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We decided to give princess another try after having a hiatus in which we switched to Celebrity specifically solstice class. We booked an inside cabin but were pleasantly surprised when three days before the cruise we were offered a balcony for just $99 per person. We could not resist! We live in Charleston, SC so we decided to drive to Ft. Lauderdale. We stopped at exit 1 in Georgia to fuel up before entering Florida. This is a great exit to gas up off I-95 since the gas is cheap and it is an easy on and off (no divided highways or traffic lights). Also the Wendy’s at the Hess station there is pretty good. If you need to gas up in Florida stop at exit 147 Vera beach for the cheapest gas on all of I-95. We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn Airport and Cruise in Dania Beach. We booked the park and cruise package. We have stayed here a number of times and the service and amenities are top notch! They have a high attention to detail. Offer a cooked to order breakfast, parking for your cruise, and free shuttle to and from the port. Ordered pizza from Sal’s Italian restaurant right across the street. They will deliver small pizzas. We got their specialty, the Brooklyn’s favorite, which is chicken, sausage, meatballs, onion and feta cheese. OMG delicious and the perfect amount for my wife and I. If you order and let them know the hotel you are staying at they give you a 15% discount. My $15 pizza was only $13. Great deal! Now the reason I am calling this the uncruise is we are changing up the ground rules. Rule number one, the ship is our destination, no leaving the ship (except to buy booze). Rule number two, no shows, it's stateroon TV movies for us. Rule number three, no dining room, only the Horizon court and other free venues (with one stop at the Crown Grill). Just sun, food and fun. Embarkation: We booked a shuttle for 11:30 and ended up on a giant bus with lots of other people. There were 8 ships in port so it was very crowded. We arrived at our gate at 12:30 and there was a very long line to get in. Now this is important! If you are a platinum or better in the Princess club you can bypass the long line and go through the short line on the right. Check in was quick. There were long lines for people wanting to bring alcohol on board. If you bring your own wine expect a wait. Cabin: I won't go into great detail about the cabin layout. There are numerous posts about this as well as videos. I will try to hit on a few details. The stateroom TV is awesome. Great picture and about every new to dvd release available. The movies function like a dvr so you can pick up where you left off. Movies on demand: Action: Ant Man, Avengers age of Ultron, Blackhat, Furious 7, Fury, Hitman Agent 47, Jurassic world, Kingsman, Mad Max, Maze runner scorch trials, Mission Impossible rouge nation, Run all night, Terminator Genisys, The Equalizer, The Man from Uncle Comedy: A Million ways tro die in the west, Burnt, Entourage, Focus, Hot pursuit, Magic Mike XXL, Mistress America, Our brand is Crisis, Pitch perfect 2, Pride, Ricki and the Flash, Rock the Kasbah, Spy, St Vincent, Ted 2, The hundred foot journey, The intern, The second best Marigold hotel, This is where I leave, Trainwreck, Unfinished business, What If Drama: A little Chaos , A Royal Night out, A Walk in the Woods, Black Mass, By the Sea, Carol, Creed, Ex Machina, Far from the Madding crowd, Lambert & Stamp, Legend, Love and Mercy, March 2015, Me Earl and the dying girl, Mr Holmes, Pawn sacrifice, Southpaw, Steve Jobs, The 33, The Danish girl, The fault in our stars, Trumbo, Truth, Unbroken, Woman in gold. Family: Alexander the and very bad day, Annie, Big hero 6, Frozen, Goosebumps, Guardians of the Galaxy, Home, How to train your dragon two, Night at the Museum (newest one), Paddington, Pan, Song of the Sea, Strange magic, The good dinosaur, The lego movie. The Tv has music but you can’t choose the songs. The live tv is news and sports mostly. One note, the TV is hard mounted to the wall with no outlets nearby and no access to a setup menu so there is no way to hook up your own devices. Also for some odd reason there is no way to access your stateroom account from the tv. You either have to use their internet or go to the purser's desk. There is a ATM device near the purser's that scans your key card and gives you a total. The balcony is small but suitable and gets nice breezes and sun. You have to put a card into a slot by the door to work the lights but any card works. I used on of the cards provided with the ship's map and it worked all week. Internet: The internet access is awesome. Being platinum we received 2 1/2 hours of internet time per person. The internet was pretty quick even at sea and provided a lot of fun for blogging. It also defaults to a webpage that doesn't use your minutes and gives you stateroom account info, the weather and events going on the ship. MUTS: I must say the picture and sound quality were a huge improvement over the older ships. During sea days they ran videos of nature and undersea creatures with popular music piped in. My DW and I have really missed poolside music on other cruises. On port days they have rock concerts at different times featuring anything from Paul McCartney to Pink. The movies on this cruise were Spectre, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Joy, and the Martian. Liquor: Super expensive on this ship. Two Mohitos cost us over $20. Food (the best part): Crown grill is always a favorite. Book early before they book up. You need to go directly to the restaurant since they don't answer the phone. We started with the scallop appetizer followed by the black and blue soup. The main was a 14oz ribeye, one of the best we have ever ate with a loaded baked potato featuring sour cream, chives and bacon. We opted out of dessert because we were too full (do not eat the bread!). Horizon court was phenomenal! The food quality there was top notch. When you sit down you can't count off ten seconds before a waiter asks for your drink order and a finished plate is removed just after you take that last bite. It is a well oiled machine. Monday was Italian night. First off avoid the calzones they were all dough and air. The Italian sausage in tomato basic was