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958 Los Angeles to Hawaii Cruise Reviews

We have gone to Hawaii on Princess before and had a great experience. We wanted to go again and explore more. We had Princess arrange our flight and travel to the ship. This went very smoothly. We did wait at the airport for about 1 ... Read More
We have gone to Hawaii on Princess before and had a great experience. We wanted to go again and explore more. We had Princess arrange our flight and travel to the ship. This went very smoothly. We did wait at the airport for about 1 hour because our flight arrived at approximately 10:00 a.m and embarkation was not until 1:00 supposedly. When we arrived at the Embarkation facility, it was very well organized and the lines were kept short. Princess has really refined this procedure. We originally sailed on the Ruby shortly after it was built (2009) and it was shiny and new back then. Even though it has gone in for refurbishment recently it appears most of this has been technology based. The ship itself is showing its age. There is some wear and tear in places. (sun fading in the rooms, wear on the wood on the chairs in the common areas). Not enough to make us unhappy but if you are looking for a bright, new ship, this one is not for you. We were in Baha 748 which was a rear facing balcony. I can't recommend this room enough! The balcony was larger than the traditional balcony and we had wake views for our sailing. The bed was marvelous and the bedding was luxurious. My husband is generally picky about his mattress and he slept well the entire time with no aches or pains. Our room steward was fantastic! We tipped him daily and really developed a relationship with him and it showed in the care he kept in our room. We did not access a lot of the entertainment but did go to the Piazza everyday and interacted with the cruise director staff. Jerry was a new staff member and he was very engaging. We really enjoyed him. We chose the early dining option in the Botticelli dining room and the food was very good. Our wait staff were not really engaging which was disappointing especially as the next section over had a very good server who was super friendly and great with his guests. I think you have the luck of the draw on this one. Our shore excursions were all private ones except the Adventure to Hana which we booked through Princess due to time constraints. We did an small plane flight above Kauai and found it the most enjoyable excursion we took. I highly recommend it. The vendor was Wings over Kauai. I would love to take this cruise again and will continue to cruise with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Arrived day prior to sailing and stayed at the Best Western, San Pedro. Great accommodations. Free shuttle to port next morning. Arrived at 11:00am and after clearing boarding formalities we were in the buffet enjoying lunch by 11:45am. ... Read More
Arrived day prior to sailing and stayed at the Best Western, San Pedro. Great accommodations. Free shuttle to port next morning. Arrived at 11:00am and after clearing boarding formalities we were in the buffet enjoying lunch by 11:45am. Luggage in cabin at 1:00pm. We selected Any Time dining in the MDR shared tables most evenings. Did not wait once. Food and selection choice was good. Did not try the specialty restaurants as we were more than satisfied with what was offered in the MDR. Drink selection and service in the bars and lounges was excellent. The nightly shows were very good, especially the guest artists who included Teacake and Bryan Cheatham who were amazing. Big shout out to Gary Golding, Cruise Director, who kept the entertainment bubbling throughout the cruise. Gary and his staff were very interactive and provided lots of laughs and fun filled events. Also enjoyed music in the lounges provided late into the evening. We were unsure as to whether we would enjoy the sea days on this cruise but found that it worked out well with lots of activities and also down time on deck. The weather was good after the first two days at sea which were cool and cloudy. Ship never felt crowded. The islands of Hawaii were beautiful. Took excursions in the four ports of call. Most enjoyable was the snorkling trip to Molikini Island and Turtle Bay by Zodiac. We swam with turtles who were as inquisitive of us as we were of them. On our way to the island we saw pods of Humpback whales. The skipper of the boat took us within a couple of hundred feet of the whales as they rolled and swam by us. The highlight of our trip. Overall, an excellent vacation. We met some wonderful people and we look forward to our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Celebrating our 50th anniversary -- always wanted to cruise to Hawaii! Long days at sea -- special!! I have to admit after reading a number of reviews of the Ruby I was unsure if we chose the right ship - so we decided to make the best of ... Read More
Celebrating our 50th anniversary -- always wanted to cruise to Hawaii! Long days at sea -- special!! I have to admit after reading a number of reviews of the Ruby I was unsure if we chose the right ship - so we decided to make the best of it. Which we did - sure it's not perfect but so much of what I had read seemed to have been fixed or I just didn't notice. Flew in the day before staying in Long Beach at the Hampton -- the service and room was wonderful. Great area with small restaurants right across the street. Got a Lyft to the port the next day which took over a half hour. Embarkation was disappointing as I felt like they were herding cows -- "go there, go here" and some of the workers were rude even yelling at us for going where we were told to go!! So it wasn't a good start. Disembarking was better but they need more porters as my husband had to go outside the terminal to get someone to help with the luggage. We had a balcony room on deck 10 -- the balcony was the biggest we've ever had. The room was very nice/clean - closet was huge. Lots of room to store things. The BED was the most comfortable we've ever had on a cruise. Our room steward was so helpful and kept our room clean daily -- and our sheets were changed at least three times during our 15 days onboard. Food was the most disappointing - only ate in the dinning room four times -- food wasn't anything to write home about so we ate at the buffet that way we could try some things and then go back to get what we liked. The service in the dinning room was great but unfortunely very slow getting the food out. Service in the Horizon Court (Lido Deck) was very good and attentive. There was alot to do onboard - some of our highlights were -- Mark Harris a Naturalist who had so much to share about the ocean, birds, etc. The Walker Black Duo - a husband/wife team who did a fabulous job night after night singing in different lounges. Enjoyed a number of movies "under the stars" -- they provided blankets, popcorn, pizza and cookies!! They ran a number of movies and concerts during the day too. Shore excursions -- Hilo - Volcanoes National Park - Kilauea -- so worth the trip. Never heard of this before but there was a free shuttle to Wal-Mart!!