6 Venice Princess Ruby Princess Cruise Reviews

Well-trained and consistently-trained staff. Unfailingly (apparently) happy in their work and with good people skills.  Good sense of humour (necessary to rebuff the complaints about the food). Relentless up selling of drink options. (I ... Read More
Well-trained and consistently-trained staff. Unfailingly (apparently) happy in their work and with good people skills.  Good sense of humour (necessary to rebuff the complaints about the food). Relentless up selling of drink options. (I don't WANT your "special" marguerita - I want an ordinary one!) Poor organisation in breakfast buffet, though with all waiting staff either assigned to drinks duty ("More coffee, sir" , every three minutes, even when cups still full) or to cleanup when the under-managers were on the prowl (three separate mornings when NOBODY came by our table to ask if I wanted juice or any other drink, I was reduced to pouring it for myself, which of course led to protests from the staff member who noticed!). Wouldn't it make more sense to have some staff assigned to each duty type at all times? Food in main dining room (8.15 sitting) bland and uninspiring. I was tempted to attend the culinary demonstration in order to find out how they managed to remove any flavour from what were (presumably) reasonable-quality ingredients. The highlight was the fried sushi rolls, which were inventive and imaginatively-presented. The lowlight was the food on the Italian night (for some reason scheduled on Halloween, some five days after we had left Italian waters), where great skill had been applied to the desiccation of both fish and meat main courses. The evening entertainment in the theatre varied from reasonable (Siobhan Phillips - beautiful and unusual voice), through adequate (Freddie Mercury tribute), to pathetic (the "other" David Copperfield). Some people seemed to enjpy Copperfield, to judge by the laughter (unless he had a backing tape set up), BUT I have to say to my US co-travellers that this was not "wacky British Humour" - he simply was not funny! The nightclub appeared to be patronised largely by off-duty members of the entertainments team, but was a lively place to relax with a post-prandial marguerita. Adagio was altogether more refined. We just didn't like the lack of atmosphere in wheelhouse, explorers, or crooners, but plenty of other people did. Daytime entertainment appeared to be focused on separating guests from their money (Casino, Art etc). Except, to be fair, the various musicians who played in the Piazza. Special mention should be made of the Atomic party band, who were able to turn their hands to many different styles, but were at their best when allowed to rock! Room was comfortable (inside, Riviera deck), very quiet and supplied with all necessities. I found it strange, though, that a US-dominated boat appeared to have no shoe-shine facilities, nor did our steward seem to understand what should be done to clean and shine a pair of brown leather shoes.  Only ended up taking one tour. The staff member assigning us to buses failed to notice the important words "guiados en Espanol" on our tickets, leaving the guide at Olympia to make some hurried phone calls to get us out of the English-language group from bus 11 and onto the Spanish group from bus 14. The other tour we booked was cancelled, so we instead did Ephesus on our own, as for most of the other ports. The guests were split 1500 US, 500 UK, 500 Aussie and 500 "other". Ages ranged from one year to about ninety, the median being around fifty. The US folk seemed to stick together, but the non-US mixed well (and I include the Latino Yanks in "non-US" here - it was the Anglo-Yanks who seemed to be the most stand-offish). The itinerary was great (Greek Isles, Venice to Rome), but I don't think we will be back on the Ruby in a hurry.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
I have travelled on many ships in my life and was looking forward to our 12 day Mediterranean cruise with Princess, having previously travelled with Costa, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Cunard and P & O and thoroughly enjoyed all of ... Read More
I have travelled on many ships in my life and was looking forward to our 12 day Mediterranean cruise with Princess, having previously travelled with Costa, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Cunard and P & O and thoroughly enjoyed all of them. We boarded Ruby Princess in Venice with our two teenageers and within 24 hours had experienced some very arrogant behaviour by a Restaurant Manager who kept us waiting for Anytime dining for over 30 minutes with no explanation or apology. When he was approached for information regarding the wait , he brushed off saying it wasn't his fault a lot of people had come at once. As a travel professional I suggested that it might have been good service to explain to customers there might be a wait and give some sort of indication how long. He blamed his staff and said it was their job not his and offered no apology and or resolution. After 45 minutes (total) we went to the buffet missing out on a more formal dining experience for which we had dressed. I contacted Customer Services on a number of occasions regarding this matter and some 48 hours later they offered an alternative restaurant. Following that, we were woken daily, when in port (nine days in total) by shipboard announcements at 7am with details of how to disembark etc. After each announcement, in a number of languages, it was impossible to get back to sleep. by day 6 of a 12 day cruise I was besides myself with tiredeness and asked if they would stop. The disembarkation information is available through a number of different means and when awoken with this sort of information you can not take it in so it is of little value.. Additionally, I