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

6 Princess Island Princess Cruise Reviews for Repositioning Cruises to Pacific Coastal

I wrote how great the shore excursion in Victoria at Craigdarroach Castle was, how we'd done Butchart x2, how great the food at Horizon Court was, how we seldom got to restuarants even tho so pretty cuz loved buffet so much! The ... Read More
I wrote how great the shore excursion in Victoria at Craigdarroach Castle was, how we'd done Butchart x2, how great the food at Horizon Court was, how we seldom got to restuarants even tho so pretty cuz loved buffet so much! The sea was rockier than expected so didn't get much sleep, glad of entertainment. Best was Amethyst Trio wAlex & 2 violinists, wowza! Staff was great, esp Leo our stateroom steward, Igor in Horizon Court, Kirk at Future Cruises, Jojo in Pizzaria. Fun w/DJ doing trivia, but pretty hard questions!! Need more general stuff, widely known. Enjoyed piano player/singer, didn't remember name. So glad embarcation & debarcation were so easy, tho they had us at wrong time, was able to get it fixed. Our mini-suite was clean & comfy, plenty of toiletries & hangers, plenty of room. Sure wish we could have gotten onto balcony more, was too cold & windy! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
The cruise must have been sold out. Hard to find any area for 'down time' except in our cabin. The buffet (Horizon Court) was always busy and it was sometimes difficult to find a comfortable seat to enjoy your meal. Speaking of ... Read More
The cruise must have been sold out. Hard to find any area for 'down time' except in our cabin. The buffet (Horizon Court) was always busy and it was sometimes difficult to find a comfortable seat to enjoy your meal. Speaking of which - we found the food very tasteless and unappetizing. Tried the dining room and ordered prime rib - I literally needed to saw through it, it was so grizzly. Definitely not 'prime'. Our last night onboard I ordered the steak in the dining room - same thing - a piece of steak which I had to saw through...such a disappointment. Plus the menu was very limited - not a lot of options. So the food/dining experience was a 1 out of 5. Loved our cabin - great view, nice sized balcony, really nice in late afternoon. Regarding 'service' - it was slow in the lounges/bars - at times; I often got up and went to the bar to order a beverage as wait staff were either not around or busy talking to each other. Was not terribly impressed with dining/bar staff ... they were always polite but did not really seem to 'see' me; hard to explain. We went several time to the Library - never any available tables/lounge chairs...always occupied. We sat on the sofa at the 'librarian's desk' and watched several (30+ people) come in one side and walk out the other side of the Library doors - no seats, some even came back after 30 minutes or so and found nothing had changed. Many (all?) tables seat four but most of the tables had two people at them -- perhaps put more tables for two? - also it would be wonderful if the Library was enlarged -- there is definitely a demand. We sat on the sofa and played Scrabble on our iPad. There was no signage to inform people where the games/cards were stored ... many people at the 'desk' waiting for the librarian to ask...Entertainment was very good - Teacake and AJ Jamal were great - but again there was standing room only - just packed - and not good air quality (Princess Theater). Disembarkation was excellent (LA). Regarding if we would travel on this particular ship again - if the price was right - yes. Many years ago we did a Princess cruise and it was spectacular - the food was excellent and the ship had many places for us to enjoy down time - that's about all I can remember - except it was an 'inside' cabin and now after having just enjoyed a cabin with a balcony - we will always go with a balcony cabin in future cruises (if the opportunity arises). Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We had a wonderful time on the 6-day Pacific Wine Coastal on Island Princess, Los Angeles to Vancouver. I had read the posts on the refurb and it took a little bit to maneuver the ship but I never found it annoying. You just adjust. ... Read More
We had a wonderful time on the 6-day Pacific Wine Coastal on Island Princess, Los Angeles to Vancouver. I had read the posts on the refurb and it took a little bit to maneuver the ship but I never found it annoying. You just adjust. We did early traditional dining, which was at 5:15 p.m. (we signed up for 5:45 but it ended up being earlier). We normally don’t even get home from work until 6:15 so this was early for us but it allowed us to see the 7:30 pm show and my husband to be in bed around 10 (too early for me but he’s a creature of habit). I was afraid of the wait times for ATD given the posts for Island Princess. This early seating worked out well for us. Here’s my thoughts on the other things most people seem to want to know about a cruise: Food: We went on a Princess Alaska cruise several years ago and honestly, I don’t remember the food being as good as it was this time. I learned last time, if the waiter recommends something, go with that choice in the MDR and was sorry I didn’t heed my own advice all the time (can’t recommend the Curtis Stone seafood stew choice). I eat much more plant-based food since the last Princess cruise and was determined to order off the menu just to see if I could. Loved the Caesar salad (ordered with anchovies) and had it for my entrée twice (recommended by one of our table mates). If you are vegetarian, I’d recommend on the day they have the ratatouille and cheese tarts, skip the cheese tarts and order an entree sized ratatouille. It was very yummy! The buffet was great for breakfast and lunch with plenty of fresh fruit and salad options. And the Indian food was great as a plant-based option. There’s plenty for meat eaters and I must say I had lox every day we ate in the Horizon buffet for breakfast. We did the Ultimate Balcony Dining and I couldn’t pass up the lobster. It was very yummy and the service was exceptional but we were in San Francisco so the food got cold quickly on the balcony. Just keep that in mind if you are in a colder climate. But can you beat the view (Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco) and the experience was well worth the price. From other posts on the topic, I assumed they added the customary 18% gratuity to the bill, which they did not so we are glad we tipped the waiter extra at the end because he and his assistant truly deserved it for making it such a memorable experience. We also did Bayou Café. The food was great but I’d have to say the service was … meh. I’d like to think it’s because Lorna Luft and her husband along with a senior officer (I want to say it was the doctor) were at a table close by and got a lot of attention but honestly l’m not sure how much difference it made. The service was not bad but I certainly wouldn’t consider it good. Just so-so. I had the shrimp and my husband had the porterhouse and lobster. We really liked the food. The porterhouse was huge! Service: Excellent all around. Our cabin steward, Norman, was rarely seen but always kept the room spotless and could easily be found if needed. We always had the ice we needed for our before dinner drinks and he did a great job straightening up our cabin after our numerous midday naps. Joepep, our waiter was excellent and his assistant, Roland was great too. We loved the traditional dining experience (have done ATD the past couple cruises), loved our table mates, enjoyed meeting them and the nightly conversation. Princess has an after dinner $3 Irish cream shot (think Bailey’s) where you get a cute little souvenir shot glass. It’s great as a shot, on the rocks, or in your coffee and it’s so cool you can buy your table a round without breaking the bank. Joepep even cleaned and wrapped the shot glasses after dinner and found us a box on the last night to transport them home safely (they are in the dishwasher as we speak). Entertainment: EXCELLENT – Do not miss On the Bayou. It’s probably the best production show I’ve seen on a cruise ship. The comedian was good and I liked he wasn’t raunchy like how they are on short Carnival cruises. He definitely catered to the older crowd which made up his audience, which I really liked. The ventriloquist was very entertaining. All in all I’d say it’s the best entertainment I’ve experienced on a cruise ship. And since there were 500-600 passengers in transit from the Panama Canal cruise, there was never a problem getting a seat at the 7:30 show even if you arrived at 7:20. We totally enjoyed the naturalist’s talks – he was great and well qualified in terms of experience. I even got to see Star Wars Rogue One on the big screen so what more can you ask for! Cruise Director: Callie Smit is so funny. OMG loved him and his stories! He made the cruise fun. General comment: Others may slam Princess because the captain decided to miss the Astoria stop because the weather was terrible. We had two days of rough seas. But we are grateful he decided to put safety first. And it gives us a great excuse to plan another cruise so we can visit Astoria in the future. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We live in Georgia. We booked this cruise for a halfway meeting point with friends from Hawaii who are also frequent cruisers, and to make a port call in Oregon, a state we have never visited before. This is our 30th cruise overall, 25th ... Read More
We live in Georgia. We booked this cruise for a halfway meeting point with friends from Hawaii who are also frequent cruisers, and to make a port call in Oregon, a state we have never visited before. This is our 30th cruise overall, 25th on Princess. We were successful in our first goal, disappointed in the second. We booked our air travel through Princess EZ Air and flew without incident from Atlanta to LAX. The transfer to the ship was slow but the expedited embarkation went smoothly. Our balcony cabin was as expected and the service provided by Jojan (Joe) was excellent. There was no complimentary mini bar in our cabin (Elite status) and it took me five tries to get it delivered, two complaints to the cabin attendant, two calls to room service and finally a visit to the front desk where the desk officer called the room service supervisor directly. That did the trick. We enjoyed the production shows, especially "On the Bayou," skipped the comedians and ventriloquist. We ate breakfast and lunch daily in the buffet, dinner most nights in the anytime dining room, three nights at a table for four by request, and two nights at a shared table. We had friendly, enjoyable companions at every meal. I must say that "any time" dining has now become first and second seating. If you want to reserve a table for any times other than 5:15 or 7:30, you're out of luck or you have to endure a long wait. The food was always good and service excellent with the following exception. We ate one night at the Bayou Cafe Steak House. The service was not better than the AT dining room and the huge steaks were of uneven quality, part tender and part tough. One of the four had to be sent back to the kitchen. I consider we wasted our money on the specialty restaurant. Our travel agent had booked end of cruise transfers to the airport for us. Separately, I booked an end of cruise excursion in Vancouver. The first day of the cruise I went to the excursions desk, turned in my transfer tickets and asked for a credit on my cabin account. I was assured then and later by the excursions supervisor that I would see the credit on my final statement. The final statement showed not a credit, but an additional charge for two more transfers (total four transfer tickets plus two end of cruise excursion tickets). My first visit to the front desk was deflected by the answer, "You have to wait for the excursion supervisor to come to her office at 8 o'clock." We were due to get off the ship at 8:15. Back to the desk at 8 and a different, much more responsible officer immediately made the correction (without reference to the excursion office) and we were on our way. Sad to say, we missed our port call in Astoria, Oregon. After two days of rough weather, the captain announced at dinner that we would skip Astoria for safety's sake and to make our port call in Victoria on time. However, by that time the sea had calmed considerably. IMO, we could have stopped at Astoria for four to six hours and cut short the 18-hour port call at Victoria by six hours. I do understand that there were many more people booked on ship excursions in Victoria than in Astoria, ergo, for Princess it was as much a financial decision as a safety issue. We had a very nice excursion in Vancouver followed by a 19-hour trip home, seven hours in the air and 12 hours waiting at multiple airports. That's nobody's fault: It's hard to get an afternoon flight from the west coast to the east coast. We had a great time reuniting with our friends, met many nice people, recognized a few Princess officers and crew from past cruises, and enjoyed our visits in San Francisco, Victoria and Vancouver. We were disappointed at missing Astoria. We were unhappy at the mini bar, transfer tickets and steak house situations. None of those were up to usual Princess standards and I attribute them to lack of attention or carelessness by higher level management or supervision on this particular ship. We will cruise on Princess again; we hope for a better experience next time out. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
The Island was repositioning from Vancouver to Ft. Lauderdale and offered a three day segment from Vancouver to San Francisco. Since I live in the SF Bay Area my friend and I thought it would be a fun getaway. We splurged on a Suite ... Read More
The Island was repositioning from Vancouver to Ft. Lauderdale and offered a three day segment from Vancouver to San Francisco. Since I live in the SF Bay Area my friend and I thought it would be a fun getaway. We splurged on a Suite C703. Flew to Vancouver on Monday 9/12 and stayed in the Residence Inn on Hornby Street. Loved the hotel and the location. Full kitchen, large room and well located. Breakfast was included. We spent Monday evening and all day Tuesday walking around, shopping and eating. We took the Hop On Hop Off Bus Tuesday with a pick up outside the hotel. Loved seeing Stanley Park and Granville Island. On Wednesday we walked and shopped some in the morning and then took a cab to Canada Place. Check in went quickly as we are both Platinum and Suite Passengers. I received my Elite card when I checked in - Yippee!! We had just settled down in the "lounge" when we were whisked on board. Straight to our stateroom. Caribe Deck 10 Aft. Very comfortable and large. Loved the extra large balcony. Since this was a repositioning short term cruise the service was inconsistent. We didn't get our coffee cards delivered until three trips to the Service Desk. We didn't meet our steward until late in the afternoon but we dropped our carry on and went straight to the Dining Room for lunch and then walked around. After muster I still had no luggage but I had a nice note from Security to come see them about my luggage. They did not like my power strip and took it away. Lots of people were down there getting appliances removed. First time in 29 years that has happened to me. Our Steward had just been reassigned to our floor and suites so he was figuring it out. He worked hard to make us happy. We had Anytime Dining. NEVER AGAIN. Long lines to get a pager, then long waits to get a table. I know I could have made reservations but I couldn't quite figure that out. So we went to Sabatini's the first night. Once again I was underwhelmed. I liked the food, but the service was sketchy and the head waiter was not thrilled to have us. We felt that way at Breakfast too the one day we ate there. The second night we had reservations at the Bayou Cafe and it was fabulous. Lots of great, innovative dishes, great service, it has a bar with a dance floor and entertainment during dinner so it was a nice change. The last night we had dinner with friends we made on the ship and waited the hour for a table for 10. They were continuing on the 15 day cruise and were going to ask about late seating set dining as they were unhappy with Anytime as well. We had lunch in the Dining Room everyday and once again they seemed to be surprised by how many people were trying to eat there. I think they were getting used to the new flow given Alaska being so port heavy and not a lot of people on board during the day. Took Pilates and Yoga both morning for $12 each. Great classes with a good instructor. Did two spa services which I love. I use Elemis products so the upsell stopped as soon as I said that. With limited time in Victoria we went to the Royal BC Museum which