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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
First Med cruise and first cruise with Princess. It exceeded our expectations. Everything was perfect. Staff were so nice. Food was fantastic. The activities and shows were all very good. Such nice treatment from all the crew. We met ... Read More
First Med cruise and first cruise with Princess. It exceeded our expectations. Everything was perfect. Staff were so nice. Food was fantastic. The activities and shows were all very good. Such nice treatment from all the crew. We met people from all over the world. This cruise had started in Singapore, picked up some more people in Dubai and then Rome, where we got on. 10 days of spoiling from all the crew on Sapphire Princess. The excursions were very good, we took the one to Juno beach. It was fantastic, and they had a speaker on the D-day landings, aboard the ship. The excursion in Portugal to Sintra and Cascais was excellent. It was so beautiful, both places. We really enjoyed Gibraltar and Monaco. The International cafe in the piazza was fantastic. All the restaurants, provided excellent service, everyday. The food was hot, and very good. We ordered Room service every morning and it always arrived promptly. The entertainment was great, and varied. We also tried the two speciality restaurants, the Steak house and Sabatinis. Both were very good. The pizza restaurant was good as well. So many bars, but lots of quiet spaces to find some space. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
the staff on sapphire seemed to just be going through the motions there were many we spoke to and they were just looking forward to getting off in Athens and Rome (contract finishing) , the onboard entertaiment was boring to say the least ... Read More
the staff on sapphire seemed to just be going through the motions there were many we spoke to and they were just looking forward to getting off in Athens and Rome (contract finishing) , the onboard entertaiment was boring to say the least there is only so much violins that a person can listen to (37 days) thats all that seemed to be on in the piazza area (boring) the cruise director and manager had no idea how to entertain the whole ships demograghpics as they just caterted for the oldies there were plenty of youthful passagers looking for some real entetainment but it just never happened. get rid of these fools, there was no free coffee avalible midship (piazza) or any of the down stairs café/bars except in the horizons buffet and the resturants which meant you had to go to the back of the ship just to get a brew, another way princess makes a buck if your not that mobile then your forced to pay at all other locations (the only other free coffee was in plastic jugs by the smokers area) real smart. the harassment from the photo shop staff was constant and very annoying as they would always deliberately cut you off when disembarking for their stupid photo's this was very tacky, I had to firmly tell them several times that I was not interested,(it felt like they were preying on the vulnerable for a quick buck) the pizza in alfredos is very good but they will not allow you to take it away if you want to then there is a $3 us room service fee. the outside area mid ship to aft often stuck of a strong sewage/ methane smell in fact I spoke directly with captain H L on deck and he stated that there was a problem with a vent pipe midship this smell was present off and on for a least 10 days (even called customer service to let them know) the Indian visa fiasco was a joke as we like nearly all passengers paid a minimum of $80us per person for an 8 hours visit to cochin, we wrote to princess months prior to the cruise and advised them that we were not interested in getting off in India, only to be told that we would still require a visa to board the ship.Only to find out that some 70 odd passengers that did not turn up at Singapore with it and were allowed to sail, they only had to sign a waiver that they would not get off in India , we wrote a written complaint to quest services on the ship but did not receive any response (once again poor service) the platinum / elite club is not worth obtaining as there are not free drinks offered in this club ,why would you bother spending more money to become elite ,we will stick with royal Caribbean from now on as they give over 3 hours of free drinks to the diamond club members and it only takes 80 days to reach this level (not 150 with princess) the only plus thing was our stateroom attendant who was very good and plenty of in room movies. almost forgot don't bother with the internet it is very slow and not worth the money Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
In late October 2018 my wife and I embarked on a 38-day Princess cruise from Southampton to Singapore via the Suez Canal, the choice of cruise was largely influenced by three of the ports of call. Highlight number one was Malta and ... Read More