spoke with other passengers who felt the same. The customer Service Manager admitted there had been complaints but couldn't do anything about it unless the ship's managment agreed. Nothing was done and I returned home exhauseted and unable to appreciate any of the good things about the cruise. I have written to Princess Cruises and had to chase their response (28 days after writing). The eventual response was evassive and said that my comments would be passed on, etc Whilst there is nothing Princess can do to make good an expensive two week holiday that was ruined, I had hoped they would realise how serious sleep deprivation can be for some people. Their response does not indicate it is an issue they are concerned with. I have found some of their responses to cusomer service issues, both on board and off, to be somewhat arrogant and would wish to advise anyone who values sleep to check beofre travelling as to the policy on early morning announcements. I would certainly not have booked with princess had they made me aware and am still cross that they would not listen to me or other passengers. They had every opportunity to put this right on board but chose not to for reasons I still cannot understand. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
We found the Ruby Princess to be absolutely gorgeous! The Public areas particularly are fabulous. The Itinerary for this trip was great in that the ports visited with one exception were excellent, and since we love sea days, the TA and ... Read More
We found the Ruby Princess to be absolutely gorgeous! The Public areas particularly are fabulous. The Itinerary for this trip was great in that the ports visited with one exception were excellent, and since we love sea days, the TA and the days at sea were perfect. The Port we did not care for was Casablanca. We did the ship excursion to Rabat and found that city very nice, but Casablanca was like an open sewer. We realize the movie was shot in LA, but we still had expectations that were not met. We were glad we stopped there and had the experience, but we do not care to go back. This is a great cruise for those who love to do TA's. As for experiences on board ship, we found the food in the main dining room with traditional seating to be very good as was the service. We did not care for the food in the horizons buffet, and found the set up for the food line to be cramped and cumbersome. We ate there only two or three times and very much enjoyed our lunches in the dining room. The menu was varied and the service was very good. When sailing Princess, please do not miss the Pizza. They have absolutely the best Pizza in the Cruise Industry. A disappointment for us on the trip was the Theater. It is small compared to experiences we have had with Celebrity. Also, we found that apparently, the any time diners arrange dinner timing to better coordinate with show times so that when we finished our late seating and attempted to make the late show, the Theater was standing room only. The ship simply does not have the capacity to handle the number of passenger's in this venue. We also found that the entertainment was not up to the standard we experienced on Celebrity. We experienced some management level staff problems on this cruise. On multiple nights, we met friends for drinks before dinner and found bars staffed with only one bartender and one waiter. Although the staff worked very hard to overcome this, it was impossible and poor service resulted. One evening our friends waited an hour for a drink. You would think the management on this ship would realize what a profit center the bar is and properly schedule staff to maximize profits while providing excellent service. Another management level staff problem that had a dramatic negative effect on our trip dealt with the handling of our toilet that often failed to flush. For about the first three days we were told that the problem was a result or our putting tissues or foreign objects in it. We explained that because we had cruised previously, we understood not to do that, and after three days, five phone calls for help, and a demand to speak to the Hotel Manager that contact was made with the Manager of Guest Relations. Although expectations were raised that this might help expedite the solution to the problem, just the opposite happened. We found the Manager of Guest relations to be a person quick to make alibis and attempt to pass off problems as being just ordinary. After about a week of problems, and another repair that did not work, extremely loud plumbing rumblings were reported to the Guest Relations Manager. Without any investigation she responded that I should not worry, and these sounds were normal. My continued pleading for help resulted in a complete toilet replacement according to our cabin steward. If the sounds were normal, then why the replacement? So that this review does not go on forever, please know that our toilet failing to flush or delayed in flushing was experienced up to the last day on board, nineteen days. I also learned that other guests on my deck, as well as the crew also experienced this problem. In short this is a problem on this ship, and one that is not healthy. When this was pointed out to the Guest Relations Manager, she denied such. When the crew tells me that they have to wait to use the toilet because they do not flush without a delay, and I experienced this as well, this is not an isolated problem. IF YOU ARE IN CABIN A642, be prepared for a toilet that at best delays flushing. This delay may be 30 minutes or more. The way the management level staff on the Ruby Princess handled our stateroom problem will cause me not to sail Princess again. Denial and inappropriate excuses is not the way to handle a problem so basic to a positive cruise experience. Although I asked that my concerns be sent to Land Headquarters, I have had no contact from Princess since the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
