutes to clear the gates. Once through the security gates, we dropped the luggage curbside at the pier and proceeded to priority check-in which went smoothly and fast with assistance to our cabin in less than 10 minutes. The only problem entering the ship was the unnecessarily steep gangway, where both Mary’s motorized wheelchair and Vincent’s scooter got stuck and we needed help from the crew. SHIP Ruby Princess is little more than five years old, since her inaugural cruise was on November 8, 2008. Our first cruise on her was in January 23, 2009, during her inaugural season in the Caribbean. She still looks immaculate as she did on our first cruise. The last time she was inspected by the CDC Vessel Sanitation Program she scored 100 points. Evidently, Commodore Giuseppe Romano runs a tight ship as did Captain Tony Draper, who commanded her in 2009. Other information on the Ruby has been reported extensively in our review published on this web site in Jan./Feb. 2009, so we refer the reader for the deck-by-deck description to the earlier review. CABIN Our cabin, Riviera deck #14302 is a wheelchair accessible cabin, similar to the one we had five years ago, on the Baja deck #11301. For the description of the cabin we refer the reader to the earlier review. Our steward Calixto was very efficient and prompt in assisting us in every thing, even to opening our cabin door whenever he saw us approaching. However, we had asked him for a chaise lounge on the balcony, but he was told by his boss, the Head Housekeeper, that there was none available. This was our first time on a Princess ship that Vincent could not enjoy the many hours lounging on the spacious balcony. Maybe, during the next cruise on a Princess ship we’ll find a more understanding Head Housekeeper, who will satisfy a passenger with limited mobility like Vincent, thus letting him spend comfortable time on the balcony. SERVICE & FOOD For us the aspects that have a major attraction to the Princess Cruises are the excellent service and high quality cuisine, especially for the Italian dishes, which we select every time we come aboard. On this cruise we found our old friends, Maitre d’ Nicola Furlan and the Head Waiter Franceso Memeo. We were originally assigned for the evening dinner to the Botticelli Restaurant which is located all the way aft on deck 6. Knowing the ship’s deck plan, we preferred a centrally located restaurant, either the Michelangelo or the Da Vinci, deck 5 or 6, respectively. No problem! In the afternoon we met our friend Maitre d’ Nicola who assigned us an easily accessible table (for us on wheelchair and scooter) in the Michelangelo. He also told us that our friend Francesco was in charge in the Michelangelo. Thank you, Nicola and Francesco for the VIP treatment you gave us. Needless to say, the service at that table was excellent, thanks to the waiters Charlie and Victoria. Most of the Executive Chefs on Princess ships are Italians and that explains the quasi gourmet quality of all the Italian dishes, which the Italian born Vincent appreciated, since they are prepared with original ingredients made in Italy and not imitations (e.g., if the recipe requires Parmigiano or Grana they use the Parmigiano Reggiano or the Grana Padano but not the generic parmisan or some other substitutes which will never match the taste of the genuine product). We remember that the Executive Chef on the first cruise on the Ruby was Manlio Cuzzolin and on this cruise we met Executive Chef Paolo Merio: Both great chefs, who keep up the high quality standard of Princess. We usually order our breakfast from the room service menu: Juices, such as orange, grapefruit, apple and prune; coffee, hot chocolate, tea and milk; fruit like half grapefruit or melon; pastries including croissants and Danish; marvelous strawberry, orange and apricot marmalade; and finally an English muffin sandwich with egg, Canadian ham and cheese. Vincent even got his lactose-free milk. As Elite members of the Princess Captain Circle we were served in our cabin every afternoon at 3:45pm a formal English High Tea: The butler sets the table with a linen cloth and serves it. Mary felt like a queen! Mary’s favorite tea was the Earl Gray Black with Bergamot. Excellent! At sea days lunch was served in the Da Vinci dining room or as a buffet at the Horizon Court, Pizzeria, Trident Grill and Cafe’ Caribe. We always prefer to eat in the dining room, where we have enjoyed some delicious dishes such as the English mixed grill with diverse cuts of meat including lamb, pork and veal, and fritto misto (fried calamari, shrimp, cod, etc.). In addition, there were soups and salads and delicious pasta dishes. We had dinner at the Michelangelo Restaurant every night at 6:00. The menus were long and varied