Ruby Princess Cruise Review by MontanaMike65
- Sail Date: February 2018
- Destination: Mexican Riviera
- Cabin Type: Balcony
I'm happy to say we had a fantastic vacation and I'm a bit puzzled by some of the negative reviews. This is now my favorite Princess ship and crew. Both were outstanding.
Embarkation was a breeze. Very well organized, fast process. We've had some horrible embarkation experiences, most notably NCL, so it's nice to see it done well.
The ship, while older, is well-maintained by the crew and is still in fine shape. I like this class of ship, with the full wrap-around Promenade deck, 5 pools, Skywalker's nightclub above the stern, and other nice features. I especially like the aft, adults-only pool. It seems like few passengers know about this place, as it never seems overly crowded, and sometimes has few or no people.
We were in a balcony stateroom (R723 - BE). Everything worked. Gerry, our room steward, was great. I like this location because we're only steps away from the aft pool and one deck below Lido, where lots of stuff is located. Being extreme aft, we did not experience any noise from Lido deck.
The crew were great. The captain made informative announcements each day at noon. The cruise director, PJ, was the best we've seen. Such a nice, energetic, funny guy. He even came to our veterans gathering and spent quite a lot of time with us, expressing genuine appreciation for our service. I don't think I had a single bad encounter with any crew members. This is unusual, as there is usually someone having a bad day or something. Everyone seemed cheerful and happy to be there, even though I know that is not always the case. Let's be real; these people sign-on for 6 months of grueling work and it's hard to always be 'up' for the passengers.
Food ranged from good to outstanding. We never had a bad experience. We found the buffet to be pretty good, which isn't always the case. I had chicken cacciatore in Da Vinci DR for lunch on embarkation day and it was fantastic. I do see what some have said about the pizza served by the pool. It wasn't as good as I remember from past cruises. I wonder if Princess has changed the recipe...
We had a great shore excursion at Las Caletas in Puerto Vallarta. I highly recommend this one. We paid extra to spend time with the sea lions and stingrays and it was well worth it. On the downside, we wasted our Cabo day on the Cabo San Lucas City Highlights tour. This one spends far too much time on the bus, either driving around or sitting on the side of the road while the guide talks. The glass blowing factory was what we were looking forward to, and the tour only spent 25 minutes there out of many hours.
Princess advertises Cabo as 7:00 AM - 2:00 PM. However, what you don't know is that you must be in line for the tender by 1:00 PM, so it's one hour shorter on an already short port day. Cabo is the best destination of the three, so it's frustrating that the ship stays there such a short time.
Lots of stuff to do on sea days. Pretty much anyone should be able to find something that appeals to their interests. We enjoyed numerous trivia games, shows and other activities.
One thing I really appreciated was not having someone pushing drink packages and other packages constantly. I got asked occasionally and that was fine. I've been on a couple of other cruise lines that really push this stuff to the point of having someone asking me every 15-30 minutes and it gets old fast.
Disembarkation was as easy as embarkation.
Great cruise overall and I would definitely do it again, sans the Cabo bus tour.
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Being extreme aft, we did not experience any noise from above.
It's only a few steps aft to the adults-only pool, Outrigger Bar, and other nice stuff.