Jump to content

Ruby Princess Inside Passage To Alaska July 13-20, 2019


Recommended Posts

Hey all!

Just got back from our Alaskan cruise a few days ago. We had this cruise booked for 500 days! Needless to say, I spent a lot of time on cruise critic. Thanks to everyone. I learned so much. Now I'd like to give back by doing up a detailed trip report with photos. I really hate it when people write super negative reviews and whine about petty little things so I'm gonna try real hard not to do that. That being said, I'm not gonna lie either. People come on here to help make informed decisions about cruising and discuss current issues.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Before I start with the trip report and photos, I'm going to do a little review of The Ruby Princess. I realize that everyone likes different things, has different expectations and different cruising experiences. This is just my opinion. The only other line I've cruised on is Carnival so that is all I have to compare to.

 

Starting on a positive note, the embarkation was amazing. Perfect. We arrived at the pier at 11. (We ignored the email that said to come at 2!) Walked right through check in, the lady said our zone would be called in about 5 minutes and our butts had barely grazed the chairs when we were called.  We were on the Ruby eating lunch at 11:15.

 

Disembarkation was the same. Very organized. We were in one of the last groups and we were off by 10. Our luggage was easy to find and customs a breeze. Got a taxi right away. No problems.

 

Getting off at ports was also very organized and efficient. Sometimes the line was very long because they only had one gangway open! Something to do with the tides. But the line moved like lightening and we were off in no time. We had excursions booked through Princess. There were representatives waiting right at the pier with well marked signs for every one. I mention that because on our last Carnival Cruise I recall this being an issue.

 

The ship was very clean. I loved our stateroom. It was roomy. I like the long closet and the cupboard next to the bathroom. It allows you to keep the cabin clean by keeping all the suitcases and dirty clothes in that area.

 

I did not find the ship crowded at all in the public spaces. I had read comments about this being an issue on Ruby. There were 3300 souls on board and I have no idea where they were!

 

Now, I realize this was a cruise to Alaska and it was all about Alaska and not the ship. Thank Goodness for that because we found the cruise rather boring and lacking in activities. With our itinerary, we had a lot of sea day time. Embarkation day, Sea Day, Glacier Bay Day, Ketchikan 1/2 day and Victoria all day as you don't dock til 7. The patter was filled with stuff but a lot of it was Art Auctions and Spa stuff. Sure there was your usual Bingo and trivia. But not a lot else. Once again, this depends on the individual and what you like. They had the on board Naturalist Micheal something or other. I didn't care for him. Found him arrogant and full of it. Sorry. Just my opinion. And I really wanted to see the dogs when they came on and they brought them on at 8 at night while we were docked in Juneau and off the ship.

 

We also found the staff were not super friendly. They did their job and that was it. The main dining room staff were the worst. Snooty maitre d who I never saw crack a smile, tried to joke with a waiter at lunch, nothing. Stone faced. Regular waiter at dinner was phony friendly and always seemed rushed. Food barely warm, salad sometimes wilted. We requested to be seated at a large table with others but they stuck us at a table for two in a corner. You couldn't go in dining room ahead of time to see your table as doors were locked.

 

I have to say that the quality of food on Princess was much better than Carnival. However, I found the buffet lacking. Quality find but very little variety. Same thing everyday. We hardly there after first day. Not even for breakfast. We went to dining room. They had same menu every morning with a couple of different specials each day.

 

That's pretty much all the negative stuff. Now I will get on to the review and pictures.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We flew out west 2 days ahead of our cruise, spending a night in Vancouver before taking the Amtrack Cascades to Seattle. It was a four hour train ride that went fairly quickly. The train was comfortable and we had an ocean view. The scenery wasn't as cool as I thought it would be, but it was okay. Pacific Station in Vancouver is very well organized. We arrived there at 5am! Yes, 5am. You had to check your bags by 530 for the 630 train. We fretted about their luggage size and weight restrictions and they didn't even weigh them or measure them! You just handed to a guy and he tossed them in the car.

 

When we arrived at King Station in Seattle, it was also very organized. Got off and collected our luggage just like you would at airport. Got a cab quite easily.