with several always available dishes such as the shrimp cocktail and our favorite “Fettuccine Alfredo” served in a roasted Parmigiano bowl, simply exquisite! Other favorite dishes to us were the following ones. Appetizers: Spring Rolls, Beef Carpaccio, Prosciutto di Parma and Melone, etc.; Pasta dishes: Four cheeses rigatoni, potato gnocchi, Farfalle a la Rustica, Bucatini all’ Amatriciana, etc...; Main Courses: Gamberi alla Fra Diavolo and Prime rib roast cooked to perfection; Desserts: Delicious gelati and sorbet, cream puffs, creme brulee and tiramisu. On our anniversary dinner, Head Waiter Tiziano and the waiters Charlie and Victoria brought us a small but very delicious chocolate cake that Mary referred to a “death by chocolate”. ENTERTAINMENT Various performances, events and activities went on throughout the day at different venues from the Piazza to the Princess Theater, the Explorer Lounge and the Lido Deck, where were shown several times a day Movies Under the Stars and other activities. Vincent enjoyed the Piano Melodies performed in the Piazza throughout the cruise by Jan Gulbicki. Among the shows offered in the theater we saw “Magical Showtime” performed by the illusionist Landon Swank. There is plenty to do for every passenger, just read the Princess Platter and choose among the many events at different venues. PORTS OF CALL Day 1. Ft. Lauderdale, FL Sail Away 5:00 p.m. Day 2. At Sea Day 3. Cozumel, Mexico Arrival 8:00 a.m. Depart 6:00 p.m. Day 4. At Sea Day 5. Ft. Lauderdale, FL Debarkation 8:00 a.m. DEBARKATION We had a nice breakfast in the Botticelli dining room and by 8:00 a.m. we were back in our cabin waiting for assistance. In addition to the wheelchair and scooter we have a walker which we use in the cabin. We went to the Casino, deck 6 where all passengers in need of wheelchair assistance wait until their numbers/colors are called. At around 8:30 our number was called and we proceeded with the assistant to the gangway. Here we had the same problem as when we embarked, both Vincent’s scooter and Mary’s wheelchair got stuck on the unnecessarily steep gangway. This time was worse, since the right pedal of Mary’s wheelchair touched the side of the gangway and broke off. She had to go all the way through customs with one pedal only. At least we were at the end of our cruise, so it was not too bad. CONCLUSION This was our 19th cruise on Princess ships, although a short one, it has been a very pleasurable one. We enjoyed our “Dolce far niente” (Sweet do nothing), since our time on the ship now is mainly spent in relaxation. Rarely, do we go down in the ports of call since we prefer to enjoy the ship by visiting the various areas, especially on port days, when most of the passengers go out. The Ruby is wheelchair friendly, with smooth thresholds and lots of automatic door openers throughout the ship, thus we were able to easily access every areas, from the Promenade to the Lido, from the Piazza to the theater, etc.... However, the most difficult aspect was to opening our cabin door, since it does not have an automatic opener and we are both operating our vehicles. Many times we were lucky to have our steward in the corridor who ran to help us, other times some passengers helped by holding the door open. The other problem is the gangway, which we have described above in this review. However, we believe the gangway can be easily modified by eliminating the sharp angles and flattening the walking plane. We have cited this problem before, but without any response. Next cruise will be on the Norwegian Epic, Feb. 9; after that we have booked one on the MSC Divina. March 15th, with our grandchildren Nicolas and Marcello. Happy Cruising! Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
My husband and I took a 5 day, 4 night cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. We have cruised before with Princess, and we were not disappointed by the friendly and helpful crew. We were upgraded twice and ended up with a balcony, which was lovely. ... Read More
My husband and I took a 5 day, 4 night cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. We have cruised before with Princess, and we were not disappointed by the friendly and helpful crew. We were upgraded twice and ended up with a balcony, which was lovely. The room was a little larger than the interior rooms we usually travel in and the balcony was ample enough for the two of us to enjoy. Our excursion when we arrived in Cozumel was to Playa del Carmen and the Tulum Mayan ruins. We had to take a 30 minute ferry on very choppy waters where several of the passengers got sick. Once we arrived on Playa del Carmen, we had a 45 minute bus ride to Tulum. Our tour guide, Juan, was the best guide we have ever had. Very informative