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Review - Regal Princess 15 Day Trans-Atlantic, Copenhagen to New York Embarkation - Disembarkation - I have to say that boarding and leaving the ship was fast and efficient, qudoes to Princess. SHIP LAYOUT - I read many reviews of the Regal before our departure, about the elevators, the Piazza, etc., and wondered "how bad can it be" well, in most cases the previous reviews were correct. The Piazza is very beautiful and elegant, giving the ship a large open area in the center. There are numerous restaurants and bars on each of the three levels, but we found them always crowded and seating very limited. The ship design allows for a large area on the upper decks for walking, relaxing and getting away from the crowds, but when the weather is cold and blustery, then everyone crams into the Piazza. The entertainment in the Piazza was always on the lowest level, and in order to make it be heard on all three levels the volume was turned up to make it a dull roar if you were seated down there. When the weather was cold, finding a quiet place to sit and read, anywhere on the ship other than your cabin was impossible. Bars - I'm not a big drinker, but do enjoy a happy hour in the evenings. Well, there is only one happy hour on the ship, at one bar, "Crooners" on deck six from 3:00 to 4:00. First of all, this was bit early for me, and second, it was the only bar to offer two drinks for the price of one plus one dollar. If you arrived at 3:15, you couldn't find a chair, and if you did, you could barely get a waiter or waitresses attention and the by the time you got your two drinks, happy hour was over. I was also disappointed that none of the bars had a decent ocean view. Window seats were always the first to be taken so you ended up sitting in the middle somewhere between the Piazza and the windows surrounded by people. We finally resorted to ordering our drinks and then carrying them done to our cabin. Due to the in-climate weather, we never did have a drink in their touted "Ocean View Bar", too damn cold. Library - I don't know why Princess even bothered with this, 50 square feet and 20 books doesn't make a library. Only a couple of chairs and the the two tables were always taken up by jigsaw puzzles. Casino - Didn't use this much, even though they didn't allow smoking here, it always had a lingering smell of cigarettes. Did play a slot machine for 20 minutes and watched $10 disappear. Elevators - This is the one issue that got the worst reviews, and now I agree. Eight elevators at mid-ships and they were always crammed with people. Not unusual to be standing at decks five, six or seven in the Piazza along with 10 or 12 other people waiting for an elevator. When one finally opened up it was like a cattle stampede, and frequently the elevator that arrived was already half full. No surprise that a head cold virus quickly infected many people on the ship including everyone at our dinner table. Not uncommon to be in an elevator with someone coughing or sneezing and barely covering their mouths. Because there were no stairs to higher decks at midship, then when you wanted to go from five, six or seven, to the Lido deck, that it would stop at every single floor going up, very frustrating. Dining Rooms - We opted for second seating and were assigned a table in the Allegro dining room. We asked for a table of eight and were surprised to be put in a small back room of the dining room where they had to put together four small tables along a wall with a bench seat. This meant that whoever decided to sit in the center had to slide down from either end. In order to serve the people seated on the bench seat, the waiters had to reach across the other guests to reach our plates. It was made a little better when the fourth couple didn't show up so we made it a table for six instead, but it was still awkward. The Allegro dining room could only be reached by the aft elevator or by the aft stairs, you couldn't walk to it directly from anywhere on the ship. This wasn't too bad for us because our cabin was aft-mid-ships, so we just took a short walk back to the aft elevator at dinner time. But if you wanted to go to the show after dinner, you had to go up a flight to deck seven to be able to walk forward to the showroom. Overall, the Allegro dining room seemed cramped and confined whereas the Concerto dining room, where you were served breakfast, was much more open and airy. Lido Buffet - The buffet is the largest I've ever seen on a cruise ship and offered two different areas, separated by a wall. The chairs in the area closest to the pool were higher with smaller tables, while the aft area had conventional chairs and tables. Food was also broken up in the two areas, offering different things in each. In order to see what was available required walking through a maze of counters in both areas. Again, if you hit the buffet at the wrong time, finding a vacant table was difficult, and many tables near the windows were taken by people that had finished eating and were now playing cards or reading, mostly due to a lack of tables and chairs on the other public decks. The first time my wife and I ate here for breakfast, we got separated and ending up walking around and around looking for each other with our hands full of plates of rapidly cooling food. In frustration I finally found a table and sat down, and watched for her to come around. We were both angry at each other and realized that it wasn't either person's fault. From that point on, we always found a table first and then took turns getting our food. Outside areas - Don't have much of a review here, most of the days at sea were cold and blustery and being outside was uncomfortable. We did have one day where we had some sun so we walked around most of the upper decks, 16, 17 and 18. There are a lot of lounge chairs in sheltered areas and around the central pool. There is a "Water fantasy" that is done each night, but the night we watched it it was blowing so hard the fountain was going sideways. There's also the large outdoor video screen that played something constantly, but we never sat down to watch. This ship is obviously designed for warm weather cruising. It was also a disappointment that the Promenade deck didn't go all the way around on the outside, and even to walk the deck out side had you dodging numerous pieces of equipment and life boats. The only other area to walk was a track on deck 18 where seven laps equalled one mile. FOOD - Well, this in many