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El Aliga

Age: 50's

Occupation:Retired/Consultant

Number of Cruises: 33

Cruise Line: Princess

Ship: Dawn Princess

Sailing Date: March 30th, 2006

Itinerary: Mexico


Dawn Princess Cruisin' Ole! It's fun all the way.

The cruisers boarded at San Francisco's Pier 35. That's how the party started! But, the Dawn Princess sail away party did not have the
Caribbean conga line since the surreal Golden Gate fog greeted the partiers. However from this point on, this 11 day seasonal cruise was spiced with fun fests, on and off the ship. And no rain for the duration. It's party cruisin' west coast style aboard one of the Love Boats.

Ole! Fun, Fun all the way. Our group went Mexican Riviera cruisin' and FUN it was. It's sailing to Catalina Island, Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas with a day stop in San Diego. How nice it is since the Nor Cal residents don't have to fly to Miami or other cruise ports. The magnetic attraction to this cruise is definitely the ship's almost all-inclusive pampering provided by great staff. For the price, few places on land will offer the impeccable service and sanitation that's beyond compare.

As highly acclaimed in the top 5% world's best large cruise ships by Conde Nast Magazine, this vessel set a new standard in cruise ship design and onboard choice when it was built in 1997. Recently renovated, the 1,950-passenger ship rises 14 stories and measures nearly three football fields in length.

Today, Princess has elevated modern cruising to a whole new level, with spacious and accommodating ships packed with amenities. To add sophistication, it has several main dining rooms, warm and intimate in scale, and few spectacular theatres and venues for a choice of entertainment nightly. Oh yes, one will always find the freedom to chart their own course including doin' nuthin' laziness.

The SF embarkation was smooth even with the limited pier space. What's to do on board after check in? This floating mega-resort consists of every activity under the sun that you can possibly want to get into. Whether you're planning on spending your time being pampered from head to toe in a Spa or participating in every deck sport that you can find, this vessel remains equip to accommodate all. There's shopping but with limited merchandise line.

The life aboard the floating mega-resorts attracts many who are seeking the best vacation value for their dollar. In between sightseeing and endless gastronomic frenzy, there are dance instructionals, spa treatments, bingo binges, karaoke karma, get healthy seminars, etc. The world-renowned cuisine offers mouth-watering delicacies. Order double lobster with side of filet mignon and the hardworking wait staff will deliver with an appreciative smile. The guests gets awarded with plethora of desserts for finale. But, the Grand Marnier soufflé' is not available.

The night action offers the effervescence of life. After the sumptuous dinner with friends, there are lounge dancing, piano bar, more shopping, shows and walking on the top deck under moonlit skies. But that's the appetizer for intense interaction at the disco. It's basically exercising off the cruise calories while having frenzied fun.

The Princess top deck parties are renowned as a combination of new year's eve celebration, Mardi Gras, Carnaval, etc. The staff gets the festivities going with absolute excitement and keeps it going until it ends a few hours later. Ey mon, even the afternoon band gets the impromptu conga line going.

Many activities are geared for kids of any age. Kids will attest that they are having more fun than their parents. The teens whoop up the
endless fun with newfound friends as well. Many calls it days and days of 24-hour grad night action.

The staff service is famous to cruisers as well. They bring hospitality with generous smiles and gracious appreciation of your patronage.
Address the staff by their names & they reciprocate your humane courtesy to them by remembering your needs especially at the dining rooms or public venues. Yes, the staterooms are freshened twice a day.

Where's the party place beside the disco? The Wheelhouse Lounge was rockin' while the ship was rollin' literally. Three dance party bands provided the showmanship & they partied the varied guests to excitement. Guest appreciation night or Champagne Waterfall at the fountain main lobby was a hit as well. Yes, there was samba, line-dance, cha-cha slide, boogie-woogie dancing with the staff.. FUN it was!

The ship's entertainment featured award-winning production shows. These exciting, lavish productions highlight some of the largest casts at sea, performing hits from Broadway through to the contemporary classics of today. Somehow, the shows are sedate & bland compared to Carnival's glitzy, fast-paced, laser-lighted action.

The itinerary stops first at good ol' Catalina Island. Rent a golf cart & do a self-tour. After 2 days at sea, don the tropical sombrero & hit
Puerto Vallarta's beaches, shopping, sights. A delightful break is a 75 minute massage at the nearby upscale Krystal Spa resort for only $40. Magnifico Mazatlan is the next stop with more gawking. For the partiers, Senior Frogs is a rockin' place to whoop it up. Pick out a cool pulmonia open-air taxi (modified convertible VW) with blingy wheels & rad stereo and you got a mobile party machine. Then the ship unloads at Cabo Wabo-land. After a nice water taxi excursion at famous Los Arcos, walk to Sammy Hagar's funky place & sample the margarita.

As usual, there are many shore excursions that are offered and it's advisable to sensibly think the entertainment value of each. After a day of partying at sea, there awaits Sandi- Eggo with Sea World, da'Zoo, etc. After another sea day, the ship glides underneath the Golden Gate bridge on the 11th day. Off the ship for the well-fed cruisers.

The negatives? Aside from the non-offered Grand Marnier soufflé', it's too bad smokers and their second-hand smoke (now an EPA classified toxic killer) is allowed at the cardio-pumping disco and many indoor active venues. Many missed the Chocoholics midnight buffet.

Love it or not, cruising is a lifestyle! And it's not only for the rich and famous nowadays. Nobody on earth will guarantee you happiness in life or at cruises except the person's own mind set. Feeling unsure about joining the varied fun fests? Well, nobody knows you at cruises. So then, let go of your inhibitive inner shell & join in the fun program.

Be alive when you're still alive!

 

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