(I believe it was provided by Roberts Hawaiian Tours.) After our tour we jumped on the shuttle (10 minute drive) to purchase souvenirs and macadamia nuts! Oahu - Island Safari Jeep Tour -- wow!! A 6 hour private tour of the island. Our guide was Sean who had a great personality and certainly knew the island. For lunch we stopped at Giovanni's food truck and ordered the most amazing garlic shrimp! Kauai - Journey to Waimea Canyon (Roberts Hawaii tour). Nani was our bus driver - very entertaining and knowelable. Waimea Canyon is a must see - Grand Canyon of the Pacific. Maui - Whale Watching Tour - so cool -- humpback whales. After the tour we stayed in town (which has a lot of little shops) then took the tender back to the ship. Ensenada - disappointed that the ship had to stop here. We did take a shuttle to town - not impressed at all! Walked back to the pier and were glad to get onboard. So overall our cruise onboard the Ruby was "special"!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose a 16 day cruise to Hawaii to celebrate my wifes 50th birthday. The ship ( Emerald) is 12 years old but it was fine for our needs. Food: The buffet had choices and always found something to eat. The 24/7 cafe is very ... Read More
We chose a 16 day cruise to Hawaii to celebrate my wifes 50th birthday. The ship ( Emerald) is 12 years old but it was fine for our needs. Food: The buffet had choices and always found something to eat. The 24/7 cafe is very good as was the burgers and fries by the pool. We had a great time relaxing on the sea days to / from Hawaii. Great Pizza by the pool. Movies under the stars was great and food in general was good. Always a choice of options and waiters were always happy to assist and or change dishes as needed. Wine options are not great if you like sweet wine. 5 pools to swim in and always free space and not crowded. Gym is very good and plenty of space on the decks. The sanctuary is great if you need privacy. Dining room was very good but not excellent. Shows were ok but not fantastic. Crowd was too old to go to a disco but were always happy to go line dancing etc. All staff were friendly. Room attendant was efficient and serviced our needed. Ports in Hawaii were all good. We both had a great time and would go on Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise because of the time spent sailing and for a get a way. The embarkation and disembarkation went very, vey well.The food in the dining rooms was super. Very, very good, the help was so great. Just loved our server and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the time spent sailing and for a get a way. The embarkation and disembarkation went very, vey well.The food in the dining rooms was super. Very, very good, the help was so great. Just loved our server and helper. I didn't take advantage of the entertainment but my husband and sister-in-law hit all the shows, even the small lounges and loved them all. We have been with Princess a long time and have made many trips with them and yes we would go again. We are now elite passengers and we love the extras that go along with that. Once again loved our trip as we usually do with Princess and will be sailing with you again. I also enjoyed the shopping aboard and got some very good deals. Another favorite of mine was the casino and I did very well with that too. See you on our next voyage!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise because friends of ours saw it online and wanted to go to Hawaii. We departed from San Pedro. Departure was great. Long Beach is lovely. We were on board in no time at all. Smooth sailing! Weather was not the best, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because friends of ours saw it online and wanted to go to Hawaii. We departed from San Pedro. Departure was great. Long Beach is lovely. We were on board in no time at all. Smooth sailing! Weather was not the best, very cold in California. Disembarkation was also not a problem. Princess does that well. The ship was not in top form. The hot tubs had barely any jet power and were very old - definitely time to replace them. The ship itself was fine but very dated and the furniture in the Piazza was old and torn and stained. The Explorer's lounge was actually disgusting and had stained chairs that had lost the padding in the seats. I could smell urine at times. There is very little room there and I found this true in the theatre as well. If you don't go 40 minutes before any show you won't get a seat. Still we were on a cruise so the basic run down state of the ship did not have any effect on our fun. I found the buffet to be overcrowded and we were herded into areas at different times and could never find any seats. The furniture here was old and sticky too. I did not like the vibe there. The pools were great. I was in them a lot. Clean and well kept. They were semi warm as well. Lots of room on the deck to sun. We really did not have to wait for chairs out there much at all. The entertainment staff were great. They had me laughing more than once; Cruise director Duke and Asst Director Mark were fantastic. Lots of fun. I miss them a lot. They were very interactive with the staff. Empara from Chile was so funny. She was really fun to interact with. The service was okay. Lucy in the Explorer's lounge was great. Our room Steward was good, but he looked rushed and not really too friendly. He gave good service though. The ports were amazing. I mean its Hawaii right? But Ensenada was fun too. We did a whale watch in Maui and that was fun. We did the tour of Pearl Harbour which was nice but I was not aware that it would be extra to tour Big Mo. Our cabin was not quiet. We were right under the lido - neptune pool, and next to storage mid-ship and we heard loud bangs very early and late. One night they were power washing the pool decks and it was very loud. The sideways inside rooms are wonderful though. Big, roomy and lots of storage. Overall the trip was fun. The dining rooms had good selections. The waiters were good but once again, seemed rushed. I had the overall sense that Princess is trying to cut back and even the International cafe seemed to have less choices, as did the buffet. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Excellent cruise again. Easy embarkation. Our suite was perfect. The food and service were perfect. Entertainment was top notch. Disembarking was easy and very quick. We loved being on the ocean for a total of 10 days. ... Read More