ways was a disappointment. Dinners - Of 13 dinners we ate in the Allegro dining room, 5 were considered exceptional, the rest were just ordinary. There were two lobster nights, two prime rib nights and one fillet night. These were the five dinners that I really enjoyed. The rest of the faire was a mixed bag of speciality dishes that didn't impress me. The chocolate desserts offered by the Chef Love, were very good however. Breakfasts - This is the joke of the cruise. I love Eggs Benedict, so the very first morning we ate in the Concerto dining room for breakfast and I was surprise to see that Eggs Benedict was not on the menu. I asked our waiter and he said it was available, so I ordered it. When he brought me my plate, there were two "things" on my plate that looked like an Egg McMuffin split in half. The Hollandaise sauce was a hard "crust" on the eggs and the eggs were literally hard boiled. That was it, no garnish, flowing Hollandaise, nothing. It took a whole glass of water to be able to get them down. My wife ordered an omelette, which only had three choices of ingredients, mushrooms, ham and cheese. She ordered a ham and cheese omelet and was delivered a small triangular mass, dry and again with no garnish on the plate. It looked like a life raft on a sea of white on the enormous dinner plate. We both laughed and ate our breakfast. That night, we mentioned this to our head waiter and he said that he would make it right. He went back to the kitchen and talked to the sous chef and was promised that tomorrows Egg Benedict would be much better. So the waiter gave me a slip of paper to hand to the maître d' when we went to the dining room that he was supposed to give to the chef. We did this and went to our table. I ordered the Eggs Benedict again, and 40 minutes later I saw the chef walk out with a tray held high with my breakfast on it. It was delivered to my table and when uncovered, what did I see, but a duplicate of the previous mornings breakfast. Laughing, I tried to explain that Hollandaise sauce should be a "sauce" and should be flowing over the eggs, not this hard crusty stuff, but it fell on deaf ears. I think they actually put the eggs with sauce on them under a broiler to turn the sauce into this hard crusty layer. I decided to go to the buffet the next morning and making my own, what I found was English muffins that had been sitting under a heat lamp until very dry, ham slices floating in hot water that had turned sort of a milky color and poached eggs that looked like they had been cooked hours before. The Hollandaise sauce was the consistency of mud and sort of glopped on to my eggs. This was the last time I had Eggs Benedict on this cruise. The buffet for breakfast was always a hit or miss proposition, if you hit it right, the food was fresh, but many times it had been sitting out for awhile. The "scrambled eggs" were terrible, made from dried eggs and were grainy in texture. They offered them plain or with cheese added, which didn't help. The made to order omelet was the only way to have eggs that were made with real eggs. However, they were always swamped and had to give you a number on a ticket that you gave your waiter once you sat down so that they could bring you your omelet. This seemed to keep the crowd down, but meant that you would eat most of your breakfast before your omelet arrived. I also like a half of grapefruit for breakfast, but couldn't ever find one in the buffet. I mentioned this to my wife and she said they must be available, since she saw on someone's table. Well I finally asked one of the cooks and he took me over to another area and reached down into a refrigerator and pulled one out for me. I had to do this every morning. Why they didn't have the half grapefruit's out and available to everyone was a mystery. I assume it was because they required more prep time so didn't want a lot of them going out. The other breakfast items, pancakes, french toast, pastries, were typical of any cruise ship faire and nothing special. Lunch - We rarely ate lunch on board on port days and never tried the dining room, only the buffet. Again, nothing exceptional to mention here. Other Dining Options - We did eat at the International Cafe in the Piazza several times for a late lunch and found the food to fresh, good and with a good selection. Servings were small, but there is no charge for this food, so you could try several things. However, if you wanted just an ordinary cup of coffee or tea, then this was extra charge. Only a glass of water was free. Gelato - The gelato bar, also in the Piazza was good, but was not free, and we found out that the price charged was for three scoops, which is way too much for most people. The Grill by the pool - Had lunch here once, typical burger and fries, nothing special. Pub Lunch - About four times, on sea days, the ship offered a "Pub Lunch" at the Crown Grill. We ate here twice for lunch and found the food very good. No additional charge for the Pub Lunch, except for the Guinness that I had with my food :-). Speciality Dining - We didn't try any of the special dining venues offered by the ship, they all seemed too expensive considering our experiences with other venues, didn't want to have to pay extra for possible mediocre food. STAFF Room Steward - Our room steward was always friendly and efficient, almost too efficient. We wanted to be conservation minded and told him to leave our damp towels from the morning hanging on the back of the door, but he never did, he always changed out all the towels several times a day if any of them looked used. The towels were always a little too stiff for our taste and had a slight bleach smell on first use. Waiters - Our dining room waiters were great and learned our particular dining choices very quickly, decaf coffee, fresh ground pepper, extra anchovies with the Caesar Salad, etc. Water glasses were quickly topped off at every meal. Other Staff - The ship staff is multinational, not all Philippine as with Holland America and other cruise lines, so when you were greeted, it was always in English, but with a varying accent. We found all the staff to be friendly and helpful. OVERALL - This ship is huge, it's beautiful and well decorated, but it holds a lot of passengers. This was our first TA and our first time on a large cruise ship. By the end of the cruise I was tired of the crowds and packed elevators and felt that a much smaller ship would have made the cruise much more enjoyable. We now know to keep our cruise ships we pick to the