 

Here is a picture taken from the window of the train:

 

IMG_1179.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

So. On to Seattle where we spent 24 hours. I'm just gonna be honest here. I didn't care for it. The homeless people are everywhere. They have a real problem there. We stayed at The Holiday Inn Express on Aurora Avenue, which was nice. The front desk lady told us we could walk down to Pike Place Market. And we did. FYI, if you haven't been to Seattle, it is NOT flat! Big hills. And they were having a heat wave the day we were there. Very hot. But at least it wasn't raining. Anyways, homeless people on every street corner. Some didn't bother us, some begged.

 

Pike Place Market was okay but I think its way overrated. Very crowded and spread all over the place. Eventually found the Star Bucks but it was lined right down the street. Enjoyed lunch out by the water and picked up some souvenirs.

 

A lot of people smoke pot in Seattle. It was quite rank down near the market. Interestingly, on a side note, when we flew back home at the end from SeaTac,  they had drug sniffing dogs at the airport. Never experienced that before.

 

The taxi drivers in Seattle are nuts. Hammer on the gas, slam on the brakes, the traffic there is crazy. Lots of construction.

 

IMG_1183.JPG

IMG_1196.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgot to mention about Seattle and the homeless. The problem is so bad that our hotel's breakfast room was locked and you needed your room key to access. Apparently, the homeless like to come in. And when we were waiting for our shuttle to the port, a homeless man did indeed wander into the lobby and they escorted him out. If you stay at this hotel, they have a shuttle to port for $10 that they don't really advertise.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ifihadamilliondollars said:

I really hate it when people write super negative reviews and whine about petty little things so I'm gonna try real hard not to do that.

 

6 minutes ago, ifihadamilliondollars said:

So. On to Seattle where we spent 24 hours. I'm just gonna be honest here. I didn't care for it. The homeless people are everywhere. They have a real problem there. We stayed at The Holiday Inn Express on Aurora Avenue, which was nice. The front desk lady told us we could walk down to Pike Place Market. And we did. FYI, if you haven't been to Seattle, it is NOT flat! Big hills. And they were having a heat wave the day we were there. Very hot. But at least it wasn't raining. Anyways, homeless people on every street corner. Some didn't bother us, some begged.

 

Pike Place Market was okay but I think its way overrated. Very crowded and spread all over the place. Eventually found the Star Bucks but it was lined right down the street. Enjoyed lunch out by the water and picked up some souvenirs.

 

A lot of people smoke pot in Seattle. It was quite rank down near the market. Interestingly, on a side note, when we flew back home at the end from SeaTac,  they had drug sniffing dogs at the airport. Never experienced that before.

 

The taxi drivers in Seattle are nuts. Hammer on the gas, slam on the brakes, the traffic there is crazy. Lots of construction.

 

IMG_1183.JPG

IMG_1196.JPG

 

4 minutes ago, ifihadamilliondollars said:

Forgot to mention about Seattle and the homeless. The problem is so bad that our hotel's breakfast room was locked and you needed your room key to access. Apparently, the homeless like to come in. And when we were waiting for our shuttle to the port, a homeless man did indeed wander into the lobby and they escorted him out. If you stay at this hotel, they have a shuttle to port for $10 that they don't really advertise.

thanks for all the super-positive reports !!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing! DH and I enjoyed the Ruby.

So sorry the crew seemed unhappy. I get that. Felt that way on a few past cruises on other ships and just chalked it up to being tired or near the end of their contract.

 

DH and I usually ate breakfast in our room (room service) and would have a light lunch (salad) in the buffet area. Dinner in the main dining room is a hit / miss usually. However, we never were hungry <grin>

 

Looking forward to the rest of your review.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I loved the International Buffet. I purchased the Coffee Card and used it lots. The desserts down there contributed a great deal to my cruise weight gain! Loved the desserts,  especially the mini cheesecakes and the pistachio pudding. My husband is a cookie monster. He must have had 6 peanut butter cookies every time we went. It was a nice little spot to hang out and drink our coffee and people watch. The cafe is tucked in the corner on deck 5 near the lower level of the piazza.

 

 

IMG_1225.JPG

IMG_2182.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

We ate dinner in the main dining room on the first night. It was quite delicious. I snapped photos of the menu that night.

I had the crab cakes and pork tenderloin and hubby had the steamed Alaska Cod over warm lentil salad. I had a hazelnut souffle for dessert and hubby had the princess love cake thing.

IMG_2187.JPG

IMG_2188.JPG

IMG_2189.JPG

IMG_2190.JPG

IMG_2194.JPG

IMG_2195.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course, in case you didn't know, the tv show The Love Boat took place on The Pacific Princess. There is a safety video that is love boated themed, featuring some of the characters of the original show! It was quite entertaining. They make you watch the whole thing, though. You can't access the tv until you do!

 

GH010521_Moment(2).jpg

loveboatsafetyvideo.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, ifihadamilliondollars said:

So. On to Seattle where we spent 24 hours. I'm just gonna be honest here. I didn't care for it. The homeless people are everywhere. They have a real problem there. We stayed at The Holiday Inn Express on Aurora Avenue, which was nice. The front desk lady told us we could walk down to Pike Place Market. And we did. FYI, if you haven't been to Seattle, it is NOT flat! Big hills. And they were having a heat wave the day we were there. Very hot. But at least it wasn't raining. Anyways, homeless people on every street corner. Some didn't bother us, some begged.

 

Pike Place Market was okay but I think its way overrated. Very crowded and spread all over the place. Eventually found the Star Bucks but it was lined right down the street. Enjoyed lunch out by the water and picked up some souvenirs.

 

A lot of people smoke pot in Seattle. It was quite rank down near the market. Interestingly, on a side note, when we flew back home at the end from SeaTac,  they had drug sniffing dogs at the airport. Never experienced that before.

 

The taxi drivers in Seattle are nuts. Hammer on the gas, slam on the brakes, the traffic there is crazy. Lots of construction.

Not here to defend the indefensible, the homeless situation in Seattle is a mess, although every major city on the West Coast is dealing with a similar mess. The Seattle City Government is full of stupid people, with upcoming elections hopefully, maybe a few City Council people will be kicked out. There are many nice places in the Seattle area, full of nice people. I prefer to go to the Pike Place Market  early in the morning when it's first opening up. A great energy and much less crowded.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sunday July 14, our first full day of the cruise, was a sea day. We started out the day attending a lecture with by the onboard Naturalist, Micheal Modzelewski. After that, we went to a Go Pro seminar where we learned a few tricks.

 

We attended the British Style Pub Lunch in the Crown Grill. It was complementary and quite delicious. I had the fish and chips and hubby had Bangers & Mash.

 

 

 

IMG_1222.JPG

IMG_1223.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

We missed the theater Sunday evening (Colours of the World) because we decided to eat at the Crown Grill and the only reservation supposedly available was 830. We didn't like anything on the main dining room menu for that night. Funny thing, when we arrived at Crown Grill, there were several empty tables! Hmm.

 

However, the food in the Crown Grill was delicious. I've included pictures of the menu.

I had the shrimp and pancetta bisque and new york striploin. I forgot to take a picture of the bay scallop timbale and my husbands filet mignon. The milk chocolate peanut butter bar was yummy!

 

 

IMG_1237.JPG

IMG_1238.JPG

IMG_1239.JPG

IMG_1240.JPG

IMG_1243.JPG

IMG_1244.JPG

IMG_1246.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

Monday July 15 was our day in Juneau. We didn't dock until 11am. As you can see, the day started out a little overcast. But it actually turned out to be a nice day, with some sun the afternoon. I even got a little sunburn on my nose and head if you can believe that! While we were out whale watching. Which I will get to shortly. Funny story, while we were waiting for the announcement that we could get off the ship, we saw a van pull up with a few people and luggage. I can only assume they missed the ship in Seattle and had to fly to Juneau! That sucks.

IMG_2211.JPG

juneau.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • SPECIAL EVENT: Q&A with Barbara Muckermann, CMO Silversea Cruises
      • ICYM Our Cruise Critic Live Special Event: Explore the Remote World with Hurtigruten!
      • Q&A with the Quark Expeditions Team: New Ship Ultramarine
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...