2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Embarkation/Disembarking was very good. Entertainment was great. They had a comedian who engaged the audience in a fun way. We had the paid coffee package which was just okay. The alcoholic drinks we ordered were excellent. Although the ... Read More
Embarkation/Disembarking was very good. Entertainment was great. They had a comedian who engaged the audience in a fun way. We had the paid coffee package which was just okay. The alcoholic drinks we ordered were excellent. Although the ship was older the public areas were very nice and clean. The food was very good. You are not getting top of the line cuts but still very good. The desserts were not as great as the food other than for the chocolate journey. This is a good ship for Alaska as some of the top decks are covered. We did not pay a huge amount so we feel it was worth the money for what you get. The boat is a little older and you can't turnaround in the small shower. The soap/shampoo dispenser was in an awkward place. The price was right and the staff was wonderful. Overall I rate it 4 stars. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this trip because we’ve never been to Alaska and wanted to see a lot. We did the right thing by doing the 5 day land tour first. We started in Fairbanks and stayed at the Princess River lodge 2 nights. The room was adequate and ... Read More
We chose this trip because we’ve never been to Alaska and wanted to see a lot. We did the right thing by doing the 5 day land tour first. We started in Fairbanks and stayed at the Princess River lodge 2 nights. The room was adequate and the beds comfortable. Really enjoyed the River cruise and gold dredge tour but the lunch provided wasn’t good. Perfect weather. On to Denali where we went on the natural history tour. Six hours of being on buses that day was way too much. Luckily we had a great dinner that night at the lodge. Loved the wild life and seeing those mountains. McKinley was next. Beautiful property and fab weather. Another long train trip to Anchorage where we stayed at Hotel Captain Cook. Great corner room with sweeping views of the city and bay. Wish we had more than one night! We stopped at the Alaskan Wildlife Refuge on the way to Whittier which was wonderful. Up close and personal with injured or orphaned bears, wolves, moose, reindeer and more. Boarding the ship was easy and our cabin was very nice. I did not hear about a send off at all. I would say my dinners were quite good and just enough food. We had a dining room breakfast one morning but the food wasn’t special so we ate at the buffet the rest of the time even though we aren’t crazy about them. Too germy. Booked Princess excursions in all three ports. In Skagway we went zip lining over Grizzly Falls in the mountains. Highly recommend and so fun. Small group too. In Juneau a whale watch and salmon bake. Whale watch was a total dud. Our boat was too far away and what few whales that day weren’t leaping. Rude passengers blocked rails and planted themselves so we couldn’t see. One woman took my seat even though all my stuff was there. First time we didn’t tip and we always tip very well. Salmon bake had a great setting in the woods and lunch was good. Our best excursion was in Ketchikan where we did Alaska Sea Cycles. So much fun, great exercise and they gave us lunch after and threw herring in the dock area so we could watch the bald eagles dive. I disagree with reviews about the entertainment. We really liked the production shows and thought the comedians were very funny. Disembarkation was super organized, even better than our Baltic cruise. Bottom line: A lot of hits and a few misses. The land tour would appeal to sedentary people. Too much sitting for us. But the weather was perfect the entire time and the scenery was too! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
Background Information Working toward Elite status on Princess - we had 10 prior to this. Cobbled together this cruise with a one night cruise on Ruby Princess into our own Pacific Coastal/Pacific Northwest vacation. First time ... Read More
Background Information Working toward Elite status on Princess - we had 10 prior to this. Cobbled together this cruise with a one night cruise on Ruby Princess into our own Pacific Coastal/Pacific Northwest vacation. First time sailing on Coral (2nd time in this ship class - sailed sister ship Island in 2006). Travel to Embarkation Port We flew into LAX one day early and took a Lyft down to Long Beach (cost $39). Hotel Information We decided to do our pre-cruise night onboard the former cruise ship Queen Mary in Long Beach. We arrived around 1pm, so our room was not ready. We had a very filling and excellent tasting lunch in the Promenade Café. We purchased the $25 all access pass (available to hotel, restaurant, or banquet guests). This got us all 3 guided tours - Glory Days, Haunted Encounters, and Steam & Steel. We enjoyed all the tours as well as on our own exploring the ship. We booked an inside king. The bed was comfortable. The size and storage options were sufficient for our one night stay. The biggest drawbacks were the lack of temperature controls and the exposure to exterior noise. The in room thermostat was not functional (and I had a friend stay here the prior weekend and I know it didn’t work for their room either) - you had to call the front desk and be told that the engineering dept would try to adjust for your room. We did that and it didn’t make that much of a difference. Because the walls are steel, you hear any people outside your room who are talking and for us there were loud groups of people having boisterous conversations and across the hallway parties late at night. We had to call the front desk to request that security come address the issue. Things finally quieted down around midnight. I always travel with earplugs so those would be a must for a stay here. The historical significance of the ship was worth the premium rate we paid - it was a unique way to enjoy a pre-cruise night. But my preference for modern convenience and comfort would lead me to choose elsewhere for my next cruise out of San Pedro/Long Beach. Embarkation Used Lyft to get to Port San Pedro. Cost about $14. Arrived at port shortly after 11am. With two Princess ships in port, Coral was docked at Pier 92. Since we had priority embarkation privileges with Princess Platinum loyalty status, we ignored the check in begins at 1:00pm time on the cruise paperwork. We were thru security & priority check-in and in the embarkation waiting area by 11:15 am. We didn’t even have to sit down as they started Platinum all groups boarding as soon as we walked in. Cabins were supposed to be immediately available. However our section on Caribe wasn’t quite finished so we headed down to the atrium to take care of a few embarkation errands (cruise card hole punched for our lanyards, submit future cruise deposit forms, etc). We returned just before noon and the cabin was ready. Our suitcases were delivered by 2 pm. Muster drill was at 3:30pm (life jackets not required), and sailaway was shortly after 4pm. Cabin We originally booked an obstructed view oceanview stateroom on Emerald deck but about three months prior to sailing we received an offer to upgrade to a premium view balcony stateroom on Caribe deck for $78. We were on the starboard side, which was good since the cruise was up the Pacific coastline. Flat screen TV on the wall now frees up easier access to the wall outlet in the minibar storage tower. Still the crappy hair dryer on the wall. Dreaded shower curtain in the bathroom and a postage stamp sized shower - I think the smallest size shower of any Princess ship I’ve been on. Otherwise, the typical setup for a balcony stateroom. This was our first cruise on a ship with the Princess Luxury Bed. It’s fantastic! Supportive yet cushy mattress. Poofy pillows. Top sheet plus a duvet. Ship Information It had been 13 years since we'd sailed on this mid-size class of ship. There is so much public space per passenger it seemed like the ship was hardly occupied. Medallion Net Internet - If you pre-pay it's $8.99pp/per day, otherwise it’s $9.99pp/per day. Platinum/Elite gets either unlimited access discount 1 device $22.49 voyage plan or 4 device $29.99 voyage plan (available only within first 24 hrs of the cruise) or 150 free minutes one device at a time. iMessage worked even when offline. We pre-paid for the soda package - $8.26pp/per day. Forgotten how huge the Wheelhouse Bar is on this class of ship. Coral is the only ship now to have the Universe Lounge. Best library of any Princess ship we’ve sailed. So weird to have International Café adjacent to the casino instead of in the piazza atrium. Horizon Court had been renovated with new flooring and more stations including the Amuleto Italian Café at the aft where all the desserts are featured. So it’s a smaller version of what you experience now on the Royal class ships. No BOGO happy hour. Activities Attended the nightly Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour. 1st night salsa & chips were the featured hors d’oeuvres. 