Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Caribbean Princess ship tour review






Last week, I was invited to a ship inspection and luncheon aboard the Caribbean Princess. The ship departs from the Red Hook Brooklyn Cruise Pier and sails 2 alternating itineraries to Bermuda and the Caribbean for 9 nights.

Princess Cruise Lines started sailing out of the Brooklyn cruise pier a couple of years ago and the Caribbean Princess was the only ship docked there so parking and check in is very simple. The Caribbean Princess has been sailing from this cruise port for the last few years during the late spring through early fall.

Being a Royal Caribbean and Celebrity cruiser myself, this was my first time on the Caribbean Princess and I was VERY impressed. Not overly huge but certainly not a small or mid sized ship, the Caribbean Princess is relatively easy to get around. Decks 5, 6 and 7 are the action decks with the Piazza (an Italian inspired central area with entertainment during the day and night, the international café – don’t miss the huge brownies or cookies, Vines- a wine bar and library, internet café), dining rooms, casino, theatre, specialty restaurants, lounges, shopping and more. The Lido (pool deck) is deck 15, spa is on 16, kids and teen center on 17 along with my FAVORITE spot- the Sanctuary and let’s not forget Skywalkers, their signature club on deck 18.

The Sanctuary is an adult only private area with a separate pool and Jacuzzis, fabulously lush lounge chairs, food and beverage service and massage cabanas. This area is at an additional cost and you can purchase your lounge chair by the day or for the entire cruise. This is the perfect spot to completely relax.

The cabins on the Caribbean Princess are all a nice size and their unique feature is that the closets are large, open and spacious and the closet and bathroom form its own private section of the cabin. I liked the open closet although one of my colleagues who was sailing on the ship didn’t like that feature. The balcony cabins have a sliding glass door leading out to a small balcony with 2 chairs and a table. The mini suites were considerably larger with a tub and larger balcony. The Penthouse suite was to die for but at a price that probably is out of reach for many cruisers. The Caribbean Princess just came out of a dry dock where a number of window suites were added to deck 6. These very spacious suites have a large bathroom with tub but no balcony. They are well located – mid ship on deck 6 and are worth a look if you want some more space.

A couple of features that I really liked on the ship was, of course, the Sanctuary but I really also liked the Piazza. The International Café is open 11am to 11pm for snacks and lite fare. Vines, the wine bar, offers free sushi if you order a glass of wine- so check the Princess Patter for times. The Piazza is a nice relaxing spot to sit and enjoy a cocktail while listening to some music. The ship features Movies Under the Stars where they offer some first run movies and sporting events. One nice touch was that there were ceiling fans through out the pool area. This helped circulate are – particularly nice when sailing the Caribbean.

All in all, I really liked the Caribbean Princess and would highly recommend the ship both from the NYC area as well as when she sails from her winter port of San Juan. With the great special rates offered earlier in the season and the great past guest rates that Princess offers, the Caribbean Princess was a great deal on many of the summer sailings this year.

For more info on the Caribbean Princess or other cruises or vacation packages, contact us at mindy@myvacationlady.com.

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