Let me start by saying we will never book our airfare through Orbitz again. We left on Monday, May 24th from Syracuse, NY. Got into Fairbanks at 12:30 their time, 4:30am Syracuse time, to find one piece of luggage missing and no welcome packet from Princess. Alaskan air was very helpful about the missing luggage, and we were reassured that our welcome packet would be waiting for us at the hotel. We had to wait an hour for transportation to our hotel, which ended up being a 5 minute ride from the airport. When we got to our hotel, we were a bit apprehensive, The Riversedge Resort looked like it had seen it's better days, but was actually quite nice. Beautiful little private cottages that were decorated well and very up-to-date. The staff bent over backwards for us and could not have been more helpful and attentive. But no welcome packet from Princess.
That same morning after we had slept, the Princess rep told us that our packet was missing, nowhere to be found. So we had no tickets for our land excursions, no itinerary, nothing. The printer would not work, so they did manage to make an itinerary for us. We demanded another packet be fed-exed immediately. We did get to go on our pre-booked tours, but had to take the bus driver in with us to vouch for us. Meanwhile, our missing luggage took two days to catch up with us, the one with all of our toiletries. We didn't get it until Wednesday evening, and we were leaving for Denali in the morning. I cannot say enough about the staff at the Riversedge Resort, they were great! And new girl Elise at the Princess Desk went above and beyond to be helpful.
Train ride to Denali was nice. However, the Denali Princess Lodge was very disappointing. Dated, no air-conditioning (it was 86 degrees) limited lunch venues. Had to ask for more linens and pillows from housekeeping staff that spoke very limited English. One of our excursions at Denali was great. The Black Diamond Treasure Hunt with Jason was fabulous. Five of us in an ATV off-roading through the wilderness, what a trip! The natural history tour was long, hot and our tourguide was knowledgeable, but as exciting as watching paint dry.