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48 Vancouver Princess Emerald Princess Cruise Reviews

We were looking forward to Pacific coast stops but Princess revised the itinerary by four days to allow for additional time in dry dock. Vancouver embarkation was smooth as silk and the three day cruise to Los Angles was uneventful with ... Read More
We were looking forward to Pacific coast stops but Princess revised the itinerary by four days to allow for additional time in dry dock. Vancouver embarkation was smooth as silk and the three day cruise to Los Angles was uneventful with two ok production shows and many onboard activities. Dined at Curtis Stone "Share" restaurant which was absolutely superb. Also dined at Steamers which was not ready for prime time. Muscles were dry lacking in cream sauce and some of the clams were cold. Others we spoke with had a much better experience, so they must have improved during the cruise. The new "Fresh Market" is a huge improvement over the crowded Horizon set up. Much more space to maneuver. We used Michelangelo any time dining room which was excellent throughout the cruise. The Dining Room Captain and door assistant were friendly and efficiently processed the many any time diners. Everything we ordered was elegantly severed and tasted great. The Panama canal crossing was made exceptional by a very knowledgeable speaker. She had a informed and unique way of expressing the history of the old canal while informing us of the construction required for the new canal. Our cabin was spacious and kept very clean by our steward. Having a bath tub and the additional shower space was a plus. We had been to all of the stops on other cruises except for Huatulco Mexico where we took a "land & sea" excursion through Princess. The contract company handling the excursion was disorganized so the excursion started and finished an hour late with a lot of waiting time in between sea & land portions. Sights along the way were good. The enrichment destination speaker was outstanding (same lady gave the canal talk). She was very thorough and gave great advise in the time allotted. The fitness center was well equipped and clean. All in all it was a very nice relaxing cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
It left from Vancouver, so that meant less flying to or from the ship as we live in British Columbai. The Emerald has just come out of a refit that took place in Victoria. There were new carpets in the cabins and in the public areas. ... Read More
It left from Vancouver, so that meant less flying to or from the ship as we live in British Columbai. The Emerald has just come out of a refit that took place in Victoria. There were new carpets in the cabins and in the public areas. The Fresh World Marketplace is a makeover of the Horizon Buffet. It is beautiful. The colours and the accents and the new furniture make the area a very comfortable place. The layout of the serving stations is much improved so that not everyone has to be in a long line to go past the food. If you want salad, you go to the salad area. If you want a sandwich, they are in a separate station. Planks and Steamers are new at the rear of the FWM in the evenings. It appears that you get a lot of food for the extra $12. Share is a dining experience. Six courses are artfully arranged on smaller plates and taste delicious. Magic To Do was presented twice. An incredible production show. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Haven't cruised for a few years so it was nice to be able to do so again. We chose a short repo cruise to LA to be followed by a few days at Disneyland. DH insisted we do carry on and I must admit I will gladly do again as ... Read More
Haven't cruised for a few years so it was nice to be able to do so again. We chose a short repo cruise to LA to be followed by a few days at Disneyland. DH insisted we do carry on and I must admit I will gladly do again as boarding and leaving the ship was extremely quick. We were actually one of the first ones on and off the ship. We had cabin E209 and actually liked it a lot. Our Steward was very good, asked for bathrobes and got them the next day. We had the new luxury beds and very soft but comfortable. The weather was very good for a coastal with only day chilly day at sea, the last day people were swimming a lot more in the pools. We had lunch in the MDR the first day, sadly my salmon was raw in the middle. A mah breakfast the next day and after that we stuck to buffet for breakfasts, lunch and then ate at The Salty Dog (very good try the mac and cheese YUM), Vines (actually really good for a light supper) and Share (this was wonderful). We did get the ultimate drink package and felt we broke even with a few cocktails, glasses of wine, special coffees, fresh OJ and lots of bottled waters. Over all it was a great cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This was my husband's and I first cruise celebrating an anniversary. We live in LA and flew to Vancouver to take the cruise from there. We arrived to Vancouver two days before the cruise and had a great time exploring the city, we ... Read More
This was my husband's and I first cruise celebrating an anniversary. We live in LA and flew to Vancouver to take the cruise from there. We arrived to Vancouver two days before the cruise and had a great time exploring the city, we also had a trip to "Squamish" which I highly recommend. Day of the cruise we arrived at the port around 12:00pm, checking in was easy and smooth, we found out that we were upgraded from a balcony to a mini suite which was very nice. The suite itself was modern, furnishing was nice with plenty of storage space. Bathroom was a good size. We had reserved a specialty dinner in the crown grill for the first night, both food and service were great. I recommend getting the chef sampler for dessert, yumm :) The Buffet at the 15th floor was good for breakfast and we had breakfast there for 4 days. Tip (try to be there before 8:30am as it gets very crowded and you will not find seating). We also had traditional seating dinner at Michelangelo dining and Boccelli dining with positive experience with food and service. Everything was great and everybody was welcoming except when I called guest services to ask about a port to airport transfer, a lady with (Russian or eastern European accent) was very rude and was talking to me like I was 6 yrs old who cannot read. That totally ruined my day. I reported the incident, someone called me back to apologize, they said they will investigate, but I never knew the outcome. I tried the spa with a pedicure, I recommend reserving online at least 7 days before cruise date to get better prices. Spa employees were friendly and my pedicure was great. For entertainment, the comedian was really good and funny. I also recommend getting to the theater at least 15min before the show starts to find seating as it fills up quickly. There was also one of the cruise directors singing Adele songs, she was great. I wish there were more of that type of entertainment. As for the weather in October, it was a little cold for me, I was wearing a jacket all the time, and I was freezing trying to watch the sunset at the 17 deck, but other passengers seems to be fine with short sleeves:). Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Good times on the Emerald! We were celebrating a big birthday & a wild & crazy 2nd wedding. Very good time had by all. The Skywalker lounge was a great meeting point for everyone. I found the staterooms were rather small so ... Read More