Not Impressed

Regal Princess Cruise Review by scottb80

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2015
  • Destination: Transatlantic
  • Cabin Type: Balcony
Review - Regal Princess

15 Day Trans-Atlantic, Copenhagen to New York

Embarkation - Disembarkation - I have to say that boarding and leaving the ship was fast and efficient, qudoes to Princess.

SHIP LAYOUT - I read many reviews of the Regal before our departure, about the elevators, the Piazza, etc., and wondered "how bad can it be" well, in most cases the previous reviews were correct.

The Piazza is very beautiful and elegant, giving the ship a large open area in the center. There are numerous restaurants and bars on each of the three levels, but we found them always crowded and seating very limited. The ship design allows for a large area on the upper decks for walking, relaxing and getting away from the crowds, but when the weather is cold and blustery, then everyone crams into the Piazza. The entertainment in the Piazza was always on the lowest level, and in order to make it be heard on all three levels the volume was turned up to make it a dull roar if you were seated down there. When the weather was cold, finding a quiet place to sit and read, anywhere on the ship other than your cabin was impossible.

Bars - I'm not a big drinker, but do enjoy a happy hour in the evenings. Well, there is only one happy hour on the ship, at one bar, "Crooners" on deck six from 3:00 to 4:00. First of all, this was bit early for me, and second, it was the only bar to offer two drinks for the price of one plus one dollar. If you arrived at 3:15, you couldn't find a chair, and if you did, you could barely get a waiter or waitresses attention and the by the time you got your two drinks, happy hour was over. I was also disappointed that none of the bars had a decent ocean view. Window seats were always the first to be taken so you ended up sitting in the middle somewhere between the Piazza and the windows surrounded by people. We finally resorted to ordering our drinks and then carrying them done to our cabin. Due to the in-climate weather, we never did have a drink in their touted "Ocean View Bar", too damn cold.

Library - I don't know why Princess even bothered with this, 50 square feet and 20 books doesn't make a library. Only a couple of chairs and the the two tables were always taken up by jigsaw puzzles.

Casino - Didn't use this much, even though they didn't allow smoking here, it always had a lingering smell of cigarettes. Did play a slot machine for 20 minutes and watched $10 disappear.

Elevators - This is the one issue that got the worst reviews, and now I agree. Eight elevators at mid-ships and they were always crammed with people. Not unusual to be standing at decks five, six or seven in the Piazza along with 10 or 12 other people waiting for an elevator. When one finally opened up it was like a cattle stampede, and frequently the elevator that arrived was already half full. No surprise that a head cold virus quickly infected many people on the ship including everyone at our dinner table. Not uncommon to be in an elevator with someone coughing or sneezing and barely covering their mouths. Because there were no stairs to higher decks at midship, then when you wanted to go from five, six or seven, to the Lido deck, that it would stop at every single floor going up, very frustrating.