fantastic! Also good was the Sicilian Acancini rice balls with meat ragu. The meat ravioli was very rich and tasty as well.The bow tie pasta alfredo was a win. The true hit was the Frutti di mare (fruits of the sea) which was a spicy sauce with pasta and shrimp, mussels and scallops. Yum. When we finished we went to the assorted cheese section and loaded up on various cheeses to enjoy in our stateroom later. The cheese selection is over the top! Tuesday was formal night in the dining room so the court decided to spruce up with fancy table cloths and goblets for water. They had many delicious treats but out standout favorites were the crusted beef tenderloin, fried shrimp and fried onion rings. Both shrimp and onion rings were just the right crispy and the tenderloin juicy and perfectly cooked. Wednesday was Bavarian night which I had been looking forward to. They served many sausages...Debreziner, Weisswurst, Bratwurst, Kielbasa, and weiners. I topped mine with mustard and kraut. Good kraut choices too. They had Red Cabbage, Spicy sauerkraut, classic sauerkraut, and sauerkraut with bacon. Of course it wouldn’t be Bavarian night without schnitzel of which they had both pork and turkey. The winner of the evening was the warm potato salad drizzled in a warm mustard based sauce. It was yummy. There were also plenty of pretzels to enjoy! Thursday was tex-mex night. They had Carne Guisada, Grilled Texas shrimp, Quesadillas, chicken enchiladas, chimichangas, and stuffed jalapeno poppers. The poppers were my favorite and were loaded with cheese. My DW loved the chimichangas. Friday was formal night. We enjoyed beef wellington which was super tender, duchess potatoes, a spicy shrimp in tomato sauce and a grilled minute steak cooked to perfection. I have been very impressed with the quality of shrimp here which is high praise being I am from South Carolina which is known for it’s shrimp. Saturday morning was the chocolate buffet. I felt like one of the kids in Willy Wonka. The was a chocolate fountain with many items for dipping. I had the french toast stuffed with Nutella with was wonderful to say the least. There was chocolate bread and butter pudding, chocolate oatmeal, peanut butter cookies covered in chocolate, oatmeal cookies covered in chocolate, chocolate donuts, a variety of chocolate puddings and deserts, chocolate pancakes, chocolate waffles, chocolate croissant, chocolate and hazelnut swirled pastry, chocolate muffins, and chocolate banana bread...whew! My favorite was of course the nutella french toast which was two peices of thick french toast with a generous helping of nutella and thinly sliced strawberries in between. Sugar Rush!!! Lunch was the BBQ buffet. There was Cheesy potatoes au gratin (super delicious), baked macaroni and cheese, stuffed bell peppers, baked beans, corn on the cob, baked potato with all the fixings (sour cream, chives, bacon), they had four kinds of french fries which included plain, garlic butter, spicy cajun, and chili (the spice not actual chili). There was BBQ salmon, bbq pork belly (kind of chewy but ok), Memphis pork ribs (which were very meaty and spiced a little more than the ribs you get at the Trident grill), honey glazed wings, and a rich bourbon brisket. At the end they had a carving station with pork belly, chicken, brisket and roast duck. Dinner was the American buffet which had a really good prime rib and baked Mac and cheese. Alfredo's: Amazing pizza and pasta are found here. We had four of the pizzas. The bacon, potato and brie was a stand out favorite. The regal had wonderfully sliced ham. The Tartina had yummy seafood on it and the Chicken BBQ which had red onion, corn, cilantro, cherry tomatoes and smoked mozzarella. It was very good. The calzone tasted good but went a little flat after you cut into it. The true slice of heaven was the veal pasta. It was an explosion of bubbling cheese. We loved it so much we had it four times. This is a must get!! Prego's : Had really yummy NY style pizza. Many different specials and some that were identical to Alfredo's special pizza of the day. International cafe: We tried the steak and mushroom pie and it was quite good. When we return to this ship I want to try more of the meat pies. Main Dining: We only went on Friday which was lobster night. We went at 5pm to get in quick. We were asked if we wanted to share which I thought was odd. We asked for a table for two but got seated at one right next to another couple. Now I am not a lobster snob. I know it is not going to be Maine quality lobster. It is Caribbean lobster which is chewier and not as tasty and I expected this. Suffice it to say it was terrible, They had cooked it in so much salt that was all you could taste. We were going to get two portions but we opted out and instead fled to the Horizon court. Trident grill: Hamburgers were a bit dry but the fries were awesome. The wife got a plate of fries one day and got nacho cheese from the taco bar and bacon from the salad bar. Yummy bacon cheese fries. The ribs here at night are quite meaty and good but the "jumbo" wings were a bit of a joke. They were tiny. Music: DJ Q was very good and takes requests. The band Rhapsody was downright terrible and sang off key. They string quartet in the Atrium was excellent. Bars: We got a chocolate mint martini from Crooners which was very good and well worth the $8. The wheelhouse bar had the candybartini which was tasty but not really worth the $12. The Norman Love drinks are a joke. We tried to get the bourbon and bacon one and the waiter said they never had the bacon and that they were removing it from the menu. That being said... Norman Love: Total ripoff. Deserts are $3 a piece and very small. They conveniently never had the ingredients for the drinks. There is one free offering a night in the Pastry but with so many other good choices I was not impressed. Jogging tracking was nice and away from the crowd. Hot tubs were very windy at night and not very hot but that could have been due to the weather when we cruised. Debarkation: Was the usual cattle line. We self debarked at 6am and we got off fairly quick. Get there at least thirty minutes early. All in all we loved this cruise and would cruise the regal again either for a cruise or uncruise. Final note, always enjoy the sunrises and sunsets.