2nd night beef steak tartare w/ Melba toast was the featured hors d’oeuvres. 3rd night smoked salmon was the featured hors d’oeuvres. Played morning & afternoon bingo on Day 2. Spent quality time in the Library - my happy place with the comfy leather chairs and a sea view. Spent a couple hours at the indoor Lotus pool area. Pool water was frigid but hot tubs were nice. Played afternoon bingo on Day 3. Watched the farewell balloon drop party. Entertainment Sailaway Party on Lido Deck with the party band Symphonee. Listened to the piano player David Moore in Crooners Bar a couple times. Saw the production show “Encore”. Not any plot - just a collection of songs about 1/3 of which were Italian/opera. The guest soprano Jennifer Fair was impressive. But I was kinda meh about the show. Went to the late night comedian Eric Lyden. He was funny but fairly edgy. Dining Day 1 Lunch - Main Dining Room (Scott and I had the same choices: avocado & bay shrimp appetizer, spinach & ricotta cheese ravioli entrée, and orange soufflé dessert) Dinner/Dessert - Bayou Café & Steakhouse (Scott had the crawfish bisque appetizer, gumbo, trinity smothered filet of beef entrée; I had the sausage grillades appetizer, jambalaya, red pepper broiled 8oz lobster tail entrée; we both had the milk chocolate peanut butter bar w/ honey roasted peanuts dessert which is the Chocolate Journeys dessert exclusive to Bayou Steakhouse). Because we received the Princess coupon book from our travel agent, we got to use the buy 1 get 1 speciality dining on embarkation day offer. Cover charge is $29pp. Day 1 Snacks - Pizza (calabrese) for sailaway. Day 2 Breakfast - Buffet (Chocolate Journeys featured pastry was Chocolate Strawberry Cheese Danish) Day 2 Lunch - Buffet (Oriental/sushi feature) Day 2 Dinner/Dessert - Sabatini’s (Scott had the lamb skewers antipasti, I had the burrata antipasti, we both had the escarole salad, Scott had the fettuccine with carbonara sauce, I had the roasted lamb tortelloni, we both had the chicken scaloppine for the second plate, Scott had the vanilla panna cotta, and I had the Rocher which is the Chocolate Journeys dessert exclusive to Sabatini’s). Dinner took about 2 hours. Day 3 Breakfast - Buffet plus pastries from International Cafe Day 3 Lunch - Alfredo’s Pizzeria at Sabatini’s (complementary; doesn’t offer the pastas that Alfredo’s does on the Royal Class ships but has more pizza offerings than what you can get on deck; Scott had the daily special beef & chili flakes, I had the Coral Princess) Day 3 Snacks - International cafe Day 3 Dinner/Dessert - Buffet (Indian Feature) Disembarkation We left the cabin about 7:00 (required to leave by 8:00) and went to the buffet for breakfast. We had walk off so we were off the ship at 8:00. We were through customs by 8:15. Vancouver does not have Uber/Lyft so we got a taxi to our hotel (cost $9). Service We had consistent service during the cruise - no major issues, no examples of above & beyond. Pretty much what I expect on a short cruise like this. Tips & Tricks - Alfredo’s pizzeria in Sabatini’s - Tiramisu martini is only available at the bar for Bayou Steakhouse - "By the Bayou" production show in Universe Lounge - unique to Coral but they didn’t offer this show on this 3 night cruise which was a bummer Final Thoughts This was our 18th cruise - 11th on Princess. Doesn’t have all the amenities and dining options that the bigger ships in the fleet have. But Coral has some unique features (2 deck Universe Lounge, Library with 8 leather club chairs & foot stools facing out to sea view, Bayou Steakhouse), and you often feel as though you have the ship to yourself with the high public space to passenger ratio. It’s a nice change of pace. We would be happy to sail on Coral again (and we’ve in fact booked another Pacific Coastal on her for May 2021). Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
As a travel advisor I wanted to experience life onboard a Princess Cruise. The embarkation and Disembarkation process was very efficient. There were many venues onboard with different nightly entertainment. The public areas never felt ... Read More
As a travel advisor I wanted to experience life onboard a Princess Cruise. The embarkation and Disembarkation process was very efficient. There were many venues onboard with different nightly entertainment. The public areas never felt crowded. The SPA experience was great and the thermal suite can be enjoyed daily at an extra cost. My cabin had a veranda, mid ship. My companion suffers from motion sickness but staying mid ship was very helpful and she did great onboard. I recommended to anyone looking to experience cruising for the first time. It is a great value for the money. The food in the main dining room is good. The menu changes every evening with a decent selection of choices. The food at the buffet as well as the coffee can be improve. The staff is very friendly. The pools were heated and there were 4 spas to relax and watch outdoor movies on the big screen. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
My husband and I took this cruise through the Panama Canal to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. It was our 12th cruise, 3rd with Princess. We booked Ezair for the first time as we were flying from Boston to LA on the day of the ... Read More
My husband and I took this cruise through the Panama Canal to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. It was our 12th cruise, 3rd with Princess. We booked Ezair for the first time as we were flying from Boston to LA on the day of the cruise and it worked perfectly. There were pros and cons with the ship. Pros: Clean ship Friendly staff Wash stations at Horizon Court Silverware at tables at Horizon Good coffee Can walk all the way around on Promenade deck Chris Roberts, Destination Expert Good Entertainment Great weather! Cons: Ship older and design confusing. Doors need to be manually opened going outside instead of opening automatically. Shower tiny (but good water pressure) The pools had no shallow end and there were no lifeguards. Movies under the Stars-movies were shown during the day which took away from relaxing pool time. They were very loud. The ports were all new to us except Puerta Vallarta where we took a taxi to Malecon. All other ports we booked Princess excursions and enjoyed them. The only complaint was we were not given a bottle of water on the excursions. It was very hot and it should have been included. The Canal experience was very interesting and you really could feel the boat going up and down in the locks. We enjoyed the cruise and seeing some new ports of call. There were quite a few sea days which made for a very relaxing vacation. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
My husband and I booked this cruise in December. Due to my precarious health we can only book vacations on shorter notice so we picked an item on our bucket list. Last year was a Tanzanian safari and generally prefer land trips so we can ... Read More
My husband and I booked this cruise in December. Due to my precarious health we can only book vacations on shorter notice so we picked an item on our bucket list. Last year was a Tanzanian safari and generally prefer land trips so we can spend more time in an area. We have found cruising to be a great way to explore and get a taste of multiple areas in one trip, thus we cruised the Mediterranean in 2011 and Alaska in 2015 and loved it, Since I do not keep current on the cruising industry, I give my review with consideration that everything I have heard and read leads me to believe things are not what they used to be, i.e., "the good old days". Had this been our first cruise, some of our ratings may have been better. We booked our one way flight thru EZAir flying nonstop from TPA to LAX on our day of embarkation as we didn't find the need to spend extra time in that area. Our flight arrived 30 min early, we were easily able to find our Princess rep and make our transfer to San Pedro, arriving around 11 am. Embarkation was very smooth, we were sitting in the Bordeaux Room shortly after noon, enjoying a rather good bacon cheeseburger. After lunch we went to guest relations to secure the last spot for my husband to go on the Ultimate Ship Tour. We then went back to our cabin to rest a little, wait for our luggage and unpack, and allow shipboard life to begin.... We loved the size of the ship and fond it fairly easy to navigate once