Excellent cruise again. Easy embarkation. Our suite was perfect. The food and service were perfect. Entertainment was top notch. Disembarking was easy and very quick. We loved being on the ocean for a total of 10 days. Really the only thing disappointing was that we were not able to get off the ship at the stop on Maui as it was by tender boat and my husband is handicapped so he was not able to get on the tender. However, we were able to watch whales and dolphins and seals from the ship which was wonderful. We received wonderful service from the staff on the ship and were always treated with extreme care and concern. The entertainment was great. The shows were Vegas quality. They are always packed but Princess does a good job setting aside seats for this disabled and their partners. We will try to do our future cruises with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise to travel to Hawaii. Being our first timebto Hawaii we wanted to see more than one island. At the time of this booking Princess was the only cruise line we could find that sailed round trip from California. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise to travel to Hawaii. Being our first timebto Hawaii we wanted to see more than one island. At the time of this booking Princess was the only cruise line we could find that sailed round trip from California. We had a decent time but the entertainment onboard was awful especially the Atomic Party Band. The entertainment of various classes like Spanish lessons and ukulele lessons were awesome. The cruise ports were really good but not enough time at any port accept Honolulu. An overnight stay in Honolulu would be more than perfect. The crew were friendly and nice. The Casino was tight. Not a lot of winners. More losers than winners. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze. We Boarded at 12:30pm And was able to go straight to our cabin. It was good to be able to check into our room immediately. Great way to travel to Hawaii. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Had a great time & ready to go on another Princess Cruise. The only cruise line we have been on. We will book another cruise to Hawaii in the future. We needed more time in Hawaii to see more that we missed. The entertainment, staff, ... Read More
Had a great time & ready to go on another Princess Cruise. The only cruise line we have been on. We will book another cruise to Hawaii in the future. We needed more time in Hawaii to see more that we missed. The entertainment, staff, & rooms on Princess are the best so far. Everything from getting on embarkation to disembarkation is so organized. It’s truly an amazing experience to cruise. We will be on more in future with Princess. Another thing is the passengers are mostly nice and courteous. Many have been on 50+ cruises & several times Princess Cruise line. I asked a couple people their favorite cruise line & it was Princess. In addition, I have a 11y/o who has twice enjoyed the Kids Club. The staff takes care of the kids really well. Keeps them busy, & the kids really enjoy all the fun activities. This makes me feel like my kid is safe too. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
To see four islands and cruise the ocean blue! I wanted to relax and see Hawaii with my spouse which we did but I expected there to be professional entertainment of a much higher level. I think BINGO was too expensive and trivia got ... Read More
To see four islands and cruise the ocean blue! I wanted to relax and see Hawaii with my spouse which we did but I expected there to be professional entertainment of a much higher level. I think BINGO was too expensive and trivia got boring. I did enjoy the chef demonstrations and all of the food. The game shows were fun. The Beach Boys guitarist should stick to music and forget comedy, that was not good. The big production at the end was not impressive at all, sorry. Thank goodness our room was near the exercise equipment, but charging for Yoga is not worth going. High end on-board prices for low end receivables in my opinion. The best thing was whale watching. The worst thing was the last second cancellation of our Kauai helicopter excursion which we looked forward to for months. The best part was we were with family and not alone. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
OK, first of all this is our fourth cruise, our 1st on Princess. We booked this cruise to visit four of my sisters in the Islands. We've sailed on Norwegian, Celebrity and Disney. We flew into the L.A. area a few days early and ... Read More
OK, first of all this is our fourth cruise, our 1st on Princess. We booked this cruise to visit four of my sisters in the Islands. We've sailed on Norwegian, Celebrity and Disney. We flew into the L.A. area a few days early and stayed at the Crown Plaza in Redondo Beach, nice hotel and staff. Nice pier to hike around with good seafood to boot. We took an uber over to the Reagan Presidential Library and enjoyed it very much. Worth checking out in beautiful Simi Valley. The Emerald Princess was going for an 18 day re-fit at the end of this cruise, and it was very much due. I will commend the vessels maint. crew for constantly painting and varnishing whenever the weather permitted. I was told the buffet dining rooms were getting a complete makeover. Also, a new medallion system would be used for passenger access. Embarkation was a breeze, well organized, everyone was very helpful. The entire process took about 20 minutes and we were in our cabin. We booked very late so the best we could do was a room (E311) with an obstructed view on Deck 8. The room was not as big as the new cruise ships, but clean and well maintained. Bathroom and shower were on the small side but what I expected on a vessel built in 2007. Our cabin attendant Nester kept the place spotless