Good times on the Emerald! We were celebrating a big birthday & a wild & crazy 2nd wedding. Very good time had by all. The Skywalker lounge was a great meeting point for everyone. I found the staterooms were rather small so definitely book a mini suite with a balcony! Beds were incredibly comfortable. Service was very good, too. We had a minor issue with our bathrobes NOT being in the room when we arrived even though we had requested them previously. We got them on the 2nd day though. The restaurants were well appointed. The maitre de always tried to seat us wherever we wanted. (had a picky friend that was being moved constantly) but they took everything in their stride!!! The cruise director Alexander & his assistant, Ruby were outstanding. They were "personalty plus." The most hilarious activity of the entire cruise (only 4 days) was the dance contest. OH SO hilarious!!!i The dancers in the evening shows were very good, too. The singers were mediocre except for the trio, 2 brothers & another friend. Jonathon & his brother + a friend were the best act of the entire cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This was our 6th cruise in the last 20 year, so we don't consider ourselves real "cruisers", but I've been a sailor for the past 30 years and have read several behind-the-scenes books about the industry. We've ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise in the last 20 year, so we don't consider ourselves real "cruisers", but I've been a sailor for the past 30 years and have read several behind-the-scenes books about the industry. We've spent about 50 days total on a cruise ship and we do have a process when we travel this way. We have sailed the Caribbean, off the coast of Mexico, Hawaii, and the Atlantic/Mediterranean. We look for cruises that have few sea days and lots of ports of call. I do have to say that we have never had a bad cruise and will continue to return to ships when it fits the bill. We live in Hawaii, Waikiki specifically, and look for itineraries that do not travel to "tropical" locations. We have a no sand in the house rule. The colder destination was one reason we chose this sailing. The other reasons were: We couldn't match up airfare, hotel in a close destination. We only had a few days and had to fly from Hawaii. The price was right at roughly $100/person/day (before the extras we purchase) with a balcony. The ship was relocating and direction of travel would be one way. And lastly, it was my wife's birthday. This is a great way to cruise at a reduced fares and I would encourage people new to cruising to take a short repositioning cruise. My concerns centered around the crew contracts. This sailing was a small leg of a repositioning cruise of around 30 days. The ship is going into dry dock next year. What happens in Vancouver (embarkation) to the crew? Are some or many rotating out? Are they preparing to rotate out in Los Angeles (debarkation) and are more concerned about getting their ducks in a row than taking care of me? Whatever the case, our interactions with all crew were fantastic. Worrying for no reason at all. The cruise departs from Vancouver. That's cool, but Hawaiian doesn't fly there. Can't use miles. The ship only stops in Astoria. Where? Oh yeah, I remember the dreaded Colombia River Bar from my sailing days. Two days at sea. YAWN! My expectations were low. Embarkation took place in Vancouver. The process began with baggage drop. We arrived from the airport around 9:00am. The bag drop line was getting really long. We had some coffee and breakfast and headed down to join the line around 10:00. It opened and even though we were at the back, waited about 10 mins to literally drop off our one suitcase. It was incredibly fast. Now what? Check in? A very friendly Princess employee suggested we take in some sights in Vancouver and return to check in at around 2:45pm. That's exactly what we did and walked right on board our Emerald Princess in about 3 mins. Now that I'm on the ship I'm looking for signs of wear as reported by other review authors. Sorry folks. The ship looks great. The only sign of moderate wear was peeling paint on the ceiling of our balcony and rust in places. I've owned 13 vessels and they all had rust somewhere. My wife and I both commented on how nice the ship looked. Our stateroom was a little smaller than others we've had, but it certainly worked for two people. Luggage was waiting so we unpacked and waited for room service to bring our pre-orderd bottles of booze. I headed out to the bar with both our ship i.d. cards to get our mixers as we also purchased the unlimited soda package. I really recommend buying your alcohol from the ship and making your own cocktails. It saves quite a bit. We were on the Lido (15) deck and the bars were easy to access. It was around 4:00 and I noticed some long lines for food. No worry, I'll get a burger in 20 mins or so. The lines quickly dissipated and we found this was the way the lines behaved for the entire cruise. Muster drill took place in the Princess theater and we didn't have to bring our life vests. Nice. We were soon on our way, but never made it to the MDR or buffett. We had cocktails on our balcony while watching the sunset. Later we got some pizza and a hotdog and were in bed by nine. Don't judge we took a red eye and didn't sleep a wink. Bright and early the next day I was up and walking the decks. This is always my favorite time on ships as it's just the crew, mops, and me. I was searching for the Calypso (I think) Bar as it opened at 6:00am and the wife wanted a bloody. Picked up some breakfast from the buffet. I was really impressed by the buffet food which I usually find fairly pedestrian. You serve yourself with tongs that everyone touches, but there is a crew member stationed at the entrance and will not let you enter until after you Purell your hands. This is important and another cruise line, Holland, doesn't even let you touch the tongs. They plate your food for you. That is a great idea and I hope other lines adopt this. Now if we can only disinfect the chips in the casino. We spent the next couple of hours watching the banks of the Columbia river from Skywalkers lounge. The views are great from the lounge, but it does have a significant vibration that you may find distracting. I know of a much better spot. Later on that. We docked in Astoria at 11:00am and were off on our bus trip to see Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach, and Seaside. Touristy, but that doesn't bother us. We had to take the shopping excursion because the only car rental in Astoria closes at 12:30pm. What? Back on the boat, cocktails, nap, and 9:30 reservation for the Crown Grill. I've found most of the surcharges for the specialty restaurants are worth it and usually eat at those locations more than the MDR. The Crown Grill was very good and they didn't even or forgot to charge us a corkage fee. After dinner headed out to the Casino and began what ended up being one of our best gambling trips ever. We paid for our trip. That has never happened. The lion's share was taken from their ugly brown craps table. I love that ugly brown felt. It was a very late night including a 1:45am call to room service for a hot dog and some flan. The two go great together............when you're three sheets to the wind! The next two days at sea were relaxing. We would get up early, grab some breakfast and here