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Coral Princess Review

4.0 / 5.0
1,023 reviews

Fabulous Panama Canal Cruise on Princess

Review for the Panama Canal & Central America Cruise on Coral Princess
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6-10 Cruises • Age 60s

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Value for Money
Public Rooms

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Sail Date: Feb 2010
Cabin: Balcony

My wife and I (both 52 years old) sailed on the Coral Princess in late February 2011. We flew from the West Coast to Fort Lauderdale by way of Dallas on American Airlines. Arriving the day before the ship departed, we stayed at the Holiday Inn Express on the 17th Avenue Causeway ($142 including tax). This is a great location for cruisers, as the port is very close and nearby there are two malls (one with wine and grocery stores), a liquor store, a CVS pharmacy, a Walgreens pharmacy, and several restaurants. We waited a half hour for the hotel's shuttle at the airport before finally checking in and heading out to dinner. As we did last cruise, we dined at the Quarterdeck restaurant. Tuesdays it has $9.95 fajitas, so we both had the shrimp version with drinks, lamenting that we just missed the 7 p.m. happy hour cutoff.

Although our hotel room was on the first level next to the parking lot in front, we fortunately did not experience any noise during the night. The next morning we had the nice breakfast offered by the hotel (yogurt, cereal, cheese omelettes, biscuits and gravy, hardboiled eggs, warm cinnamon rolls, coffee, and juice). Then we headed to Total Wine, where we bought nine bottles of wine and some beer and cider for the cruise. This all went in our carryon luggage. While we'd like to avoid the $15 per bottle corkage and haulin-g wine on board, we aren't impressed with Princess's wine list. Most of it is big corporate wine (the ubiquitous and overpriced Santa Margarita pinot gris) and hasn't changed in years. Listings in some cases don't even list the

producer (merely a generic "Puilly Fuisse," "Premier Cru Chablis," or "Chateauneuf du Pape" ) and lack any vintage date. Sure, Princess needs sufficient quantities for all its ships, but how about a Tempranillo or Malbec? The latter go for $8 at home.

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