Star Princess Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western
Review SummaryThe embarcation process was very smooth, we arrived at the port at 12:30 pm it took us only 15-20 minutes to be onboard from start to finish. Our accomodations were great we had originally booked and inside guarantee on the Main deck and with the persistance of my Cruise Consultant Joan Cohen from she was able to secure us with a 7 level upgrade to the Aloha Deck! The layout of the room was excellent with sufficiant closet and drawer space. I requested egg crate be placed on the beds and it was there as requested. In addition we were able to get several extra fluffy pillows.
The ship itself was gorgeous. Spotless, I can't find anything I would complain about as far as the beauty of the common areas. There were 5 pools onboard. One that is not mentioned on any of the Princess sites. A small fifth pool and hot tub was found under the walk way of the Skywalker Club on the 17th deck Aft ship. My favorite pool was the Adult only pool in the Sanctuary. It was the swim against the current pool and was very "zen" like. Our favorite was to end each "day" prior to dinner was to hot tub at the Sanctuary, cool down in the pool, then take a steam in the huge steam room just off the Sanctuary pool in the Spa area. They had big fluffy towels to use and you could request a robe at the reception area in the spa. The showers in the Ladies area were huge and had plenty of shampoo, conditioner, and shower gel. We showered here every day rather than the small shower in the cabin.
The food on the ship was good not great not bad. Sometimes some strange off the wall items were on the menu (sweetbreads? No Thanks) The Horizon Buffet could use better planning in the flow (or lack there of) The food area was very congested and passengers were entering from two different directions it was too small and could have been planned better. The selection of food was good the garlic / ginger spare ribs were to die for as was most of the pasta dishes.
We were scheduled with Preferred choice dining (anytime dining) The first two nights were a disaster. The wait to get into the dining room was 1 or more hours and you were given one of those huge vibrating beepers (like the kind in chain restaurants) So every where on the ship you hear beeping because the passengers were out of range of their dining room. I thought that system was classless the last thing I want to carry around wearing a gown my husband in tuxedo is a huge beeper! This also made the formal evening feel ordinary at best. After two nights of waiting for a table we spoke to the Maitre D who was able to accomodate us with a table in the Portofino dining room (second seating) From here on our dining experience became more of what I expected. Our waiter and asst. waiters were awesome we had a corner table and it was great.
The food in the Portofino dining room was great. The alaskin king crab was to die for as was the twin lobster tails and escargot. All of the pasta dishes served as the main course were equally fab, I was able to order a pasta dish for my appetizer in addition to an appetizer offered. Only dinner was had in the dining room. All other meals were had in either the Horizon buffet or the burger and pizza station. The pizza was outstanding. I am not a pizza lover, with that said I must have ate the equivilent of two pies during my cruise! YUM YUM!!
One thing I was a little dissapointed in is Princess does not offer lemonade or fruit punch along with the iced tea like most other ships do. Only iced tea and water were available free of charge. And they made it very inconvenient. There were no drink / water stations set up by the pool not even by the burger/pizza section. You had to go into the Horizon Restaurant to get beverages. This is an area that could use improvement.
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Pros: The ship was absolutly gorgeous and the itinerary was fab.
Cons: Did not care for the anytime dining