1,482 Princess Star Princess Cruise Reviews

We've cruised with Princess before and four other cruise lines. We have Princess as our vacation of choice. We actually have done this cruise before on the Grand Princess. And, will be sailing on the Star Princess at least three ... Read More
We've cruised with Princess before and four other cruise lines. We have Princess as our vacation of choice. We actually have done this cruise before on the Grand Princess. And, will be sailing on the Star Princess at least three more times before she is reassigned later this year. When living in France and Singapore we went with local cruise lines, but they didn't compare to Princess in terms of Ship accommodations, itinerary, food or staff services. We selected a cabin with an unobstructed view. We have made this cruise before on the Grand Princess, and going this early in spring, across the Pacific Ocean, at 20+ knots or 23 miles per hour, you don't really sit out on your balcony for very long. Once you are in the islands and the warmer climate, a balcony is very worth while. But, we had chosen extensive shore excursions, so we wouldn't be sitting of a balcony anyway. We lived in Hawaii for about a year back in 2008 so we already know much of the history and culture. But, Dr. Anne, the naturalist's talks about culture, history, fish and animals and details about each island were excellent, and we learned even more. Tikki Dave and his wife are wonderful entertainers, trainers [hula and ukulalee] as well as making nut necklesses. Great fun, but mostly they provided hours of entertainment. Other entertainers, the commedians, impersonators, singers and the production shows were supurb. Overall, the Star Princess is feeling her age, will be getting a spruce up this summer, but she is still a wonderful experience with a wonderful crew. Great food in the Princess fashion of excellence and we're already booked 3 more cruises on her because she still shines in the Princess tradition which is as good as it gets on the seas. Hope to see some of you in March-April and again in September aboard the Star Princess, you won't be disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We did the Hawaii cruise. The entertainment and activities offered were second to none. Our shore excursions were excellent. The accommodations on excursions made the overall experience very memorable. The embarkation and disembarkation ... Read More
We did the Hawaii cruise. The entertainment and activities offered were second to none. Our shore excursions were excellent. The accommodations on excursions made the overall experience very memorable. The embarkation and disembarkation process was very smooth. The dining experience was one of the highlights of the cruise. Great food but even greater service by the staff. Overall, I would recommend the Hawaii cruise to others. The dining experience, the entertainment onboard, and the shore excursions could not have been better. Not sure what I expected before the cruise but think the Star Princess far exceeded anything I could have hoped for. This is a bucket list cruise. The days at sea were full of entertainment and activities. The shore days provided wonderful excursions or time to just get out and explore. The staff onboard were friendly and helpful. The food in the dining rooms provided a great selection and delicious dining. This is a MUST travel if you wish to explore Hawaii. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We felt that this cruise was the perfect blend of relaxation and travel. Unlike a transatlantic crossing, the ports were buffered on either side by sea days. I've included a detailed review of our room in the ratings. ... Read More
We felt that this cruise was the perfect blend of relaxation and travel. Unlike a transatlantic crossing, the ports were buffered on either side by sea days. I've included a detailed review of our room in the ratings. Embarkation We flew into Burbank around 11 am and took a 45 minute Lyft ride to the ship. Embarkation took less than 20 minutes, and we appreciated that the main dining room was open for lunch until 1:30 pm. Our rooms were ready by the time we had finished lunch. Food We ate the majority of our meals in the main dining room. We were pleasantly surprised to never be disappointed by a main course. The meats were always tender, and the fish and shellfish were always perfectly cooked and not overdone. Syam and Juliana were our waiters, and were some of the best we've had. We also enjoyed the two British-themed Pub Lunches in the Crown Grill. We also attended the Hawiian-themed lunch, but all agreed that those particular food items weren't spectacular. One reason we loved this itinerary was the afternoon tea on sea days. However, we were disappointed by the 5pm time for 1st seating supper. This made tea time (3:30 to 4:15 pm) seem more like hors d'oeuvres before supper. Fitness Center and Entertainment The fitness center was small, and the low ceilings made it feel even smaller. We did appreciate the complimentary sauna. We absolutely loved the live Amethyst Trio (classical instrumental music) performances in the piazza. However, we were disappointed by the lack of variety in the evening main theater entertainment (mostly comedians). But this gave us an excuse to go to bed early and get lots of extra sleep! Ports Hilo, Hawaii We took a private excursion through Big Island Aina Tours to see Volcanoes National Park. We had a fantastic experience! It was quite chilly at the park, and we were grateful the tour confirmation had recommended bringing jackets. Honolulu, Oahu We hired a Lyft to and from the Pearl Harbor Memorial, and took a private tour offered to veterans and active-duty military and their families. Nawiliwili, Kauai We were disappointed that this port was bypassed due to inclement weather. We were grateful to have reserved our rental car through Costco, so there was no cancellation fee. Lahaina, Maui We booked a rental car through Costco (the company was Budget), and were picked up by the rental car shuttle. Because this was a tender port, it was about an hour from the time our tender number was called to the time we were driving off in our rental car. We drove to the Maui Pineapple Tour (Maui Gold Plantation) in Makawao (an hour drive with breathtaking scenery). The tour was informative, fun, and much cheaper than booking through the cruise line. We also stopped at a Costco on our way back to the ship. This is a great place to buy macadamia nut gift boxes. We also saw the Maui Gold labeled pineapples for sale there. Ensenada, Mexico We docked here, but our party opted to stay on the ship and catch up on calls and emails since Mexico is in our phone plan. We did enjoy seeing dozens of seals swimming in the harbor near the ship. Disembarkation Extremely easy and streamlined. We flew through customs, even though we were bringing home pineapples from Maui (we were told they were fine to bring back to the mainland, but one never knows with customs!). Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Chosen as value to visit Hawaiin islands.Amazed at the entertainment provided whilst we sailed for 6 days.to the islands and 6 days back to Los Angeles Amethyst trio were a delight to listen to in the spectacular atrium. All crew were ... Read More
Chosen as value to visit Hawaiin islands.Amazed at the entertainment provided whilst we sailed for 6 days.to the islands and 6 days back to Los Angeles Amethyst trio were a delight to listen to in the spectacular atrium. All crew were friendly and courteous at all times in all settings. Tiki Dave was a great ukulele tutor making learning great fun . He was also greatly knowledgeable regarding the islands we were about to visit which made his talks very interesting and entertaining Catering was amazing in all restaurants Theatre shows were mostly very entertaining only one magician was a great disappointment ! The theatre was well situated and comfortable seating Cabins were well furnished and spacious with private balconies and kept very clean by the domestic staff as was the whole of the ship ! Captain kept us well informed of our sea voyage and weather conditions and speed of ship A report daily at 12 noon. All activities on board were fun to watch and to join in .....as one chose to do so or not. Formal dress evenings were well respected and most guests adhered to dressing up We couldn't recommend this cruise more for all adults . Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We wanted to visit Hawaii, and at the same time, renew our wedding vows. We love sea days and this cruise had many. From the moment we came aboard we had a terrific experience. Now, truth be told, the Star is far from the pride of the ... Read More
We wanted to visit Hawaii, and at the same time, renew our wedding vows. We love sea days and this cruise had many. From the moment we came aboard we had a terrific experience. Now, truth be told, the Star is far from the pride of the Princess fleet. It is showing its age with rust lines all over, leaking ceilings in many places, older carpet in passageways, and so forth, but the crew worked hard to keep it as clean as possible and their attitude and smiling faces overcame any concerns about the ship. From the dining staff, to the entertainers and cabin staff, the crew was wonderful. Our vow renewal was everything we had hoped for and more, from the captain officiating to the rose petals scattered on our bed that night! Even though we had to skip Kauai because of the wind, the other stops were just fine their were shore excursions for everyone. We particularly liked the variety of entertainment around the ship, and the Piazza was our destination for several hours per day, just for the variety of entertainment and the great food in the International Cafe. Crooners Bar on Deck 7 was another favorite for us. Embarkation was fast and easy, and disembarkation was the fastest I have ever experienced. Bravo Princesss! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose Princess to see Hawaii. Our most desired stop in Kauai was cancelled due to weather letting us down hard. Then we spent 5 days (5 windy cold days) returning to N America to visit Ensenada, a marginal town at best. Why not spend ... Read More
We chose Princess to see Hawaii. Our most desired stop in Kauai was cancelled due to weather letting us down hard. Then we spent 5 days (5 windy cold days) returning to N America to visit Ensenada, a marginal town at best. Why not spend another day in Hawaii or San Diego not Ensenada) The old ship ( due for refurb in April) is dated and needing paint. The wifi was awful and expensive ( shouldnt wifi be free in 2020). The Gym is small, only two Specialty restaurants ( changing the menu does not constitute another restaurant). Entertainment, educational talks and casual bar food and drinks were great. Senior officers were aloof and unfriendly, the Captain was rarely seen and never heard. Older waiters weren't very helpful but the younger new ones were very enthusiastic. The cabin was small and had 1 chair and small table. When it could be used the balcony was nice. We have cruised on two other lines and had 4 great experiences. This was not Better to fly to Hawaii Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
This was to be a get away to make up for a trip that ended because of a family tradgedy. The ship was fine, but the extra amenities were lacking. We tried the special dining at the steak house and the porterhouse was chewy and the filet ... Read More
This was to be a get away to make up for a trip that ended because of a family tradgedy. The ship was fine, but the extra amenities were lacking. We tried the special dining at the steak house and the porterhouse was chewy and the filet mignon that replaced it was not much better. The wine package was not adequately explained and could only be used in a specific dining venue. There were only a few wines that met the criteria for inclusion and others were surcharged although there was no refund if the cost was below the ceiling price. The entertainment was professional and well done, although I was a tad surprised, when a Motown show had no black singers or dancers. None of the shows had any black entertainers. The spa offered a thermal package, but the only difference between it and the regular free salon activities were plastic sandals, and a robe. Although there was a pool, it was not private with the exception that no children were admitted. The general ship population was able to use it at any time. The balcony cabin we had was not private because the Promenade was just outside and on weather permitting days had a steady stream of people traipsing by at all times. The cabin steward was excellent and everything was done promptly and effeciently. The regular dining menu,service and quality was very good. The excursions offered by the ship were very expensive and did not live up to expectations. One port was bypassed because of weather and safety concerns. I had expected this trip to exceed the amenaties and experiences we have previously had with Norweigian, but alas they did not. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