I will let you in on a little secret. We never eat breakfast or lunch in the MDR. Takes way too long and I'm pretty sure the waiter heads over to the buffet and loads up your plate. Okay, okay, I know they actually prepare your food, but I've never been blown away by anyone's breakfast. So hit the buffet. After you get your breakfast from the Horizon buffet, walk up one deck(16) to Share. Share is closed, but Adagio, the bar next to it is open, but not serving alcohol. It is beautiful, comfortable, quiet and a great place to eat in peace. The views are amazing and I recommend seeking out this little gem of a getaway place on board. After you finish breakfast, take your dirty dishes back down to the buffet area. Don't leave them sitting on the bar in Adagio. No one is there to bus them. We then would get a beverage, play some cribbage, get another beverage, walk around, repeat. We've taken our kids on several of our cruises and every time there were throngs of other kids, but it didn't bother us. They would form roving bands of sugar fueled shenanigan creators. No wonder I've seen so many reviews complaining about kids. We did a poor job, like other parents, of monitoring our kids and for this I apologize. Our kids were in their early teens when we did this. Now that they have graduated from college, we prefer fewer of the little people. On this particular cruise there were very few kids, but more than I anticipated. They were all well behaved. We now look for cruises in Sept, Oct, April, or May. The kids are in school. One night we had dinner at Share which was very good. My only complaint is that they were woefully understaffed. The two servers were taking drink and food orders, running the food, busing the tables and working their butts off. I pulled our server over that let her know I appreciated how hard she was working and that if Curtis Stone was in the restaurant, he would not like what we were seeing. That's my only gripe. Our server got a fat tip. We've been amazed that on all of our 6 sailings, the casinos are mostly empty. We love that. The craps table didn't open until 8:30pm so I played some poker and did well there also. Oh, did I mention that we killed at the craps table. I know I did, but we REALLY killed it. The only show we saw was Uptown. The singers are really good, but their banter had that awkwardness to it when you see a skit going off the rails. It felt forced, but overall the show is good. Bingo is a crackup. I go just to watch the people. On another cruise my wife and I won back-to-back games. We were infamous with the blue hair crowd and I was wary of getting whacked with a HurryCane so I kept my guard up. Bingo can be a serious business for some. As the sea days counted down, we visited every nook and cranny passengers are allowed to venture, played pickleball, and tried really hard to finish all the gin, bourbon and vodka we bought. We didn't. That was definitely a first. Debarkation took 4 seconds. We popped out of the ship like a zit. 45 mins later we were relaxing in our hotel room at LAX (my wife works for a large hotel chain) and caught the 6:00pm flight back to Honolulu. Overall we were very happy with this short sailing and everything Princess had to offer. The Emerald Princess is a very nice ship and if the price is right, we will return. As we try out different lines we are beginning to get a feel for the type of atmosphere we want. As a result, we now know what we do not want. Princess is now high on our list. Well done. Mahalo nui loa Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
I just retired, was looking for a short cruise on the west coast to celebrate. I've only been on one cruise and that was in the early 90s. I'm so glad I found this Princess Cruise as my party was treated like royalty. Crew ... Read More
I just retired, was looking for a short cruise on the west coast to celebrate. I've only been on one cruise and that was in the early 90s. I'm so glad I found this Princess Cruise as my party was treated like royalty. Crew members were all very nice and helpful, making this celebratory cruise fun. The activities and shows onboard were fun and entertaining as well as the excursion we took in Astoria. I would highly recommend this cruise. My only complaint would be that I found the food to be somewhat bland and mediocre. However, there was plenty of food if wanted. If leaving from Vancouver, arrive a day or two early, more if you wish and take advantage of sightseeing the beautiful city. I wish we would have arrived a few days earlier but still enjoyed walking the downtown area with the day we arrived ahead of time. If needing a reasonable priced hotel to stay, look at the Days Inn, Downtown as it is only two blocks away from the port, walking distance. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Embarkation went smoothly; there was consideration for our limited mobility (we both had walkers) and did not wait in long line-ups. Our cabin was on Plaza deck and as we approached we heard a considerable level of noise in the hallway ... Read More
Embarkation went smoothly; there was consideration for our limited mobility (we both had walkers) and did not wait in long line-ups. Our cabin was on Plaza deck and as we approached we heard a considerable level of noise in the hallway which was a mystery to us at first. The cabin was spacious and met all our needs. Accessibility aboard the ship was never a problem, except in the hallway outside our stateroom. We were disappointed with getting around the steward's laundry and service carts; the hallway is narrow. We enjoyed our dining experience. Staff was considerate of our limited mobility and sat us near the entrance.Similarly in the buffet, the staff assisted us with our plates taking them to our table, as well as providing us with our beverage requests. We did go to one show, which was entertaining, however in choosing to sit in the accessible seating area at the end of a row, I had to get up six times to let people pass by so they could sit with others. I finally started to say no and directed the people to go to the other end of the row. We discovered a great entertainer in one of the bars and spent most evenings enjoying his talent instead of going to the theater. Similarly assistance was provided as went ashore in Astoria. It was the attitude which impressed us; we were never hurried along, the staff was always patient and helpful. Disembarkation was disappointing in terms of walking-we could have been directed to a closer exit even though we did not request wheelchair assistance (I noted that those passengers who were in wheelchairs, appeared to exit closer to the gangway). Next time, I will ask. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Went on Pacific Coast tour in October and I couldn't believe how horrible the buffet food was on this trip. I admit this is my second cruise on Princess and most likely my last as the thought of being on a cruise for a long duration ... Read More
