DAY 7: At Sea and Ship Review
We joined the culinary demonstration and tour of the galley in the morning and did a wine tasting in the afternoon. The cooking demo was fun. I always enjoy walking through the galley, one of many aboard ship, and seeing the spotless stainless steel countertops and cabinets. The wine tasting was lovely, with a great selection of appetizers on a platter: lobster, steak tartare, smoked salmon, cheeses, caviar, and more. It was worth the $15 cost but I always wish the waiter would pour me more! The last day on the cruise was windy and rainy so no one went outside. Too bad, we couldn’t really enjoy the deck on this cruise. For better weather, July might be a better month. Dinner: Roast turkey with all the trimmings and traditional Baked Alaska.
Review of the Caribbean Princess
We liked the ship very much. It’s a sister ship to several others, including the Emerald Princess we are going on next to the Southern Caribbean.
Our balcony cabin had a lovely view out the wide doors. The balcony floor is covered with some sort of spongy porous material that works well. We had a refrigerator in the room stocked with soft drinks. Princess gives very comfortable storage space with a large separate closet, plenty of hangars, and a cabinet of floor to ceiling shelves. Other furnishings included a single armchair, small round table, desk chair, tv, desk console, and two nightstands each with drawers. No coffeemaker and no sofa in the cabin. We peeked at our kids inside cabin which had the same generous storage space. You don’t get a closed in feeling because the back wall holds a wide mirror. Their desk space was larger than in our cabin.
The bathroom has a small shower area and a shower curtain instead of a door (RCCL has a glass door in a tiny round space), ultra-thin single ply toilet paper, and rough tissues (better ones in public restrooms). I got a cold on this cruise and my nose came away looking very chafed.
Bathroom amenities: bar soap, signature lotion, shampoo, and conditioner with a pleasant fragrance. The lotion comes out a bit thick.
The steward was very efficient. He cleaned our room when we were absent and left chocolates on our pillow each night. He did not fold the towels into shapes like on previous cruises.
I think the temperature in a balcony room fluctuates more due to the glass: the room can be colder in cool weather, hotter in sunny warm climates. We froze until we told the steward to get the thermostat in our room fixed. The view from our balcony when seated was clear, not obstructed by the railing. There’s a large glass partition up to the rail outside.
The first night’s show included the ship’s singers and dancers, pyrotechnics, and a comedian. The cruise director on this ship was excellent. He’s talented in his own right and was often funnier than the guest star. The second night was a dance production with mist, strobe lights, and flashy costumes. We missed the comedian’s solo performance because he got sick with a migraine. Memorable shows were the Scottish pipe band in Nova Scotia and the crew’s talent show.
Buffet Breakfast: Different type of pancakes every day, individual fried eggs, ready-made omelets, breads and pastries, fruit, yogurt, cereal, sautéed mushrooms, breakfast meats, smoked salmon, potatoes, and more. The coffee tasted good and the caffeine worked for me. Pitchers of cream are available near the coffee urns. A nice selection of teas is offered.
Afternoon tea is served in the dining room: you get brewed tea with no choice of flavors; mini-sandwiches, scones with whipped cream and jam, cookies and cakes. It’s served at 3:30 by white-gloved waiters.
Although Princess mentioned in their newsletter that they were adding a third seating at 5:30, it turned out there were only two seatings on this cruise. We had early seating and it was scheduled for 5:30. I would have preferred 6:00 but we sauntered in near that time anyway with no problem. You have the choice of fixed seating or free style dining. We did not take advantage of the restaurants for which there is an extra cover charge.
There are two outdoor grills by the pool. One serves pizza and the other station serves hot dogs, burgers, and French fries. Their pizza is thin crust and very good, better than RCCL. (We like the Seattle’s Best coffee on RCCL better).
An ice cream bar on deck serves free soft serve ice cream. We were so full from all the meals, we never got any. Plus the chilly, rainy weather was not conducive to ice cream. Fresh cookies were available around the pool area in afternoon or at the buffet. You can also get snacks and desserts at the International Café inside at the bottom of the atrium. Specialty coffee is offered her for a fee. Across the way is the Vines wine bar with free canapés and sushi but you have to pay for cheeses.
Princess menu selections are consistently appealing, and there are good choices on the alternative menu too. Breads and desserts are all good. (NCL does custard type desserts well but not pastries; RCCL desserts are okay but their menu selection loses appeal over the course of a week). Princess pastries are very good, much to the detriment of my diet. So now it’s time to lose weight and get ready for the next voyage.
For more photos, go to my New England photo album