and you could tell that he really loved telling us about his culture (he is part Mayan!). Unfortunately, the weather was rather chilly and windy and half way through our visit to the ruins, it started to rain. There are no places of refuge to get out of the rain, no bathrooms, nothing, just the amazing Mayan ruins city. I just wish we had more time to spend there but because traffic was really bad coming and going, we had little time to stroll the grounds. Because there were at least 4 buses that had to get back to the ferry, and the traffic was really bad (it took us 2 hours to get back to the ferry), our captain did not take off until we were all on board again. We had the early sitting in the Da Vinci dining room, and the meals, as always, were delicious and ample. We also went to the early showings at the Princess Theatre and the shows were wonderful.... We also enjoyed all the different trivial games that they had on board during the cruise. We will definitely cruise again with Princess because they know how to treat you right.. Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
Just returned from a very nice 4 day "sampler" to Grand Cayman. Princess came up with a great idea to have a bunch of 4 day cruises on a nice ship...we usually cruise Celebrity or RCL but the RCL 3 or 4 Days are typically on the ... Read More
Just returned from a very nice 4 day "sampler" to Grand Cayman. Princess came up with a great idea to have a bunch of 4 day cruises on a nice ship...we usually cruise Celebrity or RCL but the RCL 3 or 4 Days are typically on the older ships. First of all we were in an oceanview on the Lido Deck L102....it was a great deal and the last one left up in the front. I would recommend the cabin....the others up front may be better but L102 is fine. The view is of the deck above the bridge looking out the front....lots of light but you cant see down to the water but can look out front to the horizon and sky. Lots of closet space, no side chair but not a problem...the bed is against the wall...facing the desk and TV...very comfy. Lido deck is where the pools and buffet is so very easy. Here are a few observations and hints. In the spa and work out area are mens and womens sauna and steam rooms...no additional cost...great showers...wonderful place to relax before dinner. The aft pool and lounges is a great place...adults only, very nice service and bar, tables, close to buffet, quiet...and a large hot tube two decks up that overlooks the pool....no one knows about it so quiet and private. We ate at both specialty dining....we liked Sabatinis the best....Crown grill was OK but the Host was a sour puss...we had a reservation and were dressed up....when we got there other guests who had no reservations were being seated in the main dining area, we were shown a table right on the glass in the front right where everyone walks by....on display. I politely told the host the table woundnt work and he proceeded to tell me how we wouldn't be served in a timely way if we sat elsewhere....I let him know I didn't care, we had reservations and I expected to have a steak house experience if I was paying a cover charge...it worked out but a hassle I have never had on the 25 other cruises I have taken. For some reason a Hendricks martini is a dollar cheaper in the Explorers lounge than the Crooners...go figure. Dining room food was fine...we ordered a bottle of wine both nights but had to ask for proper red wine glasses...they have some small cheap wine glasses on the tables and unless you ask they wont bring the better ones.   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
Day 1. Embarkment went like this. we arrived the day of departure. We took a taxi from the airport, it cost us $15 to the port. Once we arrived to the port we were in a line outside and received a number for when we got inside. Once inside ... Read More
Day 1. Embarkment went like this. we arrived the day of departure. We took a taxi from the airport, it cost us $15 to the port. Once we arrived to the port we were in a line outside and received a number for when we got inside. Once inside we checked in, pretty easy at 11:00 in the morning. When we were getting on the boat at noon, the line was ridiculously long. Glad we came early. Once we entered the boat they took our picture with a iPhone type of camera and the line moved quickly. We went to our room and one of our bags were there already. The other came later. After watching the boat pull off we had lunch and they had real food. Mash potatoes with real beef...you do get what you pay for. After lunch we toured the boat and seen all the rooms on the boat. We ended up in our room and took a nap that lasted all night. Oh well... Day 2. Woke up early and went for breakfast and it