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810 Hawaii Family Cruise Reviews

The Princess Sea of Cortez Cruise was outstanding! The ports of La Paz and Loreto are not visited often and remind me of what Puerto Vallarta and Cabo were like decades ago. We chose to make this a relaxing cruise and did not take any ... Read More
The Princess Sea of Cortez Cruise was outstanding! The ports of La Paz and Loreto are not visited often and remind me of what Puerto Vallarta and Cabo were like decades ago. We chose to make this a relaxing cruise and did not take any excursions, but we walked around all 4 ports and loved doing that. The Star Princess is an older ship but it is well maintained and a perfect size, not too big or small. The production shows were underwhelming, but the smaller venue entertainers were excellent. Cruise Director Gary Golding is one of the best on the seas, and his staff was fun and omni-present. And there was not a single crew member that we interacted with that wasn’t helpful and friendly! Dining room food was outstanding. Enjoyed the pizzeria, hamburger grill and ice cream bar. The buffet food was acceptable and had a nice variety. Highly recommended! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Great way to see the islands of Hawaii, but this cruise catesr to the large proportion of OVER 55+ in activities, music & entertainment. We are in our 40's and traveled with a 16yr son from Australia and found the onboard ... Read More
Great way to see the islands of Hawaii, but this cruise catesr to the large proportion of OVER 55+ in activities, music & entertainment. We are in our 40's and traveled with a 16yr son from Australia and found the onboard activities lacking and boring. But we were there to see the islands and you are so busy getting off each day to explore that it did not matter to much. It is not a kids or party cruise. My advice for each port and what we did follows: We booked with Tombarefoot tours and probly saved $100 per person on any tour rather than through the ship. However you risk the chance if the ship can't go into port due to weather etc. I am not sure about obtaining refunds if that happens. Your call. Port Maui- Book a TOUR- there is nothing to see where they come into this port (some pretty average shops) or hire a car and do the trip to Hana(beautiful), there for 2 days. We met Richard who drove us all day and over to Lahaina (small fishing town-is a must) for $100 per person which is a cheap all day. His email is kekaukike@msn.com. Port Hilo- Helicopter flight over where the volcano had erupted and destroyed homes. Was super interesting. Taxi to airport and taxi back.Or hire a car to look around but do a tour or activity here, as not much else to do. Port Kona is beautiful with MANY shops to walk through and sit and relax looking out to the ocean- a great day to not tour and enjoy.Kauai we hired a car and drove to the Waimea Canyon, then did the Kipu Ranch ATV on the way back to ship. Would of been difficult to get to and back if we had not hired the car. Park car on street overnight close to ship and then explored next morning up North East side of island. Back by lunch because ship leaves at 2pm. Then that afternoon cruise along the Napali coast which is amazing to look at so grab a drink and get a good seat with your camera for the afternoon. Buffet food and diner food was fine. Lots of selections and dietry options with the flexibility of eating when suits. Our room configuration was a queen bed and fold out sofa (for 6ft son). His bed did not have foam to soften it and they put two doona inserts under the bottom sheet to fluff it up.Not comfortable and we did expect more comfort than that. Staff were average in comparison to my other cruise experiences. Coming from Australia the tipping is hard to get your head around but we included our gratuities in cruise payment and then tipped any better service if found (20%). They do tend to look after you a little better if you do so tip early in the cruise. The decor was not fashionable to our tastes but again you are there to see the islands and that out weighs everything, plus you need to make your own fun. I think its a do it once cruise to really see the islands. We had two nights in Waikiki before the cruise that allowed us to get over jet lag, then 5 nights when we got back to do Pearl Harbour, North Shore (hire car) and around the entire island of Oahu & Diamond Head. We felt it was enough time to see and do everything we wanted too without rushing and still relaxing on the beach at Waikiki...Was a fantastic holiday.TIP: Australians take a jar of instant coffee with you and some Vegemite!!! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Let me start by saying dont not book on this cruise line, unless you are over 65 and caucasian. Do not go on this ship, or cruise line if you have kids, or teens or under 65. Even the food is tailored to an older person's digestion. ... Read More
Let me start by saying dont not book on this cruise line, unless you are over 65 and caucasian. Do not go on this ship, or cruise line if you have kids, or teens or under 65. Even the food is tailored to an older person's digestion. Limited activities on board. Also, do not pay your gratuities in advance, or you will not get appropriate service. I dont know where to start so I will just list the issues: 1. Purchased mini- suite balcony for 3 people and ended up on a roll away bed, couch and floor 2x's. 2. Had to put my own bed up and down nightly 3. Could not access the balcony when bed was up 4. Continuously got the wrong person's mail items 5. My kids and myself only got the activities planner twice out of 10 days. 6. Charged for items we did not purchase 7. Entertainment staff were rude (I even attended a few piano bars during the correct times. I was the only one there and the pianist said they were done early because "no one was there". I said I am here but they said again no one was there. 8. The princess cruise customer service put my credit card in my 12 year olds name and did not attach it to me. I tried to correct it 3 times and explained she is a minor and can not legally have a credit card. NIGHTMARE 9. Had to call customer service to get planner, service, and things that have always been automatic. My past cruise experiences with different cruise lines allowed me to leave all my domestic responsibilities and things behind. I worked as hard as I had to at home. PICK ANOTHER CRUISE LINE AVOID UNLESS 65 AND OLDER AND CAUCASIAN. Also, lots of wheelchair bound guests, elderly. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
My family and friends took the Grand Princess on a 15 night New Years cruise. The idea of leaving out of our home port (San Francisco) and visiting Hawaii was quite enticing. My ten-year-old is a Love Boat freak (really), so when my travel ... Read More
My family and friends took the Grand Princess on a 15 night New Years cruise. The idea of leaving out of our home port (San Francisco) and visiting Hawaii was quite enticing. My ten-year-old is a Love Boat freak (really), so when my travel agent called and said there was a sale on this itinerary, we jumped on it. Unfortunately, we had the worst cruise that we have ever experienced. However, I am never one to judge anything by the first go, so despite what you read below, we put in a future cruise deposit and will be trying a 10-day Alaska cruise with Princess next year. The first day was not bad. We arrived early and the embarkation was by far the easiest we have ever experienced. We showed up around 11:00 am and essentially went directly on the ship. They were great about the soda policy and allowed my kids to carry on a 24 pack of their favorites. One downside was that I have one child that is on a restrictive diet. We checked his beverages and they arrived half gone in our stateroom. I chalked that up to it probably falling and breaking open, so no big deal. He still had enough to keep him supplied for the cruise. The views from the ship on the first day were great. We explored the ship and found that unlike many of the other cruises that we were on, this ship's layout made it Very easy to get lost. Some of the stair cases do not go all the way up/down and you need to take the elevator or else walk to another stair case. We also discovered that you cannot traverse the ship on both sides due to various lounges and restaurants. The only path that goes from front to rear is on the starboard side of the ship. We were excited for the sail away party on the top deck,and while several people turned out, the crew canceled the sail away deck party. The muster drill was actually the best we've seen. This was partly due to the cast of the Love Boat doing the safety video, but it was also extremely well organized and done in a timely manner. Our muster station was in the Princess Theater. The theater is substantially smaller that what we are used to seeing and this made for limitations on the kind of productions they could present on the ship. We had several sea days before reaching Hawaii. Normally, I love sea days. There is generally so much to do on board. I was looking forward to the cultural ambassadors' lectures and on this sailing they had a forensic scientist I was looking forward to hearing as well. On other cruises, I've been a trivia champion, winning a "ship on a stick" for every cruise we've been on (well, Carnival anyhow), so I was looking forward to the trivia as well. I was even interested in some of the more relaxed offerings such as the book club and star gazing. I was so excited I even signed up for the behind the ship tour. After only two sea days, it was clear that this cruise would not be meeting my expectations. The first production show was horrid and the comedian told mostly bad puns (okay my son loved the puns) but then all the jokes he told were catered for a very old crowd and we simply didn't get any of it. On formal night, we donned our tuxedos and my children and I opted to share a table. We were sat with a wonderful two 75 year old couples, They lamented that the cruise seemed tailored for cruisers older than themselves. As they put it - “there’s more canes, walkers, and mobility scooters than actual passengers on this cruise.” This was something that we noticed as well, but I was already expecting this based on other cruise critic reviews. We just were expecting that the ship would offer something for everyone as it was voted "best multinational cruise line." That just was not the case. The entertainment wasn’t just bad, it was outright offensive! A 30-minute production show to Motown done by an entirely white cast that changed the key of several songs. This time, my table mates were two African American women who said, “you can teach them moves, but they have no energy and no rhythm; just awful.” I actually Booed for the first time (ever) during any production show called “The British Invasion.” It was so bad at one point, I was embarrassed for the performers. The “born to dance” production was their best and the production and the guy next to me summed it up perfectly when he said, “I’ve seen better performances at six flags and at least they have snoopy!” Decor seemed dated and I heard one person ask when the ship was last in for refurbishment. I however, really liked the style of the ship. It did appear older and dated, but I felt it gave the ship a type of elegance that I have not seen on other ships. I do know that some people complained about carpet and caulking issues, but that seemed minor to me. Others were complaining about water leaks, and that was more of an issue. In fact, six cabins were flooded by a water leak during our cruise and I was speaking to one of the crew about this. They did a great job accommodating people despite being completely sold-out. One thing I have to say is that, but for a few very notable exceptions, the staff was extremely friendly and provided excellent service. I found myself tipping several of them on top of the mandatory gratuities on a daily basis. I wish I could tip the captain. He was definitely the best captain I've ever come across. Captain J.P. handled a medivac emergency on board with extreme professionalism and dealt well with those lookieloos who refused to follow crew instructions. Now on to some of the negative aspects of the cruise: Despite the excellent crew, the trip was not great due to a few bad and very visible members of the crew as well as poor planning by the Cruise Director staff. For example, there was absolutely no thought given to crowd control on this cruise. Do to their ship design, it is only possible to traverse the promenade deck on one side - so let’s go right in the middle of that through way and register people for the art auctions, completely blocking the ability for anyone to get by each day. Brilliant, just brilliant. The cruise director was nearly impossible to find. It’ was like playing “where’s Waldo” he only appears at the end of production shows and on rare occasion you might find him at a “game” show. The assistant cruise director was everywhere but she is snarky, rude, insulting to passengers and should not be in front of people - ever. If someone from princess reads this -PLEASE for your own good, replace her she is just awful! Many of the other cruise director staff were fantastic and any of them would make a welcome change. The trivia caters to teams of six so forget about winning a prize if you are a single player (in my case I always was one question behind the teams of six and I was just one person but they only award to the teams) when I suggested they do an award for teams and award for single players, I was told to just join a team. Well done, however; there will always be those that don’t want to be on a team and considering the grand prize is a coaster (no ships on sticks here) it seemed trivial (pun intended) to give out one extra coaster. While it's certainly not the fault of the cruiseline, given the weather, EVERY on-deck activity (sail away, disco party, star gazing, shuffleboard, etc.) were all cancelled. Some were rescheduled and moved indoors but were not advertised on the computer app. When I asked why not, I was told that most of the passengers were older and only read the printed patter. Again, it essentially costs nothing to put it into the app and everyone in our group never read the printed patter, we relied 100% on the phone app because we always had it with us. It truly seemed like they didn’t plan very well/at all for alternative activities. Then there was the Ensenada incident. The ship was supposed to arrive at 4:00 pm and leave at 7:30 pm, but due to weather, it was announced several days in advance that we would not arrive until 7:30 and depart at 9:30. On the day we arrived, the ship activities had absolutely nothing to do from 4:00 pm to 7:30 pm and then had all the activates starting at 7:30. In other words, despite having DAYS to plan and reschedule the activities, they kept to the original schedule assuming we would be in port at the original 4:30-7:30 timeframe. What a joke! The food on the ship was not what I expected. The buffet was pretty bad. It had pretty much the same foods each day, but occasionally they had a build your burger bar, a ramen bar, and a nacho bar.The main dinning room food was actually very good in general and we spent most of our time eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the anytime dinning halls. The wait staff were all very friendly as well, except on our last night, the waiter was just plain rude! I figured he was having a bad night, so I purchased a bottle of wine for him. He loved that and everything was much better thereafter. The food venues around the ship were okay, but definitely not great, with one exception. The Salty Dog is a winner! Everything they offer was top notch, and while it may not be healthy for you, those bacon cheese fries are AMAZING! The street tacos were my second favorite, and the bacon Princess burger with swiss - oooh soo good. Not quite up to Guy's burgers on Carnival, but really good. The Alfredo's Pizzaria which boasts "best pizza at sea" really wasn't. In fact, I actually preferred the pizza at Slices on deck 14. The International Cafe was also a major disappointment. We were told they rotate their selection throughout the day, but really, it just looked the same no matter when we passed by. A note to first time cruisers: Most of the food at the international cafe is FREE and they are open 24/7. Also, the specialty restaurants were all exceptionally good, more on that in a bit. One more complaint I witnessed "food" related... I saw another passenger in the “tea library” have a complete meltdown. He went up and walked to the wall of drawers of tea leaves and opened several and found minimal leaves there to make his tea. There were several tea kettles available on shelves on the wall and he grabbed one. There is a large water spigot on the counter with a big red warning sign that said “Caution: Hot Water”. Except, it was all FAKE. When the guy realized this, he came undone and went out and walked around the ship ten times (he came back in just to tell me this before finally calming down enough to confront the customer service desk). Customer service attempted to satiate the situation by offering him chocolate covered strawberries. He was not amused. There were two other similar issues that I experienced myself. The first - there is NO mini-golf. Despite the website clearly showing that it is there, it was removed. My kids were disappointed at this. In it's place is a flat golfing green for putting or croquet. We chose to play croquet (despite all the mallets being horribly bent), and the kids loved it! The second, the website advertised an escape room for $8. That also did not exist on this sailing. When I asked a crew member, she said that they do offer the escape room for free on the Grand Princess, but only when they are not sold-out because they just repupose one of the staterooms. On the first day, I went to the spa raffle and they had a really good deal where you could get a massage and several other services for only $99. I took advantage of the special and I was not overly impressed with he spa. It was okay, but not great and the up sell was unforgivable. Despite telling the staff before my massage that I didn't want the product sale at the end, they did so anyway - relentlessly. They also signed me up for a shave, a weight loss program, and another massage - all without my permission! I had to cancel them at a later time because she literally would not let me leave the room without saying it was okay and she made me late for my meeting with my family. My older teen sons enjoyed the gym. It was well served with cardio machines, weight machines, and