the entire voyage. Although the view was obstructed you could still see the ocean going by. On the down side, since the window doesn't open the room can get a bit stuffy at times. For lunch we ate at the Horizon Court Buffet the first couple of days. You won't starve, but just your average fare there. About the 3rd day we started having lunch at Botticelli's on Deck 6 Aft. It was set up for open seating just for lunch and the food was better. For supper we ate mainly at Michaelangelo's and Da Vinci main dining rooms. The menu's between the two really didn't change much, so after three days at sea the food was not so good. I will say they know how to cook Salmon to perfection, but after many, many Salmon suppers I won't need to eat it again for quite awhile. One item that didn't sit well with me concerning the menu was the "Side Menu" with the higher end items (Maine lobster, steaks, ect), at an additional cost. We both loved getting our morning coffee at the International Cafe on Deck 5 Piazza for a small fee. And their freshly made sandwiches and pastries were always excellent. We had "anytime" seating for the main dining rooms and almost always sat with other couples and got to visit people from all over. I would say most of the crowd on this ship were in there 70's to mid-80's. A very nice group of people, we felt young being 56 and 65. We only took two of the offered excursions because we were meeting family on two of the islands. The whale watching in the bay at Maui was great, Humpback Whales that seemed to be everywhere in that bay. It was fun! There wasn't a cruise ship dock there so we had to us the ships Tenders. Added a few minutes getting off the ship, but no big deal and it was kinda fun. We took the wine tasting excursion during our stop at Ensenada, Mexico and absolutely loved it. Well organized and very smooth. They gave us two free bottles of wine and we couldn't be happier! We only attended one show the entire trip, for about ten minutes the first or second night. We were content sipping on wine and finding cozy spots on the ship to kick back and read. We probably won't do another Princess cruise based on the food issues. We just got spoiled on Celebrity. The crew on this ship went above and beyond to make you feel at home, we especially liked the "Main Dining Room Singers"! Disembarkation was smooth, we caught an uber to John Wayne Airport, no problems! We volunteered to give up our seats and ended up staying another day in Santa Anna, so we visited the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda. Another day well spent. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise because we had nearer been to Hawaii. It lived up to our expectations. Was more than we could have hoped for. Crew & staff was extremely friendly & polite. We flew from the east coast & spent night at ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had nearer been to Hawaii. It lived up to our expectations. Was more than we could have hoped for. Crew & staff was extremely friendly & polite. We flew from the east coast & spent night at Double Tree in San Pedro. The next morning we got the shuttle to ship. Embarking was extremely quick & easy. As soon as we got on the ship our stateroom was ready, We were pleasently surprise at this. We had a balcony cabin and plenty of room for storage of all of our items. We had the second seating for dinner and were very happy they changed the time to seven thirty instead of the eight thirty we had originally signed up for. Our best meal was in the Crown Grill. We have never had a better meal anywhere, it should not be missed. The ports were great, even Ensenada,which at first we had no interest in. We look forward to our next cruise with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
An overnight at the San Pedro Double Tree made embarkation a breeze. We were onboard less than an hour after leaving on the hotel shuttle. The ship was beautiful and far exceeded my expectations as I was aware she was headed to dry ... Read More
An overnight at the San Pedro Double Tree made embarkation a breeze. We were onboard less than an hour after leaving on the hotel shuttle. The ship was beautiful and far exceeded my expectations as I was aware she was headed to dry dock after our cruise. Nothing in the public areas looked tired as I’ve seen on other lines that were headed to refurbishment. The food was hit or miss. Our first Dinner at Share was terrrific and encouraged us to book a second. If the food on the second night had been the first we would have not gone again. Polling of various dining companions netted about a 50/50 split on favoribility. Salty Dog was the same. We had ATD and never had much of a wait though we were happy to share. I did see people waiting who were only interested in a private table. Main Dining room food was pretty good with some real misses. Twice I ordered scallops that were seriously gritty. Food seeemed to start strong and trail off to the seemingly typical odd final night. This trip offered Sweatbreads and two mussel dishes on the last night. If you don’t eat either, makes for limited choices. The chef’s table was the best we’ve had on Princess. The experience blew us away - the creativity and the wow factor were both present and delivered an amazing meal. The shore excursions were pleasant. I didn’t find anything that knocked my socks off. During dinner after Hilo I discovered there were tours that would have been a better fit but the passengers describing them were very clear that the descriptions had not come close to matching the tour tour experience. One gentleman even went to tour services to ask they change the description to match so he would know what to expect! The casino was very friendly and paid well early in the trip. We saw several large slot payouts and talked to other big winners. We were able to play on the same cash we started with and casino money most of the trip. The last 3 days the slots tightened noticeably and the staff became appetjetic - it was nearly impossible to get a drink. The did seem to be an issue with crew hygiene as the voyage Dre to a close. There was one guy (I’ll withhold his name) that had body odor so bad it literally made you gag and it left a trail behind him. Needless to say we started limiting activities in that particular lounge. The teen program was very uneven and much was tolerated that surprised me. My child came home talking about kids vaping, swearing, openly discussing sexuality, etc. I get they are teens but somehow I was expecting a bit of positive direction to activities. There was even a physical assault (acknowledged by staff) that did not result in removal from the program for the aggressor. I do think that the environment should at least be safe. Based on this cruise we are looking forward to our next, but still will not hesitate to book on anothe line if we get the right deal. Princess has still not captured my complete loyalty. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was a pleasant cruise that went smoothly and no major problems. The embarkation and the disembarkation was the smoothest EVER. Cabin was nice but I would look to upgrade for more room. Dining and Cabin staff were excellent. ... Read More