we got our bearings. Every once in a while we would find an elevator that didn't go to all decks. The elevator doors closed rather quickly so we always had to be ready to move fast to enter. I walk with a cane so I cannot run. We could tell this was an older ship but it seemed well cared for, nothing was in disrepair. The mini-suite cabin selection available was very limited since we booked late but we were able to have our TA move us closer to midship after final payment when I noticed the availability on Princess.com so we were on Dolphin deck fairly close to midship elevators. I wasn't sure how I would feel with our balcony being open to anyone above us, but it was not a problem. The cabin was very clean, had plenty of storage, outlets, hangars. The couch was a sofa bed that was rather uncomfortable, glad no one would be sleeping on it. We found the two cases of water waiting for us when we arrived and put some in the refrigerator which had an ice bucket which our cabin steward kept filled for us. Despite saying we wanted robes when completing the booking forms, they were absent but promptly supplied wen we asked our steward. We wanted for nothing until tried to get out of the shower. I walk with a cane because all if the muscle surrounding one of my hips was destroyed by a faulty hip replacement. I have limited motion of one leg but the handicap is not severe enough to warrant a handicap cabin. I had read that the sides of the bathtub were high so I was somewhat prepared. The available grab bars made it easy for me to get into the shower but when I went to get, it was entirely different, The bottom of the bathtub was 4-6 inches higher than the floor making the step out impossible for me to keep all of my weight on my bad leg without moving enough that might dislocate my hip. The rim of the tub is very narrow, 2-3 inches wide, so I couldn't sit and get out. I needed something higher to step out onto. We came up with 2 options, 1 was an inverted trashcan and the other was to use the life vest. The latter turned out to be the perfect option, problem solved! We usually ate breakfast at the buffet because we got moving too late for the dining room except for using room service on excursion days. We found the buffet to have a more than adequate selection that we were very happy with. We enjoyed lunch in the dining room but could not always go because of the limited time it was open (12-1:30). Lunch at the buffet was average at best, the selection was fair, they had run out of quite a few items, possibly because we arrived about 30 -45 minutes before closing. We had pizza three times (once from room service) and it was always very good. I'll give dinner its own paragraph because that that is the reason for average rating. We had anytime dining which suited us well. We alternated between a private table for 2 and sharing a table with a group. The companions were always pleasant. Most off the time there were multiple appealing choices. There was no escargot which I understand is part of cutbacks which is no big deal. The Caesar Salad was watery and had little taste on the 2 times I tried it. The food was never served hot, we felt lucky if it was warm. The pasta was way undercooked, it always needed a few minutes additional cooking time to be classified as al dente. Lobster was offered twice and those that had it, enjoyed it. The beef was generally excellent and cooked to request, except that the cowboy New York strip steaks were very chewy. The red snapper, besides being cold, was very fishy tasting and did not seem to be fresh. many of the dishes may have been very good if served at the right temperature. The desserts were usually very good. Service was excellent for the most part with no complaints and some surprises. We were asked when we booked if we were celebrating anything and I answered "our anniversary a few days prior to embarkation". On the second day of our cruise we found many pleasant surprises, balloons and a sign on our cabin door, a greeting card containing gift cards to the spas and shops, plus a letter to give to our waiters at dinner; they sang to us and presented us with a special dessert, bravo Princess Cruises! Everyone works so hard and their efforts are apparent. They were always pleasant to interact with. We have always has anytime dining so that we don't always have the same waitstaff, no problem. We did find the waitstaff on our prior cruises to be much more personable. The purpose of the cruise was the Panama Canal which was awesome. The ports we visited were all new to us except for Puerto Vallarta which we visit on a regular basis so we did not get off of the ship. We were actually disappointed that the port had changed from what we remembered; there used to be a great flea market there. In Huatulco, we didn't do a tour, We just went into the town, walked around the shops and town, watched birds in the park, and had lunch on the beach. We had a delightful day in area that turned back time compared to PV and Cabo. We would certainly consider returning for a longer period of time. San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua is a tendered port so we chose to do Princess tour. We only decided amongst those labeled as easy because of my limitations. We were fortunate to get to go into the port as it was cancelled on the three or four previous cruises because of high winds. I was very windy when we arrived but everything was a go. It was very difficult for me to get on the tender because of the rough waters but we made it. We took a full day tour on a big bus which was a bit of a disappointment as Princess advertises smaller groups. Evidently everything worth seeing is quite a distance from the port so we spent quite a bit of time in the bus, driving, The sights we visited were the Apoyo Crater, a volcano, the city of Granada, and Lake Nicaragua. The buffet lunch in Granada was excellent; we were given time to explore the area but, besides a cathedral across the street, everything worth seeing was 10 -18 blocks away, too far for me to walk in the midday heat. We did enjoy what we saw but do not feel the need to ever return. The next port was Puntarenas, Costa Rica. We had arranges a private tour, the 10 in 1 combo Puntarenas Tour with Thumbs Up Tours who are highly recommended on Cruise Critic and Trip Advisor. Their website is the company name and they were a pleasure to work with. We were the first to contact them so they kept in touch until they had enough people to confirm the tour. as it turned out, enough people for two vehicles signed up so we were in a minivan with another couple and still charged the group of 12 rate of $65, no payment until the end of the tour! We got to see a lot of the Costa Rican countryside, monkeys, macaws, a toucan, and went on a safari boat door. We had wonderful buffet lunch at a restaurant in the rainforest with spectacular views and macaws. Gilbert, our driver and guide was terrific and we highly recommend this tour. We are interested in spending more time in Costa Rica. The port of Fuerte Amador, Panama was another tender port so we chose a Princess tour on a jungle boat excursion through Gatun Lake to see wildlife and scenery found in this area of that Panama Canal System. Getting on the tender boat was again difficult as was the walk down to jungle boat; the tide must have been low so that the slope to walk down to the floating dock was VERY steep, it was difficult but I made it. We saw monkeys who came onto the boat to take grapes from the hands of some of the passengers, some birds, and crocodiles. The tour was fine, no need to revisit. The skyline if Panama City is spectacular. Cruising thru the Panama Canal was an all day event giving everyone the time an viewpoints to see as much as they would like to see. The experience exceeded our expectations. Our final port of Cartagena, Columbia was a pleasant surprise from the skyline of skyscrapers to the amazing city back to port terminal that contained an aviary and wildlife preserve. We did a private tour with Dora the Explorer who is also highly recommended on these boards. I think there was 16-20 in our group with stops at La Popa Monastery, the San Felipe de Barajas Fort, and a walk through the old city with its brilliant architecture. The walking in the heat and humidity got to be too much pain for me so Dora arranged for me to sit in an area where the others would catch up with me later. I missed the inside of the cathedral but that was it. I would consider visiting this area again. All things considered, this was a trip of a lifetime that we are glad we did but would not go again because we wee well satisfied with our experience at the Panama Canal. This was our first Princess cruise and are not sure whether our disappointment with the food is company/ship related or the entire cruise industry. We have friends who are ardent cruisers who are going on their first Princess Cruise next month so we are anxious to hear what they will say. We have intentionally not given them any negative comments so that we can hear an unbiased comparison. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