free weights. I also did one of the yoga classes as I was experiencing leg cramps at night and thought the yoga could help - it did. The casino was the typical Carnival brand casino - horrible odds (worse than Indian casinos). I'll give one tip for those who've read this whole review this far... For you video poker players out there, if you play the spin poker machine in the non-smoking section, you can set the bet to 5 quarters, single line and get 7/5 odds without affecting the game variance due to the "spin poker" nature of the game. While that's still an awful pay scale, it's the highest odds on the ship. The lady I ate lunch with appreciated my tip as she played that machine with three lines and was dealt a Royal Flush on her first hand - winning 12k quarters or $3,000.00 from $1.25 bet! On the first day, I tried asking the cashier staff how many points I'd need to get any kind of comp and they said they had no idea, that it was at least several thousand and it would just show up when I got it. Not very helpful. Despite the negative, there were some highlights and we cannot forget those. As I mentioned at the start, we don't consider one bad experience the end of things. My family put down a future cruise deposit for a 10-day Alaska cruise with Princess next year. The Hawaii ports were great. It would have been nice to have a little more time in Oahu and Maui, but the time spent on the other islands (Kilo, Kauai) was appropriate. The choice of shore excursions was excellent, although we chose to do all of ours independently. A few times I did speak to the shore excursions desk and they seemed quite knowledgeable about the various options. As mentioned above,we also really enjoyed the specialty restaurants and we went to all three. Yes three (well, four if you count the British Pub lunch). While not well advertised, the Grand Princess does a Crab Shack on selected days. They alternate the crab shack between the Horizon buffet and the Crowne Grill for the location. We chose to go on a day when it was hosted in the Crowne Grill. The food was excellent and plentiful. In fact, I think at Sabatini's it was almost too much food. But it was out of this world good. Oddly, the only restaurant that seemed a bit not up to expectations was the Crowne Grill itself. Oh, and despite others complaining about the decor in the English Pub, I found the fish and chips to be the best I've ever had - including those that I've had in pubs in London. One thing that we liked more than other cruises were the pools. The Grand Princess has several and they are both larger and deeper than what we've seen elsewhere. We also really liked that one of the pools/hot tubs is indoors, while others are outdoors. I actually rather enjoy going in a nice steamy hot tub when it is windy, cold, and raining. Plus, the outdoor hot tubs aren't crowded at those times. My son enjoyed swimming in the indoor pool when it was cold outside. One request for Princess though - put in revolving doors! revolving doors are designed to prevent wind from entering a doorway. On our sailing, there were times when we had very high winds that would rip from the outside pool, through the inside pool, and right into the Horizon court! A revolving door would have kept each area climate controlled. The other thing that bumbed me out was that the back of the ship with the aft adult pool and hot tubs were closed for several days due to a maintenance issue with the ship's stacks (apparently, cowling and other material was falling free). We did enjoy the lounge approach to various areas. As a secret for those who took the time to read all of this... while the tea leaf library is a great place to play board games, it is often full, has smallerish tables, and can be noisy as it is an open area near the Piazza. The secret is to take your game to the Wheelhouse Bar. It is a wonderful, quiet, relaxing location, is almost always empty or nearly so (even when they are doing presentations in it), and has a wonderful view of the water. Plus the tables are larger and the chairs are more comfortable. My ten-year-old raved about the kids club. It is up on deck 15 near the spa. He said it was the best one that he's ever been at. I really liked the fact that it was themed with the Discovery channel. They kids even had a chance to do Junior Chef at sea and decorate a cake! Wow. They had a dance party just to themselves up in the club One5 and the kids all seemed to have a lot of fun. He made several friends and we would eat with the other families and play games as well. It was a great way for both him and our whole family to meet new people. Every day he brought a new craft project back to the room and he really liked his kids club T-shirt that he got to decorate himself. My older teens also really enjoyed the Beach house that was just for them. My 16-year-old said the thing he liked most was how many kids there were from foreign countries. Apparently, they enjoyed exchanging stories of how to misbehave in several countries. On one of our shore excursions, some of his friends and their family came along and it made for a wonderful day in Maui. They also enjoyed the free basketball hoop machine and ping pong on the upper deck above the indoor pool. The only issue here was that often times when relaxing at the indoor pool there was always several unattended smaller kids on that level hitting ping pong balls down at people in the pool. They were also very loud, but that is mostly because it was indoors. I could tolerate this as I have several kids of my own, but several older guests were openly complaining about this at dinner time on several days. One thing that I did notice was that the Sanctuary (adults only paid lounge area on deck 16) went completely unused the entire trip. Often when I went by, it was simply closed due to weather, and when the weather was nice, the ship was in port and I did not see anyone in the Sanctuary. It's too bad because I was looking forward to trying it out. It may have been a mistake for Princess to devote so much ship space to such a large area if no one can use it. The other odd thing about the ship is that the kiddie splash pool is located just in front of the Sanctuary in a location that is nearly impossible to locate. Unfortunately, it too was closed every time my son came by. All in all, It was the worst cruise we've ever been on, but it had a lot of positive experiences as well. We will definitely give Princess another go before discontinuing to cruise with them. The embarkation/disembarkation was smooth as could be, there were many very positive crew members, the captain was the best, and we met many nice people. On the flip side, the entertainment was the worst we ever encountered, the activities were lacking, there was very poor planning on behalf of the cruise director and staff, the food was not good except in specialty restaurants, and the ship itself had a few maintenance issues: flooding of six cabins and the cowling falling off the smoke stacks causing them to close the aft section of the ship for a few days). There were many passengers complaining throughout the cruise. All in all, I gave it two stars because the bad slightly outweighed the good on this sailing. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Our family of 12 sailed on Norwegian's Pride of America on the 12/28/19 cruise. We had a wonderful trip and I can't say enough about this ship, crew and itinerary. Our family was 6 adults (ages 39 through 64) and 6 kids (ages 4 ... Read More
Our family of 12 sailed on Norwegian's Pride of America on the 12/28/19 cruise. We had a wonderful trip and I can't say enough about this ship, crew and itinerary. Our family was 6 adults (ages 39 through 64) and 6 kids (ages 4 through 12). Our vacation package included 1 night pre-cruise at the Hawaiian Hilton Village, pre-paid gratuities, specialty restaurants, and $50 per port excursion discount. We used the Norwegian Master Card prior to the cruise and had some onboard credit to use on the ship. We arrived in Hawaii on 12/27 our flight landed in Honolulu at noon and we were in our rooms with our luggage at the Hawaiian Hilton Village by 3:30pm. We had pre-scheduled Roberts Hawaii airport shuttle for transportation from the airport to the hotel. They met us at baggage claim with a sign and helped with all of the luggage. Registration at the hotel was easy, although we did wait in line. Norwegian had a booth at the hotel and we checked in with them too, they offered us extra luggage tags and answered our questions. They were so sweet and helpful, they got our vacation off to a great start. The complex was massive and interesting, there were shops everywhere and pools and a beautiful beach. We wandered around the shops, had sushi and shaved ice. That evening we sat in the sand on the beach and watched the fireworks. We were exhausted from travel so we ordered pizzas for dinner and ate in our rooms. We were all just so excited to be in Hawaii. On Saturday we had a 1/2 day Pearl Harbor tour booked through Viator. They picked us up from the hotel at 7am and we arrived at Pearl Harbor by 0830. We had time to tour the USS Bowfin and go through the museum before the movie and boat ride to the USS Arizona. This was a powerful and sobering tour, the movie was so well done. We were so glad that we did this excursion before our cruise At 11:30 we were picked up and the tour driver took us to the port. NCL transferred our luggage from the hotel to the ship and we never even had to go back there. We arrived at the port around 12:30, check-in was easy; there was a lounge for suite guests that we hardly had time to enjoy, we were on the ship and having lunch at Cagney's by 1pm. While we were eating they announced that our cabins were ready. We were in suites, 12008 (starboard), 12058 (port) and 13012 (starboard), and these suites were great! Roomy, beautiful, lots of room to unpack, an attendant (Larry) an a butler (Georgia). 