This was a pleasant cruise that went smoothly and no major problems. The embarkation and the disembarkation was the smoothest EVER. Cabin was nice but I would look to upgrade for more room. Dining and Cabin staff were excellent. Entertainment was good but could not get into some of the Theater early shows. Activities were excellent. Service personnel were friendly and effect. Honolulu was a port that had lots to offer. One day was not a lot of time to see things. The other ports could have used an extra hour or two but it was acceptable. LA was an excellent city to explore before the cruise. We took a city tour before the trip and went to Santa Monica Pier after the cruise. Getting to the departure city a day before would be HIGHLY recommended. Many tours are available in LA. I will definitely be going on another Princess cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Booking our r/t Los Angeles - Hawaii cruise was fairly spontaneous, through a deal we found through Expedia. This was our ninth cruise, and we tend toward Celebrity. Our experience on the Emerald Princess was largely quite good. In ... Read More
Booking our r/t Los Angeles - Hawaii cruise was fairly spontaneous, through a deal we found through Expedia. This was our ninth cruise, and we tend toward Celebrity. Our experience on the Emerald Princess was largely quite good. In reading everyone's reviews, it's interesting how different people's impressions can be. As far as we could tell, the ship is in very good condition. All the common areas seem especially well kept. I will discuss our cabin below. I can only compare our Princess experience to other lines we've been on, especially Celebrity, so we were curious about the food. We were happy to have found the food served in the dining rooms to be very good to excellent. We didn't feel the need to pay for the upcharge dining as the included dining rooms were perfectly fine, with good variety. Buffet food was like typical buffet food. It largely wasn't bad, but not particularly memorable. I didn't care for the ship's layout, something you can't really do anything about. We missed having a walking track that circles the top deck. There is a little tiny one toward the back of the ship but 16 times around it equals one mile (boring). You also cannot circumnavigate the interior as you can on other ships; it's more of a linear layout. We're used to strolling around after dinner, up one side and back the other (especially on formal nights) and on this ship it's more fore-and-aft, repeated. Entertainment venues get waaay too crowded, quickly, especially when there is something going on in one of the lounges. And finding seats in the buffet area can be a frustrating challenge. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Hawaii always sounds great, especially in February. Well we can't control the weather, but the ocean was terribly rough going so the pools had more water on deck than in them. Actually the pools were closed several days because of ... Read More
Hawaii always sounds great, especially in February. Well we can't control the weather, but the ocean was terribly rough going so the pools had more water on deck than in them. Actually the pools were closed several days because of the waves and weather. Movies under the stars had to be attended while wrapped in layers of blankets and hoodies. Had I noticed the Hilo port on the itinerary I probably would not have chosen this cruise. It had little to offer as the Kona side is so much more port friendly with lots of things to do right close to the port,. Hilo was totally under construction which made it rough to make the minimal walk into town. Having been to Hawaii 5 times, I would not recommend cruising as a way to see the islands. Staying there for at least two weeks and doing an island hop on a small plane, renting a car, and doing all the island things would be my recommendation. Embarkation and Disembarkation went extremely smooth. Entertainment was less than fabulous most nights, but the piano player from Las Vegas was awesome. Service was impeccable. The cabin steward and wait staff in our dining room were 5 star. Cabins were kept clean every time we left the room. As far as the food, I would not order beef or fish again. The beef was tough as was the lamb. Fish was very dry. I began ordering the shrimp meals or chicken on a daily basis because of the quality of the other. I would never take this cruise again with 9-10 days at sea. I enjoy the ports with time to discover them instead of rushing to get everything in in a few hours. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise because we wanted to be in Hawaii during whale season. Have done two other round trip HI cruises (one from Vancouver and the other from San Diego) but never this time of year. We did see whales - yeah! Poor ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to be in Hawaii during whale season. Have done two other round trip HI cruises (one from Vancouver and the other from San Diego) but never this time of year. We did see whales - yeah! Poor Emerald, where to start. I'll go with the good first: The MDR staff (ATD) and our room steward were simply excellent. I can't overstate how efficient both areas of service were. Our cabin was comfortable and clean - just an inside on Aloha deck. The sailing itself was good - a few rough days out but nothing too bad. Entertainment was good. The piano player and the trumpet guy were great. Always love the addition of the live band and hope that is never nixed. The ship's excursion to the Polynesian Cultural Center on Oahu was great. Our guide was good not only at the site but along the way and at the other stops. We did the Ultimate Ship's Tour and that was pretty cool. I wish we could have