was pretty good. Fresh everything. After breakfast we prepared to leave for princess cay island. Once we got off the tender we were right on the private island. There are no taxi, no real excursions, just some water sports. I ended up going snorkeling while my fussy wife stayed on the beach and caught some sun. After that we walked the strip that they have and seen the bungalows that are for rent. Waste of money if you ask me. We tendered back to the ship and had a late lunch. Afterwards we prepared for dinner and went to the dinning room. The dinner food wasn't the best. Nothing I wanted to eat. They sang happy birthday to us and then we went to the lounge to witness the game show the quest. It was nice but we didn't participate just watched. Afterwards went to the club and it was Latin night so it wasn't for us. It's late and we went to bed...nite nite Day 3. At sea day...woke up late again and missed the first time cruising on princess gala. Breakfast was good again, we had fresh omelets and sliced ham that was warm. The oatmeal is made to perfection. After breakfast we walked around the boat and noticed in one of the dining rooms they were having a $10 shopping spree. We ended up purchasing a sun hat... We went to the Internet cafe and tried to log on and it was taking to long and we were using pay as you go. .79 per minute is costly! (Get the plan). We checked out our next cruise and decided on going on a Mediterranean cruise next. We noticed the international cafe which has sandwiches and cakes to dine on. We tried the shortcake And cheesecake, both were good. While walking around we went outside and they were having a water sport game between two teams. It was funny and kept our attention. We then played miniature golf and had lunch, which was hot and good. After lunch they had on the pool deck another game and this one was a bartender game, so we joined and made drinks to see which one was better and I lost!! It was fun though... This is formal night so we dressed up in gown and suit. We took pictures on the steps. Went to dinner and it still isn't as inviting as we want. Might just try the buffet the next night. Day 4 St. Martin was out stop for the day breakfast was the same. Omelette's and pastry were for breakfast. We walked off the boat to the small Pier then took the water taxi to the main town. $7 round trip per person was the fair. The guys on the water taxi sell beer and water for a good price. Beer $2 and water $1. Once on shore we are approached by several people who try to get you to take a tour of the island. We declined and went right to the beach in front of the church. 2 chairs and umbrella and a bucket of beer was $20. The water was cold but we got in anyway...we're on vacation! They have Segway tours right on the main strip and other activities that you can do. The main focus though is the shopping. All the different jewelers and clothes stores are on the main strip. After shopping for a couple of hours we headed back to the ship on the last water taxi and just made it in time. That evening dinner was in the horizon court because we didn't want to get dressed for the Dining room. Afterwards they had a deck party and we danced at the party until it rained. because of the rain, we went to the club. After that we went to sleep. Day 5 St. Thomas was the port of call and when we woke up we were in port already and we had breakfast and prepared for our snorkel day!!! We departed the boat and jumped in a taxi that cost $10 per person. We went to Coki beach and brought a chair for $5 and I went in the water put my snorkel gear on and told my wife...later!! I was out in the ocean the rest of the day. Took plenty of pictures with my underwater camera. Since its an early day we had to be back by 3pm. Once back on the boat we showered and prepared for dinner. We didn't like the menu for the dinning room so to the horizon court again. We were worn out so we rested and went to sleep. Day 6 Grand Turk was our next port and when we woke up we had until 1pm before we docked. So after breakfast we watched a fashion show and packed for our day. Once off the boat we learned that everything is in port, the shops the beach and all the activities. We wanted to go to governors beach and learned it was about 10 minute walk. So we took the hike and the beach was quiet. Not many people and it wasn't too hot. We brought a $10 chair and I went to see where the fish were so I can snorkel. Not many fish at all!! Bummer. After walking back to port we went to margarita-ville for drinks. After two drinks and a burger and onion rings, the bill was $71!! Geez...a plus was finding out that they had a free hot-spot in front of the smoothie store. i was wondering why everyone was sitting outside the store I found