13012 was bigger than the other 2 suites and worked well for a family of 6. It has a huge balcony! There was sparkling wine and flowers in the suites as we checked in. Having lunch at Cagney's and the gifts in the room set the stage for the entire vacation. We went to the Welcome Aboard show, to dinner in the Skyline and to bed early. The next morning we woke up in Maui. 2 of us scheduled a helicopter tour of the road to Hana (we knew we couldn't drive it with 6 kids). The tour was spectacular! We aw caverns, the coastline, multiple waterfalls, Jurassic Rock and George Harrison's home. This tour was through NCL and the $50 immediately showed up on our account. We were back on the ship by noon, had lunch and then went off to the beach to catch up with the family. They were at, Kihei, Kamaole Beach Park II (a 30 minute Uber ride) and it was a great beach; we swam in the warm water until about 3 then headed back to the ship. The next morning at 2:30am we were up and ready for the sunrise Haleakala Crater tour. Nettie was our driver and she got us to the top of the crater by 5:45, so we had a great viewing spot by the rail, sunrise wasn't until 6:50. It was crowded up there! It was pitch dark when we arrived and the night sky was amazing. I saw 4 shooting stars! We had about an hour of standing in windy 30 degree weather before the sun came up. Even though we dressed warmly, it was freezing! I wore a long sleeved t-shirt, a heavy sweater, my North Face jacket, hat and gloves, but only my sneakers. By the time we were back in the bus, my feet felt like frozen blocks. Despite the cold this was an experience that we will remember the rest of our lives. Only 2 adults went, I think it would have been difficult for the kids. We were back on the ship by 9:30, in time for breakfast. Then we got an Uber to meet the family in Lahaina. A beautiful little town (full of interesting shops) and the Uber ride to the town was great too! That evening we used our restaurant perk and had a wonderful dinner at La Cucina and saw the Lights, Camera, Action show. We enjoyed all the shows, our surprise was there were always seats in the theater (even for 12), it wasn't crowded like other cruises we've been on. The next day was New Years Eve and we woke up at Hilo. We had the Volcano National Park tour for all 12 us, our guide's name was John and we all enjoyed it. We saw steam vents, a lava flow from the 70's and on the way back we stopped at a orchid nursery. They had an orchid that smelled like chocolate. That evening in the Gold Rush Saloon they did the New Year's Eve count down for every time zone. We are from the East coast so we got to scream happy new year at 7pm! Then we went to Liberty Dining Room for dinner with our cruise supplied New Year's Eve swag. The show that evening was Wonders! A Magical Experience... it was fantastic! We were meant to be in Kona the next day and had a kayaking tour scheduled. We were up and ready to go when the captain announced that we were leaving because the tender service was cancelled because of rocky seas. We had an unexpected sea day to enjoy the ship. We sailed by the Molokai sea cliffs and saw whales and dolphins from our balcony. The men in our party when to the Whiskey tasting in the Napa Wine bar. They had fun! Dinner in Jefferson Bistro that evening....also wonderful.. We loved all of the specialty restaurants..so glad we had that perk. On Thursday in Kauai, we had a beach day at Poipu Beach Park The best beach ever! There were giant sea turtle sleeping on the beach. We all snorkeled and saw the most beautiful fish, probably 30 different varieties.. Plus the water was warm and calm. We spent about 6 hours at this beach. When we got back to the ship we had massages scheduled at the Mandarin Spa. Fantastic experience! Dinner at Cagney's, with a delicious chocolate cake for dessert. Kauai was our favorite island and this was such a memorable day.... perfect really. On our final cruise day we had the tubing experience with/Kauai Backcountry Adventures scheduled, only 10 of us could go, because you have to be at least 5. This tubing experience is through caves and the kids loved it. On the trip up the mountain we saw some of the settings for the Jurassic Park movies. We had to get back on the ship early and my Grand daughter who took 3 hula dancing classes on the ship was in the pool side hula show. We also all went to the lei making classes, don't miss them, they were surprisingly fun and we all still have the leis we made. As we sailed by the Napali, there were double rainbows in the sky. I know I've said this a lot but the coast and the rainbows were absolutely incredible! We saw this from my son's baloney while sipping a lovely red wine. I don't know how this could have been more perfect. Dinner at Tappanyaki that evening. It's a show and the chefs were awesome! We had our luggage in the hallway by midnight, had breakfast at Cagney's the next morning and were off the ship by 09. We had one more day in Honolulu, we stayed at the Hyatt Regency Beach Club, went to the aquarium (it's run by the University of Hawaii) and had an impressive display of Sea Horses and then we hiked up Diamond Head. 9 of us made it to the top. We were seriously proud of this accomplishment. This was easily the best cruise we've ever been on. It all exceeded our expectations. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Selected cruise for its Hawaiian ports and warm weather plus sailing on the Grand via San Francisco. Amazing cruise, amazing service by Grand Princess staff, and beautiful islands. Highly recommend Grand Princess for its world class ... Read More
Selected cruise for its Hawaiian ports and warm weather plus sailing on the Grand via San Francisco. Amazing cruise, amazing service by Grand Princess staff, and beautiful islands. Highly recommend Grand Princess for its world class service, wonderful and warm staff, and clean ship. Though it's an older ship, staff work hard to maintain the Grand Princess, and officers and staff were present throughout the ship 24/7. Had an excellent cabin steward and professional and wonderful dining room wait staff. Amazing trip onboard the beautiful Grand Princess! Like our waiter, Jonel Bola said, "The Grand Princess is known for #1 service out of its entire fleet of 18 vessels." The entire dining room staff was amazing and wonderful to all its dining passengers. The food was good, plenty of desserts to choose from, and staff are generous with service, extras/portions, drinks, and smiles! All staff throughout the ship were kind, courteous, warm, and provided consistent service and were very hard working. Service throughout the ship was consistent and amazing! Ship Captain, JP Bryant, was very nice and courteous and always greeted passengers pleasantly. This was a 16-day cruise! Have done shorter and longer cruises, but a 16-day is a perfect amount of time for a winter getaway! I highly recommend the beautiful Grand Princess! Others might be concerned that it's an older ship but I find it to be quaint, comfortable, has character, beautiful, has internet service, and has excellent and consistent customer service. I've sailed on the Grand 6 times and each time I've experienced consistent customer service! And, if something wasn't right, staff will work quickly and very hard to make the problem right! No complaints when I'm on the Grand! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
My wife and I wanted to celebrate her birthday, our anniversary, Christmas and New Years on board a cruise to Hawaii, and the itenirary of the Star Princess matched ours. Before I start the review let me inform you that we ... Read More
My wife and I wanted to celebrate her birthday, our anniversary, Christmas and New Years on board a cruise to Hawaii, and the itenirary of the Star Princess matched ours. Before I start the review let me inform you that we have cruised over a dozen times and have alway had good experiences, next let me state that in my opinion the Star Princess should not leave port until many issues with the ship are resolved for the safety of the passengers and the crew. The Negative: On boarding and going to our stateroom we noticed a mildew smell on the hallway and once in the stateroom a urine smell in the bathroom. We accepted the stateroom in hopes that the next cleaning would clear up the smells. After housekeeping came the next day the urine smell was not noticeable but the mildew smell in the corridor was still there. On the third day we had water dripping from the ceiling by the door to our stateroom, and you got wet going in and out. They put some buckets to catch the water and a fan to dry the carpet and the wet bulkheads, this blew the mildew smell into our stateroom. We at this point were concerned about our health and asked to be moved to another stateroom. At first they indicated there was no other stateroom available but they would get back to us. Approximately 16 hours later they contacted us and showed us another stateroom where the mildew smell was not as strong and we took it, however the entry light would come on or off whenever the door was closed and the temperature controller had a mind of its own so the stateroom would go from hot to cold back to hot at will, the furniture was old and damaged. Upon exploring the ship further we discovered multiple areas in many decks and locations where there was water leakage from the overhead and you could see wet bulkheads, buckets, fans, yellow tape and the smell of mildew. Around that time the Captain broadcast that one of the pools would be closed because they had discovered a crack in it, not sure if that was the same water source we had encountered since we were on the 8th deck and the pool is on the 14th deck. Overall you could see the ship was tired: frayed carpets and couches, non-functioning elevators, alarms going off due to miss-functions and looking from shore at the large yellow stains on outside of the ship, it looked abandoned. Our experience on other cruises is there are always a few crew members that are not happy for whatever reason, but the percentage on this cruise was at least three times the average. I did developed an upper respiratory infection that I have been battling for 4 days, not sure yet if it was from the mildew or a different source. The Positive: There were several crew members that made the trip pleasurable, including the Hawaiian Ambassadors that provided Hawaiian music and lessons, the man in pastry area of the International Cafe, and the crew at the Skywalker Lounge. The entrainment was in par with other cruises, as was the food at the dinning rooms. We would say that the Hawaiian Pub and The Crown, Crabshack, and Sabatinies meals were very good. We missed one port of call (Kaui) due to weather, but the other ports, Honolulu, Maui and Hilo were great. The Christmas and New Years Eve celebrations were fun and well done. Bottom line; I would not recommend a cruise on the Princess Star and would suggest you investigate the condition of any other Princess ship before you book. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I am Platinum with Princess and have cruised with RCI, HAL, Cunard, P&O and Disney totally over 21 cruises so I write this review with experience. Six adults sailed for 15 nights in three balcony staterooms side, by side. We ... Read More
I am Platinum with Princess and have cruised with RCI, HAL, Cunard, P&O and Disney totally over 21 cruises so I write this review with experience. Six adults sailed for 15 nights in three balcony staterooms side, by side. We celebrated my dad's 80 bday on xmas day onboard and the staff could not have made it more special. PROS: Food was really good. I had a steak one night in anytime dining that was better than the one I had the night before in Crown Grill! There were about 5 dishes overall I didn't think were cooked well so considering I ate many meals, that's not so bad. Remember, this isn't Crystal Cruises! Our room was immaculate Lots of activities Clean ship. An excellent Captain who made the difficult call to skip Kauai and remain in Honolulu for an extra day - which saved us from a horrific storm that would have seen us unable to dock in Kauai and suffer severe motion sickness. Thank you Captain for being so smart and careful and letting us enjoy beautiful Honolulu for another day. CONS: Now - some people were very unlucky; their room had a leak in it and that would have ruined this cruise for me. Apparently the Neptune Pool had a crack in it. I can't say more, but you will hear about from them on this site I am sure. The shows are pretty poor in comparison to other cruise lines. Don't expect riveting live entertainment The gym is tiny, Yoga was rubbish - don't think the instructor ever did a yoga class and then they charge gratuity on top of the yoga fee. I found several errors on the patter, to the point I called front desk and pointed it out - like listing the times of the dining room incorrectly or saying the "Three Hour Sale will be on from 9am to 1pm" (umm, that's 4 hours and it actually never happened on the day they said it would!) These are all minor things for me. I love having lots of sea days and if you do this cruise you better as you have 9 days at sea. No issue for me but some people might be bored (how you get bored on a cruise is beyond me!) Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise as a way to celebrate the holidays with our daughter and adult grandchildren. We had a wonderful experience. The ship was beautifully decorated with trees, garland, and ginger bread houses. Each mailbox at the entrance ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a way to celebrate the holidays with our daughter and adult grandchildren. We had a wonderful experience. The ship was beautifully decorated with trees, garland, and ginger bread houses. Each mailbox at the entrance to the cabins had a small ornament placed on it. We loved the covered pool area. We had never been on a ship with a conservatory before. The promenade deck was also lovely although we didn't get to spend much time there as the seas were rough and it was frequently closed. We left our home in North Carolina early on the day of the cruise. I don't recommend this as I think it increases the chance you could miss the cruise. However, we had to do this as our grandchildren had their college final exams the prior day. Our plane was on time. We took the cruise line shuttle from LAX to the pier. This worked well. We did not have to wait long until we were on our way. Check-in was quick and easy. We were soon on our way to our cabins. My husband and I were on Emerald deck in an accessible IA cabin. I had polio as a child and use a wheelchair. This was the BEST cabin I have ever stay in. Especially important, the bath had sufficient turn around space. The room area itself was surprising. We had two TV's, a chair, a sofa and a sleeping area as well as a wet bar and refrigerator. There was a tight turn to enter the room from the hallway. There was a marble foyer which led directly to the closets and desk. There was also a desk chair which we never used. Our cabin was well located for access being near the aft elevators. This is important to me as it makes getting around the ship easier. Our steward typically placed his carts so that I didn't have to pass them to reach the elevators. Our cabin had good temperature controls and we were able to keep the room comfortable. This ship has the "new" Princess beds which we find comfortable. However, the big fluffy pillows are not our cup of tea. We are both side sleepers and the pillows do not support our heads well. The pillows allow one's head to bend down toward the mattress and then the pillows fall inward toward one's head. Princess should provide a firm pillow on request. Also, the duvet is too heavy. Amazingly that was our only disappointment on the entire cruise. I did learn one important lesson about choosing a cabin. One should never accept a room under the pool. Although this did not affect us directly, we had a very rough crossing and one of the pools developed a crack allowing the water to flood the cabins beneath it. The ship's welder(s) were able to fix this. We chose "Anytime" dining and were quite pleased. We are most breakfast and lunches at the Horizon Court. For dinner, we arrived at the Capri dining room between 5:30 and 6 PM most evenings. We requested a table for five with no steps which was granted each evening. One chair was removed from the table so I was able to use my wheelchair easily. Occasionally, the path to our table was obstructed by another wheelchair or scooter but one of the waiters quickly moved it to make my access easy. We found the food tasty with lots of different choices. Most of the time we had the same waiter, named Petro from the Ukraine. He was personable and gave us good recommendations on what to choose. We especially loved the chocolate journey desserts. Of particular note, the entertainment on this cruise combined both Christmas/New Years and Hawaiian activities. We had a lot of fun! We especially enjoyed the duo Elua. The husband "Tiki Dave" sang, gave enrichment lectures about our ports, and taught ukulele classes. His wife did lei and hula classes. Regular entertainment included a naturalist, trivia, production shows, music venues including the piazza, and at an extra cost and escape room experience among other things. We really enjoyed the progressive trivia run by the assistant cruise director Oz and the "melodramatic mystery" play put on by the assistant cruise director Mollie. Our fellow guests did an excellent show presenting their newly acquired ukulele and hula skills. The Christmas activities included carols, a visit from Santa, and a themed production show. We did not meet any less than helpful employees. We had so few problems we never even visited the passenger services desk except to get different luggage tags so our entire family could have the same disembark timing. We did note a few grumpy guests around the ship. However, I would definitely have been less than happy if my cabin had flooded. After our rough crossing of the Pacific, we arrived in Honolulu on time and enjoyed our tour of the city and Pearl Harbor. Unfortunately, we were not able to dock in Kauai due to weather and stayed overnight in Honolulu. This disappointed many people but we enjoyed the extra time there on Christmas day. It was nice to see the difference in the holiday decorating there. We went to all the other ports. Our crossing back to California was also rough, encountering class 8 winds and high waves. We made a final stop in Ensenada Mexico which was satisfactory. Our main focus was the Hawaiian islands and they were excellent stops. Disembarkation was efficient and we did not feel we were being thrown off the ship. Overall, this was an excellent cruise and we would happily travel on this ship, this itinerary, and with Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The cruise was a good value overall but the experience goes downhill when they start to charge $1.50 for a milkshake, spin-class charges, ice cream is given out like it was gold. Ticky tack charges. Carnival has unlimited ice cream and ... Read More
The cruise was a good value overall but the experience goes downhill when they start to charge $1.50 for a milkshake, spin-class charges, ice cream is given out like it was gold. Ticky tack charges. Carnival has unlimited ice cream and Guy’s burgers on Carnival which is the best. My daughter did not like the heavy sauced foods at seated dinning so I ask for a steak which is standard on Carnival for sit down dinner. When I asked the waiter he gave me a menu with a $25 up charge. Carnival is Supposed to be the lesser ship but in my family’s opinion carnival is the better ship. More stuff to do for kids, better live shows at night and just all-around more fun. All the shows were smutty knowing that children were on board during Christmas vacation. Every show had some sort of innuendo about sex and other non-kid friendly stuff. Crew was great as in all the cruises I have ever been on. The first night we didn’t get to our seated dinner till 530 so we were a half hour late and was chastised by the waiter that we should be there at 5 o’clock but I did not get my bags until 515. Pizza and hotdogs for junkies is the best but all other food is no better than any other cruise line I have been on. We were not able to get off the boat for Kauai because of bad weather. They gave us a apology from the captain and were given $8 per person back. Cheap cheap, you would think they might give something more than $8 port fee returned and a apology. Free photo, drinks, etc.. So hold on to your wallet because Princess will try to pick it! Also stains all over my carpet and the boat looks tired. In between ports the smell of paint as the crew was painting the boat to hide the rust. I would rather have a clean carpet. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This is an excellent way to see the Hawaiin islands. The service on the ship was excellent and the crew was very friendly. The dining rooms and specialty restaurants are very good with excellent service. The ship is very clean ... Read More
This is an excellent way to see the Hawaiin islands. The service on the ship was excellent and the crew was very friendly. The dining rooms and specialty restaurants are very good with excellent service. The ship is very clean and very well maintained. The Balcony cabins are very clean, however very small compared to other Norwegian Cruise Ships. The cabins cannot really accomadate any more than 2 people unless you have a young child, as the pull out sofa bed is very small. All areas of the ship have a wonderful American theme. Embarkation and disembarkation was a breeze! Norwegian seems to have mastered how to do it right. If any one is planning a hotel stay before or after the cruise, I highly recommend the Kahala Hotel and Resort in Honolulu. This is a wonderful property that is in a beautiful area only 10 minute cab ride from Waikiki Beach. The Kahala has all the amenities and their own private beach. We had a wonderful time and would highly recommend "Pride of America" I give Norwegian top marks again!!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Despite multiple trips to Hawaii in the past, this cruise showed me more of the Hawaiian culture that I have not discovered before ! Amazing to go on the cruise and come back being able to play the Ukelele and also do some Hula dancing ! ... Read More
Despite multiple trips to Hawaii in the past, this cruise showed me more of the Hawaiian culture that I have not discovered before ! Amazing to go on the cruise and come back being able to play the Ukelele and also do some Hula dancing ! All the entertainment on board was excellent ! Nice to have ping pong tables indoors to play despite windy cold weather at times Crown grill dining was excellent and very attentive staff Excellent excursion through Princess in small group in Hilo to Rainbow falls and the lava tube and tasting candies at Big Candy store and walk around black sand beach and get to meet the Green Turtles sunbathing ! Excellent to have a full day in Honolulu with so much to see ! Great to have enough time to get to my favorite bar in Waikiki in Royal Hawaiian hotel for my Mai Tai ! Great excursion to the Fern Grotto in Kauai Overall, all the staff on board the ship were very friendly and knowledgeable and willing to help Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We went for Renewal of Vows and a Holiday get away to a warmer climate. We had a fantastic time on this Hawaii cruise! Weather in Hawaii was perfect in December, 75F-90F. We didn’t find any all day excursions, but didn’t want to do ... Read More
We went for Renewal of Vows and a Holiday get away to a warmer climate. We had a fantastic time on this Hawaii cruise! Weather in Hawaii was perfect in December, 75F-90F. We didn’t find any all day excursions, but didn’t want to do only 1/2 day. We just took Uber to local beaches for snorkeling, lunch, and drinks. All in one location. Beaches were not crowded and we had a blast! Most of the passengers on this cruise were elderly, hardly any kids. It was nice: quiet and not crowded. Only during breakfast it was quite difficult to find a table. There were too much food, so we usually skipped lunch. Pools and jacuzzi were not crowded as well. We really enjoyed the whole experience, very friendly service, great captain, food was delicious and well presented. We loved Formal nights and went to the Crown Grill, and Sabatini restaurants. Both were great! Balcony dinners were our favorite experience! Private and very personal dinners with fantastic waiters! Highly recommend. Captain did a very romantic Renewal of Vows, it was a touching moment. Then photographer took us to several locations and we loved our photos so much, we bought a $400 photo package. We loved the Spy Lectures Series and last Dancing Show. Made many great memories and loved this vacation! If you purchase any packages, print summary. Stuff gets confused what’s included in what package and it’s easier to show them a paper to claim all of the services. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This was a pre Christmas cruise that we extended to Dec 28.Exploring San Francisco before and after the cruise was an added bonus.We had the amazing itineraries of Hawaiian ports and then Mexican ports back to back.The ship was so ... Read More
This was a pre Christmas cruise that we extended to Dec 28.Exploring San Francisco before and after the cruise was an added bonus.We had the amazing itineraries of Hawaiian ports and then Mexican ports back to back.The ship was so beautifully decorated for the season,embarkation and disembarkation so easy,the cabin larger than the standard.The servers were enthusiastic and gracious.The food was excellent -the steaks on the Crown Grill done to perfection.The main dining room had offerings from Curtis Stone and the Vista was a reliable and tasteful place to dine.The afternoon tea in the dining room was delightful and an elegant experience. Sabatinis the Italian Restaurant even had the best desserts.Vines had Opus One bottles of which we bought 2 as gifts. Faouzzi, the pizza chef at Alfredo's pizzeria even created his favourite pizzas for us on request.The One 5 disco had a great DJ.Many fun activities on board for everyone-trivia a favourite, hula dancing classes and lei making before reaching Hawaii pleased everyone.There was even a native show when we were docked in Hawaii. The excursion at Honolulu visiting Pearl Harbor and USS Arizona Memorial and even to explore the submarine USS Bowfin was a once in a lifetime experience. The music especially the music of piano man Liam Stewart was exceptional.He even had his own 2 performances of Elton John songs in the Vista Lounge which were well attended. A couple of hundred children joined the ship with their families on Dec 18 and their spirit brought new joy to the ship and passengers. Adam Gorst the Hotel Manager was always visible with his wit, charm, and vigilance.The first woman Head maitre'd on Princess ships- interacted constantly with everyone during the dining with warmth and interest. A great time for every passenger on a newly renovated ship with lots of history and charm! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Everything was fantastic. Price was cheap. Experience was amazing. Recommending it to everyone. Lots of buffet food in Aloha Cafe. Specialty food was horrible so dont try it. Lots of options in the ALoha Cafe Cabin was clean. ... Read More