seen a little more of the galley area but I understand it's a busy place and they need to keep it clean. The whole tour was done very well and we were treated to some gifts from the departments. Very nice tour! Now the not so good: Many areas were always crowded. Maybe this was because folks wanted to play cards and other games in the buffet while we carried full plates of food around hopelessly looking for a free table. Same for the International Cafe - people would set up there for the day. We learned to eat in the dining rooms at every available opportunity. On the crowded note, the theatre seating was ridiculous. Had to be there 30-45 minutes early to get a seat. They allowed sitting on the stairs during the first few shows but glad to see they stopped it in subsequent shows. It was a Hawaii cruise but very cold (maybe not to others but to me, 60 degrees on a moving ship is pretty cool). Not just a few days out of L.A. and the last few back in but every single day of sailing. The day in Ensenada had a high of 55. Certainly not the fault of anyone at all, but I think it led to some of the overcrowding on the inside of the ship. I do wish this class of ship had a covered pool area and wish new builds would include them. I'm not a foodie and didn't go hungry or get sick, but man, the food on this ship was just not good at all. There is not one thing I want again. OK, I would go for any of the Norman Love desserts and the pizza was good one day, but other than those, there wasn't one memorable item. While I love them, I do not cruise to eat hamburgers and fries (that are cold by the time I find a warm place to sit and eat). Guest Services were sort of robotic, to put it nicely. However, one lady was nice and was helpful. I went the first day right after muster to sign up for the afore mentioned ship tour as a huge line formed up behind me. I finally got up to the front and while I was filling out the tour info sheet, the lady that waited on me got pulled to the side by a "mob" of people wanting holes punched in their ship cards for their lanyards. So, I'm waiting (and waiting, and waiting) for her to come back to get the sheet and the huge line behind me is getting very restless and angry at the hole punch people (and probably me, since I'm standing in their way), all the while she is off to the side punching holes in cards. So she was actually too nice and too helpful, but just not very professional - should have suggested they stand in line like the rest of the other guests. Not a huge deal as I generally don't visit the desk often if ever, but each time I walked by there, they all had pretty grim faces. I am just very glad we did not book the 28 day round trip L.A. Hawaii/South Pacific trip. And I'm reconsidering a TA booked for September on the Crown as I am afraid of the same issue with overcrowding. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We booked a suite on the Emerald Princess on the 14th floor midship. Our room steward, Sumeth, was very attentive to our needs and made sure our room was in order every day. We had great bar service, except in the pool area, where the ... Read More
We booked a suite on the Emerald Princess on the 14th floor midship. Our room steward, Sumeth, was very attentive to our needs and made sure our room was in order every day. We had great bar service, except in the pool area, where the service was horrible. We attended only two shows in the theater as we found the seats terribly uncomfortable and the shows were not of interest to us. The ship lacked entertainment, but we enjoyed the events we did attend. The cruise staff was wonderful and very friendly - they were upbeat and always had smiles on their faces. We especially liked our waiters at breakfast in the Crown Grill and our waiter and junior waiter in the Club Class Dining Room at dinner time. Since we pay more money for a suite, we would have liked to have had more perks like on NCL where we have a concierge and a butler as well as our cabin steward and better embarkation and disembarkation. Even though we enjoyed this cruise very much, we will probably sail with NCL next time. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
My big problem is the spa wants tht guest to buy a lot of produ7cts that I will never use. And I was charged for vitamins and tea that I did not get and do not need. The lady was great that did the relexology but I do not use any of the ... Read More
My big problem is the spa wants tht guest to buy a lot of produ7cts that I will never use. And I was charged for vitamins and tea that I did not get and do not need. The lady was great that did the relexology but I do not use any of the products. The Emerald was great but I would have perefered to cruise out of San Francisco noi San Pedro. The first few days at see was very bouncy but coming back the sea was very calm. I really liked the enteraiment in the princess theather and the explorers lounge. The internet was very slow and hard to use. I liked the balcony room to look at the sea and horizon every day. The food was very good in the Michaelangelo room. Horizon court is always good for breakfast and lunch. The staf at both places was ver4y helpful. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We choose this cruise to see the whales again and we really had a great experience with the whales. We also had never been to Honolulu, Hilo or Kauia. We enjoyed the tour of the Memorial and Mighty Mo. Not so crazy about Hilo - my ... Read More
We choose this cruise to see the whales again and we really had a great experience with the whales. We also had never been to Honolulu, Hilo or Kauia. We enjoyed the tour of the Memorial and Mighty Mo. Not so crazy about Hilo - my suggestion would be to book the tour that goes to the National Park. We waited too long to book and tour was full. The tour of Kauai was crazy. Our guide talked and sang the whole time. It was not relaxing. Our tour in Ensanada was the funniest. We got dusty and muddy but felt like kids again. We are in our 70s. We drove a four wheeler through the winery and enjoyed it so much. Saw animals and tasted the wine. Ride to and return from the winery was informative as well. Our cabin attendant, Jim was the best we have ever had and this was our seventh cruise with Princess. The staff was over the top friendly and helpful. Our favorite was Amel from Montenegro. Bartender at Adiago from 6p to 7p. Charles was great too. Our server at Club Dining was Olena from the Ukraine. To many to