A Buffet to Die For!

Regal Princess Cruise Review by wdblake

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We decided to give princess another try after having a hiatus in which we switched to Celebrity specifically solstice class. We booked an inside cabin but were pleasantly surprised when three days before the cruise we were offered a balcony for just $99 per person. We could not resist! We live in Charleston, SC so we decided to drive to Ft. Lauderdale. We stopped at exit 1 in Georgia to fuel up before entering Florida. This is a great exit to gas up off I-95 since the gas is cheap and it is an easy on and off (no divided highways or traffic lights). Also the Wendy’s at the Hess station there is pretty good. If you need to gas up in Florida stop at exit 147 Vera beach for the cheapest gas on all of I-95.

We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn Airport and Cruise in Dania Beach. We booked the park and cruise package.

We have stayed here a number of times and the service and amenities are top notch! They have a high attention to detail. Offer a cooked to order breakfast, parking for your cruise, and free shuttle to and from the port.

Ordered pizza from Sal’s Italian restaurant right across the street. They will deliver small pizzas. We got their specialty, the Brooklyn’s favorite, which is chicken, sausage, meatballs, onion and feta cheese. OMG delicious and the perfect amount for my wife and I. If you order and let them know the hotel you are staying at they give you a 15% discount. My $15 pizza was only $13. Great deal!

Now the reason I am calling this the uncruise is we are changing up the ground rules.

Rule number one, the ship is our destination, no leaving the ship (except to buy booze).

Rule number two, no shows, it's stateroon TV movies for us.

Rule number three, no dining room, only the Horizon court and other free venues (with one stop at the Crown Grill).

Just sun, food and fun.

Embarkation:

We booked a shuttle for 11:30 and ended up on a giant bus with lots of other people. There were 8 ships in port so it was very crowded. We arrived at our gate at 12:30 and there was a very long line to get in. Now this is important! If you are a platinum or better in the Princess club you can bypass the long line and go through the short line on the right. Check in was quick. There were long lines for people wanting to bring alcohol on board. If you bring your own wine expect a wait.

Cabin:

I won't go into great detail about the cabin layout. There are numerous posts about this as well as videos. I will try to hit on a few details. The stateroom TV is awesome. Great picture and about every new to dvd release available. The movies function like a dvr so you can pick up where you left off.