Everything was fantastic. Price was cheap. Experience was amazing. Recommending it to everyone. Lots of buffet food in Aloha Cafe. Specialty food was horrible so dont try it. Lots of options in the ALoha Cafe Cabin was clean. Little bit smaller but it was comfortable. Shows were amazing and entertaining. Standup comedy and shows were great. Service was great. Everyone was smiling and ready to help. Chef's were engaging and talking. Felt bad for kids to be working so hard on the cruise but when I spoke to one of them he explained me that he's on cruise for 4 months and get 2 months vacation so that was good. Spa is expensive. Massages are $200 or more per hour. We didnt do any shore excursions but its better to rent the car on each island and it was amazing experience. I didnt like the fact that we had to come back before 5-6 to cruise because later evening stay would have been fine and we could have covered more places driving around. Anyways, this Trip is one of my best trip. I do lot of trips but this one stands apart. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Embarkation: Super easy and quick. We were early (second in line to wait for security) as we wanted to drop off our luggage and check-in prior to going to Pearl Harbor. Ladies and girls will get a beautiful orchid lei and men and boys ... Read More
Embarkation: Super easy and quick. We were early (second in line to wait for security) as we wanted to drop off our luggage and check-in prior to going to Pearl Harbor. Ladies and girls will get a beautiful orchid lei and men and boys will get a shell lei. Check in was a breeze at the counter. I'm sure if you hit the wrong time, you would have a bit of a wait. I'm sure the Platinum or higher line would help with the queue if you have that status and used it as it didn't snake around the terminal as the cattle call line. Entertainment (shows): The two main shows were great... if you can make it to them. Many others have mentioned that since there are no sea days, you're typically in port exploring Hawaii and after a full day of excursions and walking, you want to eat and sleep. We also caught the magician Jason Andrews twice and the up close magic in Mardi Gras was really cool. We saw the comedian once for the family show and he was really funny. It was way over the kids heads so they weren't too impressed. Behind the Scenes Tour: This was subpar as compared to other BtSTs we've done. This is a perk for attaining Platinum and above. It ocurred on Friday at 9:30am (Nawilliwilli, Kauai). It is hosted by CruiseNext staff taking you to the stage area, dressing rooms for performers, laundry, galley, provisions and a walk along "Route 66" (I-95 for many of the other ships). I'm used to actually seeing and hearing from the heads of those departments and having access to speaking with them on other tours. Latitudes Internet Perk: What is with the fee to activate my FREE Internet access Latitudes perk? On prior cruises, you can access the plan without a fee. Perhaps it is only on the PoA being domiciled in the USA? Outdoor areas and pools: All were well kept without a lot of cups and dishes sitting around. If you have kids, there is a "pool" and "hot" tub on 12 mid/aft behind the checkers game. I put them in quotes because, it's probably 5" deep with a tiny slide and the "warm" tub was just that. Some folks may feel a bit clausterphobic even though there is glass looking out to the deck. Dining: My favorite! I am really not picky when presented with food I didn't have to prepare. If it's not moving, I'll eat it. If I'm really hungry and it is moving, it would probably stop moving in my mouth. You get the idea. We had the 3 ultimate dining package perk (3UDP) with our reservation and initially chose Teppanyaki twice along with Cagney's. We had Teppanyaki on embarkation night and it was "ok." A bit saltier and greasier than we're used to. So we moved the second Teppanyaki to La Cuccina. We also receive the Platinum perk of Le Bistro (Jefferson's) or Cagney's with a bottle of wine and Moderno or La Cuccina. For those two we selected Jefferson's and La Cuccina. The food at Jefferson's Bistro was great as long as you can find something on the menu that you like. Henry provided wonderful service and was very attentive. The Maitre'd (didn't get his name) at Jefferson's Bistro was phenomenal. He was accommodating and helped with an extra dessert. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We flew from London and stayed 2 nights pre-cruise in San Francisco. As Elite members check in was quick and easy and we were on board within 20 minutes. The outside of the ship was rusty in places but inside the ship was fantastic. ... Read More
We flew from London and stayed 2 nights pre-cruise in San Francisco. As Elite members check in was quick and easy and we were on board within 20 minutes. The outside of the ship was rusty in places but inside the ship was fantastic. Our balcony cabin was lovely but had no footrest on the balcony or a cabin kettle.Our cabin steward got us a footrest but couldn't get a kettle. Our Elite mini bar set up was very welcome. We had Any time dining and the first 5 nights we dined in the Michaelangelo restaurant on deck 5 and as we wanted a table for 2 we were given a buzzer to wait for a table. The other 10 nights we dined in DaVinci restaurant which was anytime dining after 7.15pm and we were shown to a table immediately. After 4 sea days we arrived at a wet Hilo. Next day we were in Oahu and took a tour to Pearl Harbor. Next day in Kauai we did a fantastic movies tour. Next day was maui where we got a tender and being Elite we met the loyalty rep in Michaelangelo restaurant and give Priority tender tickets. We then had 4 sea days before reaching Ensenada in Mexico. Another sea day later we were back in San Francisco. The food and service was fantastic in every venue. After a quick walk off disembarkation carrying our own cases we quickly got a taxi to take us to a hotel where we had a day room booked so we could explore more of San Francisco. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
My parents gave us this trip as a family gift to celebrate 4 birthdays and their own 15 year wedding anniversary. Their children and grandchildren were not present when they were married in Hawaii 15 years ago. We looked forward to this ... Read More
My parents gave us this trip as a family gift to celebrate 4 birthdays and their own 15 year wedding anniversary. Their children and grandchildren were not present when they were married in Hawaii 15 years ago. We looked forward to this cruise for six months only to find it a HUGE money pit! Very disappointed in the cruise itself. The drinks were always taxed due to being in port everyday! The auto gratuity was over priced due to the service and food quality. I'm a great tipper, but I would not have given the cooks extra tips at all! Crew members were actually serviced before my sister and I on two different days at two different locations on board. Not ok when you pay $30k for a vacay. We bought a wedding package to surprise my parents for a vow renewal for $500 so they would have the entire family present this time around. The photographer was less than par and the photos were super dark. After the viewing of the photos my parents were about to spend another $600 for 6 prints on a USB drive. Luckily my husband stepped in an intervened before that mistakehappened. Unfortunately we will not ever have good photos of the event only memories. We decided as 4 separate families that none of us would be on Norwegian ever again!! There are too many amazing cruises out there for the price we paid. .However, Hawaii is NEVER ugly or regretful. I'm glad we were together as a family in the beautiful islands. #family4ever#norwegianNeveragain Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Choose this cruise to commemorate our 65th wedding anniversary & My 90 birthday. Boarded the Oosterdam Nov.6th. Nov. 9th severe coughing, Nov.14th after ships doctor did two tests said I had Bronchitis & bacteria infection & ... Read More
Choose this cruise to commemorate our 65th wedding anniversary & My 90 birthday. Boarded the Oosterdam Nov.6th. Nov. 9th severe coughing, Nov.14th after ships doctor did two tests said I had Bronchitis & bacteria infection & a bill for $227,08. Disembarked ship Nov.23rd @9am, by late afternoon Nov.23rd after being transferred by ambulance Doctors @ Highline hospital I.C.U. ward diagnosed me as having Sepsis Pnuemonia & Bacteria infection. While on this cruise my wife, son Michael & daughter inlaw Jo-ann also experienced coughing & sickness. Apart from our illness we found this an boring & uninteresting cruise, food was pretty much the same. The only time my wife & I were able to leave the ship was in Honolulu, just too ill the rest of the time.Holland America declined our request for some form of reimbursement, but did say they were sorry that I was unwell during the cruise,how compassionate can you get. Our first night in the dining room soup was served hot one hour & 15mins. later our dinner arrived stone cold, we ate in the Lido for the rest of the cruise.Music for dancing was hard to find nothing in the Crows nest or the Ocean bar long time favourites in past years,acts in the show room far below usual standards. the only thing for us to be positive about was the CREW as always, hard to beat. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I traveled with a group of ten people to the Hawaiian islands on my first ever cruise. I wasn't sure what to expect going in, but I know for certain that I've been spoiled for any other type of travel. Cruising with Princess is ... Read More
