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Old 05-06-2008, 07:22 PM
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Need to know how is that ship?? We are hesitating between Princess and R.C.L.
Want opinion Princess Activities
Want opinion tourism ages??

And things I should know to decide myself...

thank you
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Old 05-06-2008, 08:04 PM
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Hello, tacha;

I can't give you a comparison because I have never been on an RCI ship; but I have been on Sapphire Princess several times, and am going again next October. We love her. She's big but not crowded; lots of deck space and four pool areas to choose from; kept in immaculate condition; great food and lots of choices; and always a friendly and courteous staff.

I can't tell you much about the activities; we tend to like the quieter areas and avoid the hoopla; but there are activities from early morning to late at night. One we are fond of is "Princess Pop Star"; their version of American Idol. By the end of the cruise the passengers have picked the "best" entertainer onboard. And we have always been very satisfied with Princess' shore excursions.

There are always passengers of all ages. It depends on the length of cruise and itinerary; shorter cruises in warmer climates attract younger passengers. Longer cruises and Alaska cruises draw an older average age. But there is always a nice mix.

I don't know what you look for in a cruise; but I have been cruising with Princess for over 30 years and am very satisfied with them. I think they provide the best value for your cruise dollar.

Hope this helps a little.

Rick
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Old 05-07-2008, 04:10 AM
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Finally someone who knows the Sapphire...!!! You wouldn't have any picture of that ship to send me, if yes, I would give me my email!!!

Now, I am all mixed up...!!! So, I saw picture from the Princess site, there are realy 4 pools, outside pools? The food, the dining room, great choices, great quality?? How about at lunch time, do they have a restaurant or a snack (hamb. pizza) around the pool?? The staff.. how is it?? Two formal nights??

Is it possible to buy our wine by internet before getting in the ship??

What SHOULD WE KNOW about that ship and the Mexican Riviera cuise??? Good or bad??

Thank you
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Old 05-07-2008, 06:32 AM
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Just got off the Sapphire on April 12 in Sydney after a 12 day cruise around New Zealand, through the Fiordlands, over to Tasmania and then to Melbourne before we picked-up a week Cruise Tour in Sydney. Great ship and a terrific trip!

There are actually 5 pools! Although 2 are relatively small. The food ranges from good to excellent. We found that lunch was better in the Horizon Buffet, plus on sea days (we had 6 of them on a 12 day cruise) they had a different themed buffet each sea day near the pool area right outside the Horizon. These buffets always provided very good food with lots of choices. Also, in the pool area is a hamburger and pizza area. These are open from 11 AM until 6 PM, so you can even grab an early, light, dinner (or pre-dinner if have eat late!) The pizza was good (just a bit too much cheese for me) and the burgers were very good.

The dining rooms had limited menus for breakfast and lunch, but that changed for dinner. Plenty of choices. We found the chicken, pork, lamb and fish dishes to be the best. For some reason, the only beef (other than the hamburgers) I liked on the ship was in the Sterling Steakhouse. We also ate at Sabatinis Tratatoria -- well worth the extra money, and we didn't walk away too full!

The staff was great. Our room Steward, Lino, was excellent. Ask once, and he took care of our every need. The rest of the staff was very helpful and friendly. Always said hello, good morning, "good day, mate" (hey, we were on our way to Australia), good evening, etc.

The two formal nights were a bit more elegant than on our Alaska cruise last June. The food was just a bit better in the dining rooms on those nights as well. Even the entertainment in the Princess Theater seemed special those two nights!

The ship is only four years old, and is great shape. As Rick said, they keep her immaculate. There is plenty to do, especially if this is your first Princess cruise. We didn't do some things on the Sapphire since we had just done them on the Golden less than a year ago. I have all the Princess Patters (the daily newsletter listing the day's activities) from our most recent cruise. I'll scan them in, and post a link. You can then see the plethora of activities available, even on port days.

For Wine and other spirits, go to the Princess Cellars Web Page:
http://www.princess.com/learn/onboard/services/gifts/pr...ss_cellars/index.jsp

Hope all this helps.
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:37 AM
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AlaskaGolden,

We are planning to take the Princess Sapphire on the Alaskan Cruise (with 5 days sightseeing the interior prior to cruising) and would love to see the Princess Patters that you recieved. I have read reviews that state the food is not up to standard on Princess cruises, but I see your remarks and Rick's comments and feel a bit better about the meals.

How are the mini-suites? Are they fairly nice sized or just a few feet bigger than the cabin w/ balcony?

Thanks for all of the information, it will be so handy come August.

Lizzyjane
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:47 AM
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The mini suites are quite large compared to a regular cabin. The bathroom is much larger & the full size tub/shower is plus. Also, there is a good size seating area between the bedroom and balcony which was a nice place to entertain friends and family.
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Old 05-07-2008, 11:02 AM
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I agree completely about the mini-suite; it is well worth the extra expense, especially if you like to spend time in your cabin or on your balcony. In addition to what Todd said, there is much more closet and storage space and the balcony itself is much larger and has more furniture.

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Old 05-07-2008, 11:28 AM
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That is a nice photo Rick. These days hauling that luggage on the airlines is a problem in itself. I think it will only get worse. I know we always take too much, we have to cut back on our next trips.
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Old 05-07-2008, 12:28 PM
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Wow, so that's how the other half lives. Great picture Rick. Tacha, I answered your other post. I have sailed on both Princess and Royal. Royal has more "glitz" the rock wall, the ice skating, the Promenade, etc. Princess is more elegant and I think much better food and service. Again, this is my opinion only. I haven't sailed the Sapphire, but have sailed the Caribbean and Emerald. All Princess ships I have been on are immaculate. Like I said, you can't make a bad decision, it's a cruise!
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Old 05-07-2008, 01:11 PM
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Wow - thanks a lot for the picture and information. We had originally reserved a room with a balcony but there was a special and for $100.00 more a person we could get a mini-suite. We don't have our room yet - when do they usually post your room assignment?

Lizzyjane
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