Movies on demand:

Action: Ant Man, Avengers age of Ultron, Blackhat, Furious 7, Fury, Hitman Agent 47, Jurassic world, Kingsman, Mad Max, Maze runner scorch trials, Mission Impossible rouge nation, Run all night, Terminator Genisys, The Equalizer, The Man from Uncle

Comedy: A Million ways tro die in the west, Burnt, Entourage, Focus, Hot pursuit, Magic Mike XXL, Mistress America, Our brand is Crisis, Pitch perfect 2, Pride, Ricki and the Flash, Rock the Kasbah, Spy, St Vincent, Ted 2, The hundred foot journey, The intern, The second best Marigold hotel, This is where I leave, Trainwreck, Unfinished business, What If

Drama: A little Chaos , A Royal Night out, A Walk in the Woods, Black Mass, By the Sea,

Carol, Creed, Ex Machina, Far from the Madding crowd, Lambert & Stamp, Legend, Love and Mercy, March 2015, Me Earl and the dying girl, Mr Holmes, Pawn sacrifice, Southpaw, Steve Jobs, The 33, The Danish girl, The fault in our stars, Trumbo, Truth, Unbroken, Woman in gold.

Family: Alexander the and very bad day, Annie, Big hero 6, Frozen, Goosebumps, Guardians of the Galaxy, Home, How to train your dragon two, Night at the Museum (newest one), Paddington, Pan, Song of the Sea, Strange magic, The good dinosaur, The lego movie.

The Tv has music but you can’t choose the songs. The live tv is news and sports mostly. One note, the TV is hard mounted to the wall with no outlets nearby and no access to a setup menu so there is no way to hook up your own devices.

Also for some odd reason there is no way to access your stateroom account from the tv. You either have to use their internet or go to the purser's desk. There is a ATM device near the purser's that scans your key card and gives you a total.

The balcony is small but suitable and gets nice breezes and sun. You have to put a card into a slot by the door to work the lights but any card works. I used on of the cards provided with the ship's map and it worked all week.

Internet:

The internet access is awesome. Being platinum we received 2 1/2 hours of internet time per person. The internet was pretty quick even at sea and provided a lot of fun for blogging. It also defaults to a webpage that doesn't use your minutes and gives you stateroom account info, the weather and events going on the ship.

MUTS:

I must say the picture and sound quality were a huge improvement over the older ships. During sea days they ran videos of nature and undersea creatures with popular music piped in. My DW and I have really missed poolside music on other cruises. On port days they have rock concerts at different times featuring anything from Paul McCartney to Pink. The movies on this cruise were Spectre, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Joy, and the Martian.

Liquor:

Super expensive on this ship. Two Mohitos cost us over $20.

Food (the best part):

Crown grill is always a favorite. Book early before they book up. You need to go directly to the restaurant since they don't answer the phone. We started with the scallop appetizer followed by the black and blue soup. The main was a 14oz ribeye, one of the best we have ever ate with a loaded baked potato featuring sour cream, chives and bacon. We opted out of dessert because we were too full (do not eat the bread!).

Horizon court was phenomenal! The food quality there was top notch. When you sit down you can't count off ten seconds before a waiter asks for your drink order and a finished plate is removed just after you take that last bite. It is a well oiled machine.

Monday was Italian night. First off avoid the calzones they were all dough and air. The Italian sausage in tomato basic was fantastic! Also good was the Sicilian Acancini rice balls with meat ragu. The meat ravioli was very rich and tasty as well.The bow tie pasta alfredo was a win. The true hit was the Frutti di mare (fruits of the sea) which was a spicy sauce with pasta and shrimp, mussels and scallops. Yum.

When we finished we went to the assorted cheese section and loaded up on various cheeses to enjoy in our stateroom later. The cheese selection is over the top!

Tuesday was formal night in the dining room so the court decided to spruce up with fancy table cloths and goblets for water. They had many delicious treats but out standout favorites were the crusted beef tenderloin, fried shrimp and fried onion rings. Both shrimp and onion rings were just the right crispy and the tenderloin juicy and perfectly cooked.

Wednesday was Bavarian night which I had been looking forward to.

They served many sausages...Debreziner, Weisswurst, Bratwurst, Kielbasa, and weiners. I topped mine with mustard and kraut. Good kraut choices too. They had Red Cabbage, Spicy sauerkraut, classic sauerkraut, and sauerkraut with bacon. Of course it wouldn’t be Bavarian night without schnitzel of which they had both pork and turkey. The winner of the evening was the warm potato salad drizzled in a warm mustard based sauce. It was yummy. There were also plenty of pretzels to enjoy!

