Wonderful 2 week trip: Sapphire Princess Cruise Review by danizzle

Sapphire Princess 5
Member Since 2011
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Wonderful 2 week trip

Sail Date: November 2012
Destination: Hawaii
Embarkation: Los Angeles
This was our 2nd cruise and this cruise was very relaxing compared to our first. We spent most of our time in our cabin because the balcony room was very nice.

Entertainment: Daily shows were just okay and nothing spectacular. Most of them didn't interest us so we only went to few. However the International Crew Show on the last day was excellent! That was a lot of fun. Don't miss it!

Food: The food was just okay. Nothing too impressive compared to Celebrity's food. (Though French Toast in Horizon Court was really good!) However stay away from Sterling Steakhouse. The steaks were okay, but appetizers and desserts were not impressive at all. Not worth paying extra to eat there. However Sabatini's was good. Still, not impressive as the the specialty restaurant on Celebrity Infinity.

Sweets: I wasn't too impressed with the dessert they offered, but their pistachio pudding, creme brulee (from sit down dinner), traditional cheesecake (also from sit down dinner) are More all super delicious.

Lectures/Seminars: The lectures they offered didn't interest us and they were being offered at 9AM in the morning, so we didn't even bother with those. They also run the lectures on TV like a day after. They also offered various health related seminars, but all of them basically tried to sell you products that were pretty expensive at the end. For example, I went to their free foot analysis and they tried to sell me Good Feet sole which was couple hundred dollar.

Pictures: So on the first day when we got on the boat, the photo section was promoting a photo session in Platinum Studio. They said there is no sitting fee and that there would be no obligation to buy. So we decided to give that a try. The photo was all black and white and consisted of different poses. What shocked us both was when we saw the prices. The most expensive package was in $3000s!! They did offer individual digital photo for $99, but that's only if you purchase more than 20+ digital copies. Though there was no obligation to purchase, we did feel a little uncomfortable to say no. If they would've shown us the pricing before the photo session, we wouldn't have even bothered with it. I think they strategically do this so it's harder to say no. So watch out if you're not willing to pay outrageous amount of money for photos!

Zumba class: Princess Cruise is the only ship that offers Zumba classes on sea. There were Zumba classes on all Sea days and they were wonderful. We had Sindy as the instructor and she was energetic and kept the crowd going. Each class was about 30-40min but in terms of intensity level, it was pretty high especially considering that most of the participants on the boat were elderly.

One thing I was a bit disappointed about this cruise was lack of natural animals that we encountered in the sea. The only thing I saw was pod of dolphins when we left San Pedro Port. However, apparently we passed by pods of baby dolphins and a whale when we were coming into Ensenada port. I can't believe I missed it :( Be sure to be out on the lookout when you arrive at Ensenada! Less

Published 12/11/12

Cabin review: BBC114 Balcony

C114 is a balcony room located in the forward, left part of the ship. Since the room is located in the front of the ship, we really felt it when the sea was rough and the waves were high. The room itself was super nice. Very roomy and the balcony was big too. Lots of room to hang your clothes.

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Port and Shore Excursions

Kilauea Walking Tour

We booked a local tour through Vavoom Volcano Tour to hike the Kilauea crater floor. I found them through yelp reviews. Lori was the one who gave us a tour and fortunate for us, it turned out to be a private tour because we were the only ones who booked the crater floor hike that day. It was really cool to see the crater from the top, then hike down to the crater, then across. We also roasted marshmellows at the bottom of the crater on the steam vents. Hiking back up was a killer though. We both felt like we were still rocking side to side like we're on the boat, and that's what made the last part of the hike extra difficult. All in all, this was an awesome experience!

Wailua River

Honestly I was a bit skeptical about this excursion because I heard from one of the table mate at dinner about how terrible the excursion (Booked through Princess) was at Hilo. However this excursion was a lot of fun. First we went to a waterfall and Wailua River lookout area on a bus. Beautiful scenery. Then took the boat to the Fern Grotto. We couldn't go into the grotto for safety reasons, but the view was beautiful. After we took the boat ride back and went on a tour around the Smith's botanical garden on a tram. Very nice landscape with lots of chickens and peacocks. Then they uncovered the pig that's been roasting in the pit since a night prior. The food offered in buffet line were very delicious, especially the kalua pork bbq beef. It was also nice that they offered all-inclusive maitai :) There were entertainments such as singing and hula dancing throughout these events. Also the Romantic Ceremony was held at the dining hall which also included exchange of leis made with some sort of brown shell.

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