Emerald Princess Cruise Review by nova cruiser
- Sail Date: March 2009
- Destination: Southern Caribbean
Embarkation was smooth. We were quickly able to get on the ship and familiarize ourselves with the ship's layout prior to the muster drill. The Emerald Princess is a beautiful ship with a number of nice features (e.g., Vines the wine bar, the Sanctuary, and the International Cafe that serves pastries and light sandwiches). The sail away party was fun.
The first two days of the cruise were sea days, which we always enjoy. We get excited reviewing the Princess Patter and identifying the activities that will be available the following day. Our son enjoyed the kids club and other kid activities (i.e., Nintendo sports). O.k., I enjoyed the Wii sports too, particularly when I had the high score for bowling. My wife and I tried and enjoyed a number of the activities. This included the dancing lessons; lectures on the islands; demonstrations in the making of towel animals, martinis, and animals out of fruit; dicey horse racing; movies; trivia; and art auctions. We found the cruise director and staff to be energetic and personable, the best of any of our cruises. We also took advantage of the books and games in the library.
With respect to the shows, we enjoyed the juggler, comedians, and shows in the Princess lounge. This was a change for us as we had not watched many of the shows on our previous cruises. I enjoyed watching the final four on MUTS (giant movie screen near one of the pools.) Nothing could be finer than watching your team win the national championship while you are enjoying a beautiful evening under the stars with crew bringing popcorn and pizza to you. My wife enjoyed the movies that were shown on the ship.
We found the itinerary to be an excellent one. Aruba was the first island on the itinerary. We did an ocean snorkel through Princess that we thoroughly enjoyed. On the excursion, we went to two different locations, one of which was a ship wreck from WW II. The ship next sailed to Bonaire where we did a shore snorkel. The coral and fish were awesome. We next went to Grenada. We were excited that the Sea Princess was also in port, as this had been the first ship my wife and I had sailed on. We booked a trip through Princess to a spice garden and rum distillery and were pleasantly surprised. The next day found us in Dominica where we did the river tubing. We had a blast and the tour operators did an excellent job keeping folks safe. On St. Thomas, we decided not to plan anything in particular and to relax. We ended up taking the tram up to Paradise Point where we had a beautiful view of the island. We also did a little shopping. After another great day at sea, the last day of the cruise was spent on the private island. It was a little cool, but we still found a way to enjoy ourselves.
In general, the food was good. We had traditional dining, second seating. We are always apprehensive as to our table assignment and the waiters that we will have for the entirety of the cruise. We were pleased with how things worked out on both counts. Our family was assigned to a table of wonderful Canadians. It was a pleasure going to dinner every night and to discuss what folks had done during the day. Also, it is always a pleasure when you spend time with people who are truly out to enjoy themselves and do not get caught up on things to complain about. Our waiters Ross and Mark did an excellent job, providing good recommendations and demonstrating a sense of humor. The food in the dining room was great. I enjoyed the steaks and lobster while my wife enjoyed a number of shrimp dishes. We enjoyed having breakfast in the Horizon court as there were always things we enjoyed such as French toast, Eggs Benedict, and Fresh Fruit. We enjoyed our two lunches in the dining room: my wife particularly enjoyed the vegetarian option (stuffed pepper). We had an awesome lunch of fish and chips at the Wheelhouse Bar one day and always enjoyed the burgers and pizza by the pool. I think our son could have gotten by on just burgers and cookies. For the first time, we tried one of the specialty restaurants (Sabatini's) and were not disappointed. The eight appetizers that came with the meal were fantastic, as were the main courses and desserts.
Disembarkation went quickly and efficiently. We have already begun to discuss where to take our next cruise, probably Hawaii or the Panama Canal.
In summary, it was a great cruise in which the food was good, the crew was friendly, the ship activities were enjoyable; and the islands were amazing. Sure there are a few things that Princess could improve on. However, we found it easy to enjoy ourselves and can't wait to sail again.
250,000+ people have entered their email