This cruise was for a very special occasion for 15 days to the Hawaiian Islands. On bording the ship the exterior was running with rust streaks and large dents on the outside.This did not look good as first impression. I had been upgraded ... Read More
This cruise was for a very special occasion for 15 days to the Hawaiian Islands. On bording the ship the exterior was running with rust streaks and large dents on the outside.This did not look good as first impression. I had been upgraded to a fantastic cabin I was told. The cabin straight away smelt musty and looked tired with old furniture. The valance around the bed was dirty and my bed sheets had tears in them. The bathroom had mould around the sink as did the shower tray. The outside balcony furniture was torn and old. The pipes around the balcony were covered in so much rust and the railing varnish was nearly all peeled away. the balcony door did not close properly and when crossing over to the Island in rough seas kept opening!! The pool areas of the ship were old and tired. There was large patches of rust in the pools and the Jacuzzi was cracked and leaked. It looked so tarnished and very uninviting. the steps were dirty and the pool furniture torn and old. the outside areas were in a very poor state and everywhere needed a good clean and paint. The lounge areas are worn and the theatre had wall covering peeling off. In 20 years of cruising I have never seen such a unkept ship and only to find out she is due a full re-fit in April. Why are they still selling this cruise ship as also she has been purchased by P&O so will no longer be in the Princess Fleet. There was a bad respiratory infection going around which a lot of people caught and it didnt help that there were lots of ceiling leaks and broken air conditioning. I have never been so disappointed on the state of a ship and will never travel with Princess Cruise lines again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
In the past, the culture of Princess Service was Excellent. All members of the staff used the word excellent frequently. On the Star, I did not hear the word excellent one time from a staff member. Princess' culture of excellent ... Read More
In the past, the culture of Princess Service was Excellent. All members of the staff used the word excellent frequently. On the Star, I did not hear the word excellent one time from a staff member. Princess' culture of excellent service does not exist on Star. Perhaps it is because the ship is being sold (there if much deferred maintenance to show current staff knows this - leaky plumbing with buckets to catch the water, rust on exterior of ship, etc) or perhaps it is because staff are used to the current gratuity system where everyone gets gratuity regardless of service level. Whatever the reason, the service was only adequate, NOT SPECIAL Regarding the cabin, on one occasion we had to request the room be vacumed. On another day we did not get our bed made. There were no swans or other animals made from towels left on the bed (as in the past. There was not a display of towel animals at the pool. There was no ice carving.Various venues had lines. the British Pub was open only 2 days on a 15 day cruise so everyone did not get to dine there. Entertainment was scheduled such that you needed to arrive an hour before the show to get a seat. The entertainment was mostly marginal - simply not special Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this cruise because we had never been on a cruise or to Hawaii so we figured we would kill to birds with one stone. We had a fabulous time. The crew was absolutely great! DJ Lovely, Molly, and Coco, to name a few were the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had never been on a cruise or to Hawaii so we figured we would kill to birds with one stone. We had a fabulous time. The crew was absolutely great! DJ Lovely, Molly, and Coco, to name a few were the absolute best! We loved doing the activities the music trivia and regular trivia was wonderful. But it was to hard to do everything. The ship excursions were to expensive you could get them much cheaper off the ship. Most of the food on the buffet was great and the servers were great as well, however being a previous owner of a bakery and baking many different desserts...the desserts were terrible!!! Cakes were dry and tasteless the pies were so thick like they added TOO much flour. Looking for Jan that won voice of the ocean, they gave us a card with their last name and info on it but we lost it. If we could find that out it would be great they live near us Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this trip because we wanted to see Hawaii. It was beautiful, and so happy we got to visit Pearl Harbor. The sea time was perfect to catch up on reading, watching movies, and taking in some enrichment lectures and classes such as ... Read More
We chose this trip because we wanted to see Hawaii. It was beautiful, and so happy we got to visit Pearl Harbor. The sea time was perfect to catch up on reading, watching movies, and taking in some enrichment lectures and classes such as ukelele and Spanish--different!. The ship needs to update their tv guide, as some channels and listings are not there. This is an old ship that has some leaking ceilings and some rust in places, but hopefully it will be refurbished. Our cabin had a worn out mattress. It made for backaches every morning. The steward tried to change the pad, but not much help. The sofa cushions were almost flat, likely the same sofa for the entire 18 years of ship life. This made watching tv a bit uncomfortable. We did enjoy the food. There was a wide assortment in the Horizon, and it was always fresh and tasty. Dining in the Alfani was good, and service excellent. Entertainment most nights was good, but some of the theatre seats are worn and some broken. Theatre was more than packed with people every night. Live music around the ship was great, we especially enjoyed the talented young lady at the piano. Shocking that so many adults do not cover their mouth when coughing and sneezing. There was a lot of flu on this ship, and we can see how it spreads. Perhaps the ship needs to reiterate how to cover ones' mouth. When it came to disembarking, there was too much time from when we had to be out of our room until we left the ship. Then, when we got on the bus shuttle to the airport, we were left sitting at the dock for almost an hour, a bus full of people coughing and sneezing, and with on one coming on the bus to tell us why the delay. Some feared missing their connections at the airport, creating a lot of anxiety. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I'll start with the embarkation process at the San Pedro port. Very quick, no lines and friendly staff! Overall very easy and straightforward. Only thing I noted was there was no health screening (I recall going through a health ... Read More
I'll start with the embarkation process at the San Pedro port. Very quick, no lines and friendly staff! Overall very easy and straightforward. Only thing I noted was there was no health screening (I recall going through a health screening questionnaire on the last cruise I did) and given the coronavirus risk at the moment I'm surprised this didn't occur. Once on board our cabin was ready for us. Our luggage showed up shortly thereafter. We opted for an interior stateroom with twin beds. It was dated and underwhelming. The ship was built in 2002 and refurbished in 2017 but I feel they didn't do much with the refurbishment as the stateroom had dated finishes, colors, tiles etc. The beds were very comfortable with nice down duvets and pillows. Plenty of storage and a large closet with plenty of hangers. A 40" television with a great variety of movies and tv channels. Being an interior room it was tiny but the layout provided us privacy for getting ready each day and we never felt claustrophobic. Now for the bad stuff... We had a broken toilet, and two leaks in our stateroom throughout the two week period. The toilet was noticed by the steward and he had it fixed while we were out and about the ship during the day - so that wasn't so bad. The first leak was noticed by me around 9:30 pm on a sea day. Called it in right away, but it took almost two hours for them to send a plumber to fix it. It was over my bed. I had to specifically ask the steward for new bedding and a new pillow as it was wet. He had already felt the bedding at this point and was giving no indication he was going to change it. The second leak started around 10 pm on a port day. We were getting ready for bed when we noticed it. This one was in between the two beds. We called it in right away and waited. After an hour I called again and it was after midnight when a plumber showed up. At this point we put the trash can under the leak and were already in bed. He didn't ask if he could come in - he just walked past me when I opened the door and I had to tell him to come back tomorrow as we were sleeping. Luckily when we returned to the room after returning from the port the next day the leak was fixed. After the first leak they sent a complimentary bottle of wine, and after the second they gave us a complimentary dinner in the Italian specialty restaurant. I was not impressed and did ask for a new stateroom but none were available. The ship was dated and underwhelming as well. It shows its age and a lot of rust and leaks in public areas. I'm surprised there wasn't more of an effort on behalf of Princess to keep it in better shape as I know other lines paint the hull while in ports and make more of an effort on the interior as well. Despite the lackluster look, everything was clean. Several pools on the deck and lots of hot tubs on board. Plenty of lounge chairs on the deck as well. Seating in the main piazza (central atrium on decks 5/6/7 had hardly any seating though). Shopping on board was ok - they're big on Effy jewelry and try to sell it to you every chance they get! Duty free alcohol was well priced. Entertainment is very much geared towards an older clientele and also shows the lack of amenities on board as the staff are limited in what they can even do or offer. The production shows were mediocre and pale in comparison to the more Broadway-esque shows on other cruise lines. All the shows were also very short in length. The Voice of the Ocean is one of their highlights and allows the guests on the ship to compete. It's modeled after the TV show. Sadly there wasn't much talent among the guests on board, but this one has potential but is dependent on who's on board. The on board bands play in different venues around the ship but only for 30-45 minutes at a time and then silence (even up on the pool deck). The selection of music played is also dated - lots of 50s/60s/70s music from the bands and the DJ. Otherwise it's classical music in the piazza. Lots of trivia on board but the quality of it was lacking - the PowerPoint presentations for the trivia looked like they were made by a kid and not professional or sleek like I'd expect. Much of the other entertainment were seminars or classes that needed to be attended every day during the cruise (i.e. hula classes or ukelele classes). I think these offerings are spectacular but I did not want to commit to attending every day at the same time - I'm on vacation after all. My favorite thing on board was the movies under the stars each evening. On the pool deck they have a huge screen and show new releases; deck chairs are outfitted with plush cushions, pillows and blankets and popcorn is available! We had a few good meals on this ship, one great meal and then a lot of bland, overcooked food. Princess pushes hard for sharing tables with other cruise passengers. I'm not a fan of small talk so we always asked for a table for 2 and often had to wait for one in the main dining room whether it was for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The menus didn't provide much variety and they lacked in vegetarian options and even poultry. The food in the main dining room is not cooked to order. It's mass produced and kept warm under heat lamps. The wait staff really make it feel as if it's an