out!!...later after our nap we had dinner and watched a game show then went to bed. Day 7 Last day on board and its a day at sea. Not much going on so we had breakfast brought our pictures and just relaxed for the day. Later we went to dinner and got stuck in the elevator again, and ended up walking up 7 floors. After a good dinner we went to the magic show which was pretty good. He had nice tricks that made you go hmmmm? After the magic show we seen the comedian who wasn't my cup of tea. His jokes were for an "older" crowd. After that was the final show with the crew as entertainment. One lady really sounded professional...now it's time to pack. Well that is my ruby trip...it was a perfect vacation. Being in my early 40's it was relaxing and the service and food was fantastic. Thx Ruby Princess! Disembarkment we decided to get off early due to our plane schedule so we had to be off by 7am. That didn't happen. The machine that scans your picture was broke so we had to wait. Once it was fixed, 20muns later we left the ship. We then jumped in a taxi and headed to the airport. Say bye to the ruby and head back to the cold weather! Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
Background Information : We are partial to Princess...we went on our first cruise in 97 with Princess and had such a great experience that we never wanted to go anywhere else! Hotel Info (if any) We flew in early on Friday ... Read More
Background Information : We are partial to Princess...we went on our first cruise in 97 with Princess and had such a great experience that we never wanted to go anywhere else! Hotel Info (if any) We flew in early on Friday morning (cruise was on Saturday) and stayed at the Rodeway Inn ...cruise/port....Not a bad hotel...the room was clean, there was a pretty good restaurant in the hotel....internet access, pool...I would stay there again. It was a good bargain and we don't need much. We booked their Port to Airport transfer and that was a BAD IDEA....they contract it out...and although we waited for 25 minutes for the transfer and were the first ones waiting for the transfer (they gave us a description of the van and told us where to wait)....when the van got there....a family of 9...who had just got off the ship went running over and got to the van before us....I said something to the driver and was told we would have to wait for her to take them to the airport and come back....so we flagged a taxi and got there in 10 minutes....I would not recommend using the transfer offered by the Rodeway!!!!! Embarkation Ship Info The Ruby is beautiful. She looks great and as with most Princess Ships, she is elegant and well maintained. There are things I like better about other ships but she is still an amazing ship. Likes: The Piazza is very nice....Vines is a great addition...MUTS is so much fun...glad they are adding it to other ships... Dislikes: I still don't like the Club Fusion set up....I preferred the Vista Show Lounge..I think it is a better venue... Activities: I was not a fan of our Cruise Director. He is a good guy, but not nearly as much fun as some of the other CD's we have met. I did speak to him a couple of times....just in passing...and felt like he was a bit fake. I know others have really liked him and again he is probably a good guy...just not my taste. Along those same lines, we missed some of the activities that we really like....that they didn't not offer...one example....The music trivia games... The comedians were wonderful....we really enjoyed every show we went to. Tony Tillman : Do not miss this show!....he was FANTASTIC!!!! We had fun at Bingo...especially when Mike was calling...if you see him....tell him that it Heinz 57....not Campbell's 57....he was very, very funny! We did like that they did the champagne waterfall early in the evening as opposed to midnight...lots more people got to see it! Service I think Princess is very good at it's service. Our room stewart was not as warm and fuzzy and friendly as we have had in the past, but he did his job and handled anything we asked of him. At dinner, we were so lucky to find Francois and Danny! Table 212 in the Michelangelo Dining Room....anytime dining! Francois is the BEST! He took such great care of us... And the head Waiter...Augustus...what a great job....he was going non-stop all night making sure people got tables as quickly as possible and really keeping that dining room going strong. I have to say he was the BEST head waiter I have ever seen!!! Port & Shore Excursions Travel To Port of Embarkation : The Rodeway provided this service and it went pretty smoothly. I would use this service again. When we got to the ship at 11:25, we went to the Platinum lounge, waited about 15 minutes and were in our room by 