Cruisaholic - 1st time on Princess: Ruby Princess Cruise Review by galsinger

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Cruisaholic - 1st time on Princess

Sail Date: March 2010
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Our group of eight flew into Ft.Lauderdale the day before we set sail. We booked accomodations on our own at the Ramada Inn -Airport location. This was a "frill-less" hotel but adequate for the one night we stayed. A full breakfast was included in our rate and the is a restaurant on the property for lunch and dinner. Complimentary airport pick up and transportation to the cruiseport was also included.

We arrived at the port at 11 am and were on board and headed for our cabins before noon. Our luggage arrived several hours later. The embarktion process was the best I have ever encountered. Each deck had multiple personnel processing new arrivals. All in all - very efficient and quick. Once on board we drop off our carryons in our cabin and headed to the Lido deck for lunch.

The Lido was a typical buffet for breakfast and lunch. The space here is smaller than other ships I have sailed on with no real direction for the people to follow. At times the area became quite More congested.

Cafe Caribe has a different food theme daily. Serving space is a little bigger in this venue than in the Lido.

Our group chose Anytime dining in the DaVinci Dining room. We had a standing reservation for our entire voyage at 5:45. Our waitstaff was excellent and very pleasant. The food was very good. Having said that, asparagus was served with almost every entree and I would like to see a bigger variety of other vegetables. There was more than ample choices, so it wasn't hard to find something to enjoy each night. One refreshing option was a "homestyle meal" each night. Choices varied from fried chicken, turkey dinner with the trimmings, Texas chili, and beef short ribs, just to name a few. One choice was offered each night. Every night alternative options of ceasar salad, shrimp cocktail, fettucine alfredo, beef medallions, salmon, grilled chicken and a fruit plate. The nightly menu had a vegetarian option, seafood and beef. No reason anyone should go away hungry!!!

The desserts were good - my favorite was the Princess Dream - a small serving of chocolate mousse on a very thin brownie. Very rich and delicious. If you're looking for sugar free, choices are scarce. Only one offering each night. Always available is ice cream with a variety of toppings.

Our group did not visit any of the alternative restaurants, but several folks did have pizza and burgers and said the food was good and the set up was efficient.

Pleanty of ship board activities - trivia games, bingo, afternoon movies...the afternoon movie is usually in the Explorer's Lounge and it is the same as the movie shown the night before at the Movie Under the Stars. This is a unique concept but arrive early for a lounge chair, and be careful of wet lounges from the afternoon swim crowd. Ship's staff will bring you a blanket and popcorn as well as cookies and milk. While this is nice at night, during the daytime what is shown is loud and was not for me.

Our group was up early and out at the Terrace pool by 7:45 on sea days. This is an adult only area so you need to arrive early if you want a lounge chair. You're out of luch if you arrive after 8:15. We secured our chairs and had a cup of coffee before going into have breakfast. We did not dally for fear of losing our chairs. All the pools on the ship are fresh water which was refreshing instead of the usual salt water.

The ship itself is beautiful and well maintained. One thing I did miss was lounge chairs on the Promenade Deck. Chairs were plentiful but I missed being able to stretch out to read a good book or to take in the view.

As for the entertainment - it was met with some mixed reviews from our group. I found the singers adequate but nothing special. The dancers were exceptional. There were the usual comedians and magicians. Nothing really stood out. The first show we saw was unique as it pertained to the scenery and backdrops. This is one area that is hard to evaluate as personal taste differs from individual to individual.

Disembarkation still leaves something to be desired. It was better than other lines I have sailed with, so I guess there is no easy way to disembark 3,000 passengers all looking for luggage in a confined space. Customs was fast and efficient.

The one thing I will say is the Ft. Lauderdale airport is too small for the volume of passengers utilizing this port. Expansion in the terminals is highly desired. It would help to have several restaurants located prior to security to help cut down on the congestion. Less

Published 03/26/10

Cabin review: JJC420

I chose an inside cabin as I spend very little time in it. The size was adequate with a large closet (no doors) and a top shelf that ran the length of the closet space. There was a tall cabinet as well, with extra shelf space as well as a safe. Luggage easily fit under the bed. The bed was comfortable with a small on each side containing two drawers. Each room contained a flat screened TV, a hair dryer and a small refrigerator. My one pet peeve is there is no alarm clock, so I pack a small travel alarm. The one thing I would change is the location of the telephone - it is not next to the bed, but on the vanity. The bathroom was small and compact. Even the shower seemed a bit smaller that what I have encountered on other ships. My cabin was mid-ship and close to the central bank of elevators. My one complaint is with the single parent across the hall who failed to police his child. Several evenings she and her friends were slamming doors or pounding on them yelling for friends to answer the door. Parents...please check on your kids!!!!

Port and Shore Excursions

The majority of our group opted to purchase a shore excursion to the beach. The water was nice, but locals were everywhere selling their wares. We weren't on the beach 10 minutes when we were approached to be rubbed down with aloe (to improve your tan)or to purchase jewelry or coconuts.

The beach was nice with restrooms and a bar/restaurant area.

Read 1191 Antigua Reviews

This is one of our favorite ports. We purchased a shore excursion to go sailing and snorkeling with sea turtles on the Tiami catamaran. Even though the day started with rain, by the time we boarded our catamaran, the rain had stopped. It was overcast, but what a great time we had! The crew was exceptional and knew how to show everyone a good time!!! After swimming with the turtles, out came the rum punch and beer as well as water and soft drinks. If you didn't have a good time it wasn't the crew's fault!!! After snorkeling, we anchored for an hour on a beautiful beach.

We have done this excursion on a previous cruise and wouldn't hesitate to do it again.

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We opted not to take any excursions here. We did a bit of shopping at the port and opted to spend the rest of the day around the pool which most passengers were off exploring.

Read 1320 St. Kitts Reviews

Most of our group decided to hike to a waterfall. The trip was worth the hike but it is a moderate to strenuous walk. You need to be in shape as the surfaces are uneven. The waterfall was beautiful, but bring water shoes if you plan on taking a dip in the pool. The bottom is very rocky and full of pebbles.

I decided to try whale and dolphin watching and was very disappointed. The crew was very quick to tell you sightings were not guaranteed as you are dealing with wild sea animals. We saw 2 or 3 false killers wales, several flying fish and if you happened to be looking in the right direction, one dolphin. Very disappointing.

Read 1134 St. Lucia Reviews

After a day at sea, we anchored in St Thomas. We opted not to take a shore excursion sponsored by the ship but headed out to Coki Beach on our own. This had to be the highlight of our trip. The 20 minute cab trip ran us $18 round trip. Another $5 got us a lounge chair in the sand with the clear, blue water right in front of us. If you love to snorkel, this is "THE" spot. It doesn't get better than this! A coral reef is a short swim from shore, and is teaming with fish and a variety or coral. We even had three 5-6' Tarpons swimming around. Locals will rent snorkeling gear.

There are restrooms and locals are present to sell you beverages and food if desired.

Don't be discourage when you first arrive - the beach is beautiful. Get there early because it is not a huge area.

A note for those who like to snorkel. Bring a can a chez whiz...the fish love it and will come right up to you to eat it!

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Member Since 2010
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