inconvenience if you ask to alter the menu items at all. The speed of service is great though. No problem to have a three course dinner in under an hour. The Curtis Stone menu options in the main dining room did tend to be better than the other items. The Chocolate Journeys desserts were always fantastic. We did have some particularly bad food - I rarely send my food back but the scallops they served one night were inedible yet they were the top recommendation of the server and he tried to make excuses for them when we indicated they were overcooked and rubbery. The great meal was at Sabatinis Italian Restaurant - this one is not included with the cruise fare and is an additional $25 per person. They offer a 6 course traditional Italian menu. Well worth the extra money! The Crown Grill is the other specialty restaurant but we didn't try it as the menu was pretty much all beef and pork which I don't eat. The other good food we had was at their pub lunches - there were three of them (English, Hawaiian and Mexican) and they were all good! Room service is included and is available 24-7, the room service menu is varied and provides good options for a night in. The pizzeria on board is fantastic and they brag about how they have the best pizza at sea and I just may have to agree! The Trident Grill and Sundaes are up on deck next to the pizzeria and serve burgers, hot dogs, fries and ice cream. All good food and prepared for you right then and there. I tried the buffet one night - the food was bland, limited selection and also not hot enough for my liking. Plenty of bars on board, and a good variety of beverages - service at the bars was always great and never any lines. Plenty of staff floating about the ship both on deck and below to take your drink order as well. Drink prices were quite reasonable (we didn't add the drink package). The international cafe in the piazza offers nice sandwiches, salads and desserts as well as specialty coffee and tea. The internet connection on board was great, I was surprised at how fast it was. The laundromats are also a nice touch as most cruise lines have gotten rid of them. Now onto the formal nights. Princess takes them seriously. Lots of tuxedos and ball gowns and ballroom dancing in the piazza. Not quite my thing - we participated on two of the three formal nights but opted to skip the third and did burgers and a movie up on deck instead. The staff were all fantastic. Absolutely no complaints about any of the staff. They were always pleasant and greeted us as we walked about the ship. Our room steward did a great job keeping our room clean. The nightly chocolates on the pillow are a nice touch! The on board website/app is great. Better than those provided by some other lines. All the info on the daily activities is in there plus the ability to order room service breakfast, check your account etc. Sea sickness was a real thing on this itinerary. There were gale force winds on a couple of the sea days (think drawers flying open in your stateroom and things falling down). From what we heard, there were days when hundreds were confined to bed and unable to do much. Sea sickness is not a nice feeling. And given there's 9 sea days on this itinerary and out in the middle of the Pacific it's a real risk. I've saved the best for last. The highlight of the trip was the ports! We visited 4 islands - The Island of Hawaii, Oahu, Kauai and Maui and also Ensenada, Mexico. It was my first time to Hawaii and I fell in love with it! We rented a car on each island and did a little road trip each day. We didn't partake in any shore excursions so I can't comment on those but from talking to other guests, Princess cancelled several excursions in various ports and left people scrambling trying to arrange something else. I feel like I got to see the highlights on each island and thoroughly enjoyed my time. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Wife and I took the Star Princess to Hawaii and offer the following thoughts and observations: Overall the staff and service was excellent. This is where Princess excels. The ship is in need of attention. Living with the dated decor ... Read More
Wife and I took the Star Princess to Hawaii and offer the following thoughts and observations: Overall the staff and service was excellent. This is where Princess excels. The ship is in need of attention. Living with the dated decor is not a problem, but the water leaks; scruffy, dirty and much too low to the ground furniture; dirty and out-of order bathrooms are a big deal. Entertainment—comedians were great, production shows so-so. Almost no live music in Crooners or the piazza. The cruise director reminded us of a used car salesman with his over dramatic presentation and attitude of insincerity. Trivia gatherings were boring. Dining room food and service were both very good. International Cafe, burger grill, and pizza fair. Buffet horrible. Bar service on the pool deck was slow. Drinks were usually good. Getting on and off the ship was efficient and smooth. Hilo,Maui and Kauai were fantastic. Honolulu is what it is, a big city crowded beach. It’s a cruise so of course we had an enjoyable time. Like the itinerary very much. The ship not so much. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I wanted to give Princess one more try, and I wanted to get out of town in January. The ship (I was told) is about to be sold to a different cruise line so that was the reason they have not done any major upkeep on it. The seats in the ... Read More
