Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Princess
Ship: Star Princess
Sailing Date: March 27th, 2005
Itinerary: Western Caribbean
First I wanted to thank everyone on the boards for their tips and advice. This is my husband and I's first cruise and will not be our last.
We embarked at Ft. Lauderdale on Easter Sunday. This being our first cruise we arrived early, just in case. We were to start boarding at 1, but were on the ship by 12:15. Princess has embarkation down to a science. Very efficient!
We found our room Aloha 243. It had a covered balcony, queen bed, mini fridge and a huge closet and storage area. The bathroom was small, reminded me of camping.
Our steward Kupunt was wonderful. He was from Thailand and kept our room spotless. It was cleaned no less than twice a day.
We then walked around the ship and took a spa tour. I read some posts about not purchasing the VIP pass for the Sanctuary-- well we did and it was worth every penny. We used the spa 1-2 times per day. The staff did check to make sure you had a pass.
We had a late lunch in the Horizon food court and prepared to sail. The food in Horizon court was good. I know some posts didn't think so, but each to his own.
We sailed promptly at 5 pm and the fun began. Our first dinner in the Capri dining room was fantastic. Being Easter Sunday, the menu was ham, lamb & prime rib. The desserts on the ship were out-of-this-world!
That night the sea was rough. I don't care where you were on the ship-- you feet it. I started taking Bonine 2 days before we sailed & it helped. Once I realized I wasn't going to get sick I was OK.
We arrived in Princess Cays the next morning & tendered it. Beautiful island, clear water (was COLD-- and I'm from FL!) and lots of sun!
Next was our sea day and 1st formal night we which enjoyed immensely.
Our first port was Montego Bay. We were supposed to go to Ocho Rios. No explanation why the change. Montego Bay was awful. Too many scary people with guns & drugs. There was more security to get back to the ship and then we arrived back in U.S. Everyone expressed the disappointment with Montego Bay. We told Princess that we would rather have another sea day than go back to Montego Bay.
Next was Grand Cayman. There too we tendered in. I loved Grand Cayman!! The water is awesome, the people are friendly and you felt safe. One tip-- if you are going on a snorkel excursion don't. We cancelled ours and went around and explored on our own. The restaurants and bars have ladders that lead into the water and they allow you to snorkel for free. You are snorkeling in the same area as the excursion & Nautilus boats. Remember-- all beaches in Grand Cayman are public beaches.
Our last port was Cozumel. Can you say cheap booze! We are Crown Royal drinkers and bought 3 bottles there for the price of 1 in the US. We docked in Cozumel which was nice. We shopped first, took our loot to the ship and then went to Chankanaab. It was only $12 to get in. We did not book with an excursion company. It was beautiful, the food there was great and the staff was really friendly.
Our last sea day the weather was bad, so it was an incentive for us to start packing. We hated to leave.
The ship is magnificent, the staff caters to your every wish and even though we sailed full with 1000 spring breakers on board, you never felt crowded.
I will credit Princess with keeping the adult areas, adult.
The embarkation process was smooth too. If you have to catch a plane, those passengers are let off first. Since we live in West Palm Beach we knew that we had the morning to ourselves. We were off the ship by 9:30 and home by 11.
I felt wobbly for a couple of days afterwards, but didn't mind. I reminded me of our trip. We are soooo looking forward to our next Princess cruise. I don't think I could go on another cruise with a different line.