Dining Rooms - We opted for second seating and were assigned a table in the Allegro dining room. We asked for a table of eight and were surprised to be put in a small back room of the dining room where they had to put together four small tables along a wall with a bench seat. This meant that whoever decided to sit in the center had to slide down from either end. In order to serve the people seated on the bench seat, the waiters had to reach across the other guests to reach our plates. It was made a little better when the fourth couple didn't show up so we made it a table for six instead, but it was still awkward. The Allegro dining room could only be reached by the aft elevator or by the aft stairs, you couldn't walk to it directly from anywhere on the ship. This wasn't too bad for us because our cabin was aft-mid-ships, so we just took a short walk back to the aft elevator at dinner time. But if you wanted to go to the show after dinner, you had to go up a flight to deck seven to be able to walk forward to the showroom. Overall, the Allegro dining room seemed cramped and confined whereas the Concerto dining room, where you were served breakfast, was much more open and airy.

Lido Buffet - The buffet is the largest I've ever seen on a cruise ship and offered two different areas, separated by a wall. The chairs in the area closest to the pool were higher with smaller tables, while the aft area had conventional chairs and tables. Food was also broken up in the two areas, offering different things in each. In order to see what was available required walking through a maze of counters in both areas. Again, if you hit the buffet at the wrong time, finding a vacant table was difficult, and many tables near the windows were taken by people that had finished eating and were now playing cards or reading, mostly due to a lack of tables and chairs on the other public decks. The first time my wife and I ate here for breakfast, we got separated and ending up walking around and around looking for each other with our hands full of plates of rapidly cooling food. In frustration I finally found a table and sat down, and watched for her to come around. We were both angry at each other and realized that it wasn't either person's fault. From that point on, we always found a table first and then took turns getting our food.

Outside areas - Don't have much of a review here, most of the days at sea were cold and blustery and being outside was uncomfortable. We did have one day where we had some sun so we walked around most of the upper decks, 16, 17 and 18. There are a lot of lounge chairs in sheltered areas and around the central pool. There is a "Water fantasy" that is done each night, but the night we watched it it was blowing so hard the fountain was going sideways. There's also the large outdoor video screen that played something constantly, but we never sat down to watch. This ship is obviously designed for warm weather cruising. It was also a disappointment that the Promenade deck didn't go all the way around on the outside, and even to walk the deck out side had you dodging numerous pieces of equipment and life boats. The only other area to walk was a track on deck 18 where seven laps equalled one mile.

FOOD - Well, this in many ways was a disappointment.

Dinners - Of 13 dinners we ate in the Allegro dining room, 5 were considered exceptional, the rest were just ordinary. There were two lobster nights, two prime rib nights and one fillet night. These were the five dinners that I really enjoyed. The rest of the faire was a mixed bag of speciality dishes that didn't impress me. The chocolate desserts offered by the Chef Love, were very good however.

Breakfasts - This is the joke of the cruise. I love Eggs Benedict, so the very first morning we ate in the Concerto dining room for breakfast and I was surprise to see that Eggs Benedict was not on the menu. I asked our waiter and he said it was available, so I ordered it. When he brought me my plate, there were two "things" on my plate that looked like an Egg McMuffin split in half. The Hollandaise sauce was a hard "crust" on the eggs and the eggs were literally hard boiled. That was it, no garnish, flowing Hollandaise, nothing. It took a whole glass of water to be able to get them down. My wife ordered an omelette, which only had three choices of ingredients, mushrooms, ham and cheese. She ordered a ham and cheese omelet and was delivered a small triangular mass, dry and again with no garnish on the plate. It looked like a life raft on a sea of white on the enormous dinner plate. We both laughed and ate our breakfast. That night, we mentioned this to our head waiter and he said that he would make it right. He went back to the kitchen and talked to the sous chef and was promised that tomorrows Egg Benedict would be much better. So the waiter gave me a slip of paper to hand to the maître d' when we went to the dining room that he was supposed to give to the chef. We did this and went to our table.