This was my first and last Transatlantic cruise and my last cruise with Princess... While the ship is beautiful and the crew is the best I have ever seen the overall experience was a nightmare, because... 1) There weren't old ... Read More
This was my first and last Transatlantic cruise and my last cruise with Princess... While the ship is beautiful and the crew is the best I have ever seen the overall experience was a nightmare, because... 1) There weren't old people on this cruise, there were old people's parents. While many were nice there were an equal amount that were rude, demanding and obnoxious and it affected my experience. 2) The food was disappointing, a lackluster performance at best. Bland, boring, and obviously geared to the senior sect. 3) Six sea days trapped on a ship with old people sucking any youth I have left. 4) The entertainment on board was plain horrible. We saw two comedians one who clearly got all his jokes off the Internet. The production shows were mediocre at best The one high point was Gareth Oliver from Britain's Got Talent, he was a Ventriloquist a magician a comedian and an overall great entertainer. He was the only one I saw that I would pay to see again. 5) Princess has their own shore excursions, they were all over priced for what you got. Changes to itinerary were made with no notice or offer of compensation. 6) Our cabin was very, very noisy. (R701)Located directly below the Horizon buffet while trying to sleep we could hear the restaurant staff moving carts around as though they were in our room. 7) And the unforgivable sin was they allowed people to smoke cigarettes in the Cigar bar. Cigarettes give off a foul odor due to the chemicals and paper. I'm in there trying to enjoy a $30 Gurkha and the experience was totally ruined, thanks for having your head up your butt Princess! Now if you're 80, you've found a home on the Ruby Princess... Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
Just got back from a Venice to Barcelona Cruise on Ruby Princess. This was our first on Princess but our fifth cruise. I will just go through the points as I do not mean this to be a rant. Cabin - We had a Vista Suite. For the same money ... Read More
Just got back from a Venice to Barcelona Cruise on Ruby Princess. This was our first on Princess but our fifth cruise. I will just go through the points as I do not mean this to be a rant. Cabin - We had a Vista Suite. For the same money we had a suite twice the size on Norwegian and had champagne every night and a Butler, so that was a disappointment. However the cabin was kept well by the steward and everything was in working order. On other cruises, canapes were brought every night without fail. On Princess you had to fill out a card that had be left on the door handle if you wanted them, and there were times that the card was not given to us or times that the card was left and filled in, but either we did not receive them or the arrived after 8 PM when we had no interest in them. We were given a whole bottle of champagne and glasses for the first day which was more than the published glass of champagne. Food - In a word - disappointing. All the food looked and tasted as if it were prepared for 3000 people, even in the specialty restaurants. Some of it was so bad I had to send it back, and I am one of those kind of people that will usually just pick at the food if it not to my liking rather than raise the fuss. Sabatini's was the strangest. They served everything as a tasting menu, which meant once you were there once, there was no reason to go back as you had had it all. We usually opted for the a la carte method and only ordered the dishes we wanted. The food was good but not great and unimaginative. We went there a few nights but one night we went for my Birthday. I was looking forward to a good bottle of wine, only to discover that they had a smaller wine list then the other food venues on the ship and it was not possible to order anything not on the list from another dining room. Then there was the strange availability rules. One night we were there and another table of 5 was eating their dinner and finished as we received our entrees. A group of four walked up with no reservation and was turned away. They had the table and the staff, why would they turn them away. We tried one night to go without a reservation and were turned away as well though there were many empty tables. The food in the main dining room was worse, as there is where I received meals I had to return because they were just awful. One meal was so salty that I had to spit it out. Another had vegetables that were so overcooked they were mush. Since we had a suite we could breakfast at Sabatini's. I ordered eggs Benedict and you could tell they had been under heat lamps for hours as the Hollandaise had cooked into a solid. Food at the Crown Grill was decent as long as you avoided the awful wine reduction sauce the put on everything. It was bland and muddy and did nothing to enhance the meat. I recommend the Black and Blue Onion soup, and if you want lobster, get it here as Sabatini's cooks it in some sauce that overpowers the subtle taste of lobster. The ship - It had the usual amenities. The only thing it had that was special was the giant screen over the pool where they showed movies and the world cup on. The pools were small which made it hard to get in as people congregated at the edge all the way around and you had to squeeze by to get to the pool. Ended up using the even smaller pool aft as it was less crowded. Ports - The biggest complaint amongst all the passengers was the early arrival times to all the ports and how the excursions were returning up to two hours before sailing even if it meant