has a great First Nations Exhibit. Since we had done a lot of shopping in Vancouver we didn't shop in Victoria. Disembarkation was a nightmare. Everyone on the three day was expected to walk off with their luggage. We were assigned groups based on our cabin location but Suite/Elite/Platinum were sent to a separate lounge. Rather than having us disembark as a group behind tours and early flights they waited until our groups were called. I had never seen this. They also did not provide tags so the crew did not know if you were telling the truth about your group. The ship took an hour to clear before they allowed groups to leave and then everyone rushed the gangplank. No checking no order. The in transit passengers did not understand that they needed to fill out a form and sign it so Customs got irritated and shut down for 45 minutes to clear the hall. We got off at 11. Poorly handled logistics by Princess. But I was home by 11:30 with no flying and not jet lag. A nice break Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
At the outset I always want to describe myself as someone you will find in the gym, restaurants, bars or casino - not the shops or shows. I am a lawyer in my 60's that practices with a large firm in Los Angeles. Living in Los ... Read More
At the outset I always want to describe myself as someone you will find in the gym, restaurants, bars or casino - not the shops or shows. I am a lawyer in my 60's that practices with a large firm in Los Angeles. Living in Los Angeles I could not pass up a brief repositioning cruise from Los Angeles to Vancouver. For very little I was able to book a standard cabin with a balcony - no stops -just two days at sea. This was my second Princess cruise - my first being a 14 day cruise on the Diamond Princess, which is based in Japan. The Island Princess is one of their older and smaller ships and really does not compare to the newer and larger Diamond Princess - which is really great, including its Japanese toilets (the Diamond Princess was built in Japan). In the past few years I have also taken cruises on Regent, Silversea and Crystal - which I may mention for comparison. 1. Getting on and off - very good. The staff was friendly and efficient in Los Angeles. In Vancouver there were quick and easy choices of getting off. I chose the 7:30am walk off and precisely at 7:30 I was on my way to the terminal - no muss nor fuss. 2. Food - the food on the Island Princess was very good, as was the food on the Diamond Princess. Frankly, for the money, it's a great deal and really not that much different than what you get on Regent or the other high end ship main dining rooms these days. The selections on the Island Princess main dining room menu were more limited than Regent, Crystal, Silversea or the Diamond Princess. The selections in the buffet are about the same - with pretty good coffee (the coffee on Regent was terrible). There are two speciality restaurants - which are priced at $29 per person (this must be a recent increase from the $25 per person which is mentioned in other recent reviews). I did not try them as their menus were not all that exciting - to me at least. The service in the main dining room was ok. The waiters seemed to wait for a whole bunch of dinners to be ready from multiple tables before getting them and staggering out with 10 covered dishes on the tray. The service in the buffet was very good - better than my last Regent cruise (Voyager - I have a separate review there) where there were not enough tables and servers to handle everyone promptly. Overall, Silversea (Spirit) had the best dining - but the Diamond Princess is a close second together with Crystal (Serenity). 3. Cabin - very comfortable bed and pillows - two uncomfortable chairs. As noted by others, the shower is small with an annoying shower curtain. The water pressure was good. I am 5',7" - 140 pounds - and just fit......... 4. Bars - good, with fast service. 5. The gym - not good. As noted by the professional Cruise Critic "critic", the gym was recently moved from a top deck with views to inside space on deck 6. I did not catch this and before the cruise (there are a number of You Tube videos showing a beautiful large gym with nearly 360 degree views) and was very disappointed to find a small claustrophobic gym that seemed like an afterthought. Moreover the equipment is old and the free weights seemed to be on the heavy side (no it was not because of my bar experience the night before). 6. The casino - a let down. Here again, on You Tube you will see a large casino with a fairly good sized craps table - not any more.....It appears the the remodel that pushed the gym to the 6th deck also took half of the casino. The craps table is gone and the tables that remain (blackjack and three card poker) are pushed up against a wall so that there is very little room to move around. There are a number of slot machines (although no where near what you see in the posted You Tube videos) which have a varied number of games, including a block of Quick Hit machines - which a lot of people like. The staff in the casino were friendly. 7. Other - the front desk was well staffed and organized - no lines. The same cannot be said for the Diamond Princess. The ship was clean - but the absolute cleanest and brightest (of all ships I have been on) was the Diamond Princess. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Island Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 3.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.8
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.1

Find an Island Princess Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click