11:50...WOW!!!! Princess does this really well!!!! Stateroom: Lido deck 305...we love the Lido deck...so much to do right at your doorstep...and we never notice a noise problem. I do bring a small fan that probably helps...but we aren't light sleepers and again, have never had a problem. We love this deck and our room was great! Dining: I already mentioned this when talking about service....Francois is the best and Augustus in a great head waiter.... Food: We enjoyed every meal. We enjoyed some of the new additions: Homestyle...like the chili....really good! The lobster meal is always good. I didn't see some of our old favs but really didn't care as there was always something that we liked. We didn't eat in the buffet very often but when we did, it was okay. Just what you would expect from a buffet type situation. We did eat breakfast here almost everyday..only one lunch...no dinners. The Crown Grill ...we thought was well worth the money. The filet I had was absolutely perfect...and the service was also very good! Entertainment: I already mentioned this....just to add on...MUTS was fun...we enjoyed Momma Mia and Maid of Honor...watched all the way through...as well as catching parts of other movies....Tony Tillman....best entertainment on the ship....and all the comedian's were very, very funny. Disembarkation : We had a 10am flight...we told them at the Purser's desk and were given the first color off the boat after the walk offs....had we not waited for the Rodeway shuttle that we booked, we would have been at the airport by 8:20...The only complaint I had was that there was line to get downstairs to the luggage. The line was for the walkoffs that need to use the elevator instead of the escalator....there was a crew member there ...organizing...and when I asked about those who did not need the elevator walking around the line, she said no and told me that our luggage was not even there yet...which we all know is a lie. Several people created a second line for those going to the escalator...and this worked well...when I walked by her, she said...see that wasn't so bad....! I have seen this lady before and she is the worst Princess employee I have ever met...she is always at the Port in Fort Lauderdale for disembarkation and embarkation..... Summary: We will be heading out on our first non-Princess Cruise this summer...only because our friends want us to come to them ...in LA... this time and this was what was available in our time and location situation. I hope we will not be disappointed. We really do love Princess and have NEVER had a bad cruise with them....that is not to say that there haven't been things we didn't like, but if it could be changed, they did their best to fix it....For the money, Princess does a wonderful job. We have booked our next Princess Cruise and will continue to use Princess whenever we can...I just wish they would expand their offerings in the spring and summer.... Our cruise was great from start to finish...beautiful weather, beautiful ship, fantastic service....I would say it exceeded our expectations....but since we love Princess and expect it to be great...it was...and always is....!!!!!!!!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2009
To be entirely fair to the reader, I think you should know my general philosophy. I think people who complain about their cruise experiences are idiots. How can you be unhappy in paradise? Come on!!! With that said, I am happy to ... Read More
To be entirely fair to the reader, I think you should know my general philosophy. I think people who complain about their cruise experiences are idiots. How can you be unhappy in paradise? Come on!!! With that said, I am happy to report that I had a fabulous time on this cruise! We left Ft. Lauderdale on 4/11/09. This cruise was meant to be all about rest and relaxation. Mother and I had traveled this itinerary before, so we had no plans to go ashore. We were in Lido 242, a BA category balcony room. It was a great room, very quiet. It is just under the massage therapy rooms in the Spa, so no overhead noise whatsoever. Nice! And although it was not far from two pools, the Horizon Court and Cafe Caribe, we were never disturbed by any associated noise. Mother and I did two things on this cruise that I cannot say enough about. First, we reserved two deck chairs for the entire cruise in the Sanctuary. This cost an additional $20 per day for each of us. But it was well worth it. I knew that one particular, cushioned lounge chair was waiting for me every day, no matter what time I chose to arrive. And the service there was extremely attentive. Quite frankly, I felt like I was on a private yacht up there! One tiny annoyance was that we had to pay a delivery charge for free food to be delivered. I think