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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Day 1 of Our Transatlantic Northern European Cruise April/May, 2014

4/27/14   Day One

Today was our first day of the cruise on the Royal Princess. This ship was christened in June, 2013 by The Duchess of Cambridge, Catherine, of Prince William fame. We have been excited about going on this cruise for approximately 7 months.
The check in went pretty quickly as we waited in a preferred cruiser line. They got us through within about 30 minutes and there we were, standing in front of the photographer for the expected start of the cruise photo. And then we were embarking on our very favorite part of every cruise, which is walking up the gangplank which leads up to the cruise ship, and setting foot on our home away from home for the very first time. 
Walking on was exciting until we tried to get to the elevators which had lines
packed about 5 people deep. We eventually got up to our floor, number 15 and found our room. We were able to go right in which is good because often cruisers have to wait till the rooms are ready. We dropped our carry on bags off at the room and marveled at what a wonderful room it is. As soon as I saw it, I turned around and kissed Chuck with a happy heart. The room is beautiful, similar to other Princess ships we have been on but improved. The color scheme is gold with blue and gold pillows. There are two sections to the room which is separated by a curtain. The bedroom area is first when you walk into the room, and beyond it is the sitting area. The couch is longer and wider than in most of the ships we have been on. Chuck is looking forward to taking some nice long naps on it. There is a desk across the room from it and it is much longer than in previous rooms we have cruised in. I can’t wait to sit at it and write all about our cruise on my computer! Another wonderful thing about this room is the fact that the two TVs in here are huge wide screen TVs. One is in front of the bed, and the other is in the sitting area in front of the couch. They have about 100 free movies on the ship, some of which are pretty good so we can’t wait to watch them. Most are new, but there are some pretty funny classics on here such as right now as I type this we are watching 9 to 5. That was definitely Chuck’s choice as I have seen it many times before but it is funny to watch again when everyone looks so much younger! The only complaint Chuck had is that the balcony is small. We had read this online, but it’s even smaller than we expected. I don’t care but Chuck is disappointed.

After seeing our amazing room, we met our room steward Enrique who is from Mexico and he brought us our complimentary glass of champagne which the cruise line provides. We then went to the required safety drill which was at the Princess Theater. This theater looks like something from Star Trek. It’s quite modern and very silver. After the safety drill we went to the sail away party. This was the most boring sail away party we have ever been to, hardly anyone was there, but we still had a good time waving goodbye to all the people on the shore, some from their homes and some on the beach. We toasted to a great cruise with Heinekens and found 2 chaise lounges and watched the water go by as we saw the Fort Lauderdale shoreline disappear into the horizon.

After a nap and Chuck worked out, we decided to go to dinner at the Horizon Court buffet. We love the new Horizon Court on this ship because at lunch you have a choice of the Horizon Court Bistro, which is sandwiches, soups and salads, or the full buffet area. And in the middle of both is a dessert aisle. We were quite happy with our decision to go there for dinner because it was not crowded at all and we had our choice of delicious food. The cream of mushroom soup, Louisiana crab cakes and mashed potatoes were my favorites. For dessert I had a delicious flourless chocolate cake with some kind of cream on top. I really need to learn how to make flourless chocolate cake because every time we have it on a cruise, it is absolutely delicious.

After dinner we walked around the ship for a bit, caught the last 30 minutes of the movie under the stars which was “Last Vegas” and then went to a variety show which showcased the Royal Princess dancers and an illusionist.

When we arrived back at the room, our Princess Patter, the daily cruise newsletter,
was waiting for us with all the details of tomorrow’s entertainment and activities aboard ship. It looks like it’s going to be a great cruise!

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