We definitely enjoyed our cruise on the Emerald and we will be returning for the February cruise in the Pacific.
Several of the shore tours were outstanding. I’m especially referring to the tours on Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Ponta Delgada in the Azores. Since we have visited these islands on previous cruises we know there are several excellent tours from which to select. Cartagena and Malaga were also very interesting stops.
The food was good but uneven; however, the Crown Grill continues to provide excellent dinners. Sabatini’s has been replaced by the Curtis Stone six-course meal. For us that is too much food. Two of our trivia teammates tried this new venue and didn’t recommend it to the rest of us. We might try it on our next cruise.
The orchestra on this ship was outstanding. Overall the production shows and the various entertainers were above average. My wife and I enjoyed the various offering. For the life of me I can’t understand why the sound system in the Princess Theater nearly blasts one out their chairs. Tone it down, Princess.
The piano player in Crooner’s Bar, Kory Simon, was outstanding. In addition to a broad range of music offerings, he is excellent interacting with his audience. The Crooner Bar was heavily populated in the evenings.
What continues to disappoint my wife and I Princess’ continued tendency to cut corners. This was our 26th cruise on Princess ships so we have some experience at what some call “nickel and diming” their clients. For example, the coffee card that allowed cruisers to use the card for cups of regular coffee without punching the card is now history. The Pub Lunch is no longer offered. I guess we would prefer charging more for the basic cruise and stop the nickel and diming.
The former Grill is now the Salty Dog Grill Deck 15. It is true that the offerings have been expanded. You can now purchase a special burger for $8 dollars. I tried one and it was horrible!
What teed me most was to discover that our balcony stateroom had only the desk chair. There was no longer a comfortable side chair. I was told that all of the chairs have been removed from our class of balcony staterooms. However, if one checks the Princess website, you will see that photo of our stateroom clearly shows two chairs. Oh yes, if one reads the fine print, Princess covers their a.. by stating words to the effect that the photos may not reflect reality. This disclaimer covers them from charges of false advertising, but in my view it doesn’t absolve them from charges of misleading advertising. On inquiry I learned that the chairs had been removed a few months ago, but the Emerald’s staff could provide no explanation as to why the chairs had been removed. This is not a complaint leveled at the staff of the Emerald, but at the decision makers back at Headquarters. If you are not going to provide chairs in your staterooms, update the photos on your website!
Our tour included the Roman theater, some churches and a walk up to a fort on one of the hills. It was a tour we enjoyed. Our guide was fairly proficient in English.
We toured the Alcazaba de Malaga plus the major church. As a city tour it was worthwhile.View All 52 Malaga City Tour Reviews
City tour wasn't very good. Lots of wasted time. We don't recommend it. The last time we visited Casablanca we took the tour to Rabat which was excellent.