9 New York (Brooklyn, Red Hook) to Canada & New England Princess Royal Princess Cruise Reviews

My wife and I sailed on the Royal Princess along with her sister and 94 year old mother. As platinum level Princess cruisers, we're fairly experienced on the Crown class of ship, and were really interested to experience the newest ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the Royal Princess along with her sister and 94 year old mother. As platinum level Princess cruisers, we're fairly experienced on the Crown class of ship, and were really interested to experience the newest class. The first impression is how lovely the ship is, inside and out. It is stunning, almost everywhere you look. If we had never cruised on Princess before the review could end here. Unfortunately, here are the negatives. We have also sailed on the Caribbean, Ruby, Crown, and Sapphire. Our room on the Royal was a deluxe balcony. Other than the shower itself, my impression was that it is about 10% smaller than similar rooms on other Princess ships. Even the drawers were smaller. The balcony, as pointed out by several other reviewers is quite small, but adequate for two people. Getting to your room is also different on the Royal. The elevators have been made smaller even though 400 more passengers are aboard, and you will likely experience significant waits during peak times. The Promenade Deck is now that in name only, as there is no longer a lower deck that allows access to all sections of the ship. Plus, the middle stairway is between decks four and seven, no longer accessing the entire ship. The lifeboats/tenders are stowed outside the general trim of the ship, and the machinery they require now blocks the view on most of deck seven. They also are an unattractive view from lower balconies. In these areas we were so disappointed that we decided we would not deliberately seek to book on this class of ship in the future. In fact, we called our travel agent while aboard and changed our upcoming reservation on the Regal Princess to a mini suite. Hopefully we will be a bit happier with these accommodations. Now to the positives Horizons has been completely redone. The food now rivals that served in the dining rooms below. It is divided into two areas, Horizon Court and Horizon Bistro. The difference between the areas is mostly in the seating and lighting, as the food from both is easily accessible. There are many more "hot" stations where meat is cut and a host of servers really make this an attractive dining alternative. My wife and I agree that the food in the dining areas was better than on other Princess ships as well. Less formal dining on deck 16 was about the same as on other Princess ships, featuring quite good pizza and burgers. The casino was smaller, but better laid out than on other Princess ships. The Princess Theater felt smaller, but that could be an illusion. The cup holders have been removed, but seating is still comfortable. The Retreat area is new, but we felt it was mostly so Princess could rent the cabanas around the pool. The lighted fountain show was never in operation on our cruise due to weather, so we haven't seen it to comment. The Movies Under the Stars screen is newer, brighter and sharper than on earlier ships. The television in the cabins is ok, but the newer interface and lack of a schedule are a bit of a bother. Overall, the crew seemed friendlier than on other Princess ships. Since Princess has announced a third ship in the Royal class, they are apparently wedded to this format. Hopefully they will address some of the concerns many of their "experienced" passengers are expressing about the new ships.   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
This was my second cruise, first time sailing with Princess The cruise was amazing...luxury and relaxing The "tour" from NY to New England and Canadá is very relaxing and more seniors orientated. The SPA is great as well ... Read More
This was my second cruise, first time sailing with Princess The cruise was amazing...luxury and relaxing The "tour" from NY to New England and Canadá is very relaxing and more seniors orientated. The SPA is great as well as the activities. The Shore Excursions are well planned but some are expensive. Its a great opportunity to stay a couple of days in New York and then cruise. The dinning experience is good...The buffet has a lot of options as well as the Restaurants. Our Waitress was always happy and trying to help. The young activities are not as Royal Caribbean and thats because of the more senior orientated cruise. The Mini suite is excellent for 3 passengers...The main bedroom has two individual bed that converts into a queen bed and the sofa area has an excellent sofa bed with privacy curtains so it makes the sofa area like a little bedroom. The Bathroom is ok for a 7 night cruise but i think is a little small for more than 2 people on the cabin. The balcony is kinda small for the suite. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
This was our 10th cruise, in 26 years, so we're not the regulars that some posters are. We have cruised twice before with princess,last cruise 2003, and our biggest complaint was the constant hounding to buy something. Thankfully, ... Read More
This was our 10th cruise, in 26 years, so we're not the regulars that some posters are. We have cruised twice before with princess,last cruise 2003, and our biggest complaint was the constant hounding to buy something. Thankfully, that problem no longer seems to exist, our overall experience was wonderful. We selected anytime dining, and because we usually eat early, it was never a problem getting seated. Except for the first night, our main dining room meals were excellent, and the service, just right. We were able to have dinner at the chef's table, which is a worthwhile experience. If you want to do this though, you must make this reservation as soon as you get to your cabin. Our cabin was M105, this is a balcony Mini-suite, on the bow, just above the bridge. You will experience a little more motion here, but the balcony is huge, and the views are fabulous! We found the entertainment onboard, to be very good. We always had more choices than we could do, and everything we attended was fun. The ships crew, and staff were all pleasant, and helpful, and really seemed to like what they were doing.The overall experience on this Princess cruise, was excellent, and a very good value for the cost. Yes, there are fancier, more inclusive lines, and lower cost options, but Princess delivered a wonderful experience for a reasonable fare. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Princess accomplished their objective of small ship feel on a large ship. On October 18th,I was whisked ito my cabin by Princess. Even tho I was on the 15th deck : no problem finding an attended elevator at the embarkation. I had been ... Read More
Princess accomplished their objective of small ship feel on a large ship. On October 18th,I was whisked ito my cabin by Princess. Even tho I was on the 15th deck : no problem finding an attended elevator at the embarkation. I had been warned about crowding on the Royal Princess Elevators so I didn't leave my cabin when I heard lots of people passing in the adjacent passageway. Only happened twice during the seven day cruise. So the elevators were no problem for me, although some elevators seemed small for such a large ship. And fellow passengers complained that there were just too many elevators midship. Hard to tell where the next elevator would be arriving. But I have been on forty-five cruises and I have learned not to complain about too many elevators. Had great evening dining , traditional, second seating with Jeff the waiter who made my seven dinners on the ship so enjoyable. My cabin steward Raul, was exceptional, also. I had three things I wanted my cabin steward to do and they were accomplished efficiently and in a reasonable time frame. Unusual compared to some of my experiences on much smaller ships. The weather was bad in Halifax but the captain warned us well in advance.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Embarking was a pleasure!! Quick & room ready! The ship is beautiful and nicely designed. The dining rooms were center so the walk from dinner to the show was shorter than other ships that have the dining room aft. The theatre is small ... Read More
Embarking was a pleasure!! Quick & room ready! The ship is beautiful and nicely designed. The dining rooms were center so the walk from dinner to the show was shorter than other ships that have the dining room aft. The theatre is small compared to other lines, so it fills quite early.The shows were good with great special effects in the special ones. The cooking show was the best ever - not to be missed! The sky walk was unique, but very slippery when wet, which was most of the time. Food was good with a nice variety in the dining room as well as the buffet. Service was always good. The other options were the International Cafe - great! & the pizza parlor - great & a favorite!! The 2 tender ports in New England were no problem and the time to go to and fro was quick.The TV stations really need to be more people friendly with "normal" shows & not all varities of just news shows. I enjoyed this ship and wish it would depart from NY/NJ to the Carribbean! I miss sailing Princess from this area to the islands! Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
We decided to go on a cruise on the Royal, as we are booked next April for a Transatlantic cruise and we wanted to make sure this was the ship we wanted to sail on. The Royal was indeed a grand ship. Although she was larger than the other ... Read More
We decided to go on a cruise on the Royal, as we are booked next April for a Transatlantic cruise and we wanted to make sure this was the ship we wanted to sail on. The Royal was indeed a grand ship. Although she was larger than the other Princess ships we have sailed on, so much of it was exactly the same as the smaller ships, we felt right at home. Yes there was not an outside deck to walk on on the 7th deck, but there were small areas outside that you could sit at and enjoy the sea and weather. Yes the elevators were busy, but more particularly during meal hours, which is to be expected. Yes there was no staircases mid ship, but we did not miss them at all. Yes the balconies were smaller, but could be used to sit and enjoy the weather and a libation. Yes the cabins were smaller, but clean, comfortable, cozy and lots of storage space. Yes the Sea Walk is not a great addition, but it was fun to walk on once and stare down at the ocean. I read a lot of reviews and these seemed to be some common concerns by a lot of cruisers. We were at the back of the ship, our favourite spot, in a deluxe balcony cabin. The cabin was a good size, not quite as big as expected, but big enough for us to get around. The bathroom was a fair size and they had fancy new shower heads which made for nicer showers. And yes a little foot shelf area for leg shaving, or just putting any shower products you wanted. The new flat screen TV's are a great addition, and the newer movies showing were a welcome treat. Must comment on our cabin Steward Carlito who was just great. He was quiet, professional, and always smiling, a very nice Steward. Thank you Carlito. The food was amazing at our dining room. We have always liked traditional dining as it allows us to meet people and make new friends. We dined at the Allegro, late dining and had such great servers, Jowel and Milan. They were funny, professional, attentive, and we were delighted to have them serving us. Hope to see them again in April. Also the small alcove we were in, with just four other tables surrounding us, was really different from the other large dining areas on the smaller ships. Loved it! The Horizon Food Court was the biggest we have seen onboard any ship, huge. It was always very busy and sometimes finding a seat was challenging, but we did always manage. We did not eat there a lot, we prefer the dining rooms for breakfast and lunch, but it was great for an afternoon snack. All the dining areas we visited had very good food. We had a lot of fun at Crooner's bar, where we would meet up with our friends every night before dinner. We made friends with one of the servers, John, and he made sure we were in his section every night. He enjoyed us as much as we enjoyed him. We often had martini's and he'd balance the glass on his forehead and nose and pour the drinks that way. It was very amusing, he never dropped a glass, or dripped a drop. Good going John. We went to several ports, but sadly Mother Nature decided she was going to limit some ports, so we spent our last two days in Halifax, we did not get to St. John. We went to the Vanderbilt Mansion in New Port, met some friends in Boston, who showed us around, just walked around Bar Harbor, and of course spent two days getting to know Halifax. We were fine with everything, not much you can do about the weather. We went to a couple of the shows, which were okay, but we enjoyed the individual singers, and musicians better. The pianist, singer, from Canada, Kory, was very good, and the violinist, Chris, were our favourites. Went to three shows for each. We are Platinum members on Princess, and we very much enjoy sailing with them. Their disembarkation process is fine. The only concern I have ever had is their embarkation process, it always seems painstakingly slow. They are trying now to change that, but their new system did not seem to work this time either. Hopefully someday they will get a handle on this. Loved the cruise, can't wait till April. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
This was our first cruise on Princess. We chose the Royal Princess because of being new and large. I think they were wonderful to cruise with. I had traveled with Celebrity Solstice last year and wondered if they would be as good. I was ... Read More
This was our first cruise on Princess. We chose the Royal Princess because of being new and large. I think they were wonderful to cruise with. I had traveled with Celebrity Solstice last year and wondered if they would be as good. I was pleasantly surprised. Embarking was fast and I was having lunch by 12:30 in the buffet. Our room was ready and the room steward Elisa was exceptional . We enjoyed Alfredos three days for lunch pizzas and calzones which were wonderful. They helped us celebrate a birthday with cake at dinner at the steak house, balloons and sign for door and choclate covered strawberries in the cabin. I really enjoyed the entertainment nightly and loved sitting right up front bottom floor. Nightly we enjoyed going to the casino. We had room service and enjoyed everything. The Crown grill was very good fillet , lobster and the best scallops my husband had eaten. The choclate cake ended the celebration. I want to say the people on the ship were giving 100% to make our trip enjoyable. We did the walk off with our luggage which was good. Also they have a laundry and you can press your clothes there which is a plus. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Second cruise on Princess, but much larger ship. Liked the ship and décor very much. Specialty restaurants were great; winemaker's dinner excellent; dining rooms food hit and miss; breakfast buffet good. Never saw much of the ... Read More
Second cruise on Princess, but much larger ship. Liked the ship and décor very much. Specialty restaurants were great; winemaker's dinner excellent; dining rooms food hit and miss; breakfast buffet good. Never saw much of the entertainment as the early shows can interfere with dinner and the late shows were too late for us, but we are used to that. We make our own arrangements for all the shore excursions online as the ship is more expensive and too many people to deal with. Loved all the ports as we had only been to Boston before this cruise. All in all a very good itinerary and good ship but a little large for us. Exiting and entering in ports at dock went smoothly. The tenders had waits but not long. We used the ship for transportation from and to the airport to dock, and all went smoothly - a very nice big bus. Never smelled smoke inside or out (a miracle), and the cabin was always made up nicely. I asked for robes, but none were there and the steward brought some immediately. Also asked for a top sheet, which was also done immediately, as you only have the duvet which is so thick, heavy, and hot that I cannot sleep under it. Wish you had a thin, cotton blanket in the room to use if you wished. All in all a very good cruise, and have put down a deposit for a future cruise with Princess. But will definitely get all details about the room before booking. We had a aft facing balcony listed as a premium balcony on the Aloha (12) deck. It had no cover from the deck above; it was less deep from room to railing than the floor above and below. None of the above was given in the description. Some overhang from the deck above to shade and deep enough for loungers with foot rests (as deeper balconies had) would have been worth the extra money for that premium designation, but this deck was not even as good as side balconies as they have overhead covers. I am sure I called and asked about the overhang because of the same problem with another cruise, but the phone people do not know every deck on every ship and so you cannot really find out the details. Since it was not an obstructed balcony, they do not feel the need to describe decks differently. Don't pay for a premium deck unless you know exactly what you are getting for the money. Very disappointing! Room was fine but nothing special for a balcony room. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
First time back on a cruise ship after a few year hiatus. Last cruise we went on out of Miami, I got Norovirus which cured my cruise ambitions (different cruise line) Embarked at Brooklyn, cruise terminal nice, nieghborhood less so. ... Read More
First time back on a cruise ship after a few year hiatus. Last cruise we went on out of Miami, I got Norovirus which cured my cruise ambitions (different cruise line) Embarked at Brooklyn, cruise terminal nice, nieghborhood less so. Embarkation was a breeze, had a mini suite which was a definite nice upgrade. We did not have the elevator experience that most seem to complain about, we are in mid-50's and took stairs more often than not. Having said that, demographic on this cruise was more than 60+ in age. We did the specialty dining at Sabatini's, and the Crown Grill several nights, both in my estimation well worth it. Also did the seafood (crab-shack)? which was less than worth it. Did anytime dining, typically after 1900, zero issues being seated. Wheelhouse bar was our hang out, did not do the drink package, overall I found our bar bill reasonable, between the two of use, one or two pre-dinner and perhaps three after dinner drinks. I would have had to have far more more to equal the drink package, ie. you really got to want to drink more than that to have some value to it. A little too much sales pressure in the spa, be prepared to be sold every possible package there. Never really saw too much other sales pressure, even the photogs were polite, no issues noted. Ports of call: Newport,a pleasant surprise, tender only, we walked our own tour, up through town, to the cliff side and back again, several festivals that day. Very pleasant. Boston, our favorite, walked the Freedom Trainl, even up Breeds Hill monument, healthy workout. Took a cab into town, fare sure varied, obviously first driver recognized us a pure tourist and took the long route in. But our favorite stop. Bar Harbor, tender stop, cute town, heavy fog, glad we did not take bus trip, those who did saw nothing. We walked on the harbor side, did the bar walk, alhough we did not walk on the island, the sign stated we needed a Federal Park permit to enter, not willing to risk an encounter with a park ranger we skipped the island. In town felt that the end of the tourist season was evident at a local restaurant. lousy service, lousy crab rolll, town dirty and over-run with people, probably due to weather. St Johns, a lttle industrial looking, did the hike up to the reversing falls, ho-hum. Farmers market OK, hiked through town, was not over impressed, although local pub had pleasant bartender who I felt should have been on their Chamber of Commerce, nice stop due to her dialogue. Halifax, heavy fog, great harbor walk, really enjoed it, stopped at WW II Corvette got the royal tour by Ian who served on ship for 30+ years, great visit, too bad weather was so-so. Day at sea interesting due to hurricane some 700 miles away, really no issues other than some rolling. glad we went, brought back my confidence in crusing. Would try to take tour of ship, spoke to fellow passenger who just raved about it, sign up as soon as you board. Conclusion, as long as you are not overly dependent on elevators I would do this ship again, not sure about the complaints about lack of elevators, perhaps it depends on which deck you were on, we were on Deck 10 and had either stairs of elevators. Good trip, enjoyed all of it, great wait staff at Wheelhouse Bar, did a great job of representing ship, knew ports of call, made recommendations and gave us a great insight on crew life, well done.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Royal Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.5 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 3.2

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