I traveled with a group of ten people to the Hawaiian islands on my first ever cruise. I wasn't sure what to expect going in, but I know for certain that I've been spoiled for any other type of travel. Cruising with Princess is truly the definition of royal treatment. The attention to detail was unlike anything I've ever experienced, from simple details in the stateroom to the above-and-beyond treatment we received from the dining room waitstaff (which, with such a large group, does not go unnoticed). The staff and crew were welcoming and well-informed from day 1 to our disembarkation. There was something for everyone in our group. Singing, dancing, shows, trivia, spa treatments, eating, shopping, tours, sitting quietly with a book. All of the entertainment was top-notch, the game shows were memorable, and the activities always got us laughing. We were well-prepared during our stay thanks to the information and printouts Princess provided. I especially appreciated their own miniature version of a morning talk show, the Wake Show. It was a fun way to start the day. I expected a 15 day vacation with my entire family to push me to exhaustion, but that wasn't the case. It was actually bittersweet to leave because we'd met some wonderful people and made friends with some of the crew and staff. It sounds corny, but Princess really does live up to their motto "come back new". Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I chose this cruise for several reasons. With all that has gone on in my life these last two years, I really needed some time away. This 15 day Round trip Hawaiian cruise was perfect! I was worried about being on the water 5 days ... Read More
I chose this cruise for several reasons. With all that has gone on in my life these last two years, I really needed some time away. This 15 day Round trip Hawaiian cruise was perfect! I was worried about being on the water 5 days straight. Trust me there is plenty to do. Then you hit Hilo, now the fun begins. Oahu is an extended stay. The only bad thing was it was on a Sunday. The Cultural Center was closed. Beautiful Kauai is next. We chose the Mudbug atv all day adventure. Let me tell you , those 1000 Polaris are quick and torquey. Maui was total snorkeling to see sea tortoise. Boy did we! Lots! You can take the feeling of the cruise being over. 5 more days at sea is what you have. Aboard ship fun begins again. Now you have made some really good friends. A quick stop to Ensenada for a few beers and bring home a couple of warm cozy blankets always a must. Now you can cry. Back to Los Angeles. It has been a few days now since we’ve been back. I can’t wait for the next one! That will be 4/4/20. The 7 day Mexican Riviera onboard the Royal Princess. The ship itself; the Star, like the Grand is getting up there in age but she still was cooking around 20knts. The Crew was excellent as always. Friendly and courteous. The food... Now I know why Princess’ slogan is “Come back new”. Ya, a new size. All in all it was well needed time away. The demographics on this cruise is slightly more mature for my taste but all were friendly and kind. I would definitely recommend this cruise. It is well worth it! Ratherbecrusing 11/19 Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Great trip great crew but the boat is getting a little bit dated. My parents pick this cruise as they like to sail out of San Francisco. It was a family trip you’re a little concerned that there would be a lot of sea days however there ... Read More
Great trip great crew but the boat is getting a little bit dated. My parents pick this cruise as they like to sail out of San Francisco. It was a family trip you’re a little concerned that there would be a lot of sea days however there was plenty to do on the ship. The crew was fantastic except for the cruise director Kevin he was just OK. They had a new game called high seas heist which was fun but poorly executed by the Cruise staff. There were terrific people onboard. I really enjoyed interacting with fellow Cruise critic members. We were in club class and the service was wonderful everyone on board was very nice. The Ship is getting very old in our room things were starting to fall apart the couch was saggy and the ceiling tiles kept falling. We took two tours offered by princess one on Hilo which was great we went on a small hike around the volcano. The tour in Ensenada was a joke the bus windows were so dirty you couldn’t see out of it. The tour director provided commentary such as, “on your right you’ll see a building that used to be a family home but is now a daycare center.” And that was the good portion. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I did not choose this cruise but it was fantastic. i was worried on arrival that our plane was an hour late but ncl was waiting when we disembarked the plane. The food in the Skyline was amazing and the Diner was fun to experience. all the ... Read More
I did not choose this cruise but it was fantastic. i was worried on arrival that our plane was an hour late but ncl was waiting when we disembarked the plane. The food in the Skyline was amazing and the Diner was fun to experience. all the staff I interacted with were very friendly and polite. My cabin was spacious and I loved having the balcony to go out on when I was in my room. The Vegas show was great. the entertainment director was everywhere and very good at her job, i loved the Not so newlywed game show night. i enjoyed all the ports and the excursions, however would have enjoyed more cultural options on land. the ports were beautiful and the guides that showed us around were knowledgeable. i would defiantly do this cruise again as well as cruise with Norwegian again. i traveled with my adult family there were no children in my group. embarkation from the boat was simple and easy. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
As many other reviews state...”a easier way to visit multiple Hawaiian islands” was the draw for this cruise. Having cruised with multiple lines & reading various reviews about Pride of America we knew not to expect perfection. ... Read More
As many other reviews state...”a easier way to visit multiple Hawaiian islands” was the draw for this cruise. Having cruised with multiple lines & reading various reviews about Pride of America we knew not to expect perfection. We Added the 3 day hotel/land excursions to our trip prior to boarding the ship. It help us adjust with our jet lag. Our balcony cabin (8134) was dated/average & room for 2. (Our female steward was the best we have ever experienced in our years of cruising). The buffet dining was adequate & the up-charged restaurants were a disappointment ( we tried 3 different ones) due to poor servers. One night we watched our food delivered to the servers wait station while our server & 3 others stood together laughing/talking/. After 10 minutes I walked up to the group & pointed out our food & that our request for additional drink orders had still not been filled 25 minutes later. There was no apology just a cool attitude from our server from then forward. There was a sad agreement, among our group, about the work ethic we observed of the American staff...at times we were embarrassed as the numerous foreign passengers we talked with commented on it. Shore excursions make for long days & were adequate. Our group wished we could have had one sea day to allow us to recharge our energy levels. Enjoy your trip, know there will be some disappointments with on board expectations not met...prepare yourself for the up’s and down’s while enjoying new environment beauty. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
NCL offered a very appealing itinerary with two overnight stops which allowed us to explore the islands on our own. We thoroughly enjoyed our Deluxe Owner's Suite with hot tub, it was beautiful and spacious and our butler Roland was ... Read More
NCL offered a very appealing itinerary with two overnight stops which allowed us to explore the islands on our own. We thoroughly enjoyed our Deluxe Owner's Suite with hot tub, it was beautiful and spacious and our butler Roland was helpful and friendly. The ship was easy to navigate and had everything we needed. Embarkation and disembarkation was an easy process, we had personal attention and service and felt very spoiled! Dining was okay, the specialty dining was nice, the buffet was mediocre but we were always able to find what we wanted. We enjoyed the complimentary room service and our butler also arranged a nice afternoon snack for our final day of cruising so the rest of our party could join us in our suite. We booked a couple shore excursions which were fine and explored on our own via rental car in the overnight ports. All in all a very pleasurable cruise. We have been on probably a dozen cruises with many cruise lines and found NCL to be a nice, affordable choice. If you've been to Hawaii before, or never been, this is a nice way to see more than one island. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019

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