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Just returned from a wonderful 10 day cruise on the Coral Princess. It was very relaxing and we enjoyed ourselves tremendously. We thought the food was good, the buffets very good. The entertainment fun. The magician was funny and very enjoyable. They played movies in the theaters some afternoons for those who did not go ashore. The best of all was the entry into the Panama Canal. I recommend that people take advantage of the delicious champagne breakfast they offer for $28 to enjoy while cruising thru the locks and into Lake Gatun. Delicious and well worth the price. We went on the coffee plantation excursion that included a Costa Rican lunch on the way back to the ship. This was so beautiful it took our breath away. I now know why people expatriate to Costa Rica...it is truly beautiful in the mountains. The Coral Princess is a beautiful ship that I thought was very understated in decor. It was tasteful, well designed and VERY CLEAN. I did take the advise of some of the CC board members who suggested that we ask for a top sheet under the duvet cover. Good idea. We had a min suite which we also had on our only previous Princess cruise. It was plenty big enough for all our things and even big enough to invite some folks in to have a drink. We stored our bags under the bed but there probably would have been room in the closet area. I recommend a mini suite if your budget allows. The extra room for over 7 days is worth the price. Two things I did not care for was the mattress was not very comfortable. It was not too hard, it had a dip in it that once you fell into it...you were stuck. My DH complained about it about night 4 so I took his side of the bed thinking maybe it wasn't all that bad. I was mistaken. I laughed so hard because once I got into it, it wasn't easy to get back out of. And I had heard that the mattresses had been replaced...can't imagine what the old ones were like. Also, though greatly improved the any time dining doesn't always work very smoothly. We did not realize that any time dining meant that you can make RESERVATIONS for anytime. That is very important to know as you MUST call an extension onboard each day to ask for the specific time you want to be seated. It resulted in a number of people being very unhappy as they jammed outside the Bordeaux dining room. Once you figure out the trick and IF you can get thru to the people at the ext you are to call (3463 I have it memorized from redialing it for up to 1.5 hrs and this is not what I call vacationing) it works. Other than the mattress and the business with the anytime dining we enjoyed our cruise. So much so that we reserved a future cruise while onboard. It is a very good option to consider. It is good for up to 4 yrs costs only $100 considerably less than normal for a deposit and you get progressively higher onboard credits for future cruises. A real win win. Again, this cruise was what we had hoped it to be and the Panama Canal is all we thought it would be an more. Be sure to see it sometime! AS far as excursions go reserve EARLY and I do mean EARLY. WE could not get very many due to the lack of space. So, we could not do some we really had wanted to. The good ones fill up fast and there were a large number that were cancelled. Not sure as to the why of it they just were. So, if you think you want to do one...reserve it. You can always cancel.

Panama Canal 3/26-4/05

Coral Princess Cruise Review by Carla Dean

Trip Details
Just returned from a wonderful 10 day cruise on the Coral Princess. It was very relaxing and we enjoyed ourselves tremendously. We thought the food was good, the buffets very good. The entertainment fun. The magician was funny and very enjoyable. They played movies in the theaters some afternoons for those who did not go ashore. The best of all was the entry into the Panama Canal. I recommend that people take advantage of the delicious champagne breakfast they offer for $28 to enjoy while cruising thru the locks and into Lake Gatun. Delicious and well worth the price. We went on the coffee plantation excursion that included a Costa Rican lunch on the way back to the ship. This was so beautiful it took our breath away. I now know why people expatriate to Costa Rica...it is truly beautiful in the mountains. The Coral Princess is a beautiful ship that I thought was very understated in decor. It was tasteful, well designed and VERY CLEAN. I did take the advise of some of the CC board members who suggested that we ask for a top sheet under the duvet cover. Good idea. We had a min suite which we also had on our only previous Princess cruise. It was plenty big enough for all our things and even big enough to invite some folks in to have a drink. We stored our bags under the bed but there probably would have been room in the closet area. I recommend a mini suite if your budget allows. The extra room for over 7 days is worth the price. Two things I did not care for was the mattress was not very comfortable. It was not too hard, it had a dip in it that once you fell into it...you were stuck. My DH complained about it about night 4 so I took his side of the bed thinking maybe it wasn't all that bad. I was mistaken. I laughed so hard because once I got into it, it wasn't easy to get back out of. And I had heard that the mattresses had been replaced...can't imagine what the old ones were like. Also, though greatly improved the any time dining doesn't always work very smoothly. We did not realize that any time dining meant that you can make RESERVATIONS for anytime. That is very important to know as you MUST call an extension onboard each day to ask for the specific time you want to be seated. It resulted in a number of people being very unhappy as they jammed outside the Bordeaux dining room. Once you figure out the trick and IF you can get thru to the people at the ext you are to call (3463 I have it memorized from redialing it for up to 1.5 hrs and this is not what I call vacationing) it works. Other than the mattress and the business with the anytime dining we enjoyed our cruise. So much so that we reserved a future cruise while onboard. It is a very good option to consider. It is good for up to 4 yrs costs only $100 considerably less than normal for a deposit and you get progressively higher onboard credits for future cruises. A real win win. Again, this cruise was what we had hoped it to be and the Panama Canal is all we thought it would be an more. Be sure to see it sometime! AS far as excursions go reserve EARLY and I do mean EARLY. WE could not get very many due to the lack of space. So, we could not do some we really had wanted to. The good ones fill up fast and there were a large number that were cancelled. Not sure as to the why of it they just were. So, if you think you want to do one...reserve it. You can always cancel.
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