This was the third cruise Diane and I have taken with Princess; in fact we had the same cabin on this cruise as we had on our first two years ago. Obviously this was our second cruise on the Sapphire and in between we were on her sister, the Diamond, on a second journey to New Zealand. This cruise was a repositioning trip to Sydney where she would begin her summer cruise season of voyages to New Zealand and then back to Alaska for the North American summer season.
I am disabled so for me the ship is the destination; therefore, I am in favor of large ships with many facilities: different restaurants, different bars and little places to hangout for a quiet read. Sapphire had all of those facilities plus an abundance of more activity oriented places for those who wished. The drinking-holes on the boat were many and decorated superbly; the drinks were served by people who knew what they were doing and as importantly, mixed by people that knew what they were doing. The drink prices were reasonable, at least by the prices here in Perth. We enjoyed a well mixed cocktail at night before dinner; it was a treat we both anticipated.
Besides the drink, we both anticipated the excellent meals that were on offer each night. Diane and I both cook; we know good food when it is presented to us and are aware of the difficulties of this preparation and the difficulties of the serving of that food--the people required to do these jobs on the Sapphire did them exceedingly well. Diane and I ate in the Savoy every night of the cruise except for one night at Sabatini's and one night at Sterling Steakhouse.