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Background Information This was our 13th Princess cruise (20th overall). We love sailing the brand new ships, and we had the vacation days to squeeze in this 3 day inaugural. We had previously sailed sister ships Royal and Regal. Travel to Embarkation Port We flew into Ft Lauderdale one day early and took a Lyft to our hotel (cost $15). Hotel Information For our pre-cruise night, we chose the new Fairfield Inn & Suites Las Olas. We arrived around 2pm, and our room was ready. Hotel and room décor is very modern and colorful. Our room was a king bed. Room was small compared to other hotels but OK for just a one night stay. Features included two nightstands, drawers/shelves/desk/TV stand all-in-one built into the wall, very small hanging clothes closet, microwave, and cube refrigerator. Bathroom was good sized with a large walk-in glass shower. Free breakfast was quite good with a nice variety of hot and cold options. Free WiFi was good speed. Hotel is located a couple blocks from Las Olas so it’s convenient to the shopping and dining options there. Also Foxy Brown is across the street which we’ve dined at before for a delicious Sunday brunch. I usually prefer to stay in the 17th Street area for ship watching proximity, but I’d definitely consider the Fairfield again if I wanted to be close to Las Olas action. Embarkation Used Lyft to get to Port Everglades. Cost about $9. Arrived at Terminal 2 about 10:30am. We were thru security & priority check-in and in the priority embarkation waiting area by 10:45am. Ocean Medallion technology makes check-in process very easy - tap the medallion and show your passport. However, clearing the in transit passengers delayed our start to boarding until 11:40am. Cabins were not ready until 1pm. Muster drill was at 3:15pm (life jackets not required), and sailaway was 4:15pm. Cabin We originally booked a category BC balcony stateroom on Lido deck, but we were offered a free upgrade to a category ME minisuite on Emerald deck. However, we had really wanted to try staying on Lido deck as we had never stayed on that deck on any past sailing. So when the Getaway sale (half price 2nd passenger) came along, we decided to book a category MF front facing minisuite on Lido, two decks above the bridge. This saved us a bit more than $100 from our original booking while still going up from a balcony to a minisuite. Cabin L105 has the Princess Luxury Bed, two nightstands with two drawers and a lamp with a USB port, desk with multiple drawers and usual power outlets, side chair, sofa and small oval table, wet bar area with three drawers and the mini fridge, and three closets (two for hanging clothes, one with shelves and the safe - but this is not a walk-in closet in contrast to most Princess ships). Bathroom had shower/tub combo. Hair dryer is the annoying kind in the drawer. Because the room is oriented horizontally, it meant the balcony is palatial with two loungers/footstools and a table and enough room for about 10 people. We are big fans of this cabin! Super convenient access to Lido deck food, drink, pools, & MUTS venues, yet ultra quiet being at front of the ship. We had absolutely perfect weather so motion was not an issue at all and the wind was only slight if that, so we made ample use of our balcony. Depending on the time of year, we would definitely book this type of cabin again. Ship Information Long overdue refreshing of the Princess color palette - beige is gone in favor of taupe, gray, teal, and blue. Felt like the modern style of Celebrity or MSC. Medallion Net Internet - For this cruise, Platinum/Elite got either unlimited access discount 1 device $33.74 voyage plan or 4 device $44.99 voyage plan (available only within first 24 hrs of the cruise) or 150 free minutes one device at a time. I had some wonky issues with the Internet on Princess Cays (never able to connect) and the last day on the ship it didn’t log me out properly so it used up my last 30 min. We pre-paid for the soda package - $11.79pp (incl gratuity)/per day. There are some distinctive changes with this ship compared to her sisters - no Crooners, Take Five jazz club replaces Club 6, Ocean View Sushi Bar instead of Ocean View Seafood Bar (so alas no king crab cocktail), Princess Live is now an open facing show lounge (good improvement), Good Spirits Bar knocked Bellini Bar over to lobby bar location, no Wheelhouse Bar, Seaview Bar is now located in the deck middle vs on the SeaWalk (more room for the bar and allows for new seating options by the SeaWalk), new Bistro Sur La Mer specialty dining, new infinity pool in the aft (awesome), and redesigned main pool area (much better than the fountains). No BOGO drink happy hours - guess those are gone for good. Plenty of deck loungers were available whenever we walked thru the main pool area. There were no signs indicating which items on the buffet or in International Café were Chocolate Journey items, and I missed those from past cruises. Activities Day 1 Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - guacamole & chips were the featured hors d’oeuvres, but we didn’t get the invite until after the event time. We bought the voyage length pass to The Enclave (thermal suite) so we spent a little pre-dinner relaxing time there. Day 2 We started the day in the Enclave to let the mad rush for tenders die down. We got a tender ticket around 10:30 and we were on the island around 11am. Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - Was not offered. Day 3 Met with the future cruise consultant to book two more cruises and get a new future cruise deposit, as one does to feed the cruising addiction! Enjoyed the new WakeView infinity adults only pool on the back of Lido deck and then one more visit to the Enclave. Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - Wheel of Stilton was the featured hors d’oeuvres , but we did not attend. This was the first cruise where we didn't make any of these cocktail hours - only so much we could cram in 3 days. Entertainment Day 1 New production show Rock Opera was a collection of show tunes (including three from The Greatest Showman), 80s songs, classic rock, and a little opera - with lavish costumes and featured singer Brian Justin Crum (of America’s Got Talent fame). Solidly entertaining show. Day 2 Went to the new Jim Henson Inspired Silliness puppet show. The show also features the Princess singers and dancers which I was not expecting. The show is a collection of skits that were originally featured on various TV shows in the 60s-70s that have not been seen in recent times. There are several videos that discuss Henson’s career or provided behind-the-scenes insight. We enjoyed the show, and I hope it will be embraced by passengers. The adults only show was not offered on our cruise. We did the late night stargazing Discovery at Sea program. Clouds obscured some of the constellations but it was still worthwhile. Day 3 Watched the movie Yesterday on MUTS - beautiful high def screen. They do offer free popcorn and there are blankets available, but the MUTS logo lounge cover/pillow was not put out on the chairs. Went to the brand new 5 Skies production show. It’s definitely aiming for the younger demographic with the gaming/VR theme, and I suspect many boomer and older cruisers will not be terribly enamored with it. It’s got great technology and costumes, and the acrobatics were good. Glad I saw it, but not sure I need to see it again. Dining Day 1 Lunch - Alfredo’s Pizzeria (the secret is out as an embarkation lunch choice - we had to wait about 20 min to get seated) - Scott had the minestrone soup, I had the mixed green salad, and we both got the veal pasta packets. Dinner - Buffet (tonight’s theme was Bavarian) Dessert - Gelato sundaes at Gelato - I had the Nutellone and Scott had the Amaretto & Peaches. Well worth the $3.50 charge. Snacks - Pizza and caprese toast from Slice, savories from International Cafe Day 2 Breakfast - Room service delivered promptly at the start of our 7-7:30 window. Lunch - BBQ, hamburgers, hot dogs, and a few sides were offered on Princess Cays. Food is OK, but it’s really time for Princess to step up its game on the private island. Snacks - Pizza & pizza boat from Slice and chips & salsa from the buffet Dinner/Dessert - Main Dining Room (Estrella) I had the lime & salt-cured salmon starter, the fettuccine Alfredo pasta, the broiled lobster tail with lemon-arugula risotto main, and the spiced biscuit soufflé dessert. Scott had the escargot starter, Caesar salad, the lobster tail, and the crunchy profiterole w/ banana gelato dessert. We dined with two other couples and a solo gentleman and we had a rollicking good time. Service was good and we liked all the food we had. Day 3 Breakfast - Buffet & International Cafe Lunch - Brunch ($19pp) at Bistro Sur La Mer - We both had the lobster bisque appetizer and the Spanish frittata. I had the fish & chips main and chocolate finger dessert. Scott had the roasted jumbo scallops main and the rum baba dessert. We left quite stuffed. Service was leisurely - we were there about 1hr 45min. Having this dining venue in the open air Piazza made for frequent clashes of the French background recorded music with whatever live music or performances were going on the Piazza floor. You should definitely opt a table as far in a corner as you can get to minimize ambient noise. Dinner - Ernesto burger ($5 charge) and bacon cheese fries from Salty Dog Grill, shrimp items from buffet, pizza & pizza boat from Slice Dessert - Soft serve ice cream from Swirls Disembarkation We left the cabin after 7:00am (required to leave by 8:00am) and went to the buffet for breakfast. We had a 7:20am group tag, but we opted to linger a bit longer onboard, so we walked off the ship about 8:15am. We were through customs by 8:20am - the Global Entry line was actually open. Used Lyft to get to FLL airport ($14) and after a bit of cruise port traffic congestion, we were at the Southwest terminal by 8:50am. Service Overall we experienced good to excellent service (Bistro Sur La Mer the exception). We heard complaints about the service in Crown Grill, but we didn’t dine there this trip so don't have any first hand experience. Lots of smiles from the crew. Tips & Tricks - The aft corners of Deck 7 Promenade have the wood steamer chairs with the blue cushions and footstools - Although Princess is focusing all its app attention on MedallionClass, we discovered that the old Concierge browser site is still working… - The port and starboard carpet colors on the cabin decks are somewhat different - this was pointed out to us after we got off the ship. Final Thoughts - We are big fans of the Royal class ships and Sky Princess did not disappoint. Missed a few things from the earlier ships (namely Crooners Bar and the Wheelhouse Bar), but really loved the new features (Salty Dog Grill, Slice Pizzeria, Wakeview infinity pool, redesigned main pool area). - Our front-of-the-ship minisuite cabin on Lido deck was one of the best cabins we've ever had. Super convenient access to Lido amenities yet the stateroom area was wonderfully quiet. And the balcony size cannot be beat! - This was our first truly functional Ocean Medallion equipped cruise and it worked well for us, although the MedallionClass app needs some user experience and performance tuning. - Sky Princess is a beautiful ship and we look forward to sailing her again.

Sky Princess - Dec 4 2019 "Inaugural #2"

Sky Princess Cruise Review by macusr

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2019
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
Background Information

This was our 13th Princess cruise (20th overall). We love sailing the brand new ships, and we had the vacation days to squeeze in this 3 day inaugural. We had previously sailed sister ships Royal and Regal.

Travel to Embarkation Port

We flew into Ft Lauderdale one day early and took a Lyft to our hotel (cost $15).

Hotel Information

For our pre-cruise night, we chose the new Fairfield Inn & Suites Las Olas. We arrived around 2pm, and our room was ready. Hotel and room décor is very modern and colorful. Our room was a king bed. Room was small compared to other hotels but OK for just a one night stay. Features included two nightstands, drawers/shelves/desk/TV stand all-in-one built into the wall, very small hanging clothes closet, microwave, and cube refrigerator. Bathroom was good sized with a large walk-in glass shower. Free breakfast was quite good with a nice variety of hot and cold options. Free WiFi was good speed. Hotel is located a couple blocks from Las Olas so it’s convenient to the shopping and dining options there. Also Foxy Brown is across the street which we’ve dined at before for a delicious Sunday brunch. I usually prefer to stay in the 17th Street area for ship watching proximity, but I’d definitely consider the Fairfield again if I wanted to be close to Las Olas action.

Embarkation

Used Lyft to get to Port Everglades. Cost about $9.

Arrived at Terminal 2 about 10:30am. We were thru security & priority check-in and in the priority embarkation waiting area by 10:45am. Ocean Medallion technology makes check-in process very easy - tap the medallion and show your passport. However, clearing the in transit passengers delayed our start to boarding until 11:40am. Cabins were not ready until 1pm. Muster drill was at 3:15pm (life jackets not required), and sailaway was 4:15pm.

Cabin

We originally booked a category BC balcony stateroom on Lido deck, but we were offered a free upgrade to a category ME minisuite on Emerald deck. However, we had really wanted to try staying on Lido deck as we had never stayed on that deck on any past sailing. So when the Getaway sale (half price 2nd passenger) came along, we decided to book a category MF front facing minisuite on Lido, two decks above the bridge. This saved us a bit more than $100 from our original booking while still going up from a balcony to a minisuite.

Cabin L105 has the Princess Luxury Bed, two nightstands with two drawers and a lamp with a USB port, desk with multiple drawers and usual power outlets, side chair, sofa and small oval table, wet bar area with three drawers and the mini fridge, and three closets (two for hanging clothes, one with shelves and the safe - but this is not a walk-in closet in contrast to most Princess ships). Bathroom had shower/tub combo. Hair dryer is the annoying kind in the drawer. Because the room is oriented horizontally, it meant the balcony is palatial with two loungers/footstools and a table and enough room for about 10 people. We are big fans of this cabin! Super convenient access to Lido deck food, drink, pools, & MUTS venues, yet ultra quiet being at front of the ship. We had absolutely perfect weather so motion was not an issue at all and the wind was only slight if that, so we made ample use of our balcony. Depending on the time of year, we would definitely book this type of cabin again.