that sites on the tours were shortened or skipped altogether. The was a tour that was supposed to go up the Tower of Pisa and they did not due to time constraints. Yet these same people sat on the boat over an hour prior to sailing time that could have been spent in the tour. AVOID the ELITE tours. The only difference which Princess will not tell you (yes I called and asked for details and they were not able to tell me what was included in the elite tours that was not in the regular tours) was there were 25-30 people per group as opposed to 40-45 on the normal tours and you got a better lunch, but not better enough to warrant the $200 price difference. Princess as a whole - I found that the information given by the representatives on the phone at Princess was almost always inaccurate. Information on tours, times and the cruise were never correct. I booked an extra night in Barcelona, and also booked a tour. I asked what time I could expect to be at the hotel so that I could schedule the tour. I was told no later than 9AM. Well, once on the ship we were given the excursion tickets and included was the ticket for transportation to the Hotel. It stated that we were to meet at 10AM, we did not actually get to the hotel till after 11AM. Three hours different then what I was told. Which meant we missed out on 2 hours worth of a day tour as it was my error in booking it based on the time I was told. Needless to say I will never sail Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2010
Since our return , my wife and I have have debated if cruises really are for us.So I have tried to give an honest and balanced view of our hols. What did we expect ? Our expectations were high.Expecting a 5 Star floating hotel ,excellent ... Read More
Since our return , my wife and I have have debated if cruises really are for us.So I have tried to give an honest and balanced view of our hols. What did we expect ? Our expectations were high.Expecting a 5 Star floating hotel ,excellent service ,first rate facilities and a wide variety of entertainment , with relaxed and informative shore excurtions . Did this meet our expectations? Overall no ! So here is a brief summary. Embarkation was fine , 3pm.Then had to wait until 8.45pm for our luggage.I fetched it myself after the cabin stewards politely refused as they were "busy". Was told there was no need to book a table that evening only to have to que for one.Ended up with the staff clearing up and moving tables around us for the next morning.They just wanted us out of the way. The next morning 9 am , we left our room armed with life jackets for the drill , only to be met by our "cabin steward" who then told us it was at the 3pm without an apology.So our morning trip to Venice was off.The drill was actually 2.30pm. We had evenings at Sabatinis and the Crown Grill , but got the same lines of insincere conversations from the staff as we did at the other restaurants. Be careful, as a table for two might mean 2 inches away from the next table for two.The food throughout the ship was fine , but not outstanding. Mykanos , Rhodes , and Santorini are beautiful , but not with 3500 plus cruise passengers swarming around them .Mykanos was a farce. We were expecting " West End style productions " ....there were none ! I love football , but not in Sky Walkers night club when people can view the game on a superb screen as big as your house on deck. I have no issue with the items on my account , but we were promised the summary on our doorstep on or prior to the morning of debarkation.It did not arrive , so they blamed children for "swapping the accounts about in the corridors ".Believe me this was not the case at all .Any children on the ship were very well behaved.The "discetionary" 264 dollar tip had been automatically applied to our account.I promptly removed this as we had tipped staff individually and paid the automatic gratuity applied to every bar bill.Believe me , we spent a fair amount. The entertainment was drab at best throughout the cruise , apart from the pre arranged deck party towards the end of the trip which was an uplifting experience and should have been repeated.Passengers were crying out for more of this atmosphere. We visited Crooners bar where the " Internationally acclaimed " pianist was repeatedly asking for requests.To assist , I asked for Sinatra's' , The Tender Trap.His blunt reply , "never heard of it !" Now this guy was about 60 , and we are talking Sinatra.He was more intent on publicly announcing he couldnt wait to leave the ship , in not so many words , and counted down the days each time I heard him. On our sea day they decided to try and liven things up......with a " gents sexy legs competition " ...it was cancelled due to lack of interest.Was this Butlins ? The bars and theatre were physically outstanding but with little or no atmosphere .People , including us , often walked in and straight out again. On the plus side , the ship itself was outstanding , with wonderful facilities and first rate comfort and decor.But what is the point of having all this with empty bars and no atmosphere.Our stateroom with balcony was faultless , and the cleanliness of the entire ship was 5 star . The ships excurtions were very good , coupled with informative and entertaining guides. The on deck bar staff were a delight , but the majority of staff gave the distinct impression of not wanting to be there. Believe me , we are open minded people with a broad taste in entertainment and interests , but when I pay good money I expect a good return , and was disappointed . In summary ....A 5 Star Ship with a 2 Star atmosphere . Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
Ruby Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.5 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.2

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