Ruby Princess—Romance on the High Seas

New Princess caters to lovers

Princess Cruise Lines has a long standing custom of being the cruise line for lovers, made famous by Loveboat, the long running television series of the same name. And the new Ruby Princess is living up to the tradition. In fact, a wedding took place at the inaugural in Fort Lauderdale at Port Everglades.

Princess had a nationwide contest to pick the couple with the most romantic story, flew the lovebirds to the inaugural festivities, and married them in front of hundreds of guests.

Romance continues with the 8-day, 7 night sailings of the ship. My husband and I enjoyed the ambience of the ship with its many intimate tables for two, quiet alcoves, afternoon tea for two and dancing the night away to the sounds of the Ruby Princess Orchestra.

Table for two
Table for two | Larger

Meals were top notch. The creative cuisine was tasty and served with polish and panache by an experienced staff that didn’t rush guests through their romantic meals. The dining policy on Princess offers many choices from early seating and late seating to anytime dining. We chose the anytime dining and enjoyed having the freedom to dine whenever we wanted. This was especially helpful on days at port when we arrived back to the ship tired and wanted a few extra minutes to relax and freshen up for dinner. Romance was always on the menu and desserts often ended on the theme.

Heart-shaped dessert
Heart-shaped dessert | Larger

Sometimes, we preferred breakfast in bed. No problem on the Ruby Princess. Room service was available and we enjoyed many morning meals on our veranda, surrounded by sunny skies and a majestic blue-green ocean. On some days, we arranged for a wake-up call so we could watch the amazing sunrise over the sea.

Dining options were bountiful on the ship. Alternative dining was available at two specialty restaurants. The Crown Grill served outstanding steaks in the casually elegant atmosphere of a chic steakhouse with dark woods, comfy intimate booths and tables and a marble fireplace.

Crown Grill
Crown Grill | Larger

Sabatini’s, the second alternative dining choice, served outstanding Italian cuisine in a romantic atmosphere. Once again there were ample tables for two, with cozy corners overlooking the ocean. We also enjoyed the International Café with its gourmet goodies from around the world with specialties like Quiche Lorraine and savory selections of marinated vegetables and oh-so-yummy desserts. Located in the lower level of the piazza with tables for two, the International Café also catered to lovers. It was a great place to relax and listen to the romantic sounds of string musicians and a pianist while nibbling on tasty international dishes.

Treats in the Piazza
Treats in the Piazza | Larger

More dining options included the Horizon Court and Café Caribe which served meals from early morning until 4 a.m. There was no excuse for missing a meal on the Ruby Princess.

The ship with a passenger capacity of 3,599 can have a noisy, bustling atmosphere, especially when it is at full capacity, but the Ruby Princess has an exclusive area to retreat. It’s called the Sanctuary. This adults-only retreat is pocket of tranquility and is available for a half-day or a full day for a small fee. Comfy chaise lounges and private cabanas provide intimate spaces for passengers wanting to get away from it all.

Sanctuary | Larger

My frangipani scalp massage, foot and ankle massage and eye and neck collagen treatment in the Lotus Spa on the Ruby Princess was a soulful relaxing way to spend a day at sea. The spa has its own swimming pool located far away from the main pools on the ship. There is no extra charge to use the spa pool, but it was never crowded and was another way to enjoy a yacht-like experience on a large cruise ship.

Spa Pool
Spa Pool | Larger

Ballroom dancing, ceramics, scrapbooking, water volleyball, arts and crafts, computer classes, bingo and art auctions were just a few of the many activities aboard the ship. A fully stocked library was still another alternative as was the Ruby Princess casino with its myriad of games of chance.

Entertainment options included comedians and jugglers, full-scale revues and dancing until the wee hours. Passengers also had an opportunity to get into the act. A contest on the ship was conducted for the best Princess Pop star and passengers provided an evening of fun entertainment for guests. Members of the audience voted on their favorite acts and when the show concluded there was dancing for all. The international crew also entertained one evening performing magic, music and dancing and received a standing ovation from guests.

Giant movie screen on ship
Giant movie screen on ship | Larger

The drive-in movies of days past have come alive again on the Ruby Princess. Located on one of the pool decks of the ship is a giant movie screen. What could be more romantic that stretching out on a lounge chair, under a blanket watching a movie, with the love of your life under a starry sky surrounded by balmy ocean breezes?

The Ruby Princess sails year round to the Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale.

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