Ship Information

Long overdue refreshing of the Princess color palette - beige is gone in favor of taupe, gray, teal, and blue. Felt like the modern style of Celebrity or MSC.

Medallion Net Internet - For this cruise, Platinum/Elite got either unlimited access discount 1 device $33.74 voyage plan or 4 device $44.99 voyage plan (available only within first 24 hrs of the cruise) or 150 free minutes one device at a time. I had some wonky issues with the Internet on Princess Cays (never able to connect) and the last day on the ship it didn’t log me out properly so it used up my last 30 min.

We pre-paid for the soda package - $11.79pp (incl gratuity)/per day.

There are some distinctive changes with this ship compared to her sisters - no Crooners, Take Five jazz club replaces Club 6, Ocean View Sushi Bar instead of Ocean View Seafood Bar (so alas no king crab cocktail), Princess Live is now an open facing show lounge (good improvement), Good Spirits Bar knocked Bellini Bar over to lobby bar location, no Wheelhouse Bar, Seaview Bar is now located in the deck middle vs on the SeaWalk (more room for the bar and allows for new seating options by the SeaWalk), new Bistro Sur La Mer specialty dining, new infinity pool in the aft (awesome), and redesigned main pool area (much better than the fountains).

No BOGO drink happy hours - guess those are gone for good.

Plenty of deck loungers were available whenever we walked thru the main pool area.

There were no signs indicating which items on the buffet or in International Café were Chocolate Journey items, and I missed those from past cruises.

Activities

Day 1

Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - guacamole & chips were the featured hors d’oeuvres, but we didn’t get the invite until after the event time.

We bought the voyage length pass to The Enclave (thermal suite) so we spent a little pre-dinner relaxing time there.

Day 2

We started the day in the Enclave to let the mad rush for tenders die down. We got a tender ticket around 10:30 and we were on the island around 11am.

Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - Was not offered.

Day 3

Met with the future cruise consultant to book two more cruises and get a new future cruise deposit, as one does to feed the cruising addiction!

Enjoyed the new WakeView infinity adults only pool on the back of Lido deck and then one more visit to the Enclave.

Elite/Platinum/Suite Cocktail hour - Wheel of Stilton was the featured hors d’oeuvres , but we did not attend. This was the first cruise where we didn't make any of these cocktail hours - only so much we could cram in 3 days.

Entertainment

Day 1

New production show Rock Opera was a collection of show tunes (including three from The Greatest Showman), 80s songs, classic rock, and a little opera - with lavish costumes and featured singer Brian Justin Crum (of America’s Got Talent fame). Solidly entertaining show.

Day 2

Went to the new Jim Henson Inspired Silliness puppet show. The show also features the Princess singers and dancers which I was not expecting. The show is a collection of skits that were originally featured on various TV shows in the 60s-70s that have not been seen in recent times. There are several videos that discuss Henson’s career or provided behind-the-scenes insight. We enjoyed the show, and I hope it will be embraced by passengers. The adults only show was not offered on our cruise.

We did the late night stargazing Discovery at Sea program. Clouds obscured some of the constellations but it was still worthwhile.

Day 3

Watched the movie Yesterday on MUTS - beautiful high def screen. They do offer free popcorn and there are blankets available, but the MUTS logo lounge cover/pillow was not put out on the chairs.

Went to the brand new 5 Skies production show. It’s definitely aiming for the younger demographic with the gaming/VR theme, and I suspect many boomer and older cruisers will not be terribly enamored with it. It’s got great technology and costumes, and the acrobatics were good. Glad I saw it, but not sure I need to see it again.

Dining

Day 1

Lunch - Alfredo’s Pizzeria (the secret is out as an embarkation lunch choice - we had to wait about 20 min to get seated) - Scott had the minestrone soup, I had the mixed green salad, and we both got the veal pasta packets.

Dinner - Buffet (tonight’s theme was Bavarian)

Dessert - Gelato sundaes at Gelato - I had the Nutellone and Scott had the Amaretto & Peaches. Well worth the $3.50 charge.

