Everyone’s cruise ship needs differ, some want fine dining while others prefer keeping active, while others want entertainment for the whole family. So in this series of handy cruise line guides we have suggestions for great ships to match your cruise requirements and preferences.
This time, we’re looking at the Princess Cruises fleet of cruise ships.
One of the Small Ships of Princess, Pacific Princess is ideal for couples who enjoy the amenities of a traditional cruise ship, yet desire a more intimate experience. Every day feels like a romantic date night on this cosy ship, which caters towards more mature, intrepid travellers.
You can unwind in one of the ship’s two hot tubs, or indulge in a relaxing treatment together at Lotus Spa. There’s no better place to curl up than the ship’s library, where the comfortable seating, faux fireplaces, and extensive book collection encourage guests to linger for a lazy afternoon.
For a private dinner together, opt for Ultimate Balcony Dining and enjoy a meal on your stateroom balcony, where the sweeping views of the ocean create the perfect ambiance. You can savour champagne, pastries, and quiche at breakfast; or a luxurious four-course dinner featuring lobster or steak in the evening.
Night life on the ship is always buzzing, with drinks and entertainment available in the casino, lounge, and numerous bar areas. You can mingle with the ship’s small group of guests, or easily find a quiet corner to sip cocktails and watch the sunset together.
Upcoming cruises: South Pacific (19 October, 10 Nights); World Cruise (23 January 2015, 21 nights)
Part of Princess Cruises’ largest and newest class of ships, the Royal Princess’ extended facilities and diverse entertainment options are sure to please the entire family.
The ship’s youth and teen centre offers spaces that are uniquely equipped for different age groups. Toddlers can engage in creative play at the arts and crafts stations; older children can enjoy friendly air hockey games or watch TV in the lounge; while tweens and teens can socialise while playing skeeball, foosball or video games.
The whole family can enjoy swimming together in the ship’s fresh water pools, or watching the spectacular ‘Princess WaterColor Fantasy’ in the evening, an interactive sound and light show with 10-metre-high water fountains.
The first-run films and fresh popcorn offered at ‘Movies Under the Stars’, an open-air poolside cinema, are another crowd-pleaser. Even the picky eaters in the family will find something to suit their tastes, whether it is Horizon Court’s excellent buffet, the hand-tossed Neapolitan-style pizza at Alfredo’s Pizzeria, or the sundaes and waffle cones at Gelato.
Upcoming cruises: North America (27 September, 7 nights); Caribbean (25 October, 10 Nights)
All Princess Cruises ships have been inducted into the elite Chaîne des Rôtisseurs gastronomic society, but the dining options on Crown Princess are particularly exceptional.
Sabatini’s Italian Trattoria is a classy yet casual restaurant, where guests delight in the wonderful, ever-changing menu of Italian and Mediterranean cuisine.
The Crown Grill, meanwhile, adds drama to your dining with its open kitchen, which allows guests to watch the restaurant’s talented chefs prepare premium beef and seafood dishes.
For more casual dining, there’s Café Caribe, a themed Caribbean buffet, where the spread of suckling pig, Guiana pepper pots and curries, jerk chicken, and other traditional dishes is complimented by musicians playing festive Caribbean music.
Further dining options include tapas, paninis, and pastries at the International Café, as well as Afternoon Tea and 24-hour room service. Late-night drinks at Vines Wine Bar, which was voted one of the ‘Best Wine Bars at Sea’ by USA Today, are the perfect way to finish off any delicious dinner.
Upcoming cruises: Hawaii (18 October, 28 nights); Mexico (15 November, 7 Nights)
The Diamond Princess takes relaxation to a new level with its selection of holistic treatments, hot tubs and pools. One of only two Princess Cruises ships built in Japan, its Asian-themed spa is inspired by the ship’s heritage. Here, guests can pamper themselves with a choice of facials, body wraps, and massages, including a selection of treatments customised for men, teens and couples.
There are countless other places to unwind, with numerous sauna and steam rooms, four pool areas, and more than six hot tubs.
The ship is home to the largest open-air Japanese bath in the world, which offers both indoor and outdoor bathing areas, and gorgeous ocean views that enhance this tranquil experience. More calming ocean views can be enjoyed from the ship’s 700 balconies, while adults seeking a quiet environment can head to the adults-only Sanctuary area.
This ship accommodates relatively few passengers relative to its size, which means more space for each guest to stretch out and relax.
Upcoming cruises: Asia (18 September, 9 nights); Far East (15 October, 13 Nights)
The Island Princess’ unparalleled educational opportunities, dining experiences, and elegant décor make it an easy choice for culture lovers. The ship’s ‘[email protected]‘ program offers up to 20 different courses taught by experts, including cooking classes in a demonstration kitchen, computer classes, lectures, and art lessons in the ship’s ceramics lab.
Guests can also browse the ship’s world-class art collection and bid in art auctions.
The Bayou Café and Steakhouse offers a taste of New Orleans’ unique gastronomical culture, with dishes like barbecued alligator ribs, seafood gumbo, jambalaya and fried catfish. The restaurant is decorated with New Orleans murals, and a jazz trio provides the finishing touch on the ‘Big Easy’ atmosphere.
More excellent music and stylish settings can be experienced in Crooner’s Bar, a retro Rat Pack-style piano bar; the Explorer’s Lounge, a more intimate European-inspired lounge for dancing, karaoke, and other performances; and the Paris-themed Princess Casino.
Upcoming cruises: Panama Canal (27 October, 15 nights); Europe (21 March 2015, 17 Nights)
Whatever your personality, preferences and requirements, Bolsover Cruise Club is committed to finding the right Princess Cruises itinerary for you.