Love, Family & Food

Love, Family & Food

Saturday, February 6, 2016

2016 Family Cruise on Sapphire Princess: Come Back New (Day 1-Embarking Sapphire Princess)

I had just recently went on a cruise vacation with my husband, biri and both my parents. We went on a 5D4N cruise (23rd to 27th January 2016) from Singapore to Penang, Langkawi and Port Klang on a US Ship - Sapphire Princess. The details on the ship you can see from Princess Cruise website.

We have never heard of Princess Cruise line, as all we know is Star Cruise and Royal Carribean Cruine Line. We first encouter Princess Cruise was during last year's Matta Fair in September. There was massive promotion from Princess Cruise along with their 50 years anniversary. We were offered this 5D4N package worth RM1700+ per pax with complementary waive of daily gratuities and additional free USD100 per cabin to spend on board. But the catch is that the cruise departs only from Singapore! For me and my mum, we do not hesitate much quickly booked the cruise in a few days time to avoid missing the promotion after matta fair.

But, my husband was pretty concerned about our transportation to and fro Singapore. He was angry that me and my mum were so 'kan cheong' with the booking and did not consider all these factors on transportation. But anyway, we worked it out. We took bus to Singapore and fly back to Ipoh from Singapore. Total cost for the whole trip per pax for 5D, excluding shopping and taxi fare is about RM2000+. Which I feel is totally worth it after we went on board. My husband was pretty skeptical and worry that the holiday is not worth that price but Princess Cruise proved him wrong. Haha. 

We departed from Ipoh after boarding Sri Maju Bus at around 11.30pm. This long trip was very tiring for me and my mum because my son refused to sleep in the bus and made a lot of noise. It was a bad first experience of bringing my son on long journey in the bus. Initially I thought he would sleep the whole journey, but NO! He only dozed off around 3.30 - 4am. The whole half of the journey he was whining and make lots of noise, disturbing other passangers. Swt! We will not bring him on bus anymore if it's a long journey. No more 2nd time!
We reached JB custom around 6 smth in the morning and got our passport chopped. Then we crossed the border and reached Singapore Custom around 7 smth. We were the last few passangers who need to get down at Golden Mile Complex. We reache Golden Mile around 8am and we crossed over to the Food Court to grab some breakfast. My mum commented that Singapore food was not good at all! Haha. Food critic!

We then took a taxi directly to Marina Bay Cruise Center around 9am. We reached quite early around 9 smth. We waited to board the ship around 11am. We handed our big luggages to the be checked-in and we just take along hand carry luggage for our convenience. The luggages will be sent directly to our cabin after we boarded the ship. Good right?! Star cruise doesn't have such service provided. My son was happily running around the area, but my mum was very annoyed that we left him to run around. Tension! My parents rest while waiting and our small family went to the visitor centre and my son enjoyed playing with lego!


Holiday Starts!

 Marina Bay Cruise Centre

 My son was awed!

First Family Selfie

Hi from us!

 Waiting for time to pass


Cruise model at Marina Cruise Centre

 
My Son and Hubby Playing Lego while waiting to board ship


Hubby excited for holiday!

The embarktion procedure was very smooth and systematic. We finally entered the ship around 12pm and we headed straight to our cabin at Deck 12 (Aloha) A339 (mine) and A245 (my parents). I was impressed with the confortable and neat cabin as compared to our previous Star Cruise Libra cabin. Room steward was assigned to all cabins and my room steward was Michael and mum's was Kishor. Both of them are wonderful steward and attended to all our request very promptly and always greet us with a smile.
Checked in already, waiting to be called up the ship

 
The ship from the side of Marina Bay Cruise Centre

Our comfortable bed

The other side of the room - TV, Mini fridge, hair dryer and dressing table


The room has a space to hang clothes and keeping luggage. Safety box available too.


Heading out for lunch

After enjoying a short moment in the room, we headed straight to Deck 14 for lunch at Horizon Court Buffet. The first meal was great. The food was fresh, lots of variety and I find that the place is very hygienic. There are hand sanitizer at the entrace of every dining hall and in Horizon Court. In addition, all their plates are warm, which means they really clean and disinfect all the plates before giving to customer. Good! All foods at the buffet line were hot! My dad and hubby loved all the meats available on the buffet line. While myself, I loved all the salmons! U name it, raw, smoked or cooked salmon!

