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Royal Princess Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
1,684 Reviews

First Time Cruise!

Royal Princess Cruise Review by Jennifer Tuthill

9 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Feb 2016
  • Destination: the Western Caribbean

This was our very first cruise ever; friends and family could not believe we were really taking a cruise as we do not fit your typical cruise profile, although we are retired. We had no preconceived ideas about what to expect, and I thought it might be like spending seven days trapped in an enormous floating apartment building. We were more than pleased, actually thrilled, with all aspects of our trip. Embarkation was a breeze, as we were traveling with platinum members who had special access to walk on embarkation process. We found our interior cabin plenty big, with lots of storage space, drawers, shelves, and a perfectly acceptable bathroom. Our room steward was on top of everything and I am convinced he tidied our room three times a day. The mints on the pillow every night were a nice touch. My only complaint is that nowhere did they inform you that in order to keep the lights on in the cabin, you need to leave your cruise card in the slot whenever you are there. As a result, we spent a few moments in pitch dark trying to figure out what went wrong. It is quite dark in an interior cabin with no light whatsoever.

Every single employee, throughout the cruise, when met in a hallway or anywhere else always greeted us with a polite "good morning" or whatever greeting was appropriate. All staff were extremely courteous and polite whether handing out towels or serving a meal.

The food was top notch, with such a wide cross section of options that there could be no room for complaint. We splurged one night and ate in the Crown grill, and were very pleased with the food, felt it was a bargain considering the meal we got. As a gluten free/lactose intolerant person, my pre registration of dietary needs were noted at every meal by our wait staff, especially when we chose the same dining room for dinner each morning and night. There were no problems finding appropriate food for these dietary restrictions.

We found plenty to do every day, from a morning workout on the track each day to trivia, show presentations, dance classes, the string quartet, and the fabulous piano/comedy musician at the Crooners bar. We also watched a few movies, and attended a comedy routine one night.

I had two sessions at the spa, a facial , and a sea weed massage treatment. Both were excellent, although the pressure to buy very expensive products used by the staff was off putting to me.When they forgot me for one scheduled treatment and left me sitting alone in a waiting area for 45 minutes, I went to the desk in a very poor mood, to put it mildly, and was comped the treatment.

I used the adults only area and pool, and found it wonderful. Towel service is excellent throughout the ship with as many as you want or need offered; pools and hot tubs clean and appealing.

We took excursions at every stop, although one was cancelled on Grand Cayman due to rough surf. NO problem, we simply disembarked and found a local woman with a van tour business offering to take us wherever we wanted. We got to go to the turtle refuge and other spots, narrated by a local anxious to share history and facts with us all for only $20/apiece. Well worth it, and cheaper than the equivalent offered by Princess. The other excursions sponsored by Princess were excellent, staffed by attentive, informed, and engaging staff. On one, we got to climb a Mayan pyramid and visit other Mayan ruins after an incredible lecture on the bus beforehand. We would return to each of the ports again and participate in other excursions!

If you like specialty coffees (lattes etc.) buy the coffee card- it is worth it and if you don't use it up, it is good on future cruises. You can also buy gelatos with this card, and specialty tea.

We plan to return to Princess for another cruise in the future. The sooner the better!

Jennifer Tuthill's Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin interior cabin B523

Plenty of room for a double interior. Comfortable bed, wonderful sheets, lots of storage, nice bathroom with shower. Great service from the room steward, with fresh wine glasses put out on our counter each night.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Princess Cays

We loved swimming in the ocean on this stop. Beautiful beach and waterfront; the barbecue is also great!


Thrill of a lifetime to actually visit, and climb, the pyramid at Coba. Our guide was exceptionally well educated- of Mayan descent, he gave us a ton of information before we reached the site, and on site, filled us in even more regarding interesting facts about the Mayan culture of that time. A great site to visit, and extremely well organized by tour operators.

Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

Not a big plus on my list but I got some great photos of very large iguanas on the trees around the lava formations.

Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

Due to rough surf, our booked excursion was cancelled. We found a private tour operator and visited the sites listed. It was educational, as our guide was a local who was anxious to educate us about the island and the places we visited as well as things we saw along the way.

Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

An exception refuge for this endangered species, well worth visiting the facility.

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Jennifer Tuthill
1 Reviews Written
9 Helpful Votes
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