1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Royal Princess
My wife and I sailed on the Royal Princess along with her sister and 94 year old mother. As platinum level Princess cruisers, we're fairly experienced on the Crown class of ship, and were really interested to experience the newest class. The first impression is how lovely the ship is, inside and out. It is stunning, almost everywhere you look. If we had never cruised on Princess before the review could end here. Unfortunately, here are the negatives. We have also sailed on the Caribbean, Ruby, Crown, and Sapphire. Our room on the Royal was a deluxe balcony. Other than the shower itself, my impression was that it is about 10% smaller than similar rooms on other Princess ships. Even the drawers were smaller. The balcony, as pointed out by several other reviewers is quite small, but adequate for two people. Getting to your room is also different on the Royal. The elevators have been made smaller even though 400 more passengers are aboard, and you will likely experience significant waits during peak times. The Promenade Deck is now that in name only, as there is no longer a lower deck that allows access to all sections of the ship. Plus, the middle stairway is between decks four and seven, no longer accessing the entire ship. The lifeboats/tenders are stowed outside the general trim of the ship, and the machinery they require now blocks the view on most of deck seven. They also are an unattractive view from lower balconies. In these areas we were so disappointed that we decided we would not deliberately seek to book on this class of ship in the future. In fact, we called our travel agent while aboard and changed our upcoming reservation on the Regal Princess to a mini suite. Hopefully we will be a bit happier with these accommodations. Now to the positives Horizons has been completely redone. The food now rivals that served in the dining rooms below. It is divided into two areas, Horizon Court and Horizon Bistro. The difference between the areas is mostly in the seating and lighting, as the food from both is easily accessible. There are many more "hot" stations where meat is cut and a host of servers really make this an attractive dining alternative. My wife and I agree that the food in the dining areas was better than on other Princess ships as well. Less formal dining on deck 16 was about the same as on other Princess ships, featuring quite good pizza and burgers. The casino was smaller, but better laid out than on other Princess ships. The Princess Theater felt smaller, but that could be an illusion. The cup holders have been removed, but seating is still comfortable. The Retreat area is new, but we felt it was mostly so Princess could rent the cabanas around the pool. The lighted fountain show was never in operation on our cruise due to weather, so we haven't seen it to comment. The Movies Under the Stars screen is newer, brighter and sharper than on earlier ships. The television in the cabins is ok, but the newer interface and lack of a schedule are a bit of a bother. Overall, the crew seemed friendlier than on other Princess ships. Since Princess has announced a third ship in the Royal class, they are apparently wedded to this format. Hopefully they will address some of the concerns many of their "experienced" passengers are expressing about the new ships.  

First Time on the Royal Class

Royal Princess Cruise Review by mmeachm

Trip Details
My wife and I sailed on the Royal Princess along with her sister and 94 year old mother. As platinum level Princess cruisers, we're fairly experienced on the Crown class of ship, and were really interested to experience the newest class.
The first impression is how lovely the ship is, inside and out. It is stunning, almost everywhere you look. If we had never cruised on Princess before the review could end here. Unfortunately, here are the negatives.
We have also sailed on the Caribbean, Ruby, Crown, and Sapphire. Our room on the Royal was a deluxe balcony. Other than the shower itself, my impression was that it is about 10% smaller than similar rooms on other Princess ships. Even the drawers were smaller. The balcony, as pointed out by several other reviewers is quite small, but adequate for two people.
Getting to your room is also different on the Royal. The elevators have been made smaller even though 400 more passengers are aboard, and you will likely experience significant waits during peak times. The Promenade Deck is now that in name only, as there is no longer a lower deck that allows access to all sections of the ship. Plus, the middle stairway is between decks four and seven, no longer accessing the entire ship.
The lifeboats/tenders are stowed outside the general trim of the ship, and the machinery they require now blocks the view on most of deck seven. They also are an unattractive view from lower balconies.
In these areas we were so disappointed that we decided we would not deliberately seek to book on this class of ship in the future. In fact, we called our travel agent while aboard and changed our upcoming reservation on the Regal Princess to a mini suite. Hopefully we will be a bit happier with these accommodations.
Now to the positives
Horizons has been completely redone. The food now rivals that served in the dining rooms below. It is divided into two areas, Horizon Court and Horizon Bistro. The difference between the areas is mostly in the seating and lighting, as the food from both is easily accessible. There are many more "hot" stations where meat is cut and a host of servers really make this an attractive dining alternative.
My wife and I agree that the food in the dining areas was better than on other Princess ships as well. Less formal dining on deck 16 was about the same as on other Princess ships, featuring quite good pizza and burgers.
The casino was smaller, but better laid out than on other Princess ships. The Princess Theater felt smaller, but that could be an illusion. The cup holders have been removed, but seating is still comfortable.
The Retreat area is new, but we felt it was mostly so Princess could rent the cabanas around the pool.
The lighted fountain show was never in operation on our cruise due to weather, so we haven't seen it to comment.
The Movies Under the Stars screen is newer, brighter and sharper than on earlier ships.
The television in the cabins is ok, but the newer interface and lack of a schedule are a bit of a bother.
Overall, the crew seemed friendlier than on other Princess ships.
Since Princess has announced a third ship in the Royal class, they are apparently wedded to this format. Hopefully they will address some of the concerns many of their "experienced" passengers are expressing about the new ships.
 
mmeachm’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Service
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Royal Princess price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BB D306
Smaller than the balcony cabins on the previous Princess ships we've sailed on, especially the balcony itself. The closet and drawers are smaller as well. If you want space, book a higher class of cabin. We won't book this class again.
Marina Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins