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Sail Date: June 2013

I have just returned from a two night break to expereince the new cruise liner, that the Duchess of Kent will be opening. The videos of the cruise look amazing but actually when you finally do embark after the chaos queing its ... Read More

I have just returned from a two night break to expereince the new cruise liner, that the Duchess of Kent will be opening. The videos of the cruise look amazing but actually when you finally do embark after the chaos queing its disappointing!! It doesn't have the wow factor at all. The promenade isn't what i thought, a few shops here and there. 

If you have children under 3yrs they can not use the pool even if wearing swimmers. No facilities for them to play, although as ship didn't have many children we were allowed to as a one off. There is kids clubs for 3yrs and older which do have some great games etc. The children are not supposed to sleep in the bunks if younger than 10yrs, even though they new the ages of my children when we booked. Balcony rooms are a lot smaller than other ships.

Some good parts, movies under the stars, with popcorn!! The Horizon buffet area was set out well, food was very nice. The spa looked great but we didn't use as very expensive! Watch your bill!! Paid before we left, charges of $11.50pp every day added on as gratitutes even though when you buy a drink 15% is added on. You can get this taken off, but i feel it should be explained before you embark.

Summary, wouldn't waste my money again!! If you are 60yrs and over, very rich then this cruise is for you!!

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Sail Date: June 2013

We have just returned from the first Preview sailing on the Royal Princess. Considering the ship was only about 50% full the check-in and boarding seemed rather chaotic.

We went straight to our Deluxe balcony cabin and first ... Read More

We have just returned from the first Preview sailing on the Royal Princess. Considering the ship was only about 50% full the check-in and boarding seemed rather chaotic.

We went straight to our Deluxe balcony cabin and first impressions were not that great. The decor was dull and beige and rather old-fashioned, I expected something much nicer. We have sailed on several Princess ships and the cabin looked pretty similar to the older ships. However the minute balcony was a bit of a shock and we struggled to turn the metal and plastic chairs to face the sea, really they only fitted on the balcony when facing each other. We were on deck 15 and the overhang above us was awful and would block any sun. The bathroom only had a shower and an awfully positioned toilet roll holder which meant we just used the spare roll which we popped on the counter by the sink.

We were shocked by the complete disorganisation of events onboard. Some information stated that there were two smart casual nights whilst other things said a smart casual and a Formal night. The evening entertainments were altered, we turned up at one venue and asked what was on and no-one had any idea as the time and event and been changed.

The Princess Live was horrible, very dark and dingy with incredibly uncomfortable seats. It also does not seat that many people and the view was not good. It seemed a shame to lose a bar with a stage to a venue that you can’t relax in for an evening.

The theatre looked smaller to me than the one on the Grand. However I think it has far more seats as the rows are much closer together. The waiters were struggling to take orders and give out drinks to anyone who wasn’t sat at the end of a row and once you had your drink there was nowhere to put it as the side tables have gone. Beware if sitting further back near the end of the row as the high hand-rails will seriously block your view of the stage. The seats themselves were comfortable but taller passengers may find the lack of legroom an issue.

The Atrium was a lovely space, light and airy with the tempting cafe full of delicious pastry treats to hand. However the entertainment seemed a bit hit and miss, one minute we were listening to a classical quartet and the next I had a strapping Russian gymnast stripping off his shirt 6 inches from my seat! I thought it was quite entertaining but many of the older passengers did not look amused as it didn’t really fit in with the calm, dignified surroundings.

The Vista lounge was a lovely venue with plenty of seating and areas suitable for larger groups to sit together.

The main dining rooms also looked very traditional; there was nothing to show that you were on an all new ship. However the staff were good and I felt the service was much better than I had received when using Anytime Dining on Princess before. The food was all delicious but only one small potato with a main course?

We used the buffet for breakfast and lunch. I felt that the breakfast selection was rather poor. The layout was a bit difficult but I couldn’t find a waffle station or an egg station which I expected. I don’t know if they were there and I missed them or if they just weren’t available.

At lunch there was a larger selection but there seemed to be a huge emphasis on Asian cuisine and on the second day I actually struggled to find anything I wanted. This wasn’t helped by the fact that all of the signs are above the warmers and at only 5ft tall I struggled to read them, it would be impossibility for children or anyone in a wheelchair. The salad selection was very poor and none of the dressings even had labels. The desserts were through in the Bistro area which also had a good selection of sandwiches. I could imagine this will be difficult when the ship is full and people are having to walk around a lot to find what they want. There were so many staff that they were falling over themselves to help (I think they were bored!). However even if you asked for lemonade or water it seemed to take an age for them to get it, I would far rather just help myself. I liked the decor of the Bistro better as it was light and bright but it was also very cold so we stayed on the buffet tables. I noticed that the tables were all in sixes and eights which will make it hard to find a table when the ship is full and people spread out. I did notice a lot more tables for two in the main dining rooms which I thought was a good idea as many people don’t want to share.

The pool areas looked lovely although I don’t think I like the cabanas, especially if people shut the curtains as it will ruin the beautiful vista of the pool from the other chairs. The Skywalk was OK but only fun once, I wouldn't want a cabin underneath as there is no privacy. We didn’t get to see the fountain show as it was shown on the formal night and it was so cold that my formal dress was not conducive to standing on the top deck.

Overall I thought that the Royal Princess was a nice cruise ship but it wasn’t as special as I had hope. We had already booked another cruise on the ship for next year but I am seriously considering cancelling it. The Deluxe Balcony cabin felt small and the balcony was tiny and I am not happy to spend two weeks in that sort of accommodation.

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Sail Date: June 2013

I must try to be fair in this review, and take account of the fact that this was a Preview Cruise. I realise we were mainly there to iron out any glitches or problems prior to the maiden voyage, but the fact remains, there were several ... Read More

I must try to be fair in this review, and take account of the fact that this was a Preview Cruise. I realise we were mainly there to iron out any glitches or problems prior to the maiden voyage, but the fact remains, there were several basic issues on the ship and with Princess that cannot simply be passed off as "teething problems"

Embarkation

Parking at the docks was straightforward, so in awe of the wonderful first sight of the Royal Princess we

I must try to be fair in this review, and take account of the fact that this was a Preview Cruise. I realise we were mainly there to iron out any glitches or problems prior to the maiden voyage, but the fact remains, there were several basic issues on the ship and with Princess that cannot simply be passed off as "teething problems"

Embarkation

Parking at the docks was straightforward, so in awe of the wonderful first sight of the Royal Princess we entered the Ocean Terminal - to be greeted with queues spiraling both the downstairs and upstairs check in areas. We were given by 2 ladies a green card with a letter on it and advised to grab a seat because it would be at least an hour, "due to the ship not releasing the passes until 11" whatever that meant. Anyway, an hour and 20 minutes later we were called forward to check in, which, along with the security checks were thankfully swift, so within a couple of hours from arriving we were climbing the gang plank. A month ago we boarded the Disney dream by being asked our name and walking alone through the atrium to the applause of the officers and staff, and a warm greeting over the tannoy. Princess chose the alternative greeting. Shove us along the promenade deck, in through a side door, and steered into a packed elevator area along with equally lost passengers and the occasional staff member who didnt have a clue.

The biggest Atrium at sea, and we are ushered to the corridors. Big big opportunity lost Princess. We could have said WOW when when came aboard. Instead our reaction was "what the....."

Cabin

We were in Deck 9 Dolphin 709, a standard balcony room. This is the first big issue I have with the Royal. The room was minute, and this coming from someone who usually prefers inside cabins. The beds were stupidly short. Im 6ft 3" and my legs went well over the end of the bed, not to mention the narrowness, which bing a big bloke was very much an issue. It was rock hard as well. I thanked my foresight in only booking the 2 nighter. Much more in this bed would have crippled me. As we discovered that night, the walls were paper thin. We could hear clearly normal conversations next door, and was treated to Skyfall at 1.00am that morning. Again something I had never experienced before. The bathroom was adequate and cupboard space quite good, so no real issue there. The TV function was poor. The GPS location map didn't work, nor was there any Account access to see what you had spent - standard for every previous cruise I had been on.

The Ship

Much has been written about the new royal Princess, but I must say, it failed to impress this reviewer. Don’t get me wrong. I love cruise ships. I love the aura, the atmosphere, the grand atrium, the show bars and the quiet piano lounges. The Royal however just didn't offer anything additional that impressed. I'd seen it all before, and though I would no doubt enjoy a trip on her, I view other ships in a better light, with better layout, better organisation, better food and a bigger WOW factor to be seen on Cunard, Independence of the Seas, even the Sapphire Princess. I just didn't take to her.

The crew

Poorly trained. Over enthusiastic when you wanted to be left alone. Not interested when a bit of assistance would have been appreciated.. My biggest gripe is reserved for the Cruise Director, Ron Goodman, however. I likened him to Hughie Green - oozing insincerity from every pore. Too slick. Too smug. To pleased with himself to be opening his eyes and looking at the obvious issues the ship has. The shows were good - loved the big production number with the lighting in the main theatre, and the ABBA tribute band were better than most act I have seen on a ship. The bar staff tried hard to please, with the best service witnessed in the Wheelhouse bar. The worst at the Seaview Bar. Inept. The bars around the Atrium closed at 11 on the last night, yet the waiter seemed happy to serve their mates but refuse others sat nearby. I expect that behaviour in a dodgy local pub, and not the supposed pride of the Princess fleet.

The Restaurants

Horizon Court. The first breakfast was horrible. Nothing tasted right or nice. The worst Corned Beef hash I have ever had, and that’s saying something. The bacon was inedible. Eggs were sloppy. Very very poor fayre. The meals in the main dining room were an improvement. Nice Beef Wellington and nice steak on 2nd night, but I wasnt a fan of the decor or layout, however. The waiters were good - fair play to them, they tried and tried to give us what we wanted. Cant ask for any more from them.

Overall we paid £300+ each for a 2 day trip which to be blunt was simply not worth it. We willingly paid over the odds expecting to be given a memorable introduction to a wonderful new ship. The entire setup seemed to be with the objective of fleecing you - getting every available buck out of you, but with none of the class or charm offered by Cunard or Celebrity. We were given sub standard fayre, and we left with a firm conviction that we would in future stick with the names we usually stick with.

 

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Sail Date: June 2013

I felt that after reading the reviews given so far it didn't paint a proper image of the Royal Princess for future cruisers, so I will give an accurate overview from an experienced cruiser who normally travels with Princess, Royal ... Read More

I felt that after reading the reviews given so far it didn't paint a proper image of the Royal Princess for future cruisers, so I will give an accurate overview from an experienced cruiser who normally travels with Princess, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity.

Overview:-
Stunning ship from outside and interior. The atrium must be the the most impressive centre point of any ship I have seen and princess have done well to make it a destination of its own full of bars, restaurants and eateries, all of which are beautifully designed. The entire ship was sparkling (as it should being a few days old )

Embarkation:-
As quick an easy as any other cruise line. With a grand entrance to the piazza.

Public Rooms:-
Princess have done a great job with integrating bars and restaurants to compliment each other. E.g. Wheelhouse and crown grill. Sabatines and vines. The show lounges look great and I have to agree with other reviewers that the main theatre looked pretty small but I loved having the vista lounge back instead of club fusion which featured on other recent ships. Princess live is interesting but I didn't really attend anything in this area so hard to give a review on, I must say I liked the explorers lounge and feel I will miss having this area to the ship. Club 6, the new lounge/late night entertainment venue is stunning. Well designed and a great idea to bring it closer to the atrium area. I do feel that it was a miss not to have an dedicated observation lounge which I think princess passengers would have enjoyed being of the older clientele . The shops look very similar to other princess ships, just more spread out and the casino looked as to be expected.

Bars:-
So many bars to choose from you will not be disappointed. Crooners looks great but very similar to how it is on other ships. Other bars include Bellini's, wheelhouse, vines, lobby bar and sea view bar. Have to say I was a little disappointed in the sea view bar. I think they could have made more of this in terms of using it as a mini indoor observation lounge, but still a great idea.

Restaurants:-
again, very similar to other ships in terms of main dinning rooms but these have been enhanced and are truly stunning with spacious seating and more tables for 2 than ever before. Sabatinies has been expanded and located to near the piazza. Looked fab. As does Crown Grill. Both of these restaurants have a reasonable fee of $20-25. Alfredo's the new pizzeria is great. Amazing food , atmosphere, menu and its fee free. The sushi bar in the main atrium looks beautiful and food delicious but never got a chance to try. Main difference on this ship is the horizon court/bistro. This area has been majorly expanded and Princess have taken this to another level dividing it into a bistro for a quick bite, and court for a substantial buffet meal including indian, Mexican, Chinese and others. They have also incorporated the crab shack and fondu in this area-for a small fee.

Top deck:-
Fantastic top deck with the largest pools I have seen at sea. Movies under the stars has been expanded and the screen is double the size. I feel princess could make more of this at night by putting a few movies on instead of one or two. The adults only area is wonderful, especially the sanctuary and pool area. Stunning and the best in the industry!

Cabins:-
We had a standard balcony cabin on caribe deck. Very comfortable cabin but I was slightly disappointed with the shower curtain coming back. Think the way other cruise lines have gone with the glass door is the way to go. TV is great as is the new entertainment system "movies on demand"

Crew:-
Excellent and friendly crew who seem to be getting to ropes with the new ship. Give the staff a few weeks to settle in and this will be up to scratch.

Overall, great 2 day cruise. We have booked in September which we are very excited about
And feel the little niggles will have been sorted out by the. The ship as I have previously stated is wonderful, a huge improvement to other princess ships with the azing piazza, expanded pool deck and fabulous dinning options. Royal Princess is now a real contender in its industry.

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Sail Date: June 2013

We booked this Cruise in January 2013 to celebrate a friends special birthday. We have sailed with Princess on five previous occasions and have been upgraded to Platinum status. Princess have, for the past year made a huge deal about ... Read More

We booked this Cruise in January 2013 to celebrate a friends special birthday. We have sailed with Princess on five previous occasions and have been upgraded to Platinum status. Princess have, for the past year made a huge deal about this Cruise with loads on videos and emails. To be honest, we were very excited at the thought of going to this trip.

 

Embarkation was fine. As a Platinum guest we had priority. We were lucky enough to be amongst the first new guests on board. The looked great. Although the length of the ship does not seem any longer than other ships we have been on, Crown Princess, Sea Princess, Ruby Princess it is a lot taller. Everything smelt brand new. The Atrium is a marvel. top points to Princess for the new design. The layout of this was somewhat different from the norm, which was a pleasant surprise.

 

Upon embarking, as one does, we headed straight up to the Horizon Court. The Horizon Court was very light and airy with the décor being very pleasant. Instead of the usual buffet lines, the design is totally different with long self service counters with a variety of different foods. Unfortunately, a lot of the food was repeated and what appeared to be a great choice turned out not to be. The hot food was not hot. The food was very bland with many passengers making derogatory comments. The service was good.

 


After lunch we headed to our Cabin. The cabin was very nice. Similar in size to what one would expect. We had a balcony cabin made up with a queen bed. A nice touch was the wall mounted wide screen TV with a great selection of films and TV box sets on demand at no extra cost. The cabin steward was great., Our room was clean and tidy at all times. The guy was polite and unobtrusive. Room service was good and on time.

 


Princess then, in my opinion really messed up. The first night was billed as a Formal night. The customary champagne waterfall was scheduled. We arrived as billed. No fuss was made of the new ship and the captain said nothing. Only a few drinks were handed around and I didn't see any canapés. A huge opportunity to welcome everyone aboard and to make everyone feel special was missed.

 


We opted, with our friends for anytime dining. In the afternoon we had phoned and made a reservation. No complaints surrounding this process. The food however was unimaginative, was cold and bland. Very disappointing.

 


After Dinner, having explored the ship we headed for the Show. The Princess Theatre on this ship has been designed differently than the other ships. Whilst the seats are more comfortable they no longer have trays to put your drinks. Only two narrow walkways now existing from the top to the bottom. The scenery and lighting was excellent as was the sound. The Princess Dancers were fantastic although the show itself was not to my taste.

 

In my opinion, the real let down of this trip was the Cruise Director and his staff. We have been unfortunate enough to have had the same Cruise Director, Ron Goodman on a previous trip. The guy was never around the ship and I don't think we saw his staff more than once. The guy is totally false.

 

We were due to visit Guernsey, but due to poor weather we could not dock. Princess had a captive audience. Hundreds of people were milling around the central atrium most sitting bored. The ship hurriedly produced a new Princess Patter but it was clear that the Ship not only had no B plan, but didn't have a C, D or E Plan. A friend of mine approach Goodman and said to the effect, hey, do something, you have a captive audience, this is a new ship, people are bored all he said was, 'thanks for your comments' and walked off. This guy and his team are doing Princess no favours.

 


All in all, having taken a number of cruises before, our party of 8 all felt let down by this whole experience.

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Sail Date: June 2013

This is without a doubt a lovely ship and my review like others will detail some aspects that need improving. It is a subjective thing to write a review such as this but im a firm believer that reviews like this can make other peoples ... Read More

This is without a doubt a lovely ship and my review like others will detail some aspects that need improving. It is a subjective thing to write a review such as this but im a firm believer that reviews like this can make other peoples vacations better for the future. Bare in mind this was a 2 night trip.


The Positives. Shows were fantastic and generally all the areas of the ship worked very well. Loved the big bed in the Stateroom along with the massive TV. Food was excellent at all times. Nice selection of films in the stateroom. Loved the idea of a full TV film studio, that’s an excellent choice.


Negatives. I do wonder who buys the WiFi package on these ships for some $70 !! Shower in room 530 packed up one evening at peak time, this might just be a glitch. The main Theatre has no room to place a drink. Mid Ship stair well, there is none, you get a lift or nothing. Stairs only front and back. No colour coded carpets on Port / Starboard. Serving staff don’t always understand English. They got it wrong a few times. I asked for Porridge and no one knew what I was on about. No BINGO, oh come on, all ships have something like Bingo to entertain. Missing a trick here guys. No Party feel to this launch week event, where was the Party feel, there was nothing. No Souvenir too, it’s a special week, would you not expect a small gift? Staff in Restraints can be variable, we were a bit rushed the second night and there was not really a choice to come back to same serving staff the next night. We had to book over the phone. Last night no Party feel, they closed the Casino at 12 !! as we had entered UK waters. Could we not have just stayed back a bit, it was the last night? We went to Guernsey and back but could not get off, this was outside the control of the crew and ship of course but could we not at least have seen Guernsey from a point at sea, we saw nothing, we could have been anywhere.

The Buffet has no real flow, you go to get some fruit and then wonder where you might get a bowl from. Staff take plates and bits away from you before your really finished. Oh and can we just apply our own tips to staff. This works better on other companies like Thomson's as those guys really work for their tips.


All in all this was a good trip and we would go on the ship again. It does need to have a better feel though, it just felt a bit stilted.

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Sail Date: January 2013
First, we arrived in Houston, on Jan 12th, and looked and looked for Princess people. We finally found the table with 2 people hidden under the escalators. On the table, were many paddles that had PRINCESS printed on them. But, no ... Read More
First, we arrived in Houston, on Jan 12th, and looked and looked for Princess people. We finally found the table with 2 people hidden under the escalators. On the table, were many paddles that had PRINCESS printed on them. But, no people to hold the paddles up and direct pasengers. We checked in and were assigned bus #5. We were told, would be an hour to 2 hours. Then, we had to take our luggage to the bus an hour later. Normally Princess takes the luggage at the carrasel, and we don't see it until it arrives in the room. We arrived in Galveston about 2:10 and I told my husband, something is wrong, there is not a Princess ship docked. When we got off the bus, and rounded up our luggage, we were told, there is a delay, and could be a few hours. Now, I am still wondering where the Crown Princess is. We headed down the dock to a restaurant, and about 3:30pm, here comes the Crown Princess. By 4:30, all or most of the passengers booked on the Jan 12th cruise aboard the Crown are in the terminal and those not in terminal are driving around waiting for a parking lot to open. No open spots as the cars still parked belong to passengers still on the Crown. This terminal in Galveston was not meant to hold 3,000 passengers. There were maybe seats for 1200 people. Leaving about 1800 people with no place to sit. About 4pm, Princess announced, Sorry, we are bringing in more chairs, water and sandwichs. None of the above promised items appeared. Most of us are sprawled out on the floor, and wondering, are we ever gonna get aboard. Elite were boarded first, 8:15pm, and the last were welcomed aboard by 10:15pm. First drill held at 10:50pm and the Crown set sail at midnight. When we were boarding, the photo guys from the Crown were stopping everyone, and wanting to take "Welcome aboard pictures" and this was slowing the boarding process down as some were to kind to say "you got to be kidding". I cannot say what we said, would be kicked out I think. Princess will argue, they have no control over an act of god. And I agree 100% with that. But, fog is common in Galveston, and they should have had a plan in place just in case this above scenerio happen. Many folks never made the fire drill as they were tired, and because the drill was going to happen, they could not get any thing to eat at the buffet. First time cruisers, and there were many, stated, "First cruise, and last cruise." Read Less
Sail Date: February 2012
We sailed on a seven day Western Caribbean Cruise which immediately followed the "cruise to no where." As such, the Crown Princess just completed its 48 hour sanitation and cleaning. Embarkation - We arrived the night before the cruise ... Read More
We sailed on a seven day Western Caribbean Cruise which immediately followed the "cruise to no where." As such, the Crown Princess just completed its 48 hour sanitation and cleaning. Embarkation - We arrived the night before the cruise and stayed at the Embassy Suites near Port Everglades. Ended up with free transportation from the hotel to the Port, arriving at the Terminal at approximately 1:00 p.m. Hotel has a great location, only needs a near by Starbucks to better! Room was clean and ready. However, price was a little on the high side. Although we were forewarned via a phone call from Princess that we would need to report to the convention center, when we arrived at the Terminal it was operating as normal. So, no convention center waiting for us! Being Platinum members we made use of the Preferred Member entrance and were through the embarkation process and on board within fifteen minutes. Stateroom - We were in a category AA mini-suite and found it to be clean and ready for occupancy. It provided plenty of storage space with a large bathroom and tub. The balcony was appointed with a table, two chairs and two footrests, which were very nice additions. Our cabin attendant was exceptional in looking after us, bringing us champagne and our pre-purchased excursion tickets within an hour. Throughout the cruise he was attentive without being obtrusive and very pleasant to converse with, constantly asking if we needing anything to make our vacation more enjoyable. (Considering what the crew went through the weeks before with the Noro virus, he exceeded our expectations in every way) Food - We ate all but one of our dinners in the Main Dining Room, having selected traditional late dinner. The other dinner was at Sabatini's. The food in the Main Dining Room was very good with no real complaints. The only bump in the road was the first night dinner service. Service was slow and they seemed to be short staffed for the first hour of service. However, to be fair, when we arrived at 8:15 for dinner several tables from the earlier dinner service were full and still eating. This created a snow ball effect into the late dinner service. Waiter and assistant were very attentive, personable and tried their best to make us comfortable. The International Cafe was highly enjoyable for those quick lunches and mid-day snacks. (Loved the fresh chocolate chip cookies and wife loved the Gelato!) This was the first time we tried Sabatini's since it switched to a la carte ordering. While the food was very good we missed the non stop parade of food that epitomized Sabatini's and made it different from the other dining options on board. Excursions - First stop was Grand Cayman's - a simple day at the beach with a Tiki Bar! When we first arrived the beach had quite a few beach goers. However, within 45 minutes the place became mostly deserted. So, private beach party! Next stop was Roatan. We did the Eco-Hike Tour and Pirates Bay with "Big Mike." After eating for a few days it felt great to be outside and exercising. The hike was moderately difficult but certainly doable provided that you are in reasonable shape. Belize equalled the Lamanai Ruins Tour. Long day as it took approximately one hour to arrive at the location where we were to pick up the boats for the trip to the ruins, then another hour or so by boat to arrive at the ruins. However, the trip was worth the commute! The ruins were highly enjoyable and stunning. The view at the top of the Main Temple was spectacular! The final stop was in Cozumel Mexico. Here we went to the X-Caret Eco Park. Options for everybody abounded! Was there in time to see the release of turtles back into the wild. Simply a relaxing and enjoyable way to end our excursions and turn to sail back home. Disembarkation - There was a slight delay in disembarkation. We were suppose to be off the ship at 9:30 but didn't disembark to after 10:30. However, we were lucky enough to find a seat in the lounge. All in all the cruise was very relaxing and enjoyable. There were, of course, some issues and difficulties. However, I believe that a vacation is what you make of it and what you put into it. Given the fact that the crew had two weeks of Noro outbreaks before our cruise, they were all pleasant, attentive and tried their best to make things enjoyable for the passengers. Unfortunately, I cannot say that all the passengers were as accompadating! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2011
sailed from Southampton to Guernsey and Laharve France. Cost was £948 for Three days. This was our first and and did not know really what to expect apart from high standards of service and exquisite cuisine as we had been told by ... Read More
sailed from Southampton to Guernsey and Laharve France. Cost was £948 for Three days. This was our first and and did not know really what to expect apart from high standards of service and exquisite cuisine as we had been told by other cruisers.