I ordered the Eggs Benedict again, and 40 minutes later I saw the chef walk out with a tray held high with my breakfast on it. It was delivered to my table and when uncovered, what did I see, but a duplicate of the previous mornings breakfast. Laughing, I tried to explain that Hollandaise sauce should be a "sauce" and should be flowing over the eggs, not this hard crusty stuff, but it fell on deaf ears. I think they actually put the eggs with sauce on them under a broiler to turn the sauce into this hard crusty layer. I decided to go to the buffet the next morning and making my own, what I found was English muffins that had been sitting under a heat lamp until very dry, ham slices floating in hot water that had turned sort of a milky color and poached eggs that looked like they had been cooked hours before. The Hollandaise sauce was the consistency of mud and sort of glopped on to my eggs. This was the last time I had Eggs Benedict on this cruise.

The buffet for breakfast was always a hit or miss proposition, if you hit it right, the food was fresh, but many times it had been sitting out for awhile. The "scrambled eggs" were terrible, made from dried eggs and were grainy in texture. They offered them plain or with cheese added, which didn't help. The made to order omelet was the only way to have eggs that were made with real eggs. However, they were always swamped and had to give you a number on a ticket that you gave your waiter once you sat down so that they could bring you your omelet. This seemed to keep the crowd down, but meant that you would eat most of your breakfast before your omelet arrived. I also like a half of grapefruit for breakfast, but couldn't ever find one in the buffet. I mentioned this to my wife and she said they must be available, since she saw on someone's table. Well I finally asked one of the cooks and he took me over to another area and reached down into a refrigerator and pulled one out for me. I had to do this every morning. Why they didn't have the half grapefruit's out and available to everyone was a mystery. I assume it was because they required more prep time so didn't want a lot of them going out. The other breakfast items, pancakes, french toast, pastries, were typical of any cruise ship faire and nothing special.

Lunch - We rarely ate lunch on board on port days and never tried the dining room, only the buffet. Again, nothing exceptional to mention here.

Other Dining Options - We did eat at the International Cafe in the Piazza several times for a late lunch and found the food to fresh, good and with a good selection. Servings were small, but there is no charge for this food, so you could try several things. However, if you wanted just an ordinary cup of coffee or tea, then this was extra charge. Only a glass of water was free.

Gelato - The gelato bar, also in the Piazza was good, but was not free, and we found out that the price charged was for three scoops, which is way too much for most people.

The Grill by the pool - Had lunch here once, typical burger and fries, nothing special.

Pub Lunch - About four times, on sea days, the ship offered a "Pub Lunch" at the Crown Grill. We ate here twice for lunch and found the food very good. No additional charge for the Pub Lunch, except for the Guinness that I had with my food :-).

Speciality Dining - We didn't try any of the special dining venues offered by the ship, they all seemed too expensive considering our experiences with other venues, didn't want to have to pay extra for possible mediocre food.

STAFF

Room Steward - Our room steward was always friendly and efficient, almost too efficient. We wanted to be conservation minded and told him to leave our damp towels from the morning hanging on the back of the door, but he never did, he always changed out all the towels several times a day if any of them looked used. The towels were always a little too stiff for our taste and had a slight bleach smell on first use.

Waiters - Our dining room waiters were great and learned our particular dining choices very quickly, decaf coffee, fresh ground pepper, extra anchovies with the Caesar Salad, etc. Water glasses were quickly topped off at every meal.

Other Staff - The ship staff is multinational, not all Philippine as with Holland America and other cruise lines, so when you were greeted, it was always in English, but with a varying accent. We found all the staff to be friendly and helpful.

OVERALL - This ship is huge, it's beautiful and well decorated, but it holds a lot of passengers. This was our first TA and our first time on a large cruise ship. By the end of the cruise I was tired of the crowds and packed elevators and felt that a much smaller ship would have made the cruise much more enjoyable. We now know to keep our cruise ships we pick to the
scottb80’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BB A623
CABIN - Our cabin was a Verandah cabin on deck 16 Aft Midships, A623. The bed was comfortable although they don't give you a top sheet, only a large heavy duvet. I sleep warm, and found the duvet to be too hot at night, even with the thermostat turned to it's coldest position. We often had to leave the sliding window open to get the room cold enough to sleep. About the fifth night I asked our room steward for a top sheet so that I could roll up the duvet to the center, once I did this, I slept much more comfortably. The cabin has lots of storage and a large closet with LOTS of hangers. My wife considered the bathroom small, but I found it Ok. The sink was large and rectangular with a flat bottom, which I liked, because you could set your razor or cream in there and it wouldn't roll around. The shower had a great shower head and there was never a lack of hot water. The balcony was compact with two chairs and a small table, but Ok for an occasional breath of sea air or to watch a sunset.
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews