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My wife have always wanted to visit Alaska by a cruise ship. So it was between Princess and Holland America as they offered the most itineraries with Glacier Bay. Holland America's Eurodam had a very similar itinerary as our Ruby Princess and almost chose that over the Ruby. The service aboard Ruby was very good. Room steward was excellent. Our mini-suite cabin was more than spacious for 2 passengers. We had assigned seating for the 5:30 PM dinner in DaVinci and the food and service was good. We also tried Crab Shack and Share. The food was probably a little better than DaVinci but the service and roominess was much much better. DaVinci dining room is a little crammed with a lot of tables. The extra pay restaurants offer much more room which seems like a real luxury when on a cruise ship. The buffet food in the Horizon restaurant was OK but the problem there is over crowding. It was very hard to find a table and when you did, you almost always had to hunt for silverware because they were not replenished quickly enough. I believe the staff there worked very hard. Perhaps Princess just does not have enough personnel in the buffet restaurant during peak hours. Anyway, by second day, we started to use DaVinci for breakfast also. If you go there when the restaurant opens up, you can get seated right away. Or, if you don't mind seating with fellow passengers, you can get seated right away also. This ended up being much more fun anyway because after the first, "Where are you from?" you never have a dull meal. You'd be amazed how many interesting people you meet from all over the world. On our cruise, we met a lot of interesting Australians who were travelling all the way back to Sydney on the Ruby as this was her last Alaska trip of the season and will be travelling to Australia for 6 months. I believe the Cruise Director had a very good programming for the entire cruise. We did some Zumba for the first time in our lives, sat through some lectures on Alaska, watched some live shows and watched movie on the top deck. All was pretty good and the vibe of the ship makes you relax. When I was tired, it was awesome to be able to just retire to your room to take a nap or whatever. One thing that disappointed me during the cruise was the myriad of tired and worn furniture I saw. I thought the Ruby crew could have done better with ship appearance. Perhaps the corporate office reduced the budget for ship upkeep? The stops on this trip was great. We did a Princess sponsored excursion at each port except Victoria. Embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth. Pro tip: Arrive for embarkation at the Seattle port after 2 PM. The lines are very short by then and you get get on board in less than 30 minutes.

Great soft product, mediocre hard product

Ruby Princess Cruise Review by alaskahappy

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
My wife have always wanted to visit Alaska by a cruise ship. So it was between Princess and Holland America as they offered the most itineraries with Glacier Bay. Holland America's Eurodam had a very similar itinerary as our Ruby Princess and almost chose that over the Ruby. The service aboard Ruby was very good. Room steward was excellent. Our mini-suite cabin was more than spacious for 2 passengers. We had assigned seating for the 5:30 PM dinner in DaVinci and the food and service was good. We also tried Crab Shack and Share. The food was probably a little better than DaVinci but the service and roominess was much much better. DaVinci dining room is a little crammed with a lot of tables. The extra pay restaurants offer much more room which seems like a real luxury when on a cruise ship. The buffet food in the Horizon restaurant was OK but the problem there is over crowding. It was very hard to find a table and when you did, you almost always had to hunt for silverware because they were not replenished quickly enough. I believe the staff there worked very hard. Perhaps Princess just does not have enough personnel in the buffet restaurant during peak hours. Anyway, by second day, we started to use DaVinci for breakfast also. If you go there when the restaurant opens up, you can get seated right away. Or, if you don't mind seating with fellow passengers, you can get seated right away also. This ended up being much more fun anyway because after the first, "Where are you from?" you never have a dull meal. You'd be amazed how many interesting people you meet from all over the world. On our cruise, we met a lot of interesting Australians who were travelling all the way back to Sydney on the Ruby as this was her last Alaska trip of the season and will be travelling to Australia for 6 months.

I believe the Cruise Director had a very good programming for the entire cruise. We did some Zumba for the first time in our lives, sat through some lectures on Alaska, watched some live shows and watched movie on the top deck. All was pretty good and the vibe of the ship makes you relax. When I was tired, it was awesome to be able to just retire to your room to take a nap or whatever.

One thing that disappointed me during the cruise was the myriad of tired and worn furniture I saw. I thought the Ruby crew could have done better with ship appearance. Perhaps the corporate office reduced the budget for ship upkeep?

The stops on this trip was great. We did a Princess sponsored excursion at each port except Victoria.

Embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth. Pro tip: Arrive for embarkation at the Seattle port after 2 PM. The lines are very short by then and you get get on board in less than 30 minutes.
alaskahappy’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin ME D214
Very roomy cabin. The two small television that sits on top on the furniture in the middle of the room has been replaced in our cabin with two large TV's (40 or 42") that was affixed to the walls. This is a huge improvement. The mini-suite comes with a bathtub and a sofa bed. Thermostat worked very well. Lots of space to put your clothes away including a large closet. It seemed that the rooms were well sound proofed. Room attendant was excellent. We almost never saw him except on the first day when he introduced himself. But the room was updated twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. He seemed to keep track of when we left the room to scoop in to do his thing.
Dolphin Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews