Regal Princess Cruise Review by whirledpeas
- Sail Date: February 2018
- Destination: Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Balcony
We have come to recognize that Princess seems to be catering their onboard activities to 90 year olds. There is very little to do; no pool games, uninteresting trivia and tv show type games...their main focus seemed to be Effy jewelry, the Lotus Spa and the art auctions, none of which i care anything about. The spa hounds you and their pricing is not transparent. The mediocre haircut I got did not include washing my hair. That, and blow drying it were extra. I declined and just got the cut. The art auctions have been fine in the past, but we've bought plenty of pieces already. And Effy.....yawn. The onboard shopping is geared also to 90 year old people, and i don't think even they would wear those clothes! They do carry Brighton, which I like. The casino appears to be well-liked, though we don't gamble, and Bingo seems to do well. (i'm not quite that bored, yet) So, as long as you go onboard knowing you will spend a lot of time on deck, at the pool or on your balcony (this ship is something like 90% balconies) and then get out at the itinerary stops, you will enjoy yourself.
They have brand new, speedy wi-fi that includes messaging, facebook and online access, which is free for Elite and Platinum members. Minimal cost otherwise. This made getting on and off the ship super fast. We basically walked on and off. No lines. Worth it just for that! They are working on rolling out a really good "cloud" based system but it looks like it's going to be a while before they sort it out.
The ship is beautiful throughout. Cabins are well designed, plenty of room for two average sized people with a mini fridge, desk, tables/chairs. Bathroom is reasonably sized, even the shower. Great closet space. Could have used a few more shelves or drawers but hey, we had clothing for 14 days! lol. Balconies are smaller than some but work just fine for lounging, looking, reading, snoozing.
The Horizon Court buffet has been reconfigured into several stations which prevents the lines and crowds from ever being a problem. Lots of seating, too. The food was pretty good. Well seasoned and a good assortment. After 2 weeks I was craving something else, though. A lot of the food is the same. and they repeated many of the dishes every day. We only ate in the main dining room (traditional seating) on formal nights, which worked well. Food was good there and our server was terrific. The pizza, burger and ice cream venues were fabulous. They've added more menu items to the burger station.
The musical entertainment was excellent. Best I have ever heard on a ship. They had The Beatlemaniacs for the 2nd leg of the trip-always fun (and completely full seating). The 2 "house" bands were fabulous, excellent vocalists and newer songlists (I guess Princess read about my last complaint, haha) Extremely well done. They also had a female guitarist who primarily sang Americana/country/pop. We saw nearly every show she did. Fabulous! We love Movies Under The Stars and they sort of under delivered there. Daytime offerings were goofy for the most part. Evening movies were inconsistent. The cabins all have great tv/movie choices, so we watched a lot of them from our room.
Short of needing a bit more options for the evening, this cruise was one of the best. The Regal Princess has a few more kinks to work out- I don't get why they would put a dance floor in the middle of the main promenade, but it's there! and the awkward 6th floor that can only be accessed from either end of the ship. They listened and fixed up some things that The Royal was missing, ie: a second pool, more outside deck spaces. We never visited the sanctuary type area but it was beautiful.
If you are looking for relaxation, don't care too much about games and gizmos, i recommend this ship, this itinerary. (which was actually better on the Western side, due to the storm damage in the Eastern Caribbean) St. Maarten, one of my favorite islands, is still rebuilding, though the beaches are great. Shopping is the usual cruise port snooze fest. Princess Cays was great beach and water time, though it was tough to get a chaise lounge both times we visited. The floaty things sell out, too. Order them online or from your cabin. Don't wait to do it on the island. The best excursion options for this trip were historical and beach themes, in my opinion. Jamaica (Falmouth) was fun to explore and fun with the food and drinks. We just walked around the cruise areas in Grand Cayman and Cozumel. Fun, but nothing fantastic. I am temporarily injured so we thought it best to not attempt some of the things we like, such as inner tubing and more active excursions. So, the relaxing thing was good for me this time around.
I rate this trip nearly 6 stars. Had the onboard options been a bit more exciting (honestly, i was starting to think napkin folding was sounding good) I would have rated it higher. With an onboard captive audience, you would think they would figure out what people want to do, see, buy. They also need to remember that 3/4 of their clientele are repeat Princess cruisers. All in all, great ship, itinerary, staff. Thanks goodness for the good weather!
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
CozumelI have a sports injury that makes walking (and standing) hard. Highly overrated (haha). I had a wheelchair in Cozumel which was nearly impossible to use. Not wheelchair friendly with curbs and sloping streets, as well as a lot of traffic. We were in port until 10 pm. and I don't recommend going too far off the beaten path anytime after 6-ish. Not a lot of tourists out and it didn't feel safe. It was a very hot, dry heat which will get you sunburnt fast if you are not careful. Lip sunscreen is a good idea, if you've ever had sunburnt lips.....ouch. A few funky restaurants/bars just off the ship were great for watching the sunset. Drinks/food overpriced.View All 6,685 Cozumel Cruise Port Reviews
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FalmouthReally liked Falmouth. The town has a pathway with the history of the island and the population, which was interesting. The locals are super friendly. A bit of ganja smell in the air here and there (it is legal, as one guide informed me; he was showing us where the post office was) - and a nice cold Red Stripe while walking around hit the spot. The shopping is all souvenir based and not too exciting but the local color and flavor were awesome. We ate at a nearby restaurant which was excellent, featuring local cuisine like conch, jerk and deep fried corn on the cob. yummy.View All 1,324 Falmouth Cruise Port Reviews
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Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)Hotels were pricey. This is the best shopping port. Sawgrass Mills is enormous, with several anchor stores. You have to fit everything in before 3-ish, so you don't miss the ship! This was considered a port of call on the 2 week back to back.View All 1,922 Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades) Cruise Port Reviews
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Grand Cayman (Georgetown)A lot of cruise ships in port when we visited (seven, maybe?) So it was crazy out on the streets. I found a cute little shop that had moderately priced women's clothing so i picked up some souvenirs that i might actually wear. There was more to see here and the cruise port type shops were not so abundant. (thank heavens) We were happy to get back onboard and to the pool after this trip off the ship!View All 3,387 Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Reviews
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Princess CaysGreat Princess owned beach location. Some rocks getting into the water. Bring water shoes if you can. Order any floaty devices prior to getting to the beach, as they sell out. Lawn chairs are hard to come by. Great music, food, bar service. Use your cruise card for everything. Really enjoyed our beach time here this trip. We visited twice, had a cabana shell the second time which was lovely.View All 554 Princess Cays Cruise Port Reviews
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St. MaartenWhen St. Maarten gets rebuilt, it will be fabulous. We took the water taxi from the pier into town. (very easy and $7 gets a great boat ride as many times as you want. Gorgeous! They sell beer for the crossing, too) The beachfront stores and restaurants are in a state of repair, some more so than others. Really not worth a visit just yet. Some of the shopping on the second streets in are okay. We did not visit the French side this trip. The beaches appear to be fine. Originally we had planned to go to Maho beach to see the airplanes but changed our minds, as we weren't sure how many flights were coming in.View All 4,728 St. Maarten Cruise Port Reviews
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