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Regal Princess
Princess Cruises Christens Another "Royal" Ship

by Linda Coffman

Part Two

Where the Action Is
If you've sailed on other Princess ships you'll find Regal Princess' layout similar in some regards and different in others. As noted in Part One of this preview, specialty restaurants are "paired" with lounges on Decks 5 and 7. Additionally, the Lotus Spa is found on Deck 5 and no longer "paired" with the adult retreat, the Sanctuary.

Lounges are located throughout Decks 5, 6, and 7 and there are a lot of them, which contributes to the lack of crowding—passengers fan out to their favorites. Like old friends, you'll find the traditional Princess Theater where production shows and other entertainment is scheduled; the Wheelhouse Bar, a cozy and clubby room with nautical flair; and Crooners, which serves up designer martinis accompanied by a pianist and Rat Pack vibe. Princess Live! is the television studio with a nearby Princess Live! Cafe that was also introduced on Royal Princess. The secondary show lounge, Vista Lounge is a venue for interactive entertainment where there's continuous action...

Speaking of action, gentlemen can try their luck in the Casino and then relax in the adjacent Club 6 or Churchill's Cigar Lounge, while their sweethearts spend their winnings in one of the nearby boutiques. Or...

Take in a a gorgeous light-and-water show adjacent to the main pool or head to the Retreat Pool where the Night Sky Lounge offers dancing under the stars on select evenings.

Sanctuary Cabana
Terrace Pool
Where There's More Action & None At All
Veg out or work out? The Lotus Spa and Fitness Center goes to both extremes. Those who choose the latter will find a exercise machines to get the heart pumping, free weights, and an aerobics room. Some classes are complimentary, while there's a fee for others such as yoga, spinning, and pilates. One deck up are the Sports Center, the Driving Range, and a Jogging Track with exercise stations. Complimentary steam rooms and saunas are no longer located in Fitness Center changing rooms, so for true relaxation after a work out sport fans will have to give the Enclave thermal suite a try in the Lotus Spa, located down on Deck 5—heated stone loungers, a Hammam (Turkish-style steam room), Caldarium (herbal steam room), Laconium (dry heat sauna), a hydro-therapy pool, and rain and fog showers are included in the fee. Be forewarned—the Enclave has proven to be so popular that weekly passes sell out and day passes may not be available. The Lotus Spa and Salon offers treatments and services by Steiner Leisure, including a new Couples Villa for the ultimate in pampering and privacy.

For true adults-only indulgence, look no further than the Retreat Pool and Sanctuary where peace and tranquility are only a thickly padded lounge chair away. Retreat Pool Cabanas and Sanctuary Cabanas are available for rent by the day or half-day. A generous portion of the deck is shaded for comfort and passengers needn't lift a finger after being greeted by Sanctuary Stewards with a chilled towel. Forgot your iPod? No problem, MP3 players loaded with soothing sounds are available for rent. Servers circulate offering healthy snacks and beverages (a nominal service charge applies for food). Cabanas are located at the bow where massages with a view can be booked through the Spa. A half day or full day charge is levied for use of the Sanctuary Loungers to insure the serene atmosphere. A centrally located cabana is available to all who want to cool off in the shade.

Not found on sister-ship Royal Priness and all new on Regal Princess is the aft-facing Terrace Pool, which is also a haven of tranquility for mostly adult swimmers.

The Piazza
Like her sisters ships, the heart of Regal Princess is the atrium's Piazza. And why not? Adjacent is the International Cafe and it's the perfect place for coffee and a pastry in the morning, sandwiches and salads at lunch, tapas before dinner, and to people watch at any time. Overlooking the Piazza is the all-new Bellini's where the signature Italian cocktail is tops on the bar menu. Throughout the day and evening you'll often find passengers lined up along the overhead railings while musicians or other performers entertain on the main floor.

Overlooking the Sea, The SkyWalk
Fun Stuff For Families
No one gets overlooked on Regal Princess and the youth and teen areas are as appealing as the programs' names. Remix (ages 13-17), Shockwaves (ages 8-12), and Princess Pelicans (ages 3-7) offer age-specific spaces and activities. Indoors and outside, play areas for younger children are extensive and teens even have their own private outdoor retreat with a whirlpool spa.

Not new, but not to be overlooked is MUTS, Movies Under The Stars—the giant Times Square style movie screen where concerts and movies are featured at the main pool. After dark it's kind of like going to a drive-in movie (remember those?), only without the car or an admission charge. Fun for all ages is the SkyWalk, cantilevered over the sea with see-through panels on the floor.

For passengers interested in the behind-the-scenes workings of a cruise ship, and who don't mind paying a fee for the experience, the “Ultimate Ship Tour” offers the unique opportunity to explore areas normally off limits to passengers. Participants also receive a variety of themed mementos at many of the stops along the three-hour route, which takes in the ship’s engine control room, medical center, print shop, laundry, photo lab, bridge, and other spaces typically seen only by the ship’s crew.

Princess Cruises, the Future
With the trend toward more meaningful travel experiences, Princess strives to enrich their passengers’ lives by offering in-depth experiences. The range of ship sizes in the fleet adds itinerary flexibility and even Regal Princess—in the largest Princess ship class to date—can potentially visit every port that is most important to the line.

While on board Regal Princess, we found a lot to like. Nothing struck us as revolutionary and that was part of the Princess Cruises plan. Regal Princess is an evolution in design that was introduced by Royal Princess and all passengers—not only those who are returning to the line, but those who are new to Princess—will find intimate spaces on a human scale and a lot to like.

Regal Princess Fast Stats

142,229 tons
1,082 feet long
155 feet wide
Speed 22 knots
3,560 guests, double occupancy

Back to -> Regal Princess Preview - Part One

Cruise Diva's Regal Princess Blogs:

At Home Aboard Regal Princess
Regal Princess Calls At Princess Cays
Regal Princess: So Entertaining
Regal Princess: Art & Architecture
Dining Aboard Regal Princess
The Suite Life Aboard Regal Princess

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