In late October 2018 my wife and I embarked on a 38-day Princess cruise from Southampton to Singapore via the Suez Canal, the choice of cruise was largely influenced by three of the ports of call. Highlight number one was Malta and Valletta the capital, steeped in history and grand historic buildings this was a truly magnificent location and I would certainly like to return there one day. Highlight number two was the Suez Canal transit, while strictly not a port of call this amazing feat of engineering continually amazed with its everchanging vistas and was so unexpectedly different from what I had envisaged. Alas due to flash flooding and unfortunate death of a dozen lives we were unable to visit Petra in Jordan and the third highlight on our list, but at least we were safe and able to continue with our holiday. Sapphire Princess lived up to the usual excellent Princess standards of food and service, but it was the steam room and sauna that stood out as being properly hot with the facilities designated their own proper area and not out in the public arena, much better than on many other ships. One down side (my hair grows fast) being that I was starting to look scruffy and needing a haircut. I decided I couldn’t wait and would have to check out the salon and see if they do men’s haircuts. No problem and I was soon looking much neater and was pleasantly surprised at the price I was charged. Another great feature we have found on Princess ships is the self-service laundrettes (necessary on cruises of seven or more days) as we like to do our own laundry, maybe this is an Australasian thing? only trust this is a feature that is still being designed for and included on all new ships. Ps I have plenty of photos. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
Main reason was to go along the Suez Canal and then see Petra. We saw and liked the Suez, but Petra had to be cancelled due to the flood there the day before our arrival. Practically nearly all of the other ports we had visited ... Read More
Main reason was to go along the Suez Canal and then see Petra. We saw and liked the Suez, but Petra had to be cancelled due to the flood there the day before our arrival. Practically nearly all of the other ports we had visited before, and this ship and it's itinerary (apart from the Sea or Sun Princess World Cruise) go through the Suez and gave the chance of going to Petra. Had we seen advertised before we booked, various section itineraries of this cruise we would have just taken the Rome to Dubai section, and missed out the problem and cost of the Indian Visa's, plus the trouble the Sapphire Princess had with them when we were about to arrive at Cochin. Fortunately, we had ours on a thumb-drive and were able to have Sapphire Princess customer service reprint them. A lot of people had problems there. The Sapphire Princess also charged excessively for shuttle buses that were probably put on by the ports, for which Princess would probably pay only a pittance. The shows were sub-standard and a lot of passengers were complaining about them and walking out. There was little in the way of activities, and the Cruise Director staff were very loud, would shout or scream even though they were using a microphone. The Cruise Director Manager, Paul, would 'put down' his female staff and it was 'beneath' him to talk to passengers. On the whole, this is the WORST CRUISE we have ever taken with Princess, and it will take a lot of consideration before joining Princess again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We haven't cruised for nearly 30 years so it was interesting to see how cruising in general had changed. We chose this particular cruise and cruise line because of the ports of call and the timing. We decided that 10 nights was ... Read More
We haven't cruised for nearly 30 years so it was interesting to see how cruising in general had changed. We chose this particular cruise and cruise line because of the ports of call and the timing. We decided that 10 nights was enough for us and by night 10 we were right. We were told onboard by other passengers that this cruise was a 'repositioning cruise' so 'don't expect too much in entertainment'. We didn't know this but it was true. We were expecting more guest lecturers, workshops etc that we used to have in previous cruises but the only lectures or seminars were ones where the crew tried to sell things. Having said that we loved the cruise, the ship, the ports of call, the food....everything. The ship was very clean and impressive. Needs more signage though - kept getting lost. Our cabin - inside and low down the ship because of movement - was suitable for our needs. Great wardrobe space and very comfortable beds. No problem there. I liked the fact that we could chose 'anytime dining'. Some times we just had a bowl of soup from one of the cafes. We didn't join in with the formal nights but that's ok we just went to other places for dinner. Horizons was superb, loved the International Cafe for a great coffee and cake after a day's sightseeing and the other restaurants were top class. As I said, not much in the entertainment but we only had 3 'at sea' days and we just wanted to relax. The spa was great - I joined the thermal suite for the cruise and it gave me a place to relax away from the general population. Service was spot on. Everyone seemed to be genuine in their greetings and happy to be there. Excursions were a little on the shallow side and expensive for what they were. Many of them entailed a great deal of coach time to get to places - Rome, Florence and Paris - so that made for a rather long and exhausting day. Yes we are planning another cruise and yes we would cruise with Sapphire Princess again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Great itinerary, great staff, horrible in your face sales ploys. Princess has lost its way and has now totally conformed to the Carnival model of every square inch of the ship needs to be a profit center. Library is a joke. Future cruise ... Read More