I wanted to give Princess one more try, and I wanted to get out of town in January. The ship (I was told) is about to be sold to a different cruise line so that was the reason they have not done any major upkeep on it. The seats in the theater were frayed and did not sit properly. Some seats made you feel like you were about to slide off because they did not fully stay in the upright position. The bathrooms in the cabins need to be updated and the balcony cabin I had was smaller than I had expected. There was barely enough room on the balcony to put 2 small chairs and a small table. The entertainment was not the quality I have come to expect from other cruise lines and as the cruise progressed the food seemed to lose quality until at the end instead of fresh pineapple on the buffet it looked like a can of Dole pineapple slices. The crew was very nice and helpful and the specialty restaurants were very good. On future cruises they plan to include internet, beverage packages and so on to passengers but of course not on this one. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We chose this particular cruise to Hawaii to escape the January cold of Idaho and we are loyal to Princess, so on to Star princess we roll. We also did this itinerary in January, 2013 on the Golden, so this voyage was a do-over. We had ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise to Hawaii to escape the January cold of Idaho and we are loyal to Princess, so on to Star princess we roll. We also did this itinerary in January, 2013 on the Golden, so this voyage was a do-over. We had previously been on Star to Mexico in 2016, so we were familiar with this ship. Pre-trip- Spent the night before embarkation at the Best Western Plus in San Pedro. There is a noise problem and cruise shuttle issue at the hotel, so we suggest you find pre-cruise accommodations elsewhere. Embarkation- Smooth as silk. Being in the elite group, we bypassed the general throng at 11:30 am and were on the ship within fifteen minutes of arrival at the port. Ship- Maintenance seems to be slipping on this vessel, compared to what we noticed on our 2016 trip. There is rust on a lot of the balcony railings and exterior nooks/crannies on the ship structure itself, and we think that it needs another drydock schedule to fully get this ship cleaned up. With the Star now 18 years old and counting, we suspect that it may be sold to a second-tier cruise company in the coming years, so perhaps they are backing off on the exterior maintenance for that reason. The interior portions of the ship are kept pristine, with the exceptions of the lounge/theater seat cushions, which are being destroyed by the ever-increasing obese passengers that frequent this type of vacation. Stateroom- We had a balcony stateroom on the Caribe deck, and the balcony space was gigantic, probably 12' x 10'. Half was open to the decks above, and half was very enclosed/private, so this wasn't an issue for us. Stateroom was clean/plenty of room for two passengers. Shower space is smaller than on the Regal/Royal class of ships. Dining- We had traditional dining/2nd seating in the Amalfi DR. Enjoyed good bantering nightly with our staff members ( Melvin and George). Orders were delivered promptly and correctly. Room was not overly loud, and food was very good in here. Specialty dining- we tried both Sabatini's and Crown Grill..... with Sabatini's having a slight nod overall. Buffet- Buffet food was fine.... seating was hard to come by during the popular dining hours. Staff- Friendliest Captain we have ever been around (Christopher Lye). He mingled with the passengers throughout the ship and could be found dining often in the buffet, hanging out with the common folk. He delivered a daily noon update via the PA system, and always had a short explanation on how things work on the ship and the sea. All staff members were friendly, quick to help, with a big smile. The CD could be a little over the top at times, but he definitely ran the show with gusto. Tiki Dave and Leialoha do a fantastic job of running the Hawaii Ambassadors on-board program (and have been doing this for years). The enrichment lectures could put you to sleep pretty quick. Bar staff was attentive without being intrusive. Excursions- We did not do any ship-sponsored tours, instead doing our own thing on each island. Pearl Harbor visit on Oahu (mobbed). Did not care for our luau on Oahu. Did the volcano on big island, bummed around on Kauai, and beach day on Maui. Sea days- Lots of them...… four days westbound, and five days eastbound, so prepare yourself mentally for lots of ocean time. Very few "bumps" on the sea during this trip. Younger passengers might go bonkers on these long runs. Conclusion- We ate well...… well, too much! Star has not adapted yet to the Medallion program, (coming soon) which we really liked on the Regal and does improve the on-board experience. Shipboard activities could be lacking during some of the sea days, forcing you to entertain yourself. Would like to see better ship maintenance. Ship did not sink, nor run out of food, so we consider this another successful cruise! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We chose this particular cruise based on cost and timing. We wanted to go to Hawaii and this just worked. This was the longest cruise we have ever been on, 15 days. Embarkation and debarkation were both smooth and trouble-free. The ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise based on cost and timing. We wanted to go to Hawaii and this just worked. This was the longest cruise we have ever been on, 15 days. Embarkation and debarkation were both smooth and trouble-free. The Star Princess is older, which gives it some character but also shows its age. There were constantly public restrooms with toilets or urinals out of service and in need of cleaning. We saw several buckets placed in hallways to catch drips from what appeared to be leaking plumbing. There were areas on the ship that were too cold and other areas too hot. There was limited seating in most inside areas. Pool and deck areas had adequate seating, probably due to the weather being colder than we expected. We were somewhat concerned that the pools were not closed for safety reasons. The water was violently sloshing from one end of the pool the other due to rough seas. We normally prefer a balcony cabin but settled for an interior this time due to cost. The cabin was larger than we had experienced in the past with enough storage for our stuff. The temperature was somewhat hard to regulate in the cabin. One light switch quit working after a few days but was fixed without us having to say anything. I assume the cabin steward reported it. We only ate in the dining room three times. We had Anytime Dining so were sat with different guests each time. We prefer sitting on our own, although most guests were good company. The service and food were very good. The Chocolate Journey dessert choices were exceptional. The food in the buffet varied from poor to excellent but mostly just average. There was, for some reason, a German night, which did not fit a Hawaiin cruise. However, this was the best night at the