Embarkation: We took the red-eye flight from Los Angeles. Our travel agent had a room for us at the Comfort suites and the hotel picked us up at the airport. We were able to take advantage of their complimentary breakfast and they were also able to extend the check out time until 1:00 P.M. We took a taxi to the river where we were able to take the river boat down the waterway. The hotel took us to the cruise pier about 1:00 P.M. Embarkation was easy and we were on the ship in no time. I was a little surprised that there was no music playing by the pool. But, we had time to have lunch in the Horizon court and explore the ship before sailing.
Service: The service on the Princess was great. I have taken several cruises (my first on the Princess) and think that Princess has the friendliest employees. Every employee said hello when we passed them on the ship. Our cabin stewardess, Nemaia, went beyond the call of duty. She discovered that I brought orange juice to my room each morning to have with drinks at night. She had room service deliver 2 glasses each day. She also put a foam pad on our bed and brought us an extra bath towel (which we requested). Our waiter, Miguel, and our assistant, Nick, were also good. We had traditional late seating dinner. Miguel was not super outgoing. He is new and I am not sure that he really enjoyed his job, but he did give good service and did many extra things for our table. Nick was always there with a smile.
Room: We were on the Baja deck, room 502. It was a great location. The showers were small but the closets were large and the room had plenty of space for two of us. Our friends were next door, so our steward opened the door between the balconies so we can share the balcony together.
Food: Most of the food dishes were great. Lately, I have been disappointed with the food on RCCL and really thought the food on the Princess was better. The salad dressings were little bland for my taste but the meals were all good. We did not eat at the Bayou but did eat at Sabatini's. The service at Sabatini's was as good as you have in any fine restaurant. The food kept coming and by the time you received the main course, you were full. It was 3 hours of eating and everything tasted delicious.
Activities: There was plenty to do on the ship and we just ran out of time. I had every intention to take advantage of the scholarship at sea program but never made it to any classes. I did have a wonderful facial. we also tried the golf simulator which was a lot of fun-although I do better on the course. The minature golf was okay.
Entertainment: We could not possibly hit all the shows. We enjoyed the Tribute show. The Welcome Aboard show was not very good and the comedian, Jack Mayberry was not very good either. Comedians Tony Daro and Rick Corso were much better. The piano player at Crooners, Charlie Sleeth, was the best. He will be going to the Sapphire in April. The entertainment in the Wheelhouse bar was not very good. We tried to listen to the late entertainment in the Bayou, but we never saw them. The were suppose to play until midnight and were always on break or quit earlier. One night the piano player was ill. Of course, we had to go to watch the finals of the "princess idol" show as 2 of our CC members, Kirby and Terry, were the finalist. Kirby became the Princess idol (what a good voice he has).
Ship: The ship was beautiful. I enjoyed the Lotus pool, which was the adult pool. The pool was fresh water and heated. When we wanted more action, we went to the main pool, but it was very crowded. We discovered the lounges in the back of the baja deck, which was really relaxing. The noro virus was on the ship and many passengers and crew members were quarantined. The ship handled the situation and we were always suppose to sanatize our hands when entering the restaurant. It was strange seeing men running around wearing hazemat suits! Our group of 8 all stayed healthy.
Cruise critic: Our cruise critic roll call members got together on our first sea day. It was sure fun meeting everyone. Bill tried to see if the cruise director would put together a party for our group and left his name and my name with the director. We never heard from him. I do think the CD should have responded to our request, even if to say no. As a matter of fact, we very rarely saw the CD. His assistant, Mike, was everywhere. I was disappointed with the CD.
Disembarkation: I like the fact that Princess gives an estimated time for each group to be called. We were the purple group and to be called at 9:00 A.M. We were called at 9:15 which wasn't too bad. We were able to have breakfast and then get go to our room to get our carry luggage. Princess required that luggage was out before dinner. Other cruises allowed you to put the luggage out after dinner, by a certain time. I don't know why Princess wanted it out so early. Immigration and everything went smoothly until we needed to collect our luggage. The Purple group was put in the back corner, even though we were off before other groups. Finding the luggage was very difficult. Then, we had to try and get the luggage out between other suitcases (paths were not big enough) and people were getting irrate. This was not the way to end a great trip. Luckily, we had a 5:00 plane flight.
All in all it was a great trip and I would recommend the Coral Princess.
Celebrity: Silhouette 10/11/12; Solstice 6/28/13; Solstice 11/4/13; Century 4/26/14
Royal Caribbean: Viking Seranade 1/2/95; 3/28/97; 4/2/99; 4/21/00; Rhapsody of the Seas 8/01; Monarch of the Seas 4/04 3/05; Jewel of the Seas 8/15/08; Radiance of the Sea 11/7/09; Serenade of the Sea 11/7/10; Voyager of the Seas 3/24/12; Quantum of the Seas 4/12/15; Serenade of the Seas 10/7/15
Carnival: Elation 4/98; Fascination 6/00; Ectasy 4/02;12/05; Conquest 3/03;
Princess: Coral 6/03; Sapphire 12/04; Sapphire 9/11; Golden Princess 11.14
Radisson: Paul Gaugin 8/02
Premier: Big Red Boat 8/90