mention. Food at Share was great. Jose Luis and Daniel took great care of us. Crown Grlll - Gerry was our server from the Philippines. He loves music. George, the room manager at Crown Grill took great care of us. We hated the buffet as it was too crowded and we could never find a place to sit. We were in cabin R401 which was VERY NOISY starting at 4:30 in the morning. Plus when u sit on the balcony u here the music from above. Trip over the seas were roughj. Trip back we barely recognized being on the ship. Seas were very calm. Fitness center ok. We found the staff rude. U can not use the treadmills before 8AM or after 8PM. Supposedly rooms below the treadmills which is stupid. We enjoyed the spa. Enjoyed the lectures given by a Naturalist. Enjoyed the lectures give by a person who talks about comedians. Did not see any shows because no seats available for early shows. Princess should have matinees for their shows. Plus they should have hosts to find seats for people in the buffet. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I choose this cruise thinking it be relaxing, enjoying and good food, man I was wrong, it was not relaxing because you could find a seat where it was warm, to cold around pool, where most of the movie we’re. Very hard or sometimes ... Read More
I choose this cruise thinking it be relaxing, enjoying and good food, man I was wrong, it was not relaxing because you could find a seat where it was warm, to cold around pool, where most of the movie we’re. Very hard or sometimes impossible to find a seat indoors. Because so cold out doors. The only was to get a seat in princess theaters for main shows, was to go one hour before showtime. Now foods overall was poor, four good meals two prime rib very good, two lobsters dinner very good. The rest of meal was tough or weird spices. The last for or five days we had a lot of leftovers or food no one like. The last three days never seen a chocolate chip cookies, the must of ran out of chocolate chips. But help in dining was fantastic and also rooms steward was fantastic. The ship was very clean and we’ll maintain. Overall poor no place to sit that was warm, seating was limited at princess theater and food was poor. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We flew from the east coast, spent two days at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach (booked on our own so we can go early to the ship) and then took a one week cruise down the coast of Mexico, stayed in our Penthouse Suite and then took the 15 ... Read More
We flew from the east coast, spent two days at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach (booked on our own so we can go early to the ship) and then took a one week cruise down the coast of Mexico, stayed in our Penthouse Suite and then took the 15 day cruise to Hawaii. We had never been to Long Beach and wanted a change from the familiar Caribbean cruises we take to escape our winter blues. We were able to catch up with old friends who had relocated to California, eat some great meals and go to the Laugh Factory across the street from the Hotel. The Hotel is a 20 minute taxi ride from the San Pedro pier and in a very good location. We have stayed in Penthouse Suites several times and this room, although a little shabby (the Emerald is going into dry dock for some major changes in April), has a brand new comfortable bed, two TVs, a walk in shower (plus tub). The sofa bed's cushions kept coming out and we had a minor flood that was quickly repaired. A narrow balcony held two jammed together lounges and a small table with chairs. We never used it as we sprung for the Sanctuary for the whole trip and were often the only couple up there. We raced to sign up (a stupid move - the weather was cold and windy for most of the cruise) as having a suite does not give you first dibs. Oscar and his staff treated us like royalty, bringing us tea and hot chocolate. On the Mexico cruise there were some young families, replaced by Baby Boomers for Florida. The whale watching tour in Cabo was cancelled at the last minute due to weather and the other tours in Mexico were terrible. Just skip them. We were very disappointed in the excursion desk. Usually Princess is top notch in loading the buses, this time the Wheelhouse bar was used and was a zoo. However on Maui a bus broke down on the other side of the island and the ship waited over two hours for the excursion to return, so that is a reason to book through the ship if you plan on going far. The change over for the Hawaiian cruise (leaving all your stuff in your room is a great perk) on returning to LA was wacky: We were sent off the ship around 11:00 am, directed to go out of the terminal and come in the other door with no guidance. About 100 of us were briefly dazed and confused, but we made it back on and went to lunch. For the first cruise the cruise director was Kaylee. (She was very enthusiastic and excellent at the marriage game) but upon our return to Long Beach she disappeared and was replaced by Duke. Wow what a hoot. The cruise staff, Mark A. and Mark C., Kimberly and two other replaceable young women, threw themselves into the games with abandon. The games, and especially the very seriously attended trivia, were always standing room only. Forget the production shows. They are old repeats (only the 1920's tap dancing show is good) . The two comedians were excellent. Keith Bender did a late night adult show that was fabulous. People kept bringing in chairs, sat on the floor and stood. We had breakfast every morning at the Crown Grill. George has whipped his staff into a frenzy of excellent "immediately" service. At night the food was pretty good (lamb chops, onion soup, grill salad terrific) but the quality of the meat has gone down since Carnival took over. The steak on the main dining menu was not edible on more than one occasion (DO NOT ORDER steak Diane). Do not go to Share upstairs. It is awful; six lousy courses. I hear they are bringing back the Italian restaurant on the two new ships. The pizza and ice cream on deck is good. The hot dog is very good, the hamburger OK, lack of quality meat problem again. Bingo fun and Princess (unlike Celebrity) gives away mega bucks on the final cover-all. Over $4,000 on last day of the cruise. The smoking in the casino is awful. Gamblers get very few perks. Very little off a cabin price, maybe a cheap bottle of wine and religiously those chocolate covered strawberries (yuck). NCL and Celebrity do better by gamblers. Nice variety of slots though. Our stateroom attendant Jim was the best we have had in 50 cruises. Always a smile, efficient and caring. The ship was about a third Canadians. I have to say that they are the nicest people. Everyone was friendly and kind. We made some friends to play Trivia with and had a great time. I really loved every minute of the cruise. My husband said it was too long. You have to like sea days (we each read 5 books). We would do it again without Mexico. Hawaii is beautiful. Went to Polynesian Cultural Center in Maui ( fun day). Hilo is sad would prefer Kona port. Honolulu is amazing, Kaui is gorgeous. Went to Canyon and fern grotto. Enjoyed. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Leaving from San Pedro was great----no flying so easy in and out. Embarkation was a breeze. Staff friendly enough. Cruise director did her very best. Food in dining room and in the buffet not so good. the Emerald really needs a new ... Read More