buffet. Otherwise, it was just variations on the same foods each day. I did really enjoy the selection of exotic fruits, dragonfruit, lychees, rambutans, to name a few. The pizzeria was good but not a big variety and not available after 10 PM. It would have been nice to get pizza after the late shows in the theater. The burger and hotdog grill was not up to par with other cruise lines. The quality of the production shows in the main theater was less than we have found on other cruises. That being said, the guest entertainers were all excellent with the exception of the magician, Handsome Jack. He was pretty poor and it seemed all guests had the same opinion. Guest lecturers and entertainers A J Clarke and Craig Richard were excellent in both their presentations and performances. Comedy juggler Randy Cabral was hilarious and the other two comedians on the cruise were funny as well. The Hawaiian Ambassadors onboard, Tiki Dave and his wife Leialoha, were excellent. Dave did presentations on each of the Hawaiian Islands we visited, held ukelele classes, and did performances of Hawaiian music and a more rock-oriented show. Leialoha taught hula classes and lei making. They performed Hawaiian music together as Ellua. The ukelele and hula classes came together for a show in the theater. The cruise director and his assistants were great in their trivia challenges and game shows. Service, in general, was excellent. There were the usual inconsistencies in the quality of drinks from bar to bar. The ports were all good, although we could have done without the stop in Ensenada, MX. With the exception of Lahaina, Maui, there is nothing to do and little to no shopping right at any of the ports. Shore excursions were adequate and accomplished the stated goals but seem over-priced. Visitors can do better searching on their own. I will comment that the average age of guests on this cruise appeared to be about 80, which made us feel younger. We are mid-60's. There were a few kids and teens, but not many. Overall, it was a good cruise. I was initially concerned about having so many days in a row at sea (4 going out and 5 on the return) but it was not a problem. There was enough to do and used the down-time to relax. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Having taken this same cruise 3 years ago by myself, I decided to return with my adult daughter. The weather became a big factor in our trip, though not due to the cruise line. In speaking with fellow travelers who had previously ... Read More
Having taken this same cruise 3 years ago by myself, I decided to return with my adult daughter. The weather became a big factor in our trip, though not due to the cruise line. In speaking with fellow travelers who had previously experienced this particular trip, the consensus was it had never been this cold, cloudy and rainy. We had only three full days of sun! I believe the ship has diminished in quality in the area of food. Most meals in the dining room or in the Horizon Court were just okay. Adjusting for personal preference, this seemed to be the case during the entire cruise. The pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs and fries out on deck were the standouts! We did enjoy the British pub lunch and it was very popular! Personally I loved the days at sea with a choice of everything or nothing to do, depending on your mood. The different lei making classes provided a fun and creative outlet during this time. In-port days gave each individual the choice of exploring on their own or joining a tour. Out of the tours booked through Princess, I would highly recommend the Kauai Sip, Savor and Shop. It was a wonderful experience, informative and delicious and well worth the price paid. The Explore Hilo Town Highlights was very disappointing and extremely overpriced! The driver made four stops of exactly 20 minutes each which made it impossible to visit the marketplace. He parked two blocks away which left us no time other than to get there and return. Another seriously overpriced tour was the Maui Ocean Center which consisted of transportation and admission to the Center and was self guided. Now that I know better, I would get a taxi and pay admission on my own. The problem is if you don’t experience it yourself, there is no way to know if it is a good value or not. Here is where reviews are so important before embarking on any type of travel. All in all it was a good cruise, if for nothing more than being waited upon and lowering your stress levels. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
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
Just my wife and I on this cruise. Main goals were relaxation and warm weather, this cruise accomplished both. We had been to some of the ports on prior cruises so chose not to go a shore at two of the ports. We really enjoyed our time ... Read More
Just my wife and I on this cruise. Main goals were relaxation and warm weather, this cruise accomplished both. We had been to some of the ports on prior cruises so chose not to go a shore at two of the ports. We really enjoyed our time with the ship to ourselves. Although not Medallion, embarkation was super smooth, basically walked right on. The ship is not new but felt and appeared pretty well maintained. The cabin is a little small but worked quite well for the two of us, plenty of closet / storage space. The balcony was good sized, really enjoyed our time out there. Super attentive staff, this is obviously a priority for Princess and particularly the Star Princess. The food quality was better than the last couple cruises with Princess, a very pleasant surprise. All in all had a great time, looking forward to our next Princess cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This was a repeat cruise for my husband and me but included Sea of Cortez which we had only visited on the World Cruise. We did a B2b With the Mexico and Hawaii Cruises to just get away. We spent a lot of time in the casino and I ... Read More