-Embarkation was excellent and smooth. We were onboard a little after 11am and only took about 15 minutes from start to finish. Disembarkation was just as smooth, with a slight delay due to a computer glitch with immigration. -The ship ... Read More
-Embarkation was excellent and smooth. We were onboard a little after 11am and only took about 15 minutes from start to finish. Disembarkation was just as smooth, with a slight delay due to a computer glitch with immigration. -The ship was great, didn't really notice any wear and tear. It had just been in dry dock recently with upgrades. Elevators were quick and there are many of them. Lots of public spots to be out of your cabin. We did have to work while on vacation on the ship, and thanks to the new Medallion internet service.. it was a breeze and just as good as the internet at home. This made our cruise very stress free! We had been worried about that prior, thinking we would not have good internet until the port days.. and then part of our port days working. But thanks to Medallion, we were able to absolutely enjoy all the cruise activities we wanted, the port days and work when needed! -Our Cabin was a balcony one. I absolutely recommend a balcony especially for anything longer than 7 days. It is really great to order room service and eat out on the balcony. Also just having that extra semi private space to just sit and read, watch the ocean and marine life.. really makes a difference to be in your pj's and do that! Beds were good. we had 3 in our room. Our daughter was up in a berth bunk, and it was comfy and big, not too high and plenty of room above her as she is 5'1" and she could sit very comfortably and there was still space over her head. Our beds were originally as 2 twins, but the 3rd day in our steward suggested putting them together, and I was pleasantly surprised as that was not an option on our room bed request configuration. He said no problem, and set it up, and from then we were very comfy! Closet space was great with tons of hangers! I also had brought closet shelving and over the door storage, that with the cabinet with the safe was absolutely perfect for the over packing I did. I do have to say.. the bathroom was small, and the shower was TINY..lol. all in all a great room. -Dining- we had anytime dining. Did not do any of the formal nights.. we are over that. Instead we choose to be comfy and just relax now when we cruise and not be on a schedule or have to go eat at a certain time and dress up. We did go to breakfast at the dining room, only once as the buffet works better for us, and our tastes and times we eat. The buffet was great! lots of variety.. food was good to great on some dishes in our opinion. always difficult to please everyone when it comes to food..lol -Entertainment and Activities- They cruise director, staff, entertainers, musicians and dancers were great!!! Not all shows were spectacular, but they were very good and entertaining, and thats all you can hope for with nothing else to do! We did have a lot of fun with trivia and the shows though. There really is tons to do.. for all tastes.. and thats the great thing about cruises.. you can do as much or as little as you wish. -Service - We had exceptional service throughout the cruise. The youth center staff was great as they only had 12 kids on the ship.. and not all were together at most times.. and they really went out of their way to make sure the kids were not bored. Can't thank them enough.. because bored kids would have made this a really LONG cruise..lol Our steward was great.. a little ninja.. we hardly saw him! but our room was always perfect and clean. The buffet staff were amazing!!! we spent most of our late evenings with them since we are night owls, and the demographic age of the ship went to sleep pretty early compared to us. We would enjoy our coffee and chat with them as they did their cleaning with music coming from the kitchen.. Really a lot of fun! that was very unexpected! -Ports and Shore Excursions- I will list them individually, but will say that the excursions we did were not with Princess but private tours and they were exceptional, and did the same and more than the Princess excursions but at a fraction of the cost. -Huatulco Mexico~Absolutely loved Huatulco.. we did a boat cruise that took us to all the bays and the man in the rocks, and other sights to see. Then went to Entrega and went snorkeling with our tour captain. it was just us 6 in our group, and it was exceptional!!! Snorkeling was only about $5 per person..with all the gear. He was great and snorkeled with us, actually towed us around holding a line on a floating ring and went and got different fish and we fed then and we went all along the bay amazed by the coral.. just the best time! The water was wonderful with no currents or waves really in that bay. The coral is literally steps from the beach. This is the place I would recommend you go in the water or relax on the beach. we also enjoyed some great food at great prices, right on the beach.. huge and delicious shrimp cocktails and drinks.. just the best place! -Chiapas Mexico- not our fave at all.. everything was far from the port and the heat was insane! We didn't venture from the port and visitors center. There are some stores and shops, and a pit where they dance. The dancing and live music was great. Be prepared to tip, the young kids really do a great job and earn their tip. We stayed there about 2 hours then headed back on the ship. Friends we spoke with said the tour to the town wasn't great.. very crowded, small and too many people.. might have been great for others though. -Puerto Quetzal Guatemala - After reading on the state department website that this was a level 2 place to not visit, we had decided to not do an excursion. there is a really big market area right at the port area where you can really walk around safely. But after being at the port for a bit.. we started chatting with a gentleman who offered us a tour to Antigua. We did go, and am glad we did. You fell like you stepped back in time 200 years in Antigua. There is gorgeous architecture, and a volcano well within view. We ate at a great little bar and had the best tuna sandwich ever! Tuna is one of Guatemala's major exportations, so it was delicious! It is not the safest place, and the tour operator had extra security following us around the markets and streets.. but we never felt un-safe. They did a great job and we thoroughly enjoyed our time there and are very happy we "risked it" and went. -Panama Canal and overnight stay in Gatun Lake- Well we woke up very very early (4:30am) to get a good spot up on the deck outside, then spent HOURS watching as we passed through the locks. It all began around 8 and we anchored around 5 I think. It is a wonder and amazement to experience it.. and just the engineering that went in on this is mind boggling.. but it is a very very long and slow day. And be prepared for some rude people (fellow cruisers) around you to shove and push a little. that was our experience least. On the return transit, this time it didn't start till 11 am.. so by about 8 am we got a big table at the very front of the buffet and spent another very very long day there repeating the locks, but in reverse.. then anchored again to take on fuel all night long... which was a little noisy as it was on our side of the ship. The anchoring on Gatun lake was great... very calm waters which was great as when we left Chiapas, we had some strong winds for a few hours. -Puntarenas Costa Rica- This country is gorgeous and the people were amazing!! you can tell that most people live comfortably, and poverty is not very visible like in other countries. It is also a very safe country to visit. We did a private excursion with Chico and he was amazing!!! He has a brand new 14 passenger van, and we were the only 6 with him.. he took us EVERYWHERE!! Went to almost every place the cruise excursions went to, and we had lunch at an amazing restaurant up high in the tropical rain forrest.. it was open air and the views were breathtaking!! He also took us to a private monkey habitat.. and we had the best time.. monkeys everywhere..and they climb right on you and you feed them fruit. it was sooo much fun and only $3 a person... we also bought some arts and craft and water there.. was just the best experience! We also went and saw the crocodiles.. the rain forrest, the volcano, wild life.. beautiful