• Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Log In
Ocean Princess Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
217 Reviews

Tahitian Princess - South Pacific

Ocean Princess Cruise Review by JHL

1 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2004
  • Destination: the South Pacific
  • Cabin Type: undefined

This is an adult cruise.......... not for kids. Passengers are a tad older, generaly 45-50+. Off ship activities are concentrated in aquatic activities such as scuba or snorkel and jeep tours. The ship, Princess Line, "Tahitian Princess" was a wee thing. Formerly the Renaissance R4, built in 1999. Small, only carried 670 passengers, but had all conveniences except for smokers. Smoking was only allowed in staterooms, on one outside deck in one area, by the pool bar, and in the very very small casino and casino bar which had but 9 stools. When I say the casino was small believe me; it is smaller than our family room, and the casino bar was no larger than the nautical bar in our "party room"! Drinks onboard were very reasonable at $ 3.65 for top shelf liquors. My only disappointment was that I expected the ship, permanently assigned in Tahiti, to have the decor of the islands. This was at best old English, European, with dark cherry woods, rugs and so forth. Not one thing was tropical other than the large table bouquet of flowers I brought onboard. Boarding was a breeze. Took no more than 5 minutes. Fast, efficient and not at all crowded, under a large tent on the dock. Throughout the 10 day cruise I loved that the onboard photographers took only a few shots of people, unlike other ships where they reach the point of being a nuisance. Temperature ranged between 77-84 degrees. Our suite was perfect! About 350 sq. ft., with cherry wood cabinets, closets, ample drawer space, large make-up area for my Lady, nice sized balcony over the sea, light blue & white carpeting, great air conditioning & TV, built-in refrigerator, large bath with both shower & tub. Antonio our stateroom steward spoke fluent English and was excellent! In fact, everything was excellent except that one would freeze from the air conditioning in the one level small show lounge; great service throughout the cruise; excellent dining & dining room wait staff; maitre'D Gianluiggi, also fluent in English, and his assistant Gino, were excellent! The buffet area was also well attended with tasty foods. A mixed nationality crew with Italian officers. Everyone went out of their way to accommodate every passenger. Entertainment was also very enjoyable; Las Vegas style shows with cast of 6 dancers and 2 vocalists on such a small floor level stage. Also native dancers at one port. Loved them! Absolutely no complaints about the ship and its crew. We also dined in the onboard Sterling Steak House and Sabbatini's where cover charges were $ 40 and $ 30 a couple, plus gratuity. While both were excellent the quality was actually no better than the main dining room which was excellent. One highlight we'll not forget was the Champagne breakfast they offered in your room, on the balcony for just $25. Four trays of various foods; near a full pound of the best Nova Scotia lox we have ever eaten; fresh crab cakes & crab quiche (all lump crab meat & no fillers), french pastries, rolls, tropical fruits, and much more, plus a split of chilled Moet Chandom White Star........ enough for 4 hungry adults! Leaving the ship was also a pleasure. We got off when we wanted to as we were going back to the Beachcomber Resort after our return from the cruise to spend another 2 days in a Motu over the sea! We had spent a week there in a Motu over-the-sea bungalow prior to the cruise and it was magnificent! Princess uses a nice approach with this ship for the convenience of passengers. People boarded on a Friday from noon time till whenever. Ship does not sail until the next day at 5pm. Hence people use the ship for their meals and to sleep, which allows them to visit Papeete. You get on and off the ship whenever you like while in port. With return of the ship it docked on a Sunday, however, one did not have to leave the ship until late Monday. Rooms had to be vacated by 11 am Monday to allow for cleaning for the next cruise. People however could stay on the ship; use the ship, have meals and such while waiting for their flights home (nearly all fly out at night up until midnight). They could also purchase drinks and such for cash while onboard waiting. Our 10 day cruise took us on a 1600 mile journey to the backends of the earth and was truly enjoyable as it was and is a cruise for adults. We never had any problem or delays at the Papeete Airport; in and out in a breeze. We flew Air Tahiti Nui out of Los Angeles connecting from Atlanta. Long flight but well worth it (only a 6 hour time difference from the East Coast of the USA as it is Daylight savings time in Atlanta). Service aboard the 8 1/2 hour Air Tahiti flight was fine; food was OK, drinks plentiful and no charge; private TV for every passenger; various movies in flight, games and more. Non smokers please understand that Tahiti caters to many Europeans and many do smoke; hence the airport is a smoking area and it is not air conditioned. Ventilation is OK though. The same applied to our resort where smoking was permitted in dining rooms and elsewhere. Remember, YOU are the stranger. Hotel pools and beaches allow topless and some ladies also go nude; you'll also note that the local phone book has a nude polynesian lady on the cover along with a Hertz ad. It's no place for a prude. Best of all there is none of the constant haggling like you get from the natives in the Caribbean. It's the exact opposite here on the islands. The people appreciate you stopping to look and to just say hello! Also, tipping is not the custom on the islands.

JHL's Full Rating Summary
Public Rooms
Shore Excursions
Sign Up for Price Drop Alerts
Get tomorrow's 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

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Previous ReviewNext Review
3 Reviews Written
1 Helpful Votes
Never Miss a Deal!
Subscribe and Save
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

More Ocean Princess Reviews

Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.