This was a repeat cruise for my husband and me but included Sea of Cortez which we had only visited on the World Cruise. We did a B2b With the Mexico and Hawaii Cruises to just get away. We spent a lot of time in the casino and I came home $3,000 richer than when we left. I had lost my fanny pack on the first day but it was turned in to the Customer Services desk. It was intact except for the $400 cash, nothing else was missing. We did 2 excursions in Mexico, In Cabo we did not get off. Due to it usually being very rough water there, with the tender and we have been many times so it was not necessary for us to get off the ship. I use a mobility scooter and it would have been a challenge. I had no problems in other ports with getting on or off with the scooter. In Loretto we did the Clam Back and it was fun. We walked back to the tender and stopped at a local craft sales street. Very small port and very clean and quiet. Since there are only 4 cruise ship visits per year it was not over crowded. In Lapaz we did not get off the ship due to the tender and 30 minute free bus ride into the town. We enjoyed the ship with trivia that day. In Porto Viarta we took a ship tour that went to a few art shops and went to the top on the hill to an art studio. They taught cooking classes and painting classes. We finger painted a black tile of a waterfall. It was fun with snacks and wine. We had a handicap balcony cabin and our room steward was very good. He did not bother us but had everything cleaned up and organized by the time we got back from breakfast. We had anytime dining and enjoyed eating with new people every night. The conversations were always enjoyable. The food was very good . I went to the show and my husband went to the casino almost every night. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We love the Mexican Pacific coast and it was great to travel into the Sea of Cortez. The Star is in great condition and we felt at home again on Princess. The food was excellent and we had traditional dining at 7:15. We enjoyed the shows ... Read More
We love the Mexican Pacific coast and it was great to travel into the Sea of Cortez. The Star is in great condition and we felt at home again on Princess. The food was excellent and we had traditional dining at 7:15. We enjoyed the shows in the Princess theater. Our cabin steward was outstanding and took care of all our request. The casino was lively and even paid back some to us. We are elite members with Princess and the added perks that come with that are excellent. We always do a future cruise payment for our next cruise. We already have our next one scheduled for April on the new Sky Princess. What we really like about Princess is that you feel at home on the ships and the other passengers all seem happy to be there also. I did not hear any complaints about the ship or the service we all received. Thank you Princess for another great cruise Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Profit enhancement appears to have won out over service and conveniences. After about 20 cruises: with Princess, still cannot get a table for 2 without getting in line to complain. Did they think I was not serious when I request 2-seating ... Read More
Profit enhancement appears to have won out over service and conveniences. After about 20 cruises: with Princess, still cannot get a table for 2 without getting in line to complain. Did they think I was not serious when I request 2-seating every time for more than a dozen cruises? Yes, I mean it, every time. If they cannot honor their request without a dustup every time, at the beginning of the cruise, they should not bother asking. the 10th deck cannot get cool enough. specially at night, the room would not cool down. pre-purchased gifts are not delivered to the room, you have to go get them. so forget about surprising your wife with a box of candy. we like coffee cards. except now, you do not know how many drinks you have left and you cannot any longer carry the unused drinks to the next cruise. desserts are sequestered from reach, you have to ask for them. so the joy of loading up your plate with treats to sample cannot be, not without the inquisitive scornful eye of staff. I do not mind the kids running around all over. but who gave them noise makers? all in all very relaxing pilgrimage we make to the islands about every year end. these are relatively minor complaints. not eating in the dining room is no big deal, and after all, the food there is not so good anyway. basically a cattle call. sabatinis and crown grill the places to go. the food is nice and fresh in the buffet and it is quiet and less crowded. they say about eating places, follow the locals. on board where does staff eat? i saw the captain at the horizon grill. 14th deck. Smart choice. we missed kauai due to weather. that is fine. it happens. you need patience and tolerance when in uncertain conditions. I do this cruise every year. And will again. By the way, princess bedding is terrific, and the tv's are large and have a good variety of programming. all good there. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Los Angeles port is close to my home. The ship was s mess. It was poorly maintained in nearly every area. Mold in the public bathrooms, food frames patched with mismatched aluminum. None of the tampon machines worked. Black mold, ... Read More
Los Angeles port is close to my home. The ship was s mess. It was poorly maintained in nearly every area. Mold in the public bathrooms, food frames patched with mismatched aluminum. None of the tampon machines worked. Black mold, rust and algae visible on the stairs in the conservatory, urged out lift number. Dirty carpets. Horizon court windows so dirty you could barely see out. Moldings and murals ruined by water from leaking pipes in the restaurant. We were told that one of the pools had a crack, but the ceiling in horizon court was dripping, no pool there! Brown stains on the carpet from dripping. Ceiling tiles inserted incorrectly and didn't fit right. They raised the price on a pre paid spa service by 45% they refused to honor their posted and prepaid price. Duty free liquor was more expensive than duty paid liquor at my local grocery store. All in all, I didn't let the food or the ship destroy my vacation. But a lot of people did. 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
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
Star Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness & Recreation 4.0 N/A
Family 4.0 3.8
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 4.0 N/A
Service 4.0 4.2
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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