Mini-Review - Puget Sound and San Juan Islands - September 8-15, 2018

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647 Posts
Joined Jul 2013
I am starting this thread for my mini-review of my Puget Sound & San Juan Islands Cruise, September 8, 2018 to September 15, 2018. It was a beautiful cruise with 71 passengers onboard. I'll share my impressions from this past week on my ship experience as well as information about the ports and shore excursions.

Next: Travel Day and Pre-Cruise Package
647 Posts
Joined Jul 2013
Travel Day and Pre-Cruise Package:

It was a looong travel day (Sept. 7th) with two flights across country to Seattle. I was traveling with a friend and we had opted for the pre-cruise package which included a one night hotel stay at the Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza, 113 6th Avenue in downtown Seattle, a city tour and transportation to the ship.

We took a taxi to the hotel from the airport and our fare was $49.39. Upon check-in, we received a Welcome Packet from American Cruise Lines outlining the pre-cruise activities for the next day. We were tired from the flights and had dinner in the hotel at the Regatta Bar & Grille. The hotel is an older Holiday Inn, a bit tired, but it was adequate for one night. I am an IHG member and upon request, the hotel credited me points for the one night stay. Breakfast was not included. We ordered room service for breakfast the next morning to give us the maximum time in the room and some extra rest from our travel day.

We met in the lobby with a representative from ACL at 8:30 a.m. (Sept. 8th), presented our boarding passes and identifications before boarding the bus for our city tour. Our luggage was earlier picked up inside our room and would be taken to our cabin on the American Spirit. The city tour was approximately 2 1/2 hours and was comprehensive with an option to be dropped off and picked up at Pike Place Market for a 45 minute visit. Surprisingly, no one took advantage of this. My friend and I had both been to Seattle in the past and had no plans to spend any additional time in the city beyond the city tour which we both enjoyed.

The American Spirit was docked at Shilshole Bay Marina and we arrived at the ship around 11:30 a.m.

Next: Embarkation and Cabin
647 Posts
Joined Jul 2013
Embarkation and Cabin:

Embarkation was very easy. Staff was waiting outside the ship under a tent and checked us in and we were on the ship. The Chesapeake Lounge was open and had refreshments available; however, our cabin was ready and we decided to go directly there and get settled in. Lunch would be served at 12:30 p.m.


We were in a Category A cabin. It was 258 sq. ft. with a large picture window. We requested twin beds and were very comfortable in the room. Our room was kept very clean twice a day by our cabin steward.

Next: Dining and Wi-Fi
647 Posts
Joined Jul 2013
Dining: The food was outstanding. Service in the dining room was excellent. The Hotel Director and Assistant Hotel Director were visible in the dining room during the meals overseeing the staff and would circulate among the tables to ensure good service.

Wi-Fi: I was able to get online in my room as well as other areas of the ship, although once in awhile there was no service, but it was likely due to the ship's position. I could send text messages and retrieve my emails. I had difficulty sending pictures to friends. At times, some websites I tried to access would not load (my local newspaper at home and the Weather Channel, for example). I utilized the ship's public computer in the second deck lounge to check into my flight home and print my boarding passes.

Next: Entertainment and Lectures/Enrichment