Crown Princess - Western Caribbean: Crown Princess Cruise Review by tmitchell82

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Crown Princess - Western Caribbean

Sail Date: November 2009
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
We traveled on this cruise with our daughter (5), and my parents. My parents, and us have all cruised Princess before, but never with kids. We had spent months trying to teach our daughter how to "cruise". More specifically, how to swim, sit through dinners, etc. She was very excited to go, as this was her first trip to the ocean and to another country. Our cruise was from 11/7/09 to 11/14/09. Our itinerary was the Western Caribbean with stops at Grand Cayman, Roatan, Cozumel, & Princess Cay.

We flew down to MIA the night before and stayed at the Embassy Suites near the MIA airport. Nothing special, but close and fit our needs. We had SAS transportation take us to Port Everglades the morning of our cruise. Great service, very timely. Would not hesitate to use them again. Embarkation was a breeze. There was a long line to get in, but since we were Platinum, we did not have to wait in line and were let right in and proceeded to get our cruise cards and board. I think we More boarded in less than 20 minutes from arriving at the pier. Got to hand it to Princess for the Platinum boarding process. Without it, probably would have taken an hour or more.

Once aboard, we went straight to our cabin. We were in a mini-suit on the Dolphin deck. This was our first time in a mini-suite and we found it to be very nice. Plenty of space for the 3 of us. Bathroom was much larger than a balcony cabin that we had been in before. Balcony was uncovered, but it was no big deal to us. Our Cabin steward was Albert and he did a decent job. Made towel animals a few times for my daughter, got our eggcrate, etc. Only down side was that we asked for fresh wine glasses everyday and after a few days, he left a note to call room service to get them. No big deal.

We had anytime dinning and our waiters, John & Jeffery, were outstanding. We went back to the same table every night. They brought our daughter her bowl of barriers and chocolate milk each night without us being asked. Had one problem with the reservation line when we called to get this table, so we spoke with the head waiter and he had us all taken care of the rest of the week. Food was up to par with what we expect for Princess.

Since this was our first time with a kid, we were curious about how well she would do with the kids club and just being on a cruise. She loved the kids club. When we asked her what she liked best she said "swimming and going to the kids club" They always had activities for them to do and kept the kids occupied. We did late night baby-sitting one night. For $5 an hour, you cannot beat that. Our daughter did the kids dinning one night (while we went to the Crown Grill) and she loved it. My wife is a director of a day care and she was very impressed with the staff, policies, and procedures they had in place at the kids club. Would definitely take our daughter back on Princess again. I think Princess gets under rated for their kids programs.

The entertainment was decent. The production shows seem to be the same ones we have seen on other Princess ships. Would be nice if the changed them up a bit. We saw one comedian who was pretty good. Once complaint about the shows in the Explores lounge is that it can be difficult to get a seat, particularly at the earlier shows.

We really enjoyed the cruise and our daughter had a blast. Less

Published 12/10/09

Cabin review: MBD610 Mini-Suite with Balcony

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Port and Shore Excursions

We stopped at Cozumel on a sunny, but windy day. Seas in the port area were pretty heavy and all of the water excursions through the ship were canceled due to safety, which it was easy to see why. My wife, daughter, and mother all had signed up for a private cooking class with Josephina and the absolutely loved it. Took a cab to the location without a problem. They had selected a dish to cook before hand and they were also very accommodating in changing the date since this port was a day later than planned due to Hurricane Ida. It was just the three of them in the class and they went to a local market to buy food and ingredients and back to the kitchen area to cook. All had a great time. Josephina was very good with our 5 year old and allowing her to "help" do various things. Definitely a different type of excursion and they all enjoyed the time.

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We did a private tour to the stingrays and Island Tour through Captain Marvin's. We had pre-booked the tour and when our itinerary changed due to hurricane Ida, they had automatically switch us to the different day which was nice. Tour office was very close. The Stingray tour was very nice. Our daughter loved interacting with the stingrays and the crew did a great job. After the stingray tour was done, we were meet by a lady who gave us the island tour. It was just 3 of us which was really nice. The turtle farm was the highlight for our daughter and with a group of 3, the guide at the turtle farm was great at letting us pick up as many turtles as we wanted, took pictures, etc. Overall very nice day and great tour.

This was our first trip to Roatan. Ship was at the dock in the morning and then did tendering in the afternoon. We were at Coxen Hole as the new Mahogeny Bay terminal had not yet opened. Port area was tinny, lots of people/kids wanting to sell you stuff once you left the secured port area. The big downside for Roatan, was that it was raining most of the day we were there. We had signed up for the Gumbalina Park tour through the ship so our daughter could see the monkeys and we were not going to let some rain stop us. Took a bus to the park and had our tour guide lead us on the tour. There is a Pirate part, which is a little cheesy. We got to see some parrots and they let the parrots sit on your shoulder and such. Very pretty birds. We did sort of rush though that due to the rain. Got to the monkeys which was great, even with the rain. They have several monkeys, on leashes and with handlers that will climb all over you. for a 5 year old it was fantastic. There is also a beach and pool at the park we could have used, but with the rain, we went back. They did not have a set time for you to go back as a group, but said, let us know and we will get a bus for you. Nice if you want to spend some extra time there. Enjoyed Roatan, looked very pretty, rain was a bummer.

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