Thursday was tex-mex night. They had Carne Guisada, Grilled Texas shrimp, Quesadillas, chicken enchiladas, chimichangas, and stuffed jalapeno poppers. The poppers were my favorite and were loaded with cheese. My DW loved the chimichangas.

Friday was formal night. We enjoyed beef wellington which was super tender, duchess potatoes, a spicy shrimp in tomato sauce and a grilled minute steak cooked to perfection. I have been very impressed with the quality of shrimp here which is high praise being I am from South Carolina which is known for it’s shrimp.

Saturday morning was the chocolate buffet. I felt like one of the kids in Willy Wonka. The was a chocolate fountain with many items for dipping. I had the french toast stuffed with Nutella with was wonderful to say the least. There was chocolate bread and butter pudding, chocolate oatmeal, peanut butter cookies covered in chocolate, oatmeal cookies covered in chocolate, chocolate donuts, a variety of chocolate puddings and deserts, chocolate pancakes, chocolate waffles, chocolate croissant, chocolate and hazelnut swirled pastry, chocolate muffins, and chocolate banana bread...whew! My favorite was of course the nutella french toast which was two peices of thick french toast with a generous helping of nutella and thinly sliced strawberries in between. Sugar Rush!!!

Lunch was the BBQ buffet. There was Cheesy potatoes au gratin (super delicious), baked macaroni and cheese, stuffed bell peppers, baked beans, corn on the cob, baked potato with all the fixings (sour cream, chives, bacon), they had four kinds of french fries which included plain, garlic butter, spicy cajun, and chili (the spice not actual chili). There was BBQ salmon, bbq pork belly (kind of chewy but ok), Memphis pork ribs (which were very meaty and spiced a little more than the ribs you get at the Trident grill), honey glazed wings, and a rich bourbon brisket. At the end they had a carving station with pork belly, chicken, brisket and roast duck.

Dinner was the American buffet which had a really good prime rib and baked Mac and cheese.

Alfredo's:

Amazing pizza and pasta are found here. We had four of the pizzas. The bacon, potato and brie was a stand out favorite. The regal had wonderfully sliced ham. The Tartina had yummy seafood on it and the Chicken BBQ which had red onion, corn, cilantro, cherry tomatoes and smoked mozzarella. It was very good. The calzone tasted good but went a little flat after you cut into it. The true slice of heaven was the veal pasta. It was an explosion of bubbling cheese. We loved it so much we had it four times. This is a must get!!

Prego's :

Had really yummy NY style pizza. Many different specials and some that were identical to Alfredo's special pizza of the day.

International cafe:

We tried the steak and mushroom pie and it was quite good. When we return to this ship I want to try more of the meat pies.

Main Dining:

We only went on Friday which was lobster night. We went at 5pm to get in quick. We were asked if we wanted to share which I thought was odd. We asked for a table for two but got seated at one right next to another couple. Now I am not a lobster snob. I know it is not going to be Maine quality lobster. It is Caribbean lobster which is chewier and not as tasty and I expected this. Suffice it to say it was terrible, They had cooked it in so much salt that was all you could taste. We were going to get two portions but we opted out and instead fled to the Horizon court.

Trident grill:

Hamburgers were a bit dry but the fries were awesome. The wife got a plate of fries one day and got nacho cheese from the taco bar and bacon from the salad bar. Yummy bacon cheese fries. The ribs here at night are quite meaty and good but the "jumbo" wings were a bit of a joke. They were tiny.

Music:

DJ Q was very good and takes requests. The band Rhapsody was downright terrible and sang off key. They string quartet in the Atrium was excellent.

Bars:

We got a chocolate mint martini from Crooners which was very good and well worth the $8. The wheelhouse bar had the candybartini which was tasty but not really worth the $12. The Norman Love drinks are a joke. We tried to get the bourbon and bacon one and the waiter said they never had the bacon and that they were removing it from the menu.

That being said...

Norman Love:

Total ripoff. Deserts are $3 a piece and very small. They conveniently never had the ingredients for the drinks. There is one free offering a night in the Pastry but with so many other good choices I was not impressed.

Jogging tracking was nice and away from the crowd. Hot tubs were very windy at night and not very hot but that could have been due to the weather when we cruised.

Debarkation:

Was the usual cattle line. We self debarked at 6am and we got off fairly quick. Get there at least thirty minutes early.

All in all we loved this cruise and would cruise the regal again either for a cruise or uncruise. Final note, always enjoy the sunrises and sunsets.
wdblake’s Full Rating Summary
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