Went on Pacific Coast tour in October and I couldn't believe how horrible the buffet food was on this trip. I admit this is my second cruise on Princess and most likely my last as the thought of being on a cruise for a long duration and having to eat horrid food with questionable sanitation at tables each time we eat there is not my idea of vacation. The food was bland, dry, and at times tasted awful. Buffet service is slow cause everyone had to wait for their utensils once they find a table to sit. I already have gotten my food and now I have to wait for utensils by finding and asking the waiter for utensils...which was not always easy. Also cream for my coffee was crazy. Had to also ask waiter for cream since they don't put it out at the beverage area, Napkins, what? Again had to ask the waiter. Waiters were busy getting utensils for people that waiting for cream which often took a while that my coffee was cold. Crazy. We couldn't wait to get off the ship to eat fresh, tasty food, which is saying a lot! The ship's layout was very strange to badly laid out. I understand that these ships are huge and takes time to manage it. But if I keep having to go up on flight and down again just to get to the dining room or theater is totally baffling and strange to me why one can't simply walk thru to the other end of the ship is the common areas. Maybe they want people to get their exercise walking stairs? Can't imagine how difficult it must be for the handicap having to wait for elevators which was really slow. The ship's layout is the worst I've had to maneuver. Ports were nonexistent, tho I admit I went on this cruise just to get away, relax and enjoy dining experience. Not much in Astoria, tho we did enjoy ourselves at the brewery...hmm, why couldn't it be like this on the cruise. I did complain to Princess Cruise and all I got was a "I'm sorry" from them. We'll I'm sorry I won't be going on anymore Princess Cruises. I've never been disappointed on any of the Royal Carribbean and NCL cruises considering the many, many times I cruised with RCCL and NCL. Guess Princess Cruises thinks they are great enough to not try to entice disappointed guests back. I book many group tours with friends and families and there is no way I will subject them to a cruiseline that does not back up it's service and food. NOR do not value it's past guests. Entertainment OK. Had better experience on other cruise lines, esp RCCL. Activities. Minimal activities. Mostly activities to try to get you to the shops with raffles. Eh, not for me. Anyways, my take, Princess Cruise line from my experience does not values it's past guests and back up it's service and food. Will not be taking Princess again. NO WAY. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We took this cruise because my husband is wholly dependent on a walker due to his rehabilitating from two broken femurs (thighbones). It was convenient to where we live and didn't involve air travel. In addition, it was mostly sea ... Read More
We took this cruise because my husband is wholly dependent on a walker due to his rehabilitating from two broken femurs (thighbones). It was convenient to where we live and didn't involve air travel. In addition, it was mostly sea days. It started off badly, with the wheelchair supervisor slamming the footrest down on my husband's shin while assisting him into the chair. He didn't apologize or offer a band aid to quell the bleeding. We waited more than an hour for an attendant to get us to the room. The ship is really too long for someone with difficulty in walking any distance with a walker and that is my own fault for booking it. There was a helicopter rescue while at sea and we were denied access to our room for 5 hours. The announcement came while we were at breakfast and we couldn't get to our medications, reading materials, glasses. There was just about no place in the public rooms to sit (all occupied by the three floors of people who were evacuated) and we finally found the last two chairs in the library. This my 4th helicopter rescue at sea and we've never been denied access to anything but the immediate area. We could not attend some activities due to not being able to get from one place to another to get to an aisle or otherwise accessible seat for my husband. The Lido Deck was continually crowded--seemed like it was poorly arranged and not adequate for the volume of passengers. Upon disembarkation, we were kept waiting for over two hours for a wheelchair attendant; we were supposed to be off by 9:00 a.m. and it was after 10:00 a.m. when we finally got off. I had pleaded with the person doing the scheduling that we were in danger of missing our bus. We were the last two loaded on the bus. Our waiter literally ran between tables. It would appear to me that help is stretched very thin. Service was good. Our stateroom attendant was excellent. Our cabin was one of the nicest we've had since needing an accessible one--double sized balcony. The theater has no center aisles, is not tiered on the main floor. The seats are so broken down my husband said he felt like he needed a seat belt to keep from sliding forward. The rows are so close together that no one could possibly pass in front of the seated person who must stand each time. We're through with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise for being round trip from Vancouver. Embarkation was very fast since we were almost the last to board the ship. Our luggage arrived inside our cabin very quickly. The seas were rough leaving Vancouver and we ... Read More
We chose this cruise for being round trip from Vancouver. Embarkation was very fast since we were almost the last to board the ship. Our luggage arrived inside our cabin very quickly. The seas were rough leaving Vancouver and we couldn't sit by the pool till day 5 where we watched Mamma Mia! We were disappointed with the selection and food in the dining room. The Crown Grill and Share were excellent! The staff in the Wheelhouse knew our evening drinks. Now that is service. We enjoyed the deck party with the video of the staff of the original Love Boat with Jen and the cruise staff. Disembarkation took longer and when our color was called not all our luggage was in the specified area. It probably was due to arriving a little late due to the medical emergency which happened on board. A good time was had by all. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Old, dated, stained. Felt like an old Travelodge hotel.Low value. cannot compare to our other 3 cruises with Holland America. We repent Holland America, never again will we sale with the Dirty Princess. Our stareroom steward was great. The ... Read More
Old, dated, stained. Felt like an old Travelodge hotel.Low value. cannot compare to our other 3 cruises with Holland America. We repent Holland America, never again will we sale with the Dirty Princess. Our stareroom steward was great. The stateroom was worn out, the window curtans didnt fit properly. THe food in the Horizon buffet was almost un eatable. THe other resteraunts on board were better but disappointing in many ways. Check your room key card when you use it. Staff gave the wrong key card back to customers and cause lots of problems. Entertainment leader Jen was awesome but most of the entertainment was just so so. When we dis embarked the ship in Vancouver we had to Walk off because our connection was at 11am and we had no help from staff at ALL. My wife and I are in our 70s and I am disabled and we pleaded for help getting off boat but we were ignored by the staff. My wife and I had to drag and push our 5 bags down 4 decks and gang planks to a taxi. Worst expierence we have ever had. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We took this cruise because of all the sea days plus the ease of getting to Vancouver. As there was only the Emerald in port, embarkation was a breeze. We booked a Suite so there was a dedicated line for check-in. Speaking of ... Read More