parrots and birds... went shopping.. had great great delicious milkshakes and smoothies... of all the ports, Costa Rica was our favorite country and we hope to return and spend some time there! -San Juan Del Sur Nicaragua- Captain skipped this port due to high winds.. honestly after speaking with our Costa Rica tour guide and the staff on the cruise ship.. I believe it was mostly due to the political unrest in the country. The week before 3 ships skipped that port as the political protests ended with violence. We knew the night before we were not going to port.. so we just had a very relaxing day on the ship instead.. although it did start early about 6 am, as the captain came over the speakers to inform us of the canceled port. -Manzanillo Mexico- You really do not need to do any excursions there.. you can have a great time just off the port. LOTS of shops and places to eat.. you can get right on the beach immediately... of all the places we visited, Manzanillo had the nicest and best priced souvenirs. everyone was very nice... weather was great.. not as hot and humid as the other ports. spent the day driving around with a private tour operator.. and had a great time... We did travel with our daughter age 11, my husband and myself in one cabin. My mother (age 79), my sister and my nephew age 17. the kids had just as much fun as we did. the staff on the cruise were amazing... our ports were good to great! the only thing I can say about this long cruise.. is that it didn't really feel long, and that I give great credit to mother nature as the ocean was almost lake like most of the time. Only about 2 hours of high winds leaving Chiapas Mexico was the worst of it. And the rest of the credit goes to the staff and private tour guides we were lucky enough to meet. We would do the Panama Canal tour again, but I think it would be the back to back tours from Los Angelos to Florida, then back again.. only adds 10 days.. but different ports. The ratio of port days to sea days.. were long.. but not unbearable. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose the Coral Princess because of its LA to LA itinerary and because it was doing a Panama Canal transit, even if a partial one. A bonus was many ports I'd never been to before. I have zero complaints about anything. I am ... Read More
I chose the Coral Princess because of its LA to LA itinerary and because it was doing a Panama Canal transit, even if a partial one. A bonus was many ports I'd never been to before. I have zero complaints about anything. I am pretty laid back and easy to please; there were no glaring faux pas on the part of the ship or trip. Yes the ship has bumps and bruises, but the way ships get turned around (and thus keep cruising costs reasonable) I expect them. I don't expect perfection, I just want it to be enjoyable without any glaring problems and there weren't any. We ate a lot of meals at the Horizon because I like fast and simple, but the nights we ate the anytime dining room and steakhouse were very good and a nice change of pace. My method at the buffet was to try very small bites of what looked interesting and what turned out to be great, I'd go back for more of. Not everything I tried was great, so it worked out well to go small rather than load up and be disappointed. The entertainment was good to great. There were more activities on board than one could manage and a little something for everyone. I was happy with pool time at the indoor pool and reading time. Ports that I especially enjoyed were Huatulco, Chiapas, Puntarenas and Puerto Quetzal. We visited a colonial city (Tapachula), coffee plantation and Mayan ruins; all of which were very worthwhile. In Puntarenas, I just made it a beach day and local food, both of which were great. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We have cruised with Princess 4 times. This embarkation was quick and easy. We weren’t early and had no queues or waiting. The mini suite was very comfortable- the bed was wonderful! The dining room food and food in general, was ... Read More
We have cruised with Princess 4 times. This embarkation was quick and easy. We weren’t early and had no queues or waiting. The mini suite was very comfortable- the bed was wonderful! The dining room food and food in general, was better than our cruise experience in the Baltic however the menus in the speciality restaurants didn’t appeal so we passed on trying them. The shore excursions - we did one in nearly every port - can be a bit hit and miss depending on your guide. We did a boat trip back through the Miraflores locks. The guide was nice but extremely difficult to understand and the organisation of the tour was a schemozzle with the captain/ship pilot and or the food all being late causing us to sit on the boat for an hour before we even left the dock! We did an excellent walking tour with hop on-hop off option in Cartagena. The ship staff have generally been great. Miranda the cruise director is just lovely. We are a retired couple from Australia and have enjoyed our Princess cruises and am sure we will enjoy many more Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had already taken a partial transit cruise through the Panama Canal previously on the Coral Princess. Some of the ports we had not been into yet. Really did enjoy Cartagena and Huatulco. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had already taken a partial transit cruise through the Panama Canal previously on the Coral Princess. Some of the ports we had not been into yet. Really did enjoy Cartagena and Huatulco. Only disappointment was not being able to get into Nicaragua because the choppy seas. Apparently this happens often. It was one of the few ports that I was really looking forward to seeing. I understand the safety aspect, but if this happens more often, then look for a different option to get passengers off the ship. We enjoyed the commentary that was presented while we were transiting the canal. It was very informative. Being on the Cora once before, it was fun to be cruising on her again. I enjoyed the newly refreshed ship, but our cabin had some issues. Enjoyed the Lotus Pool area. It was quiet and relaxing. I feel because of the frequent sea days that there could have been a little more variety of intellectual programs and activities during the day. I really enjoyed the Movies Under the Stars with the recent movie releases. We went to the movie almost every night. Really enjoyed the blankets and popcorn. I really enjoyed two of the production shows, The Secret Silk and Encore. Motor City is getting a little old. They also had a production show that was staged in the Universe Theatre, instead of the Princess Theatre that was unique. The rest of the main entertainment was average. We had fixed dining and had a wonderful waiter and assistant waiter. Our waiter sang to us during Italian night and sang an anniversary song to a couple at our table celebrating their 68th anniversary. Our assistant waiter made us napkin animals several times. It made dining fun. The food was good. We enjoyed the galley tour along with the show ahead of the actual tour. Embarkation went smoothly, we were later getting onto the ship, so there wasn't any waiting what so ever. Disembarkation went fairly smoothly. There was a back up in the terminal, but they keep us comfortable on the ship and well informed. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We had a balcony cabin which was big enough except for the shower, but we lived through that. The ship was recently remodeled in the passageways and I am assuming that various other parts were remodeled also. The cabins had large ... Read More
We had a balcony cabin which was big enough except for the shower, but we lived through that. The ship was recently remodeled in the passageways and I am assuming that various other parts were remodeled also. The cabins had large TV's installed on the walls but other than that not much looked new in them. The ports were great but we were disappointed that we missed San Juan, Nicaragua due to bad weather. The food was good and we tried several restaurants on board. DO NOT PRE-PAY for restaurants as they are easy to get reservations for daily and although we cancelled one reservation forty-eight hours in advance, we are fighting to get our pre-paid money back. They claimed that they refunded us but they also charged us again for the reservation. If it wasn't for that I would give the ship five stars. Watch your room bills closely. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This ship gave us an up close and personal experience with the Panama Canal. The ship was just the right size for efficiency, all the staff was amazing. The entertainment was great, needed a little more variety for daytime, and not just ... Read More