Well what a shock we had instore! Very disappointed in the cruise as a whole!

very little entertainment provided throughout the day, We were very bored especially when we could not get off the ship to go to Guernsey due to bad weather! I feel the activities team should have been more pro-active and provided some entertaiment knowing this.The Entertainment that was already scheduled was for the older generations and we are not gamblers! Therefore there was nothing for us to do but watch TV!!!!!Very poor indeed!!!

Could not book into any restaurants as serial cruises had already booked all the places months in advance!!!

Food in buffet was bog standard with very cheap cuts of meat and lacking in vegetables, all meals were just warm or cold!and not enough seats for everyone, we had to sit on deck near the pool to eat!!!!!!!

Room was nice though, lovely and clean with fresh towels Twice daily! Beds were hard though and gave me terrible backache and the pillows stank of stale sweaty heads!!!! I used a bath towel rolled up for a pillow.

Drinks on board were very expensive and gratuity of 15% is added onto every receipt!!! along with $22 per person per day gratuity!!!! This is disgusting!!!

I AM A NURSE MANAGER AND NO ONE TIPS ME FOR MY service!!!!!

Our first and last cruise I might add!!! never again OUr Bill was $400 for 2.5 days we boarded on Saturday at 3pm and was kicked out of our room at 8am on Tuesday we only spent $15 dollars in a shop!! the rest was about $200+ Gratuities and the cost of alcholic beverages for Two people!!!!! We were not even spoken to on departure after being robbed for Three days!!!!! they could have at least acknowledged us, they were too busy welcoming the next bunch of unsuspecting victims!!!!!!!

If Ihis is cruising you can stick it!!!!!!!

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Sail Date: September 2011
We have always enjoyed cruising with Princess and this last little mini-cruise really topped the list. We decided that to get even closer to reaching the Elite level, we would take this cruise. We booked 2 insides and we were very luckily ... Read More
We have always enjoyed cruising with Princess and this last little mini-cruise really topped the list. We decided that to get even closer to reaching the Elite level, we would take this cruise. We booked 2 insides and we were very luckily upgraded to Caribe 752, an aft penthouse category. We were astonished at the size of the suite of course but to be able to stand on the balcony and to see the Seattle skyline was amazing On the balcony, we had a teak circular table, 4 chairs, and 2 teak loungers, each with its own red plaid blanket.

The huge bathroom was in 2 sections, connected by a teak lined door. The single sink had ample space around it, the toiletries were prettily displayed in a metal container, and the upgraded towels were hung on gold-trimmed racks.

The other section of the bathroom had the clear glass shower stall (good size) and the jacuzzi tub,again with a container of bath salts nearby, plus 4 plush extra large bath towels. Beautiful marble walls and floor.

The makeup area was indeed spacious, lots of mirrors, hairdryer attached nearby. The number of pull out drawers in this area is greatly appreciated, especially for a longer cruise.

The queen size (king size?) bed was truly comfortable, topped with 6 pillows. In a suite you can ask for and exchange pillows (ie feather, etc.) Lots of lighting options throughout the suite. From the bed you can look out the balcony windows. There are 2 balcony doors, one in the bedroom section and one in the sitting area. The 2 areas are separated by a curtain.

The sitting area comprises of a chair and a sofa, both comfy, and an oval glass topped coffee table. When we entered the suite, we saw the beautiful flower arrangement (roses, tiger lilies, greenery) on one of the side tables by the couch. There is also another smaller flower display in the bathroom. (orchids)

The walls are tastefully decorated with pictures; the entire suite is very peaceful feeling.

The suite also has a wet bar and a mini-bar set. The mini-fridge located under the flat screen TV/DVD also has additional drinks such as Perrier water, soft drinks and beer. The second TV is located in the bedroom section.

Ample closet space is provided with 2 rows of closet rods, wooden hangers, and shelves. As in all cabins, there is a safe.

Embarkation Process: we departed Vancouver using a bus service that took us to Pier 91, Seattle. We arrived at the Terminal before 11:30 and by 12:30, we were in our cabin/suite. So we were pleased with the Seattle embarkation system.

Lunch: International Restaurant is open on embarkation day so we partook of the excellent services of our waiter, Fernando and his assistant. Broiled salmon was one of the choices and it was excellent.

Dinner: Santa Fe Restaurant, table 352: good service. We found the area a bit noisy (we had a table by the window) Prime rib was tasty as was the shrimp cocktail.

Evening performances: We were fortunate to hear the Korean Drum Band, a group of young ladies who entertained us well with their talented drumming.

This was followed by the Princess dancers and singers who performed "Piano Man"--excellent costuming, good singing, and as usual, fabulous dance steps!

Fellow Passengers: for this one night cruise, filled with mainly Canadians, we saw all age groups, from children to seniors into their eighties.

Noise level, overall: the atmosphere was very positive throughout the areas of the ship that we visited. We did not get a chance to visit the pool areas.

Overall look of the Ship: I personally could not find fault with any area of the ship. The flooring was clean, tidy, polished; the staircase areas were well maintained. The public washroom were all clean and well kept up. I did not see any areas needing painting, carpets in distress, etc. Of course, I was only on this ship for one night.

I was very impressed with the layout of the present Sapphire. I like the new change of having the International Cafe and Vines, but it is unfortunate they are reducing the size of the Internet Cafe (it will lose the windows it presently has) and the Writing Room area, which is perfect for sitting and reading.

Disembarkation in Vancouver: we were lucky to be in the Platinum Waiting area (Wheelhouse Bar) and we managed to be off the ship by 9:15. We could have arranged for an earlier time but chose not to. The only glitch in the system is not with Princess or its procedures, but with the Canada Customs (lack of staff) to process over 2700 passengers in a timely manner.

Summary: The Sapphire is a gorgeous ship. We experienced wonderful staff, very friendly and helpful. The staff in the Boutiques were all wonderful too. We have a number of cruises under our belt (not all Princess) and we walked away with a very positive feeling about this one day cruise.

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