We took this cruise because of all the sea days plus the ease of getting to Vancouver. As there was only the Emerald in port, embarkation was a breeze. We booked a Suite so there was a dedicated line for check-in. Speaking of Suites, here is where I get snooty. We have cruised many times, usually atthe Suite level. Princess does not treat their Suite passengers with nearly enough care,compared to other lines we have travelled on. Although we did get the Crown Grill forbreakfast every day, which was excellent, there were few other Suite perks. The ClubClass dining was available as part of the Da Vinci dining room for Suite and CC mini-suiteguests but the area was crowded and noisy. Moreover, the Head Waiter, Jelena, was overly friendly to the point of being pushy and made us wonder just how genuine she really was. Otherwise, being in a Suite meant we had a nice cabin, but not a lot else. We miss having a Concierge or even a dedicated phone line for reservations. Princess is a mass-market cruiseline. The other big disappointment: we are readers, especially with 10 sea days. EmeraldPrincess has the worst library I've ever seen on a crusieship of any size. There was nolibrarian or cruise member to answer questions. No inventory of books. Not many booksanyway, except those that other passengers left. No daily printed newspapers, summaries from Canada, USA, Britain, etc. And no one to complain to. Very sad. Re the food: Hardly ever went to the buffet; too crowded. The dr menu was okay butthe "always available" left much to be desired. Not even a steak, as had always been thecase. Instead there is a deluxe hamburger but I never saw anyone eating one for dinner. Princess has cut back. There are too many other lines that present a better product. We'll only travel Princess again if they have a particular itinerary to which no one else travels. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This ship goes to fantastic Islands like no other! You will want to go back right away as soon as you leave them! The Cruise Director and staff on this cruise work very hard to make sure all the guests are well entertained. The food in ... Read More
This ship goes to fantastic Islands like no other! You will want to go back right away as soon as you leave them! The Cruise Director and staff on this cruise work very hard to make sure all the guests are well entertained. The food in the dining room is superb! The Captain and his team were detained in their journey when a passenger became deathly ill and after travelling a whole night on the way back had to turn the ship around and head back to the Island to meet a helicopter that would pick up the ill passenger. This was all done very professionally and the Captain managed to get us back to Vancouver at the expected time anyway!! Pretty smooth sailing all the way! Embarking and disembarking was made very easy by spreading out the clients across the ship with numbers and colors. The excursion to Germaine's Luau in Honolulu was spectacular! Unfortunately ours got rained out but they handed us all good sized rain ponchos to keep us all dry! I hope to return to Hawaii someday, it was spectacular! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We had been looking forward to this cruise for several years. We were celebrating a significant anniversary and we had had a wonderful experience on a previous Princess cruise. The ship sailed from Vancouver to the Hawaiian islands and ... Read More
We had been looking forward to this cruise for several years. We were celebrating a significant anniversary and we had had a wonderful experience on a previous Princess cruise. The ship sailed from Vancouver to the Hawaiian islands and back. It was a 15 day cruise. The ship itself was clean but not maintained all that well. There were mysterious wet spots on the carpeting in some areas and the occasional funky smell. There were also a lot of burnt-out or non-unctioning lights, which may seem trivial but often indicates a general lack of maintenance that may extend to areas not so visible. The seating in the Princess Theatre was atrocious. Any of you who are large might consider that there is only an 18" width to the seats and the sides are hard. (Picture sitting in a box 18" wide.) EVERYONE that we discussed this with felt that those seats were awful! To give you some idea of the width, 18" is even less than the 18.5" that airline seating allows. The food had also gone downhill siginificantly, as had the service. Everything appears to have been cost-cut to the point where it is obvious to pretty much all of the passengers. The staff in the dining rooms is running to keep up, the wait times between course servings is frequently a half hour or more, and the food delivered may, or may not match the descriptions in the menus. Much of the hot food or soup is luke-warm at best. (The Princess chefs need a Truth-In-Advertising refresher course.) In addtion, the food is generally just plain bland. The pace and working conditions of the staff show in their attitudes. Where you never used to encounter an "attitude" with the crew and service people, these days you hear not-so-subtle complaints and encounter mediocre service on a fairly regular basis. Worse yet, every where you turn somebody is trying to sell you something at an additional cost. This encompasses not only all of the regular shops and over-priced drink packages, but also periodic sales in the dining rooms between meals under conditions that would make a discount store blush as well as the purported "activity" programs offered to pasengers which are thinly disquesed sales programs. It gets really, realy old in a hurry. Lastly, the premium restaurant that we tried was the steak house on board. Bearing in mind that this meal cost an additional $29 per person, (although ours was part of our tour package), one would expect a really fine steak. However, the steaks we ordered, while beautiful and beautifully cooked, had no flavor whatsoever! Yes, there were some really fun surprises and a few really memberable dishes in the dining rooms. Yes, some of the shore trips were great. But overall, I'm thinking that this was probably our last Princess cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We wanted a holiday for my wife from her usual houshold management, and adventure for both of us in visiting a wonderful part of the world we'd never gone before. What we liked so much was ease of getting from our home in Vancouver ... Read More
We wanted a holiday for my wife from her usual houshold management, and adventure for both of us in visiting a wonderful part of the world we'd never gone before. What we liked so much was ease of getting from our home in Vancouver to the ship, without having to bother with an airport or flight. Staff, especially the waiters, were delightful: cheerful (often heard them humming or singing as they went by), friendly, and helpful. Ship was beautiful and comfortable, though so big it took a while to get the layout. It was a new experience to watch a movie while in a swimming pool! Cabin steward was always quietly helpful and friendly, and left our room sparkling every day. Food was excellent, with so many choices of places to get it, and of food options when you decided where to eat. That brought us into much contact daily with waiters, and they were a lot of fun in general conversation, and explaining different items when we wanted to know what they were like. We had supper with the same two other couples every evening, and they were also great companions - lots of knowledge, jokes, and personal sharing. We both enjoyed specially the ventriloquist, my wife liked being in the pop choir, quilling, and exercise, I played the grand piano once, we liked and learned a lot from speakers and videos, enjoyed a few movies but left one when the language got dirty. Best of all was the 8:30 am Bible study/prayer daily, which became a beloved bunch of friends. Embarking we were excited, disembarking sorry to leave, no problems either way. Ports were lovely, walked around all 4 days, loved swimming at all four beaches - yes! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My husband and I chose this cruise because we wouldn't have to fly. Our home port is Vancouver. Also, neither one of us is a beach vacation person but we did want to see Hawaii. The good: the food was pretty good. We were ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because we wouldn't have to fly. Our home port is Vancouver. Also, neither one of us is a beach vacation person but we did want to see Hawaii. The good: the food was pretty good. We were booked for anytime dining but only went to the MDR once. It took about 1.5 hours to have dinner there and for us that's okay once in a while. So we stuck to the buffet where we thought the food was quite good. The complimentary pub lunches were really enjoyable. We usually shared a table and had very pleasant companions. The Salty Dog gastropub was worth the cover charge. If you go to it, make sure to get the hamburger. The entertainment was enjoyable too. Especially the Hawaiian ambassador couple - Rowena and Brian. Brian played ukelele and sang while Rowena did hula dancing. They were entertaining in the piazza quite often and I always stopped by at least for a few songs. In the Princess theater, the singers and dancers were a favourite for my husband. Also, there was a retired professor giving talks about Hawaiian history which I found interesting. The bad: the coffee in the buffet. We did pay for some at the International Cafe but didn't think it was worth it. And crowded during peak times in the buffet. Often we just ate outside by the pool. Our favourite stop was in Kuaui because there was a beach within a 10-minute walk from the dock. So we got towels from the ship's pool and spent the morning at the beach. You could walk right into the water it was so warm. What I would do differently: go to the hula dance lessons. Kind of regret not doing it. Finally, the embarkation and the debarkation were both very good. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise due to the round trip Vancouver. We live on Vancouver Island and this way do not have to deal with airports. Embarkation was seamless and we were on board in time to have lunch in main dining room. This was the largest ... Read More
We chose this cruise due to the round trip Vancouver. We live on Vancouver Island and this way do not have to deal with airports. Embarkation was seamless and we were on board in time to have lunch in main dining room. This was the largest cruise ship we had ever sailed on and would not be in a hurry to travel on a large ship again but know if we want to do this cruise again then will likely have to book on this size again. Inside cabin was clean and quiet. Food was great most nights in main dining room although was sub par on second formal night. Do not think the shows were as good as the last time we did this cruise and would like to find a bar that does not always have music playing but this seems to be the same on the other cruise lines we have sailed with. We will likely do this cruise again and have put down a future cruise deposit. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because it left and returned to Vancouver. We live in Victoria and it is always nice not to have to fly. Although a few things were disappointing on this cruise, we are still loyal Princess passengers and will continue ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it left and returned to Vancouver. We live in Victoria and it is always nice not to have to fly. Although a few things were disappointing on this cruise, we are still loyal Princess passengers and will continue to sail with them but will think twice before sailing on the Emerald again. The dining room wait staff at our table were awesome. Our cabin steward kept our room clean and well supplied. The comedian on the first and 3rd night was awesome. We didn't bother with the Princess dancers and singers. There were less interesting games during the sea days. We always participate in the question of the day on the Wake show but quit playing after they changed the question when it came to the next day for the answer. They asked when was Alcatraz built NOT when it was opened. And the next day they said that they didn't want the answer of when it was built but when it was opened. Embarkation and Disembarkation went very smoothly for us. The embarkation lounge didn't offer beverages and snacks as they have in the past. We found the ship very crowded and noisy. Other Princess ships we have been on welcomed you back from a port visit to the ship with a cool drink and warm towel but not on the Emerald. One of the port days didn't have a dining room open for lunch and the buffet was a zoo to find a seat as only one side was open. It seems that every cruise we take there are less of the things that make Princess different from the other lines. The free coffee on this ship was deplorable.They are hoping to force you into buying the specialty coffees. The pub lunch was awesome. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was a pretty unremarkable cruise. The ship was full to capacity and you could feel it. Too many people for the public areas to handle, it felt crowded most of the time. The ship is pleasantly decorated and clean. The dining room ... Read More
This was a pretty unremarkable cruise. The ship was full to capacity and you could feel it. Too many people for the public areas to handle, it felt crowded most of the time. The ship is pleasantly decorated and clean. The dining room was very busy and the food was average, bordering on disappointing. The buffet was also very busy with not enough tables to handle the number of guests. The alternative restaurants, Share and the Crown Hrill, were very good. The entertainment and activities were what you find on most cruise ships - filled the time but not outstanding. The crew and servers were competent and friendly. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. The only glitch was that after disembarking, the Vancouver Port Authority put us in a 2 HOUR long taxi line outside with cold air blowing from vents above us. When I asked to have them shut off all they did was shrug. I ended up sick. I will not cruise into Vancouver, BC again after that. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I chose this cruise for the itinerary but once onboard, completely disappointed with food and the state of the ship. I've been on many cruises prior to this but this was the worst by far. My expectations on the food were gravely ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the itinerary but once onboard, completely disappointed with food and the state of the ship. I've been on many cruises prior to this but this was the worst by far. My expectations on the food were gravely disappointing. The quality has certainly gone down the tubes and temperature of the food was also just slightly warm. The long lines were horrific around the restaurants and trying to find a table in the buffet zones was impossible. The state of the room was also disappointing....tired old furniture, uncomfortable mattresses. Unhygienic bedding, pillows and duvets are not cleaned also very used and pilled On a 10 day cruise I would have expected my sheets to be changed once, not until I asked. Gross! The sofa in the stateroom was something you might find curb side. Very soiled and cushions were sagging. The ventilation in certain parts were emitting stench from,the sewage on board. Walk down certain corridors and it's overwhelming. I couldn't sit long outside on the Sanctuary side for the wafting of sewage coming from the exhaust of ship. Yikes! Is at with a towel over. Y nostrils not to inhale the fumes. Gross! Will not be returning to Princess! Non voyage! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I chose this cruise because it left from Vancouver and came back to Vancouver, which is my home port. This was my first time on Princess and the first cruise for my daughter who came with me. The Emerald Princess has a capacity of 3500 ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it left from Vancouver and came back to Vancouver, which is my home port. This was my first time on Princess and the first cruise for my daughter who came with me. The Emerald Princess has a capacity of 3500 passengers and was extremely crowded. There is not enough public space for that many people and too much space is given over to selling artwork and photographs. There were line-ups for anytime dining and the tiny atrium was standing room only. Because of the line-ups, we ate later than we normally would have and as a result, were not able to attend many of the entertainment events. Often we arrived to find there were no seats left at all. Sharing tables with others in the Horizon Court buffet was the norm. I found it difficult to tell direction on this ship, even after 10 days, and signage for the restrooms was poor. We ate breakfast and some lunches in Horizon Court and found it to be adequate. We had very nice dinners in the paid venues Crown Grill, Crab Shack and twice in the Saltydog gastropub. We really enjoyed the appetizers, soups and desserts in the main dining room and we liked the pub lunch in the Wheelhouse Bar. Our favourite place was Vines where we received excellent service and enjoyed the tapas and California rolls. We watched the Wake show in the morning which started our day with good laughs and good information. Our favourite event was the ABBA trivia session hosted by Jen and Omparo (sp?) but we also enjoyed comedian Steve Caouette, music group Pinnacle, the Walker Black Duo and the Sun Shine Duo. Embarkation was okay but disembarking was not. We were sent to the Princess Theatre, which is terraced, so I had to drag my carry-on down several stairs and then pull it back up again when it was time to leave. Made no sense at all. We booked excursions through the ship in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and San Francisco. We loved the wine and cupcake day in Santa Barbara and our trip to Muir Woods and Sausalito in San Francisco. We did not like Los Angeles and wished we'd stayed on the ship. The best part of the trip was some of the people we met and the many staff who worked so hard to make our holiday a success. I would travel with Princess again but I'd keep an eye out for smaller ships. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
First, the positives: (1) Excursions. Give in to the arch-tourist nature of packaged few-hour bus-herd excursions, go with the flow -- it's only for a few hours, cynic! -- and you'll get an effortless taste of what's fun, ... Read More
First, the positives: (1) Excursions. Give in to the arch-tourist nature of packaged few-hour bus-herd excursions, go with the flow -- it's only for a few hours, cynic! -- and you'll get an effortless taste of what's fun, cool, interesting, and breathtaking about Alaska. Plenty of options with minimal tour-bus time -- see how rugged the land is from a floatplane, meet happy sled-pulling mutts, see glaciers and maybe whales and hungry bears, wonder if your tour guide never breaks character because he *is* a character. (2) Premium dining, 2 out of 3 ain't bad. At the back of the boat, Share is legit gourmet. If not outstanding, at least consistently crafted and palate-pleasing. In the pub, The Salty Dog may push "artisanal" an inch too far, but it's blessed relief from the culinary crimes of dispassion everywhere else. Sadly, you *can* screw up the basic steakhouse experience, and the Crown Grill is proof -- even when the second ribeye was rightly rare inside, it was an underaged, unseasoned, joyless too-thin cut from a too-big cow. Sides were drab. (3) Music. The jazz group playing one night in the Adagio is so happy to have an audience and happy to play that you won't care that they're not a tight group or that they never get past the most standard of jazz standards. Especially not after a week on this boat. Elsewhere, the acoustic guitarist in the pub knew just how to render dad-rock classics to make you smile. Thank heaven for four great excursions and two great meals, or I'd have abandoned ship like a fellow passenger did. (Seriously -- so unhappy with spa & fitness & food they quit at Ketchikan.) The highlight from here on out is you can appreciate the pleasantness of purgatory. Embarkation is a ridiculous four-hour rat's maze with no cheese at the end. Leaving from Vancouver in this frosty-border era is irredeemably stupid. It's not just having to get a US passport to visit Alaska, or going through Canadian customs at the airport and then US customs dockside -- it's the maddening meandering in and out and up and down through the terminal with cruelly interspersed glimpses of the ship for no purpose other than to create the illusion that you're not just waiting in long lines. Your DMV ain't got nothin' on the Port of Vancouver. It's actually an ingenious management of expectations, fooling you into thinking you're almost there over and over and over again until you cannot believe that they fooled you again, but they did. At the end you're so relieved it's over you don't have the emotional energy to find and torture the evil genius responsible for masterfully obfuscating the most colossal jerk move in handling travelers since three ounces and no shoes. But at least once we were on board the food sucked. Seriously. "Anytime Dining" means Anytime As Long As You Love Retirement Home Buffet Or A Midwest Ramada Inn Hotel Restaurant Meal From 5:15-9pm. If you're an urban coast dweller who eats at restaurants or just shops at Safeway, you are not prepared from this grim food desert. You know the past-their-prime trends you make fun of for their bandwagon ubiquity in mediocre chains and fast food like southwest chipotle and aioli everything with Applewood smoked bacon? Princess isn't that sophisticated. By mid-cruise I pined for Denny's, and a Guadalajara-style carnitas burrito seemed the height of exotic culinary fantasy. Half the waitstaff is Thai, but there's no Thai food here, no curry, no cajun... no spice but black pepper, no unadulterated proteins or green vegetables except a post-bankruptcy Sizzler romaine-only salad bar -- heck, even gas station sushi would be welcome. The full-service dining menu is competently prepared and perfectly reasonable, if your idea of exotic is Italian food that isn't pasta. If you don't like the Italian