This ship gave us an up close and personal experience with the Panama Canal. The ship was just the right size for efficiency, all the staff was amazing. The entertainment was great, needed a little more variety for daytime, and not just shopping. Food was OK, loved the Movies under the stars, and all the nooks and crannies to spend my day relaxing if I wish. We were in B612, and loved having a balcony to ourselves. We were disappointed that due to weather were unable to stop in Nicaragua, but the experience of the Canal was amazing! Cruise staff was extremely friendly, as was all the dining, bar and wait staff. Loved the Princess experience! Our shore excursion to the Walk in the Clouds was a little disappointing in Costa Rica, way too long bus ride, and not much to see when we got there. We did the arch boat ride in Cabo, which was very good, and the Gatun Lake boat to Monkey Island in Puerto Amador was very good as well, We used Dora in Cartagena and she is amazing. Highly recommended. The Everglades tour at Fort Lauderdale was the worst,,,,only because of the organization...the bus an hour late which shortened the tour due to guests needing to get to the airport. Once we got to Everglades Holiday Park, it was enjoyable. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We choose this ship and cruise as it fitted with the locations and time. The ship was very nice, cabins without a doubt dated and in need of a makeover but perfectly clean and adequate. Beds and pillows very comfy. The main areas have ... Read More
We choose this ship and cruise as it fitted with the locations and time. The ship was very nice, cabins without a doubt dated and in need of a makeover but perfectly clean and adequate. Beds and pillows very comfy. The main areas have had a refurb and the Atrium is very smart. Staff very friendly and helpful, nothing was too much trouble. The food in Horizons, excellent so much choice all day long, always hot. Provance dinning room pleasant, waitress was a real gem, full of good humour and professional . Food on the second week maybe not quite so much choice, but none the less a few adaptions here and there asking for extra veg, potatoes was soon organised. We were also lucky enough to have a meal in Sabatinis as a wedding anniversary treat. NB..do not eat before you go as so many delicious courses. It is however very disappointing when passengers do not follow the dress code , example on Formal nights a lot people arriving in the theatre in sports wear, jeans , shorts. The excursions like all cruise excursions not long enough and due to weather the tender was not able to operate to Nicaragua which meant 5 days at sea, its a pity another port on another day could not have been organised. Overall more sea days that land days, but the highlight being the Panama Canal was worth the wait. We did the excursion the day before on the smaller boat so was fantastic being in the canal on smaller boat and then the ship. Also saw plenty of Dolphin pods and a whale. Movies under the Stars , we watched 2 films, popcorn was served. Blanket provided but not needed. Entertainment was good although some not for us, maybe being British made the difference as we did not know the singers from Nashville. The last show Silk was excellent. Downside need to get to the theatre at last 40 minutes early to secure a seat, annoyingly a lot people reserved for friends who did not show. Only 2 waiters generally on duty serving drinks. Wi fi was worth having although it did fail on two occasions. Immigration at the end was awful, over a hour as US Citizens were fast tracked , even though the Non US Citizens queue was very long. We missed our connection taxi due to the delay and had to make other arrangements, plus we were 30 minutes later that the given time to disembark the ship. Very satisfied with the overall cruise, would most definitely sail with Princess again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
This was the first cruise of the Coral Princess after a rehab in dry dock. Carpets have been replaced, flat screens added to all rooms with satellite reception, new paint and improved internet access are among the changes. The ship is ... Read More
This was the first cruise of the Coral Princess after a rehab in dry dock. Carpets have been replaced, flat screens added to all rooms with satellite reception, new paint and improved internet access are among the changes. The ship is small and was built for the Panama Canal. Overall the cruise gets high marks. My husband and I are in our early 60's and were among the youngest people on the ship. Lots of folks with walkers, wheelchairs, scooters and canes. Excellent weather, no rain and not too hot. We did the Princess excursion "Aromas and Flavors of Cartagena" which was excellent. Demonstration and coffee tasting, local cooking class and tour of the Old City. Very well done. We were a group of 28, split into two class groups. The small size allowed for a high level of interaction with the guides and young people who were teaching the classes. Humberto is the ship's guide to the Canal. He did a fabulous job of narrating the passage through the Canal all day. We made our way around the ship throughout the day. The emergency doors on level 11 was opened so we could view the locks from the front of the ship. This is not advertised. So check "non-traditional" access points. Princess is one of the few ships that stops at Puerto Amador. We did the train trip and the new locks. We did the dome car which wasn't worth the extra expense. There wasn't much to see that you would miss if you were below. Save your money. The new locks are very interesting especially when compared to the old locks and well worth the time to visit. Our tour also took us through the city and past the old town. No stops just the bus ride. Costa Rica was our least favorite stop. All excursions are very long as they take you a good distance from the port of Puntarenas. We did the tour of the Botanical Gardens, Coffee Plantation and some old church. The Botanical Gardens left much to be desired. Birds in very small cages and green houses of orchids that need more TLC. The Doka Coffee Plantation was excellent. We could have spent another hour there, but the guide hustled us on the a public park and church. This stop could have been eliminated and we would have been able to see all that the coffee plantation had to offer. Way too long on the bus. In Nicaragua, we did the Hacienda on Lake Nicaragua. Very relaxing. It's a working hacienda. The family was our host. Local dancers performed traditional dancers and local crafts were demonstrated. Lunch was delicious. This is not an exciting adventure. I sat with the lake in hammock and renewed my soul. My husband watched the performances of the horses and interacted with the local folks. Our last stop was in Cabo. We did the half day sailing adventure. It was fabulous. Wonderful guide. Plenty of food and drink. We saw about whales, sea turtles, marlins and a variety of birds. We had a wonderful room steward and great waiters for dinner. We chose the Anytime Dining but had the same table every night. Food was better than average. Food that we did not like was relaced quickly. Activites on sea days left much to be desired. Mostly trivia, and craft kits during the day. Each night was a different performer. Three nights were productions. All others were one-person shows. Comics with jokes that addressed the age of the majority of the guests. The "enrichment speaker" was terrible. Very dated presentations with extremely poor visuals (think powerpoint with old B/W videos embedded). The wine tasting was excellent as was the cooking demonstration by the Chef and the Head of the Hotel and the tour of the galley. All in all, it was a very relaxing expereince. No drama. Just a wonderful time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
The dining room and cabin steward were great. The ship just came out of dry dock and there were technical problems with the Movies at Sea on deck, that was a bit disappointing. Many workers came along on the first leg out of dry dock to ... Read More
The dining room and cabin steward were great. The ship just came out of dry dock and there were technical problems with the Movies at Sea on deck, that was a bit disappointing. Many workers came along on the first leg out of dry dock to finish up maintenance, no big deal - just something we noticed. The Panal Canel was everything we hoped for as this was our first time through the canel. The main dining room experience was great, our regular waiter and assistant waiter for dinner were excellent. The times we went to breakfast and lunch (anytime dining) was equally great. The buffet, or cafeteria as some call it was what you might expect from a cruise ship. My significant other requires gluten free food and I give Princess an A+++. The head waiter was very accommodating and even had the galley prepare special desserts for her (and other passengers) the following night for dinner. Awesome job! We didn't arrange any port excursions through Princess; therefore, no comments on those areas. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise to go through the Panama Canal and it ended in San Francisco which is home for us. The ship, Coral Princess, had been in dry dock for 12 days prior to our cruise and the contractors were not finished with the upgrades ... Read More
