Updated May 2019
Before Princess Cruises' highly anticipated Royal Princess embarked on her maiden voyage, she spent a week in Southampton hosting various launch events. Some Iglu team members were lucky enough to be invited to these, and we have been blessed to have had further visits onboard since then. Find out exactly what the team have to say about this ship.
Royal Princess Arrives in the UK
Royal Princess was serenaded into Southampton harbour on her first arrival, with a beautiful rendition of ‘God save the Queen’. The pomp and ceremony of the event made the British public who were watching from the port all the more excited to see this ship up close. Princess did an excellent job of decorating the terminal building with ship pictures, welcome signs, fresh flowers, and a bright blue carpet.
We were instantly impressed when we walked on to the outer deck, which boasted clean wooden style flooring, and then were guided through to the inside. This is where the real ‘wow’ came. We stepped into the atrium and were amazed by the size and splendour. Set at the heart of the ship, this area is carefully decorated in warm gold colours and lined with elevated platforms of cafes, bars, and seating areas.
From here we went to check out our stateroom. Upon arrival we were warmly greeted by stateroom attendants, who introduced themselves and advised that they were available for any help or questions. This is always a good start to a cruise, as it puts you completely at ease knowing there is someone you can speak to if you have any problems. The stateroom was a reasonable size and the warm décor gave it a cosy feel. It had a very large wardrobe space and a nice bathroom.
The sun was shining, so after unpacking and freshening up, naturally our next place to visit was the top deck.
Top deck was top notch…
Upon reaching the top deck of the ship, we were met with an array of inviting pools, a spacious sun lounge area, and outside bars which are all set out perfectly. This is truly an excellent place to enjoy the sun if cruising in a hot climate. The addition of private cabanas that appear to float in the water really add to the tranquillity of the pool area. It's here where guests can enjoy the ‘Movies under the stars’ concept that Princess seem to have nailed down to a tee. Royal Princess has one of the largest screens at sea standing over the pool, and there are plenty of comfy loungers and seating areas to accomodate viewers. Another nice touch is that staff are on hand to give out blankets, drinks, and popcorn during screenings as well.
Passengers looking for that added slice of luxury will adore adults-only Sanctuary and Retreat Pool. These are absolutely beautiful and will surely provide the ultimate escape.
Those travelling with families, however, will be pleased with the generous kids areas which offer large spaces to hang out and play. There is even an area for children under three years of age, where parents can stay and play with their little ones. The teen programme called ‘Remix’ boasts a large lounge area with video games, football, and skee-ball.
Cruisers of all ages can try the Sea Walk; a glass walk way extending 128 feet above the ocean offering unparalleled views.
After a presentation from the Princess Cruises staff it was time for our sit down dinner; the dining room is large and decorated in warm colours, creating a traditional cruise ship feel. We were treated to a five course meal with a choice of two dishes for each course. These included an immaculate goats cheese soufflé, superbly soft beef tenderloin, and a decadent chocolate souffle dessert.
After dinner we were invited to the top deck to see a special performance from RnB singer, Lemar. The fantastic show was complimented by how pretty the pool deck looked when the sun had gone down. From the coloured lights to the fountain show in the middle, it was just an amazing place to be. After the performance we went to check out some of the other evening venues such as the nightclub and the piano bar. There is certainly an excellent choice of evening entertainment to suit everyone’s taste.
Time to go… for now…
After a comfortable night in the stateroom, and a hearty, tasty breakfast in the morning, it was time for us to disembark. This was a quick an easy process, and we were all left keen to get back onboard again next time we had an opportunity. Fortunately for some of us, Royal Princess' naming ceremony was right around the corner!
Our Royal Princess comes to Royal Princess…
The official naming ceremony of Royal Princess was a truly grand affair, not least because this cruise ship's Godmother is HRH Duchess of Cambridge. As part of her duties as Godmother, Kate Middleton would be smashing the ceremonial bottle of Champagne over the hull of the ship.
Some of our team, along with many other lucky cruise advocates, were invited along for the two-day event. Day one consisted of a gala dinner with fantastic food, followed by a performance from popular British singer, Beverley Knight. A great way to kick-start the occasion and bring about a sense of excitement.
The next morning brought the big day. The celebration started with a musical piece from the Royal Marines Band, followed by the pipers of the Irish Guards and a song from Natasha Bedingfield. It was then time for The Duchess to arrive.
Dressed in an elegant black and white animal print dress, paired with an elegant black hat, Kate gracefully smiled and waved at onlookers before taking to the stage to cut the ribbon. The ceremony could not have been any better, with the Champagne-christening going smoothly. After this, we were brought back onboard for final lunch before disembarking.
If you'd like to experience the splendour of this ship for yourself, browse through our range of Royal Princess cruise deals and start planning your next holiday.