that if you pay for the entire week (or if you are Elite or Platinum), that delivery fee should be waived. But I would still pay it, just for the convenience! We also did the Chef's Table. We were very fortunate to be selected. We began with a tour of the galley where the Head Chef waited for us with champagne. We were presented with four hors d'oeuvres. First came Tuna Tartar with Wasabi and Pickled Ginger. It was fantastic. Then came Bliss New Potatoes with Sour Cream and Caviar. Ahhhhhh. Then the Fontina Cheese Quiche with White Truffle & Sun Blushed Cherry Tomato. (I can't speak highly enough about this dish. That cherry tomato was roasted until the skin peeled off and was so full of flavor that I wanted to cry.) Then, finally came the Foie Gras Terrine on Toasted Brioche with Apple Chutney. All of this with plenty of champagne. Then we paraded back through the dining room to an elaborately laid table. We started with Risotto laced with Parmesan Cheese and Julienne of Treviso Red Radicchio and Langoustine Ragout. This was served with a wonderful white wine. The palate cleanser was incredible "Amalfi" Lemon Sorbet with Mango Slaw. It had Limoncello vodka poured over it. Holy cow, that was so good! The main course was Roast Veal Shank & Veal Tenderloin, carved Table side, with Cepes and Jus. The shank fell off the bone and melted in my mouth. This was accompanied by market vegetables (asparagus, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, onions, etc.) and Chateau Potatoes. This was served with a red wine that was, I think, some of the best I have ever tasted. It was a blended wine - mostly Cabernet, mixed with Merlot. The cheese course was a Baked Camembert with Pine Nuts with a Port Wine Reduction, served with fig bread and date bread. What can I say - divine!!! The dessert was an incredible construction that the pastry chef brought out himself. I'm not sure I can describe it properly. It was described as a Passion Fruit Dome Cake with a Whiskey Soaked Raspberry Soft Center served with a Mango Glaze. But to see this beautiful work of art sitting in front of me made my mouth drop open. Each of us had one. On the dessert plate sat a spun sugar "plate". The spun sugar was clear with raspberry swirled throughout. The edges of the spun sugar were lifted up into elaborate folds. Sitting in the center of the spun sugar plate was the dome cake, with a dollop of whipped cream on top. Sticking up out of the cake were two tall pipettes of raspberry spun sugar. Wrapped around the pipettes was a wafer cookie shaped like a pig's tail. Beautiful! This was served with a sweet dessert wine. The whole experience was amazing. I am so glad that we did it!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2009
We have sailed 5 times with Princess and this was the best cruise we have had in all categories. Boarding the ship was a breeze in Fort Lauderdale. No problems at all getting checked in and to our cabin in 30 minutes. The ship was ... Read More
We have sailed 5 times with Princess and this was the best cruise we have had in all categories. Boarding the ship was a breeze in Fort Lauderdale. No problems at all getting checked in and to our cabin in 30 minutes. The ship was almost completely sold out with over 3,000 people on board. We were amazed that we didn't find ourselves waiting in long lines to board at any of the ports either.We had a mini suite on the Dolphin deck (D326) that had plenty of room and a great view, large bathroom with full size tub and shower. This cabin really allowed us to spread out and be comfortable. We enjoyed breakfast in our cabin each morning. Balcony was great, plenty of room. Some folks didn't like the fact that some upper levels of the ship could look into your balcony. This didn't bother us at all. People were very friendly. Food was great! We had anytime dining and found that to be very enjoyable meeting new people almost each night. We tried to eat dinner each night between 5:45 and 6:15. No problems getting seated they really took care of everyone. Service was very good. We paid the extra $20 per person and ate at Sabatini's on our first sea day. This was well worth the $$ as the food was fantastic! This was an awesome 16 course meal like I have never had before. The food and service here was unbelievable. Well worth the extra $20.. I would recommend this to all. I don't think we missed any of the shows on board. The dancers were great and well put together. Orchestra was fantastic as well. Here we did have to arrive 20 minutes early considering most shows were full. Read Less
Sail Date April 2009
Ruby Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.5 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.2

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