Great itinerary, great staff, horrible in your face sales ploys. Princess has lost its way and has now totally conformed to the Carnival model of every square inch of the ship needs to be a profit center. Library is a joke. Future cruise is now in the library with all the lines of passengers and high decible noise to go with it. Photo sales takes up an insanely large area with high price photos even though most people get high quality photos off their camera phones at a fraction of the price. Don't even get me started on the art auctions. Yuk! So called limited editions that seem to be on every cruise for many years. Even the beautiful floral arrangements that use to be throughout the ship have ceased to exist. If you ask for a table for 2 in the main dining room you will be seated on a long uncomfortable bench with more parties of 2 within a foot of you. Wake up Princess and make cruising great again. We miss you. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Best value for money, compared to other destinations and length of cruise. We visited ports and countries we would never have visited had we not been on this cruise. Lots to do on board the ship even when we had 6 days in a row at sea. ... Read More
Best value for money, compared to other destinations and length of cruise. We visited ports and countries we would never have visited had we not been on this cruise. Lots to do on board the ship even when we had 6 days in a row at sea. Great variety of activities on board. From hand crafts to exercise classes, singing, dancing, banjo playing. Bible study classes to Bingo. Movies on the big screen or in your cabin, a huge variety to choose from. Food what can I say about the food. If you couldn't find something you liked either in the 6 formal restaurants or in the Horizon Buffet restaurant you must be very fussy, or too spoilt. Shore excursions we had a huge range of choice, from very active to very sedate. The staff on board made you feel very special whether it was our cabin staff or restaurant staff, or anywhere else on the ship. AMAZING TRIP so much so we have already started to make booking for our next cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Ports of Call were our main reason for choosing this cruise. Ship was tired. Many unhosted events. Some of the guests were voluntary speakers onboard. Crew service was brilliant in some areas and woeful with attitude in other areas. ... Read More
Ports of Call were our main reason for choosing this cruise. Ship was tired. Many unhosted events. Some of the guests were voluntary speakers onboard. Crew service was brilliant in some areas and woeful with attitude in other areas. Many crew seemed as though they didn’t want to be there. I am convinced Phillippino crew are the best. Entertainment was downright poor, Cabin was great and always clean. Cabin attendant great. Shore excursions were very good and seemed reasonable value. The big plus was the food. A big improvement. Sabitinis great. The steakhouse could do with a better venue. The Skywalkers bar was not opened till 2200 hrs to the general public. It is the best viewing bar on this boat. You can see over the years the costcutting that has occurred with Princess. It is now to the bone. Meat loaf as the lunch roast in the buffet.??? With all the survey awards you see these days Princess is hardly mentioned. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2018
Good value for money. Very disappointed that Happy Hour had been taken off all Princess Cruises. Food was great. I have noticed portion size has decreased which is a great thing. Entertainment was very ordinary. I enjoyed the few days ... Read More
Good value for money. Very disappointed that Happy Hour had been taken off all Princess Cruises. Food was great. I have noticed portion size has decreased which is a great thing. Entertainment was very ordinary. I enjoyed the few days from Singapore. The entertainment progressively got worse. I found the activities on board not to my liking. This was my 5th Princess cruise and it was the first time the activities were disorganised. Marcus the Cruise Director was amazing and got to know the passengers. Too many formal nights. We had 7. It got to the stage where I just dined at the Horizons as I couldn't be bothered dressing up. 1400 people got off in Rome and the ship had a different feel. It was like it improved services after Rome and upgraded furniture in Crooners and offered more activities. The crew are always friendly. The ports were amazing. We got off exhausted but very pleased to have done the cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Chose this cruise for the ports. Princess cruises is usually our first choice.The Sapphire Princess had just come from a refurbishment which was great. New beds , new flat screen TV's, new carpets etc. Embarkation went smoothly ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the ports. Princess cruises is usually our first choice.The Sapphire Princess had just come from a refurbishment which was great. New beds , new flat screen TV's, new carpets etc. Embarkation went smoothly approx 45 min. Our first port was Sri Lanka then Cochin. Did the backwater tour in Cochin (ship tour). We really enjoyed all the ports. The weather was good and very calm seas. From cochin to Dubai we had 6 sea days which quite relaxing then Aqaba in Jordan. In Aqaba we arranged a private day tour to Petra which was amazing . When we got back we took the shuttle into the town and had a walk around the city. Next ports were Santorina, Athens, Malta, Naples then Civitivecia (rome)all of these ports were really good and easy to go ashore and do your own thing. We also sailed through the Suez Canal which was interesting. DIsemberkation went smoothly. We got a number beforehand with time to disembark . When we got the terminal our luggage was there for collecton. The terminal itself was very busy as there was another 6 cruise ships docked. It took quite a while for us to get the bus from the terminal to the Civitivecia train station to Rome as it was a public holiday. The entertainment and all services on board was very good. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2012
Okay, here's the scoop: my wife and I flew to LAX on 4/26, stayed two nights on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, hopped on the Sapphire Princess on 4/28 and sailed to Santa Barbara, San Francisco, San Diego and Ensenada. We had an inside ... Read More
Okay, here's the scoop: my wife and I flew to LAX on 4/26, stayed two nights on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, hopped on the Sapphire Princess on 4/28 and sailed to Santa Barbara, San Francisco, San Diego and Ensenada. We had an inside cabin (B422) and Anytime Dining. Check-in at the San Pedro pier was pretty painless; we arrived at around noon and were on board in about 45 minutes. As far as the ship is concerned, I wasn't expecting much. I've never liked the exterior of these ships (although it grew on me....a little), and photos of Sapphire's interiors didn't really do much for me. To my surprise, she was actually quite nice inside....yep, some areas were a bit sterile, some a bit tacky, but others were downright beautiful. I was surprised how sleek and contemporary many of the remodeled rooms were...some would fit perfectly in a Celebrity ship. Overall, I had no problems with a bulk of the interior decor. I will say that Sapphire Princess is one of the best maintained ships I have ever been on. For a vessel built in 2004, she looks as if she came from the shipyard just yesterday. Of course I know she just spent some time in dry dock, but even areas they didn't touch looked brand-new. The one remodel that's a total failure is the Horizon Court buffet. This is, by far, the worst design I have ever seen (even worse than QM2's King's Court). On each side of the ship are eleven or twelve individual food stations....all within an area of about 30 by 20ft. During meal times it was always crowded, and people constantly ran into one another. There were really no lines, it was just a free-for-all. Unfortunately the food left a lot to be desired. Hot food in the Horizon Court was lukewarm at best, and the selection was completely whacked out: pork and bean SANDWICHES? Really? Rock-hard, golf ball-sized biscuits with nacho cheese sauce for breakfast? Really? Their attempt at Indian dishes was somewhat laughable...simply adding curry to something doesn't make it Indian food. The pizza, burgers, fries, etc. out on deck were very good and, throughout the ship, desserts were excellent. I did find it funny that, at the ice cream bar, called 'Sundaes', there was not one sundae to be had. The specialty pizza in the atrium was also very good. The Anytime Dining worked out well. The Sapphire has four anytime dining rooms (5:30-9pm) and we tried all four. We liked the decor of the Vivaldi Dining Room the best so we ate there multiple times. The menu is the same in all four dining rooms, the exception being that each one has its own signature dish. In all dining rooms the quality of the beef was disappointing; nearly every steak I ordered had 'silver skin' running through it. During the first night at dinner, our waiter noticed me struggling with my steak and he walked over and said, "Let me get you another one"; I didn't even say anything, he knew. On the flipside, the pasta dishes were very good....the veal-stuffed ravioli in a mushroom wine sauce was outstanding. We ate at Sabatini's on the first formal night ($20 per person), and it was only marginally better than the main dining rooms. Service was just about the same. All in all, I'm not sure I would pay the $40 again; it certainly wasn't anything like the incredible experience we had in Millennium's Olympic Restaurant. We sat through four tunes of the "Do You Wanna Dance" production show before the sharps and flats got the best of me; the lightshow, however, was pretty impressive. With the exception of the pianist, live music throughout the ship was very good. There were two live bands on board, a heavier rock band (Indigo) and another band (name escapes me) that played the standards. I really liked both, although Indigo seemed to be just a bit on the heavy side for the mostly 70-plus crowd. By far the biggest asset Princess has going for it (at least on the Sapphire) is the staff. Service throughout the ship was nothing short of excellent, and unlike some of the crew on our last cruise (Carnival), they were always smiling and very courteous. I have no qualms about the service at all. Since I now have Elite status with Princess I received a lot of perks: free mini-bar set up, free laundry, wine tastings, etc. I also received 150 free minutes of internet time. Problem was the internet service was so slow that I wasted probably a third of the time just waiting for the thing to move. However, the perks were nice to have, and since I always have my clothes pressed on board, I saved quite a bit. I have to say, out of 43 cruises, I have never seen such a concentrated number of walkers, electric scooters, canes and wheelchairs. At night, after most of the passengers had gone to bed (which was understandably early), at least one or two electric scooters were parked in every stair/elevator landing. I mean I've been on cruises plenty of times when my fellow passengers were on the older side, but wow, not like this. To be honest, I don't think a good portion of these people should have been on a cruise....many looked like they could have kicked-off had a good, stiff breeze came by. Santa Barbara was pretty cool, although all we did was walk to the charming downtown area (about a 15 minute walk) and did some browsing in a few of the eclectic shops. While in San Francisco, Seven Seas Navigator and Norwegian Pearl were there. About Norwegian Pearl: much to what I'm sure was her passengers' disappointment, she docked miles away, near the Bay Bridge. Not much around it. Sapphire Princess and the Regent ship both docked right in the heart of San Francisco, very close to Fisherman's Wharf. The other thing is that Norwegian Pearl arrived after us and left before we did, so not only does the NCL ship dock far away, her time in port seemed pretty short. We had purchased a hop-on hop-off day pass (strictly as a means of getting around the city) and it worked out very well. We went to the Palace of Fine Arts (which was a personal goal for me as it was a favorite place of a dear friend who passed away earlier this year) and then hopped back on the bus and got off at the Golden Gate Bridge. We walked over the bridge to the first tower and then the vertigo took over. After that we headed to the Japanese Tea Garden at Golden Gate Park, Chinatown (10 minutes of that was enough), Lombard Street and then back to Fisherman's Wharf. We went on an hour- long cruise of SF Bay and then headed back to the ship. On the way, we stopped at Frank's Nautical Collectibles and I found a treasure-trove of reasonably priced ocean liner items....among other things I bought a French Line CGT cup and a silver-plated ashtray from the second class smoking room on Europa (1930)... $30 for both! San Diego was a blast. A good friend, a fellow Cincinnatian who moved out to SD years ago, met us at the pier and we spent the day romping around the city. We visited Balboa Park and then drove to La Jolla to see the spectacular views. He also took us to Point Loma to see the Cabrillo memorial, which sits high up on a cliff....more incredible views. After lunch we made our way back to the ship, said our goodbyes and then my wife and I walked over to see the u.s.s. Midway. I was happy to discover the USO tribute to Bob Hope which, being a sentimental sap was quite emotional for me. Last stop was Ensenada. Since I had already been there, and my wife had no desire to head into town, we just walked around the dock and took some photos. While we were in San Diego and Ensenada, the Semester at Sea ship, the former Olympic Explorer (now just Explorer) was docked close by. It was my first time seeing one of the two ships in the class and, to be honest, I loved the exterior. It had such a sense of speed about it...very cool. Disembarkation back in San Pedro was a breeze. We purchased the transfer to LAX while we were on the ship and it worked out well. We were off the ship, on the bus and at the airport within an hour. Overall it was a great trip. The ship was nice, service was great, we loved the itinerary and I understand that food is always subjective. I do have to eat a little crow in that I had always believed that Princess was notorious for nickel and diming people to death...not so (at least not on this cruise). Sure they had the typical watch sales, spa specials, etc., but they were never in your face about it. In that regard, it was very 'un-Carnival'. One last thing: the Cruise Director was on the television, non-stop, telling people about what was going on, telling jokes, etc......but NOT ONCE DID I SEE THE GUY. I came away thinking that maybe he wasn't even on board. I mean out of seven days you'd think I'd see him at least once. Never. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining; the last thing I want to be subjected to is a totally obnoxious Cruise Director, but this was just weird. Read Less
Sapphire Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 5.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.2

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