 
 Yummy meats on hubby's plate

My delicious salmon

Biri's lovely desserts

After our first meal, we went back to the cabin to check if our luggages had arrived. We wanted to take our swimming attire! While waiting for the luggage to come, we relaxed in the room and watch some movies from the TV. There were lots of recent hit movies available for selection. My dad and mum and biri dozed off for afternoon nap. After our nap, we headed straight to the pool at Sun Deck. But, my son was crying non stop and refused to enter the pool. Probably he was confused with the sudden change of environment. He was super clingy and refused to go back to the room or entre the lift. We all walked around to have a look at the facilities provided. Just see the pictures below will tell! =)
 The sun deck at Deck 14. There was no sun - gonna rain. See the Big Screen? You can enjoy Movies Under The Stars Here

 Walking around the ship

Hubby with biri and mummy


 Well equiped gym beside the Lotus Pool (Adult Only)

 My son found his favourite item - yoga ball

 Mummy, I'm going to do yoga

Parents dipped in the warm adult pool. Nice!


The Lotus Pool for Adult only - directly outside the gym

 The view of the pool from top

 Hubby, you jump, I jump!

Biri with Ah Gong and Ah Po enjoying the sea breeze

 I'm flying with my towel

 Another indoor pool at Deck 14. Our favourite place for daily swim

 Just above the indoor pool, there's activity centre where you can play ping pong and table soccer. Tournament going on between dad and mum

Hubby and I walked around and saw this Logo finally!

 We walked around the ship again

 We found the kids centre. My son awed again.

The colorful kids centre

Beautiful Sea
After playing and walking around for nearly two hours, we headed back to the room and bathed. Again, my son refused to bathe in the bathroom. In the end, we just use clean warm cloth to wipe his whole body for 2-3 times to keep him clean. During our booking, our travel agent had helped us to reserve 2nd seating (8.00pm) for international dining room. After reserving, we will dine in at the same time on the same table every night. No hassle about no table for dinner! Princess Cruise has two seating for International Dining Room, either 6pm or 8pm. If you do not fancy fixed dining time, you can always opt for any time dining and choose between the other 4 dining rooms available on the ship. But, if you decide to go for other dining room, you have to inform the staff a day before that you wish to cancel your table. The other 4 dining rooms available are Vivaldi, Santa Fe, The Savoy and Pacific Moon Dining Room. 

  
The International Dining Room

Santa Fe Dining Room

Pacific Moon Dining Room

 The Savoy Dining Room

  The Vivaldi Dining Room

When comes to dining options, all dining rooms including Horizon Court serve the same dinner menu. But the menu changes every day. If you wish to opt for a more refined dining experience, you can go for either Sterling Steakhouse or Italian Restaurant Sabatini's for additional charge of USD25 per pax. You can always refer the Princess Website for more information on the available dining options there. 

 
Sabatini's - Italian Restaurant with charges

Sterling Steak House - Steaks and chops with charges

Other food options available on the ship besides dining hall are casual dining options like 24 Hours International Cafe, Alfredo Pizzeria (both at the Piazza Deck 5), Sundae Ice Cream, Pizza and Trident Grill (Hotdogs, burgers and fries) at Sun Deck 14. In other words, Sapphire Princess is like a Big Food Galore where you can eat non-stop for 24H (if you can). They offer room service too! 
The lovely Piazza at Deck 5

 Ice cream for free.

The room service and fruit basket order sheet are provided to us daily with chocolates. Thoughtful

Okay, enough introduction. Haha! We went for our first dinner in the International Dinning Room at 8pm. The environment was very peaceful and 'romantic'. Very seldom we dine in at a restaurant so this is a great experience for every one. It took about 15-20 minutes for the food to arrive and the food were covered individually when the waiter transported it to the table. Very hygienic! The waiters are very polite and they provided excellent customer service all the time! Thumbs up! Lets take a look at the food we had for the dinner!
Dinner menu and table setting

 The Princess Menu for first dinner

 Cheers!

 Cheers from me!

 Pumpking soup

Appetizer - Spring roll with peanut sauce

 Another starter - fruits with mint

 Hubby's portion - Grilled beef steak

Mum's portion - grilled chicken breast

My portion - grilled salmon


Asian delight - prawn and lobster rice

 Dad's portion - Hainan chicken

Sharing - Singapore Fried Noodle

After the dinner, we headed to the Princess Theater at Deck 7. It's time for SHOW! I'm always excited for shows. Tonight's show is 'Born To Dance' so I expected there must be dances the whole time. But, the exact show was way out from my expectations. It's way TOO GOOD! The dancers are not only talented with all types of dance, they have great voice too! Both women and men! I was blown! My hubby and parents watched and  fell asleep at the same time due to tiredness! I watched the whole show. Bravo!

Live performance from Piazza that night

 Waiting for the show to start

Dancers dancing around perfectly. Great performance

After the show, we all headed back to room and Good Night! End of Day 1!
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