We chose this cruise to go through the Panama Canal and it ended in San Francisco which is home for us. The ship, Coral Princess, had been in dry dock for 12 days prior to our cruise and the contractors were not finished with the upgrades such as new carpet and flat screen TVs in the rooms. Nice upgrades, but there were rolls of carpet about the ship and painting still being done. Embarkation was delayed for 4 hours as the ship was late coming from dry dock so we sat in the waiting area until we could board. Our cabin had a new TV and the room was thoroughly functional, but the wi fi was not working properly and there were tech's throughout the ship working on it. Cosmetically the ship was not up to the standards we have experienced on Princess. For instance there were speaker covers sitting on the floor in the Princess theater and seats around us were broken and wobbly. Our cabin was a balcony unit and other than the minor cosmetics we were overall happy with it, it was clean and the bed was comfortable. Dining was excellent, the food was great and a nice variety to chose from. The dinners were a little long, averaged about two hours to finish our meals. We had the early seating for dining, the shows are staggered so we could still see them after dinner. We really enjoyed the Production show, well done. The guest entertainers were excellent, I recommend seeing them, comics, magicians, singers. Lots of activities daily on the ship, we never got bored. The service was excellent, the crew is friendly and works hard. We took a shore excursion at every port through Princess and they were well organized. Only drawback is on ports where you tender in took a long time waiting in tender lines both coming and going. Some ports were short on time and some of it wasted waiting in line. Only one of the excursions we took was misleading in the Princess tour listings description. In Cabo San Lucas, MX we took tour SJD-500 that is titled "4 x 4 Desert and Camel Adventure". There was NOT a 4 x 4 ride "on a guided off-road safari adventure". It is also listed there is a tortilla-making presentation which did not happen, very misleading. We did have a tequila tasting as described and the traditional Baja meal was excellent. The camel ride was fun and unique, well organized. The description says "cameras may not be used whilst atop a camel", however we were prevented from taking photos while greeting the camels too. Disappointing since the vendor had there own photographers taking photos, unfortunately their photos were expensive starting at $40 for one! Way too expensive, we returned without a photo of us on the camel. Guests we dined with took the Whale Watching by Zodiac in Cabo San Lucas and they really liked it, said it was fantastic and they saw about 30 whales and several were up close. If we are able to do this cruise again we plan on doing this excursion. This was a great cruise and we would do it again (probably will in a few of years). Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
An amazing cruise and would recommend a Panama cruise to all. The ship was going into dock for some refurbishment but this did not spoil our trip. It did look tired and old fashioned in some areas. It certainly did not detract from our ... Read More
An amazing cruise and would recommend a Panama cruise to all. The ship was going into dock for some refurbishment but this did not spoil our trip. It did look tired and old fashioned in some areas. It certainly did not detract from our enjoyment. The entertainment in the theatre was a little disappointing overall but there were plenty of alternatives if you wanted. Driinks packages were expensive as with many of companies and would look for offers next time. The trips we took with the ship overall were good and very well organised. Staff were all exceptionally helpful and friendly. Restaurant staff in particular we r out of their way to ensure we had a positive experience every day. Would definitely cruise with Princess again and try one of the newer and/ or larger ships in the fleet. Will look for offers and also consider sailing from Southampton uk Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
We have been on the coral 3 times previously. This was our third time thru the Panama Canal, and 2nd time through on the Coral. Since we wanted to go through the original locks this was or the Island were the only ships. We had a ... Read More
We have been on the coral 3 times previously. This was our third time thru the Panama Canal, and 2nd time through on the Coral. Since we wanted to go through the original locks this was or the Island were the only ships. We had a wonderful experience. We were in a mini suite that was upgraded to club class. The entire staff was friendly. The service was wonderful and club class was an unexpected joy. It is great to be able to walk into the dining room and find a table for 2 during any time dining without having to wait. It is in its own section of the dining room and the staff stays the same during the entire cruise. They remember your name and your preferences. In Panama we choose to take a ferry thru two sets of the locks. It is a totally different experience then being on the ship when it goes through the canal. In Puerta Vallerta we went whale watching in a Zodiac which was awesome. The only cons on the ship were that the international cafe does not carry a non-milk substitute such as almond milk. Also there were not as many shows as I expected. A lot of one person singers or musicians in lieu of the cruise singers and dancers. Having cruised with Princess on a total of 9 cruises I can honestly say that this was the best cruise in every way I have taken on the line. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We wanted to take this cruise as we have never cruised the Panama Canal and wanted to go through the old locks. We usually cruise the grand class ships, so I was a little apprehensive about the smaller ship (no Vines, small International ... Read More
We wanted to take this cruise as we have never cruised the Panama Canal and wanted to go through the old locks. We usually cruise the grand class ships, so I was a little apprehensive about the smaller ship (no Vines, small International Cafe) but we were pleasantly surprised. The layout of the ship was fine and it was very easy to get around. Having less passengers meant it was easy to find seats in venues, dining rooms and the pool. I have heard about issues with Anytime dining if you weren’t Club Class but, other than the first night, we had no trouble getting seated either with a group or by ourselves. The food was good and there were several options to choose from including an option to choose an entree from the steakhouse, Bayou Cafe, for an upcharge. Our room location was great, the steward was fantastic. The only complaint we had was the sofa in the room. It was very worn out. I am hoping it is replaced when the ship goes into dry dock. We took the Princess shore excursions which were very good. All in all it was a great cruise. I wouldn’t hesitate to do this cruise again on the Coral Princess. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
I chose this cruise due to the fact that it ended in Los Angeles, started in the USA (in this case I took a transfer from Miami airport to Fort Lauderdale but did not hang out in Florida). It was a good choice for me economically and for ... Read More
I chose this cruise due to the fact that it ended in Los Angeles, started in the USA (in this case I took a transfer from Miami airport to Fort Lauderdale but did not hang out in Florida). It was a good choice for me economically and for relaxation purposes. Both embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly. I knew it would be a calmer cruise with few ports. For this vacation, that is what I wanted. The service staff were very nice and did a good job, I loved the production cast shows, and the magician Trigg Watson. They played movies under the stars, in a theater, and in the rooms, that were fairly recent like withing that year (it was great the selection).I really enjoyed the anytime dinner option, along with tea time everyday. I also had personal pizzas made at Alfredo's a few times and that was very nice. The shore excursions I went on were eco tours with crocodile sightings being a highlight in both Costa Rica and Hualteco and I enjoyed both immensely. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
