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Ruby Princess

A cruise ship launched in 2008 that is part of the Princess fleet.

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Ruby Princess

  • Feb 8, 2010
  • by
Rating:
+3
One of the newer ships in the Princess fleet is the Ruby Princess. Carrying 3,080 passengers the Grand Class vessel was put into service in late 2008.  Currently she is home ported in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and does a 10 night Caribbean itinerary.

Embarkation:
Embarkation was easy. We arrived a little early, and were escorted into a waiting area with lots of chairs. The personnel at the port was exceptionally nice and very helpful. I was even permitted to leave (I forgot something in the car) and let back in-- going through security, of course-- with no problems.

Princess sets up different stations arranged according to your deck number. They also have separate stations for full-suite guests and their Elite and Platinum Members. The process is the same as the other lines I've been on. They take your papers and passports, slide your credit card, and hand it all back to you with your room key. Then you're off to the ship.

Cabin:
We've always been lucky on Princess and our cabin has always been ready for us. On all of our Princess sailings, we've chosen the lowest "mini-suite" category and we've never been disappointed. The room is large and spacious and has COMFORTABLE beds. A flat screen tv is overlooking the bedroom area, and another is overlooking the living room.

Food:
In the past, we've always been impressed with Princess' food. This year, we thought it was just ok and found very little that we actually enjoyed. Things seemed a little bland, and the food was less than up to par. Dining choices for much of our 10 day cruise were too exotic for our tastes, and we found ourselves eating in the buffets. Even the frozen yogurt ice cream had a funny taste to it. I will say that the pizza from the pizza bar was outstanding.

We did eat in one of the pay-for restaurants on this cruise. Although I can't think of the name, the steakhouse is always a good choice. You will pay an additional $9 for any lobster you might want, but all the rest is included in you $25/person cover charge. The food was fantastic, the meats perfectly cooked, and the atmosphere was soothing. Excellent.

Room service food was always tasty and quick. They have great sandwiches, french fries, and fresh chocolate chip cookies.


Entertainment:
We were disappointed to find out that the entertainment we saw the previous year on the Ruby was back again a year later. So we skipped out on the shows we had already seen.

Princess does offer Movies Under the Stars showing at one of the pools. The set up deck chairs in preferred viewing areas, place red covers over them (so they look like movie theater seats), and cater to your every whim. Throughout the movie, blankets, popcorn, and candy are all passed out. Towards the end, cookies and milk are also given. There was something really magical about floating the middle of the ocean, your hair blowing in the wind, and watching a first-run movie. We participated in at least 4 movies and loved the whole experience.


Dining:
The dining areas are nice and well maintained. There are two anytime-dining dining rooms and one assigned dining room. The staff has always been polite and respectful. We've never encountered problems on any of Princess' vessels, including this one.

Princess also offers pay-for dinning options with two full service restaurants. One is a steakhouse; the other a multi-course Italian extravaganza. We dinned at the steakhouse, as I said before. Excellent food and service.

Sushi is also offered in Vines. We didn't eat there, but heard from our friends that the sushi was fantastic.

The International Cafe serves homemade gelato (three large scoops for a set price), and pastries, sandwiches, and sides at no charge.

The grill by the pool serves regular grill stuff, but the pizza bar is the place to be. They not only bake plain and pepperoni pizzas, but also creative, exotic ones. Everyone we tried, we liked.

Buffets were alright. We were surprised they weren't as good as previous years. If you chose to dine late, many items, like lobster or crab legs, were long gone and not to be replenished.


Public Areas:
The Ruby is easy to navigate and things are centrally located. Areas are kept fresh and clean. Hand sanitizers are centrally located and easy to get to. Getting people to use them was a problem, though. Many times I saw older individuals sneezing and coughing into their hands on into the air and not use sanitation devices. I guess that would explain the cold I came home with!

We had the privilege of touring the bridge this year, and it was something not to be missed. If you choose to partake in this, be sure to bring your camera along.

The pools are nice and always clean. There is an adult's only pool located on the aft of the ship. It's a quite area that we really enjoyed. The bar was located up a short flight of stairs, so you didn't have to go far for any of you alcoholic or non-alcoholic needs.

The casino separates the main promenade area from the lower half of the Princess Theater. After shows, you will find the casino insanely crowded.

Disembarkation:
Disembarkation was easy. We set our baggage outside the night before, and carried the rest off with us. We were to be out of our rooms at 8am, and in a centralized meeting area for our "color." It seemed to be a mess, and many guests were confused and had no idea where to go. The wait was long a boring, but having done it before, we were familiar with what to do. Once off the boat, we were directed to the luggage area and found our bags right away. Once we were off the ship, we had our bags, were through customs, and in our car in less than 15 mins.

All-in-all, the Ruby is a great, state-of-the-art ship with lots to offer. Movies Under the Stars should not be missed; great experience. The rooms are clean and well maintained, and the staff was very friendly and helpful. The ship has an easy layout and everything was simple to navigate. We were disappointed that the shows were the same, but it didn't ruin our experience. Since we had previous great dining experiences on the Ruby, I'm sure our bland dining was a fluke. Princess attempts to make everything hassle-free and as user friendly as possible, and it really shows.

This review was writen in part with Leslie Lane, a Cruise Radio correspondent.

Doug Parker is the founder of Cruise Radio. He has been in the media industry for more than 10 years. His Web site, CruiseRadio.net, offers industry news, on demand interviews, video and travel tips. Cruise Radio is the worlds only independent cruise travel show.

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Doug Parker ()
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Thanks for checking out my little spot in the Lunch land. I am a radio personality, traveler, blogger and creator of CruiseRadio.
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Wiki

Ruby Princess is a new addition to Princess Cruises's modified Grand class fleet, which currently consists of Crown Princess, Diamond Princess, Sapphire Princess and Emerald Princess. Like all of her Grand Class sisters, the ship also has the "Movies Under the Stars" feature. The ship has a nearly identical design to her sisters, which includes 3 main restaurants, the specialty restaurants Crown Grille and Sabatini's, a Piazza-style atrium, theater, alternative showlounge, 5 pools and many hot tubs, a spa and gym, and other entertainment and dining venues. Unlike the line's earlier Grand Class ships, Ruby Princess will continued the modified Grand Class design with the Skywalkers Night Club moved just aft of the funnel, rather than suspended over the stern. Ruby Princess also was the first to debut a new program called the Ultimate Ship Tour, where guests are given a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to run a city at sea. Ruby Princess was handed over to Carnival Corporation and Princess Cruises in late October 2008. The maiden voyage took place on November 8, 2008. Ruby Princess' godparents are Trista Sutter and Ryan Sutter, who christened her prior to the maiden voyage. The ship will embark on a series of 7-day Western Caribbean cruises through April 2009, with stops in Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, and Princess Cays.
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Leisure, Cruises, Cruise Radio, Cruise Ships, Princess Cruises, Ruby Princess, Caribbean Vacations

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