Snacks - Pizza and caprese toast from Slice, savories from International Cafe

Day 2

Breakfast - Room service delivered promptly at the start of our 7-7:30 window.

Lunch - BBQ, hamburgers, hot dogs, and a few sides were offered on Princess Cays. Food is OK, but it’s really time for Princess to step up its game on the private island.

Snacks - Pizza & pizza boat from Slice and chips & salsa from the buffet

Dinner/Dessert - Main Dining Room (Estrella) I had the lime & salt-cured salmon starter, the fettuccine Alfredo pasta, the broiled lobster tail with lemon-arugula risotto main, and the spiced biscuit soufflé dessert. Scott had the escargot starter, Caesar salad, the lobster tail, and the crunchy profiterole w/ banana gelato dessert. We dined with two other couples and a solo gentleman and we had a rollicking good time. Service was good and we liked all the food we had.

Day 3

Breakfast - Buffet & International Cafe

Lunch - Brunch ($19pp) at Bistro Sur La Mer - We both had the lobster bisque appetizer and the Spanish frittata. I had the fish & chips main and chocolate finger dessert. Scott had the roasted jumbo scallops main and the rum baba dessert. We left quite stuffed. Service was leisurely - we were there about 1hr 45min. Having this dining venue in the open air Piazza made for frequent clashes of the French background recorded music with whatever live music or performances were going on the Piazza floor. You should definitely opt a table as far in a corner as you can get to minimize ambient noise.

Dinner - Ernesto burger ($5 charge) and bacon cheese fries from Salty Dog Grill, shrimp items from buffet, pizza & pizza boat from Slice

Dessert - Soft serve ice cream from Swirls

Disembarkation

We left the cabin after 7:00am (required to leave by 8:00am) and went to the buffet for breakfast. We had a 7:20am group tag, but we opted to linger a bit longer onboard, so we walked off the ship about 8:15am. We were through customs by 8:20am - the Global Entry line was actually open. Used Lyft to get to FLL airport ($14) and after a bit of cruise port traffic congestion, we were at the Southwest terminal by 8:50am.

Service

Overall we experienced good to excellent service (Bistro Sur La Mer the exception). We heard complaints about the service in Crown Grill, but we didn’t dine there this trip so don't have any first hand experience. Lots of smiles from the crew.

Tips & Tricks

- The aft corners of Deck 7 Promenade have the wood steamer chairs with the blue cushions and footstools

- Although Princess is focusing all its app attention on MedallionClass, we discovered that the old Concierge browser site is still working…

- The port and starboard carpet colors on the cabin decks are somewhat different - this was pointed out to us after we got off the ship.

Final Thoughts

- We are big fans of the Royal class ships and Sky Princess did not disappoint. Missed a few things from the earlier ships (namely Crooners Bar and the Wheelhouse Bar), but really loved the new features (Salty Dog Grill, Slice Pizzeria, Wakeview infinity pool, redesigned main pool area).

- Our front-of-the-ship minisuite cabin on Lido deck was one of the best cabins we've ever had. Super convenient access to Lido amenities yet the stateroom area was wonderfully quiet. And the balcony size cannot be beat!

- This was our first truly functional Ocean Medallion equipped cruise and it worked well for us, although the MedallionClass app needs some user experience and performance tuning.

- Sky Princess is a beautiful ship and we look forward to sailing her again.
macusr’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
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Service
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MF
Cabin L105 has the Princess Luxury Bed, two nightstands with two drawers and a lamp with a USB port, desk with multiple drawers and usual power outlets, side chair, sofa and small oval table, wet bar area with three drawers and the mini fridge, and three closets (two for hanging clothes, one with shelves and the safe - but this is not a walk-in closet in contrast to most Princess ships). Bathroom had shower/tub combo. Hair dryer is the annoying kind in the drawer. Because the room is oriented horizontally, it meant the balcony is palatial with two loungers/footstools and a table and enough room for about 10 people. We are big fans of this cabin! Super convenient access to Lido deck food, drink, pools, & MUTS venues, yet ultra quiet being at front of the ship. We had absolutely perfect weather so motion was not an issue at all and the wind was only slight if that, so we made ample use of our balcony. Depending on the time of year, we would definitely book this type of cabin again.
Lido Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

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