dining room, don't fret -- you can go to the other Italian dining room. Oh, and your favorite timeless cocktail? Forget it. Just what's on the menu, that's what I was told. Really. And they want me to spend money on drinks? Lest you dismiss this as the ravings of a food snob, a different way to look at this: some days you just want a couple of tacos at Taco Bell, or a Spicy Italian at Subway, or just to give up with a QPC. No such comforts, either gramps' buffet or mom-made-it hamburgers or cheap takeout pizza (both pool-adjacent for that sea-air-and-chlorine aroma) or airport chicken salad and sadsack mini-sandwiches for you until dinner time, and then it's dad's-birthday dining every night. Oh, but don't worry about the dress code -- it's a lie. Just look like you thought about trying not to be a slob, that's probably enough to get by. Or actually wear the black suit and tie you packed and feel like the idiot who didn't know the rules are for suckers. Service? Great with premium dining, happily efficient with regular dining, attentive and respectful everywhere else -- but with the pervasive cattle-call atmosphere, much of it was lipstick on a pig. Perhaps it's just the nature of a ship with 3,000 passengers... but if so then maybe the ships should be smaller. One particularly frustrating experience typical of the cruise: for glacier-skirting catamaran tours, everyone was directed to gather in the theater. After being seated and subjected to a ads for GoPro cameras, photo packages, and future cruises for a half-hour, they announced the boats would be another half-hour or so, and gave everyone the option to leave the theatre and come back in 20 minutes. An hour later, they announced it would be another 20 minutes, and anyone with a second excursion for the day would need to choose which one to cancel. Finally, Internet access. THE WIFI IS A LIE. My in-cabin wifi suffered from constant router flap, probably between two overlapping radios in autosense duking it out over what frequency to use, so even connecting to the onboard directory Princess@Sea was an exercise in browser timeouts. But go where there's solid wifi signal (conference room!) and the satellite Internet connection is simply choked to death -- and my expectations were low. Forget even basic websurfing -- mere POP3 email downloads would sometimes time out, and a 2MB attachment might take five tries over an hour to fetch. It was so slow Kindle for PC wouldn't download a novel. Neal Stephenson, but still, one novel, text only, took 45 minutes. The good news is THEY CHARGE BY THE MINUTE FOR THIS FIST-SHAKING FAIL. Last time I was charged by the minute was at a greedy hotel back when RealPlayer was cool. It's barbaric. Princess would do their customers a great service by unplugging their Internet service and telling them to lump it. By promising Internet access they mislead passengers into thinking they might actually be able to answer a help-what-do-we-do email from work in an emergency. A sense of captivity is hard to avoid on a cruise. But Princess makes it far worse than it needs to be with repeated poor group management, restricted dining, utterly useless Internet, and daily upselling for onboard art auctions, official photography and video diaries, jewelry and fragrance "workshops," and future cruises. I would in all honesty rather book passage on a cargo ship and eat stew with the crew -- at least that would be authentic. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
This was our 25th wedding anniversary & my husband "Bucket-list'. we have sailed on Princess before. I remembered the last time we cruised with Princess I had alot of issues. But for some reason I was thinking that this ... Read More
This was our 25th wedding anniversary & my husband "Bucket-list'. we have sailed on Princess before. I remembered the last time we cruised with Princess I had alot of issues. But for some reason I was thinking that this one will be different.(because of my review I have done before) I choose the Emerald because mainly cause of the price and the time of year we could go. We always go for the mid-balcony, but this time I picked "guaranteed" wont do that again.I need alittle more control on were the rooms are. It was ok, much smaller them what we are used to(I need to figure out how to read an"upgrade")So we landed in Vancouver. What a mess, you felt like you were a herd of cattle. Im glad I did my research before we went to allow enough time to get on the ship, it wasn't what we've gone through before.I was just going to get a Taxi. but my husband wanted the shuttle bus(28 each). But to my surprise, all of our bag were in our cabin when we got in, as we walked into our cabin,we were followed by our cabin steward(which has never happened) so as the week went on. the first day was the best part.the food is just ok.we like to go to the dinning are(cause we eat to much at the buffet) not to much to choose from,same old same old. I wanted "Eggs Benedict" they didn't have it(I was bummed),so done talking about the food, the biggest issue was the activity's on the ship.if you didn't on shore the wasn't nothing to do,unless you like Napkin folding connect four or play card,. then the entertainment ,SAD! they had movie on pool-side. your out-side in Alaska,REALLY! only a few shows (first part of the week) by Wed, nothing in the evening ,one night they had "the Voice of the sea' that was fun,but just one night. they had a REALLy good Comedian, I could of listen to him all week.So they got this new program disembarking. you give them you airline info and they are to ck you in and take your bags for you to the airport, so you don't have to deal with them till you get home , To good to be true. we kept going down to the front desk to see it our tag and our boarding passes were there,nope!that was at 5,they told us to come back at 8, then they told us to come back at 9.nope. now mind you we needed to ck in on our flight.the front desk could or didn't no how to help you. so we felt very nervous. so we called the airlines, they had no idea what we were talking about, so we went ahead and cked in. we get a knock on our door @11;30 with our tickets.our bag have already been taken. I think they need to work on the program alittle better. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Food was horrible! Staff was not happy or friendly. Atmosphere was very ugly. No one I spoke to on the cruise was having a good time. Daily entertainment was very limited! Kids program was not fun for my 12 year old who is almost 13. ... Read More
Food was horrible! Staff was not happy or friendly. Atmosphere was very ugly. No one I spoke to on the cruise was having a good time. Daily entertainment was very limited! Kids program was not fun for my 12 year old who is almost 13. Everything was geared toward little kids in his group so he never went to class because they didn’t make it fun and made my preteen feel like a little kid. He wanted to hang out in the 13+ but they would not let him even though he is 13 next month. It was at least 30 min to get seated for dinner and food took forever. When the food came it was old and gross. Selection was not great either. The buffet had old food And again not a big selection. Overall this is the worst cruise I have ever been on and will not be back in Princess! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Emerald Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

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