Leaving from San Pedro was great----no flying so easy in and out. Embarkation was a breeze. Staff friendly enough. Cruise director did her very best. Food in dining room and in the buffet not so good. the Emerald really needs a new Chef! Food was blah! Dining room staff---especially the head waiter Edgar Vega was excellent and made up for it. He is a rock star! Entertainment was just OK they could step it up more......especially on this cruise to Mexico. It was good----but not over the top like other cruises. The production shows really need to some into the new century! Very dated. Overall rating....I give it a 7 out of 10. This is a good family cruise with many pools and activities for all to enjoy outside. Outside dining is good with pizza and hamburgers for the kids to enjoy so there are some pluses and of course movies under the stars which is a nice touch. Don't forget, if you are looking for more of a dining experience, the ship does have three specialty restaurants. High end and only $29.00 per person. well worth the experience. Bon Voyage Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We wanted to experience Hawaii without long cramped flights. We knew princess cruises are well done and thought it would be a great alternative. It was! As expected, the service on Princess is outstanding. The crew has a culture of ... Read More
We wanted to experience Hawaii without long cramped flights. We knew princess cruises are well done and thought it would be a great alternative. It was! As expected, the service on Princess is outstanding. The crew has a culture of helpful friendliness. Our cabin Steward (Sahu), waiter (Sretten) and assistant waiter (Tek) were all outstanding. Duke, our cruise director, has a wonderful sense of humor and was the most accessible cruise director we've had in a while. On board evening entertainment was first rate (afternoons a bit sparse). Meals and cabin (club class mini-suite) were as good as we have come to expect from Princess. Got a chance to see the 4 major Hawaiian islands. Great exposure to the best of each. The stop in Ensenada checked the box to become an international cruise. We took an independent helicopter ride on the big island that was well worth it. We had enough time after to explore on the hop on hop off bus. Oahu was the mandatory pilgrimage to Pearl Harbor for the fist time in Hawaii. Moving, as it should be. Kauai was a tour to Waimea Canyon and the Fern Grotto. Amazing scenery. Well run excursion. On Maui, we took and Uber to Kaanipali Beach. Beautiful! In Ensenada, we took a shore excursion to a former casino and a former winery. The tour guide spoke broken English and did not get the group together before speaking. Could have been better. Overall, great trip. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Very sorry to say after many Princess cruises we have seen the quality deteriorate the last couple years. This recent cruise on Emerald was the icing on the cake and will be our last with them. The food in the MDR has become competitive ... Read More
Very sorry to say after many Princess cruises we have seen the quality deteriorate the last couple years. This recent cruise on Emerald was the icing on the cake and will be our last with them. The food in the MDR has become competitive with the buffet which you long time cruisers know is as bad as it gets. As great as the staff was they couldn't hide the poor food quality and tried to shove as many dishes at us until perhaps we liked one.The famous lobster night which almost all cruisers look forward will now become infamous. In this review I have attached a picture of the lobster and I can assure you the pic is authentic. The lobster tail really was that size and grey in color. When we tried to eat it the experience was close to what we can only believe would be chewing on a rubber lobster tail toy for your dog from Petco. In most cases the food was bland and had very little taste even the sauces which typically should add taste to a dish but sadly not on this boat. We actually felt sorry for the servers as they frantically tried to please the diners but terrible food cannot be overcome by service. Princess as part of Carnival has suffered in recent times due to the stock's poor performance. The accountants now are clearly running the show and cost cutting goals were not met in 2018 and I can assure you 2019 will get ugly as the year goes on. The saving grace was the International cafe which has tasty sandwiches, salads, and deserts 7X24. There were a few moments of greatness in the buffet at lunchtime with the food but spending a lot of time roaming the 15th floor for a seat is no picnic. The comedian and ventriloquist in the Explorers lounge were fantastic and a great surprise. The queen bed which is really two beds pushed together was terrible! The mattresses were in such bad shape you had to sleep on the outside or you'd be sucked into the middle canyon area and sleep on the steel frame (I kid you not). The staff is the only thing that has kept us returning to Princess but that can only last so long and enough is enough. Note to Princess: WAKE UP! Your platinum and Elite customers are jumping ship and you can cut costs all you like but scaring customers away is a bad business model hoping to load up the boat with new blue card cruisers who don't know the difference. Other companies have tried this and it doesn't exactly build brand loyalty. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019

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