Had a great time. Some highlights and lowlights. Highlights: main dining room staff was great. Highlights Matre' d was very responsive to first night request for a table for 2. The line for requesting this was 20+ deep ... Read More
Had a great time. Some highlights and lowlights. Highlights: main dining room staff was great. Highlights Matre' d was very responsive to first night request for a table for 2. The line for requesting this was 20+ deep after we embarked. We asked for table for 2 at the start of the first night's dinner and it was available for the rest of the cruise. Lahito was excellent as a waiter. Crab shack was good. Service was slow. Ambiance (Horizon Ct.) was a bit tack but all elsce considered, I would do it again. Of course, Brenda, our AAA travel Agent had arranged for a meal voucher. Bayou Cafe was excellent. Again, thank you Brenda. Puerto Vallarta Whale Watch via Princess. We've been on several of these over the years and this was absolutely the best. We were fortunate to have Benjamin as a guide. He came with a hydrophone (and recordings) so we could 'experience whales singing. Saw two groups of whales. One female being pursued by 5 males and all of them harassed by a school of dolphins. The second was a mother and calf. The mother breached several times (yes, I've got photos) and the baby slapped its flute over and over. Finally, the baby laid across mother's back and 'snuggled' for a long time. The baby peaked it's head out of the water as if mugging for the camera. I'd recommend this excursion. Lolights Missed Nicaragua stop due to wind and waves. Teenagers on board tended to gather in public spaces and annoy everyone. Twice they occupied the stairs and landing at the elevators on our floor and tried to act mature by dropping f-bombs in their conversations so that all nearby could hear them. Come on parents, get some control. Ship feels a little dated but most are anymore. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Going thru the process of checking in and boarding in Los Angeles was the easiest and most pleasant of all the cruises that I have taken. I never slowed down from the time I checked my bags until I was having my picture taken for ID as I ... Read More
Going thru the process of checking in and boarding in Los Angeles was the easiest and most pleasant of all the cruises that I have taken. I never slowed down from the time I checked my bags until I was having my picture taken for ID as I entered the ship. Food was subpar in dining room. The food in the buffet at times was better. It is too bad that there is very few that dress for formal nights. Trip was on wife’s bucket list. Half of ports were a waste of time. The ship does need a little TLC. A lot of the furniture needs to be upgraded or replaced. The service crew in the buffet was attentive and was eager to serve and was very pleasant the entertainment was mediocre except for the last night comedian he played the piano like he should have been in a concert hall except for the fact that he was a great comedian. He was able to entertwine the two together with great success. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Chose the cruise based on desire to cruise through the old locks of the canal as well as wanting to visit the ports. First time having anytime dining so hard to compare service versus traditional dining. Food was better than previous ... Read More
Chose the cruise based on desire to cruise through the old locks of the canal as well as wanting to visit the ports. First time having anytime dining so hard to compare service versus traditional dining. Food was better than previous cruises on the Emerald and Diamond. Enjoyed the Chef Table experience and Chef Eddie and Maitre D’ Daniele hosted an exceptional meal and event. Rating would have been higher, but ship is showing it’s age. Dry Dock in January is needed and should enhance overall appearance of the ship. The Coral being a smaller ship made it very convenient to navigate the decks. Enjoyed Chris Roberts presentation for each of the ports and effort put in on day cruising through the canal. Enjoyed the entertainment except for comedian on day one. Female rock singer was very good and I enjoyed her very much but obviously too loud for a lot of passengers. Enjoyed having the International Cafe back on a cruise as I missed it on board the Diamond this summer on cruise around Japan. Would like to commend Rafael of the Patisserie Bar. He mad excellent coffee drinks in the morning and prepared great cocktails at night. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
The transit through the Panama Canal was magnificent, and we enjoyed most of the ports. We had Anytime Dining, but except for the first night, we had the same table and the same servers every night. The dinners in the Bordeaux Main ... Read More
The transit through the Panama Canal was magnificent, and we enjoyed most of the ports. We had Anytime Dining, but except for the first night, we had the same table and the same servers every night. The dinners in the Bordeaux Main Dining room were excellent, and our waitstaff were the best we have ever had on any cruise. Dinner in the Bayou Café was 3 hours long, yes, 3 HOURS!!!, because apparently our order was ‘lost’, and it required HOURS to fix the problem. A free bottle of wine would have been nice compensation for wasting HOURS of our time. And the food in the Bayou Café was no better than the food in the Main Dining Room. The ‘Scenic Train Ride’ in Puntarenas, Costa Rica was MUCH shorter than it was the first time we took it several years ago; however, to offset the much shorter train ride, there were additional shopping stops so that we would have more time to buy trinkets, and I suppose that Princess/Carnival gets a percentage of the money spent at the additional shopping stops. Even with the negative experiences, overall the cruise was very good, we had a great time, and are looking forward to our next Princess cruise. ________________________________________ Now I would like to present an overall evaluation and description of our experiences with Princess over the past 27 years: My wife and I have been cruising with Princess since 1991 (26 cruises, 247 days), and since Princess was acquired by Carnival Corporation in 2003, we have noticed a slow, gradual degradation in the overall quality of Princess cruises, primarily due to monetization, the attempt to squeeze every possible nickel out of passengers. And if you don’t believe me, just ask other longtime Princess cruisers, because I have asked them, and most of them agree that Princess cruise quality has significantly degraded over the years. Now, having said the above, I want to add that we will continue to cruise with Princess because, having tried other cruise lines, we still think that Princess offers the best value, even with the degradation in quality. However, if my wife and I were young and just starting to cruise, we would do a very careful evaluation of other cruise lines, and maybe focus on another one, instead of Princess. At our age (75), it would take us too long to achieve another cruise line’s equivalent ‘Elite’ status. And don’t tell me (in a whiny voice), “If you don’t like Princess, then use another cruise line.” Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose this cruise because we wanted to go through the Panama Canal and it went the right direction for us. The staff was great. They always had a smile and would answer your questions or concerns. The steaks could have been better they ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to go through the Panama Canal and it went the right direction for us. The staff was great. They always had a smile and would answer your questions or concerns. The steaks could have been better they were tough.But the other food was very good.If you like rolls this is the place they were very good. The two times we had room service it was alway on time and hot.. When we did the arts and crafts they could have had more so more people could have done them. Getting off and on the ship was very easy. I would say the best we had in many years. The art auctions did not run over time, I think that many have been a first for us. We liked that very much. There is the ice cream bar that was good as well. The cabin where clean and neat. I would most definitely recommend this crusie to others Read Less
Coral Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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